News: Cedar Fair reports 2020 fourth quarter and full year results

Wednesday, February 17, 2021 9:39 AM
Walt's avatar

Cedar Fair reports COVID-19-related loss of more than half a billion dollars for 2020.

https://pointbuzz.com/News/Story/3328


Walt Schmidt - Co-Publisher, PointBuzz
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Home to the Biggest Fans of the World's Best Amusement Park

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Wednesday, February 17, 2021 10:36 AM

Sounds like they’re planning to return to full capacity on rides and in parks this year.


CP Top 5: 1) Steel Vengeance 2) Maverick 3) Magnum 4) Raptor 5) Millennium

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Wednesday, February 17, 2021 1:04 PM

The bigger issue is that their parks in California and in Canada are very likely not going to have much of a season this year, and I caught note of capital investments being made only to get things up and running this year, which makes sense but certainly will put doubt on any big expenditure projects happening in 2022 and perhaps even in 2023.

Locally, I’m hoping Cedar Point will be able to have their 150th celebration this season, although I’m skeptical of how things like parades and nighttime shows will work that usually cause massive amounts of people to get together.

Last edited by mgou58, Wednesday, February 17, 2021 1:04 PM
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Wednesday, February 17, 2021 1:58 PM

Way too early to say CA parks & Wonderland are "very likely not opening in 2021." Wonderland is scheduling for May 14th. CGA for May 22nd, no date for Knotts. CF explained the reasoning for the conservative openings date across the chain, nothing opening till May 8th at the earliest.

On Capex CF repeated again the line about no long term contracts & maximum flexibility for 2022/23. The question is what they consider long term. Is the supposed Dorney wood coaster & CGA delayed hyper considered long term, if it was planned possibly for say 2021 & pushed back. The likely scenario is CF is talking to manufacturers & was before the pandemic, but not committed b/c of the uncertainty on 2021 level of the comeback on the financials. 2022 will surely not be a normal Capex year, 2023 is likely the earliest for that

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Wednesday, February 17, 2021 3:38 PM

It’s not too early at all. You must have missed the part where the Canada health board stepped in and said that they would be the ones to decide when the park opened, not Cedar Fair. Additionally, the lockdowns in California are still highly restrictive, and Disneyland’s manager has even been quoted as saying he doesn’t anticipate opening anytime soon. It’s nearly certain that those three parks will not be opening in time. Everyone else, sure. Depending on state guidelines and the status of the pandemic.

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Thursday, February 18, 2021 9:05 AM
MichaelB's avatar

mgou58 said:

It’s not too early at all. You must have missed the part where the Canada health board stepped in and said that they would be the ones to decide when the park opened, not Cedar Fair. Additionally, the lockdowns in California are still highly restrictive, and Disneyland’s manager has even been quoted as saying he doesn’t anticipate opening anytime soon. It’s nearly certain that those three parks will not be opening in time. Everyone else, sure. Depending on state guidelines and the status of the pandemic.

Billion dollar companies tend to have more pull than you and I. Ohio was originally saying that CP wouldn't open in 2020. I think we all know how that ended. Governments are suckers for bending to those that provide them millions in tax dollars.

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Thursday, February 18, 2021 12:14 PM
DSShives's avatar

Except in California.


Steve Shives
First Cedar Point Visit - 1972
Dockholder-Cedar Point Marina

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Thursday, February 18, 2021 1:35 PM

Or Ontario. The Provincial government pulled the rug out from Wonderland ONE week before their desired opening date at the start of July. The park had spent all of June hiring to fully staff, put up main gate and in park Covid requirements and spent the prior 3 weeks testing all the rides. That was a significant wasted expense, and I think they essentially mentioned that in the year end comments. Having 2 of the top 3 parks in the chain in Ontario and Southern California really hurt the chain during this crisis. Could lose 2 full years or more at both parks.


CP Coaster Top 10: 1. Steel Vengeance (28 rides to date) 2. Top Thrill Dragster (182 launches to date, 4 rollbacks) 3. Raptor 4. Millennium Force 5. Maverick 6. GateKeeper 7. Valravn 8. Rougarou 9. Magnum XL 200 10. Gemini

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Thursday, February 18, 2021 2:26 PM

You both beat me to it but thank you. Billion dollar parks do NOT have more pull then the local governments. Especially during a pandemic.

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Friday, February 19, 2021 6:24 AM
Vince982's avatar

It's hard to say if Wonderland will get the green light this year or not.  Ontario started out strict in the pandemic but we just ended our latest lockdown and stay at home order and it was a bit of a joke.  When we were at the most relaxed stages of restrictions in the summer most places were allowed to be open at 10% or 25% capacity  but casinos were limited to 50 people total, regardless of venue size.


We'll miss you MrScott and Pete

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Friday, February 19, 2021 10:57 AM
MichaelB's avatar

mgou58 said:

You both beat me to it but thank you. Billion dollar parks do NOT have more pull then the local governments. Especially during a pandemic.

But they do. CP opened (during a pandemic) when they were otherwise told no at the beginning.

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Friday, February 19, 2021 11:15 AM

It’s obvious that you aren’t getting it so I’ll leave it alone. Three parks aren’t going to open in May I can promise you that. Also, do you happen to recall why Cedar Point didn’t open on time?

I’ll wait.

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Friday, February 19, 2021 11:33 AM
Thabto's avatar

Then why were they given the green light the next day after filing or threatening a lawsuit? It seems like they do have some kind of pull. The day before zoos and other outdoor places were given the greenlight but not amusement parks. Later that day, a lawsuit was either filed or threatened then the next day, Boom! They were given the green light to open.


Brian
Valravn Rides: 24| Steel Vengeance Rides: 26| Dragster Rollbacks: 1
2021 Visits: 3

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Friday, February 19, 2021 11:50 AM
Dvo's avatar

I think it's more to do with the fact that we learned more about the virus and how it is transmitted, and the lawsuit was appropriately-timed with the government already loosening restrictions on other similar businesses. That's not to say that Cedar Fair has "no" pull in the government, but I don't think they're the major string-pullers that's being implied.


370 MF laps
Smoking Area Drone Pilot

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Friday, February 19, 2021 11:57 AM

Connecting an awful lot of dots with the lawsuit idea in my opinion. I also don’t pretend to talk as though I have inside information about said lawsuit either. My point was that at the beginning of the season they were not allowed to open due to state guidelines.

So for the final, exhaustive time: states do have the ability to say if amusement parks can open or not. Period. Can that be changed? Sure. Can parks sue their way to an opening? Sure. Is there a reason Disneyland hasn’t opened in nearly 18 months? YEP. Is it possible that this virus continues to decline and we all go back to normal globally by May? I don’t know, I don’t have a crystal ball. And if anything I’ve learned NOT to rely on current data trends because things can always shift in regards to the virus.

Moving on.

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Friday, February 19, 2021 7:02 PM

With regard to the lawsuit, there was an interesting game being played there.

By the time the Cedar Point/Kalahari lawsuit was filed, the State had already lost a couple of other lawsuits which were making it ever more clear that the courts believed that the State had overstepped its authority in preventing businesses from reopening; in fact had overstepped its authority in insisting that businesses close in the first place. Once the suit was filed, it was in the State's best interest to cave rather than allow that suit to go forward, due to the mounting evidence that the State would probably lose. Losing such a suit is the worst outcome for the State, because it would prevent the State from taking similar action in the future, while simply addressing the plaintiff's remedy makes the problem go away and still leaves open the possibility that the State can force such closures again.

I still don't understand why Governors think it's safer to open indoor FECs than outdoor amusement parks. I'd love to go to Cedar Point again, but even at 1:208 odds I have no interest in going to, say, Scene 75. And yet, Ohio allowed indoor FECs to open a full week before greenlighting outdoor facilities, and New York is letting the indoor facilities open a *month* ahead of the outdoor ones.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.



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Friday, February 19, 2021 10:00 PM
DSShives's avatar

You're trying to use data, facts and common sense. Remember we are talking about the government here that doesn't use such things in making decisions.


Steve Shives
First Cedar Point Visit - 1972
Dockholder-Cedar Point Marina

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Saturday, February 27, 2021 11:05 PM

Ride Man- Yeah I noticed that too here in NY. Of course Cuomo could’ve just said both FECs and parks could open at the same time, and just let the weather sort it out. No outdoor amusement parks are opening here on 3/26 (FECs allowed to open) or 4/9 (amusement parks allowed to reopen) anyway. It’s too damn cold.


But then again, what do I know?
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Monday, March 1, 2021 8:47 AM
Paisley's avatar

If I remember right DeWine said he was going to address amusement parks separately on a particular day that week and then that day came and he chose not to and said he would address it some other time and blew them off and then the lawsuit was filed the next day and it had more to do with the amusement parks being singled out and treated differently than other similar businesses and venues that had been given the green light to open than arguing that he couldn't stop them from opening at all. Like if people can wander around outside and stare at animals then they should be able to wander around outside and ride rollercoasters just like if you can buy a hamburger at McDonald's you should be able to buy a hamburger from Dairy Queen you can't say it's safe to open one and not the other.

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