It was a good year for Cedar Fair. The company announced Wednesday the combined 2007 attendance at its amusement parks totaled 22.1 million, compared to 19.3 million in 2006.
And people spent more money while they were in the parks. According to preliminary figures, average per capita spending increased 5 percent in 2007 to $40.45, compared to $38.71 in 2006.
The 2006 figures include Paramount Parks, since the company purchased the parks from CBS Corp. on June 30, 2006. The 2007 year-end results include a full year of operation with the acquired parks.
"We're really pleased with these results," said Cedar Fair spokeswoman Stacy Frole. "We really looked at this year as a transformational year."
About 12.4 million guests visited the northern region parks, compared to 10.7 million in 2006. About 4.1 million people traveled to southern region parks, compared to 3.3 million in 2006. The western region parks entertained 5.6 million people, compared to 5.3 million in 2006.
Year-end figures for Cedar Point were not disclosed.
"We don't provide that information on an individual-park basis," Frole said.
However, Cedar Fair chairman, president and chief executive officer Dick Kinzel made an exception during a conference call in November.
During the call, Kinzel explained the company's 2007 third-quarter results.
"I think it is important to mention that Cedar Point through October this year has experienced record revenues and operating profits," he said. "This growth is a combination of stable in-park revenues along with growth in our out-of-park revenues, including resort hotels."
For 2008, Cedar Fair plans to spend a record-high $88 million in capital expenditures and introduce new marketing promotions. The company's biggest investment this year will cost the company about $21 million. Standing at 230 feet tall, Behemoth at Canada's Wonderland, Toronto, will be the tallest, fastest and longest roller coaster in Canada.
Cedar Fair will host a conference call with analysts Feb. 7 to discuss 2007's fourth-quarter and full-year earnings for Cedar Fair.
The company's 2007 year-end tax information will be processed and mailed to shareholders at the beginning of March. The same tax information will be available to shareholders through the investor relations section of the partnership's corporate Web site, cedarfair.com, beginning March 3.
Cedar Fair owns and operates 11 amusement parks, six outdoor water parks, one indoor water park and five hotels.