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TEA’s SATE 2010 conference explores the making of breakthrough guest experiences at theme parks and museums


Related: 2009 TEA/AECOM Attraction Attendance Report shows resilience, stability in the theme park industry / Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) Announces 16th Annual Thea Award Recipients

“The annual SATE Conference held Sept 30-Oct 1 by the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) will be a meaningful and energizing gathering as our industry continues into economic recovery, ” says TEA president Steve Thorburn of Thorburn Associates. “We will gather at Universal Orlando resort to discuss and explore new high-profile guest experiences with top creators at theme parks and museums including Universal Studios (Harry Potter), the new Fort Worth Museum of Science & History, the National World War II Museum in New Orleans (Beyond All Boundaries) and Walt Disney Imagineering.”

The four pillars of SATE are Storytelling, Architecture, Technology and Experience. SATE is a professional conference annually convened by TEA, an
international alliance for the makers of compelling places and guest experiences. SATE offers two days of presentations and discussions of techniques and practices, examining projects that demonstrate the best application of both. The theme of SATE 2010 is “Telling the Inherited Story.”

Registration for SATE 2010 is now open at

Topics & Speakers

Rocking the storytelling world this summer is the opening of “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter”™ at Universal Orlando® Resort. Members of the team that brought this literary phenomenon to life will take the audience through the process of keeping the integrity of the story intact as it entered the immersive dimension.

Presenters from The Hettema Group, a design and masterplanning company, will talk about the creation of the award-winning “Beyond All Boundaries” 4-D theatrical multimedia experience, which has been drawing record attendance to the World War II Museum in New Orleans.

The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History has transformed itself for the 21st century with an expansion, new building, new exhibits and technology, praised by the public and the press and recognized by the industry. Van Romans, president of the museum and a former Disney executive, and Chick Russell of Chick Russell Communications will be two of the SATE presenters for this project.

A team of Walt Disney Imagineers will share philosophies and approaches in presenting “Keeping the Magic Fresh: Evolving the Legacy.”

Additional SATE presenters will be announced in coming weeks.

About SATE (Storytelling, Architecture, Technology, Experience)

SATE is a professional design conference presented by the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) annually since 2007. The mission of SATE is to stimulate dialog among the makers of compelling places and guest experiences, reaching across a broad range of creative disciplines and market sectors within the attractions industry. SATE provides an environment to share diverse ideas and concepts, to challenge and inspire, and to discover collaborative opportunities.

A European counterpart, the first SATE Europe, is currently in planning stages by the TEA Europe & Middle East Division. It will take place in addition to the US conference.

SATE is organized by a volunteer committee of TEA leaders in conjunction with TEA staff. SATE 2010 committee chair is Kile Ozier, working with Larry Tuch of Narrative Concepts, Dan Christman of X-nth, Steve Birket of Birket Engineering, Penny Peavler of Weber Group and George A. Head. SATE 2010 sponsors include Universal Studios, VOA, Thorburn Associates and Birket Engineering.

About TEA

The TEA (Themed Entertainment Association) is an international nonprofit alliance founded in 1991 and based in Burbank, Calif. TEA represents some 7, 000 creative specialists, from architects to designers, technical specialists to master planners, scenic fabricators to artists, and builders to feasibility analysts working in more than 650 firms in 30 US states and 40 different countries. TEA presents the annual Thea Awards and the TEA Summit and hosts the annual SATE conference (Story, Architecture, Technology, Experience). TEA also produces a variety of print and electronic publications, including the TEA/AECOM Theme Index, TEA Project Development Guidelines, and TEA Annual & Directory. Visit

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