Category Archives: Cedar Fair

2017 Free Cedar Fair Ticket (Cedar Point, Kings Island, etc.) for Giving Blood

140716 Red Cross Blood Drive Cedar Point Ticket

Before we had season passes, one of our favorite programs to take part in was donating blood to the Red Cross and getting a free Cedar Point ticket (Note: we still donate blood even without the ticket benefit). So we are always happy when we see the program return each year because not only does your blood donation save countless lives, it gives everyone a chance to be able to visit the park.

Fact: Someone in the U.S. needs blood every two seconds.

The process is quick and simple, and you are allowed to donate blood once every 60 days. So assuming you get in at the beginning of June, you can do so again in August (when maybe they will add additional free Cedar Fair ticket dates).

While the promotion is labeled as a free Cedar Fair ticket of choice, you need to verify with your donation center which tickets will be available. Each center will not have a pile of tickets from each of the parks. Most likely they will be regionalized, meaning Ohio and surrounding States will offer Cedar Point or Kings Island tickets, etc. Again confirm with your donation center when making a reservation.

So where can you donate blood in 2017 and get a free Cedar Fair ticket?

Upcoming blood donation opportunities in Ohio offering one free Cedar Fair theme park ticket:

(Reference List)

June 1, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at iHeartMedia, 7461 South Ave., Boardman, 44512

June 7, 2017 from noon to 6 p.m. at Geauga County Fairgrounds, School Building, 14373 N. Chesire St., Burton 44021

June 9, 2017 from 1:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Ashtabula Towne Square, 3315 N. Ridge Road E, Ashtabula, 44004

June 13, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Massillon Recreation Center, 505 Erie St. N, Massillon, 44646

June 14, 2017 from noon to 6 p.m. at Packard Music Hall, 1703 Mahoning Ave., Warren, 44483

June 20, 2017 from 1 to 7 p.m. at Ehrnfelt Recreation Center, 18100 Royalton Road, Strongsville, 44136

June 24, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Stephen Rung-Meno Memorial Blood Drive, 409 Armour Road, Avon Lake, 44012

June 28, 2017 from 2 to 7 p.m. at Castaway Bay, 2001 Cleveland Road, Sandusky, 44870

July 3, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Fairview Recreation Center, 21225 Lorain Road, Fairview Park, 44126

July 7, 2017 from 1 to 7 p.m. at Hilton Garden Inn, 700 Beta Dr., Mayfield Village, 44143

July 12, 2017 from noon to 7 p.m. at Dave & Busters, 25735 First St., Westlake, 44145

July 18, 2017 from 1 to 7 p.m. at Heartland Community Church, 3400 Weymouth Road, Medina, 44256

July 21, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Cuyahoga Community College, West Campus, 11000 Pleasant Valley Road, Parma, 44130

July 25, 2017 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Independence Community Center, 6363 Selig Drive, Independence, 44131

Upcoming blood donation opportunities in Indiana offering one free Cedar Fair theme park ticket:

(Reference List)

6/15/2017 East Noble High School 1pm-7pm 901 S. Garden St. Kendallville, IN 46755
6/15/2017 Purdue University Northwest – Westville 10am – 4pm 1401 S. US 421 Westville, IN 46391
6/23/2017 Zion Lutheran Church 1pm-7pm 101 East North Street Columbia City, IN 46725
6/27/2017 Celina High School at St. John Lutheran Church 12pm-6pm 1100 N. Main Street Celina, OH 45822
6/29/2017 St. Elizabeth Ann Seton 12pm-6pm 10700 Aboite Center Rd Fort Wayne, IN 46804
6/30/2017 Madison Park Church of God 2pm-8pm 6607 Providence Dr. Anderson, IN 46013
7/6/2017 Faith United Methodist Church 12pm-6pm 22045 CR18 Goshen, IN 46528
7/8/2017 Three Rivers Festival 12pm-4pm SCU on Barr Street Fort Wayne, IN 46802
7/11/2017 Logansport High School 1pm-6pm 1 Berry Lane Logansport, IN 46947
7/12/2017 University of Notre Dame at LaFortune Student Center 11am-5pm 315 LaFortune Student Center South Bend, IN 46556
7/12/2017 Scout Park Conference Center 1pm-7pm 2300 Meyer Road Fort Wayne, IN 46803
7/19/2017 Elida High School/Community 12pm-6pm 401 East North St. Elida, OH 45807
7/19/2017 Chapel Hill Church 12pm-6pm 2600 W. Alto Rd. Kokomo, IN 46901
7/20/2017 Purdue University Northwest – Hammond at Student Union Library 10am-3pm 2200 169th Street Hammond, IN 46323
7/21/2017 Huntington Church of the Nazarene 1:30pm- 7:30pm 1555 Flaxmill Rd. Huntington, IN 46750
7/24/2017 Mitchell High School at Mitchell Church of Christ 12pm-6pm 1004 Main Street Mitchell, IN 47446
7/26/2017 Sonlight Church 11am-5pm 455 N. Gerald Lett Avenue Angola, IN 46703
7/29/2017 Fishers YMCA 11am- 4pm 9012 East 126th St. Fishers, IN 46038
8/8/2017 Irsay Family YMCA 10am – 4pm 430 S. Alabama St. Indianapolis, IN 46225

You must register with the Red Cross prior to your arrival to ensure you get a free ticket. Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information.

The Red Cross is also giving away a paid trip to either Cedar Point or Knott’s Berry Farm for those that like to enter contests. You will also see a link to purchase discounted tickets.

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To Souvenir Cup, or Not to Souvenir Cup

170415 Kings Island 2017 Mystic Timbers Souvenir Bottle

There used to be a time where the decision was easy. You simply paid for your drinks individually, which really got expensive fast. Or you purchased a souvenir cup and received free refills on the day of purchase and $1 refills thereafter. However, in 2016, Cedar Fair rolled out an enticing program for those of us who like to pay one and done with the All-Season Souvenir cup.

With the All-Season souvenir cups, you paid for the cup upfront and receive free refills all season, and you could use the cups at all of the Cedar Fair parks. It was a no-brainer, but came with its own set of risks and downfalls.

Once the All-Season souvenir bottles were unlimited for the year, they were easy targets of thieves, as gross as that sounds to drink out of other people’s bottles you do not know. Plus you always had to deal with storing the bottles during rides.

Fast forward to 2017, and Cedar Fair introduced the All-Season Drink Pass, where you get unlimited drinks all season, though in smaller, disposable cups.

So the question became, To Souvenir Cup, or Not to Souvenir Cup?

When the start of the season rolled around, our family had to make a decision, would be go with the All-Season Souvenir bottles or the simpler All-Season Drink Pass? Or do we do one Drink Pass and one Bottle to share among our family?

After discussion, our family elected to go with two All-Season Souvenir bottles, and here is why.

Both programs limit refills to every 15 minutes. The All-Season Drink Pass offers a smaller cup of beverage than that in the souvenir bottles. The All-Season Drink Pass does not include lids or straws with the cups, as opposed to the souvenir bottles that do.

Since we have little kids and share the cups between our family, we have enough choices to make about which beverage to put inside them. The All-Season souvenir bottles were an easy decision for our family because they offer lids and a straw, which minimize the potential for spills.

We also have children young enough that we bring a stroller into the parks; therefore, we have a place to store the cups and typically at least one adult is back with our youngest and the stroller. We just need to be diligent about keeping an eye on the stroller/bringing the cups with us on any family rides.

Now that you know our family’s reasoning for going with the All-Season Souvenir Bottles, which program do you prefer?

Note: The 2017 souvenir bottles are about 4 ounces smaller than those from 2016 and years prior. Current cups hold 24 ounces of beverage as opposed to 28 ounces in years prior.

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Interesting Facts from the 2017 Cedar Fair Investor Presentation

Earlier this month Cedar Fair released their 2017 Investor Presentation that is packed full of information about the company, as well as forward-looking statements about what we may expect in the coming weeks, months, or years. We always find these documents rather interesting, and over the years they have begun to release more and more information from behind the curtain. So lets take a peak into some Interesting Facts from the 2017 Cedar Fair Investor Presentation.

Cedar Fair Park Revenue

Cedar Fair has put forth 7 consecutive years of record results in terms of revenue and Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA). Where it really gets interesting is looking at the breakdown by park to see which parks carry the weight.

Referencing the 2015 Theme Index of attendance, the top four performing Cedar Fair parks were Knott’s Berry Farm, Canada’s Wonderland, Cedar Point, and Kings Island. We expect to see similar results when the 2016 list is released in May 2017.

1703funinvestorpresentation-Slide5

However, when it comes to revenue by park, Knott’s Berry Farm and Cedar Point are about equal at about 23% and 21% respectively of the $1,289,000,000 2016 revenue. Further, Kings Island beat out Canada’s Wonderland revenue at 11% and 9% respectively.

Knott’s has a distinct advantage of being open year round, but it still interesting to see how the top attendance parks relate to revenue, with the two top earners double what the next closest two earners are for 2016.

On the flip side, it is rather surprising to see Kings Dominion and Carowinds being roughly equal in terms of revenue, yet one has clearly gotten more investment than the other. For reference, the 2015 revenue appears to be about equal as well.

What is also interesting to see if that California’s Great America (CGA) is about equal in terms of revenue as Kings Dominion and Carowinds. However, the 2016 EBITDA of CGA is a small fraction of the other two. Given CGA recently received approval for extensive expansion plans, this is an interesting long term play.

It is also quite interesting to see how the lowest earner, Michigan’s Adventure, is a $26 million revenue park vs the giants, Cedar Point ($272 million) or Knott’s Berry Farm ($293 million).

Developed vs Undeveloped Land

It is always interesting to us to look at how much land the parks have for future development. Fortunately, the Investor Presentation tabulates the numbers nicely.

March 2017 Cedar Fair Land Holdings Chart

Most people will immediately look at this chart and think, “wow, such and such park has tons of room for expansion. Why don’t they build 10 giga-coasters with all that land?”

In reality, expansion is not as simple as it once was back when the parks were built. Today’s development rules require extensive engineering to handle normal infrastructure, but also additional storm water runoff measures. In addition, many sites contain wetlands, which can be expensive to mitigate for expansion. Not to say it can not be done, but it all costs a LOT of money. Expansion requires the proper infrastructure behind to make sure it can be sustained.

What is also interesting to look at is where the properties in Cedar Fair ownership are located.

For example, take Cedar Point. They own the majority of the peninsula with the exception of some outlying residential properties. Cedar Point also own extensive property outside the causeway for employee housing, parking, hotels, and restaurants.

The purchase of the former Griffing Sandusky Airport allowed Cedar Point to greatly expand their reach into the sports market.

Now enough of the numbers game. Get out there and have some FUN, because that is what is all about in the end!

Disclaimers:
1) All numbers roughly calculated from Cedar Fair Investor Presentations and do not represent actual values.
2) We do not own any Cedar Fair interests at the time of this article.
3) Photos from slides ©Cedar Fair

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