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New Year's resolutions for theme park fans

Written by
Published: December 30, 2008 at 9:09 PM

As we wrap up 2008 and look ahead to 2009, many folks are taking time to make New Year's resolutions.

And next week, most will take a little more time to break them! :-p

Still, I think the exercise a worthy one, for how it shows us how much of our lives we can control, and improve. Heck, the whole point of Theme Park Insider is to help us plan and have better vacations.

So in that spirit, here are 10 New Year's resolutions for 2009:

  1. To spend a day at a theme park we've not visited within the past 10 years, or ever.
  2. To go on at least one old attraction we've never been on at a park we've visited many times.
  3. To walk an uninterrupted lap around the park at some point on every visit -- not to get anywhere, but just for the sights and the exercise.
  4. To let the other folks go first when we get to the queue entrance at the same time.
  5. To start a conversation in a queue with another visitor we don't know.
  6. To start a conversation with a park employee whom we don't know.
  7. To give a lost visitor directions.
  8. To ask for directions when we are lost.
  9. To go to a park's guest services desk on our way out of the park and compliment the work of a specific park employee.
  10. After each visit, to post more attraction, restaurant and hotel reviews to ThemeParkInsider.com. ;-)

I used the first person plural ("we") in the hope that maybe you would adopt some of these resolutions for yourself, too.

What else would you add to this list? Please add your New Year's resolution for 2009 (theme park related or not) in the comments.

And have a Happy New Year!

Readers' Opinions

From Anthony Murphy on December 30, 2008 at 9:47 PM
People SHOULD go and tell guest service about a great worker! They love those kinds of things!
From SC Todbear on December 30, 2008 at 9:51 PM
This is an excellent list, maybe it will catch on and there will be a lot of employees getting compliments to boot. Keep up the good work!
From Joshua Counsil on December 30, 2008 at 10:33 PM
I've done numbers 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 10 many times. I would love to do number 1 if I had the money, and once tried to do number 9 but didn't know the employee's name.

I plan to follow through on number 10 after my trip to Las Vegas on New Year's Day. I'll write a trip report, but I cannot rate any attractions or restaurants as they do not appear on the site. I can understand the restaurants' absence from the site since they change frequently and are numerous, but I think a little section in the "Park Reviews" could be dedicated to Las Vegas for its shows, rides and attractions (even if you couldn't rate them, but merely have a section of compiled trip reports/reviews). Las Vegas is like one giant theme park.

As for my New Year's theme park resolutions ...

1) Finish my Mechanical Engineering Bachelor's Degree in April and begin planning my future theme park engineering strategy.

2) Ignore my desires to correct friends/family when they confuse Disneyland with Disney World.

3) Arrive at a theme park BEFORE 10AM and NOT hungover.

4) Keep my temper in the afternoon heat when a Brazilian tour group cuts me in line.

5) Teach the Universal employees how to properly operate a Single Riders line.

6) Teach the Disney employees how to properly point with one finger.

7) Teach the Six Flags employees how to properly ... do everything.

8) Have an on-ride photo that doesn't get censored.

9) Proudly admit that I love "Sounds Dangerous" at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

10) Shamelessly wear a pair of those damn Mickey ears.

From KD Younger on December 30, 2008 at 10:40 PM
Well, now, you'll never get a Disney CAST MEMBER to point with one finger. Ain't gonna happen. No sir. About the only time you'll see a Disney cast member point with one finger it might be back stage where they can't be seen and in a private place where they might be signaling their frustrations.... ;)
From Mark Hollamon on December 31, 2008 at 7:58 AM
I would love to see a NYE's resolution by park employees to actively enforce the no smoking policies that they have in place. There is nothing more disgusting than to go to Typhoon Lagoon for a relaxing day only to have some fool sitting next to you start smoking and then put the butt out in the sand and leave it there.

I would LOVE to see a few people get walked from the park for this. ENOUGH!

From Andy Guinigundo on December 31, 2008 at 2:02 PM
We all need to resolve to get out there! Show up! Don't leave that trip for next year. Most everyone has a park within a few hours drive. Save up your pennies, book a cheap room if you need to. Don't let our theme parks (especially the regional/local parks) turn into the next Hard Rock.

Spending money is the only thing that will grow the economy!

ps Robert - love your list.

From Deidre Dennis on December 31, 2008 at 8:43 PM
Definitely loving #9. I try to do that when we go out to eat and get good service, in addition to leaving a good tip we also write on the receipt "EXCELLENT SERVICE."

People always hear about the negative stuff so it's always good to let people know, (and to let their supervisors know), the good stuff, too. Plan to do some of the items on your list on our next trip.

From TH Creative on December 31, 2008 at 11:05 PM
I can do all of those things! And will!

It's just before 1 AM. We just returned from the Disney Shopping Village where traffic was steady but a bit lighter than usual. The new stage is great, but clearly the absence of the Pleasure Island Clubs and the IDIOTIC decision to save a few bucks by not having fireworks for the Downtown Disney crowd will take a toll on the till.

We capped the night standing in the Magic Kingdom cast member parking lot watching the MK's impressive New Year's fireworks.

2009 may well be the most challenging year for the theme park industry. We enter it humbled, with our fingers decidedly crossed.

CURRENT PROJECTS: I am currently working as a project manager on the construction of the new Peabody Tower and convention center (as well as renovations in the existing Peabody). I am also managing the renovation of six buildings at the Caribbean Beach Resort and the Dolphin Resort. I am also managing work at the new artifacts storage building at the Kennedy Space Center.

Best wishes to all TPI posters in 2009.

From Broose Johnson on January 1, 2009 at 11:43 AM
Robert-
Wonderful list!
The only thing that I would add is: 11) Look for more opportunities to offer to be the photographer so that groups or families can have everyone in the picture.

I love the grateful looks on their faces! Happy New Year!

From Robert Niles on January 1, 2009 at 12:33 PM
Great one!
From Tony Duda on January 2, 2009 at 10:11 PM
As for offering to take a group picture of other visitors, I try to do that at least twice every time I go to a theme park. It really is easy to see people in that fix and helping them out and making them happy also make me happy.

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