It’s not that thrill-seekers don’t expect they’ll be elevated to great heights on roller coasters like the Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit at Universal Orlando, but even the person with nary a shred of fear might get restless when stuck vertically at 150 feet in the air for three hours. Twelve passengers on that ride were rescued last night after an apparent technical glitch froze the ride in place near its summit. [More]
For those of us who didn’t grow up near Disneyland, it sounds like we were missing out of a heck of a fun time: while parents used to be able to drop kids off at a Disney park for the day and have Mickey Mouse and friends babysit their offspring, a new admission policy requires that kids be at least 14 if they’re not with adults. [More]
Prepare to pay even more to stand in line waiting to enjoy rides. For the second time in less than a year, Disney is hiking prices at its California theme parks. The cost of tickets will increase 9% (from $80 to $87) for the humble one-day pass for guests over 10, and 30% (from $499 to $649) for annual passes that include the cost of parking. [More]
Theme parks and resorts know how badly you want to be having fun, and send admission prices sky-high in the summer because they know they can. But you can still have a blast this summer, without resorting to fishing deep into your pockets. [More]
Disney has developed a new subterranean nerve center to combat lines as they happen. Pirates of the Caribbean too slow? Launch more boats and deploy a Jack Sparrow actor to distract customers. Fantasyland overflowing but Tomorrowland bare? Send out a mini-parade to lure guests over. Sounds like the basis for a fun new real-time strategy game. [More]
The “Forbidden Journey” ride at Universal Studios’ Harry Potter park just got a little less forbidden, at least for some obese tourists. The park has added new larger sized seats to the ride, so at least some of those who were turned away in previous months might have better luck now. [More]
When you have a theme park as large as Disneyland, you run into some unique challenges. Among them, the gobs of melted Mickey bars and popcorn boxes attract hordes of rodents, and those rodents have attracted an estimated 200-strong feral cat colony that has been going strong for the past 25 years. [More]
Did Disney’s eternally overreacting duck mascot put the moves on a woman visiting Epcot Center a couple of years ago? That’s what the woman claims happened; in her lawsuit, she says a park employee dressed as Donald Duck grabbed her breast and molested her, “then made gestures making a joke indicating he had done something wrong.” She’s asking for $50,000. [More]
If you visit the Harry Potter theme park this summer and happen to see a relatively large person poking himself with his brand new wand and muttering reduccio!, don’t be confused. He was probably just told he can’t ride the Forbidden Journey dark ride at the park. [More]
Harry Potter’s greatest magic trick is his ability to take money from people in infinite ways. The boy wizard’s latest venture is the Universal-owned theme park-within-a-themepark The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which opened in Orlando this weekend. [More]
Disneyland mistakenly extended a special annual pass program to ineligible customers last December, but only realized it recently. At the time of the sale, residents of certain Southern California zip codes could buy an annual ticket on a 12-month installment plan, free from any interest rates or other fees. When they discovered that some customers weren’t in valid zip codes, they ended the payment agreement with them—but they’re letting them keep the annual passes.
Throughout 2009, if you show up on your birthday to any Disney theme park in the U.S., you’ll get in free. Imagine how much money you can save on an awesome birthday, provided you go alone! [Orlando Sentinel] (Thanks to RL!)
Disney, inventors of childhood itself, told Daniel they would foot the bill after he got injured on their California Adventure ride. Then when Daniel and his wife Jane tried to collect, they got strung along for months by Garth Steever in guest claims. When they finally locked him down 11 months after the incident, Garth told them Disney changed its mind. By this time, the medical bills had already been sent to collections. Then Jane read about how to send an EECB on The Consumerist, and stormed the ramparts of Cinderella Castle. Here’s her letter, and success story…
Here’s a strange complaint. We don’t usually get too many people griping about getting ripped off in an amusement park, because, well… everyone knows amusement parks are a ripoff. This is not a secret. It takes a pretty egregious fleecing by a theme park before the roller coaster nuts start complaining about it.
There’s an excellent piece in the March National Geographic that explores how Walt Disney’s vision of Orlando set the mold for the exurbs (“A region lying beyond the suburbs of a city, especially one inhabited principally by wealthy people”) proliferating across America.
In a great leap forward for workers’ rights, but a disappointment to throngs of born-again tourists, management of the Holy Land Experience theme park in Orlando cancelled the daily crucifixion. “Park officials were apologetic but firm: None of their employees would hang on the cross during a lightning storm.”