Thea ceremony to take place March
TEA, the Themed Entertainment Association, has announced the winners of its 14th annual Thea Awards. “Motion pictures have the Academy Awards, the music industry has the Grammys, and the experience industry has the Theas,” says past TEA president Craig Hanna of Thinkwell Design.
The Lifetime Achievement Award this year goes to Jack Rouse of Jack Rouse Associates. The firm that bears his name is now one of the most recognised and trusted global names in experience design, serving a variety of industries. During his multi-faceted 30-year career, Jack has become also a much sought after lecturer and panel member at conferences and seminars across the globe.
The winner of the Thea Classic Award for 2008 will be SeaWorld San Diego, California. The park opened in 1964 on 22 acres, attracting more than 400,000 visitors in its first year. Today’s annual attendance exceeds 4.2 million and the park has now spread out over more than 189 acres. Current owner and operator Anheuser Busch purchased the facility in 1989.
Thea Awards for Outstanding Achievement are as follows – Attraction: Shuttle Launch Experience, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Center, Florida. Attraction Limited Budget: Awakening of The Temple Lobby Show, Aztec on the River, San Antonio, Texas. Attraction Rehab: Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, Disneyland, California. Exhibit: Noah’s Ark, Skirball Community Center, Los Angeles. Museum: Donald W Reynolds Education Center, Mount Vernon, Virginia. Heritage Centre: The Generations Center, Western Wall, Jerusalem. Exhibit Limited Budget: Cleveland Avenue Time Machine Experience, Troy University’s Rosa Parks Museum. Travelling Exhibit Limited Budget: CSI: The Experience, Fort Worth Museum of Science & History, Texas. Science Centre Limited Budget: Cosmos at the Castle, Black Rock Castle, Ireland. Event Spectacular: Songs of the Sea, Sentosa, Singapore. Live Touring Event: Walking with Dinosaurs, Immersion Edutainment, Australia. Event Spectacular: Peter Pan’s Neverland, Universal Studios Japan. Technical Achievement: KA Floating Stages, Las Vegas. Themed Training Experience: Battle Stations 21, Great Lakes Naval Station, Ilinois. Interactive Adventure: Kim Possible World Showcase Playtest, Epcot, Florida.
“These outstanding achievements demonstrate the power that storytelling, architecture, technology and experience design can have on the guest and visitor experience,” highlights Hanna.
The official presentation of the awards will be made March 8, 2008, at TEA’s 14th Thea Awards Gala, sponsored by Economics Research Associates, at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, California. Tickets are available through www.teaconnect.org, see the link below.
Pictured here are previous Thea lifetime achievers: (back, left to right) Don Iwerks, Barry Upson, Monty Lunde and Tony Baxter and (front row) Marty Sklar, Bob Rogers, Harrison ‘Buzz’ Price