Although California’s Great America was unable to open this year, the coaster tracks are still rolling in Ohio, which is precisely where you can find some friendly Bay Area-based associates this fall!
More than a dozen Great America full-time associates answered the rallying call to assist at Cedar Point for their brand-new Tricks or Treats Fall Fest event. Cedar Point is a 365-acre amusement park located in northern Ohio and owned by the same parent company as Great America. Our Bay Area associates packed their bags and hit the road, eager to return to the theme park environment at our “sister park.”
There's no better way to learn about our team members' experience than by reading them firsthand.
Paul | Merchandise Manager
Working at Cedar Point was a great opportunity to get back to my roots in more ways than one. I’m originally from Ohio and have worked at Cedar Point in the past. This was a great chance to get to see family, friends and former coworkers.
Also, while I am in retail and have been for the past 14 years, I originally worked in ride operations. It has been quite a thrill to be back working a ride.
Most importantly though, it has been amazing to see our guests again. My first day at Cedar Point I couldn’t help but smile from hearing the noises, smelling the food and hearing the screams. We all are in this industry because we love to entertain--we love amusement parks. I am thankful that I still have the opportunity to make our guests’ day the best day ever! Even if it is halfway across the country!
Brad | Entertainment Manager
I’ve been fortunate to work at Cedar Point in both the rides and entertainment departments in a multitude of facets over the past few months.
I started at Great America as the entertainment manager in October of 2019. What makes this experience so interesting is the fact that my journey with this company has had me working at another park for longer than I worked at my home park! In any case, I feel very fortunate to have been given this opportunity in being able to explore new places/sister departments, meet new people and expand my horizons.
I immediately noticed that working in rides was a mark of pride at Cedar Point with their large coaster selection and legendary ride experiences. Working at maXair and Dodgem gave me the opportunity to use some of my entertainment skills in live-spieling. It was surprising to have such a small, intimate team working both rides, but this helped in closing our gaps when it came to the strengths and weaknesses to become our own well-oiled machine.
Although the summer wasn’t too hot, I will not miss the bugs nor the humidity when going back to California!
After a few weeks working in rides, I was asked to go back to my role in entertainment and assist in both directing and acting for the new Tricks and Treats Fall Festival at Cedar Point. I jumped with giddiness at the chance and immediately began working on the Witches show as the director and memorizing lines as the judge for the Costume Council show. I am very proud of how Witches turned out. As for the Costume Council, it is so fun to not know who will come on stage with what costume; every show is a blast with the guests and my fellow performers.
If this year has taught me anything, it is that despite the best of plans, you never know where you might end up, who you might meet and what beautiful and rewarding things may blossom from that.
Ernesto | Merchandise Director
I worked at Cedar Point's "Dive In" quick-service food stand for two weekends this fall. When the call went out for Great America employees who could help at Cedar Point, I knew I wanted to work with their food and beverage team. As Great America's merchandise director, I have a lot of experience with retail and with operating Cedar Fair's registers. I thought it would be a great fit.
The two weekends I was at Cedar Point, the park was hosting its new Tricks and Treats Fall Fest, which offered fall food, activities and entertainment. In addition to its regular menu, “Dive In” was serving two types of street corn for Fall Fest: a maple butter variety that reminded me of caramel corn, and a spicy option called "El Chupacabra." We almost always had someone at our window ready to try a tasting. We were really popular!
Being at Cedar Point was great. People were so excited to come back to the park. It was incredibly impressive to see how well our guests were following the health rules and how much fun they were having being out and about. It definitely gave me a small feeling of normalcy to be back in an amusement park!
DeVikeo | Admissions and Guest Services Area Manager
I am currently working as a ride operator at the Corkscrew roller coaster at Cedar Point. It has been tons of fun meeting new people from all over. It is a big deal for me to have the opportunity to join the Cedar Point family for this year. I remember back when I first visited Cedar Point when I was 16, before college and graduating high school, I always wanted to work at Cedar Point as a ride operator. Sadly, that dream faded as I was a resident of Georgia and had no way of living in Ohio at that time. But now here I am, years later, as a part of the Cedar Fair family and working as a ride operator at Cedar Point at Top Thrill Dragster and Corkscrew.
This has been an amazing experience. I have had a chance to laugh and build relationships with many of the associates. Best of all was meeting some of my partners from other parks across the company. It was good to actually be part of a park that was able to open during these crazy times. I can’t wait until Great America reopens so I can put some of the things I have learned into action!
See You Soon, Bay Area
These are just four of many Great America associates working at Cedar Point this year. Even more of the Great America family has spent part of the summer and fall lending their hands in the park doing what they love best: creating experiences for the guests.
We all can’t wait to reopen Great America in 2021 to do the same right here in the Bay Area! Stay healthy, stay safe and we’ll see you soon.