Midway Talk


The ashes of late ride foreman, Emmett Cadle, were spread from atop Smokey Mountain Amusement's Sky Wheel in a ceremony at the Iredell County Fair in Troutman, North Carolina.  The ceremony took place on Labor Day, September 6, which was also Emmett's birthday.  Emmett passed away earlier this year.  His final wish was to have his ashes spread from the Sky Wheel, a ride he passionately moved for years.  Emmett was in his late sixties and had been a member of the industry for many years.  His daughter was born on Al Kunz's Century 21 Shows.  He also worked for Childress Shows, Nova Expositions where he moved a coaster, and Smokey Mountain Amusements.  Billy Clark, owner of Smokey Mountain Amusements told Carnival Magazine that Monday's ceremony was beautiful.  Emmett's two children and wife, Judi Cadle, were present.


Bernie Bolstad passed away on September 10, 2010.  Bernie was 81 and had spent a majority of his life in outdoor show business.  He also traveled throughout the world for 36 years as an American Red Cross field director with the Army, Navy and Air Force from 1955 to 1990.  Bernie recently contributed his large collection of family photos and notes about Ziegler Shows, which was run by his uncle, Charles Ziegler. 


Merriam’s Midway Shows rewarded eight individuals with Bicycles at the 2010 Steele County Free Fair in Owatonna, MN.  In the 17 years that Merriam’s Shows has provided the fair’s midway, they have given away 112 bicycles.  This year’s winners included a fairgoer from Germany.  The 92nd Steele County Free Fair ran from August 17 through August 22.  Attendance reached 285,605, which was the third largest fair ever.  Carnival revenue was up 7% from 2009.  Merriam’s Midway Shows is based in Somerset, Texas.


In fair news, an interesting contest was held at the Kansas State Fair this year—The U.S. Cellular Speed Texting Contest.  Amanda Mitchem, a senior at Kansas State University won the contest and received an award of $1,000.


According to the Tullahoma News and Guardian, the Tennessee State Fair is considering a move to the city of Manchester in Coffee County.  A proposal will be considered though there are concerns about the State Fair running too close to the Coffee County Fair.  State Fairgrounds have been in Nashville for 100 years, but plans are in place to convert the property into a $2 million park.  Although a location for the 2011 Tennessee State Fair has not been finalized, the dates are already set.  The 156th Tennessee State Fair will run September 9 – 18.


The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) announced Andrew Lee has been named Executive Director for the trade association’s new office in the Asia-Pacific region.  As the leader of IAAPA Asia Pacific, Lee is responsible for expanding and enhancing the association’s programs and services in the region and will oversee government relations, communications, membership development, education, and Asian Attractions Expo.  Lee started his post on September 16 in Hong Kong.


Preliminary numbers show the Oregon State Fair brought in $2.5 million, up considerably from 2009.  Attendance was up 14% compared to last year with a little less than 400,000 fairgoers this year.  Indications are that fairgoers spent more time on the grounds this year and more fairgoers returned to the grounds for multiple visits in 2010.  Funtastic Shows of Portland, Oregon provided the midway for the 2010 Oregon State Fair.


Victoria Secret Model Adriana Lima recently enjoyed the North American Midway Entertainment midway at the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto.  She rode N.A.M.E.’s Giant Wheel and is reported to have enjoyed midway games as well as mini donuts and deep-fried butter at the event.  Also according to N.A.M.E., “at the Illinois State Fair, Unit Manager, Pat Repp proudly took the Stanley Cup won by the Chicago Blackhawks for a ride on the Century Wheel.”


Congratulations to Wayne Kunz and Don Larson.  They have both been inducted into N.A.M.E.’s Lifetime Achievement Hall of Fame.  2010 marks Wayne’s 63rd year in the amusement industry.  Don’s career with the amusement business has now spanned almost five decades.  They are the first two inductees to the Hall of Fame.


On September 26, Chris Atkins of Luehrs Ideal Rides and Amber Swedgan of N.A.M.E. competed in the Beauty vs. the Beast competition to raise money for educational scholarships.  The race included a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike ride, and 13.1-mile run.  Amber won the race by a difference of 14 minutes.  Over $30,000 was raised for scholarships offered by the OABA, IAFE, and Showman’s League of America.  “We had amazing support from the industry,” says Amber.


The IAAPA Attractions Expo returns to Orlando November 15 – 19.  More than 25,000 participants from 100 countries will benefit from the more than 90 education sessions, daily networking events, and products and services from more than 1,000 exhibitors.


Checkers Industrial Safety Products, Inc. has expanded its line of Guard Dog Cable Protectors to include eight new Low Profile designs, four of which can have optional rubber pad added to them for increased traction.  Contact Checkers for more info and see next month’s New Products section in Carnival Magazine.


Also new is Gold Medal Products, Karamel Baby.  The Gold Medal Karamel Baby is an inexpensive way to add freshly baked caramel corn to any business creating year round profits.  The product was just in time for National Popcorn Poppin’ Month in October.


Longtime Carnival Magazine contributor, James D. Withrow, is under hospice care.  He needs our prayers and support. If you would like to send him a card, you may mail it to 3035 Redwood Dr., North Palm Springs, CA 92262-2087.