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castaway_kid

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Everything posted by castaway_kid

  1. Wow. That really sucks, but after 24 years of teaching in a middle school I cannot say I'm really surprised. I guess the only thing that might help is higher wages, bringing in (theoretically) higher caliber workers, but I assume that would have to be a corporate decision and obviously negatively affects the bottom line. Do you know if this is a problem across the boards at most Six Flags parks or is it unique to our area? We were at Great Adventure in July and they didn't seem to have as big an issue with too few employees in any venue but don't know if that is always the case or we just hit a good day with low attendance. It was a Tuesday when we were there. I'm not sure about all of the parks, but Chicago and STL both use boosters during FF to try and help fill in some of the gaps, but this too comes with problems as you are not going to have a very knowledgeable "employee" if they get trained and do their one and only shift all in the same day. As for the caliber of employees you are spot on about the wages. First off Eureka doesn't have that many teenagers wanting to work there, and those that do generally flock to the Aquatics and Entertainment departments, which are the highest paying for seasonal workers generally. The Rides, Games, and Retail also get quite a few of the "locals". The main problem is retention of the Culinary department which seems to be primarily teenagers bused in from north St. Louis. Of the over 700 hired throughout the season they have around 200-250 left roughly and will get around 50+ callins on some days, and if they do show up some of them try to get off as soon as possible without even finishing their shifts. A higher wage would definitely attract a higher caliber of employee and in the end would probably save them money as they wouldn't have to hold a new training class (Discovery) every couple of days.
  2. There will always be more than just 2 "scare actors" in a house. Blackout has the smallest staff and still has between 5-8 people...
  3. Having multiple registers open or having multiple expeditors is always the plan. But when nearly 100 culinary service employees call in on a Saturday with 27,700 people in the park that is hard to do. They try and pull as many people from other departments as they can to help but they can only rob from one department to fill another so much. Funnel Cakes on Saturday had the Director of IPS, an entertainment supervisor, an HR supervisor, and 2 crowd control (lifegaurds) in there helping out. And they were the fastest ones in there. The actual culinary employees in the front is what slowed down the process.
  4. Wouldve thought it would be NEXT weekend. I went to Creepyworld on Sunday and it wasn't too crowded. Only annoyance was the group in front of me that screamed at everything. Actually the last weekend of Fright Fest is almost always the lowest in attendance. It will probably be a little busier than the last few years next weekend since Halloween is not on an operating day. Halloween is a ghost town at the park... pun slightly intended.
  5. Just a heads up for anyone planning on coming to the park this weekend, this weekend is historically the busiest weekend of Fright Fest and the whole season. But then again, the weather is going to be awesome and there is plenty to do besides waiting in ride line... like watching some of the shows, waiting in food lines, going to a haunted house, waiting in guest relations line to complain about food lines, and looking at the décor! This should be an awesome weekend.
  6. Yesterday was the busiest day the park has had in several years. The lines were long everywhere but with just shy of 27,000 people in the park they kept up pretty well, food not so much but that's a problem even on a 5,000 day...
  7. So after a few weeks of having a rep from Vekoma at the park on and off the train for Boomerang has been put back on, and on the loop you can see probably and additional 20 or so braces from the spine to the rails. They are still bare metal and there are two large lifts sitting next to the ride.
  8. Clowns were relocated due to it being a blacklight theme. Batman plaza had too much ambient light that the black lights did not work properly. The sewers are not from Insanity Alley, Night terrors still uses them. These are in addition too those, plus there are like 5 more large tunnels sitting on the backroad to use if needed.
  9. Never did the Fright Fest haunted houses, but if you'd only be going for those, I'd say do scarefest instead, specifically The Darkness and Creepyworld. Hoping to do Fright Fest this year, but it could be bad timing, since if anytime, it would be a Sunday, but they're only open until 8(thought they were open till 10 last year). They have closed at 8 on Sundays since at least 2010, not sure about before then. AS for the Darkness and Creepyworld, there props looked very nice and the scenes were well designed for the most part, Creepyworld not near as well as the darkness, but as for actual scare actors, I think Six Flags might actually have them beat. Now I'm not very impressed with SF houses but after going to both the darkness and creepyworld I found them even more understaffed and the majority of the "scares" were just them cocking their heads and then after you pass them they might scream.
  10. Based on how much new power was just added to the roof of Justice League on the American Thunder side for HIP, I'd say there is an extremely high chance that whole path between Moon cars all the way to DC will be open. They wouldn't drop that many new electrical boxes all labeled as "HIP Roof" if there weren't plans to light that area up and be open. Plus as someone already said, they need a path open to First Aid.
  11. Got the chance to watch the Love at First Fright show in the Palace Theater tonight. The show was very good and the special effects were far better than one would expect from a theme park show. The cast did a really great job. Towards the end of the show however the fire alarm went off. After the initial confusion of what was going on when all the lights turned on and the music stopped mid song and the alarm started, the cast and crew did a really good job "evacuating" the building. In just over a minute they were able to get probably close to 500 people out of the building. They seemed just as shocked as we all were when they went off but they handled it very well! I look forward to going back and seeing the whole show next time!
  12. The App says down temporarily The ride was closed all of last night
  13. For anyone coming to the park for FF, the hours of the dining passes have changed a little to fit within the different park hours Snacks are from 12:30-8:30 (one hour later shift from regular season) Lunch is 12:30-4:30, no lunch available on Fridays Dinner is 5:00-8:30 giving you an additional 30 minutes than during regular season. Snacks and Dinner end at 8:00 on Sundays Hope this helps!
  14. yes! Sometimes extremely long, there is an express slasher pass that is kinda like a flash pass that speeds things up but it is still a little wait with those as many more people buy them than they do flash passes.
  15. They have something called a slasher pass. It gets you into all of the attractions for that night. I cant remember the exact cost but it is somewhere in the $30 range I think. You can also buy individual tickets if you want to. My suggestion is don't waste your time in BlackOut, previously voided vision and total darkness before that. It's just not worth the time.
  16. In case anybody was curious, this past weekend the park started using custom made SFSTL flags for the six flag poles by the front mall fountain. The flags at the marquee by I44 are still the original nations flags, well, with the new version of France and Spain.
  17. Sure does!!!! That little thing is way more fun than you'd expect for its size. Yes, yes. That's what she said. Ok, so I feel like someone should point out that American Thunder won't be open for HIP. According to the thematic map & renderings, the path from Moon Cars too Log Flume won't be open. Remember, there is only about two weeks of true turnaround time from Fright Fest to HIP. Blind Fury has to completely come down and be replaced by some light lighting, in addition to the entire graveyard in the palace garden be removed. The logistics of everything is being planned out meticulously. I'm getting pretty excited just to see the transformation. It is definitely going to be challenging and exciting. Last year, with anticipation of HIP coming, they changed a bit on how tear down happens. So FF can almost completely be taken down and at least moved to the back road in a bout one week now. Then properly storing it can happen later. Fury took a little longer but there is a new plan for that as well. As for American Thunder it is my understanding that that section is still in question. The rides wont be operating most likely but they were talking about keeping the path open as another way to first aid. Also if this is anything like the first year of Fight Nights, they have discussed opening "closed" areas of the park just to help relieve pressure from the streets, even if nothing is open in those areas.
  18. Labor Day weekend is never the best time to go. First like others have said a lot of the staff have gone back to school. This weekend has a larger number of call in than normal. The park anticipates this and staffs up but that doesn't help when they call in too. What bothers me as an employee is that the guests don't see how hard we are trying still. I mean, the Park President, the acting park manager, ops director, and several supervisors from across the operations division were at the front gate for hours each day this weekend, and then they were at different food stands across the park. No we are not perfect, but when you hit around 18,000 guests on a Sunday in September, its a hard task to keep up with. The operations division really stepped up this weekend and tried to help but there's only so much we can do with the circumstances. For example, there were rides, entertainment, park services, and security supervisors jumping into food stands and restaurants trying to help speed things up. Again, we are not perfect and in an industry like this no one ever is, but we ARE TRYING to make sure you guys have fun.
  19. I suppose I could say the same about SFOT. In fairness, I must applaud the efforts of Steve Martindale and SFOT Management. They always make sure that our park receives something respectable each year. If it was a Star Flyer, then it would be the 400ft version. If it was flats, then we would get the best flats money could buy. We are still the only SF park to haved received a Zamperla Endeavor ride. And ours has twice the seating capacity of the one at Coney. Say what you will about our forth coming S&S 4d Free Fly. It least it's not a Larson Loop or used bumper cars. Hopefully, SFSTL management is planning for something big in the future. Who knows, maybe that RMC T-Rex Giga is on the horizon. To be fair, we've been hearing that "something big is coming" propaganda since like 2008. It's a forgotten link in the SF chain, dependent on goobers who flock there without any actual awareness that their park is sub-par in the whole SF chain. In other words, the company has no need to add anything of value to our park, because the toothless hillbillies think a boring, one-trick Disk-O or a horrible boomerang is something special. Face it. We're stuck with this crap. Get used to it. Better yet, plan some roadtrips to actual good parks.... Clearly you guys have not been paying attention to what HWFan and myself have been saying, so I will say it one more time. Does the park need a signiture coaster, yes. But the park needed general improvements more. Lets say that in 2013 instead of Boomerang we got a signiture coaster, not the greatest thing ever but an all around good ride. People start flocking to the park that season and see all the things that need painting and repair. Many of those people would leave with the opinion that the ride was good but the park looked terrible and wouldn't return till the next big thing is built which would be years. What they instead are doing is installing small additions to replace aging and unpopular rides and taking the remaining funds and funneling it into general park improvements. This phase should be wrapping up soon just in time for the parks 50th year. I see Spinsanity as a step forward, we have gotten past the point of every addition is a replacement for something and now we are expanding the portfolio. Compare the park today to were it was back in 2012 or 2013 and it is a significant improvement. There is a method to the madness and reasons for the way things are being done. Once you figure out the method you realize that it truly isn't madness at all, but logic. You obviously haven't been around the park that long as some of us others have, we've been hearing about park improvements for OVER A DECADE and it isn't happening, they have done more than they used to do, but no where CLOSE to what theyve needed to be. As long as they keep doing small park improvements and not large ones, theyll never catch up and theyll always be 3 steps behind. Im not being negative, Im being realistic in the sense that Ive been watching it happen for well over a decade. Ask any maintenance staff, youll see.... Until they invest at MINIMUM of 4-6 million into improvements and hire a ton of contractors to help the full time maintenance staff, the park will continue to be be a semi polished turd. Except they HAVE done pretty huge things, I don't know why you insist on being so argumentative with someone who works at the park and sees what happens and how things function from a day-to-day basis. To be honest I'm getting really sick and tired of everyone constantly shooting down any actual reason and fairness on this forum and trying to counter it with a bunch of muddled nonsense. Last year they renovated the entire freaking Palace Theater, including the whole interior and exterior, which was a HUGE investment and needed to be done, and just this season they opened up a brand new restaurant where one hadn't existed for years, repainted the facade by Batman, the facade for The Boss, they're retheming Pandemonium now, there was even more theming added to Thunder River, more and more landscaping jobs are being created every year, this year having the most, and yet people like you are most likely going to keep saying that they don't invest crap into the park, give me a break. And you wonder why HWFan keeps his distance from this forum now. now I'LL be the one who says PAY ATTENTION to CHRISGRASLIE...... what does the very first line of my last message say?..... do you think HWfan is the ONLY person on here that works at the park? Do you think HWFan is the only one who speaks with management?.... if you've read these forums much, youll see that he is NOT the only one who works at the park or has very close association and business with it. SOOOO, Ill say again my first line for you in case you missed it.... "You obviously haven't been around the park that long as some of us others have, we've been hearing about park improvements for OVER A DECADE and it isn't happening, they have done more than they used to do, but no where CLOSE to what theyve needed to be." I even said that YES, they HAVE been making improvements, but theyre on pace to NEVER CATCH UP!...... just reread my last post again so that it can sink in fully please. Sorry for coming off so harsh, it just really ticks me off when people run their mouths without reading or knowing what theyre talking about!!! I know HWFan isn't the only one on here who works at the park, obviously I'm not that stupid. I use him as an example because for a while he was the guy that kept this forum from spiraling into madness, and even he's given up on replying to the crap people say on here. I talk to other employees other than him that pretty much all have the same amount of frustration with this forum, which is exactly the reason why I respond to things the way that I do, because I've gotten tired of it as well. What people like you need to understand is that they're not going as slowly as you think. It's great that you can acknowledge they're doing more things than they used to do, but those things aren't written on a little half sheet of paper with 3 bullet points. There was only so much money they could put into it before, but this year and last year is when it's started to really ramp up, and you're going to see even more in 2017. There's a clear goal in place for where they want to be, and as more money goes into improvements and refurbishments, they'll get there within the next few seasons. I feel as if I'm typing the same stuff over and over, I really just wish everyone would see the big picture so I can stop repeating myself, it's not just me that's trying to get this message across. As someone that knows a lot of the actual big picture of the park, it doesn't quite line up with your version of the big picture...
  20. I suppose I could say the same about SFOT. In fairness, I must applaud the efforts of Steve Martindale and SFOT Management. They always make sure that our park receives something respectable each year. If it was a Star Flyer, then it would be the 400ft version. If it was flats, then we would get the best flats money could buy. We are still the only SF park to haved received a Zamperla Endeavor ride. And ours has twice the seating capacity of the one at Coney. Say what you will about our forth coming S&S 4d Free Fly. It least it's not a Larson Loop or used bumper cars. Hopefully, SFSTL management is planning for something big in the future. Who knows, maybe that RMC T-Rex Giga is on the horizon. To be fair, we've been hearing that "something big is coming" propaganda since like 2008. It's a forgotten link in the SF chain, dependent on goobers who flock there without any actual awareness that their park is sub-par in the whole SF chain. In other words, the company has no need to add anything of value to our park, because the toothless hillbillies think a boring, one-trick Disk-O or a horrible boomerang is something special. Face it. We're stuck with this crap. Get used to it. Better yet, plan some roadtrips to actual good parks.... Clearly you guys have not been paying attention to what HWFan and myself have been saying, so I will say it one more time. Does the park need a signiture coaster, yes. But the park needed general improvements more. Lets say that in 2013 instead of Boomerang we got a signiture coaster, not the greatest thing ever but an all around good ride. People start flocking to the park that season and see all the things that need painting and repair. Many of those people would leave with the opinion that the ride was good but the park looked terrible and wouldn't return till the next big thing is built which would be years. What they instead are doing is installing small additions to replace aging and unpopular rides and taking the remaining funds and funneling it into general park improvements. This phase should be wrapping up soon just in time for the parks 50th year. I see Spinsanity as a step forward, we have gotten past the point of every addition is a replacement for something and now we are expanding the portfolio. Compare the park today to were it was back in 2012 or 2013 and it is a significant improvement. There is a method to the madness and reasons for the way things are being done. Once you figure out the method you realize that it truly isn't madness at all, but logic. You obviously haven't been around the park that long as some of us others have, we've been hearing about park improvements for OVER A DECADE and it isn't happening, they have done more than they used to do, but no where CLOSE to what theyve needed to be. As long as they keep doing small park improvements and not large ones, theyll never catch up and theyll always be 3 steps behind. Im not being negative, Im being realistic in the sense that Ive been watching it happen for well over a decade. Ask any maintenance staff, youll see.... Until they invest at MINIMUM of 4-6 million into improvements and hire a ton of contractors to help the full time maintenance staff, the park will continue to be be a semi polished turd. Except they HAVE done pretty huge things, I don't know why you insist on being so argumentative with someone who works at the park and sees what happens and how things function from a day-to-day basis. To be honest I'm getting really sick and tired of everyone constantly shooting down any actual reason and fairness on this forum and trying to counter it with a bunch of muddled nonsense. Last year they renovated the entire freaking Palace Theater, including the whole interior and exterior, which was a HUGE investment and needed to be done, and just this season they opened up a brand new restaurant where one hadn't existed for years, repainted the facade by Batman, the facade for The Boss, they're retheming Pandemonium now, there was even more theming added to Thunder River, more and more landscaping jobs are being created every year, this year having the most, and yet people like you are most likely going to keep saying that they don't invest crap into the park, give me a break. And you wonder why HWFan keeps his distance from this forum now. HWFan is not the only person that works at the park that offers info on this site. There are several others that work much more into the day to day operations. Yes this forum is a bit negative lately but oh well, people are just stating their opinions. As for you post. the new theming that went into thunder river is because the original theming, the waterfalls, literally began to fall apart so instead of replacing the waterfalls, they painted letters on a smooth concrete wall instead. Panda is just being painted, that is all. Palace got cosmetic work done on it outside, but nothing was done on the inside. You are correct about landscaping though. Ever since Nick took over landscaping a few years ago he was put so much more energy into the park and his team is much more creative now too.
  21. So far everything I've heard says Chevy Showcase is staying. Its either going to run parallel to the tracks or its going to take Slingshots spot. A quick Google Streetview analysis just before reading this post had already killed my hopes. Too bad. I hate that building with passion. If that building goes away, then you loose quite a bit of the parks fright fest storage along with general storage for the entertainment department. I don't believe that building is going anywhere and despite your hate for that building, it needs to stay if the park wants to maintain its current FF, regular season entertainment plus the additional stuff going in there for HIP.
  22. McBride & Son home bought all of it, they started clearing it last November and are building 4 neighborhoods, a park, and an elementary school. Apparently there is a clause for home buyers that they can not complain about any noises coming from the park.
  23. Nothing happened to it. It was simply that, a rumor... Everyone was just assuming that we were getting one because it would fit in a Tidal Wave sized area and SFSTL is always hoping for a new coaster. So nothing was stolen from us.
  24. There have been surveyors around the area between Sound Stage and the train tracks for the last several days. I asked if Sound Stage was going to be removed and was told no. They said it still makes too much money as a haunted attraction during FF and also houses a lot of the entertainment departments set pieces for their other theaters and other décor for throughout the year. I wouldn't be surprised if the old façade between SS#2 and the tracks goes away.
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