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Robert Niles
Editor

Knott's Berry Farm causes jaws to drop with Demon Drop deal

Published: October 20, 2009 at 12:19 PM

Here is today's "you've got to be kidding me" story: Cedar Fair is moving the Demon Drop ride from Cedar Point to Knott's Berry Farm.

Demon Drop at Cedar Point

Seriously. Forget "Demon Drop." Let's call this the "Jaw Drop," 'cause folks are stunned that Knott's is even trying this.

Screamscape picked up the news (scroll down) from a City of Buena Park newsletter, and the LA Times openly mocked it early today.

California Adventure's getting a billion-dollar makeover. Six Flags Magic Mountain has bulked up its kiddie lands and is adding a new coaster, reclaiming the nation's "most coasters" crown (for whatever that's worth). Universal Hollywood's bringing in a major new Transformers attraction, plus a new high-tech King Kong. Even Legoland is expanding, with a new hotel and water park.

And this is what Cedar Fair brings to the table to compete in the Southern California theme park market?

Replies (18)

Vickie Boyd

Published: October 20, 2009 at 12:34 PM

Okay, that makes no sense. Except that they're spending a lot of money on the two Intimidators to get them up and running. But Demon Drop? Why? It's not like CP needs the space. That's not enough room for anything. This is really curious.
Mike K

Published: October 20, 2009 at 1:21 PM

I think it has to do with park capacity. Demon Drop rarely gets long lines at Cedar Point, but the ride still has life to it. Knott's could use the thrill capacity as the ride will generate a decent wait time during peak days.
Ryan Sanford

Published: October 20, 2009 at 1:22 PM

i really dislike the demon drop.
glad its leaving CP
Jack Michael

Published: October 20, 2009 at 2:00 PM

Its the same thing as the other parks building identical rides at multiple parks, no biggy.
Melissa Kosztowny

Published: October 20, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Hmmmmm... I knew that CP would get rid of the ride. And as for the space? It is very close to disaster transport. If they got rid of that ride then there would be space for something new. Just to start a rumor, probably wont happen. Demon drop hardly gets any riders and they could be cutting some costs, though it probably isn't a lot to run the ride...
Derek Potter

Published: October 20, 2009 at 4:49 PM

Cedar Point has had Demon Drop up for sale for a few years now. Parts aren't cheap and it doesn't really gather much of a crowd anymore. While it is odd that the 25 year old ride would move to Knotts, I guess they figure that it will work somehow.

The only thing I can think of is that Cedar Point has plans for some long overdue improvements to that part of the park soon, and figure that another park can get some use out of the ride for a while. I'm also scratching my head at the choice of Knotts instead of Michigan's Adventure, Valleyfair, or another smaller park in the chain. Demon Drop would probably be more popular in one of those parks, and SoCal is a big boy's market that is improving itself. If this is all Knotts is getting for 2010, then that's pretty weak stuff to bring to the table.

With that said, I wouldn't be surprised if Knotts has some other things for next year as well, or is getting something substantial in 2011.

James Koehl
Writer

Published: October 20, 2009 at 5:33 PM

With everyone else in So.Cal. bringing in megabuck improvements at the same time, perhaps CF decided to 1)get rid of an unnecessary ride at CP, 2) send it to KBF to give them SOMETHING new at low cost, and 3)wait until the following year to bring something big to KBF, when it will not be lost in the "NEW THIS YEAR AT...(fill in the theme park name here) hubbub. It's not a very big ride, it doesn't have a very big footprint, and it will probably fit into a few semi trucks. It always seemed to be in a bit of a strange location at CP, tucked behind the bathrooms at the front gate.
Maybe, if we're lucky, CP will decide to send Mean Streak to KBF the following year, thus freeing up a lot of room for a less orthopedically-destructive roller coaster.
James Rao
Writer

Published: October 20, 2009 at 7:58 PM

I gotta second Derek's comments. Why not move the thing to one of the less conspicuous parks to the north? And if Knotts wanted another drop ride, why not just buy DCA's Maliboomer? I heard Disney would love to move it out sooner than later, and the shipping would be a lot cheaper. =) Heck, Disney may have even paid Knotts to take that lame eyesore off their hands!

I wonder if Disney Imagineering knew when they were designing the Orlando version of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror that it would render all other drop rides obsolete?

71.216.165.48

Published: October 20, 2009 at 5:47 PM

Will this ride fit in Screamin' Swing's space? It seems as if it would be an eyesore in that location. They can't expand the ride to the north, or it extends into the Courthouse Square are where crowds form for large shows. It cannot block the door to the side of the Charles M Schultz theatre. If they expand to the south, they tear out part of Boot Hills. I think it should be theme and painted brown to fit in better.
Raul Araoz

Published: October 20, 2009 at 6:45 PM

This move makes absolutely no sense. Knott's already has Supreme Scream, which is the best drop tower I have ever been on that doesn't have the words "Tower" and "Terror" in it.

The freefall style ride was made antiquated by the drop tower. The Demon Drop should simply be scraped.

72.131.53.81

Published: October 20, 2009 at 7:35 PM

I love first generation free falls! They are so much fun. I'm still pissed at Six Flags for tearing them all down. I live within driving distance of Cedar Point, so I was happy to have it there, and I'm bummed they are moving it so far away.
86.96.226.87

Published: October 21, 2009 at 5:45 AM

Knott's already has a drop ride... just weird...
76.169.253.39

Published: October 21, 2009 at 8:52 AM

^^Exactly the point...even SIX FLAGS said "it's time for these these things to go"...
209.154.226.123

Published: October 21, 2009 at 9:54 AM

Yeah, kinda sad to see Demon Drop go, but it's time. It was a mid-1980's addition, and at that time it was fairly groundbreaking. It got lost in the coaster bubble of the 1990's, but still enjoyable. I always enjoyed a ride or three on it upon arrival, just to warm up my Coaster Legs!

But yes, space is starting to become a concern at CP, and so unfortunately some of my childhood favorites are going. White Water Landing made way for Maverick, and so must Demon Drop make way.

The front of the park needs some attention anyhow. Besides Wicked Twister, which is not for the timid by any means, the only other major attraction in that area of the park (unless you count the Needle. I don't.)is Disaster Transport.

Disaster Transport was mediocre when it was Avalanche Run(also a mid-80's addition), and the covering and re-theming of it was interesting for a few years. But ultimately, it was still a mediocre ride. It's now past its time, too. I would venture to guess, in fact, that the corner of the park that these two attractions occupy is actually one of the least crowded areas of Cedar Point. Most visitors head straight for Raptor, Millenium Force, etc.

Getting rid of Demon Drop doesn't do much for CP space-wise, but getting rid of Disaster Transport too would provide space for at least one new major attraction.

That's why I suspect that this season will be Disaster Transport's final one, as well.

Robert Niles
Editor

Published: October 21, 2009 at 10:21 AM

I think it is telling that the majority of positive comment about this is coming from... Cedar Point fans who are happy to see the ride go.

Not a good sign for Knott's, is it?

Melissa Kosztowny

Published: October 21, 2009 at 11:41 AM

Remember MaxAir is also in that corner of the park, and if a very popular ride. The area does need attention. Maybe a redone Kiddie Kingdom, which is in bad shape and losing disaster transport to build another bid ride?
Jeremy Ferrell

Published: October 21, 2009 at 2:16 PM

Well, Robert--I don 't know if I'd say we're *happy* about Demon Drop leaving, but I think we're not *unhappy* about it. It was/is a great ride, but has run its course.

CP has done a great job of getting the most it can from a fairly small peninsula. But if CP is to continue to evolve and stay relevant, the old must make way for the new. It's a bittersweet farewell, I guess.:)

Oh, and I meant that *next* season will be Disaster Transport's last. At least I suspect so.

And, yeah....can't imagine why it's going to Knott's. That part of it throws me for a loop.

97.93.74.158

Published: October 24, 2009 at 1:48 AM

I would be curious to find out why Knotts has bought the ride. Perhaps an interview is in order eh? (hint hint) I like others have been on their other high drop ride. Is one ride like this enough? What made them decide to add a second?

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