The world’s largest attraction trade association is partnering with the Rosen College of Hospitality Management to connect theme park innovators with students who will lead the industry in the future.
The partnership will be announced in a press conference Monday on the eve of The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo at the Orange County Convention Center.
IAAPA, which promotes the $39 billion attractions industry, is relocating its headquarters from Alexandria, Virginia to Orlando next year. The association is also partnering with JA Worldwide (formerly known as Junior Achievement), a nonprofit that empowers young people to transform their future through economic success.
“IAAPA and Rosen College have established a great partnership for the purpose of preparing the future generations of theme parks and attractions leaders, while professionalizing the occupations of the management in the theme parks and attractions industry, said Abraham Pizam, dean at Rosen College of Hospitality Management.
IAAPA Attractions Expo’s 2016 trade show floor will be the largest in the event’s 98-year history with nine miles of exhibitors. More than 30,000 professionals from 100 countries have registered for the weeklong event that begins Monday.
Bob’s Space Racers, the Daytona Beach manufacturer of hands-on games like Whac-a-Mole, will be exhibiting for the 44th time at the show. The Daytona Beach company’s hand and water games can be found at Universal Orlando, Sea World, Walt Disney World, and theme parks around the world.
“It’s the biggest show in the world and all our customers will be there,” said Jack Mendes, president of the BSR (Bob’s Space Racers) Group. “We look forward to showing and selling our new products.”
The expo is a launching ground for the industry’s newest, game-changing products. More than 1,000 companies will showcase innovations including new thrill rides, attractions, midway games, water slides, inflatables, simulators, food and beverage treats, and technology.
Buyers from leading amusement parks, water parks, family entertainment centers, zoos, aquariums, science centers, museums, and resorts attend the conference. It is not open to the public.