21 May 2018 Attractions Management Handbook
 

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Attractions Management Handbook - John Wood

Movers & Shakers

John Wood


The chair and CEO of Sally Corporation was inducted into the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Hall of Fame in 2013

John Wood, chair & CEO, Sally Corporation
Starro the Conqueror faces an all-star cast of DC Entertainment super heroes in Sally’s Justice League – Alien Invasion 3D ride
Batman and others combine to save Earth from destruction

Dark ride developer John Wood was honoured by IAAPA last year for his significant and lasting contributions to the global attractions industry and for his role in enabling the revival of family dark ride attractions.

How did Sally get started?
Founded in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1977 as an animatronic manufacturing company, Sally Corporation’s first foray into the world of dark rides was the company’s 1986 renovation of an existing ride at the Alton Towers theme park in the UK.

Several more renovations followed, with the recognition that there was a gap between the high-quality, story-based rides at the Walt Disney parks and most of the dark rides in the smaller markets. Attractions pioneer Wood wanted to create something new – a highly themed, affordable, interactive dark ride with a strong storyline that would foster repeat business.

How did Sally grow?
The company’s in-house talent pool was extended and began offering full design and build services for the visitor attractions industry. Sally’s first full drawing board-to-installation project was called Zombie Paradise – a haunted castle-type ride which opened at the Korakuen Park (now called Tokyo Dome City) in Tokyo, Japan during 1992.

What is Sally’s USP
Adding an extra element of fun and competition to rides with strong storylines, interactivity and modern technology, music, sound effects and special effects.

Sally Corporation has become well known for its method of incorporating animatronic characters into the company’s dark rides, as well as for its method of using black light painting in rides to create an additional exciting dimension – along with interactive laser targeting and ride car scoring consoles.

What challenges face the industry?
Coming up with new ideas and products that can perform in the mass entertainment industry is an ongoing challenge. Suppliers from all over the world are always trying to create the next new and exciting attractions. We have great creative thinkers on both the manufacturing and operating sides of the equation.

What exciting things are happening right now?
Disney’s hard work in China and Universal’s in Singapore, combined with the Middle East coming back to life and Russia’s serious approach to leisure.


ABOUT JOHN WOOD
Wood has long been a recognised leader in the industry – a former director of IAAPA and TEA, a governor of the prestigious Applause Award and a member of the IAFE.

Facebook: SallyCorp
Twitter: @sallycorp
http://sallycorp.com



From Attractions Management Issue 1 2014

Read this, and all of our back issues at
www.attractionsmanagement.com/archive


Originally published in Attractions Handbook 2014 issue 1

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