UP! A Great Bird Adventure will debut on April 22nd!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Disney have just announced that UP! A Great Bird Adventure will debut in Animal Kingdom on the 22nd April 2018, in exactly 2 months time!

Back in December as part of their 12 days of Disney parks Christmas Disney announced that an all new show was coming to Animal Kingdom that will feature Russell and Dug from Disney•Pixar’s film ‘UP’ and will take place at the Caravan Theater in Anandapur village. At the time it didn’t have a name but we now know that it is going to be called ‘UP! A Great Bird Adventure’.

It will start just in time for Animal Kingdoms 20th anniversary and will be a family friendly experience where you will be able to see Russell and Dug discover species of birds from around the world in an adventure around Anandapur Village with ‘UP’ close encounter every day with lots of winged creatures!

Who’s looking forward (or up) to this?

Smiles Included

Abby

Disney Release New Images of their Star Wards Inspired Resort

 Hey Thrill Seekers,

Last week on OAT Live we spoke a bit about the new Star Wars Hotel coming to Walt Disney World in the future. It is definitely going to be a one of a kind resort  with a groundbreaking concept which will combine luxury with complete immersion putting customers straight in to a Star Wars story throughout their stay.

Today, Disney have released some more visuals of the resort..

https://www.facebook.com/orlandoattractiontickets/videos/1879709088707532/

 

“The immerse experience offered at this hotel will stand out among all of our resorts around the globe. As you can see, families visiting this resort will board a starship alive with characters and stories that unfold all around them during their voyage through the galaxy – and every window has a view of space!”

Disney state that the resort will be ‘seamlessly connected’ to Star Wars: Galaxy’s edge which is coming to Hollywood Studios in 2019 (we think) and guests will also be able to wear Star Wars attire to really fit the part!!

I’m not personally a huge Star Wars fan but even I can’t wait for this!! Especially with the rumour of interactive lightsabers flying around.. 😉

Smiles Included,

Abby

 

OAT Live Episode 23

Hey Thrill Seekers,

In case you missed the live show last week here’s your chance to catch up with Abby and Gavin as they chat about all things Disney, Universal and SeaWorld.

There’s still time to enter the #GavsYellowJumper competition just head over to our Instagram page, find the SeaWorld pic and comment with the hashtag above.

Abby and Gavin are back on the 1st March for episode 24.

Smiles included…

Jamie

Disney Confirm Toy Story Land Opening Date

Hey Thrill Seekers,

ANDY’S COMING!!!!

Yep fall to the floor Toy Story lovers cos we’ve finally got an official opening date for Disney’s Toy Story Land and its the 30th June Yay!!!!

Yep on the 30th June guests visiting Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will “shrink” to the size of a toy and become immersed in the world of Woody, Jessie, Buzz and Mr Potato Head plus all of Andy’s other toys.

In Andy’s backyard guests can take a ride on Slinky Dog Dash, a roller coaster Andy has assembled from his Mega Coaster Play Kit and topped off with Slinky and Jessie.

Kids can drag Mum and Dad on to  Alien Swirling Saucers for a spin the aliens are those cute little green dudes that Andy wins at Pizza Planet, they swirl about in their flying saucers with guests in tow in their rocket ship toys, while “The Claw” hangs overhead.

Guests can also walk through a new carnival game box to experience Toy Story Mania! Now expanded with a third track, the popular attraction will put even more guests in the action taking aim at 3D objects – using everything from baseballs to cream pies – in a variety of whimsical, fast-paced games.

Woody’s Lunch Box (hee hee) actually, Andy’s lunch box that he’s set on its side – will serve up tasty meals and old-fashioned soda floats from a walk-up window setting. The entire land will serve as a visual celebration of toys, with Crayons, Cooties, Green Army Men, Rubik’s Cubes, Tinkertoys, and other familiar toys and game pieces incorporated into the land’s design.

As if you need another reason to visit Disney!

Smiles included…

Jamie

More Information on the Sesame Street land coming to SeaWorld Orlando

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Back in May we found out that in a few years we could be seeing a realistic version of Sesame Street. The new Sesame Street Land is set to replace Shamu’s Happy Harbour at SeaWorld.

In May SeaWorld said that the new land would be open by 2022 but that was about all we got specifics wise and now it seems as though work could start as early as this year. You will find Sesame Street lands at SeaWorld San Diego, San Antonio and at Busch Gardens but these mainly feature just the characters – the areas aren’t generally themed.

The Sesame Street land looks as though it is going to be a mix of new and existing attractions and structures. Most of the attractions along the outside of the area will remain and the interior of Shamu’s Happy Harbor will be almost completely renewed.

When announcing the new project it was stated that:

“We’d like to build the actual Sesame Street that kids can be on and walk down. We will have hopefully a Sesame parade, rides, show where they can see and meet the Sesame characters.”

It is bellieved that the new land will open in late 2020, with the full area opening roughly two years after that (2022). According to the documents uncovered by Touring Central Florida the majority of the current Shamu’s Happy Harbor flat rides will remain such as the Shamu Express, Flying Fiddler, Jazzy Jellies, Ocean Commotion, Sea Carousel, and the Swishie Fishies. It is highly likely that the rides will get  updated to be more Sesame Street themed.

It has been speculated that there is going to be a dark ride added to this section of the park, as a few large building have been noticed on some building plans. There has been rumours that SeaWorld have been in talks with The Goddard Group who have worked on projects like Spider-Man and T2 so maybe this could be a hint toward a dark, Sesame Street ride which will be unique for SeaWorld Orlando as there is certainly not a lot of indoor ‘show scene’ rides since the animatronics on Journey to Atlantis stopped.

The Sesame Street land will be one of the largest investments in the parks history and continues to move away from live animals, infact, from the plans it doesn’t look as though there is going to be any live animal habitats in the land.

Who’s excited for this?

Smiles Included

Abby (not Abby Cadabby 😉 )

Abby’s Annual Halloween Horror Night Predictions

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Yep its that time again where I try to guess what this years Halloween Horror Nights houses will have in store for us. Last year I got 3/6 correct which I was pretty happy about to be honest.

Last year I had the privilege of attending HHN for the first time and it was INCREDIBLE. I feel as though it has also given me an advantage for this blog.  This year I’m confident of beating my previous score and if I’m correct HHN28 is going to be awesome.

Stranger Things

We thought this might make an appearance at HHN27 after Universal big cheese, Mike Aiello, expressed his love for the show on twitter, however due to time constraints (they start working on the following years Halloween horror nights as soon the latest one starts) we feel this might make an appearance this year.

With 2 seasons under its belt and no sign of viewer fatigue we’re guessing that a Stranger Things house will cover the events on season 1 & 2, so expect Demogorgans and a girl with a nosebleed. 

Likelihood: 8/10

IT

One of 2017 most anticipated remakes and although it split audiences it still raked in $700 Million  on a budget of just $35 Million proving that there is definitely a strong fan base there.

IT feels like a very obvious choice for me, the theming is right up Universal’s alley and I can see the house moving from scene to scene easily. Also last year we didn’t see a house with a resident clown so maybe it’s time to step up the clown antics at HHN or could the recent uproar of working clowns vs scary clowns affect this?

Likelihood: 9/10

American Horror Story 

One of the highest rated houses from HHN27 and HHN26 (and my personal favourite) could well return, American Horror Story season 8 is rumoured to be hitting TV’s in the Autumn and will centred around either lust or violence (following the 9 circles of hell.) In 2016 the house featured Murder House, Freak Show and Hotel. Last year it featured Asylum, Coven and Roanoke with their biggest floor plan of the year (you can hear me screaming my way through the 4+ minute house here. ) I think it’s obvious that we would see Cult featured this year!

Universal obviously have a working relationship with FX and the creators of AMS and as Walking Dead’s popularity falls I think American Horror Story is in a good position to become a HHN regular.

Likelihood: 8/10

Five Nights at Freddy’s 

Now this one’s a bit of a hail Mary but bear (excuse the pun) with me. For those who don’t know Five Nights at Freddy’s is a computer game about a security guard looking after a Pizzeria at night, during the night the animatronics come to life and are hell bent on killing stuff.

Here’s the reason we think this could have a chance. Chris Columbus of Harry Potter, Home Alone  and The Goonies fame has signed on to direct a film based on the computer game. The Studio making the film? Friends of Universal, Blumhouse. Who you might remember had a house last year based solely on their horror franchise.

The only thing that makes us doubt ourselves is the timing, the announcement that a film was in the pipeline only happened a few days ago. So perhaps we’re looking at HHN29?

Likelihood: 3/10

Titans of Terror

In Hollywood last year they were blessed with the Titans of Terror, yep Jason, Freddy and Leatherface. We’re thinking that perhaps these classic horror icons might make the trip east to appear at HHN28.

Here’s what Hollywood said about the house;

Fall victim to the silver screen’s most deplorable killers, whose affinity for bladed weapons, redefined the horror movie genre as slasher films: Leatherface (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre) wielding his iconic chainsaw, Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) brandishing his relentless machete, and Freddy Krueger (A Nightmare on Elm Street) swiping his trademark glove armed with razor blades.
The new maze will be an assault on your sensibilities as you descend into the forbidden realms of these iconic horror monsters and discover the place where these depraved legacies were born.

Likelihood: 6/10

The Purge

Okay, bear with me on this one. I know that the Purge franchise is very popular and featured as a scare zone in 2014, a house in 2015, didn’t feature in 2016 and was back as a scare zone in 2017. It works extremely well in a scare zone  BUT there’s a new Purge film set to be released this year called ‘The First Purge’ (also known as Purge: The Island) which will be a prequel that will focus on the events that lead up to the very first Purge event. So with all loose ends tied up, a beginning, middle and end it could be upgraded to its own house again.. I hope so anyway!

The Purge was by far my favourite Scare Zone of HHN27 and I could imagine it to be a very adrenaline pumping, high energy house that can now also tell a story.

Likelihood: 6/10

Now this one is not included in my predictions as such, it’s more of a wish.. and that is the idea that The Wizarding World of Harry Potter could be incorporated in HHN. How? I hear you ask… Let me explain..

Death Eaters Attack Diagon Alley.

This has already happened at the Japan park, what’s to stop it coming to Orlando?! In Japan guests saw Death Eaters attack Hogsmeade so for Studios if this were to ever happen it would have to take place in Diagon Alley as HHN only features in Universal Studios.

In Japan, as night fell the cheerful world of magic transformed into a world of darkness as the Death Eaters appeared wearing black hoods and masks enabling guests to come fact to face with the followers of Lord Voldermort

This is a very far-fetched idea and I’m pretty sure JK Rowling wouldn’t allow for the Wizarding World to be part of HHN but I think it would be amazing!

Likelihood: 0/10

So there you go, my predictions for Halloween Horror Nights 2018 are out there.. none of these have been confirmed by Universal.

What would you like to see come to HHN this year?

Screams included…

Abby

Interview With Philip from Kennedy Space Center

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Tell Me Tuesdays is back (well duh it is Tuesday) i’m now aware Tell Me Tuesdays might be just as bad as Jamie’s ‘Interview Tuesdays’ buy hey, lets just roll with it.

This week we’ve got a cracker from our mate Philip from Kennedy Space Center, Philip is a top bloke and if you haven’t seen the Kennedy Space Center special OAT Live episode with myself, Gavin and Philip then why not? Watch it… now!!!!!

Name:  Philip Britton
Company:  Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Position: UK Account Manager

GETTING TO KNOW YOU

What did you want to be when you grew up? A pilot

If you could only have one meal for the rest of your life what would it be and why? Love a full English, (no fried bread or black pudding), scrambled egg with grilled bacon & sausage and brown bread ……So its good for you!

What movie title best describes your life? Apollo 13…… It nearly all goes badly wrong but somehow it all works out in the end…..

If you were stranded on a Desert Island and could only take 3 items what would they be and why? A football – so I could try and beat my keepy up record of 259. A massive box of matches as trying to start a fire by rubbing 2 sticks together would drive me mad! A combined compass and atlas – so when I built my escape boat I would know where to go……

Would you rather be able to time travel into the past or the future and why? The past, the future should be a surprise!

How would you describe your theme park / attraction using only 3 words? Past….present…..future

WORK

What was the highlight of 2017 for your company? A record number of launches from KSC & Cape Canaveral, numerous satellites, resupply missions to the International Space Station and  so much more!

What are you most looking forward to in 2018? Hopefully the first test flight of the SLS Space Launch system, the largest rocket ever built which will one day take man to mars and beyond!

Favourite Theme Park ride/attraction of 2017? The Shuttle Launch Experience has remained ever popular this year, it’s a 7 ½ minute rocket ride to space!

What is going to be BIG for your company in 2018? New Mars Exhibits and the Mars Rover Concept Vehicle on Display at the Visitor Complex!

Best Theme Park/attraction tip? Always get to KSC early (Gates open at 9) as it gets very busy especially in the summer months and make sure you jump on one of the KSC buses to the Saturn V Center and see the rocket that took 12 men to the moon!

Tell us something we don’t know about Florida… South of KSC is Fort Lauderdale which is known as the Venice of America because the city has 185 miles of local waterways!

Of course the movie title answer was going to be space related, we can always count on Philip to get involved! You can purchase your Kennedy Space Center tickets here for as little as £36.00.

Smiles Included…

Abby

Everything We Learnt From Disney’s D23 Expo

Hey Thrill Seekers,

The annual Disney D23 Expo took place in Japan yesterday where Bob Chapek, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts revealed a few new details to the official fan club.

Here’s all the info covering our favourite Orlando parks.

Guardians of the Galaxy

In Disney’s own words “we are going BIG with the “Guardians of the Galaxy”-inspired coaster”

Disney promised that this one-of-a-kind family attraction will be one of the world’s longest enclosed roller coasters when it’s added to Future World at Epcot.

It will include a unique story currently being created by Walt Disney Imagineering and feature a new innovative ride system that’s guaranteed to “wow” guests.

The most important thing for me is that its a ROLLER COASTER. Yay!!!

Opening date: By 2021.

Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway

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 that we’re calling 2 ½-D. No glasses required.

On the attraction, the fun begins when you see the premiere of a new cartoon short with Mickey and Minnie getting ready for a picnic. As they head out, they drive alongside a train and find out that the engineer is Goofy. Then, one magical moment lets you step into the movie and on Goofy’s train for a wacky, wild ride.

Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway will put you inside the wacky and unpredictable world of a Mickey Mouse Cartoon Short where you’re the star and anything can happen. And for the first time, we shared a preview of what the cars will look like when you board the attraction for a zany, out-of-control adventure filled with surprising twists and turns.

Opening date: 2019

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Bob Chapek shared an update on the progress of the highly anticipated land, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and shared a sneak peek at the unique Toydarian merchandise guests will find exclusively in the land.

At Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, guests will visit the planet of Batuu, a remote outpost on the galaxy’s edge that was once a busy crossroads along the old sub-lightspeed trade routes. Here, guests will find themselves in the middle of the action at two attractions that take detail and immersion to the next level: one that lets guests take the controls of Millennium Falcon on a customized secret mission, and an epic Star Wars adventure that puts guests in the middle of a climactic battle between the First Order and the Resistance.

Guests will also be able to explore a street market run by a Toydarian, a character first introduced in “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.” Among his wares will be handcrafted toys made by local artisans, like those seen above.

Opening date: 2019

Incredible Summer Celebration

A new Pixar-inspired experience is set for multiple parks as Walt Disney World Resort readies its “Incredible Summer” celebration.

At Magic Kingdom Park, guests can visit Tomorrowland to party with characters from “The Incredibles” – including for the first time, fashionista Edna Mode.

Over at Disney’s Animal Kingdom – just in time for the park’s 20th anniversary – a new show inspired by “Up” will star Senior Wilderness Explorer Russell and his furry-friend Dug.

Toy Story Land is also set to open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios this summer. When it opens, guests visiting this new land will “shrink” to the size of a toy and join in on the fun Woody, Jessie, Buzz, and Andy’s other beloved toys are having in Andy’s backyard. Here, guests can take a ride on the Slinky Dog Dash family coaster, take a spin on Alien Swirling Saucers, or visit a playful guest-favourite – Toy Story Mania!

Opening date: 2018

Star Wars Resort

https://www.facebook.com/orlandoattractiontickets/videos/1868739743137800/

Last summer, Disney announced plans for an immersive Star Wars-inspired resort to be built at Walt Disney World Resort. Yesterday Disney shared a few  more details on what this thrilling new resort, which will be seamlessly connected to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, will be like.

This first-of-its-kind resort will combine luxury with complete immersion into an authentic Star Wars story. Guests’ journey through space will start when everyone departs together for a multiday Stars Wars adventure by boarding a starship alive with characters and stories that unfold all around them during a voyage through the galaxy.

At the resort, guests immediately become active citizens of the galaxy and can dress up in the proper attire. Every resort window will also have a view into space. The opportunity for immersion at this resort will also stand out among all Disney resorts around the globe, as it will be seamlessly connected to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, allowing guests a total Star Wars experience.

Opening date: 2019 we think.

Some very interesting reveals from Disney and shows the future looks bright.

Smiles included…

Jamie

The Great LEGO Race is opening March 23rd

Hey Thrill Seekers,

 

The highly anticipated new VR attraction at LEGOLAND Florida now has an opening date! On the 23rd March 2018 you will be able to experience the thrills of a coaster with virtual reality technology as you race against all your favourite minifigures.

The Great LEGO Race is the first VR coaster aimed solely at kids and is also the first time LEGO brand and minifugures have been integrated with VR technology (in a theme park attraction)

The ‘wild and wacky’ race pits guests against a pirate, wizard, surfer and pharaoh as they steer LEGO-built vehicles like a rocket-powered windsurfing rig, a stylish scooter fuelled by espresso and an ornately canopied bed (called a “litter”) carried by mummy servants.

Wearing optional VR headsets, riders will experience the action from every direction while riding the roller coaster — up, down, forward, backward and all points in between — in a dazzling environment where everything is made of LEGO bricks.

And there’s more….

After crossing the finish line on The Great LEGO Race, guests can then switch gears and enjoy an all-new treat at Funnel Cake Factory, which will open this spring just steps away from the roller coaster in the LEGO Technic area. The highly themed pit stop will offer freshly made-to-order funnel cakes with toppings including fresh fruit, powdered sugar and soft-serve ice cream. YUMMMMM

Also check out all the other awesomeness coming to LEGOLAND in 2018.

Smiles Included

Abby

What to Look Forward to at LEGOLAND Florida in 2018

Hey Thrill Seekers,

It looks as though there is a big year ahead of us at LEGOLAND Florida as they have just announced what we can expect within the next 12 months.. Take a look!

“LEGO NINJAGO: Master of the 4th Dimension”: Opening Jan. 20

This exciting new theatrical experience combines dazzling 3D computer animation with “4D” real-world effects as ninjas Lloyd, Kai, Jay, Cole, Zane and Nya must find their way out of a mind-bending dimension filled with eye-popping visuals. See it daily in the Wells Fargo Fun Town Theater!

LEGO NINJAGO Days: Jan. 20-21, 27-28, and Feb. 3-4

Celebrate your favourite ninja heroes with exclusive in-park activities and meet-and-greets with Kai, Nya and for the first time ever – Master Wu!

The Great LEGO Race: Opening March 23rd!

The wildest LEGO race ever imagined combines cutting-edge virtual reality technology with roller coaster thrills in an exhilarating new attraction that will transform the theme park’s existing Project X ride into an all-new adventure starring a wacky cast of LEGO minifigures.

Brick Dash 5K*: Saturday, April 14

The popular, long-running 5K family event returns under the new sponsorship of Visit Central Florida, benefitting Merlin’s Magic Wand. Additional information and registration details will be announced soon.

KIDZ BOP Weekend

The KIDZ BOP Kids return to rock the park with three days of high-energy concerts, including the debut of their official theme song for LEGOLAND Florida Resort, “Awesome Awaits.” Plus, fans will enjoy exclusive meet-and-greets with the coolest kids around – Ahnya, Cooper, Freddy, Isaiah, Julianna and Sierra! Stand by for an announcement about 2018 dates!

LEGO® Star Wars™: The Force Awakens MINILAND Model Display: Opening May 4

Visit LEGOLAND as they unveil the newest addition to our LEGO® Star Wars™ MINILAND Model Display. Created with thousands of LEGO bricks, the display features memorable moments from Episode VII of the popular Star Wars™ saga enhanced with lights, sound effects and animation.

LEGO® Star Wars™ Days: May 5-6, 12-13, 19-20

Enjoy the huge new LEGO® Star Wars™ display in MINILAND USA as  you celebrate a record three weekends of fun from “a galaxy, far, far away”! Activities include meet-and-greets with LEGO Darth Vader and – new! – a LEGO character from “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi,” hands-on LEGO® Star Wars™ building activities and much more.

Fourth of July

Celebrate America’s independence on Wednesday, July 4 as we light the skies above Lake Eloise with one of our biggest fireworks shows of the year! Before the sun goes down, help create a giant U.S. flag out of thousands of LEGO bricks.

Firefighter Friday: Friday, Oct. 5

Held in association with the National Fire Protection Association, this entertaining and informative event teaches kids about fire safety with a variety of fun activities in the theme park, including information from NFPA’s annual Fire Prevention Week theme.

Brick or Treat: Select dates in October

The very popular Halloween event returns full of spooky, kooky LEGO fun for kids. The friendly-not-frightening event features trick-or-treating inside the theme park, giant LEGO models and photo ops, LEGO build activities, meet-and-greets with LEGO Halloween characters and an exclusive, themed fireworks spectacular in Pirates’ Cove.

Christmas Bricktacular: Select dates in December

The annual holiday celebration returns to deck the halls with a 30-foot-tall LEGO Christmas tree lit several times each evening in a brilliant combination of twinkling lights and classic yuletide music, festive decorations and photo ops, including a giant LEGO wreath and a life-size LEGO Santa, reindeer and sleigh, plus holiday-themed scavenger hunts with cool LEGO prizes and hands-on LEGO building activities for kids. Meet LEGO Santa and LEGO Toy Soldier during daily park appearances.

Kids’ New Year’s Party: Select dates in late December

A multi-day party invites kids to move and groove at a high-energy dance party, set fun goals for the year ahead and go on a special scavenger hunt in MINILAND USA before ending the night with an amazing fireworks show over Lake Eloise. Then on Monday, Dec. 31 only, ring in the new year with the traditional before-midnight “brick drop” and an even bigger fireworks spectacular.

So mark your calendars, it’s set to be an exciting year at LEGOLAND Florida Resort! All of the events (excluding Brick Dash) are included with general park admission which you can get for just £29.00!!

Smiles Included

Jess