Friday, July 30, 2010


The Nation’s Only Theme Park Based Entirely on the Show Sesame Street Turns 30

Langhorne, PA (July 30, 2010)—Today, Sesame Place, the nation’s only theme park based entirely on the award-winning show Sesame Street, marks its 30th birthday. Sesame Place, which opened on July 30, 1980, was developed to bring the Sesame Street television show and its values to life for children through play. What began as a 3-acre theme park has grown to 14 acres with more than three-dozen interactive activities, including water attractions, whirling rides, an action-packed roller coaster, choreographed stage shows, furry friends and a fun-filled rock ‘n roll themed parade.

“As an employee who has worked at Sesame Place since it opened in 1980, I have seen the positive affect it has had on families who visit the park, our local community and our dedicated employees,” said Park President Robert J. Caruso. “For the last 30 years, Sesame Place has stayed true to its mission to provide parents and children with a place to share in fun, laughter, learning and playing together. We will carry on this mission over the next 30 years, as we continue to evolve our park to meet the needs of our current and future guests. ”

When the concept for Sesame Place was first outlined, the intention was to create a Sesame Street themed park that offered an interactive play experience for children and their families featuring physical play activities. Sesame Place and Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street, partnered to bring this concept to life.

”For 30 years, Sesame Place has been a wonderful extension of the laughter and learning you’d find on Sesame Street,” said Peter van Roden, Vice President, Themed Entertainment of Sesame Workshop. “Whether you’re looking to meet some of your favorite Sesame Street friends,
catch a musical stage show, or take a fun-filled water ride, Sesame Place is a unique Sesame Street family destination. We congratulate them on this milestone.”

Now, 30 years later Sesame Place continues to be a place that brings out the child in
everyone through its ever expanding offering of rides, water attractions, stage shows
and interactions with everyone’s favorite Sesame Street characters.

IAAPA Attractions Expo Returns to Orlando 15-19 November

IAAPA Attractions Expo is the largest conference and trade show in the world for the attractions industry. Participants buy and sell the latest products and services for the attractions market, attend education sessions and build a their networks among industry professionals.

Organizers estimate 25,000 people from more than 90 countries will attend IAAPA Attractions Expo 2010. Owners, executives, managers, and young professionals representing theme and amusement parks, waterparks, family entertainment centers, zoos, aquariums, museums, science centers, resorts, and casinos will participate in the show. More than 1,000 exhibitors are expected to showcase innovative products and services for the attractions industry including theme park rides, show and event production services, food and beverage products and services, consultancy services, design services, ticketing systems and services, and information technology systems.

Photo: IAAPA

PLASA 2010 Boasts Comprehensive Free Education & Learning Program

PLASA 2010 will take place 12-15 September in Earl's Court.

The first details of this year's extended PLASA 2010 Education & Learning Programme have been unveiled by organisers PLASA Events:

"The Gottelier Masterclass will be presented by last year's Gottelier Award winner - Alex Cooper from Midas Klark Teknik. Entitled 'Don't Just measure: Listen', the Masterclass will be an appreciation of the power of human perception and spatial awareness, and how they relate to audio.

InfoComm International will host a seminar theatre dedicated to AV & Systems Integration. Topics over the dedicated two day programme include lighting for video in the large meeting environment, project management for stage labour, audio techniques for corporate AV events and a primer on audio equalisation.

ISCE will host a seminar for acoustic consultants, architects, specifiers and facilities managers.

Technologies for Worship has extended its three-day programme by popular demand, opening with a talk by Wigwam president Mike Spratt on how UK houses of worship are using technology, from an integration standpoint, as well as creatively. See how the use of modern technology is making the house of worship community one of the fastest growing industries in the world.

Roland Hemming, RH Consulting, presents 'Millennium Dome 10 Years On' - a candid account of the project and lessons that can be learned from other large projects..."

Full story here.

At Shanghai Expo 2010, USA Pavilion visits top three million

SHANGHAI, July 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The USA Pavilion at Expo 2010 Shanghai welcomed its three millionth visitor today, only 80 days after it opened doors on May 1.

"I am very proud of what we have accomplished in the past 80 days," said Ambassador Jose H. Villarreal, U.S. Commissioner General. "During this span, we have greeted visitors and dignitaries from across China and around the world -- including Chinese President Hu Jintao, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, among others. Today's marking of our three millionth visitors is another important milestone after we celebrated our National Day on July 2. We look forward to sharing the American spirit and warm hospitality with more visitors and friends."

The USA Pavilion is expected to receive more than six million guests over the entire duration of the Expo. With the theme of "Rising to the Challenge," the United States presence showcases American culture, values, innovation and business in one of China's most dynamic cities, while celebrating the friendship and cooperation between the United States, China and the rest of the world.

Full story here.

Photo by MeiGuoGuan of Sir Patrick Stewart visiting the USA Pavilion. MeiGuoGuan's USAP photostream is here.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lighting Equipment & Technology: LED Show, Las Vegas, Aug 27

According to the promoters:

'Join mainstream LED manufacturers in promoting the latest LED technology. This LED show will attract an exclusive group of buyers from around the world and every subset of this increasingly important industry. Promoted as "TheLEDShow", this strategically targeted convention has a more direct approach to marketing and promoting LED products. As a manufacturer, your customers are here with questions and interest. As an attendee, you will have the opportunity to ask questions and dispel any myths about LED lighting. This year the expo is almost 20,000 sq ft and will have speaker sessions in an adjacent room. This event will also be co-hosted by "World Light Show" to showcase innovative Lighting products of all types.'

More info here.

Louisville Science Center, MacGillivray Freeman among GSCA Marketing Award recipients

The Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA) is pleased to announce the winners of its annual marketing awards, which celebrate the best execution of ideas in promoting giant screen films and theaters. The awards will be given at the Achievement Awards Presentation, sponsored by Technicolor, on Saturday, September 25, at the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga, Tennessee, during the GSCA 2010 International Conference and Trade Show.

Educational Program - Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh, North Carolina, for its Learning Lab program to supplement the field trip experience to the Wachovia IMAX Theatre at Marbles Kids Museum.

Film Launch by a Theater - Louisville Science Center, in Louisville, Kentucky, for its launch of the giant screen film Van Gogh: Brush with Genius.

Marketing Campaign by a Distributor - MacGillivray Freeman Films for the launch of Arabia 3D.

Full story here.

ETI sponsors SEGD exhibition symposium in Detroit Aug 12-14

New Directions in Exhibition and Environment Design: Innovation
7th Annual Symposium, organized by SEGD (Society for Environmental Graphic Design)
Theme: Exhibition and Experience Design
August 12-14, 2010, Cranbrook Academy of Art
Bloomfield Hills, Mich.

Founding Sponsor: Edwards Technologies Inc. (ETI)
Sponsors: Interpret Green, Electrosonic, iZone, Color-Ad, N.A.M.E., EDPA

Six AIA credits are available for this event. The symposium focuses on how innovation works in the interpretation and exhibition community, and how innovation is incorporated into practice. Symposium themes include collaboration, design approaches, technologies, and strategies. All attendees participate in the discussions, design exercises, and case studies. The resulting dialogue will be captured in a digital and print workbook, which will be available after the event.

More information here.

Electrosonic Provides AV and Show Control Systems for China State Shipbuilding Pavilion at World Expo 2010 Shanghai

Electrosonic provided the extensive audio, video and show-control systems for the China State Shipbuilding Pavilion at the Shanghai 2010 world's fair. The pavilion experience enables visitors to explore the role of shipping in China’s past, investigate exciting concepts for future floating cities and farms, and simulate navigation. Electrosonic was challenged to deliver multi-image and edge-blended displays onto unusual surfaces; and furnish immersive interactive experiences for visitors. The pavilion will continue to operate as a permanent museum and exhibit long after the Expo is over.

Overall, Electrosonic furnished front, rear, and fog projection screens with the majority of surfaces edge-blended and/or warped to accommodate unusual screen geometry. More than 100 projectors were installed, as well as a videowall and 23 plasma and LCD displays – nine of them with built-in touch-sensitivity - ranging from 21 to 103 inches. In addition, 72 individual audio inputs and 94 individual audio outputs feed approximately 150 speakers.

Full story here.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Wildfire Inc. supplies Ultraviolet touch to Santa Monica's Nighttime "Glow" Event

Santa Monica, CA, July 27, 2010 – Wildfire Inc., market leader in UV (ultraviolet, aka “black light”) effects for theater, themed entertainment and special events, supplied 16 Long-Throw flood black light fixtures (LT-400F) to Glow, the all-night art event set to take place Sept. 25th on Santa Monica's Muscle Beach. As a sponsor of the Glow event, Wildfire provided the equipment at a discounted rate.

Glow is a free, dusk-to-dawn phenomenon featuring international, national and local artists and including black light performances by acrobats, jugglers, dancers and martial artists. Santa Monica joins Paris, Toronto, Rome, Madrid, Chicago, New York and other cities around the globe whose communities produce nuit blanche (white night) events.

Related items:
Ferrari World Abu Dhabi installs Wildfire UV lighting
VMA Awards and America's Got Talent make the most of Wildfire UV lighting effects
At LDI 2010, Wildfire Inc. introduces new products
"Glow" Event in Santa Monica gets the Wildfire UV touch

Wildfire Inc. Exclusive sales/development alliance with Modern Masters

Energy efficiency, quiet operation and even distribution make the Wildfire 400W Long-Throw floods an ideal outdoor lighting choice for Glow’s nighttime beach setting.

Wildfire takes an active interest in promoting arts and community events, encouraging artists and designers to apply and experiment with UV lighting and effects. “We are delighted to be part of the transformative festival and celebration of community that is Glow,” says John Berardi, president of Wildfire, Inc. Read more here.


Animals in need and endangered species and around the world will benefit from more than $1 million in grants awarded by the non-profit SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund. Since its creation seven years ago, the Fund has granted more than $7 million to protect wildlife and wild places.

The Fund’s board of directors approved the 2010 grants to 95 wildlife protection projects including rescue and rehabilitation efforts of endangered manatees and sea turtles, protection of critical habitats such as the Florida Keys, studies of declining shark populations and education programs that inspire people to care for at-risk wildlife.

“The challenges and pressures facing wildlife and entire ecosystems are greater than ever,” said Brad Andrews, president and executive director of the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund and chief zoological officer for SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. “We identify projects with the greatest potential to positively impact conservation so that every dollar we grant works as hard as possible to protect the animals.”

Just a few of the many projects and organizations supported in 2010 include:

Preserving the Florida Keys
The Florida Keys are known for sunshine and good times, but the area is also a vital ecological region suffering from environmental degradation. The Florida Keys Wildlife Rescue facility rescues and rehabilitates injured wildlife and educates the public on the importance of keeping the environment safe and clean for present and future generations.

San Diego Turtle and Tortoise Society
The San Diego Turtle and Tortoise Society is the only non-profit organization in San Diego that rescues turtles and tortoises of any species. They also provide medical care, foster care and permanent home placements. The Fund’s support will help with medical care requirements of the California Desert Tortoise and education of the public concerning the proper care of the tortoise as well as how to help protect species native to California.

Safe Guarding Sea Turtle Nesting Sites
Cameroon Sea Turtle Society is protecting newly identified green and leatherback turtle nesting sites along the Wole beach in the Republic of Cameroon. This is an important nesting ground for sea turtles threatened by ship building, toxic waste and egg poachers. The Society’s efforts include nesting site clean-ups, creating safe zones that would limit access and educating egg poachers in other income–generating trades.

Bald Eagle Rescue and Rehabilitation
Florida supports one of the largest breeding populations of bald eagles in the continental United States. The Audubon Center for Birds of Prey is the leading raptor rehabilitation facility in the region and works to protect bald eagles and their habitat through its rehabilitation program, nest monitoring program, and educational programs that reach more than 35,000 people annually.

Sand Tiger Shark Conservation
Due to their unfortunate reputation as a “man-eater”, sharks are often not thought of when the public considers wildlife conservation. The Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries is currently doing a study on the decline of the sand tiger shark population along the east coast of the United States. This information will be integrated into the development of the Coastal Sharks Interstate Fishery Management Plan by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to further the conservation of this threatened species.

Conserving the West African Manatee
In Africa, the lack of basic knowledge about West African manatees has been a great hindrance to the long-term conservation of the species. The Wildlife Trust is working to create a unified network of African researchers in countries of the animal’s range to collect collaborative research on the endangered species.

Save the Elephants
The Mobile Education and Monitoring Unit is a new project that will double the outreach and education capabilities of the Save the Elephants Education Program in Samburu, northern Kenya. The work being done there includes long-term elephant monitoring and conducting mammal census in the Samburu and Buffalo Springs Reserves.

For more information on the Fund, please visit

Monday, July 26, 2010

National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium opens $40 mil expansion and "Lifeless Gulf" exhibit

DUBUQUE -- The National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium opened its $40 million expansion, the Diamond Jo National River Center on June 26, 2010. The expansion includes a new Gulf of Mexico exhibit. However, the Gulf exhibit did not open as a celebration of a vibrant, life-filled Gulf; instead it shows a Gulf empty and completely devoid of life.

A dramatic depiction of the effects of the oil spill is presented in the aquarium gallery next to the lifeless aquariums. Educational materials, hands-on activities, multi-media exhibits and information about how to get involved are also presented. The board and staff decided that opening a Gulf of Mexico exhibit at this time requires a compassionate and factual representation of the Gulf crisis.

The intent of the Gulf of Mexico exhibit is to draw a connection between the Mississippi River and the ocean and to bring to light the devastating effects of the oil spill. The exhibit, without fish, has the opportunity to make a bold statement related to the oil spill in the Gulf Coast by asking Museum & Aquarium visitors to imagine a lifeless Gulf. Read more here.

New 3D/4D theater at San Diego Air & Space Museum

The San Diego Air & Space Museum opened their new 3D/4D Zable Theater today, the first of its kind in Balboa Park. The 3D/4D Zable Theater is very advanced, employing interactive seats and unique special effects that are built into the theater itself. By creating a set of "4D" effects that are synchronized to the film production, the 3D/4D Zable Theater adds another layer of immersive fun for audiences. 4D theaters create a multi-sensory experience that is changing the way people watch movies.

The 3D/4D Zable Theater holds up to 36 guests per show, with multiple shows per day. The Zable Theater is a special exhibition and is included with regular admission. Funding for the Zable Theater was provided by the Walter J. Zable Foundation.

The current 3D/4D films showing include Fly Me to the Moon from nWave Pictures.

In addition to the 3D/4D Zable Theater, the Museum is opening a special play area for kids, the Kid Aviation Action Hangar (KAAH). The KAAH will have an abundance of attractions for kids of all ages.

Read more here.


Several Governors and a Ghost Host a Celebration of the Spirit of Louisiana
at New Visitor Experience Designed by BRC Imagination Arts

Louisiana’s Old State Capitol is a unique symbol of the resilience of the Louisiana people, making it the perfect backdrop for a new visitor experience showcasing the state’s rich traditions. Opening to the public on July 23, 2010, the new visitor experience - designed and produced by BRC Imagination Arts - includes dynamic new galleries, revived public spaces, and a magical, ghostly theater experience that will leave audiences wondering what their eyes have seen.

“The new visitor experience celebrates the unbreakable spirit of the Louisiana people, who time and time again have overcome adversity to be reborn with renewed strength and joie de vivre,” said Bob Rogers, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of BRC Imagination Arts.

Among the highlights is “The Legacy of Huey Long,” a series of galleries that plunge guests into the controversial political legacy of this famed politician. A lively rally allows guests to experience the power of Long’s oratory. Visitors also investigate Long’s assassination, examine the real evidence, and decide for themselves what may have really happened.

And now the Old State Capitol is also home to a haunting and magical new experience. It has long been rumored that a ghost haunts the halls of the Old State Capitol. In “The Ghost of the Castle,” a one-of-a-kind immersive theatrical presentation, visitors come face to face with the ghost of Sarah Morgan, an authentic Civil War-era figure who loved the castle from the day it was built, and wrote passionately about it in her published book, Sarah Morgan: The Civil War Diary of a Southern Woman.

In the roughly 12-minute experience, Sarah conjures the building’s remarkable trials through history, showcasing the determination of everyday Louisianans who have saved the castle time and time again. With floating images from the past surrounding the audience, this unique theater will amaze and delight visitors.

“Our Old State Capitol is a reflection of Louisiana’s indomitable spirit. Blending the majesty of its physical presence with this high-tech wizardry will make it a magnet for young and old alike. BRC has helped us to successfully accomplish this goal,” said Jay Dardenne, Louisiana Secretary of State.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

ProSlide Welcomes Their Newest Team Member Mr. Lars Lenders- Amsterdam, The Netherlands

ProSlide is proud to welcome the newest member to the ProSlide Team! Based out of Amsterdam, Lars will step into the role of Business Development Manager for ProSlide's overseas projects. Lars will join the Sales Team, with Rick Hunter, Jeff Janovich, Phil Hayles & Frank Good, to further develop the company's presence in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Having worked with both manufacturers in the theme park and waterpark industry, Lars will use the extensive experience he has gained from being in charge of leisure projects worldwide. "In fact, now that I have seen the various fields of leisure development, I look forward to combining this know-how in future waterpark projects", says Lenders.

Meet our newest team member at the upcoming IAAPA Asia Tradeshow in Kuala Lumpur from July 13th to the 16th!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

LightingPad™ App Now Available

Art-Net Compatible DMX Lighting Control Software brings simple control to iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch devices

Orlando, Florida -- Alcorn McBride has announced the release of its newest App – LightingPad™. LightingPad is designed for controlling lighting for small shows or for installing and testing lighting systems. It can also be used to program Alcorn McBride’s LightCuePro™. Users may connect any Art-Net compatible DMX device to a wireless network to create a hand-held lighting console.

The LightingPad is compatible with the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. It controls 512 channels of DMX and stores up to 100 cues with independent fade times. With the Art-Net DMX-over- Ethernet protocol it can automatically search and display any Art-Net device. For the iPhone and iPod Touch, the horizontal screen displays the slider view; users may flick left or right to display more channels. Rotating the iPhone or iPod Touch vertically will bring up a scrolling list of 100 cues. Touching “Save” names the cue and memorizes fade time and slider positions, while pressing the “Go” button allows a user to run through cues in the cue list from a single button.

The iPad version includes all the features of the iPhone version; all sliders and cue lists fit on the iPad screen. The iPad version also has the ability to assign and edit slider names and can copy cue lists to and from iTunes for backup and storage.

“We developed the LightingPad to provide our customers with an easy-to-use and convenient tool for lighting design and troubleshooting,” said Jeremy Scheinberg, Alcorn McBride COO. “The iPad/iPhone platform is a great way to add new features and new products which will help our customers to create incredible experiences, no matter the scale.”

The LightingPad App is available for download via the iTunes store under “Utilities”.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wildfire provides UV lights for Ferrari World

Abu Dhabi, July 21, 2010 – Wildfire Inc., market leader in UV (ultraviolet, aka “black light”) effects for theater, themed entertainment and visitor attractions, supplied Ferrari World with a lighting package to provide atmosphere and enhance the guest experience throughout the park. From the Wildfire brand, the installation includes 86 Effects Master Deluxe series fixtures (EM-42D), 48 Long-Throw floods (LT-250F, LT-250S, LT-400F), and 181 SableLux linear fluorescent lamps. Additional equipment provided by Wildfire includes 49 Eclipse series dowsers and 25 power supplies.

Scheduled to open Oct 2010 on Yas Island (30min from Abu Dhabi, 50min from Dubai) Ferrari World is the first Ferrari-branded theme park.

Wildfire is well established in the theme park sector with more than 20 years of providing UV lighting & effects for major parks in the US, France, Japan and now the UAE. The list includes Six Flags, Sea World, Disney, Universal Studios, Warner Bros. and Knott’s Berry Farm.

“The world is watching this dramatic expansion of the amusement park industry in the Middle East and we are honored to be a part of it,” says John Berardi, president of Wildfire, Inc. “Transforming a brand of Ferrari’s caliber into a first class guest experience opens a new dimension in branded entertainment.”

Related items:
Ferrari World Abu Dhabi installs Wildfire UV lighting
VMA Awards and America's Got Talent make the most of Wildfire UV lighting effects
At LDI 2010, Wildfire Inc. introduces new products
"Glow" Event in Santa Monica gets the Wildfire UV touch

Wildfire Inc. Exclusive sales/development alliance with Modern Masters

Friday, July 16, 2010

Planetarium at Cleveland Natural History Museum unveils state-of-the art Sky-Skan digital projector

The Nathan and Fannye Shafran Planetarium, which opened in 2002, has just received a new digital projection system [Sky-Skan definiti system) that adds 3-D graphics, high-definition imagery and enhanced special effects to the museum's sky shows. These additions "will allow us to present brighter, more detailed sky shows," said Glenda Bogar, the museum's associate director of communication.

Read full story here in

Photo: John Kuntz, The Plain Dealer

2010 Greenbuild International Conference & Expo, Chicago Nov 17-19 registration now open

The U.S. Green Building Council’s Greenbuild International Conference & Expo convenes the industry’s largest gathering of representatives from all sectors of the green building movement. Three days of extensive educational programming, workshops, a vast exhibition floor and ample networking events provide unrivaled opportunities to learn about the latest technological innovations, explore new products, and exchange ideas with other professionals. Greenbuild is the three time recipient of IMEX Green Meetings Award and the 2010 show will be held on Nov. 17-19, 2010, in Chicago, Illinois. This past year’s conference in Phoenix, Ariz. drew more than 27,000 attendees and featured more than 1,800 exhibit booths.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Cinnabar’s work at California Academy of Sciences honored with 2010 SEGD Design Award

Cinnabar’s work at California Academy of Sciences  honored with 2010 SEGD Design Award

Full story here.
Cinnabar, Inc., a company of designers, artisan builders and producers creating unique experiences for the museum, entertainment and cultural industries, was recognized with a SEGD Honor Award (Society for Environmental Graphic Design) for exhibit design at the celebrated new California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. The award was presented June 3 in Washington, DC. The annual SEGD Design Awards recognize exceptional environmental graphic design, illustrating the multidisciplinary nature of visual communications in the built environment.

Cinnabar was acknowledged in tandem with environmental design firm Volume Inc. Working closely with Volume, with the Academy and with architect Renzo Piano, Cinnabar implemented a highly collaborative and time-efficient project development method known as “integrated creative management” to produce 35,000 square feet of exhibits for the Kimball Museum of Natural History, on the main floor of the new Academy - a $488 million, 400,000 sq. ft. facility created to replace the earthquake-damaged former structure. Cinnabar CEO Jonathan Katz executive produced the exhibits.

Wildfire sponsors "Ultraviolet" at dA Center for the Arts

Wildfire sponsors "Ultraviolet" at dA Center for the Arts

Full story here.

"This exhibit opens everyone's eyes to the potential of UV effects, in addition to their established role in theatrical and entertainment settings," said Wildfire CEO John Berardi.

Wildfire Inc., the industry leader in UV (aka ultraviolet or "black light") effects, fixtures and products, sponsored "Ultraviolet," an exhibit of artwork created for black light viewing, at the dA Center for the Arts through July 24. Wildfire donated high powered metal halide and linear fluorescent black lighting for the duration of the 3 month exhibition. Wildfire's manufacturer and wholesale supplier Modern Masters also donated a selection of Wildfire signature paints (luminescent, phosphorescent and fluorescent) for this modern exploration of the possibilities of UV in painting, sculpture and printmaking. 

FUNA acquires ShowSys

FUNA Acquires ShowSys To Provide Technical Design & Integration For Themed Entertainment Projects In North America

The acquisition of ShowSys is part of FUNA's ongoing drive to bring its suite of technical design and consulting services to a wider range of themed entertainment markets, especially land-based projects in North America, Europe and Asia.

Full story here.

Related: FUNA creates AV show magic for Oasis of the Seas.