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Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

p. 623 - New Epic Universe details, including Celestial Park!

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^I have a feeling that this ride is a lot like the Eurofighters where a bad train can ruin your day. Grab a seat on a train that was just rehabbed and you'll get a completely different ride from a train that's been riding for weeks/months.


Also, you rode right before the lengthly downtime. We rode it near opening and again a couple of weeks ago (day it came up from it's long rehab) and it was amazing in several different seats.

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I figured I would throw in my experiences from last weekend. I rode the ride 5 times, all in the backseat. All of the rides were fun, but there was a noticeable difference on the one train, where I noticed a slight amount of jackhammering over certain elements on the course. The ride was still fun, but there was a noticeable difference from my other rides on other trains, all in the same row and seat.

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I was on the ride 4 times in the past two days. Ops were good, the line was posted at 40 to 60 minutes but took less than half that time. All laps were reasonably smooth, with a couple instances of shuffling on the "rough" rides.


This thing didn't impress me in the least last spring, when we had to camp out to swoop in during one of its few up-times. Talk about cranky. After that, it gave us a dull, forceless spin. It plainly sucked.


Now it's grown on me. Every one of our 4 recent laps were filled with fun air pops and laterals. It was best in the front and back, but even rows 3 and 4 were good. The soundtrack was cool and perfectly synced. I think RRnR is finally living up to its potential. After lap 4, I love this thing. Wish I could have managed a couple more laps.


EDIT: I forgot to mention the hidden tracks didn't work for us. When we managed to get the input screen up and enter a code, silence was our dubious reward. Is it working for anyone else?

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NEWS: Universal Orlando VP, Jan Stratton dead

Dies at age 54 from a reported self-inflicted gunshot wound




Jan Stratton, an executive at Universal Orlando and mainstay of local charitable and civic groups, died Sunday after being removed from life support. She was 54.


Orange County deputy sheriffs responded to her Bay Hill home about 11 a.m. Saturday after a family member reported a self-inflicted gunshot wound, sheriff's spokesperson Jim Solomons said.


She was transported to Orlando Regional Medical Center, where she died.


Stratton was vice president of community and diversity relations at Universal Orlando, responsible for the company's charitable giving, community events and minority relations.


"Jan Stratton's fingerprints were on so many things," said long-time friend and associate Dick Batchelor. "This is so surreal because she gave so much to so many people in this community."


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She served on boards for many organizations, including Give Kids the World, the Valencia Community College Foundation, the Orlando Regional Healthcare Foundation, Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital Advisory Board, African American Chamber of Commerce, Florida's Independent Living Advisory Council, Association of Corporate Contributions Professionals, City of Life, Orlando Children's Trust Committee, Harbor House of Central Florida, and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.


Those community groups received hundreds of thousands of dollars in corporate donations earmarked by Stratton.


"Jan was a woman of enormous heart. She had a great passion for helping the families of our community," said Universal Orlando spokesman Tom Schroder. "She will be forever missed."


Pam Landwirth, president of Give Kids the World, which hosts more than 5,000 families with ill children each year, first met Stratton 30 years ago when they worked for Walt Disney World.


"Jan cared so deeply and passionately about children," Landwirth said Sunday evening. "She just drew you in and you knew it was genuine. She genuinely cared."


David Odahowski, president and CEO of the Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation, said he knew Stratton for 20 years and will remember her and her trademark red business suit with black trim.


"There is no one more passionate and professional in her work," Odahowski said. "She is a great advocate for children and champion of the Second Harvest Food Bank."


Before coming to Universal in 1996, the University of Central Florida alumnus worked for the Walt Disney Company for 21 years. Stratton was named Business Woman of the Year by the Orlando Business Journal in 2000 and by the Orlando Rotary Club in 2004. In 2007, Stratton was the recipient of the Summit Award by the Women's Resource Center.


Stratton is survived by her husband, Jack Cudworth, and two sons, James and Michael.


"The way to celebrate her life is to continue giving and supporting the causes she cared so much about," said Batchelor, who hosts an annual 5K foot race to support abused children. "It will be a void that will be very, very hard to fill."


Her death remains under investigation, according to the sheriff's office.

Edited by Moose
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Words can't express the sadness and shock felt by the community in the wake of Jan's death.


While I didn't know her personally, I did have a few professional encounters with her and I can tell you that I've never known a more genuine person in the amusement industry. She lead by example and taught her team to go out of their way to accommodate the families and staff that I work with, to ensure they had the time of their lives. It was never a case of just getting their brand out there, tied to a charity...it is and has always been a true effort to make a difference.


Her knowledge, experience and character helped shape the mission I uphold everyday. She will be missed.

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  • 1 month later...

Universal's Islands of Adventure Ripsaw Falls is on Fire!!!

Update: Ride has reopened






A fire has erupted at Islands of Adventures at Universal Studios in Orlando Saturday.


Guests and employees were evacuated from the park at about 5:30 p.m.


According to reports, the fire broke out at Ripsaw Falls.


No injuries were reported.


Toon Lagoon Island has also reportedly been evacuated as well.


Orange County and Orlando fire crews are responding to the fire.


News 13 is working to get more details.






A "major fire" that erupted at Islands of Adventures at Universal in Orlando Saturday has been put out.


Guests and employees were evacuated from the park at about 5:30 p.m.


According to officials, the fire broke out at Ripsaw Falls.


No injuries were reported.


Official don't know how the fire started but they did say it started on the roof of the ride. They are actively investigating.


Toon Lagoon Island was also reportedly been evacuated as well.


Official don't know how the fire started, but they are actively investigating.

The water ride will be shut down at least through Sunday. Some guests may get reimbursed, according to park officials.


Orange County and Orlando fire crews responded to the 2-alarm fire.


Thick, black smoke could be seen in the area.


More details:











I really hope this doesn't mean the end for an amazing attraction.



Another Update:




ORLANDO, Fla. -- Universal Studios Florida said a building fire prompted a ride evacuation at the Islands of Adventure theme park Saturday.


Universal spokesman Tom Schroder said the Ripsaw Falls ride was evacuated as a result of the fire and that guests and park employees were safe.


The fire is already out, Schroder said.


A WESH-TV viewer sent a photo from the park showing heavy smoke in the area.


There was no immediate indication of how the fire started.

Edited by Moose
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Ride outdated??? or theme?


For the Island its in I think it fits pretty well. Heck, for that measure all the themeing in toon lagoon is outdated, to kids and young adults. But every island has it's demographics in my opinion.

Edited by jarmor
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