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Busch Gardens Tampa Bay (BGT Discussion Thread)

p. 348 - Iron Gwazi POV!

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Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has sent us a press release regarding their new deal for the 2012 Preschool Pass!

 

It’s an awesome time to be a preschooler! Children ages five and younger can now explore the wonders of Africa and the depths of the ocean for FREE with the new Busch Gardens & SeaWorld Preschool Pass. Little ones will experience kid-size thrills at Busch Gardens' Sesame Street Safari of Fun and SeaWorld's Shamu’s Happy Harbor play areas, get up close to their favorite furry and feathered friends, and see new shows brought to life.

 

The pass is valid for all of 2012 at both SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. Kids are welcome to experience all there is to do for the preschool set, including seasonal events such as Summer Nights at Busch Gardens, SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular and festive holiday events at both parks. New this year, Busch Gardens will delight guests with its biggest ice show ever, Iceploration, premiering Feb. 2. And SeaWorld is introducing an all-new festival this year, “Just for Kids!” featuring concerts by Lazy Town, Max & Ruby, the Doodlebops and Choo-Choo Soul, along with plenty of family-friendly fun and activities on Saturdays Jan. 14 through Feb. 4.

 

Parents and older kids can join in on all the excitement with a Fun Card, which invites guests to pay for a day and play all year through Dec. 31, 2012, with no blackout dates.

 

“Must-see” preschool attractions at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay

 

Preschoolers will delight in Sesame Street Safari of Fun, a sunny, funny play land, filled with moments that your family can share for the first time — like a first coaster experience aboard Air Grover. And everyday smiles can be repeated again and again: clapping along to original shows, splashing in an expansive water play area and enjoying kid-size rides.

 

Also available in Sesame Street Safari of Fun, families can Dine with Elmo and Friends on select days and enjoy special event dining experiences with the characters to mark holidays, character birthdays and more. Beginning in March, opt for the Family Fun Buffet, offered on select days. It’s the perfect way to feed your hungry family during your busy day and not miss out on any of the fun! Enjoy an all-you-can-eat buffet along with the chance to meet beloved Sesame Street characters between 12 and 4 p.m. on select days in the Sesame Street Safari of Fun Dining Pavilion. Reservations are not required.

 

In February, children’s imaginations will go wild when Iceploration takes the ice. The all-new, 30-minute show combines ethereal ice skating, larger-than-life puppets, amazing costumes and even animal stars. Iceploration opens Feb. 2, 2012 with shows daily in the Moroccan Palace Theatre. Another family favorite at Busch Gardens is “Critter Castaways,” in which a cast of unlikely characters – including dogs, cats, parrots and exotic animals – come together to create a side-splitting show with surprise twists that will have the whole family laughing.

 

There are plenty of animal encounters and pint-sized rides for families with young children to enjoy as well. In Jungala, families can connect with the jungle through a three-story play land, enjoy a water play zone and come face to face with exotic and endangered animals. At Jambo Junction, guests can have up-close interactions with animals such as flamingos, lemurs and sloths. And in Timbuktu, a carousel and other junior rides will delight those not ready for the major coasters. And what preschooler doesn’t enjoy a train ride? You and your little one can journey across the Serengeti Plains to view zebra, rhino and giraffes aboard the Serengeti Express.

 

Some additional features that Busch Gardens offers families with young kids include stroller parking and reduced prices on kids’ meals in 2012. Parking spots are available within our preferred parking area designated strictly for guests with strollers, so they can bypass the tram. No additional fee is required, and spaces are available on a first-come, first-served basis to guests who request them at the parking tollbooths. At the park’s restaurants, kids’ meals are now just $5.99, including a drink, making it even more affordable to not only entertain, but also feed your little ones at Busch Gardens.

 

SeaWorld loves kids, too

 

And don’t forget that this awesome new FREE Preschool Pass also includes admission to SeaWorld Orlando. Just a short hour’s drive away, SeaWorld’s littlest guests can enjoy the wildly popular 4-acre play area, Shamu’s Happy Harbor. It’s a kid’s dream come true, complete with kid-size rides, a 4-story net climb, and a great place for parents to relax in the shade. The park’s first family-oriented roller coaster, Shamu Express, can be found here, along with many other kiddie rides to explore.

 

And that’s in addition to all the wondrous animal encounters at SeaWorld. Your family can meet penguins, dolphins, fish, rays, sharks, and, of course, Shamu!

 

Sign up today!

 

The Free SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Preschool Pass is an online-only offer, available at BuschGardensTampaBay.com or SeaWorldOrlando.com. It is exclusively for Florida residents ages 5 and younger and is valid for unlimited admission – with no blackout dates – through Dec. 31, 2012 at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and SeaWorld Orlando. The Preschool Pass does not include parking or Premium Passport discounts or benefits.

 

After registering through either park’s website, registrants can pick up the Preschool Pass for their child by bringing a printed confirmation and a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate to any ticket window at Busch Gardens’ or SeaWorld’s front gate.

 

For more information on the Free SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Preschool Pass, visit BuschGardensTampaBay.com or SeaWorldOrlando.com.

 

There was also a new article about Busch Gardens Tampa Bay's new ice skating

 

http://www.tampabay.com/features/travel/attractions/busch-gardens-new-show-includes-animals-helium-filled-puppets/1208902

 

A new ice show opening in February at Busch Gardens will include live animals on-stage and helium-filled puppets.

 

Iceploration tells the story of a computer savvy preteen whose grandfather thinks he's not as connected to the world as he thinks. So they travel on a 30-minute journey to the four corners of the earth, accoridng to a news release about the new show. The multi-sensory story, told through theatrical skating by a cast of 20 with an all-new original score, is the collaboration of an award-winning creative team with Broadway credentials, including Tony Award-winning costume designer Gregg Barnes (The Drowsy Chaperone, Best Costume Design Tony winner 2007, and Legally Blonde the Musical, Best Costume Design Tony nominee 2007).

 

The show opens Feb. 2 at the Moroccan Palace.

 

In the production, Austin explains how technology has made his generation more connected to the world than ever before. But his grandfather argues that the boy is more disconnected than he realizes, and takes him on an adventure around the globe. Through their travels they visit the African Serengeti, Great Barrier Reef, the Arctic and the Amazon rainforest.

 

The adventure unfolds as they arrive in the Serengeti, where larger-than-life puppets and intriguing set design bring elephants and other animals to life at a watering hole. Solo and chorus skating performances accompanied by acrobatics tell an anecdote of an agile cheetah stalking graceful gazelles and meerkats.

 

Austin and Grandpa then dive into the Great Barrier Reef to explore the harmony of life on the ocean floor. A black light transition and never-before-seen helium-filled puppets immerse the audience in the wonders of the sea, filled with parrotfish and lionfish, sea urchins, turtles and a moray eel.

 

In the Arctic, skaters become snow flurries as a winter storm threatens the travelers. Austin and Grandpa witness even more beauty as they encounter the Aurora Borealis, represented with theatrical lighting and projections. Then they share the stage with live animal stars, including a Siberian lynx and a sled of Siberian huskies as they continue to traverse the tundra.

 

The two adventurers wrap up their adventure immersed in the lush, tropical Amazon Rainforest. Squirrel monkeys, sun conures and colorful macaws fill the air as playful frogs, and a dragonfly skates into the grand finale: a new signature song called Meet the World.

 

Iceploration performances are included with any daily park admission or annual Pass. For more information, visit BuschGardens.com.

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I haven't heard anything about a drop tower, but that could be interesting.

 

I was at the park yesterday and it was busy due to the long weekend and it's that time of the year when the tour groups from Brazil & Argentina are out in force. Montu was down a good part of the day, but was back up and running later in the afternoon. Cheetah Hunt had a consistent 40-45 minute wait all day. The animal care center looks great and I'm looking forward to checking out the inside once it opens to guests.

 

I saw yesterday that the "Let's Dance!" featuring Burn the Floor (Australian ballroom dance group) will be back starting January 18. That was a pretty good show, so looking forward to its return for the winter/spring.

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The park was packed yesterday! Tons of tour groups! But I had a chance to see Let's Dance feat. Burn the Floor which runs through April 15th. Here is a video on YouTube with some clips of the new segments for this year:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Every park that doesn't have one could use one! I love the screamin' swing flats. I think a Screamin' Swing would be a better investment for BGT than a drop tower because many more people enjoy screamin' swings as they are a bit tamer.

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*** ALERT! THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS!***

OMG! So I had the chance to go to an preview of Busch Gardens new show, "Iceploration"! It was fantastic! The way they told the story of the Boy Alex and his Grandfather. Also the way they transported us into each part was mind blowing! Also the lighting was really cool as well. The Great Barrier Reef scene was by far my favorite scene! I will give you a few spoilers the sea creatures hanging above you in the scene seems like you were actually underwater with everyone! I hope you all get to see this show cause this is one of Busch Gardens Tampa best show since Hollywood on Ice!

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Today TPR got to check out a preview of the new Busch Gardens Tampa ice skating show, "Iceploration!"

 

Here is the official press release about the show:

 

ALL-NEW EPIC ICE SHOW PREMIERES AT BUSCH GARDENS IN THE MOROCCAN PALACE THEATRE

 

Busch Gardens’ Biggest Ice Show to Date Takes the Ice on 2-2-12

 

TAMPA (February 1, 2012) — For more than five decades, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has set the industry’s standard for delivering unforgettable entertainment experiences, with Broadway-style stage spectaculars like KaTonga: Musical Tales From the Jungle and innovative ice shows like World Rhythms on Ice. Iceploration builds on that tradition and introduces audiences to the next generation of ice shows.

 

Starting February 2, a cast of 20 brings to life an all-new adventure filled with world-class skaters, more than 75 original costumes, amazing aerial performances, master puppetry and live animal stars, with shows daily in the Moroccan Palace.

 

“The grand scale of this show sets a new standard of entertainment that further solidifies Busch Gardens as one of Florida’s premier theme parks,” said Busch Gardens Park President Jim Dean. “Iceploration reintroduces the ice show to our most loyal fans while bringing together the things Busch Gardens stage productions do best: world-class entertainment with top-notch skaters, amazing costumes, original music, larger-than-life puppets and even animal stars.”

 

Iceploration inspires audiences to “explore the world” on a 30-minute journey to the four corners of the earth. This multi-sensory story, told through theatrical skating and an all-new original score, is the collaboration of an award-winning creative team with Broadway credentials, including Tony Award-winning costume designer Gregg Barnes (The Drowsy Chaperone, Best Costume Design Tony winner 2007; Legally Blonde the Musical, Best Costume Design Tony nominee 2007).

 

The 30-minute show opens with Austin, a digitally savvy preteen, who believes that technology has made his generation more connected to the world than ever before. But his grandfather – and old-world explorer – argues that the boy is more disconnected than he realizes, and takes him on an adventure around the globe. Through their travels they visit the African Serengeti, Great Barrier Reef, the Arctic and the Amazon rainforest.

 

The adventure unfolds as they arrive in the African Serengeti. Here, larger-than-life puppets and spectacular set design bring elephants and other awe-inspiring animals to life at a watering hole. Solo and chorus skating performances accompanied by acrobatics tell an anecdote of an agile cheetah stalking graceful gazelles and meerkats.

 

Austin and Grandpa then dive into the Great Barrier Reef to explore the harmony of life on the ocean floor. An amazing black light transition and never-before-seen helium-filled puppets immerse the audience in the wonders of the sea, filled with parrotfish and lionfish, sea urchins, turtles and a moray eel.

 

In the Arctic, majestic skaters become striking snow flurries as a winter storm threatens the travelers. Austin and Grandpa witness even more beauty as they encounter the Aurora Borealis phenomenon, represented with theatrical lighting and projections. Then, they share the stage with amazing live animal stars, including a Siberian lynx and a sled of Siberian huskies as they continue to traverse the tundra.

 

Austin and Grandpa wrap up their adventure around the globe immersed in the lush, tropical Amazon Rainforest. Squirrel monkeys, sun conures and colorful macaws fill the air as playful frogs and a graceful dragonfly skate into the grand finale: a new signature song called “Meet the World.”

 

Iceploration performances are included with any daily park admission or annual Pass. For more information, visit BuschGardens.com

 

Photos and some video....

 

TPR is at Busch Gardens Tampa for the media preview of Iceploration!

 

Here is what you see when you walk into the Iceploration theater at Busch Gardens Tampa.

 

Jim Dean, president of @BuschGardens Tampa introduces Iceploration.

 

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The African Serengeti and ice skaters? Sure! It works!!!

 

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Iceploration Elephant Stiltwalkers in the Serengeti

 

Now we visit Australia's Great Barrier Reef!

 

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Iceploration in the Great Barrier Reef

 

Now we are in the arctic! It's even snowing in the theater!

 

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Iceploration Austin and Grandpa with Huskies in the Arctic.

 

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Iceploration Acrobatic Monkeys in the Rainforest

 

Hooray! A trampoline section!

 

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Iceploration Dragonfly Solo Skater

 

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Iceploration Finale in the Rainforest

 

Three of the stars, and one of the animal trainers from Busch Gardens Iceploration.

 

Austin and Grandpa Jones from Busch Gardens Iceploration. First long-run BGT show with a kid actor!

 

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Scott Swenson gives us a great backstage tour!

 

Backstage at Busch Gardens Iceploration! Theater geeks will love this!

 

That baby elephant is well hung!

 

Backstage at Busch Gardens Iceploration you see some of the props from the show.

 

Scott says... "Come out to Busch Gardens Tampa and see Iceploration... You'll love it!"

 

And here is a video clip from Iceploration!

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Iceploration Cheetah Gazelle in the Serengeti

Meet The World Finale.mp3

A clip of music from the show - Meet the World Finale

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Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has sent us a press release regarding a special one-night-only offering they've planned for Valentine's Day.

 

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with the ultimate “date night” – a romantic adventure under the stars, complete with unforgettable African animal encounters and delicious treats on Busch Gardens Serengeti Night Safari.

 

WHAT: Valentine’s Day Serengeti Night Safari

Venture through Edge of Africa to witness the active nighttime behaviors of hippos, lions and hyenas, lit only by moonlight and handheld lanterns. Then, on the Serengeti Plain, use night-vision monoculars and special filtered lighting to view free-roaming herds of giraffes, zebra, rhinos and other intriguing African animals. After your amazing animal adventure, cozy up around a roaring bonfire to hear colorful tales of African folklore.

 

DATE: Tuesday, Feb. 14, 6:30-9 p.m.

 

FOOD/DRINKS: This nighttime experience begins and ends in the exclusive Safari Club. You will enjoy savory appetizers and adult beverages before the excursion, and a special nightcap completes the evening with champagne and chocolate-dipped strawberries.

 

PRICE: The cost is $60 per person, plus tax. Park admission is not required or included.

 

RESERVATIONS: Call 1-888-800-5447 or visit BuschGardens.com. Guests must be 21 years of age or older to participate.

 

Busch Gardens has also sent us a press release announcing the birth of another reticulated giraffe at the park!

 

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay welcomed a new baby female reticulated giraffe on Monday, January 27, 2011. At 6 foot, 2 inches tall and weighing approximately 176 pounds, the newborn is the calf of father, Jafari and mother, Cupid. This is Jafari’s second calf, and cupid’s fifth.

 

This new addition brings the park’s reticulated giraffe population to 19. Exactly one month to the day before this most recent birth, another female in the herd, Tesa, gave birth to Jafari’s first calf, which was also female.

 

The new mother and baby are currently in an area out of guest view so they can be closely monitored by zoo staff to ensure the baby is nursing and growing properly. The duo will join the other animals on the Serengeti Plain in about three months.

 

A reticulated giraffe’s gestation period is approximately 15 months, and the new baby will nurse for about one year. This birth is part of a successful long-term breeding program at Busch Gardens. The term “reticulated” refers to the giraffe’s net-like pattern of spots.

 

Busch Gardens’ 65-acre Serengeti Plain is a naturalistic habitat featuring a diverse population of free-roaming African animals including giraffe, zebra, white rhinoceros, eland antelope and several other species of hoof stock and birds.

 

You can view these amazing animals from the Serengeti Express, the Skyride or on a Serengeti Safari, an open-truck tour during which you can hand-feed reticulated giraffes and get up-close with the other animals on the plain.

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Edited by jedimaster1227
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I've been hearing Iceploration is a great show! One of the greatest shows Busch Gardens has had. They added Cheetah Hunt, new Animal Care center, attempted to fix Gwazi, and might even have a drop tower coming in the future. This park has really turned this place around

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Giraffes have blue tongues?

 

Black actually. And from what the animal keepers at the park have told me, it's because giraffes eat all day long (I've seen them going for the grass near the back wall of the meerkat habitat and trying to reach leaves way up in the trees), so they have dark tongues so they won't get sunburned.

 

And that new baby giraffe is BEYOND cute!

 

I've been hearing good things about Iceploration. I can't make it to the park again until after my trip to Disney next weekend, but I'm looking forward to checking it out.

 

Also, I believe Kasi the cheetah's 1st birthday is coming up soon and I know the park will most likely do something to celebrate. He's such a cutie pie!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Been searching these forums for the past few weeks. I wish I knew about this place years ago..

 

Anyways, I'm planning on visiting this park next Friday. I live in the Boston area and my kids have school vacation next week. I know that the WDW parks will be jammed. What do you think the crowds will be like for this park on a Friday?

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