For the moment, let's leave aside the qualitative judgment of where a "better time" can be had. The part that really gave me pause was the price. Is Knotts Berry Farm (or other regional theme parks) really half the price of Disney?
Let's look at three such parks--for completeness sake--from three different parts of the country. Around the corner from Disneyland in California, there's Knotts Berry Farm. In the east, we will look at Six Flags Great Adventure (from my own old stomping ground of Central New Jersey). Finally, I've included Cedar Point near Cleveland, Ohio. All three are very respectable parks, so they will offer at least close to a reasonable comparison.
A one-day Disney World pass costs $89.00. Meanwhile, gate admission at Knotts, Cedar Point, and Great Adventure cost $57.99, $51.99, and $61.99, respectively. So there might be some savings, but NOT "half the price."
I am not suggesting that you should avoid these regional parks. Heck, some of my fondest childhood memories include riding Batman: The Ride with my father after Easter dinners, or challenging my friends to Q-ZAR (think laser tag, but more 1990's). The point is, theme parks cost a lot to build and maintain (and insure). If it makes you squeamish to spend a few hundred dollars for a day with your family, there are plenty of other great things to do. But seriously, stop complaining.