I have always wished Mr. Shapiro the best in his lofty attempt to redefine the Six Flags brand, but the reality is that with SFSTL he is still dealing with a dirty, broken down, iron ride park, operated by self-centered teenagers with no concept of customer service. It is as if he and his team completely forgot about the Midwest in their quest to improve the brand....and missed a huge money-making opportunity in the process.
(Robert, you might want to rephrase my rant into something a little more P.C., like, "So, Mr. Shapiro, presuming your company does not go bankrupt, do you have any plans for improving the condition of the Saint Louis operation?").
One other question: The Six Flags Thrilleaders....what was he thinking???? ;)
Although I can't participate in the tournament picks, here are my predictions for the F4:
Tower of TerrorSplash MountainThe Amazing Adventures of SpidermanIndiana Jones Adventure
Yes, all Disney and Universal. Sad, but, let's face it - fan boys will come out in full force. I'd like to say Apollo's Chariot will sink Splash and that Millennium Force will trump Indy (I think Indy is overrated), but it's doubtful. Fan boys to the rescue.
That being said, I think that as a whole, Silver Dollar City is themed every bit as well as a Disney park. Not all of the rides are heavily themed, but the park is, and Herschend doesn't have the money to spend 5 million on a coaster track and 95 million on it's scenery. Perhaps if they raped their customer's wallets like certain theme parks do, then they could build such things. Of course it probably wouldn't hurt WOF's attendance if Cedar Fair invested in that park like they have in Cedar Point.
BTW, do me a favor and take a couple of spins on Prowler for me this year. I live in Ohio, one of the most coaster happy states in the country, and I still don't have a GCI wooden coaster to ride around here.
I didn't get the email for some reason, but I'll give you a final four off the top of my head because I'm pretty sure I know this website and the people who vote. If they are in separate brackets, here's how it probably will go.
SpidermanTower of TerrorEverestIndiana Jones
That could be a bit off, but it will basically come down to insert Disney ride here, Universal ride there. It will be that way because the Disney and Universal fans will make the trip to this website to blindly vote for their rides, even though they likely have never ridden the usually good coaster from the regional park that will inevitably face them. The Busch coasters will get some play, even though they are really no better and no more themed than most Cedar Fair/Six Flags B&M coasters. Oh well, at least it will be fun talking some trash. Maybe I'll get the folks at the Kings Island and Cedar Point fansites to flood the tourney with votes and make it a fair fight.
And, I would probably have a list of questions for Six Flags but I would absolutly have to ask:
What is your plan if you go bankrupt and what will you do if you survive.
But again, we are not talking Cedar Point + King's Island here in Missouri, and honestly, we should be. There isn't a lot of competition in the states round about, so the only reason the parks aren't bigger and better is because both the the financial investment and the long term vision are lacking.
I aim the previous accusation at all three parks discussed.
And I do blame Busch. For a lot of things! ;)
Anyway...my Prowler review will be hitting the presses in about one month, April 18th/19th, weather permitting!
Back to the tournament...two dark horses: Toy Story Midway Mania, and The Simpsons. If they pull a few upsets, either one is capable of going all the way. However, I think most folks will take Pirates (especially the Disneyland version) over TSMM, and there are still a lot of Back to the Future fans upset over the Simpsons. We'll have to wait and see!
BTW -> Mr. Niles now allows unregistered comments on the Blog Flume...when you are not logged in you get the IP instead. I use that mechanism when I want to pretend like I am Jake Rivers, which I will be doing a lot during this tournament!
The deal is still on for me, although to tell you the truth, I think you would get the short end of it. The people will love Prowler. As for me, the closest GCI is about 5 hours away...although I suspect that it may be Cedar Point's turn for one soon.
Oh, and Mr. Shapiro, from Six Flags America, in Largo, MD-- Do you have a clue if it's going to be sold? If not (and the park goes completely out of business), do you think some of the rides will be sold to other parks or to a fair or something? Thanks
I'm bringing snarky back.
It's snarky synergy!
(I swear, if this ends up being a real Internet rumor within the next month, I'm gonna scream.)
I'm going to my friend's house for a green eggs and ham (and, of course, beer) breakfast. By the looks of it, I'll be in no condition to vote later today (though I'm sure Tower won't need my help).
Thanks for settin' this up, Robert, and top of the mornin' to all ye!