Call for Ideas: New Membership Program Perks

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lce

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I don't think that is something we should look down upon, not saying anyone is. It would almost be nice if BGW kinda tried to encourage this behavior. After all, wasn't that kinda the original intent of BGW?

I think an area that keeps you in the mindset that you are still at BGW, but is also a nice place to escape the temperature and hang out for a little would be smart. They need more areas where locals can just sit and hang out in their free time without feeling as though they are impeding on space or such. The only place I have felt like I can sit and hang for a long period of time is Grogan's/Annie's. Anywhere else feels too restaurant-ish.
 
Nov 24, 2009
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I too have gone in and spent quite a bit of time in certain spaces at BGW, a few years ago we spent about 6 hours in the Brauhaus on opening day for the season....heck David Cromwell even sat for about a hour and talked that day. Now we were buying quite a bit of food and beverage so we weren’t just taking up space.
Funny story from years and years ago, we rope dropped the Festhaus and pretty much stayed all day. We did have a group of 15 or so people and people came and went through the day but there was always a few people sitting there. We had seen multiple shows and each show the Burgermeister would come to our table and drink. We weren’t rowdy and we had spent plenty of money but by about 6pm security came and asked us to leave because according to them we had been there too long.
 
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Although I would say, I think the overall percent and number of park guests doing so is so small it shouldn't be a reason to say no to a member lounge.

People keep bringing up free drinks, different foods, and other ideas for a lounge. I want member only WiFi, phone charging stations, things like that.
 

belsaas

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This thread is getting too reasonable and civil. And thus I propose: Norway.

An entire member's-only hamlet, with secret rides only we get to ride.

Complete with member's-only dining hall serving only the best in Norwegian lutefisk.

We can recover the pieces from Maelstrom at Epcot, make our own, better version!
 
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Nov 24, 2009
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I don’t think the number of people doing it is huge either but if you walk around the park and count the number of folks doing that if the member lounge is fairly small it could in therory clog the lounge. Member wifi would be hard to monitor although the fact the park hasn’t provided wifi is odd. I know it was discussed a few years ago as something they wanted to do but so far I have not seen anything substantial for guests to use. I was given passwords that worked for a few days at various media events....so it’s there.
 
Nov 24, 2009
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This thread is getting too reasonable and civil. And thus I propose: Norway.

An entire member's-only hamlet, with secret rides only we get to ride.

Complete with member's-only dining hall serving only the best in Norwegian lutefisk.

We can recover the pieces from Maelstrom at Epcot, make our own, better version!
Malestrom is gone.....saw large set pieces going into a dumpster with my own eyes. But could you imagine a Akershus quality table service dining location in the park??
 

Lolers

Wavering faith will not serve you well
Sep 14, 2014
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Although I would say, I think the overall percent and number of park guests doing so is so small it shouldn't be a reason to say no to a member lounge.

People keep bringing up free drinks, different foods, and other ideas for a lounge. I want member only WiFi, phone charging stations, things like that.
I agree, and in fact I think a member's lounge should be designed to allow members who want to stay for a while to do so. That's just my opinion though. If the park felt otherwise, all it would need to do is encourage as many parents as possible to bring their cranky children to the lounge, and that would put a quick end to long stays by all other members.
 
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Aug 23, 2017
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worth noting that in my experience there havent been many issues at SWO with their lounge. Sure there might be some isolated icidents, but generally it works as advertised. One last note though is that Pass membership is considerably lower at the florida parks compared to tourists with tickets and(at BGT) guests with very cheap fun card admissions.
 

Nicole

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When we were in the SWO member lounge I watched someone complain to the staff about the children. I also heard other people commenting to each other about the kids using the area as a playground.
 
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Joe

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Theoretically I could see this happening. I have no evidence to support that it would happen in practice, but if I lived closer I could see myself doing this on hot days. It would be a way to both get out of the house and avoid the heat, and since I like hanging out at BGW, the lounge would give me a place to sit and read a book or do work on my computer.
This is true. I've spent countless weekends with my laptop and textbooks studying for exams by the International Street fountain at KD. It's just so relaxing. I'm sure if BGW added a dedicated place for somewhat local visitors to kick back and relax, it would invite more lingerers than people realize. I don't think this is an issue or flaw; it's part of the design - a place that invites regulars to slow down and rest. However, for this reason, I don't think a small lounge, like the Rhinefeld candy shop, would be large enough.

But I do agree that a pass member lounge would be an amazing perk. I still think the rarely-used-for-anything-important Wilkommenhaus is a perfect location.
 
Dec 13, 2013
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WiFi was considerably more available (and usable) this year at BGW.

Let me chime in a two things; understand I’m speaking as a new dad, with a fresh set of eyes (and I had a rough day in the office, so this may come across slightly harsher than I intend)
1) Breastfeeding. A baby does not understand that they need to wait ten minutes until mom can get to a family restroom to nurse. That baby will get fussy, sometimes going fro asleep to screaming in 30 seconds (such as ours). And as far as using a bottle, some babies won’t take a bottle. A lot of parents do not want to use formula (antibodies are great and highly recommended from just about any doctor or nurse you talk to, breastfeeding isn’t a hippy thing).
2) My wife and I have full-fledged memberships. We have a child (almost three months old. Everyone now, awwww). It sounds like our presence would not be welcome in a member lounge, because of the child that may occasionally be loud? Now, an uncontrolled child running amuck, I hope, is what each of you that mentioned this were implying. Because if our $170/person or whatever doesn’t get us into a member lounge on a hot day in August so that we can get some relief for ALL members of our family, I will be pretty upset. Now: if my four year old is running around, making a ton of noise, and screaming without me trying to control him, you can be mad at me, give me the stink eye, and ask a team member to ask me to a) control my child or b) leave the lounge until I can. But if my kid cries because they’re hot/tired, and we are actively trying to resolve that issue, you had best not try to make me feel unwelcome. Membership members come in all ages, and all pay for the same privileges.
3) let’s keep the member lounge alcohol free. I don’t want to be in there relaxing, charging the phone, and have some rowdy, drunk, 25 year old kids ruining my zen. Or park geeks talking about what they hope the 2022 sky-spin-soaker-coaster is going to be themed as.
The point of item 3 is that we all have the ability to be ‘annoyed’ by some other group of paid attendees in the park that we all love so much. But instead of trying to build a barrier, why not help everyone be more comfortable and enjoy the park even more? No, I’m not suggesting open admission to a lounge. But offer directions to someone walking slow in front of you while staring at a map. Offer to take that family’s picture so that they are all in the photo (you may be surprised how many will take you up on the offer, and how surprised they are that you offered. And it cost you 30 seconds of time).

It is my belief that the majority on this forum do not have children, and until a year ago I was considerably less understanding (though patient and more understanding than many) about the trials of parenthood. It is NOT for the faint of heart.

Brauhaus - I don’t see why this shouldn’t remain open to the public. But, there is a sign that says no outside food or drink. When a family of 12 comes in, pushes two tables together for their kids, adults at a third, and they proceed to eat their pizza/fries/carrot cake with nothing being said to them, while we get reminded of the sign as we steal a handful of popcorn from our bucket, well...
And smokers - let’s all agree to politely remind folks we see smoking or vaping in clean air areas, that they are in fact not in a smoking section. The more times they are politely reminded the more I hope they refrain. And I may start carrying a cup of water to douse their cigarettes when they refuse to do the right thing (as most do).

Of all of my rambling, I guess it comes down to this, the Platinum Rule: treat others the way that they want to be treated. It is better than the Golden Rule. Some want to be left alone, some want to be included, some want to scream on Griffon, some want to remain silent for those 80 seconds. Let them, and help them make the most of their day. We can all work together to make the world a better place, starting in Williamsburg.

No, I’m not running for office. ;)
 
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As far as making sure there is room for all of the membership members in a lounge: put two or three lounges in the park, scattered throughout. Not tiered (Rhinefeld candy shop is only for Titanium-Platinum alloy members), but have a few, scattered, so that they are also more accessible. It adds to the available square footage, which means less people in each lounge at any given time (vs all of those same people in the same building at the same time). If I go into the Rhinefeld lounge and there aren’t any seats, I either head to what was once La Cucina, or the Brauhaus, or what was Annie’s, etc. Or, make new friends in Rhinefeld (yeah, not likely with my attitude, right?).
 
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Zachary

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Get those pitchforks and torches ready because I'm coming in with the controversial, opposing argument.

It sounds like our presence would not be welcome in a member lounge, because of the child that may occasionally be loud?
The theoretical core membership lounge should, of course, be open to all. If the space allows it (like SeaWorld Orlando's new lounge does), I fully support an age-gated section though.

The whole spectrum from crying babies to rambunctious 6 year-olds to obnoxious tweens and teens grate of my nerves. I don't honestly care why a kid is making a bunch of noise right next to me as I'm trying to decompress for a few minutes—I just don't want it to happen. It's just that simple.

let’s keep the member lounge alcohol free
BGW is literally a theme park founded on alcohol. Banning alcohol from a lounge in the park is unfathomable.
 
Mar 16, 2016
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Get those pitchforks and torches ready because I'm coming in with the controversial, opposing argument.



The theoretical core membership lounge should, of course, be open to all. If the space allows it (like SeaWorld Orlando's new lounge does), I fully support an age-gated section though.

The whole spectrum from crying babies to rambunctious 6 year-olds to obnoxious tweens and teens grate of my nerves. I don't honestly care why a kid is making a bunch of noise right next to me as I'm trying to decompress for a few minutes—I just don't want it to happen. It's just that simple.



BGW is literally a theme park founded on alcohol. Banning alcohol from a lounge in the park is unfathomable.
Amen, and I don't think it should be controversial to say there should be an age gated area TBH.

I want to throw something out there, that's more "American" that the park normally is:
One of my favorite bars in Richmond is a speakeasy (Grandstaff and Stein). What if in the member lounge, the "age gated" section was treated "speakeasy"-like where it entrance is "hidden" to get into it.
 
Nov 24, 2009
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All the entraces should be hidden. Say in the Festhaus take the employee food line and move it to a new addition to the Festhaus where they can make it more updated then take the old space for a members lounge where you can order food, snacks or beer directly from the Festhaus or Brauhaus withought having to stand in line, its brought to you. The door should remain non descript. And beer, at this point the way the park operates and the way they see a need to push a pop up bar selling overpriced crap drinks......I wouldnt doubt they build a kids only club that has a alcohol sold in it.
In reality I highly doubt we will ever see a members lounge and even if we do I would imagine it to be in the Josephines seating area, with a few red and white chairs and couches, a few tables, lots of Coca Cola branding and free coke samples......sound familiar?
 
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No pitchforks here! I'm only interested in providing some alternate insight to what I perceived as being some anti-inclusive requests. My post was not meant to be confrontational, my only intention was trying to provide some enlightenment on something that I now have had immersive first-hand experience.

Gated over 21 area? Sure thing, I'm in favor and I won't be offended that I can't bring my child in there with me.

As far as "BGW is founded on alcohol", you're 100% correct. There's a brewery next door even. But, the two are no longer related, if I'm not mistaken, in anything other than the word 'Busch'. Using this logic, nothing should have changed over the last 40 years - no additional rides or hamlets. No price changes would've been nice, eh? Heck, I'm pretty sure you can even buy Coors Light and Miller Lite in the park these days (something which I don't imagine was possible before the sale to SEAS?), if you're into that kind of thing. So though it was founded on alcohol, times change. Orville and Wilbur were mechanics - bicycles, motors, machinery. Milton Hershey began his entrepreneurship making caramels. Glad he didn't stop there. In fact there were many decades that he did not make (commercially anyway) caramels. And Hershey Park was initially a place to relax when not at work, to fly a kite, to eat a picnic lunch with family. That has kind of changed too.
I'm not being argumentative, just a devil's advocate. We all hate change until we like the change, myself included.

Note again that I said item 3 (including no alcohol) was provided as a counter-point, that we can all be annoyed by some other guest. How we handle it, and how that other guest tries to make things right, makes all the difference. When we bring our daughter to BGW this year (and we will) we will be those parents that take care of her, tend to her, make sure she is not being an annoying child ruining other people's day. If she's cranky and isn't going to settle down, back to the hotel we go. But we REALLY want to show her how easy it is to love our park. Not that we need persuaded, but we can't wait until she's asking us if we can go to BGW for the weekend (we're five hours away).
 

Lolers

Wavering faith will not serve you well
Sep 14, 2014
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It sounds like our presence would not be welcome in a member lounge, because of the child that may occasionally be loud?
First, congratulations on parenthood! As far as cranky kids in the members lounge, I definitely think they should be welcome, but I think a members lounge should be designed in a way where there is space for parents with children, and separate space for other members who are looking for a quiet place to relax. Maybe this could mean an area (without alcohol) for parents and their kids, and a more quiet area (with alcohol) for other members.

I believe a members lounge where parents and their kids don't feel welcome would be a major disadvantage to the park. I know several parents who leave the park in the afternoon when their kids need naps, intending to return later in the evening. Many times they decide not to return that day. Having an area in the members lounge where kids can take naps (or throw fits, whichever they choose) would keep those families in the park, where they would later spend more money on dinner, etc.

However, since it would be a lounge for all members and not just a place for children to rest, it would need to also be appealing to members without children. I think it is possible to satisfy both of these demographics with good design.
 

Lolers

Wavering faith will not serve you well
Sep 14, 2014
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What if in the member lounge, the "age gated" section was treated "speakeasy"-like where it entrance is "hidden" to get into it.
I love this idea. In fact, when the Brauhaus first opened, it felt rather hidden away until more guests started realizing it was there and it started attracting more people than it can hold. A "hidden" speakeasy that's meant to feel that way sounds awesome.
 
Mar 16, 2016
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I love this idea. In fact, when the Brauhaus first opened, it felt rather hidden away until more guests started realizing it was there and it started attracting more people than it can hold. A "hidden" speakeasy that's meant to feel that way sounds awesome.
Like I’m thinking a 21+member lounge in England right in the entry way. Then there’s a row of Police Boxes or Phone Booths (mix of both?) that like 4/5 people can squeeze into. Start of each month has a new password. Pick up the phone, say the password, back wall opens to let you into the area.
 
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