Saturday 16 March 2024

March 17th - Theme Park News in a Nutshell

 This week's Theme Park News:

- The DisneylandForward proposal has cleared it's first major hurdle this week, with The Anaheim Planning Commission voting 5-1 to recommend the  proposal to the Anaheim City Council. The Council is expected to vote on this later this spring.

- Universal confirmed this week that Florean Fortescue soft-serve ice cream shop, originally found in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida, will be opening another location at Universal Hollywood later this month. Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream counter will open March 29 in former Zonko's joke shop space within Honeydukes. The counter will serve 10 flavors of ice cream in cups or waffle cones: Banana, Chocolate, Mint, Orange, Vanilla, Toffee Nut, Granny Smith Apple, Pistachio, Toffee Apple, as well as Butterbeer ice cream. To celebrate that iconic flavor, Universal is declaring March 15 through April 30 as "Butterbeer season" at its U.S. theme parks. The parks will feature new Butterbeer-flavored items during the event, including a Butterbeer popsicle as well as Butterbeer caramels, which will be available in Orlando only.

- Shanghai Disneyland this week states that it had "began initial preparation work for construction of a separately themed attraction to be located within Shanghai Disneyland, adjacent to Zootopia." They also announced that they had completed piling work on its as-yet unamed third hotel.

- The Disneyland Resort is previewing new entry gates that will be installed at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure, starting later this year. They have opened a test gate this week, which will bel used for a limited time and will assist with traning staff. The project is going to be finished in 2025.

- Disneyland resort dropped a whole bunch of details on Pixar fest, which returns to the resort April 26 and continues through August 4. This year it will feature a food festival, a part called Pixar Pals Playtime Party, and new parade at DCA called Better Together: A Pixar Pals Celebration!

- In the U.S. SC Holdings has acquired Santa Monica Amusements LLC, the operator of Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier.  

- Fuji-Q Highland has announced that its iconic roller coaster, Do-Dodonpa, has closed permanently. The S&S Thrust Air Coaster has been closed since August 2021, after a number of injuries.

- Aquatica Orlando officially opens its newest water slide, Tassie's Underwater Twist. This 129-foot long enclosed Super Bowl water slide from WhiteWater West features an orchestral score and synchronized video display that recreates the underwater world of Australia's Shark Bay for guests to explore as they slide through on two-person innertubes.

- Kennywood has announced the winner in its contest to name the park's bumper cars ride. In a fan vote, Potato Smash beat candidates Deep Fried Derby and Speedy Spuds to become the name for the ride, which has been getting a rebuild as Kennywood themes the cars to its Potato Patch fries.

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And you can find our weekly podcast about theme park news called Nuts About Theme Parks, on all good Podcasting platforms.

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