Markets in everything

by on June 6, 2011 at 2:22 pm in Economics | Permalink

The 10-employee park has five pieces of machinery, including a pair of Caterpillar D5 track-type bulldozers and three Caterpillar 315CL hydraulic excavators. Dig This sells three-hour packages that consist of a 30-minute safety and operation orientation followed by two hours of maneuvering either a bulldozer or excavator.

Guests can either dig a trench up to 10 ft deep or build an earthen mound; there are also skill tests like picking and moving 2,000-lb tires or scooping basketballs from atop safety cones. 

Packages are priced at $400, which reflects equipment maintenance and insurance costs. Patrons 14 and older can play in the dirt.

“Half of our customers are females, including housewives and grandmothers,” says company spokeswoman Cathy Wiedemer. “Throttling up a powerful engine and moving mounds of earth is very empowering.”

The full story is here and for the pointer I thank Chug.

1 dollymix June 6, 2011 at 2:27 pm

I thought this sounded fun til I got to the part about allowing kids to play in the dirt around the bulldozers – that sounds like a recipe for disaster.

2 Seth June 6, 2011 at 3:15 pm

I believe that was referring to playing in the dirt *with* the dozers.

3 Rahul June 6, 2011 at 3:31 pm

Would be quite a skill test to pick a kid with the dozer bucket….

4 doctorpat June 7, 2011 at 1:06 am

That’s pick up the entire kid.

5 Rahul June 6, 2011 at 2:27 pm

Sounds like my dream. I always wanted to drive an excavator since I as a kid but never know how to go about it. Damn the $400 price though; my flight lesson is cheaper.

6 Rahul June 6, 2011 at 2:48 pm

……I wish they add a crane or two as well.

7 mulp June 6, 2011 at 3:13 pm

Seems like a contractor with equipment but no government construction projects to pay the loans.

If only the unemployed would start small businesses and borrow the tax cut savings from the bank and build some new bridges that the government can’t afford because of the tax cuts to replace the red listed bridges that are at risk of falling down and killing people, like when Presidential candidate Pawlenty was governor.

8 Andrew' June 6, 2011 at 3:43 pm

Rent a hoe. Sounds dirty.

9 Tim "Beatdown" Ferrell June 6, 2011 at 7:11 pm

Blood libel much? That bridge collapse was not even partially from lack of maintenance. It was engineering failure, and it’s recklessly partisan of you to not gather the basic facts before labeling someone a killer.

10 Laserlight June 7, 2011 at 10:13 am

Tim, didn’t you notice who made that comment?

11 tom hynes June 6, 2011 at 9:45 pm

“Dear, I just spent $400 for two hours with a back hoe.”

I don’t see what could go wrong.

12 NickC June 6, 2011 at 3:50 pm

400 dollars! Over here in the UK we have “diggerland” for c25 dollars. Height restriction of 90cms – I suspect the kids love it almost as much as the parents.

13 Andrew Montgomery June 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm

Yes, but the machines in Diggerland are a lot smaller than these ones in Vegas. It’s a popular concept though – they already have four sites in the UK. I expect it to be a roaring success in Vegas too.

14 Careless June 7, 2011 at 2:52 pm

So they’d have let my daughter drive one around the time she turned two? That doesn’t seem right.

15 dearieme June 6, 2011 at 5:00 pm

“Height restriction of 90cms”: max or min?

16 save_the_rustbelt June 6, 2011 at 5:57 pm

It has been many years, but some of the great thrills I’ve ever had were opening the throttle on one of Cat’s big yellow machines. There is nothing like it I know of.

One day when some dirt piles needs knocked down I was allowed to try out the Cat D-9 dozer. Oh my goodness.

Some of the backhoe operators used to place bets about who could pick up a tennis ball (lunch hour amusement) without scuffing the ground. Amazing.

17 Trevin June 6, 2011 at 10:40 pm

I’ve always thought more people should have the pleasure of operating big equipment. For $400, however, one could rent a mini-excavator and have it delivered to their home for 24 hours. Not quite the same as operating a full-size excavator but still fun and possibly useful. Spend the day digging out a patio instead of just digging.

18 Mike June 6, 2011 at 11:17 pm

So now capital and people working for a negative wage have supplanted potential workers from digging holes and filling them back up again.

The last nail in the coffin of Keynesian fiscal policy has been driven!

19 AndrewL June 7, 2011 at 8:16 am

I wish there was a like button on here! 🙂

20 Tom June 7, 2011 at 12:37 pm


21 Dave June 7, 2011 at 9:17 am

Wasn’t this an old Tim Allen stand-up joke?

22 Silas Barta June 7, 2011 at 4:55 pm

This would probably be illegal if they found some way to put the new holes dug to profitable use (thereby getting people to *pay* to do work for them — negative wages).

Or if the women got “too much pleasure” from the vibrating seats.

23 Ray Ban Eyeglasses June 8, 2011 at 10:41 pm

This shows which they last very much lengthier and thus saving you income which could otherwise are actually utilized to purchase new ones.

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