Transworld’s Halloween & Attractions Show is the largest gathering of haunters in the world, and the annual show has moved up its timeline this year to February 2-5, 2023, in St Louis. The show also added a new Interactive Entertainment section. While...
Transworld’s Halloween & Attractions Show is the largest gathering of haunters in the world, and the annual show has moved up its timeline this year to February 2-5, 2023, in St Louis. The show also added a new Interactive Entertainment section. While at IAAPA Expo last week, I stopped by to learn more. Subscribe: https://linktr.ee/hauntedattractionnetwork
Chris: My name is Chris, and I am with Transworld Exhibits. We are super excited to be here at IAAPA, exhibiting, and being a part of this amazing industry.
Philip Hernandez: Tell me a little bit about your show that is coming up in February this year.
Chris: We are really, really excited. For over 40 years we have produced the world's largest trade show, just dedicated to Halloween, Christmas, and now Interactive Entertainment. So, we're really, really excited, and for those of you that remember that show being in March, it's going to be in March, except for 2023. There's some construction, so we're going to be doing this from February 2nd to the 5th of 2023. So, you got to make sure you mark those dates on your calendar so you don't miss out.
Philip Hernandez: And bundle up, it's going to be a little bit colder.
Chris: It's true, it's true. It's still Saint Louis, so...
Philip Hernandez: Ugh. Tell me a little bit about the interactive entertainment space that you've expanded into for this year.
Chris: Absolutely. So, room escapes have been around for a little bit, they've been a new budding industry that is kind of helped to accent all the haunted attractions.
Philip Hernandez: That's true.
Chris: And they have stand-alone locations as well, so it's becoming kind of a big thing. Well, what we have found is people like to have those little like 5-minute, 10-minute other excursions that use a little bit of physical activity. So, we see archery, we see axe throwing, we see laser tag, we see people moving and interacting and being able to enjoy their night, kind of complete the entire package. So, that interactive entertainment using a little bit of your brain, a little bit of physicality, team building, and leadership, it's an awesome experience. We're helping to put a forum together that people can learn how to do it, how to execute it, and also get all the tools that they need to make sure that they can design and execute.
Philip Hernandez: I think, also to expand on that, it seems to me like you guys are really, at the Transworld show, it's kind of the entire ecosystem really is there for haunted attractions, anything they want to do. So, we know that haunts get into Christmas, and a lot of haunters produce Christmas shows, and like you said the escape games are things that they have been adding to get year-round revenue, and these are all pieces of your show. It's expanded into that whole realm.
Chris: I think you said it perfectly there, we try to make sure that show is perfect for whatever skill level, wherever you're at in the industry. So, if you're starting off, you have no idea what you're doing but you'd like to get involved, we have educational tracks, we have people that can help you design what you want to do. If you don't know how to design it, we have consultants that can help build it, people that can help in every aspect, every single contributing factor to making sure that your business is a success; whether it's just the physical operations, the marketing, manpower, teaching you how to market it and how to make sure that you're successful. Now for those veterans that have been there, they're always finding new tips and tricks, learning from their peers, being able to find that next gadget or cool prop that's going to change the industry, you're going to find that at TransWorld.
Philip Hernandez: You hit on it a little bit there but the education, beyond just the trade show floor, of course, there's education, there are tours of local haunts as well, what's going on this year?
Chris: So like you said on the education, we have a track system, different levels, we have dozens and dozens of seminars taught by the industry professionals from Disney, Universal, Six Flags, and from all the leading attractions all across the country that have their different niches. Of course, we can't just sit in a classroom and just do it, so we bring you straight. Into the environments that these people have created. We take you right behind the scenes, we get to see how certain things were done at this haunted attraction, how this exhibit worked, how did they build this? What was the concept behind it? You could talk right to the designer and be able to not only learn but also inspire yourself for what you might do at your own attraction.
Philip Hernandez: What are you most excited about for this year's show?
Chris: I mean, I always love seeing Haunted Attraction Network, so I'm super, super excited about that, and some Pappy's Ribs, but besides those two amazing things...
Philip Hernandez: I can't compete with ribs, I'm sorry.
Chris: It really is, jokes aside, it really is the networking, it's the people. We have an amazing family of all of these people from across the country. So, to be able to reconnect, be able to see each other as old friends, and have an opportunity to catch up and see how our years going, to be able to trade a little bit here and there, that's the best. It's the people, it's 100% the people.
Here are some great episodes to start with.