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The Industry Buzz

The Industry Buzz features carnival, amusement park, fair and festivals news direct from the lots. If you have newsworthy information that you would like to share on, please email For full feature news articles and exclusive interviews, please check our news and interviews section.

OABA releases new ride safety video
The Outdoor Amusement Business Association released a new safety video earlier this month.  The purpose of the video is to help educate the general public about a safe visit to the carnival and carnivals, fairs, and events are urged to share the video on their web sites and social media.  Amber Swedgan, chair of the OABA Safety Education Committee, produced the video in-conjunction with the Ray Cammack Shows Christian Academy this past fall. 

  Posted by Matt Cook on 1/25/2016

New Equipment Purchases for Illinois Shows
Several Illinois based carnivals revealed new equipment purchases during the Illinois Association of Agricultural Fairs trade show this past weekend.  

Missouri based Tinsley Amusements announced the purchase of a Charlie the Chopper from Majestic; American Banner purchased a Ali Baba from A.RM., Fantasy Amusements purchased a fun house from Owen Trailers, and All Around Amusements purchased a Kolmax Flying Elephant ride and a Wacky Shack from Owen Trailers.

Kolmax, a ride manufacturer based out of the  Czech Republic, will be displaying All Around's new Elephant ride at the upcoming Gibtown Trade Show and Extravaganza.  Jeremy Floyd will also be taking delivery of the same piece, with his debuting at the Florida State Fair booked with Wade Shows.   While not attending the IAAF Trade Show, Illinois based Windy City Amusements and Modern Midways both announced the purchase of Vertigos from ARM with both shows set to take delivery this spring.
  Posted by Matt Cook on 1/18/2016

Dreamland Amusements to debut new Technical Park Giant Wheel at FL State Fair
Dreamland Amusements is slated to debut its new "Dream Wheel", built by Italian manufacturer Technical Park, at the Florida State Fair with Wade Shows this February.  The Dream Wheel stands 22 meters (72ft) tall and is equipped with a advanced LED light show.  The wheel is the first of its kind to have LED back-lit gondolas which have the ability to be synchronized to music.  The wheel racks on one semi trailer.  The Dream Wheel is the first of two Technical Park 22m Giant Wheels coming to the USA; the second of which belongs to Strates Shows who will be taking delivery this spring.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 1/15/2016

Classifieds Maintenance
Over the last few days, the self post classified ad section on was down for maintenance resulting from a recent hardware upgrade.  As of January 11, 2016 - the self post classified system is back up and running.  Click here to access the classifieds.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 1/11/2016

Vote for the Top Stories of 2015
Each year, we ask our readers to choose the top stories of the year.  2015 was a very exciting year with many possibilities to choose from.

We narrowed down the list to three stories for two categories:  Carnival and Fairs.

Please look over the stories and cast your votes now for the top stories of 2015:

Vote Your Favorite Carnival Story of 2015:
NAME Acquisition Begins New Chapter for Fair Industry
Revenue up for Wade at Florida State Fair
Reithoffer signs new 4-year deal with Expo New Mexico
Poll Maker

Vote for Your Favorite Fair Story of 2015
IAFE Leaving Las Vegas
personality quizzes
  Posted by Ron Weber on 1/1/2016

Windy City Amusements to hold Carnival Auction on December 22 (UPDATED)
Chicago based Windy City Amusements will be holding a public auction to sell off surplus equipment on December 22 at its Aurora, IL based winter quarters.  Items include two Roller Derby group games, a Machine Gun game, a fleet of trucks, generators, concession supplies, arcade games, and much more.  ADDED 12/17 - A Venture Granny Bug, Funni Frite Fireman Fun House, Three trailer mounted Hampton Umbrella Rides, 3 roll off center joints, basketball stick joint, and more.

Bid online or onsite - for more information, CLICK HERE.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 12/18/2015

KMG / Big Rock Amusements settle intellectual property lawsuit
Due to a legal dispute, regarding intellectual property rights for the KMG 'Freak Out' amusement ride, KMG and Big Rock Amusements have entered into a 'Settlement Agreement'.   Therefor KMG would like to inform the US carnival and park industry about the following 'Joint Statement':

KMG International, BV ("KMG") and Big Rock Amusements, LLC ("Big Rock") have entered into a Settlement Agreement in connection with KMG's intellectual property lawsuit against Big Rock.  KMG's suit alleged that Big Rock's Extreme ride was similar in design and appearance to KMG's Freak Out ride. Without admitting liability, Big Rock agreed to the entry of an injunction, and payment of a patent licensing fee to KMG, for the purpose of avoiding further expenses and uncertainties of litigation.
The financial terms of the Settlement Agreement are confidential.  However, as a matter of public record, the amicable resolution required the entry of a U.S. federal court injunction precluding Big Rock from importing any additional Extreme rides into the United States.

For further information please feel free to contact KMG sales representative Mr. Peter Theunisz (tel.: +31-655795792 / email:

  Posted by KMG Press Release on 12/16/2015

Tony Fiori Farewell Tour
Ray Cammack Shows would like to invite friends, family, and acquaintances to celebrate the life of Tony Fiori.  Join RCS on Wednesday December 9, 2015 at 11am at the Orange County Fairgrounds in Costa Mesa, CA.

Orange County Fairgrounds
Hangar Building
88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Tony's name by clicking here (select TonyGre)

  Posted by RCS/Matt Cook on 12/2/2015

Ray Cammack Shows Tony Fiori passes
Tony Fiori, V.P./Media and Marketing for Ray Cammack Shows, passed away over the weekend.  Tony had worked for RCS for over 30 years and was a great friend to many in the industry.  As additional details are available on services, they will be posted here.  Posted by Matt Cook on 11/23/2015

Henry Poluffe of Specialty Insurance passes
Henry Leonard Plouffe, 84, chief financial officer of Specialty Insurance, LTD., entered into eternal rest on October 26, 2015, surrounded by his loving family.  He was the beloved husband of 62 years of Mary Bergin Plouffe.  Together they had five children: Kathryn Dumas, Jeanne (Robert) Prota, Thomas Plouffe, Michael (Kyle) Plouffe and Maryann (James) Laspino.

Henry was a graduate of Fairfield Preparatory School and served in the US Army during the Korean Conflict.  His banking career began as a teller at Tradesmen's Bank, New Haven.  In 1975 he retired from the former Orange National Bank as a vice president.

From 1975 until his second retirement, in 2005, Henry was employed by the City of West Haven as a 911 operator.  In addition, he served as both a paid and volunteer firefighter for the City of West Haven and its' Allingtown Fire district for 65 years, commencing in 1953.  From 1979 until 1985, he held the position of chief of the volunteers.

Until his retirement and illness just two weeks ago, Henry was the chief financial officer for Specialty Insurance, LTD. He was a coach, for many years, in the West Haven Midget Football League.  As a devoted member of the Church of St. Louis, he held the position of senior trustee.  In 2010, he was awarded the St. Joseph's Medal of Appreciation, presented by the Most Reverend Henry J. Mansell, Archbishop of Hartford.
  Posted by Obiturary on 11/3/2015

Rides 4-U to Introduce New Rides at IAAPA

Len Soled's New Jersey based Rides 4-U is planning on introducing two new attractions at the 2015 IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando.  Rides 4-U will have two large booth spaces - one indoors and another outdoors.  They will be showcasing a new interactive family ride produced by Italian manufacturer, SBF/Visa.  The new ride will feature cars that pivot on the end of the rides sweeps and riders will be able to shoot at targets on the cars and keep score.  Another new attraction that will debut at the trade show includes a triple spiral roller coaster that will be showcased at the company's indoor display.  Other equipment slated to be at the Rides 4-U booth at IAAPA include a Compact Spinning Coaster, being delivered to Fiesta Shows of New England; a Frog Hopper to Stweart's Amusements; a Groovy Bus to Browns Amusements; and the Drop N Twist drop tower.

Soled also announced the delivery of Skerbeck Entertainment Group's KMG Inversion this week.  The piece will debut at the Louisiana State Fair in Shreveport with Crabtree Amusements.

The 2015 IAAPA Attractions Expo will take place November 17-20 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 10/26/2015

Bingo Hauser Passes
MCW has learned that Canada's West Coast Amusements founder, Bingo Hauser, has passed.  Our thoughts and prayers are with the Hauser family.  As more information comes available, we will post it here.

In 2012, we conducted a video interview with Bingo as a part of our "Four Questions with Industry Pioneers" feature.  That interview can be seen by clicking here.
  Posted by MCW on 9/14/2015

Ray Cammack Shows buys Dutch Lamberink Gondola Wheel

Ray Cammack Show's Guy Leavitt and Ben Pickett announced the purchase of a new Gondola Wheel, built by Lamberink BV of the Netherlands and sold through Peter Theunisz's Used Rides Europe.  The wheel stands 108 ft tall and has 24 gondolas capable of seating up to six adults.  The ride has a LED color changing lighting package, galvanized sub-frame, stainless steel fencing, electric motors, PILZ safety system and Emmerson frequency drive units. What is so unique about this wheel is that it can be set up without the use of a crane and moves on only 3 semi-trailers!  Cosmetically, the wheel will have a white color scheme and will feature a RCS logo on the axle hub.

The wheel will be delivered in December and shipped to Galveston, TX. The wheel will have a large sign on the axle with the RCS logo on it.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 9/9/2015

Reithoffer Shows debuts new Galaxy Coaster in NM State Fair

Reithoffer Shows announced the debut of their new Galaxy roller coaster at the New Mexico State Fair, opening September 10.  The Galaxy was built by Interpark of Italy, whom acquired the ever popular Pinfari coaster models.  The Galaxy has the same track layout as a Pinfari Zyklon and travels on three trailers.  After the New Mexico State Fair, the coaster will play the Georgia National Fair and will travel primarily on the blue unit.  Last week, the show debuted a new Wisdom Himalaya themed the Music Express at Riot Fest in Denver, CO.

Reithoffer's coaster purchase marks the fourth new coaster purchased from Interpark by a North American carnival in the past year.  Last year, Ray Cammack Shows purchased a "Zyklon" model coaster, and this year three more were sold to Playworld Amusements, Wade Shows, and Reithoffer Shows.
  Posted by Matt Cook on 9/4/2015

Tim Nolan Passes
Timothy J. "Tim" Nolan, 53, of Zanesville, passed away Sunday, August 30, 2015. 

Tim was born on August 24, 1962 a son of the late Fred and Sallie Nolan. He was a graduate of Maysville High School and MATC. Tim was the owner of The Treasure Cove and brought the game room concept to Zanesville in 2005. Being a part of the Nolan family he was deeply involved in the Nolan Amusement business all of his life, always providing quality entertainment whether with rides or concessions. He was a great promoter and always had new and inventive ideas. At the time he was trying to revive the old "Moxahala Park", it was his dream.

He is survived by one son, Timothy James "TJ" (Klissa) Nolan; three grandchildren, Ashlynn, Makayla, and Tanner; one brother, George Scott (Amy) Nolan; long time fiance, Chris Boring. 

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by two brothers, Rick Nolan and Kevin Nolan. 

  Posted by Obiturary on 9/3/2015

Browns Amusements adds Freak Out & Groovy Bus for 2016

Danny and Sherry Brown, owners of Arizona based Brown's Amusements announced the purchase of a new Freak Out from KMG, which is set to be delivered during the spring of 2016.  "We're real excited about the new piece and what it will bring to our events", Brown said of the Freak Out.  In addition to the Freak Out, the show also purchased a new SBF Groovy Bus from Rides-4U as well as a new food trailer from Hitch-Hiker.  "I always liked the look of the Groovy Bus since I first saw it in Gibtown and decided it would be a great fit for our midway", Brown echoed.

In addition to the new purchases, Brown reported that the show picked up a couple of new events in Idaho and surrounding areas.  The show has had a solid season so far and will wrap up the 2015 season in October with some events in the Phoenix area.
  Posted by Matt Cook on 8/20/2015

Rainbow Valley Rides co-founder Ronald Kedrowicz passes
Ronald A. Kedrowicz, co-founder of Wisconsin based Rainbow Valley Rides, passed away on Saturday July 25, 2015 at Seasons of Life Hospice Center in Woodruff, WI at the age of 79.

He was born Dec. 29, 1935 in the Town of Sharon, WI. He is the son of the late Joseph & Florence (Kielpinski) Kedrowicz.

He entered the US Navy on March 22, 1956 at Great Lakes, IL. He served on the USS Valley Forge and was honorably discharged on Jan. 27, 1958 at Norfolk, VA.
His marriage to Lorraine Yenter took place on Nov. 8, 1958 at St. Adalbert Catholic Church in Rosholt, she survives.

Ronald was employed by Consolidated Papers in Paper Board Products for several years. In 1973 the couple started their carnival business, Rainbow Valley Rides Inc. Transferring the business to their sons at their retirement in 2010.

Survivors include his wife Lorraine, two daughters: Renee (Jeff) Budsberg of Shanty Town and Doreen (Randy) Krusick of Amherst. Two sons: Ronald "Chip" (Teri) Kedrowicz of Custer and Joseph (Christa) Kedrowicz of Stevens Point. 10 Grandchildren and 2 Great grandchildren. One brother: Rhody (Kathy) Kedrowicz of Wisconsin Rapids.  He is preceded in death by 1 infant granddaughter Bailey.

A memorial in his name will be established at a later date.

Funeral Mass will be 10:30 AM Wednesday Aug. 5, 2015 at St. Maximilian Kolby Catholic Church in Almond. Rev. James Trempe officiating. Burial will take place in St. Martin's cemetery in Buena Vista. Visitation will be from 4 to 8 PM on Tuesday Aug. 4, 2015 at the Pisarski/Dzikoski Funeral Home at 703 Second St. in Stevens Point and from 9:00 AM until the time of services Wednesday morning at the Church. A rosary will be prayed at 7:00 PM on Tuesday evening at the funeral home. Pisarski Funeral Homes is honored to be serving the family.

For on line condolences please visit
  Posted by Matt Cook / Obiturary on 7/29/2015

Billy Burr passes
BILLY BURR, passed away over the weekend, former owner of Burr’s "FUN-O-RAMA," a carnival that operated in the Northeast.  Billy was a long time board member of the OABA and Trustee in 1990.  He was inducted into the OABA Hall of Fame in 2000.  A reputable carnival owner, his lure was to the CIRCUS, as he was an active CFA and Showfolks Club member, living in the Sarasota area, after selling his show.    
As Wayne McCary said, "Sad to hear about the death of Billy Burr. He was a legendary New England showmen, circus fan and a perfect gentlemen.  Glad we put him in the Hall of Fame, when he could still enjoy the honor."

  Posted by OABA on 7/13/2015

J&J Amusements Shirley Richardson passes
J&J Amusements matriarch Shirley Richardson passed away on June 28, 2015 unexpectedly at her home. Shirley was the mother of four children including J&J owner John Richardson Sr. She had ten grandchildren and twenty-one great children. Shirley had traveled from Florida to Ohio a few weeks back ( while battling cancer) because she simply had spots that she had to keep working! She developed many long term relationships with the events she worked, including the Canfield Fair in Ohio which she worked for more than 62 years.  Posted by Matt Cook / Obiturary on 7/1/2015

Wood Entertainment's Magnum gets another facelift
Michael Wood announced another update to his Mondial Magnum this spring.  In addition to an upgraded LED light system from Denny's Electronics that was installed last year, the ride's backwall sceenery was repainted with a new mural.  Wood hired a artist from England who specializes in painting amusement rides and flew him in to give the Magnum a completely new look.  The ride is currently playing the San Diego County Fair in Del Mar, CA.

CLICK HERE to view additional photos of the ride
  Posted by Matt Cook on 6/29/2015

Long time Wade Shows employee Bill "Shag" DeGrace passes away at the age of 55

Bill De Grace, known by all as Shag because of his affinity for long unruly hair, died suddenly on Tuesday, June 16 of unknown causes.

A lifelong Wade Shows employee, many wondered how he got away with wearing his long hair when the practice was forbidden by show rules. When asked, Wade Shows owner Frank Zaitshik  replied "Shag is just Shag and I guess he got grandfathered in".

"He was truly an 'old school' Carnival guy said Frank Zaitshik. "He was with us for 35 years doing a variety of jobs. Prior to joining WADE shows he was with Art Lampkin who owned Johnny's United Shows", he added Shag initially made his mark as a Sky Wheel foreman, but for the past 15 years he moved the show's Zyklon Coaster. Ironically, the show recently sold the coaster after the Florida State Fair to make a new purchase and Shag  was excited to get a crack at moving the new Cyclone Coaster that is being delivered later this summer. 

Shag was known as a talented, kind-hearted co-worker who would do anything to help a friend or any fellow showman.  Shag is survived  by his Father William De Grace, sons Joseph and Daniel Akers, Grandaughter Alexis Ackers and  ex-wife Tina Griffen.

He is fondly remembered by his friends and family at Wade Shows.  

  Posted by Ron Weber on 6/20/2015

Rio Syrup Celebrates 75 years
Saint Louis, Missouri based Rio Syrup is celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2015.  The company was founded by Stuart S. Tomber in 1940 and is currently in its third generation, headed by Phillip S. Tomber.  Rio Syrup manufacturers beverage flavors for Shaved Ice, Slush Drinks, Sno Cones, Fountain Drinks, Icees, Punch Drinks, Malt and Milk Shakes.  Posted by Matt Cook on 6/8/2015

Skinner's Amusements takes delivery of NEW Chance Zipper
Illinois based Skinner's Amusements took delivery last week of a brand new 2015 Chance Zipper during the Harvard Milk Days festival in Harvard, IL.  The Zipper is the first produced by Chance Rides since 2001 and features many upgrades over older models.  One of the most noticeable upgrades is a state of the art LED lighting system from by Denny's Electronics.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 6/8/2015

Hickey Culpepper passes
It is with great regret to announce the passing of long time industry veteran Hickey Culpepper. 

Culpepper, Milton "Hickey", 83, of Tampa, Florida passed away on May 11, 2015.  
Hickey was born on August 26, 1931 in Wright City, Oklahoma to the late Tom Culpepper and Flora Yardley-Culpepper. Hickey followed his life's passion into the carnival business where he owned and operated an outdoor amusement business. He was a lifetime member of the Showmen's League of America, The Greater Tampa Showmen's Association, and the International Independent Showmen's Association. He will be remembered for his upbeat positive attitude and his love for "His Club". Hickey is survived by his beloved wife, Bonnie Woodard Culpepper; daughter, Patricia Yhnatko; brother, Charles Culpepper; granddaughters Marlo and Meagan Yhnatko.; and many extended family and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, Tom and Flora Culpepper, grandmother Burns; and brothers, Dudley, Hubert, and Tommy Culpepper.

Friends are invited to attend a memorial service at 11:00 A.M., on Thursday, May 14, 2015, at A Life Tribute Funeral Care- Tampa Chapel, 4040 Henderson Blvd, in Tampa, FL. 

In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to the COPD Foundation at, 3300 Ponce de Leon Blvd, Miami, FL, 33134, or, so others can breathe better tomorrow. Condolences can be shared with the family at In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to the COPD Foundation at, 3300 Ponce de Leon Blvd, Miami, FL, 33134, or, so others can breathe better tomorrow. 

  Posted by Matt Cook on 5/12/2015

Battech Enterprises acquires ORI, LLC to service Eyerly rides
Oregon based Battech Enterprises, LLC. announced the purchase of ORI, LLC (formerly Oregon Rides) and will now be the sole provider of parts and service for Eyerly rides.  Battech will be selling the parts under a new company, Replacement Parts Resource, LLC.  According to a press release from Battech, former ORI owner, Tod Sherbourne will be working for the new company in the parts department.  All fabrication and manufacturing will take place at the company's headquarters in Salem, Oregon.  Battech Enterprises, LLC. currently produces the Cliff Hanger, Zero Gravity, Hog Rally motorcycle ride, a variety of Super Slides, and other pieces formerly produced by Hrubetz/Kilinski/Dartron.
  Posted by Matt Cook on 5/8/2015

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