The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) kicked off its annual conference and trade show at the Orange County Convention Center, where thousands of participants gathered to learn and experience the latest innovations in attractions technology and products. This year’s IAAPA Attractions Expo includes the largest trade show floor in the event’s 98-year history.

IAAPA, the largest trade association for the $39 billion worldwide attractions industry, recently announced that it will relocate its global headquarters office to Orlando, Florida. Orlando’s low cost of doing business, easy access to air transportation, proximity to industry leaders and large talent pool attracted the global organization to the region.

Unsurprisingly, Orlando is home to many companies that specialize in the innovative technology behind attractions, shows and even ticket queuing.

“Orlando is the epicenter of the attractions industry,” announced IAAPA Chair John McReynolds during the show’s opening.

Orlando based ITEC Entertainment is responsible for project planning, development, management, technology and pre-visualization for theme park rides, shows, retail stores and restaurants. ITEC Entertainment recently completed the Ride Show Supervisor system for the adventure ride Skull Island: Reign of Kong in Universal’s Islands of Adventure. ITEC Entertainment also worked on Revenge of the Mummy for Universal Studios in Singapore and Bob Marley: A Tribute to Freedom for Universal Orlando’s City Walk.

Falcon’s Creative Group, headquartered in Orlando, is a design firm that develops plans for theme park attractions and shows. The company has even started creating its own intellectual properties and characters. Work from Falcon’s Creative Group can be found in the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Turtle Trek in SeaWorld Orlando and “Avengers: Battle of Ultron” for IMG Worlds of Adventure in Dubai.

Lake Mary based accesso develops software for easy on-line and on-site ticketing. The company also produces software for point-of-sales and guest management. You can find accesso’s work at Six Flags, Dollywood’s Splash Country and the Brevard Zoo.

Sanlab Simulation, a Turkish company, houses its U.S. office in Orange County. The company develops motion platforms for multiple applications, including entertainment and racing simulations.

PSI Composites is an on-the-rise firm specializing in fiber reinforced plastic used for roller coaster doors. The Lake County based firm also works on simulation screens.