Thursday, December 29, 2011

DUMBO IN DISNEY CRUISE LINE'S FANTASY SHIP

Dumbo on Fantasy
What is the best symbol to Fantasy? That is exactly the question that Disney is posing for everyone that will be traveling the seven seas of the world! The answer will surprise you.

Continuing their long standing tradition that began in 1998 when the Disney Magic, the first of Disney Cruise Line's ships, started traveling across the seas. There's a couple of things that the imagineers always look when they are designing the ships. One is the title of the vessel and technology advances they are going to include in it. But another one that is as exciting as these two, it's picking up the iconic character they will put in its stern (the back of the ship).

The thinking behind the stern is how tide up is to the title of the ship, and it has to be in a pose that shows the character painting the name of the ship in a wonderful, neat, and unique way, and keeping up with the classic visuals of the original.

So, everyone was fill with excitement with the announcement of the new sister ship to the Disney Dream, the Disney Fantasy! And as all the information was becoming available, one thing that the imagineers wanted to keep under wraps was the symbol for the ship.

The Disney Magic, for being the first one of the Cruise Line, sported Goofy trying to "paint" the back of the ship with its name. Then, the imagineers got a little more daring and funny with the figures of Donald Duck hanging by a rope trying to "paint" the stern and Hewey (with Dewey and Louie peeking from behind) cutting the rope with a huge scissor, on the Disney Wonder. For the Disney Dream, the imagineers went old school and put the one and only Mickey Mouse in its "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" look sending one lonely mop to "paint" the stern with the name of the Ship.

What do the imagineers did with its newest ship? Well, to answer the original question pose to all the imagineers, they decided to bring back one amazing pachyderm, Dumbo. Of course, that iconic character will never be complete without the help of its amazing rodent companion, Timothy Quincy Mouse. Dumbo will be "flying" with the bucket of paint holding up with his trunk and Timothy Mouse will be holding the brush ready to "paint" the name on the stern. It has that Disney Classic written all over, but at the same time with a fresh look that will be a welcome sight when you arrive from the port of call to the ship.

Do not forget to try this new ship from the amazing Disney Cruise Line. Certainly will be fill with amazing areas to have fun and enjoy your delicious vacation. At the same time, this newest ship will be with the latest technological wonder that only Disney can do. Every Magical wish has been implemented and some you may haven't thought about!

98-days left to enjoy this awesome Ship made by the magic of Disney!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Macy’s Holiday Parade at Universal Studios

The Macy’s Holiday Parade at Universal StudiosThere is nothing like the Macy’s Day Parade to kick off the holiday season. But if you’re like everyone else you were running around trying to get the house ready for your Thanksgiving company. Well I have good news for you, you can still catch the Macys parade, and not just a rerun on the television. The Macy’s Holiday Parade has made its way to the Universal Studios, and it even has some additions!

With all the floats and balloons that make the parade a Macy’s event here at the Universal Studios there is no better way to get into the season. My kids and I went yesterday and we had a blast. With full marching bands and all the floats that came directly from the parade it was great! We bought a ton of holiday food and some hot coco and kicked back on the side of the road to all the great music and entertainment.

The best part is that this awesome event isn’t over; it is going till January 1st. So if you are still in town and want to get a good spot on the front row of the Macy’s Holiday Parade you still can! While you are there be sure to check out some of the other awesome Christmas stuff that Universal is offering. Like meeting Santa and the daily tree lighting!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

BE OUR GUEST RESTAURANT NEWS

Be Our Guest Menu
You probably were glued to the big screen watching the movie "Beauty and The Beast", specially the part where Lumiere (the wonderfully funny and friendly chandelier) welcomed Belle and sings the song "Be our guest".

That is the back-story that Disney has for one the Restaurants that is going to open in the new Fantasyland expansion that is being build at this moment in Disney's Magic Kingdom.

Details are coming, since we are getting closer and closer to one of the biggest openings in years for the N# 1 Theme Park in the World!

Be Our Guest is the Restaurant's name. Details given by Disney, the new restaurant:

  • Located in the "Beauty and The Beast" area, and the dining area will be just inside the Beast Castle, one amazing place for one amazing Restaurant in the making!
  • It will fit nicely 550 people.
  • Three (3) dining rooms Library/Gallery, West Wing (where, if you know the movie and story, lays the enchanted rose), Ballroom (remember that awesome part where Belle and Beast dance?).
  • It will offer Table-Service dining during the evening, and Counter-Service dining during the mornings/afternoon.
  • It will feature decoration inspired by the famous movie, and the ambiance be awesomely enchanting with a mural depicting scenes with the characters of the movie.
Even though there's no word in regards to whether is a character interaction, Disney has something up its sleeves. Many gossiping around this Restaurant refers that perhaps there would be a Lumiere audio-animatronic, like "Chefs de France" with Remy in Disney's Epcot, but Disney has been very hush-hush.

Once we are getting closer to the date of launching we all know more information. In this same area there would be another Restaurant called Gaston's Tavern with a huge statue of, you got it!, Gaston!

Stay tuned, this expansion to Fantasyland is looking more and more incredible and immersing and amazing!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Gatorland Zip Line Revisit

Gatorland's Screamin Gator Zip Line Course!It has been quite awhile since I have had the opportunity to get to a theme park. But with a friend coming down for the holiday season they asked if we would join them on their visit to a theme park. Now they are planning to spend a whole week between Universal, Disney and other attractions in the area. Unfortunately my work schedule would only let me take off one day. So when it came to which park I could visit with them I had to pick Gatorland.

Now, Gatorland wasn’t always my favorite park in the Central Florida area. But, after they added the zip line course to the park I haven’t been able to think of anything else. When the course first came out I went and visited, road the course and then wrote it a pretty good review. But now I had an opportunity to take a friend on the course for the first time… and we had a blast.

You can make reservations at the park for the zip line course when you purchase your ticket. You see the “jumps” are scheduled throughout the day, and they fill up real fast, so you gotta get in quick. Anyway we had a ten o clock jump scheduled, and at 10:05 we were sitting in a room going over the instructional video and getting geared up. Shortly after we were walking across the park and climbing the first tower three stories into the air.

Now if you think three stories isn’t that high I want to see your face when they clip that thin cable to a wire and tell you to get a running start. Either way, by the third tower jump you feel like a veteran. Jumping off a wooden tower that is swaying in the wind over a pool of alligators sure leaves you with a good memory to take home.

The best part is at the end. The last jump has two wires right next to each other, and they let you race another person in the group. I raced my friend of course, and I am not willing to let you know how it ended… but I will tell you one thing… someone cheated.

Friday, December 2, 2011

JAWS WILL BE CLOSING!!!!!!


Jaws is all hung up
I am bummed out for the following news. Universal Studios Florida will be closing the Jaws/Amity Area for good on January 2nd 2012 @ 9pm.

It’s been one of my favorites attractions. Sure, you can say all you want about how cheesy is the jokes and the interaction of the “boat” driver, but this ride grows on you and totally makes you feel very immerse into the action. Plus, you can feel the heat when you see a charred shark on his final try coming out as one of those nice twists to the ride.

The spokeman for Universal Studios Florida noted that this has been one of the first attractions to open in the park:

“We know you love JAWS! and we do too. It has been an amazing attraction and after terrorizing the waters of Amity here at Universal Orlando for 20 years, it’s a VERY important part of our history“

However, we are excited that something else will be coming into this area, and hopefully they will do something to tell the past guest or little clues to tell that Jaws was here.

Universal also took the chance to assure the visitors about new developments without revealing too much what is going to take place there:

“So, we’ve got a couple things planned to ensure we always remember and honor it. We know it’s hard to say goodbye, but we can’t express how EXCITED we are about the new, innovative & amazing experience we’re going to be bringing you.“

This comes in the date where Universal Studios Singapore is opening its “Transformers – The Ride”, which will open soon in Universal Studios Hollywood. Wheels are turning and would this be perhaps a clue as to what will be build here? Who knows!

Let’s stay tune to what new things will happen in Universal Studios Florida, which will sure make visitors new and “old” happy and excited to come to the center where movies are brought to life in new incredible ways!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Ready to have a "Cyber" New Year?


People gather in Time Square for the traditional drop of the ball since December 31st, 1907.

Usually, you are glue to your TV sets to see the amazing and ageless Dick Clark until he press that red button and the New Year is being welcome! Or, perhaps you are standing by Main Street USA in Magic Kingdom, seeing how the fireworks irrupts across the night sky bathing Cinderella's Castle in a blast of incredible designs and colors!

Have you heard about CYBER New Years Celebration?

Well, the past year DISNEYQUEST, that interactive "theme park" in Downtown Disney, started to do a "cyber" end of the year celebration. It was a total success, so this year they decided to do it again!

• The event starts from 8pm - 1am.
• Kids will be entertained by a DJ that will play dance music getting the people in that party mood!
• Unlimited access to ALL the games and DisneyQuest attractions including Buzz Lightyears's Astroblasters, Virtual Jungle Cruise and CyberSpace Mountain.

If you still awake by that time with all the incredible time playing the games and enjoying your time and spending your energy going from one awesome excitement to the next one, then you'll be in for a surprise!

• Cofetti Drop.
• Festive party favors.
• Coupons for a pizza, hot dog, chicken Caesar wrap or Hamburger plus chips and soda.

You can purchase your tickets ahead of time, so you can get a savings for this special "Cyber" event.

Let's create a brand new end of the year tradition, being the magical place that it is, DisneyQuest will have its annual Cyber New Year an event not to be miss!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Candlelight Processional

Candlelight Processional at EpcotThe Candlelight Processional features celebrities narrating the Christmas story, plus a 50-piece orchestra and a choir made up of hundreds of cast members and community members. The Disney World event dates to 1971 and the first Magic Kingdom Christmas, but it moved to Epcot's America Gardens Theatre in 1994.

There are three performances nightly at 5 p.m., 6:45 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. through Dec. 30. It's included in regular theme-park admission.

The schedule for celebrity narrators is:

Nov. 25-27: Mira Sorvino, Academy Award-winning actress ("Mighty Aphrodite")

Nov. 28-Dec. 1: Gospel singer Michael W. Smith

Dec. 2-3: Geena Davis, Oscar winner for "The Accidental Tourist"

Dec. 4-6: Actor Edward James Olmos (Public shows only at 6:45 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. on Dec. 4)

Dec. 7-9: Actress-model-author Isabella Rossellini

Dec. 10-12: Actor Neil Patrick Harris (TV's "How I Met Your Mother")

Dec. 13-15: Actress Lorraine Bracco ("The Sopranos")

Dec. 16-18: Actress-dancer-singer Chita Rivera

Dec. 19-21: Country singer Trace Adkins ("Just Fishin'," "You're Gonna Miss This")

Dec. 22-24: Actress Susan Lucci (Emmy winner for "All My Children")

Dec. 25-27: Actor Blair Underwood ("L.A. Law," "The Event")

Dec. 28-30: Marlee Matlin, Oscar-winning actress ("Children of a Lesser God.")

Do not miss the chance to see your favorite star in an amazing venue, with all the wonderful and the holy-est of occasions, here at Epcot during the Christmas time!

Friday, November 18, 2011

SeaWorld Expansion

The New Freshwater Oasis at Discovery Cove!Recently was announced from SeaWorld Orlando that they will start a series of expansion to its theme park.

First, the one that will draw the eyes will be "Antarctica - Empire of the Penguin". This will be the biggest-ever attraction and will be open in 2013! In their own words this attraction will make you be "surrounded by the sights, sounds and awesome encounters found in this frozen place, embarking on a one-of-a-kind ride". I will also carry state-of-the-art ride technology "for adventures that are different each time", so that visitors can be able to "experience the mystery and wonder of life on the ice through the eyes of a penguin, sensing the beauty and drama of their sometimes-dangerous habitat."

Another incredible attraction coming from SeaWorld Orlando is "TurtleTrek", which will open in 2012! What is really unique about this attraction is that visitors will enter into "two massive naturalistic habitats, one filled with hundreds of freshwater fish and gentle manatees, the other home to more than 1,500 saltwater fish and more than a dozen sea turtles". Then, guests will move to a domed theater were there will be a 3-D/360-degree "completely immersive" picture. The picture, plus the effects and the dome "allows a hyper-realistic 3-D movie to be shown all around – not just in front or on only one screen. It’s this unique and immersive way of showcasing a sea turtle’s epic and astounding journey that is the heart of TurtleTrek. And for the first time, you, the guest, are given a turtle’s eye view of the ocean’s wonders."

The Third attraction will be in its sister theme park Discovery Cove. Here, it will open a new attraction in 2012 called "Freshwater Oasis"! In a relaxing and totally stress-free environment with a design closely resembling the rainforest of the world, guest will "wade past rocks and trees to encounter the thriving, lush habitat of the Asian small-clawed otter. Experience the lively energy of the otter in an up-close-and-personal way, without ever having to leave the refreshing water." There's two ways to "discover" this amazing experience "Swim through waist-deep water to the center of Freshwater Oasis, or view from a scenic pathway, an island abundant with life. There will be no glass separating you from the marmoset monkeys that call the idyllic island home. Experience a whole new world, right in front of your eyes."

Cannot wait to see these incredible attractions, it will certainly make you plan ahead and be ready to experienced it with your own eyes!

So, 2012 will bring TurtleTrek (in SeaWorld Orlando) and Freshwater Oasis (in Discovery Cove), and 2013 will bring Antarctica - Empire of the Penguin.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Disney’s Upcoming Exotic Driving Experience!

Disney’s Exotic Driving ExperienceDisney has always showed an interest in sports, and the Richard Petty Driving Experience was just one way of showing it. However the new buzz around Disney is that Disney is about to open a new and exciting new attraction that will have people from all over Florida coming in. When most people visit the Central Florida area for a vacation they rent a vehicle to make their stay easier. Some people even rent sports cars to make their stay in the area even more exciting. But the truth is everyone has that one car that is so far out of their reach that they would give anything just to drive it for ten minutes. Well here at the upcoming Exotic Driving Experience you are going to be able to do just that!

Disney went around asking their guests that if they had the opportunity to drive just one exotic car which one would it be? After compiling a list and finding the most popular selections Disney will be introducing the new attraction on January 16th of next year. The current list of cars available are Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Audis Porsches and more! They are even building a new course with a bunch of sharp turns and challenges so that you can really put the cars to the test. Apparently you get to take six laps in the car of your choosing.

Now if you are like me you will be heading down to this track when it opens. I don’t know if I would suggest getting there the week after it opens, because I am sure its going to be crowded, but I will most definitely be fighting for my spot in the weeks following!

Monday, November 7, 2011

SeaWorld Up-and-Coming big News!

Shamu says hello
This November the 8th, SeaWorld is getting its feet wet with new additions to its marine theme park in Orlando.

As per their spokeman Nick Gollattscheck said "We do have plans for incredible new attractions at SeaWorld Orlando, and we're committed to finding amazing new ways to immerse our guests and fans in the mysteries of the sea. It's too early to talk about the plans and details right now, but you can expect us to share the news in the near future."

What kinda projects will delight the millions of visitors to this amazing theme park? There's a couple of items that are coming in the "gossip" pipeline, mainly (as per the Orlando Sentinel):

  • One of the biggest projects, expected to be completed in 2013, involves Penguin Encounter, a walk-through exhibit that opened in 1987 and displays several different species of penguins, as well as puffins and murres. This will close in December for an 18-month refurbishment. SeaWorld plans to build an indoor "dark ride" in its place. Since August, SeaWorld Orlando has also trademarked a trio of names that could be associated with the project: "Antarctica" and "Empire of the Penguins," both for use as themed areas in an amusement park, and "SnowWorld," for use as an amusement-park attraction.
  • Separately, SeaWorld is also planning to redevelop its Manatee Rescue attraction, a project expected to debut in 2012. According to a person familiar with details, the plans include renovating a circular theater and using it for an upgraded, sea-turtle movie that will likely be tied in with a theatrical documentary that was released this past summer through SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment's new SeaWorld Pictures film unit. SeaWorld plans to convert the manatee exhibit into a "combination manatee/sea turtle exhibit." SeaWorld last month also trademarked the name "Turtlesphere 360" for use in a theme-park attraction.
  • Discovery Cove, the high-end boutique park next door to SeaWorld, is also a part of the expansion efforts. Documents filed with the water district and Orange County show that SeaWorld intends to convert a now-closed saltwater reef into a freshwater environment referred to both as the "Flooded Rainforest Trail" and as "Flooded Forest River Trails." Its features will include a "primate island" and an otter-viewing area.
Certainly with these trio of possible developments, we are waiting for the official word, and counting the days until these areas open here in Orlando. SeaWorld wants to keep its name as the n. 3 theme-park company in the business, specially getting tough competition from the new Legoland theme-park, the new Fantasyland area in Magic Kingdom, and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Island of Adventure.

Stay tune cause this November the 8th will be the official unveiling of the plans for next year!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cinderella's Holiday Wish Show Returns Today!

Cinderella and friends
One of the most magical places on earth is Walt Disney World, specifically Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park! And one of the most inspiring time of the year is reaching upon us, Christmas!

What happen when the two of those unite? Well, the thought is both gratifying and magical! A super jolly good ol’ time, like drinking your hot cocoa with marshmallow combination, simply delightful!

Starting today, Friday November 4th until the end of the holiday season, Magic Kingdom will have a beautiful show called “Cinderella’s Holiday Wish” show.

We meet our beloved fav four: Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy that wants to create magic and thinking in the best way possible. Then, at the castle shows up the Fairy Godmother, who wants to give some magic to the festivities. Enter, Cinderella and Prince Charming, and it is here that they decided to do something to make the castle sparkle as her glass slippers!

Between a little holiday music and dance routine, and a little of the “Salaga-doola, menchika-boola, Bibbidi-bobbidi-boo” from the adorable Fairy Godmother and the end is totally awe-inspiring.

The entire castle lights up as magical as ever. It will look as if the castle has been transformed into a glass, or diamond (depending on your taste), that sparkles in a magical way. Only Disney can do something like this!

To create this effect required: 32,000 sq. ft. fishing nets, 15 miles of cables, 200,00 LED bulbs and 500 strobes. However, what’s more important is the magical results.

Do not miss this amazing and entertaining show, that certainly will be a highlight of your visit to Disney’s Magic Kingdom!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Best Fireworks in the Land!

Wishes Fireworks
One of my fascinations is that of fireworks. Since their inception dating back to 7th century China, which is the earliest documentation of fireworks, people have been marveled by the colorful and incredible designs from that simple pyrotechnics show.

From those humbled beginnings, it has transformed itself into a business that is use around the world. Goes without saying that fireworks and magic goes hand in hand, like peanut butter and jelly, and like Mickey and Minnie!

Walt Disney when creating his masterpiece thought about what would have been the best way to close the park while leaving a touch of pixie-dust to the park's future visitors. The answer was in a show that had Sleeping Beauty Castle as a backdrop in Disneyland. It goes without saying that this magical place, plus the show itself was a total hit. When he decided to build Walt Disney World here in Orlando, goes without saying that he wanted to bring the show to its new place with a few tweaks...this time the backdrop will be Cinderella's Castle!

Back in the those early years, the show was called "Fantasy in the Sky", now it is called "Wishes: A Magical gathering of Disney Dreams".

It doesn't matter how many times you see the show, every single time you'll be immerse in the beautiful designs, the sheer spectacle of its music, and above all, seeing around you all the people marveling at the multicolored display patching the night sky, well, it is without saying that you'll be seeing some grown ups with tears. At the end, no matter your age, you'll be irrupting in joy and in applause as the show culminates with a magnificent spectacle of pyrotechnics magic!

Do not leave the park without seeing this show, it will electrify and it will make you feel that dreams can be reality. Perhaps is good to finish with one quote from one of Walt's incredible creations, Cinderella:

A dream is a wish your heart makes when you're fast asleep. In dreams you will lose your heartaches. Whatever you wish for, you keep. Have faith in your dreams, and someday, your rainbow will come smiling through. No matter how your heart is grieving, if you keep on believing, the dreams that you wish will come true.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Halloween has come and gone

Kids at Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
So what did you wear this past All-Hallows-Even? Oh my, I am sorry! that is the question I should have made in 1556, but today i would have to ask "What did you wear this Halloween?"

The art of dressing the children in disguises or customes is called guising, and the first records about this we find it as early as 1895 in Scotland. The first record of this tradition in the U.S.A is in early 20th century, and the first mass-produced halloween customes appeared in stores in the 1930s.

Traditionally, Halloween costumes feature scary characters like monsters, witches and devils; also can be ghosts, skeletons, fictional characters, celebrities, even presidents! Of course, little children usually try dressing as either princes or princesses.

It is interesting that Disney compiled a list of the most frequent halloween customes in their parks, and here's the discovery:

Girls
  1. Rapunzel
  2. Princess Aurora
  3. Pirate
  4. Belle
  5. Minnie Mouse
Boys
  1. Cars 2 Characters
  2. Jack Sparrow
  3. Pirate
  4. Buzz Lightyear
  5. Woody
Now dressing up is all done :(
But Christmas is right around the corner :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Art of Animation Part Two

The Art of Imagination is coming!Each building will have an area for family photo. For Example, in the Lion King area, the imagineers created the characters in such a way that makes you feel as if you are little Simba roaming the African savannah.
They will have the main characters like Simba, Timon, Pumbaa, as well as, scar and the hyenas. In the Cars section, they will have Tow-Mater, as well as, Lightning McQueen and others. The Finding Nemo will have a decor with a huge Crush the turtle and Nemo with Marlin his dad the clown fish. A highlight will be at The Little Mermaid building where a huge King Triton will welcome guest and a huge clam will hold Sebastian as if dancing "Under the Sea".

One interesting thing about this complex is that will have 1,120 Family Suites (rooms that can accommodate up to six people) in the first three buildings (The Lion King, Cars, and Finding Nemo), and 864 theme rooms in The Little Mermaid wing. The Family Suites features two rooms with two bathrooms and living room plus a mini-kitchen with a microwave and a mini-fridge and a coffeemaker.

As of this writing, there's one dinning restaurant that will be in this Resort called Landscapes Cafe.

Per Disney's reports, the opening timeline will be: The Finding Nemo wing will open May 31st, 2012; The Cars wing on late July; The Lion King in late September; and The Little Mermaid wing will be opened by late 2012. The resort will be located near the Pop Century by the Wide World of Sports area.

This Value Resort will certainly be a total hit with families and guest that wants to relax and enjoy the newest attractions that will be opening next year and the coming years in the Walt Disney World Resort area. Place your reservation now to this amazing resort; it will be a Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious day in the newest resort Art of Animation!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The art of Animation Part One

The Art Of Animation is coming to Disney!What would be the place where you can say that you'll feel "Hakuna Matata"? Where you can go "Ka-chow!" with your camera left or right and find the perfect spot for a family photo? Which place will make you feel "totally awesome dude!"? When you could you go "under the sea" in a party atmosphere that has no rival?

The answers to those questions are hints that lay in the new development within the Walt Disney World Resort. Probably you have heard the new revamp section of Fantasyland in Disney's Magic Kingdom, or perhaps the announcement of the Avatar-land in Disney's Animal Kingdom. However, the Walt Disney Company knows that with these incredible cool areas will bring lots of visitors and these will need a place to stay. Hence, the announcement of the new hotel Art of Animation!

The Art of Animation will be a complex of Four (4) different buildings. Each of those buildings will be dedicated to a Disney movie or a Disney-Pixar movie. One for The Lion King, another for Cars, next is Finding Nemo, and last but not least The Little Mermaid.

This is going to be an amazing project from start to finish. To "lick your paws" in anticipation, here are a few nuggets of information about this hotel:

It will sport the biggest pool in the entire resort area. Yes, you hear me right, the Biggest Pool! The pool will measure 11,859 sq. ft. and will have a design to tend for the big ones in the family to the little ones, and the theme of the pool will be that of Finding Nemo. Aside from this one, the complex will also have two other pools and a children's water play area.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

LEGOLAND Preview Part Two

One of the many LEGOLAND dinosaur constructs around the theme park!Towards the back of the theme park you can find the Cypress Gardens… gardens that are still left over from the old theme park, as well as the ski show and stadium that appears to be coming back after renovations. Two of the parks best coasters are also located in the back, the Flying School and the Coastersaurus. The Flying School is a suspended roller coaster where you sit down and your feet dangle in the air. With a lot of steep drops and sharp turns this coaster was great fun. However, finding your way to the Flying School requires a map, because you have to climb a ramp hiding behind a giant red car that will be home to a future ride. The Coastersaurus is located in between The Dragon and the Flying School and is an original wooden roller coaster. From the looks of it they went about repairing it to its original splendor. If you were to ask me I think it is the fastest coaster in the whole park and has a Jurassic Park style theme with lots of Lego dinosaurs.

Coastersaurus is located in the Land of Adventure, and is right next the Lost Kingdom Adventure (Not to be confused with Land of Adventure). This was a great ride because of how quick the line went. Each cart holds four people, and they can have you in a cart and on your way in about twenty seconds. Once in your cart pick up your western style laser gun and shoot targets. On the cart the amount of targets you hit is recorded and you gain a score. So at the end of the ride you can compare your points to the other players in the cart. Nothing is as fun as a friendly competition you know what I mean?

Across from Lost Kingdom Adventure is the Test Track, a speedy little coaster that has you taking one fast drop after the other and keeps to whizzing around in the area. This ride could accurately be described as a road in the sky. From the top of the coaster they give you short breathers where you can actually see whole sections of the park from an aerial view, including the massive lake. Right under the roller coaster is the Imagination Zone, where you can find all sorts of challenges that let you test your creativity with Lego bricks. We spent twenty minutes constructing cars and then racing them while we were there.

LEGOLAND has plenty more rides and attractions, and even more to come when the park opens, but these are the ones that stick out to me the most. The park is only open from 10am till 5pm, so get there early if you want to see it all. It seemed to me like the rides cleared up towards the end of the day, we must have road The Dragon six times in a row because the line was so short! There are also a ton of carnival style games all around the park to enjoy, so be sure to stop in and win a prize.

Friday, October 7, 2011

LEGOLAND Preview Part One

The Dragon Rollercoaster at LEGOLANDSo with the big day coming up on October 15th LEGOLAND has been giving select people preview tickets to view the park before it opens. That means a few select guests get into the park before it’s even officially open. Lucky for me a friend of mine came into possession of one of these tickets and let me tag along for the ride. So, without further ado my visit to the LEGOLAND theme park, just a week before it opens!

As soon as we walked through the gates we were hit with some of the amazing things that the park has to offer. Massive twenty foot tall statues of dinosaurs and Lego characters are standing right at the entrance. Just behind them highlighting the skyline is the Island in the Sky tower, a massive spinning pavilion that gets lifted into the sky above the theme park on a massive blue metal arm. From on top you can see for miles and miles into the distance, but better yet you can see every inch of the LEGOLAND theme park from an aerial view. I wish we hadn’t waited till mid day to go on this cause it would definitely have helped with our navigation of the theme park.

As soon as you pass the Island in the Sky you come to a two story carousel surrounded by souvenir shops containing everything you can think of with a Lego theme. If you hang a right you will come face to face with my favorite ride, The Dragon. This roller coaster leads you through the Lego Kingdom castle where you get to see a ton of Lego constructs, including a massive smoke spewing dragon. Then as you exit the castle the ride begins and you rise to the top of the coaster before plummeting down sharp turns and quick bends. Once you exit The Dragon attraction you pass a few other carnival style rides before finding yourself in Miniland USA. Miniland USA is a collection of incredible Lego structures, entire cities made from the tiny little pieces. They have every major city in the U.S. including some of the country’s most important monuments.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights

Can you believe that Christmas is right around the corner? The holidays creep up on us, but for those of us that are going to visit Disney this season that isn’t such a bad thing. In fact picture after picture of the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights are starting to surface. If you don’t know what that is then you have come to the right place, because I am going to explain. Like me and many other Central Florida residents the Dancing Lights display has become a yearly tradition for the family.

When the display arrived in 2006 it was purely the original display from the Osborne estate. The history behind the Osborne estate is pretty simple; in 1986 a man by the name of Jennings Osborne decorated his house for his daughter’s entertainment with 1000 lights. Over the years the light display got bigger and bigger until the two adjacent properties to the house had to be purchased just to support the accumulation of three million lights by 1993.

Unfortunately the light show at the Osborne estate had to be limited, because the masses of people visiting the site caused to great a disturbance in the middle of the night. So now the great display can be found at Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort. But not only can it be found here the collection of three million lights has expanded and the lights display dances to different music for nearly forty minutes!

If you are going to visit the Hollywood Studios theme park this season then this is a definite plus! With great music, lots and lots of lights plus the occasional hot coco stand I am excited about this Christmas season coming up… even if all the excitement is a little early!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Lion Will Roar Live in Orlando!

Lately, we been thrilled to go to the movie theater and see the new 3-D presentation to the #1 animated movie of all time, Disney's The Lion King. With unforgettable soundtrack from the academy award winning Sir Elton John, songs like "Circle of Life", "I just can't wait to be King!" and "Hakuna Matata" were instant hits. It shows what a timeless movie it is and why Disney is the best at hand-drawn animation!

Next year, relieve the fantasy and the amazing spectacle and the sheer excitement that is "The Lion King" Broadway style. Yes! Broadway style, because the musical is coming to Orlando from April 17th thru May 13, 2012 at select nights and times (check listings) at the incredible venue Bob Carr Theater of Performing Arts.

The musical is the winner of six Tony Awards (which is the "Oscar" equivalent for theater and musicals) including Best Musical. It is the Seventh longest-running show in history!

The last time the show opened in Orlando was in December 2006 and it was a total hit with both the adults and the children. In the musical, Disney has incorporated new songs, including a musical number with Zazu the hornbill bird that serves as the "butler" to Mufasa and later to Simba.

From the opening number "Circle of Life" where many African animals roams the savanna until reaching to "pride rock" where Mufasa presents Simba as his heir to "Hakuna Matata" where Timon (Meerkat) and Pumbaa
(Wathog) teaches Simba the meaning of "No Worries" with a comic panache, then we reached the pinnacle with the romantic number "Can you feel the Love tonight", this and many others will be a delight to the attendees and will make you sing-along with the orchestra and the chorus.

Don't forget to mark it in your calendars for when The Lion King roars the Bob Carr Performing Theater. It will be a spectacular event that only Disney can create and one not to be missed!

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Magical Celebration of the Year!

Disney's Magic Kingdom Theme ParkWhere were you 40 years ago? Were you marrying the love of your life? Having your first born baby? Were you a teenager? Not born yet?

Well, this Saturday October 1st 40-years ago the doors to the most magical place on earth opened! That happen in 1971, and since then, it put on the map Orlando.

Walt Disney World started with one incredible theme park, Magic Kingdom, and has transformed over the years into four theme parks, two water parks and incredibly nifty hotels to stay, and the growth continues as more expansions are being thought to make Walt Disney World Resort a special place to vacationing!

So, for Magic Kingdom’s 40th anniversary celebration, Disney has been extremely top secreted about what they will do to make this important date significant and magical.

As the day approaches, little bit of information are being released. There would be a festive parade that runs at 9:45am going from Main Street Train Station to Cinderella’s Castle. Characters will gather alongside Walt Disney World President Meg Crofton including cast members that had been working for the company since 40 years ago.

A one-day-only commemorative T-shirt will be sold. That with merchandise that is related with the 40th anniversary will be sold, including ear-hats, pins, and balloons and other sought-after collectibles editions things that will be incredibly rare to find!

The park will be open at 9am and will be closing at midnight.

And to have a final goodbye to the day and to this special event, Disney has revamp its “Wishes” fireworks spectacle including “perimeter fireworks usually fired during special, after-hours events”!

We cannot wait to see what this incredible party brings, definitely will be the most magical party on earth, and one that will be talk for years to come!

See you at the most magical place on earth, Magic Kingdom, Saturday October 1st!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The NASCAR grill at Universal

NASCAR Sports Grill OutsideWhile picking up my attraction tickets at the office of Billy Boy’s Discount Tickets I managed to scoop up a coupon for the NASCAR Sports Grille inside Universal CityWalk in Orlando. It was a coupon for $5 off which was valid with $25 food, beverage, or merchandise purchase so you can believe I put the NASCAR Sports Grille on my go-to list. I decided to visit the Sports Grille with my wife after we were done visiting Islands of Adventure. In order to prepare for our feast we made sure our tummies were empty so we knew we can handle anything on the menu.

The Sports Grille is definitely a NASCAR haven. It had plasma screens practically around everywhere you look. If that wasn’t enough it even has a huge plasma wall where they show all the big races or big sports games going on. The Sports Grille was also filled with NASCAR memorabilia around every corner. I really didn’t want to sit on a table so we headed straight to the bar. Lucky for us, we also scooped up loads of 2 for 1 coupons on our visit to Billy Boy’s Discount tickets. Lets just say I really wish I had a taxi coupon too because I definitely had to call one in that day. I decided to go with good old Yuengling (draft, of course) and my wife went straight for the Long Island Iced Tea. I decided I was gunna go big or go home so for my meal I chose the “KING” Ribeye. My wife is a 105 lb health fanatic but her eternal weakness is ribs so she ordered the fall off the bone Rubbin’ is Racin’ BBQ Ribs without thinking twice. The food was so scrumptious that I couldn’t wait to take the next bite. It was like every bite I was taking was beating up my taste buds with flavor. It took us a while to gobble down our feast but we managed to finish everything on our plate (and in our cups).

Since I had the coupons I decided to leave a generous tip (the tip might have been alcohol influenced but who cares?!). I called in a cab and the Mrs. and I went straight home. If any of you folks decide are on City Walk I highly recommend stopping by the NASCAR Sports Grille. The drinks are priced nicely and there is nothing wrong with good food. It has plenty to offer for NASCAR or sports fans alike.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Avatar Land Coming to Disney's Animal Kingdom


Incredible news has been released by the company the mouse build, Walt Disney!

The immersive landscape created by James Cameron in the 2009 movie and top-grossing film of all time will be recreated with a little bit of tweaking by the imagineers at Disney. Avatar is the ultimate blockbuster, and this partnership with Disney seems to spark the visionary cells of this two giants.

As per the reports “Tom Staggs, Disney's chairman of parks and resorts, said the land would be similar in scope to Cars Land, a 12-acre area based on the town of Radiator Springs in Disney/Pixar's "Cars" movies. Cars Land is to open next summer at California Adventure Park in Anaheim.“

James Cameron at first wasn’t too sold out with the idea of partnering with Disney, but then changed his mind. In his words “I quickly realized that their vision for this thing is far beyond what I imagined,” he told reporters. “It was kind of thrilling that they wanted to do a land and really bring the world of Pandora to life“

To tackle in bringing James Cameron’s world into the real-world realm is an undertaken that will require workers in the area, and at the same time with a price tag of approximately $500 million surely have to be an impressive project for Disney.

The theme park that was chosen to be the house of this “land” will be Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Mr. Staggs commented about this “made it a natural thematic fit with Animal Kingdom, which designers always envisioned as including mythical animals in addition to living and extinct ones. “We just felt like Avatar was the perfect and most amazing mythical world we could think about exploring,” Staggs said.

However, this new land wont be available soon, here’s the official response from the leads in Disney “A precise date hasn't been set for completion of the Avatar attractions in Animal Kingdom, but an opening sometime in 2016 could allow Disney to capitalize on a fresh wave of fan interest in the ‘Avatar’ film franchise from the two sequels currently in development. Cameron said the tentative plan is to release the first sequel around Christmas 2014 and the second around Christmas 2015. “The timing seems to work out well in terms of the sequels,” Cameron said. “Really, what we need to resolve is how much of the elements of the second and third films are incorporated into the Avatar land.”

Stay tune as much more information is gather and shared. As the project starts to get from its infancy stage, to its design and its subsequent construction, we’ll show you the progress as it will be a great way to opening the appetite for what the imagineers have in store for us. Definitely will be a great addition to Disney and especially to the Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park! Disney has decided to up-the-ante and wake up to the knowledge that in order to maintain their status as the leader, Disney has to keep creating state-of-the-art and immersive lands that will entice crowds to visit their theme parks!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Halloween Horror Nights Experience

Halloween Horror Nights XXEveryone is scared of something and in my case that something is the dark. You can only imagine how I felt when my wife and I decided to go to Halloween Horror Nights 2010. To be honest, I refused to go no matter how my wife was trying to convince me. My good old buddy Rafael heard about my little dispute with my wife and he did what any good friend would do. He made fun of me. He even started insulting me and calling me names that didn’t make much sense to me to this day. For example, he said I was a ‘scurdy cat just like Mayflower’ and that if I don’t go to Halloween Horror Nights I would no longer have a ‘manhood’. I really didn’t understand more than half of his rambling but any insult from Rafael is a huge insult in my book so you can bet I took my behind to Halloween Horror Nights that year.

I arrived to Universal Studios with a good attitude and promised myself I wouldn’t make myself look my bad in front of my wife. I somehow ended in an area called Saws n’ Steam and didn’t think much of it at first. That was until I was running for my life when a psycho decided to chase me with a chainsaw! My wife was trying to insure me the chainsaw maniac wouldn’t hurt me but I’m Hispanic and my people don’t being chased down by any machine wielding freak. I wanted to go home after that but my wife warned me she would be very upset if we have to leave early. I don’t know about you folks but in my opinion there is nothing scarier than an angry woman. I decided to take my chances with the demented Universal Studios. My wife wanted to go to a haunted house so we made our way to the pleasantly named Catacombs: Black Death Rising. This is where my ‘manhood’ was being put to the test. The skulls and bones placed everywhere was already make me panic but at soon as the sick infested zombie looking creatures came out my day at Halloween Horror Nights was over. I left the entire premises and went straight home. My wife stayed behind with a friend who was also there as well and it didn’t take her long to realize that I left her at Universal Studios. When she got home, let’s just say that Halloween Horror Night was not over.

Now it is 2011 and my wife has warned me that we WILL go to Halloween Horror Nights this year and we will only leave when she says so. YIKES! Well I have done my research before doomsday draws near and to be honest it’s not looking good for me this Halloween Horror Nights. The theme this year will be revolved around Lady Luck and one of their mottos is ‘Nobody beats the house’. Sounds like good chances to me. With Scare Zones with names like Canyon of Dark Souls, Grown Evil, and Nightmaze you can bet I’m counting the days before I go to Halloween Horror Nights this year. The Haunted Houses also have attractive names like The Thing, Nightingales Blood Prey, and The Forsaken. Unfortunately for me I only named a few of the attractions that will be present this year and my wife has already made it clear that we will visit every single Scare Zone and Haunted House this year. If not, she said she will show me what a chainsaw psycho really looks like. I sure know how to pick the women huh?

Monday, September 19, 2011

Fantasy Land Expansion Update

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train CoasterWe have been keeping a close eye on the expansion of Fantasy Land at Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park. They have slowly been releasing information and images/concept art showcasing the new rides and entertainment that is going in. But recently they just released probably the biggest addition to the list, a fly through video of the addition to the park.

This means we get a view of all the new stuff they have planned. Long story short instead of just having a list on paper we can now put the rides in their places and get a better view of how things are going to change. In fact when I visited the park a couple months back you could already see where they were getting down to business and starting construction.

In addition to this new fly through video there was also a computer generated video of what the new Snow White Mine Train Coaster is going to be. I gotta tell you I am really excited about these new additions, and the time till their arrival just keeps getting closer and closer. I can tell you right now that I will definitely be visiting the theme park when the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Coaster opens.

This new expansion is what the Magic Kingdom really needs. For us Disney enthusiasts some new content is in order and all these new additions are just what we are looking for. I look forward to visiting the rides as the open one by one in the next year!

Friday, September 9, 2011

All New Show at Busch Gardens!

Iceploration
Get ready for one spectacular show that its being cooked at Busch Gardens in Tampa (Florida)!

The show will feature “a cast of 20 brings to life an all new adventure filled with world-class skaters, amazing aerial performances, master puppetry and live animal stars, with shows daily in the Moroccan Palace.”

Tony Award-winning designer Gregg Barnes have confectioned the costumes that will be used at the show. These brings awe-inspiring animals to life.

The story itself will be a hit with children and adults alike. It will be a 30-minute stravaganza will tell the story of a digital-savvy preteen that is proud to say that technology has made his generation more connected to the world; however, his grandfather – an old world explorer – takes him on an adventure around the world and shows him that he is more disconnected than he realizes.

The adventure takes them to settings like the African Serengeti, Great Barrier Reef, the Arctic and the Amazon Rainforest. All will immerse the guests in a multi-sensory performance full of color and vivid music and incredible grand scale stage that has that Broadway feel to it.

And the finale, promises to be an inspiring one. For the creators have created a signature song called “Meet the World”!

The show will have its first show on February 2nd 2012. the performances are included with any daily park admission or annual pass.

Certainly, we cannot wait for this show to come to Busch Gardens Tampa. Not only will have world renowned roller-coasters and other attractions, but starting February 2nd 2012, it will have a Broadway-like show that looks to be a delight to children and adults alike!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Disney Quest

Pirates of the Caribbean, Battle for Buccaneer GoldSo my friends came into town for the weekend but planned to only stay until dinner. So they had a total of about ten hours to hang out with us and they wanted to do something fun in the Orlando area. Now ten hours really isn’t enough to get in the car and get to the Disney theme park, since a theme park takes a full day and they wanted to take us out to eat. So we decided we would head over to one of my favorite places, Disney Quest.

Disney Quest is a five story arcade with a bunch of awesome rides that get the whole family involved. This isn’t the kind of arcade where you walk up to a machine and start playing pong… which they probably have here. But my point is that the place is absolutely filled with interactive games. Unlike the Disney theme parks where you get on a ride and experience a world that they imagined, you get to actually interact with a world they created.

For instance, my favorite ride at Disney Quest is the Pirates of the Caribbean, Battle for Buccaneer Gold experience they have. You get 3D glasses and then you are ushered into a room with a screen that circles the entire room. In the center of the room is a ship that actually rocks back and forth when you walk across it. Around the edges of the boat or ship are cannons. You have a navigator that pilots and six gunners to fend off other pirates. Then you navigate around the ocean and capture gold from all kinds of boats, fortresses and hidden islands. It’s all great fun, and the best part is you have to work as a team to get a high score.

There are a variety of other great games at Disney Quest, from dinosaurs to flying carpets, aliens to making your own roller coaster, even racing nine other guests on the Daytona speedway! Disney Quest is a great experience, and it takes only about a half a day to complete… although staying for the whole day is just as fun! My guests loved it, and we all had a good time together.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Disney's Halloween Part Two

Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween PartyFirst, it is the only time of the year where kids can dress up in their favorite costume and parade around the park (only children are allowed to dressed up). To make it extra special, Disney has included the help of the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique in Cinderella Castle where girls can be dressed as their favorite princess or the boys as princes, and there's also A Pirate's League in Adventureland where boys and girls can dressed as Pirates or as Jack Sparrow (uh-Hum, Captain Jack Sparrow!).

Another awesome entertainment that only Disney does with so much flair is their Parades. Disney has named the parade that runs during the party "Mickey's Boo-to-You Halloween Parade", besides showing the usual Disney characters; it will be headed by the Headless Horseman! Of course nothing will be complete unless there's fireworks, and definitely nobody does it better than Disney! The Happy HalloWishes is a spectacular show where Disney Villains go "trick-or-treating" in the sky.

Between the music, the shows, and the Disney characters with their own "Halloween party" look, will immerse guest into the festivities and definitely will be a super delight for the younglings or the young-at-heart. plus, the kids will be doing trick or treating while being surrounded by Disney characters and in the most magical of all places, Magic Kingdom, so what more can be asked for!

Do not missed this opportunity of a lifetime, to enjoy this amazing party hosted by the most famous mouse of all, Mickey, in his Not-So-Scary Halloween Party!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Disney's Halloween Part One

Disney's Not So Scary Halloween PartyChildren across the globe and across the nation await the month of October. During this month many countries celebrate what many calls: All Saint's Day, Noche de Brujas/Dia das Bruxas (Spanish and Portuguese for Night of the Witches), Yue Lan (Chinese for Festival of the Hungry Ghosts); something interesting is that the Norfolk islands doesn't celebrate Christmas but they do celebrate the second Tuesday of December the party that in North America receives the name of Halloween.

In this party children dresses up and utter the familiar "Trick or Treat!" phrase in which the house-holder gives many candies to the kids, if not kids will be playing tricks! Another staple of this party is that many houses are decorated with effigies of ghosts or witches or cemetery with headstones baring interesting and often funny quotes. this has created an industry that during this month spends approximately $6.9 billion annually!

This hasn’t escape the sights of one of the biggest brands for family entertainment, Walt Disney World. In Magic Kingdom, the number one theme park visited in the world, Disney has its special event that celebrate this party. they have called it "Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party"!

This year, like in many past ones, the park has added touches here and there to make the entire party be extra special and one treat of a lifetime for the many who will enjoy this annual event. The event will take place between Tuesday September 13th - Tuesday November 1st on selected nights.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Cheetah Hunt

Never saw it coming ..

You can't escape ..

A new breed of speed killers ..

She lives for the hunt ..

One of the fastest predators on land ..


Now you can join the hunt as Busch celebrates a centuries old ritual of the Cheetah Hunt. Just inches from wild animals, brave the first of its kind attraction that will launch you up to 60 mph. Venture aboard the high-speed coaster designed for the hunt.

Hang on for this white-knuckled ride as your educated at the crossroads of cultures. and learn firsthand why the Cheetah is the most dangerous predators afoot.

Aboard this machine, get the adranline rush of a lifetime as you enjoy a new vantage point behind three differnet launch stages.

Majestic, but ferocious and shrewd, climb aboard nature's fastest most agile predator as you race across the Serengeti plains.

Climb above the African landscape, dive some 130 feet to an underground trench, take a deep breath for the over-banked turns, be exhilerated in the Air Time parabolas, and hold ;your breath for the Heartline roll inversion.

An amazing 4,429 foot track of mind-numbing, jaw-dropping, adrenaline-pumping, hair-raising, 4G, action-packed thrills for an eternal 3 1/2 minutes.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Typhoon Lagoon

What better way to spend the dog days of summer than to go to one of my favorite water parks!Typhoon Lagoon has everything for the entire family. No matter the ages or if you are a thrill-seeker, this water park is an awesome way to refresh yourself.

Let me start by pointing out that this has been the most visited water park in the world. This past year, 2,038,000 visitors enjoy this amazing water park!

It has 56-acres of fun areas to really dip in the water. It doesn’t matter what you are looking for in terms of cooling from the summer heat, or just contemplating reading your book-of-the-day, or just plain and simply you wanna relax, this park offers everything in spade.

Let’s see, for the relaxing crowd, there’s the Castaway Creek. This lazy river runs along the outer rims of the park (you can compare it to the little train that runs around magic kingdom). This river of 2100-foot in length will relax you in its gentle waters. Circling the park while passing thru caves, grottos, waterfalls, and sections with a rainforest look will certainly be a delight to everyone.

For the “I just wanna read my book” or the “I wanna feel like I am at the beach”, there’s the centerpiece to this water park, and also many people’s favorite area! A 109,000-square foot area called Surf Pool. It holds 3-million gallons of water. But the most unique thing about it is that it feels like if you are in a secluded island. Waves crashing by every 30min, it definitely feels as if you were at the sea, you’ll be checking just to see that you are really in a pool. And those who will stay at the shores, there’s sandy “beaches” around to just bath in the sun rays and toning down your bronze tan!

For those thrill-seekers in the family, there’s the Mayday Falls, which happens to be the longest slide in the park, passing thru caves and waterfalls. Also, Humunga Kowabunga shoots you down at triple speed slide to a splashing end! But if that is not enough, consider this, Crush ‘n Gusher is the equivalent of a roller-coaster or should I say water-coaster, making uphill and drops that will make you scream of delight! What about an encounter with sharks and tropical fishes in a coral-reef like environment with a sunken tanker that is also an observation deck area? That is exactly what Shark Reef is, so don’t let the opportunity pass you by!

Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon hasn’t forgotten about the little ones. Ketchakiddee Creek has ten different playful areas that include slides, floating boats, waterfalls, and squirting animals. A small sandy beach is also in this area! Definitely made for the little ones in the family!

The “Cinderella Castle” of this water park is Mount Mayday, which raises the Miss Tilly boat 95-feet at the top. And that little horn you hear will tell you that a tidal wave of fun is about to come your way!

Don’t forget to enjoy the summer days in this amazing water park. Typhoon Lagoon is the place; don’t go from Orlando without visiting it!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Pirates Dinner Adventure New Show!

The food at Pirates Dinner AdventureSo not a lot of information about this is out yet, but rumor has it that the Pirates Dinner Adventure in the Orlando area is changing their show! Now I have taken the kids to this great dinner show in the past, and we always enjoyed. So, I can’t wait to see what the newest additions or changes are! Pirates Dinner Adventure is one of the few shows in the area that really gets the kids involved.

In fact I can’t tell you how many times my kids have spent their week pretending to be pirates after spend a night at the show. The rumors were verified for me when I visited their website. Their show page says “Now in celebration of our fifteenth year anniversary in Orlando we’ve brought you a brand new show – The Curse of Poseidon’s Treasure!” This is exciting; I have to get the kids together for another visit!

What sets the Pirates Dinner Show aside from the other shows in the area is stage… or ocean? Let me explain. In the center of the room is a massive 300,000 gallon pool, the perfect ocean for this high seas adventure. In the center of the pool is one of the biggest ships I have ever seen, the perfect stage for awesome sword fights and action! But what people want to really know is whether or not the food is good. Well you can rest assured that you will not be disappointed. We really like the food here; they serve gourmet chicken and pork as well as all that great American food for the kids!

If you are looking for a dinner show to visit in the Central Florida area then this is a great choice. If you get there before me you have to tell me how good the new show is. I plan on getting down there soon and seeing The Curse of Poseidon’s Treasure!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Scorpion at Busch Gardens

The Scorpion at Busch GardensSo I was recently reading about a new roller coaster that was just put up over seas when I read that its one of three of its kind. So naturally they listed where the other ones were located and it just so happens that one of the roller coasters was in Tampa at the Busch Gardens theme park. The coaster is the Scorpion, and even though I can’t thoroughly explain what sets it aside from other roller coasters I just had to go back and try it.

The Scorpion has this really unique design between the cart and the track that keep it from shaking. Very few people realize that a cart shakes as you go down the track because their often thinking about the giant loops coming up or the inversions they just whipped through. So when it comes to how smooth a coaster is it usually doesn’t end up at the top of someone’s list. But since it isn’t like I ride a roller coaster every day I had to do a little experiment.

Since Busch Gardens is home to over twelve separate roller coasters I decided I would take the family and enjoy a day at the park. At the end of the day, after riding all the other roller coasters, we would go on the Scorpion. By that time I would be able to tell the difference and compare. So we road both the Gwazi coasters, the Kumba, the Montu, the SheiKra and even the new Cheetah Hunt… which was awesome! Finally at the end of the day we headed over the Scorpion, which had a very short line. I noticed almost instantly as we rounded the first bend the difference. You have to pay attention the Scorpion feels like riding a wave, it is smooth and sleek!

So my little experiment got me a full day of roller coasters at the theme park. If it wasn’t for these discounted tickets we wouldn’t be able to visit the parks as often as we do! Even though Busch Gardens is in Tampa and about an hour away from the Orlando area it’s a definite investment. Then you can tell me what you think of the Scorpion!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Tiki Room Reopening!

Walt Disney in the Tiki room when it first opened.If any of you have been to the Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort and went to the Tiki Room to see some talking birds you know that this is a big deal. The Tiki room as been close for years now because it was falling apart. Every once and awhile it would reopen for a short time after receiving some fixes, before it would close again for remodeling. In fact the name of the show even changed at once to the “Enchanted Tiki Room – Under New Management.” I guess that’s just Disney’s sense of humor.

Anyway it looks like it is opened for good now, and the show has totally changed! It used to feature a ton of talking birds, but the main characters were Lago from Aladdin and Zazu from the Lion King. Now they brought over a theme from Disney Land in California, a place I have never been. So, this whole thing is going to be an entirely new experience for me!

The new characters are four birds that are apparently a hit over in California. The birds are Jose, Fritz, Miachael and Pierre. These four parrots are supposed to be a collage of humor and fun, and with over 200 birds to sing along with them I am really excited. The new ride is going to be named Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, so it’s only dropping the “Under new Management” part. I am really looking forward to the new song addition to the show called “Lets All Sing Like the Birdies Sing.”

I am going to have to grab the kids some weekend and head out there. I might wait a little while because the ride is a theatre style “show.” So after the first few weeks I think I can avoid the large crowds. This is a nice little treat before they add the other additions to the Magic Kingdom Theme Park!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Wild Florida Airboat Tours

An alligator on our tour!So my parents visited this week and the first thing they wanted to do was go see the alligators. We offered to take them to Gatorland but they were more interested in seeing them in the wild. So we went down to the lake front at night with a flashlight and looked around for some eyes. The only thing we found was a duck and mosquitoes. So we decided we would go on an airboat tour to ensure they got to see their Florida gator before they left.

We decided to go with Wild Florida for the airboat tour, since we had never been on this tour before. It’s the first time I have seen Cypress Lake before, so it was kind of a treat for me as well. If you don’t know what an airboat is let me explain. It’s this big, flat boat that has a massive fan on the back. Because it has no propeller in the water so it won’t get tangled in the weeds. It is the preferred method of getting around the thickly brushed Florida lakes. The best part is you can fit a ton of people on these things; some of them have room for fifteen or twenty.

Anyway, Wild Florida was great! These guys knew just where to look for the alligators. I am sure they know these alligators on a personal level… I mean they take visitors out to see them every day. But, the way these guys navigate the weeds is just awesome, they are definitely skilled. Best of all the guide answered all my fathers questions that I was probably supposed to know… after living here for so long.

If you want to tour the lakes this is the best place to go. I have been on a bunch of airboat tours and never seen a guide stop the boat so quickly to show us a snake any other passenger would have missed. Plus they had a really cool aviary that my mother was fond of!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Kennedy Space Center

Kennedy Space CenterSo it has been awhile since I visited the Kennedy Space Center. In fact I was trying to figure it out last week and I came to the conclusion that it had been almost five or six years. So with the great rates on line I decided to go. I mean it’s really inexpensive and last I remember it was really great. Plus I have been hearing a lot of good feedback about all the updates to the Space Center I was kind of excited.

Now the last time I visited I got to be honest with you, I really enjoyed all the exhibits and the rockets they showcased but it seemed like there was a thick layer of dust over everything I found. But this time it was totally different. I don’t know if they hired new staff or if they stepped up there game, but the place was full of new stuff and everything seemed brand new!

From the massive rocket shuttles to recent pieces of debris from the unfortunate Challenger incident, this place has everything. One of the things that interested me most was the full exhibit on the new James Webb Space Telescope, something planned to be launched in 2018. The exhibits here are just limitless; I mean there is interesting fact after interesting fact.

The truth is I could sit here for days telling you about what I saw, there is just so much. If you plan on visiting Kennedy Space Center while in Orlando… which you should, look for a tour. I really wish someone was guiding me the entire time I was there, especially someone who could answer my questions.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Fantasy Land Hidden Concept Art

An early concept art of Fantasy LandSo if you are a fan of the Magic Kingdom theme park or if you have visited in the last couple of years you know that they are planning a huge expansion of the Fantasyland section of the park. They are planning to add rides and attractions that will nearly double the size of Fantasyland as we know it. Rumor has it that the new rides and attractions are going to utilized the massive courtyard to Cinderella’s Castle that is currently only occupied by a large field of grass. A large field of grass that never gets used except for special events.

Anyway this would probably be old news to you… since they have been talking about it since early 2010. In fact there are small sections of the park where you can already see them making preparations for the big renovation project. But something recently just came out in a neighboring theme park that secretly slipped under the radar. I’m not sure how long it has been there or if Disney was the one to “leak” the information, but there has been a large addition to one of the minor attractions at the Hollywood Studios theme park.

Hollywood Studios has what most would call a museum of Walt Disney’s dreams, all pieced together in a time line. It’s located in the back of the park and is known as “One Man’s Dream.” Well apparently in the last few weeks they added a whole new exhibit over night featuring all the compiled information and concept art on the new and upcoming Fantasy Land. But not only that, they went and added a whole new set of concept art that shows rides and attractions that were previously only known by name. They even have a monitor showing three dimensional images of what their construction efforts are going to look like!

It is like an in depth look or even a revealing of the new rides that will be coming out. It is really exciting, I can’t wait to get over to Hollywood Studios and check it out! I wonder why they didn’t make a big deal about this; it seems like something we would want to know!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Discovery Cove's Dolphin Swim

Discovery Cove's Dolphin SwimSo I have visited SeaWorld twice in the last few months and every time I went I kept thinking about the Discovery Cove right next door. Believe it or not with all the time I have lived here I have never been there. The big deal with Discovery Cove is that you get to swim with bottle nosed dolphins, something I was pretty excited about when I decided me and my wife should go. Now the thing about getting discounted tickets to Discovery Cove is that you have to do it in advance, because they only let so many people into the water on certain dates. Otherwise there would be five hundred people in the water and only three dolphins.

So we got up bright and early and drove out to Discovery Cove for our big day. Now the dolphin swim is a half hour experience, so there is more to do at the park when you are done. But for this blog, I am going to tell you about the dolphins. When you first arrive they fit you a wet suit, because the water is freezing cold and trust me, you want the wet suit. If you didn’t bring a wetsuit they let you buy one from the gift shop, which probably costs more than I make in a year.

Anyway once you get out to the water they instruct you on what you can and can’t do. Then you wade into the water and they call the dolphins over. You get to spend some time rubbing them and touching them before they tell you that you can swim out further. From there the trainers help you interact with the dolphins while in the water. Probably the coolest part is when they let you grab hold of a dolphin’s dorsal fin for a ride back to shore. Just a neat little trick they taught the animals.

At the end we bought a picture of us with the dolphins, just something to prove we had been in the water with them. The Dolphin Swim is definitely something I would suggest for people visiting the area. It’s a great vacation experience; I would definitely do it again if I had the chance.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot Part Two

International Food and Wine Festival at EpcotThis year promises to be a banner year. Let me give you a spoon taste of what’s next to come: Disney has added three more places into the venues around the World Showcase Lagoon. And, the “old” participant countries are changing their menus to showcase delicacies only found on their land.

For example, look at this “new” places:

Portugal -> it will offer a wine bar and also calamari salad with olives and smoked paprika…if that doesn’t sound yummy, you don’t know what you’ll be missing!

The Caribbean -> a plate that is synonymous to comfort food to the Hispanics, Ropa Vieja or many called it carne mechada (shredded meat) over rice, jerk spiced chicken drumstick…and who wouldn’t want to join it with a Frozen Rock Coconut Mojito (I heard that! I can feel your mouth is just waiting for this one!). this and many of the drinks in this stand will be sponsored by Bacardi, so you know is going to be delicious!



Hawai’i -> it will offer a plate that I am waiting to taste that is called tuna poke (poe-kay) with seaweed and kalua pork sliders (kalua is a bbq method used to cook the pork in the big island). And a drink to boot is this one, Seven Tiki Mai Tai, oh lordy lord just the thought of savoring a sip of this drink makes my mouth tickling with awesomeness!

And you cannot go wrong with some “old” favorites like going to Mexico in La Cava Tequila Bar, which offers one of my favorite sets which is the tequila tasting tray that brings like 6-different tequilas, it is to die for!

I tell you, cant wait to come with my friends and family to this incredible exposure of culture, culinary delicacies, and party-like atmosphere. This promises to be one festival not to be missed! Don’t forget is in Epcot in Disney between September and November. The international food and wine festival.

Fun Facts about Disney World


Perhaps it's not such a small world after all

A sprawling resort that covers some 40 square miles or 25,000 acres, if you were to stretch Disney World out, it would be the same size as California.

But who would have ever guested that Disney was the largest employer boasting over 62,000 cast members throughout the United States! Can can you imagine the task of washing all of the cast members outfits?

If you were to wash one load a day for the next 50 years, it still would not be equivalent to the number of garments washed each day. On an average day, Walt Disney's Laundry Matt washes in the order of 285,000 pounds each day! That's a lot of Suds.

A place where fans are encourage to dream, and a place where dreams really do come true, many of these magical moments are being captured on film each day. As a matter of fact, some 100,000 photos of guests are taken each day at Walt Disney World Resorts.

Hungry? Disney fans have a ferocious appetite. Imagine, Disney enthusiasts put away over 9 million pounds of French Fries including 10 million hamburgers a year, even Wimpy has nothing over that crowd!

Not to many Disney adherents would have imagined that the castle that shimmers each Christmas, the center of wishes fireworks, and the centerpiece attraction for one of the most famous princesses, was really made out of fiberglass.

Next time you take Expedition Everest's to come face to face with the world's famous Yeti, remember that it would take the force of a 747 jet liner to moves his arm while you are haplessly riding up a 200 ft incline on the tallest attraction at Walt Disney World Resort.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot Part One

International Food and Wine FestivalI love food. When I was little, my sister and I used to watch my mom prepare the food in the house. The love she put in every plate and the amazing expertise which she poured in the ingredients without looking at a recipe, just by eye-measuring.

The love affair has grown to include incredible delicious treats from around the world. So, it is not surprisingly that one of my favorite times of the year is between September to November in which Disney throws its annual Food and Wine Festival, this year marking its 16th anniversary!

I’ve attended several of this festival, year in year out, pardon for using the lingo but it’s mouth-watering! This year the festival the dates are September 30th thru November 13th.

In the years since I been a regular to this event, I tasted food from Argentina, Australia, Greece, Mexico, Brazil, Ireland, South Africa, and Spain. I keep coming because every year the chefs and the different food marketplace raise the bar, not only on taste but also on countries. Certainly the title for this year’s festival touches my love affair of food and traveling, “A Passport to a World of Flavors.”

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Halloween Horror Nights Announcement

Halloween Horror Nights
I am not a major horror fan. When I was younger, I had my issues with horror movies, so I am very choosy. I can definitely count with two hands the horror movies I’ve seen. But one that stood out for me is “The Thing”, which I heard is getting its Hollywood remake this October. My personal way to rate if the movie is horrifically good is for the nights of unsettled sleep I have, (sounds funny, but its true!)

The images from this movie come in a rapid-pace one after the other. From the Arctic expedition going into a desolated scientific lab, to the dog in the cage, the alien who can get into all breathing thing, to the final confrontation…scary thing as hell! Three days of nights where I thought “the thing” will get into my skin and transformed me into a monster! Sounds hilarious now, but for a 10 year old you can bet your spider-man undies that it was darn scary!

Now back to balmy hot Florida 2011, 38 year old me is thrill with the idea of seeing the movie again. After a few impressive horror movies like the Saw series, to “I spit on your grave” to Cesar Romero’s Zombie movies, I am really wanna see what the remake will bring from the original.

However, since the movie is distributed by Universal, what better way to tie-in and add advertisement than to include as a major component of its Universal Studios Florida incredibly awesome Halloween Horror Nights in its 21st edition.

Jim Timon, senior vice-president of Entertainment at Universal Orlando says:
“Having recreated well known horror films in the past, the same level of attention to detail has gone into creating a house experience that will completely immerse guests into the storyline and environment of ‘The Thing,”

And the press release says as follow:

“The new haunted house will offer guests an unprecedented first-hand preview of the much-anticipated thriller in advance of its October 14 release. Guests will find themselves in a series of face-to-face encounters with “The Thing,” an alien creature that can transform itself into an exact replica of any living being. “The Thing” haunted house will recreate the spine-chilling suspense from the film, confronting guests with the paranoia and fear that comes from being trapped inside the film’s Antarctic Thule station.“

Well, for you hordes of horror fans and adrenaline junkies, here’s something to look for during September 23rd to October 31st. with the tag “Luck will run out” certainly many of you will roll the dice for this incredible experience that only Universal Studios Florida’s often replicated never duplicated Halloween’s Horror Nights can bring!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Re-imagined Pleasure Island

The future of Pleasure Island!
Here’s some news that certainly will really be awesome for the Bowling and Billiards enthusiasts. From the hot presses of Disney comes this incredible news:

“This fall, construction will begin on Splitsville, a 50,000-square-foot upscale entertainment center that combines bowling with billiards, dining, music and nightlife. To make way for this experience, RIDEMAKERZ, currently located on the West Side, will move to the Marketplace.”

This is awesome. You can do a night of dinner, movie and a play of either pool or bowling with your friends or loved one! Make it the perfect date! Another awesome information is this tidbit:

“Over on Pleasure Island, we’ve completed removing some of the buildings that aren’t part of our future plans. During the course of this site work, we identified opportunities to further refine our master plan and are pausing to evaluate them. What does this mean for you? While we’re moving quickly, it will admittedly cause a delay in construction. But we’re willing to bet that any delay will be worth the wait once we’re able to share details about the exciting work we’ve been doing.”

I can’t wait until the new and re-imagined Pleasure Island will be open…definitely this is what we been waiting for… not only awesome dining experiences, but also excellent entertainment district that will be a delight for the entire family! They even released the new name for Please Island, its going to be “Hyperion Wharf!”

You can see how Disney is inventively up-the-ante from the news of Universal Orlando’s mini-golf!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Sea World Orlando

Sea World OrlandoNow a few months back I wrote a blog about visiting Sea World on an afternoon to ride the roller coasters. But the short time I was there didn’t offer me much opportunity to see all the shows at the park, and to tell you the truth that’s probably the best part about the theme park. Most theme parks have shows that feature two or three people acting out a show, combined with special effects and audience participation you leave smiling. But here at Sea World the shows are incredible; I mean you leave in total awe.

The first show you absolutely need to go see is inside the massive stadium, something you can’t possibly miss. The name of the show has changed over the years, but it is currently called “One Ocean” and is a must see for anyone visiting the park. This great show is where you will find the popular Shamu doing incredible stunts. It always surprises me how high these massive killer whales can jump. The most amazing of stunts you will see though is when a trainer rides the nose of a killer whale that swims to the bottom of the massive pool, and then heads straight for the surface launching the trainer straight into the air. I swear they must fly five stories high!

Another great show at the park is Clyde and Seamore take Pirate Island. Most of the shows at the theme park showcase the animal’s physical abilities, but here you get to see some of their intelligence. These incredible animals will have you laughing the entire time; at least they have me laughing the entire time. It is definitely a comedy, with great jokes and comical pirates you just have to go see it while you are here.

Finally there is Sea World’s newest addition to the theme park, something I got to see for the first time. It combines incredible stunts by dolphins with incredible acrobatics by Sea World trainers. With music and special effects including flying characters and a storyline that follows the dream of a young girl this is really one show I have to suggest for you. I raise my cup to you Sea World, this was a great addition.

There are more shows and attractions at Sea World, I just told you about a few. So if you are planning a trip to Sea World I haven’t spoiled everything. But in my opinion these are three shows you absolutely have to go see if you visit!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Blue Man Group

Blue Man GroupNow I have been to Blue Man Group before, but I enjoyed it so much it was high time I took my family to see it! So I purchased all four tickets from GreatOrlandoDiscounts, would you believe they are almost twenty dollars cheaper than at the theme park? So off we set to see the show down at City Walk.

It really surprised me how much new content there was; I mean it felt like a whole new show to me. It opens with the three blue men coming on stage, no big surprise there, but then they launched into some hilarious comedic acts that I have never seen before. They had me laughing so hard I could barely breathe in no time at all. It amazes me how funny they can be without any of them speaking.

Then they started doing tricks, one of them painted a spinning canvas, and then he sets it on a podium and puts a price under it. At first he places a 10$ sign under it, then he puts a 100$ sign before finally stopping at 10,000$.

They even called one of my family up on stage. They sat her down at a table and began to eat Twinkies with her, then they spewed the food all over the table out of little holes on their shoulder. A trick I am still trying to figure out! I couldn’t help but laugh the entire time; it was so sudden and unexpected.

Blue Man Group is definitely my favorite show; I haven’t even given you a glimpse of the hilarity and comedy in the show, not the mention all the really awesome music, light shows and even a toilet paper… experience? Its something you gotta do if you are on vacation, and even more if you live in Central Florida!