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Dutch Wonderland TR

frontrow frontrow Profile

Posted:
6/7/14 at
3:58:56 PM

Well, yesterday we made our very first visit to Dutch Wonderland. A friend of mine, who lives, in York Pa met us out there. We had this trip planned on this specific day for quite some time. Thursday was my kids last day of school and I wanted to start off their summer vacation with a theme park visit.

We arrived at the park at 9:40 for a 10:00 opening. My friend, Matt, pulled in right behind us. We purchased our tickets are received $10 per admission due to our Kennywood season passes. Matt was granted $10 off, due to his Hershey season pass. From the parking lot, I could tell that Dutch Wonderland was a really nice park. The park is themed extremely well, It's very clean, and they pay attention to every detail. It's a kids park, but a really nice one.

When the park opened we rode the train, and then the Sky lift, in order to get an overview of the park layout. The park is about the size that I predicted. It's not a huge park by any means. Matt has been going to this park since he was a kid and was very informative about the history of the park and the rides in the park. At one time Hershey Entertainment operated DW and some rides that used to at Hershey are now at Dutch Wonderland. The old Hershey Trabant is the one most noticeable.

Dutch Wonderland has 2 coasters, Joust, and Kingdom Coaster. Joust is a kids steel coaster that is very simular to Big Dipper at Michigan's Adventure. Nothing great about this ride. We only rode it once for the credit. Kingdom Coaster is junior wooden coaster that was CCI's first ever coaster. The layout is more simular to Pegasus at Mount Olympus, but runs more like Zach's Zoomer at Michigan's Adventure. It's a decent coaster for what it is. It's one of the better junior wooden coasters. The front seat seemed to provide the best ride. There are a couple pops of air time and the coaster really seems to build up speed towards the end of the circuit. We enjoyed it, and got 6 rides on it throughout the day.

New for 2014 is Exploration Island. It's very simular to Cedar Fair's Dinosaurs Alive with a few differences. DW does not charge extra for the attraction and they have moved their turnpike cars back there to circle the whole island. You can also take a boat ride around the island, which was my favorite. The gondola boats look something like from Disney,and we were able to real natural wild life while taking that ride. We even saw an Amish man plowing his field with horse and buggy type equipment. I must say that was a first for me at an amusement park.

DW does have some good and unique rides. Their bumper cars are 2nd best only to Knoebles. Very hard hitting and just loads of fun. If the building they were in was larger, the ride would be even better. We rode them 3 times, and really enjoyed them. DW also has an attraction called Wonder House. It's very simular to Houdini at SF Great Adventure, but on a smaller, more modest scale. They also had 2 simulators. One was very old and they first one I ever seen. The other was more modern, but still very rare. Only seen one at mall one time, and either one wasn't an up charge. With some nice theming on standard flat rides, we were having more fun than I expected.

Towards the end of the day a very unfortunate incident occurred. When I go to these parks I take tons of photographs of my children, and maybe even few of roller coasters. It was near the end of day and my phone went completely dead. My kids were on a ride called Kite Flyers. I asked my buddy Matt to grab a photo of my kids. Here come to find out 3 security guards were behind us and demanded we come with them off to side. We were then interrogated by security. We played 20 questions 3 times over. Apparently there were some complaints that I was taking too many photos. My phone was dead, so I couldn't prove that I was just taking photos of my kids. I even offered to show them my photos if the could provide a cordless charging device. I even offered to present my kids passports to them to show proper identification. Nothing worked these continued to pursue with their line of child molester questioning. By this time my kids were off the ride, they saw the anger in my face,while talking with security. They thought they did something wrong. Once my children came over, security finally dropped the matter and went about their business.

My friend Matt is very religious and was corporating fully with them. He never did get upset or offended like I did. I know I'm growing as a person, because 10 years I mostly would have gotten ejected or arrested, I was that angry. After Matt left, I couldn't take it any more. My day was ruined over this incident. I went to guest services and asked for management. I asked " Is it against park policy to take photos or videos while inside the park?" Management answered no, you are allowed to take photos. Then why was I stopped, pulled aside, and interrogated by intimadating security guards? I told them that out of the 52 parks I've been to I never had a problem like this. I told them that I only took photos of my kids, but by law and by park rules I can take any photo I want while inside the park and there is nothing they can do about it. I should have been been harassed. They said some other patrons were complaining about all my photo taking and they didn't want their kids in my photos. I told management then those people need to stay the F**k home. I know my kids are going to end up in other people's photos. I know the park itself takes on ride photos of my kids, without my permission. Guess what that's part of going to an amusement park. If you don't like it stay home. Of coarse management sided with their security team. I have called the GM of Dutch Wonderland and left a message. He was until Monday, then I will get the corporate office of Palace Entertainment involved. I will see this to furthest and I will be compensated. I'm still extremely angry and I will not revisit this park or any other Palace Park until this matter has been dealt with. If anything, this will be brought to the attention of the people in charge and hopefully another person won't have to go through that sort of mistreatment. It was just a shame that the day had to end like this.

Ken

* This post was modified at 6/7/14 4:01:27 PM *

Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by chitlins73 chitlins73 Profile at 6/7/14 9:11:29 PM
frontrow said:

Well, yesterday we made our very first visit to Dutch Wonderland. A friend of mine, who lives, in York Pa met us out there. We had this trip planned on this specific day for quite some time. Thursday was my kids last day of school and I wanted to start off their summer vacation with a theme park visit.


We arrived at the park at 9:40 for a 10:00 opening. My friend, Matt, pulled in right behind us. We purchased our tickets are received $10 per admission due to our Kennywood season passes. Matt was granted $10 off, due to his Hershey season pass. From the parking lot, I could tell that Dutch Wonderland was a really nice park. The park is themed extremely well, It's very clean, and they pay attention to every detail. It's a kids park, but a really nice one.

When the park opened we rode the train, and then the Sky lift, in order to get an overview of the park layout. The park is about the size that I predicted. It's not a huge park by any means. Matt has been going to this park since he was a kid and was very informative about the history of the park and the rides in the park. At one time Hershey Entertainment operated DW and some rides that used to at Hershey are now at Dutch Wonderland. The old Hershey Trabant is the one most noticeable.

Dutch Wonderland has 2 coasters, Joust, and Kingdom Coaster. Joust is a kids steel coaster that is very simular to Big Dipper at Michigan's Adventure. Nothing great about this ride. We only rode it once for the credit. Kingdom Coaster is junior wooden coaster that was CCI's first ever coaster. The layout is more simular to Pegasus at Mount Olympus, but runs more like Zach's Zoomer at Michigan's Adventure. It's a decent coaster for what it is. It's one of the better junior wooden coasters. The front seat seemed to provide the best ride. There are a couple pops of air time and the coaster really seems to build up speed towards the end of the circuit. We enjoyed it, and got 6 rides on it throughout the day.

New for 2014 is Exploration Island. It's very simular to Cedar Fair's Dinosaurs Alive with a few differences. DW does not charge extra for the attraction and they have moved their turnpike cars back there to circle the whole island. You can also take a boat ride around the island, which was my favorite. The gondola boats look something like from Disney,and we were able to real natural wild life while taking that ride. We even saw an Amish man plowing his field with horse and buggy type equipment. I must say that was a first for me at an amusement park.

DW does have some good and unique rides. Their bumper cars are 2nd best only to Knoebles. Very hard hitting and just loads of fun. If the building they were in was larger, the ride would be even better. We rode them 3 times, and really enjoyed them. DW also has an attraction called Wonder House. It's very simular to Houdini at SF Great Adventure, but on a smaller, more modest scale. They also had 2 simulators. One was very old and they first one I ever seen. The other was more modern, but still very rare. Only seen one at mall one time, and either one wasn't an up charge. With some nice theming on standard flat rides, we were having more fun than I expected.

Towards the end of the day a very unfortunate incident occurred. When I go to these parks I take tons of photographs of my children, and maybe even few of roller coasters. It was near the end of day and my phone went completely dead. My kids were on a ride called Kite Flyers. I asked my buddy Matt to grab a photo of my kids. Here come to find out 3 security guards were behind us and demanded we come with them off to side. We were then interrogated by security. We played 20 questions 3 times over. Apparently there were some complaints that I was taking too many photos. My phone was dead, so I couldn't prove that I was just taking photos of my kids. I even offered to show them my photos if the could provide a cordless charging device. I even offered to present my kids passports to them to show proper identification. Nothing worked these continued to pursue with their line of child molester questioning. By this time my kids were off the ride, they saw the anger in my face,while talking with security. They thought they did something wrong. Once my children came over, security finally dropped the matter and went about their business.

My friend Matt is very religious and was corporating fully with them. He never did get upset or offended like I did. I know I'm growing as a person, because 10 years I mostly would have gotten ejected or arrested, I was that angry. After Matt left, I couldn't take it any more. My day was ruined over this incident. I went to guest services and asked for management. I asked " Is it against park policy to take photos or videos while inside the park?" Management answered no, you are allowed to take photos. Then why was I stopped, pulled aside, and interrogated by intimadating security guards? I told them that out of the 52 parks I've been to I never had a problem like this. I told them that I only took photos of my kids, but by law and by park rules I can take any photo I want while inside the park and there is nothing they can do about it. I should have been been harassed. They said some other patrons were complaining about all my photo taking and they didn't want their kids in my photos. I told management then those people need to stay the F**k home. I know my kids are going to end up in other people's photos. I know the park itself takes on ride photos of my kids, without my permission. Guess what that's part of going to an amusement park. If you don't like it stay home. Of coarse management sided with their security team. I have called the GM of Dutch Wonderland and left a message. He was until Monday, then I will get the corporate office of Palace Entertainment involved. I will see this to furthest and I will be compensated. I'm still extremely angry and I will not revisit this park or any other Palace Park until this matter has been dealt with. If anything, this will be brought to the attention of the people in charge and hopefully another person won't have to go through that sort of mistreatment. It was just a shame that the day had to end like this.

Ken

Wow!!!!! Are you kidding me Ken?????? That is insane that they would have the nerve to take you to the side and question you like that!!! Like you said, everyone at some point will show up in a pic that is taken from somebody else. I would never go to that park ever again unless they do something for you to make up for that unjust embarrassing accusation!!!!

Dion
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by frontrow frontrow Profile at 6/7/14 9:43:06 PM
Dion I talk speak to the head of Public Relations of Dutch Wonderland today, and she was very professional and understanding. We had a 45 minute conversation. The GM of Dutch Wonderland was not in and is scheduled to call me at 2:00pm on Monday. I will not let this rest until I get a letter of apology to my kids and I from Dutch Wonderland and a written consent document from Palace Entertainment that I'm allowed to take photographs in their parks. I plan on calling the corporate office on Monday. If they do not comply, then I will even take it further. You see my Facebook page, and you know I photograph my kids. If I can't do that without being harassed, then I'm not going to visit that chain of parks. I follow all park rules and don't give anyone any trouble. There is no way I'm going to allow this type of mistreatment from anyone. This goes beyond amusement parks. If this were to happen at a ball park or grocery store, I would handle it the same way. They made the mistake of harassing the wrong person. My goal in this is to make another father can take photos of his kids at Palace Parks and not be accused of being a child predator.
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by frontrow frontrow Profile at 6/9/14 10:06:10 PM
Well I spoke to the GM of Dutch Wonderland today. I told him my side of the story and gave examples how this was mishandled by his security team and management team. His security gave him a whole different story. They gave him completely false information. I told him, they are lying to you. I didn't matter. No matter how I tried to plead my case or put him in my shoes, he was determined to side with his employees. I asked if he was willing to issue a written apology to my kids and I. He said he would, if he felt they mishandled the situation, but he feels they handled the situation correctly. I asked if a revisit your park what guarantee do I have that this situation won't happen again? He said none. He said if my security team wants to question you they can and they can use any approach they feel necessary. I said in other words your security guards can use the intimidation/ harassing/ interrogating technique and you approve of this, even if I'm not breaking any park rules. His answer was yes. I told him I refuse to tolerate that type of treatment from anyone in society, especially when I'm a pattron at an amusement park. I told him I'm sorry we couldn't come to a conclusion, but now I'm getting the corporate offices involved. Once I tell them my story, he will have to answer to them for his words and inability to handle this situation. I did call Palace Entertainment in Long Beach California. I reached a lady who is actually in charge of this kind of thing. She said she would try to return my call later in the day, but she was off to meetings. She said she would get back to me by tomorrow. We shall see what Palace's opinion is on this matter. If they do side with Dutch Wonderland, then not only can they refund my money from Dutch Wonderland, but they can refund my Kennywood season passes also. I'll just be done with Palace Parks. One thing is for sure, I don't care what future coasters or rides Dutch Wonderland puts in,I will never visit that park again. Just thought you guys would find this interesting, absurd may be the better word.
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by alpengeistno3 at 6/10/14 12:19:49 AM
Wow!!! Who would have thought Dutch Wonderland could have WORST customer service than Cedar Fair?!?!

Even if the GM wanted to back his employees, he could have "lied" to you in an attempt keep a customer. I've never been to Dutch Wonderland, but it is clear they don't have any interest in having you return. Their loss!! I'll be curious what Palace Parks has to say.

Paul

Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by drachen drachen Profile at 6/10/14 5:05:16 PM
My take on this whole thing... Ken and I have chatted about it a bit, and I think we're mostly on the same page about most of this.

1) I think Ken was more 'guilty by association' in this regard. I totally believe him when he says that he was only taking photos of his own kids.

2) His meet-up partner is about as innocent a person as you'll find (from what I gather). He likes to shoot more random videos and photos at parks (excessively at times) - which understandably could be frowned upon at a children's park.

3) As Dutch Wonderland is a park geared more toward children, safety, including safety from possible predators, is rightfully taken very seriously. If parents brought a complaint to the park about perceived questionable activity, then Dutch Wonderland has no choice but to investigate. No choice.

4) As the park is privately owned, they are within their rights to ask any individual to not photograph or record video. They are within their right to remove anyone from the park for any reason they deem appropriate.

5) I believe that there are parents that are totally overly sensitive to some things and, as a result, totally misjudge some situations. But that doesn't necessarily make making such a complaint wrong.

6) From what I've learned from Ken, the security team totally mishandled this situation, seemingly accusing Matt and him of something before gathering facts. As a parent, if I were accused of something so heinous without proof, I would be livid.

7) The GM clearly is siding with his staff, which I get. But he may not have the complete story. Unfortunately, in his case, with possibly no precedent set of previous mishandlings by his security team, he's going to believe them, and not one guest out of tens of thousands.

8) Having said that, if Ken was clear and adamant that he was guilty of no such thing, and that the security team's "investigation" proved as much, then it's pretty safe to take Ken at his word. If not publicly, then personally, he has to be open to the idea that his team could have mishandled it. I'm sure that he is.

9) But in the court of public opinion, he'd much rather err on the side of caution - putting forth the image that the park has a zero tolerance policy regarding issues of child safety. It's better to lose a couple of guests' business than to appear weak on this issue, in his mind.

10) Unfortunately, as unfair as it is to Ken, I feel Palace will stand behind their GM on this issue too.

11) It's just a shame that Ken, who by all accounts is a good man, and a great dad, had to be caught up in this situation - one in which he probably wouldn't have been had he gone to the park with just his children.

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.94 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.56 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
Facebook: Search Park Connoisseur
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by alpengeistno3 at 6/10/14 6:47:35 PM
All of what you said is well and good. But the facts (as presented by Ken, who I have met and know to be a great guy) are:

1. Ken did nothing other than take pictures of his kids. I don't think there is a park or amusement venue in the country that has a rule against that.

2. Whoever accused Ken of otherwise was WRONG. He was not preying on other children (he probably was not even aware of them.)

3. Security was wrong to make any insinuation that he was doing anything other than taking pictures. Had he approached another child, they would have had reason to approach him. Family park or not, they had no probable cause.

4. The manager had no reason not to believe Ken. The only thing they had was he was taking a lot of pictures. Since his phone died, it is safe to assume he was not taking them when he was approached. Even if they believed he was most heinous of individual, they HAD NO PROOF.

All Ken asked for was an apology for how he was misjudged. If the manager could not even give him that, then it is clear that the customer service is lacking. Regardless of what the security said, they have NOTHING to accuse Ken of than what the initial guest complained about, taking pictures!!

Paul

Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by frontrow frontrow Profile at 6/10/14 8:52:55 PM
Thanks guys for the kind words. I do try to be a good person and a good father, in fact in my older age, I really do try hard. I did talk to the corporate office today and spoke to a lady named Linda. She is in charge of these types of issues, and she is my last hope. She said that there is no one else in the corporation I could talk to. I described the encounter with the security team. I told her they initiated the conversation by saying you 2 get over here with us. I told her when I saw their attic and aggressive approach, I asked for their manager and they did not get their manager. I told her I offered to show them all the photos I took that day if they could provide a phone charger, and they said they couldn't do that. When they were accusing me of not having any kids with me in the park, I offered to show them my kids passports for ID and they blew that off. I told her I made several attempts to prove my innocence, but they wanted to keep the questioning going. I asked Linda, as a guest at your park, what more could have done and what do suggest that I should have done differently? She said nothing. She said I acted in the proper way and was more than cooperative. She said she understands why I'm so upset over this. She would be too, if the same thing to her. Unfortunately Palace Parks let's the GM of each park govern its own park. Palace will investigate this matter, but apology letter, or refund would be determined by the DW GM, and he already said he's not willing to do that. I told her if that's the case, that the corporate office can't govern their own parks then I done with Palace. She said she could recommend a letter of apology, but she can't order one. I'm friends with the PR director of Indiana Beach. When she saw my photos from Indiana Beach last year, she asked if she could use them for promotional use. I went to DW and did the exact same thing I did at Indiana Beach, photograph MY children, and now I'm a child predator. It's just a mess that never should have gone this far.
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by drachen drachen Profile at 6/10/14 9:29:02 PM
alpengeistno3 said:

All of what you said is well and good. But the facts (as presented by Ken, who I have met and know to be a great guy) are:


1. Ken did nothing other than take pictures of his kids. I don't think there is a park or amusement venue in the country that has a rule against that.

2. Whoever accused Ken of otherwise was WRONG. He was not preying on other children (he probably was not even aware of them.)

3. Security was wrong to make any insinuation that he was doing anything other than taking pictures. Had he approached another child, they would have had reason to approach him. Family park or not, they had no probable cause.

4. The manager had no reason not to believe Ken. The only thing they had was he was taking a lot of pictures. Since his phone died, it is safe to assume he was not taking them when he was approached. Even if they believed he was most heinous of individual, they HAD NO PROOF.

All Ken asked for was an apology for how he was misjudged. If the manager could not even give him that, then it is clear that the customer service is lacking. Regardless of what the security said, they have NOTHING to accuse Ken of than what the initial guest complained about, taking pictures!!

Paul

I don't disagree with any of that. I made the point, albeit briefly, that Ken was totally wronged.

With some of the other points, I wanted to simply give what I think is the park's perspective.

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.94 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.56 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
Facebook: Search Park Connoisseur
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by drachen drachen Profile at 6/10/14 9:33:00 PM
frontrow said:

I'm friends with the PR director of Indiana Beach. When she saw my photos from Indiana Beach last year, she asked if she could use them for promotional use. I went to DW and did the exact same thing I did at Indiana Beach, photograph MY children, and now I'm a child predator. It's just a mess that never should have gone this far.

I'm glad you got further with Palace. Linda seems to be very understanding. That's a step in the right direction.

Like I said in my previous post, I think had you gone to Dutch Wonderland by yourself, with just your kids, you would have been fine.

Matt's a good guy. But the mere presence of another grown man taking so much video and so many photos totally changed the appearance of your visit, I think.

* This post was modified at 6/10/14 9:48:04 PM *

drachen
Coaster to Park Ratio: 4.94 / Steel to Wooden Ratio: 2.56 / Wooden Coaster Percentage: 28%
Facebook: Search Park Connoisseur
Re: Dutch Wonderland TR by frontrow frontrow Profile at 6/10/14 11:18:17 PM
Personally I usually only take photos of my kids at the parks we visit. I may photograph a rollercoaster here and there. I know a lot of you on here take a lot of photos or videos of the park in general. My goal in this dispute is to make sure other people won't be harassed from taking photos or videos, and that I won't be put in this situation again. If park security does feel the need to approach someone for taking photos, my objective is make sure they approach people in a respectful, friendly manner. No matter what your opinion is about this situation, any one of you could have experienced this same nightmare. Do you guys want to deal with intimadating/ arrogant security guards in order to enjoy this hobby? Wouldn't you want to be treated with respect? If I would drop my complaint, then nothing would be done to ensure that good, common people can't enjoy the park to the fullest. If anything, out of my persistent, the conduct of of these security guarded will be questioned and reviewed. They may think twice before they take the aggressive approach. I will wait to see I Palace makes this right. If they don't, then I have a decision to make. I must decide if this is important enough to my kids and I to seek legal representation. Hopefully it doesn't come to that. That was never my intentions, but I have went through every chain of command, and that would be my only option to solve this dispute.