Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Theme Park Wrap-Up


Happy holidays! With 2019 coming to a close, things are starting to wind down at Central Florida’s theme parks. Here are the latest updates from all your favorite attractions. 

Walt Disney World 

Likely the biggest news of the month, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance has finally opened at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This groundbreaking attraction thrusts riders right into the middle of a battle between the First Order and the Resistance. 

Walt Disney World also announced a slew of opening dates for upcoming attractions. To name a few: Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway will open on March 4th, Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will open in 2021, and Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure will open next summer. 

Anna and Elsa have received new outfits to celebrate the release of Disney’s “Frozen 2.” You can meet Anna in her new royal attire and Elsa in her wintery magic gown from the new film at the Royal Sommarhus in Epcot. 

Submitted Photo

Everyone’s favorite intergalactic baby, ‘The Child’ from “The Mandalorian” on Disney+, finally has some merchandise at Walt Disney World. Guests can get Baby Yoda on phone cases, MagicBands, and magnets at the resort’s various D-Tech locations. 

To celebrate the holidays, Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar at Disney Springs has transformed into Jock Lindsey’s Holiday Bar for a limited time. Guests can enjoy the seasonal décor, themed cocktails, and shareable Christmas eats now through January 5th. 

A new Ron Jon Surf Shop location has opened up at Disney Springs’ Town Center. Here, guests can browse and shop beach-ready surf, sand and skate styles all in one place. 

Orlando International Airport’s second Magic of Disney location has opened to travelers after what Disney calls a “transformative refurbishment.” The store is located on the east side of the airport and is a good place to stop and grab a MagicBand and Mickey ears on your way to Walt Disney World Resort or find those last-minute souvenirs to commemorate your trip. 

Universal Orlando 

New Year’s Eve is rapidly approaching, and Universal Orlando Resort is celebrating in a big way. Guests at Universal Studios Florida can enjoy party zones, character meet-and-greets, and of course, pyrotechnics. Festivities will also be found during EVE at Universal CityWalk and at each of Universal Orlando’s resort hotels. 

The Green Eggs and Ham food stand in Seuss Landing at Universal’s Islands of Adventure has reopened, and now offers unique food items like Green Eggs & Ham Tots and even “Who Hash!” Normally closed outside of peak season days, the quick-service stand is now open from 9:30 AM – 5 PM. 

To celebrate the season, Universal Orlando has quietly added a fun holiday activity. The Holiday Tree Hunt has guests visit both Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure in search of unique Christmas trees. For those who find them all, the prize is a holiday ornament. You can grab a free Holiday Tree Hunt map at either of the parks’ main stores. 

SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay 

Both SeaWorld and Busch Gardens showed off new coaster vehicles for 2020 additions at this year’s IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando. SeaWorld revealed the coaster car for the park’s first launch coaster, Ice Breaker, which will open next spring. 

Busch Gardens Tampa revealed the coaster car for Iron Gwazi, a new coaster experience that will rise from the ashes of its wooden coaster predecessor. Iron Gwazi is currently under construction and is set to open sometime next year. 

Legoland Florida Resort 

The Star Wars Miniland model is leaving Legoland Florida Resort after this month, along with all other Legoland parks. For 8 years, millions of Legoland guests around the world have experienced the Star Wars saga through painstaking recreations from seven of the liveaction “Star Wars” films, replicated in 1:20 scale with over 1.5 million Lego bricks. Guests have until January 6th to see the model one last time. 

A new attraction has opened up at Legoland Florida Resortthe Florida Prepaid Schoolhouse, an indoor play area that invites younger guests to explore learning and future careers. The Schoolhouse features a new entertainment stage, school-themed play equipment, Duplo brick play areas, and a touchscreen where kids can practice their numbers and letters while exploring future careers. 

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

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