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Carnival & Fair News
Carnival & Fair News
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Remembering Michigan Carnival Operator Terry Schmidt

Terry Schmidt, founder of TJ Schmidt & Company, passed away on July 21, from complications due to Leukemia. One of the leading Michigan-based, families –owned carnival companies, TJ Schmidt ......[read more]

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Ray Cammack Shows: Balancing Improving Economy with Rising Labor Costs

Aside from meteorology, the perennial concern for every fair and their carnival company partners is the economy. Is unemployment down or up in any given area? Do families seem to have more or less ......[read more]

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Napa County Fair: A Throwback to a Traditional Country Fair Experience

The Fair & Fiesta at the Napa County Fairgrounds was a buoyant, throwback experience in 2018. Running May 5 and 6, this year’s fair features included a petting zoo and pony ride; the ......[read more]

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After strong 2017, Midway of Fun Reinvested for 2018

This year started off several challenges for Brass Rings Amusements, a Northern California-based carnival company that operate under the moniker Midway of Fun. Foremost of course was the weather and ......[read more]

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Geofencing & Groupon Boost Attendance for State Fair Meadowlands

More is never enough. When it comes to marketing and promotion, the State Fair Meadowlands in New Jersey did not just increase outreach, but took a more innovative approach. Combined with a more ......[read more]

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Indiana's St. Joseph County 4-H Fair Endures Record Heat

The 93rd annual St. Joseph County Fair ran from June 29 through July 8. The nine-day fair is known for its 4-H involvement. According to the fair website, the fair board strives to foster, encourage ......[read more]

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Shamrock Shows Flows With the Times

Shamrock Shows started in 1989 and is based out of Milton, New York. The carnival services events such as festivals, fireman’s carnivals, church bazaars and fundraisers throughout the Hudson ......[read more]

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Placer County Fairgrounds Gets Makeover; re-named @the Grounds

The 81st annual Placer County Fair took place from June 21 to 24 in Roseville, California, and the 61-acre former fairgrounds have been reborn as simply @the Grounds.The fair had been said to be on ......[read more]

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Overcoming Early Labor Shortfall, Crabtree Amusements now Poised for Magic Year in 2018

For Crabtree Amusements, the first quarter of the year turned into an workforce scramble. His H-2B worker allotment was “capped out” by February and while he was able to receive an ......[read more]

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Merced County Fair Builds on Connections, Attractions, to Keep Fair Thriving

The 127th annual Merced County Fair took place from June 6 to 10 and was said to be a great success.“We had a great run this year, and brought in even more entertainment for the community to ......[read more]

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Revenue Up 25 Percent, California Carnival Company Celebrates 12 Years

The 12th anniversary party for California Carnival Company on July 1st proved to be a trifecta. Reaching the dozen year mark was just one reason to party. The other two reasons were the final payment ......[read more]

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4th of July Fireworks Capped San Diego County Fair

It was an explosive event this summer. The San Diego County Fair, held in Del Mar, Calif. at the Del Mar Fairgrounds hosted 1,609,481visitors to enjoy 1,879 concerts and explore a whopping 4,187 ......[read more]

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Magic Money: Carnival Companies & Fairs Going Cashless with Cellular RFID

Being held in the heart of America’s heartland, the Iowa State Fair has an iconic status among North American outdoor events. But this year’s fair may also represent a breakthrough for ......[read more]

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San Mateo County Fair Builds Increased Attendance and Positive Guest Experiences

A smattering of chilly days may have suppressed ride revenue at this year’s San Mateo County Fair but the other sectors of this Silicon Valley event all moved in a positive trajectory. ......[read more]

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Things Looking Up For San Joaquin County Fair

The 2018 San Joaquin County Fair took place from June 14 to June 17. The fairgrounds are managed by the 2nd District Agricultural Association and the fair has begun to revive after periods of ......[read more]

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Powers & Thomas Midway Entertainment Overcomes Tornado with Optimistic Outlook
CarnivalWarehouse: Views from the Road

Weather woes have marked the 2018 spring routes of most carnival companies in the northeast. Midway providers may have cold, rainy weekends in common, but few companies anywhere survived an actual ......[read more]

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Carnival Warehouse: Views from the Road
Rick Riethoffer: Getting to Fair Time After a Cold Wet Spring

This year started out promising for Reithoffer Shows, but then came a cold and damp spring. Carnival companies may invest in new equipment and other upgrades, create stronger marketing collaborations ......[read more]

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KMG Releases New Surf Ride for 2018

On May 3rd, 2017, KMG released a design concept for a new ride designed to travel on one semi-trailer. The new ride, who's factory model name is "Surf Ride".  Since, the ride has generated a lot ......[read more]

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Keizer Iris Festival: Everything is Coming Up Irises

The Keizer Iris Festival has been a successful event for 38 years. Located in the town of Keizer, Ore., the event is “blooming” with fun for the whole family with a series of connected ......[read more]

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Celebrate Fairfax!: Fair Festival Hybrid Survives Rainy Close

A drenched Saturday followed by a rainy Sunday dampened the overall turnout for Celebrate Fairfax!, but this unique combination of music festival and family-friendly county fair had an estimated ......[read more]

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Santa Barbara Fair Goes Out of This World to Increase Attendance and Spending

A healthy uptick in attendance and spending enabled the 2018 Santa Barbara Fair & Exposition to live up to its “Out of This World,” marketing theme. This California fair has become ......[read more]

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Funtastic Shows: Ron Burback Presides Over Carnival History

Located in Portland, Ore., Funtastic Carnival offers a wide range of rides, games, food, and fun for kids and families. From the Washington State Apple Blossom Festival to smaller shows at shopping ......[read more]

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Active Shooter Training: Due to Rising Gun Violence Trends, Fairs Implementing New Security Measures

On the night of Sunday, October 1, 2017, a lone gunman fired more than 1,100 rounds on a crowd of concertgoers at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival on the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada, leaving 58 ......[read more]

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Hop on Up to the Calveras County Fair and Frog Jump

According to Calveras County Fairground CEO Laurie Giannini, attendance hopped up this year over last at the annual Calveras County Fair & Jumping Frog Jubilee. The event is one of the oldest in ......[read more]

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Gillette Shows Demonstrates Continued Success as a Family Affair

Known as a major player in the northeast, Gillette Shows of Pittsfield, MA, has been around since 1947 and has become a successful, family-run business with matriarch Betty Gillette at the helm. The ......[read more]

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Third Annual Horry County Fair up 10% from 2017

The 3rd annual Horry County Fair took place April 20th-29th at the Myrtle Beach Speedway. Jennifer Willard, the Director of Sales and Marketing at the Myrtle Beach Speedway and NASCAR Racing ......[read more]

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Chicago area Concessionaire, Peter Kasin, Recovers from Surgery

Peter Kasin, one of the carnival industry's best-known concessionaires, is doing well seven weeks after having surgery to remove a softball-sized tumor from his colon. Kasin books games with ......[read more]

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2nd Empire State Fair Gets Rained Out, but Market Potential Remains Clear

Not a whole lot of positives can be said about a nine day fair that had eight days of rain, which included two rained outs when the gates never opened. The fact it was only the second edition of the ......[read more]

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Danny Huston acquires NAME from Townsquare Media Inc

North American Fairs LLC has purchased North American Midway Entertainment (NAME) from Townsquare Media Inc. for $23.5 million plus a 15% residual interest in any future proceeds of a sale of NAME in ......[read more]

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Skinners Amusements adds Downdraft for 2018 Season
Show puts extra emphasis on preventative maintenance

Skinners' Amusements is eager to showcase its new Downdraft ride. The piece was supposed to be delivered by Memorial Day, but officials with the Illinois carnival said it's been delayed until June. ......[read more]

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AG Department Engineer Named North Carolina State Fair Manager

The new manager of the North Carolina State Fair is Kent Yelverton, a civil engineer who worked 26 years with the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Yelverton replaces Wesley ......[read more]

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Florida Federation of Fairs Convention: Security Workshops and Agricultural Commissioner Debate

An upbeat attitude and an uptick in attendance highlighted the annual convention Florida Federation of Fairs and Livestock Shows, Inc. Convention, held May 17- 19 at the The Hilton Buena Vista Palace ......[read more]

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BREAKING NEWS: Townsquare Completes Sale Of North American Midway Entertainment

GREENWICH, Conn., May 24, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Townsquare Media, Inc. (NYSE: TSQ) ("Townsquare" or the "Company") announced today that it has completed the sale of North American Midway ......[read more]

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Shaw & Sons: A Family Carnival Business Continues to Grow

Shaw & Sons carnival was started by co-owner Roy Shaw’s grandfather Leroy Shaw in 1945, and a lot has changed since then. “He built a train ride, and he started with that,” Shaw ......[read more]

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Lori Cox, Taking the Helm at Nebraska State Fair

The Nebraska State Fair may be somewhat bigger and longer than the previous fairs Lori Cox has led – most recently as General Manager of the Big Sky Country State Fair ......[read more]

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The National Orange Reaches 103 Years of Citrus-Themed Entertainment

The National Orange Show celebrated 103 years of citrus-themed entertainment this year, and according to fair coordinator Tim Ellis, “attendance was up and the weather was ......[read more]

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Poor Jack Amusements Overcomes Setbacks with Help of Family

Poor Jack Amusements is based out of Milton, Indiana, and provides carnival rides, games and food to fairs and festivals throughout eastern and northeastern Indiana and western Ohio. Part of the ......[read more]

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Great Northern Carnival: A Tradition in the Southwest

With a home base in the greater Phoenix area, Great Northern Carnival traverses the southwest: Arizona, northern New Mexico, and southern Colorado are the states that host the family-owned ......[read more]

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Washington State Spring Fair: A taste of the State Fair in Spring

The Washington State Spring Fair entertained over 100,000 guests this April, and as one of two Washington State Fair events held annually, it offered guests a wide array of family entertainment. ......[read more]

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Joel Cadwell finds a niche for his carnival in Virginia

Jody Cadwell has been in the outdoor amusement industry for quite sometime. Throughout the years, he’s always had a few irons in the fire but has now settled on a couple of things he loves. His ......[read more]

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York Fair & Expo Center Welcomes Bryan Blair to Leadership Team
Blair to assume CEO duties on January 1 when current CEO, Mike Froehlich retires

(YORK, PA, MAY 8, 2018) -- The York County Agricultural Society is pleased to announce that Bryan Blair, General Manager, Elkhart County 4-H Fair and Agricultural Exposition, Goshen, IN, will be ......[read more]

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A Date to Remember: The Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival

The Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival, ran February 15-24 this year, and is a long running event that’s really two events in one. Located in Indio, Calif., just east of Palm ......[read more]

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Poteet Strawberry Festival Guests Have a Berry Good Time

The 71st annual Strawberry Festival returned to Poteet, Texas, from April 13 through April 15. Though Poteet is a small town with under 4,000 residents, it is famously recognized as the ......[read more]

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Southwood Entertainment Starts Jacksonville Spring Fair
Amusements of America on the midway

Brian Ellsworth, the founder of Southwood Entertainment Group, just finished up his first event for the 2018 season: The Jacksonville Spring Fair. The brand new event took place in the Everbank Field ......[read more]

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A Few Changes At Yuma County Fair
Beer Garden & Popular Cinnamon Rolls Get An Upgrade

For 66 years, the Yuma County Fair has invited visitors to come together to celebrate the community's roots. It takes a lot of people to put on the fair – around 350 volunteers help out with ......[read more]

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Houghton Enterprises braves early snow, rising costs

Jim Houghton started out in the business in 1965 tearing down rides with his brother and brother-in-law. As he worked on the show, the owner, Phil Garrett, took Jim under his wing and mentored him in ......[read more]

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OABA Leaders Lobbied Congress Last Week in DC

Last Wednesday, some 25 mobile amusement industry leaders representing carnivals, independent ride owners, concessionaires and suppliers were in DC, following the Spring Board meeting, to lobby key ......[read more]

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Carnival Industry Remembers Joe Zumsteg, 1950-2018

On April 19, 2018, the amusement industry lost a good friend of 40 years, Joe Zumsteg.Zumsteg passed away at his home in suburban Western Springs, Illinois, after a long battle with brain cancer. He ......[read more]

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Miami Dade County Fair down 21 Percent
Bridge collapse nearby hurts attendance

The 2018 Miami Dade County Fair and Exposition featured new entertainment and a new pricing structure for concerts. Locally known as the “Youth Fair,” the focus of this year’s event ......[read more]

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Central Florida Fair Continues To Draw Crowds
Offers Visitors A Fantastic Blend of New and Old

The 2018 Central Florida Fair took place from March 1st through March 18th at the Central Florida Fairgrounds. The fair, which has been around for more than 100 years, brings in more than 200,000 ......[read more]

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