TEA Connect Blog

21 January 2020

TEA's biggest conferences and events in 2020: Summit, Thea Awards Gala, SATE, IAAPA Expos and the Theme Index release

Here's everything you need to know to plan for and participate in Themed Entertainment Association (TEA)'s biggest contributions to the global industry dialogue in 2020 - the TEA Summit and TEA Thea Awards presented by Chimelong, the TEA SATE conferences, TEA at the IAAPA Expos and the TEA/AECOM Theme Index and Museum Index. Details below. 

TEA Summit - April 16 - 17, 2020 - Anaheim, California USA

The Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) annual Summit conference is a two-day event, followed by the TEA Thea Awards Gala presented by Chimelong on April 18. Showcasing a global spectrum of top-awarded projects, companies, people and technology leading visitor attractions and providing a forum for peer discussion. Together, TEA's Summit & Thea Awards comprise the Association's most important weekend of events. 

Day One of the TEA Summit invites delegates into a top-level, members-only, peer discussion and exploration of current issues, trends, and business needs that affect their industry. Thea Case Studies Day (Day Two of the TEA Summit) pulls back the curtain for revelatory, behind-the-scenes peer discussion of how these top-honored, successful projects came to be – challenges, solutions, innovations - and makes the most of the remarkable mix of industry figures who have come to town for the Thea Awards – the project owners, and the creative team that collaborated to design and realize the project and the owner’s vision, and are credited in the official Thea Awards Program. 

Tickets & Info: 2020 TEA Summit
Disneyland Resort
Anaheim, CA
April 16 -17


TEA Thea Awards Gala presented by Chimelong - April 18, 2020 - Anaheim, California USA

The prestigious TEA Thea Award is considered one of the attractions industry's greatest honors. The awards were founded in 1994 by TEA. From hundreds of nominations received each year, the Thea Awards Committee deliberates at length to produce the annual slate of recipients. Recipients are announced in November and formally awarded the following spring at the annual Gala, an elegant, black-tie dinner event that takes place the day after the TEA Summit (see above).

Tickets & Info: 26th Annual Thea Awards Gala presented by Chimelong
Disneyland Resort
Anaheim, CA
April 18


TEA/AECOM Theme Index - June 2020

The TEA/AECOM Theme Index and Museum Index is a collaboration of the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and the economics practice at AECOM, a global provider of technical-professional and management-support services. This free resource is a widely-cited, definitive calendar-year study of global attractions attendance that benefits the industry. Top worldwide theme parks, amusement parks, water parks, museums and theme park group operators are named, ranked by attendance, and industry trends are identified. 

The study is released in early June and published in English and Chinese on TEA’s and AECOM’s websites, in addition to a limited number of print copies.



Group shot from TEA SATE Seattle in 2019, with the iconic Space Needle in the background

TEA SATE 2020 - May 6-7 (Barcelona); August 20-21 (Osaka); October 1-3 (Las Vegas)

The TEA SATE conference was created by the TEA in 2007 to enhance and improve understanding and conversation about the methodology of Experience Design and the interdisciplinary nature of themed entertainment. The SATE acronym stands for Story + Architecture + Technology = Experience. SATE reaches across a broad range of creative disciplines and market sectors within the attractions industry. SATE provides an environment for learning and professional development: to share diverse ideas and concepts, to challenge and inspire, to learn about breakthrough projects, best practices and trends, and to discover collaborative opportunities in the field of attraction design and development. SATE has grown to three international annual conferences held in Europe, Asia and North America.


TEA SATE 2020 locations:

Barcelona, Spain
May 6 – 7

Osaka, Japan
August 20 -21

University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Nevada, USA
October 1- 3



TEA at IAAPA Expos - June 9-11 (Macao); Sept 21-24 (London) November 17 -20 (Orlando)

TEA participates in the three annual IAAPA Expos - Europe, Asia and US. Taking part in these vital international forums for the attractions industry is one of the ways TEA serves our membership and the global business community.

The TEA presence at IAAPA Expos includes exhibit booths, networking events and educational sessions. In November, we wrap up the year and look ahead to the next with at the industry's largest international gathering, IAAPA Expo Orlando. There, TEA hosts thousands of guests at the annual TEA International Mixer, announces the new slate of annual TEA Thea Award recipients and installs new Board members at the annual TEA Members Meeting.

IAAPA Expo Asia
June 9 -11

IAAPA Expo Europe
London, England
September 21 - 24

Orlando, USA
November 17-20


TEAs organizes more than 100 events annually, including opportunities for networking, education and professional development within the global attractions industry.

See upcoming events

SATE Asia 2019


Posted by Christy Nakada



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