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:
- There are some fluffy new characters in the Universal Superstar Parade at Universal Studios Florida. Duke, Max, Gidget and other pals from The Secret Life of Pets are rolling along the parade route with two new floats and a musical performance that's sure to make you howl with laughter.
- Starting Dec. 23, guests will have the option of ordering alcohol during their meal at selected sit-down Magic Kingdom restaurants. Tony's Town Square Restaurant, Liberty Tree Tavern, Cinderella's Royal Table and Jungle Navigation Co. Skipper Canteen join Be Our Guest in serving wine, beer and cider selections.
- He's stolen the Whos' gifts, but that's not enough for The Grinch. Universal posted a video of the Grinchmas celebrity stealing the Universal Studios Tram Tour. What a rotter.
- One of our must-see theme park shows, Waterworld, will undergo a refurbishment from early January to April. We love this show—full of stunts, explosions, leaping and water. Check it out during your next Universal Studios Hollywood visit.
- The Epcot International Festival of the Arts is just around the corner. Disney has teased us with a sneak peek of the sweet treats that will be available at this celebration of everything colorful, creative and culinary from Jan. 13-Feb. 20.
- Curious about leaping over the wall inside Disney's Animal Kingdom to get a peek at Pandora: The World of Avatar? WDWMagic.com posted some amazing aerial photos of the construction progress. That's some amazing rockwork and greenery. We can't wait to see everything inside next year.
- The Castle Heraldry shop in Fantasyland in Disneyland will be closing Jan. 12. This is one of the rare shops that offers unique merchandise—family crests, swords—rather than Disney items. We purchased the Frog Family coat of arms from this shop many years ago.
- There will be plenty of entertaining New Year's Eve options at Disney California Adventure. Dance to DJs in Cars Land, Hollywood Land and Paradise Pier, with two performances of "World of Color - Seasons of Light"
- If you won't be at the Magic Kingdom on Dec. 31 to see the spectacular New Year's Eve fireworks show, #DisneyParksLIVE will broadcast a live stream of the show, starting at 11:45 p.m. EST. The thrill of the fireworks and none of the massive crowds all trying to leave at the same time.
The Frog Pond is all decked out for this holiday weekend. Presents are wrapped and we're ready for some festive croaking (or carolling, as you call it). From our Frog Family to yours, Merry Christmas. May you be surrounded by friends and family. If you're travelling to the Orlando or Southern California theme parks, may your wait times be good and your spirits (and patience) high.
That’s it for the theme park news this week. Have a great holiday weekend!