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Lifetime Products Showcases New Ticket Kiosks for NAME; KMG Reveals Upcoming Deliveries & New Lunarix Ride at Gibtown Convention
Rides 4U - New & Used Rides Giant Wheel Foreman Wanted
The IISF Trade Show started slow on day 2 but crowds built  throughout the day as people streamed through the gates. The mood at the show was generally positive, with most showmen coming off a good year in most sections of the country,  even though the East Coast hampered some by rain on the weekend at the end of the season.

Despite rising use of credit cards versus cash and increased credit card default rates around the country, most believe the public will continue to enjoy the local amusement value that the industry provides.  The amusement industry has traditionally survived well during economic downturns as people stay closer to home and enjoy the attractions that the industry provides at a more affordable rate than traveling to a large amusement park out of state. 

Sid Karmia of Toy Factory, a large stock supplier, had nothing but positive comments about the show.  “It's the best it has ever been”,  he enthused.  “There was nobody here until noon today, but then it hit.  This is the best writing show in North America — bar none.”

Karmia was not alone in reporting good news from the 2024 showgrounds.



Lifetime Products

Gary Otterbacher of Lifetime Products is another big show enthusiast.  He is one of the longest standing exhibitors at the event, both with his new company, Lifetime Products that builds bunkhouses,  and his former company, Otterbacher Manufacturing, a premier food trailer building company. 

With NICA and the OABA running events last week, Otterbacher was worried there might be some negative impact on the trade show.  Otterbacher is hopeful that NICA and the OABA can get realigned with the IISF to provide the best possible scenario for the show.

Despite the disharmony, Otterbacher said the show has been going good and he is optimistic about the status of the industry.



Otterbacher was featuring a beautiful new ticketing kiosk in his booth, built for North American Midway Entertainment, which they will be using for the FunTagg system they recently purchased.  North American recently contracted with FunTagg to use their system, at their events.

The kiosks have 6 machines per unit, and Otterbacher will be making 14 kiosks for NAME.  They will be putting 2 kiosk trailers on each transport. 

The company can also build trailers with more than 6 units for a large ticketing plaza and a bigger presentation.

“Eventually everyone will be using this type of system.  More and more shows will need this type of technology”.  Otterbacher hopes to be building many more of these kiosks for the industry.

In addition to the ticketing kiosks, the bunkhouse business is also going along well.   On display were bunkhouses for Angela's Pizza and Jamie Skerbeck. 

The good news is that the company has been able to overcome the backlog that developed during the Covid Pandemic.  Lifetime increased manufacturing capacity, labor has improved and supply chains seem to be flowing.  “We are back to where you can hire people again”, said Otterbacher

As a result of these positive developments, he said is able to make deliveries of new bunkhouses by July of 2024.


KMG

Peter Theunisz of KMG  had a slew of sales and deliveries to report.  After the Pandemic, he took many orders from showmen who had either put on hold a previous order or were purchasing with an optimistic look for the coming seasons.  Now those orders are being delivered here to the States.



In the coming weeks, a new XXL ride will be delivered to Iconic Midway Attractions, owned by Marina and Johann Small.   Mr. Ed's Magical Midways will also be receiving a new Freak Out ride being delivered in the next few weeks.


Other deliveries coming in 2024 include:
  • A Surf Ride  will  be going to Beauce Carnaval in Canada in March
  • Fiesta Shows will be receiving a new Freak Out in April
  • Sean Butler will take delivery of an XXL in July
  • An X-Drive is going to Bishop Amusements in Sept.
  • Butler will also get a Move It in December of this year.

Theunisz will be selling the used Freak Out Fiesta Shows is replacing and is hoping to get some good leads at the show.

In addition to the above rides, Theunisz is working on a deal for an Inversion ride to possibly be sold to a Polish showman this week. 

KMG has been busy building and delivering rides and the production slots at the factory are scarce.  Currently, they have one slot for November, 2025 and a slot in 2026 before issuing 2027 delivery dates.

Even with all the building and delivery, KMG has had time to develop a brand new attraction, the Lunarix.  Announced just last week, the ride moves on the same size trailer as a Freak Out.

Standing 80' tall at its peak, the ride has two large gondolas at either side of the pendulum, There are 8 single seats per end of the ride for a total capacity of 16.

Making the ride unique, the cars are completely free swinging and move sideways.  There are three actions to the ride; the swing of the pendulum, the rotation of the ends and the swinging of the cars.



The ride weighs about 38 tons and perhaps best of all, it does not require a water ballast.

The first Lunarix will be going to a showman outside the US.  Delivery is scheduled for June of 2025.  The second slot available for the ride will be November of 2025.  When the unnamed showmen saw the drawing of the ride at the IAAPA  show in Orlando, he already had placed a deposit on a ride to be built.  Seeing the Lunarix however, he asked if the deposit could be moved to the new piece.  KMG agreed, and he will be the first owner of this new spectacular attraction.

Theunisz said the ride is surprisingly similar in price to that of the Freakout and he expects there will be quite a bit of interest in the November 2025 slot for the piece.
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