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Valleyfair (VF) Discussion Thread


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This is the second year in a row that they've announced on the second Thursday of September, I guess that's their day now. But unfortunately no one thought to look ahead and realize that it would someday land on the 11th.

 

Regardless of when it is announced, here are my final predictions:

-A Snake Pit-like slide package from White Water West going in the old IMAX spot.

-Racing slides (Dragster H20-ish) or a Tornado/Funnel-type slide (like what CW is getting) in the old Hydroblaster spot.

-A brand-new children's play area that would remove the current one to make way for it.

 

I'm definitely excited to see what White Water West does for us. I'm hoping they've splurged and ordered an Aqualoop from them... sure they're a bit silly, but a looping waterslide has presence like nothing else. An installation like this one or this one would look great in future advertisements.

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My only fear with those slide packages is cost- West Edmonton Mall paid $1.5 million to add an AquaLoop, but their install obviously had many unique challenges. But in the long run and extra million to add an AquaLoop would pay for itself when it stars in years worth of advertising material, plus potential TV news coverage. It's truly a case of "build it and they will come".

 

I'm also curious if they'll announce any spending for capitol improvements. Maintenance at VF has been largely done on an as-needed basis (often called "deferred maintenance"), and the list of little problems is getting ridiculous- Wild Thing and Highroller need paint, a number of roofs need to be replaced, paths need to be repaved, there isn't enough office space, and the parking lot needs huge improvements. Some of this may have been fixed, I didn't make it this season to see for myself, but I doubt much extra was done.

 

The redheaded step-child isn't chained in the basement anymore, but it needs a bit of love before it's ready to sit at the dinner table.

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Well tomorrow's the day. I recently went on an aqualoop at Wilderness resort in the dells area and it was amazing! Very fun slide! It would be awesome if they got one! I have a feeling that VF worked with a slide company to get a total package price. Adding one new element at a time is one price but if you package a lot elements together you can get better pricing. 1.5 million for an aqualoop is expensive but lets say VF is adding 15 to 20 million in waterpark improvements, the slide company may very well throw in an aqualoop at no extra cost. they would just add it to an existing tower. Anyway we shall soon see!

 

I'm also curious if they'll announce any spending for capitol improvements. Maintenance at VF has been largely done on an as-needed basis (often called "deferred maintenance"), and the list of little problems is getting ridiculous- Wild Thing and Highroller need paint, a number of roofs need to be replaced, paths need to be repaved, there isn't enough office space, and the parking lot needs huge improvements. Some of this may have been fixed, I didn't make it this season to see for myself, but I doubt much extra was done.

 

Valleyfair has been doing a good job IMO on upkeep of the park. Mr. Frazier is well aware of the parking lot situation and told me last time I was there that they were looking at working with a local business to make some improvents to the parking lot. Also, High Roller gets painted every two years so next year it should have a new paint job. I agree with wild thing and also Steel Venom really need a new paint job. Wild Thing's station should also be updated.

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Valleyfair has been doing a good job IMO on upkeep of the park. Mr. Frazier is well aware of the parking lot situation and told me last time I was there that they were looking at working with a local business to make some improvents to the parking lot. Also, High Roller gets painted every two years so next year it should have a new paint job. I agree with wild thing and also Steel Venom really need a new paint job. Wild Thing's station should also be updated.

If High Roller is getting repainted this offseason, that's great, because it's starting to become an eyesore. Well, when you're off the ride, High Roller looks just fine, but on-ride, you can see a ton of bad spots that need new paint. Yeah, it would be nice if Wild Thing and Steel Venom could get new paint, but it's not as bad of a deal as on High Roller. I actually think Excalibur has the worst paint job, but at this point, repainting it would not be worth it.

 

Less than 6 hours to go .

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Looks like the news we've been waiting for!!

 

Edit:

New for 2015 is a water slide complex with six new slides. Breakers Pipeline consists of four tube slides that start riders on a platform 65 feet up. 3...2...1! The platform drops out from under riders sending them on a series of drops, twists and turns!

 

Breakers Plunge is a pair of speed slides dropping riders 90 feet, virtually straight down!

 

Also new for 2015 is Barefoot Beach, an interactive splash pad featuring multiple water play elements such as smaller slides, aim-and-spray water shooters and jets of streaming water.

 

Edit 2:

 

Also posted on their website[/url

 

 

Valleyfair to Add New Aquatic Attractions for 2015 Season

 

SHAKOPEE, Minn., Sept. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Grab a towel and slap on the sunblock, it's time to hit the water! Thrill seekers will soon be able to submerge themselves in even more fun in the sun as Valleyfair announces a 2015 expansion of Soak City Waterpark.

 

New for 2015 is a massive water slide complex with six new slides. Breakers Pipeline features four tube slides that will enclose riders in a capsule, sixty-five-feet up. Once inside, the floor will fall out from underneath riders sending them through a series of drops, twists and turns. Breakers Plunge consists of two speed slides that drop riders ninety feet, virtually straight down. The slide complex is a perfect addition to the existing 34,000 square foot wave pool at Breakers Bay.

 

The expansion also includes Barefoot Beach, an interactive family-friendly splash pad spanning nearly an acre. This area features multiple water play elements such as small slides, aim-and-spray water shooters and jets of streaming water that spray up from the ground and cascade down from overhead.

 

"This expansion will give guests more choices in how they enjoy Soak City Waterpark," said Dave Frazier, Vice President and General Manager of Valleyfair. "Whether guests are looking for relaxation at Barefoot Beach or want to seek out thrills on the Breakers slide complex, the new Soak City Waterpark will appeal to every age and interest level."

 

Construction on the project will begin this fall and the expanded Soak City Waterpark is expected to open in the spring of 2015. Guests will continue to enjoy two parks for the price of one throughout the season with Valleyfair and Soak City Waterpark.

Edited by larrygator
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Is the wave pool and things we already have staying? The wave pool isn't that old so I was just wondering.

 

Yep, these expansions are probably happening in one of the empty spaces where the Imax, dining pavilion, or Hydroblaster once were. Looks like they're also keeping the old tube slides and lazy river, hopefully those can get a refresh in the future.

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So, I don't have an idea on what water slides cost, or what this expansion costs (or even an estimate) but is this big enough to dream B&M?

 

It depends. If Cedar Fair goes BIG with VF for its investment (a similar $40-60 million over 3 years like they did with Carowinds), then a large B&M could most definitely be in VF's future. If Cedar Fair goes more conservatively with VF and does a smaller investment, then we could end up with a Talon or Patriot-sized ride and some infrastructure improvements. Either way, VF is due for some love.

 

I'm surprised that they're keeping the original slide complex... and aren't also adding a flat ride for 2015. Oh well.

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My analysis:

I am extremely happy with what Soak City is receiving for 2015. It is a 3-part expansion like I originally predicted, and 2 of the parts are thrilling .This expansion does several things to the park...

 

-It turns the waterpark from one of the chain's worst to one that's actually decent.

-It will make Soak City look much more pretty. The slides in the illustration look colorful, and that's a nice touch.

-I think it allows us to dream B&M since other parks have had similar waterpark expansions and B&Ms in recent years.

-It brings a thrilling addition to VF for the first time since 2007. The floor-dropping slides look awesome. I can't wait to try them out.

-The new slides will be a big GP grab. Not as big as a coaster, but it will bring in crowds.

 

I'm happy that VF and CF made the decision to add this because I think they really are realizing the growth potential. Hopefully the year after is when the long-awaited new coasters comes.

Edited by VF15
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My analysis:

I am extremely happy with what Soak City is receiving for 2015. It is a 3-part expansion like I originally predicted, and 2 of the parts are thrilling .This expansion does several things to the park...

 

-It turns the waterpark from one of the chain's worst to one that's actually pretty good.

-It will make Soak City look much more pretty. The slides in the illustration look colorful, and that's a nice touch.

-I think it allows us to dream B&M since other parks have had similar waterpark expansions and B&Ms in recent years.

-It brings a thrilling addition to VF for the first time since 2007. The floor-dropping slides look awesome. I can't wait to try them out.

-The new slides will be a big GP grab. Not as big as a coaster, but it will bring in crowds.

Alot of times water slides would have a greater ROI then a 25 million dollar coaster

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I gotta say this is a bit of a yawn, IMO. More slides are definitely needed, but these don't seem all that creative. I've done the trapdoor slides before and the trapdoor aspect is thrilling. But that aside, you've got 4 slides that basically just drop straight to the ground. Why couldn't they have added tube slides, or a bowl, or an aqua loop, or a mat racer, or a bowl!!, or anything remotely more interesting?

 

As for the new kiddie area, this looks boring. Large play structures with the giant dump bucket on top seem to be the norm nowadays (and for the last 10 or so years). As a VF marketing intern alumni, I remember receiving phone calls from mothers asking about what there was to do in the waterpark for small children. I felt so embarrassed trying to talk up the existing play structure and the geysers in the wave pool.

 

This isn't enough to get me back for a visit. Here's to hoping that next coaster screams "significant growth potential" more than this expansion.

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I am also not that impressed with this announcement. Valleyfair already has a couple speed slides that go straight down, and now they are adding 4 more. I do think the floor dropping on the slides will be thrilling, just wish the layouts were more interesting. Also the kids play structure looks fairly small in the picture compared to ones that other parks have. Hopefully they didn't go too big in an effort to save money for our B&M next year

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This is pathetic. A couple new speed slides and lame kiddy area #2. Mt. Olympus put more effort into their kiddy area than this! No mat racers, no big raft slides. Look at Dorney Park's Snake Pit: I thought we'd get a minimum of that, we didn't even get the whole package! Guess we're not meant for a nice ride afterall.

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Even the wave pool was a letdown. Actually, I can't think of a more uneventful wave pool off the top of my head.

 

In an industry that continues to grow and innovate, VF hasn't knocked any socks off since 1996. And to say that these waterpark additions are better than nothing is complete BS. Nowadays, people expect more and it's quite easy to take a look on the internet and see where else you could go and spend your money...in this case 3 hours east on 94 to visit some real waterparks. These new slides look like something Noah's Ark would have built 10 years ago.

 

It has been discussed so much about how VF is 1 of 3 parks slated for blah blah blah....and this is just not impressive at all.

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I wished for more but I'm happy with what we got. I've ridden the aqua-loops, and the trapdoor part is by far the best part of it, and that's what we go; looks similar to the complex at SFSL. The old speed slides were lame and rough and kept tearing up my swimming suits and those are being replaced; the other old slides are still fun and serviceable. I'm assuming this doesn't preclude another expansion next year or if there's a coaster next year, the year after. What's missing is slides where you ride a single or double tube down, and I personally don't find those especially exciting.

 

Wonder if the tower is being designed so more slides could be added in a second phase, or more elements to the kiddie play area. It's going to take a lot of money to create paths, pipes, and whatnot from scratch so maybe they're laying the groundwork for something more.

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