Giving Thanks For Our 'Community of Coin-Op'
As the mega-IAAPA Expo in Orlando winds down today and I look ahead to next week's Thanksgiving Holiday, I'm in a good state of mind.
There's nothing like a trade show to get jazzed up and re-energized about the business. This week, as I viewed the new product on display and conducted countless conversations with coin-op colleagues, I found myself in a near constant state of "information overload." Several times, I found myself frantically searching for paper and pen to make notes so I wouldn't forget all the great new ideas I collected.
Whether a technological breakthrough, a dose of creative genius or some new insight on a particular issue, the show was a nonstop "learning lab" for buyers and sellers.
However, more than anything was/is the intrinsic sense of comradery evident at events like IAAPA and Amusement Expo International.
Most of us probably don't think about how many people we know in this business. It's not the same as the volume of Facebook friends or LinkedIn connections we have. To me, it hits home at a trade show when I walk through an exhibit hall, registration area or hotel and find myself in a spontaneous conversation, a quick exchange/ handshake or even just a nod and wave with individuals I've come to know through coin-op.
And then, there's the new people we meet, which constantly expands our network and circle of friends.
Next week's Thanksgiving Holiday is about celebrating our families, personal friends and all the things we have been blessed with in our lives.
As you count those blessings, don't forget to figure in those among our "coin-op community" who play an important role in our worlds.
Next Thursday will mark my 18th Thanksgiving as a part of AMOA. To me, the association is a unique, very special sub-set of the overall coin-op community. Many of my very best friends are part of this organization. It was great to re-connect with some of them in Orlando this week and I look forward to seeing many more in Las Vegas next March at the AAMA-AMOA Amusement Expo.
Happy Thanksgiving to the coin-op community, especially those who call themselves AMOA members!
-- Jack Kelleher