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Messages - shavethewhales

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Branson Talk / Re: MO 76 realignment over current MO 465
« on: December 04, 2019, 09:03:29 AM »
It's a very interesting development, but not necessarily for the reasons people might assume. Nothing is happening yet except the switch-out of signs and route numbers. This does pave the way for the city to make massive changes to the strip going forward though. No more waiting on state approval to upgrade the road.

The spirit of 76 project will live on one way or another. They really don't have much of a choice. I just hope they don't try to simply force a four lane upgrade through. We need a mass transit system, and we need it ten years ago.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2019 Daily Attendance
« on: November 18, 2019, 11:32:31 AM »
It's nice that they have had good weather for these Christmas weekends at least. The weather worked against them so often this year, I'm glad they are catching a break at last.

They mentioned at CC that they had over 100,000 more guests during Pumpkin Nights than they usually do during that time of year, so it was a hit regardless of some of the nasty weather that came through. I think they are still down a good bit for this year overall though, but hard to say where we'll land by year's end. Probably still down some overall from last year.

Next year will be interesting. New ride + more Pumpkins + Christmas. Hopefully set a new record again.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: Fire In The Hole Bump
« on: November 18, 2019, 11:26:57 AM »
He also said that they recognize that many people view FITH as essential to the park.

When he said essential do you think he meant the ride itself or the history connected to the ride, or both?

I think he meant the ride itself.  We both discussed how many people really don't know the story behind the ride.

I would wager he was referring more to the spirit/history of the ride. Given how they have allowed certain things to slip on the ride building, I'd say they definitely have plans to completely rip it out and replace it within the next 5 years. We've discussed the rumors for years now, and Swoosh will certainly tell you that there have been multiple ideas that have apparently floated around. No telling what exactly they'll decide on, but I would bet money on an entirely new indoor coaster/ride loosely related to the FITH story to come around soon-ish. Probably more emphasis on firemen and less on baldknobbers, but we'll see.

I think we went through a phase where SDC sanitized a lot of stuff, but now the clientele are starting to voice opinions the other way, saying that SDC has pulled too much. Hard to say what the PTB are hearing, but I don't think at this point that they would completely get rid of the baldknobber story. I do think they would emphasis that part of it less though.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2020 Season Passes
« on: November 18, 2019, 11:21:25 AM »
It helps to use the payment system. 9 payments of $12 is easy to budget for vs. taking the hit on one month. As a point of comparison, I've paid $8 a month to Six Flags this year for a yearly "membership". Of course, the SF membership gets you into every single park...

There was a survey floating around a little while ago where they were testing the waters for things they could add on to make the season passes more worthwhile. I expect to see some kind of multi-property HFEC membership option come around sometime. Probably a lot of branson discounts, plus the ability to go to other HFEC properties like Talking Rocks or maybe even DW/WA?

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2020 Project (Thread #2)
« on: November 17, 2019, 11:55:43 AM »
From the outside looking in, it seems that the Mill has actually gotten TOO popular over the past couple years. There were rumors that they were looking at expanding it somehow, even taking over the candle shop to do so. The mill was never built to handle the number of people coming through to get cinnamon bread. At times there have been lines of 30+ minutes or more.

We'll see where things land in spring, but I was told that the mill would still have a few baked things, and they would still have some bread making going on there. I think the milling should be more featured though - so many people fail to realize that it is a real mill!

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2020 Project (Thread #2)
« on: November 09, 2019, 10:41:04 PM »
Got to see it all up close at the ACE coaster Christmas walk back today. It really looks incredible with the authentic rock work everywhere. The new ribhouse will be nice and cozy and it interacts a lot with the new ride through. They are still pouring concrete at the base of the tower and may not even start on the steelwork until after the season ends.

They also dropped the news that the old white river mercantile building will become a cinnamon bread bakery. I guess that building will be safe for the future.

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2019 Daily Attendance
« on: November 09, 2019, 03:53:18 PM »
Very busy today. Christmas time is definitely here for SDC!

Random Talk / Re: Best Park for Kids over 42" but under 48"
« on: November 04, 2019, 01:14:01 PM »
That's a head scratcher. Most parks with many coasters obviously feature larger coasters with higher height restrictions. PK has always been pretty unique for its low height restriction. Always made me wonder how S&S hasn't sold more of those things since you'd think demand would be so high for this range.

Off the top of my head Legoland comes to mind. Also maybe Mall of America/Valleyfair?

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2019 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: October 31, 2019, 08:32:12 PM »
So the pumpkin stuff was an obvious success, despite some poor weather and the fact that it was more-or-less confined to a fairly small area. Sounds like it will be back even bigger, longer, and more pumpkiny next year as expected. I'm sure the "backstage" area will be better then as well. It looks like they installed a bunch of infrastructure to support something that didn't get debuted this year.

Sounds like they finally heard the complaints about the lack of crafters. The crafters had been falling off for years now, but this year was the first time everyone seemed to notice at once.

How was the lumberjack show? Didn't hear much about it.

The new tree is already being installed. The park posted a new video about the Christmas prep on FB today. Still lots of trees in the way!

Other Parks / Re: Six Flags in a bid to merge with Cedar Fair
« on: October 21, 2019, 09:13:34 PM »
There's definitely been some great things happening at WOF for those who pay attention. Really want a new star attraction there, but it's good that they have been getting some important work done fixing up the place.

I don't know if WOF would do as good or better under SF ownership, but they probably wouldn't be worse. SF has put a lot of effort into basic park maintenance the last few years (well, in most cases). I don't think there's a huge amount of difference to how SF and CF run their parks (feel free to disagree). The real issue is keeping enough competition in the marketplace so that they still have to push the envelope with new attractions. Then again, they already have to compete with everything else grabbing for people's attention, so maybe it isn't that big of a deal who owns the parks anyway.

I was thinking more about MiA and even Valleyfair when I made that comment. Those parks don't get a ton of investment most years anyway. SF would want them to expand their footprint. CF just kind of keeps them around to give the company more critical mass. I could see a deal eventually developing where SF takes the route of buying a couple smaller CF parks to continue spreading their reach while CF uses the money to invest into turning their core properties into bigger giant resorts. Who knows at this point though. They might completely change strategies again in a couple years.

Other Parks / Re: Six Flags in a bid to merge with Cedar Fair
« on: October 14, 2019, 08:26:50 AM »
Yeah, I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. They'll come back eventually with another offer more than likely.

I'd like for them to just scoop up a couple of the smaller parks and be happy with that. Leave the good CF parks alone!

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: Harvest Festival
« on: October 14, 2019, 08:24:56 AM »
I've been told by a number of people that the crafters are PO'd at SDC. I don't know all the details, but they feel they have been actively pushed away by the park management.

The park is increasingly run by corporate thinking. It's part of what happens when you grow into an operation that involves thousands of workers, but no one likes it.

SDC has always been a tough park to run, so in some ways I feel for the management that has to figure it all out. As we've discussed in the attendance thread, one week they can be packed, and the next they might be worried how they'll keep the lights on. They do need to stop treating the employees and crafters like they are so dispensable though.

Other Parks / Re: Six Flags in a bid to merge with Cedar Fair
« on: October 03, 2019, 08:57:38 PM »
Yeah, it's hard to wrap me head around this one. Enthusiasts aren't good at truly understanding the business side of things. These are huge publicly traded companies, and the motivations for these kinds of M&A offers are often pretty complex. The people at the top are almost always out for a quick buck so they can move on and do their next thing.

Obviously few park enthusiasts want to see this happen. The benefits from having more parks on a single membership plan are probably outweighed by the massive loss of competition among the industry, leading to fewer and less interesting major new rides. No reason to build big expensive B&M hypers when you are only competing with yourself. SF is already playing it pretty tight with their pocketbook when it comes to new rides. The bottom line is all they care about.

Many have speculated that this is only an opening offer that may lead to a different final deal however. Perhaps CF will sell off some of their smaller properties. SF seems hungry to gobble up whatever they can get to spread their footprint again. They are even talking about building FEC's around the country.

Construction/Rumors / Re: SDC's 2019 Project(s) and Park Developments
« on: September 30, 2019, 10:25:05 PM »
Seems like something with utility hookups... could be for future expansions of the Pumpkin/Christmas fest... Maybe at some point we'll see a second tree w/ light show?

General Silver Dollar City Talk / Re: 2019 Daily Attendance
« on: September 29, 2019, 10:52:30 AM »
I think it's safe to say that the pumpkin nights will be greatly expanded next year, both in terms of scale and the length. I'll bet they start by mid-September at the latest. Keep in mind Disneyworld was already doing a trick-or-treat even in mid August when I was there.

Glad that they are getting some decent numbers again. This season looks like it has largely been a wash, but at least they always finish out strong. Hopefully next year will be much stronger.

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