April 12, 2006
Six Flags pulling plug on Sacramento waterpark
Six Flags Inc. won't renew the lease for its waterpark in Sacramento, Calif., after this season, the Sacramento Bee reports.
Six Flags Waterworld Sacramento, in business since 1981, occupies a strategic 14-acre spot in the heart of Cal Expo, the site of the annual California State Fair. The waterpark could be torn down after the fair concludes Sept. 4, making room for new entertainment.
Six Flags spokesman Paul Garcia confirmed the lease termination but would give no explanation. "What happens after this season with the facility is up to Cal Expo," he told the newspaper.
"Six Flags has notified us of their intent to terminate the lease after the 2006 season," Brian May, Cal Expo deputy general manager, told the Bee. "There isn't much more we're able to say at this point. We are considering several other possibilities for the property."
Several operators ran the waterpark before Six Flags took over 10 years ago. The company operates another waterpark, Six Flags Waterworld Concord, about 70 miles south of Sacramento.
Six Flags closed its AstroWorld park in Houston in October and recently announced that its New Orleans property, damaged by Hurricane Katrina, would not open this season. The company, under new management, has also put Six Flags White Water Bay in Oklahoma City on the sales block.
In other company news, Six Flags has agreed to pay Daniel Snyder $10.4 million to reimburse him for expenses he incurred in his bid to gain control of the company last fall, including a $5 million signing bonus for CEO Mark Shapiro, the Washington Post reports.
Red Zone Llc., the investment vehicle for Snyder's 11.7% stake in Six Flags, spent $11.6 million to persuade shareholders to turn the theme park operator over to Snyder and his team, according to an SEC filing. Snyder, now chairman, had asked to be reimbursed for $11.4 million.
The company's previous management, led by chairman and CEO Kieran Burke and chief financial officer James Dannhauser, spent $9.4 million on legal, investment banking and other fees in their effort to retain control, according to the SEC document.