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Zachary

Royal Mango Créme Frappuccino Survivor
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Sep 23, 2009
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#1
I'm no expert, but this doesn't look good. :s


Some interesting things to note:
  • 2012 estimated attendance was 2,854,000
  • 4% estimated attendance growth over estimated 2011 numbers
  • Estimated attendance for 2012 hit basically right between the attendance numbers for 2009 and 2010

Full PDF


Past Attendance Estimates By AECOM:
  • 2012: 2,854,000 [ +4%] (Verbolten, Entwined)
  • 2011: 2,744,000 [ -2%] (Mach Tower, Mix it Up)
  • 2010: 2,800,000 [ -3.4%] (Europe in the Air, IllumiNights, Celtic Fyre)
  • 2009: 2,900,000 [ -6.2%] (Sesame Street Forest of Fun, Christmas Town)
  • 2008: 3,094,000 [ -2%]
  • 2007: 3,157,000 [+12.5%] (Griffon)
  • 2006: 2,762,000


Considering the upturn in the economy and a new $54 million coaster, I would've thought numbers would be back above 3,000,0000. :-/
 
Likes: Party Rocker
Apr 29, 2011
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#2
I'm actually not surprised at these numbers. I do know many times last summer the park didn't meet their projected daily attendance, mostly due to inclement weather or extreme heat. Still, a 4% jump over 2011 is better than no increase at all though I'm sure the company was banking on a much bigger boost.

WCUSA had a 3.5% increase and the company as a whole was up 3%.
 

Zachary

Royal Mango Créme Frappuccino Survivor
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Sep 23, 2009
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#5
Ben said:
Hope this doesn't cancel any future projects...
I don't know if you all remember, but back when that extended plan was leaked, I heavily emphasized that a lot of that was dependant on what happened with Verbolten and how much of a boost in attendance it brought. This doesn't look good. :s
 
Aug 25, 2012
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#8
They need to start putting commercials all over the country (or at least the east coast). You see a bunch of WDW and Universal Studios Orlando commercials, and they're in Florida. Do yousee BGW commercials down there and BGT commrcials up here? No. I barley ever see BGW commercials.
Or they could create a kids television network, make a bunch of famous TV characters, make a ton of movies, build a castle,... :p
 
Apr 29, 2011
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#9
pandorazboxx said:
Man, that does suck. I mean look at 2007 when Griffon opened up. There was no Christmastown or Forest of Fun. But the economy appeared to be in a much better place back then too...
That along with Griffon's debut is exactly why the attendance broke 3,000,000 visitors for the first time. Nationally, it was the last stable summer before the economy started to tank the following year.

The AB company was also spending a ton of money advertising Griffon all over the place. TV commercials for the ride were getting heavy airplay all the way up in NYC all summer long.
 

Shane

ParkFans Founder
Silver Donor
Jun 2, 2011
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#10
They need to heavily advertise like that again. Verbolten is still new enough and unique enough to market like that.
 
Sep 28, 2009
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#11
I think advertising has a lot to do with it. I'm a big fan of TV ads and gaining interest among locals. I haven't seen a Food & Wine commercial yet, which seems a bit odd considering this should be a big deal for us local Virginians.

Going back to the topic at hand, of course the park will have record attendance with a ride like Griffon. However, that shouldn't underplay Verbolten. For the type of coaster, I think Verbolten did a great job of creating interest.

Mach Tower unfortunately has not been reliable enough to bring more crowds in. Sad, but true.

My theory is the park will have ups and downs depending on weather-economy-advertisement-and new attractions. It is a delicate balancing act. Rides like Griffon are insanely expensive as are expansive additions to the park.

The next time the park builds a huge mega-monstrosity-coaster or perhaps ads a huge addition (say a country) to the park- the numbers of attendance will spike through the roof.

The fact that the park is working like crazy with events like the Food & Wine festival, HOS, and Christmas Town means that they are doing everything they can to boost sales and attendance between the addition of "big attractions".
 

Zachary

Royal Mango Créme Frappuccino Survivor
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Sep 23, 2009
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#12
I agree that marketing is currently a very weak area for the park. Verbolten's core features were never really advertised at all if we're completely honest. Really the best the park did for Verbolten was some crappy animated commercials. It's the first coaster in the country with drop track and the park hardly even mentioned that the drop track existed.

Nora said:
Rides like Griffon are insanely expensive as are expansive additions to the park.
Well, seeing that Griffon was less than half as expensive as Verbolten, I imagine the park was hoping for an attendance increase at least as strong as the boost Griffon brought back in 2007.
 
May 30, 2013
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#13
I still don't understand how Verbolten was anywhere close to being that expensive. 54 million dollars?? The Wizarding World of Harry Potter cost 200 million (before the expansion). How did they get so much more value for their money. Verbolten is great, but the level of detail, technology and sheer size of WWoHP, I could see it costing 20 times more than Verbolten!
 
Aug 25, 2012
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#14
Zachary said:
It's the first coaster in the country with drop track and the park hardly even mentioned that the drop track existed.
I think they want the drop track to be a secret for new riders. I get what you are saying though. Show actual video of the coaster, not an animation, and advertise it's "unexpectedness" inside the black forest.
 

Zachary

Royal Mango Créme Frappuccino Survivor
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Sep 23, 2009
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#15
Exactly. Thirteen did it perfectly and everyone and their uncle was talking about it. Hardly any attention was turned to Williamsburg for Verbolten because the park didn't actually emphasize or express how special and unique it really was.
 

netdvn

Team Instinct
Jan 12, 2012
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#16
I still don't understand how Verbolten was anywhere close to being that expensive. 54 million dollars??
Theming isn't cheap. Assuming the park actually got a company that did Universal's theming to work on Verbolten, it's pretty safe to say 50 mil is about right.
 

Zachary

Royal Mango Créme Frappuccino Survivor
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Sep 23, 2009
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#17
Griff said:
I still don't understand how Verbolten was anywhere close to being that expensive. 54 million dollars?? The Wizarding World of Harry Potter cost 200 million (before the expansion).
If the $200k number is right (source?), that means about half of that was just for Forbidden Journey. Verbolten's $54 was for everything.
 
May 30, 2013
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#20
This is an article in the NY Times saying analysts expected it to cost 256 million for the whole expansion.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/16/business/media/16harry.html
 
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