Hi there! Welcome to our weekly roundup of the most interesting theme park news around the Walt Disney World Resort, the Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and other theme parks.
Here Are This Week’s Theme Park Highlights:
- Ready for your closeup? A Disney spokesperson has confirmed that Photopass photographers will be replaced by automatic cameras at select meet-and-greet character locations early next year. At nine character greeting spots around Walt Disney World, multiple cameras would be used to capture the character encounters. The locations include Town Square Theater at Magic Kingdom and Adventurer's Outpost at Disney's Animal Kingdom. According to Attractions Magazine, the new cameras will be housed in themed boxes and use artificial intelligence software to capture candids and posed pics. We're so curious how the automatic cameras will work, and we will be hoppin' over soon to find out!
- Blueprints from what is expected to be a Star Wars-themed hotel at Walt Disney World have turned up on a Florida state government site, giving us an early glimpse of what Disney is envisioning. The plans for the expected two-story hotel display 34 cabins, a concourse and a table-service restaurant. Theme Park Insider has in-room concept art from Disney of the futuristic spaceship cabins that include bunk beds.
- The news was hoppin' out of the IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando this week, which we've incorporated into our What's Coming to the Orlando Parks post. Disney revealed more details about the new ride car coming to the Guardians of the Galaxy coaster planned for Epcot and an expected opening for the Disney Skyliner gondola transportation system.
- It's (almost) beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Universal Orlando Resort. The holiday festivities are set to begin Nov. 17 and run through Jan. 6, 2019! We'll be hoppin' to the parks to check out Christmas in the Wizarding World, the Macy's Parade and more, and we'll have more to report back next week.
- Meanwhile, the holiday fun has already begun at Disneyland Resort, and we were there once again to capture the merry decorations and celebrations ... plus bring you tips so you can make the most of this most magical time that runs through Jan. 6, 2019, at Disneyland Park and Jan. 8, 2019, at Disney California Adventure.
- Last but not least, we know next week is Thanksgiving, but in between your family, friends and turkey time, we hope you'll hop over to the site to gobble up some savings. We'll have special Cyber Week promotions starting Monday! Plus, we'll have a hoppin' good sweepstakes for a Universal Orlando Resort family vacation!
That’s it for the theme park news this week! Have a great weekend.