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The Knott's Berry Farm (KBF) Discussion Thread

P. 639: Montezooma's Revenge major renovations announced!

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Looks great.

 

These mini-additions under the direction of Ouimet are quite good. It doesn't take 25 million dollar coasters to improve a park *cough* Dick *cough*.

 

If only they could rip out all the coasters they installed under his reign.

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^In general, they are good coasters. Silver Bullet, Ghost Rider & Hydra weren't exactly well thought out IMHO. Silver Bullet is a cluster of supports, and lacks anything that makes inverts what they are. Ghostrider was a bad decision due to the company's lack of TLC that is required for these types of rides. Hercules could of been something more, now with RMC (topper or i-box).

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Knott's actually does a decent job maintaining the ride. The problem is that like many other CCI's, being built with cheaper quality wood and being such a large structure make it nearly impossible to keep up.

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I am sorry, but I really don't get the big deal with the new GM deciding to put all family rides in the park in the last almost 10 years and everyone rejoicing about it (heck some people even saying Knotts should continue this and stay with family attractions and not add another thrill ride). I am not saying its a bad thing (or a good thing) I just don't see why everyone thinks its such a positive and here's some reasons why:

 

Was the park REALLY bad prior to all these family additions year after year? Granted it seems they are doing more landscape lately (but that's most of the Cedar Fair Parks lately).

 

Is it proven this is actually a smart business decision (AKA making more money)? I get hes probably getting more families coming, however how many thrill seekers aren't going because the same thrill rides have been there the last 10 years (I get families will typically spend more money than thrill seekers, however thrill seekers visit more often which I'd think would offset the financial difference)?

 

There are 5 family parks within 80 miles of the park (3 of which are within 10 miles) Disneyland, California Adventure, Adventure City, Legoland and Sea World and I think there is no arguing that 2 of them (Disneys) are better family parks no matter how much effort Knott's puts into it, however I get Disney is far more expensive.

 

As I said this isnt for or against them doing it, its just I don't see why the sudden last 10 years everything must be family oriented and no new thrill rides. I think the Boardwalk/Logride and the new Camp Snoopy look great I also want to add, but I don't see how a new coaster could hurt the park either (this isnt Magic Mountain afterall )

 

Please let me know what you think and if someone actually has financial numbers that shows they are now making more money due to this please say something.

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Knott's actually does a decent job maintaining the ride. The problem is that like many other CCI's, being built with cheaper quality wood and being such a large structure make it nearly impossible to keep up.

Agreed. The maintenance department at Knott's is solid. Whenever I open in the morning, it's always nice to chat with the maintenance people. They're hard working and just fun to be around and always take our suggestions. For example, if we leave a note saying that a certain restraint is getting stuck every time, it'll be fixed the next time I'm there. But still, I am a huge supporter of the topper track solution as having to go down 4 times a year for maintenance is no fun. The ride, while not completely un rideable, could definitely use the help.

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I am sorry, but I really don't get the big deal with the new GM deciding to put all family rides in the park in the last almost 10 years and everyone rejoicing about it (heck some people even saying Knotts should continue this and stay with family attractions and not add another thrill ride). I am not saying its a bad thing (or a good thing) I just don't see why everyone thinks its such a positive and here's some reasons why:

 

Was the park REALLY bad prior to all these family additions year after year? Granted it seems they are doing more landscape lately (but that's most of the Cedar Fair Parks lately).

 

Is it proven this is actually a smart business decision (AKA making more money)? I get hes probably getting more families coming, however how many thrill seekers aren't going because the same thrill rides have been there the last 10 years (I get families will typically spend more money than thrill seekers, however thrill seekers visit more often which I'd think would offset the financial difference)?

 

There are 5 family parks within 80 miles of the park (3 of which are within 10 miles) Disneyland, California Adventure, Adventure City, Legoland and Sea World and I think there is no arguing that 2 of them (Disneys) are better family parks no matter how much effort Knott's puts into it, however I get Disney is far more expensive.

 

As I said this isnt for or against them doing it, its just I don't see why the sudden last 10 years everything must be family oriented and no new thrill rides. I think the Boardwalk/Logride and the new Camp Snoopy look great I also want to add, but I don't see how a new coaster could hurt the park either (this isnt Magic Mountain afterall )

 

Please let me know what you think and if someone actually has financial numbers that shows they are now making more money due to this please say something.

 

Many of the people commenting are ones (like myself) who grew up with the park under the Knott family ownership. When it had charm and a personality all its own. Cedar Fair spent the last 10 years gradually removing all that charm/history with coasters that are not all that great. Xcelerator is the only exception to this IMO, as it was themed to the 50's (in the 50's boardwalk area) and a great ride. I personally appreciate that they are making their efforts to restore as much of the charm of the park as they can, as it adds so much more to the park than a coaster ever could.

 

That doesn't mean we wouldn't welcome an Intamin Hyper (or some other kickass ride), but I would hope that their next major coaster addition is similar to Xcelerator or GhostRider, where it is themed to the area AND a kickass ride to keep the charm alive.

 

Cedar Fair's stock is up to record levels, as is their revenue, so the company must be doing something right.

Edited by Jew
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I get families will typically spend more money than thrill seekers, however thrill seekers visit more often which I'd think would offset the financial difference?

 

This is it, right here! The returning thrill seekers won't spend as much money, though. They're the ones who've been to the park and don't need to spend a whole day. When they don't spend a whole day, they won't eat full meals in the park, they aren't going to be buying merchandise, and they aren't going to spend nearly as much money. Say a family of four goes once a year, that's four tickets, four meals, some merchandise, a few treats, maybe an on-ride photo, pretty soon you're up to $3-400. I used to have seasons where I'd go to a park 30 times and not spend that much, (which is way higher than the norm). As a fan of amusement parks, it does suck when you get expansions like Route 76 at Valleyfair, and the new Gemini Midway at CP, but they're necessary. What is exciting though, are things like Wonder Mountain and the Log and Mine Ride redos. Things that'll appeal to people across multiple age groups. Disney's always been the king, and it seems after like 58 years, some of the other parks are finally catching on.

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I think what we are seeing is a management team that understands the region. The guy running the company being a former Disneyland president and the guy running the park having gotten his start in Knott's janitorial department. They know that the Knott's demographic expects a higher level of theming and polish than the people who go to their other parks; their demographic being locals that grew up with Disney, Universal, SeaWorld, Magic Mountain (pre Six Flags), and Knott's when it was still family owned plus tourists including a big percentage of Asian tourists used to well-themed parks (who coincidently are one of the few groups out there where the western theme still has broad appeal). Their predecessors were perhaps too accustomed to the higher percentage of thrillseekers that other CFP properties get and in chasing that lost some of the higher spending family/tourists that they now seem desparate to get back.

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I think what we are seeing is a management team that understands the region. The guy running the company being a former Disneyland president and the guy running the park having gotten his start in Knott's janitorial department. They know that the Knott's demographic expects a higher level of theming and polish than the people who go to their other parks; their demographic being locals that grew up with Disney, Universal, SeaWorld, Magic Mountain (pre Six Flags), and Knott's when it was still family owned plus tourists including a big percentage of Asian tourists used to well-themed parks (who coincidently are one of the few groups out there where the western theme still has broad appeal). Their predecessors were perhaps too accustomed to the higher percentage of thrillseekers that other CFP properties get and in chasing that lost some of the higher spending family/tourists that they now seem desparate to get back.

 

I don't really know what your basing that on. The rest of the parks in the Cedar Fair chain are getting, or have received additions just as nicely themed as Knotts' most recent... I don't count the Log and Mine Ride, because they're holdovers from a different era, but as far as the Boardwalk and Camp Snoopy? My home park, Valleyfair got a really well done, and nicely rethemed kiddie area, and is getting another well themed area with a family "coaster" attraction and some well themed flats. So I wouldn't say the Knotts demographic expects anything better than the rest of the parks' visitors do.

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I don't really know what your basing that on. The rest of the parks in the Cedar Fair chain are getting, or have received additions just as nicely themed as Knotts' most recent... I don't count the Log and Mine Ride, because they're holdovers from a different era, but as far as the Boardwalk and Camp Snoopy? My home park, Valleyfair got a really well done, and nicely rethemed kiddie area, and is getting another well themed area with a family "coaster" attraction and some well themed flats. So I wouldn't say the Knotts demographic expects anything better than the rest of the parks' visitors do.

 

I wasn't implying that Knott's guests are somehow more sophisticated. There are just a greater number of a certain type of guest here that really doesn't care about rides in general; the type of people that have annual passes to Disneyland and pretty much just go to ride the train and swing dance. Knott's has been doing a good job of attracting them with a combination of cheap passes, vasy improved food, and improvements to some classic Knott's offerings (log ride, mine train, atmosphere entertainment, return/refurbishment of scenery items). Knott's has also been the new home to at least 2 musical acts that Disney let go. This along with the general improvements being seen at CFP properties is broadening their appeal. Compare this with previous management decisions that closed their only dark ride, closed the Haunted Shack, stuck Silver Bullet in the center of the park, etc.

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I don't really know what your basing that on. The rest of the parks in the Cedar Fair chain are getting, or have received additions just as nicely themed as Knotts' most recent... I don't count the Log and Mine Ride, because they're holdovers from a different era, but as far as the Boardwalk and Camp Snoopy? My home park, Valleyfair got a really well done, and nicely rethemed kiddie area, and is getting another well themed area with a family "coaster" attraction and some well themed flats. So I wouldn't say the Knotts demographic expects anything better than the rest of the parks' visitors do.

 

I wasn't implying that Knott's guests are somehow more sophisticated. There are just a greater number of a certain type of guest here that really doesn't care about rides in general; the type of people that have annual passes to Disneyland and pretty much just go to ride the train and swing dance. Knott's has been doing a good job of attracting them with a combination of cheap passes, vasy improved food, and improvements to some classic Knott's offerings (log ride, mine train, atmosphere entertainment, return/refurbishment of scenery items). Knott's has also been the new home to at least 2 musical acts that Disney let go. This along with the general improvements being seen at CFP properties is broadening their appeal. Compare this with previous management decisions that closed their only dark ride, closed the Haunted Shack, stuck Silver Bullet in the center of the park, etc.

 

What musical acts have they hired that Disney let go? I would love to know; it sounds interesting.

 

I personally haven't been to Knotts'... But, my lord, their Scary Farm attractions during October are wicked.

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^ I think this is the first one.

 

But also, something to keep in mind with this group: They were not created by Disney, and were not owned by Disney. They preformed outside the park at other venues all the time, and will continue to do so. The only thing that Disney owns is the name Hilly Bill and the Hill Billies (I think. I have never seen them use that name outside of Disneyland) So it doesn't surprise me that they are playing at Knotts, because they always traveled.

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I don't really know what your basing that on. The rest of the parks in the Cedar Fair chain are getting, or have received additions just as nicely themed as Knotts' most recent... I don't count the Log and Mine Ride, because they're holdovers from a different era, but as far as the Boardwalk and Camp Snoopy? My home park, Valleyfair got a really well done, and nicely rethemed kiddie area, and is getting another well themed area with a family "coaster" attraction and some well themed flats. So I wouldn't say the Knotts demographic expects anything better than the rest of the parks' visitors do.

 

I wasn't implying that Knott's guests are somehow more sophisticated. There are just a greater number of a certain type of guest here that really doesn't care about rides in general; the type of people that have annual passes to Disneyland and pretty much just go to ride the train and swing dance. Knott's has been doing a good job of attracting them with a combination of cheap passes, vasy improved food, and improvements to some classic Knott's offerings (log ride, mine train, atmosphere entertainment, return/refurbishment of scenery items). Knott's has also been the new home to at least 2 musical acts that Disney let go. This along with the general improvements being seen at CFP properties is broadening their appeal. Compare this with previous management decisions that closed their only dark ride, closed the Haunted Shack, stuck Silver Bullet in the center of the park, etc.

 

 

I wasn't arguing you thought they were. I was arguing against your idea that the company is adding better themed attractions to Knotts than the rest of the chain

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They also got a group that performed at DCA as the Miner 49ers (known as simply The Miners at Knott's). And I would agree that in terms of additions KBF is getting about the same as the other CFP properties, but the money that was spent/is being spent on Timber Mountain and Calico Mine Train probably wouldn't have happened under the old thrills-first mentality. KBF is a good place for them to try for more of a theme park than an amusement park given what they already have to work with there. I don't know if they will do this at any of their other parks though although the dark ride being built in Canada looks interesting.

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