The Zippin Pippin roller coaster is exceeding expectations and proving it by posting big numbers during the first month of operation.
The city owned Bay Beach amusement park brought in more than $226,000 over last year because of the new ride, with more than $726,000. That represents a more than 45% increase. The city was anticipating about a 20% increase.
The roller coaster is gaining attention, with a buck a ride, it brought in over $110,000 alone.
Park Director Tina Westergaard says more people are spending longer periods of time in the park. Receipts show spending increases in other areas of the park with concessions, souvenirs, soda machines, commissions, and video games.
May Jim Schmitt says this is about lifting a whole park, not just a roller coaster.
Schmitt received critical comments of his effort to bring the ride to Green Bay.
Overall ridership was lacking on all the other rides, with attendance down 7.3%. The other 16 rides saw ridership decrease by neary 25%.
Change the scheme, Alter the mood! Electrify the boys and girls if you would be so kind!
Enjoying the rides at Bay Beach Amusement Park in Green Bay soon could mean more than just a fun and relaxing afternoon. It could mean supporting your favorite local charity. Green Bay city leaders are considering letting nonprofit groups raise money by asking donors to match revenue generated by rides at the popular city-owned amusement park.
Brown County United Way conceived the idea and sought to designate one day to benefit United Way during Bay Beach's upcoming summer season. Some city officials initially balked at the idea, questioning whether a public resource like Bay Beach should be used to fund a private charity. A compromise proposal headed to the Green Bay City Council tonight would limit the number of nonprofit events to be held each year and would require outside groups to share their charitable proceeds with the city.
Alderman Jerry Wiezbiskie, an early critic of the idea, said he now sees the arrangement as a winning strategy for both sides. "Share with us, and we'll share with you," he said. "If anything, it's going to increase our business and make the park more valuable to our community."
Under the proposal, a nonprofit would have to give the city 2 percent of its proceeds for the right to raise funds at Bay Beach, which sometimes generates crowds of 5,000 people or more daily during the summer.
Brown County United Way President Gregg Hetue said he was unsure whether his organization would want to go ahead with its event under the city's conditions. Hetue said he had hoped allowing sponsors to match Bay Beach ride revenue would create a new source of funds for the organization's early childhood development programs, also known as the Community Partnership for Children. Referring to the emphasis on helping children, Hetue said holding an event at Bay Beach seemed like a natural alliance. "What better place than a place where kids go every day?" he said.
Tentatively planned for July 29, the event would allow individual United Way sponsors to choose one of Bay Beach's 17 rides and match whatever revenue was generated by that ride throughout the day. The city would not be asked to relinquish any of its normal revenue from the amusement park.
United Way officials have talked about lining up 17 corporate sponsors so that the Ferris wheel, bumper cars, merry-go-round and other attractions all would generate matching dollars for charity.
Dawne Cramer, the city's parks and recreation director, said other nonprofits in the community might want to try the same thing if it is successful for United Way. "I think this is a great opportunity for them," Cramer said. "Where else do you get to go and use a venue like Bay Beach?"
Buoyed by its new Zippin Pippin roller coaster, the amusement park last year posted record-high revenues of more than $2 million for the city.
Aldermen on the City Council Park Committee voiced concerns about using city dollars to support private charities, or possibly attracting out-of-town groups or inappropriate nonprofits, such as political organizations.
The policy being debated by City Council tonight limits the offer to Brown County nonprofits with a "family oriented" purpose. It also requires a $50 application fee and another fee to cover city costs — on top of the 2 percent share of the proceeds.
No more than two such nonprofit events annually would be permitted under the proposal. Alderman Ned Dorff said he might support increasing the number of events allowed so that more local nonprofits can borrow the United Way's idea and benefit from charitable matching dollars.
Dorff said he proposed the 2 percent share — which would be earmarked for the city's Bay Beach fund — as a way of making sure that the city was reimbursed for any costs involved in helping a charity hold its event at Bay Beach. Dorff said he welcomed the United Way's creative new approach to fundraising. "It's a cool idea," he said. "We just had to set some ground rules."
Change the scheme, Alter the mood! Electrify the boys and girls if you would be so kind!
The Pippin is certainly a fantastic old school ride and being able to help raise money for charity just for riding it is a big plus. Overall I enjoyed the park and wished I had more time to spend there. I think overall the Pippin added that little something it was missing to keep people there, not to mention the park is very affordable for families.
New ride coming to Bay Beach Amusement Park Mar 6, 2013 Written by Scott Cooper Williams
The Sea Dragon swinging boat ride, currently traveling county fairs in the eastern U.S., would cost $670,000 to bring to Green Bay. / Submitted
GREEN BAY - The Sea Dragon could make its new home on Green Bay’s waterfront by this summer.
The Green Bay City Council agreed Tuesday to spend $670,000 to acquire the new swinging boat ride as the latest addition to Bay Beach Amusement Park.
The acquisition is part of a new plan for investing millions to expand and upgrade the city-owned amusement park over the next several years.
Alderman Jerry Wiezbiskie joined others in applauding the ambitious growth strategy.
“It sends chills down your spine, really,” Wiezbiskie said.
The City Council voted unanimously to pursue the purchase of the Sea Dragon, which would become the first new ride added at Bay Beach since a blockbuster deal three years ago that brought the Zippin Pippin roller coaster here.
The Zippin Pippin, which cost more than $3 million, has been credited with boosting attendance and revenue at the park.
City parks officials assured aldermen Tuesday that attendance and revenue would continue to climb with the new proposed improvements, including other new rides, a waterfront promenade, a shelter for corporate events and an outdoor dining terrace. The strategy calls for $20 million in investments, most of them in the next 10 years.
All improvements would be funded through Bay Beach revenues or private donations to a new Friends of Bay Beach fund-raising group, officials said.
Negotiations are under way to acquire the Sea Dragon from owners who have been using the 20-year-old ride on a county fair circuit in the eastern United States. City officials have not yet identified the ride’s current owners.
Jason Arnoldi, assistant manager for Bay Beach, told aldermen that the swinging boat attraction could hold 40 to 60 people at a time and is projected to generate ridership of 300,000 to 350,000 people in its first year of operation at Bay Beach.
“It’s a really fun ride,” Arnoldi said. “It just fits perfectly with what we do out there.”
Depending on how the purchase negotiations go, the Sea Dragon could make its Bay Beach debut before the end of the upcoming season, which extends from May to September.
In addition to the Sea Dragon purchase, the council approved the long-term master plan for expansion and the creation of the friends fund-raising group.
Alderman Amy Kocha thanked city parks staffers for setting Bay Beach on a course for dramatic improvement.
“This thing,” Kocha said of the park, “has just blossomed so beautifully.”
Last edited by larrygator on Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:17 am.
As usual, my analysis is free of charge! Original enough to not steal someone else's quote as a signature
The Sea Dragon sounds like it will be a perfect fit for the park. With the success Zippin Pippin has had and seeing the boom Fun Spot is experiencing, it doesn't sound *too* impossible that Bay Beach could expand a little more. It would be very cool for this fun little park, but I'm not expecting a B&M Giga or AQUATRAX!!!1!!11! anytime soon. We'll see what the future brings.
I smell like fresh cut spring flowers spewn across a babbling brook with a hint of lemon. |:D
The Seadragon rides are really the best of the swinging ship rides. If they're run correctly (meaning they don't run it like they do at Knott's or the Santa Monica Pier) you get great floater air in the end seats.
These pages are in no way affiliated with nor endorsed by SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Cedar Fair, Legoland, Merlin Entertainment, Blackstone, Tussaud's Group, Six Flags, Universal Theme Parks, the Walt Disney Company or any other theme park company.
photos and videos on this website were taken with the permission of the park by
a professional ride photographer.
For yours and others safety, please do not attempt to take photos or videos at
parks without proper permission.
You need a sense of humor to view our site,
if you don't have a sense of humor, or are easily offended, please turn back
Most of the content on this forum is suitable for all ages. HOWEVER! There may be some content that would be considered rated "PG-13." Theme Park Review is NOT recommended for ages under 13 years of age.