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Apr 1, 2010
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Uhh, looking at those pictures? Zero spark of creativity. Just the same 'ole same ole'. Too bad it can't be like normal company intellectual property where works created while employed at one company can't be used for another company. And the The Blue Flamingos? No, just no.
 
Oct 7, 2011
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The entire world is Carl Lum blue....colors are an illusion.
This is the point in the show ParkFans! The Musical when the lights would drop to a vivid blue background, slowly rotating disco balls would descend from catwalks high above the audience's heads, and our clean-cut intrepid protagonist -- brightly lit in his symbolic prison stripes and white dinner jacket, backed by an incongruous rock band that looked like they were helicoptered in from some other, completely different show -- would ruminate about the illusory nature of entertainment and commercialism before soaring into the timeless melodic wisdom of Dennis DeYoung, quixotic prog weenie and "Chief Ideas Officer" of Styx.

 
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Sep 7, 2018
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As I usually do, I will preface this with - I know that this will be a very unpopular opinion but...

I realize 2011-12ish is considered by most to be the last good years of HOS, but I would give anything to have 2013-2015 level HOS compared to 2017-2019. I actually think Scott did some good things; not the best years but certainly not the worst in my opinion.

And yes I know he was with Oak Island, but I don't think he actually worked on any BGW stuff. Feel free to correct me if I am wrong.
 

Zachary

Administrator
Sep 23, 2009
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And yes I know he was with Oak Island, but I don't think he actually worked on any BGW stuff. Feel free to correct me if I am wrong.

This is my understanding as well.

Anyway, it turns out that BGW ditching Oak Island after 2018 was a great call. Imagine being any of the parks that depended on Oak Island for their holiday events only to be told earlier this year “Whelp, we’re going out of business.” So many parks are now having to look for new entertainment contractors or are faced with trying to execute these events fully in-house. It’s going to be a rough time for many parks in an already incredibly rough year.
 
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Do you know when BGW started using Oak Island? I was thinking that 200?-2014 was done in house, but then they brought in Robin Cowie for Unearthed in '15. But I have a feeling I am way off.
 

mtorange

Grand Carnivale, Haunt, and WinterFest Aficionado
Jul 26, 2014
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This is my understanding as well.

Anyway, it turns out that BGW ditching Oak Island after 2018 was a great call. Imagine being any of the parks that depended on Oak Island for their holiday events only to be told earlier this year “Whelp, we’re going out of business.” So many parks are now having to look for new entertainment contractors or are faced with trying to execute these events fully in-house. It’s going to be a rough time for many parks in an already incredibly rough year.

TIL that Cedar Fair parks depended on Oak Island. Color me shocked when I saw KD listed.
 
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Sep 29, 2009
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2005 is the first season I’m sure the park worked with Oak Island. Last Laugh Industries debuted that year, and is the first haunted house that I know they designed. BGW came up with the branding, the story, and left the rest to Oak Island.

Until 2011, most of the last-minute/cheaper-looking mazes were the only ones designed by Oak Island. It is my understanding that prior to 2011, the park tried to do as much as they could on their own, and only used Oak Island as a last resort option for when they didn’t have enough time to design a maze themselves. Masquerage is a key example.

After years of second-rate mazes from Oak Island, it seems the park decided to give them time and money in 2011. They proved their worth with Deadline and Fear Fair, but also gave us 13.

The whole BGW/OIC dynamic reminds me of a quote from Scott Swenson (former creative director in Tampa): “You can build a house fast, cheap, or good... Pick two.”

That means; if BGW called up to Oak Island and said: “Hey! We need a haunted house in less than a month, but we don’t have much money,” they would get a house made fast and cheap, but it would look very lackluster. (Masquerage, Clownfusion, or the original Root of All Evil.) If they paid twice as much, it might have looked ok. To me, ”just good enough,” for the same costs as Kings Dominion’s newer (and better looking) mazes is not worth it.

Sometimes the park would contract Oak Island with insane amounts (given the results and amount of work) just to advise the park on how to recycle props they already had. The result of this type of thing were Cut Throat Cove and the first week of the last season of Catacombs. Inevitably, the park had to do a lot of tweaking in-house to make those products halfway decent.

I’m not sure when Oak Island became the overall contractor for setting up the event, but I believe that was 2007.
 
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Zachary

Administrator
Sep 23, 2009
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Is it fair to say 2011 was the first year Oak Island was given a major role in every stage of the HOS development process? I know Fear Fair, Deadline, and Thirteen were all Oak Island products—but it’s my understanding that park scenic and scarezone development and design were taken over by Oak Island by that point. From what I remember, Oak Island was even playing a roll in cast supervision and training by 2011. That line up with what you know @CastleOSullivan?
 
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b.mac

Indiana Beach Vibe
May 14, 2011
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I am not sure of the extent in which Oak Island has worked with Cedar Fair prior to the rollout of Winterfest in their parks, but it would not surprise me if Cedar Fair has been working with them (or at least one or two of the parks individually) for a few years prior to that.

Six Flags first partnered with them to roll out their Holiday in the Park events back in 2014, and I think it stretched into some terror trails for Fright Fest here and there, but not all that much. As far as I am aware, Six Flags only contracted Oak Island for design and resource management and Oak Island had no involvement in the casting and day-to-day management of the shows and trails for Fright Fest and HitP.

Hershey Entertainment & Resorts as far as I am aware, is also in similar vein to Six Flags where Oak Island only supplied resources for Hersheypark in the Dark and Christmas Candylane.
 
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