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  1. #1

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    David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    An interesting article over at MousePlanet today...

    http://www.mouseplanet.com/david/dk050913.htm


    The biggest loser was Disney's California Adventure as a whole, where estimates have summer-time attendance levels at historic lows.

    Perhaps the downturn shouldn't be surprising. For a change, DCA offered no significant discounts this summer. Too, while Disneyland boasted about 10 exciting new additions, the only thing DCA got was the parade and later the Turtle Talk With Crush show. As well, the marketing department seems to have forgotten the place exists.

    Certainly concern must be growing that DCA will never be able to stand on its own—a necessity before Disney will ever invest in a third gate on the strawberry fields.
    And then the article goes to interviewing folks who have decided to not go to DCA (You should read the entire article)...


    Karen - "she's never been to DCA. Never even considered it. She's pretty familiar with it, but just doesn't have any interest in it."

    “It's not fun,” Rita explained. “There's really nothing that I like, except they served alcohol..."
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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Heck, even as an Annual Passholder, getting DCA FREE, I haven't been in there since May. With Disneyland looking so good, DCA is depressing.
    -Monorail Man

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Yes, Darkbeer. We all know you hate California Adventure. I read that article earlier today, but how did I know you were going to post it on here and probably on the other sites too.

  4. #4

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Interesting article... I liked this part...

    Chuck, 43, has three teenage kids and has also never been to DCA. But then he hasn't been to Disneyland either in the last five years. What's kept his family away? “The cost,” he says. “If it were cheaper I'd go in a heartbeat. It costs $50, $60 to get in, and it's just not worth it.”

    Perhaps it's Disneyland that has priced DCA out of the market. Although the two parks charge the same amount to get in, it's difficult to argue that they provide the same value.
    Well, yes... Yes they did...

    Oh, one more thing about the article that I liked... The hint on what kind of change is needed to fix the attendance problem?

    What's a mouse to do? Keep adding rides until something catches the public's fancy? Change the theme to something more appealing? Steamroll the carnival rides? Bribe dissatisfied customers to stop bad-mouthing the place?
    It is going to need a dramatic change... And unfortunately the last time TDA had a dramatic change "the New Tomorrowland" it didn't turn out so well...
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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Quote Originally Posted by DLResident
    Yes, Darkbeer. We all know you hate California Adventure. I read that article earlier today, but how did I know you were going to post it on here and probably on the other sites too.
    Unfortunately you can't change perception of the park by blogging with a "DCA Lover's Alliance." It just doesn't work to try do subvert the dominant paradigm that the park actually isn't "Disney." There is nothing that speaks "quality family entertainment" in much of the park... That is essencially what the problem is... And you can't really change that with an alliance...

    It is a nice try... But you see, I have been there... And the only thing good about that park, is exactly what I like about the park... It is empty when I am there...
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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    I would like to figure out what constitutes a "historic low" when they've had problems getting people into the place all along. When you get to the bottom, there's only one way to go.

    And I do think that it might eventually get there...

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Quote Originally Posted by cellarhound
    And the only thing good about that park, is exactly what I like about the park... It is empty when I am there...
    You are of course entitled to your own opinion, but I think that the public would disagree. While there certainly are flaws, I believe that Soarin', Screamin', ToT, Grizzly, the Animation Building, and Aladdin are all good, if not great. And also according that same article, BPB has been a hit. Also, the quote from "Rita" so convienantly trailed off so that it seemed that the only thing that she liked was the alcohol, when she actually states that she also liked Soarin'.
    I am not AT ALL trying to say "Oh, she liked Soarin', the park MUST be a hit!" I'm not arguing with the numbers which do state that DCA is not doing very well. I am just annoys me that people are constantly saying that "everything about DCA sucks" when I think there are unarguably some hits.

  8. #8

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    They could always do what Six Flags is doing with AstroWorld - close the place and sell it for real estate

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Some interesting points have been made and judging by what people have been saying Ive realized (like many others who are disatisfied with DCA) that good or even GREAT rides dont make-up for lack of theming, lay-out, Exposure, Immersion or the feeling of Fantasy that is in great abundance across the way. ToT, Soarin', Animation, GRR, CalScreamin' are all great rides. My girlfriend loves the Orange. ITtbaB gets me everytime. It s the fundamentals, the basics, the simple things (but thats what happens when Mgnt is more concerned with $$$ than doing their job) that leave this park with much to be desired. Even with the very enticing prospect of alcohol theres not the "magic" tugging our heart strings (unless you go to DCA to get drunk only to leave it like a wasted prom date for the hotter younger more fun to be with red head in the motel room across the way. Get over it Stacey I didnt even like you that much to begin with).

    Is it cause Disneyland is "too" classic? Does the small 50 yr.old park resonate within our emotions so much class and nostalgia that it will forever eclipse its apprentice, never allowing it to become one with its potential? (is DL to DCA what Obi-wan is to Ani?)

    I dont know!
    I do know that people might find it over-priced. If I had a choice (at work my boss regularly gives away DLR tickets good for either DL or DCA) between the two I know which park I would pick. How 'bout you?

    Im not suprised at the lower than low attendance levels DCA experienced. Should anyone? Did anyone think that with DISNEYLAND turning 50 anyone would pay attntion to DCA let alone spend money on it when there was so much that was new and exciting and surreal? I feel for the park like I feel for bums beggin for change. Its sad but they have options... "Get a job"!

    *note - the gimmick of sending classic Disneyland shows and parades (i.e. Main St Electrical Parade) to DCA to trick people into going there is insulting and wrong and just like straight to video animated sequels tarnishes the image of something so precious. Knock it off!
    Last edited by WRDup; 09-13-2005 at 06:35 PM.
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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    I am not surprised by the reaction to DCA from the comments of guests who have not visited DCA.

    I have on many occasions expressed my disappointed and frustration at how Disney did DCA.

    But I DO want to stress that I don't hate DCA. I just think it could have been designed sooo much better. I also think that it CAN be fixed! It is like dealing with a person who has a drinking problem, the first step to recovery is to admit that you have a problem. Until TDA admits that there is a problem, there cannot be a solution. I believe that all the things that the DCA lovers alliance enjoy about the park can be preserved while correcting the theme and magic of the park to make it enjoyable for others.

    I believe that both groups can be accommodated and pleased.
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  11. #11

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    I'm always glad to see the poor attendance at DCA get some press. I think it makes it more likely that Disney will finally fix this park. While I'm sure Six Flags or Knotts would be happy with DCA level attendance, it is a failure by Disney standards.

    Aside from Tower of Terror, which I love, there is no reason for me to ever visit that park. Sounds like I'm not the only one who feels that way.
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  12. #12

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    I'll say it once again...

    I LOVE DISNEY'S CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE!!!

    Sure, it's not anything like Disneyland, but then again, it was never meant to be. And it's only been open for 4 years, going on 5 in February. Give it time and don't rip on it so much.

    If you look at all the old pictures of Disneyland when it first opened up, you'll see that the Park itself was really not much to look at. It was quite drab, and most felt it wasn't going to make it. But here we are, 50 years later, and Disneyland is better than ever.

    I honestly feel DCA will make it's mark, it just needs time. Sure, there are things that can be done to improve the Park, but that will come in time. But again, DCA was NEVER meant to be a continuation of Disneyland. And for those of you who can't stand the place, yet still seem to go there (and you know who you are), perhaps it's time you just stay out and devote ALL your time and energy at Disneyland.

    Leave DCA to those who really do enjoy it and have hope that it will continue to get better & better as each year passes!

    ***I will now step off my soap box!!

  13. #13

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Quote Originally Posted by JiminyCricketFan
    I am not surprised by the reaction to DCA from the comments of guests who have not visited DCA.

    I have on many occasions expressed my disappointed and frustration at how Disney did DCA.

    But I DO want to stress that I don't hate DCA. I just think it could have been designed sooo much better. I also think that it CAN be fixed! It is like dealing with a person who has a drinking problem, the first step to recovery is to admit that you have a problem. Until TDA admits that there is a problem, there cannot be a solution. I believe that all the things that the DCA lovers alliance enjoy about the park can be preserved while correcting the theme and magic of the park to make it enjoyable for others.

    I believe that both groups can be accommodated and pleased.
    I agree 100%. Great post.

    Although I only visit DCA for Tower and occassionally Animation and Soarin', I think the place can be helped and isn't competely bad.

    Although I don't particuarly like the place, I do notice its few positive attributes and am willing to give it credit when credit is due.

    I've become increasingly aggrivated by those who plaster across message boards that the only solution is a bulldozer ... or instead of anything positive or optimistic, they bash it relentlessly. I've been known to bash and criticize DCA, but I never deny it of it's (few) highlights.

    I also am becoming increasingly aggrivated with the people who hail DCA and proclaim themselves as "DCA Lovers" and those who choose to ignore every fault of the Disney company and battle every discussion of the company's problems and issues with weak positives. --- It's fine to appreciate DCA and enjoy the place... but its really just absurd when you chose to ignore the fact that the park isn't doing well.

    Throughout the summer Disneyland was continuously packed. If the park is deserving of a $56 admission price, it should be of similar caliber to it's parent park across the esplanade. The fact it isn't, and the Disneyland Resort guests have figured that out and refuse to pay for it. Even when it wasn't the 50th, Disneyland had much more significant crowds than DCA - it is undeniable that the place has problems and just because when you go you see crowds doesn't mean those crowds are there every day.

    I know by human nature we're all opinionated and never really agree on much - but a lot of people are chosing one side of the extreme rather than paying fair attention to both the postives and negatives of the park. It's okay to criticize the park if you enjoy the place - And if you don't like the park, it's also okay to notice the positives it offers- even if you think they are not significant enought to warrant a visit from you.

    Anyways, sorry for the long ranting post. I needed to vent

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Quote Originally Posted by GoldenEars
    Leave DCA to those who really do enjoy it and have hope that it will continue to get better & better as each year passes!
    We could take that route - If you don't like it, just keep your mouth shut and don't go. But we all know Disney's history of only fixing the problems that get them bad press. How many years should a Disney park be left to underperform before the company does something about it? I say we continue to scream loud and hard until they fix the place.

    No one is saying that DCA doesn't have anything going for it. The problem is that it doesn't have enough critical mass to draw in the crowds to make it a success. Until they fix DCA, we'll never get a new 3rd gate.

    It makes me really sad that they thought the public would buy a watered down Disney park like this. I think it hurts the entire Disney brand (Same with Disney Studios Paris). As someone who really loves the Disney Parks and has seen all of them (soon to see Hong Kong as well), I don't want to settle for second best when I've seen first hand what we could have gotten for a 2nd gate (both good and bad).

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    Re: David Koenig 9/13 - DCA "summer-time attendance levels at historic lows"

    Quote Originally Posted by MasterGracey

    I've become increasingly aggrivated by those who plaster across message boards that the only solution is a bulldozer ... or instead of anything positive or optimistic, they bash it relentlessly. I've been known to bash and criticize DCA, but I never deny it of it's (few) highlights.
    Who says bulldozering it isn't optimistic?


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