Wednesday, August 3, 2011

July 2011 in Review

July is the single busiest month of the year for us.

On July1st we had the opening of 2 major events for us. . . Subfest in Groton, CT as well as the St. Joseph's County 4H Fair in South Bend, IN.

At Subfest the Naval Sub Base on the banks of the Thames River opens it gates to the public for its annual event celebrating the 4th of July. This years Subfest entertainers included a return of Bwana Jim's Wildlife Show (now in his 4th or 5th straight year a
t this event), Franzen's Elephants & Tigers and the Flying Pages aerial thrill show. Animals are always a huge hit at this event as they are at most events and tiger shows continue to draw the public in the gates.

Out in South Bend the Hot Dog Pig Races made its first
ever appearance at the St. Joesph's County 4-H Fair. Pig racing is a favorite at all kinds of events from fairs to BBQ festivals and the Hot Dog Pig Races offers up to 5 shows per day with a finale of racing Hot Dogs. Actually miniature Dachshunds dressed in buns and condiments, but it always gets a huge reaction from the crowd. I don't know what it is about pig racing but audiences gather at least 6 to 10 deep or more to catch a glimpse of this hilarious spectacle. They performed at the fair until the 9th.

On Saturday the 2nd until Monday the 4th Alexanderiathe Great performed her Houdini style escape show at the Houlton Fair in Houlton, Maine. Houlton is the last exit on I-95 before you get to the Canadian border, I also like to call it the outer most reaches of our Solar System since if you travel to Maine to see the amazing model of the solar system along route 1 you will find Pluto at the visitors center in Houlton. The models follow route 1 all the way into Presque Isle. Alexanderia found a new fan base up in Aroostook County many of who m now follow her on Facebook.

On Sunday North American Amusements brought their family rides to the Stoughton Night Before 4th Celebration. This traditional event attracts locals who its seems come together as a community for this one night a year bring their blankets & coolers to enjoy the rides, music and fireworks.

In addition to the event we had over the July 4th weekend we were busy with last minute arrangements for a daredevil stunt FIVE YEARS in the making. The Human Home Run at the Lowell Spinners. On July 5th the big event was finally to take place. The stadium was sold out and media surrounding the field as if it was the bottom of the 9th in the World Series! David Smith Sr. was shot 165' over the center right field wall to the delight of the baseball fans. Immediately the Boston Red Sox TV coverage picked up the happening on their broadcast and by the 11pm news all the Boston media was buzzing. By the early hours of the morning ESPN Sports Center did a feature on their broadcast and the next day the Human Home Run was
one of the lead stories on Yahoo News! The coverage was picked up nationwide and David Smith's daughter even saw media coverage in Europe!

On the weekend of the 8th, 9th & 10th we brought the Hu
man Cannonball David Smith to the Whaling City Festival in New Bedford to do a victory lap of cannonball performances so to speak. New Bedford is the largest fishing port in the country and we were blessed to meet the crew of the tug the "McAllister Sisters" who came out to see the show and invited us back for a tour of their vessel in New Bedford Harbor. It was awesome to see a real working tug boat and our 8-year old had an amazing time with the Captain taking the ship out for a spin in the Harbor. Thanks to the crew for the tour and for all you do!

The 10th also saw the closing of the Anastasini Circus at Wild Adventures Theme Park in Valdosta. They had a run there that lasted over a month and enjoyed every minute of working with this family friendly theme park. It was a pleasure working with the staff
once again!

On July 14th the McIntyre Family Circus opened a 10 day stand at the Nanuet Mall with Dreamland Amusements performing aerials, unicycle and high wire!

Saturday the 16th was the opening of the Barnstable County Fair on Cape Cod which is open for a full week plus a day from Saturday to Saturday. This year we had the "Enchanted Wa
gon" for the run of the fair. The "Enchanted Wagon" is a kid magnet and I can easily say there is no other strolling entertainment
quite like it, it is completely original and unique. The wagon is operated by a puppeteer and guided by an enchanted faerie. The wagon is like something out of a childhood adventure book with a sea turtle carrying a magical house on his back. It is driven by an owl and their are windows that the children can open to see magical creatures like a sea dragon come to life. It is hands on for the kids which is so rare these days of do not touch. The wagon also blows bubbles and sprinkles magic faerie dust as it goes along its merry way. If your at an event with the "Enchanted Wagon" and you want to see it for your self just look for the crowd of happy laughing children and their you will find it right in the middle.

Wednesday to Saturday Lucky Bob made his appearance at the fair for the 3rd year in a row. The Lucky Bob Show is filled with comedy, magic, juggling and a little rola bola for good measure. I have noticed once a fair books Lucky Bob they repeat him year after year, which is easy to do with such a talented performer who keeps his show funny, fresh, exciting and family friendly.

On Friday the 22nd the South County Balloon Festival opened on the grounds of the University of Rhode Island. The entertainment line up this year featured the Flying Pages with flying trapeze, juggling and aerials. They also had the all new "Flying Pig Races" from the producer of the Hot Dog Pig Races. The Flying Pig Races is also a traditional pig racing show with a final heat of "Flying Pigs" that is pigs who run up a ramp, jump into the fair, splash down into a pool, swimming across to the other side, up a ramp and back out onto the track, refreshed and ready for the final homestretch to the treats waiting to reward them for their efforts. It was the buzz of the festival this year!

July Saturday the 23 rd we took a day out to support a worthy non-profit organization benefiting retired thoroughbred
racehorses, Old Friends Equine Retirement. We spent a day at the beautiful Saratoga Race Track enjoying the races and witnessing
the Coaching Club of America Oaks featuring the five best 3 year old fillies in the country including Joyous Victory, Plum Pretty and Its Tricky. Its Tricky and Plum Pretty put on one heck of a show in the stretch and Its Tricky came out on top. The race was televised by NBC and was seen by over 1.2 million viewers. After the races we headed over to the Washington Inn to the cocktail party hosted by Michael Blowen and his wife Diane White benefiting their local Cabin Creek division. Also in attendance were Hall of Fame Jockey Angel Cordero Jr. and New York legend and former jockey of Funnycide Richard Migliore. There were lots of silent auction items of racing memorabilia and a great time was had by all.

The last weekend of July came all too quickly!

On the 29th we had two events open: the Quick Chek NJ Festival of Ballooning and the Northern Maine Fair in Presque Isle, Maine. At the Quick Chek NJ Festival of Ballooning we
had the "Cannon Lady" Jennifer Smith doing her amazing Human Cannonball. Everyone within 100 miles knew the Cannon Lady was going to be their there were no less than 10 feature articles written on her by the local media. While she was traveling to the event she stopped at Devil's Tower in Wyoming and someone stopped her and said "I know who you are, your the Cannon Lady, I'm from Readington, NJ and you are all over the news!".

Lucky Bob began his first ever run at the Northern Maine Fair in Presque Isle, and if you live up that way or are visiting the area you can catch him at the fair until August 6th.

So what have we learned this month everyone? To entertain your audience and keep 'em on the grounds, pig racing is what you need. Needs something this kids will love and help create memories they will cherish, you must have the "Enchanted Wagon". And if you want the media to cover your event and bring you media attention that has the power to reach millions . . . none other than a human cannonball!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Performer Spotlight - the Amazing Anastasini's

This month we are spotlighting a family of performers who are accomplished circus performers as well as show producers. This family represents eight generations of circus know how.

Luciano Anastasini currently performs as "Luciano's
Pound Puppies" with an adorable and charming mix of mutts who as their name suggests came from various pounds around the country. The act is fast paced, colorful and inventive. Most recently they were featured on the PBS Series - "PBS Circus" which began airing late in 2010. Luciano also performs Diablo juggling and his wife Gladis is an aerialist.

Giovanni Anastasini is a ringmaster, Diablo juggler and aerialist. His daughter Chiara is also multi-talented, she performs a breath hand balancing, as well as hula hoops and aerials. Chiara's brothers Fabio and Guiliano are accomplished in their Risley act and have spent the last few years traveling around the world.

The Anastasini's produce and perform in a variety of venues as well as their own show. The can perform in circuses, cruise ships, fairs, festivals, corporate events and more.

Their show can be performed in a building, on a stage, outdoors or when you are ready to take your event to the next level, in their own European Big Top.
Having a Big Top Circus whether at a theme park, fair, corporate event or private party takes you to the next level. It is also a fantastic options for your guests. Did you know circus tents can be heated and air conditioned? A local vendor can be hired to climate control the big top!

Some of the venues the Amazing Anastasini's have performed at
include: The Big Apple Circus, Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus, Busch Gardens, Disney Land, the White House for President George Bush, Circus Conelli, Wild Adventures Theme Park, the Champlain Valley Exposition and many many more.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

February, March & April 2011 in Review

The amusement business begins to awaken as the snow melts. February sees an end to the live trade shows. Although trade shows have been dwindling in attendance and vendors for quite some time now, I believe its more of a process of natural business evolution and technology with a little bit of the slow economy thrown in. Unless trade show organizers can come up with a way to make these events more worthwhile & viable for all I believe we will see them disappear over the next several years.

Dreamland Amusements paid its annual visit to Kings Bay Village Plaza in St. Mary's Georgia in mid-March (March 16 to 20th). The weather was quite nice and seasonable and we were all hoping this trend woul
d continue throughout the spring.

In April we had three shows open on the East Coast. Power's Great American Midways played the Randolph Mall in Asheboro, NC April 15th to the 23rd as well as the Staunton Mall in Staunton, VA. Of course that was during the major tornado outbreak in the south, fortunate the bad weather went around the shows, as tornadoes for those who have never experience them are very isolated incidents, unless of course they hit your home. However we weren't spared by the heavy rains and thunderstorm. It was school vacation in Staunton and the carnival is always welcome by parents looking for affordable nearby entertainment for their children.
Up in Massachusetts, Rockwell Amusements played the Silver City Galleria in Taunton from April 14th to the 24th and about half of the days saw rain. This year we haven't seen nearly as much warm weather as last year and it has rained in some amount nearly every day.

Spring Carnivals are really popular with the malls, retailers always see an upswing in business at the mall often as much as 20% of the weekly sales over the previous. It is a win for the carnival because they are usually set up on pavement and grass is notoriously soft in the spring.

We are really hoping the weather improves and the rest of the spring and summer events will soon be in full swing!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Alexanderia the Great

“Alexanderia the Great”

Alexanderia the Great is one of the world’s few female Escapologists in the world today. She performs and improves upon escapes first made famous by Harry Houdini.

Escapes from her own custom built Underwater Cell, straight jackets, chains, or swimming pools. Alexanderia can also custom design an escape just for your event as she did for GreenFest last summer in Boston where she was handcuffed,

chained and locked into a recycling bin filled with water.

Alexanderia the Great is also known as the Hockey Mom Houdini, she has taken her hobby of escaping chains and ropes and picking locks into a profession. She is a mother and a wife of a proud family who is supporting her 100% in her career.

She is a two time world record holder.

Recently she has been featured on the CBS Evening News with Katie Couric, Fox Morning Show (national broadcast), as well as ABC Boston’s Chronicle and New England Cable News. She has done many benefit performances and is a regular performer in the bewitching city of Salem, Massachusetts.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Music Roster

The Blues Brothers

The Jake and Elwood Blues Revue is the only Blues Brothers tribute show officially sanctioned

by Dan Aykroyd and the John Belushi Estate! This interactive show boasts up to 60 minutes of non-stop energy complete with “Soul Man”, “Everybody Needs Somebody”, “Gimme Some Lovin” all of the familiar songs from the hit movie “The Blues Brothers” and “Saturday Night Live”. During “Sweet Home Chicago” one lucky guest will become an Honorary Blues Brother’! This Act is guaranteed to bring the house down Chicago Style for your Casino, Fair, Festival, Performing Arts Center, Venue, or corporate function.

Steve Augeri - (Former Lead Singer of Journey)

Steve Augeri joined legendary American rock group Journey in 1998, following on the heels of Steve Perry. Steve recorded three albums during a successful eight-year tenure that brought the world’s most accomplished melodic rock group back to the stage for multiple world tours to millions of fans.

"Seperate Ways (World's Apart)" (#1), "Open Arms" (#2), "Be Good To Yourself" (#2), "Only The Young" (#3), "Ask the Lonely" (#3), "Who's Crying Now" (#4), "Don't Stop Believin" (#7), "I'll Be Alright Without You" (#7), "Girl Can't Help It" (#9), "Faithfully" (#12), "Stone in Love" (#13), "Lovin' Touchin' Squeezin" (#16), "Any Way You want It" (#23), "Send her My Love" (#23), "Wheel in the Sky", "Lights" and much, much more!

Robert Gordon Featuring Chris Spedding

Robert Gordon broke out with his hit "Red Hot" in 1977 often credited for lighting up and, knocking down disco queens, would-be punks, and new wave wannabes with his no-holds-barred take on hot-rodded rockabilly. Since then he has been like a turbo jet, and i roots-rock revival and paving the way for real rock''n''rollers to find their niche among the overblown dance music and arena rock that dominated the airwaves.Gordon's hit songs,"Fire" (a gift fromBruce Springsteen) and "Someday, Someway".

Chris Spedding is one of the most spectacular, versatile, and menacing guitar players to ever come out of the British music scene. He has lit up sessions for everyone from Dusty Springfield to Paul McCartney to Elton John, and is fully entrenched in the legend of rock''n''roll for having produced the Sex Pistols demos that launched a revolution. More recently he has been seen sharing the stage with Roxy Music.

Robert Gordon returns with his #1 Partner-in-Crime in 2011 to bring their hard-edged style of Blues, Roots-revival, and Rock-n-Roll and of course Rockabilly, to audiences around the World.

“Red Hot”, Black Slacks”, "The Catman", “Fire”, "Walk On By", "Rock Billy Boogie”, “20-Flight Rock”,“Someday, Someway”, “Its Only Make Believe”, “Wild, Wild, Woman and many more

Jimi Jamison – (Former Lead Singer of Survivor)

Survivor achieved its greatest success in the1980s with its AOR sound, which garnered many charting singles, especially in the United States. The band is best known for its double platinum-certified 1982 hit "Eye of the Tiger", the theme song for the motion picture Rocky III Singles like "Burning Heart" (US #2), "The Search Is Over" (US #4), "High on You" (US #8) and "I Can't Hold Back" (US #13) continued to chart in the mid-1980s.

Eye of the Tiger (#1), Burning Heart (#2), The Search Is Over (#4), High On You (#8), I Can’t Hold Back (#13), I'm Always Here" (Theme from Baywatch).

Bad Finger (Featuring Joey Molland)

The band was at times tagged as the heir apparent to The Beatles, partly because of their close working relationship with them and partly because of their similar sound. After their initial hit song on The Beatles' record label, Apple -"Come and Get It" (wh

ich was written and produced by Paul McCartney).

Badfinger had four consecutive worldwide hit song s in 1970-71, as well as recording the original version of "Without You," a frequently covered song that became a Billboard #1 hit for Harry Nilsson and a #3 hit for Mariah Carey. Day After Day (#4), Come and Get It (#7), No Matter What (#8), Baby Blue (#14) Plus much, much more!

Gary U.S. Bonds

This Little Girl (#11), New Orleans (#6), Quarter

to 3(#1), Twist Twist Senora (#10), Schools Out (#5)

Artimus Pyle & Street Survivors

Former Member of Lynyrd Skynyrd & Rock n Roll Hall of Fame Drummer

Rock n Roll Hall of Fame Drummer & original and surviving member of Lynyrd Skynyrd., performing the Music of Skynyrd with Street Survivors.

Sweet Home Alabama (#8), Free Bird (#19), What’s Your Name (#13), Saturday Night Special (#27), Truck Driving Man (#12), Swamp Music (#16), “Gimme Three Steps”, “That Smell”, “Simple Man”, “Gimme Back My Bullets”, “I Know Little”, “Tuesday’s Gone” and Many More Skynyrd Classics!

Danny Seraphine’s - CTA

Danny Seraphine - founding member of multi-million selling, Grammy Award-Winning band Chicago (1967-1990). Performed & Produced 18 Gold & 13 Platinum Albums; 50 Top 40 Hits, 20 Top 10 Singles & Five #1’s. Performing a set of Chicago’s Greatest Hits.

CTA includes: Marc Bonilla David Coverdale, Whitesnake, Keith Emerson, Glenn Hughes & Larry Braggs– Tower of Power

Danny Klein’s Full House

Danny Klein, is a founding member and current bass player for one of the worlds all time hard driving rhythm and blues act, The J. Geils Band. A celebration of the music of The J. Geils Band". This is classic J Geils Band material with the unique sound that a group of veteran and talented musicians brings to it. Not your mama's cover band, for sure! Who can resist the top of the charts number one bestsellers like Freeze Frame, Centerfold, and Love Stinks, and the classics like Give It To Me, Musta Got Lost,Whammer Jammer, I Do, Houseparty, Detroit Shuffle and so many more.

Monsters of Classic Rock

The Monsters of Classic Rock is a phenomenal new band containing Original members from the groups that defined “Classic Rock” over the past Three decades. They are: Chris Slade (AC/DC, The Firm & Asia) on drums, Greg Douglass (Steve Miller Band & Greg Kihn) on guitar, Mario Cippolina (Huey Lewis & the News) on bass, Terry Ilous from XYZ on vocals, and Sam McCaslin (Michael Schenker Group and Carmine Appice) on keyboards. Set includes The hits from the bands represented by the above artists.

Ernie & The Automatics

Ernie & the Automatics Feature Original Members of Platinum Selling Band Boston; Barry Goudreau (Guitar) & Sib Hashian (drums). There Boston set is Amazing!

Larry Braggs

Larry Braggs is the current lead vocalist of Tower of Power, TOP's lead vocalist. "LB" is referred to by Emilio Castillo as "Pound for pound, the baddest cat in the land". Larry's high energy vocal range allows the band to pull virtually 40 years of songs out of their "trick bag". Braggs till today remains the longest lead vocalist the band has ever had. Braggs did the lead vocals for TOP's latest album The Great American Soulbook. Laryy Braggs performs selections from Tower of Power, a Sam Cooke Set plus much much more!

Nick Gilder

Hot Child InThe City (#1), Roxy Roller (#1 Can), The Warrior (#1 Scandal),

Cowboy Troy

He is a member of the MuzikMafia, an aggregation of country music singer-songwriters whose membership also includes Big & Rich,Gretchen Wilson and James Otto. He has released four studio albums and one EP, including two releases on Warner

Bros. Records, and has charted twice on the Billboard country singles charts. Cowboy Troy co-hosted, with Jewel, the fifth season of Nashville Star on the USA Network and CMTCanada

"I Play Chicken With The Train" (#48), "Hooke Em Horns", "Hick Chick", "My Last Yee Haw" and more.


TC Kross is a perpetual power house. There is no doubt that that KROSS is in her element performing

with artists such as Teddy Cook (Ronnie James Dio), Al Pitrelli (Alice Cooper, Trans Siberian Orchestra & MEGADETH), Mark Edwards (Criss Angel), Gary Saint (Tangier), Teddy Rondinelli (Vanilla Fudge) and Tom Cavanaugh (Lita Ford).

TC Kross’ first single & video from her SONY/RED Debut is "Hangover"; also the Lennon & McCartney Hit “Eleanor Rigby” which Kross brings a fresh sound and arrangement to The Beatles Classic.

Royal Doggs

An All Star Band comprised of current & former members playing the hits that they played. Donny Baldwin (Starship & Jefferson Airplane), Tommy Miller (Greg Allman & Friends & Starship), Jeff Tamelier (Tower of Power), Del Burchette (Greg Kihn), Marke JellyRoll Burgstahler (Greg Allman & Friends), Randy Forrester (Eddie Money, Elvin Bishop, Steven Stills), Steve Salinas (Cold Blood), Johnny Gunn (Eddie Money). The Doggs set includes hits from Eddie Money, Allman Brothers Band, Starship, Greg Kihn, Bad Company, Greg Allman, Steven Stills, Jefferson Airplane, Elvin Bishop, Montrose & more.