It’s been a few years since the rumor has popped up, but here it is again. According to the Spring Hill Courier (a site that just popped yesterday), Six Flags has been secretly buying up property in Hernando County for 20 years to build a Six Flags theme park. Could we finally be seeing the coaster crazy chain coming to Florida, or is this just a publicity stunt by a fledgling site? Either way, it got our attention.
While the rumors of a Six Flags park have been around since the mid 90’s, and picked up steam during the housing boom of the early 2000’s when the park was actually looking at building a park in Florida. Talks were to have the park somewhere on the East Coast, far away from the distractions of Disney and Busch Gardens but in a spot accessible enough to draw from South Florida. That all changed when the housing market collapsed, and Six Flags started having financial trouble of their own. Instead of looking to Florida as the golden goose, the chain instead decided to turn all focus on bringing more people into the existing parks, and growing the brand back to it’s original form for thrill seekers.
Now word comes of a renewed interest in Florida, via a fledgling site, who made it’s first update a day ago. The site claims that not only has the park been secretly holding onto a plot of land in Hernando County, that land is right across from Weeki Wachee Springs. Even more, the site claims that there are permits filed.
Should you believe it? Not for a second.
First there’s the time frame. If Six Flags had already owned property in Florida for the better part of 20 years, they would have already bypassed the most difficult aspect of opening a new park…the land. There’s tons of zoning and regulations that a business has to go through in order to open said business. Second, and this is the most important, right across from Weeki Wachee…where? Weeki Wachee is now a part of the Florida State Parks system, owned and operated by the government. A third would be to look at the other stories on the site, all ranging from the ludicrous to the downright offensive. After a look on the official Hernando County website, there’s nothing filed. Also, Six Flags has not officially made an announcement either. A search through the permits from South Florida Water Management also shows nothing. And the biggest red mark is that the author names Will Feinstein as the CEO. That might come as a surprise to Jim Reid – Anderson who has been serving as the Six Flags CEO since 2010.
While it would be great if Six Flags would enter into the Florida market, it’s not likely to happen anytime soon. The park is having huge success with it’s new additions in each new park on a yearly basis, and has even committed to build a Dubai theme park as well. The chances of another U.S. park at this time are unlikely, and if it does, the park would most likely be a good ways away from any of the Central Florida parks, as competition is very stiff, and family friendly, and doesn’t leave a lot of room for the big record breaking rides that Six Flags is known for. Call this rumor a big fat lie.