Holiday Season at Universal Orlando Resort Florida

Universal Orlando Tickets

Universal Orlando Tickets

Experience one-of-a-kind holiday excitement the whole family can enjoy at Universal Orlando® Resort! It’s the only place where you can catch the music and festivities of Grinchmas™, as Seuss Landing™ in Universal’s Islands of Adventure® is transformed into a wintry wonderland. You won’t want to miss the heartwarming live version of “How The Grinch Stole Christmas”, the Wonky Tree Lot, strolling Whos, and a chance to get your picture taken with the mean green one himself.

Right next door, the 10th Anniversary edition of the Macy’s Holiday Parade™ takes to the streets of Universal Studios® with colorful balloon and floats direct from New York City, marching bands, clowns, and an appearance by Santa Claus. You can explore the Holiday Village bustling with unique gifts, delicious treats, and crafts for the kids. Then sing along with your favorite holiday songs performed live on stage every night.

Plus, at both parks you’ll experience the action and thrills of all your favorite rides and attractions, from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ and The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man® to Shrek 4-D™ and the Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit® coaster. It’s can’t-miss holiday fun and entertainment for every member of the family —and it’s only at Universal Orlando Resort!

Petty Holdings Adds Exotic Driving Experience

Richard Petty Experience

Richard Petty Experience

The Exotics Course at Walt Disney World® Speedway will be new home to “supercars”
(November 9, 2011) Combine some of the world’s finest automobiles with a track specifically designed for drivers to safely experience their awe-inspiring acceleration, speed and handling and you have “Exotic Driving Experience”, the latest offering from Petty Holdings.

Best known as owner and operator of Richard Petty Driving Experience, the worldwide leader in the stock car ride and drive business, Petty Holdings has applied its expertise in delivering safe, accessible, exciting automotive entertainment to develop an experience allowing anyone with a driver’s license the opportunity to get behind the wheel of a “supercar” – a rarified class of automobile.

Exotic Driving Experience will feature supercars by Ferrari, Lamborghini, Audi, and Porsche. Future plans include the addition of other exotic models, as well.

It will officially begin on January 16, 2012.

“This exotics business is the most significant new offering from our company since the creation of Richard Petty Driving Experience in 1994″ said Brian Flynn, Petty Holdings Chief Executive Officer. “This was a strategic decision intended to expand our customer base by diversifying our experiential offerings.”

Plans call for Exotic Driving Experience to operate approximately 150 days annually on The Exotics Course at Walt Disney World Speedway, a new track configuration (see below) at the motorsports complex located on the grounds of the world-famous theme park.

Be Petty Disney

Be Petty Disney

Driving Experiences will start at $189 for six laps around the circuit. Thrill Rides with a professional driver at the wheel will be available for $99.

The Exotics Course at Walt Disney World Speedway®
Built in 1994, the one-mile oval at Walt Disney World Speedway® has been home to Indy Racing League (IRL), NASCAR Truck series and United States Auto Club (USAC) sanctioned races. Since 2000, it has been operated year-round exclusively by Richard Petty Driving Experience, which has seen more than 250,000 people drive or ride in one of its NASCAR race cars.

Petty Holdings recently completed an interior road course-style section at the track, specifically for Exotic Driving Experience, which features a series of quick, challenging right and left-hand turns, known as “switch backs.” Complete with barriers and rumble strips, this section replaces the frontstretch of the oval when the supercars are on track and, together with the backstretch, comprises another one-mile layout which has been named The Exotics Course at Walt Disney World Speedway®.

“We needed a circuit that would allow customers to really get a sense of what these incredible cars are capable of” said Rick Fedrizzi, President and Chief Operating Officer, who designed the new interior section. “Drivers can rapidly accelerate to high speeds on the backstretch of the oval and, when they come into the interior section, feel the incredible braking and handling characteristics of whichever exotic they’ve selected.”

“It is an absolute blast to drive this course in any one of these cars,” Fedrizzi said.

About Petty Holdings:

Petty Holdings, LLC owns Richard Petty Driving Experience, the worldwide leader in NASCAR-style stock car drive and ride entertainment, which operated at 25 race tracks in the United States and Canada in 2011. It markets other Petty and Richard Petty branded and licensed ventures including Petty Safe Driving and Richard Petty’s Fantasy Racing Camp. It also provides motorsports support services to the commercial and film industries, mobile marketing event services and designs and executes ride and drive events for automobile manufacturers

Headquartered in Concord, NC, Petty Holdings is a portfolio company of BV Investment Partners, a leading middle-market private equity firm, investing in the information and business services, communications, and media sectors.

Win a Copy of “Turtle: The Incredible Journey” Available on DVD November 15

The award-winning film “Turtle: The Incredible Journey” from SeaWorld Pictures will be available on DVD, Blu-ray and Video-On-Demand on Tuesday, November 15.  In celebration of the movie’s release, we will give SeaWorld Orlando Facebook fans a chance to win a free DVD copy of the movie starting Tuesday, November 15 thru Friday, November 18.  Check the SeaWorld Orlando Facebook fan page each morning at 9:30 a.m. EST for the daily trivia question and email your answer to swf.pr@seaworld.com where you will automatically be entered into the daily drawing. Each day at 5 p.m. EST we will announce 3 lucky winners to receive a free DVD copy of “Turtle: The Incredible Journey.”

Turtle: The Incredible Journey – Trailer from Save Our Seas Foundation on Vimeo.


“Turtle: The Incredible Journey” is the critically-praised, award-winning film from director Nick Stringer (“National Geographic Explorer”) that has enchanted and enthralled audiences worldwide.  The spectacular adventure of a loggerhead turtle is one of nature’s greatest journeys. From the moment a young hatchling turtle emerges from her nest buried in the sand, until she returns 25 years later to the same beach as a pregnant adult, this film presents an up-close look at the exciting and harrowing trek that takes many loggerheads completely around the Atlantic Ocean.  It’s a remarkable story about a threatened species and an amazing odyssey you won’t want to miss.

Good Luck!

UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT FAMILY TRAVEL TIPS

Universal Studios Tickets

Tips for your trip to Universal Orlando Resort

Bringing your family to Universal Orlando means fun, excitement and adventure.  The best way to make sure everyone in your family has a great time is to do some pre-planning.  Universal Orlando offers these tips to help make sure your family has an unforgettable vacation:

Keep in mind the many benefits of staying on-site: In addition to allowing for resort-wide charging privileges, the hotel’s room keys double as Universal Express Pass access, which allows your family to skip regular lines at most attractions. You can also enjoy The Wizarding World of Harry Potter before the park opens, with early admission to Universal’s Islands of Adventure. Enjoying lunch and dinner has never been easier, with priority seating at select restaurants throughout both theme parks. In addition, mom and dad can plan a date night at Universal CityWalk, thanks to the on-site hotel’s kids camps.

Buy your admission tickets in advance: Scratch the ticket booth line by buying your tickets online at www.officialticketcenter.com and receiving them before you arrive at the parks. In addition to saving time, you can take advantage of The Official Ticket Center’s online discounts.  You can also explore vacation packages that include accommodations and special benefits at Universal’s three on-site hotels.

Have a game plan: Visit Universal Orlando’s web site with your family before your vacation to explore the resort and develop a basic plan for your visit. Here, you will find information about special events (Mardi Gras beads, anyone?) and attractions suited for the entire family. Talk to your children about what’s most important to them, and make a prioritized check list.  (But remember it’s a vacation and that it’s okay to be flexible).

Pack smart: Make sure to pre-pack all of the essentials:

  • Hats and sunscreen for the entire family
  • A change of clothes and a large plastic bag for those who may enjoy water play areas
  • Water bottles, snacks for the finicky eaters, juice boxes, and sippy cups or bottles
  • Ponchos or umbrellas and a towel
  • A camera (with an extra battery and memory card)
  • Baby and hand wipes
  • Any needed medications

Be theme park savvy:

  • Upon arrival, grab a map to check in-park showtimes and character meet & greet times, to make sure you are up-to-date
  • Mix up the schedule: start one day early and end the night relaxing by the pool at your on-site hotel enjoying a Dive-In movie; or start the day in the afternoon (perhaps after nap time) and end with a family night out to watch the Blue Man Group show. With live music, its unexpected humor and lots of paint, the show has a unique, family-friendly party atmosphere that kids of all ages absolutely love!  If you want to have dinner at CityWalk before the Blue Man Group show, Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville and Pastamore are both great family friendly choices.
  • If you arrive early to the park, start in the back, working your way to the front to avoid the predictable morning traffic pattern.

Know our family-friendly amenities:

  • Take advantage of the Child Swap program: one member of your group can wait with the little ones in a comfortable room while other family members experience the attraction, and then swap places. This feature is available at nearly every marquee attraction.
  • Stroller rental, nursing facilities and a companion restroom are available at Family Services in both theme parks.
  • Many of their restaurants and food locations offer healthy and delicious dining options for everyone. At select locations, side options for adults and children include healthy choices such as fruit for kids or salad for adults, or trans-fat free fries.
  • If your teenager is looking for a special treat, take her to the Mandara Spa at the Loews Portofino Bay Hotel. The spa’s YCARE program was created with teenagers in mind, offering a special selection of services for guests ages 13 – 17, including massage, facial, manicure, pedicure and more!

Additional tips:

  • Take a picture of your parking location with your cell phone to make it easier to remember where you parked.
  • Don’t deviate too much from nap schedule for the little ones. Great stroller nap spots include inside Mythos at Islands of Adventure in the late afternoon (while your child naps, you can enjoy great sit-down meal) and Central Park in New York at Universal Studios Florida.
  • The night before visiting the park, soak a washcloth in water and freeze in a plastic bag. Bring it with you to the parks the next day for a very refreshing cool down during hot days!
  • The splash pad areas are great for little ones – in Islands of Adventure take them to If I Ran the Zoo or Me Ship the Olive. In Universal Studios Florida, they will enjoy Curious George Goes to Town and Fievel’s Playland.
  • Traveling with teenagers? Then consider purchasing the Meal Deal. For one low price, they can enjoy as much food as they like throughout the day at participating locations.
  • Older children sometimes don’t want to hang with their parents, so always have a meeting point with your family. Let them be on their own and meet at a pre-determined location every two to three hours. That way if cell phones don’t work you can always touch base several times during the day.

SeaWorld Orlando Announces Waves of the Future


Sea World Tickets Orlando

Sea World Tickets Orlando

ORLANDO, Fla. — With three astounding new attractions featuring all-new ways to connect guests to the mysteries of the sea, SeaWorld Orlando and Discovery Cove are once again sure to top the “must-see” list for upcoming Orlando vacations.

SeaWorld designers just announced new experiences to open in 2012 at SeaWorld Orlando and Discovery Cove, and released a few details of a massive expansion set to debut at SeaWorld in 2013. Discovery Cove is a swim-with-dolphins resort across the street from SeaWorld in Orlando.

The new attractions represent the biggest attraction expansions in the history of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, the parks’ parent company.

Terry Prather, president of the company’s Orlando parks, SeaWorld, Discovery Cove and Aquatica, said, “With TurtleTrek at SeaWorld Orlando and Freshwater Oasis at Discovery Cove, travelers will have all new reasons to visit Orlando. What we’re creating will take you places you’ve never been before, places only SeaWorld can take you.”

To learn more about all the new attractions and how to include them on their 2012 Orlando vacation, guests should visit SeaWorldOrlando.com. There, they also can buy tickets and book vacation packages.

TurtleTrek

While creating TurtleTrek (opening at SeaWorld Orlando in spring 2012), designers stayed true to SeaWorld’s unique blend of nose-to-nose animal encounters and state-of-the art entertainment.

Guests first visit 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.  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.

Moving on from the habitat, guests enter a domed theater, and what happens next has never before been seen and is a first at any theme park in the world.

Coming to life is a first-of-its-kind 3-D/360-degree dome theater film that is completely immersive. The dome allows a hyper-realistic 3-D movie to be shown all around guests and even above them – not just in front them 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, SeaWorld guests are given a turtle’s eye view of the ocean’s wonders.

TurtleTrek is as inspirational as it is astounding. There’s a call-to-action at the end of the experience:  SeaWorld calls on guests to join them in conserving the world we share. “Do a little, do a lot, but join us and do something to help the world and its animals,” said Brian Morrow, the attraction’s chief designer. “TurtleTrek is about the everyday heroes who can make a difference in nature.”

Freshwater Oasis

Just across the street from SeaWorld Orlando is Discovery Cove, a limited-admission, all-inclusive tropical resort where guests swim with dolphins, hand-feed tropical birds in a free-flight aviary, snorkel among thousands of colorful fish and rays and relax on pristine beaches.

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.

When guests participate with nature at Discovery Cove, they unlock discoveries that can be life-changing. Freshwater Oasis is an all-new opportunity to wade up-close with wildlife in a relaxing tropical setting. It’s an exhilarating tropical exhale.

Designed with a rainforest canopy above and sparkling-clear springs below, Freshwater Oasis is a natural fit within Discovery Cove’s tropical vibe. Guests can relax and explore. They’ll wade, wonder, swim and float in the water-filled trails and discover marmosets and playful Asian otters. No matter where they turn, they’ll find endless discoveries.

Freshwater Oasis is included with admission to Discovery Cove, an all-inclusive tropical getaway and the only place to experience the most exciting animal encounters the world has to offer.

Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin

Also announced was SeaWorld Orlando’s biggest-ever attraction expansion, Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin, opening spring 2013.

Through the years, SeaWorld Orlando has taken guests to far-flung corners of the globe, immersing them in the character and feel of exotic places and introducing them to unique worlds of adventure.

At the park’s “Wild Arctic” guests ride a simulated jet copter to the frozen north, into a habitat of polar bears, beluga whales and huge walruses. “Key West at SeaWorld” sets guests down in the funky ambience of the Florida Keys, with dolphins, stingrays and colorful birds. The rocky northern California coast is found at “Pacific Point Preserve,” with dozens of seals and sea lions. The park’s other attractions take guests into the worlds of sharks, sea turtles and manatees, or let guests soar like a ray on the Manta roller coaster or ride the back of a mythical beast, the Kraken.

But no journey is bigger — or as incredible — as the one to come in 2013. It’s a voyage to the bottom-of-the-world, to the coldest and windiest continent, to a place of ice more than 9,000- feet thick. It’s a journey to Antarctica and to the empire of the penguin.

Guests will be surrounded by the sights, sounds and awesome encounters found in this frozen place, embarking on a one-of-a-kind ride and an incredible family adventure.

They’ll 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. Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin combines closer-then-ever animal connections with state-of-the-art interactive ride technologies for adventures that are different each time.

It’s an all-family experience that could only come from SeaWorld and can only be found at SeaWorld Orlando. And, it’s safe to say Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin will be the coldest theme park attraction in the world.

A year-and-a-half from opening at SeaWorld Orlando, details are few. For now, SeaWorld Orlando’s Antarctica will stay as mysterious as its namesake continent. “Only SeaWorld and its parks can take you on these journeys or bring these experiences to you,” said Prather. “We’re excited about what the future holds for our parks and our fans.”

Vehicle Assembly Building Opens to Guests at the Kennedy Space Center

Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex

Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex

Kennedy Space Center FL. ~ For the First Time in More than 30 Years, Guests Are Invited Inside Kennedy Space Center’s Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) to See Where Rockets are Built

For more than 30 years, tour buses have driven guests past the 525-foot tall Vehicle Assembly Building, or VAB, at Kennedy Space Center,   pointing out the massive building in which Apollo V rockets, and later, space shuttles, were assembled for launch. But only a select few, including astronauts, NASA officials and space center personnel, have ever had the opportunity to go inside the building – until now.

For the first time since 1978, guests at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will have the chance to disembark their tour buses and tour inside the VAB to see firsthand where monstrous vehicles were assembled for launch, from the very first Saturn V rocket in the late 1960s to the very last space shuttle, STS-135 Atlantis, earlier this year.

The opportunity to visit the VAB will be offered for a limited time to a limited number of Visitor Complex guests per day as part of KSC Up-Close, a new two-hour, guided special interest tour.* Beginning Nov. 1, the tour will be offered eight times daily for $25 for adults and $19 for children ages 3-11, plus the cost of admission which is $43 + tax for adults and $33 + tax for children ages 3-11.

Making this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity even more special, for a very limited time, guests on the KSC Up-Close tour may see a space shuttle orbiter inside the VAB as they are being prepared for display in their new homes in Los Angeles, CA, Washington, DC and Florida.

The $100 million exhibit for Atlantis will be the marquee element of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex’s 10-year master plan. Initial design concepts for the 65,000 square-foot home for the orbiter include viewing the space shuttle “in flight,” showing how the spacecraft worked in space and providing a unique vantage point for guests to look at the complex vehicle up close. Complementing the orbiter display will be interactive features reflecting major accomplishments of the Space Shuttle Program, including the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Space Station.

Officials with Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex plan to break ground on Atlantis’ new home in 2012 with a grand opening planned for 2013. The orbiter home will be located in the Shuttle Plaza at the main Visitor Complex; incorporating the Shuttle Launch Experience attraction.

To purchase your discount Kennedy Space Center Tickets, please call us toll free at 1-877-406-4836 TODAY!

Universal Orlando ~ Holidays Event Returns

Universal Studios Orlando Tickets

Holiday Evented at Universal Orlando Resorts

There’s no better place to enjoy the Holidays with your family this year than at Universal Orlando Resort. It’s the only place you can come face-to-face with The Grinch and the Whos from Whoville, watch a cheerful holiday parade filled with big, colorful Macy’s balloons and sing along to the classic sounds of the season as you stroll through a holiday-trimmed theme park with your loved ones.

The Holidays fanfare runs from December 3, 2011 through January 1, 2012, offering guests incredible entertainment themed for the season at both Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure.

At Islands of Adventure, adults and children alike will be entertained when the popular Dr. Seuss book “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” is brought to life in Grinchmas. Guests can see the heartwarming live stage show, “Grinchmas Wholiday Spectacular,” starring The Grinch and the Whos from Whoville with an original recorded musical score by Mannheim Steamroller. Guests will also have the opportunity to meet The Grinch and the Whos, and on select dates, purchase a spot at a special character breakfast with the mean, green one himself.

At Universal Studios, the Macy’s Holiday Parade will celebrate its 10th Anniversary of partnership with Universal Orlando by filling the streets every evening with some of the same iconic elements seen winding through New York City each year at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The beloved event features colorful holiday characters, fantasy-filled floats – including one specially-designed to commemorate the 10-year milestone – a tree-lighting ceremony by Santa Claus and dozens of larger-than-life balloons. The Macy’s Holiday Parade also welcomes select park guests to participate in the procession as real balloon-handlers guiding the helium giants, a truly unique and exclusive experience to Universal Orlando.

Returning this year with more concerts than ever before is Mannheim Steamroller – the masters of Christmas music with more than 40 million albums sold worldwide. The acclaimed musical group will take to the Music Plaza stage in Universal Studios six times this year to play their memorable holiday hits for guests, performing on December 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 and 18.

Also at Universal Studios, guests can enjoy special holiday-themed versions of their favorite shows, and nightly a capella holiday music in the nearby Holiday Village, which is filled with hand-blown glass ornaments, caramel apples, hot chocolate, roasted chestnuts and a cupcake decorating location.