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Six Flags Great America (SFGAm) Discussion Thread


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When Will Koch (Holiday World) was around, he often spoke about how important it is to treat your guests with the utmost respect and integrity. He would say something along the lines of 'if you treat them right, they will want to come back.' Maybe something about how if you treat people right, they will be happy to spend their money at your park. They will tell their friends and family to visit, etc.

 

And Will was (and still is) absolutely 100% right. Look at Disney, Europa and Knoebels as good examples of parks that go out of there way to make sure that you have the best time possible.

 

Any park or corporate executive that has that "Well, there are more fish in the sea" attitude likely won't end up holding a job with that company once their shareholders start losing money because their customers aren't returning to buy their product.

 

Edit - I meant to mention that I was sorry to hear about your experience, Prozach...but yeah, free drinks, upgrades and good Chicago pizza would have made up for it a little bit. Hope to see that report sometime!

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And Will was (and still is) absolutely 100% right. Look at Disney, Europa and Knoebels as good examples of parks that go out of there way to make sure that you have the best time possible.

 

I'd add Cedar Point as well; the rest of the Cedar Fair parks are probably close behind. Funny thing I realized about Holiday World a couple years ago. I was standing near the middle of the park and looked out over everything and Splashin' Safari... it's not the "little park in Indiana" anymore. It's a big park now! They did that by treating people with respect.

 

Any park or corporate executive that has that "Well, there are more fish in the sea" attitude likely won't end up holding a job with that company once their shareholders start losing money because their customers aren't returning to buy their product.

 

They switch around so much; old one out, new one in. They're business people - which is perfectly fine, but they don't seem like fans or have a passion for the industry.

 

Bummer to look at it from these angles, but it's the truth. Luckily for me, I still love my home park SFGAmerica, and still think it's the best in the chain.

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I often call Six Flags the Wal-Mart of the industry; cheap and close, and they DO have lots of good stuff.. but the place can be an armpit and the service is usually poor to absolutely miserable.

 

Damn, I hate to dog on th SF chain, but I couldn't help but to appreciate that relevant comparison. There's a lot of truth there. Either way, just as you said, I'll be back despite the total BS call of screwing over hundreds of guests.

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Damn, I hate to dog on th SF chain, but I couldn't help but to appreciate that relevant comparison. There's a lot of truth there. Either way, just as you said, I'll be back despite the total BS call of screwing over hundreds of guests.

 

Me too... and I go to Wal-Mart as well, after swearing off the place years ago. Here in Chicagoland, we used to hike the 2.5 hours to Indiana Beach in favor of Great America, but IB has seriously gone down the drain after the Spackman family sold it (2009?).

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I'd add Cedar Point as well; the rest of the Cedar Fair parks are probably close behind. Funny thing I realized about Holiday World a couple years ago. I was standing near the middle of the park and looked out over everything and Splashin' Safari... it's not the "little park in Indiana" anymore. It's a big park now! They did that by treating people with respect.

 

I was actually going to add CP in there and you are absolutely right.

 

At least in terms of ride op's nailing it out of the park with their quick dispatches and overall enthusiasm for their jobs, they're about as good as it gets. I am sure that others would have qualms about the food service/quality, rain procedures and FL+ queue lines, but I myself consider CP in the top 5 parks that I have visited in terms of customer service/quality.

 

I really did enjoy HW, despite not caring for the wooden coasters too much (and not having beer). The water park, free beverages/sunscreen and friendly employees would make me return for another visit to try Thunderbird - as well as giving Voyage another shot (albeit in the front seat this time).

 

Sorry to banter off subject...now back to your SFGAm discussions.

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I wish they could turn it around somehow, but I think for now they are fine with how things run.

 

I believe a lot of the problem especially in the Midwest is that they are essentially hiring temporary help at minimum wage (many of them foreign exchange student workers) they are basically getting the bottom of the barrel work force that have accepted that it's a 3 month temporary job, there is no desire for most of their employees to even try as they know the gig will be up in short whether they are employee of the month or the employee that gets written up every week, they won't be getting a raise or continued employment... Combine that with the fact that they deliberately under staff the place just adds to the misery... I mean seriously on a perfect 90 degree mid summer day with the capacity pushed to the limits most of the 'food and beverage kiosk' that are clearly designed to have 2, 3 or even 4 or more cashiers have a SINGLE teenager that is day dreaming about hanging out with their friends when they get off, acting as not only cashier but also as server and stocking person resulting in everyone waiting 30 minutes or longer for a drink refill...

 

And to add insult to injury the 'managers' are most just the lucky teenagers friends that got a different colored uniform so there is no accountability or supervision... There was a incident this summer where one of the ride operators, in one of the designated child areas appeared to literally be having a physiological breakdown, she was talking and yelling at herself, pounding her fist on the control panel repeatably and banging her head against the wall (and I mean literally she was hitting her head on the wall)... It was quite a scene that was quote disturbing so several adults including myself tracked down a so called manager to report what was going on, the result was the manager telling the employee she would take over ride control for a bit and that she should go on her break to compose herself, her break consisted of going over to one of the other ride operators in the kiddy area and continuing her antics for 15 minutes and then returning to work as if nothing just happened...

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I was browsing around RCDB earlier today and noticed something interesting...

 

Apparently Vertical Velocity and Deja Vu both opened in 2001, although Deja Vu opened a few months after, due to problems I’m assuming. Did the park intend to open them at the same time? I just found that interesting since they are very similar ride styles, and Deja Vu has been gone for so long, I sorta forget the two rides coexisted for quite some time. What a strange move, to add two extremely similar rides from separate manufacturers in the same park during the same year. Did they market them together?

 

Sorry for the strange question. Some of Six Flags’ moves in the early 2000s really intrigue me...

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^Yeah, that was a big mess. Billboards all over Chicagoland advertised "2 new coasters" with pictures of the 2. Deja Vu opened rarely with horrible and troublesome operations. It was kind of a joke if you actually found it open and even a bigger joke if you got to ride! I think there was even a lawsuit someone filed for false advertising (the opening of 2 coasters in one year).

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It was kind of a joke if you actually found it open and even a bigger joke if you got to ride! I think there was even a lawsuit someone filed for false advertising (the opening of 2 coasters in one year).

 

For what ever reason, on my 4-5 visits from 2005ish to whenever it was removed, Deja Vu was open almost every visit except for one. Granted when it was open it would go down once every hour or two, but I got quite a few rides on it. I actually really enjoyed the ride. The backwards vertical lift was frightening in a good way. I found the rest of the ride really intense, but comfortable. It was also really intimidating and cool to look at. That thing generated a ton of screams. I found it a good compliment to V2, which was also very extreme for its time.

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I wouldn't assume that. People aren't coming out for this event, but it could be that they just didn't find the event compelling. I'm fairly certain Chicago could still have a successful HITP event. But I doubt they try this beerfest thing again. It just isn't drawing people like they thought.

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I wouldn't assume that. People aren't coming out for this event, but it could be that they just didn't find the event compelling. I'm fairly certain Chicago could still have a successful HITP event. But I doubt they try this beerfest thing again. It just isn't drawing people like they thought.

 

Exactly. Great Adventure is generally dead for the 2 weeks between Fright Fest and Holiday in the Park despite doing a wine and beer tasting event for one of those weekends. The popularity of that event is SLOWLY growing but they're still slow weekends. When Holiday in the Park starts, crowds pick way up.

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