Project Spotlight: C'MON in! Golisano Children's Museum of Naples Now Open

February 29, 2012

Photos courtesy of Golisano Children's Museum of Naples

Photos courtesy of Golisano Children's Museum of Naples

We interrupt our regularly scheduled blog series for a special Project Spotlight feature.

Southwest Florida is now home to a new family destination, as Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples (C’MON) opened its doors to the public yesterday. Conceived in 2002 by Allyson Loos to address the need for more inclusive family experiences in Collier County, the mission of C’MON is “to provide an exciting, inspiring environment where children and their families play, learn and dream together.”

Fishing Pier "At the Beach"

Jack Rouse Associates, along with educational consultant Mary Sinker, provided overall planning, design development and fabrication and installation project management for C’MON’s 30,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor exhibit space. Through the museum’s 12 galleries, children and families learn about such topics as regional history, agricultural, geography and weather, all while enjoying an environment of engaging and cooperative play. JRA and Sinker based the design on three interrelated principles: an appreciation of children’s play behavior, knowledge of how an environment can influence play and learning, and an understanding of children’s developmental milestones.

Trolley in "The Street"

Specific exhibit areas include:

  • • An outdoor edge maze and amphitheater
  • • Journey Through the Everglades
  • • Banyan Tree
  • • At the Beach
  • • World Café
  • • Produce Market and Farm
  • • Mother Nature’s House
  • • ABC Lot (Toddler Area)
  • • Curious Kids (Pre-Teen Area)
  • • Pet Vet
  • • Green Construction
  • • Art Gallery and Studio

A delivery truck connects the "Farm" to the "Produce Market"

According to the museum’s website, exhibits were created to meet Florida’s Sunshine State curriculum standards, and all are accessible for individuals with developmental, hearing, physical, social/emotional and visual challenges.

The museum offered a special opening weekend to its 2,000 members, and a feature from the Naples Daily News lauded it as a "hit" and included some pint-sized “thumbs ups” from its early reviewers. When interviewed for the article, Heather Patton, director of external affairs, said that kids were “crying as they were leaving" and that the museum "had kids here comparing it to Disney World.”

For more information on the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples, please visit their website or check our their Facebook page. Thanks for reading, and tune in next week for Part 2 of our Media Moves! series – Production.
 

Tags: JRA Journeys , Project Spotlight

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Blog N' Learn: Media Moves!

February 22, 2012

Sample storyboard, courtesy Blur Studios.

Sample storyboard, courtesy Blur Studios.

In our previous series, we’ve showcased the 16 Stages of Project Development primarily as they relate to the physical components of your project (rides, physical interactives and theming). In today’s digital age, however, the development of a project’s media components has become a crucial element of its success. For our next three posts, we’ll delve into the process of creating vibrant and captivating media for your project. We’ll start with what happens before the first frame is created.

As with your physical exhibit components and overall layout, the development of your media begins with a concept. This concept is usually developed in a charette in the concept design phase and summarized in a short brief. During this formative stage, the following questions are discussed:

  1. What are the content and experience objectives (what do we want the guest to feel and learn)?
  2. What kind of experience is it (4D theater, 2D/3D simulator dark ride, or interactive?
  3. How long is the experience? This is in largely based on capacity numbers.

Once the level of detail becomes sufficient for pricing, JRA’s media team assembles a bid package and tenders it via an RFQ/RFP process (see our Sept. 22, 2011 post on the Three R’s). This bid package includes the creative brief, mood boards, schematic rendering, deliverables and proposed schedule. Once the proposals have been returned, JRA’s team will then work with you to select the best producer for the project. JRA can also serve as the executive producer for the Owner on the media components through installation.

With the media producer on board, the real work begins. The concept develops into a more focused, detailed storyline. These words are then transformed in to storyboards (small renderings and photo references) with production notes to enable to the client to better visualize the final product. Once the client has approved the developed storyline and storyboards, the producer begins writing the final script. Simultaneously, location scouting, production/set/character design, prop and wardrobe shoppers are mobilize to get ready for the production stage.

Animation requires a completely different level of preparation, including animatics (still renderings that are edited together to make a moving storyboard), character and scene development and voice-over casting.

So you’ve crafted your script, hired your actors, developed your character and found your locations. It’s time to shoot or animate! We’ll cover the production stage in next week’s post. Questions so far? Feel free to comment below or on Facebook, or send us a tweet. Thanks for reading!

 

Tags: Blog N Learn

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Meet the Team: Bjorn Kemper

February 15, 2012

Senior Project Designer, Bjorn Kemper

Senior Project Designer, Bjorn Kemper

Guten Tag!  For this Meet the Team segment, we're profiling Senior Project Designer (and German native), Bjorn Kemper.

From innovative dark rides, to magical theme park settings to contemporary museum galleries, Björn Kemper has established a reputation for delivering unique designs that immerse guests within one-of-kind environments.

 Björn studied Architecture at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany. Since joining the studio in 1999, his background in architecture, design, illustration and themed entertainment has helped make him an integral team member to a variety of JRA’s more high profile projects. His recent work includes attraction planning and design for Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, as well as the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta. Björn also played aleading role in the planning, design and art direction of Science Centre Singapore’s atrium experience and for attractions within both HarborLand – a 40-acre theme park in Ningbo, China – and Volkswagen’s Autostadt in Wolfsburg, Germany. Björn is currently working on a number of attraction components for two JRA theme park projects set to open in Europe within the next two years.

As you can see, JRA prides itself on having a dynamic team of designers like Björn for a project's physical environments.  But we also pride ourselves on our stellar executive production team, which oversees every film and interactive media experience within an environment or attraction.  How does this process work?  We'll learn more about that in next week's segment, as we begin our three-part Media in Motion series.

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Happy Valentine's Day!

February 14, 2012

All of us at Jack Rouse Associates wish you a very happy Valentine's Day.  Thank you for supporting us over the last 25 years. 

You can continue to "love" us by following us on Twitter, visiting our Facebook page, and commenting on our blogs. We want to write what you want to know.  And check back tomorrow for a post about a staff member who's museum and attraction design work we love! 

Speaking of which, have you visited your local museum lately?  Maybe it's time to show them some love this Valentine's Day!

Thanks for reading, and we'll see you tomorrow. :-)

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Just a Thought: A Sincere Thanks...

February 08, 2012

JRA Chief Executive Officer/Owner, Keith James

JRA Chief Executive Officer/Owner, Keith James

As we enter our 25th anniversary year, CEO Keith James reflects on his recent IAAPA Outstanding Service Award and offers his sincere thanks to all those who have helped him (and JRA) along the way.

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Those of you who know me personally know that my entire career has been behind the scenes, whether it’s been stage-managing a musical or overseeing the development of a theme park. This is a role I’ve always enjoyed and always preferred.
This past November, however, I stepped from behind the scenes and onto a stage in Orlando to receive IAAPA’s 2011 Outstanding Service Award. And while I have to admit that being the center of attention for those few minutes made me a bit nervous, I have also never felt so appreciative and humbled.

When I started in this crazy industry four decades ago, I had no idea how my work would come to influence every aspect of my life, in ways for which I am, and will always be, grateful. 

I met my lovely bride Patti while we both worked at Kings Island theme park. We’ve been married over 32 years now, and have two adult daughters: Alexis, who was born during my time at Expo ‘86 in Vancouver, and Chloe, who was born during my time at Australia’s Wonderland in Sydney. So you could say that this industry gave me my family, which by far is the most important
thing in the world to me.

My career has also introduced me to people who became lifelong friends.  Their friendship and support over the years has meant the world to me, both personally and professionally. I’ve had the chance to work with some incredibly talented individuals over the years, not the least of which are those with whom I share an office back in Cincinnati. My firm’s success is truly a result of their talent and commitment. One of the best parts about my job is that I get the chance to work with people who I genuinely admire and respect.

Due to the international nature of this business, I’ve had the opportunity to travel the globe and be exposed to an amazing array of cultures, exotic sites and fascinating people. And while my 9 million frequent flyer miles certainly haven’t come easy, the experiences that I’ve gained have been worth every mile.

Finally, I am very thankful for all of the clients who have entrusted JRA over the years with their hopes, dreams and projects. If not for them, I would not have had the career that I have enjoyed so much. It was with sincere appreciation that I accepted IAAPA’s kind award last November. It is something that I will always cherish.

One could say that the award is in recognition for what I’ve given to the industry over these many years. However, I will always look at it as a symbol of the many wonderful things that the industry has given to me.

 

Tags: JRA Team , Outside the Studio

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Meet the Team: Samantha Albert

February 01, 2012

JRA Co-op, Samantha Albert

JRA Co-op, Samantha Albert

Long walks, wolves and PB, J and banana sandwiches!?!  Must be time for a 5 Questions segment with another one of our blockbuster co-ops, Samantha Albert!

To get inspired, I go …
On obscenely long walks. Some people “sleep” on their problems; I walk all over them.  That is the only way I get through things and break through creative ruts. I'm sort of Julie Andrews circa The Sound of Music, except that I live in Clifton.

The biggest challenge being a designer is …
Not getting emotionally invested in what you're doing. I like helping people and fixing problems, and while that's a good thing to have in the back of your mind, sometimes it takes over, and it's hard to remember that design is about other people, not you. So when you REALLY like what you're working on, but it is completely ridiculous to the situation, that is not helping anyone.

If you had to be an animal, what would you pick?
I think I would be a wolf, which is a weird thing to say because I'm vegetarian and they most definitely are not herbivores. But I read Julie of the Wolves in second grade and it changed my life. There's just no coming back from that. I also like the pack dynamic of wolves.  They all look out for each other, which is neat.

My favorite person ever is …
Actually, there are two of them. I know that's cheating. But they're my sisters, so I can't just pick one because then the other one would hate me forever. And they're both kind of terrifying, so I wouldn't want that to happen. I live with Alyssa, who attends the University of Cincinnati with me and is in a rock band that just got signed (she's the lead singer)! And my youngest sister Stephanie is attending Ohio University for one of the best commercial photography programs in the nation, and she also speaks Japanese. (Are you intimidated yet? Because I am.)

My favorite sandwich is?
Peanut butter, strawberry jelly and sliced bananas on toasted bread. It's a weekend sandwich.

Thank you, Samantha.  And thank you out there for reading!  Tune in next week for another installment of JRA + blog, and in the meantime, beat the winter blues by supporting your local museum or attraction.  Cheers!

Tags: JRA Team

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