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Amusement Mega-Expo IAAPA Canceled Amid Coronavirus Concerns

Virtual reality at IAAPA 2017. Photo: Brendan Byrne WMFE.
Virtual reality at IAAPA 2017. Photo: Brendan Byrne WMFE.

An annual conference and expo for the attractions industry has been canceled due to COVID-19. The IAAPA expo was set to take place at the Orange County Convention Center in November.

The IAAPA expo takes over the floors of the Orange County Convention Center each year, displaying the latest in attraction technology from new roller coasters to cotton candy machines.

Last year the expo brought more than 1,000 vendors and over 40,000 attendees to Orlando from around the globe.

“The ongoing prevalence of COVID-19 in Florida in the United States, coupled with significant restrictions on international and domestic travel makes that impossible at this time,” said IAAPA President and CEO Hal McEvoy.

Instead, the organization will hold a virtual conference. In previous years, the expo has been a boon for Orange County tourism dollars, which are now at a historic low since the pandemic started in March.

“While we are disappointed we are unable to meet in-person this year, we are already looking ahead to IAAPA Expo 2021 in Orlando,” McEvoy said.

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration.