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How can boysenberries, a beagle and some bandits take on the Mouse?

Make it an inside job.

The Knott’s Resort

Mission Objective

Sure, everyone loves Knott’s Berry Farm. It’s the place you went to as a kid, a favorite of your grandma and home of the world’s best fried chicken. But when was the last time you actually visited? The SoCal institution held its own as a legitimate contender to the Anaheim park until the 1990s when Disney strategically started targeting locals with Mickey’s Toon Town, the Indiana Jones Adventure and annual passes.

Strategic Flight Plan

Enter three Rocketeers – Mike Wheeler, Michele Wischmeyer and Bob Ochsner – they began their multi decade journey on the Knott’s payroll to transform the berry farm into a destination resort with multiple gates, record capital investment, branded hotel and restaurants and a year-long calendar of signature events leading to the acquisition by the country’s #3 theme park operator. Along the way, the trio used every marketing, promotional, strategic alliance, special event and PR tool in the war chest to help build Knott’s into what it is today.

Mission Results

  • Oversaw unprecedented annual attendance, revenue, and media coverage growth from 1993-2011 with a record number of annual passes sold.
  • Created a long-term strategy to position the multi-day Knott’s Resort featuring the Knott’s Soak City Waterpark, the Radisson Hotel Knott’s Berry Farm and a rejuvenated Knott’s Marketplace with a refreshed Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant and notable national restaurant franchises including TGIFridays and Johnny Rockets.
  • Expanded the Knott’s Soak City equity with waterparks in San Diego and Palm Springs; feeder markets to Knott’s Berry Farm.
  • Built global recognition for Halloween Haunt at Knott’s Scary Farm, the world’s first and still the biggest theme park Halloween event.

Mission Support

  • Marketing & Brand Development
  • Public Relations
  • Advertising & Promotions
  • Creative & Production
  • Website Development

See Our Work

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