|Cummons Scale Amusements, Inc. was founded in 1970 when
I wanted to put a carnival on my model railroad and was unable to find any models that
suited my needs. So, I began building my own from the memories of when, as a young man, I
worked with the carnival during the summers. An acquaintance saw the models and suggested
that I start manufacturing and selling carnival models as kits. I began producing carnival
ride kits from metal with steel bracing, and Cummons Scale Amusements was born.
The kits proved to be very difficult for the buyers to put together, so, I
decided to assemble the kit parts and sell the models in their completed form. In 1972, my
wife, Shirley, and I began working together and to attract the model railroad market,
decided to advertise in Model Railroader and Model Railroad
By 1973, the carnival ride models weren't moving as well as we would have liked, so we
incorporated model circus wagon kits into our line. The patterns for the circus wagon
sides were hand carved, molds were made of silicone rubber and the scenery was then cast
from metal. These kits sold pretty well for a few years, then the market dried up, and we
went back to the model carnival rides full time.
In 1975, we exhibited at the International
Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions
show in Atlanta, Georgia. Model sales at that trade show were phenomenal, and our business
moved into high gear.
In 1977, we did the Carnival Model Builders and
Historical Society show in Mt. Prospect,
Illinois. It was suggested by a carny there that we should show our models at the International Independent Showmans' Association show in Gibsonton, Florida in February of 1978. We were
overwhelmed at the amount of interest we received at the show. We have operated with a 24
to 30 month waiting list, that continues to the present time.
Since that show our life has never been the same.
Don and Shirley Cummons