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Save Great America!!!

General discussion about Marriott's GREAT AMERICA

Save Great America!!!

Postby jimmy gimbels » Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:48 am

Financial analysts are predicting that Six Flags will go out of business during 2009/2010. It's a combination of lower attendance at all parks due to the economy, a heavy debt load and financial notes due in 2009 and 2010.

Grab a friend...or a couple of them...and head to great America this summer! After all, it is a country of fun for everyone....
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Postby GreatAmerica4ever » Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:01 pm

I thought Great America was one of the highest attended parks that Six Flags own. Does anyone have actual facts about this?

If Six Flags is in trouble, wouldn't GA be the last asset they would get rid of?
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Postby WhizzerSFGAm » Mon Feb 09, 2009 3:38 pm

SFGAm will definitely be owned by SF until the very end. The worry here is what would happen to SFGAm if SF went completely belly-up.
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Postby Demonlover13 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 4:06 pm

^I don't agree with that at all. If Six Flags lost everything, they aren't going to get rid of the whole park. Cedar Fair could definately consider it.
I need a great day this year, or 2, or 30!
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Postby WhizzerSFGAm » Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:07 pm

^ Could consider it. Don't forget though that Cedar Fair isn't in the best position to be buying parks either since they just bought the entire Paramount Parks chain 2 years ago. On top of that, this economy isn't good for anyone.
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Postby Demonlover13 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:17 pm

Still though. It'd be the saddest day in my life if all the rides were just sold off or scrapped
I need a great day this year, or 2, or 30!
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Postby Glorfindel7 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:19 pm

I guess the key is those that haven't been to the parks in a few years (like me :o) should consider going....
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Postby Demonlover13 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 7:22 pm

Remember, Great America is one of the most successful parks in the Six Flags chain.
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Postby MGA1 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 9:35 pm

Six Flags Great America fans don't worry. Great America will keep operating despite what may happen to the Six Flags corporation. Great America-Gurnee is the cash cow for the Six Flags corporation...it's the park that brings in the most profits. It is true that Great America's owner, Six Flags Corp. does have a massive debt load and will (most likely) end up defaulting on their debt payments sometime this year. So, what exactly does that mean for Great America-Gurnee? There are two options...Chapter 13 bankruptcy means Six Flags Corporation goes into receivership. The Six Flags Corporate big wigs get fired and the court appoints some executive to run the corporation while the terms of Six Flags' debt is restructured. In this case, Great America would continue to operate as normal. I'd expect that no additional new attractions would be added while the Corporation is in receivership. However, Six Flags Corporation and Great America would continue to exist. The other option is that Six Flags Corporation could file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. If that happens, Six Flags Corporation and all of the parks would have to shut down as soon as the corporation files (that's what happened to Bennigan's/Steak 'n Ale). In that case, Great America would be put up for sale almost immediately. Since Great America is definitely a money-maker, someone would purchase the park and it would re-open probably by the next season. Considering the current economy, I don't think it would be purchased by another theme park operator...face it, Disney, Universal, and Busch (inBev) wouldn't want a seasonal regional theme park and Cedar Fair probably can't afford it. However, I am 100% confident it would be purchased by some wealthy individual/corporation. Warren Buffet or the Pritzker family (Hyatt hotels, Royal Caribbean Cruises, etc). The Pritzker's are from Illinois...in fact they have (had?) HUGE mansion/castle on an enormous estate not too far from Great America. The village of Gurnee may even purchase it just to keep it open. So no worries, Great America will still be there!
"...and enjoy the rest of your day here at Marriott's GRRRREAT America"
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Postby jimmy gimbels » Tue Feb 10, 2009 7:53 am

Um, while Great America is one of the better parks operated by Six Flags, it is not the huge money-maker people try to make it out to be. Sales were up slightly last year, but revenue was not much to talk about. For 2009, it will be difficult season considering the state of the ecomony. High operating costs combined with an aging facility would make it a difficlut sell. Not much addtional value in the land since there is so much undeveloped acerage in the area.

Take a closer look at the buildings next time you are in the park. Maintenance has neve been high on Six Flag's list of priorities. "Behind-the-scenes" areas are a mess. As in 2008, if a ride costs too much to run or breaks down, Six Flags will just close the ride. Or, they will shut down entire areas of the park if attendance is low. We were supposed to tell guests that areas were closed due to "electrical problems." With the two large notes coming due, the emphasis will be on saving money, not sprucing up the parks. As is the past, when the park starts to look tired, people will start staying away.

Let's hope the new water ride is a winner. So many people hated last year's "Dark Knight"!
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Postby yankee Clipper91 » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:56 pm

I don't think that Six Flags corp will last long. I hope that somebody else buys the park and it will be as good as it was pre 2001.
RIP Sky Whirl (1976-2000)
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Postby redfishpaw » Tue Mar 17, 2009 9:27 am

Great America has had many owners in the past and I'm sure there will be more in the future.

from wiki:

1 Marriott Era (1974-83)
2 Bally's Six Flags Era (1984-1986)
3 Wesray Six Flags Era (1987-1991)
4 Time-Warner Six Flags Era (1992-1997)
5 Premier Parks Six Flags Era (1998-2005)
6 Shapiro Era (2006-Present)

:arrow: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_Flags_Great_America
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Bankrupt?

Postby jimmy gimbels » Tue Mar 24, 2009 5:51 am

According to new reports (March 2009), Six Flags corp is close to bankruptcy but intend to operate the parks during the 2009 season. They simply extended their credit when purchasing properties and just cannot raise the cash needed to pay off bonds. Many positions being elimnated at park in an effort to improve revenue flow. Smaller crews mean longer lines for attractions and a less-attractive park. Watch for big discounts on tickets...but food and merch prices will skyrocket. Plan is to operate kid's areas only in prime season.

In other news, Cedars is looking to sell off parks to raise cash, so don't look for them to come to the rescue.
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Postby retlawfan » Tue May 26, 2009 10:26 pm

And "their" Great America is one of the properties that may be sold off (to the SF 49ers even), so unlikely the Great Americas will be reunited in the same family again. :(
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