Denver, Colorado (Abbreviation: EG)
Known at Six Flags Elitch Gardens (1999 - 2006)
Owned by CNL Lifestyles Properties
Managed by Premier Attractions Management
Park News - (1/21/14) Screamscape sources tell us that Chris Thorpe has been tapped as the new GM for Elitch Gardens. I’m told that previously he served as the GM at Darien Lake a few years ago, but we don’t know much more.
ook place at Elitch Gardens early Saturday evening. According to the report the park’s Half Pipe ride suffered a major malfunction and possible partial de-rail while they were riding on it. Rather than speculate, I’ll just post the report as it was sent to me for everyone to read as well as a few photos they were able to take of the ride after getting free of it.
(12/15/13) A quick look at the ownership information of ElitchGardens.com now tells us that Premier Attractions Management is now the official “Registrant Organization” listed for it, and not Herschend. Looks like CNL signed a new deal with Premier to manage the park for them going forward. The latest update to the domain’s WHOIS file was just added on Dec. 12th.
(11/23/13) According to the latest rumors Herschend Family Entertainment (HFE) and CNL Lifestyle Properties may have decided to part ways when it comes to HFE’s management contract for Elitch Gardens. CNL announced that HFE would take over the management duties of Elitch Gardens and Darien Lake back on January 25, 2011.
While I have yet to hear an official announcement, it is worth noting that HFE has already removed any mention of the Elitch Gardens theme park from their official list of attractions. The deal to manage Darien Lake, another CNL property, is apparently still in effect however, and still listed on the website.
So far there has been no word on who CNL might hire to manage Elitch Gardens for the 2014 season, though I would think that one of the four other management partners would likely have the inside track to run the park. That would be either:
Amusement Management Partners – Magic Springs and several FECs
NorPoint Entertainment – Wild Waves (doubtful)
Palace Entertainment – Waterworld
Premier Attractions Management – Frontier City/White Water Bay and Splashtown
If I had to bet, I’d say Premier might have the edge here anyway, as Kieran Burke is a former Six Flags CEO and is already familiar with Elitch Gardens and helped broker the deal to sell it from Six Flags to CNL in the first place. Plus Premier and CNL just signed a new deal to run the Wet 'n' Wild waterparks in Hawaii and Phoenix.
(10/9/13) A reader took a bike ride past Elitch Gardens on Tuesday and paused to check out the status of Half Pipe. They report that the train had been removed from the track and posted a photo to our Facebook page showing what appears to be one or two missing LIMs removed from the track.
(10/7/13) A reader sent in word about an interesting occurrence that t
”Today I was on Half Pipe with a friend, our first ride of the day and it literally crashed n derailed. Somehow no one contacted the news. During the ride duration while coming down the east spike the car HIT the LIM causing a crash sound. Immediately the ride went into its safety cut out mode. As we flew through the station now slowing down suddenly the coaster began to derail literally and a bunch of sparks bursted as we entered the west spike. While all this happening, piece of the LIMs and coaster parts were flying in the air. The crash sound and jolt of the coaster with sparks flying around followed a distinct electric burning smell. No one was hurt. Overall the park handled the situation well. This happened all around 630pm on saturday 10/5”
Glad to hear that everyone got off safely off this fairly unique flat ride creation from Intamin. Click here to see a video of how the ride experience is supposed to work.
2014 - Brain Drain - (3/10/14) Elitch Gardens announced their new 2014 attraction late last week as Brain Drain. As rumored of Screamscape, it is a new style Ring of Fire / giant loop machine style flat ride. They did not get into specifics, but I believe this will be a Larson creation. It will stand 7-stories tall and sent riders through the giant loop forwards and backwards, seated in back-to-back facing seats in an open-air car.
Unfortunately, the public response to this news has been less than stellar, especially as these rides have been seen as a staple of traveling carnival ride packages for the past twenty years. A new ride is always a good thing, but considering that this is the first new ‘thrill ride’ to be added to Elitch Gardens in the past decade, I think the locals were expecting a bit more.
(3/5/14) The latest pictures from Elitch Gardens have been posted to the bottom half of the ElitchHappenings page this week. The park is also expected to make an announcement sometime this week as well, possibly about this new addition.
(2/24/14) The latest look at Elitch Gardens secret new attraction project can be seen over at ElitchHappenings.
(2/17/14) The latest update to ElitchHappenings shows off the latest ground work pictures as well as a look at Halfpipe where a few of the LIMs appear to have been marked for replacement. This comes as no surprise after the incident where it appeared to have torn up a few LIMS late last season.
(2/15/14) A look at the work that has taken place so far at Elitch Gardens can be found at the new Elitch Happenings website. So far the site has been cleared, new survey flags in place and conduit is being run for new electrica systems. The site seems the perfect size for a new flat ride of some kind… I’m just not sure what it will be yet. Since they haven’t been digging a huge hole, you can count any kind of large tower ride out, but beyond that anything goes right now.
2/3/14) Quick update on Elitch Gardens. The spot where the new activty is taking place is actually the former home of the Rainbow ride itself and not a section of the boneyard. A couple of new pictures of the cleaned up site taken this week came in over the weekend.
(2/2/14) According to a local area reader, an area of the park’s boneyard that used to hold the remains of the park’s former Chaos and Rainbow rides has been cleared out and an excavator is now on site removing the junk as well as the hardtop under it. I’m told that the site lies about half-way between the Halfpipe and Shake, Rattle & Roll and should be a big enough site to place a new flat ride into. Anyone know more about what’s going on?
(1/29/14) Disappointing news from Elitch Gardens today, as the first big announcement made on the park’s Facebook page was only the offer of a free souvenir cup with 99 cent refills for Season Passholders. No word on a new attraction yet… maybe they will save the best for last.
(1/28/14) Screamscape sources tell us that the assortment of shipping containers that arrived nearby is not for Elitch Gardens, but instead for the Denver Snow Show. As for the park, they did confirm that they will have “3 awesome announcements” coming over the next few weeks, with the first expected to come out on Tuesday.
What could this first attraction be? A little bird tells me it could be a Ring of Fire style carnival ride.
(1/27/14) I’m told that Elitch Gardens will make some announcements about new items coming to the park this season on their Facebook page starting on Tuesday. On a possible related note, a local source tells me that 30 to 40 large shipping containers have been dropped off in a lot across the train tracks from the park. No way to know if it is for the park or for something else, but it may be worth watching. Stay tuned!