Cedar Fair Reports 5% Increase in Revenues Through July 4th Holiday Weekend

New rides and attractions, combined with enhanced guest experiences and improved consumer messaging, drive visitors to parks in early summer season

Jul 10, 2012, 08:23 ET from Cedar Fair Entertainment Company

SANDUSKY, Ohio, July 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Cedar Fair Entertainment Company (NYSE: FUN), a leader in regional amusement parks, water parks and active entertainment, today reported that preliminary revenues through the Fourth of July holiday weekend were approximately $456 million, an increase of more than $20 million, or 5%, when compared with the same period a year ago.  This period traditionally represents approximately one-third of the Company's full-year revenues. 

The higher revenues are a result of a 2% increase in attendance and a 4% increase in average in-park guest per capita spending.  Out-of-park revenues, including resort hotels, were also up approximately 2%. 

"We are pleased to see these positive trends early in our operating season," said Matt Ouimet, president and chief executive officer.  "It is clear we have gained traction on the strategic growth drivers we announced in January.  Enhanced guest experiences, improved consumer messaging, dynamic pricing, advance purchase commitments and premium product offerings have all contributed to our strong early-season results.  Supported by all of these initiatives, we continue to see our season pass programs grow across all of our properties as the consumers recognize the strong entertainment value these passes represent."

Guests at the Company's parks have responded favorably to the new rides and attractions that have been introduced this year as well.  "The 306-foot-tall, 92 mph roller coaster, Leviathan, at Canada's Wonderland and the rebranding and major expansion of the Soak City water park at Kings Island have contributed nicely to our early-season growth in attendance," said Ouimet.  "At the same time, premium benefit offerings and improved consumer messaging have resulted in increased guest spending, particularly at Cedar Point and Knott's Berry Farm."

Ouimet noted that virtually all of Cedar Fair's revenues from its seasonal amusement parks and water parks are realized during a 130 to 140-day operating period beginning in early May, with the majority concentrated in the peak vacation months of July and August.  The third quarter of the year also historically has been the busiest for the Company's two parks that are open year-round, Knott's Berry Farm and Castaway Bay. 

"We will continue to execute and refine our defined initiatives, but are pleased with the positive momentum that has been created thus far.  Our new e-commerce platform, with an emphasis on season pass sales and advanced purchase commitments, has created a solid base for our parks to build on as we enter the peak vacation months of July and August," added Ouimet.  "With approximately two-thirds of our annual attendance at our parks still to come, we remain confident in our 2012 attendance and revenue targets."

About Cedar Fair  

Cedar Fair is a publicly traded partnership headquartered in Sandusky, Ohio, and one of the largest regional amusement-resort operators in the world. The Company owns and operates 11 amusement parks, six outdoor water parks, one indoor water park and five hotels. Its parks are located in Ohio, California, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Missouri, Michigan, and Toronto, Ontario. Cedar Fair also operates the Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park in California under a management contract. Cedar Fair's flagship park, Cedar Point, has been consistently voted the "Best Amusement Park in the World" in a prestigious annual poll conducted by Amusement Today newspaper.

Forward-Looking Statements

Some of the statements contained in this news release constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements as to the Company's expectations, beliefs and strategies regarding the future.  These statements may involve risk and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in such statements.  Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to have been correct.  Important factors, including general economic conditions, adverse weather conditions, competition for consumer leisure time and spending, unanticipated construction delays and other factors discussed from time to time by the Company in reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") could affect attendance at our parks and cause actual results to differ materially from the Company's expectations. Additional information on risk factors that may affect the business and financial results of the Company can be found in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and in the filings of the Company made from time to time with the SEC. The Company undertakes no obligation to correct or update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

This press release and prior press releases are available online at www.cedarfair.com.

SOURCE Cedar Fair Entertainment Company