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Six Flags Darien Lake (SFDL) Discussion Thread


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I've heard of parking lot coasters before, but never swimming pool coasters. The least they could have did was make the swimming pool less visible.

 

They could have just poured concrete over the campground pools and painted over the pool depths markings on the deck, so it would look like if the pools were never there.

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Considering that the park is literally in the middle of no where, it has quite a good list of attractions for its size and location. The new water park expansion looks fantastic as does the kids area. They're definitely heading in the right direction.

 

Personally, I've had no issue with Viper or Preditor over the past few years. Ride of Steel, given its age, is still a fantastic ride that I enjoy as much as, if not a bit more than Behemoth. Ride of Steel and the old Huss rides alone are worth to drive to Darien.

 

Moto Coaster is a lot of fun but it sure does look funny where it sits. I'm sure whatever their next coaster turns out to be will be a perfect fit.

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From what i'm hearing Darien Lake has lowered itself to the level of Martin's Fantasy Island except on a bigger scale with a hotel and an amphitheater on site!

 

I happened to really enjoy Martin's Fantasy Island... What exactly are you trying to say? It isn't like Darien Lake has removed the majority of its attractions to match the amount Martin's has.

 

I really don't get the complaining... No one park is entitled to any new addition. Complaining to Herschend about the fact that they haven't added a hyper coaster-level capital investment to a park they don't even own is something I'd expect to see on Facebook where it would be met with other poor responses. I give Mike full credit for replying in a way that fully addressed the question despite its silly conceit. His answer was both justifiable and overly honest as to why Darien Lake isn't getting a major addition right now but also reassures that the park will continue to see investments and updates under Herschend's leadership.

 

You may not be able to see the renovated guest facilities and family attractions that have been worked on under Herschend's leadership above the tree line, but they are there, and have likely increased guest satisfaction significantly in the park. The park has a great lineup of attractions as it stands--let's let the park fix its flaws rather than ignore them in favor of building new coasters "just cause." Six Flags went that route and look how long it has taken them to be dug out of the mediocre hole they put themselves in under the "BUILD BUY BUILD BUY BUILD" mentality where the truly important aspects of guest satisfaction (guest service, safety, cleanliness, etc...) were thrown by the wayside.

Edited by jedimaster1227
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An even better idea would be to put Motocoaster in Galaxy Theater and dig up the old campground pools and have a 46" height restriction on the coaster!

 

That option was thrown on the table. It doesn't fit in the building and Zamplera requires a 48" height restriction, no exceptions.

 

As long as they DO NOT TOUCH UFO, I'm good. Galaxy theater seems out of place, it either needs an overhaul/retheme or be taken down.

 

I wouldn't be shocked if UFO is gone this season.

 

While no park is "entitled" to a new coaster, from a business aspect Darien Lake DOES need a new coaster. I can't think of any other similar-sized park that has gone 14 years without a major coaster. That being said, I do think that Herschend is moving in the right direction but a coaster should be in the works within the next few season. I don't think many people realize how much the addition of Leviathan hurt the park. The majority of campground/hotel visitors are Canadians. As Canada's Wonderland continues to grow and become more and more appealing, Herschend should be very concerned.

 

I think Blast-off is a wonderful addition. Minus the name and low capacity (then again, PARC/SF scared away a majority of its guests so that shouldn't be an issue) I think that it will be a perfect fit and will compliment Rowdy's Ridge very well.

 

Now that Herschend is settled in, I think things are looking up. I'm interested to see what happens but it is going to take time. HFE is very detailed-oriented and I hope that it eventually translates into a better guest experience. It certainly hasn't happened yet but it will get better.

 

And for what is worth, having two trains operating on Ride of Steel by Memorial Day Weekend this past season was a huge success on HFE's part.

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Based on my visit to Darien Lake this past summer, there is a lot the park needs to do before focusing on a new coaster. While nothing in their collection is noteworthy apart from Ride of Steel, it's sufficient for a medium-sized park like Darien Lake. Perhaps its because I've only visited the park once and it was an odd day, but on my visit there were delayed openings, numerous breakdowns, one train operations on most of the coasters (I think Ride of Steel and Viper were the only ones with two, and Viper didn't even have a line), and some of the staff members seemed as slow as La Ronde's. The only other Herschend park I've been to is Dollywood, and while I don't expect Darien Lake to be at the quality of Dollywood I would expect the company to hold employees to similar standards. I hope they will attempt to do this in 2013, as well as ensuring everything is running at maximum efficiency.

 

As far as rides go, additions like Rowdy's Ridge and Blast Off seem like better choices for now. Many of the park's non-coaster rides are outdated, so working on that collection and keeping a balance between family and thrill rides is probably a good course of action. The park is not as big of a draw as Dollywood or Silver Dollar City, so they don't need major investments as frequently. Additionally, Darien Lake doesn't really seem like a thrill park, so a major new coaster is not likely to be a priority for them. Besides, with Canada's Wonderland less than three hours away and Cedar Point only a couple hours further, thrill seekers have options better suited to their tastes within reasonable range. That being said, I wouldn't be surprised to see a new coaster in the next few years, but not until other necessary improvements are completed.

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I can't find the sketch I made, but I created a "re-brand" for Ride of Steel when I was bored at work. I wanted to create something that fit the ride experience and also pay tribute to the local area. I came up with "Stampede." The logo featured a charging bison which coincides with the "Buffalo" region as well as the natural/secluded area the park resides. The color scheme uses a dark charcoal gray structure and track, but the rails would be a dark red. One train would be a charcoal gray with red highlights, and the other vise-versa.

 

Just my two-cents on Ride of Steel which is still one of my absolute favorites.

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While no park is "entitled" to a new coaster, from a business aspect Darien Lake DOES need a new coaster. I can't think of any other similar-sized park that has gone 14 years without a major coaster. That being said, I do think that Herschend is moving in the right direction but a coaster should be in the works within the next few season.

 

 

I couldn't agree any more. To keep guests of all ages coming to the park, Darien Lake shouldn't just focus on families. They already have a great selection of family rides. People who like thrill rides are going to get bored after a couple of rides on Blast Off and want a new coaster to go on. A thrill ride is a step in the right direction, but as stated above, a new coaster is needed.

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^We all know it, and the management knows it, but I'm in full agreement with what HFE's apparent ideology is: Take baby steps. As much as the park needs a new coaster, the park needs everything else as well. It was in a pretty crappy shape before they came in. When PARC was in charge, the family coaster was a desperately needed ride, and Motocoaster fit the bill very well. Then the water park needed upgrading, because the slide count was disgustingly small. DL's kiddie section was pretty dilapidated, and that part of the park that was recently upgraded for this year's new additions really needed a facelift. Now it looks a lot better and a sense of theme is actually appearing throughout the park (and IMO has a little bit of Dollywood spirit in it, I very much approve.) Now for 2013 we are getting the drop tower, and another section of the park is rethemed and renovated so it doesn't look old and busted (as well as laser show upgrades and apparently a new restaurant or two.) As much as the park needs a new coaster, what the park has in the meantime is actually pretty good. But you guys also have to realize, coasters can take up to two years to develop, so I'm not expecting a coaster until either 2014 or 2015.

 

 

Also:

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When they do get a new coaster the big question is what will be removed for it. Well in my opinion they could put where Grizzly Run is, where Predator is, where Galaxy Theater is (or in it!), or they could do a parking lot coaster and not remove anything for it!

 

What do you think, if Darien Lake were to get a new coaster where would they put it?

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I'm pretty thrilled with all of these well thought out and thorough park improvements. Of course I'd love a new crazy coaster. But ultimately I feel better about my home park getting some real positive treatment. I'm really excited for Blast Off, as it's a top notch flat that'll help round out the selection. That news alone got me to renew my season pass again. I'm sure we'll see a new coaster in a few years, but right now I'm really pleased with how the park is being handled.

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Does Darien Lake still own Batman the Escape from AstroWorld? I've seen some pictures of it just sitting in a lot but thats if. If they still do have it do you think they will ever erect it? It's sad to see that this was the fate of other coasters from AstroWorld like Greesed Lightning which just sat in a field unused for so long.

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It would be better scrapping it then to keep having people ask about it. At least the park would make some money.

 

I would so pay to get a chunk of one of my favorite childhood rides. They should sell it off in parts to the public.

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Who would buy a piece of rusty track or ride car from a coaster that was dismantled improperly? The tracks from the former Batman coaster from Astroworld is better off getting getting melted down for tracks (Ala Drachen Fire from BGW) for Darien Lake's new coaster!

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^Intamin doesn't make stand up coaster anymore and besides it was made back when Intamin used Giovanola as a subcontractor. So the chances of Darien Lake ever setting up the former Batman coaster from Six Flags Astroworld are slim to none, But the chances of Darien Lake getting rid of Mind Eraser in the future are very likely!

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^ It's a Vekoma Headbanger ( )! the last time I've rode it was screaming "in pain" and I don't know why it always has the second longest line in park from Ride of Steel, but I guess that people like getting their head banged around by Mind Eraser!

 

Here's what I'm thinking for Mind Eraser's new colors, a lime green track and neon orange support or a fresh coat of red (tracks) and teal (supports)!

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^And what exactly makes you think that? Sure it desperately needs a paint job, but every time I went, it always had the second longest line in the park, behind RoS.

 

 

Just because it has a long line doesn't mean it won't leave. Skull Mountain at SFA always had a long line, yet that left for a new coaster. If they were to replace it with a good new coaster, why would it matter how popular it is?, the new coaster could bring more attention to the park. Also, for a small park like Frontier City, Mind Eraser could do great there.

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