This is our annual Buyers’ Guide edition, and in it we present a revamped roadmap to all of the significant companies in the industry. These businesses can assist you with everything from finding the right insurance and theming services to buying the perfect toys for your redemption counter or the top-performing food service equipment for your leisure entertainment facility kitchen. Please contact me if you would like to be listed in the 2013 edition of the guide, or if you have any questions or suggestions about this editorial feature.
Amusement Expo 2012 is scheduled for March 14-16, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nev. Myself and Associate Publisher Larry White will be attending, so please stop by the magazine’s booth to say hello. Also, on March 15 at the Expo, the first-ever winners of the Excellence in Family Entertainment Center Awards will be announced. The awards were created and sponsored by Tourist Attractions & Parks magazine and Foundations Entertainment University. Thank you to the over 2,100 individuals who cast over 8,000 votes to determine the winners.
To read about the latest news and trends in the coin-op industry, turn to the Street Beat section, where we cover bulk vending machines and merchandise and broad trends in the coin-op industry, including the popularity of music and redemption. The section also contains bonus sidebars with tips for successful bulk candy, capsule, snack and soda operations. Additionally, in the Industry News section on page 18, we provide a snapshot of a video game, kiddie ride and prize dispensing machine designer and manufacturer that also operates family entertainment centers.
Major new attractions in the amusement park business have for some time been a gamble in terms of guaranteeing long-term profitability. In this issue’s Large Park Report, Contributor Chad Emerson examines Disney’s latest bet on the 2009 James Cameron film Avatar. An entire new area based on the movie is slated for Animal Kingdom in Florida, and Emerson looks at the thinking behind the move.
In the universe of museums, attractions that cater exclusively to children are a growth area. In the Food Service Spotlight section, we examine how desserts fit into the food service offerings at children’s museums around the country. Visiting waterparks is also a favorite activity for kids. It can sometimes be a challenge to also appeal to the rest of the family, however, and in our Waves section we look at how these attractions make sure there is something to entertain everyone. The story also features the bonus sidebar “Designing a Waterpark to Meet the Needs of All Ages.”
In the Family Entertainment Center Report, the Industry Owls cover choosing the right vendors. Also in the section is a letter from the BPAA on creating events that create revenues and a bowling center story on arcade profitability that includes the sidebar “Before You Sign On the Dotted Line.” In the Mini-Golf/Go-Kart Report is the story “The Profitability Picture – Drivers for Visitation and Spending.” We also offer an expansive ILTA section and a special feature on creating redemption profits that includes the sidebar “Four Top Tips for Making Redemption Counters Popular and Profitable.”
The magazine also covers creating and maintaining butterfly exhibits at zoos, the most popular colors and equipment for party rental companies, a haunted attractions feature, the value of attending Amusement Expo 2012 and Foundations Entertainment University, and an International Perspectives story, “The Challenges of Developing Entertainment Projects in Africa.”
I hope you enjoy the issue. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your comments, questions and suggestions.
President and Executive Editor
Tourist Attractions and Parks magazine