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Posts posted by coasterbill

  1. That sounds similar to our experience. We were not fans of that park at all. It seemed like word got out that it was going to close forever and they just figured they’d get a head start and close half of it right now.

    I’m not sure when you got there but I will say that Sidewinder usually opens super late but there’s no sign anywhere telling you that.

    Congrats on your degree!

    • Like 1
  2. Busch Gardens does a very good job of updating the website with what rides are currently closed for staffing and budget.

    In short:

    Finnegan's Flyer and The Flying Machine are closed but I think they're both actually broken / being refurbed, Mäch Tower (lol), Rhine River Cruise, Roman Rapids and Skyride are closed every day for staffing. Battle For Eire is also closed, possibly forever.

    Escape from Pomeii and Le Scoot are open Friday - Sunday only but this park has a strong under-promise and over-deliver policy with this list so if they opened them on a weekday if they had the staff I wouldn't exactly be shocked.

    All other rides including all coasters are open daily.

    • Like 1
  3. So Six Flags New England’s coaster power hours were awesome. They only advertised the coasters and frisbee being open but as more and more staff became available for an event that they just started advertising a few days ago they opened like half the flat rides in the park for no reason even though nothing was filling trains.

    It’s really a tale of two companies with them and Cedar Fair right now 😂

    • Like 1
  4. On 6/2/2021 at 10:24 PM, Zand said:

    Superman's ranking is basically a "boycott" against the new restraints by some enthusiasts. The same ride went head to head against Millennium Force for 10 years and still runs just as smoothly and powerfully as it did then, so it should still go head to head with Millennium Force. The only change is the restraints.

    I totally remember the Millennium Force vs Superman days and like any good teenage virgin coaster dork I had them 1 and 2 in my Coaster Grotto rankings (in that order because... I mean... come on).

    I don't really think that anybody is boycotting the ride. If we took the top steel coasters and removed everything built in the last 15 years then the top 5 steel coasters on the list would be:

    1) Expedition GeForce

    2) Millennium Force

    3) Goliath

    4) Superman the Ride

    5) Phantom's Revenge

    I don't think that's really that insane for a top 5 steel list that someone made 15 years ago. Goliath butted in between the two but they're still ranked pretty close together.

    • Like 1
  5. I was just making a joke, I didn't mean to derail this thread (but also I'm 100% serious, lol).

    The only thing that I'd add is that in many cases there's no harm just buying the passes at the park. You often need to do that anyway to get pass discounts to apply properly. Unless it's a park where pre-buying or buying as soon as you arrive saves you a ton of time (like a Six Flags park) or you're going on a weekend where there's a very real chance that they'll sell-out you can always just budget for the pass and then play it by ear because there's no real reason not to. Whenever I see a post like this about a Cedar Fair or Busch park where buying the pass in a shop takes approximately 8 seconds I scratch my head.

    • Like 1
  6. I agree with this entirely. Last year at Kings Island we counted 12 people on the Orion platform (on a day where Windseeker was closed for staffing, which isn't a big deal but still... lol). Let's be generous and assume that some of them were training and some of them were supervisors who were just popping by to chat with the people in the booth. Still, whatever... Nitro needs 3 people on the platform and one of those people groups and does Flash Pass merge (though not scanning) before checking 18 seats (because it has one more row than Orion has) and shockingly they don't double stack most days.

    On slow days they won't have a greeter at all and they'll use the exit ramp for Flash Pass so they still only need 3 ops.

    And I also agree that Six Flags has major food staffing problems, but they usually just make a bunch of places Mobile Order only so that they have to pay less people and food gets out just as fast (or slow lol). On really bad days they bring in some food trucks and then call it a day.

  7. Credit to @onlinehyde on Twitter for this, as I have better things to do than watch the Goldman Sachs Travel and Leisure Conference webcast without actually being a shareholder and there’s no transcript to skim, but there was an investor conference yesterday. Cedar Fair shared that they anticipate burning average of 60 million in cash a month during Q2. As a reference, Six Flags expects to be cash flow positive for Q2. Busch / SeaWorld is already cash flow positive this year. They’re looking to “improve efficiencies” (see: cut budget). The fact that they made another budget move on the same day that they said they were going to do exactly that must be a coincidence, right?

    Saying “kids these days don’t want to work... please ignore the fact that Six Flags is paying people half of what we’re paying them, staffing their parks just fine chain-wide, not cutting hours, operating 7 days a week and in many cases extending hours to capitalize on pent-up demand” is easier than saying “We’re absolutely clueless as to what we’re doing so now we have to pay people $15 an hour to work at Kings Island and we’re closing early for budget since we’re losing tons of money thanks to our poor decision-making”.

    Based on the comments here, I guess it’s working.

    PS: I’ve also seen the over-dramatic Facebook comments. Those people are ridiculous but that doesn’t mean Cedar Fair isn’t also a train wreck. Those two things can both be true. 

    • Like 6
  8. 28 minutes ago, Alex26841 said:

    I know this discussion was had a few pages back and it's been done to death at this point but growing up with King's Island being my "home park" (2.5 hours away, lived in WV)... I just never understood how people could prefer it over Cedar Point. And I'm talking about when both parks are operating at their max efficiency. 

    I don't prefer it over the July 2019 version of Cedar Point which was probably the last time the park was running well, but we haven't had that in two years. Every shoulder season and in the last two peak seasons Cedar Point is a world-class theme park being operated like it's Lake Compounce. I went from being mortified at the thought of Six Flags buying Cedar Fair a few years ago to wishing that they had so that park wouldn't be closed today, they wouldn't close ride lines early, they wouldn't close rides for staffing every Spring and Fall and would have a longer operating season. Like... if you think Six Flags would close Top Thrill Dragster on Halloweekends Fridays you're actually on crack. If you think they would close at 8 and not do haunts on Halloweekends Sundays you're also on crack. In contrast, Kings Island is the best-run park in the chain right now except for possibly Knott's. The bar is pretty low, but it's true.

    That said, everyone's improving opinions of Kings Island isn't just because Cedar Point has fallen off of an operational cliff. I used to believe that Kings Island was one of the most overrated major parks in America. It was like Kings Dominion with worse rides and an uglier main street that needed trees desperately (that's still true, by the way). They had a lot of "good" rides but no "great" rides until it got dark out.

    Since my first visit though, they've really beefed up their offerings. I think Diamondback is one of the better B&M hypers, Banshee is a blast, Mystic Timbers is also a blast (and the shed is fun with the right expectations) and I really do feel like Orion finally gave them a real headline coaster. Now look... I get the complaints and I like it more than most people. No 91 mph coaster with clamshells and a wave turn is ever going to be boring to me (though I crap on Candymonium a lot so I admit that I don't really know where the line is, but even that ride is fun). I get that it's a budget-giga but I really do like the ride. I also feel like they've just really rounded out the collection in-general over the last decade or so.

    Plus, additions like the Brewhouse patio, Antique autos (which look really nice), sprucing up the Bat, the Flight of Fear theming enhancements and similar things have also really improved my opinion of the place. They also have an incredible Fastlane system which is nice. Also, removing Firehawk and Vortex were addition-by-subtraction. They also just clearly give more of a shit than most parks in the chain. When we went last year every effect was working on Backlot stunt coaster. You're not getting that at another Cedar Fair park.

    I've liked everything they've done lately (except for their crappy Winterfest but I've resigned myself to the fact that Cedar Fair is hopeless with that).

    • Like 4
  9. I can't wait to check out this event from the top of Rip Ride Rockit


    ... in all seriousness, this is exciting. I feel like it has high suck-potential because they're clearly positioning it as the cheap option and selling the combo ticket for this and BGT for the same price as one night at HHN but more competition has to be a good thing for HHN and every time I've gone to the BGT event I've really enjoyed it.

    I think there's a chance that every animal thing will be closed and it will just be rides, pop up bars, mazes and scare zones but please make Clyde & Seamore's high school slaughterhouse of death (or something like that) happen. Then I would buy a ticket immediately.

    • Like 1
    • Haha 1
  10. As time has gone on I've started to feel more hesitant to recommend credit cards because obviously they're great for some people and not great for other people and in-general people overspend on them and pay interest which is the entire reason that they exist. I like them though, they work for us and if you like playing the card game too then keep reading, otherwise stop reading right now and pretend this was never posted.

    Anyway... right now people are paying down their balances and credit card companies are freaking out (lol let me break out the world's smallest violin) but that's kind of good news since it means the sign-up offers are getting crazy because they want to suck more people in and get them into debt. If you're on top of things though and know you won't over-spend, it's great news.

    I expect more crazy offers from other card issuers to follow along so keep an eye on those issuer websites and even your snail mail, the best example right now of a crazy offer is the Chase Sapphire Preferred: 100k points ($1,250 on their Expedia portal) for spending 4k in 3 months offer (or if you want to go nuts they have tons of transfer partners but anyone that wants to deal with that already knew about this anyway, I'm just posting this disclaimer since I know those people are coming to correct me). There is a $95 annual fee, the benefits might make it worth it for you but you have to look into that. If not, cancel after the first year.

    I already have this card and have for years and I'm salty as hell because I didn't get 100k points but I got Brit to apply for this today so now I can use Brit's points.

    I also expect more crazy offers so you don't have to jump at this one. Chase has no-annual-fee business cards with $750 signup bonuses which is also nuts and you know that Amex, Barclays and Capital One will respond. Just keep an eye on card issuer sites and snail mail card offers, they're getting insane.

  11. The parks aren't dead, but in 2019 if I would have told you that Magic Kingdom was at capacity you probably wouldn't have expected to wait only 35 minutes for Peter Pan, 25 minutes for Haunted Mansion, 40 minutes for Space Mountain and less than an hour for Mine Train (the current wait times with the park at capacity).

    I know fastpass isn't a thing, but there's no way that these parks are anywhere near their real capacity. I'm not saying that this is even bad, I'm just saying that it's weird.

    • Like 2
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