If you look at the volume of people purchasing food at the festival events opposed to the volume of people in the park there's no comparison. The festival events are not practical for most families and younger people don't care about them. So, you're looking at way less people split up among a fraction of the guests. Try this strategy with the entire park and it's going to fail.
All of the restaurants were packed when we visited in June and the longest line I saw at the food festival stations were maybe a few people deep, if they had any line at all. They're also serving about sample size portions and simply collecting coupons. I have to think that events like this are more geared to bring people in the park than to make a profit off of food. Most importantly:
KI Kidd wrote:I don't know that there is a disconnect necessarily. As long as they can get away with it, they will sell the cheapest product at the biggest mark-up they can. If they are making a profit on it what incentive do they have to change it?
People praise Steel Vengeance, but they bitch about parking, bitch about Fast Lane customers, bitch about merchandise costs, and bitch about food. Where does the money to build these large attractions come from? There's a lot more to making money than the cost of admission. You can't cry about the food and then say, "What kind of 20 million dollar coaster do you think Cedar Point will get for their 150th anniversary?"
I feel like a lot of this goes back to Robb's spot on "Don't be a Theme park idiot" post in reference to purchasing food. Kid of like waiting in line for 30 minutes to buy burned chicken strips. If you're into this hobby and expect anything other than some of the aforementioned experiences then you're not good at adapting. We like going to Cedar Point because they're one of the few large corporate parks that actually offers some diversity from dry pizza and stamped hamburgers. I named six different examples just off the top of my head where Cedar Fair has 'stepped up their game' over other parks. If you're expecting anything else then pack a cooler lunch.