Will Disney's Southland Diss Be Knott's Gain?

Disneyland and California Adventure, which are practically printing money these days they've been so successful with the whole Cars Land thing, announced earlier this week the end to the Southern California resident program that provided reduced admission prices to locals.

Perhaps the Mouse House's snub of Southlanders will pay for another Orange County theme park.

With less fanfare and no television commercial time I know of to tout its season passes, Knott's is selling the annual admission cards for only $72–with no blackout dates.

By comparison, Disney passes are $269 to $329 for Southern California residents with blackout days, $469 for a Deluxe Annual Passport with 315 available days, $649 for a Premium Annual Passport that has no blackout days and $849 for a Disney Premier Passport that gets you into any Disney resort in Anaheim or Orlando, Florida.

Single-day tickets to one Disney Anaheim park are $81 for ages 3 to 9 and $87 for ages 10 and up, while one-day Park Hopper tickets to both parks are $119 for ages 3 to 9 and $125 for ages 10 and up. Single-day tickets at Knott's top out at $59.99, with discounts for buying online, in advance or depending on the season.

The price disparity would seem to make a natural advertising campaign for Knott's, which I'd urge to include a daily discount for Southern Californians to further stick it to the Mouse.

Instead, the Buena Park theme part is promoting its “Spring Fling,” which runs Saturday through April 7 with live entertainment, interactive games and food and wine events.

“The Search for the Easter Beagle” will have kids ages 3 to 11 scurrying across the park to find images of the famous beagle for prizes. “Peanut's Party in the Park” is a new interactive live musical revue in Charleston Circle. The Knott's Boardwalk area hosts the Big Boardwalk Board Games, where participants serve as game pieces.

At the Grande 3-D Art Show at the Silver Bullet midway, you can step into life-size drawings of spring nature scenes. Knott's Towering Topiary Gardens in Wilderness Dance Hall features wines from around the world, craft beers and farm fresh food offerings (additional fees may apply). “Lucy's Really Big Show” in Camp Snoopy Theatre features Lucy Van Pelt in her very own show. There's nighttime dancing at the Spring Fling Dance Party in Fiesta Village.

Spring Fling activities are included with regular Knott's Berry Farm admission, which is less than you-know-where. Hours are extended, too; from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 714.220.5200 or click on www.knotts.com for tickets or more information.
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