PW MAY19 18 News.qxp_PW_Nov14_p08_09 24/05/2019 15:31 Page 18

Park News

Industry out in force for TEA ‘big weekend’


he Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) has reported increased attendance numbers for its annual big weekend of events, April 11-13, 2019, consisting of the two-day TEA Summit conference, followed by the 25th Annual TEA Thea

Awards Gala presented by Chimelong. Members of the visitor attractions industry came from around the world to enjoy

opportunities for professional development, networking and celebration. Some 350 delegates attended TEA Summit Day One; 600+ filled the room for Day Two (Thea Awards Case Studies Day); and 800 people attended the Gala. Nominations are open for the annual Thea Awards of the Themed Entertainment

Association (TEA), the international membership association for the creators of compelling places and experiences. Nominations for the 2019-2020 judging cycle are due July 8, 2019. The TEA Thea Awards recognise excellence and innovation in the themed

entertainment and international visitor attractions industry. Each year, hundreds of nominations are received and considered by the TEA Thea Awards Committee for outstanding destination attractions, breakthrough technology, event spectaculars, cultural attractions or guest experiences, and individuals who have made their mark through a lifetime of distinguished achievements.

Six Flags SkyScreamer goes vertical

Six Flags Darien Lake, Darien Center, New York, has begun construction work on the park’s newest attraction, Six Flags SkyScreamer. By Funtime, it is in its final stages. At a staggering 242 feet (74 m) high, Six Flags SkyScreamer will be the tallest thrill ride in New York State. “As a shining beacon of Six Flags Darien Lake, this

monstrous tower will serve as an iconic new landmark, calling out to thrill-seekers everywhere,” said Park President Chris Thorpe. “Soaring high among the clouds with majestic views of the park and surrounding countryside far below, guests will take to new, record- setting heights in New York State this season.” By night, Six Flags SkyScreamer’s bold, synchronised

light package will light up the skies. It is a soaring 24 stories tall and will accommodate 32 riders, sitting two across in open-air swings. It will spin in a 98 foot (30 m) circle at 35 mph (56 kph). Six Flags SkyScreamer is scheduled to open by the middle of this month.

Finnegan’s Flyer sends riders over the edge

A high-flying thrill ride debuted at Virginia’s Busch Gardens Williamsburg. Finnegan’s Flyer, an exhilarating Screamin’ Swing from S&S – Sansei Technologies is located in the park’s Ireland village adjacent the park’s Loch Ness Monster roller coaster. Finnegan’s Flyer takes 32 riders to

staggering heights of more than 80 feet (24 m), with speeds reaching 45 mph (72 kph). Two pendulum-like arms

fly progressively higher over the park with each swing, providing incredible aerial views of the park. The duelling arms swing back-and-forth, the ground plummeting into view with each swing. “Once again Busch Gardens has

Cynthia Vergon (InFact Global) and Ifat Caspi (P&P Projects) of the TEA EME Division present Thea Award trophy to Denise Saviss and Kerry Lovegrove of Princess Cruises for "Fantastic Journey.”


designed a ride that pushes the thrill ride envelope,” said Kevin Lembke, park president at Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA. “We’re committedto providing new and unique experiences year after year. We design these rides for our fans and strive to make each one a unique experience you can only get at Busch Gardens.”

“We love the name and how it

naturally fits into our Ireland village. It visually grabs your attention,” said Suzy Cheely, senior leader of design and engineering at Busch Gardens Williamsburg and Water Country USA. “This ride is huge. The swings go back and forth, increasing in height, until they go beyond 90º. As you swing back and forth, you catch some airtime, which is similar to a roller coaster. That may be unexpected, so people may be getting more of a thrill than they think.”

MAY 2019

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