We have recently been analyzing and fine tuning the feasibility of pushing the proverbial green light for the proposed wood coaster that connects two piers. While most of the coaster itself has been designed (with appropriate thanks going to all the input we received from the various coaster clubs and aficionados) we have only started scratching the surface on the very important subject of lighting design for the coaster. As you know, we are mostly a nighttime park, hence lighting will be crucial if we are serious about truly creating a world class woody.
To accomplish this we have preliminarily selected our good friend and colleague Lars (aka “Large”) Koch from Eworks Pro in Orlando, Florida. Lars is currently under contract to re-light the Ferris Wheel which begins this September. The design team will include Lars, Rich Stokes (architect), Jeff Pike (Great Coasters), a show designer (TBD) and of course our own in-house team. My job ………to lead and coordinate all this talent. If you think this sounds easy just read up a little on the NYC theater production of Spider Man.
So with my brother, Will, at the helm we headed out to Orlando. Also joining us was my bride, Karen, and our two college sons, Zack and Jordan, who were meeting us in Orlando for a little family time. Before boarding we stopped by Sam’s Pizza to pick up two pies (one plain, one pep, both well done). It was a beautiful 4hr 11min. flight down and provided a rare opportunity for Will and I to brainstorm strategic business challenges and opportunities. Of course one always thinks better when “sharing” a piece of Sam’s Pizza……sorry kids, we just couldn’t help ourselves.
After delivering the pies to the kids we retired for the evening and prepared for our meeting with Lars on Saturday morning.
We met Lars at his manufacturing facility, which I must say is worth a trip in and of itself. It is part robotic science lab, part fabrication facility and part electrical engineer/inventors paradise. Lars runs it all with an iron, but ironically humorous fist.
We believe the coaster lighting needs to be both classic and contemporary and must have good show value for spectators… oh and ideally it should never be the same twice. To achieve this we have preliminarily assigned about $400,000 to the project which sounds like an awful lot of money until you compare it to the multi million dollars shows that inspire us such as the Eiffel Tower, the Hong Kong skyline light show and Disney’s new World of Color.
I fundamentally think you must start these brainstorm ventures as a dreamer (actually without a budget) and without regard to any pre-judged barriers. Much of what we do is to provide an arena for theater and great theater can be as simple as a single mime on a street to the $65,000,000 production of Spider Man.
Our meeting was extremely productive and all I can say at this time is that I think we have assembled the right team. Lars has come up with an idea that has never been done before which of course means we don’t know if it can be done………so wish us luck, we are gonna need it!!!!
And if you have any ideas, I would absolutely love to hear them.