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Europa Park | Unknown | Mack Rides BigDipper | 2024

Fluorineer

Mega Poster
Out of interest, why is it that they went with a Russian gas company in the first place? With BF being in Iceland, surely an Icelandic gas company would have been more fitting?

I guess Gazprom could have offered a very compelling business proposition to Europa at the time…

Gazprom pays good money, plain and simple. Also, while the sponsorship has always been controversial, it was until very recently perfectly in line with German energy policy, which is why they didn't have to be too afraid of backlash. To cut it extremely short and oversimplify it, this whole EU-taxonomy debacle, in which natural gas and nuclear were supposed to be labeled as green energy sources is part of a deal between France and Germany, where Germany is willing to accept nuclear as green, as long as France will not oppose the green label for natural gas, since Germany remains heavily dependent on it (mostly because the past 4 governments have done a very bad job at the transition towards renewables).
 

CSLKennyNI

Giga Poster
The Adventure Land (African area) and Dschungel Flossfahrt retheme have also been brought up here a few times. The park confirmed the area will become part of an Austrian area expansion.
The Flossfahrt boat ride will become "Josefinas Kaiserliche Zauberreise" (Josefinas Imperial Magic Journey), Africa Queen will become "Donau Dampfer" and a new fountain show on the lake will be added.


However the project will be spilt across two years. Phase 2 will see more improvements/additions and the new boats (the old African rafts redecorated will run for one more season).

Phase 1 will be finished for the park's reopening on 19th March. Some glimpses of the new boat ride:
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Source

Following the removal of the Gazprom/Nord Stream 2 sponsor in response to the war in Ukraine the park have also planted flowers forming the symbol of peace in front of Bell Rock.
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Additionally by the park entrance the Russian flag has been removed.
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Following questions on social media whether the actual Russian themed area would be removed or changed the park responded:
"We do not have a closure or renaming planned. The Russian themed area of Europa Park represents the history, craftsmanship and culture of this Nation. The buildings and materials in their theme go back in history and mirror the wide traditions of the people of this country."
 

Nitefly

Hyper Poster
Yeah… I’m really not sure how all of this ‘corporate disassociation’ of a whole country and any vocalised ‘solidarity/righteous sentiments’ benefits anyone. Just feels like an attempt to either avoid criticism or relieve a ‘personal sense of duty’, more than any material care or practical assistance towards any issues. This is how we’ve ended up with that strange ‘cancel culture’ we see elsewhere in society.

Articles like this make me feel quite uneasy:


How far will it go…? Pretty far, apparently.
 

Nitefly

Hyper Poster
They aren’t removing the country or anything else as said in the post. Russia is not “cancelled”. It will remain. Simply the flag won’t be proudly displayed over the main entrance it seems.

Yes, Europa Park is not in and of itself “cancelling Russia” by not displaying a flag temporarily, but I do think there is an air of a ‘cancel culture’ in respect of the collective/cumulative corporate sentiment (extending beyond theme park industry), that Europa is now itself participating in, which I think is worthy of caution and (hence my) comment.

There is a balance to be struck and, looking around generally, I don’t think it’s quite right. I certainly feel uneasy about actually cancelling performing arts (or artists) that are linked to Russia, or penalising individuals because they won’t vocally disavow Putin.

A very difficult subject to approach and get right, of course, and truly awful circumstances generally.

Edit: It admittedly doesn’t warrant further discussion in the context of this thread, I suppose I just felt the need to express my reservations over what I’m observing in the press.
 
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CSLKennyNI

Giga Poster
Are they likely to remove Euro Mir while they're building the 2023 coaster, though?
No the renovation/retrack project will be after the opening of the BigDipper to take the crowds/capacity in that section of the park. When after though remains unknown.
 

Matt N

CF Legend
I was only intrigued because I was hoping it would be open in April when I hopefully head to EP for the first time, Putin-permitting. Of course, I would understand if it was shut, but I'm glad to hear it should hopefully be open!
 

Ethan

Strata Poster
Yes, Europa Park is not in and of itself “cancelling Russia” by not displaying a flag temporarily, but I do think there is an air of a ‘cancel culture’ in respect of the collective/cumulative corporate sentiment (extending beyond theme park industry), that Europa is now itself participating in, which I think is worthy of caution and (hence my) comment.
So I do see where you're coming from, although I feel as if saying this is "cancel culture" is a little misguided. This isn't a YouTuber getting "cancelled" for a dodgy tweet about gays in 2015. But I know you know that.

Europa Park is just showing solidarity with Ukraine, and yes whilst it could be considered a little performative, it's the right thing to do.
I was only intrigued because I was kind of hoping it would be open in April when I hopefully head to EP for the first time, Putin-permitting. Of course, I would understand if it was shut, but I'm glad to hear it should hopefully be open!
I can assure you that you really, really would not be missing out on much. To be honest, although I'm neutral about the area staying, I'd say it's by far the ugliest area of the park. I'd love them to, firstly, burn down the travesty that is Euromir, but secondly just freshen it all up. There's a fair bit of Russian architecture that's actually quite wonderful (the Kremlin is fab too but definitely does not pass the vibe check) so I wish they'd draw more from that.
 

Matt N

CF Legend
I can assure you that you really, really would not be missing out on much. To be honest, although I'm neutral about the area staying, I'd say it's by far the ugliest area of the park. I'd love them to, firstly, burn down the travesty that is Euromir, but secondly just freshen it all up. There's a fair bit of Russian architecture that's actually quite wonderful (the Kremlin is fab too but definitely does not pass the vibe check) so I wish they'd draw more from that.
Interesting... thanks for your thoughts @Ethan!

I'm interested to ride Euro Mir because a) it's an extra +1 and something else to do and b) it seems quite polarising, with most either absolutely loving it or absolutely hating it, so I'd be interested to see what I think. I'm not the biggest fan of spinning coasters to begin with, but who knows what I'd think? I'm not entirely sure what else Russia has, but EM looks intriguing, albeit not the ride that excites me most at Europa.

Here's hoping I'm actually able to go to Europa... Putin-permitting, my trip is scheduled for the end of April.
 

Nitefly

Hyper Poster
So I do see where you're coming from, although I feel as if saying this is "cancel culture" is a little misguided. This isn't a YouTuber getting "cancelled" for a dodgy tweet about gays in 2015. But I know you know that.

Europa Park is just showing solidarity with Ukraine, and yes whilst it could be considered a little performative, it's the right thing to do.

Yes. I agree there is a clear and material difference between the ongoing conflict and other circumstances where the phrase ‘cancel culture’ has been banded around (such as you mention). There are stark differences but some similarities of outcome, as is perhaps better demonstrated by other examples. In the press today we see ‘growing calls for McDonalds to stop trading in Russia’, as a piece of reported news. I’m really not on board with this sort of thing.

There undoubtably is a lot to be angry about in this world and there are a lot of wrongs to be called out. Unfortunately, I think perpetual ‘angry, projected criticism’ and perpetual ‘over-sensitive corporate disassociation’ (in relation to other matters) have fuelled each other to the point where it’s now, in relation to this conflict, it’s seemingly unacceptable to some that an American company is making money selling burgers in Russia. I find this extreme and absolutist (and devoid of consideration of, for example, the consequences to Russians that are simply working for McDonalds and living their lives). I think such behaviour leads to isolation, entrenched positions and resentment. I don’t see it as being constructive. Yet it’s the approach that many corporates are unilaterally taking, in part (I suspect) to avoid the scrutiny that McDonalds is now facing. I appreciate that I’m way off topic now (sorry), but I do fear the end-game of this sort of activity.

As to what is ‘right or wrong’ in the context of Europa, I think there is scope for a range of reasonable approaches. It’s ultimately OK, to me, that Europa have done what they have done, but I also think it’s within the realms of acceptable for them to have taken no actions at all. I’m also totally OK with you thinking it’s the ‘right’ thing for Europa to do.
 

munshun

Roller Poster
I don’t see it as being constructive.
I'm afraid you are missing the point. At this moment, the western world has no other means, without war of course, to force changes in Russia. The only way to change russian government is to make Russians angry enough to do it by themselves. I belive at this moment, putin will do whatever he wants, at any cost. Only his own country can take him down 🤔
 

cookie

Hyper Poster
As to what is ‘right or wrong’ in the context of Europa, I think there is scope for a range of reasonable approaches. It’s ultimately OK, to me, that Europa have done what they have done, but I also think it’s within the realms of acceptable for them to have taken no actions at all.
Hard disagree with that last part. If Europa just had an area themed to Russia and that was the extent of their connection with the country, that'd be one thing. It's a whole other thing when Blue Fire was sponsored by and basically acted as a propaganda arm for the Russian state and a now-canceled gas pipeline up until about two weeks ago. I wouldn't have found it acceptable for them to just ignore it or pretend it doesn't paint the area in an ugly light, and so I hope they're actually dealing with it beyond what they've already done.
 
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Nitefly

Hyper Poster
I'm afraid you are missing the point. At this moment, the western world has no other means, without war of course, to force changes in Russia. The only way to change russian government is to make Russians angry enough to do it by themselves. I belive at this moment, putin will do whatever he wants, at any cost. Only his own country can take him down 🤔
I understand the intention/point, I just think of it as being occasionally misplaced and counterproductive (at these volumes).

Hard disagree with that last part. If Europa just had an area themed to Russia and that was the extent of their connection with the country, that'd be one thing. It's a whole other thing when Blue Fire was sponsored by and basically acted as a propaganda arm for the Russian state and a now-canceled gas pipeline up until about two weeks ago. I wouldn't have found it acceptable for them to just ignore it or pretend it doesn't paint the area in an ugly light, and so I hope they're actually dealing with it beyond what they've already done.
I acknowledge the link you're referring to but I don't find myself very suddenly repulsed by the sponsorship. The connection between the ride and the Russian gas is over a decade old and the pipelines have previously been heavily promoted by Germany.

There are potentially ethical questions with any sponsor and, in respect of ethical risk, I guess having any ride sponsored by a major energy industry player is asking for it. It is better to take a stance against some things than nothing at all, so if you find the sponsorship of this theme park ride unpalatable then more power to you.

***

I apologise to the masses as I've thoroughly derailed the thread, which should now go back on track. I can continue this further as PMs if anyone is so inclined. Thanks.
 

richardcrete

Mega Poster
Looopings confirms Voltron Coaster name, BigDipper and launch but announces two launches including one vertical:

The park sould announce it tomorrow during the season start's press conference:
 
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