10 NEW exciting things to look forward to at Walt Disney World!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Let’s take a look at what we can expect from Walt Disney World in the next few years!

What? Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Where? Disney’s Hollywood Studios When? 2019

I think this is the most anticipated new addition to Orlando in a good few years! Fly the millennium falcon, interact with Star Wars characters and the possibility of REAL light sabers.. it’s safe to say we cannot wait for this to open!

What? Star Wars Resort Where? south of Hollywood Studios When? 2019/2020

What’t not to absolutely LOVE about this?! A whole hotel themed to Star Wars where you will become part of the galaxy itself in the most immersive hotel ever.

What? Walt Disney World Skyliner Where? Walt Disney World When? 2019

Above is a map of the expected routes for the Skyliner which is a Gondola system that will transport guests to and from the above parks and resorts.

What? New nighttime show Where? Epcot When? 2019

Sadly, IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth is ending in the summer of 2019 but fear not, Disney have promised that we should expect something even better to replace it with more information set to be released soon!

What? Mickey and Minnie’s runaway railway Where? Hollywood Studios When? 2019

Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway will feature a new catchy theme song created especially for the attraction as well as a new experience that defies logic, called 2 ½-D. No glasses required.

What? Lightning McQueen Racing Academy Where? Hollywood Studios When? 2019

Step right into the action in a high-octane first-of-its-kind new show that’ll put you right in the middle of the world of Disney•Pixar’s “Cars.”

What? Guardians of the Galaxy attraction Where? Epcot When? 2021

This one has been confirmed as a coaster and we are soooo happy about that!

What? Tron Lightcycle Power Run Where? Magic Kingdom When? 2021

The Lightcycle ride will momentarily place fans into the world of Tron in a lightening speed roller coaster.

What? Space themed restaurant Where? Future World – Epcot When? TBD

This restaurant will be built in a newly developed area located between the park’s Mission: SPACE and Test Track attractions.

What? Ratatouille attraction Where? Epcot When? TBD

This is going to be in a whole new area just past the Eiffel tower and just like the attraction at DLP.

Which one are you most looking forward to and what else would you like to see Disney add?

Smiles Included

Abby

How similar is Universal Beijing going to be to Orlando?

Hey Thrill Seekers,

I think it’s time to talk about Universal Beijing, said to open in 2021, the Beijing park will be the next Universal park to open and  it’ll be the only other location besides Florida to (eventually) be a proper resort they have confirmed that it will cost $6.5 billion!! Some new information has come to light which seem to confirm some details of this project which give us some nods towards what Universal may have planned for their already existing and new parks in Orlando.

After reading a post on Orlando Weekly I think we should keep a close eye on Universal Beijing as they are not only creating a lot of the same rides, attractions and lands as Orlando but they are adding new rides and ideas which i think gives us clues into what we can expect stateside.

In images found on the web the resort looks a VERY similar layout to the Orlando resort with 3 parks, a hotel that resembles Cabana Bay, a City Walk and a waterway that links everything. Thinking about this, it doesn’t really make sense.. why would Universal basically recreate their Orlando resort in China? Wouldn’t it draw visitors from that part of the world away from Orlando?

Just like Orlando there is what looks like a Universal Studios on the right, what could be Islands of Adventure on the left and a Volcano Bay themed water park too.. One difference we can see straight away is the entrance to Studios which is covered by a hotel which would actually look over the park itself.

Due to some leaked documents we can see what lands will be included. In what looks like a leaked plan, posted on Reddit shows more detail:

What’s the same as Universal Orlando? 

It looks as though there will be a central lagoon, an outdoor performance venue, a coaster the same as the Hulk but themed to Transformers here (YES!) as it looks like there will be a transformers based land so would also include the same Transformers 4d ride that is in Orlando.

Near a rumoured WaterWorld is a Jurassic World where it looks as though there will be 3 attractions.. A water ride, steel coaster and an attraction based on the Gyro-spheres featured in the films. Do we think they’ll move Jurassic to the new Universal park to fit the same attractions or expand on it in IOA?

There is a Hogsmeade with a Forbidden Journey ride and a Flight of the Hippogriff with a piece of land next to it which fits with the shape and size of Diagon Alley. The area is divided into three sections, the middle and biggest section is where Hogsmeade Village, Flight of the Hippogriff and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey will be located. The two smaller sections on either side are designated for future expansions. Based on the size of the bottom section and its location it could be the same coaster as the one currently being built in IOA. The smaller expansion at the top could be a future train station for Hogwarts express.

Whats new / different to Universal Orlando?

It looks like there will be a enclosed land themed to Kung Fu Panda including carnival type rides as well as a dark ride.. This is different to Orlando now but has been rumoured to feature in Orlando’s new Universal park alongside Trolls, and Shrek.

Minion Land – this will most likely have the same simulator rides as the other Universal parks as well as another attraction and even an indoor play area. As the popularity of Minions is still growing there are also rumours that Universal Orlando will create a mini-land.

photo from themeparx.com

How similar to Orlando do you think this is going to be and what new attractions would you like to see?

Smiles Included,

Abby

 

Sesame Street Halloween Fun at SeaWorld and Busch Gardens

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Sesame Street is coming to SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa for a Halloween season of not-too-spooky fun for families this autumn.

Guests of all ages can join everyone’s favourite furry friends from Sesame Street as Count von Count, Elmo, Abby Cadabby and others take to the stage in ‘Sesame Street’s Countdown to Halloween’ show, where the Count is feeling lonely and it’s up to the audience and the loveable monsters from Sesame Street to get him into the Halloween spirit. Batty bats and spooky skeletons join the fun in a song-filled stage show that invites families to dance, play and sing along.

Pets Ahoy is getting its own seasonal twist and you will even have the chance to meet a mermaid in the mermaid grotto. It starts on the 22 September and children can dress in Halloween costumes and take part in fun-filled trick-or-treating in the park.

At Busch Gardens, Sesame Street Kids’ Weekends are also returning every weekend in October, including half term. Children are again welcome to dress in Halloween costumes and dance along as Count von Count serves as master of scare-emonies to lead his Sesame Street pals through his favourite tunes in the new stage show.  There will also be autumn-inspired activities at Gwazi Field in Busch Gardens, including a hay maze, pumpkin ring toss and much more.

Dining with Characters 

Families can even opt to dine with Sesame Street characters at both theme parks. At Busch Gardens, the ‘Lunch with Elmo and Friends’ buffet every Saturday and Sunday during the Halloween season will let children enjoy hugs and high fives with sing-a-longs, dance parties, and special photo opportunities.

At SeaWorld, ‘Count von Count’s Spooktacular Breakfast’ features a delicious buffet enjoyed with the furriest characters in town. The breakfast is a fun-filled experience sure to delight kids and parents alike.

Character dining requires an additional reservation.

Smiles Included,

Abby

 

 

Brick or Treat at LEGOLAND Florida

Hey Thrill Seekers,

With more days, more events and MORE CANDY added to this years Brick or Treat event at LEGOLAND it’s the best time to visit LEGOLAND Florida!

Brick or Treat is a friendly, non frightening event which features trick-or-treating, seasonal Halloween shows, giant LEGO models, special meet-and greets with LEGO Halloween characters and more!

The dates it is running are: October 6th, 7th, 13th, 14th, 20th, 21st, 27th, 28th and 31st.

Event activities include:

  • New Brick or Treat Trail interactive experiences and more candy
  • More entertainment including a Tale of Pirates’ Cove fireworks spectacular, Groovin’ Graveyard, Jammin’ Jack O Lanterns, Mummy comedy duo, and other streetainment
  • Meet LEGO Witch, Frankenstein, Mad Scientist, Lord Vampyre, Mummy and LEGO Spider lady
  • Participate in LEGO activities such as the spider build, candy corn scavenger hunt, mosaic build and cobra super brick build
  • LEGOLAND Hotel and Beach Retreat entertainment
  • Monster Bash dance party, sweet treats, festive shopping and more!

Check out the full guide below:

Don’t forget this event is included with your LEGOLAND admission tickets so what’s your excuse???

Who’s going?

Smiles Included,

Abby

IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth to be end in 2019

Hey Thrill Seekers,

After its fantastic 20 year run Disney have announced that Epcot’s IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth will finish at the end of summer 2019. Fear not though as the Disney Parks Liver Entertainment team are already busy creating something new that will debut immediately after the last IllimuNations so the tradition of a nightly show on the World Showcase Lagoon will continue.

 

Disney and Epcot have big plans for their transformation of the park that is sometimes overlooked (wrongly in my opinion) and they’re going to be bringing new experiences that will’ “WOW!” guests while still keeping true to the original vision of the park and the new fireworks spectacular will be part of this exciting evolution.

Earth Globe reveals a torch at IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth

We already have lots of things to look forward too coming to Epcot in the future such as the Guardians of the Galaxy roller coaster, Ratatouille inspired attraction and a new restaurant next to mission: SPACE.

Cant’ wait for updates about this show and if you haven’t already seen IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth then i suggest you get your but over to Orlando to experience it before it ends!

Smiles Included,

Abby

Feast your eyes on this years HHN Food

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Universal have just released all of the new food and drinks we can expect from this years Halloween Horror Nights!

There are five waffle dishes to choose from!! It’s always easier to discuss food when you’re looking at it and not trying to describe it.. With that being said, check these out! (can you guess which house they’re mainly based on 😉 )

Strawberry Shortcake

Location: San Francisco Bakery – two waffles, fresh strawberries, strawberry sauce and whipped cream.

Bananas Foster

Location: San Francisco Bakery – Two waffles with banana cream cheese and hazelnut spread, topped with raisins, walnuts, whipped cream and a bananas foster sauce. This one is a HUGE YES from me!!!

Triple Decker Extravaganza

Location: San Francisco Bakery – If you’re a fan of “Stranger Things,” you’ll recognize this inspired creation. Three waffles filled with layers of whipped cream, chocolate, peanut butter morsels and jelly beans.

Fudge Dipped Waffle on a Stick

Location: Benny’s Burgers, New York Area 

Waffle Ice Cream Pocket Sundae

Location: Louie’s Gelato Window – 2 chocolate chip waffles stuffed with strawberry ice cream. Top it off with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, caramel sauce, sprinkles, chopped peanuts, and of course, a cherry!

Christmas Tree Light Cupcakes.

Can you guess which iconic scene from “Stranger Things” these were inspired by?

11 Mini Donuts

(can you guess why 11?) covered in drizzles of red frosting. Choose from powdered sugar or cinnamon donuts.

“If you’re craving something savory, fuel up for the fear by stopping at Benny’s Burgers, named after the diner in season one of “Stranger Things,” in the New York area of the park. Here you’ll find cheeseburgers, hamburgers and chicken sandwiches, all served with a side of tasty fries.”

You can also find the return of the Fiery Onion Ring Burger at Mel’s Drive-In, the Chili Garlic Chicken Sandwich at Richter’s in San Francisco, and yes, Pizza Fries at KidZone Pizza Company.

Halloween Horror Nights 2017 Pizza Fries
Fiery Onion Ring Burger - Halloween Horror Nights 2018
Chili Garlic Chicken Sandwich - Halloween Horror Nights 2018

 Drinks

  • Totally L.I.T. (Long Island Iced Tea) – Vodka, tequila, gin, rum with triple sec, lime, sour and Coca-Cola
  • Wicked Rad Punch – Blueberry vodka, raspberry vodka, triple sec, lemonade and grenadine
  • Gnarly Twist – A perfect sweet and sour combo of both the Wicked Rad Punch and Totally L.I.T.
Totally L.I.T. Drink - Halloween Horror Nights 2018
Wicked Rad Punch Drink - Halloween Horror Nights 2018
Gnarly Twist Drink - Halloween Horror Nights 2018

Syrup & Waffles – obviously inspired by “Stranger Things.” It is a blend of flavors that even has tiny waffles on top.

Syrup & Waffles - Halloween Horror Nights 2018

Candy Corn. – The bottom layer is toasted marshmallow; the middle is your traditional candy corn flavor; and the top is whipped cream with sprinkles.

Candy Corn - Halloween Horror Nights 2018

Lets not forget about the Halloween Horror Nights Tombstone doughnut too!!

Halloween Horror Nights Tombstone Voodoo Dougnnut

 

Well, now i’m hungry! Which one looks tastiest to you?

Smiles Included

Abby

Halloween Ho

NEW Ride coming to Busch Gardens in Spring 2019!!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

YES, DOUBLE YES AND YES AGAIN! Busch Gardens Tampa have announced a brand, spanking new coaster coming to their park in the spring of 2019 (which now can’t come quick enough!) We love coasters here at OAT and Busch Gardens is one of our fave parks so this is just fabulous news all around.

Get ready to take on Tigris.. It will be Florida’s tallest launch coaster and will feature a TRIPLE LAUNCH with both forward and backward motions. You will be catapulted through twists and drops, a 150ft skyward surge and not to mention a heartline roll! (think barrel rolls) Oh yeah.. did i forget to say that you’ll be experiencing all of this at over 60mph!

Riders on Tigris will travel more than 1,800 feet as they race along steel track designed to mimic the awe-inspiring agility of the world’s most powerful cat – the tiger.

Complete with orange track and black framework we can see the layout of the track in some images below:

I not only love the fact we are getting yet another coaster but I love the theme. If you’ve been to Busch Gardens you will know that lots of their coasters are based on animals (think Falcons Fury, Cheetah Hunt and Cobras Curse) and I think a tiger themed coaster is a perfect addition.

Due to this image we think it is going to be a bit like Tempesto at Busch Gardens Williamsburg where riders start off by launching straight up and then rolling backwards through the loading area to then be launched forward again.. Take a look for yourself:

Pretty coooool huh?

Above is an image of the heartline roll – it looks as though you’ll be ‘rolling’ all the way up, along and then back down!

Here’s a concept of the ride cars complete with tiger stripes. In the above images it looks as though there is going to be 3 cars of 6 seats on each train meaning 18 riders will be able to ride each train.

Where do we think the new coaster is going to go?

Well we reckon one of those 3 places.. 1 & 2 obviously because there is space there and 3 because that water ride has been closed since 2016 ‍♀️ Where do you think it will go?

Either way we are super excited for Tigris to open!

UPDATE:

Smiles included,

Abby

 

Rock The Universe 2019 dates

Hey Thrill Seekers,

In 2019 Universals annual Rock the Universe event is going to take place in the cooler month of February instead of the usual September. You will be able to see live music, worship and ride your favourite attractions on the 1st and 2nd February 2019.

Here’s a line up of some of the talent who will be headlining Rock the Universe next year:

Friday, Feb. 1

  • Lecrae
  • Matthew West
  • Colton Dixon

Saturday, Feb. 2

  • Skillet
  • Bethel Music
  • Crowder

In between sets by these headliners, you can attend artist autograph sessions, or visit the FanZone presented by Coca-Cola for live performances by up-and-coming Christian acts. Saturday night’s candle-lighting ceremony and Sunday morning’s service offer the ultimate worship experience for a faith-filled weekend. Of course, your admission to Rock the Universe also includes access to some of Universal Studios Florida’s most thrilling attractions.

As Universal have just announced that A Celebration of Harry Potter is no more for 2019 Rock the Universal is filling those dates.. does this mean we’re getting something else Harry Potter themed in September? Who knows..

Smiles Included,

Abby

How did Orlando Theme Parks fare in the Golden Ticket Awards

Hey Thrill Seekers,

The winners of the annual Golden Ticket Awards were announced over the weekend so lets take a look at how our beloved Orlando parks done..

The Golden Ticket Awards are presented annually to honor the “Best of the Best” in the amusement industry and are calculated from an international poll conducted by Amusement Today. The prestigious survey asks experienced amusement park voters around the country and world to rate the “bests” in 23 categories.

WINNERS!

Best Marine Life Park –  SeaWorld Orlando

YES! It’s great to see SeaWorld win this award as it does some amazing stuff for marine life (and of course has some of the best coasters in Orlando)

Best Halloween Event – Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando

Now that one is an absolute no brainer! Wan’t to go to the most amazing Halloween Event ever? You know where to go

Best Dark Ride – Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Fun & Intense, what more do you want from a dark ride? Oh yeah.. Ghosts

Best Indoor Roller Coaster –  Revenge of the Mummy at Universal Studios Orlando

YES YES YES! This ride sometimes doesn’t get the credit it deserves so we’re very happy that it has won this award!

Best New Ride of 2018 – Water Park – Ray Rush, Aquatica, Orlando

Should have also won ‘best name of an attraction’ in Gavin’s opinion but unfortunately that is never going to be a category ‍♂️‍♀️

5 out of 23 awards is not bad at all for the theme park capital of the world

Smiles Included

Abby

 

A Celebration of Harry Potter will not return in 2019

Hey Thrill Seekers,

We do always try our best to bring you good news from within the world of Orlando theme parks however sometimes we cannot avoid bad news…

This time we aren’t basing off rumours.. Universal have confirmed that A Celebration of Harry Potter isn’t going to return to their parks in 2019. Here’s the official press release:

Universal Orlando Resort is working on exciting new experiences for guests to continue to celebrate the Wizarding World next year. These include the all-new thrill ride coming to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade and additional fan experiences that have yet to be announced. While our focus on these fan experiences means we will not be hosting A Celebration of Harry Potter in 2019, we and other Universal theme parks will always be looking for opportunities to host special Wizarding World experiences.

This poses the questions of ‘is it being replaced by something new?’ or ‘are they too busy with the new ride to host it?’ Gavin thinks that they could be replacing it with something Fantastic Beasts themed ‍♀️ Universal have also said that there are going to be ‘additional fan experiences’ like the Back to Hogwarts event hosted on the 1st September.

Now we don’t know if it is just 2019 that Universal have pulled the plug on or future years as well as that isn’t mentioned in the press release. It is quite unusual though, A Celebration of Harry Potter has been going 5 years and each year seems to become more and more popular so surely it cannot be a case of it not bringing in enough witches, wizards and muggles?

Lets take a look back at some of the cool shots we got from last years event.

It’s a sort of bitter-sweet feeling as we don’t like to say goodbye to a fantastic event but we can look forward to what Universal are going to surprise us with in the near future..

Smiles Included,

Abby