Today Theme Park Review was invited to come have a chat with Six Flags President and CEO Mark Shapiro as well as check out the first completed X2 train.
A lot of questions were asked, and I think you'll be very pleased with some of the answers! Be sure to listen to the interview. There is a link to it at the bottom of the update. It's in MP3 format and you can either stream it or download it once you click the link.
As for some of the bullet points that were discussed outside of the audio portion of the interview, here you go:
TPR: When asked about taking out older rides -
Mark Shaprio: "It's about taking out what's not working. The old philosophy would just let rides sit there and rot. We are going to go through our park and clean them out. We have a master plan. You might not see an immediate exchange, but in time we will fill out the park."
TPR: When asked about 2009 at Six Flags Magic Mountain -
Mark Shaprio: "We are looking into a new coaster for 2009. Can I say anymore? No. We're also looking into Wiggle's World. "
TPR: What kinds of rides do you like?
Mark Shaprio: "I like big drops, but I'll be honest, I don't like to go upside down. Goliath is my favorite ride at Six Flags Magic Mountain."
TPR: Thomas Town looks like it will be well themed, you are adding new theming to X2, can we expect this level of theming with up coming attractions?
Mark Shaprio: "Everything we launch will come with a storyline, it will come with a theme. That's a focus for Six Flags moving forward. Historically it's been 'put down a ride where ever we have room', I don't believe in that. We want to do something for both families and the thrill seekers. Will Six Flags Magic Mountain gain back the coaster capital status? In due time, absolutely."
TPR: When can we expect X2 and Thomas Town to open?
Mark Shaprio: "Memorial Day weekend, 2008."
I can also mention two things that have not been announced yet that Shapiro talked about today. First off, in the location of Circus Wheel will be a new high-energy, complex Midway game. It will be a "3 point challenge Basketball Game" that promises will be full of entertainment for the guests. Not only the ones playing, but for spectators as well. So how can they replace a ride with a game you ask? What about a new ride to replace it you might ask? Shapiro tells us "be patient...we WILL fill out the park...in due time."
Another new for 2008 announcement is that the Sky Tower will also be turned into the Sky Tower Museum. You'll see exhibits from past Magic Mountain rides on display and will give more reason to visit Sky Tower.
Anyway, onto the photos and onto the audio interview. There is quite a bit more covered in the audio portion of the interview - Fright Fest, attraction removals, where the park is headed in the next few years, etc and you can download the audio part of the interview click:
We arrive at the site of X2 where we will check out the first complete train and chat with Six Flags CEO Mark Shapiro.
Here it is...the very first X2 train. Complete!
This is the view that ride ops will see quite a bit. (with people...of course!)
Mark Shapiro, Jay Thomas, and Tim Burkhart tell us all about what's happening with Six Flags and Magic Mountain in the near future.
To get some really cool photos, we got to walk the lift hill of X2.
Ok, ok, so it's not totally complete...but it's close.
The paint job is pretty much done, and it looks AWESOME.
"Hey everyone! Me and my buddy Mr. Folder are having a good time on X2!"
Take one last look at all this old signage.
It was time to take a look at some other improvements in the park. The old coffee shop will be turned into the "Cyber Cafe."
Oooh....blue prints. I wonder what they could be for? Hmmm....
During the mid-week off season huge sections of the park are being re-paved.
A new sign went up for Thomas Town yesterday. There's even kid sized holes in the wall so they can peek into the construction.
Quite a bit of work going on. We are told that vertical construction should be started by West Coast Bash.
In the area where Circus Wheel once stood will be a new "3 Point Challenge" basket ball game. It's kind of a midway game meets entertainment venue. From what we've seen it looks like it will have a lot of energy and be fun for spectators as well. So what about new rides you might ask? Shapiro tells us "be patient...we WILL fill out the park."
Opening this summer in the Sky Tower will be the "Sky Tower Museum" and will feature many different pieces of Six Flags Magic Mountain's history.
Some examples of what you might see in the new Sky Tower Museum.
I just want to say a BIG THANK YOU to Tim Burkhart, Mark Shapiro, and Jay Thomas for having us out today! Thanks guys!
In case you missed it. To listen or download the audio portion of the Mark Shapiro interview click:
Thanks for reading!
ps. Come out and join us at Magic Mountain on March 9th for West Coast Bash!