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Source: Thrill Network.com/Crains Cleveland business on the web.

Feb. 5th, 2007 -- Striving for a more intimate and family-centered image, Geauga Lake will remove their X-Flight and Steel Venom roller coasters near the park's entrance to make the park more inviting to guests. The removal of these two high-profile attractions is one of many changes currently underway at Geauga Lake to swap its thrillride laden reputation into a more intimate regional family-entertainment park.

Aesthetics, operating and maintenance costs and stagnant park attendance all factored into removing the two roller coasters and the park’s monorail, said Cedar Fair's Chief Operating Officer, Jack Falfas. Geauga Lake also removed the towering Mr. Hyde’s Nasty Fall ride from the same part of the park before last summer.

Falfas said the presence of several big rides near the park’s entrance made it “not as inviting†as a Cedar Fair park should be. As for the monorail, it toted passengers over land where Geauga Lake’s original water park once stood, and Mr. Falfas likened that part of the park to “scars on the earth†that he’d rather visitors not see. It was recently announced that the X-Flight roller coaster has found itself a new home in 2007 at another one of Cedar Fair's parks -- Kings Island, near Cincinnati, OH. Meanwhile, Steel Venom is destined for storage at another park once it's dismantled, said Cedar Fair chief operating officer Jack Falfas.

“Our intent is to clean up that whole front area,†he said. “They have a large number of roller coasters and rides in there. It’s more than what the guest demand is (justifying) right now, particularly the way we’re going.â€Â

Falfas says it has become clear that Geauga Lake’s appeal lies as a cozy, regional attraction rather than a thrill-seeker’s paradise.

“I think at first, some people assumed  and maybe we did ourselves  that Geauga Lake was ‘Cedar Point East,’†he said, referring to the Sandusky park’s reputation as a coaster capital. “It’s not going to be a Cedar Point East. It is a local park, it’s a great picnic park, it’s a community thing.â€Â

However, the attractions will not be ignored completely. Falfas noted that two of the park's thrill rides are scheduled for new expensive paint jobs -- one will which will also have cameras installed in every seat so visitors can buy a video memento of their ride and a movie/simulator ride is being re-themed. In addition, the Raging Wolf Bobs coaster has been completely refurbished and there are plans for new attractions, but details were not disclosed.

Hmmm, lets up this "community thing" as falfas calls it turns the park around I'm worried the new attractions hes talking about are lake side condos. According to him they were worried about the up front attractions making the park look ugly....not that abondoned waterpark they left sitting there for the past few years. Wolf Bobs re-tracked....all the kids on geauga guide have been claiming that viliain was getting retracked. I dont know who to believe now....the uninformed self proclaimed know it alls of Geauga Guide or Falfas....no matter which...lets just hope GL gets turned around.

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on the coaster EXT flyer it says the villian would be rehabed and ready to go that does not mean its getting retracked... maybe just fixing it up.

They are doing a good thing by trying to increase revenue. I think the way to really get people to come is picnics and a lot of the, it seems like thats what they are doing this year.

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"In addition, the Raging Wolf Bobs coaster has been completely refurbished"

My God how many times are they going to re-do that coaster? It's been "refurbished" about 10 times over the years... and never gotten any better.

Shaggy

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Interesting that they are putting Steel Venom in storage. I think that this ride may reopen at another Cedar Fair park in 2008, possibly Dorney Park? It was rumored that Dorney was getting a new power line installed, be that as it may.

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"In addition, the Raging Wolf Bobs coaster has been completely refurbished"

My God how many times are they going to re-do that coaster? It's been "refurbished" about 10 times over the years... and never gotten any better.

Shaggy

They cant do the whole thing at once it seems. Every year they do one part thus causing the never ending refurbishing.

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"In addition, the Raging Wolf Bobs coaster has been completely refurbished"

My God how many times are they going to re-do that coaster? It's been "refurbished" about 10 times over the years... and never gotten any better.

Shaggy

Actually, I say it has gotten a LOT better. They actually spent two years refurbishing Raging Wolf Bobs, during the 2004 and 2005 seasons. I rode it for the first time in 2005 when the revamp was about half done, and there was one really rough spot left on it. Then I rode it in 2006 once the refurbishment was complete, and the difference was amazing. The curving area of track that was so rough and unpleasant was gone, and the ride overall was no longer unpleasant. In fact , there was no part of the ride left that felt rough to me. Now I will admit that the coaster is still not an airtime machine or anything like that, but the refurbishment has made a HUGE difference in the coaster from the way it was in 2004 and before. During the coaster EXT event last year when we had a Q & A with the manager, several people thanked him for the refurbishment, agreeing with me that the ride was much better. Just the difference between 2005 and 2006 was enough to convince me to ride it frequently again.

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I'm very surprised to hear they are removing Steel Venom also? Any news of this official from CF or just rumors? I think the park attendence will drop alot this year and next year they'll remove Dominator. Then in 10' the news will be the park is closing. This is my guess.

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I'm very surprised to hear they are removing Steel Venom also? Any news of this official from CF or just rumors? I think the park attendence will drop alot this year and next year they'll remove Dominator. Then in 10' the news will be the park is closing. This is my guess.

From the article:

...Meanwhile, Steel Venom is destined for storage at another park once it's dismantled, said Cedar Fair chief operating officer Jack Falfas....

So, if the chief operating officer of the company saying Steel Venom is being removed and going into storage isn't good enough for you, what on earth is?

Is it really too much trouble for you to actually READ the threads before you just go off posting stuff? This is the second one of these this morning alone...

I'm sorry to go off like this, but it really is getting old...

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refurbishing every year, doesn't get any better..... whoa.... are you talking about the wood coaster at Gauega (or however it's spelled)? 'cause I could have sworn you were spekaing of SOB. Which by the way, there may be a thread on it already (didn't look at the whole site)- but the local media is reporting that SOB will not open until later in the summer now. I think Paramount was close, but how long do you think CF will go before the white towel is hoisted?

Back to the Geauga lake discussion... It would seem a pretty risky venture to remove your signature attractions even if you are trying to attract a particular segment- unless your overall intention was to eventually change course entirely and scale down to perhaps just a water park. Didn't LeSourdsville Lake try to appeal to just one particluar segment.... and die within a few years? Yea, I agree with Interpreter... Good luck with this endeavor.... Perhaps KI can "soar" above and poach some other northern attractions before it is all said and done.

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"refurbishing every year, doesn't get any better..... whoa.... are you talking about the wood coaster at Gauega (or however it's spelled)? 'cause I could have sworn you were spekaing of SOB. "

Ge-au-ga.

I am definitely talking about Raging Wolf Bobs at GL. I have ridden it several times over the years and have not seen any major improvement. I was not a fan of the ride to begin with, nor have I become a "changed man" as many others proclaim to be. I am glad others find the "improvements" worthwhile, or think that it's a great coaster now. I don't. The layout has never been a thrilling one, and IMO the switch from PTCs to Gerstlaurs is not inspired. I mean Gerstlauer trains are HORRENDOUS.

Speaking of which, there's a bad rumor floating around that CF is looking at placing Gerst trains on Sonny. God help us all if that's the case. Bottom line, a bomb should have been dropped on Sonny about 2 years ago.

Shaggy

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It wasn't. Actually under Paramount KI was slated to no have a new install of ANY sort in 2007. I learned that direct from the park itself.

Actually, it would have likely LOST a ride. I was told that KD's FOF was closed and removal to Carowinds had already been planned. When Viacom decided to sell the parks, the plan was put on hold. KI's FOF was slated to close after 2007 and be relocated to Wonderland.

Shaggy

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I do remember hearing that, about taking out Flight of Fear...but seems as if CF has other plans. We'll see where they go with that.

I'm actually planning on, at some point during the on-season, going to Geauga Lake. The last time I was there it was still Six Flags, and I was still under the parents so I couldn't just go wander off and ride what I wanted to (I wanted to ride RWB because that was the only thing I would ride back then), and we spent the majority of the day over at the Sea World part anyway.

So to hear this, that they're still planning to keep GL alive for now...it kind of gives me hope. In my opinion, they're not trying to kill it off, rather to restore it to what it once was. Six Flags, I think most of us can agree, kind of screwed it over. I'm all for the regional park thing. You know, it's been around forever...that's even more of a reason to keep it around for generations to come. (Maybe I'm just too sappy and optimistic, but there you go.)

Besides, from what I've heard, Dominator is pretty sweet, and I have a date with Big Dipper. :D

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To clarify, I do not think the improvements to Raging Wolf Bobs have made it a great coaster. What they have done is remove most of the roughness from the ride, making it more tolerable to ride. The difference from 2004 to 2006 is very striking, and the ride is not painful now and I do enjoy it. But these improvement did not make it a great coaster. But it did address the worse problems of the ride. That being said, I also hate the Gerstlauer trains and will be appalled if they are used on the newly improved Son of Beast.

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I don't think Cedar Fair has any plans to close Geauga Lake any time soon. With these changes I expect the park will be making money again and while it won't be much it will be enough I suspect to not have to worry about its future. Back when Cedar Fair purchased the Paramount parks they released data on just how much revenue all of the parks made in 2005 (this is the total amount the parks bring in NOT profits). Geauga Lake was at $26 million. Michigan's adventure is lower at $19 million. Neither park brings in enough to justify yearly additions but I suspect every few years you will see either a coaster or flat ride. But I don't see anyone claiming Cedar Fair is planning to close Michigan's Adventure. These rides really did make the entire entrance to GL very ugly and uninviting to anyone who is not a coaster fan.

I still plan to visit GL this summer and the loss of these two rides really does not change my mind at all.

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Cedar Fair is smart, If you read the whole press release they were sometimes themselves thinking it would be Cedar Point east (but in all accounts its a family park).

It will be a great park done right.

Everything you read about Cedar Fair is great!!

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^ yeah, I definitely agree with you. Just because CF is downsizing GL doesn't necessarily mean they plan on closing it. I think there's still a viable market for the small, affordable, local park. Granted, that means that most of their attendance will probably be pulled from the local market (as opposed to people--other than enthusiasts, of course--coming in from other areas in the region.) But, that's ok...as long as the footprint of the park is reasonable for the attendance the economics of the park are scalable.

As far as the new reclaimed land from X-Flight, SV, and the old waterpark...what about opening a Family Entertainment Center (putt-putt, go-karts, big indoor arcade, restaurant, etc.) that would have a year-round operation? That could be a good way to generate year-round revenue. Also, CF could set up an information/reservation desk for the other parks and maybe do some cross-promotion of their "destination" parks. Since the land in question is adjacent to the parking lot, it seems like logistically it could work. I've always wondered why seasonal parks didn't try adding year-round FEC...it seems like a natural expansion of the product.

While I'm rambling...I've also wondered about the feasibility of a stand-alone indoor waterpark. So far, all the indoor waterpark developments have been tied to a full hotel/resort at $200-400/night. I wonder about the feasibility of building an indoor waterpark that doesn't include the hotel and opening it up to the public for say $25 a person? I wonder if capacity would be a problem with that idea...meaning, you couldn't physically accomodate enough guests at a time to actually make money?

Oh, well...sorry for the random thoughts :)

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Didn't LeSourdsville Lake try to appeal to just one particluar segment.... and die within a few years?

Actually no.... that is what LL is needing to do if it ever hopes to be a park again. LL opened trying to accomodate whoever it could and actually did quite well. Problem was, LL was ran like a six Flags park and the accomodations for guests weren't that great. The 2002 season would have finished the entire year had it not been for the management company deciding not to pay bills and then just leave. The park management company, The Pughes took advantage of the Park Owner Jerry Couch and he was forced to close shop for the year. It had nothing to do with LL's business model!

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Didn't LeSourdsville Lake try to appeal to just one particluar segment.... and die within a few years?

Actually no.... that is what LL is needing to do if it ever hopes to be a park again. LL opened trying to accomodate whoever it could and actually did quite well. Problem was, LL was ran like a six Flags park and the accomodations for guests weren't that great. The 2002 season would have finished the entire year had it not been for the management company deciding not to pay bills and then just leave. The park management company, The Pughes took advantage of the Park Owner Jerry Couch and he was forced to close shop for the year. It had nothing to do with LL's business model!

Speaking of Lesourdsville, check this this SA topic out for pictures of Americana/LL as of October 2006.

I hope we don't become the storage center for Steel Venom...

Just what we need, another rotting coaster.

I doubt its going to rot, it will probably be a 2008 attraction somewhere.

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Besides, from what I've heard, Dominator is pretty sweet, and I have a date with Big Dipper. :D

Ill see you at big dipper :)

^Same here (kenban's post)

WT is the worst coaster at CP so I dout Steel Vemon is any better. And X-Flight is going to be at KI so I can ride it here.

I liked venom more the holding break was sweet and a lot of people liked it because of that

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