John J. Fanelli started in the amusement ride business in 1956. Before that, as a young man in the late 1940's, he traveled to many New England fairs with his uncle. He worked in a large food tent, toting water, cooking hot dogs and making tonic. At the end of the fair, he had to take the large tent down and travel to the next fair. At the age of 16, he built a small popcorn trailer and set it up at most of the local community events, selling popcorn and novelties.
When he got older, he took his popcorn stand to local community events and parades on weekends and holidays. People asked him if he could provide children's rides. Fanelli Amusements was born.
That year, he started in the amusement ride business, purchasing an old auto-car kiddy ride. He spent what he could to refurbish it and put it to work. He also began adding used and reconditioned rides.
In 1960, he purchased his first merry-go-around and Ferris wheel. He decided to hit the road full-time with a handful of rides and a popcorn trailer. Having continuity, being consistent and providing a clean safe, quality midway proved to be successful ingredients. Our reputation today is indisputable. John quotes: "There is absolutely no substitute for quality."