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Sergeant Pepper

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Posts posted by Sergeant Pepper

  1. Answers for Friday's 5@5 mailbag below:

    Stan Byme - Do you know of an amusing story about those huge stuffed Coney Mall prizes...such as someone not being able to get it into their car?

    You see a lot of funny or odd things at the park during a summer. I would watch that reality show. One of the strangest I saw last year was a very heavy set woman riding a motorized wheelchair. Tied to the back of it was a giant stuffed tiger in the clear bag. Riding on top of the bagged Tiger being dragged down I-Street were her kids. Not what I expected to see at the time.


    Derrike Marksberry - Is there any chance that sometime in the relative future X-Base will officially be deemed a separate area, such as coney mall and rivertown are?

    That section of the park has expanded and there is plenty of room to continue in that direction but I’m not sure it would ever not be considered part of Coney Mall.


    Brad Perdue - I would love to see some KI logo'ed Polo's in the shops. Not sure if I have mised them, but I have not seen any yet this season. Can I request that polo's be considered as an item avaliable for sale

    I was in the Reds gift shop on Wednesday and was impressed by their Polo offerings. I left my $85 in the car so I didn’t get one but they were nice. I will mention this to our merch director tomorrow. He’s been around a long time and I’m sure he’d be selling them if they were popular enough.


    Scott Littleton - Is it possible to include menus and/or prices on the website for the food options at Kings Island? It would really help in my budgeting of trips this year.

    We did have the menu for each location listed last year. I wasn’t sure if that was helpful at all so we went more generic this year but adding it back is easy to do. http://www.visitkingsisland.com/public/park/dining/index.cfm


    Nick Mahoney I was looking at the park map awhile ago and noticed Adventure Express is rated 5 and Drop Tower is rated a 4 why is this?

    Manufacturer recommendation on Adventure Express and Drop Tower. A ride like Drop Tower may be more thrilling, but AE has twists and turns and pulls more negative g’s.


  2. Another late one. Sorry. Answers for Saturday's 5@5 Mailbag:

    Travis Nuss - what ride would you bring back from the past? i think king cobra

    That would certainly be a good one to bring back. For my money, the Antique Cars can’t be beat.

    Tim Brown - You said first priority is safety so I have a safety question. In 2009 the metal detectors were not being used all the time. Will they be running consistantly this year and why were they shut off during parts of last year? I assumed it was for a good reason like a maintenance issue or the cost of powering them. One time the detectors caught a pocket knife I forgot I had on me (and intended to leave in the car) and it made me feel that much more safe at the park. Thanks

    Our entrance procedure has been modified over the years and the overall plan involves much, much more than just the metal detectors. There are no maintenance or power cost issues. We may use them every day or we may use them randomly. Those decisions are made and adjusted on an ongoing basis.

    Daniel Bruington Why are the lights on inside the tunnels of The Beast and Backlot Stunt Coaster? It really takes away from the rides...especially at night (which is what The Beast is 'known' for).

    I honestly don’t know the answer to this but since you’ve been patient I will make sure to ask someone in the morning. I can see your point for sure.

    Bruce E Knolle Jr Why is Action Theater not listed anywhere on the KI website? It's not listed rides or even under shows.

    Oversight. Nothing more. We were waiting on the decision for that film when the site was launched and never went back to add it. I will make sure this is added tomorrow. Thanks. And thanks for the picture you sent today.

    Jennifer Farmer Dent We went on Boo Blaster on opening day and my 3 year old son was a bit freaked out by the skeletons. He refused to ride again. Then, we got him to ride again yesterday and as previously stated above the skeletons were off. As asked, was this just a daily malfunction or was it deemed too intense for others? If so, I'd recommend replacing with something elsesoon (or turn them back on) as that part of pretty much pitch blackness has the potential to scare a child more than shrieking skeletons (which I thought was intense..more Haunt than former Scooby...but very cool)! Good ride...and I am glad my son gave it a second chance (he loved it this time and was so proud he did it...he's a fan again)!

    I’m glad you got him to ride and am happy that he liked it. My kid wouldn’t try the first time but I intend to suggest again next visit. The skeleton room experienced a technical issue. That’s it. Not changing it. It is more intense but I have yet to see a single complaint on the ride. We have gotten nothing but compliments to this point.

  3. Thursdays 5@5

    Lots of great questions to pick from. Below are answers for Thursday's 5@5 mailbag.

    Derrike Marksberry - Since Tower Gardens is now a smoking area, will we see more enforcement of people who are walking through the park and decide to light up where they stand?

    We do try very hard to enforce this. Much harder than many people realize. This is certainly a hot topic. It's not easy to stop a guest and ask them to find another place. But we absolutely do it. There are times in the summer when I take a trip around the park and don't make it far between steps without stopping to pick up trash or enforce this rule. We take both very seriously. If we see an associate walk past either smoking or trash without addressing it – it will be addressed. Try it one day. Take a lap around the park and look at it from my eyes. Bring your hand sanitizer! I will speak to someone about the fountain in the Tower Gardens area.


    Robbie Zerhusen - With more and more places offering free WiFi connection due to the ever increasing connected world that we live in, does Kings Island offer any locations where free WiFi is available in the park?

    Robbie, I spent two hours today in a meeting with a company discussing this and several other IT projects. After about 5 minutes I had no clue what they were talking about. I felt pretty dumb but they were talking techie gibberish. I was surprised to hear how difficult it is to make the entire park wireless. Years ago we had a child-tracking service that should be an easy app nowadays but making sure you can cover the whole park is a big deal. I can imagine watching my kid on the i-phone and seeing the flashing red light disappear somewhere in The Beast woods! We are working on it though. Trying to get the I-street webcam up by the end of the weekend by the way.


    Keith Harrison - What was your favorite experience/interaction with a guest on opening day?

    Great question. Mine actually took place on Wednesday before we opened. The kids that were invited to check out Planet Snoopy early were from 4 local orphanages. They had such a great time and it made me feel very good. It was also great to see the gates open on Saturday and see so many familiar faces.


    Christine Salleng UmmKhaleel - Historically, how crowded is bring a friend days for gold and platinum pass holders? I was thinking about inviting my friend and was just wondering how crowded it is usually. Thank You! I appreciate your help!

    The old Bring-a-Friend Free days were crowded. Too crowded. That would also probably be the answer to the "largest single-day crowd" too. At least in recent memory. The way we do it now on Mother's Day and Father's Day for $9.99 work so much better – for everyone. These are great days to visit. Crowds are not an issue.


    Gabriel Zelazny - As you have stated in a past 5@5, you have a 3-5 year future plan when it comes to new attractions for the park. What makes you decide to build a high thrill ride one year and maybe a family ride another? Also, because Cedar Point is a sister park and is not THAT long of a drive from Cincinnati, do both parks talk with each other when it comes to their new attractions so that both offer a different experience that year to maximize visitors to both parks?

    All parks need balance between thrill and family. I think we have great variety and you really need both. Especially at the size park both Kings Island and Cedar Point are. I don't think there's much crossover between KI and CP when it comes to new rides. They have a much different situation from us. We are centered around some nice size cities all within a day's drive and have a large home market to pull from. They are a destination park and see many visitors from all over the country. Aside from a couple of markets, I don't think it comes down to an either-or decision between the two parks. Two totally different strategies but both need the same level of balance.

  4. I voted Planet Snoopy to be good, everything besides the signs are great. (The signs were too small)

    I think PS was better than NU because it used alot more color. NU was just green and orange all over the place.

  5. We didn`t eat at the Skyline on International Street. We ate at the one in Coney Mall. One other change that was noticed in Coney Mall is that the Eurobungy is gone, replaced by a EuroBobble. Not sure what a EuroBobble is? (I would link to the Eurobungy site, but it appears to be down at the moment). Imagine a pool of shallow water. On top of said pool, imagine giant bubbles that people get inside of. They can run around in it, and not move very far, kind of like a hamster ball. Here is a link to a YouTube video showcasing the EuroBobble:

    Somebody posted a picture here: http://www.KICentral.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=21229&pid=373360&st=0entry373360 Post #2


    I had some computer issues last night so I apologize for the delay but here they are, the questions and answers for Saturday's 5@5 mailbag:

    Joshua Young - Do the ride mechanics walk the track on the coasters every morning or is it just on the wood coasters?

    Joshua, the maintenance workers on the wood and steel coasters will thoroughly inspect the track on every coaster in the park every day before the ride opens. On the wood coasters, they’ll walk the track. On steel coasters there are parts of the track they will walk. They will also listen for sound during test runs.


    Brett BeFair Fehr – How did Opening Day go?

    Brett, it went well. The temperatures were on the cool side, but overall it was a beautiful day weather wise. Planet Snoopy was a hit with children and families. Boo Blasters on Boo Hill received rave reviews. Guests enjoyed our new live shows, Charlie Brown’s Hoedown and Way Too Much TV. It’s always great to see the park come alive after a long winter.


    Brian Krosnick – Now that the park is open, are you hoping to put photos of all of the Planet Snoopy rides on the official site, instead of just the logos?

    Brian, we will be spending the next couple weekends taking photos of the rides in Planet Snoopy and all the other rides in the park for the new website. Each ride will have its own photo gallery like we have with the information about Diamondback.


    Chris Hughes – Today was a great day at the park!!!! My question is that I noticed Christmas lights around Backlot, Tower Gardens and the Eiffel Tower….what are they for?

    Chris, I’m glad you had a great day at the park. The lights on the trees are for a new night time show that will be unlike any other light show you’ve seen before. We’re excited about it. Full details including the dates and show times will be announced soon. The light show followed by the fireworks will be a great way to cap off a memorable day at the park.


    Zach Branstetter – What roller coaster model is in the window for display at Thrill Seekers? Is this an idea for a future design?

    Zach, the model on display is of an existing coaster. It’s not an idea for a future design. We have a couple of different coaster models at the park. I will find out which one we currently have on display.

  6. </h2>

    <h2>It continues to be a very busy week, so I apologize for the delay. Below are your answers for Tuesday's 5@5 mailbag.

    Bobby Crawford - I really like the fact that the browser/site identification for the new Kings Island website says “Kings Island theme park – the fan and only.” I for one have always thought of Kings Island as a special theme park and not a run of the mill amusement park, with I-Street, Rivertown, Coney Mall, etc. Hasn’t the park always been called a theme park?

    Bobby, when the park opened in 1972, it was divided into five themed areas: International Street, Old Coney Island, Oktoberfest, Rivertown and the Happy Land of Hanna-Barbera. But if you look at old news releases and newspaper articles, for more than a decade the park was referred to as an entertainment center. What we are is a fun park, the thrill capital of the Midwest.


    Christine Salleng Ummkhaleel – I plan on visiting Kings Island on Opening Day. I will arrive at 2 p.m. I will also be processing my pass then as well. Do you think the season pass processing line will still be really long by 2 p.m. on Opening Day? I would really like to know so I can know if I will be waiting a long time or not. Thanks! I appreciate your help!

    Christine, if you have a chance to process your season pass prior to Saturday I would recommend doing that so on Opening Day when you arrive at 2 p.m. you can head straight into the park to avoid whatever wait there might be at the Season Pass Processing Center. The wait time on most days is usually the longest in the morning. Opening Day always seems to vary.


    Adam Woltermann – Will we see a change on the Rivertown Train this year like theming or just anything? Thanks.

    Adam, you won’t see any new theming with the trains this season but what I can tell you is we’ve had a lot of discussions about the train. We feel there’s an opportunity there; a way to make the ride more of an experience for our guests. The trains are real authentic steam-spitting locomotives and are full-scale replicas of the 1800’s locomotive known as The General, which was the subject of the Great Locomotive Chase of the American Civic War. There's a story behind the trains, one we're looking at ways to tell.


    Brian Krosnick – Will the red & purple spotlights be on inside Flight of Fear’s spaghetti bowl this year? They should be! :P

    That’s a good question. I plan to ride Flight of Fear later this week and will let you know if the spotlights are on.


    Tim Brown – There’s a lot of people that are annoyed by the kids at KI that walk around dribbling basketballs they’ve won at a midway game. In addition to the sound being annoying (especially when near a whole group of dribblers), they also often chase after runaway balls which causes the balls, or even themselves, to run into people. I was just curious if this was viewed by the park as a minor or major problem and is there any chance of the basketballs being replaced or at least handed out with no air in them?

    Tim, looking through the guest comment forms from last year this doesn’t appear to be a problem but since you say there’s a lot of people that are annoyed by it, we’re going to take a look at it and see if there’s something we need to change there. Thank you for bringing it to our attention.

  7. Jon Roost - Have there been any changes to Backlot Stunt Coaster this year since the Mini Cooper license is expiring? For example, at Kings Dominion the cars got a paint job and the little doors removed, is a similar thing happening here this year?

    You will see changes to the trains with the removal of the Mini Cooper brand. I've ridden this ride a lot and not once did I get off the ride and say "wow, those are great stickers". For my money I would have spent a few more million on steel and less on copyright allowances.

    Ya-Hoo <_<

  8. Bret Shroats - Another Question. You tweeted yesterday the Park Maps are in. When will the map be available online

    You’ll see lots of parks maps online next week when the new website goes live!


    Cameron Saavedra - How much work do you think the park has till April 17th?

    It looks like a lot left to do – but it always does and it always gets done in time. The team will be working right up to the end this year thanks in large part to a really cold and snowy winter. The park is buzzing with activity now. It’s really fun to take a walk around each day. It’s amazing how much they get done so quickly.


    Tanner Burns - Since Boo Blasters is going to be more intense, will the "entrance" to Planet Snoopy be moved back to not include it? or will there be any signs stating this?? or will it still be a family friendly ride??

    The entrances to Planet Snoopy will be the same. The dark ride will be scarier but no so much that it needs to be addressed this way. Families like mine will still pour into this ride. My older kid will like it much better. My youngest kid might want to wait another year but that’s okay because there are a ton of things for that age to do.


    David McPeak - What area of the park do you recommend going to first? The Diamondback line goes extremely fast, so no problem there, but usually X Base is packed, would you recommend going there first?

    Go opposite everyone else. Every morning the right hand side of the street is packed with everyone heading to DB and Beast. Action Zone lines up because you see this first so lots of people go that way. You’re right to head to Firehawk and Flight of Fear. Diamondback’s line is always moving so you’ll still get plenty of rides there. Best plan though is to get your DB/Beast rides in during Gold Pass ERT every day!


    David McPeak - How does it feel that Kings Island and Cedar Point are now sister parks? Before the purchase, I'm sure that you guys were "enemies", and had to compete with each other. For example Son of Beast and Millennium Force in 2000

    It’s cool that we’re on the same team. Cedar Point is a great park – regardless of our connection to them. Many KI folks have made a trip up there for “research” and fun every year and still do. We do things differently but we do a lot of things the same. Always have. We were competitors that’s for sure. Not sure I’d say enemies. At the end of the day all parks root for each other. That means we’re all doing well.


    Ben Rosen - Pop Evil rocked the house last year (IMO blew collective soul away), Are there any plans to have another rock show this year? I personally like metal / 80's hairbands (Poison,Firehouse, etc..).

    Pop Evil was great. We had no idea to be honest. They were a very last minute addition. We are feverishly looking for more concerts. They are not easy though. Tough business. It’s great seeing Timberwolf full of people. Spirit Song, Hannity, JoyFest Gospel are all locked up. I think a country concert festival would work well here and we’ve always had luck with the rock acts like you mentioned. We’ll keep working it.


    Brad Perdue - Has there been a significant decrease of ridership on rides in Action Zone since SOB has not been running? Specifically on Flight Deck? Just curios how it has impacted that area of the park.

    Flight Deck ridership was up last year as was most every ride in the park. It is kind of hidden but it always has been. Most people coming to the park have it on their to-do list.


    R.j. Huber - I guess you can say I'm a n00b to Kings Isalnd. This is my first year as a Gold Passholder and I am wondering if there was a "special" entrance for passholders? I'm wondering what your procedure was for the ERTs

    Welcome. I hope you end up being a passholder for a very long time. Diamondback and The Beast open early every day this year for our Gold Passholders. You will see a designated entrance on the right hand side of the street when you come in. This has worked very well.


    Christy Walters - Will the log flume be getting new boats this year? The old ones flooded.... a lot. & my kids love that ride!!

    I have not seen any new boats arrive. If I do I’ll let you know. You’re right, this is a great ride.


    Kyle Joyce - In the final couple years of Scooby Doo and the Haunted Castle, the guns hardly worked anymore, and even from the beginning of the ride,when it opened in 2003, it seemed like a lot of targets you couldn't even hit, like in the "living room" scene. Will any of these problems be fixed for Boo Blasters?

    Sometimes it’s the guns. Most times it’s the targets. I asked this same question to the workers in there this week. They said you’d see a great improvement in the ability to hit the targets. This makes your score better and the entire ride much more fun since it’s the targets that activate a lot of the scenes. People have been working in this building many hours in the past weeks to make this a better attraction.


    Rick Penny - Scooby has been at Kings Island since the park opened, I understand why you guys put snoopy in but why take scooby away after 37 years....He was the best part, well Hannah Barbara!!! I love CF and KI And Snoopy but KI will just be a little different with out scooby!!!! Is there any chance that we may see scooby one way or another again in the future??

    Scooby was a great piece of KI and it will feel different without him. I remember many people who didn’t want the rest of the HB characters to leave when the Nickelodeon characters arrived. Many of those people changed their minds quickly. I disagree that Scooby was the best part of the park.


    Chris Hughes - What is one change at the park this year, that no one has asked about?

    Surprisingly there are some questions no one has asked. One thing people will notice is a new family restroom located next to the women’s restroom at the front gate. Our group sales clients will also be very pleasantly surprised to see some of the new landscaping improvements being made in the Picnic Grove.


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