Friday, 22 May 2020

News in a Minute - 22 May 2020

Here is this week's news!
- Disney Springs has partially re-opened in Florida, with mixed success. A lot of talk this week about how signage for queue has been done, as Disney appear to be using a "Don't Stand Here" approach, as opposed to universal using a "Stand here" approach.
- Universal Orlando has put forward a plan to their county, to re-open their theme parks to the public on June 5th. The Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force has requested plans from all major theme park chains in the region. They uniamously approved the plan, which includes a testing periods on June 1st for cast members, and June 3rd and 4th for invited guests and annual pass holders.
- In Europe, Efteling has re-opened, with firm rules around distancing, but no requirement for wearing masks.
- This years IAAPA Expo Asia has been announced as a virtual event , which will run on July 28th to the 30th.
- Current WDW President Josh D'Amaro has been named as Bob Chapek's replacement as the hea d of the park, experiences and products division of the Walt Disney company.
- Village Roadshow, who owns and operates Movie World and Sea World in Australia, has entered into exclusive takeover talks with a private Equity company BGH Capital. Interestingly though, there specific terms in the offer relating to raising the price if the theme parks run by the chain are able to re-open before the deal is finalized.
- Europa Park gave a video of the making of their new Piraten in Batavia ride.

Friday, 15 May 2020

News in a Minute - 15th May 2020

More good news this week!!

Here it is:
Shanghai Disneyland successfully opened this week to many face masks and much social distancing.
Universal Orlando’s Citywalk also opened selected restaurant and shops yesterday.
Holiday World have announced that they will have all rides with virtual queues when the park reopens on June 14
Knott's Berry Farm and Cedar Point have Postponed their Anniversary Celebrations until next year.
Some of Europe’s biggest theme parks have announced their reopening with Europa Park opening on May 29th and Efteling opening in May 20th
It’s rumoured the wdw might open reservations for their hotels in the coming weeks, with July 1st being the suggested date.
Six Flags has introduced its new system for visitors to make reservations to visit the company's amusement parks. They said that pass holders will get first option to book and that people will able to add themselves to a wait list for booked out days. No announcement yet on when parks will reopen

Friday, 8 May 2020

News in a Minute - 8th May 2020 - THE RETURN

The long await... maybe... return of Theme Park News in a minute!

This week's news:
Shanghai Disneyland is set to re-open on Monday May 11th! The first Disney park to survive the Coronavirus. The park closed in January along side Hong Kong Disneyland. They've been requested to allow no more than 30% of their normal capacity, but Disney has stated the initial days will be even lower. All guests and cast members will be required to wear masks, excluding Face characters, however they will only be accessible "from a distance".
Disney Springs at Walt Disney World is going to start a phased re-opening starting May 20th. Select retail and dining locations will be opened, and there will be new safety measures in place for capacity as well as the use of face coverings.
Universal Orlando's CityWalk may also be in the process of re-opening with reports of staff being told there are potential re-openings as early as next week.
Hersheypark has had it's first test run of it's new coaster Candymonium this week. The new B&M Hypercoster is the anchor for their new entrance plaza, planned to open this year.
The Cedar Fair park reported their first quarter earnings, which showed that Knott's Berry Farm had a 19 percent increase in attendance, prior to the coronovirus closures.
It's been stated that when Six Flags theme parks re-open from this current shutdown, they will require guests to make advanced reservations to visit the park, so that they can limit visitation numbers.
A rumoured new 100 million dollar theme park in Iowa  called Lost Island theme park has continued construction during this pandemic, with site owners day it wouldn't be wise to stop things now for the planned 2022 project.

Don't forget that you can also have Theme Park News straight to your earholes. Search for Theme Park News in a Minute on all good Podcasting platforms... or just click here:

Sunday, 22 March 2020

Australian Theme Parks closed due to Coronavirus

The major Australian Theme Parks (Dreamworld, Movie World and Sea World) have all announced tonight that they are closing due to the Coronavirus. Honestly, it's about time. I hope that the parks are able to sustain being closed financially until this threat of the virus passes.

Having said that, please enjoy a video filmed 4 weeks ago when we revisited Dreamworld for the first time in 4 years. I have a lot of very fond memories of Dreamworld, and it will always have a special place in my heart.

This visit was for a birthday party for one of my daughter's friends, so it's a basically a montage of me chasing my 3 year old around. Enjoy!

Friday, 28 February 2020

News in a Minute - 28th Feb 2020

Disney has a new CEO, with Bob Chapek filling the role vacated by Bob Iger. No word yet on whether a 3rd Bob will fills Bob's role, now that Bob is replacing Bob.

The Tokyo Disney resort is closing because of Coronavirus fears. It's announced it will be closed from February 29 through March 15.

It was reported that there has been an incident on Magic Kingdom's Jungle Cruise, where a ride boat sank. It sank about a foot, as the water in this ride isn't actually very deep.

Legoland California has a new General Manager, with Australian Kurt Stocks taking the role. Kurt was previously the General Manager of Legoland Malaysia.

Disney's Hollywood Studios is going to start hosting Mickey Mouse cartoons in the reimagined Mickey Shorts Theater, from March 4th.

Walt Disney World have added a new variation of the Dining Plan, with the Disney Dining Plan Plus, which has two table or quick service meals a day.

The Magic Happens parade has opened at Disneyland Resort.'/.

DisneyWorld have announce the dates for their Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween part, running on 36 date from August 13th.

Attendance and revenue up at SeaWorld Theme Parks for 2019, up 0.2 percent.

Universal Orlando released images of their new Dockside Inn and Suites, which open next month.

Sea World San Diego gave a media preview of their upcoming B&M floorless dive coaster, Emperor.

King's Island have released footage of their first test run of Orion, their new B&M Gigacoaster.

Friday, 21 February 2020

News in a Minute - 21st Feb 2020

This week's News:

Universal Studios Hollywood has confirmed the closure of its Walking Dead attraction on March 4th.they also released the theme for its first Halloween Horror Nights maze of 2020 as the Walking Dead.

Magic Kingdom’s Cinderella castle getting a slight touch up later this year, with concept art for a new slightly darker colour scheme released this week.

Universal launched a new "Let Yourself Woah" campaign staring "Saturday Night Live" cast member Kenan Thompson.

Cedar Fair reported record attendance at its theme parks in 2019 up over last year by 5 percent.

Screamscape have reported that Universal is working on a secret project that will be connected to Epic Universe in Orlando. Think along the lines of Star Wars Galactic Star Cruiser... but for Harry Potter.

The Apex Parks group has closed 4 of their properties including 2 amusement parks Indiana Beach and Fantasy Island

Turkey’s Wonderland Eurasia (formerly called Ankapark) is now closed for good after failing to attract enough business

The Secret Life of Pets: Off the Leash! at Universal Hollywood will open to the public on March 27.

Friday, 14 February 2020

News in a Minute - 14th Feb 2020

This week's news:

Disney is coming for even more of your money, with price increases for day tickets at Disneyland resort and annual passes at Walt Disney World.

Six Flags has announced that all 26 of their parks and attractions have been designated "Certified Autism Centers" by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards.

Universal is giving away 8 trips to Japan in a promotional stunt for Super Nintendo World at Grand central station in New York on February 19th.

Universal Hollywood have dropped a hint on the opening of their new Secret Life of Pets Ride, saying it will be open for their Peacock Live after hours event on March 28th.

They also announced more details for their Top chef event this week and

It’s been reported that the next maintenance closure of their Jurassic World Ride will see the inclusion of the Indominous Rex.

Dreamworld Australia is retiring the Rocky Hollow Log Ride.

Disneyland had a backstage media preview of the Magic Happens parade.

New restaurant called Asian Street Treats has opened at Disneyland resorts downtown Disney.