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Jora Entertainment rebrands


T


he Dutch event and themed attraction producer Jora Entertainment has changed its name to the Leisure Expert Group.


“The new name better conveys what we do as a company," says


director Marjolein van de Stolpe. “We develop projects for theme parks, dance festivals, as well as other entertainment concepts.” As Jora Entertainment, LEG's clients to date have included the


Wildlands zoo and Dutch Railway Museum, Europa-Park and Movie Park Germany, Walibi Belgium, Djurs Sommerland in Denmark, Electric Daisy Carnival in the United States and Walibi Holland, for which it has produced several hit Halloween Horror Night events. Van de Stolpe says the Leisure Expert Group's goal is to ensure ideas do not remain dreams and to listen carefully to the wishes of park owners, leisure entrepreneurs, managers and investors: “Do they want to attract more visitors in a season, or to attract a new audience? Maybe they want to ensure that guests stay longer? A clear purpose is the first step towards an operational and marketable idea.” With offices in Amsterdam and Almere, the Leisure Expert Group has


approximately 30 employees. More information can be found at leisure-expert.com The design firm and former sister company Jora Vision will continue to operate as a separate business and is not rebranding.


New


Kernels


Australia's Aussie World theme park wants to open seven new rides as part of a five-year plan which aims to catapult the Sunshine Coast facility into one of country's largest tourist destinations. New attractions identified include a Crazy Mouse rollercoaster, Typhoon 360, Drop Tower, Aerobat, Windstarz, Star Fly and Air Race. Suppliers include Technical Park and Zamperla.


Nancy A Krejsa has joined the board of directors at Six Flags Entertainment. For the past seven years she served as senior vice-president of investor relations and corporate communication for the regional park operator.


Mark White


at Picsolve Picsolve, the image capture and digital content creation partner for the theme park and attractions industry, has made two new appointments to its senior management team. New chief operating officer Mark White has over 30 years’ experience in the television industry. Prior to joining Picsolve he held senior positions at Thames Television, UK Gold, UK Living and Channel Five, as well as consultancy work with companies including ITV, Sony, Fox, The Food Network and Argos. This experience will be central to Mark’s role as COO at Picsolve, where he will work to create instant digital content for sharing. Sarah-Jane Nightingale joins


Sarah-Jane Nightingale


Picsolve after a career in sales with leading technology giants such as BT and Oracle,


where she managed relationships the National Trust, Selfridges and Burberry. As vice-president of international sales and business development, Sarah-Jane’s role will involve developing new business opportunities and supporting company growth within up-and-coming regions for leisure and attractions in including the UK, Middle East and Asia Pacific.


appointments


Former Ocean Park chief executive Tom Mehrmann has joined the board of advisors at The Producers Group, replacing Don Iwerks. After serving in management roles with Knott’s Berry Farm, Six Flags Marine World and Warner Brothers Movie World Madrid, Mehrmann went on to enjoy a distinguished 10 year+ career at the famous Hong Kong marine life and animal theme park, growing attendance from less than 3 million to over 7.8 million visitors annually via the implementation of a HK$5.55 billion Master Redevelopment Plan. “Based on my four decades of management and executive theme park experience,” says Mehrmann, “I find The Producers Group uniquely qualified to create and produce innovative themed entertainment experiences.”


Minnesota's Valleyfair amusement park has named Brad Marcy as its new vice- president and general manager. Previously vice-president and general manager at Dorney Park in Pennsylvania and Carowinds in North Carolina, he spent the past year as corporate director of strategic initiatives for parent company Cedar Fair.


As well as the (delayed from 2016) Kleine Zar family coaster opening this season at Hansa Park in northern Germany, Park World can confirm that the famiy-owned park will also add a custom-themed Gerstlauer Sky Fly called Kärnapulten. Additionally, further theming is promised on the massive Schwur des Kärnan Infinity Coaster added by Gerstlauer in 2015.


A Viking theme park has been proposed for the county of Hordaland, Norway. Developer Vikinglandet Utvikling, which is working with designer ITEC Entertainment and has already agreed a site with the Sveio Municipality, is seeking an initial investment of 200 million kroner (€21.8m/$22.3m) for the Thor's Rike project.


24


Multimedia attractions specialist Holovis has been ranked the UK's ninth fastest- growing small to medium-size enterprise for international sales by The Sunday Times SME Export Track. The Leicestershire-based company had a record-breaking year in 2016, delivering immersive experiences to clients across the globe, all designed and built in the UK. As well as projects in Europe and China, highlights included a world-first augmented reality experience connecting guests across an entire theme park (Cedar Point, Ohio), which picked up a prestigious IAAPA Brass Ring award in November.


Extreme Engineering has appointed Ride Entertainment to become an official distributor for its Cloud Coaster zip line attraction, targetting customers in the Middle East as well as global players such as Six Flags, Universal and Disney. Marketed as “the world’s first cart-less roller coaster”, the Cloud Coaster is the only zipline coaster on the market using a motor-driven lift, which allows tandem riders to be pulled up a track and zip up hills.


Picsolve, the photo and video capture for the leisure and entertainment industry, recently introduced a new way for guests to collect and purchase official images at Madame Tussauds London. Visitors to the London wax and celebrity lookalike attraction are given a wristband at the first photo moment that is then valid for use throughout their visit. By scanning the wristband, users will automatically associate themselves at each subsequent photo moment.


Andrew Wolfe, chief executive of Willows Activity Farm in St Albans, England, was honoured last month with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the National Farm Attractions Network (NFAN) Conference in Brighton. Andrew, 54 started his career as a farm manager working in Leicestershire. He went on to found Willows with his wife Anna in 2002 and now acts as a mentor to a range of business owners in the UK, as well as being an active member of the NFAN committee for many years.


Big name house music DJ Roger Sanchez is set to perform at Blackpool Pleasure Beach on May 6 as part of the event Ministry of Sound presents Titanium. The popular UK park will be open to Titanium ticket holders from 8.30pm until 11pm so that they can get their adrenaline fix before heading to the Arena to party the night away until 3am. Tickets are £25.


MARCH 2017


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