Rye Playland Discussion Thread

P. 30: The future(?) amid the squabbling
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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby Carnage » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:19 pm

Rye was in my rough plan for after the Indimidatour trip. With this news I'll have to make sure I make it there.
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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby larrygator » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:44 pm

Something doesn't add up.

$6,000,000 to run the park. 300,000 people spending $20 each on tickets/wristbands covers $6,000,000. You can't tell me that place doesn't pull in 300,000 a year. The park has 100 operating days, that 3,000 people a day.

Parking is $7 on weekends, $5 on weekends. 500 cars a day = about $250,000 a year.
The food vendors have to be paying rent for their booths, also.

If it really costs only $6,000,000 a year to run, I don't see how they don't at least break even.

When Clementon Park was sold a couple of years ago, financial statements showed them with $1,500,000 in annual revenue.
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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby ginzo » Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:00 pm

^Yeah, something does seem strange. They own the land, don't have to pay property tax, and aren't exactly spending a lot on new rides.
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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby thrillrider » Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:21 pm

Astorio is a run of the mill Politician. He has accomplished nothing in his turn and is looking for an easy out to prove he can save same money. He has been targeting the park for a long time. He's claiming the park hasn't made a profit in a generation, yet it made 16 million in 2004 according to it's 260 page master plan. The master plan also said that 55% of the park attendance was the local County, 10% Groups, 28% neighboring counties and 7% destination guests.

If they have dropped form 55% to 30% what is the managment and county officials doing to scare them away in the last 6 years?
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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby monsterfan99 » Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:51 pm

larrygator wrote:Something doesn't add up.

$6,000,000 to run the park. 300,000 people spending $20 each on tickets/wristbands covers $6,000,000. You can't tell me that place doesn't pull in 300,000 a year. The park has 100 operating days, that 3,000 people a day.

Parking is $7 on weekends, $5 on weekends. 500 cars a day = about $250,000 a year.
The food vendors have to be paying rent for their booths, also.

If it really costs only $6,000,000 a year to run, I don't see how they don't at least break even.

When Clementon Park was sold a couple of years ago, financial statements showed them with $1,500,000 in annual revenue.

With it being government ran, I'm am betting some of the vendors are getting some amazing contracts costing the park millions.

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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby 808Freq » Wed Aug 04, 2010 9:59 pm

Haha, a theme park run by the government that is failing. That's fitting..

larrygator wrote:Something doesn't add up.

$6,000,000 to run the park. 300,000 people spending $20 each on tickets/wristbands covers $6,000,000. You can't tell me that place doesn't pull in 300,000 a year. The park has 100 operating days, that 3,000 people a day.

Parking is $7 on weekends, $5 on weekends. 500 cars a day = about $250,000 a year.
The food vendors have to be paying rent for their booths, also.

If it really costs only $6,000,000 a year to run, I don't see how they don't at least break even.

When Clementon Park was sold a couple of years ago, financial statements showed them with $1,500,000 in annual revenue.


I know that it's a government run facility, but I'm sure they needed insurance.. to pay employees, advertise, etc, etc.. I could see those expenses running long.. And you are talking about the government trying to budget money. It's a total oxymoron..

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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby ParkTrips » Thu Aug 05, 2010 12:59 pm

larrygator wrote:Something doesn't add up.

$6,000,000 to run the park. 300,000 people spending $20 each on tickets/wristbands covers $6,000,000. You can't tell me that place doesn't pull in 300,000 a year.

I think he's saying that the $3-6 million is the loss the county is eating. The only other article I could find on the possibility of Playland shutting down (here) mentions an operating budget of $16 million.

The "master plan" I linked to earlier had this to say:
Attendance through the 1990s increased from about 850,000 to one million in 1999. In 2004, those numbers declined to 920,000 in part as a result of inclement weather and a soft economy, but underlying factors included lack of reinvestment in attraction content and insufficient resources to mount a proper marketing program. Attendance generated $16.5 million in annual revenues in 2003 with net revenues of about $10.5 million. The remainder being paid to ride owners and concessionaires, an arrangement that leaves Playland without resources for the park.

Sounds like the park was barely breaking even at those attendance figures, so I could see a big drop in attendance running the park in the red. Seems to me like the problem is the contractors are getting paid while the county is not (as monsterfan alluded to)



thrillrider wrote:None the less, you still have 33% more people going to that area, that wouldn't be there if the park did not exsist. Those people spend money at gas stations, hotels, restaurants...ect..ect.

MAYBE (23%, btw) - you could easily day-trip the park from 30 miles away, but you wouldn't fall under the 77% of 'locals'. That could include taking a train from the city: that IS how the park got its start, right? You also have to remember that the park is very close to Connecticut, so visitors from there could easily buy any gas and or pre/post-park meals in another state.

But, out of curiousity, say all 70% of park patrons who come from outside the county (as stated by the county exec) -- they spend $20 on admission, $20 inside the park, and another $20 outside the park (but still within the county). A nice round attendance number to use would be 750k. 525k out of county guests * $60 each = $31.5 million generated. Tax that at 7% and you've got a little over $2 million in tax revenue that could be lost. If they are losing between $3-6 million by keeping the park open (which is my translation of the article), they are still looking at a "gain" of $1-4 million even after the loss in tax revenues

Sure, there is the loss of jobs with the park, but most of them are seasonal kids who could likely find other employment. The 100 or so (at max) full time employees would be a loss in both spending power and local income taxes, but that's assuming they couldn't find other work (not to mention, in a county of one million residents, 100 jobs is barely a splash)

I kind of question the 77% number they came up with. Where and how did they study this?

I really don't see why it's a surprise - its a local park, not a big draw like a Disneyland or Sea World, and there are a ton of people who live within 25 miles of the park (which would run into the northern parts of New York City)

Even local people that live 25 miles from the park will stop and eat at a restaurant after they leave the park.

Maybe, but who's to say they wouldn't have eaten out either way? Or that they wouldn't eat when they got back home, or in Connecticut or NYC?



In the end, I think public opinion of the decisions of elected officials will prevent the park from closing (see the poll in the original article Adam posted). Guess it will depend on how the constituency feels. Like Larry, I see no reason this place can't at least break even. I think the county is just looking for ways to cut losses, and if its losing money now, then it makes sense from that perspective at this time. A net gain of $1-4 million works out to 20-80 teacher/firefighter/police/etc jobs that might not need to be cut (@50k/year)

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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby thrillrider » Thu Aug 05, 2010 2:47 pm

thrillrider wrote:Astorio is a run of the mill Politician. He has accomplished nothing in his turn and is looking for an easy out to prove he can save same money. He has been targeting the park for a long time. He's claiming the park hasn't made a profit in a generation, yet it made 16 million in 2004 according to it's 260 page master plan. The master plan also said that 55% of the park attendance was the local County, 10% Groups, 28% neighboring counties and 7% destination guests.

If they have dropped form 55% to 30% what is the managment and county officials doing to scare them away in the last 6 years?
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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby ParkTrips » Thu Aug 05, 2010 3:09 pm

revenues =/= profits

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Re: NEWS: Rye Playland being considered for closure

Postby Solid Gold » Thu Aug 05, 2010 4:15 pm

Someone disprove my math here, but as long as our figures are accurate and 16 mil is the annual expense:

900,000 people x $30(unlimited rides, as well as a good standard figure)=27,000,000

Out of that 900,000, at least 33 percent are getting discounts for being in-county, or twilight admission, or Kiddie admission only, or any number of season pass options. But then you add some for parking, games, food, merchandise (you know, where parks actually make money).

There's a LOT of unaccountables in that basic figure, but at 16 mil expenses the park should break even at about $18 per guest, and able to afford ample new rides for 4 more dollars (I.E, I'm fully confident we don't know the real story)

1. We don't have enough info for my analysis to matter
2. We don't even know if the figures we have are credible.

But, I think it's pretty clear that if our numbers are good the potential is there for this park to hold its own.

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