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Dec 23, 2011
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Zachary said:
There's a widespread perception amongst the general public that since the buyout the park has been in steep decline- I hear it from everyone I know.

Yes the park may have changed somewhat in policies and such but overall, I think the park is still pretty much the same. I mean the only main huge differences is a better more organized company structure and Blackstone has majority say. Things like paint fading, team member attitudes, etc. have all basically stayed the same and hasn't been affected at all, other than the fact everyone believe the park is in complete turmoil.
 
Apr 1, 2010
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RE: Minor Changes (2013)

Our family's experience in the park (and with staff) has been noticeably different since AB days. Not to the better. The physical changes, show quality & content and cheap merchandise has diminished the charm for us. It is still better than other parks, but becoming more like other parks. The main reason we pick BGW over other parks is/was the uniqueness and escapism. For us, my opinion, the whole package isn't there anymore. We are too near to getting "just another park" instead of the BGW experience of days past.
 
Sep 28, 2009
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RE: Minor Changes (2013)

I think the problem is we are comparing Busch Gardens to a standard of the past that will more than likely ever happen again. The main goal of the park was not to make money but to "advertise beer" when AB owned it. Money was not an object; be it shows, rides, food, or merchandise.

However, as a corporation, this can never happen again.

But! and I mean but..

I see a company that is trying hard to maintain the best of both worlds. They are trying hard to keep a level of quality that has been in the past (when budget was not an issue)and yet, still fall into a category where they can be a profitable business.

I do not envy them.

Not all has been perfect since Blackstone took over, but what I do see is hard working people doing there best to keep beautiful landscapes, well themed hamlets, quality products, and reasonable prices in a tough economy.

By offering "affordable" solutions, perhaps we can assist with the small changes we wish to see at the park in the years ahead.
 
Apr 1, 2010
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RE: Minor Changes (2013)

I agree it will never again be and morn so. I am now concerned with what it *may* become. Even more so as a publicly traded money maker than as a treasured family heirloom. I'm hoping they will realize the treasure this park is before poor changes become too irreversible. Change CAN be good. However, the direction thus far has me concerned.

Side note: My daughter asked me, "What if the Busch's bought the shares to get the park back?"
Out of the mouths of babes.

Ooop, I think we hijacked the "Minor Changes" thread.
Sorry
:ashamed:

Edit: I'm not dissing Nora. We need to do what we can to make/keep BGW the best.
 
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Alf33

Life is short, so eat dessert first.
Jun 8, 2013
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Look at the bright side...InBev could still own the park and imagine how it would be if they did! It makes me cringe just thinking about it as their bottom line is nothing but money and getting more of it by cutting everything in sight to get it.

Regardless I think this year has seen some of the better improvements than in the last few years. Now let's hope it continues through the year and into Howl-O-Scream and Christmas Town.
 
Mar 30, 2010
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Besides root of all evil, I thought Howl-O-Scream was as good as it has been in years (3 awesome HoS shows!). That's been under Blackstone. Christmastown has been almost perfect and that's something that Busch never did. They just put in a $50 million dollar family coaster. I get that the "certain feeling" seems to be diluted, but I think the park is better than it has been in a while. I don't think they're heading in the wrong direction is all I'm trying to say.
 
Sep 29, 2009
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I think it's simply a management issue. Right before/ during the time of the sale there was way too much shuffling of management in several departments(Entertainment,Merchandising,Culinary,etc). On top of all that, John Reilly (the previous General Manager) came at a bad time, yet he led the park through it well. I personally think they may have promoted him too soon. I know he didn't seem happy with the direction the park was going. For example: Sesame Street was very annoying for the park because Sesame Workshop and the park both had their own things in mind. And since this was ultimately for Sesame Street, the park didn't really get their way. Obviously they weren't too pleased.
Fast forward to Carl Lum as G.M.; He was previously an accountant for BGT. He didn't know much about BGW, or its history when he came here. I'm not saying this is his fault (or Scott Gasparich's for that matter), but now the park management seems to be in a bit of a confused mess.
I wish him well, as I know he is a smart man, and hopefully, together with corporate, they can get the park back on track.
 
Nov 2, 2011
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Yes the park has changed since the AB ownership days what has me wondering what the future for the park holds is once they started offering stock to the public well watch out as I work for a company that use to be family run when they went to having a CEO and not family run its been downhill ever since as now its all about generating the most money they can to keep the stock holders happy and everything else falls by the wayside.....
 
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Apr 5, 2011
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I really have to agree with Nora, people will cling onto this idea of what the park should be (whether it actually even existed or not) and anything that doesn't meet that specific standard, despite quality, is proof that the park is being ruined. You guys have to remember that AB had plenty of bad shows and rides as well. Look at American Jukebox and Rock the Boat as bad shows, worse than Entwined. Drachen Fire's terrible execution and Griffon's uninspired layout were both the work of AB as well.

Look at right now though, Verbolten is a superior ride and even Zachary can't deny that Scott is capable of great shows under the right circumstances. These complaints are steming from an Illuminights show that nobody has even seen yet. I've said this before, but the emotional attachment to a certain perception of what the park should be is something I've noticed a lot around here. (Not talking about you, Nora, you're emotional attachment is pure love :p) It's like a guy yelling at his girlfriend because she's not wearing the right dress sometimes.

A theme park cannot remain static and hope to thrive. Technologies, fashions, and cultural tastes all change and that's why the park needs to change itself. Nora also raised a great point, one of the reasons the park did something a certain way was because it didn't have to make money, and now that's changed so our options are to deal with the changes or watch it get shut down, which I can seriously imagine making some people on these forums happy. While I realize that there is something of a rough transition going on, that will not stop me from going, enjoying pretzels and rides, watching some show, enjoying some animals, and having a good time with my friends.
 
Feb 6, 2013
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Dude, that brought a tear to my eye! We definitely need to step back and look at what is being said and done sometimes. The future of the park is change, as it is with any park. The people that bitch about a ride now will be all up in arms when they close it down! "Griffin took out Le Mans, I hate Griffin", yet Griffin's queue is constantly full, plus it's a ride that people stop to just watch! That is only one example of the things I read here. This is why I don't talk baseball on the radio anymore, too many purists that want nothing to change, but guess what, change, often, bring progress!
 
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Sep 5, 2010
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RICHMOND
This old ghost again?

Nobody is against change. Not a single person.

Everybody should be against stupid changes. Everybody should be against dumbing the whole thing down to the lowest common denominator. Everybody should be against taking out good shows and replacing them with nothing, taking out good rides and replacing them with worse ones, and overlaying the "World's Most Beautiful Theme Park" with tacky, cheap props every single day of the operating season for one half-hearted "festival" after another.

There were bad shows in the past, but nobody complained when they got rid of them. You didn't see anybody crying about the loss of One Last Jam or The Haunted Lighthouse. You did see people complaining about those things coming in in the first place, though, which ought to tell you something; when stupid things come, that's a bad change and people don't like it. When stupid things go, that's a good change and people do. No one would lament the loss of EitA or Entwined...nobody really cares that Pirates is wrapping. Get over this ridiculous, unfounded opinion that people hate change. It's nonsense.

I'm supposed to go the park on Thursday and I'm honestly thinking about giving GO-KARTS PLUS a look, instead. That's not a joke. You go from a guy who used to go to the park to sit and chill in it to a guy who seriously contemplates skipping it in favor of Put-Put and bumper boats. That's not good, buddies.
 
Apr 5, 2011
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Nobody is against change. Not a single person.
Only against changes that happen to be against a very specific concept which the park has abandoned years ago...

Everybody should be against stupid changes. Everybody should be against dumbing the whole thing down to the lowest common denominator
If the park makes money and continues to exist because of something like Entwined, I can deal with that.

Everybody should be against taking out good shows and replacing them with nothing, taking out good rides and replacing them with worse ones
Can you be specific here? EitA was a mistake, which is something that the park has done since it existed. AB was not the Jesus equivalent that everybody thinks they are, they made plenty of mistakes, or did you not ever ride Drachen Fire? Everybody knows people hates EitA (even the employees), it's only a matter of time before it gets replaced by a better motion sim or the ride system is scrapped. If you're talking about BBW for Bolt, then that's a matter of an old ride simply not being able to justify the price of maintenance and needing to be replaced.

I'm supposed to go the park on Thursday and I'm honestly thinking about giving GO-KARTS PLUS a look, instead.
If you're that upset about the park, why are you even posting here? Why not break up with the old gal and move on?

edit:
Everybody should be against taking out good shows and replacing them with nothing, taking out good rides and replacing them with worse ones, and overlaying the "World's Most Beautiful Theme Park" with tacky, cheap props every single day of the operating season for one half-hearted "festival" after another.
Yes, the scaffolding looks ugly, it is one section of the park. Special events come and go, and I fully admit they should scrap Illuminights, but landscaping, buildings, scenery, is still there. Besides, if the park does lose that award, it will send a shock to them.
 
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Apr 1, 2010
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Bama said:
Yes the park has changed...what has me wondering what the future for the park holds is once they started offering stock..now its all about generating the most money they can to keep the stock holders happy....

^ This

Pretzel Kaiser said:
I really have to agree with Nora, people will cling onto this idea of what the park should be (whether it actually even existed or not) and anything that doesn't meet that specific standard, despite quality, is proof that the park is being ruined. You guys have to remember that AB had plenty of bad shows and rides as well.

A theme park cannot remain static and hope to thrive...Nora also raised a great point, one of the reasons the park did something a certain way was because it didn't have to make money, and now that's changed so our options are to deal with the changes or watch it get shut down...

^this

Dr. Julius Money Ed.D said:
Nobody is against change. Not a single person.

Everybody should be against stupid changes. Everybody should be against dumbing the whole thing down to the lowest common denominator. Everybody should be against taking out good shows and replacing them with nothing, taking out good rides and replacing them with worse ones, and overlaying the "World's Most Beautiful Theme Park" with tacky, cheap props every single day of the operating season for one half-hearted "festival" after another...

and ^ this.

Just my opinion and concern.

Dr. Julius Money Ed.D is voting with his $ and feet. I do the same. I buy the "good" stuff when I can still find it. I do not ever buy anything from a glow stand, that I can can get at any other park or seems cheap. I support the talent in Entwined (some really good people in there), but I don't support the show by going to it more than once a trip. One would hope the financial impact will lead them to better shows and merchandise. I use to spend $$$ every visit to get great stuff. Now I spend $, maybe.
 
Feb 6, 2013
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Portsmouth, Va
It seems to me, though, that a lot of the "change" people want is back to old stuff. That is not change. Bring back this, bring back that. I can still go and chill at the park no problem. Some things I won't do by myself, but I love them because my kids do. My kids love Celtic Fyre, as do I. I am not the biggest EitA fan, but they love it! The park seems to be listening, and are working towards some of "our" goals. We wanted changes to Illuminights, even scraping it. Changes are being made but there is skepticism before the product has even been given a chance. They changed Entwined because people said it sucked. People wanted a new show in Globe, here it comes. Changes are being made, but some people may be against them, that's the nature of business. I own my own business, and not all of your decisions will be popular. I had people upset when I changed my logo, or that my new flavor wasn't the one they suggested. Most of the changes are for the GP, to give them a reason to come back. They know we will keep going, then complain, and come back. Take the bad with the good (Illuminghts<F&WF) and have faith that they want to make things better as much as we want them to!
 
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