E93: Christian Dieckmann, VP of Strategic Growth at Cedar Fair- Interview

February 2, 2017


This great interview is with Christian Dieckmann. Christian is the Vice President of Strategic Growth at Cedar Fair Entertainment Company. As many of you know Cedar Fair is a large amusement park company. They have 13 amusement parks and have about $1B in annual revenue. That’s a lot of rides and a lot of screams (fun ones).

Christian has a very interesting role at Cedar Fair. Essentially how to grow their business using new technology. That’s not easy with all the entertainment distractions we have today. Christian is especially interested in immersive technologies (VR, AR, mixed reality) which we talk about.

Christian went to Boston College for his undergrad and Wharton for his MBA.

Here are some other things we talk about:

-What’s a virtual reality roller coaster?
-How do you find new ideas?
-What’s a tech you’re excited about outside of VR/AR?
-How will the amusement park experience be different 10 years from now?


David Kruse: Hey everyone. Welcome to another episode of Flyover Labs and today we are lucky enough to have Christian Dieckmann with us. And Christian is the Vice President of Strategic Growth at Cedar Fair Entertainment Company.

As many of you know, Cedar Fair is a large amusement park company. They have about four amusement parks and have about $1 billion in annual revenue. So that’s a lot of rids going on and Christian has a super interesting role there, essentially how to grow their business and that’s not easy as we all know, all the distractions that we have in life around entertainment. And Christian is especially interested in Immersive Technologies.

So Christian went to Boston College for his undergrad and Wharton for his MBA. So let’s just get right into it. Christian, thanks for joining us today.

Christian Dieckmann: My pleasure Dave.

David Kruse: Definitely I appreciate it and before we get into what you are doing now, can you tell us a little bit about your background?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so it’s been a bit of – it’s the shortest path to my current role, but all my positions have been focused on some combination of strategy, financial analysis and building teams and organizations as well. So I started out after Boston College in GE Capital Financial Management program. That was a 2.5 year rotational program, so I did stand in different business units for GE Capital and then I ended up working in Europe for their internal audit staff for about a year based in Munich, German but that covers all over Europe.

From there I went on to Wharton where I got my MBA. I also a got a Masters in International Studies from Lauder Institute at the University of Pennsylvania as well, so it was a dual degree program but it was just a great way to round out my business acumen and just to get acquire an amazing network of people that I have certainly stayed in touch with both professionally and personally since then.

And then I went on to be a Management Consultant at a gaming company where I worked on just a wide array of projects and all the single threads through here is really strategy and financial analysis. I got to work in industries like doing due diligence for private equity companies, working for IT outsourcing company, working for a newly publishing company, just all sorts of things. It was just a real good experience.

David Kruse: Interesting, and with that experience or any of the earlier experience you had, was there one that you was especially interesting or like you learnt a lot or you look back on, like man, that was really good.

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, I think that the time that I spent at Dan & Company was just great, because it teaches you how to go into a new area where you might not have a lot of knowledge and figure out what you need to know and become an expert as quickly as possible and really cut down to the core of the key business challenge and questions. And so that’s just been a tool set that’s been immensely valuable in all the roles I’ve had since and it included the role I had at Cedar Fair where, you know we are looking at different senior horizons here, so there not the fine play book you can always get it to, so that skill set is just really helpful.

David Kruse: And well I was going to ask as how you kind of use that as Cedar Fair, but we’ll get into that. So and I was also curious you know what I often ask from one of your past experiences, was there one that was kind of miserable or didn’t work out or something that like, Wow! Next time I would have done that a lot of different. Do you have an example like that?

Christian Dieckmann: Yes Dave, I think you know that we all have the benefit of hindsight and there is definitely some things I would have done differently. The way I try to approach it is to take a huge experience and those things that you do right and you learn from those and then you make mistakes, you try to learn from those as well. So definitely I made my share of mistakes and if you are not falling down when you are skiing down the mountain, you are not getting to be a better skier, but I’d say you know all-in-all I would say I haven’t any major regrets.

David Kruse: Nice, all right. Well, that’s a good attitude, I like it. And all right, so can you – before we dive into more of your current role at Cedar Fair, can you kind of give us an overview. I gave a super brief one, but give us an overview of the company.

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so Cedar Fair, we are a publically traded company. Our stock ticker is aptly named FUN, F-U-N. We have 11 regional amusement parts in North America. We do have about 24 millions guests a year and a bit over $1 billion in revenue a year. So really a huge company and we are definitely a house of brands. So you know Cedar Point is braded differently from Knott’s Berry Farm, it is branded differently from Carowinds, in North Carolina and South Carolina and so on and so forth.

So if people aren’t familiar with the industry, they may not have heard of us, even though they may have grown up going to water parks, so that’s a really interesting thing about Cedar Fair.

David Kruse: And I’ll have to update the intro. I said only four, I don’t know how I got that number. It sounds like four, a $1 billion, that doesn’t – that’s a lot of revenue per park. You wish you had a $250 million per park in revenue.

Christian Dieckmann: So we had the big four.

David Kruse: Okay.

Christian Dieckmann: Which included Cedar Point, Canada’s Wonderland, Knott’s Berry Farm in Kings Island and now we talk internally about the big five, because we’ve invested a lot of money into Carowinds in the Carolinas and that parks you know really doing well for us now too.

David Kruse: Okay, and can you tell us about your role as the Head of the VP of strategic growth. Kind of what are your priorities and focus areas?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so it’s been a really interesting role. So I end up looking at a lot of things. Let’s say, you know really I end up spending a lot of time looking at areas that’s been a little bit outside of our core business, so mainly outside of our current foot front of the 11 amusement parks in North America. So that could be mean looking at mergers and acquisitions opportunity, looking at international development opportunities, looking at ways to apply new technologies into our parks and new lines of business.

So it’s really anything that doesn’t fit with how we have been operating over the past several years, I end up with a small team of other people I work with a lot. We tend to spend time looking at those sorts of potential opportunities.

David Kruse: Got you, okay and with your Bain experience, I’m kind of curious, when you first came into Cedar Fair, what was your approach to kind of quickly learn the business and then kind of figure out a road map of what you should be working on and your focus areas.

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so when was I at Bain we talked a lot about primary research and secondary research, right. So the secondary research is you know reports and information and that sort of things. So I’d say I spent a lot of time looking externally at all of the different information that’s out there like the AECOM attendance report that’s out there and just all the analyst data that’s out there on the industry and on the companies in the industry, and I spent a lot of time doing this sort of data internally and trying to learn much about the company through reports and metro X and presentations as possible. And then covers really, that covers the second research and the primary research is just talking to as many people as possible.

So getting to the executive leadership team, getting to know the people in the parks, asking them about this – often the challenges and opportunities for the business and then really having a lot of conversations with people outside of the company too, who could be potential partners or better suppliers down the road. So our CEO used to joke that you know Christian would take a meeting with anybody and that really was approach in the first few years, because I just wanted to learn as much better to think that good.

David Kruse: And how long have been with Cedar Fair for?

Christian Dieckmann: So just shy of three years. So yeah it’s been a steep learning curve, but it’s been really exciting. This business gets in your blood like a few other industries do?

David Kruse: And why is that?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, I think the opportunity to what I call three dimensionalize the products, like you get out there and you walk around the park and you use the guest smile and having a good time. It’s really easy to get your head wrapped around it and so it’s just so tangible in that regard.

David Kruse: Yeah, I would have definitely been good. Make sure I jump on a roller-coaster each morning if possible. I don’t know if that’s discouraged.

Christian Dieckmann: Use a cup of coffee.

David Kruse: Yeah.

Christian Dieckmann: Way more effective than a cup of coffee.

David Kruse: Yeah, great. So I’m curious and anyway if you can share you know when you first kind of came into Cedar Fair and you had lots of discussions and had lots of analysis, you know was there – what was one thing like, Ah! We should really look into this. Like this is pretty interesting that maybe you are working on now or…

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so we adjust, we are just launching a ride in Canada’s Wonderland. That was a digital dark ride that dealt with a company called Tria Tech at a fostered home and so it was really a wide need to video game and I was just fascinated by that, the potential around that.

In my spare time, the weeks before I had kids I used to be a fairly ad gamer and so the ability to pay digital media content and add interactivity to create a very unique and immersive experience just really struck a chord with me, and as you can see from some of the projects that we’ve been involved in over the past few years, like the rides we launched with Electronic Arts at Great America and at Carowinds and some of the things that we are doing with virtual reality and playing around with augmented reality, I think really that’s the potential for digital media content and interactivity is real interesting.

David Kruse: Yeah, and you came out at a perfect time. So that was probably 2013’ish and you know the oculus really hadn’t come out that much and so – I mean was Cedar Fair doing much with Immersive Tech before you got there?

Christian Dieckmann: Well, the main thing we were doing was the digital dark ride we were doing with Tria Tech and so – I mean like you said, these technologies were so nascent around 2014 were I came onboard, I don’t there is much focus there. And also I’d say it today Dave, there is just a host of challenges we are trying to sort through. We’ve done some project with putting virtual reality on rollercoaster’s and guests love the experience when they get on, but a major concern for us is when you are doing five to ten thousands of people a day, you need have high capacity on these rides. So as amazing as virtual reality can be, one of the challenges that we have dealt with is just getting enough people through it to make it even better.

David Kruse: And how many people do you need on? Like I would say one of your popular roller coasters like on a busy day, like how many people do you need to go through that ride in a given day?

Christian Dieckmann: A traditional coaster could be doing you know a 1000 or north of 1000 people an hour. So that’s really high hurdle.

David Kruse: Yeah, Wow! Okay. All right so let’s, I kind of want to talk about some of the technologies that you are experimenting with at Cedar Fair and it sounds like a lot its VR and AR and can you maybe describe a rider to the audience, like how it works, because I’m sure a lot of people have not experienced VR in roller coasters?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah. So I can talk a little bit about our VR experience. We added to Iron Dragon at Cedar Point. So depending on what we are in the pilot, we are running it. We started out running one of the two trains that run on it with VR. So really in the evenings we were running something that’s called Cedar Point nights and as part of that we had this whole VR experience.

So waiting in line like you normally would, you get a Samsung gear VR while you are waiting in line about seven a ride and then you get into the ride vehicle and you put on the headset. And then you make sure that the headsets working, that the guest has got it strapped on properly. It’s not an extreme ride, so there is really no risk of the headset flying off of you or anything like that. We spent a lot of time making sure that we are very comfortable with the safety and health and potential wellness.

But you put the headset on and you are ridding a digital version of the rides. You are riding the real ride and so you are getting the visual movements and feel the g-force of a real roller coaster. But as you are looking around, you are seeing sort of a midlevel landscape around you with bats and ogres’ and dragons instead of seeing what you’d be naturally seeing. So it’s really a mind-blowing thing, especially to people who have never done VR before and we got a really strong response from guests ; guests loved it.

So that’s what we are doing, but as I mentioned you know one of the challenges is just getting people in and out of the cars and getting the headsets off and sanitizing the headers between usage, those are some of the challenges. It’s just slows us down a little bit.

David Kruse: Yeah, how would you sanitize. You know I actually – I read different – I did a frame on the VR and I’ve read people talk about different issues like motion sickness, which I’m curious around, but then also the sanitation. How do you sanitize, like your VR. It seems like you get the straps and everything?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so most people don’t – won’t get motion sickness or at least won’t get substantial motion sickness on the VR attached, because what causes the ill feeling in VR is when your residual system is out of sync with what you’re seeing. And so since the ride animation is perfectly synced with the motion of the vehicle, you are not getting at all sick. So for the most part people, most people do pretty well at that, whereas in doing other types of VR experiences they may feel nauseous. And then on the hygiene side, you are just using a cleansing solution on the headsets and straps in-between switch.

David Kruse: Got you, that’s good, that’s good. I was thinking about that when you are talking, like switching out you know, you got 1000 people going through it, but that makes sense. It’s good you guys thought about that.

And so with this VR, what – have you had other challenges besides you know getting the headsets on or off. I mean what about the – I know you are working with the tech partners on those applications. But is it hard to coordinate, to make sure that the timing is right or is that kind of the easier part compared to the moving the headsets in and out?

Christian Dieckmann: Well, that’s the secret sauce we rely on our technology partners for all right. So we have been working with GR Coaster out of Germany, who has done a lot of these projects and they are very good at getting it all to work together. So we’ve been very excited about that relationship and yeah, they’ve got the secret sauce that they use to get it all to work.

David Kruse: And do you want to use VR on all your coasters at some point or always have the option I guess?

Christian Dieckmann: I don’t think that’s where it will end up. You know I think over time people will figure out how to create a wide experience and incorporate VR and AR in more of a custom wide sort of way. I think putting the stuff on existing rides is really interesting, but I don’t know if that’s ultimately where it will end up, because there is a lot more you could do if these things were designed to work together.

David Kruse: And do you have some ideas around that? How like – if you design the coaster for VR, how would it be different?

Christian Dieckmann: I mean you can have more dynamic movement. I mean think you set out saying what story you experience you want to tell and then figuring out how to use the combination of either the digital in the journey and the movement and speed of the track to tell a story.

David Kruse: Got you.

Christian Dieckmann: You may not even be on a track. I mean that is why you should do motion simulation technology as well.

David Kruse: That’s what I was going to ask.

Christian Dieckmann: And we’ve seen some…

David Kruse: Go ahead.

Christian Dieckmann: We’ve seen some pretty compelling concepts out there that either combines VR and motion simulation too.

David Kruse: Yeah, so I was wondering about you know this could really reduce the potential footprint for some of these rides and maybe the cost, at least from the – I mean digitally it would cost more, but from the hardware perspective it would be a lot less. I mean could you open up more rides or create more parks around the nation, because you know they are a lot more smaller parks, like satellite parks because of this technology?

Christian Dieckmann: So I mean we don’t have any plans to do anything like that. I do think you bring up an interesting point there Dave and you know with some of these changes with technology, there is really nothing between amusement parks and movie theaters that are really you know compelling guest experiences. So you are seeing a lot of things out there like Lego Land Discovery Centers and Kidzania International which are really sort of fitting in the retail and mall based environment. So could you see a smaller footprint type of entertainment experience out there that new technology enables I think quite possibly.

David Kruse: Okay and I’m curious you know what’s your role with this, some of these digital technologies, like pulling together a project. I saw you on some phone where you open up a ride with all the different partners and you know kind of, how are you involved from like beginning to end to make that happen?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so a lot of the projects that I have worked on, you know step one is identifying something that we think that’s interesting to try out and then really you start think through what the guest experience is and you know start answering questions like okay, how much do we think it’s going to cost? I mentioned you know capacity before, so we are trying to figure out okay, well how many people can I get through this thing in an hour, and what’s the creative concept and so you start talking to potential partners and it’s a very interactive processes.

So you may think cost is going to be thing and if you think talk to somebody and like oh, but we really want to do that and its going to cost this amount of money. So it’s really a little bit of a rubik’s cube figuring out the whole cost capacity guest experience thing, which is why it’s an iterative process and again, we found some really great partners to work with who help us figure all that stuff out.

So I would say from there you try to build outer business case around why this particular project would be interesting? How are we going to monazite it? Is it going to be just something that we are marketing to everything at the park? Is it something that we are going to charge extra for or monazite in a different way, or something we are going do sponsorship for and then really talking through that model with the rest of the executive team to see if it’s something I want to do or not? How does it backup against other priorities that we are want to do, because there is many things, money is not intimate, so you got to prioritize and pick and choose what we want to do and then if we get to something that we are really excited about and we agree about it, its bringing together the external and internal team to make it happen.

So again, we will not allow external partners to sort of act to external contractors, but they may be bringing other qualities to the table. So for example the 3D ride that immersive to the LE company that built the NASA tech lightforce of great America, they brought on Halon Entertainment that they previewed in animation shows to do all the cinematic work in digital animation. They brought on a company called Prishendon [ph] Media Engineering to do the near and far field sound technology that we put into the theater. Media Nation provided a motion state and really you know the three arrivals along that was spearheading all that.

David Kruse: And can you tell…

Christian Dieckmann: So…

David Kruse: Oh! Sorry, go ahead.

Christian Dieckmann: Well, I was going to say that was a very well put explanation that was good. I mean there is a lot of moving parts in all of this and you are trying to coordinate all the moving parts and talk to the stakeholders and the partners, but through the 3D live project, can you tell us what that’s like.

David Kruse: Yeah. So again as I alluded to you, there are a lot of partners involved. I know we had Electronic Arts who was a great partner as well and we’ve got the opportunity to use their fantastic NASA tech franchise with the IT and create a background for this story. So there was just a lot of iteration there.

I led weekly calls with all of the main leaders of the park and from the different companies we are working with in Electronic Arts to get us through with status updates and see where we are and then we split up into separate work streams around different categories like construction and animation content and how we are going to market and either build awareness around these things.

So just really a lot of moving parts and it was a great learning experience for me because it was the first time I’d every really worked through a major looking park attraction. So it was just fascinating and you know the great thing is, it was such a fantastic team at Cedar Fair, both at corporate and at the park level to provide, to support and market sure that we were able to make this thing right. So definitely it made me feel like I was out on my own, but in terms of spearheading everything it was definitely a big moving curve that’s well met.

David Kruse: And that’s more like a theater experience, right, the 3D project?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah. So it was a, we retro fitted an existing theater that used to have a days of thunder attraction back in the paramount picture days when that park was owned by Paramount and we put our motion seats in there and then we put the world’s largest and highest resolution 3D LED screen in there, which is just this amazing technology. You get a better view space, better clarity, color, you know depth and it’s just a real impressive piece of technology.

So you can put that all together with a live actor and so we thought it was important to have a live actor curate the experience. Number one, it helps extenuate the depth coming out of the screen. So if you have projection based 3D you can do it, because you’d have a shot of the actor, but because of the light coming out of the 3D LED screen. There is no shadow and it just really helps extenuate. It’s almost like a mixed reality thing where it looks like the performer and the 3D digital imagery are on the same physical space. And the number two, you know how [inaudible] no two performances are going to be exactly alike.

David Kruse: Interesting. All right, and so where do you look for like new ideas and come up with ideas like this? Do companies often approach you or are you seeking them out or…

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so its mix. So I would say it’s a lot of just keeping up-to-date on what’s going on in the industry and reading trade publications and daily news letters and looking for what is out there and so a lot of times I’ve reached out to companies and then a lot of times they will reach out to us. So it just really depends, but you know a company like Alter Face that we work with on the plans for zombies’ attraction to Carowinds.

You know we have talked to them about some other projects, but I see their name popping up a lot in the industry press and so we spent some time and crafted out a concept with them. And then 3D Live, it was basically another company out of E3 back in 2014 and this company was really to do our stuff and they introduced me to the 3D item, another floor demo. I was pretty blown away and then we brought over our executive team to get a demo as well and they were impressed too and really over the course of the next six to nine months we started kicking our own ideas and ultimately got to a conflict where we were all excited about.

David Kruse: And how do you prioritize. So it sounds like you are kind of the master filter often for Cedar Fair for new projects, but how do you personally decide whether to move up a project. Is it kind of a gut feeling or do you talk with your team or executives ever so often and then kind of move our projects up and down based on kind of the overall analysis. What is kind of your thought process?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah it’s really a funnel, right. So if we are going to have 20 or 30 ideas up there that are really I would like call the ideation stage, it’s just sort of a concept. You are not sure if it’s going to become anything. You start talking about those, you try to get your head wrapped around what you feel has the most application. We had a lot of internal conversation to do something around the floor and so from there you really start flushing out the business plan and the cost profile, and what that looks like and sort of if you get to that stage and again, you sort of socialize it internally, you deal with the feelings, you are just buying and then if you still have traction, right. Maybe if you add 30 projects to begin with, now you are down to five to 10 projects.

So you really take a deep look at this five to 10 and then out of those you maybe find one or two ideas that actually is going to turn into something. So it’s just really a iterative planning and betting process and like I said, especially on some of this new frontier stuff, we got to bet it up against other things that we are spending money on every year, because a lot of time we are going to add something new to the planning side and something else may have to come out. So there is a lot in this conversation.

David Kruse: Oh! That makes sense and for augmented reality, are you thinking about or looking at to use like a roller coaster or do you have other ideas that you might use AR?

Christian Dieckmann: So you know augmented reality we think it’s really interesting. We are all not quite sure exactly what do with it yet, but what we did do was we created a game app experience for Cedar Point last year called the Ballet for Cedar Point and so it was a mobile phone based game, like really getting aside with the park experience. So now you are not riding coasters, but you are getting point for it and you get to contribute to a coaster clam score and at the end of the day one of the coaster clams would win for the park and it was hiding the merchandise and we had augmented reality experiences. Some of the new media actually dubbed it, you know Pokemon for the roller coaster.

So that was a really exciting first test with augmented realty. You know part of the challenge now is you got a lot of stuff out there in the horizon, like the hollow lens, you can catch it and ODG, another augmented reality device in fact it just raised a bunch of money. So there is a lot of pack that’s really on the cusp here, but it hasn’t really been commercialized yet. So I think that is one we are going to keep an eye and in the mean time, much like Pokemon very, very successful, we think augmented reality via the mobile phone has got some likes here in the short term.

David Kruse: Got you, and you talked a lot about the impressive tech. Are you looking at technologies outside of the digital realm at all to test out to bring it in?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so a few things. I would say most of it can be mean a lot of things. We always get hung-up on the technology, but I think what’s important to remember is first and foremost we are trying to create a guest experience and so we are trying to creative an emissive guest experience and so technology and different pieces of technology are really just tools in that tool box.

So there are things that you can do with live actor interaction, there are things you can do with physical feeling and set design. There are number of way you can create a deep emissive experience without just relying on technology. I think really what the theme park industry does incredibly well is talking all these different ideas together to make a seamless and compelling guest experience.

So yeah, I mean there is lots of things that we are looking at outside of VR, AR and 3D, those sorts of things. I mean you look at our Halloween products across our parks and we do a huge amount of business in the month of October and although there are some technology aspects of those attractions, you go through one of our house mazes for haunts or not scary farm, it’s going to be one of the most immersive experiences you are going to have and there is no VR, AR there.

Now you start thinking about what it could be like to add VR or AR on top of experience like that, that gets really interesting too, but immersive experience can be more than two things.

David Kruse: Got you, okay and we are almost done here and I got a couple more questions. And maybe you probably have already answered it, but I was curious if you kind of had a vision for amusement park in the future and that’s kind of a broad maybe ridiculous question. But you touched on a lot of it, but I don’t know if you have kind of a – what would be – how would that experience be different in 10 years? I mean we talked a lot of these Digital Tech maybe that’s a …

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, so looking 10 years out plus it’s really hard to say. I think one thing that the amusement park in the future will have though is that in a lot of ways it’s going to look similar to the amusement park of today, at least the big regional theme parks and the destination theme parks. So I don’t think that’s going away, it’s going to be really hard to replicate what a roller coaster is like. It’s going to be really hard to create a new experience like with Harry Potter is doing at Universal Hall, all excitement that’s got. But I think there will be digital layers to the amusement park experience and I think there will be in two categories.

So one is how technology will be used just to enhance the overall guest experience. So that could be leveraging mobile phone technology. We’ve introduced a mobile app that most of our products that have wait times, and way finding and integration with our digital photo product and in park Wi-Fi, so there is going to be some stuff that’s just enhancing the overall experience. Maybe down the road you are going to be able to do mobile payment and things like, you know just some more of the great success that Starbucks has had with their Starbucks app and you can pick a payment method.

And then the other categories is really leveraging some of this new technology to create new types of guest experiences and entertainment experiences and that’s what things like VR and AR, interactivity, 3D, that’s where that comes in and so I think these maybe, they maybe, there will be attractions that are built around those technologies, but I think there might also be a digital layer to the park.

So maybe at some point you are going to have your own augmented reality device and you are going to walk through the park and the entire park experience is going to be gamified by what you are seeing in your headset and because we are in a fixed physical location, you are going to be able to leverage that in a way that if you are just sort of walking around the park, like the public park or the Town Square, let say something like working on go cart use, it will be hard for us to do that.

So really hard to say and then I think like we talked about a little bit earlier to make a smaller entertainment models, really leveraging on some of the challenges that malls and retail are having these small operators, but look for ways to go back into the mall and so I think entertainment could help facilitate that. So thinks like Lego Land, Discovery Centers and Kidzania and other models could be interesting as well.

David Kruse: Well, that’s a good vision and last question, I’m just curious, do you get to visit many amusement parks whether its Cedar Fair, outside of Cedar Fair, you mentioned like the Harry Potter, do you get to – do you get to visit all of these?

Christian Dieckmann: Yeah, I do. I get out to all the water parks on a fairly regular basis and then we do go to other parks and check them out and see what the competition is up to and so I get to do a lot of things in the under the shield of market research that most people would be willing to do in their free time.

David Kruse: Yeah, I’m a bit jealous I think. If there is one ride that you had to ride everyday for the rest of your life, which ride would that be that you have been on?

Christian Dieckmann: That’s a tough question. You know I think I would – I’m not going to name a specific ride. I think a ride that you know is, that would be dynamic and have some repeatability on a daily basis, so it’s not the same thing every time, and I think that would be something that would be exciting about. And that’s a question we ask a lot of the time how repeatable is an experience.

David Kruse: Got you, make sense, okay. All right, well I think that’s a good way to end the podcast and this has been great. Christian, I definitely appreciate your time and hearing about your experience and what you have all done, and yeah, you have a pretty interesting job and you explained it quite well to us so I definitely learned a lot. So I appreciate it.

Christian Dieckmann: Thanks Dave, it’s been a lot of fun.

David Kruse: Definitely, and thanks everyone for listening to another episode of Flyover Labs. As always I greatly appreciate it. Thanks everyone. Thanks Christian.

Christian Dieckmann: Thanks.

David Kruse: Bye.