This is the start of a series of blogs that will finally, once and for all, answer the question “What do you guys at Morey’s Piers do all winter?”
The common misconception for all seasonal amusement parks, like Morey’s Piers, is that upon closing for the winter, we all fly to Florida for a vacation that runs until the week before we open. We return, sweep up, and we’re ready to go in the spring. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth! There is so much going on around here in all departments that it boggles the mind. There’s Pier and Waterpark Operations, Recruiting, Accounting, Marketing/Group sales, Attractions Maintenance, Facilities Maintenance, busily at work right now to prepare for 2011.
I thought I would share a little bit of what my department, Morey’s Piers – Pier Operations, does during the winter. The pier operations team (of which there are three of us that work year around and hundreds that work seasonally) have a myriad of projects on our plates. Here’s a small sampling:
• Shut down and winterize the parks and AV equipment (think paperwork, storage, scrubbing, pressure washing, moving, counting, taking down stuff, etc)
• Update manuals and associated training documents for 75 rides. Believe it or not, every one of these rides gets a full review and revision. We’re talking about way more than 1,000 pages here and well over a month of work every year.
• Budgets. These are FUN! There is nothing like spending a couple weeks pouring over tab after tab of spreadsheets that make up the operating budgets for our three piers.
• Updating our orientation and departmental training programs. Video, animation, PowerPoint’s, two 30+ page handbooks, trainer guides, etc.
• Reviewing and providing input on all the marketing materials that you see over the course of the year.
• Updating our park maps and associated content on our website.
• Meetings. Lots and lots of meetings…
• Developing new training programs
• Researching and purchasing a ton of stuff
• More meetings…
• Updating and replacing signs throughout the parks
• Updating audit programs, supervisor training programs, training the trainer programs, certified trainer programs, park services training programs, and even more training programs.
• Attending industry related safety and educational seminars
• Reviewing things that just didn’t go as planned and coming up with procedures, programs and guidelines to fix them for the future.
• Planning for events, attractions, new experiences (think Breakfast in the Sky), and developing the programs to make them work.
• Benchmarking other facilities and implementing new and better ways of doing things.
• Hiring in the spring and conducting hours upon hours of training before the first guest enters any of our parks.
• Did I mention meetings?
Well, there’s a taste of what the Pier Operations department does over the winter. I won’t bore you with more details, but everything we do is centered on our goal of providing the safest, cleanest, friendliest experience possible for all of our guests.