Buffalo, New York (Abbreviation: DL)
Known as Six Flags Darien Lake (1999 to 2006)
Owned by CNL Lifestyles Properties
Managed by Premier Attractions Management
Park News - (3/5/15) The local news reports that Darien Lake is being considered for a series of tax breaks worth up to $180,000 in sales tax exemptions in exchanged for their $2.5 million investment into the theme park this year.
(11/17/14) The latest update from Screamscape sources confirms to us that Premier is indeed the management company running Darien Lake, for the time being at least, to keep things going while they finalize the details. I’m told that Chris Thorpe was pulled over from Elitch Gardens to serve as GM for Darien Lake.
I’m also told that another wedge that drove HFE and CNL apart was the pending sale of the parks, where CNL is wanting to sell all their parks as a package, and HFE was apparently willing to buy Darien Lake, but not the rest, as they had some plans ready to put into action that they felt would really improve Darien Lake over the next few years, which sadly, will likely never see the light of day unless they are able to come to some kind of agreement down the line.
(11/14/14) A Screamscape source has confirmed to us insider information revealing that Premier Attractions Management LLC has been selected as the new management company for Darien Lake, following the departure of Herschend. Nothing official has been confirmed by the park or CNL at this time.
(11/6/14) Have Herschend Family Entertainment and Darien Lake parted ways? It seems so, as Darien Lake is no longer listed as one of their theme parks on the official HFE website. Herschend was also quick to remove Elitch Garden’s from their corporate page as soon as they had ended their management deal to run that park for CNL Lifestyles Properties. The management of Elitch Gardens was picked up by Premier Attractions Management, so I wonder if they will make a grab for Darien Lake too, or if CNL’s planned sale of all their theme park properties may keep future management deals from being signed.
(8/21/14) A reader visiting Darien Lake reports that the Scrambler is now back up and running in the park, located in a new spot near between the entrance to Ride of Steel and Predator.
(7/17/14) Darien Lake has put up a banner in the park that says “Welcome back Scrambler. We’ve missed you!” According to Screamscape sources the park’s Scrambler is likely to return to action sometime in August.
2015 - Rolling Thunder / Brain-Drain - Confirmed - (2/16/15) Darien Lake has announced two new attractions for the park's 2015 season, one wet and one wild. Brain Drain will be added to the park's waterpark, featuring two spiraling racing waterslides, each 333 feet long that will begin with a plunge from a Skybox.
Rolling Thunder will be added to the theme park side, and is the previously rumored 7-story tall Larson Super Loop style flat ride.
(1/10/15) According to the local news Darien Lake management went before a local planning board to discuss a new proposed attraction for the park in 2015, a Larson Giant Loop just like the ones several Six Flags parks are adding in 2015. The new management team for Darien Lake is the same one who ran Elitch Gardens and added the same attraction to that park last summer as well. The new ride will replace the park's existing UFO ride.
???? - Lake Monster - Planning - (12/4/13) The latest word on the proposed Lake Monster / Predator transformation project is that it’s officially dead for 2014… but may be revisited for the 2015 season, so cross your fingers.
(10/21/13) According to the latest gossip from Screamscape sources, Darien Lake and Herschend are ready to go ahead with the new Lake Monster conversion of Predator. The hold up comes from CNL, as they are the actual park owners… HFE is just on board to manage and run it for them. So the ball is in CNL’s court right now to approve the project and provide the funding while the quickly closing window to get it open for 2014 is still there.
(8/16/13) A reader at Darien Lake spotted some interesting things taking place around Predator. Several of the coaster’s footers have now been sprayed with bright orange paint. A man was also spotted on site doing some site survey work… but even more interesting was what appeared to be a GCI logo on the back of his shirt. Could GCI be the one’s behind the transformation of Predator? Things just got interesting
(8/15/13) According to the local news the local planning board met last Thursday and recommended approval for plans Darien Lake has submitted for a complete renovation to The Predator wooden coaster. The plans call for “re-tracking and adding new unique elements and trains.” However the renovation will not change the size of the ride’s footprint.
(7/23/13) A reader contacted Screamscape to report that the proposed Lake Monster coaster at Darien Lake may actually be a rebuild of the park’s Predator coaster. According to our reader, "During the WNYCC Holiday Party in January, near Buffalo, Bob Montgomery spoke of some major changes coming to Predator. He said that all that might be left of the original is the station and lift hill, and that it would likely go over the lake. This must be what you're now reporting. At the time Bob didn't say which company would be chosen for the project, but did note that several now use steel structure, which may or may not happen. Who knows what the final coaster will be, but it is exciting news."
Given that Darien Lake is now run by Hershend who just opened Outlaw Run by Rocky Mountain Coasters to rave reviews, I can’t help but think that RMC is their first choice. Don’t look for this to be an I-Box Hybrid project like Texas Giant and Iron Rattler however, I’d bet on this using RMC’s Topper Track system like Outlaw Run, which would also keep the Lake Monster’s status as a true wooden coaster. Stay tuned!
(7/22/13) Darien Lake has sent out a guest survey this month that mentions a possible new roller coaster for 2014. They call it the Lake Monster and it sounds similar to Rocky Mountain Coaster’s Outlaw Run (and has a picture of it) that opened as sister park, Silver Dollar City. The description says it would feature the first “wing over drop” on a wooden coaster, a “Zero-G Camelback Hop Reversal” and “Suspended corkscrew” all within a 3,190 foot long course.