Last Week At Your Amusement Park......August 1A digest of amusement park news and rumors...and a couple of rants...with a sense of humor...
From Jeff ElliottShanghai Disneyland - While many plans have surfaced about what is actually going to be put into Shanghai Disneyland, and frankly most of them are just plain ludicrous (like Disney would ever build a rip-off of Knotts Coaster Farm’s classic log ride themed to a movie about slavery....keep dreaming), but one of the craziest ideas looks like it has already hit the construction phase: the gigantic moat around the entire resort. While it doesn’t look like the moat has been stocked with any added security, I was not about to trust the signs that seemed very welcoming to Internet rumor mongers and Universal employees. As a bit of an investigator, I pride myself on seeing the little details that no one else does, and as the air was filled with the snaps and screams of what sounded like large reptiles shredding Universal employees, I found that the time stamp on my FastPass (to see the moat up close) was off by 3 minutes, which definitely invalidated it.
Posted August 1, 2011 at 12:13 PM
Canada’s Wonderland - A sneaky visitor to Canada’s Wonderland was able to get close to some of the rebar they are laying down for their 2012 ride and found a label that says "Giga Coaster Caps". While an official announcement is still a couple of weeks off, early rumors say that the giga coaster will be themed to the Maple Leafs 50+ year drought without the Stanley Cup.
Moron of the Week - Lagoon - An employee was arrested and fired after an altercation and then a fist fight involving 3 teenagers trying to get in line for the Samurai spinny ride when they were trying to close it down for the night. While I am as much a fan of random vigilante justice as the next person, particularly when it comes to teenagers, I think the method of delivery is what took this from being something that everyone appreciated, into something that they were fired for. Anyone who has seen a superhero movie knows that the proper way to hand out vigilante justice is to just jump in before asking any questions or they can even say, "Hey, it’s the Batman", and then hit them so hard they fly through the air and crush a structure 30 feet away. So remember this short checklist, 1. Don’t ask questions, 2. Deal out wrathful justice, 3. Make them fly through the air before, 4. Crush some random structure that wasn’t there a minute earlier and, 5. Wear a mask or glasses or something to conceal your identity. With these simple steps in mind, please resume your former places and proceed to beat the crap out of the teenagers who all richly deserve such treatment for their loud music, pants hanging off their butts, and walking on my grass.
Stories from a Theme Park Insider - It seems that Robert Niles has thrown the PR machine into overdrive over his new book, where it was mentioned on both of the main sites I scope to do this article. While I would really like to say I enjoyed the book, I must mention that until I get a Kindle for Christmas or as a late graduation present (or as a thank you for writing these wonderful news/humor articles), I will be waiting for the Cliff Notes version, the audiobook, the movie, or the Christmas Special before I get my copy. And when do you find time to read when there are 164 channels of garbage on your TV set? All joking aside, please buy a copy of Robert’s book; it is keeping the lights on and the rent paid on this website, and who knows, you may actually enjoy reading......once you get tired of video games.
Six Flags Fiesta Texas - While it is looking like SFFT is getting a new ride for the 2012 season, it is very unclear what it is going to be. From what I can piece together, it is a new attraction designed to test your stamina and ability to cope with the worst situations in the world as it shakes your wallet out of your pocket and then flips you over the border into Mexico where you have to find your way back to the middle of Texas without money or ID.
Ticket Scams - This is another public service announcement (just so we might qualify for some government money). Every week for the last two months, undercover stings have been uncovering many different theme park ticket resale operations. The latest sting in Florida uncovered over a million dollars of counterfeit tickets. The way they are doing is by buying unused days of theme park tickets and reselling them to others. The problem is that the reselling of tickets like this is illegal, and the parks have gone out of their way to defeat these types of ticket recycling. The way the laws read, if you buy an illegal ticket, you can personally be held responsible for being in possession of stolen property and being arrested as well as losing the money you spent on these tickets. I have said it before, so I am going to say it again: If you value everything that your theme park does for you, pay full price on their website. As Theme Park Insiders, it is our duty to not scam our favorite theme parks with even legally bought discounted tickets. Let the theme parks know how much we appreciate them by not only paying full price, but throwing in an extra couple of dollars to help them pay for the next big attraction. Except for anyone who would think it was ok to spend $55 million on a $350 thousand spinny ride.....
Cedar Fair - Apparently the inbound CEO and Chairman of Cedar Fair has a new and interesting way to get the pulse of his customers at his parks. Matthew Ouimet likes to sit on a bench in one of his parks and write notes on a clipboard as he hears patrons talk about the park. So here is an assignment for everyone who goes to Cedar Fair parks, if you see a guy in an expensive suit and tie sitting on a bench with a clipboard, I want you to say one of the following in a loud and clear voice, "The only thing this park needs is free parking and free drinks," or "If I am going to ever come back to this park, it better be cheaper or have a major new attraction," or "Theme Park Insiders deserve free admission because they do such a great service to all of humanity," or "It should be a new park policy to flog the teenagers," or "I have no idea what a B&M is, but I think we need three."
Walt Disney World - WDW announced a multi-year alliance with Chiquita. Apparently the deal is designed to lure some of the best monkeys away from Six Flag’s Ride Design division, who "won’t spend $55 million on a crappy spinny ride....maybe with a larger budget than they are used to (paid in Chiquita bananas), the monkeys could come up with LardBeer or BananaBeer or something". One could hope that they could only just sign on the dotted line when a particular franchise has done more than $4 billion at the box office...
If I have missed anything (and I have, so no worries there) please post below. If you have some inside information, more news, more rumors, first rides, please share with the rest of us.
Sources: Screamscape, Amusement Today, and whatever else I happened to read this week...
Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.
From Melissa DonahueCaption: "Hey guys... Look what blew up during the sandstorm on Tatooine!"
Posted August 1, 2011 at 1:45 PM
From Jeff ElliottCaption: After too many Jedi mind tricks, the Stormtrooper finds that his pink and fluffy brain can only fall in love with other pink and fluffy things.
Posted August 3, 2011 at 11:19 AM
From Rob VialaCaption: Oh Crap....I knew I should have gotten Lord Vader one!
Posted August 3, 2011 at 1:19 PM
From Tony DudaCaption: How am I supposed to eat this stuff when I haven't even figured out how to p** while wearing this uniform?
Posted August 3, 2011 at 8:18 PM
This discussion has been archived, and is not accepting additional responses.
Theme Park Insider: Orlando 2014
Get all of Theme Park Insider's reader ratings, tips, and advice for planning a trip to Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, or SeaWorld, in our new 2014 Orlando guidebook! It's more than 200 pages of well-tested, insider information that will help you get the most from your vacation.
Order now: Kindle | iBooks | Paperback | Kindle (UK)
Theme Park Insider Guidebooks
Top U.S. Theme Parks
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Other Top International Parks
Readers' Top Themed Rides
Top Roller Coasters
Top Theme Park Shows
Features, News and Advice
2014 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar.
2013 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2012 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2011 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2010 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2009 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2008 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2007 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2006 Blog PostsJan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
2005 Blog PostsDec.
2004-2005Staff column archive