Sunday, January 04, 2009

What will be the story in 2009?

Happy New Year to everyone!

I hope you guys had a great holiday season and a very successful 2008.

When a new year begins, it's always interesting to look ahead and try to figure out what the next 365 days will be like. For our purposes here, let's focus on the theme park biz.

Just as it was in 2008, the biggest story in 2009 is going to be the economy. Sure, gas prices have dropped, but in this unstable time, will people still want to travel to theme parks?

We have a bunch of new rides and attractions premiering this year. Kings Island's Diamondback (pictured) looks like it will be a winner. Manta at Sea World Florida seems to be getting a lot of attention and rightly so.... the theming and layout looks very interesting.

Speaking of theming, we'll find out whether a wooden roller coaster at Six Flags Magic Mountain can be successfully themed to The Terminator series. We'll also see if the Saw movies will make a good theme for a roller coaster at Thorpe Park in England.

I also wonder if 2009 will be a good year for "coaster enthusiasm" in general. One thing that I've noticed over the past several years is that interest in roller coasters and theme parks seems to be waning. Back in the late 90's (during the "coaster boom") the community was engaged, excited and growing. These days, it seems like there isn't the same level of enthusiasm as there was back then. I could be wrong, but I'm curious to hear what you think.

So what does 2009 have in store? What will be the big story in 2009?

Let's talk about it in the forums.

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