April 2015 Midway Talk
Former Showmen’s League of America President, James H. Drew III, has become an ambassador for Wings Watch Company. The watch company chooses outstanding people in their fields from the United States and around the world to represent it.
In making his presentation, Frank Christian, president of Wings Watch and former photographical historian of Augusta National Golf Club, said: “We are very honored to have Mr. Drew as a Wings Watch ambassador. Mr. Drew, known throughout the U.S. for his specialty in show business, is also known locally as an outstanding pilot with ratings in both multi-engines and instrument.”
Wings Watch Company is distinctive in that a pilot’s ratings are displayed as a red chevron on the black metal band and the pilot’s wings are engraved on its fastening latch. Drew, a former two-term member of the Augusta Aviation Commission, has been active in aviation circles since 1963.
Recently, Bill Bullis passed away. His early days in the midway industry were spent on Klein Amusements and, later, Serie Fun Shows, each a midwestern carnival. With Serie, he was a Manager for a decade.
Next, Bill established himself, with wife Terry in tow, as an independent ride owner. His arsenal included Wisdom's Gravitron and Castle, respectively, a pair of Hampton kiddies plus an Eli Mini-Ferris Wheel. His headline attraction was a 1970s-manufactured Mack Himalaya that he secured from Arnold Amusements in 1990. Bill altered the piece to operate it sans the canvas roof.
In 2001, Bill purchased Arbroo Shows in the northeast and operated it for several seasons. He later sold out with Pat Guthrie of Georgia's Gold Medal Shows acquiring the "Himi", refurbishing it and placing the "music ride" for sale.
Besides Terry, daughter Jennifer and son Troy survive Bill -- Dan Zapata, Contributor.
The IAFE Management Conference will be held April 30-May 3, at the Millennium Hotel in Buffalo, New York. Designed for upper level management staff, this program is only open to fair members. This conference always features cutting edge programming, but this year's is thought to be exceptional.
Keynote speaker Dan Quiggle's acclaimed session on "Lead Like Reagan" will kick things off. Breakout workshop sessions and panel discussions will cover everything from marketing to programming to operations (final details announced soon). Highlights will include a chance to experience the brand new, state-of-the-art Agriculture Discovery Center at the Erie County Fairgrounds in Hamburg, New York, as well as an exciting evening featuring a daylight and illuminated night view of the Niagara Falls.
The OABA's 50th Annual Member Meeting, held last month in Tampa, Florida, in conjunction with the IISA trade show and Fare Foods trade show, plus NICA events, with over 400 members attending, witnessed many changes in the leadership of this trade association.
Chairman Chris Lopez turned the gavel over to Michael Wood, as the 2015 Chair, with Officers Tom Gaylin, E. J. Dean moving into the First and Second Vice Chairs, respectively. Jay Strates, formerly a seven year Director, was elected by the board to become Third Vice Chair. Larry Yaffe was re-elected as Treasurer and the following Directors were elected by the members attending this meeting: Charlene Leavitt and Doug Burtch. The following Alternate Directors were elected: Patrick Sheridan, Scott Siefker and Steve Turner.
Trustee Bill Johnson, having served on the Board for the the past 15 years, steps down as an Officer, however we know he will always be a great OABA supporter.
The OABA's Hall of Fame recipients included Jean Clair, with Luehrs' Ideal Rides and Clair's Classic Foods, an OABA Trustee in 1996, who broke into the then-male dominated board to chair the OABA that year, after serving as a director.
Congratulations to both OABA's Pioneer and Hall of Fame class of 2015!
The Maryland State Fair & Agricultural Society, Inc., in a proactive safety measure for its employees and Maryland State Fairgrounds visitors, has expanded its safety program to include more Automated External Defibrillators (AED).
According to a recent Occupational Health & Safety Magazine article, “Having an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) nearby when Sudden Cardiac Arrest strikes increases the survival rate by nearly 70 percent.”
The portable medical devices, that offer voice prompts with step-by-step instructions, are located in the Cow Palace, 4-H/Home Arts Building, Exhibition Hall, Farm & Garden Building, Administration Office and Maintenance Shop.
“The purchase, placement and installation of the devices has been overseen by our Maryland State Fair Safety Director Bill Connolly,” said Maryland State Fair General Manager D. Andrew “Andy” Cashman. “Hundreds of thousands of people visit our fairgrounds each year. We think it is important to have these life-saving devices available in the event of an emergency.”
June 2015 Midway Talk
Ray Cammack Shows has eight new rides on the midway for 2015. The new rides include a Monkey Maze, a Wacky Worm, a Twister, a wave swinger, the Pelican Splash, a Galaxy Coaster, and a KMG OMG. The OMG was declared to be the scariest ride on the midway at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo by the Houston News. Ray Cammack Shows will have a new date in their route for 2015 as well. They have added the Rock In Rio Music Festival in Las Vegas, Nevada to their schedule. The event will be two weekends, May 9-10 and May 16-17.
Already looking ahead to 2016, the show has on order a European bumper car, the Music Trip, and a new gondola wheel. Chris Lopez, vice president for Ray Cammack Shows, did not want to share any details about the new gondola wheel except to say it was really special.
Powers Great American Midways has added to their midway for 2015. Their new attractions are a Zamperla Family Wheel, a Wisdom Monster Truck Ride, a Wisdom Raiders, A Wisdom Sizzler, a Majestic Charlie Chopper, a Gold Star Puppy Dog, four Hampton umbrella rides, and a used Reverchon Himalaya. They have also added three additional concessions trailers for pizza, popcorn, and fried dough.
Billy and Sarah Pross have purchased D & B Shows in Lone Tree, Iowa from Dave and Bonnie Tripses and renamed the carnival Sweet Fun Carnival. Formerly independent concessionaires, the Pross’s will now maintain their concessions route as well as their new carnival route. In addition to the dates already committed to by D & B Shows, Sweet Fun Carnival has added the Corydon Old Settlers Fair in Corydon, Iowa and the Iowa County Fair in Marengo, Iowa to their route. New rides that will be added to their midway are a kiddie ferris wheel, a whip, a king car ride, and a rock-o-plane they are in the process of refurbishing.
According to Syracuse.com, the New York State Fair is having difficulties in booking musical acts at its grandstand this year. By the end of April, 2014, they had already announced five acts and then added two more, Kid Rock and Pitbull in May. Currently for 2015, they have only booked one, Eric Church. Officials project this trend will be a challenge for many state and local fairs in 2015. During a meeting of the New York State Fair Advisory Board, Acting Fair Director Troy Waffner expressed concern over the difficulties of booking acts this year. He told the board, “The price of artists has escalated beyond belief.”
Waffner said the fair has made offers to twenty-one artists, including Phish, Jimmy Buffet, and Florida Georgia Line. Almost all of the offers have been declined.
Bonnie Brosious, marketing director and talent buyer for the Allentown Fair in Pennsylvania, said fairs have had an especially difficult time competing with major music festivals in recent years. Today’s most popular artists seek out major festivals like Bonnaroo, Coachella, or Lollapalooza.
The slow start in 2015 does not bode well for ticket sales at the grandstand.
North American Midway Entertainment has signed a new five year agreement with the Kentucky State Fair to be their midway provider beginning in August, 2015. North American Midway Entertainment has been the midway provider for the fair for the past nine years.
“We are thrilled to continue our successful relationship with the Kentucky State Fair to provide approximately forty five of our finest rides for the whole family to enjoy at one of our signature events,” said Jeff Blomsness, co-owner of NAME. “Our continued dedication to this event will make our partnership over the next decade monumental. We are grateful for this opportunity.”
NAME has also signed a ten year contract with the Western Fair District in London, Ontario as the event’s sole midway provider. The 2015 Western Fair will be held September 11 through September 20. NAME’s other Canadian fairs include, the Calgary Stampede, Edmonton K-Days, Saskatoon Prairieland Exhibition, and the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto.
Skerbeck Entertainment Group of Escanaba, Michigan, has purchased two new rides. Sonja Skerbeck, marketing director for Skerbeck Family Carnival, says, “Customers on our midways this summer will see our new children’s carousel. The ride was manufactured in Poland by Luna Park and has a lot of cute features that will appeal to younger children.”
The ride was delivered and in operation for the West Fest at John Ball Park in Grand Rapids, Michigan which ran April 23 through April 26.
Skerbeck Entertainment Group has also purchased a KMG Inversion to be delivered in late Fall 2015.
These rides represent an investment of almost a million dollars for the company.
The Erie County Agricultural Society hosted more than 300 international fair professionals at the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, New York for the 2015 International Association of Fairs and Expositions Management Conference April 30-May 3 and the IAFE Zone 1 meeting held May 14-16. Both events utilized the facilities of the Millennium Hotel and the Fairgrounds in Hamburg.
“We were honored to host this distinguished group of leaders from the fair industry,” said Assistant Fair Manager Jessica Underberg. “The upgrading of our livestock facilities and the opening of the Agriculture Discovery Center during the 175th Fair in 2014 was a big factor in bringing the IAFE seminars to Western New York.”
This was the first year that the IAFE Management Conference was held in Western New York. The weekend was designed for upper level fair leaders and included workshops, keynote speakers and opportunities for networking. Attendees represented 37 states and provinces, as well as the United Kingdom and Australia.
Two weeks later, the IAFE Zone 1 Meeting saw fair representatives from Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Brunswick, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Pennsylvania, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Rhode Island and Vermont. Sessions focused on agriculture, facility usage, marketing, entertainment and security planning. The Zone 1 Meeting was last hosted by the Erie County Fair in 1991. While in Western New York, delegates had an opportunity to tour the Erie County Fairgrounds and visit local attractions.
“The fair industry promotes the open sharing of ideas, concepts and best practices,” said Underberg. “In the past, members of the Erie County Fair have traveled across North America to bring ideas back to Hamburg. Our hope is that other fairs can learn something from our successes and from other fair colleagues, while in Buffalo.”
The International Association of Fairs and Expositions was founded in 1885 and serves state, provincial, regional, and county fairs, exhibitions and expositions. Its membership is currently made up of more than 1,100 fairs and 900 members around the world. The IAFE primary mission is to promote and encourage the development and improvement of agricultural fairs, shows and expositions.
The Erie County Agricultural Society is a private, not-for-profit membership organization. First established in 1819, the society is the oldest civic organization in Western New York. The fair currently ranks as the 10th largest fair in North America, as compared with all state and county fairs and expositions. The 2015 Erie County Fair will be held August 12-23.
May 2015 Midway Talk
Bob Johnson, President of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association (OABA), has been leading the charge to ask Congress to instruct the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the United States Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS) to continue processing H-2B prevailing wage determinations and labor certifications for the seasonal, international workers so many of their members rely on to ensure their seasons run smoothly and professionally.
On March 5, 2015 the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it will no longer accept or process requests for H-2B prevailing wage determinations or labor certifications in light of a March 4 decision in Perez v. Perez, No. 3:14-cv-682 (N.D. Florida, March 4, 2015). The DOL suspension of H-2B processing would leave small and seasonal employers without any source for the seasonal labor they have relied upon for some 15 years. Shortly thereafter, USCIS/DHS also suspended processing H-2B approvals. This suspension could potentially devastate seasonal employers, their American workers, and the fairs that support community events and agriculture to their state’s economy. OABA estimated that about 2,300 employers and 33,000 H-2B workers would be affected by this halt in processing seasonal, guest workers. Economists have estimated that for each H-2B worker, 4.64 American jobs are created and sustained.
This fatal blow to the H-2B program came on the heels of another disturbing announcement. The H-2B cap for the first half of fiscal 2015 was reached on January 26, dramatically impacting the many carnivals beginning their seasons with no hope of being able to hire workers until April 1. This arbitrary cap limited the number of H-2B employees that could be hired in the United States to 66,000 annually or 33,000 for each half of the fiscal year. Previously returning H-2B workers in compliance with all of their visa requirements were exempt from the cap, but even that exemption had expired.
Due to the tremendous pressure applied by the OABA and other organizations and industries that rely so heavily on seasonal labor, the Department Of Labor filed a motion to stay the decision in Perez v. Perez until April 15. Additionally, DOL and DHS will be issuing joint Interim Final Rule that they intend to announce by April 30, 2015.
While so much attention has been given to the Blue Unit of Reithoffer Shows because of the New Mexico State Fair, the Orange Unit will certainly be playing a packed schedule as well. Under the leadership of Pat Reithoffer, the Orange Unit will begin its season in the Maryland area playing locations throughout the Northeast until it returns south to the Upper South Carolina State Fair in Greenville, South Carolina. Previously held by Jeff Brady’s Playworld Amusements, the event is new to Reithoffer, and it will run from August 27 through September 7. This event ties in well with the four other fairs, Reithoffer plays in North Carolina and South Carolina. Also, the Orange Unit has added some new equipment including a Mulligan Wheel recently renovated with LED lights that was purchased from Myers International Midways and a new Wacky Worm.
Charlotte, North Carolina theme park Carowinds, owned by Cedar Fair Entertainment Company, introduced the Fury 325, the world’s fastest and tallest giga coaster, March, 27, 2015. The Fury 325 is to simulate the wild, daring and spontaneous flight of the hornet. Riders will board one of the three 32-passenger open air trains and begin their ascent to the top of a 325-foot tall hill (over 30 stories) followed by an initial 81-degree first drop. The train then races through a series of hills, curves and quick transitions while reaching speeds of up to 95 miles per hour. "We are making history here at Carowinds, and creating another reason people can be proud to live in the Carolinas. The opening of Fury 325 gives Carowinds two of the top 10 tallest roller coasters in North America," said Mike Fehnel, Carowinds vice president and general manager. "We want to be the destination for families near and far, and the debut of Fury 325 coupled with the other exciting experiences for the 2015 season puts us in the driver's seat." Fury 325 is part of a planned $50 million multi-year investment to bring new life to founder Pat Hall's original vision for Carowinds. This revitalization also includes a Funtime Sling Shot which catapults thrill-seekers nearly 300-feet into the air, providing them brief weightlessness, before rotating them head over heels.
Kelly Tuckwiller Collins has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of the State Fair of West Virginia in Lewisburg, West Virginia. Jerry Cook, Chair of the Board, stated that, “Kelly’s diverse skill sets, previous experience and dynamic personality make her the ideal choice to lead the State Fair organization. “
Collins earned her Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Master of Science in Integrated Marketing Communications from West Virginia University. She joined the State Fair staff in 2012 as Agricultural Competitions Manager and was promoted to Operations Manager in 2014. She is also a graduate of the International Association of Fairs and Events Institute of Fair Management.
The 2015 State Fair is scheduled for August 14-23 and will promote the theme, “It Feels Like Fun. It Feels Like Fair.”
Reno County youth spoke out to the Kansas State Fair Board for the second year in a row to ban smoking from the midway and confine it to a few designated smoking areas. The youth organization first presented the idea last March by presenting the fair board with a clear case of 2,650 cigarette butts they had collected in one hour at the fair. While currently smoking is not permitted in the buildings or the grandstand, the group strongly contends that expanding it to the entire grounds would eliminate second-hand smoke exposure at the fair creating a healthier, more desirable atmosphere for fairgoers. In addition to public comments and statistics, the group presented case studies of several state fairs that implemented a smoking policy and all tabulated an increase in attendance the next year. The Indiana State Fair, for example, saw an attendance increase of 4,000 in 2013, while the Minnesota State Fair implemented a policy in 2013 and enjoyed an attendance increase of 110,000 the next year. Fair Board President, Ron Hinrichsen, responded, “We appreciate your hard work. However, we want to look at the pros and cons before we can make a decision. It has gotten our attention, and we will look at it from logistics and from expense.”
Belle City Amusements was pleased with their performance at the Florida Strawberry Festival, Plant City, Florida in spite of attendance being slightly off from last year. The eleven day event lost most of the first weekend to rain, and yet they were still able to draw about 520,000 compared to the 535,000 of last year. Paul Davis, manager of the Florida Strawberry Festival, was thrilled with Belle City Amusements which has several years left on its current contract. “They put on a good show and work very hard. Charles and his people do everything we ask,” complimented Davis. Charles Panecek, owner of Belle City Amusements was also happy with the final outcome, “the last Saturday and Sunday were the biggest we have ever had.”
Along with Belle City Amusements, Michael Wood brought in three rides, the Magnum, Techno Power, and Daytona while Amusements of America booked a roller coaster. Additionally, Family Attractions booked several rides as well as Arnold’s Amusements.
Nik Wallenda, famed tightrope walker, will attempt his longest walk ever at this year’s Wisconsin State Fair. On August 11 at 7:00 p.m. Wallenda will attempt to walk a wire more than 10 stories above the Milwaukee Mile for 1,560 feet.
A nine-time world record holder, Wallenda is a seventh-generation member of the Flying Wallenda family who has performed since the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Most recently, Nik Wallenda appeared in Chicago last November, when he walked between two skyscrapers on a wire that rose nearly 100 feet from start to finish. State Fair entertainment director Bruce Sullivan said two cranes will hold Wallenda's wire, stretching from turn one to turn four of the track.
"I just love the wow factor," said Sullivan. "When I saw him do his walk in Chicago, I was just so caught up in the drama."
Reserved seating for Wallenda's walk at the fair will be available in the grandstand for $15. Tickets went on sale Tuesday, March 31 at 10:00 a.m. at WiStateFair.com and the Fair Ticket Office.
Carnival Magazine is pleased to announce the addition of Buddy Barlow as finance director. With a tremendous background in banking and commercial finance, Buddy will be a tremendous asset to the Carnival Magazine staff. Sharon Barlow will continue her duties as marketing director. However, she has also been named managing editor.
March 2015 Midway Talk
Gary Montgomery of Sam's Amusements
is adding two Dalton umbrella rides for the 2015 season. The rides are a Down
of the Farm Tractor and a Motorcycle Jump.
The show sold its Orient Express ride as Sam's also has a Go-Gator.
Smith Amusements has traded for a
new Mindwinder, manufactured by Amusements Unlimited. According to Steve Smith, the show traded its
old Mindwinder in on the new one.
Smith also refurbished its
Loop-O-Plane and it now sports a new paint scheme.
Vern Tripse of Next Generations
Shows has purchased a used Sellner Spin-the-Apple. The Apple is replacing the King Flying Pig
(originally Flying Tiger). Tripse is
seeking an original paint scheme for the Flying Pig before selling it.
Jim and Gladys Houghton of Houghton
Enterprises (Cochranville, Pa.) celebrated a wedding at the end of 2014. Their son, Jason Houghton, married Sara
Cunningham on Nov. 16.
responsibilities in the show and Sara works in the office.
New York Fair Convention announced the following award winners for 2014: Fair
Person of the Year, Mark St. Jacques of Washington Country Fair; Workhorse of
the Year, Sarah Lloyd McAndrew; Show Person of the Year, Joey Sofo of Playland
Amusements. Officers of the New York Show People's Association for the year
are: President, Tim Dean, Dean's Concessions; 1st vice president,
Joey Sofo, Playland Amusements; 2nd vice president, Joe Zutter,
Zutter Design; Secretary, Sarah McAndrew, Lloyds Concessions; and treasurer,
Alberta Hawkins, Hawkins Amusement Rides.
John Burr of the Lewis County Fair was selected for the NYSAAF Hall of Fame.
The George Washington's Birthday
Celebration in Laredo, Texas, has announced that (Charles) Leonard Martin will be the Grand
Marshall for that festival's Grand International Parade. That event
occurs during 20th Century Independent Midway's (Leonard's company) second
weekend of its annual 12-day run in Laredo.
Reithoffer Shows is refurbishing a Chance Zipper and a Wisdom
Tornado. An unspecified event in South Carolina has reportedly been added to
Midway Rides of Utica will play fewer split bookings in 2015. Two
rides are being refurbished and converted to LED lights.
Main Event Amusements is adding a couple major rides and at least
one kiddie ride for 2015. A Syracuse area community event has been added
to the route in July, replacing S&T Magic Amusements on the midway.
Gillette Shows has signed another western New York event in July.
Powers & Thomas Midway Entertainment expects to play at
least one New York event, an Allegany community festival.
Bates Bros. will play the same three events in New York again in
2015, fairs at Dunkirk and Little Valley
and the Corn Festival in Eden, which it added for 2014. The show is adding a
second Eli Eagle 16 Wheel for 2015. It
will replace a 12-seat wheel on the second unit.
Ronald Burback has reported that Funtastic Shows (Portland, Ore.)
has purchased a new Highlight Wheel from Tommy Coffee and a Rockstar from Eric
Bates. Burback said that the company
also added another generator.
January 2015 Midway Talk
Jerry H. Geren
carnival world was saddened on Oct. 8, with the sudden death of Jerry H.
Geren. Along with his wife, Joanna,
Geren owned and operated Geren Rides Inc., based in Valdosta, Ga.
is a four-generation show.
to Joanna, survivors include Glenn and Diane Geren (son and daughter-in-law)
and Hilary Geren (granddaughter).
Kentucky State Fair
Kentucky State Fair has recently signed a new five-year contract with North
American Midway Entertainment to be its midway provider, for August
2015-2019. NAME has been the midway
provider for the fair for the past nine years.
thrilled to continue our successful relationship with the Kentucky State Fair,
to provide approximately 45 of our finest rides for the whole family to enjoy
at one of our signature events," said Jeff Blomsness, co-owner of NAME. "Our continued dedication to this event will
make our partnership in the future even stronger. We are grateful for this opportunity."
On Nov. 18, the
International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) announced
that rides and carnival games developer Bob Cassata and legendary amusement
park operator Richard "Dick" Knoebel were inducted into the IAAPA
Hall of Fame. The IAAPA Hall of Fame
honors individuals for their significant and lasting contributions to the
worldwide attractions industry. The inductions were announced during the
Kickoff Event for IAAPA Attractions Expo 2014 in Orlando.
"We are excited to welcome Bob
Cassata and Dick Knoebel as the newest inductees to the IAAPA Hall of
Fame," said Ron Gustafson, 2014 chairman of
the IAAPA Hall of Fame and Archives Committee and director of marketing and
public relations for Quassy Amusement Park in Middlebury, Connecticut.
"The products and guest experiences they have created have thrilled and
delighted amusement fans for years. Their passion for our industry is profound
and they both deserve this prestigious recognition for their contributions."
Games Innovator: Bob
Cassata, Bob's Space Racers, Daytona Beach, Fla.
Bob Cassata and his company, Bob's Space Racers (BSR), revolutionized the
carnival games business and adapted it to the worldwide theme park
business. The first game Cassata
developed was a three-pin bowling alley game at the Daytona Beach
Boardwalk. From there, he built
"Pitch-Til-You-Win" and "Balloon Dart" games that he
mounted on a burned out house trailer he assembled in his garage. In 1970, Cassata developed one of the world's
first electronic group games, the "Space Racer," just after the first
Apollo lunar mission. The game was so
popular people began asking for Bob's "Space Racer" games, which led
to the name of his company. In 1972, BSR
sold the first mechanized group game, which for the first time, allowed players
to compete against each other instead of against the operator. Throughout
the 1970s and 1980s, BSR created several games, including
"Whac-A-Mole," a game that's still popular today. BSR holds 22 patents and more than 50
trademarks and is currently doing business in 120 countries. Cassata earned the respect of the industry by
developing games that were reliable, fair, and, most of all, fun.
Amusement Park Legend: Richard "Dick" Knoebel,
Knoebels Grove Amusement Resort, Elysburg, Pa.
Dick Knoebel was raised in the attractions industry, as his parents founded the
Knoebels park in 1926 in Elysburg, Pa.
In 1971, he was elected president of the Pennsylvania Amusement Parks
Association and in 1984, was instrumental in the development and adoption of
the Pennsylvania Ride Inspection Act. Since 1988, Knoebel has served as the
president of the family business and has been at the forefront of preserving
and restoring vintage rides ever since.
Legendary projects include rebuilding "The Phoenix" roller
coaster, which debuted in Texas in 1947 and was reopened at Knoebels park in
1985, and saving "The Twister," which was purchased in Colorado and
made its debut at Knoebels in 1999. He has also built first-of-their-kind
attractions such as a flume ride with wood supports and the "Flying
Turns," the only wooden bobsled-style roller coaster in existence that was
inspired by a similar classic attraction of the 1930s. In addition,
Knoebel has been an active IAAPA volunteer, including serving as a member of
the Board of Directors from 1999 to 2002.
IAAPA Hall of Fame Honors
Those Who Have Made Lasting Contributions to the Global Industry
The IAAPA Hall of Fame was established in 1990 to honor legends and pioneers
for their significant and lasting contributions to the growth and development
of the attractions industry. In the past
24 years, dozens of industry pioneers from around the world have been inducted
to the Hall of Fame, including P. T. Barnum (founder of the American Museum);
Walt Disney (Walt Disney Company); Milton Hershey (Hersheypark); Bo Kinntorph
(Liseberg); Will Koch (Holiday World and Splashin' Safari); Franz Mack (Mack
Rides/Europa-Park); Bob Rogers (BRC Imagination Arts); Jay Stein (Universal
Studios Florida); Geoffrey Thompson (Blackpool Pleasure Beach); and Antonio
Raymond Iden, 37, of Waterford, Mich., died in a highway accident on Aug. 12,
2014. The Jeep that Iden was driving
crashed on Interstate 90, 32 miles east of Buffalo, Wyoming.
of American Concessions, had just worked a motorcycle rally in Sturgis,
S.D. That event ended on Aug. 10 and
Iden was then heading west.
from Berkeley Springs, W.V., Iden was introduced to the concessions business by
Jim McCready of Bobo Concessions in Youngstown, Ohio. McCready has operated Bobo the Clown dunk
tanks since 1958. According to McCready,
he considered Iden a son. "He called me
Dad and I called him son," said McCready.
service for Iden was held on Sept. 6, in Warfordsburg, Pa. Donations in his memory may be made to the Thomas Iden
Memorial Fund, in care of the Harness Funeral Home, 351 N. Adams, Buffalo,
Iden is survived by four sons and
two daughters. Iden's parents also
survive: Thomas Iden of Winchester, W.V., and Gloria Null of Lexington,
N.C. During his childhood, Iden also
spent a lot of time with his grandmother, Nancy Iden, of Hancock, Md.■