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:
- A Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique-like Frozen experience is opening in Disney's Hollywood Studios next week for all of your favorite little princesses, who are looking for the royal Elsa and Anna treatment. At the Ice Palace Boutique, guests ages 3-12 will undergo makeovers ahead of Coronation Day. Certain packages include access to an Ice Palace Cafe, an immersive themed cafe, along with reserved seating at "For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration.
- Disney CEO Bob Iger shared a peak at the lands inside Shanghai Disney, mainland China's first Disney theme park. Many of the resort's rides will have never seen before, and its Enchanted Storybook Castle will be the tallest, largest and most interactive castle ever seen. In Tomorrowland, for example, guests will be able to experience the coaster-like TRON Lightcycle Power Run, where guests will board two-wheeled lightcycles. The other lands are Fantasyland, Adventure Isle, Tomorrowland, Mickey Avenue and Gardens of Imagination, each with their own amazing attractions. It is quite impressive, and we frogs may need to start thinking about a big hop across the pond.
- Disneyland released dates for this year's Halloween Time at Mickey's Halloween Party. We've got the full lowdown on everything you need to know if you want to attend this year's event.
- Today marks a momentous occasion. The 60th anniversary of the grand opening of Disneyland! All summer long, celebration has been under way, but this is the actual special date. We can't wait to see pics, because guests coming to the parks today are invited to dress to the nines in 1955-style.
- Universal has revealed yet another house for Halloween Horror Nights — based on the Insidious film franchise. The house will appear at both Universal Orlando and Universal Studios Hollywood.
- Reservations for premium events at this year's Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (one of my very favorite events!) are set to open July 30 at 7 a.m. Some are available to book online. The popular Party for the Senses returns, this time with a theme for Halloween (Yelloween, chic yellow and black). There are also new events, including Rockin' Burger Block Party with the cast of ABC's "The Chew."
- Prince Harry is bringing his Invictus Games to Disney World's ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex on May 8-12, 2016. This will be the first time the event, which celebrates wounded servicemen and women from around the world competing in sports events, has taken place in the U.S.
- Disney's PCH Grill at Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel has added a new nightly buffet themed after the culinary delights you might sample along California's coastline. The Beach Side Bonfire includes a carving station with tri-tip beef and baby back ribs, a seafood sautee station, wood-fired pizzas, mini tacos plus kid favorites such as mac 'n' cheese, fried chicken, and cheeseburger sliders.
- The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is conducting a milk and blood serum study of new mom Kalia, one of the killer whales at SeaWorld San Diego. It is hoped that the research could provide insight into one of the key risk factors for the endangered Southern Resident killer whales.
That’s it for the theme park news this week. Have a great weekend!
If you’re thinking about a trip to Disney World, make sure to check out the other news, tips and information we post to the blog throughout the week. If you’re ready to plan your trip, we recommend you start with our Orlando Planning Guide.