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2016 IISF Trade Show: Friday Highlights
KMG / UsedRidesEurope and NICA updates


By Ron Weber

Rides 4U - NEW AND USED RIDES Farrow Finance Rides 4U - LED LIGHTING PACKAGES Farrow Finance
Day 4 of the IISA Super Extravaganza and Trade Show finally delivered a sunny Florida day for attendees.  Traffic seemed to pick up a bit and most exhibitors were reporting strong sales.

Peter Theunisz / KMG / Used Rides Europe
Peter Theunisz is an incredibly busy guy.  The industry first met Peter as the KMG representative, selling popular rides such as the Fireball and Freak Out.  Later, he started Used Rides Europe, selling used European rides to the American market.  Last year, we received news Theunisz was representing the Lamberink family in their efforts to sell an updated version of the "Dutch" wheels still carried by Strates, Reithoffer and a few other shows.  Now, Theunisz has announced his latest venture; New Rides Europe.  The new company will be a one stop shop for the lines he carries, KMG, Lamberink and ACO - a company that manufactures ticket booths, dog houses and other customized containers for rides.  

Theunisz, who purchased the URL for the venture, said he wanted to distinguish his new ride offerings from his used ride business.  By representing ACO, he adds a new dimension to the business.  ACO builds for both KMG and Lamberink so now show owners can customize their rides from the same builder the manufacturer uses.

The new ride business will compliment his thriving used ride business.  In Europe, he recently sold a used Street Fighter between German companies.  For Europe to US sales, he sold a German Tango to Pat Crabtree and a Technical Park Street Fighter to Todd Armstrong of Armstrong Shows.  

Theunisz got the idea of Used Rides Europe when working with Len Soled of Rides 4 U.  He saw the need to make purchases from European companies easier for clients in the United States.  He can assist with pricing, titling, shipping, delivery, advise on modifications needed to meet US standards and sometimes just provide a good office to assist with the purchase.  Cross-border purchases can be confusing to those without international experience and Theunisz hope his company can make the purchase of a used European ride as simple as buying in the states.  

With a strong dollar now, prices have become very attractive and opportunities for purchase have never been better.  In fact, during the show Theunisz sold a used Tango from the United Kingdom to Kevin Tate of the California Carnival Company.

Lamberink B.V. is the company Theunisz represents in the Giant Wheel market.  Without a stateside supplier for Giant Wheels any longer, some shows have been clamoring for an opportunity to purchase an affordable Giant Wheel as tall as the Chance Giant Wheel or even the ground mounted "Dutch Wheel",  both of which were popular for so many years.  

Lamberink's first US sale is a 33 meter (108') wheel being delivered to Ray Cammack Shows in the next couple of months.  The wheel will make its debut in Tuscon, Arizona, just after the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.  The wheel is outfitted with a Maxtron light package from Karl Rinaldi.

In April, Powers Great American will receive the second wheel, also a 33-meter version, but the Powers wheel will have an LED lighting package from Lamberink.  The wheel lights will be white with colored decorations added.

The 33-meter wheel moves on three trailers and has 24 tubs with 6 people per tub.  The wheel can be set up in 7 hours with only a boom truck, no crane is needed according to Theunisz.  The build is from the ground up.

Lamberink is building a 45 meter wheel (148') for January 2017 that they will keep for their own use.  This wheel travels on 6 trailers and has 36 gondolas.  Theunisz said there has been a lot of interest from US carnivals on the larger version wheel as well.

The company was excited to announce that they have closed a deal with Showmen's Supplies to carry parts for the wheels and Showmen will have an electrician/engineer available to supply support as he does with the KMG rides for which they already supply parts.

On the KMG side, business is still booming.  The Inversion at the show is going to Mr. Ed's Magical Midways.  On Saturday, at show closing, the ride will be torn down and transported to Wisconsin.

Currently, KMG production is booked through Feb. 2018 with the exception of one slot in November 2017.  

Theunisz said there have been quite a few Inversion sales lately.  A new Inversion was delivered to Butler Shows earlier this week. The next know slot for an Inversion is a 2017 delivery to Peachtree Amusements.

Freak Out sales also remain strong.  In March, Danny Brown of Brown's Amusements will take delivery of a new ride and Ottaway Amusements will get their new piece in April.  In late summer, Greg Brooks of Crescent City Amusements will take delivery of a new Inversion. 

Deggeller Attractions will take delivery of a new Fireball in March of 2017.  Talley's Amusements also is awaiting delivery of their new Fireball in December of this year.  At IAAPA, Theunisz sold a Fireball to a Russian Park, oddly named Three Beer Park.

Also at IAAPA, Kissel Shows inked a deal for a new Speed ride.  Finally, Mike Demas' X-Factory will be arriving in August of this year.

Theunisz said KMG builds 12 - 15 rides per year and the factory has remained busy, especially with the favorable exchange rate. "The exchange rate has helped sales and makes the rides more affordable for the shows who previously thought the rides were out of reach", said Theunisz.

At the close of the show, it was reported that Pennsylvania based Houghton Enterprises ordered a Inversion for 2018 delivery.

On the concession front, NICA held its annual membership meeting on Wednesday at the Sheraton hotel.  New President Paula Keene came into office, replacing Joe Potillo.

The event was emceed by Lee Stevens; the "Mayor of Gibtown". Speakers included Marla Calico, new IAFE President/CEO and Kent Hojem, CEO of the Washington State Fair and IAFE Chairman.  Others in attendance included Richie George of the IISA and Kenny Detty of the Tampa Showmen's Club.

Hojem touched on the IAFE's move to San Antonio for its annual convention, citing the rising guarantees for rooms and food and beverage from the Las Vegas host hotel as reasons for the move.

Russ Harrison of Rudy's Inc, past president of NICA was inducted into the NICA Hall of Fame. 

Monday and Tuesday, NICA held their annual Business Expo at the Sheraton.  Topics included a DOT Seminar, a workshop on soda machines, a workshop on employee training and Servsafe certification.

On both nights, the Porter family hosted the Fare Foods Food Show.  Audrey Poole coordinates the show showcasing food products for concessionaires.

One important issue NICA has been working on for many years is transfer of ownership with fairs.  NICA has argued that vendors should have the ability to sell their location along with their trailer if the opportunity arises.  Many on the fair side have been resistant, only issuing one-year contracts without any guarantee of return if the business is sold.  

Russ Harrison reported that two fairs, the Dutchess County Fair in NY and the Eastern States Exposition have both adopted policies allowing a transfer of ownership, giving the buyer a year or more to prove their abilities.  Harrison said he was very happy to see this action taken by the fairs and he hoped others would follow suit.

The next NICA food show will take place on February 6 & 7, 2017 with the general membership meeting on the 8th.  

Stay tuned to next week for our wrap-up coverage of the trade show to find out what was purchased and upcoming new equipment deliveries.

2016 IISF Trade Show Coverage

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