Winter at Cedar Point

Friday, October 5, 2007 6:59 AM

Why has Cedar Point never tried to operate the park for a month, or so, in the off season. The park has such great draws it seems like it would be a great sucess..

Didn't one of the Paramounts parks have something similar to this?

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Friday, October 5, 2007 7:49 AM

This seems to be about the right time of year when these posts inevitably come out.

Cedar Point DID try to have a "winter event" back in '95 or '96...somewhere in there. The carousel at the front of the park was open, they had hot chocolate and those types of things, they had a carriage ride, etc. There were more employees in the park than there were guests...and that isn't much of an exaggeration.

While the winters can be mild in Ohio, they can also be nasty. And, when it is nasty in Ohio it is nasty times 50 on the Cedar Point peninsula. Locals aren't going to go out to the Point for a winter event and why would anyone really want to drive all the way to Sandusky (where there is precious little else to do outside of the indoor water parks) in the middle of winter to freeze their assets off on the wind-whipped peninsula?

Sea World had a failed winter event too. Northern Ohio just ain't the place for it.


"You can dream, create, design and build the most wonderful place in the world...but it requires people to make the dreams a reality."

-Walt Disney

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Friday, October 5, 2007 8:40 AM
Zeek's avatar

Maybe because of snow? And frost bite? And wind chill? And death?


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Friday, October 5, 2007 9:20 AM
Dvo's avatar

Even at Kings Island it was a catastrophe. They tried to bring back Winterfest a few years ago, and it was ridiculous because there was virtually nothing to do and they charged $25 to get in, even for season pass holders! Needless to say it was a flop and it'll probably never happen again. Though I do remember going to the old winterfest when Hanna Barbarra owned KI, and it was fantastic. But then again I was probably about 7 years old at the time... ;)


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Friday, October 5, 2007 9:30 AM
Force00's avatar

If Ohio has a winter like Michigan did this past year Cedar Point might as well stay open. It was like 50 on Christmas.


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Friday, October 5, 2007 10:27 AM

There's no way to predict winters here though. To pick a date far enough ahead would be risky. Ever head of "lake effect snow?" Sometimes it hits us and sometimes it doesn't, but when it does it makes for some miserably cold, snowy and dangerous conditions. Until somebody figure out how to cover all of Cedar Point in a space-age dome with a controlled enviornment (yes, a dream of mine), it's fine with me if they say closed all winter.

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Friday, October 5, 2007 10:56 AM

Actually, Sandusky and the peninsula are somewhat insulated from the lake effect snow (found much more commonly on the east side of Cleveland but south of the lakeshore).

But, when the lake is frozen and small snowfall with even a slight wind makes for dangerous driving conditions on the peninsula let alone walking around out there. I dreaded getting out of my car and walking the 10 yards to my office in the middle of winter. I certainly would not have wanted to stroll down the midway.


"You can dream, create, design and build the most wonderful place in the world...but it requires people to make the dreams a reality."

-Walt Disney

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Friday, October 5, 2007 11:41 AM
Loopy's avatar

HP does well with their Holiday stuff and it's freakin cold on the other side of PA too.

I think it's all in the marketing.


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Friday, October 5, 2007 11:44 AM

Well heck, if there were a chocolate factory with a chocolate spa on the Peninsula in Sandusky even I might brave the elements for that. But, the Lake Erie wine isn't that good during the summer. It is less appealing in the winter.
*** Edited 10/5/2007 3:45:12 PM UTC by Chief Wahoo***


"You can dream, create, design and build the most wonderful place in the world...but it requires people to make the dreams a reality."

-Walt Disney

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Friday, October 5, 2007 1:09 PM
Kevinj's avatar

I love Cedar Point, and I go multiple times every year. It's my favorite place on Earth, literally, and I live only 3 hours away.

I have absolutely zero interest in paying to go to some kind of Winterfest type of event at an amusement park. Apparantly I'm not alone.

Now as to why; I think it's because ever since early childhood Cedar Point equals summertime fun. "Cedar Point is the cure for the summer time blues".

All the coasters would be closed, so what would be the point in going? To drink hot chocolate? Ice Skate? I can do that in Columbus.

I dont want to pay 25 bucks to look at roller coasters in the snow.


Promoter of fog.

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Friday, October 5, 2007 4:27 PM
MaVeRiCk 'n MaGnUm XL's avatar

Cedar Point is also my favorite place on earth.

I too would never dream of going to C.P. in the dead of winter. I can freez my butt off in MI let alone drive 2 hrs to CP and freez there while staring at Maverick or TTD in the snow. Allthough they could Open the park in late march or even early april for an extra moth or so. But i bet that wont happen because of the kiddies are still in school...

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Friday, October 5, 2007 4:42 PM
Kevinj's avatar

The thing is, no matter how you shape it, the only way to make this cost-effective would be for the employees to work on a voluntary basis. As neat and quaint it would be to decorate the park, rides, etc...you just cant make it work.

It's like Kramer and Newman's pop bottle run to Michigan. They got their free truck, but I doubt CP would find "free" employees.


Promoter of fog.

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Friday, October 5, 2007 4:51 PM

When they experimented with it the one winter that took full time (salary) employees and basically said, "you are doing it."

Frankly, the last thing a full time employee wants after working 6 days a week from April to October is to be told their holiday plans are suddenly in the crapper. Merry Christmas indeed.


"You can dream, create, design and build the most wonderful place in the world...but it requires people to make the dreams a reality."

-Walt Disney

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Friday, October 5, 2007 4:53 PM

The only way Cedar Point could make it work in the winter time would be to do the following....

Set up a Santa's Workshop in the Area above the Arcade and have Santa's workshop for children....

Have Santa Clause come and you can take pictures with him, in another part of the building you have Santa's Workshop where children can build a wooden toy, like trains, boats, cars, etc...., paint them, and let them dry!

Enclose Kiddie Kingdom with a Large Tent, (Not that big of an area, and open up those rides for little kids, remember Christmas is for the kids!!!!!!) Put in a few space heaters to keep it from freezing in that area, it doesn't have to be hot, just not freezing in there.

Put a canopied walkway to Disaster Transport and open up Disaster transport for the older kids.

Have a holiday train ride where the Cedar Point Resort Buses will trek people back and forth to Funway Station. There board the Judy K, Myron H, or George R for a holiday train ride where Cedar Point puts up Christmas Lights! In each of the coaches of the trains put clear plastic on the sides of each coach that are strips so people can be warmer and yet see through so you can see all the lights.

Open up one of the stores to sell Cedar Point Related Merchandise and Season Passes at a special reduced price of $ 10.00 off of the special Season Pass prices that are offered in September, as well as tickets for juniors and seniors at $ 9.95 Each and Regular Funday Admission Tickets for $ 29.95 Each.

Charge a resonable price for the kids to do this, remember this isn't for the adults but for the kids, where if you want to participate in Santa's Workshop it is $ 15.00 per kid. Includes Train Ride, Disaster Transport, and Kiddie Kingdom. Pictures with Santa Clause, at a good price.

Open up a concession stand selling pretzels, hot dogs, pop, coffee, and pop-corn (at 1/2 the price Cedar Point normally sells the stuff for during the regular season.)

Only sell so many tickets per day and sell only advanced tickets with time slots to the Santa's Workshop.

It will sell out for sure every year. Did you hear that Dick, it will sell out for sure every year. Lake Farm Park in Lake County Ohio does it every year and so can Cedar Point.

Get corporations involved, get them to donate tickets for under privledged children, da da da.....

I promise you it will work! Maybe it is time for Cedar Point to give back to the Sandusky Community and this is something the Sandusky Community would be interested in.

No one from Chicago is going to go there for this event, but locals and people from Toledo and Cleveland would!

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Friday, October 5, 2007 4:59 PM

I know a lot of locals in Sandusky. I don't know too many who would want to go to the park and spend $15 in the wintertime to ride something in the freezing cold that they can ride in the summertime, Santa or no Santa.

If Cedar Fair thought they could make a buck they would have done it already. (They did. They didn't.)


"You can dream, create, design and build the most wonderful place in the world...but it requires people to make the dreams a reality."

-Walt Disney

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Friday, October 5, 2007 5:13 PM
Loopy's avatar

Yeah, I'm sure Hershey is losing loads of money and they only charge $9.95 for admission. That is in no way related to Chocolate World either. Over 30 rides open and decorated, along with an over two mile drive through Hershey Sweet Lights. That's an additional charge but the park itself is open every day from the 13th of December all the way up 'til the 23rd. They do have weekend hours starting on the 16th of November.

You're right, there's no money to be had in that type of happening. Hershey does it out of the kindness of their hearts (which from what I've seen wouldn't surprise me). It comes down to CF not handling it properly just like many other things we've seen.


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Ride on, MrScott!

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Friday, October 5, 2007 5:45 PM
e x i t english's avatar

^ I heard they are going to hold a Christmas time bonfire in Aurora this year.

Ouch, I think that might have been too cruel, even for me. :)

'Sall in good fun, though.


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Friday, October 5, 2007 5:57 PM

If only they put into Christmas what they drop into Halloweekends - perhaps they could make it all work. I agree the buildings are not "thermo designed" for winter, but that doesn't mean that the idea couldn't work if they did it right. I see a pattern with Cedar fair that if one time things are a failure - they choose to make the decision never to try it again, rather than learning from their mistakes and making things work... To me that means the company is ran by shortsighted management that lacks vision.... Whereby others may disagree, I stand by my opinion.

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Friday, October 5, 2007 9:09 PM
Loopy's avatar

Yeah, that's pretty much what I was getting at Jay.


eat. sleep. ride! - Coaster apparel and accessories!

Ride on, MrScott!

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Friday, October 5, 2007 11:26 PM

There are tons of places with outdoor winter events. Toledo Zoo and Columbus Zoo have lights, etc. as do many other places that I can't recall at the moment. They have a few rides, lots of lights and lots of crowds. It is no colder at CP then in the middle of a any treeless area of NW OH. If anything, temperatures are milder at the point until January or so due to the relatively warmer lake. Well, of course this past year it was pretty warm until almost February. Just because a handful of freeze babies claim it is tooooo cold, doesn't mean they couldn't attract a lot from the region. Especially of they put at least as much effort as the do into halloweekends. I think it would be a huge success, especially if there were a number of rides open, including coasters if conditions are OK. Even without the rides it could still be a success. This past Saturday at CP it was so busy we decided to focus on seeing the shows, parade, the band near ID, haunted features, etc. We did not ride a single coaster and we had an awesome time (though it was still killing me not to ride). A winter event with shows, etc. and some weather hearty rides could be a great success IMO. Oh, by the way, I like cold weather, even at the point! :)

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