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Six Flags Fiesta Texas

Six Flags Fiesta Texas is a seasonally operated theme park located on approximately of land within an old quarry near the northwest intersection of Loop 1604 and Interstate 10 in San Antonio, Texas.

History

Development and construction

The original development team consisted of property owner USAA Real Estate Company, a subsidiary of the major insurance company, and Gaylord Entertainment, which owned the now closed Opryland USA theme park in Nashville, Tennessee. The original concept for Fiesta Texas was defined as "a destination market, musical show park" similar to that of Opryland USA. The primary focus on southwest music and culture rather than rides would be the unique element that would set the park apart from its competition.

When the initial ownership group began investigating a possible major theme park development in San Antonio, Texas, they faced significant competition in the Texas market. There were similar established Six Flags parks in Arlington and Houston as well as the nearby SeaWorld of Texas, which opened in 1988. Based on the competition, the development team believed the opportunity in San Antonio (an established regional leisure destination) was there and that the stable, slow growth direction of the theme park industry in the U.S. was in their favor.

Actual construction of the theme park took approximately 23 months, running from early 1990 to the park's opening in March 1992. Construction of the theme park was overseen by a joint venture of two general contractors, Lyda Inc. of San Antonio and Manhattan Construction Company of Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Gaylord Entertainment managed and was a minority owner of the Fiesta Texas theme park. USAA Real Estate Company was the majority owner. Although attendance at the park met initial projections, Fiesta Texas was a money loser. After losing $16 million on the theme park in 1995, Gaylord sold its 14-percent stake back to USAA.

Change in ownership

In 1996, Time Warner took over management and operations of Fiesta Texas. USAA was the sole owner. Premier Parks, now known as Six Flags, purchased Fiesta Texas from USAA in 1998. Recent enhancements to Fiesta Texas include an expanded waterpark and boardwalk. On most nights the park closes with an animated laser show projected on the limestone quarry walls and fireworks.

For the 2008 season, the park received a new roller coaster, Goliath. This roller coaster is a Bolliger and Mabillard designed inverted coaster which was at Six Flags New Orleans known as "Batman: The Ride". Goliath will be the park's 8th coaster that is at the park, the 9th to actually operate at the park, and the 10th to have been announced by the park.

Rides & attractions

This theme park goes beyond thrill rides—it includes a water park, named White Water Bay (renovated for the 2006 season), and music shows. Most nights conclude with a fireworks and laser show.

The themed areas of the park are Los Festivales, Crackaxle Canyon, Spassburg, Rockville, and Fiesta Bay Boardwalk.

Roller coasters

Ride Year Opened Removed In Description Location
The Rattler 1992 A John Pierce (designer) and RCCA (builder) wooden roller coaster. The ride opens with the world's largest drop on a wooden roller coaster, reprofiled several times in the following years to decrease the drop. Crackaxle Canyon
Der Rollschuhcoaster 1992 Vekoma Junior Coaster/Roller Skater - kiddie roller coaster. Spassburg
Joker's Revenge 1996 2002 Vekoma Hurricane roller coaster with backwards facing trains. Ride was closed for the 2002 season, moved to Six Flags New Orleans for the 2003 season. Fiesta Bay Boardwalk.
Road Runner Express 1997 Arrow Dynamics Mine Train (last one built). Crackaxle Canyon
Boomerang 1999 A Vekoma Boomerang. A short ride which pulls the rider to a steep height (from the rear) to 'charge' then releases. This ride only lasts a few seconds and has one loop. Los Festivales
Poltergeist 1999 Premier Rides LIM roller coaster (spaghetti bowl design). This ride is extremely fast and starts instantly (also very swiftly.) Spassburg
Superman: Krypton Coaster 2000 B & M Floorless roller coaster. Rockville
Tony Hawk's Big Spin 2007 Gerstlauer Spinning Coaster.(where Joker's Revenge was located). Fiesta Bay Boardwalk.
Goliath 2008 For the 2008 season, the park received a new roller coaster, Goliath. This roller coaster is a Bolliger and Mabillard designed inverted coaster which was at Six Flags New Orleans known as "Batman:The Ride". Goliath is the park's 9th coaster. Los Festivales.

Current rides and attractions

  • Train with stops in Crackaxle Canyon (Whistle Stop) and in Spassburg (Der Pilger Bahnhof) - opened in 1992
  • The Gully Washer (Hopkins Rapids water ride) - opened in 1992; located in Crackaxle Canyon
  • Die Fledermaus (Zierer Wave Swinger) - opened in 1992; located in Spassburg
  • Dornroschen (Morgan Carousel) - opened in 1992; located in Spassburg
  • Steingasse (Morgan Bumper Cars) - opened in 1992; located in Spassburg
  • Der Fliegenzirkus (kiddie bi-plane ride) - opened in 1992; located in Spassburg
  • Kinderbahn (kiddie convoy ride) - opened in 1992; located in Spassburg
  • Kinderwagen (kiddie bumper cars) - opened in 1992; located in Spassburg
  • Motorama / Motorama Turnpike (Morgan car ride) - opened in 1992; located in Rockville
  • The Hustler (Morgan spinning ride) - opened in 1992; located in Rockville
  • The Power Surge (Hopkins Shoot the Chute water ride) - opened in 1992; located in Rockville
  • Crow’s Nest Ferris Wheel (Chance Ferris Wheel) - opened in 1994; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • S.S. Overboard (Zamperla Galleon) - opened in 1994; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • Waverunner (Eli Bridge Scrambler) - opened in 1994; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • Little Castaways (Ride Works kiddie tea cups) - opened in 1994; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • Wagon Wheel (Schwarzkopf Enterprise) - opened in 1996; moved from Six Flags Over Texas; located in Crackaxle Canyon
  • Bugs’ White Water Rapids (Hopkins Super Flume water ride) - opened in 1998; located in Spassburg
  • Der Twister (Huss Top Spin) - opened in 1998; located in Spassburg
  • Frisbee (Huss Frisbee) - opened in 1998; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk, was in Los Festivales for 1998 season
  • Lil’ Bronco Buster / Rodeo Rider (S&S Power Frog Hopper – kiddie drop ride) - opened in 1999; located in Crackaxle Canyon
  • Yosemite Sam’s Wacky Wagons (Zamperla Mini Ferris Wheel – kiddie ride) - opened in 1999; located in Crackaxle Canyon
  • Foghorn Leghorn’s Barnyard Railway (Zamperla Rio Grande – kiddie train ride) - opened in 1999; located in Crackaxle Canyon
  • Kinderstein / Mini Tea Cup (Zamperla Mini Tea Cups – kiddie ride) - opened in 1999; located in Spassburg
  • Scream! (3 S & S combo tower complex) - opened in 1999; located in Rockville
  • Daffy’s School Bus Express (Zamperla Crazy Bus – kiddie ride) - opened in 1999; located in Rockville
  • Taz’s Tornado (Zamperla Lolly Swing – kiddie swing ride) - opened in 1999; located in Rockville
  • Go-Karts (extra charge) - opened in 1999; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • Scooby-Doo! Ghostblasters – The Mystery Of The Haunted Mansion (Sally Corp. interactive family dark ride) - opened in 2002; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk

Former rides and attractions

  • Rennsporplatz (Mason Corporation kiddie roller racers/scooters) - opened in 1992, removed end of 1997; located in Spassburg
  • Cap’n Willie’s Shrimpboat (kiddie soft play ship) – opened in 1994, removed end of 1998; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • The Wipeout (Chance Wipeout) – opened in 1994, ride closed in 2003, removed during 2006; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk
  • Bayside Paddle Boats (extra charge) – opened in 1994, removed end of 1998
  • Seaside Golf (extra charge mini golf) – opened in 1994, removed end of 1998
  • Boardwalk Canyon Blaster (family coaster) - open in 2000, it was announced but never built; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk'''
  • Screamin’ Skycoaster (extra charge) – opened in 1995, removed in 2001
  • Daffy’s Duckaneer (Sartori kiddie swinging ship) - opened in 1999, removed end of 2000; located in Crackaxle Canyon; moved to Six Flags St. Louis in 2006
  • Chaos (Chance Chaos) - opened in 1999, removed end of 2005; located in Rockville
  • Turbo Bungy (Eurobungy extra charge bungee/trampoline) - opened in 2001, removed end of 2005; located in Crackaxle Canyon
  • Tempest (Gravity Works Skyscraper extra charge) - opened in 2002, removed end of 2006; located in Fiesta Bay Boardwalk

White Water Bay (free water park)

Formerly named Ol’ Waterin Hole and Armadillio Beach

  • Texas Tumble (family raft ride) - opened in 1992
  • White Water Canyon (lazy river) - opened in 1992
  • The Six Chuter (open tube slide) - opened in 1992
  • The Mine Shaft (enclosed tube slide) - opened in 1992
  • Texas Treehouse (family activity area) - opened in 1999
  • Lone Star Lagoon (Texas shaped wave pool) - opened in 1999
  • Tornado (Proslide Technology Inc. Tornado – funnel shaped tube slide that uses four person cloverleaf or two person “whirl wheel” tubes) - opened in 2004
  • Whirlpool (Proslide Technology Inc. “Cannonbowl”) - opened in 2006
  • Big Bender (Proslide Technology Inc. “Pipeline”) - opened in 2006
  • Hill Country Racer (Proslide Technology Inc. “ProRacer” – 6 lanes) – opened in 2006; moved from Six Flags Astroworld
  • Splash Water Springs (new different kids area) - opened in 2006
  • The Blow Out (body speed slide) - opened in 1992,
  • The Twister (enclosed body slide) - opened in 1992,

Removed (former) waterpark attractions:

  • The Gusher (two open raft slides – wet/dry slides) – opened in 1992, removed end of 1999
  • Pipeline (two enclosed raft slides – wet/dry slides) – opened in 1992, removed end of 1999
  • The Triple Dipper (two body slides with three humps) – opened in 1992, removed end of 2002
  • Splash Water Springs (kiddie area) – opened in 1992, removed end of 2005
  • Tadpole Pond (kiddie pool) – opened in 1996, removed end of 1998
  • Sandy Bottoms (beach volleyball area) – opened in 1996, removed end of 1998
  • Ol’ Swimmin’ Hole (family activity area) – opened in 1996, removed end of 2005
  • Crackaxle Springs (“adult” activity area) – opened in 1996, removed end of 2005

Ride/attraction timeline

1990: Construction begins on Fiesta Texas

1992: March 14 - Fiesta Texas, built as a show park by USAA and Gaylord Entertainment (Opryland) opens in an old rock quarry on the Northwest side of San Antonio at the intersection of Loop 1604 and IH-10.

May 22-25 - Fiesta Texas holds it's grand opening. Oct 31 - Last operating day for the year 1993: March 13 - Park Opens for 1993 season.

1994: Fiesta Bay Boardwalk opens

Park is open in December for "A Lone Star Christmas"

Admission price is $24.95 1995: Screamin' Skycoaster added

1996: Time Warner/Six Flags takes over management of Fiesta Texas

May 10 - Joker's Revenge, A Vekoma roller coaster opens.

May 24 - Armadillo Beach Opens with a children's water play area with a dozen junior sized waterslides

1997: Roadrunner Express, an Arrow mine train opens

March - Premier Parks (not yet deciding to buy 6 Flags itself) reaches an agreement with USAA to take over ownership of Fiesta Texas

May 23 - Armadillo Beach opens for the season with several adult water slides.

Park is open for "Holiday in the Park" for the last time.

1998: Bugs' White Water Rapids, an O.D. Hopkins super flume opens. Six Flags is sold to Premier Parks Der Twister and Frisbee, both Huss rides, open in the middle of the season after Premier takes over.

Several more waterslides are added to Armadillo Beach along with a lazy river. 1999: March 13 - Boomerang Coast To Coaster, a Vekoma Boomerang, opens. Scream, a S&S combo ride, opens with 2 towers May 28 - Poltergeist, a Premier Rides LIM launched coaster, opens. Third tower on Scream is converted to another combo ride. Texas Treehouse and Lone Star Lagoon, a wavepool open in Armadillo Beach Mini Tea Cup, Chaos, Daffy's School Bus Express, Taz's Tornado, Go Karts, Rodeo Rider, Yosemite Sam's Wacky Wagons, Foghorn Leghorn's Barnyard Railway, and Daffy's Duckaneer added Season passes for only $39.99 and all of the new additions make 1999 the best year Fiesta Texas has ever seen. Park wins Amusement Today Golden Ticket Award for Best Theme Park Shows. 2000: March 11 - Superman Krypton Coaster, a B&M Floorless, opens.

Boardwalk Canyon Blaster "family coaster" was announced but never built. Park wins Amusement Today Golden Ticket Award for Best Theme Park Shows.

2001: Fiesta Texas concentrates on shows this season adding many new ones and improving some old ones. Park wins Amusement Today Golden Ticket Award for Best Theme Park Shows for the third year in a row Daffy's Duckaneer, Screamin' Skycoaster removed Tempest, a Gravity Works Skyscraper, takes the place of the Skycoaster. Rides cost $15 Turbo Bungee, a trampoline - bungee thing opens. Rides cost $7 2002: Scooby-Doo Ghostblasters - The Mystery of the Haunted Mansion (a Sally interactive dark ride) opens. Poltergeist receives lapbars instead of the OTSR's. Joker's Revenge will remain closed all year. Rattler receives some major track work.

2003: The Amazing Chinese Acrobats premier in the Zaragoza Theater The "All New" Lone Star Spectacular premiers For the 4th year in a row, the park receives a Golden Ticket Award for best shows. Golden Ticket Award for the #1 floorless coaster in the world (#24 steel overall) Joker's Revenge removed before park opens for the season and moved to Six Flags New Orleans as "Jester"

2004: Tornado, a Proslide water slide, opens in Armadillo Beach Waterpark. Park wins "Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award" for "Best Theme Park Shows"

2005: Xcelleration, a BMX extream show, debuts in the Zaragoza Theater Park wins "Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award" for "Best Theme Park Shows"

2006: Armadillo Beach Waterpark is re-theme and named to White Water Bay Hill Country Racer, A six lane Proslide mat racer, Opens after being transferred from Astroworld Big Bender and Whirlpool, Both Proslide slides, open in White Water Bay Park wins "Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award" for "Best Theme Park Shows" After a proxy battle Six Flags is under new management. Many new features are added to the park - More Looney Tunes - Introduction of Justice League - Daily Parade - Papa Johns opens in Rockville and in Sangerfest Halle

2007: Tony Hawk's Big Spin, a Geustlauer coaster, opens Sangerfest Halle stage is renovated and is used as full stage A ticket version of Flash Pass is used Johhny Rockets added to the Boardwalk Panda Express opens in Crackaxle Canyon Cold Stone Creamery opens in Rockville Kodak takes over photo opps at the park VIP program introduced Mayor Salyers Monster Mash Bash get a major overhall with new set and all new songs Park wins "Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award" for "Best Theme Park Shows" Park announces the return of HOLIDAY IN THE PARK after 10 years - Majesty of Christmas returns to the Zaragoza Theater to rave reviews - Happy Holidays debuts on the new Sangerfest stage - A 100ft tall Live Christmas Tree is set up in Rockville with 30,000 lights - Magical Musical Lights debuts at Texas State Square

2008: Golaith, a B&M Inverted coaster, is set to debut. Six Flags Blast! Fever set to debut in the Zaragoza Theater Two Dick Clark based films debut is Sangerfest Halle - AMA REWIND - ACMA BACK TRAX Groovin' at Rockville High set to debut in summer Looney Tunes Dances Party debuts on the streets of Rockville Six Flags Storytime debuts at the Spassburg Children's Theater Flash Pass is expanded to the LO-Q generation two technology

Johhny Rockets was built in Spassburg, at the same time taking out Superhero Grill

Proslide Bullet Bowl

Award-winning shows

In addition to Fiesta Texas’ roller coasters and water park, several shows are presented throughout the day. Six Flags Fiesta Texas' show bill has been awarded Amusement Today's Golden Ticket Award for “best theme park shows in the country” for the ninth consecutive year (2007). In 2005, Xcelleration, a show featuring professionals from the sports of BMX Biking, skateboarding, bungee artists and acrobatics was opened at the Zaragoza Theater. Xcelleration was also awarded an industry accolade, the Big “E” for “Best Sports Show of 2005.” Fiesta Texas' Fright Fest show "Mayor Slayer's Monster Mash Bash" was awarded best show with a production value of $25,000–$50,000 at the IAAPA Big "E" Awards.

Nearby attractions

Six Flags Fiesta Texas is the major entertainment component of USAA's La Cantera, a 1,600-acre (6.5 km²) master-planned development in northwest San Antonio. Six Flags Fiesta Texas is located in a former rock quarry in an area known as "La Cantera" — which means rock quarry in Spanish. The western area of the site is the resort zone, dominated by two championship golf courses, a Westin La Cantera resort hotel and other resort amenities. On the southern part of the site, there are a number of commercial and residential projects, including The Shops at La Cantera, a major regional shopping center and an entertainment complex that opened in September 2005. To the north of the site, the new North Rim mixed-use commercial development.

References

  1. Theme park development case study
  2. Nashville City Paper article
  3. Thomas Enterprises
  4. Fiesta Texas history
  5. Amusement Today's 2005 Golden Ticket awards (PDF) and Golden Ticket award
  6. Six Flags Fiesta Texas unofficial website
  7. Six Flags 2004 Annual Report (PDF) does not include revised stats since Hurricane Katrina closed Six Flags New Orleans; or the closing of Six Flags Astroworld in 2005.

External links

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