South Florida's PrimeTime Amusements got a piece of action at WWE's Wrestlemania 29 in New Jersey a few days ago.
The Fort Lauderdale company best known for renting and selling arcade machines had a hand in creating a replica of the Statue of Liberty for the set of the April 7 pay-per-view wrestling event. The statue was displayed before more than 80,000 fans at the MetLife Stadium as the event was broadcast in more than 100 countries, according to WWE.
David Goldfarb, owner and founder of PrimeTime Amusements, said the creation was by far "the best project we've ever done."
The 17,500-pound, 67-foot tall statue was built by PrimeTime Amusements' theming division established in 2012, Prop Creations, along with Propmasters Miami, said Goldfarb. The Miami company contracted PrimeTime to help create the project, he said.
But the Fort Lauderdale-based company isn't stopping with Lady Liberty.
They are involved in another project expected to be completed by Memorial Day and which will top the Wrestlemania piece in terms of exposure, Goldfarb said.
His company will be among a group creating a 6,000-square-foot building on New Jersey's Seaside Heights' boardwalk, following last year's devastation from Hurricane Sandy, he said. The new venture will be like a "mini Dave & Buster's" offering food, ice cream and arcade games, Goldfarb said.
PrimeTime will supply about 80 arcade machines, he added.
In the meantime, PrimeTime will also be among the exhibitors participating Wednesday in the BizBash IdeaFest at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center.
They'll be showcasing their foam props and other services at the trade event geared toward event and meeting planners. The South Florida show will gather trade professionals for the daylong event, which includes forum sessions, workshops and an exhibition floor.
As the economy picks up, businesses like PrimeTime Amusements, caterers and others in the hospitality sector are noticing increased demand for their services, industry experts said Tuesday.
"The entire event industry really took a hit over the last three years," said Kim Sullivan, an executive with the California-based Event Planners Association. "But we are seeing it come back in full swing in all segments."
A recent study by the Event Marketing Institute found a rise in event programs put together by brand marketers, said Anna Sekula, executive editor of BizBash. It increased from 137 events produced per company in 2011 to 152 events in 2012, she said.
"We are seeing a lot of vendors and companies reporting that budgets are increasing, and people are looking to hold events more than they were in 2008 when people were tight with their money," Sekula said.
Marla Lasine, owner of Show Biz Productions, with offices in Pompano Beach and Orlando, said she's getting more calls now for corporate and social events than three to four years ago.
For more than 15 years, she's been renting arcade games from PrimeTime for events she organizes for Fortune 500 companies, government agencies and other clients, Lasine said. PrimeTime's quality customer service has kept Lasine a loyal customer, she said.
"In the event industry that's what it's all about," Lasine said. "You have to have good customer service. You're only as good as your last event."
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