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May 12, 2012 - 8:05am

Darien Lake unvails upgrades and changes for 2012 season, opens today

posted by Howard B. Owens in business, entertainment, Darien, darien lake theme park.

Darien Lake Theme Park had a media day yesterday, but I got there way late (finishing up the Ranzenhofer story took up most of my day yesterday) so just about everybody was gone and all but one of the new rides was shut down.

Still, I grabbed some photos of the new rides.

The park has turned over pretty much all of its management and with the changes comes a new energy. Besides the new rides, there are other differences at the park. After the jump (click on the headline to read more) is a press release from April 2 about the new rides and other changes. After that is a press release about today's grand opening for the season.

April 2 press release:

DARIEN CENTER, N.Y., April 2, 2012 — Darien Lake announced today the addition of more than $5 million in new attractions and significant park upgrades, as well as a new lower price on four-pack Season Passes.

When the park opens for the season on May 12, guests will have more to see and do than ever before, with the addition of three new family rides, internationally acclaimed live entertainment, new cabins, and upgrades to RV sites and the lodge.

  • New family rides. The new “Rowdy’s Ridge” family area will open this season featuring three, brand-new, fun-for-the-whole-family rides. Moose on the Loose is a fun backwoods adventure on a “runaway moose” with funny encounters along the way. On Heave Ho!, riders pull themselves up to the top of a three-story tower by rope and then gently descend. Riders on the Hornet’s Nest can do exciting flying on a tall swing, controlling flight angle and height.
  • A fresh approach to in-park entertainment. Seven new live shows will make their New York state debuts, including live comedy acts, performing dogs, a renowned magician, a mesmerizing hypnotist, and a modern rhythm and stomp group. The shows will rotate during the season, bringing a constant stream of all-ages comedy and amazing thrills to the park. More details are available at www.DarienLake.com.
  • New and expanded lodging offerings. Guests can take advantage of numerous improvements to the park’s on-site lodging options, including 15 brand-new cabins equipped with free Wi-Fi and flat screen TVs; seven new pull-through RV campsites that accommodate larger vehicles with more power requirements; and a larger game room, a new fitness room and an expanded café menu at the Lodge on the Lake Hotel. All lodging offerings include free admission to Darien Lake’s rides, in-park shows and water park.

“Darien Lake no longer is just an amusement park, it truly is a destination experience offering unlimited fun and unbeatable value,” said Bob Montgomery, general manager, Darien Lake.

“This coming season will be better than ever, as we have added millions of dollars in upgrades to vastly improve the overall experience for guests, with new attractions, lodging and entertainment they can’t get anywhere else.”

Season Passes: More Than 100 Days of Unlimited Fun for Less than the Price of Two Visits Season Passes offer unlimited admission to rides, the water park and live shows throughout the 2012 season. Beginning April 2, Season-Pass buyers can save $40 by purchasing four or more passes for only $59.99 each (a single Season Pass is $69.99 each).

In addition to unlimited admissions during the park’s more than 100 operating days, Season Passholders who visit the park before Memorial Day will receive a free “bring a friend” ticket for any day during the season. They also receive a free ticket for a friend for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, savings on purchases at in-park restaurants and retail locations, and lower rates and special booking privileges on resort and campground accommodations. Passes do not include parking, but season-long parking passes can be purchased for only $20.

About Darien Lake

Darien Lake’s wide variety of entertainment has made it “destination fun” since 1964. Located 45 minutes from Niagara Falls between Buffalo and Rochester, N.Y., today the park boasts more than 45 rides, including six world-class roller coasters; dozens of family rides; several world-class entertainment shows right in the park; the region’s largest water park complete with wave pool; and a 20,000-seat performing arts center, operated by Live Nation, that hosts some of the hottest music artists. The park is open May to October, and welcomes overnight guests in a wide range of accommodations – from a full-service hotel and modern cabins to rental RVs, and RV and tent campsites. For more information or to order Season Passes, visit www.DarienLake.com.

Today's Press release:

DARIEN CENTER, N.Y., May 12, 2012 — After a mild winter and a relatively balmy spring, fun-seekers are hungry for some action.The wait has finally come to an end now that Darien Lake is officially open for the summer season. The park opened its doors today to its first visitors of the season. With the addition of more than $5 million in new attractions and significant park upgrades, this season is bound to be one for the record books. 

“The team has put in a lot of hard work into the park and we’re excited to see how the guests will receive all of the improvements,” said Bob Montgomery, general manager at Darien Lake. “We look forward to welcoming guests and hope everyone enjoys all the thrills and great entertainment we have planned for this summer!” 

Guests Will Enjoy $5 Million Dollars in Improvements

Guests have more to see and do than ever before, with the addition of three new family rides, internationally acclaimed live entertainment, new cabins, and upgrades to RV sites and the lodge. 

  • New family rides. The new “Rowdy’s Ridge” family area is now open and features three, brand-new, fun-for-the-whole-family rides. Moose on the Loose is a fun backwoods adventure on a “runaway moose” with funny encounters along the way. On Heave Ho!, riders pull themselves up to the top of a three-story tower by rope and then are gently descend. Riders on the Hornet’s Nest can do exciting flying on a tall swing, controlling flight angle and height.
  • New and expanded lodging offerings. Guests can take advantage of numerous improvements to the park’s on-site lodging options, including 15 brand-new cabins equipped with free Wi-Fi and flat screen TVs; seven new pull-through RV campsites that accommodate larger vehicles with more power requirements; and a larger game room, a new fitness room and an expanded café menu at the Lodge on the Lake Hotel. All lodging offerings include free admission to Darien Lake’s rides, in-park shows and water park.

Live Entertainment Promises to Please a Wide Range of Audiences

Live, in-park entertainment at Darien Lake will be better than ever this season, with several new live shows making their New York state debuts, including live comedy acts, performing dogs, a renowned magician, a mesmerizing hypnotist, and a modern rhythm and stomp group – all of which guests can enjoy for free with the price of park admission.  Live shows will rotate during the season, bringing a constant stream of all-ages comedy and amazing thrills to the park. The nightly Laser Blast show returns as well, Friday, Saturday and Sunday beginning May 18 – June 22, and then every night from June 23 – Sept. 3, with popular music, laser effects and fireworks. More details on shows and showtimes are available at www.darienlake.com/2012-in-park-shows/.

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