UNIVERSAL ORLANDO GOES A LITTLE BIT COUNTRY AS MUSIC STAR JOSH TURNER
TAKES THE STAGE AT THE SUMMER CONCERT SERIES
Summer Concert Series Runs Every Saturday Night Through July 14
Universal Orlando’s Summer Concert Series continues this weekend as country music star Josh Turner performs live at Universal Studios Florida.
Turner burst onto the country music scene in 2003 with his debut album, “Long Black Train.” The album’s single, “Long Black Train,” spent more than 40 weeks on the Billboard country charts. In 2006, Turner was invited to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry, making him the second youngest country singer to date ever to be inducted. Turner’s most notable hits include “Your Man,” “Would You Go With Me,” and “Why Don’t We Just Dance,” which was the most played song on country radio in 2010 and earned him an American Country Award for “Singer of the Year – Male.” Turner’s fifth studio album, “Punching Bag,” was released this month.
Universal Orlando’s Summer Concert Series is included in admission to Universal Studios and gives guests the opportunity to add a major concert to a day of theme park thrills. This year’s star- lineup features top-name talent that will appeal to fans of every music genre. The full list of upcoming acts is below.
SUMMER CONCERT SERIES 2012 LINEUP
Guests can also experience Universal Studios’ brand-new entertainment experiences – Universal’s Superstar Parade and Universal’s Cinematic Spectacular – 100 Years of Movie Memories. Before the concert, Universal’s Superstar Parade will roll through the streets and transform into a theme-park-wide performance stage as today’s most beloved stories and characters bring new adventure and excitement to guests. After the concert, Universal’s Cinematic Spectacular – a nighttime show that takes guests on a journey filled with powerful movie moments – will unfold across the park’s central lagoon.
A while back I wrote a post about my favorite value resort, Pop Century. Today I’d like to share with you my favorite moderate resort, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter. The first time I stayed there back in December of 2007, it wasn’t exactly the most magical trip, but that had nothing to do with the resort (you can read more about that horrible/wonderful trip here). Even though it wasn’t the greatest trip, I fell in love with the resort. Part of my attraction to this resort is the fact that I used to live near New Orleans, and if you aren’t aware, this resort is primarily themed after the French Quarter section of that city.
I love the fact that you are greeted by a Cast Member who holds to door open as you enter the lobby. This little touch makes it feel like you are being welcomed home. One of my favorite aspects of the resort is its intimate size. Also a little known fact is that the notes featured by the along the check in area at the front desk are from the song “When the Saints Go Marching In.” Because it is so compact, the resort does not even offer preferred room locations. The standard rooms feature two queen beds, as opposed to two double beds as some of the other moderate and all of the value resorts. It is conveniently situated near Downtown Disney with a complimentary water taxi that ferries guests down the Sassagoula River back and forth from the shopping and dining district to French Quarter and its sister resort, Port Orleans – Riverside.
The resort is very quaint and neatly manicured in its exterior design. It is almost organized like in small neighborhood apartments with courtyards and parks intersected by cleverly named streets. As is to be expected, the decor in the rooms is influenced by French theming, with regal golds and blues, with a fleur-de-lis thrown in here and there with the furnishings matching. This is one of my favorite places to stay because it always feels so peaceful and relaxed. Everything seems to be conveniently within walking distance from just about any location from the boat launch to the pool, gift shop, bus stop, lobby, bars and food court.
Ah, the food court. I absolutely love Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory! Again, I used to live in Louisiana, so my affinity for cajun food may be greater than the average guest. Having said that, they have one of my favorite breakfast/snack/dessert items anywhere on Walt Disney World property: beignets!!! If you have not tried this heavenly treat, get yourself over to French Quarter ASAP! It is essentially a fried dough pillow (hollow inside) covered in powdered sugar. Be warned, it can be very messy, but can make for very fun pictures of friends and family trying to eat them delicately to no avail. My favorite lunch/dinner item is definitely the gumbo, but I always like to add some extra kick to it.
The food court is playfully themed to Mardi Gras with beads, jesters, kings and masks in larger than life form hanging from the walls and ceilings in the majestic golds, greens and purples that are often associated with New Orleans. Attached to Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory, just off the lobby, you will find one of two bars at the resort: Scat Cat’s Club. This great little bar often offers live entertainment with a musician/singer playing some classic oldies, soul music and he also takes requests for Disney songs along with other pop music. It is a fun location with one of my favorite brews on tap in Abita’s Purple Haze, but also features a full bar with drinks like Hurricanes you don’t find many other places on property.
Port Orleans French Quarter is great for kids and adults alike in activities. There is an awesome pool with a waterslide shaped like a dragon named Scales. A kids water play area and playground are also featured nearby For the grown ups there is Mardi Grogs, the pool bar, and a nice hot tub for a relaxing evening after a day of playing in the parks. In addition to the water taxi to Downtown Disney and Port Orleans Riverside, there is also a nice walking path to Riverside if you want to go catch Yehaa Bob at River Roost. If you are looking for romance, not much beats a private horse drawn carriage ride along the beautifully lit shores of the Sassagoula River. The gift shop at the resort is named Jackson Square after the famous area in the French Quarter if shopping is more your style.
Some of my favorite touches at the resort are street signs with the fun names going with the theme of jazz and New Orleans. I love the details at Port Orleans French Quarter and hope that you can experience this gem of a resort in the Downtown Disney area. It is a great moderate resort that offers convenience and fun for a value if you aren’t looking for a deluxe property. Have you stayed at or visited French Quarter? What did you think? What are some of your favorite things?