I have been asked on several occasions just that…..Why “it” for the name of our newest attraction.
Well, to tell you the truth, “it’s” a bit complicated, but here is my best shot at explaining “it.” “its” a bit of a long story so I am also attaching a memo from one of my greatest mentors, Steve Izenour, to help me explain “it.”
“it” really comes down to this…..We are not a theme park. Our goal is to be the best seaside amusement park in the world AND to redefine and carry on the celebration of the boardwalk as a unique cultural icon.
I would agree that the differences between a theme park and an amusement park can be subtle and that most guests could probably care less, but to me it is a vital distinction if we are to achieve our goals above. I have learned a lot from my theme park travels (including practically growing up in Disney World), but what I have learned more than anything is that they all try to sort of control the environment and its surroundings. We on the other hand are on the beach and ocean; nothing is ever going to take precedence over that. Hence, my job is to celebrate the environment by selecting and placing our attractions in a manner that creates a one of a kind seascape for families to let their hair down a little.
So how does this relate to naming rides? Well, again the subtle thing. Yes some of our rides clearly have themed names, but that is mostly from the past, when we admittedly were once trying to be a theme park. We now select names that are either based on a reinforcement of our environment (Great Nor’easter, Great White, etc.) or based on an “it is what it is theory” (The Giant Wheel) or based on some pop culture silliness that can be done without embracing a specific theme (“it”). Mind you our first name for “it” was “sick-o,” but we had a little internal squabble on that one… and I lost. The naming contest revealed some great names that were hard to say no to and some theme park names that were easy to say no to, but when Ed Peahota suggested “it” for a name I immediately fell in love with “it”... and my brother was just happy I gave up on “sick-o.” So hats off to Ed, who I might add is quite a talented speed painter and if you have never seen this kind of art you must check it out.
Lastly, please don’t share this with Santa Cruz Beach and Boardwalk (the currently ranked #1 Best Seaside Park) as we would not want to let them in on what we are up to.