April / May 2011

Food Service Spotlight

AZA Report – Controlled Quality: Keeping Food Service Payroll Costs Down
Observing and anticipating attendance and sales patterns is a crucial aspect of controlling food service payroll costs at zoos and aquariums. Although certain events – such as spring break or a new exhibit – may be “no-brainers” in terms of staffing needs, there are often more variables than constants.

Five Tips for Controlling Food Service Payroll Costs at Zoos and Aquariums

Kings of the Grill – The Art and Science of Barbecue
Barbecue is hot at parks and attractions from Texas to Florida. Although this traditionally southern specialty borrows its flavors from longtime recipes that have been enjoyed by generations, many of the dishes can be customized for the leisure attraction audience.

A Chef’s Take on Barbecue
Aaron Banks, director of food service for Carowinds Park in Charlotte, N.C., dishes on pulled pork, the southern tradition and why barbecue is so popular at theme parks today.

Three Secrets to BBQ Success

The Main Course Toward Perfect Parties – Making the Food Fit the Special Event at Destination Locations
Food is an essential ingredient in throwing a successful party, especially one hosted at a leisure entertainment location. And it is often up to the staff to guide a client’s choices so the menu will be sure to please.

Food Spotlight Industry News

Business Strategies

2011: Lessons Learned from the First Quarter
The first quarter of any year usually sets the tone for the rest of the year and 2011’s first quarter has been quite interesting.  The word that sums it all up is “uncertainty.” However, the amusement industry is starting to show some life.  Shows held during the first quarter, especially the Amusement Expo, were busy and attended by those who were interested in expanding their businesses. Additionally, interest rates are still low and great financing and leasing deals are available industry wide.


An Industry Association Worldview: Coming Together for Perspective and Profit
The amusement and the attraction trade share a number of common ideals, and one of these is an innate belief in the need for an associational structure. But as the teeth of the current Global Financial Condition (GFC) start to bite, some in the market begin to ask the same question – “What exactly are these associations doing for me?” In this feature we hope to chart the main international associations – their scope and the developments that are shaping their structure.

Attraction Operations Report

Ticketing and Wristbands: Not Taking a Pass on Efficiency and Safety
Tickets are more than an admission pass into an attraction, park or family entertainment center. For owners and operations managers, tickets not only keep track of their guests, but they also help to maintain security and keep attractions running on schedule.
To read this article, please visit www.tapmag.com.
special sections

The Large Park Report

Anticipating a Season to Remember: A Summer 2011 Preview
With winter behind us in most places and summer creeping closer, now is a great time to preview what the industry’s larger parks and resorts have in store for this year’s peak season.  While none of these parks will offer something as big as Universal Orlando’s 2010 boy wonder named Harry Potter, several are bringing highly anticipated attractions to the table.


A Divine Place to Be: Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park
Just as Mount Olympus was the divine kingdom of the Olympian gods and the most worshipped place in Greece, family-owned and operated Mt. Olympus Water & Theme Park, located in Wisconsin, is quickly making its mark in history, one mile at a time. The park covers over 200 acres in the Wisconsin Dells tourism area and borders over a mile and a half of the Wisconsin Dells famous Parkway “the Strip.”
44  |  Waterpark Product News

Family Entertainment Center Report – BPAA

Food at Bowling Centers: Advice to Maximize Your Profits
Advice on ways to create loyalty and capture your deserved portion of the food and beverage market, and to up-sell the customer once they are in front of you.

Family Entertainment Center Report – Bowling Report

Pro-Shops Offer Bowling Center Customers Both Sound Equipment and Sound Advice
Bowling centers know that if their customers enjoy the game, they will come back for more. To inspire their customers to become better bowlers, many centers have added a pro-shop. These independent entities are the source for equipment, and sometimes coaching, to spark the imaginations of patrons.

Customer Service Translates into a Perfect Game for Pro-Shop Owners

Family Entertainment Center Report – Industry Owls

Safety and Security Questions You Might Not Want to Hear
What does safety mean to a family fun center?  Read the insights of someone who understands how to address the risks inherent in fun center operations.

Retail Space: The New Frontier
At one point in our industry, finding the right space at the right price was often the most difficult part of opening an indoor Family Entertainment Center – harder in some cases than attaining the financing. As the economic landscape has changed, so too have options regarding obtaining prime real estate.

Family Entertainment Center Report – Mini-Golf & Go-Kart Report

Food for Thought: Listening to the Fun Food Experts
Increasing food sales at miniature golf and go-kart parks requires taking inventory of more than just the food items on hand.  It starts with evaluating your food service operation and the type of attraction it complements to balance the menu with the venue.
73  |  Mini-golf Product News

Family Entertainment Center Report – ILTA

A Message from ILTA Membership Services

Why Attend the Laser Tag Convention?
The ILTA Membership Services Director addresses the many ways attendees will benefit from the Laser Tag Convention in Orlando, Fla., in May. The convention will again be held in conjunction with the Roller Skating Association International’s trade event.

Spotlight on Critical Business Decisions: Selecting a Vendor
Advice to help those looking at vendors for laser tag equipment to avoid headaches
and confusion and choose the best system for their facilities.

Laser Tag Product News

Family Entertainment Center Report – RSA Report

Food Service Equipment Tips for Hits, and How to Avoid Misses
Whether you are stocking a snack bar, concession stand or café, you must find food equipment that works best for your business needs. Consider space, time and cost before jumping into a new product. Visit www.tapmag.com to learn six quick tips to help meet that end.

Street Beat

Fresh Snacks Fast: Insights into Food and Beverage Vending
Vending machines are a welcome sight for those who crave a snack or beverage.  Operators must not only keep track of customer tastes but product freshness as well if their machines are to remain popular at commercial and industrial locations.

Bulk Vending Machines: Tips to Keep Vandals at Bay
Vandalism of bulk vending machines is an ongoing problem, despite the increased presence of security cameras and enhanced features on machines. This article addresses the challenges of keeping thieves at bay, and offers strategies to deal with the issue.

Street Beat Product News

AAM Report

Valued and Valuable: The Museum Volunteer Workforce
Volunteer programs constitute a vital element in museum operations. In fact, museums would be unable to properly function without the dedication of their volunteers.  Thus, it is an ongoing process to bring in new, enthusiastic volunteers, to keep them feeling valued and to provide them with opportunities to stay educated and excited about the institution they represent.

Tips for Matching Volunteers to a Specific Job

Tips for Retaining Volunteers

Amusement Rental/Inflatable News

Shelter from the Storm – Safe Operating Strategies to Cope with the Weather
Nothing guarantees to please guests like an event held in the great outdoors. But wind and rain can conflict with even the best-planned parties. This article offers strategies to deal with weather events that any operator or owner can use.

Amusement Rental News

Amusement Rental Product News

Foundations Entertainment University

Foundations Entertainment University is an educational seminar event held at locations around the country that offers a blueprint for success, growth and profit in the entertainment industry. The seminar, which is taught by leading industry experts, covers topics such as feasibility costs, games and attractions, financing, design, operations, food and beverage and more.

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