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IAAPA Expo opens in Atlanta

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Published: November 15, 2006 at 9:47 AM

The annual International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Expo is convening this week in Atlanta. I'm hoping to get some on-scene reports from Theme Park Insider readers, which would be posted here on the Blog Flume, later this week. If you're in Atlanta, please send us your impressions of the event here.

Among those in Atlanta are representative from Garden Grove, Calif., the suburb just down the road from Anaheim. They're looking for theme or water park companies to build in their city, in yet another attempt to grab some of Anaheim's tourist business. (See TPI's I-Drive West and casino stories.)

The Orange County Register story linked above includes a quote from some theme park webmaster you might know. It didn't make the story, but I remarked that a water park would be Garden Grove's best bet for immediate financial success -- *if* it was done well and opened before Disney was able to get its long-rumored Anaheim water park in development. Otherwise, the theme park industry, as it stands now, is consolidating. It's a brutal, expensive, competitive business and given that there's already a major park for sale in the Southern California market, I don't see any high-quality player who's looking to build a new resort area in the region. And if you can't bring high quality in this business, you're not gonna survive anymore.

Readers' Opinions

From Michael Willis on November 16, 2006 at 7:21 PM
I am here at the IAAPA conference in Atlanta.
So far the biggest news is that the Hard Rock Park in Myrtle Beach has announced the ride manufacturers for their park. They are B&M, Premier, Chance Morgan, Vekoma, Huss Park Attractions, and Sally Corp. There is an article on it at http://www.ultimaterollercoaster.com/news/stories/20061115_01.shtml.

Also, Mark Shapiro, CEO of Six Flags spoke this morning. There wasn't any news about potential buyers for any of the Six Flags parks that are up for sale. Mr. Shapiro said that as of now they are operating under the assumption that all parks will remain open until acceptable buyers are found. Mr. Shapiro stressed that Six Flags needs to continue to find new ways of generating income and continue to make Six Flags a family friendly attraction to be successful. That’s all the big news so far.

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