Just Published: Theme Park Insider: 2016 Year in Review
Busch Gardens’ new thrill ride Falcon’s Fury includes first-of-its kind design elements, systems and parts. Due to a delay in the fabrication of key component parts, neither the manufacturer nor Busch Gardens are able to complete the lengthy testing processes needed to open the ride to the public. The safety of our guests and team members remains Busch Gardens’ top priority and none of these delays involve safety systems. The ride has been safely operated in the initial stages of the testing process, and all other elements of the park’s newest re-imagined land Pantopia are now open to guests. Busch Gardens will provide updates on the ride opening as events warrant. We are committed to delivering world-class thrills and the best possible ride experience, and we look forward to the launch of Falcon’s Fury, North America’s tallest freestanding drop tower, later this summer.
Kentucky Kingdom – The park is open! Congratulations go out to Ed Hart and his team. Here’s hoping that you are once again able to build this park up and zoom past your previous attendance highs. I think now is a very good time for the following video to be reposted. Please watch carefully and take notes, there will be a test.
Question 1: Is it possible to start a regional park and through proper investments have more visitors than the metro population of the area the park is located in within 8 years?
Question 2: What is the primary driver of attendance in a regional park?
Question 3: What happens when you stop investing in a park’s ride portfolio?
Question 4: What happens when you remove rides from your park?
Question 5: If the previous questions were so easy to answer, how come there are so many parks that complain about their attendance figures when they are doing nothing about it? (Essay answer, please post your responses below. Answers will be graded on prose, sarcasm, facts, humor, and the proper balance of incredulity and indignation.)
Islands of Adventure – The rumored King Kong attraction is now a dirt pit reminiscent of Diggerland. I really hope that they aren’t done just yet.
Canada’s Wonderland – Wonder Mountain’s Guardian has opened. They dropped a bit of a hint during the below interview with the creators and mentioned that they intend to retheme the content of the ride to something haunted for Halloween. That leads me to believe that some of the internal scenes are on screens and can be easily changed, kind of like Toy Story Mania, but it sounds like this park will actually get around to changing the ride.
Tokyo Disneyland – Here is video for their Once Upon a Time castle show.
Dorney Park – Things aren’t looking good for Stinger. It looks like there was a bit of a mishap on the ride that could keep it closed for most of the season.
Holiday World – I don’t know about you, but I have already given up on the two-month long promotion before they actually tell us what they are going to build. Unless there is some sort of axe murderer running around the boat during the voyage, I have to say that I am really uninterested for the time being. We have also had our spies at work in the park who spotted some markers on the ground. This would seem to lean the conversation away from an Iron Horse treatment of the Voyage. Although every other guess (including doing nothing at all) is still in play. Hopefully it won’t be some sort of weird floating hot dog cart that sells gourmet pig leftovers to only the patrons of a particular ride.
Universal Orlando – While we all know that the dragon was installed, I found some video of the dragon before it was covered up. Other elements of the new land are also starting to come on line.
Six Flags Magic Mountain – Honda owners will be rolling in the good fortune thanks to a promotion from the local Honda dealers, including free parking, early admission to the park, and other free gifts in the park.
Schlitterbahn Fort Lauderdale – This park is starting to look like to may actually be built. A deal is currently on the table that needs to be signed off on by the city by July 15th. If this happens and everything else goes right, this park could open as early as 2017.
Star Wars Universe – StarWars.com is releasing installments of their documentary Star Wars to Jedi. Here are the first episodes to get you caught up.
Now Hiring: Universal Orlando – Auditions for the returning Rocky Horror Picture Show Tribute and anyone interested in being a Who will be held on June 3 and June 8. On June 2 is auditions for a female Jazz singer.
1. Yes (Louisville has a metro area population of 1.3 million)
2. Big splashy rides & roller coasters
3. Attendance stagnates
4. Attendance drops
5. Answers will vary, post and review below.
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