Page 1

March 2017

In This Issue:

New TSA Rules

Find out which eight states will be affected by new ID requirements in 2018

2017 Convention

of New York State Association of Agricultural Fairs, Inc.

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Contents The Official Publication of the Outdoor Amusement Business Association


TSA Won’t Accept Driver’s Licenses From Eight States New York State Association of Agricultural Fairs, Inc. 2017 Convention


March 2017



The 51st Year

New DOT Administration



Coming Up Next Month


8 ON THE EARIE Tom Powell reports on the industry’s shows, fairs, colorful show folks and amusing events.


Rodney Huey follows circuses around the country.

23 CAPITOL UPDATE Joan Galvin, Government Relations Consultant

The OABA catches members in action.

18 SERVICES, BENEFITS & PROGRAMS Final 2016 Contribution Fund


Twitter @oabainfo

Instagram @oaba51

Read with Smartphone Bar Code Scanner

Our Mission: To promote the preservation and growth of the

outdoor amusement industry through leadership, advocacy and education.

All advertisements appearing in this ShowTime publication are paid by the advertiser and the OABA reserves the right to refuse any advertising. The ads are provided on an “as is” basis and do not necessarily carry the endorsement of the OABA. In addition, the OABA does not guarantee, warrant, or endorse the information, products, or services of any corporation, organization, or person contributing to this publication.

ShowTime PUBLISHER|MANAGING EDITOR Robert Johnson 407.681.9444 H EDITOR Dee Dee Alford 407.681.9444 H GRAPHIC DESIGN Avic-Versi Creative Jen Burge H 817.602.7254 H ADVERTISING SALES Dee Dee Alford 407.681.9444 H ASSOCIATION OFFICE Outdoor Amusement Business Assn., Inc. 1035 S. Semoran Blvd., Suite 1045A Winter Park, FL 32792 407.681.9444 H fax 407.681.9445 © Outdoor Amusement Business Assn. 2017



CHAIR E. J. Dean 1ST VICE CHAIR Jay Strates 2ND VICE CHAIR Larry Yaffe 3RD VICE CHAIR Debbie Powers TRUSTEE 2016 Thomas J. Gaylin, III TRUSTEE 2015 Michael Wood TRUSTEE 2014 Chris Lopez TREASURER Mitchell Kaliff PRESIDENT Bob Johnson

OABA DIRECTORS Michael Brajevich Steven Broetsky Doug Burtch Tony Cassata Brad Dallman Andy Deggeller Michael Doolan Blake Huston Stacey Jamieson

Marc Janas Mary Johnson Michael Lauther Charlene Leavitt Ron Morris Lance Moyer Ben Pickett Rick Reithoffer Lorelei Schoendienst

Patrick Sheridan Scott Siefker Mary Chris Smith Greg Stewart Holly Swartz Rob Vivona

Mike Featherston-2013 Jeanne McDonagh-2012 Bill Johnson-2011 Dominic Vivona, Jr.-2010 Wayne McCary-2009 Andy Schoendienst-2008 John Hanschen-2007 Guy Leavitt-2006 Ron Burback-2005 Don Deggeller-2004 James E. Strates-2003 * Jackie Swika-2002 Danny Huston-2001 Jeff Blomsness-2000 Sam Johnston-1999 Buddy Merten-1998 * Richard Janas-1997 Jean Clair-1996 James Murphy-1995 Dominic Vivona-1994 * Bill Dillard, Sr.-1993 Tom Atkins-1992 * Red Wood-1991 * Deceased

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* Billy Burr-1990 Bob Coleman, Sr.-1989 * Milt F. Kaufman-1988 * Andy Andersen-1987 * John Vivona-1986 * Mike Farino-1985 James H. Drew, III-1984 Gerald L. Murphy-1983 * John A. Campi-1982 * Buster L. Brown-1981 * Hub Luehrs-1980 * Lloyd J. Hilligoss-1979 * Hal F. Eifort-1978 * Alfred H. Kunz-1977 * P.E. Reithoffer, Jr.-1976 * Bernard P. Thomas-1975 E. James Strates-1974 * Rod Link-1973 * C.J. Sedlmayr-1972 * John Portemont-1971 * William T. Collins-1966-70 * W.G. Wade-1965

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The 51st Year Tom Gaylin, OABA Chair 2016


t’s unbelievable that my tenure as the 2016 Chair of the OABA has come to an end; where did the time go? This past year has been an adventure, has been very enlightening, and has also been very educational, to say the least. I am indebted to so many individuals for their hard work, dedication, endless passion, and especially their support for me and our trade association. Throughout the year, I have had the luxury of visiting over 20 different midways. No matter where my travels took me, I always felt right at home being the recipient of excellent hospitality. Visiting different shows and fairs always reaffirmed my pride for being involved in such a great industry. The mobile amusement industry has REALLY stepped up its game in advancing the way in which we present our form of entertainment to the public. I can tell everyone firsthand that the Mobile Amusement Industry is alive and well. Whenever someone is placed in the position of leadership, you are only as successful and productive as your support group allows you to be. President Bob Johnson and his staff have been amazing to work hand in hand with. The diligence and professionalism is only surpassed by their dedication. No matter what I needed, no matter what time of day it was, challenges received a remedy and issues received immediate and proper attention. Throughout this past year, the partnership with the IAFE has strengthened through the leadership of Marla Callico. This international fair association has not only become an integral partner in our H-2B battle, but has also stepped up their efforts to support and promote the OABA’s Circle of Excellence program. Thank you, Marla, and the IAFE’s board.


The seasonal, guest worker program (H-2B) is a never-ending effort, as is any regulatory program that the federal government is involved in. Even though we lost the Returning Worker Exemption, we have shifted gears, changed strategy, and are currently diligently working on correcting the current situation with a re-authorization bill. This effort will be costly, time consuming, and require a major effort from a lot of different sources and our stakeholders. In the long run, a new law that increases the 66,000 cap, reduces the red tape and burden on all stakeholders, is the right way to go. Over the past year, OABA members have stepped up their game and obtained more credibility by increased congressional lobbying in D.C. and with contributions to our PAC fund. This has not only maintained our seat at the coalition’s table, but has made the OABA a serious power in D.C. when it comes to congressional considerations. It is imperative that the OABA maintain this momentum to receive substantive H-2B relief in the future. Your OABA directors, along with your engaged trustees and officers, have worked extensively in the past year to advance agendas for the betterment of the Mobile Amusement Industry. Your new Chair, E. J. Dean, is a tireless, pro-active young man who will make all members proud. I have all the confidence in the world for the future of the OABA. As I stated in a previous article, one individual does not run this association. For the wheels to turn freely, the Executive Committee working in harmony, along with the total support of the Board of Directors, advances this trade association in a positive direction. And above all, the OABA is only as good as you make it. An engaged and supportive membership will continue to make this association GREAT! Thank you, everyone, for a great year I will never forget. H

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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Coming Up Next Month Bob Johnson, OABA President


r Mission: To promote the preservation and gro tdoor amusement industry through lead wth of the ou nd education ership, advocacy a


hile we are about a month out from when you’ll receive this message in March, many industry events taking place in Tampa February 8–11 will be covered in our April ShowTime. With much happening, including the State Fair, OABA’s 52nd Annual Meeting, NICA/Fare Foods trade show, Florida Federation events and the Gibsonton Trade Show, we’ll have lots to report, pictures to show and, more importantly, many college scholarships to award young people in this industry. Our 2016 Chair Tom Gaylin has fulfilled his chairmanship duties, steered the board and provided leadership on many fronts. As with all chairs, as they get to the end of their term, they are comfortable in their role and many want to continue. Tom doesn’t sail off into the sunset; he’ll stay in a leadership role with the Executive Board for three more years. Fortunately, like many industry association, we have a first, second and third vice chair chomping at the bit to take the reins and place their mark on our trade association. Next up is E. J. Dean, who received the gavel last month as our 2017 chair. E. J., with Fiesta Shows, hails from New England (a huge Patriots fan) and has the largest carnival operation in New England serving some of the finest fairs in


Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. He and his father, Gene, have built an excellent midway operation and are members of the OABA’s Circle of Excellence. Our DC lobbyists will be presenting a new, revised strategy on February 9th to the Board regarding the H-2B visa program, which we understand will change direction from getting annual relief and the “returning worker exemption” in government Appropriation bills to advocating new legislation to fix some of the problems, reduce red tape and ease the burden on seasonal businesses. Again, more to follow on the H-2B front, as the new Administration and Labor Secretary take control. There are several bills being drafted and will be dropped by key legislators who see things as we do, and will be designed to save American jobs! In addition, the Florida State Agriculture’s Bureau of Fair Rides convened to discuss ride safety in the state with all amusement ride industries, including zip-line and challenge course attractions. As appointed by Commissioner Putnam, I have had the honor to chair this important committee. At this meeting, we review the ride safety statistics statewide as provided by the Bureau, comprised of very capable and trained ride inspectors and management. Hopefully, many Florida Fairs will attend as well. H

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On The Earie Tom Powell, OABA News Ambassador


y the time this comes out, the Gibtown Trade Show will be over, E. J. Dean will be the new OABA chairman, Wesley Burnett will have succeeded Jo Ann Arnold as president of the International Independent Showmen’s Association, and hopefully, I will have survived my 45th trade show. I got to know Dean’s father Gene, when I went to visit Roger Shaheen at a park he owned in Salisbury Beach, MA and Dean owned one there, too. He and his partner, Jimmy Flynn, had Fiesta Shows which is now operated by father and son Deans. Being an Irishman from Scranton, PA where there are Notre Dame Fighting Irish clubs on every corner, I was impressed when I found out that the latter was a Notre Dame graduate. One of my many treasures is an autographed picture of the legendary Four Horsemen — Jimmy Crowley, Elmer Layden, Harry Stuhldreher and Rip Miller — by almost-Heisman Trophy Winner Joe Theismann. Crowley became chairman of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission, and his son, Jimmy, played piano at Preno’s, a popular Scranton bar and restaurant After reading the first draft of this column, my son Kevin pointed out that many assume Theismann won the Heisman, but he was actually runnerup to Jim Plunkett. Joe’s last name was actually pronounced “Theesman,” recounted in 2007 that it was Notre Dame publicity man Roger Valdiserri who insisted he change the pronunciation to rhyme with Heisman. But he still finished second to Plunkett of Stanford University. I became friends with both Crowleys, plus another who was unrelated and became a movie star. That would be Patricia Crowley, a neighbor of mine who became a movie star. Her sister, Ann, starred in the play Oklahoma on Broadway, and their brother, Paul, was a


state legislator. Paul and I hit every bar in town one election night, and he told me that when the results came in his mother would always call and ask one question. It was not whether he won or lost, but “Did you carry Bellevue?” That was the beloved section where we lived and winning there was more important to her. Another favorite son of the area was Stout Steve O’Neil. He managed the Detroit Tigers, who beat the Chicago Cubs in the 1945 World Series. Ironically, Joe Madden, who managed the Cubs to the world championship in 2016, is from nearby Hazleton. But before I get into some memories of past extravaganzas, which is what the Gibtown events add up to with multiple happenings every day and night, I want to mention my annual Christmas card from former OABA director Alfie Phillips and his wife, Pam, from Toronto. It has a picture of Phillips and three friends who were winners of the Canadian Curling Championship in 1967, which was Canada’s centennial year. I’ll never forget how gracious Alfie was when, as editor of Amusement Business I visited Conklin Shows at the Calgary Stampede. I asked if he had time for an interview. He stopped what he was doing and said, “You have traveled all the way from Nashville and you wonder if I have time for you. You bet I do. What can I tell you?” A beautiful working relationship and friendship were born. I began with, “What’s it all about, Alfie?” Just kidding. As usual, Phillips had nice words to say, starting with “great articles.” He noted that as Canada now celebrates its 150th year, it’s sad that two of his teammates, “Ron (Moon) Manning and Keith (Wheels) Reilly will not be with us; they passed away in 2012.” Also left is John Ross. The card points out that the four rang up nine straight victories to win the much-ballyhooed Canadian Centennial Brier rockiest.

The card also contains an appropriate message: “As the twilight years race by, you realize that life really is short. Some of our friends are gone, this is difficult to accept. However, life goes on and we should enjoy it while we are able.” That’s one big reason why Christine and I go to Gibtown. After 45 years, there are numerous memories of good times at the club with so many who are no longer with us. Among the earliest, and closest, were Joe Lane, Terry (The Viking) Erickson, Bill Lordy, John (we serve nothing but Maxwell House coffee) McCarthy, Andy Osak, George (Bud) Gilmore, Gene McQuater, Gene (Teeshirt Kelly) Spezia, Jerry Reed, Danny Royal, Frances Hadsall, Paul Dell, Ernie Adams, John (The Peddler) Curtis, Big Hearted Jerry Bohlander (The Little Man With the Big Heart), Steve Swika, Buzzy (The Ice Man) Barton, and so many others. All those guys helped show me the ropes and made me feel welcome, which is something I’ll never forget. I also miss dinners at such places as Bern’s Steakhouse, the Columbia Restaurant, Malio’s, Don Shula’s and Donatello’s with people such as Milt Kaufman of Gooding’s Million Dollar Midways; Fireworks King George Zambelli, Paul (Duke) Smith, who founded and built Allied Specialty Insurance, Ed Gregory of United Shows of America, and others. Good times! Good company! Good food! Harry Fee was president the first year I went to Grand and Glorious Gibsonton, as it has always been so described by veteran sideshow operator Ward Hall. That was 1973. Harry and his wife, Bea, had what I thought was the most unusual attraction I ever witnessed on a midway — a Monkee Speedway. I first saw it at the Lowndes County Fair in Valdosta, GA. Little Richard Thomas had (cont’d on pg. 10)

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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From left, at the 95th annual convention of the Tennessee Association of Fairs in Nashville, are Jim Drew, Drew Exposition, Augusta, GA; Savannah Seibert, her father, Russell Kissel, and her husband, Nick Seibert, all with Kissel Entertainment, Clanton, AL.

On hand in Nashville were Jimmy Danton, left, Wade Shows, who came in from the South Florida Fair, West Palm Beach, and Jason Floyd, Kissel Entertainment.

William Purdy, left, Amusement Attractions, Riverview, FL, plays a lot of Tennessee Fairs, as does James Roy Pope, Pope’s Concessions & Rides, Greenfield, TN.

Jane Pope, right, mother of James Roy, received the prestigious Jimmy Floyd Award for outstanding contributions and meritorious service at the annual banquet. She is congratulated by Lisa Purdy, left, Amusement Attractions, and Petrina Pope, James Roy’s wife. Hillman Snyder, Jr. and his wife, Janie, who book food with Matt McDonagh’s Big Rock Amusements, Chesaning, MI, hosted a Christmas party at their home in West Nashville. From left are Tommy Yttring, Lexie Snyder, Mike and Jill McCormack, Hillman and Janie Snyder, Barbara and Fred Sparling, John A. Hobbs, Nancy Quinn and Christine Powell.

Among those exhibiting at Tennessee and other state convention trade shows were Jean Leonard and Avery Wheelock, LJM & Associates, Gibsonton, which provides risk management services.

Annie Shugart, left, and Glenn Harris of Allied Specialty Insurance, an XL Group Company, Treasure Island, FL, were also at the Tennessee trade show. Shugart is the company’s marketing and client relations coordinator and Harris is a producer. Scott Jones, manager of the Tennessee State Fair, Nashville, visits with Sue Nichols, FiveCentRide, Dickson, TN, who travels to shows all around the country.

Wayne White, former owner of the Dickson Carnival Company, center, is a NAARSO certified inspector based in Cumberland Furnace, TN. He is flanked by Ed and Ashley Noerper, Sonshine Amusements, Odenville, AL.

With Ron and Laura Porter’s Fare Foods, Duquoin, IL are Audrey Poole, left, and Lori Neumeier. They had a booth at the Nashville trade show, as well as helping stage the big NICA show in Tampa.

MARCH 2017 | OABA ShowTime Magazine H

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TSA Won’t Accept Driver’s Licenses From Eight States B

eginning early next year, travelers from eight states will no longer be able to clear airport security and board a domestic flight with only their driver’s license. Last month, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials began posting signs in airports alerting travelers to the new rules that will take effect on January 22, 2018. The rules state that ID’s from Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota,

Missouri, Montana, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Washington do not meet the federal government’s minimum security standards for stateissued driver’s licenses. These minimum standards were set in the REAL ID Act passed by Congress in 2005. Beginning next year, residents of these eight states will need to show an alternative form of acceptable ID for domestic air travel to board their

flight, such as a valid passport or military ID. States have made slow progress in meeting REAL ID compliance standards and some have balked at the requirements due to privacy concerns. Currently, 24 states and the District of Columbia are REAL ID compliant. Other states — excluding the eight referenced — have applied for and received extensions to meet the REAL ID standards. H

Puppy Roll Faribault, MN

MARCH 2017 | OABA ShowTime Magazine H

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2017 CONV T

OABA 3rd Vice Chair Debbie Powers reporting an update about OABA

he 129th Annual New York State Association of Agricultural Fairs Convention at the Joseph A. Floreano Riverside Convention Center in Rochester, NY was held January 13–16, 2017. Thirty-nine fairs attended, as well as associate members of the association. Over 750 individuals were in attendance. President Andy Imperati, Dutchess County Fair, Rhinebeck, NY welcomed everyone to the convention. Saturday’s keynote speaker was Clint Swindall, “Tell me Somethin’ Good!” and Sunday speaker Juli Burney presented “Those Who Laugh, Last.” A variety of breakout sessions

Bob Commerford set up at the trade show.


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Corky Powers, Powers Great American Midways, and Bob DeStefano, Dreamland Amusements, presenting a workshop on carnival relations

continued throughout the four day event and delegates enjoyed an interactive game show experience “Fair Family Feud.” The auction to benefit the scholarship program grows in items and attendance each year. Record amounts were raised for the fund in 2017. The trade show included 88 booths. The “Little Red Wagon Parade” with its theme “County Fairs” was a tremendous success. The “Hall of Fame” award was presented to NYSAAF Past President and Executive Secretary Russell Marquart, CFE of the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, NY. New York State Showpeople’s Association awards were presented to Jefferson Mayne of the Madison County Fair for “Fair Person of the Year,” Avery Wheelock for “Show Person of the Year,” and Cameron Ward, Wheelock Rides, for “Workhorse of the Year.” The 2017 officers are: President Gary Newkirk, CFE of the Ulster County Fair, New Paltz, NY; First Vice President Scott Christian, Essex County Fair, Westport, NY; Second Vice President Nick Pelham, Steuben County Fair, Bath, NY; Third Vice President Jason Lawrence, Chenango County Fair, Norwich, NY; Treasurer Melissa Beardslee, Delaware

County Fair, Walton, NY; and Executive Secretary Russell Marquart, CFE, Erie County Fair, Hamburg, NY. District District District District District District District District District

Directors are: 1 Frank Cuff, Ulster County Fair 2 Lauren Rowland, Saratoga County Fair 3 Joseph Giroux, Clinton County Fair 4 Douglas Hanno, Lewis County Fair 5 Kevin O’Brien, Delaware County Fair 6 Richard Freligh, Seneca County Fair 7 Taryn Moyle, Orleans County 4-H Fair 8 Alton M. MacDuffie, Genesee County Fair

NY State Fair Acting Director — Troy Waffner, Syracuse Associate Directors — Jeff Lloyd, Utica, NY & Joseph Sofo, Jr., Auburn, NY For more information on NYSAAF Fairs & Convention contact Russell Marquart, CFE, Executive Secretary at or visit our website at H MARCH 2017 | OABA ShowTime Magazine H

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Photo Gallery Minnesota Federation of County Fairs, Minnesota State Fair and Midwest Showmen’s Association Convention

The Minnesota Federation of County Fairs Annual Meeting, Al De Rusha with Heidi Herriott, “The Rhinestone from left, Kirk Peysar, District 6 director; Barb Bening, past Cowgirls.” She and her daughter Cassidy will be president; Sharon Stillings, president; Ray Erspamer, VP, seen at fairs with her performing horses. and Tiffany Gusting, executive secretary.

State Fair Hall of Fame; Fred Pittroff, right, creator and owner of the Giant Slide for 49 years at the fair. Jim Ertl, left, Honorary Lifetime Member and long-time FFA executive and state fair fixture. Pictured in the Magel Carnival Midway suite, from left, Glenn De Rusha (Al’s son), Craig and Jeanie Gass, Father John Vakulskas and John Magel. Seen at the Midwest Showmen’s open house were George Atsidakos and Jeremy Solem.

Annual Meeting of the Minnesota State Fair.

Visiting the Cody Rides hospitality suite were Merritt, Steve, Jean, Edwin, Courtney and Mike. Al De Rusha congratulates Nick Taulelle, 2016 Midwest Showmen’s president, on a job well done. Magic by Chaz, Magic Shows Strolling Magic Charles Misenheimer, performed for the Midwest Showmen. A Master Magician! Owatonna, MN Steele County Free Fair Board of Directors with President Dan Demi and Secretary/ Manager Jim Gleason.


Janet and husband Dennis Beise, manager of the Wright County Fair, Howard Lake, MN.

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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Pennsylvania State Association of County Fairs Convention

Rick Marchione was a fantastic emcee at the Pennsylvania Showmen’s banquet.

The Triangle Poster dudes, Al Rosenberg and Ed Kengerski.

The Haughton Family; Jim, wife Gladys, grandson Jason Jr., dad Jason Sr. and his wife Sara.

Pictured in the R.W. Commerford booth, from left, Corky and Debbie Powers, Bob Commerford and his son Billy.

The Powers & Thomas folks, from left, Tracy and Ron Thomas with Amy and Ed Powers.

Al De Rusha with Larry Johnson, Majestic Midways. Larry is the OABA liaison for the Pennsylvania Showmen’s Club.

At the Pennsylvania Showmen’s Hawaiian luau; Beverly Gruber, Steve Swika III and Al De Rusha.

Al De Rusha at the Pennsylvania County Fair banquet pictured with Isabelle Lindsay, Dayton Fair Queen candidate.

Pictured in the Allied Specialty Insurance booth were Joplin Taylor, Sue Vereker and Brandee Mellert.

Pennsylvania State Association of County Fairs 2017–18 President David Hallstrom and his wife Marianne. MARCH 2017 | OABA ShowTime Magazine H

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Photo Gallery


Wisconsin Association of Fairs Convention

Visiting the Earl’s Rides suite were Chris and Gail Huston with their daughter Andrea. With Calkins United Shows; from left, Alan Larkee, Barbara Larkee, Cindy Larkee, and Jeff Dills.

With Mister Ed’s Magical Midways; Sierra, Mariah, Lisa and Chad Duchow.

Pictured bidding at the live auction were the NAME guys; from left, Danny Menge, Tom Thebault and Pat Repp. With Earl’s Rides; Jake, Marie and Doug Fink.

From left, Alpine Amusement Company’s Donnie Massie III with Russell Scott and Peter Kasin.

The A&P Enterprise Shows celebrating 50 years; in back from left, Connie, Dave, Nathan, Art, George and Sheila. In front are Phyllis, the show matriarch, and Jane Kedrowicz.

Rainbow Valley Rides, the Kedrowicz Family; from left, Chip and Teri, daughter Christa and husband Joe.

Thanks to Chuck and Lynn Waterman for organizing Monday Night Carnival.

ASTM Meeting – New Orleans, LA

Louisiana Association of Fairs & Festivals Meeting Carnival owners attending the LAFF meeting.

Jerry and Loretta Aldrich with OABA Trustee John Hanschen.


Tony Lowery, Lon McQuarter, Gus Miller and Jimbo Miller.

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Anyw the e industry tor but ay, this is a facturing of design, development of us that sad time for a knew Ron. the heat shiel and manu all - him and I Apollo spac d sensors his family.� am certainly thinking e prog for NASA’s of Privately, Ron ram. Cedar Fair’s enjoyed work CEO, He hand carve on Ron’s ing with wood passing tellinDick Kinzel reflected . was not bling wood d waterfowl and enjo only an outst g AT, “Ron Toom en yed assem - outstandin er enjoyed cross car kits. He was an anding engi avid g neer, indiv word reader, mou but an idual. He puzzles, pictu cooking and sly to the Ron Toom re puzzles, gardening growth and contributed enorer he most enjo . In industry. developm (and in seco as seen through the I always cons yed the days his younger years, ent of our years at Arro nd photo and camp idered him and more when he could Zamorano) with Arro w Dynamics in important w’s Alan hike sona and ly, I considere a colleague nation’s Natio the High Sierras Harris and l friend.� at home with various functions and visit d him a pernal Parks. Melree , the IAAP the Publicly, Six Flags’ AT FILE PHOT his IAAPA Hall though, Ron of Fame awar A trade show and well OS Toomer durin Pat Hoffman work known for is perhaps d. g ed his work industry with in the amus most saying, “I first his early days at Ceda with Arrow Deve met Ron r Point Dynamics) lopment (aka ement installation and of the Ceda in 1969 during the Arrow of attraction the creation of a vast number later on both the Cork r Creek Mine Ride s, particular tall Vertigo swing and roller coas screw and ers. Througho ly the mod ter. While Gemini the Wind Rider, a 130-foot popular ride. See ern steel ut all the his Arrow was ent Park has opened of the construction coasts first park model tackling wate first assignment with testing and initial Top left: Cliff’s Amusem phases, times on the openings Pirates of Rides. It is the supplier’ r issues at there to take upside down multiple he Disn the flipping ride from A.R.M. (USA) was are Giant care eyland’s up. Caribbean tall always Mine Train Elitch Gardens guests ’s massive 73-foot I was youn of anything that migh at Six Flags ride, the Runaway page 31. Top right: ride is the company t come first roller but Ron alwa g and just starting onal Brain Drain. The coaster proje Over Texas was new Larson Internati my career, ys took time his tions. Karl Bacon, ct. Working to answer He beca he Loop. See page 4. along my queshelped prod GARDENS me my men side grea paved the COURTESY ELITCH uce a coas tor t guy who way for an CLIFFS/AT GARY SLADE; will be misse and was truly a coaster and amazing colle ter that National d by many ride proje .� designed cts. In 1975 ction of Richard Mun Roller Coaster Muse and um Historian , Toomer ch said, “His ers. His desig opened four Cork industry can screw coas n for the Ceda be measured importance in the t- quantity one year r Point by the quali of later, inclu ty and ded a verti Corkscrew, direction, rides produced by missed the Arro cal from w coas loop under his 1966 to his ter record . He most opening of retire ly with Karl books for a modern-e Bacon, Toom ment. Working the his guid cal loop, ra coas er excelled ter with a ance creat when Mag vertiunder ing some ic Mountain Anton Schw of the most opened the tant coasters of the arzkopf-de impormod signed Grea Revolution, corkscrew just seven element, impr ern era, including the t American days elem ovem During his earlier. ent and the ents of the suspended loop ers became tenure at Arrow, Toom was instru coaster. men the must-have er’s coastArrow the world cessful attra tal in providing all at parks . His track types of sucdesign woul all around to an asso ctions, from coas way beyond ters to flum d lead the rtme Corkcrews es, loops and to include draw for millio nt of rides that boomeran prov interlocking g elements. took coas during that ns who visited the natioided the ter In period. Ride n’s parks the creation technology to a new 1981, he Monster, s like the Mag of level with Loch Ness first suspende The Bat at Kings Islan Rides, have num XL-200 and the d, Arrow’s thrilled millio fun Mine partner with d coaster. In 1989 continue to ns of rider , he woul Cedar Poin gain new s, and will surrounded Intamin, d from coas t fans, long to flume ter to brea build the first er high-tech even as taller this massive log steel e drop followed by rides corn and Phantasialand opens with the Mag k the 200-foot-tall Ron is survi er the mark five levels and a 53-degre Top left: Germany’s Waheight limit et.� ved by features three lifts, added a Zamperla term Hype num XL-200. With years, four that ride, by a new section. Chiapas 11 & 12. Top right: Six Flags Over Texas rcoaster was children and his wife, Betty of the and 54 pages teamed up 38. their spou ushered in. a camelback hill. See Blasters. See page with ses: He also Jeffr Christie Toomer of as Daffy Duck Bucket sive seven-inv Six Flags to creat Darien, Ga.; Gregory JEFFREY SEIFERT ey Thornton termania ride themed e three ersio Carol and FLAGS OVER TEXAS/AT TIM BALDWIN; SIX All total, Toomn coasters from 1988 mas- Alana Mitchell of Bedford, Texas; FANTASYLAND/AT Gary and -90. of Keller, er would 93 steel and Texas; Chris be credited Kristi Toom roller coas topher er of Park with gran ters. He countless 5-7, 2014 er, Colo. dchildren. ber assis othe Septem | ted S r and nine amuseme with AWARD initial layou A memorial t for the hillsid nt rides including the 2014 GOLDEN TICKET service for Magic Mou was held e setting of family and ntain’s log on Oct. Six Flags friends 1 at the flume. Methodist Mart Church in Bedford, Texa in United s.

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summer. one of in love Charles I.D. Looff, Americans fall most successsel’ the earliest and with the ‘Carou ls delive. back to ful builders of carouse Roundâ€? come a popular pastim Though dating Go opened 16th centuered the “Merry John Leibrandt France in the mid in August of EDWKKRXVH RQ the late 1800s to the Boardwalk WKH Ă€UVW SXEOLF ry, it wasn’t until Santa The 1865. tion of a steam in 1911. and the adapta ated the beach with its southcarousels became Looff, who immigr beach, that Cruz engine side of as a young from Denmark shore on the north ed popular. g carousels ern become ey Bay was protect man, began buildin Americans had new J KLV Ă€UVW DW Monter harsh waves typical the LQ  LQVWDOOLQ ted with these earveer’s Bath- from offered a enchan the late 1800s and Mrs. Lucy Vander the west coast and with rides in age of Coney Island, of ul and serene area and the golden ing Pavilion at ing. ly 1900s in 1876. Be- beautif is generally considopen-water swimm New York City, ls safe, carouse RI Ă€UVW PDQ\ uses soon fol1905 to 1925. LQJ RQH RI WKH ered to be from Island Other bathho ants, PDQ\ Coney restaur WKH uent  WR along with the subseq 9LVLWRUV Ă RFNHG learned their lowed scattered photo stands and parks shops, ent carousel carvers curio amusem Looff. In to take out the country skills from Charles carousel hotels. his W. Swan- through the “painted ponies.â€? 1910 he moved In 1904, Fred spin on g factory to 6DQWD &UX] a ors alike and ride buildin WRQ ZKRVH Ă€UVW Riders and spectat carved nia. HG LQ D Ă€UH ul Long Beach, Califor KRWHO ZDV GHVWUR\ e casino loved the beautif music and opened the Neptun he pro- horses, the calliope relatively new alk that A bathing beach the of boardw glow and ent City the lights. Like many amusem20th moted as the “Atlantic was incandescent of the that as West.â€? That too parks at the turn It is estimated WZR alk began of the were HG LQ D Ă€UH MXVW 3,000 carousels century, the Boardw stop many as Americans GHVWUR\ peas a bathing beach. prosper- years later, but that didn’t ed in this short time the Santa produc more 175 of those were becoming Swanton. He formed in 1906 riod but less than dependent on on today. Company operati Beach ous and less in Cruz r remain They realized page 5 an even grande constant work. See CAROUSEL, a a good and opened with was on in 1907, along that recreati ing had be- casino thing, and swimm

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Celebrating Our



, Calif. — bringSAN DIEGO San Diego, ed SeaWorld Millay debut to the experiencand personal g ing us up close park. Incorporatinof a marine life es found in g it the focus tions and makin T! prove to be a sea life attrac THE BES would ery BEST OF of discov would eventualan entire day ing this, Millay their of parks. Over winners and success. Follow our industry orld into a chain of parks has ony weekend sakes honoring ly expand SeaW family but the cerem orld tuSeaW and mov- accomplishments, the years, the networking oppor e this ting, entertaining of animals an enjoyable e anniversary educa a chanc — becom d has er evolve fun, as well as rating its 50th s, presented come. The numb park. laughter and Diego, celeb Tickets Award of each host inspiring. Bring- nity full of ing those that ths SeaWorld San been streng has attendees the 2014 Golden ted 2014. Event musicians pour- season, hosted the er in encounters to experience saved and protec marinein training or , on Sept. 6, animals togeth l shows and Like athletes , the many parks by Amusement Today memories peoing people and mix of anima into their songs , these are life ment indus- were treated to the park’s ing their soul day. amuse and interactions ORLD the every SEAW within with them at the park themed rides. COURTESY ent of en- and water parks ple take home guests’ days , vice presid ue the try strive to make their Rick Schuiteman be and to contin to welcoming can possibly best looks forward orld San Diego the best they tertainment, r to make the so cool for SeaW Ticket Awards to push themselves harde ctions n industry. “It’s making conne this year’s Golde not only have even better. Or perhaps, ber long to be hosting n will remem an honor! We s that childre lives ceremony‌what showcase our beautiful park within familie grown is a way they touch to it after they are Awards salute the opportunity the theme park industry, The Golden Ticket atulations go s of the wonders day after day. to the leader ry. Congr to experience but in the indust taken top prize, also allows them known as America’s Finest the finest on not only have , also hard to rank to those that of San Diego have worked who each er for Sea- also to those that City!â€? especially those general manag with their rty on a the charts, and even John Reilly, future prope the this in , enjoys the day try to make it there World San Diego AT asked what he feels is s of excellence. tation of rty, expec When panel continual Diego prope daily basis. our experienced te of the San With each year, grow worldwide. AT has defining attribu “Our team members. Their ues to of voters twice. experts contin Reilly responds, wow me every day.â€? exact same group have talent d to be host- never had the d the globe passion and Today is thrille Awards at people aroun us along with Amusement Hundreds of tise Ticket n collective exper in the parks to annual Golde attendees enjoy shared their ing its 17th dollars Diego. Here, lives hard-earned nters, rides and with their SeaWorld San have made their of shows, encou Today park, give back to those that Amusement a dynamic mix al SeaWorld pleasurable. inat the origin TM a little more rsary. beauty — all those enthusiastic its 50th annive does the is indebted to the fan, this industry now celebrating industry visitors leave “getâ€? what parks when inspired by dividuals that “I hope our with so nd ates Awards weeke day, and celebr they take action day after Golden Ticket 100 percent. in it more than SeaWorld that — Tim Baldw populations,â€? they’ve given the animals at nce for wild to make a differe by Amusesays Reilly. s presented The annual award e prized keepnot only becom ment Today have


| Pages 29


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NEW JER SEY PIERS HIT HARD BY SAND ` AT’s exc lusive cov Y erage inside

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Contribution Fund PROGRAM

2016 OABA Contribution Fund Program Participants

BRONZE • Get Your Contribution Fund Tickets Now • This is deductible as a business expense

OABA Contribution Fund Program

THE OABA’S CONTRIBUTION FUND offers three different plans to meet your show’s contribution to the OABA and in turn rewards the show and concessionaires for these donations.

WHY SHOULD I PARTICIPATE? You will be given the opportunity to receive cash prizes for your contributions to this program and help the OABA protect the carnival industry.

WHAT IS IT? Fund-raising for the OABA has always been based on the generosity of its members and depends on members to pay their fair share, the theory being that the organization belongs to the members who raise relevant issues and in the belief that they will also underwrite activities. Support and participation of enough members will provide the revenue necessary to continue and improve on membership services.

HOW IS IT HANDLED? This OABA program advises member carnivals to collect funds from all office-owned and independent concessions and rides, side shows and arcades. When the show owner collects the money, they need to give or complete a receipt. The show or concessionaires then send the receipts to the OABA office, which will be eligible for monthly and annual incentive prizes. Please note that it is important to include your phone number on your receipt, as we want to be able to contact you when you win!

WHAT IS THE MONEY USED FOR? The funds collected for this program are earmarked for legal, legislative and lobbying issues. Also, funds are used to continually upgrade member services. CAN’T I JUST CONTRIBUTE? Sure, but then you lose out on the opportunity to participate in winning cash incentives.

SEND IT ALL IN! Funds are solicited and contributed in the name of the OABA. Once money is collected, please send it monthly to the OABA office in form of a check or money order. You may check ShowTime magazine where the contributions and monthly winners in each plan will be published monthly. H

Bronze Plan

Contribution from Concessions & Rides $5.00 per event

Monthly drawings April-October First Prize $300 Second Prize $200 $100 Third Prize

Final drawing in February First Prize $3,000 Second Prize $2,000 $1,000 Third Prize

Silver Plan

Contribution from Concessions & Rides $10.00 per week

Monthly drawings April-October First Prize $400 $300 Second Prize Third Prize $200

Final drawing in February First Prize $4,000 $2,000 Second Prize Third Prize $1,000

Bronze and Silver Plans: If the carnival contributions exceed $5,000, OABA dues are waived for carnival.

Gold Plan

Contribution from Concessions & Rides $5.00 per day

Monthly drawings April-October First Prize $500 $400 Second Prize Third Prize $300

Final drawing in February First Prize $5,000 $2,000 Second Prize Third Prize $1,000

Gold Plan: If the carnival contributions exceed $10,000, OABA dues are waived for carnival.


Calkins United Shows Chuck & Lynn Waterman Doolan Amusements Abigail Doolan Heidi Doolan John Doolan Michael Doolan Sean Doolan Tina Doolan Frazier Shows 3 G’s Ashley Ice Cream Blazen Enterprises Broetsky Entertainment Broetsky Equipment Broetsky Foods Andrea Broetsky Ashley Broetsky Bryan Broetsky Cash Broetsky Jan Broetsky Julie Broetsky Piper Broetsky S.P. Broetsky S.T. Broetsky Steve Broetsky Allie Carpenter Lauren & Billy Carpenter William Carpenter Frankle Fair Frazier Shows Damian Haller Jessica Johnson Jamal Khalil Jamal’s T Shirts Elizabeth Landon Lauren Lauther Garfield Miller

Garry Miller Ginny Miller Carlos Ramirez Jaxon Scales Tristan Scales AJ Schrum Adam Schrum Betsi Schrum Schrum Enterprises Mike Scott Courtney Skaggs Barb Sloan Larry Sloan Tobias Sky Andrea Tobias Dylan Tobias Emma Tobias George Tobias Georgie Tobias NAME/All Star Amusements David Belcher – The Eatery Huts JPB Blomsness Pat Blomsness James Mayhew Potopas Kristina Rieder Dawn Snoddy Carl Vance Dennis Voss Rainbow Valley Rides Teri Kedrowicz Rosedale Attractions & Shows Michelle Farrow Barbara Gaylin Tom Gaylin Wayne Hinson J&J Concessions

Final 2016 OABA Contribution Fund Ray Cammack Shows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57,800 Reithoffer Shows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31,510 Powers Great American Midways . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18,920 Deggeller Attractions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15,770 Frazier Shows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9,440 Luehrs’ Ideal Rides . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5,150 S&S Amusements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,715 NAME/Astro Amusements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,640 Rainbow Valley Rides . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,500 NAME/All Star Amusement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,425 Skerbeck Entertainment Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,420 NAME/Mid America Shows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2,035 Rosedale Attractions & Shows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,655 Elliott’s Amusements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,160 A Fantasy Amusement Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1,000 Doolan Amusement Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 800 Carousel Family Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 570 Calkins United Shows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 500 TOTAL $160,510

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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Memberships Sold Many thanks to our OABA Ambassadors for their continued support of the OABA and its Mission:

“To promote the preservation and growth of the outdoor amusement industry through leadership, advocacy and education”

Tracy Creason 287

Madison Kissel 175 Kissel Entertainment

Powers Great American Midways

Heidi Elsperman 86

Marina Zaitshik 69

Katherine Petree 46

Andrew Schoendienst 38 Luehrs’ Ideal Rides

Niki Skerbeck 36

Skerbeck Entertainment Group

Richard Hanson 33

Rick Reithoffer 16

Michelle Farrow 14

Carly Vertz 10

Ray Cammack Shows

Deggeller Attractions

Reithoffer Shows

Total 20

Wade Shows

Rosedale Attractions

Debbie Powers 143

Thomas Carnival

GoldStar Amusements

Skerbeck Family Carnival

2017 Memberships Sold!

Contribution Fund James Martin McKinney Foods Troy Meadows Dean O’Brien Pier Amusements Eldon Runyan Runyan Games Toby Runyan Wentz Sylvia Wilson Powers Great American Midways A Dream Photo Andrews Ann Marie Bear Brandon Concessions Chen Chico Sales Phil & Suzi Corl Dave’s I Got It Jeff & Sheila Dean DeWitt Tattoo Doolan Elliot/Powers Ruthie Evans Flores Fonzone Gail Gillette Mike Heaton Ianni Concessions Marc & Tiffany Janas Jason’s Caricature Jill Klingenmeyer Liang Pam McDonald Bob & Suzette McKnight Mel & V Concessions Mike Knife David Miller Murphy Nu Again Enterprises Philly Pies Corky & Debbie Powers Raymond Duke Ristick Steve Ristick Rose Ryan Sadie Snyder Swika Fun Clinic Tang Pics Tara Teddy Bear Concessions M. Thomas, Jr. Wheelock Reithoffer Shows Tony Albanese

Gary Alberry Mike Bronchik Jan Husted Michael Lauther Andrew Prestin Beau Pugh Bobby Pugh Rick Reithoffer Mario Rojas Paul Smith John Stoorza Robert Vinson


Ray Cammack Shows Nancy Bishop Brian Bradbury Emily Bradbury Jacqueline Bradbury Savannah Bradbury Zane Bradbury Matthew Burton Nathan Burton Bryan Creason Jose De La Cruz Joyce Hutchins Nathan & Stephanie Janousek Nathan Janousek Ashley Kastl Cameron Kastl JoAnne Leavitt Mark Leavitt Joe Lewis Vanesa Lewis Mad Hatter Tom & Jeanne McDonagh Bill Morton Burt Morton Carrie Morton Deborah Morton Hailey Ousey Jayce Michael Ousey Kate Ousey Kirsten Ousey Mary Ousey Michael Ousey Michael John Ousey Jayce Michael Pacheco Dominic & Kim Palmieri Alan Putter Andrew Schoendienst, Jr. Sweet Cheeks Brian VanderVorste Stephanie VanderVorste

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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NewGovernment DOT Administration Feature Title Government By Ericby Arnold, ArnoldOfficlal SafetyName Consulting commercial motor vehicles which operate infrequently — like utilities, construction vehicles or OABA members — do not need the ELDs. It is too soon to say for sure. The date the ELDs must be installed is December 17, 2017, so hopefully clarification comes before then.

Hours of Service

Evan El-Amin/Shutterstock, Inc.


have gotten numerous questions in the past few months about President Trump. Most of these questions are along the lines of, “When will President Trump save us from this

out-of-control government?” My answer, which is based on 26 years of experience working both inside and outside of the federal bureaucracy, is ‘no time soon.’ First, the question assumes President Trump wants to save you from the over-zealous regulators. This is a big assumption which may turn out to be false. Assuming regulatory relief is coming, it will take several months, probably years, for it to happen. As of this writing, a new head of FMCSA has not been named; that will take another few months. Once the new FMCSA administrator is named, it will take them many months just figuring out what FMCSA does. If this individual wants to cut regulations, they will face opposition from FMCSA bureaucrats at nearly every turn. Do you really think a new FMCSA administrator is going to get

A Trump FMCSA could loosen the hours of service regulations. It’s possible they could kill the 30-minute rule. This would help OABA members, not because our drivers are not taking or don’t want to take the 30-minute break, but because many members and their drivers don’t know it needs to be logged.

Speed Limiters There is a rulemaking in the pipeline which will require trucks to have speed governors on them. The implementation date of this rule is pretty far down the road, maybe five years or so. It is favored by the ATA, as they view it as a way to crush their smaller competition. Killing this rule would help OABA members.

Safety Fitness Rule There is a rulemaking called the ‘Safety Fitness rulemaking’ which could have serious implications for OABA members. Essentially, the FMCSA would do away with their Satisfactory, Conditional, and Unsatisfactory rating designations which they’ve used for the past 25–30 years, and primarily use the CSA scores to determine fitness. In this new system, if an OABA member gets a number of poor roadside inspections or speeding tickets, they could be in serious jeopardy of having their DOT number revoked. The proposed safety fitness rule would make it easier for FMCSA to place motor carriers Out of Service. This could conceivably happen to an OABA member. This rule was facing headwinds from the trucking industry already. Hopefully under a Trump FMCSA, those headwinds will become a gale.

cooperation slashing regulations from the very bureaucrats who have just spent the past eight years writing these same

Overall Aggressive FMCSA

regulations? No chance. Action will be slow, if it comes at all.

In the past eight years, FMCSA has morphed into a hyperregulatory, punitive monster. This is, by far, the worst I have ever seen that agency operate. They currently believe the best way to reduce truck accidents is to pass more and more regulations on trucks, and severely punish anyone who breaks these regulations. Judging by the number of crashes happening, I don’t think their philosophy is working. I recently had an FMCSA enforcement action come across my desk. The motor carrier had four speeding tickets in the past year. FMCSA fined this carrier $21,000 for those speeding violations. It is becoming relatively common practice for

However, here are some areas where I think there could be some positive change.

Electronic Logging Devices (ELD) The ELD mandate will almost certainly not go away because of Trump. It was passed as a law by a Republican Congress and is strongly favored by the American Trucking Association (ATA). However, the FMCSA has the power to interpret who must have the ELDs. I think it is possible that a Trump FMCSA could determine that non-traditional

MARCH 2017 | OABA ShowTime Magazine H

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FMCSA to simply pick out a CSA category where you have too many violations and fine you several thousands of dollars, just based on those poor roadside inspections. Overall fines levied during audits are much higher than they were just five years ago. It is possible a Trump FMCSA may reign in some of the worst abuses by its field auditors, but this will likely take years. In the meantime, my advice remains the same: take FMCSA and their rules seriously. Have your equipment thoroughly inspected and repaired before the start of the season. Check all straps you are using to tie down equipment for cuts, nicks and abrasions. If you have marginal or broken equipment and you’re gambling on not getting caught, rest assured if DOT does catch you, they are going to make you pay harshly. Make sure your drivers understand how to fill out the logs and make sure they are doing so every day. Make sure they are logging a 30-minute off-duty break for each eight hours they are driving or on-duty. Make sure all your drivers have a


Bluetooth device so they are not tempted to use the handheld cellphone while driving. Make them wear their seat belts and force them to follow the traffic laws. Make sure you are running the MVRs on the drivers within 15 days of them getting new medicals. If you are not doing so already, you should acquaint yourself with your CSA scores. The CSA is the FMCSA’s bible. They use these scores religiously to determine who they will audit, and ultimately punish. If your scores are getting high, you have a small window to do something about it before you get the phone call from FMCSA. When you get that phone call, it’s often already too late. H Eric Arnold, President of Arnold Safety Consulting, Inc., is a former U.S. Department of Transportation agent, with 26 years regulatory and transportation compliance experience. His column will appear periodically in the ShowTime magazine. As part of your OABA dues, Mr. Arnold is available for free consultations regarding the DOT rules and regulations.

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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From The Center Ring Connecting & Protecting the Circus Industry! Rodney Huey, RAH PR Strategies OABA Circus Media Consultant


his year’s March winds will reverberate with “winds of change” in the American circus world, as Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey continues its “Final Tour” hitting nine cities primarily along the East Coast. Out of This World opens the month at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, then moves to Newark (NJ) March 8–12; Trenton (NJ) March 17–19; Richmond (VA) March 23–26; and the Verizon Center in Washington, DC opening March 30. Circus Xtreme opens the month in Duluth (GA) before trekking to Cincinnati (OH) March 10–19; then it’s back east with engagements in Norfolk (VA) March 23–26, finishing out the month in Hampton (VA). Irony of ironies, of course, is that ticket sales are booming along the final itinerary. The box office for last few performances in Uniondale (NY) and Providence (RI) are selling out quickly, and scalpers on are making circus history by offering prime ringside tickets in Uniondale for $2,000 — the highest price ever asked for an American circus ticket. Also, if the fire marshals will allow it, you may see SRO tickets (a “straw house” in circus parlance) for the first time in memorable history at The Greatest Show on Earth. If you plan to catch RBBB before it closes, better get online quickly and pick up what what’s left of seats in the nose-bleed sections! In other touring circus news, Universoul is in Atlanta (GA) through March 12 while Carson & Barnes’ new Circus Saurus winds up its traditional Texas schedule before heading out-ofstate. Kelly Miller Circus kicks off its 2017 season this month in Aledo (TX), then meanders around the Lone Star state with numerous one-day stands. On the West Coast, Circus Vargas’ new Steam Cirque opens March 2 in Escondido (CA), the fourth city on this year’s itinerary, then moves to Temecula (CA) on the 16th to finish out the month. Cirque Italia’s Silver Unit opens at the Towne Center Circle in Sanford (FL) March 2. Although we are seeing the larger classical American touring shows facing unprecedented challenges, popular interest in circus arts have never been stronger, particularly among young people. Smaller, boutique American circuses continue to entertain audiences from coast-to-coast, such as Circus Sarasota, Bindlestiff Family Circus, American Crown Circus, Circus Hanneford, Culpepper Merriweather Circus, Cirque Musica, Paul Kaye’s Great American, Circo Hermanos Caballero, Circus Vasquez, Circus Gatti, Walker Brothers Circus, Zerbini Family Circus, Hamid Shows, Jordan Circus, Loomis Family Circus, Carden International, Zoppe Family Circus, Midnight Circus and Cirque des Voix and Summer Circus Spectacular at the Historic Asolo Theater at the Ringling Museum among others. Additionally, every youth circus, from Sailor Circus to Circus Harmony to Circus Smirkus, present


annual and/or bi-annual shows while college student/circus artists with Gamma Phi Circus at Illinois State University and Flying High Circus at Florida State University showcase their artistry in annual campus performances. And if that wasn’t enough circus to satisfy your Big Top appetite, the 50th Annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival will feature Circus Arts as one of its themes this summer in Washington, DC. SFF curator Preston Scott recently visited the 41st Festival International du Cirque de Monte-Carlo in Monaco where he announced the Fédération Mondiale du Cirque as its first international partner at a luncheon hosted by H.S.H. Princess Stephanie of Monaco. Other American attendees included OABA Trustee Wayne McCary, circus fans Bruce Hawley and Ron Morris, and Circus Juventas co-founders Betty and Dan Butler with their daughter Rachael. The Circus Arts program at the 2017 SFF will take place on the National Mall in Washington, DC from June 29 through July 4 and from July 6 through July 9, and is free and open to the public. For more information and periodic updates, visit The Arizona Regional [Circus] Festival, sponsored by Circus Academy of Tucson (AZ) runs March 2–5; and Moment of Circus, dubbed as “six days of contemporary circus” and hosted by Aloft and the Beat Kitchen, will take place in Chicago (IL) March 7–12. The Milner Library at Illinois State University will receive a $268,000 grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) to digitize its 300 circus route books dating from 1842 to 1969. Additionally, as part of CLIR’s Digitizing Hidden Collections program, Milner Library will partner with Circus World Museum in Baraboo (WI) and the Ringling Circus Museum in Sarasota (FL) to collectively digitize their respective routes books into a single online portal. The award-winning cinematic virtual reality studio of Felix & Paul of Montreal (QB), recently partnered with Cirque du Soleil to produce “a new virtual reality experience” entitled Dreams of O. The 12-minute film was released for Samsung’s Gear VR Headset at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (NV). Two Oklahoma State University professors, Lee Brasuell of the theater department and Henry Segerman from the department of mathematics, put their heads together to design a new circus prop for innovative young artists. The Tao-Line is a rolling apparatus that allows performers to “roll in a straight line along the stage but at certain points can go off on a different path by shifting their body weight.” Sorta hard to explain without seeing it, so you

H OABA ShowTime Magazine | MARCH 2017

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2017 Circus Fund

We’ll Fix Them!

National Showmens Association, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 250 Paul Gutheil – in fond memory of Johnny Welde . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 150 Felix Adler-Paul Binder Tent No. 12, CFA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 Forepaugh-Lubin Tent No. 2, CFA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Bill & Chris Schreiber – in memory of Johnny Welde, bear trainer, circus man & friend . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Robert K. Momyer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 TOTAL

If your Berry-Go-Round, Barrel-of-Fun, Dizzy Dragon or any other Sellner Spin Ride has rotted or soft floors, or needs a complete makeover, give us a call. Our new technology offers a permanent, affordable alternative to replace your floors. Plus, our state-of-the-art paint and fiberglass departments can refurbish your old spin rides to look and perform like new at a price much less than replacement.


To contribute to the Circus Fund, make your check payable and send to: OABA Circus Fund, 1035 S. Semoran Blvd., Ste. 1045A, Winter Park, FL 32792 It is important that we maintain this fund so we are able to hire professionals to assist with challenges such as legislation that threaten our members’ businesses. Please consider and make your contributions to this very important resource pool. Feel free to be creative such as matching dollars, innovative fundraisers, endowments and memorials, to name a few. Another option is to designate a percentage or daily amount of your ride operation to be set aside for this important fund.

can check it out at osu-faculty-members-develop-new-circus-apparatus. The Venice Area Historical Society has raised nearly $250,000 to begin restoration of a 1953 Pullman sleeper car purchased from RBBB in 1978. When fully restored, the car will be permanently installed at the historic Venice Train Depot. It is rumored that Disney Studios will sign actor Will Smith to star in Tim Burton’s adaption of the 1941 animated film classic DUMBO. According to Steve Seigh of, the remake of America’s most lovable animated elephant movie is “well on its way to becoming a reality.” However, Variety noted that the deal “is far from closed.” Finally, Asian elephant sisters Rudy, 14, and Sundara, 8, from Ringling’s Center for Elephant Conservation in Polk County (FL) will join a male and three female pachyderms at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Ohio. H

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