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PW-JUL19-19-News.qxp_News 15/07/2019 15:51 Page 19


Park News


New multi-million dollar ride opens at Schlitterbahn Galveston Island


they are out of this world. Infinity Racers is a pair of space-themed, racing head-first mat slides. At eight stories (75 feet or 23 m) tall and as long as two space stations (696 feet or 212 m), Infinity Racers delivers a fun, only one in the world, water slide experience. Both of the racing slides are nearly fully (85%) enclosed the entire time (except for the loading and splash zones) with multi-coloured fibreglass that creates unique lighting effects inside each slide.


S


chlitterbahn Galveston Island, Galveston, Texas, has added a new multi-million dollar set of slides that are more than the first of its kind –


Schlitterbahn chose to add a space theme to the


slides in honour of the men and women of NASA and the Johnson Space Centre, who have inspired the world to reach for the stars. Given the park’s proximity to the space centre, it’s also a salute to the entire region. The interior of each slide delivers a unique


experience as well. One of the slides, named Orbiter, features circles of multi-coloured fibreglass in different sections of the ride while the other, Galaxy, features dashes of multi-coloured fibreglass. The water slide opened in time to be part of the national celebration of the 50th anniversary of the lunar landing.


Infinity Racers is the brainchild of both Schlitterbahn


Galveston Island’s GM, Ron Sutula, and water slide designers at WhiteWater West. WhiteWater West also designed and built Schlitterbahn Galveston’s awarding- winning Massiv, the world’s tallest water coaster, which is one of the top waterpark attractions in the country. Engineers took full advantage of the existing tall


tower to maximise slide time for guests. Riders slide head-first on mats, racing along enclosed twists and turns over the park’s river system and cabana village until they slide down to the splash zone at the base eight stories below. Infinity Racers is the perfect addition to Schlitterbahn


Galveston Island, which is known for its many high thrill slides. In fact, Infinity Racers joins Massiv and the park’s Torrent Indoor River (the longest in the state) as another record-breaking water ride.


Fernando Eiroa new CircusTrix CEO Book Review: The Amusement Park: 900 Years of Thrills and Spills, and the Dreamers and Schemers Who Built Themby Stephen M. Silverman


CircusTrix, a developer, operator, and franchisor of indoor active recreation centres, has appointed Fernando Eiroa as chief executive officer. As CircusTrix’s new CEO, Eiroa will lead a company that has experienced rapid growth since its founding in 2011, including adding approximately 50 new locations in 2018. CircusTrix now has a network of more than 260 locations in the U.S., or more than 320 total locations globally, both owned and through its franchise partners, in nearly 20 countries. “As the demand for experiential entertainment continues to increase in the US and worldwide, Fernando’s level of leisure


industry experience and global background makes him a unique leader to guide CircusTrix to even greater success,” said Allen Rodriguez, executive chairman of the CircusTrix board of directors. “We are particularly thrilled to benefit from his expertise in building world-class experiences as CircusTrix continually enhances how our morethan 40 million annual visitors enjoy our parks.” Eiroa served as CEO of Parques Reunidos until 2018, having led the company to


its IPO in 2016. Parques Reunidos, which generated revenue of more than $650 million in 2018, is one of the world’s leading leisure park operators with more than 60 locations in 14 countries, including 25 locations in the U.S. He previously served for nine years as President and CEO of California-based Palace Entertainment, the


largest U.S.-based subsidiary of Parques Reunidos. “I am excited to join the CircusTrix team, and I look forward to leading the


company as it continues to achieve its strategic objectives in the experiential entertainment industry. CircusTrix is the premier new trend in this industry based on fun, physical activity that is directly relatable to social media-minded Gen Z,” Eiroa said. “After 15 years in the traditional leisure park space, I appreciate the effort and expertise required to build the exciting recreational concept of the future. CircusTrix is a game changer.” Eiroa succeeds Case Lawrence who founded CircusTrix in 2011. Mr. Lawrence will


remain actively involved in the company as a significant shareholder, advisor, and as the board’s chairman of the Real Estate and Innovation Committees. His innovative approach to indoor trampoline parks transformed the extreme indoor recreation industry and established CircusTrix as the worldwide leader. Under Lawrence’s leadership, the company has grown significantly and achieved exciting milestones since 2016, including a major investment by an affiliate of Palladium Equity Partners, LLC, the acquisition of Sky Zone, and the roll-out of a new franchise brand—DEFY.


JULY 2019


If you are curious about the history of amusement parks, you will want to read The Amusement Park by Stephen M. Silverman. It is well researched, authoritatively organised and written, and beautifully illustrated, an important chronicle of the amusement industry. Within its pages you will discover the electrifying, never-before-told true story of amusement parks, from the middle ages to present day, and meet the colourful (and


sometimes criminal) characters who are responsible for their enchanting charms. The Amusement Park


is a rich, anecdotal history that begins nine centuries ago with the pleasure gardens of Europe and England and ends with the most elaborate modern parks in the world. It’s a history told largely through the stories of the colourful, sometimes hedonistic characters who built them,. These include showmen like Joseph and Nicholas Schenck and Marcus Loew, railroad barons Andrew Mellon and Henry E. Huntington, the men who ultimately destroyed the parks, including


Robert Moses and Fred Trump, and gifted artisans and craft-people who brought the parks to life. It’s an amazing cast of supporting players, from Al Capone to Annie Oakley. Silverman presents an enthusiastic


celebration of the rides, those marvels of engineering and heart-stopping thrills as his life-long passion for his subject shines through. He is a 20 year veteran of Time and was the founding editor of People.com. The parks and fairs featured include the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, Coney Island, Steeplechase Park, Dreamland, Euclid Beach Park, Cedar Point, Palisades Park, Ferrari World, Dollywood, Sea


World, Six Flags Great Adventure, Universal Studios, Disney World and Disneyland, and many more. Published by Black Dog & Leventhal,


The Amusement Park: 900 Years of Thrills and Spills, and the Dreamers and Schemers Who Built Them by Stephen M. Silverman consists of 432 pages with approximately 150 photos. Paul Ruben


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