Theme Park Insider's 2011 Year In Review - July
Written by Jeff ElliottNote: The editor of these articles has insisted that I make the soon to be obvious point that while there may be some real news in here, the key to these articles is a sense of humor. While your own recollection of these stories may be a little different than what is presented below, your recollection is quite possibly closer to truth. While it was requested that I keep to the facts, I realized quite quickly in this process that 1) I need to get sober before agreeing to writing a ridiculous long article series and 2) I agreed to do twelve of these?? Was I insane??
Published: December 30, 2011 at 8:15 PM
July, the month of extraordinarily perplexing events. With the theme park season at its peak, very disturbing things started happening. Among many other disturbing events, this was the month that I found out that I was going to be a daddy. After several unsuccessful tries, my wife finally asked me really nicely to stop pushing her down the stairs. So now I have to be a daddy… Once the kiddo starts crying and keeping me awake at night, the good humored person that writes these articles will go away to be replaced by the irritable, clueless, and disconnected parent that I had when I was growing up, so you now know that you are on notice. And after all of that, not much else happened in the news.
The captain has turned on the no-morels sign… my room number is 214. Please feel free to take a random room key out of the punch bowl. Keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle at all times. And those things in the other punch bowl are not balloons, use them and we won't have any additional surprises in nine months.
Theme Park Insider's Year In Review – July
Thorpe Park – After a very odd viral campaign claiming that the world was ending filmed of nut jobs roaming through the park carrying large signs, the speculation finally came to an end as Thorpe Park put the first shovels in the ground for this new coaster. No offence, but if the world were to end, would it really start near London? I can completely understand New York or Washington DC, even the deep south of the United States makes sense to me, but not London. I mean if you really want to put a specific occurrence to the beginning of the end of the world it will be when Paris Hilton gets her own TV show. Wait, what? That already happened? Ok… What about if Paris Hilton opens a retail store? Hmmm… that too, huh? Well, that just about confirms it, the world is over… I'm going down to the pub and see if I can hold off the raging zombie hordes from there.
California Adventure – While construction continues on the rest of the park, California Adventure opened its new entrance designed to make it look older than Disneyland. The design was based on a building that was so old that it burned down years ago, but some design genius buried deep in the Imagineering underground bunker still thought that this was a great idea. Hopefully the old disguise will allow the park to buy beer, the only reason why you would have want to look older than what you really are.
Hersheypark – After what it wished were a successful viral campaign, Hersheypark finally decided to let the cat out of the bag on their newest roller coaster, Skyrush. At over 200 feet tall, this new coaster will be a nice new addition to their coaster fleet. And yes, this is a theme park; it is themed to and smells like chocolate.
Tokyo DisneySea, while being one of the most spectacular parks in the world, did something very odd this month. They spent $22 million on a suped-up Dumbo ride. For the life of me, I have no idea where they spent that money. The ride system itself could only by half to three quarters of a million even if they spend the extra money to have an overbuilt model. Assuming that the ride was surrounded by a themed land and themed restaurant and themed trees and themed benches and the like, that may come out to a little over 2-3 million. So then what happened to the other $20 million dollars? If this happens much more, I am going to take my single share of Disney stock to the stockholders meeting and raise a holy stink about this if it continues. It is expensive enough to run a theme park without $20 million running out the door like a redneck when confronted with soap.
Darien Lake – For those of you who don't remember, one of the more traumatic events happened this month when an Iraqi War veteran who had lost both of his legs to a roadside bomb fell out of the Ride of Steel and was killed.
Luna Park (Australia) – Despite the Australian education system scoring very well against most other nations, it turns out that their young people are just as stupid as people in other nations. What led to this conclusion was when 17 members of the staff at Luna Park were fired over an ATM machine that was giving out $50 bills instead of $20 bills. Once news of this had spread around the park, these 17 staff members proceeded to go down to this ATM and empty their accounts, while the ATM machine happily took pictures of the whole thing. Not very bright… but it doesn't matter a whole lot, Australian girls are hot so it balances out.
So there you have it: July. If you don't remember the month like I do, please set a monkey-boy straight in the discussion below.
All monkey pictures have been lovingly borrowed from the amazing artist Frank Cho and his long deceased comic strip Liberty Meadows. No monkeys were harmed during the production of this article, but if I get my hands on them, it will be over… do you hear me?? OVER!
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