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SeaWorld Orlando (SWO) Discussion Thread

P. 266: Reef Plunge and more announced for Aquatica!

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To all the locals....we will be at Seaworld on July 28th. Anybody heard about an opening date for infinity falls? Any chance it will be open by then? Or is everyone in the dark on this?

 

Best food in the park?

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The two dining options I love at the park are Mama's Pretzel Kitchen and Dine with Shamu.

 

Mama's Pretzel Kitchen sells pretzels that are basically doughy crack. They are better than anything you'll get at Wetzel's or Auntie Anne's. I absolutely love them. If the bacon one is offered, you're in for a real treat, but you can't go wrong with any of them.

 

Dine with Shamu was in the ballpark of $25 and it included an all-you-can-eat buffet with solid food, all-you-can-drink beer (Busch), and a private show with Shamu.

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The two dining options I love at the park are Mama's Pretzel Kitchen and Dine with Shamu.

 

Mama's Pretzel Kitchen sells pretzels that are basically doughy crack. They are better than anything you'll get at Wetzel's or Auntie Anne's. I absolutely love them. If the bacon one is offered, you're in for a real treat, but you can't go wrong with any of them.

 

Dine with Shamu was in the ballpark of $25 and it included an all-you-can-eat buffet with solid food, all-you-can-drink beer (Busch), and a private show with Shamu.

 

We did the dine with shamu this spring and loved it! The only complaint was that we felt rushed.

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To all the locals....we will be at Seaworld on July 28th. Anybody heard about an opening date for infinity falls? Any chance it will be open by then? Or is everyone in the dark on this?

 

Best food in the park?

 

Word on the street is it may not open until August but they are trying to get it open sooner

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Hmmmm......that will be very close to our date. Guess we will just have to keep our fingers crossed that it is ready. We are getting off a short cruise to Cuba that morning in Tampa and have a car for the day to get to Orlando so that will for sure be the easiest day for us to stop at Seaworld. Hope it's ready!

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SeaWorld Orlando has sent us a press release regarding the topping off of Infinity Falls' tower strcuture, marking a milestone in the development of the attraction leading up to its opening at a date still to be announced.

 

Construction is coming to a close at SeaWorld Orlando as Infinity Falls – the highly anticipated new attraction opening at SeaWorld Orlando this summer – takes its place in the Orlando skyline. The record-breaking new attraction was “topped off” over the weekend as cranes lifted the final piece of the rides iconic blue and gray tower into place. The whimsical tower structure, blending modern architecture with ancient ruins, reaches a height of 67 feet and surrounds the attractions unique vertical lift. The 41-ton steel tower, made up of 10 pre-fabricated segments, took crews five nights to install. When it opens, Infinity Falls will feature the world’s tallest drop on a river raft ride.

 

The new attraction brings the thrill of white-water rafting into a new experience the family can enjoy together. Aboard the rides 8-passenger circular rafts, riders will embark on an adventure through a lush rainforest environment inspired by some of the world’s most incredible freshwater ecosystems. The new attraction will feature dynamic drops and turns, interactive water elements, and allow visitors to experience the feel of exhilarating rapids. The ride will also feature an innovative vertical lift designed to transport the rafts to the top of the ride’s 40-foot drop in just over five seconds.

 

The new attraction will be the centerpiece of a newly themed area designed to resemble the basecamp of explorers and scientists. After riding Infinity Falls, the entire family can explore the basecamp and take part in interactive experiences that combine play with education to create a positive impact on freshwater ecosystems, reinforcing “Park to Planet” in real time, a mission to help guests understand some of the challenges facing the planet and inspiring them to help.

 

SeaWorld Orlando Pass Members can be among the first to ride Infinity Falls when it opens. The park plans to announce an opening date in the coming weeks. Right now, Florida residents can purchase a SeaWorld Orlando Annual Pass for less than $15 per month with EZpay.

 

Get the latest Infinity Falls updates by following SeaWorld Orlando on Facebook, Instagram and the SeaWorld Orlando Blog.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kupi0IfUbJI

Edited by jedimaster1227
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Yeah, I saw on youtube that they basically just have the landscaping and testing left.....and that testing had started. But announcing the date in the coming weeks doesn't sound like there will be much chance we will get on it on the 28th. Probably worst possible scenario, we can watch it test but not ride. Boo. I thought for sure when it said open summer of 2018 a few months ago that we would be safe by the last Saturday in July.

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That structure around the vertical lift looks amazing but .........man those stairs around the thing are a bit of an eye sore. Hopefully they landscape it out of a view a bit or something.

 

Hopefully they will paint the stairs blue to match the tower and add some more landscaping to block the view over time. But the tower and overall ride is really looking good. Sea World has a winner on their hands.

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I always chuckle when people say America doesn't work with Intamin anymore. They may not have built a massive hyper coaster in the last couple years but it seems like every year thee still pumping rides into ameraica via Rapids, drop towers tire launch coasters ect

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I still don't "get" this attraction at all, but it certainly looks nice.

 

Same, as much as I like rapids rides I like not being totally soaked more. (I still want one of these in a waterpark, then I'd ride it all day)

 

I feel you, but obviously these rapids rides are quite popular as they get lines and keep getting built. I can tell you that kids LOVE them. KT is at a Disney camp this week and the highlight for most of the kids is riding Kali River Rapids, maybe because all of us no fun adults don't normally let them ride and get soaked in their clothes?

 

Also, it's hot here like 11 months out of the year so it's a good place for a rapids!

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I feel like people will enjoy the ride when they're in the park, I'm just skeptical that anyone's going to be driving down I-4 and see an Infinity Falls billboard between the Harry Potter billboard and the Pandora billboard and plan a trip to SeaWorld... especially since Disney and Universal already have very similar attractions.

 

I just don't know if a ride with a heavy staffing commitment that's expensive to operate is the right move for SeaWorld unless it actually draws some gate. I'm sure it'll be fun and I'm sure they'll make it look great and maybe this is why they get paid the big bucks and I don't but I'm pretty confused by Infinity Falls.

 

That said, I love the Sesame Street move. I love it even more because it's opening in the same year that Star Wars land and Potter coaster are opening. SeaWorld can't compete with that, so capitalizing on a strong kids IP that appeals to an entirely different demographic than those areas seems brilliant. I don't know how much faith I have in Infinity Falls moving the needle though.

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I just don't know if a ride with a heavy staffing commitment that's expensive to operate is the right move for SeaWorld unless it actually draws some gate. I'm sure it'll be fun and I'm sure they'll make it look great and maybe this is why they get paid the big bucks and I don't but I'm pretty confused by Infinity Falls.

 

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I'm as ignorant as anyone about the industry but I would guess that the initial cost of the attraction was considerably less than Mako or another full size coaster. Concrete is a lot cheaper than steel so maybe the costs of the project off set the long term operations expense.

 

I feel like people will enjoy the ride when they're in the park, I'm just skeptical that anyone's going to be driving down I-4 and see an Infinity Falls billboard between the Harry Potter billboard and the Pandora billboard and plan a trip to SeaWorld... especially since Disney and Universal already have very similar attractions.

 

I mean realistically would anything SeaWorld built attract people over Universal or Disney? I feel like generally speaking people come to Orlando for multi day trips to Disney and Universal, then maybe add on some other parks/attractions here and there in between so similar rides at other parks maybe isn't that big of a deal. If it does matter then maybe this will tick of Universal enough to build a Flying Dinosaur Coaster in Jurassic Park haha.

 

"Oh you wanna build a rapids ride huh, two can play this game, get B&M on the phone! stick to you're fish shows and Sesame Street....."

-Some Universal Executive (probably not)

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At the end of the day I don't know, and that's why I don't work in marketing for SeaWorld. I'm 100% confident that Universal and Disney have zero interest in what SeaWorld does, but SeaWorld has mentioned on conference calls that they're very in tune with what everyone else is doing because they pretty much have to be. Hell, they even blamed the late opening of Diagon Alley for their attendance drop once.

 

Again, I hope I'm wrong and Infinity Falls is a huge hit.

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It really feels like this attraction was designed to give Sea World a great water ride (for the Florida heat) and a tag line (big drop on a river rapids ride). I don't think this ride will make tourist change their plans but, it gives Sea World a nice new ride to attract those local passholder crowds. With Florida's population now the 3rd biggest of any state, with over 20 million, they may just find their new growth model with becoming the 'ticket' for locals.

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Hopefully this ride will be ready to go soon. It looks like a great addition to the park. I think once the landscaping grows in over the next few years it will really complement Sea World's beautiful grounds.

 

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The new store.

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It looks like this ride will really shine after dark.

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Holiday giant Thomas Cook has announced it will stop selling trips to animal parks that keep killer whales.

 

The firm said more than 90% of its customers were concerned about animal welfare.

 

The two parks it will stop selling tickets to as a result are SeaWorld, in Florida, and Loro Parque in Tenerife.

 

"This was not a decision we took lightly," chief executive Peter Fankhauser said as he announced the new policy.

 

In a blog post, he acknowledged that both parks had met standards and had made improvements to how animals were kept.

 

But, he said: "From next summer, we will no longer sell any animal attractions that keep orcas in captivity.

 

"We have actively engaged with a range of animal welfare specialists in the last 18 months, and taken account of the scientific evidence they have provided.

 

"We have also taken feedback from our customers, more than 90% of whom told us that it was important that their holiday company takes animal welfare seriously.

 

"And when so many of our customers are so clear in their view, I could not allow our business to ignore them," Mr Fankhauser said.

 

"I am clear about the kind of business that we want to be. That's why we introduced our animal welfare policy 18 months ago, and that's why we've taken this decision today."

 

Criticism of keeping orcas in captivity has intensified since a 2013 Netflix documentary Blackfish about a performing killer whale called Tilikum.

 

SeaWorld's visitor numbers fell, although the theme park described Blackfish as "manipulative".

 

Last year, Thomas Cook began an audit of 49 animal parks to see if they met its policy on animal welfare, based on standards set by ABTA (the Association of British Travel Agents). Some 29 failed, and the travel firm stopped selling tickets.

 

The latest ban was announced on Sunday.

 

Mr Fankhauser said: "We will work with both [theme parks] over the next 12 months to prepare for our exit.... We will also continue to work ourselves to identify more sustainable alternatives.

Source

 

5 years later and Blackfish is still a thing making news?

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Ugh, Blackfish. I'm into animal rights. I don't believe circuses should be using elephants, tigers, etc. I don't eat meat. I think it's disgusting what we do to animals on a daily basis. BUT even I found Blackfish to be very one sided. Most documentaries are so skewed for the audience to see what the filmmaker wants them to see. I don't understand how people don't realize this.

I support Sea World and their conservation efforts. They said they're stopping breeding the Orca, what more do people want? They can't be released into the wild. I'm gonna stop because I could go on forever about this subject.

I love that Cook won't sell to parks that have substandard care for their animals, but Sea World isn't one of them.

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Sounds like they're saying that Sea World met their standards but they're still not selling tickets. That seems biased to me, like they did this audit of the 49 parks specifically to exclude SeaWorld, and when their own audit showed SeaWorld's one of the good ones, they just went according to their pre-conceived idea anyway.

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