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Michigan's Adventure (MiA) Discussion Thread


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Side note: Still too much Thunderhawk hate

 

That's like saying we have too much air to breathe!

 

Thanks for the feedback, guys! I know that was a bear to read through, but I appreciate that you took the time to do it!

 

Yes, priority #1 for me, if they make me GM tomorrow, is creating a nice concrete midway/path where that service road is. It makes SO much sense, it hurts the head trying to fathom why they haven't done it yet! You could even put shops and flats there, or a new coaster, or even the Planet Snoopy that many seem to think MiA needs (not sure I agree on that last one, as the whole park feels a little "Planet Snoopy-ish..."). Seriously: if MiA were to ONLY put a concrete walkway there for 2016, and put NOTHING on it, I would be very happy! It's simply not asking for much...

 

And yes, grsupercity, I should have mentioned that in my TR, but the one other thing I would do thisfast if I were to be made GM, is install a belt, or some kind of system to get those tubes up that hill. In my attempt to breeze through the Wild Water Adventure part of my TR, I neglected to mention the absolute joke that was trying to get that tube up the hill, with only two little kids to help me!

 

I've been leading the charge for a new coaster at MiA longer than some posters on TPR have been alive, but even so, I would definitely consider both of those "infrastructure" additions to be more critical to adequate viability than a new coaster!

 

I really do think the park has potential to be a LOT better than what it is - heck, I've felt this potential since the turn of the century! But sadly, I don't think those running it, be it Cedar Fair, or the GM, share a vision where the park is anything better than what it is now. Which is a shame, because it certainly could be better, if proper attention was given to things like I just mentioned, as well as regular, excitement building, capital investments (and when I say regular, I mean every 5 years or so - nothing unreasonable for a park its size!) It'll never be Holiday World in terms of overall park experience, and it'll never have the history of a Kennywood or a Knoebels. However, it could be a LOT closer to those parks (the latter two, at least) than it is currently, with some TLC, and vision, and it pains me to see it wasted under the current regime...

 

Regarding the crowds, it really does go back to the improving economy here in Michigan, as well as the excellent tourist machine that Lake Michigan and the West coast has turned into! GR is thriving, and it's a fairly large city, I think some people (out of staters, who chime in regarding MiA as if they would truly have a clue compared to us locals) don't realize that, fail to grasp all of the factors surrounding MiA's success year after year when haughtily saying it's out of the way and not a "destination park." Well, very few amusement parks are "destination parks", in the true sense of the concept, and the FACT of the matter is that the Lake Michigan shoreline IS very much a destination for not just Michiganders, but those in the surrounding states as well! That has had the effect of making MiA a place that people can quickly bop over to, when they're visiting South Haven, Grand Haven, or even heading up to Traverse City. It has a MUCH more built-in local base than a park like Holiday World does, so putting people through the turnstiles should never be a problem for it. But as I experienced Tuesday, and have experienced most of my visits to Wildwater Adventure, the park isn't big enough for the crowds it's generating, and is crying out to expand, even if it's only a new midway connecting the sides of the park, and a new major coaster.

 

Ok, this post got much longer than I intended it to be, so I'll shut up now. It's just I've been going to this place since it was Deer Park Funland, so there's a lot of built in passion for the park that is pretty deep-seeded, in spite of trying to be ambivalent about it as of late...

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Regarding food, whenever I go, we bring sandwiches and chips and eat it in the parking lot and use the re-enty thing. It's a lot cheaper and easier. The thing that I see here and on other social media outlets is that guests will continue to go here year after year. That right there is why the park has no reason to add anything new. They know that they have a ton of people that go every year no matter what. Granted the park's attendance would grow exponentially if something is added, but they really have no reason to, since even without something major in years, the attendance continues to grow year after year.

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The thing that I see here and on other social media outlets is that guests will continue to go here year after year. That right there is why the park has no reason to add anything new. They know that they have a ton of people that go every year no matter what. Granted the park's attendance would grow exponentially if something is added, but they really have no reason to, since even without something major in years, the attendance continues to grow year after year.

 

NO, NO, NO! This is simply NOT a valid reason for a park not to make regular, capital investments in a park! It's lazy, greedy, and worst of all, disrespectful to the fans of the park! (And I'm not defining "fans of the park" here as being enthusiasts - simply local people who care about the park, which would include virtually everybody I know outside of boards like this and my enthusiast friends I've acquired over the years.)

 

Note, MIAfan88, I'm not saying that you are wrong, that that's what MiA's and CF's attitude towards MiA is - I'm just saying it's a WRONG attitude for a park to have. You'd never see a well-run park like Holiday World, Kennywood, or Knoebels say something like that. Especially when CF and MiA management know darn well that what I said above is true, that they have a built in cash cow in the park, simply based on its prime vacation location. People go year after year, and in increasing numbers. But I know many non-enthusiasts who are bored with the park and want to see more of a reason to go here. We're talking again about locals, who would potentially go every year, not the tourists who are driving these attendance numbers. I have a whole lot else to say on the matter, especially about what's at the root of this line of thinking as far as CF is concerned, but I'm not going to bother putting it out there just to get flamed by anybody who thinks CF management is far more altruistic than they actually are... (And yes, I know CF is a business. But there is no reason altruism, and good business practice, have to be mututally exclusive!)

 

I guess why this attitude being condoned on enthusiast boards bothers me so much, is because it essentially gives the park a "get out of jail free" card, instead of holding their feet to the fire, and insisting they put a little more effort into their product than what they've done for the past 15 years.

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NO, NO, NO! This is simply NOT a valid reason for a park not to make regular, capital investments in a park! It's lazy, greedy, and worst of all, disrespectful to the fans of the park! (And I'm not defining "fans of the park" here as being enthusiasts - simply local people who care about the park, which would include virtually everybody I know outside of boards like this and my enthusiast friends I've acquired over the years.)

 

Note, MIAfan88, I'm not saying that you are wrong, that that's what MiA's and CF's attitude towards MiA is - I'm just saying it's a WRONG attitude for a park to have. You'd never see a well-run park like Holiday World, Kennywood, or Knoebels say something like that. Especially when CF and MiA management know darn well that what I said above is true, that they have a built in cash cow in the park, simply based on its prime vacation location. People go year after year, and in increasing numbers. But I know many non-enthusiasts who are bored with the park and want to see more of a reason to go here. We're talking again about locals, who would potentially go every year, not the tourists who are driving these attendance numbers. I have a whole lot else to say on the matter, especially about what's at the root of this line of thinking as far as CF is concerned, but I'm not going to bother putting it out there just to get flamed by anybody who thinks CF management is far more altruistic than they actually are... (And yes, I know CF is a business. But there is no reason altruism, and good business practice, have to be mututally exclusive!)

 

I guess why this attitude being condoned on enthusiast boards bothers me so much, is because it essentially gives the park a "get out of jail free" card, instead of holding their feet to the fire, and insisting they put a little more effort into their product than what they've done for the past 15 years.

 

Oh no, I completely agree with you. The park won't admit it, but I believe completely that they only own this park to make money and to grow Cedar Point and other larger Cedar Fair parks. Although, it has gotten better with Matt, but that was my main reason why I refused to like Dick when he owned Cedar Fair. It's a Geauga Lake in disguise. Mark my words.

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The park won't admit it, but I believe completely that they only own this park to make money and to grow Cedar Point and other larger Cedar Fair parks. Although, it has gotten better with Matt, but that was my main reason why I refused to like Dick when he owned Cedar Fair. It's a Geauga Lake in disguise. Mark my words.

 

You have NO idea how happy inside it makes me to hear you say that, and see it written out! I know it's a taboo thing to say in various circles, but I commend you for putting it out there. I don't care what any CF shills say: they could convince me my name is Suzy easier than convince me that this^ isn't true...

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Oh no, I completely agree with you. The park won't admit it, but I believe completely that they only own this park to make money and to grow Cedar Point and other larger Cedar Fair parks. Although, it has gotten better with Matt, but that was my main reason why I refused to like Dick when he owned Cedar Fair. It's a Geauga Lake in disguise. Mark my words.

 

I'm confused how this is Geauga Lake in disguise. Geauga Lake grew too fast for its own good (Michigan's Adventure has not) and suffered massive attendance and revenue drops (which Michigan's Adventure also has not).

 

And to make money and grow the other parks? Each park has their own accounts and the GM's have the creative decisions (and that GM is the daughter of the previous owner of the park and also was the GM prior to Cedar Fair's purchase of the park). The cost of capital is taken out of the direct percentage that the park itself makes each year. So x amount of money made at Michigan's Adventure doesn't go to increase the budget for a major thrill attraction at Cedar Point. If Cedar Point wants a major attraction, then they save it themselves. Michigan's Adventure has the highest profit margin in the chain, but that doesn't make it the most profitable park. Overall, yes, the profit does help drive the chain when it comes to debt loads but has nothing to do with what other parks build or invest in.

 

But if it were TRULY Geauga Lake in disguise, then how come when the chain was in serious debt in 2008, they chose to put Valleyfair, Worlds of Fun & California's Great America up for sale and MiA wasn't included on the list? This is far from GL because MiA isn't losing money like GL was. MiA was purchased for potential and not for CP proximity (though it was stated when Kinzel was CEO that he hoped for people to spend a few days at Cedar Point and then go up to MiA). If anything, SFGAm is more of a competitor in the market to MiA than Cedar Point is.

 

Yes, we all want that shiny new coaster. But considering its size, you have to wonder what a new, bigger coaster would do for the park. Once we push a million people, I'm not sure how much the park would be able to grow after that to continue to increase attendance. Some parks, such as Dorney, have been stuck in that zone for years and it sits in a much, much larger market than MiA does. Its simple business. You grow at your own pace for what the market supports...you grow too fast and then you do become Geauga Lake! Right now, the timeline for a new coaster has been every 10 years. It just is what it is. I'd love a new coaster too, but the improvements that have been coming are great. I also believe the park needs to focus on other areas and not just coasters as well. I'd be cool with one soon, but then waiting for awhile and building up other things like in-park entertainment, flat rides etc...

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^I don't know WHERE in Michigan you live, but in Central and Eastern Michigan, places I've spent a lot of time in, mingling with many, many GP over my many years of life, Six Flags is barely even known about, and Cedar Point IS BY FAR the amusement park most in competition with MiA for Michiganders (not that it's much of a competition at this point.)

 

I should clarify that I don't think MiA and GL were in identical situations, because they clearly were not. I mean, MiA is still here, so that proves that! However, I firmly believe CF's intent in purchasing both parks was essentially the same, which was to protect CP's dominance in the region. Barring leaked tapes of CF's brainstorming sessions coming public, neither of us has any tangible evidence to support our belief about intent, so we'll just have to agree to disagree about that matter...

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^West Michigan. On this side of the state, Cedar Point is an overnight trip, but if you're looking for a fun day trip, you decide between SFGAm or MiA. And that is the majority of people on this side of the state, see it in my FB feed all the time.

 

On this side of the state, MiA is closer to SFGAm than Cedar Point is. MiA is split market in the two big markets in the Midwest, Chicago & Detroit SFGAm is, obviously, a part of the Chicago market and Cedar Point is part of the Detroit market. Michigan's Adventure does have the smaller but thriving markets of Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo/Battle Creek, which could help with expansions in the future. I'll have to find a copy of the Investment information for the park, but it lists Six Flags Great America as its main competitor but does also list Cedar Point as a competitor. Cedar Fair tries to draw people to their other nearby parks though (remember the FunGuide from Cedar Point that used to be sent out? It always included a coupon to MiA). I wouldn't be surprised if a CP & MiA Combo Ticket pops up in the future just like there's a CP/WWK and CP/KI combo ticket.

 

MiA would've never stepped on CP's turf. So that wouldn't be a region to purchase it. I think they purchased it because it was a park doing so well with a signature attraction and they felt they could make it their own and find a way to make more money with it. It has worked! Its like the purchase of Kings Island, that remained open and its even closer to Cedar Point than MiA. Yet, you see them pumping money crazily into it with new attractions that could spoil Cedar Points dominance. So that really doesn't make much sense...though I do see what you're saying.

 

Going back on what you were saying earlier about it not being a destination park but the beaches nearby being the destination. I can't agree more! Being from here, we know tourism is the second largest industry in the state and we rely on it. We know Michigan's Adventure will never be a "destination park" and that most out-of-towners just add it onto their already planned vacation. Well, what if MiA attempts to become a "better part" of that destination and capture more revenue off of it? This could help solidify future expansion and there are numerous ways you could go about it!

-Purchase Duck Creek RV Resort across the street. Many families utilize this for a camping trip. By purchasing it, you can advertise it as a place to also explore other area attractions and even capture revenue from those not attending the park. You could also offer discounted tickets, early entry etc...

-Build a small motel (expansions can come later) with the same idea as above.

-There's always that indoor waterpark/resort idea too. That would help but that would have to be further on down the road. But imagine MiA churning the money year round like Cedar Point does with Castaway Bay. May not be bad.

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^ Sounds pretty good to me... I guess I'm a little less trusting than you are at taking everything CF management says at their word is all! Regardless, we still have MiA, it's better than it was in some infrastructure ways, and I've actually cone to be content with it being what it is. That other subject just still gets in my bonnet like a bee, sometimes!

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^ Sounds pretty good to me... I guess I'm a little less trusting than you are at taking everything CF management says at their word is all! Regardless, we still have MiA, it's better than it was in some infrastructure ways, and I've actually cone to be content with it being what it is. That other subject just still gets in my bonnet like a bee, sometimes!

 

You cant blame CF. The GM is the one choosing not to put new rides in. CF wanted MIA to get knotts windseeker. CF wants MIA to get a drop tower. The GM and head of maintainance dont want the headache. Which is a shame. An amusement park that doesn't want to build amusement rides because of the work and budget it involves

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^ Sounds pretty good to me... I guess I'm a little less trusting than you are at taking everything CF management says at their word is all! Regardless, we still have MiA, it's better than it was in some infrastructure ways, and I've actually cone to be content with it being what it is. That other subject just still gets in my bonnet like a bee, sometimes!

 

You cant blame CF. The GM is the one choosing not to put new rides in. CF wanted MIA to get knotts windseeker. CF wants MIA to get a drop tower. The GM and head of maintainance dont want the headache. Which is a shame. An amusement park that doesn't want to build amusement rides because of the work and budget it involves

 

I know you keep saying that, but with all due respect, I have a VERY hard time believing Cedar Fair's higher-ups would allow the GM of a park they own to dictate anything to them. Add in the nepotism factor - from a head of maintenance no less - and you get a situation that reeks of un-professionalism, if true! If you are correct, however, that is a very big shame indeed, and CF is culpable in dropping the ball by not canning those two...

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^ Sounds pretty good to me... I guess I'm a little less trusting than you are at taking everything CF management says at their word is all! Regardless, we still have MiA, it's better than it was in some infrastructure ways, and I've actually cone to be content with it being what it is. That other subject just still gets in my bonnet like a bee, sometimes!

 

You cant blame CF. The GM is the one choosing not to put new rides in. CF wanted MIA to get knotts windseeker. CF wants MIA to get a drop tower. The GM and head of maintainance dont want the headache. Which is a shame. An amusement park that doesn't want to build amusement rides because of the work and budget it involves

 

I know you keep saying that, but with all due respect, I have a VERY hard time believing Cedar Fair's higher-ups would allow the GM of a park they own to dictate anything to them. Add in the nepotism factor - from a head of maintenance no less - and you get a situation that reeks of un-professionalism, if true! If you are correct, however, that is a very big shame indeed, and CF is culpable in dropping the ball by not canning those two...

 

The GM and head of maintenance are married. So the hom has a pretty big pull.

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The GM and head of maintenance are married. So the hom has a pretty big pull.

 

I realize that. I'm just saying that for a marriage to affect the way a business is being run, especially one that other people are in charge of, would be/is pretty unprofessional! If CF doesn't care about that, then that pretty much proves my point that they're not terribly concerned about MiA. If they really wanted something at MiA, neither the GM's husband nor the Head of Maintenance would stop them. I guess all this to say, if that's really what's going on behind the scenes, MiA's situation is more disappointing than I originally thought!

 

Having said all that, I really decided the other day not care if it ever becomes anything more, and accept MiA for what it is. Clearly I have some work to do in that regard!

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Since the OOF slide complex is being cloned once again (it's coming to Carowinds now) do you think one might show up at MIA soon as well?

 

As much as that's a sweet complex, and would certainly only enhance MiA's already stellar water park, MORE water slides seem like the last thing that park needs right now. Having just been there a week ago, I was struck by how large the place was, and how many different slides they had already. The number of slides outlasted my ability to stay out in the blistering sun riding them, actually! There are so many other areas the park really needs to address (and I'm not even talking about a coaster here, either) before adding to the one part of the park that already is well above average.

 

So all this to say: yeah, that's exactly what MiA is getting in 2017 after 2016 brings us nothing significant!

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Since the OOF slide complex is being cloned once again (it's coming to Carowinds now) do you think one might show up at MIA soon as well?

 

Well it would be better then nothing lol. I still have my money on a bowl slide or disc-o or nothing lol

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^ Sounds pretty good to me... I guess I'm a little less trusting than you are at taking everything CF management says at their word is all! Regardless, we still have MiA, it's better than it was in some infrastructure ways, and I've actually cone to be content with it being what it is. That other subject just still gets in my bonnet like a bee, sometimes!

 

You cant blame CF. The GM is the one choosing not to put new rides in. CF wanted MIA to get knotts windseeker. CF wants MIA to get a drop tower. The GM and head of maintainance dont want the headache. Which is a shame. An amusement park that doesn't want to build amusement rides because of the work and budget it involves

who is your informant

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^ Sounds pretty good to me... I guess I'm a little less trusting than you are at taking everything CF management says at their word is all! Regardless, we still have MiA, it's better than it was in some infrastructure ways, and I've actually cone to be content with it being what it is. That other subject just still gets in my bonnet like a bee, sometimes!

 

You cant blame CF. The GM is the one choosing not to put new rides in. CF wanted MIA to get knotts windseeker. CF wants MIA to get a drop tower. The GM and head of maintainance dont want the headache. Which is a shame. An amusement park that doesn't want to build amusement rides because of the work and budget it involves

who is your informant

 

I live and work within 10 minutes of the park. I will not name who I speak with. Lets just say I know everyone in the park. I speak with everyone in the park. I dont want to get in trouble or get anyone in trouble. Believe me or not. Its allllll good lol

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