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SeaWorld Orlando (SWO) Discussion Thread

P. 276: Penguin Trek construction update!

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Superb pics!


Yeah it's not a whole day park, even if you relax and take your time (which you should do there anyway) but it's a real nice place. Also Kraken is a pretty sweet ride.

I miss the days of going to FL

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After Epcot, this is the second best park in Orlando, and easily the best value around.


This. I'm surprised more people don't use Discovery Cover as their gateway ticket to all of the SeaWorld parks in central Florida. I think for like an additional $50 you can get unlimited admission to SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, and Aquatica for the length of your vacation which is a great deal.


These new additions look fantastic, I can't wait to get down here again sometime soon and check them out.


Edit: I Just verified pricing and it's only $20 additional to enjoy SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, and Aquatica for 14 days. So $300 for a dolphoin swim and full day at Discover Cove plus 14 days unlimited admission to SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, and Aquatica. Best deal in Orlando by far.

Edited by Hilltopper39
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Here is some video I took at SeaWorld a couple days ago showing off some of the animals and the coasters:


Here is some (very shakey!) video footage I took at Discovery Cove two weeks ago showing the otters playing around, along with being surrounded by stingrays and fish in the grand reef:


I realized the other day I've been to both of these places so many times and never took any video, so I finally got around to it!

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How much did Renee charge you for those pictures with her?


$69. You're welcome.


If you consider that the park closes at 5:30, I'd say that it's definitely best to stay there from open to close to take full advantage of everything they have to offer. And with unlimited food and drink too, why not! You won't have any problems spending a full day there, especially if you do the dolphin interaction and SeaVenture. And even if you don't do either of those, it's still totally worth it. I'm not a huge beach person either and when I visited, I didn't lounge around in the beach areas there at all.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I went to the park a few days ago and absolutely lived it! It wasn't my first visit however it was the first time I would ride large roller coasters there. We started with Manya which quickly became my favourite coaster. I had expectations forthr pretzel loop and it absolutely delivered. We then headed to Kraken and as I sat in the brake run, I knew that that was the best coaster I have been on. It was forceful and intense, just how an old school B&M should be.

Then we went to Journey and since there was a long line reaching 40 minutes we decided to use the single rider queue. This boarded us immediately! The ride was fun and I loved the coaster section. We rode this twice. Later on in the day there was a large thunderstorm hanging over the park so they cancelled One Ocean (understandably).

We went to Aquatica two days later and decided that we would revisit Seaworld afterwards. We headed to the Sky Tower which was now free of charge and enjoyed the views of the parks and international drive. after that we headed to the Shamu stadium to watch Shamu Rocks where I was very impressed with the show. I was surprised when the guitarist came out to play eruption. we watched as it got very dark during the show and I thought that I might be able to get a night ride on one of the B&Ms. After the show we headed to Manta to see that there was a small line of people waiting outside the entrance. They were waiting for the line to reopen so we stood and waited. After fifteen minutes they opened the ride and we walked through the whole queue to half way up the stairs. The right side of the station was shut so there wasn't many cars going out which made a little wait for us but not for people further down the queue. When it was our turn we were sent to the front which had no queue. As we boarded I looked out to the lift hill and knew it was going to be fun. It was! Possibly the best coaster experience of my life! After the ride was done you had to wait on the brake run for 5 minutes (which is a long time to be held in that position) since only one side of the station was active. After that we stood at the splash down element of Manta and looked across to the fireworks which dazzled above it. Few trains came through and made it a more enjoyable experience for us. It was a great day!


Also, Kraken desperately needs a single rider line since there were so many empty seats on each train. With 40 minute plus queues its quite annoying as well. Thankfully I didn't have to wait in that sort of queue.

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^The Busch parks seem to have a love/hate relationship with single-rider lines. BGW has them for Apollo's Chariot and Griffon, but they've haven't been open much this season, and I think they did away with the one for DarKastle.


It would be nice to see single-rider lines for Kraken and Manta.

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  • 4 weeks later...

SeaWorld Orlando has sent us a press release with new details about this year's Halloween Spooktacular!


Endless Waves of Halloween fun at Seaworld Orlando Every Weekend in October


SeaWorld Orlando invites families to dive in and explore an underwater “fantasea” at SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular. Lifetime memories are created during Central Florida’s ultimate family-friendly event where children can trick-or-treat, dance with fanciful sea creatures, and create sea-themed arts and crafts. Back and better than ever this year, SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular returns with added trick-or-treat stations and even more colorful characters.


SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular takes place every weekend in October: 6-7, 13-14, 19-21 and 26-28. This daytime event runs from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., leaving the littlest of trick-or-treaters wide-eyed for the fun-filled activities. The best way to experience all of SeaWorld’s year-round events, as well as exclusive savings and perks, is with an Annual Pass. For more details or to purchase visit SeaWorldOrlando.com.


Spooktacular Highlights Include:


Penelope’s Party Zone

Join the Halloween party of the season that immerses children in the wonders of the sea through kid-friendly music, games, and playful characters. Located at SeaWorld’s Bayside area, this dynamic underwater environment comes to life when guests dance and play along to the spooky sound waves broadcast by a live DJ. With countless bubbles floating overhead and colorful pumpkin fish gliding beside you, this Halloween party is sure to provide non-stop fun for all ages.


Trick-or-Treating Under the Sea

Offering more than one million pieces of trick-or-treat sweets, costumed youngsters can search for hidden “sea” treasures using their Spooktacular maps at fifteen different locations. Each station features an assortment of ghoulish goodies and candies.


Sweet Treat Decorating

Kids and parents alike can have a “splash” creating their own sweet treats at this interactive station located inside of Penelope’s Party Zone. Tasty apples dipped in decadent caramel and chocolate-covered rice crispy treats are available to decorate to your sweet tooth’s desire with a variety of tasty toppings.


Strolling Entertainment

Stroll among colorful, playful schools of pumpkin fish welcoming trick-or-treaters throughout the park and get the chance to meet other whimsical characters like Penelope Pumpkin fish, Shamu, Dolly Dolphin, Shivers the Polar Bear, Pete and Penny Penguin, a mermaid, and a walking-talking spider-crab! Photo opportunities with these “spook-tastic” characters create lasting memories.


More SeaWorld Halloween Fun:


SeaWorld’s Holiday Family Sleepovers (6 p.m. – 9 a.m. on Oct. 19, 20, 26 and 27)

Families can snuggle into a spooky slumber surrounded by exotic fish, rays, and sea dragons inside the floor-to-ceiling aquariums at Manta. Cost is $78 per person or $103 (includes next-day park admission). A pizza dinner and breakfast are included. Program is for children in grades K-5 and their families. Reservations can be made by calling: 1-800-406-2244. For more info, visit seaworldorlando.com.


Edited by jedimaster1227
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Looks like the standard offering for this event, which is usually very well done and nice for the kids. I've always though that if done properly some type of fun and lighthearted, spooky (not scary) walk through featuring Sesame Street characters in Halloween costumes would be a lot of fun for kids at an event like this.


^The Busch parks seem to have a love/hate relationship with single-rider lines. BGW has them for Apollo's Chariot and Griffon, but they've haven't been open much this season, and I think they did away with the one for DarKastle.


It would be nice to see single-rider lines for Kraken and Manta.


At Manta it seems like they used to take singles through the quick que line, but maybe not on a regular basis? At Kraken logistically a single rider line would be tough, it would probably have to go through the exit platform which would be a nightmare for the operations teams. In my experience Kraken is rarely crowded enough the really need a single rider line, even on a crowded day with multiple trains running I can't remember that line ever being longer than about 45 minutes. Maybe Antarctica will draw more crowds back to that section, but until that happens a single rider line at kraken is probably the least of SeaWorld's worries.

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SeaWorld Orlando is doing away with its long-running, Polynesian-themed luau dinner show. The Makahiki Luau will say its final “aloha” on Sept. 30.


The show, which SeaWorld says has operated for more than 30 years, currently resides inside Seafire Inn in the theme park’s Waterfront area. Menu items include Hawaiian chicken, Polynesian-style barbecue pork, and a selection of fish in pina colada sauce. Entertainment includes music and fire dances. Guests receive complimentary leis and one “tropical welcome drink,” the park’s website says.


Reservations for the show, which was once known simply as the Polynesian Luau, are required via www.SeaWorldOrlando.com. Cost is $46 per person ($29 per child). Park admission is not required. Free parking is available one hour before the meal.


In July, SeaWorld reintroduced its Dine With Shamu dinner offering. SeaWorld has not said what — if anything — will replace Makahiki Luau. Official word: “Our fans will need to stay tuned to find out where our next adventure takes them.”

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There's never been a better time than now for Florida residents to experience an exciting fall getaway. With Discovery Cove exclusive savings available through December 31, 2012, Florida residents can enjoy a “Dolphin Swim Day Resort” admission for $199 plus tax or “Day Resort” admission (full day, without dolphin swim experience) for $129 plus tax. This great offer includes an unlimited admission pass to SeaWorld Orlando and Aquatica through January 31, 2013, valid after the date of Discovery Cove visit.


Discovery Cove features a one-of-a-kind opportunity to swim with dolphins, snorkel among thousands of tropical fish and rays in The Grand Reef and hand-feed exotic birds in a free-flight aviary. All new is Freshwater Oasis, where guests can relax and explore. They’ll wade and wander in the water-filled trails and discover two new species of animals -- marmoset monkeys and playful Asian otters.


Not only are Florida residents able to experience an unforgettable day at Discovery Cove, but with unlimited admission to SeaWorld and Aquatica through January 2013 included, they can also experience incredible family-friendly events such as SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular, SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration and January’s Just for Kids. Featuring an ocean of Halloween fun, Halloween Spooktacular allows children to trick-or-treat, dance with whimsical sea creatures, catch silly and spooky shows and create sea-themed arts and crafts. And this winter, guests will feel a wave of holiday spirit splash over them at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration. With everything from elves to Elmo, and from Santa to Shamu, holiday traditions are made at SeaWorld Orlando. Then Saturdays in January, little ones can sing, dance and play the day away at Just for Kids, featuring live shows from kid-favorite popular artists, our kid-sized rides, and amazing animals.


Just across the street at Aquatica, guests can enjoy high-speed water slides, exhilarating wave pools, tranquil beaches and the remarkable animal habitats that are the hallmark of SeaWorld. Aquatica’s exclusive attractions promise unlimited fun for every age, sending guests on amazing undersea adventures and through breathtaking animal exhibits.


“Dolphin Swim Day Resort” admission for Florida residents at Discovery Cove includes:

  • Reserved dolphin experience
  • Unlimited access to signature experiences including: Freshwater Oasis, The Grand Reef, free-flight Explorer’s Aviary, Serenity Bay, and Wind-Away River
  • Freshly prepared breakfast and lunch plus snacks throughout the day
  • Beverages all day long, including sodas, water and alcoholic drinks (for those 21 years and older)
  • All swim gear (mask, snorkel and swim vest or wetsuit), towels, locker, sunscreen and other first-class amenities
  • All day self-parking at Discovery Cove
  • A complimentary photo portrait of guest and their party upon entry to park
  • Unlimited admission pass to SeaWorld Orlando and Aquatica valid after date of Discovery Cove visit through January 31, 2013

Proof of valid Florida residency for each adult is required upon check-in at guest reception. Book online at DiscoveryCove.com or call 1-877-434-7268 for more information.





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Had the chance to stop by SeaWorld Orlando today to check up on the latest construction progress on Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin, as well as the recently reopened Shamu Underwater Viewing space near the Dine with Shamu offering at Shamu Stadium.


What better way to start an update than by fulfilling TPR's Turtle Fancy?


In the weeks since I last visited, the main attraction structure for Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin has grown to be visible from many new angles.


A portion of the old Penguin Encounter building was retained for the creation of the new attraction, but it is clear that this new ride will be far more complex. At least two floors are clearly defined, one more likely for the ride and the other for exhibit or queue space.


A smaller section of the building juts out away from the main structure, likely serving as the entrance and exit for the ride.


The concrete section at the back of the building is from the old Penguin Encounter building, but the rest is all brand new.


The old Friends of the Wild and Antarctica Market buildings have been kept to be reutilized in the completed expansion. How they will be integrated into the new complex has yet to be revealed.


The unique shapes of the building's layout indicate likely placement of the rock work (penguin mountain as Elissa called it) seen in the expansion's concept art.


A taller section of the building might indicate a larger show scene... Or possibly even the location for the live penguins in the ride.


Defined access ways lend credence to the idea that this could be the entrance and exit for the attraction.


When you look at it at an overview, it is easy to see just how big this expansion really is!


It will be interesting to see just how different this building looks when it is completed...


With the reopening of Dine with Shamu came the reopening of the old Shamu Underwater Viewing location.


During the tank's downtime since the tragic incident over two years ago the tank has undergone modifications to install a quick-rise floor as a preventative measure for all future trainer interactions performed in the water. It is expected that this system will eventually be rolled out to all SeaWorld tanks used for killer whales.


It is hard to believe it has been over two years since guests could access this viewing area.


But there really aren't many other experiences that allow you to get this close to a killer whale!


Let's take a closer look at the quick-rise flooring.



You really do get some unrivaled views here!


Just another awesome day at SeaWorld Orlando!

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SeaWorld is again appealing a federal judge's ruling that prohibits trainers from having contact with killer whales.


The order came down in July as a response to the 2010 death of trainer Dawn Brancheau.


The judge at the time said trainers need to have some sort of physical barrier separating them from the whales during performances.


SeaWorld is now taking its appeal to the United States Circuit Courts.

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SeaWorld Orlando and the Miami Dolphins have announced a multi-year marketing agreement. “SeaWorld, Where the Dolphins Play!” is the tagline for the integrated campaign involving a season-long sweepstakes and special deals for Florida residents.


The face of the campaign is former linebacker Jason Taylor, who will be inducted into the Miami Dolphin Honor Roll on October 14. Vignettes will feature him and his family enjoying SeaWorld as part of the following elements:


SeaWorld Football Family of the Year is a sweepstakes that kicked off on September 21 and will continue through December 31. Fans can register at Dolphins.com/SeaWorld to win a grand prize three-day, two-night SeaWorld and Aquatica weekend getaway plus four tickets to all 2013 regular season Miami Dolphins home games.


The Game Day Advantage offers Florida resident deals at SeaWorld for Miami Dolphins fans and will be featured in radio, digital and TV throughout key Florida markets as well as in-stadium.


“Aligning with the Miami Dolphins is a natural fit. We both share the same commitment to family and tradition and are great places to make lifetime memories,” said Vice President of Marketing Toni Caracciolo. “We’re thrilled to have Jason Taylor involved because he’s devoted to family, a world-class athlete and loved by so many fans”.


"SeaWorld and their associated parks are premiere destinations for all ages from South Florida, across the country and internationally. We have the same vision to provide exciting moments for our visitors in a unique environment, while always giving back to the community," said Jim Rushton, Chief Revenue Officer, Miami Dolphins / Sun Life Stadium. "We are honored to call them a partner as we both continue to grow our respective businesses."


"From the exciting rides to swimming with the Dolphins, and everything in between, SeaWorld is simply an amazing destination for family entertainment," said Jason Taylor. "My wife, kids and I had a great time on our most recent visit and we can't wait to go back!"


SeaWorld Orlando immerses guests in the sea’s mysteries through up-close animal discoveries, amazing attractions, thrilling rides and unforgettable performances. Whether riding Manta, getting drenched by Shamu, or feeding seals and sea lions, vacation adventures become lifelong memories at SeaWorld. All new is TurtleTrek, a unique blend of up-close animal encounters with manatees and turtles and state-of-the art entertainment with the world’s first 3D/360 dome theater film.


Coming to SeaWorld Orlando in spring 2013 is Antarctica – Empire of the Penguin, the biggest and most expansive attraction in SeaWorld’s history. This epic exploration of a mysterious world blends animal encounters with an exhilarating ride for a one-of-a-kind experience the whole family will enjoy. Be transported to an icy world you’ve never seen before. Experience the majestic grandeur of the South Pole and see it through the penguins’ eyes on an exhilarating first-of-its kind family ride. Then, step out and explore their colony in an expanse that envelops you in cool extremes: bringing you above and below their icy world.

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