Give Kids The World Village Unveils New LED-enhanced Attraction

Give Kids the World
The SNA Displays LED screen onboard the Serendipty II pirate ship at Give Kids The World Village.

Give Kids The World Village is an eighty-nine-acre, ADA-accessible, storybook-themed destination in Kissimmee, Florida that, ever since opening in 1986, provides critically ill children and their families from all over the world with joy-filled, weeklong wish vacations at no cost. The GKTW Village has welcomed more than 176,000 families from all fifty U.S. states and seventy-six countries.

On-site theming found throughout this whimsical park includes a host of colorful characters that interact with the children, snoring trees, oversized mushroom architecture, an enchanting castle, and the world’s largest game of Candy Land.

For many years, the Park of Dreams Pool area at GKTW Village also had a pirate ship called Serendipity that provided lots of buccaneer-themed fun and hosted a projector-based screen. However time had not only taken its toll on this playground vessel, but the screen was very hard to see during daytime hours.

Shiver me timbers! GKTW Village officials knew it was time for an overhaul and rebuild (a kinder, gentler keelhaul, if you will).

This past July, after a year of planning, redesign, and construction, GKTW Village celebrated the grand opening christening of a newly constructed, ninety-plus-foot pirate ship replacement called Serendipity II, taking anchor in this port in an effort to spread more hope and happiness to the children and their families. This new buccaneer-themed build was made possible by a $1.5 million grant from the Don and Lorraine Freeberg Foundation, a nonprofit that supports organizations focused on education, healthcare, children, and veterans.

Built to withstand the humid subtropical climate of Central Florida, the ADA-accessible Serendipity II was constructed by SteamLabs Design Group and Icarus Exhibits Orlando using a 100 percent aluminum frame and cladding, while Poly Gem coating was added to replicate the look of real wood.

Serendipity II was built off-site using a labor-intensive process and took almost a year. Once finished, it was then disassembled and delivered to the Village for a two-day installation with the use of a crane.

Give Kids The World
The Serendipity II pirate ship.

The bright, colorful ship includes an animated parrot, an interactive ship’s wheel, and a masthead “sea-quine” figure designed as a close cousin to the seahorses found on GKTW’s ADA-accessible Enchanted Carousel. Impressively its towering seventy-four-foot masts had to be approved by the FAA, due to the park’s proximity to the nearby Kissimmee Gateway Airport.

However the main attraction onboard the replacement pirate ship very well could be its brand-new 16-feet-5-inches-wide-by-9-feet-10-inches-high SNA Displays EMPIRE™ Exterior LED screen situated near the center of the new ship in an open deck area for everyone sitting or swimming in the Pool of Dreams area to view. Management and integration of this state-of-the-art solution was overseen by Electrosonic AV Design out of Orlando, Florida, while the SNA Displays team was present throughout the project to assist and troubleshoot any issues that arose. (Note: Electrosonic AV Design is an international audiovisual and technology services company that designs, builds, and supports innovative technology solutions that create lasting experiences where people live, work, and play.)

The 3.9mm pixel pitch screen measures 1,280-by-768 pixels and outputs content at a resolution of 720p.

With this digital screen adornment, the Serendipity II ship is able to present and host feature film screenings, dive-in movies, sports broadcasts, special events promotions, and more to visitors in the Pool of Dreams Park area at GKTW Village.

“One of the priorities for this LED display was to provide a medium for the Village’s ‘dive-in’ movie events for their guests,” says Thursby Pierce, project manager at Electrosonic. “I think the screen fits the scale of Serendipity II well. It doesn’t feel intrusive to the whimsical nature of the space, [and] it is large enough to give guests a great seat to the show no matter how close they are.”

Give Kids The World
Installing the LED screen.

The GKTW Village team and their designers requested a size and design for the direct-view SNA Displays LED screen that was best determined by the size of the Serendipity II ship and its accompanying design elements. They also wanted a size that would be conducive to movie watching at any time of the day, which necessitated a basic 16:9 aspect ratio.

“They wanted a screen bright enough to provide viewing at all times of the day. The previous ship used projection-based technology, which made daytime viewing impossible,” says Jason Helton, executive vice president of SNA Displays. “Given the size limitations, we proposed 3.9-milimeter pixel spacing, which is a very tight pixel pitch for exterior LED displays.”

“It’s rare to have a sub-4mm exterior LED display,” says Nicole Rotyliano, project manager at SNA Displays. “Thanks to [our] R&D team, we were able to provide this client with a product that fit their use-case for the technology, showing movies to visitors of the Village at relatively close viewing distances.”

According to Helton, “The resulting screen looks great.”

Construction on the pirate ship’s structure was mostly finished before the LED display was installed on-site. Icarus Exhibits Orlando provided the mounting structure for it, per specifications from Electrosonic and SNA Displays. “Once the mounting structure was in place, the installation was fairly typical,” says Pierce. “We were really happy with the results.”

Programming on the SNA Displays screen is initiated from a small watchtower-style building located across from the ship. “They’re set up with a fairly typical front-end system, allowing for various input types like cable, Blu-ray discs, and other content,” says Pierce.

Although the LED display is outdoor-rated like other digital billboards, the Give Kids the World Village team still wanted to make sure it would still be protected from extreme tropical storms that take place in the Florida area. So Electrosonic, SNA Displays, and the Serendipity II structural engineer collaborated and implemented a storm-shutter solution to it. “It provides adequate protection without impacting the viewer experience,” says Rotyliano.

Contrary to its meaning, the Serendipity II project did not happen by chance; in fact, all the crew members involved were vetted and chosen based on their levels of skill and expertise.

Delivery of the SNA Displays product to the site took place this past March. A substantial amount of ship construction had to be completed before actual installation to it, which took place in May a month before it would be installed in the ship itself.

However all the parties involved did end up happy from being able to complete work on a new pirate ship attraction that is bringing so much joy to children and their families.

The post Give Kids The World Village Unveils New LED-enhanced Attraction appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

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Epson to Host Webinars on New Production-Class Wide-Format Printers

To further support dealers and customers interested in the new line of production-class SureColor® P-Series photographic and graphic art and SureColor® T-Series technical and graphics wide-format printers, Epson today announced upcoming webinars that will offer a first look into the products. The virtual events hosted by Epson’s product management team will offer customers and dealers a look at the brand-new line of sleek, fast, and versatile production-class webinar

“We have received tremendous industry interest and feedback on our new production-class printers since their launch,” said Jason Meyer, group product manager, Professional Imaging, Epson America, Inc. “The upcoming virtual events are an engaging and convenient way for our partners and customers to learn about the new models and learn helpful tips and recommendations regarding ongoing usage, workflow matters and current trends impacting the industry today.”

The upcoming production-class webinars will be held at 1 p.m. PST on:

Aug. 24 and Sept. 15: Introducing the SureColor T-Series – The Epson team will introduce the latest high-speed technical, graphics and poster/POP printing solutions.

Aug. 25 and Sept. 16: Introducing the SureColor P-Series – The Epson team will introduce its brand-new line of sleek, fast and versatile production-class printers that deliver innovative solutions for fine art and photography printing

Epson offers ongoing webinars and virtual events to allow customers to directly interact with Epson and industry experts, ask questions live, view the products from various angles, and see product features or demos most important to them. Additional upcoming virtual events covering the latest advancements in digital printing, applications and market trends include:

Wednesday, Aug. 18: UV Flatbed Product Overview – The Epson team will give a full overview of the key features of the SureColor V-Series 4’x8’ UV flatbed printer, covering key innovations in productivity, print quality, multi-layer printing, and more.

Tuesday, Aug. 24: Stand out with Fluorescent Inks – Offers tips and tricks to creating designs with fluorescent colors, looking at design software, optimizing print setting and the latest technologies that can increase productivity.

Wednesday, Sept. 1: Optimal Scratch Resistance with Resin Ink – Offers a technical overview of how to leverage the relationship between Epson’s breakthrough Resin ink technology, optimizer, and heat to create highly scratch resistant prints, optimal for indoor/outdoor graphics, textiles, and wallpaper applications.

Tuesday, Sept. 7: Preparing for Peak Production – Offers DTG printing practices to get through the peak season and thrive, covering how to maintain current equipment, selecting new equipment to help scale, as well as tax and incentive programs.

Wednesday, Sept. 15: UV Flatbed Product Overview – The Epson team will give a full overview of the key features of the SureColor V-Series 4’x8’ UV flatbed printer, covering key innovations in productivity, print quality, multi-layer printing, and more.

Wednesday, Sept. 22: Preparing for Peak Production – Focusing on dye-sublimation, learn best practices to get through the upcoming holiday season, offers tips on maintaining current equipment, looks at new equipment to help scale the business, as well as tax and incentive programs.

For additional information, to register for upcoming webinars and events, visit Future events will be updated on this page as they are scheduled, including participation in live events.

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YESCO, Official Partner Of The Las Vegas Raiders, Fabricates, Installs Nearly 4,000 Signs At Allegiant Stadium

Allegiant Stadium las vegas raidersYESCO, the 101-year-old company known for creating, repairing and maintaining internationally recognizable signs, is a proud partner of the Las Vegas Raiders and Allegiant Stadium. When Allegiant Stadium opens on Aug. 14 for the Las Vegas Raiders’ first home game of 2021, YESCO will welcome fans with nearly 4,000 signs including all stadium naming signage, pylon signs and interior and exterior directional signs to enable guests to navigate the new stadium.

“As a proud partner of the Raiders and a valued building partner of Allegiant Stadium, we are excited for fans to enjoy the 2021 season in the stadium,” said Jeff Young, executive vice president, YESCO. “It’s enormously gratifying to be such a visible part of Las Vegas’ newest landmark structure.”Allegiant Stadium las vegas raiders yesco

Encompassing approximately 50,000-man hours of work, the project included the installation of notable exterior signage such as the two rooftop signs spanning an impressive 564 feet each for a combined total of 115,056 square feet and comprising nearly two miles of outline lighting. Other signs, such as the stadium’s freestanding pylon sign, measures 124 feet in height and 44 feet in width, with the electronics portion measuring 80-by-36 feet.

Allegiant Stadium las vegas raidersTo accentuate the dramatic architecture of the stadium, YESCO installed white light ribbons comprising one-and-a-half total miles of light band. Massive individual illuminated letters reading “Allegiant Stadium” on the interior and exterior of the facility range from 20 to 31 feet in height. At Raiders Headquarters, the Intermountain Healthcare Performance Center, YESCO also installed all building and directional signs, including the pinnacle, outdoor Raiders’ shield sign measuring 27 by 25 feet.

The post YESCO, Official Partner Of The Las Vegas Raiders, Fabricates, Installs Nearly 4,000 Signs At Allegiant Stadium appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

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LexJet Introduces In-house Digital Label Printer and Cutter

LexJet, a subsidiary of S-One Holdings Corporation, has launched a new printer and die cutter that allows cannabis brands to print high-quality labels in house.lexjet RP530 and RP530W printers

The RP530 and RP530W printers, manufactured by IntoPrint and sold under LexJet, allow for premium digital label printing in full CMYK, or CMYK+White.

The RF8510 die cutter seamlessly finishes label jobs, and can laminate, die cut, strip, slit, and rewind. The machine uses plotting technology to cut labels into any shape.

These machines are an ideal investment for cannabis brands who are looking for the flexibility of variable print and on-demand label production.

These print and finishing solutions allow brands to print variable data, remove production delays, reduce inventory, and lower print costs by bringing label production in house. Due to the ever-changing nature of cannabis regulations, business owners can seamlessly change artwork files as regulations change.

With the solutions from LexJet and IntoPrint, there are no more costly reprints, high minimum order quantities, or warehouse shelves filled with non-complaint labels. Cannabis business owners can simply print the exact quantity they need when they need it.

The RP530 and RP530W label printer, and the RF8510 die cutter are easy to use, straightforward to install, and require minimal training to get started.

For more information, or to get started on in-house label production, visit or reach out to a LexJet specialist at 800-453-9538 or

The post LexJet Introduces In-house Digital Label Printer and Cutter appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

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Signarama Celebrates Major Milestones During World Expo Event

Signarama, the world’s leading sign and graphics franchise, recently hosted hundreds of franchisees and vendors during the United Franchise Group (UFG) World Expo in West Palm Beach, Florida. The four-day event took place at the Palm Beach County Convention Center, just a few miles from the Signarama global headquarters.

signarama world expo

More than 200 Signarama franchisees attended the brand’s biggest event of the year, which also happened to be a 35-year celebration for the brand. With a jam-packed agenda, franchisees learned about the latest updates in technology, product development, marketing strategies and vendor partnerships. In breakout sessions, speakers addressed important strategic topics on how to make our franchisees even stronger. In addition to brand-specific content, franchisees had the opportunity to attend general sessions and hear from UFG leadership, including CEO, Ray Titus. Attendees also had the unique opportunity to hear from four keynote speakers including motivational speaker, Joe Theismann; author, Chris McChesney; and founder of Fans First Entertainment and owner of the Savannah Bananas, Jesse Cole. Each of the speakers brought fresh perspective to our franchisees and left them inspired, motivated and ready to apply lessons learned during Expo!

Highlights from the 2021 convention include:

  • 2020 system-wide sales reached $341 Million which was impressively up from $316M in 2019.
  • 63 Signarama centers around the world qualified for inclusion in the Million Dollar Circle in 2020. Criteria for inclusion was $1 million dollars in gross sales in the calendar year of 2020.
  • The Signarama President’s Award, which recognizes a longstanding franchisee with excellent performance, significant contributions to the benefit of the brand and consistent sales impact and growth, was awarded to Beatriz Cardona & Roberto Hiller in New Tampa, FL.
  • The 2020 Signarama MVP award was presented to Bob Chapa III, Signarama Troy/Metro Detroit, MI, for achieving over $8 million in sales in the calendar year of 2020.
  • Over 100 vendors were present on the United Franchise Group Trade Show floor for live demonstrations of the latest products and equipment.
  • The 2020 Signarama Sign Awards Ceremony honored franchisees who produced amazing projects across 11 categories, including the “Best In Show” Award, which was presented to “JB” Jason & Cynthia Brown from Louisville (Dixie), KY for their team’s work on a stunning design for local celebrity Chef Fernando Martinez’s latest restaurant concept, La Bodeguita de Mima.

One of the most exciting parts of the World Expo was when Signarama set a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ for most signatures on a banner in one hour. On June 28th, the brand successfully captured the needed signatures on the 25-foot banner that was themed “We Love Signs” in celebration of their anniversary marketing campaign. GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ adjudicator, Michael Empric, flew in for the event and was present to count each participant. He later officially announced and confirmed the record attempt totaling 689 signatures on-stage in front of all the participants. The minimum number to set this GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ title was 250.

“The 2021 World Expo event was remarkable. This was the first time that we’ve been able to gather with our franchisees for an in-person event in over a year and to top it off, we got to celebrate 35 years in business together,” said A.J. Titus, President of Signarama and United Franchise Group. “The hard work and dedication to the brand was apparent during the awards, where we recognized a record number of award winners this year. In total, the brand gave out nearly 300 awards to Signarama franchisees from across the globe. Without our franchisees, we wouldn’t be where we are today.”


Additional awards presented at the event included the following:

Hall of Fame Inductees

Todd & Stephanie Cunningham: Frisco, TX

Bryan & Katherine Duquet: Clinton Township, MI

Ed & Arlene Sullivan: Asheville, NC


Master License Partner of the Year

Olivier & Rouba Fossat: France


Humanitarian of the Year

John & Ashly Robbins: Redding, CA

Mike Ziccardi & Dawn Tiritter-Bent: Huntington Station, NY


Most Improved

Mike & Beth Powers: Flint, MI

Aaron Grochowski: Bloomingdale, IL


Rookie of the Year

Matt & Kelly Mattingly: San Antonio NW, TX

Dan & Kendra Pearson: Lake Mary, FL


Team Player

Ric & Karen Anderson: Salt Lake City, UT

Alex & Sharon Fong: Redmond, WA

The post Signarama Celebrates Major Milestones During World Expo Event appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

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American PERMALIGHT® Welcomes Alexis Hinckley to the Team

American PERMALIGHT® Inc. is pleased to announce its recent hire of Alexis Hinckley, who officially joined the organization in June 2021. She will serve as Sales and Project Specialist, with a focus on growing relationships within the life safety industries that the company supports.Alexis Hinckley American PERMALIGHT

Alexis is a subject matter expert who provides tremendous value through American PERMALIGHT® Inc.’s Educate & Inspire approach that establishes a sustainable competitive advantage and is mutually beneficial for both organizations. She will facilitate professional and organizational growth within your business while acting as your accountability partner to ensure that you stay committed to achieving your goals and objectives.

Alexis says, “Since joining American PERMALIGHT® I have learned so much about the life safety industry. American PERMALIGHT®, directly and indirectly, saves people’s lives every day by improving the safety standards in buildings and homes across the nation, and this is the main reason why I wanted to join this organization. I’m excited for my journey with American PERMALIGHT® and look forward to Educating and Inspiring our customers about life safety.”

The post American PERMALIGHT® Welcomes Alexis Hinckley to the Team appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

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New Contra Vision Product to Create Impressive Dual-Color Signage

Contra Vision are proud to present a great value product that makes signs stand out both day and night. Contra Vision® Performance™ Black Perforated Film in 20% transparency is a black on black perforated film intended for the production of dual-color back-lit signage.

The film is applied to the outside surface of built-up channel letters and during the day, when it is not backlit, the letters appear black. When the sign is backlit at night, it takes on the color of the translucent sign face used.

contra vision Performance Black Perforated FilmAlready this product has been used successfully by sign makers based predominantly in the USA but with increasing use in other countries. Recently, it was used by Rainbow Signs and Maintenance, who are based in Northern Ireland, on the Carryduff Community Church sign and the installation has been met with a great response.

Gavin, Lead Pastor at Carryduff Community Church said of the response to the sign,

“We love the sign and have had a number of very positive remarks about it from the general public as well as the folks who attend the church.”

contra vision Performance Black Perforated FilmThis 20% transparency film gives greater night-time light output than other lower transparency products currently available on the market. This means signage will stand-out to passers-by due to its vibrancy.

Alternatively, we offer a white on black perforated window film in 20% transparency which can be printed to produce channel lettering that is colored by day and white at night.

The post New Contra Vision Product to Create Impressive Dual-Color Signage appeared first on Sign Builder Illustrated, The How-To Sign Industry Magazine.

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After Shop Destroyed by Fire, Sign Company Rises Like a Phoenix

Thanks to neighborly goodwill, Innovative Signs in Wisconsin is up and running again after a fire destroyed its shop earlier in the year, the Milwaukee Business Journal reports.

“All of our printing equipment was gone,” CEO Chad Schultz told the paper. “For the manufacturing equipment, we had to replace a piece of equipment we had just installed and started running two weeks prior. Brand new technology, it was running great. It got corroded.”

In a stroke of serendipity, Innovative Signs had purchased a larger building two months before the fire, though it was not ready to move into at the time of the disaster. That meant the company needed a temporary home, which they moved into within a week of the fire.

While in their temporary digs, a local signshop called Silver Leaf Signs & Graphics let Innovative use its industrial printer to continue making vehicle graphic graphs, real estate listing signs and other products, the article explains. Also, a local furniture maker donated 14 office chairs to help reestablish operations.

By July, Innovative had moved into its new facility in Waukesha, WI. It measures 19,600 sq. ft., about 8,000 more than its previous headquarters.

On Aug. 20, Schultz will join the Independent Business Association of Wisconsin to share the story of how his shop is bouncing back from the disaster. For registration information, visit

Read more at the Milwaukee Business Journal.

The post After Shop Destroyed by Fire, Sign Company Rises Like a Phoenix appeared first on Signs of the Times.

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Outlook Continues to Improve for Overall Economy and Sign Industry

Analysts have revised the economic outlook even higher than previously thought, thanks to a stronger than expected rebound. But commodity prices and supply shortages pose a threat to the expected growth, according to the Sign Industry Quarterly Economic Report, produced by IHS Markit for the International Sign Association.Economic Report
The report covers the second quarter of 2021 and was prepared in June. It is sponsored by the National Association of Sign Supply Distributors (NASSD). The report assesses four segments of the industry: two supplier markets (printing and electrical/digital signage) and two end markets (electric/digital signage and architectural signage). It also forecasts commodities.

Some highlights:

  • The four market segments all show improving outlooks for 2021, with 2022 a year of continued recovery, IHS says. Strong consumer demand will continue to drive supply side and end market electric/digital signage into 2022.
  • IHS Markit has increased its forecast for global GDP growth in 2021 and 2022. GDP is expected to grow 7.4 percent in 2021 and 4.8 percent in 2022.
  • Commodity prices are starting to moderate. Steel production is alleviating the supply shortages, which will cause prices to fall during the second half of 2021. The exception is the United States, where steel capacity is idle, and imports are suppressed by logistics problems.
  • In 2022, both sides of the electric digital signage market—supply and end market—show an improved forecast as input prices return to normal levels and consumer demand remains strong.
  • Architectural signage end market is again the weakest segment, though IHS revised its forecast upward in 2021. It is expected to decline in 2022 and 2023, however.
  • The supply side printing market is vulnerable to labor and raw material issues. Analysts expect those to lessen over the next six months and output will grow rapidly. If cursed by further disruptions, the potential will be far harder to achieve or will be partly deferred into 2022.

The report is free for ISA, ISA Affiliated Association and NASSD members. Non-members may purchase it for $1,000 per quarterly forecast. This research can be accessed at A recorded webinar, in which IHS details the findings of the report, can be accessed at

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Tripp Lite’s New Digital Signage Stands Offer Quick Setup and Portability

Tripp Lite, a global manufacturer of power protection and connectivity solutions, offers simple, cost-efficient stands for displaying information, directions or entertainment in almost any setting, including trade shows, corporate offices, schools, healthcare facilities, retail stores, malls, airports, museums and hotels.tripp lite

Tripp Lite’s new digital signage stands accommodate flat-screen displays or interactive touchscreens up to 70 inches. The stands are a smaller, less expensive alternative to rolling TV/monitor carts, yet they still provide the convenience of portability.

Six different stands are available to hold a variety of screen sizes and weights. All of the stands feature quick, easy setup and VESA-compliant brackets for hassle-free display mounting.

  • Tripod stands (models DMPDS2342TRIC and DMPDS3770TRIC) feature adjustable height.
  • Folding stands (models DMPDS3255F and DMPDS3255CF) fold flat. DMPDS3255CF has handles and rear casters for smooth rolling.
  • Easel stands (models DMPDS4970 and DMPDS5570S) have snap-lock brackets for quick assembly and include wire rope to prevent tipping. DMPDS5570S has a built-in shelf for peripherals.

“A rolling display cart may not always be practical for digital signage in smaller spaces,” said Karenann Brow, Tripp Lite’s Director of Product Marketing for Surge, Power Strips and Display Mounts. “Tripp Lite’s portable digital signage stands have compact designs that allow users to bring their message to their audience almost anywhere. The stands are flexible solutions for everything from temporary wayfinders to permanent signage.”

Key Features of Tripp Lite’s Portable Digital Signage Stands

  • Stands are available to accommodate displays from 23 to 70 inches
  • Portable form factors bring digital signage almost anywhere
  • Compact designs fit in small spaces
  • Simple setup enables fast deployment
  • VESA-compliant brackets provide no-hassle display mounting

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