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Vegas a bust?

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  • #31
    Well guys, I opened our haunt in 2007 and took the leap into the fire and opened a Halloween store separate from the haunt in 2008. It was a CRAZY leap/idea to say the least. But the store helped the haunt by increasing traffic, got us some great help, and people haven't stopped talking about both sides of it (thank goodness). So, I have to support that they go hand in hand.

    I am at home and did not attend Vegas (or Houston). What's funny is atleast 3 times a week I was getting calls from Transworld telling me not to forget to register which tells me they were promoting heavily for one reason or another. Vendors from Houston are giving different reviews. AND THE FUNNY ONE is that my Rubies rep. called me yesterday to say they will have their show room open in New York this weekend to come up and visit. Which typically means the rest of them up there are open also. They have been open no less than 4 times now since December. They even opened for the Toy Show 2 weeks ago. What is this telling us? Retail is in some trouble.

    It was my first year in 2008 attending the Haunt/Retail show in Vegas. Some vendors ignored us when they saw our tags said haunted house, but when I told them we were opening a store, they turned around and listened.

    I decided that my haunt was more important with the economy the way it is and my group is attending St Louis. I can pick up the phone and reach all the vendors to get new catalogs. But we all must admit that seeing merchandise in person is the best way to make the decision and the haunt vendors definately bring the WOW to the shows.

    I think we all need to realize that our industries go together to some degree. Haunters are just much more passionate about Halloween and put our blood, sweat, heart and souls into it. MOST retailers are just spending money in the hopes to make more money.

    So I being on both sides, support a rejoining of the shows no matter where it's held. But will always follow the Haunt Show First! I think us standing strong will show them how powerful of a group we are and make a big part of the retail business. Because without us having our haunts/corn mazes, etc, people wouldn't be getting into the Spirit of Halloween until days before Halloween.


    • #32
      I would just like to say, as much as I liked seeing the new retail items and rubies great costumes. I think the two shows can get along separate but could also work together to make for a much better show. If the booth cost stay affordable for the smaller haunt vendors why wouldnít they want to be at a show with both? That would more then triple the opportunities to sale there product. I also agree there should only be one show. ONE BIG SHOW affordable to all vendors. Thatís the win win.
      Also I need to say, donít be fooled. We need the Halloween retail much much more then they need us. I donít know about your town but in the Dallas area I am able to set up ad campaigns in more then 65 store front locations strategically placed around our city. ABSOLUTLY FREE!!! This is called Party City, Cow Halloween, Spirits, etc. etc.
      My point is. If it wasnít for all these stores opening up and reminding everyone in Sep. that its Halloween again. Then our haunts would do considerably less people.
      Sure, we would still get that 10% that look forward to Halloween all year and hit 4 or 5 haunts around there city no mater what. I donít know about anyone ells but I canít open my doors for only 10%.
      So we need to be just as concerned for the retail part doing well as we are with the Haunt part.
      Face it, we need them to do well, much much more then they need us to open our doors.


      • #33
        Couple of issues to consider...

        Retail shows cost more. Rosemont cost more. Our vendors for years paid retail price on tradeshows... Transworld retail party show cost more per booth than IAAPA and IAAPA had 4 times the buyers. Retail shows in general are more expensive.

        We are not a retail industry we are an attraction industry. We have nothing in common other than the fact we like looking at the cool Halloween junk. But for the most part we don't buy anything.

        Exactly the reason they didn't want you there, a reason I can actually understand and agree with... this is why you have your own show now.

        One of these two shows Houston/Transworld is going under for sure... after this mess with both shows having little to no attendance one is going down. If Transworld show survives great, if not doesn't matter.

        We have our own show one where the vendors can save money on booth costs, hotels, food and travel. Haunted house owners also want better deals, more products developed, then you need your vendors to realize some saving as well.

        Lets not be selfish because we want to look at some Halloween stuff.

        Do we really want to be in the middle of this turmoil or just wrap your fingers around your own show? Think about it!

        Larry Kirchner


        • #34
          I wish it were as simple as just buying a coat. Coats I have many of. You Chicago guys figure out how to get a coat on the planes and stop the bad weather so flights don't get delayed or cancelled alltogether and Chicago is fine. We've been there and done that I thought....



          • #35
            Here is a stupid thought.

            Hey TransWorld what about this.

            1- Move them back together 1 show 1 headache!
            2- Keep the price as usual for retail and charge the haunt section a better rate? Maybe even increase the booth price on the retail side and let the extra go towards the Haunt Vendors.
            3- Supply coats for those who don't own one and think Chicago is to cold.
            4- Have a web feed from the show floor for those who will not attend whether it be as a vendor or a buyer.
            5-Offer buses that will go from Chicago to St. Louis so the Darkness tour can be an annual event.
            6-Offer TransWorld food stamps for those who think it cost to much to eat in Chicago. Because no one knows how to shop around for a good meal at a cheap price.
            7. Have a booth reserved for vendors that want attend so we can go to their websites and order online. I mean its apparent most don't own computers or would just do that from home anyway.
            8- Just keep the retail vendors that don't want haunters vendors there out of the show.
            9- Just keep the haunt vendors that don't want the retail vendors out of the show.
            10- Offer an awards dinner and offer awards to the vendors/buyers who cry the most, know the most, does the most, things like that!!!

            These are just my ( Shane's) opinions but I think its the best thing and seems to have covered all of the concerns brought fourth. Shane and its Another great post by me. Shane this time!!


            • #36
              I just came back this afternoon, and I will say it was pretty slow yesterday, ( Friday.) There were alot of one booth vendors at the show, and instead of, for example, seeing 6 feather booths, there was only one. Strange to see big vendors bow out due to Rubie's Pide Piper effect. With the economy the way it is, the real factor will be next year to see who will survive. The shows, including the Haunt Show, may have to unite for the sake of cost, if not business. Rubie's doesn't even need any of the two shows, they are assasinating the industry and brigging down the competition, they are a spitefull and disgusting corperate bully. They make their money with private showings, and it was them that dictated to TW to remove the Haunter's. They didn't like the attention being stolen from them. And like a spoiled little kid, they took their ball, some of the best players, and ran away.

              Matt Marich
              Edge Designs
              Listen to them, Children of the night. Oh what music they make.


              • #37
                Your right Matt!

                Exactly right! Hell why not say piss on Rubies and make this the best Halloween/Haunt show in the world!! It can be done! It should be done! It will be done!! Well hell 2 out of three aint bad lol! Shane and its is this thread turned into Drama yet? Shane this time!


                • #38
                  We don't need a Halloween Haunt show... we need a Haunt Attraction show. Shane you can talk until you're blue in the face, but haunted houses and Halloween retail have NOTHING in common. NOTHING!

                  I love Halloween and I like Halloween stuff for my HOUSE!

                  We need a bigger and better ATTRACTION SHOW!

                  Lastly, the cost of booths for the retail show was something like $1900 bucks and this haunt show is 1200 bucks. This saves the vendor 700.00 per booth. Do we care more about seeing Halloween costumes, feathers, wigs and whatever else or do we can about insurance, ticket systems, food suppliers, theming equipment, animations, monsters, monster costumes, blah, blah.

                  I think you get the point.

                  If the show was to re-unite and go back to Rosemont I wouldn't go. Our industry would have taken a major mile backwards. We would be shooting ourselves right in the foot.

                  As per what Allen said, I agree. A few times we tried to drive into Chicago in March we almost got killed because of ice and snow. Several times flights are cancelled because of horrid weather. Face it Chicago has bad weather. Period. Now they are saying they will move the show into February... HELL NO!!!!! Count me out.

                  Larry Kirchner


                  • #39
                    Chi town in February, why not have it on the North
                    Giving People The Chills Since 2005



                    • #40
                      I think March is a good time to host Transworld. The winter weather is turning over to spring and all the snow begins to melt away. The outdoor temperatures feel much better out which puts people in a better mood. Just my 2 cents
                      ~Bill Mlinac
                      The Deadland Haunted House


                      • #41

                        I am going to kindly disagree with you Halloween Retail and Haunted Houses have alot in common. Let me ask you this when you started off many years ago where did you get your decorations? I opened my first haunt in 1990 the only things I could find were in places like Wal-Mart, K-mart, Spencers, places like that looking back I laugh and say wow that was kinda cheesy but then I say how could it? I did not have anything to compare it to. Larry other than purchase things for your gift shop much like me ( I own costume/party shops but I will leave it out of this and keep it to the ownership of my haunt) you have no use for the Halloween Retail right?

                        Now what about the little guys? the home haunters? those charities starting out fund raisers ect. They dont have the budgets that you or I have or any other professional haunt. But hey you got to start somewhere and thats where they need to start. They cant go to a haunt only show and buy what major haunts buy. They can however go buy what they need to start off and say maybe next year we can purchase more in the Haunt section. Its a way of working up very few start off with a ton of money they start small put love, blood, and sweat into it and build up from there.

                        Paul told me they spent more last year in the retail section than they did in the Haunt section. They focused alot on retail and makup things like that. I may have over looked it but I have not noticed anyone that sells make up there well I take that back Morris will. But Morris buys it from the same companies we can buy it from.

                        Bottom line if these big retail stores had not offered us Halloween retail there would have never been a need for this industry. We went we bought and then the Haunt Vendors were born. Shane and its yes Virginia I feel they compliment each other! Shane this time!


                        • #42
                          Larry and Gang,

                          What i was simply implying by what i posted was it all seemed to fall apart when they moved it out of Chicago,period.

                          Let's say that hadn't moved it at all and it had been in Chicago the past two years,would there ever be this much ranting about it, probably not it would still be the kick ass TW it had always been.

                          As soon as that decision was made to move it all the other shows popped up trying to draw the crowds that TW left behind(hence Houston and it's empty aisles).

                          I talked to a lot of people that did attend Vegas because yes in fact i knew it would be more expensive to attend than in Chicago and sure enough there were some big complaints, Expense to begin with, how far some people had to walk to get from hotel to the convention even though they were right next to it.(Vegas hotels are freggin huge hence more walking).

                          Haunt tours they said were very lame, the afterhour party was basiclly non exisitant, and lack of being able to get into costume which im sorry if you don't care for it Larry people do like to do as part of the festivity's and to promote themselves and thier haunts.

                          Had it been left in Chicago im not going to say it wouldn't have died off like it did,but even if you took Rubie's out of the equation in Chicago i really don't think it would have made a dam bit of difference, it would still be a steadily growing show and not flayling in the wind like it is today.

                          The thing is nobody could have perdicted what was going to happen with this economy like it is, but maybe had we left it alone it might have survived even without Rubie's.

                          Haunting and TW go hand in hand it's like one big ass family that love to show our freaky side and party along with it! When Aunt Marge decides she's going to have the reunion after ten years of Aunt Jane's been holding it with great results the family has no choice but to split off and go to seperate reunions, some won't attend either just because they think the family fueding is BS, soon after the whole family's fueding and choosing sides and everybody's pissed off at each other.

                          We didn't stop having the reunion because Rubie's didn't bring the potatoe salad, we stopped attending because they split the family.


                          • #43
                            My opinion is keep both shows together!! I would go on a limb and say having more shows only make it more difficult to attend all of them as a vendor or a consumer.I really dont care were it is but make it fair for all.

                            Jason Blaszczak



                            • #44
                              Wow, there are a bunch of very interesting threads! Larry, any chance we can get them all combined? LOL

                              The real question here, and one that nobody has addressed yet, is whether or not TW, as a business entity, can afford to do the Haunt Show as a stand alone venture. At the end of the day it is not about how many people are there, it is not about where the show is, it is about whether or not Transworld Exhibits makes enough money on the show. Only Transworld can answer this question. Until they do answer it after this year (or maybe next year) all of these discussions are really moot.


                              • #45
                                See guys TW back in Chicago a few years ago was an awesome dam time for me and my crew, we saw and bought all the latest gadgetry, browsed and ordered make up aisles (which is a huge part of what we do in haunitng,ordering a seasons supply of make up for a 100+acting crew is no joke!), and then got dressed up and celebrated the off seasons biggest gathering.

                                I truly wish even Chicago could have been more affordable to crews and not just owners(thats where i think MHC rocks). To have your senior staff along while browsing the aisles is truly a huge help when it comes to the time to go home and build what you purchased into your haunts.The seminars were just way to pricey,never saw acting seminars which for a LOT of owners is incredibly valuable information.

                                When we attended TW chicago we brought anywhere from 20-25 people along, included were builders, make up artists, costume people, and even a few of our best actors because when we returned EVERYBODY was excited and everybody wanted to build like Mad Dogs and get ready for the new season. We would all meet up in our midway and empty the contents of our goody bags out onto the tables so people who couldn't attend would get excited and want to pitch in.

                                I remember our first year at TW only the owner went and he bought a prop that we couldn't even fit into the haunt via the doors... we were like WTF! Had i been standing there i would have told him yeah it's nice but it won't fit, thing is the guy was a great bussinessman but he couldn't read a tape measure!

                                Lastly, we all use our upper managment and go to people to get our haunts up and running,Make up managers, Builders, lead actors and so on, so why would it be so hard to have a convention thats geared to EVERYBODY on the haunt staff if they wanted to attend. I love the Haunters section and all the gadgetry of TW but at the same time i love what Barry's doing with MHC and gearing it a lot to stuff like make up wars, and masquerades and Ms.Scary pageants.

                                Because if you brought the crew we used to bring there would be something for everybody to do and see, all those extra people results in spending money,period!

                                Im going to end this in a memory of TW. It was saturday night 3-4 years ago in the hotel across the street from the Rosemont, the after party was in full swing but a freind and I needed to drop of a few things to our rooms after guest acting at dreamreapers. I come back downstairs and theres my best buddy JD with a cocktail in his hand(to young to drink but hey he wasn't driving).

                                JD is sitting there talking to Nick the Pirate from Emerson who was also pretty ripped and Screech and his fiance also in conversation mind you Nick was talking in his pirate voice and JD was using his hillbilly voice. Talk about a site to see and that was just one of the many,many memories from TW. Thats why im so upset they moved it, we HAD an awesome thing going! It was a family reunion that happened once a year the only exception is the family was compleley INSANE!