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Cedar Fair Corporate Development Discussion Thread (FUN)


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  • 3 weeks later...
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You have to wonder that in the age of smart phones, will people even pay attention to these televisions? They're going to have to put some really compelling content on this system to compete. Certainly offer up a lot more than random commercials and terrible music videos that Six Flags would run on their system.

 

dt

 

Totally agree. Even little kids have cell phones now, so it better be worth watching!

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Some B-Roll footage of the chains coasters wouldn't hurt. Great filler if you ask me.

Or some b-roll of the coaster's chains

 

This is how I read his post at first and I was thinking hmmmm, that would probably be boring for most folks but us enthusiasts would be totally down! Funny you mentioned it.

 

Great to hear Cedar Fair is doing well! Especially Oceans of Fun with Schlitterbahn across the border.

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^When I read the full sentence I got the idea right, but when I saw the first few words, I also immediately thought of a chain POV.

That would be interesting

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You have to wonder that in the age of smart phones, will people even pay attention to these televisions? They're going to have to put some really compelling content on this system to compete. Certainly offer up a lot more than random commercials and terrible music videos that Six Flags would run on their system.

 

dt

 

They'll probably make it interactive like Six Flags (even if the game is lame).

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Sometime down the road, possibly 10-25 years (guesstimate). I can see CF converting the WindSeekers to drop towers.

 

That would work if most of the parks with Windseekers didn't already have drop towers...

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Sometime down the road, possibly 10-25 years (guesstimate). I can see CF converting the WindSeekers to drop towers.

 

That would work if most of the parks with Windseekers didn't already have drop towers...

 

Demon Drop - Power Tower

Behemoth - Leviathan

 

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Sometime down the road, possibly 10-25 years (guesstimate). I can see CF converting the WindSeekers to drop towers.

 

That would work if most of the parks with Windseekers didn't already have drop towers...

 

Demon Drop - Power Tower

Behemoth - Leviathan

 

 

Point? Demon drop no longer exists and Behemoth and Leviathan are not drop towers.

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Sometime down the road, possibly 10-25 years (guesstimate). I can see CF converting the WindSeekers to drop towers.

 

That would work if most of the parks with Windseekers didn't already have drop towers...

 

Demon Drop - Power Tower

Behemoth - Leviathan

 

 

Point? Demon drop no longer exists and Behemoth and Leviathan are not drop towers.

I think the point is that you can have two similar rides at the same park without issue.

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^I understand the reference, but I personally wouldn't consider a drop tower with a unique vertical-to-horizontal aspect the same as a standard vertical drop tower. Nor would I consider the experiences provided by Behemoth and Leviathan the same. A standard drop tower and a retrofitted WindSeeker would, as far as I know, have the exact same straight-up-and-down belly-dropping experience. Feel free to describe the difference in more detail, but otherwise I just don't see the point in converting these rides.

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  • 3 months later...

Did anyone else see this?

 

Cedar Fair L.P. profits, attendance take a dip

CEO: Revenue record for year is still on track

 

SANDUSKY — Nicked by bad luck and bad winter weather, Cedar Fair L.P. said Tuesday that its second quarter profits decreased 7 percent to $43.9 million, or 79 cents per share.

 

A year ago in the second quarter, the Sandusky-based amusement park chain had profits of $47.4 million, or 85 cents per share.

 

While earnings were down, Cedar Fair did have revenues of $363 million, up slightly from a year ago when revenues were $362 million. The company said quarterly revenues were bolstered by a 4 percent increase in average in-park spending, which rose to $43.94 per guest.

 

But the earnings were off because of a 2 percent decrease in park attendance to 7.7 million guests and a $3 million decrease in out-of-park revenues (hotel stays) to $35 million.

 

Cedar Fair shares fell $1.70, closing at $50.81 on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday.

 

The company said its higher per capita spending was because of improvements in food and beverage programs at its 11 amusement parks and four waterparks.

 

The attendance slip and drop in out-of-park revenues were attributed to three things — the closing of Cedar Point for a weekend in early June because of a water main break, partial flooding the last week of June at its Valleyfair Park near Minneapolis, and prolonged school calendars throughout the Midwest and other regions following harsh winter weather earlier this year.

 

With the second quarter complete, Cedar Fair said it remains on track to achieve record full-year revenues of between $1.16 billion and $1.18 billion.

 

“We have approximately one-third of the operating season still ahead of us, and we expect 2014 to be another record year for Cedar Fair,” said Matt Ouimet, company president and CEO.

 

Also Tuesday, the company declared a dividend of 70 cents per share, payable Sept. 15 to shareholders of record as of Sept. 4.

 

Read more at http://www.toledoblade.com/Retail/2014/08/06/CEO-Revenue-record-for-year-is-still-on-track.html#b7xqlZHwIhgtmr9e.99

 

They seem optimistic that they're going to have record revenues this year but I'm not sure what they're basing that off of. SO far it seems to be a down year for the industry as a whole.

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The optimism could be based on few factors:

The average spending per customer being a higher percent than the percent drop in attendance

Hotel bookings for Q3 and Q4 could be higher

The year over year trending from Haunt events. They get more popular every year.

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Thanks for moving this. Before posting it I did an advanced search for topics with "Cedar Fair" in the name and didn't find one which is why I posted it where I did. I guess I didn't go back far enough or I just suck at using the advanced search feature. lol

 

You bring up a good point about Haunt trends. Hopefully the weather and their projections works in their favor this October and they get the boost they're expecting.

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  • 3 months later...

From NewsPlusNotes: http://newsplusnotes.blogspot.com/2014/11/heard-on-cedar-fair-3q14-earnings.html

 

This past week Cedar Fair announced their 3rd quarter earnings, with a full press release available on the company's website.

 

The results were good, as Cedar Fair was able to report record revenues for the quarter of $595 million. The company had an extremely strong October, which has made revenues through November 2nd up 2% over last year, based on a 3% increase in per capita spending, offset by a 1% decrease in attendance.

 

The company also declared a $0.75 distribution per unit (up 7%), payable in December.

 

The real goodies always come on the conference call discussion the quarter, here's what I took note of:

 

 

 

• There was "record demand" for Halloween events this year; though exactly what that means is not clear. Regardless, they're as popular as ever and won't be going away any time soon.

 

• California's Great America was closed a total of 7 season days this season due to the 49ers stadium, and each of those days the 49ers paid to "buy out" the park. Cedar Fair still operated their new banquet center those days, though, to make additional revenue. Smart.

 

• Knott's Berry Farm and Kings Island are expected to both produce record levels of individual profit this year. Cedar Point is expected to have its 2nd best year ever, behind last year when GateKeeper opened.

 

 

 

• The changes made at Knott's, mainly investing in atmosphere, refurbishments and improving the guest experience has been a home run success. Cedar Fair feels there is room to replicate this type of investment patterns at other parks to achieve the same results. I can't wait to see this!

 

• Next year the company will spend $170 million in capital expenditures, much higher than normal due to the Hotel Breakers renovation project. The hotel renovation has been the largest capital project in Cedar Fair's history. In the future, they expect to spend about $120 million a year on capital, which is up a bit from their older "9% of revenues" guidance.

 

• Fury 325 will be the anchor for the re-launch of the Carowinds brand into the Charlotte market. The company is also spending a large amount of capital on the park, as announced previously, in various smaller projects.

 

 

 

• When speaking of Rougarou, CEO Matt Ouimet stated that the ride represents a "new strategy" of taking a "less popular roller coaster and transforming it into an exciting experience through the introduction of new floorless trains." It costs a "fraction" of a new coaster, and is an efficient way to spend capital in order to get a new attraction.

 

• If Rougarou is a success, and they expect it will be, they've already identified two other coasters where they can "make similar investments." One would think this would be Vortex at Carowinds and Vortex at California's Great America, two other (but smaller) B&M Stand-Up rides. Or it could be another coaster... but that seems less likely. I would expect unique names and themes if the transformations take place.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Vortex at CGA just seems too short to do anything with. Floorless trains could be a lot more comfortable, but the ride is so short that I don't think it would add that much to the park.

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  • 1 month later...

Well, the contract for the Red Gold ketchup has expired and Cedar Fair is back with Heinz once again. Just noticed the Heinz logo has appeared on all of the websites.

 

Sad part is, French's mustard is out now since Heinz is going to cover all condiments: ketchup, mustard, relish, and mayo.

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^^ I agree...same could be said for the Vortex at Carowinds too.

 

But I guess if Six Flags can take two crappy stand-up coasters and simply relocate them with new branding, I guess I could see CF investing in floorless trains, which would be an improvement over a relocation, I suppose.

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  • 3 months later...

Read this article from the Los Angeles Times about Cedar Fair looking at putting in dark rides at each of their parks. Should be interesting to see how this turns out.

Cedar Fair plans dark rides for all its amusement parks

 

Best known for its collection of behemoth steel roller coasters, a chain of regional amusement parks plans a concerted push into immersive dark rides long considered the exclusive domain of Disney and Universal theme parks.

 

Cedar Fair — the parent company of Knott's Berry Farm, Cedar Point and Canada's Wonderland — has already introduced a pair of interactive dark rides and plans a portfolio of future attractions under the banner of Amusement Dark.

 

Canada's Wonderland unveiled Wonder Mountain's Guardian in 2014 and Knott’s plans to open Voyage to the Iron Reef on May 15. Both attractions were designed by Montreal-based Triotech, a relative newcomer to dark-ride manufacturing.

 

Cedar Fair president and CEO Matt Ouimet plans to eventually expand the Amusement Dark concept to all 11 park locations in the chain.

 

"I think ultimately you'll see them at every Cedar Fair park," said Ouimet, a former Disney executive who served a stint as Disneyland president.

 

Cedar Fair has never been known for its dark ride collection. Scooby Doo-themed haunted dark rides based on an off-the-shelf Ghost Blasters model by Sally Corp. opened in the early 2000s at Canada's Wonderland, Carowinds, Kings Dominion and Kings Island. The rides were re-themed in 2010 as Boo Blasters on Boo Hill when Cedar Fair decided to drop the intellectual property branding.

 

Other Cedar Fair parks — including Cedar Point, Dorney Park and Knott's — have featured dark rides throughout their history that have long since been shuttered.

 

Meanwhile, Cedar Fair rival Six Flags, long known for its themeless steel parks, has also leaped into the dark ride game with a pair of Justice League attractions from Sally Corp. opening this summer at Six Flags Over Texas and Six Flags St. Louis.

 

Industry watchers have long been expecting Ouimet to instill more Disney DNA into Cedar Fair parks since taking over as CEO in 2011. While recent additions at Cedar Fair parks have placed a higher emphasis on family entertainment and themed environments, the new attractions have lacked the immersive storytelling associated with the most elaborate Disney rides.

 

In typical executive bullet-point fashion, Ouimet distilled his Amusement Dark vision into three S’s: strategy, storytelling and social interaction.

 

The strategy portion envisions a fleet of dark rides with a highly interactive interface and a digital infrastructure allowing for constant upgrades. Think Toy Story Midway Mania video game screens with Buzz Lightyear Astro-Blasters ray guns.

 

The storytelling aspect focuses on traditional topics such as pirates, dinosaurs, dragons and cowboys and Indians that don’t require expensive IPs from major media companies.

 

And the social component seeks to include gaming elements that encourage competition between family and friends while driving repeat visits.

 

Cedar Fair will never create $100-million dark rides like Disney and Universal, Ouimet said, settling instead for budgets at 10% to 15% of the industry leaders. Similarly, Cedar Fair will have to make do without expensive intellectual properties such as "Frozen" or "Harry Potter," which Ouimet admits makes marketing the new attractions more difficult.

 

Instead, the Amusement Dark rides will tell stories about the "world underneath our parks," Ouimet said.

 

So far, in-house design teams have had wide latitude to dream up unique back stories about mystical creatures dwelling beneath each park — a dragon living inside a faux mountain at Canada's Wonderland and sea monsters lurking below Knott's boardwalk.

 

"We're not going to do a bunch of rides at once and put them at every park," said Ouimet, who envisions one day having a library of stories that might move around from park to park.

 

Avoiding the one-size-fits-all approach also allows Cedar Fair to capitalize on constantly improving technology. Iron Reef at Knott's will feature backlighted imagery and 10-times brighter cameras that were not available when Guardian was built at Canada's Wonderland.

 

That same flexibility allows Cedar Fair to transform an existing ride with a seasonal overlay or an entirely new theme.

 

"You can literally hit a switch and change the story," Ouimet said.

 

While animatronics have not played prominent roles in Guardian or Iron Reef, Ouimet expects to work on future Amusement Dark projects with San Bernardino-based Garner Holt Productions, which created life-like figures for recent refurbishments of the 1969 Timber Mountain Log Ride and the 1960 Calico Mine Ride at Knott’s.

 

With no Amusement Dark projects currently in the pipeline, it’s unlikely we'll see any new dark rides added at any Cedar Fair parks in 2016 — but that hasn’t stopped Ouimet from planning for 2017 and beyond.

 

"We have blank spaces and empty boxes at every park," Ouimet said.

http://www.latimes.com/travel/themeparks/la-trb-cedar-fair-dark-rides-20150415-story.html

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Edit: ^ Beat me to it. I'm excited to see what the concepts will be for Cedar Point and Kings Island. Cedar Point is probably a few years away from receiving a dark ride since it appears that a coaster is coming next year. Kings Island may be the next large park to get a dark ride, but that's just a hunch. I'm really intrigued about Michigan's Adventure possibly receiving a dark ride, simply due to it's size and location. I'll be surprised if Michigan's Adventure gets a dark ride and the concept should be interesting...

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Six Flags... Known For their Themeless Steel Parks?

 

 

Let Me Name Some Cedar Fair Coasters that were Steel and Themeless

- Millennium Force at Cedar Point

- Wicked Twister at Cedar Point

- Talon at Dorney Park

- Possessed at Dorney Park

- Boomerang at Worlds Of Fun

- Thunderhawk at Michigan's Adventure

- Steel Venom at Valleyfair

- Carolina Cobra at Carowind's

- Dominator at Kings Dominion

 

There's Some line about Glass Houses and Stones.

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