We are back this week some the best theme park news on the internet. Let’s start this week off with Wakefield Report Episode 64 and the 9 News Nuggets You Need to Know. Don’t forget, you can follow along on the Wakefield Report Facebook page.
Story 1: Jump For It Last week 4 year old Sean Engelmann was arrested for trying to climb the fence at Universal Orlando to gin free admission. This is actually considered theft in the city of Orlando. What made this “crime” even more interesting is that Engelmann climbed the fence right in front of the theme park and in full view of Orlando loss prevention authorities. Engelmann was arrested on the spot. He plead guilty and spent two days in an Orlando jail.
Story 2: Fast Car Unfortunate news from Walt Disney Word. 36 year old Disney Cast member Gary Terry was killed in an accident at the Richard Petty Driving Experience. Terry, who was an instructor, was riding in the passenger seat of a Lamborghini when 26 year old Tavon Watson, who was driving the car, lost control of the vehicle, sending it into a guardrail. The crash is still under investigation and the Exotic Driving Experience has been suspended. The Richard Petty Driving Experience, which is set to be closed in August of this year, is operational.
Story 3: My Stolen Magic? Interesting news is coming from California company InCom Corp. InCom claims that it developed, patented, and perfected the RFID technology that goes inside Walt Disney World’s Magic Bands. The technology company has now filed suit against Disney and the things could get ugly for WDW. IF, and this is a BIG if, a judge rules in favor of INCom, then we could see a suspension of parts of the MyMagic+ program. It would stand to reason that if a judge does find that Disney stole the RFID technology, then Disney must stop using the RFID tech inside of all Magic Bands. This case is still in the very early stages, but it is well worth keeping a close eye on.
Story 4: Cedar Fair is Going Dark Cedar Fair is putting it’s money on dark rides for the foreseeable future. The company, who’s theme parks are widely known for their monstrous steel coasters, is trying to ride the rising tide of popular dark rides. Hoping to capitalize on attractions such as Universal Orlando’s Simpsons, Harry Potter, and Transformers rides, Cedar Fair Matt Ouimet announced the the company will be making a significant investment in the coming years in new dark rides. Starting with Knotts Berry Farm’s Voyage to the Iron Reef, Ouimet announced the possibility of the new dark rides making their way across all Cedar Fair parks.
Story 5: Breakfast with Belle Walt Disney World will be testing a new breakfast menu at the Magic Kingdom’s Be Our Guest restaurant. The test is set to run until July 18th and the menu includes items such as an Open Faced Bacon and Cheese Sandwich, Scrambled Egg Whites, a Vegetable Quiche, and more.
Story 6: Measles No Mas The dreaded measles outbreak in Disneyland has officially been declared over. The nightmare is over and you can now begin booking trips to the greatest stateside Disney resort.
Story 7: Hulk Goes Metal The metal detectors that have been placed in front of Universal Orlando’s Hulk, Rip Ride Rockit, and Dragon Challenge coasters are now here to stay. The metal detectors have been put in place to prevent people from bringing cameras, cell phones, and metal plates onto the attractions, which could then become safety hazards.
Story 8: Volcano Bay It is all but official. Universal Orlando is set to open its first water park in the fall of 2016. Volcano Bay will feature the usual themed water park attractions such as slides, a wave pool, and more. No further details are known, but you can guarantee Universal is going to come out of the gate swinging with this one, as they continue to try to persuade guests to add days to their Universal vacations.
Story 9: Blackfish: The Roller Coaster Sea World Orlando announced last week that they will be building the tallest, fastest, and longest roller coaster in Orlando. Very few details are known about the yet to be titled coaster, but Sea World did announce that the coaster will stand a 200 ft tall. Set to open sometime in 2016, the coaster will indeed be a record for Orlando. Keep your eyes to the sky next year.
E Ticket Report Episode 16
On this Episode of the E Ticket Report Derek, Tim, and I talk about Disney’s controversial MyMagic+ program. We discuss the failures and successes of the Next Gen project.
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