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January 26, 2011
When they open later this year, Frontier City and White Water Bay will be under new management — by some familiar faces.
The parks’ owner, CNL Lifestyle Properties, has reached a management agreement with former owners Kieran Burke and Gary Story.
“We could not be more excited about the opportunity to once again manage both Frontier City and White Water Bay,” Burke said.
“Our love for this city, these parks and the team members we have worked with make this an especially rewarding assignment.”
Pair left company in 2005The pair used to own both parks on their way to building Six Flags Inc. into the largest regional theme park company in the world with 39 parks in eight countries.
Burke and Story left the company in 2005. Six Flags sold Frontier City and White Water Bay to CNL two years later.
Story said the theme park business never left his blood, even though he had retired.
“There’s no better product than fun,” he said.
Story and Burke began looking for new opportunities in the business after Six Flags let Burke out of his noncompete clause.
They acquired water-park, marina and RV resort Nashville Shores in 2009 and added Ocean Breeze Waterpark in Virginia Beach this year, but Story still kept an eye on Frontier City.
“It’s got a lot of assets and a good team in place,” he said.
Story, who remained in Oklahoma City since leaving Six Flags, said he welcomes the opportunity to return to the Oklahoma City park.
“In many ways, it’s a homecoming for me,” he said.
Multiyear management dealThe multiyear management deal with Burke and Story’s Premier Attractions Management LLC kicks in when the Oklahoma City parks open this spring: Frontier City on April 9 and White Water Bay on May 21.
Local park management teams will remain in place, supported by additional senior-level leadership.
Story is an Edmond resident, as is Hue Eichelberger, the management company’s senior vice president. Burke will continue living in New York, but he will visit as needed.
Story said the new management group is committed to keeping the rides at Frontier City running as much as possible.
He also said the park needs some “TLC” to be the kind of attraction Oklahoma City deserves.
Officials also are considering possible attractions to be added at White Water Bay, but that isn’t likely to happen this year, Story said.
The company also manages Splashtown Houston.
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