Indiana Beach To Acquire Abandoned Fantasy Island Amusement Park
Over the course of the last two years, Gene Staples of Indiana Beach Holdings LLC has become quite the high profile buyer in the amusement industry. In 2020, Indiana Beach shut it’s doors, as it’s parent company (Apex Parks Group LLC) was looking to offload the park. Gene Staples came forward, and managed to acquire, reopen, and expand Indiana Beach.
Months later, Indiana Beach purchased Clementon Park at auction, intending to reopen it.
Now, Gene is negotiating with Store Capital Real Estate Investment Trust Co. of Scottsdale, Arizona for a long-term lease to take over the defunct Fantasy Island amusement park, and reopen it.
Fantasy Island was an amusement park located in Buffalo, New York, that operated until the end of the 2019 season. Like Indiana Beach, the park was owned by Store Master Funding IX LLC and operated by Apex Parks Group LLC, which closed at the same time as Indiana Beach.
Unlike Indiana Beach, the park has sat dormant since it’s closure, with a few rides being disassembled and sold. The park’s signature coaster, The Silver Comet, as well as a few rides and slides, are currently standing but not operating (SBNO).
Listings on the IAAPA job search site indicate that Indiana Beach is looking at acquiring the park. There are listings on the site for Facilities Maintenance Manager, Aquatics Manager, and Ride Maintenance Manager positions in Buffalo, NY.
With Buffalo being the home of both Fantasy Island and Six Flags Darien Lake, the listings are for Fantasy Island, as that is the park that could be aquired (Darien Lake is owned by EPR Properties)
As of now, the park is still owned by Store Master Funding IX LLC. That corporation previously owned the Indiana Beach property, until it was purchased by Gene Staples. Since there has been a previous transaction between the two parties, it is possible that there are ongoing discussions for the park at the current time.
Stay tuned as this is a still developing story!
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