Thursday, January 15, 2009

Introducing … IAAPA!

My job is to market IAAPA, so I want you to know exactly what you’re getting when you join or renew your membership—and why it’s even more essential to stay connected to the industry through us as we all head into what will be a challenging economic year. A lot of our benefits are intangible or immeasurable, but even if you just use ONE of them, your membership will undoubtedly pay for itself.

Each week, I will update the blog with a post about what IAAPA can do for a specific attractions community; some of the benefits will be the same across the board, some will be specific, but all of them will be things you can use or learn from to improve your business.

This week, my topic is: Waterparks, Resorts, and IAAPA.

You know that operating a successful waterpark or resort takes more than just knowing about water safety and chemical balance (not that those things aren’t important!). This segment of the attractions industry is growing and changing at a rapid pace, and we’re here to help you get through it and come out ahead:

Government Relations
Our team is constantly monitoring issues like waterpark safety, regulatory issues, the Virginia Graeme Baker Act, and other government relations and safety issues. The more members we have and the more facilities we represent, the stronger our voice in the legislative realm, and the more we can do to impact change. Your membership dues guarantee you have two dedicated full-time IAAPA staffers in Washington, D.C., working to protect your business interests. And we’re not just limited to federal issues; we have worked on a variety of state legislative initiatives as well. As a member, if you EVER need any support regarding a government relations issue, all you have to do is ask! Go ahead, it’s easy:

News Flash
News Flash is a daily e-mail service that provides you with all the headlines from the global attractions industry. You can follow the trends as you learn about waterpark openings, closures, successes, struggles, and other situations. News Flash is an incredibly powerful tool, but you have to read it, AND use it. If you’re currently a member and don’t receive News Flash, sign up: If you’re not a member and want to know more, e-mail or call me at or +1 703/836-4800.

How are you going to train your staff this year? Do you have all the education resources you need? IAAPA has a whole bookstore full of training tools offered at affordable prices for members. Take a look at the First Steps or the Skill Builder series for economical training ideas that can really come in handy as you start building your staff.

And if you're looking for something FREE, we also offer an waterpark--focused education track at IAAPA Attractions Expo that is completely free for members. If you have ideas about what you would like these sessions to cover, let us know now (again, just shoot me an e-mail; we are just starting to work on the sessions for 2009.

Did you know that if you had an issue at your facility and needed help with the press, IAAPA’s staff provides you with FREE crisis communications support? That alone is worth the price of admission (or membership!). Just call the IAAPA offices and we will put you in touch with all the right people.

Now it's your turn. Let me know what you think and if there is anything else that IAAPA can do to help support you. My e-mail is and I look forward to hearing from you.

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