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Park News

Shanghai summit

Still on track to overtake France and Spain as the world’s top tourist destination by 2020, China was host to another attractions industry conference recently. Picking up where similar events have left off, the China Theme Park Expansion Summit, (CTPES), was staged in Shanghai on September 8 and 9 by Noppen, which organises conferences for a diverse range of industries. At CTPES, over 200 industry professionals assembled to hear presentations on the local market in Shanghai, developing and running theme parks, and social media within the attractions industry.

Cochran retires Larry Cochran

Former Six Flags veteran and one-time IAAPA chairman Larry Cochran has stepped down as chief executive officer of Adrenaline Family Entertainment. Cochran will remain on the board of directors, as chief financial officer Russell Kuteman adds the role of president to his portfolio.

Cochran began his career with Six Flags in the early 1960s and over the 35 years that followed worked his way up to president and CEO. In 2008, he was inducted into the IAAPA Hall of Fame, having served as the association’s chairman in 1998. “We sincerely thank Larry for his countless contributions as CEO and look forward to his continued involvement with the company,” reports fellow Adrenaline Family Entertainment board member Arthur Peponis. “Larry’s wealth of industry experience and knowledge is a tremendous asset to the team’s strategy.”

Hi Mordelt!

Following the demise of Heimo, the animatronic company founded by his father Karl-Heinz Mordelt, Olaf Mordelt has set up a new company serving the attractions industry. Based in Berlin, One World Studios aims to provide a diverse range of services including concept development, masterplanning, technical design, theming development, character development, model-making, project management, experience analysis and visitor management. Following the company’s launch last month at Euro Attractions Show in London, Mordelt says he received an enthusiastic response. Particular interest was shown in the Aroma Station, which creates scents to enhance attractions, and an interactive dark ride equipped with foam ball cannons.

Olaf Mordelt 22 A keynote session was delivered by Lenny Larsen

of the Rubicon Group, highlighting the evolution of theme park attractions, and predicting that they will become more interactive as consumers crave immersive experiences.

Delegates included representatives from Disneyland Shanghai, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, Suzhou Amusement Land, Janfusun Fancy World (Taiwan), while sponsors and companies keen to market their products to the local market included Dynamic Motion Rides, Kodak China, nWave, Sanderson Group, Swiss Rides and many more.

Jora Entertainment

The Dutch design studio Jora Vision has launched a new offshoot to provide live entertainment to parks and attractions. Jora Entertainment has been formed in partnership with managing director Paul Nelissen, ex-Walibi Holland, and concept developer John Ruisch of Dolfinarium Harderwijk. “Right now a lot of parks are producing their own entertainment but I am not sure they always have the right people to do it,” says Ruisch. “We aim to work with parks to provide marketable shows and events while staff concentrate on operations and other issues.” Ruisch cites the example of Dolfinarium Harderwijk’s dolphin show Droomwens (Dream Wish), which has enjoyed great success by integrating a story into the performance. The park has also enjoyed a retail boom, with sales of yellow alarm clocks featured in the show becoming one of the top-selling items in the Dolifnarim gift shop.

Creating affordable intellectual properties that can be exploited in this way will be a key offer. As

A summit session in full flow A repeat event is promised for some time in

2012. Park World will bring you details as soon as we have them.

well as shows, Jora Entertainment can also produce parades and special events such as Halloween celebrations, Nelissen boasting considerable expertise in this area from his days at Walibi.

Although the company expects to collaborate with Jora Vision on a number of turnkey projects, Ruisch/Nelissen say there is nothing to stop them working with other theming companies or independently.

John Ruisch and Paul Nelissen Heimotion

Michael Friedrich, the former managing director of Heimo Animated Attractions, has taken control of the company’s reincarnation as Heimotion following the departure of the founding Mordelt family.

Aiming to go back to Heimo’s routes, the new firm will produce theming for dark rides, shop window displays and moving figures. “We’ve got off to a good start,” says spokesman Suaine Dorn, adding that this year the company completed 47 moulded figures for Compagnie des Alpes as part of its Walibi park rebranding and a retheme of the Tabaluga Adventure boat ride at Holiday Park in Germany. Orders are now in place for a restaurant retheme at the Weisenhauser Strand holiday resort in northern Germany and a giant animated ape figure in partnership with Huss Park Attractions.

Heimotion retains Heimo’s old premises in Jagsthausen, north of Stuttgart. OCTOBER 2011

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