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:
- Disney and the NBA announced a partnership to bring an NBA experience, restaurant and retail space to Disney Springs. While few details have yet to be revealed, the deal will include interactive experiences, hands-on activities and video productions. No opening date has revealed.
- Over at CityWalk, Universal is planning to open an NBC Sports Grill & Brew this fall in the site of the former NASCAR Sports Grille. The plans include a HDTV that is more than 100 feet wide across the exterior of the restaurant and an indoor-outdoor beer garden. Inside, guests will find more than 100 beers on tap and more than 75 food offerings.
- Harambe Market at Disney's Animal Kingdom is now open. The location in Africa offers up four quick-service options, including Kitamu Grill, Famous Sausages, Chef Mwanga's and Wanjohi Refreshments. While you'll find some traditional theme park fare, there are some African-inspired options such as skewered chicken, corn dogs made from South African sausage and spice-rubbed ribs.
- The Great Movie Ride has gotten a makeover with the help of Turner Classic Movies and now features a new pre-show and climactic movie montage.
- Over on the West Coast, Universal revealed more details about the The Wizarding World of Harry Potter that is coming to Universal Studios Hollywood in spring 2016. The park will add Flight of the Hippogriff and a 3D version of Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey as well as shops such as Ollivanders and Honeydukes.
- The Disney Channel is set to debut a "Tangled" animated series in 2017, with Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi reprising their roles as Rapunzel and Flynn Rider. That Flynn Rider is so dreamy.
- Last but not least, Twisted Colossus is open. The hybrid combines the original wooden track with steel and has a "top gun stall," an inversion where the ride cars slow while upside down. Tad cannot wait!
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.