Disney Announces New thrill Ride You Can Drive!

The newest thrill ride from Disney is not exactly what you’d expect. Disney have announced the Richard Petty Experience with exotic cars! The experience currently available offers stock car drives at the Disney speedway but will now offer an increadible opportunity to drive Ferraris and Lamborghinis too!

The new option is coming this January, in part, because the stock car business, including Nascar has contracted in the tough economy, said Mike Bartelli, chief marketing officer of the Richard Petty Driving Experience.

The Exotic Driving Experience is expecting to start out with two Ferraris, two Lamborghinis, a Porsche 911 and an Audi R8. Other brands and models could be added in the future.

We’ll keep you posted on when this will be pre-bookable via our partner Orlando Attraction Tickets! In the meantime you can book something a little less exotic to get some practice in. usrentacar.co.uk are offering cheap rates for your Christmas car hire in the USA. Fully inclusive rates start from just £16* per day. Take a look at some of their car hire USA offers currently available.

SeaWorld Orlando Announces Major Attractions 2012/2013

360 DEGREES TO SUBZERO AT SEAWORLD PARKS FOR 2012 AND BEYOND NEW ATTRACTIONS FOR 2012 AND 2013

  • · TurtleTrek: Nose-to-nose animal encounters and state-of-the-art entertainment opening at SeaWorld Orlando Spring 2012
  • · Freshwater Oasis: All new tropical rainforest attraction at Discovery Cove, featuring playful otters and curious marmoset monkeys, opening Spring 2012
  • · Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin: The coldest theme park attraction in the world to take to the ice at SeaWorld Orlando 2013

Guests to SeaWorld and Discovery Cove in Orlando will soon be able to embark on a journey of a lifetime through the eyes of some of the world’s most charismatic animals, from the deepest corners of the sea, to the lush tropical rainforests of the Amazon and onto the coldest continent on earth.

TurtleTrek… Hatching at SeaWorld Orlando

Using new technology, TurtleTrek gets guests closer than ever before to the lives of one of the worlds’ best loved and most vulnerable reptiles – the sea turtle.

This visual conservation experience allows guests to learn more about the plight of the sea turtle and the incredible life journey they take from hatching on a beach and making the mad dash to open waters, to the dangers and hazards they face as they mature and return to the very same beach to lay their own eggs, their tales of life underwater have in the past been impossible to show – until now.

Coming to life in front of the guests is a first-of-its-kind 3-D and 360-degree dome theatre that is completely immersive. Guests will experience a 360º view of the film, from above and all around, where they will be given a turtle’s eye view of the ocean’s wonders.

Back in the real world, visitors can get up-close to the sea turtle at two extensive habitats next to the dome, one saltwater area which will also house more than 1,500 fish and over a dozen sea turtles, and the other a freshwater habitat where guests can discover hundreds of freshwater fish and gentle manatees.

Many of the manatees and sea turtles were rescued by the park’s animal team. Since SeaWorld Orlando’s rescue programs began, the team has cared for and returned to the wild nearly 240 manatees and more than 1,200 sea turtles.

Freshwater Oasis… Otterly Fresh New Area at Discovery Cove, Orlando

Opening at Discovery Cove in spring 2012 is Freshwater Oasis, an all-new attraction featuring swimming and wading adventures and face-to-face encounters with playful otters and curious marmosets.

Designed with a rainforest canopy above and sparkling clear springs below, Freshwater Oasis is a natural fit within Discovery Cove’s tropical vibe.

All of the family can experience this tropical setting, with most of the water at waist height and various levels of exploration where they can wade, swim and float in the water-filled trails and discover marmosets and Asian otters.

For a spot of après-animal exploration guests can soak up the Orlando sunshine in the warm waters in the In-Water Relaxation Station, a secluded pool including comfy in-water chairs.

Freshwater Oasis is included with admission to Discovery Cove, an all-inclusive tropical getaway where guests can swim with dolphins, hand-feed tropical birds in a free-flight aviary, snorkel among thousands of colourful fish and rays and relax on pristine white sandy beaches.

Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin… Subzero at SeaWorld Orlando for 2013

Never has there been a theme park so cold – until now. Spring 2013 sees the launch of SeaWorld Orlando’s most incredible attraction, Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin.

Explore the frozen wildernesses of the Antarctica through the eyes of the world’s most loved bird – the penguin.

Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin will take guests on a journey like no other to the coldest and most barren place on earth with a state-of-the-artinteractive ride combined with an animal attraction.

More details to follow…. for now it’s on ice.

Quidditch – just what are the rules anyway?

Ever wondered exactly what the rules of Quidditch are from the Harry Potter films? Well, wonder no more because below is a quick run down of the how to play;

Rules

The official rules of Quidditch are partially described in Quidditch Through the Ages. They are said to have been laid down in 1750 by the Department of Magical Games and Sports. Some of the more common rules are as follows:

  • Players must not stray over the boundary lines of the pitch, although they may fly as high as desired. The Quaffle must be surrendered to the opposition if any player leaves the boundary. Quidditch matches in the Harry Potter films, however, show players often deliberately flying over the boundary lines and even around the spectator towers.
  • time out may be called at any time by a team Captain. It may be extended to two hours if a game has already lasted for more than twelve hours. Failure to return to the pitch afterward disqualifies the offending team.
  • The referee can impose penalties if a foul occurs. A single Chaser from the fouled team takes a penalty shot by flying from the central circle towards the scoring area. The opposing team’s Keeper may attempt to block this shot, but no other player may interfere, much like a penalty shot in ice hockey.
  • Contact is allowed, but a player may not grasp another’s broomstick or any part of his or her body. (Draco Malfoy breaks this rule in Prisoner of Azkaban by grabbing Harry’s broomtail to stop him from seizing the Snitch.)
  • No substitution of a player is allowed, even if one is too badly hurt to continue (rare exceptions may be made when the game continues for a great length of time, and players become too fatigued to continue).
  • Players may take their wands onto the pitch, but they must not be used on or against any players, any player’s broomstick, the referee, any of the four balls, or the spectators. (The right to carry wands at all times was granted during the height of wizard and witch persecution by Muggles, according to Quidditch Through the Ages).

Fouls

Rowling writes that there are 700 Quidditch fouls listed in the Department of Magical Games and Sports records, but most of these fouls are not open to the public, owing to the Department’s supposed fear the wizards/witches who read the list of fouls “might get ideas”. It is claimed that all 700 occurred during the very first Quidditch World Cup. Apparently, most are now impossible to commit as there is a ban on using wands against an opponent (imposed in 1538). The most common of those fouls which are described are enumerated below:

  • Blagging: No player may seize any part of an opponent’s broom to slow or hinder the player. (Draco Malfoy commits this foul in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, thus preventing Harry from seizing the Snitch.)
  • Blatching: No player may fly with the intent to collide. (Substitute Slytherin seeker Harper breaks this rule when he collides into Harry after insulting the latter’s friend, and Gryffindor Keeper, Ronald Weasley. This occurs in the sixth book, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.)
  • Blurting: No player may lock broom handles with the intent to steer an opponent off course.
  • Bumphing: Beaters must not hit Bludgers towards spectators (although Harry jokingly orders one of his Beaters to send one at Zacharias Smith in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince), or the Keeper, unless the Quaffle is within the scoring area. (In the first film, however, Marcus Flint, a Chaser, commits this foul with a Beater’s bat, and Madam Hooch penalises him for it.)
  • Cobbing: Players must not make excessive use of their elbows against opponents. (Marcus Flint, the Slytherin Chaser, commits this foul against the Gryffindor Chaser, Angelina Johnson, in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban).
  • Flacking: Keepers must not defend the posts from behind by punching Quaffles out of the hoops – goals must be defended from the front.
  • Haversacking: Chasers must not still be in contact with the Quaffle as it passes through a hoop (the Quaffle must be thrown through).
  • Quaffle-pocking: Chasers must not tamper with the Quaffle in any way.
  • Snitchnip: No player other than the Seeker may touch or catch the Golden Snitch.
  • Stooging: No more than one Chaser is allowed in the scoring area at any one time. (However, game play in Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup and the fan-made Q3D permit this behaviour.)

Well now you know the rules there’s no excuse not to have a game or two…just be careful on those broomsticks 😉

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More Quidditch info

SeaWorld San Diego To Launch Manta In 2012

SeaWorld San Diego plans to unveil a $10 million manta-themed ride and animal exhibit for 2012, according to construction documents.

The marine park had been keeping the project under wraps until Web snoops discovered an online bid invitation for a “Sea World Manta Exhibit & Ride Attraction 2012” posted to the McGraw-Hill Construction website. The bid request seeks a general contractor for a “recreational” construction project built from “structural steel” in San Diego. McGraw-Hill’s “recreational” category includes casinos, theaters, athletic facilities and — wait for it — roller coasters.

SeaWorld San Diego officials declined to comment except to say that they plan to make an announcement in early February about a new attraction for 2012.

The news comes a few days after the Screamscape theme park news website published blueprints and drawings showing a track layout and “Manta-style sting ray” train design for a roller coaster reportedly coming to SeaWorld San Diego in 2012. The plans bear a striking resemblance to a Mack launched megacoaster called BlueFire at Europa Park in Germany, according to Screamscape.

SeaWorld’s sister park in Orlando, Fla., opened a similarly themed Manta flying coaster in 2009 that features a wing dip splashdown across a shallow lake. (View a Manta photo gallery by the Orlando Sentinel).

The SeaWorld San Diego ride will likely be located in a relatively unused back corner of the marine park near the Skyride and Flamingo Cove, according to Screamscape.

For 2011, SeaWorld San Diego will install a sea turtle exhibit, add the Riptide Rescue spinning boat ride and update the Shamu killer whale show.

Article from http://www.latimes.com

Disney release teaser video for Goofy’s Sky School

Check out the Disney teaser video of Goofy’s Sky School rollercoaster, which is due to debut at California Adventure in mid-2011.

Goofy’s Sky School will be a rethemed version of the Mulholland Madness coaster, which closed on October 12, 2010. The wild mouse coaster will receive a new theme based on the 1940 cartoon Goofy’s Glider, which tells the story of Goofy attempting to teach pilots how to fly.

Ripsaw Falls ride closed after catching fire

A water ride that caught on fire at Universal Orlando’s Islands of Adventure will remain closed for several weeks to repair the damage and undergo seasonal maintenance, officials said Sunday.

Universal spokesman Tom Schroder said fire officials are working to identify and correct the cause of the fire that started in the roof of Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls on Saturday and forced its evacuation.

The maintenance for the ride was originally scheduled for later this month. Schroder did not say when the park plans on reopening the attraction.

The smoky, two-alarm fire erupted on the roof of an area through which cars that look like logs carry passengers, said Orlando Deputy Fire Chief Greg Hoggatt. It grew quickly.

“That type of material puts out a lot of black smoke,” he said.

Forty firefighters, including some from Orange County Fire Rescue, were called to the scene. The fire was tamed in about half an hour and extinguished in an hour, Hoggatt said. A few guests were checked at the park first-aid room, but none required hospitalization. No damage estimates were available, Schroder said.

A park guest, Anthony Rosa, said he was in the Harry Potter area when he saw smoke from across the lake in the center of the park. A moment later, he smelled burning plastic.

A large crowd began walking across a bridge and away from Ripsaw Falls, Rosa said. The number of those evacuated was not immediately available, but Schroder said dozens of people were in the area.

Rosa said he wouldn’t go back to the ride immediately even if it reopened.

“It’s a bit concerning,” he said. “I’d definitely be second-guessing it the whole time.”

Investigators are considering an electrical problem from components such as air conditioners or ride controllers, or an accident, Hoggatt said.

Susan Gartner, a chaperone with the marching band from Wamego High School in Kansas, said she was eating when she saw black smoke rise out of Toon Lagoon. She began trying to contact other chaperones and students, who said they saw flames shooting out of the ride.

“Thank goodness” they were OK, Gartner said of the students.

Schroder would not say what compensation might be available to park patrons who were forced to get off the ride.

“In a situation like this, we would always work with our guests and do what is right,” he said. “We’re happy to work with our guests and make them feel that they’re accommodated.”

Toon Lagoon, where the water ride is located, reopened about 90 minutes after fire and dark, billowing smoke closed it shortly after 5 p.m. Saturday, officials said. Toon Lagoon also is home to Popeye and Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges.

Article source

How Disney Plan To Reduce Theme Park Queuing Times

Disney handles over 30 million visitors per year! Top of everyone’s pet hate list is queuing… so what are Disney doing about this?

According to the New York Times Disney have been busy in 2010 equipping an underground nerve centre to tackle our favourite pet peeve.

In one corner, employees watch flat-screen televisions that depict various attractions in green, yellow and red outlines, with the colors representing wait-time gradations.

An example of how this would work is given as…

If Pirates of the Caribbean, the ride that sends people on a spirited voyage through the Spanish Main, suddenly blinks from green to yellow, the center might respond by alerting managers to launch more boats.

Another idea which is not exactly scientific is…

Another option involves dispatching Captain Jack Sparrow or Goofy or one of their pals to the queue to entertain people as they wait. “It’s about being nimble and quickly noticing that, ‘Hey, let’s make sure there is some relief out there for those people,’ ” said Phil Holmes, vice president of the Magic Kingdom, the flagship Disney World park.

What if…

What if Fantasyland is swamped with people but adjacent Tomorrowland has plenty of elbow room? The operations center can route a miniparade called “Move it! Shake it! Celebrate It!” into the less-populated pocket to siphon guests in that direction. Other technicians in the command center monitor restaurants, perhaps spotting that additional registers need to be opened or dispatching greeters to hand out menus to people waiting to order.