The Rumor Was Right: Thor Buying Part of Wonder Wheel Park
Remember that rumor we posted last week about Thor Equities negotiating to buy the property where Wonder Wheel Park's kiddie rides are located? It was more than a rumor.
Stephen Witt reports in the Bay News that Mr. Sitt is close to buying the property:
Sitt is in closing to purchase the properties for $11 million, according to Dennis Vourderis, who with his brother Steve, own and operate the Wonder Wheel along with several other nearby rides.While Mr. Vourderis's point about having a hard time matching Mr. Sitt's offer is well taken, we will note that Wonder Wheel tickets are $5.00 each, not $2.00.
The first section currently houses a kiddie park, which the Vourderis Brothers operate right off the Boardwalk and the second section is on Jones Walk.
Jack Ward of Ward Realty Corporation currently owns both properties.
“Thor has decided to add to his collection of real estate,” said Vourderis. “My brother and I both have the option to purchase [the kiddie park property] because we are on long-term lease with Ward dating back to 1970,” he added.
Vourderis said part of the legal terms of the lease is they had to be notified if Ward was selling the property and given 30 days to match the offer. They recently received the notification of the pending sale. Neither Ward nor Sitt could be reached for comment about the sale at press time.
“We’re in kind of a difficult situation. At $2 a pop we’d have to sell a lot of [Wonder Wheel] tickets to match the offer,” said Vourderis.
Vourderis said the brothers do have some leverage, though, as the lease also states that even if the property is sold, the long-term lease states the kiddie park can’t be moved until the Wheel turns 100 in 2020.
We have always wondered when--not if--the Wonder Wheel Park would be snapped up by Mr. Sitt as it is a kind of hole in the donut given that he owns a tremendous amount of land around it. Now, the question is, how much more property is Thor going to acquire?
Coney Island Rumor Mill: Is Mr. Sitt Trying to Buy Part of Wonder Wheel Park?
UPDATE: As we noted last week, the front portion of the Wonder Wheel Park land is owned by Ward Realty Corp. The back portion is owned by Wonder Wheel Inc.
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