Several Cedar Fair Theme Parks Are Switching from Nickelodeon to Peanuts Themed Areas in 2010
In 2010, the former Paramount Parks now run by Cedar Fair, will be getting re-branded kids areas and attractions. California’s Great America, Kings Dominion, Kings Island, Carowinds, and Canada’s Wonderland will be dropping their Nickelodeon-themed areas for a nod to everyone’s favorite animated dog, Snoopy of the Peanuts.
A Case of Classic versus Current
From a park guest perspective I don’t like the move. Of course, I can’t speak to the business implications and cost of licensing the Nick characters. While Snoopy is universally recognizable in the general population, I have to think that Nickelodeon’s stable of characters resonate much more with your average 8 year old. Think about it. How often do you see Snoopy and the Peanuts on TV these days? I’m not a huge Snoopy fan. Maybe someone can set me straight. Aren’t there just Christmas and Halloween TV movies? On the other hand, most kids know of Spongebob, Dora, and Diego. I can speak from personal experience as my 2 year old daughter had her first star struck moment this year at Carowinds when she met a life-sized Dora and Diego.
The only opposing argument is that some of the Nick characters become less popular over the years. And if the kids didn’t grow up with them (or remember them) and neither did the parents, then you have a character that resonates with no one. Examples of dated Nick characters might be the Wild Thornberrys and Rugrats. Meanwhile, Snoopy is decades old. Still, overall I would take a Nickelodeon-themed kids area over a Peanuts-themed one by a mile. At least we got some deeply discounted Nick souvenirs at the park this summer.
UPDATE 1/24/10 – The San Jose Mercury and MercuryNews.com have featured this post. Read the article here: “Snoopy is in, SpongeBob is out at Great America theme park”.
What’s Your Take?
Obviously, the change is going to happen. But I am interested in hearing what others think. Which theme would you prefer? Leave a comment below.