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  • Thu, October 22, 2020 3:27 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    From the desk of Vanessa Gagne:

    October 22, 2020


    9th District Court in California has upheld Proposition 12, The Prevention of Cruelty to Farm Animals Act, which bans intensive confinement of hens, veal calves, and pregnant sows.


    Konz Show Pigs is a Garner family enterprise

    Coronavirus could drive the last nail into the mink fur trade
    This is after activists released minks from a farm last week.  The ARs were poised and ready to jump on that opportunity to try and drive the last nail in the coffin for mink farmers.  Now they want the US to buy out the remaining farms.

    Horse racing newsletter: Changes to the whip rule are being seen

    Impossible Burger maker is hiring more than 100 scientists to develop meatless steak, fish and more

    7 charged in flying squirrel trafficking ring that extended from Florida to Chicago to South Korea, officials say
    Wildlife trafficking is a global issue and is causing the endangerment of many reptiles, amphibians, and small mammals.

    Cincinnati Council Wants To Create Database Of Animal Abusers

  • Thu, October 22, 2020 3:25 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)
    U.S. On-Highway Diesel Fuel Prices
    Change from
    10/05/20 10/12/20 10/19/20 week ago year ago
    U.S. 2.387 2.395 2.388 -0.007 -0.662
    East Coast (PADD1) 2.473 2.473 2.465 -0.008 -0.580
    New England (PADD1A) 2.577 2.578 2.575 -0.003 -0.470
    Central Atlantic (PADD1B) 2.655 2.649 2.652 0.003 -0.583
    Lower Atlantic (PADD1C) 2.328 2.332 2.316 -0.016 -0.600
    Midwest (PADD2) 2.259 2.275 2.269 -0.006 -0.688
    Gulf Coast (PADD3) 2.141 2.148 2.143 -0.005 -0.659
    Rocky Mountain (PADD4) 2.319 2.330 2.326 -0.004 -0.718
    West Coast (PADD5) 2.928 2.933 2.924 -0.009 -0.751
    West Coast less California 2.534 2.538 2.542 0.004 -0.748
    California 3.252 3.258 3.239 -0.019 -0.741
    *prices include all taxes
  • Wed, October 21, 2020 8:58 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    Financial Announces Results of Amusement Industry Survey

    Survey asks amusement owners and operators the impact of COVID-19 on their business and the effect on their 2021 plans.

    Needham, Mass. - Firestone Financial, a subsidiary of Berkshire Bank, today announced the results of their amusement industry survey, including purchasing needs and industry event attendance plans over the next year.

    “Our customers and industry partners have faced their greatest challenges this year – from shut downs to shifts in consumer behavior to changes and limitations in facility operations,” said Firestone Financial’s EVP, Chief Operating Officer Michael Smith. “Firestone has always prided itself on supporting the amusement industry. In response to the uncertainty COVID-19 has caused in the industry, we want the survey results to be used as a resource to understand where our customers are, what their plans are over the next 12 months, and how we can best service those plans.”

    Survey highlights:

    • Of those surveyed, 65% plan to purchase equipment for their business over the next 12 months.
    • 47% plan to finance up to $50k in the next 12 months.
    • Due to COVID-19, 45% of respondents indicated they are no longer making planned purchases.
    • 59% do not plan to attend any in-person events in 2020 or 2021

    The survey was distributed to Firestone Financial’s amusement, location-based entertainment, and vending customers, as well as others in the industry.

    Questions related to their purchasing plans over the next 12 months and the impact of COVID on those plans and their business were asked of respondents, as well as their plans to attend industry events over the next year.

    132 surveys were completed during September 2020. Survey findings can be found here.
    Founded in 1965, Firestone Financial is a nationwide finance company serving the amusement, carnival, fitness, vending and laundry industries. The Company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Berkshire Bank (Member FDIC). Interested parties can learn more about Firestone Financial at www.firestonefinancial.com or by calling Firestone Financial at 800-851-1001.

    Leah Siporin, Head of Marketing, 617-807-8194, lsiporin@firestonefinancial.com
    Aaliyah Outlaw, Corporate Communications Manager, 518-925-6027, aoutlaw@berkshirebank.com

  • Thu, October 15, 2020 4:17 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    From the desk of Vanessa Gagne:

    October 15, 2020


    H.R. 1754, The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act of 2019, has passed committee and now heads to the full House to be heard. 
    House committee passes Barr’s bipartisan horse racing reform bill              

    State-Funded Horse Shows Still On Despite Fort Worth Rodeo Cancellation                                                                       


    Maine AgrAbility to host virtual state fair, Oct. 20

    Wilson's Wild Animal Park owner facing new animal cruelty, trafficking charges

    Animal rights activist let loose mink in Northern Utah and Southeast Idaho

    A Strong Relationship With Your Elective Officials Is Key in Protecting the Future of Dairy

    Or any hotly contested industry for that matter.  Build a rapport with your legislators so they come to industry professionals for answers first, not at the end of the line when put on the defensive.  
  • Wed, October 14, 2020 8:30 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)
    U.S. On-Highway Diesel Fuel Prices*
    Change from
    09/28/20 10/05/20 10/12/20 week ago year ago
    U.S. 2.394 2.387 2.395 0.008 -0.656
    East Coast (PADD1) 2.473 2.473 2.473 0.000 -0.571
    New England (PADD1A) 2.592 2.577 2.578 0.001 -0.464
    Central Atlantic (PADD1B) 2.658 2.655 2.649 -0.006 -0.578
    Lower Atlantic (PADD1C) 2.323 2.328 2.332 0.004 -0.588
    Midwest (PADD2) 2.269 2.259 2.275 0.016 -0.692
    Gulf Coast (PADD3) 2.154 2.141 2.148 0.007 -0.657
    Rocky Mountain (PADD4) 2.336 2.319 2.330 0.011 -0.711
    West Coast (PADD5) 2.928 2.928 2.933 0.005 -0.720
    West Coast less California 2.554 2.534 2.538 0.004 -0.702
    California 3.236 3.252 3.258 0.006 -0.724
    *prices include all taxes

  • Fri, October 09, 2020 10:04 AM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    2020 IAFE Annual Convention Cancelled

    SPRINGFIELD – Due to the continuing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic upon the fair industry, the annual Convention & Trade Show of the International Association of Fairs & Expositions (IAFE) scheduled for Nov. 29-Dec. 2 in San Antonio, Texas has been cancelled.

    With regulatory restrictions making it impossible for over 90% of the IAFE members' fairs to go forward in normal fashion, the economic losses to fairs and the hundreds of businesses involved have been devastating. Additionally, nearly 60% of projected participants are currently unable to travel either due to the quarantine restrictions upon return to their state or country, or employer travel restrictions.

    “With the added uncertainty regarding the potential arc of the disease not only in Texas but across the United States over the next two months, it is the prudent thing to do,” stated IAFE President and CEO Marla Calico.

    IAFE Chair Nancy Smith of the South Carolina State Fair in Columbia praised the work of the 2020 Convention Program Committee, which has been meeting virtually nearly every month for nearly two years to first develop a program and then swiftly pivoting to adapt to the evolving situation to develop alternatives.

    “This group of dedicated volunteers, led with such enthusiasm and optimism by our Committee Chair jill Albanese of the Wisconsin State Fair, has poured their hearts and souls into our ‘2020 Clear Vision’ programming and we have every confidence they will help the IAFE staff fine tune plans for the delivery of a series of educational presentations and virtual networking discussions to be scheduled Nov. 30-Dec. 1. Vision is what we need now more than ever as we seek to provide alternative solutions to keep members connected, striving forward, and #FAIRSTRONG in these difficult times. Our industry is extremely fortunate to have the leadership, passion, and dedication of the IAFE staff. I know of no other industry that has been afforded the necessary and critical resources to help navigate in such unknown territory. Marla Calico and her team are to be commended for their untiring efforts on our behalf,” stated Smith.

    IAFE Director of Sales Steve Siever reported that despite significant interest from associate members in participating in the trade show, it was impractical to go forward with so many people from the fairs unable to attend.

    “Everyone in the event business has seen such devastating economic losses, yet their passion for the industry and their drive to go forward and work with fairs in 2021 and beyond remains. We are working right now to finalize an innovative and creative means of connecting these businesses with fair folk during December,” stated Siever.

    Like most fair members, the IAFE has to adapt to a less than ideal situation. Fairs are the heartbeat of their communities. Even when many could not hold their annual events in 2020, they continue to serve their community. Whether it is hosting a blood drive or drive-thru coronavirus testing, providing shelter from wildfires, or offering space for drive-in movies, fairs have reflected and met their communities’ needs. The Agricultural Fairs Rescue Act, H.R. 7883, is a bill in Congress that would provide relief to fairs serving the people in their community.

    The IAFE will hold an online educational event called Virtual Vision to provide important educational and networking opportunities for its members. Virtual Vision will be held Nov. 30-Dec. 1. Stay tuned for more details at www.fairsandexpos.com/Virtual-Vision.

    The 2021 IAFE Convention and Trade Show remains scheduled to be held in San Antonio, Nov. 28-Dec. 1.

  • Thu, October 08, 2020 4:27 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    Hello F24 Members,


    The upcoming meetings of ASTM International Committee F24 on Amusement Rides and Devices are quickly approaching. All meetings will take place virtually Monday, October 12th – Friday, October 16th from 9am-2pm (Eastern Daylight Time) via WebEx.

    Please register if you plan on attending any meeting over the course of the week; there will be no requirement to register for individual meetings: https://www.astm.org/MEETINGS/filtrexx40.cgi?+-P+MAINCOMM+F24+-P+EVENT_ID+4132+-P+MEETING_ID+147632+meetinginfo.frm

    Meeting Schedule   
    The schedule has been updated since the last email; specifically the following meetings:

    • F24.24 Ride Modification – moved from Thursday 10/15 to Tuesday 10/13 from 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm
    • Addition of F24.70 Task Group on Surf Pools on Wednesday 10/14 from 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

    Please be sure to review the most current version of the October 2020 F24 Meeting schedule in the attached Excel file. This schedule should be used to guide your participation each day. The updated schedule in pdf format will also continue to be available online through your MyASTM account.

    The F24 Main Opening Meeting is scheduled for Monday, October 12 from 8:30 am – 9:00 am

    Please note there are multiple tabs in the excel flle (one for each day) and a master schedule as the first sheet. You can use this file to create your customized schedule, sort, and edit meetings as needed. It is important that you have the WebEx links for meetings you plan to attend. To make this easier for you, we’ve added a column to include the option “add to calendar” which automatically secures the date/time and WebEx info in your preferred calendar. PLEASE NOTE some meetings are sharing a WebEx link; meaning the calendar invite may include the full duration of all meetings and not the specific time for individual meetings (use the excel file schedule to know what time you want to use the Webex link to join any one meeting OR manually edit the calendar invite to fit your meeting needs).

    Because we will be using WebEx it is important you take the opportunity to familiarize yourself with the controls and platform prior to game time. Attached is a WebEx Meetings Users Guide with a Table of Contents for finding needed controls and features quickly. Please note Chapter 1 is for Participants and Chapter 2 is for the meeting lead/host. 

    Important Notes
    If you’ve never used WebEx previously, you may want to download the desktop app now because it does take 5-10 minutes to download and open.  For the instructions to download/install WebEx, please see attached instructions here: Download and Install the Webex Meetings Desktop App.docx

    The password for every session is: astm2020.

    International call-in numbers for WebEx are available in the link here

    General Information:
    General registration is and will remain open. Similar to in-person meetings, registration is required if you plan to attend any meeting; but individual registration for each meeting is not required. 

    There will be an assigned ASTM staff member for each meeting that you can reach out to should you have technical issues joining the WebEx. Those names/contact information are included in the attached excel schedule for easy access.

    Thank you for your commitment to industry safety standards and we look forward to speaking with you soon!

    A special thank you to our generous sponsors who have committed to supporting the meetings!

  • Thu, October 08, 2020 2:59 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    From the desk of Vanessa Gagne:

    October 8, 2020

    After weeks on the run, Wildlife in Need's Tim Stark arrested in New York
    Mr. Stark had his animals removed by PeTA and placed at various zoos and sanctuaries this past September. 


    Israel moves to ban 'immoral' animal fur trade

    Exotic Animal Smuggler In Worcester Sentenced For International Crimes
    The conservation of endangered reptiles and amphibians is of course extremely important, at the same time, the trafficking of wildlife, which includes harvesting them from the wild, needs to be stopped.  The conditions in which these animals are transported to evade authorities are horrendous. 

    Wrangler National Finals Rodeo: Who's in, who's out?

    Petco ends sale of electronic shock collars, calls on competitors to also 'Stop the Shock' with online petition

  • Thu, October 08, 2020 2:57 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)
    U.S. On-Highway Diesel Fuel Prices
    Change from
    09/21/20 09/28/20 10/05/20 week ago year ago
    U.S. 2.404 2.394 2.387 -0.007 -0.660
    East Coast (PADD1) 2.486 2.473 2.473 0.000 -0.568
    New England (PADD1A) 2.601 2.592 2.577 -0.015 -0.470
    Central Atlantic (PADD1B) 2.662 2.658 2.655 -0.003 -0.569
    Lower Atlantic (PADD1C) 2.343 2.323 2.328 0.005 -0.587
    Midwest (PADD2) 2.282 2.269 2.259 -0.010 -0.708
    Gulf Coast (PADD3) 2.157 2.154 2.141 -0.013 -0.663
    Rocky Mountain (PADD4) 2.348 2.336 2.319 -0.017 -0.703
    West Coast (PADD5) 2.941 2.928 2.928 0.000 -0.714
    West Coast less California 2.557 2.554 2.534 -0.020 -0.681
    California 3.257 3.236 3.252 0.016 -0.729
    *prices include all taxes

  • Thu, October 08, 2020 2:33 PM | Sue Gallup (Administrator)

    A Wisconsin Tradition Since 1932

    The End of the Road for Earl's Rides

    "Earl’s Rides, Inc. is a 3rd & 4th generation owned-and-operated, family oriented, full-service carnival working in Wisconsin. This family carnival dates back to 1932. We bring clean, wholesome family fun to fairs, festivals, celebrations, family picnics, and corporate picnics.

    The quality and variety of our show provides fun and excitement for families to enjoy themselves. It has always been a goal of Earl’s Rides, Inc to make every patron’s visit a memorable and enjoyable one."

    Posted on Earl's Rides website Monday, October 5, 2020

    The end of the road.

    We look back fondly on the memories of the years and the many miles that we have traveled in this state. The people that we have worked with at events and festivals. The individuals, friends and family that have worked for us.

    We thank you, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your friendship and your business.

    Sincerely, the family from Earl's Rides

    The OABA family wishes the entire family of Earl's Rides well in whatever the future holds for them.

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