Life Gets Better

If baseball games and amusement parks are any indication, the recession is coming to a close.

Amusement parks, which were considered recession-proof, got hit in woeful 2008-09, but are starting to rebound. Crowds increased at many of the nation’s parks last year, with some seeing record attendance. Six Flags Entertainment and Cedar Fair Entertainment reported attendance was up nationwide in 2010. Regional parks also saw at least modest gains. Disney parks reported a dip.

Dollywood in Pigeon Ford, Tenn., saw bigger crowds throughout the summer and fall. Parks are reportedly spending more on new rides and attractions.

Meanwhile, the St. Louis Cardinals are going to delve into dynamic pricing after seeing fellow Major League Baseball team the San Francisco Giants get a 7 percent increase in revenue because of the practice. The Cards signed with Qcue, a dynamic pricing specialist that will adjust single-game ticket prices at Busch Stadium.

“It’s something that people are familiar with in other industries, such as the airline industry, where prices are floating based on factors that change over time,” Cardinals President bill DeWitt III told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We just felt like there’s been enough research to see it as a win-win for the fans and for the club.”

The change comes while baseball ticket prices have remained relatively flat. There was a 1.5 percent increase from 2009 to 2010.
The movie industry has not seen the same fortune as the above. There has been a 20 percent decline in revenue so far this year.
But the problem apparently isn’t the economy. It’s because the films suck.

“I think it all boils down ot the quality of the movies,” AMC Entertainment CEO Gerry Lopez told the Los Angeles Times. “This year we just haven’t had those kind of movies that cut across all quadrants of age, race and income.”

Michael Lynton, CEO of Sony Pictures Entertainment, was equally blunt, telling the paper, “So far there is just nothing terribly compelling about what we’re delivering as an industry.”