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Kentucky Kingdom (SFKK, KK) Discussion Thread

P. 401: Herschend Enterprises named majority partner and park operator

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^If I may add my opinion, then perhaps maybe they would add a used flat ride or two just be used for a few seasons to help attract the riders and amusement park flyers until they can generate enough cash flow to purchase a brand new ride (like a kick-@$$ coaster), but I do know for a fact that when you have a few rides that has been sitting idle for a few years and been lying under the weather, you'll need lots of time and money for maintenance. Who knows how much retrackingThunder Row and Twisted Twins will need, not to mention the weed pulling and landscape clearing needed for the Roller Skater?

 

But regardless of what they do and if they played their cards right, then Bluegrass Boardwalk shall rise like Phoenix out of Louisville and be another "must visit or else" destination. As for me, even if they get it running and operational for next season, it might be a few years before I can come by for a visit (nothing personal, but I can only come this way once every few seasons due to other park destinations all around this good old USA).

 

"'I can only come this way once every few seasons'. Bah! You do the same thing to me!"

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It's neither cheap, easy, or practical to dig a 100 foot deep tunnel. Apparently Roller Coaster Tycoon is catching on again.

Herschend was and is a different brand than Six Flags.   There is one certainty. Kentucky Kingdom will not be receiving a launched wooden roller coaster any time soon.

Yeah, I think the only 'concern' is because people see this park going more the way of Celebration City or Wild Adventures than becoming the next SDC or Dollywood.  I think it will stay pretty much th

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^ I don't think it will ever be a "must-see destination" but it might get back up to being a decent regional park. I think down the road that they need to focus on way finding and layout issues. It would require some pretty big changes but they need it to feel like a more modern park... not just by adding rides but the overall image and feel.

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I was wondering if they might be thinking of swapping flat rides between this park and Holiday World just to save money the first couple of years and still have "new" rides to advertise at both parks.

 

To me it seems the wisest move if money is short.

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It wasn't always a terrible park, actually used to have a lot of charm for small local place. Other than being limited by height restrictions from the airport the location is actually pretty decent, right next to the fair grounds, Churchill Downs, Pappa Johns Stadium, and very conveniently located off of the interstate within about 3 hours drive of several decent sized cities (Lexington, Louisville, Bowling green, Nashville, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Dayton).

 

The ride selection isn't great as far as coasters go but it's a pretty decent selection of flats and water slides compared to a lot of places. It's not going to be Cedar Point or Knobles after year 1, but all in all it's a decent palate to start with and develop a new park.

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So the first year investment is only 15.6 million? That is quite a bit lower than I expected... I'm guessing that figure is simply to get the park going again?

 

Yeah, I would agree. I don't think they can do much more the first year than get the place up and running again.

 

dt

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So the first year investment is only 15.6 million? That is quite a bit lower than I expected... I'm guessing that figure is simply to get the park going again?

 

Yeah, I would agree. I don't think they can do much more the first year than get the place up and running again.

 

dt

 

Unless that's total investment for NEW attractions? That would make quite a bit more sense. Ed Hart was putting the reopening alone at something like $27M.

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I went to this park yrs ago and it was HORRIBLE, small, terrible location & old rides. 15 million is no where NEAR what this park needs. They just need 2 make it a water park.

 

Kentucky Kingdom isn't small, it's basically your average size amusement park ( while the whole park is open). They also have more land to expand. Decent rides could have been put into the park, However as you said KK was outdated. It has been that way since Six Flags manage the park. When Ed Hart left the park in 1998, no NEW flats had been added. The amusement side is more popular than the water park, Six Flags just didn't invest in that side of the park.

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^ Do you think flats are what is needed? I feel the investment should go infrastructure, water park, iconic ride, then flats. Flats won't draw people in the gate or convince them to give it another try - but highlighting improvements might.

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Their biggest draw will be the Waterpark. They need to add some more slides where Chang was, get rid of T2 and add another Wave Pool and make Penguins Blizzard like Pilgrims Plunge. Enter from the Waterpark or the Amusement Park. Get rid of Mile High Falls and place a Giant Frisbee there. That's some of my thoughts on what to do.

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Their biggest draw will be the Waterpark. They need to add some more slides where Chang was, get rid of T2 and add another Wave Pool and make Penguins Blizzard like Pilgrims Plunge. Enter from the Waterpark or the Amusement Park. Get rid of Mile High Falls and place a Giant Frisbee there. That's some of my thoughts on what to do.

 

I think removing T2 and expanding the water park over Chang's & T2's location wouldn't be that wise of a decision as the park won't deliver the thrills. Also, I think a new coaster in the future would be good in Chang's location.

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On the contrary, T2 would fetch a good price if sold. It's rough, has a 52" height restriction, needs a ton of work and is in the way of a possible water park expansion. However.... I think T2 is owned by the State or the Fairgrounds, but don't quote me on that.

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^ But that does bring up a good point. Are they going to cannibalize each other or are they different markets? I feel like 90 minutes away makes them the same market..but I could be wrong. Hopefully a local will chime in!

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^ But that does bring up a good point. Are they going to cannibalize each other or are they different markets? I feel like 90 minutes away makes them the same market..but I could be wrong. Hopefully a local will chime in!

 

I think that they're in the same market, but they're not that big of a threat to eachother since it's such a large distance. I think it's like Sea World San Diego & Universal Hollywood. I'm not a local as I live 2000 miles away from KY, so I too want to hear what a local has to say.

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^ But that does bring up a good point. Are they going to cannibalize each other or are they different markets? I feel like 90 minutes away makes them the same market..but I could be wrong. Hopefully a local will chime in!

 

I think that they're in the same market, but they're not that big of a threat to eachother since it's such a large distance. I think it's like Sea World San Diego & Universal Hollywood. I'm not a local as I live 2000 miles away from KY, so I too want to hear what a local has to say.

 

 

Um...Sea World San Diego is around 3-4 HOURS (including traffic) away from Universal Studios Hollywood. one is LA, and is San Diego. These are different markets.

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^

How about:

 

- Thorpe/ Chessington

- Legoland California/ SeaWorld

- Kennywood/ Idlewild

- Hersheypark/ Dutch Wonderland

- Geauga Lake/ Wyandot Lake

 

 

Although (Insert person here) is right saying they should go extreme; They were "The Thrill Park" for awhile.

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I live in Jeffersonville, IN that's right across the river from Louisville. I worked at Ky Kingdom for five seasons, 2000-05 and I can tell you back than the Waterpark was more popular than the Amusement part. Holiday World is only 1 hour way and I can tell the past few summers that since Ky. Kingdom closed their attendance has increased, same thing their. Splashin Safari is packed. People in this area seem to like Water attractions. Once again this is only my thoughts and ideas.

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When I lived in Central Kentucky (near Lexington) I visited Kentucky Kingdom and Holiday World about the same amount of times each summer for whatever that is worth. While the two parks are in competing markets I think that Louisville is a large enough city that Bluegrass Boardwalk could have a fairly large amount of season pass holders that visit on a regular basis. It will be interesting to see what kind of ticket options they make available to guests and if there are any options that include admission to Holiday World.

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Based on this recent article it sounds like no rollers coasters will operate this year and in the best case scenario only the Roller Skater and Thunder Run would be ready for 2014.

 

http://www.courier-journal.com/article/20120524/NEWS01/305240076/Louisville-theme-park-won-t-offer-roller-coasters-may-delay-reopening-2014?odyssey=mod%7Cnewswell%7Ctext%7CHome%7Cs

 

Louisville theme park won't offer roller coasters, may delay reopening to 2014

Written by Sheldon S. Shafer

The Courier-Journal

 

There will be no major roller coasters running at Bluegrass Boardwalk when the theme park opens at the Kentucky state fairgrounds, according to a preliminary state application that emphasizes restored and expanded water features.

 

And the Bluegrass Boardwalk partners are acknowledging, for the first time, that delays in signing a lease and getting finances nailed down are casting doubts on whether the park will open next May as planned. They say the opening now might be pushed back to 2014.

 

The park’s new operators — members of the Koch family who also own Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari in Santa Claus, Ind. — said in their application to the Tourism Cabinet for tax credits that several rides, including its larger roller coasters, “will not be refurbished due to the age, reliability and costly repairs.”

 

That includes the looping steel coaster called T-2 and twin wooden coasters called Twisted Twins that were popular when the park operated as Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom.

 

When Bluegrass Boardwalk opens, it will do so with “all the existing water park attractions and some of the amusement park rides,” according to a copy of the application obtained by The Courier-Journal. That would include the carousel, the Blizzard River whitewater raft ride, the Flying Dutchman, the Himalaya, Breakdance, six kiddie rides, bumper cars and an antique car ride.

 

“Pending a successful 2013,” the application says, additional rides will be refurbished, including the large Ferris wheel; The Roller Skater, a junior steel coaster; Thrill Park Theatre, an indoor movie venue; and Thunder Run, a wooden coaster.

 

But while it suggests that the coasters that won’t be repaired and “will be replaced over time with new, safe, reliable, fun, high guest-capacity attractions,” it doesn’t specify any new roller coasters.

 

The Kochs have a tentative 50-year lease for the theme park with the Kentucky State Fair Board.

 

Paula Werne, the Kochs’ spokeswoman, said the application for the state aid “contains preliminary information, based on cursory examination of the rides” before Feb. 29, when the draft application was filed with the Tourism Cabinet.

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Sounds like the place needs a lot more work than they originally counted on, so they're concentrating on the water park. I hope the Kochs are able to make a go of the place.

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