Friday, September 25, 2020

New Rides, Stores and Teases

THEME PARK WRAP-UP

This month was jam-packed with news from Walt Disney World, as well as updates from Universal Orlando, ride openings at SeaWorld Orlando, and new ticketing offerings across many of the Central Florida parks. Let’s dive into it!

Walt Disney World

The new date-based ticket pricing has officially rolled out at Walt Disney World, and has resulted in price increases for not only the peak times of the year, but also for annual passes and guest parking. Parking at the Disney theme parks is now up to $25 per day, while annual passes saw increases of $20 to $45.

Captain Jack Sparrow’s Pirate Tutorial show held its last performance in Magic Kingdom on September 29 after 12 years of performances. The show originally made its debut in 2006, and recruited children daily to join the pirate’s life. Guests can now encounter the captain in a regularly-scheduled meet-and-greet at the former show’s stage.

After just opening almost two years ago, PizzeRizzo at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is now in seasonal operation. A Disney spokesperson confirmed the change in operation, but did not share when guests would be able to dine on the famous “rat pizza” once again. There is no confirmed reason for this change, though many can guess low interest, general negative response to the menu, and frequently-changing operating hours to be part of the problem.

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort has unveiled its re-imagined new features, including two new restaurants, a new lobby area and a poolside bar. The new lobby and check-in area feature high ceilings, lounge seating and a new souvenir shop. The new dining offerings include table-service restaurant Sebastian’s Bistro, fast-casual restaurant Centertown Market and poolside bar Banana Cabana.

Three new retail locations are open at Disney Springs. Guests can shop for their furry friends at Disney Tails in the Marketplace Co-Op, pick up the perfect 3D greeting card in Lovepop, and purchase Disney art created by Greg McCullough in his own gallery starting November 3.

Also announced for Disney Springs is City Works Eatery & Pour House, set to open next summer. This new eatery will be located adjacent to the upcoming NBA Experience on the West Side of Disney Springs, and feature a large selection of local, regional and global craft beers and classic American fare.

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort.

Universal Orlando Resort

Things have been quiet at Universal Orlando, with Halloween Horror Nights in its home stretch. However, the park did release a sneak peek at new art for the Harry Potter-themed coaster coming to Universal’s Islands of Adventure sometime next year.

The artwork depicts Hogwarts Castle in the background, with a mysterious, abandoned building off to the left. In the foreground, a banked roller coaster track curve rises from the trees, and a few mischievous Cornish Pixies are ready to cause some chaos for riders.

No other details on this new coaster have been revealed, and we are still awaiting the name of this mysterious new attraction.

SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa

After what feels like quite a long time, Infinity Falls is now open at SeaWorld. This family raft ride features roaring rapids, fountains that will drench riders and a record-setting 40-foot waterfall drop. Set in a rainforest utopia, riders will take on the role of a conservationist on a journey through the rainforest during this experience.

Three new attractions are coming to Legoland’s The Lego Movie World in early spring.

SeaWorld and Busch Gardens also rolled out a new, tiered annual pass system this past month, giving guests new choices based on their needs. Both parks have their own names for the four tiers, and the lowest level of annual pass starts at just $9.99 per month. The highest tier pass, the Platinum Pass, gives guests access to all 11 SeaWorld and Busch Gardens parks nationwide, along with a few other perks.

Legoland Florida Resort

Legoland has revealed the three new attractions that will be a part of their upcoming new area, The Lego Movie World, set to open in early spring.

Guests will be able to walk the streets of Bricksburg and experience three unique attractions: The Lego Movie Masters of Flight, a flying theater attraction; Unikitty’s Disco Drop, a drop tower ride; and Battle of Bricksburg, a water-based arcade shooter attraction.

Catch more theme park happenings, news, and updates here next month or every day at AttractionsMagazine.com.

Brittani Tuttle is a writer with Attractions Magazine, the only publication that covers all the major theme parks and attractions worldwide. In addition to the magazine, there is “The Attractions Show” online, an email newsletter, podcast, app and more. For more information email info@attractionsmagazine.com and visit AttractionsMagazine.com.on her blog: www.mycardsandhowtheygrow.wordpress.com.

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