Universal Orlando Resort reveals new dates and headlining acts for Rock The Universe 2019
Florida’s biggest christian music festival returns to Universal Studios Florida in February 2019
Rock the Universe 2019 will feature the same great content – with better dates. The event, which is popular with youth groups, will take place on February 1 and 2, 2019 – well after the start of school in most cities – allowing guests to enjoy a faith-filled weekend of live music, worship and theme park thrills.
This year’s event will feature performances by GRAMMY-nominated Christian rock band, Skillet, GRAMMY award-winning hip-hop artist, Lecrae, chart-topping artists of Bethel Music, Dove Award-winner, Matthew West and more.
Big Daddy Weave
Rhett Walker Band
Rock the Universe guests will also enjoy autograph sessions with the genre’s top artists and access to the FanZone presented by Coca-Cola, which features more live performances by up-and-coming acts.
FanZone Presented by Coca-Cola
Features Austin French, David Dunn and Carmen Justice on Friday plus Apollo LTD, Tiger Drive and PEABOD on Saturday. You’ll also have a chance to meet select Rock the Universe artists at autograph sessions each night.
Keep in mind that autograph sessions are not guaranteed and are subject to change without notice. Space is limited and open on a first-come-first-served basis.
Saturday Candlelighting Ceremony
Join with other faithful for a touching ceremony with a special message and moving music performed live by one of our headliners. Saturday evening at the Music Plaza Stage, 11:45 pm.
Sunday Morning Worship Service
Wrap up your weekend praising God with youth from around the country at a powerful non-denominational worship service located inside Universal Studios Florida™ at 9:30 am and 10:45 am. Admission is included with any 2019 Rock the Universe™ Ticket. Space is limited so advance registration is required. Check back soon to reserve your group.
Experience mind-blowing rides at Universal Studios Florida, included with your event ticket. Get a Rock Your Weekend ticket and you can also head next door to Universal’s Islands of Adventure. Plus, with a 3-Park Rock Your Weekend Ticket, you can enjoy Universal’s Volcano Bay.
It’s an unforgettable weekend of faith and fun.
Rock the Universe is a separately ticketed special event.
Right now there are some FANTASTIC ticket and annual pass offers available for the theme parks of Central Florida!
Let’s take a look at them all!
SeaWorld Orlando and Aquatica Orlando Preschool Card
The 2019 SeaWorld/Aquatica Preschool Card is now available for registration exclusively for Florida Residents offering an ocean of experiences that are perfect for pint-sized guests, from up-close animal encounters to breathtaking live shows.
SeaWorld and Aquatica Orlando will offer kids ages 5 and younger a FREE Preschool Card valid for visits through December 31, 2019 for unlimited admission to both SeaWorld and Aquatica Orlando.
Advance registration must be completed online and is only valid for children ages 5 or younger at the time of redemption at the park.
Please note registration is required by January 27, 2019 and ticket redemption is by February 28, 2019.
To redeem your Preschool Card visit a SeaWorld Orlando or Aquatica Orlando ticket window and present all of these:
Your Preschool Card online registration confirmation
Your child’s birth certificate or travel passport
Your Florida resident ID
Also keep in mind that the Preschool Card does not include taxes, service fees, free parking, separately-ticketed events, or other discounts.
Busch Gardens Tampa and Adventure Island Preschool Card
The 2019 Busch Gardens Tampa/Adventure Island Card is now available for registration exclusively for Florida Residents offering an ocean of experiences that are perfect for guests 5 and under.
Busch Gardens Tampa and Adventure Island will offer kids ages 5 and younger a FREE Preschool Card valid for visits through December 31, 2019 for unlimited admission to both Busch Gardens Tampa and Adventure Island.
Advance registration must be completed online and is only valid for children ages 5 or younger at the time of redemption at the park.
Please note registration is required by January 27, 2019 and ticket redemption is by February 28, 2019.
To redeem your Preschool Card visit a Busch Gardens Tampa Bay or Adventure Island ticket window and present all of these:
Your Preschool Card online registration confirmation
Your child’s birth certificate or travel passport
Your Florida resident ID
Also keep in mind that the Preschool Card does not include taxes, service fees, free parking, separately-ticketed events, or other discounts.
Busch Gardens Tampa and Adventure Island BOGO Fun Cards
For a limited time, buy a 2019 Busch Gardens Fun Card and get an Adventure Island Fun Card FREE. Blockout dates apply.
Valid at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay through December 31, 2019.
2019 Blockout Dates: Mar. 30 | Apr. 6 & 13-27 | May 25-26 | July 1-7 | Nov. 23-24 & 29-30 | Dec. 21-22 & 28-30. Valid at Adventure Island March 15 through October 27, 2019.
2019 Blockout Dates: April 14 & 20-27 | May 25-27 | July 4-7, 13-14 & 20.
Keep in mind that a Busch Gardens Tampa Bay / Adventure Island Fun Card
Does not include admission to select special events (including Howl-O-Scream at Busch Gardens), parking, or discounts on food and merchandise.
Only valid for residents of the US, Canada and Puerto Rico.
Non-transferable and non-refundable. Not valid with other discounts or special offers.
LEGOLAND Florida Resort’s FREE Preschooler Pass, available from January 10 through February 18, 2019, will grant Florida Resident children ages 3-years-old and 4-years-old 12 months of unlimited admission to both LEGOLAND Florida Theme Park and Water Park.
As the theme park built for kids, LEGOLAND Florida Resort offers more than 60 percent of its rides and attractions for guests 40 inches or taller. The one-time offer pass includes all seasonal events including Brick or Treat and early spring visits when THE LEGO® MOVIE™ WORLD opens. Taking guests from the theater to the theme park, the newest theme park addition will feature three attractions, inspired by the characters and themes of the worldwide blockbuster THE LEGO® MOVIE and the upcoming THE LEGO® MOVIE 2: The Second Part.
LEGOLAND Florida Resort’s Preschooler Pass will be available for a limited time at the admission ticket window only. Guests purchasing the pass must bring a copy of their child’s birth certificate or travel passport for proof of age. Children must be aged 3-years-old or 4-years-old at the time of receiving the Preschooler Pass to qualify. Guests ages 2-years-old and under will continue to receive free admission.
Annual Passes are none refundable, however if you have purchased a LEGOLAND Florida Resort Annual Pass for your 3 or 4-year- old, you can choose to extend the validity of that pass by 12 months or transfer the purchased pass to an immediate family member. (Transfers are limited to one per person).
Universal Orlando Resort has launched a first-of-its-kind offer that gives Passholders more thrills and adventure than ever before. Starting today, guests can get up to six months FREE on Universal Orlando Resort Annual Passes depending on what tier they choose.
This special offer is valid on 2-Park (Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure) and 3-Park (Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay) Seasonal and Annual Passes and is available for purchase and activation through April 4, 2019.
Here’s a look at the different Universal Orlando Annual Passes:
$269.99 for two park, $368.99 for three park
Three months free
Doesn’t include any parking or merchandise discounts,
Includes blackout dates
$354.99 for two park, $463.99 for three park
Three months free
50% off regular daytime self-parking after your first visit
Limited discounts at CityWalk, Blue Man Group, and resort hotels
Includes blackout dates
$394.99 for two park, $503.99 for three park
Six months free
Free self-parking and discounted rates for normal and Red Carpet valet parking after your first visit
10% Discount at Universal-owned stores and restaurants (not carts), CityWalk, Blue Man Group, and resort hotels
No blackout dates
Early park admission without having to be a resort guest
$559.99 for two park, $733.99 for three park
Six months free
Free prime self-parking and normal valet parking, with a large discount for Red Carpet valet parking
15% Discount at Universal-owned stores and restaurants (not carts), CityWalk, Blue Man Group, and resort hotels
No blackout dates
Early park admission without having to be a resort guest
Free Express Pass after 4pm
For more information and to purchase Universal Orlando Resort Annual Passes visit their website.
Walt Disney World Florida Resident ‘Discover Disney’ Ticket
For a limited time, Florida residents can take advantage of a special ticket offer and purchase a 3-day Discover Disney Ticket for only $175 plus tax—valid for admission to one theme park per day! Plus, add a 4th day for just $20 more plus tax! These tickets can be used on non-consecutive days through June 30, 2019 with no blockout dates.
Visit multiple theme parks on the same day by upgrading your ticket to include the Park Hopper Option for just $32.50 plus tax more for a 3-day ticket or $37.50 more plus tax for a 4-day ticket.
For an additional $57.50 plus tax, add the Park Hopper Plus Option to a 3-day Discover Disney Ticket—or for an additional $62.50 plus tax, add the Park Hopper Plus Option to a 4 -day Discover Disney Ticket. If you add the Park Hopper Plus Option to your Discover Disney Ticket, you get all the benefits of the Park Hopper Option, plus you can enjoy 3 visits with the 3-day Discover Disney ticket or 4 visits with the 4-Day Discover Disney ticket to the Disney Water Parks, select Disney golf courses and more Walt Disney World fun.
Take advantage of these great prices:
3-Day Discover Disney Ticket – $175 plus tax
3-Day Discover Disney Ticket with Park Hopper Option – $207.50 plus tax
3-Day Discover Disney Ticket with Park Hopper Plus Option – $232.50 plus tax
4-Day Discover Disney Ticket – $195 plus tax
4-Day Discover Disney Ticket with Park Hopper Option – $232.50 plus tax
4-Day Discover Disney Ticket with Park Hopper Plus Option – $257.50 plus tax
Purchase through June 27, 2019. Discover Disney Tickets are valid for use through June 30, 2019 and can be used on non-consecutive days—with no blockout dates.
Tickets and options are nontransferable and nonrefundable and exclude activities/events separately priced. Discover Disney 3- and 4-Day Tickets and add-on Options expire on June 30, 2019.
Conversations with Cheryl: Make a runDisney Goal – My runDisney 5K Story
I never thought I could achieve a 5k. My friends were in participating in the runDisney 5K, and at over 310 pounds I was scared but excited to join them.
How I started slowly…
The idea of training for my first 5k was daunting at first, but once I became more comfortable with the idea that a 5K was 3.1 miles which I typically walked during a day in the parks I was ready to get started.
My favorite (and easy) practice walk was to go to Epcot and walk around World Showcase, which is 1.2 miles.
After I got comfortable walking for longer periods of time, I found that I wanted to keep going so I would walk at night around my neighborhood or I would hop on the treadmill.
Do you need a buddy for a runDisney 5k?
I like to walk with friends, but it is not completely necessary.
If you think you would like to have a buddy, don’t be shy about asking your friends. Who knows…you could inspire them to give it a try, too!
Also if you look on Facebook it is easy to find running groups, charity runners, and running events in your local area.
SeaWorld Orlando 2019 Event Line-Up Kicks off with the Return of Three Kings Celebration
Three Kings Celebration Brings Cherished Traditions and Festive Cuisine to Orlando January 1 – 6
In honor of the cherished tradition of Latin cultures, families are invited to help commemorate the arrival of the Three Wise Men as only SeaWorld can.
Enjoy extended opportunities to see O Wondrous Night and Sea of Trees, partake in authentic festive cuisine, and best of all see the Three Kings and camels take the stage as they share the tale of their journey.
SeaWorld’s Three Kings Celebration is included with park admission and begins at 11 a.m. daily, January 1 – 6, continuing through park close.
Tale of the Three Kings – Join the Three Wise Men at a live nativity scene depicting the arrival of the Three Kings. A storyteller will share the tale of their journey and the traditions of the Three Kings holiday to park guests. This presentation, featuring live animals, will take place several times throughout the day and offer a truly special photo opportunity for park guests.
Festive Food and Drinks – Food connoisseurs can enjoy Latin-inspired dishes and drinks prepared exclusively for SeaWorld’s Three KingsCelebration. Menu items include papas rellenas (fried stuffed potatoes), empanadas (cheese, chicken or beef) and bacalaitos (codfish fritters). Libations include frozen sangria and coquitos.
O Wondrous Night – Hear the greatest story never told with over 30 carols, life-size puppets and live animals in this signature show that will charm, entertain and delight people from all walks of life. Lots of singing, special effects and incredible lighting enhance this production and holiday spirit. It’s a live nativity that only SeaWorld can bring to life.
Sea of Trees – Take a walk through our wintery, watery wonderland and immerse yourself in a sea of holiday trees. Our glistening forest with over 100 trees sparkles to music and lights up the water…and, your eyes.
Best Way to Play
The best way for guests to experience all of the events at SeaWorld Orlando is with an Annual Pass, starting at $10.99 a month for Florida residents.
Special members-only benefits such as discounts on dining and shopping make the Annual Pass especially valuable to enjoy SeaWorld’s events throughout the year.
Over on the Disney Parks Blog, Jeremy Schoolfield just shared a blog post about the 19 new Magical Experiences in 2019 coming to Walt Disney World.
2019 is definitely going to be one for the Theme Park history books!!!
Check out what’s coming in his post and let us know what you’re looking forward to the most!!!!
19 Magical Experiences in 2019 at Walt Disney World Resort
HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2019 is going to be an amazing time at Walt Disney World Resort, with so many new and exciting things happening all year long. You’ll travel to a galaxy far, far away and experience zany fun aboard a runaway railway. You can MousekeDance yourself silly and play basketball like the pros. Or maybe you’ll want to take in beautiful views while you dine 15 stories high atop a new resort hotel tower or glide across the sky in a gondola.
So let’s get to it!
Here are 19 reasons to be excited for a trip to Walt Disney World Resort in 2019:
1. Anything Can Happen at Mickey & Minnie’s Surprise Celebration – Starting Jan. 18, Magic Kingdom Park is honoring those true originals, Mickey and Minnie Mouse, now, more than ever with new entertainment, merchandise and specialty food and beverages. The new “Move It! Shake It! MousekeDance It! Street Party” will parade up Main Street, U.S.A. several times daily, while you can meet Mickey and Minnie together – wearing their new birthday outfits – in Town Square Theater.
2. Celebrate the 30th anniversary of Disney’s Hollywood Studios – On May 1, Walt Disney World Resort will celebrate the 30th anniversary of Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The park is honoring this achievement all year with a new 30th anniversary logo and other fun and excitement (see below!).
3. Say a Fond Farewell to IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth – After nearly 20 years of delighting Epcot guests through music, fireworks, fire torches and more, this nighttime spectacular will be ending in the second half of this year. Now, more than ever you’ll want to spend another evening around World Showcase Lagoon to celebrate this classic show that has entertained millions since its October 1999 debut.
4. Jaleo Cooks Up Fresh Tastes at Disney Springs – Chef José Andrés will bring the spirit and flavors of Spain to Disney Springs with his new Jaleo restaurant, opening this winter. The tapas experience will offer a lively setting befitting its name, which means “revelry.”
5. Party with Pixar Pals at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Starting Jan. 18, celebrate the park’s 30th anniversary with The Incredibles, who will host a dance party at Pixar Avenue (where you can also meet the one and only Edna Mode!). A door to the monster world will open at Walt Disney Presents, where Mike and Sulley from Disney•Pixar’s “Monsters, Inc.” will be greeting you. And Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Jessie and the rest of the gang are ready to welcome you into Andy’s backyard at the new Toy Story Land.
6. Disney on Broadway Concert Series Expands During Epcot International Festival of the Arts –This celebration of the visual, culinary and performing arts returns Jan. 18-Feb. 25. This year, the Disney on Broadway Concert Series will expand to seven days a week, so you can bask in live Disney magic more than ever. The festival also will feature 13 Food Studios, a variety of workshops led by professional artists, interactive exhibits and activities, and much more.
7. “The Lion King” Roars Again at Disney’s Animal Kingdom – 2019 marks the 25th anniversary of Walt Disney Pictures’ animated classic “The Lion King.” To mark this occasion, starting Jan. 18 Rafiki and Timon will lead you in dances and games during the “Hakuna Matata Time Dance Party” on Discovery Island.
8. Take in the Topiaries During Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival – Welcome spring’s arrival with this popular festival, which returns March 6-June 3. This year’s event will feature delectable bites at outdoor kitchens, as well as dozens of world-renowned, Disney-themed topiaries. In addition, the Garden Rocks Concert Series will include three shows a day for all 90 days of the event.
9. Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy Speeds into Disney’s Hollywood Studios – When this new show experience opens this spring, you’ll come face to face with racing legend Lightning McQueen, who will teach you about racing from his years of experience on the track. This will be the untold story of Lightning McQueen … as told by Lightning McQueen!
10. H2O Glow Nights Return to Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park – These evening beach parties happen Thursdays and Saturdays from May 30 through Aug. 17, transforming the water park into a new nighttime experience through special music, lighting and food. Come party with friends from Pixar’s “Toy Story” films during the 30th anniversary summer of Typhoon Lagoon!
11. New Cinematic Nighttime Experience Coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios – As part of the theme park’s 30th anniversary, Wonderful World of Animation will debut May 1. The show will use state-of-the-art technology to take you on a magical journey through more than 90 years of Disney animation, all beginning with Mickey.
12. Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort to Open New Tower – This summer, the resort will complete a total reimagining, including the new 15-story Gran Destino tower featuring a rooftop restaurant and 545 new guest rooms. A second new restaurant will be located on an island in the middle of the resort’s 14-acre lake, while all of its existing 1,800-plus rooms have been fully updated with new fixtures and furnishings.
13. NBA Experience Will Be a Slam Dunk at Disney Springs – This brand-new destination will allow you to participate in your own scouting report, take you through pregame preparations and let you step onto the court to make clutch shots and highlight reel-worthy slam dunks. By participating in 13 unique and innovative hands-on activities, you’ll feel like a star player.
14. Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Will Spice Up Fall – The aromas and flavors of global marketplaces will welcome you to the 24th year of this renowned festival. You’ll have a chance to meet celebrity chefs, try new food and wine pairings, and listen to great music during the Eat to the Beat Concert Series.
15. Major Youth Sporting Events Return to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex – The Jr. NBA World Championship will return to the complex, showcasing top boys and girls basketball teams from around the world. In December, the 63rd Pop Warner Super Bowl will bring hundreds of young football players to Walt Disney World to compete in national championship games.
16. Explore Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – Live your own Star Wars adventure when this deeply immersive land opens at Disney’s Hollywood Studios this fall (and this summer at Disneyland Park in California). You’ll explore Black Spire Outpost on the planet Batuu, where you’ll find all manner of new sights, sounds, smells, tastes, characters and creatures from a galaxy far, far away. The land will also feature two thrilling new attractions: Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, and Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.
17. Take a Ride on Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway – Opening later this year at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this will be the first ride-through attraction themed to Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse. It will feature a new original story and lovable theme song, taking you on a journey inside the wacky and unpredictable world of Disney Channel’s Emmy Award-winning Mickey Mouse cartoon shorts. New technologies will transform the two-dimensional cartoon world into an astounding multi-dimensional experience.
18. Glide Through the Air in the Disney Skyliner –Disney Skyliner will offer Tinker Bell views later this year as guests float in gondolas to either Epcot or Disney’s Hollywood Studios on roundtrips from Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, Disney’s Pop Century Resort, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort and the new Disney’s Riviera Resort.
19. Disney’s Riviera Resort Will Be 15th Disney Vacation Club Resort – Scheduled to open by the end of this year, Disney’s Riviera Resort will reflect an elegant early 20th-century design, inspired by Walt Disney’s travels to the Mediterranean. The deluxe DVC resort is slated to offer approximately 300 family-friendly vacation home units.
ICON Orlando Rolls Out New Savings & Experiences for the Holidays
ICON Orlando offers Friends & Family Discounts, Dining Package, Sky Bar 360, & More
ICON Orlando is rolling out a festive collection of seasonal savings for group and individual flights, exciting new options for group celebrations and gatherings, nightly light shows, and unique dinner experiences.
Designed for visitors and locals alike, the new offerings present significant savings on memorable holiday outings for friends and families, including always FREE garage parking at the popular dining and entrainment complex.
Located in the heart of Orlando’s International Drive entertainment district, ICON Orlando 360 is home to an array of unique dining experiences. From authentic Spanish and Mexican fare to traditional American eats, ICON Orlando 360 offers selections to please any palate. Nightly live music, shopping venues and a central courtyard with fountain and choreographed water displays, complement the experience.
“Whether entertaining out-of-town guests, toasting the holidays with friends or co-workers, or looking for an iconic Orlando vacation experience, these new offers deliver memorable moments and substantial savings,” said Cindy Dykman, director of sales and marketing at ICON Orlando 360.
ICON Orlando new seasonal experiences include:
Holiday Friends & Family Pass – (Groups of Three or More) – Share the experience with your loved ones this holiday. A group of three riders on ICON Orlando pays less than $22.00 per person, per rotation and can fly during any time of the day or night. For groups of more than three riders, the admission price drops to just $14.99 per additional rider, compared to the listed $29.99/adult and $24.99/child general admission pricing.
Fly Before 4 and Save – Take a flight on ICON Orlando before 4 p.m. and pay just $14.99 per person, per rotation – a savings of $15.00 per standard adult and $10.00 per standard child admission rates. (*Block out dates include December 24, 2018-January 1, 2019.)
Florida Residents Anytime Flight – Florida residents riding ICON Orlando enjoy a savings of 25 percent with prices at $19.99 for adults and $14.99 for children when purchased online.
Sky Bar 360 – ICON Orlando now offers private Sky Bar 360 beverage capsules for up to 10 guests, starting at just $29 per person. An ideal experience for a holiday gathering of friends and colleagues, Sky Bar 360 capsules include options for a bottomless selection of beer and/or wine plus two full rotations (44 minutes) on ICON Orlando. Beer options include Bud Light, Corona and Blue Moon with wine offerings including an array of white, red, sparkling, and Prosecco. Guests of the Sky Bar 360 capsules must be 21 years or older. Customization for quantity and selection of beverage offerings is available upon request. (Not available December 31st).
Holiday Light Show – More than 64,000 LED lights will bring the tallest observation wheel on the east coast of the United States to life in a kaleidoscopic 10-minute show, synchronized to a festive holiday soundtrack. The light show runs until January 6, 2019 (Sunday-Thursday at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.; Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., 9 p.m. and 10 p.m.).
Fly & Dine – Fly & Dine includes one flight aboard ICON Orlando, along with a choice of dinner options at seven of ICON Orlando 360’s fast casual and full-service restaurants. The set menu options start at just $32 for fast casual or $45 for full-service dining at participating restaurants, including Sugar Factory Orlando, Tin Roof Orlando, Tapa Toro Spanish Restaurant, UNO Pizzeria & Grill and others.
New Year’s Eve – Exciting plans are underway for an iconic New Year’s Eve celebration. More information will be announced soon!
The centerpiece of the 18-acre ICON Orlando 360 dining and entrainment complex, ICON Orlando captivates guests with an experience like no other. One of the tallest observation wheels in the world, the 400-foot ICON Orlando provides riders with a bird’s-eye view of Central Florida. Its gentle rotation allows time to take in the Central Florida landscape, and enjoy meaningful time with friends and family for the holidays. In addition, SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium, Madame Tussauds Orlando, SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology and the all-new StarFlyer Orlando provided added entertainment.
For more information on how to purchase tickets and to view the all-new options, visit the official website.
Disclosure: I was an invited guest of the Walt Disney World Resort to experience the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays, however all opinions are 100% my own.
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla.
The Epcot International Festival of Holidays fills the park with holiday magic, international seasonal delicacies, captivating live entertainment, and festive decor daily until December 30th. And the best gift of all? Most of what you can experience is included with your theme park admission!
The Festival is a great way for families to learn about and even celebrate Holiday traditions from around the world, and at this year’s Epcot International Festival of Holidays you can also experience a new Holiday Cookie Stroll as well as new food and beverage items at Holiday Kitchens throughout Epcot.
With so much to do, I thought I would share my Epcot International Festival of the Holidays must do’s and tips!
Top 7 Epcot International Festival of the Holidays Must Do’s and Tips
Try a tasty teats at the Holiday Kitchens
At the Epcot International Festival of the Holidaysyou can savor holiday dishes and beverages from across the globe at 12 specialty kitchens set around the park’s World Showcase.
New items this year include black forest roulade with cherry whipped cream at the Bavaria Holiday Kitchen in the Germany pavilion and sofrito-marinated beef with sweet plantains, and olives at the Feast of the Three Kings Holiday Kitchen.
AND a brand-new kitchen this year, L’Chaim!, will feature traditional Jewish dishes such as pastrami on rye, chicken and matzo ball soup, and more. I can tell you that this Holiday Kitchen is an ABSOLUTE MUST DO!!!!
If you want to find out a COMPLETE list of what you can find at each Holiday Kitchen, visit the official Festival website to plan your culinary celebration!
Tip – If you want to sample dishes at the Holiday Kitchens, you can stay on budget by using Disney Gift Cards! Also, don’t forget to register your card on disneygiftcard.com, because if you lose the card you can still have access to the money you’ve loaded onto the card.
Three words…Holiday Cookie Stroll
New this year is the Holiday Cooke Stroll where you can enjoy delicious cookies from cookie stroll locations around World Showcase.
As you enjoy the cookies you will collect stamps for each one in your Holiday Passport, and if you get all five stamps you will be rewarded with a complimentary “completer” cookie and a cold glass of milk!
Tip – You don’t have to eat all all five cookies in one day, but I won’t stop you…you have until December 30th to present your completed passport for the Cooke Stroll.
Candlelight Processional is the heart of Epcot’s International Festival of the Holidays, and is a retelling of the story of Christmas by a celebrity narrator accompanied by a full choir and a 50-piece orchestra in a performance that inspires joy and fills you with the holiday spirit.
This elegant showcase is performed three times nightly at 5:00 PM, 6:45 PM and 8:15 PM through December 30th at the America Gardens Theatre in Epcot’s World Showcase.
Here’s a list of this year’s remaining celebrity narrators:
NEW! Alfonso Ribeiro – November 27, 2018
Robby Benson – November 28 to 30, 2018
John Stamos – December 1 to 2, 2018
Neil Patrick Harris – December 3 to 6, 2018
Whoopi Goldberg – December 7 to 9, 2018
NEW! Bart Millard – December 10 to 12, 2018
Blair Underwood – December 13 to 14, 2018
Gary Sinise – December 15 to 17, 2018
Pat Sajak – December 18 to 20, 2018
NEW! Auli’i Cravalho – December 21 to 23, 2018
Edward James Olmos – December 24 to 25, 2018
Jodi Benson – December 26 to 27, 2018
Cal Ripken Jr. – December 28 to 30, 2018
Tip -Seating for Candlelight Processional can get quite packed, so if there is a celebrity narrator that you MUST see consider taking advantage of a Candlelight Processional Dining Package. You can choose to enjoy a delicious breakfast, lunch, or dinner at some of the tastiest restaurants in Epcot and the adjacent Disney’s BoardWalk Resort and Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts followed by reserved seating at a performance of the Candlelight Processional. To reserve Candlelight Dining Packages, call (407) WDW-DINE.
Storytellers and Holiday Entertainment
Another MUST DO for the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays is to stroll the World Showcase stopping to see costumed performers bring the traditions of their home countries to Epcot with holiday stories and music, along with a variety of other international festive entertainment.
Tip – As soon as you get into the park pick up a times guide (or two) for the week, because this is the only way to find out what times performances are happening in each pavilion.
Chip ’n Dale’s Christmas Tree Spree
Chip & Dale are on a scavenger hunt, collecting ornaments for their Christmas tree—and they need your help!
To get started, simply purchase a map and stickers ($6.99 plus tax) from select merchandise locations including Pin Central, Disney Traders, and World Traveler at International Gateway.
As you travel around World Showcase, be on the lookout for Chip & Dale in each World Showcase pavilion.
Once you spot them, add the corresponding ornament sticker to your map.
Then, take your completed map to Disney Traders or World Traveler and exchange it for a festive surprise, courtesy of Chip & Dale!
Tip – Look carefully for Chip & Dale on wreaths on the Holiday Kitchen buildings…some are hard to find, so be patient!!!
IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth
The Illuminations: Reflections of Earth nighttime spectacular of fireworks, special effects, flame torches and more includes a special holiday finale nightly until December 30, 2018.
This will be the final holiday season for IllumiNations, as the show is currently scheduled to conclude at the end of summer 2019, with new thrills on World Showcase Lagoon set to debut immediately afterward (more on this soon).
Tip – While most of the fireworks and special effects take place in the air, I still like to arrive 30 minutes before Illuminations: Reflections of Earth begins (make sure to check your times guide) to find a spot close to the water so I can see all of the magic!
Meet Santa and Mrs. Claus
If you are looking to take an iconic Holiday photo, head to The American Adventure pavilion where you can pose for a photo and share their holiday wishes with Santa and Mrs. Claus.
Tip – The lines to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus can get quite long, so if you are visiting with little ones try to have one adult wait in line while the other adult keeps the little elves busy with the Kidcot Fun Spot at the pavilion or by grabbing a snack from the nearby Holiday Kitchen.
Attending Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is a really fun way to ring in the holiday season, and since attending the party is a splurge for most families here are some of my best tips for making the most of your time at the celebration:
Top 10 Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Tips
Tickets for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party vary by date, so make sure you pick the best date for your schedule and wallet. Also, on select nights there are discounts for Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club Members. Also remember that while the party officially starts at 7 pm, you can enter the park with your Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party ticket starting at 4 pm.
When you are entering the Magic Kingdom, make sure to grab a Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party event map…in fact grab more than one since you will be referencing it often during the celebration.
A lot of the entertainment happens around the hub in front of Cinderella Castle, so if catching as many of those as you can is a priority consider grabbing a spot that allows you to see several of the offerings at once.
Little ones getting restless? Head over to Club Tinsel, inside of Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe, where they can dance with holiday friends and get out some energy.
There are several attractions opens throughout the park during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, but if rides aren’t your priority I still recommend taking a spin on the Jingle Cruise.
There are several party exclusive treats this year that are only available after the party begins at 7pm, however if you use the My Disney Experience app to mobile order you’ll find them before the party starts. (I 10 out of 10 recommend the Feliz Navidad Nachos at Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn and Cafe!)
If you see merchandise you really want to purchase or a party exclusive photopass picture you want to take…do it right away! As the night goes on, lines can get longer and/or you may find yourself on the other side of the park.
Don’t forget to pick up your Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party exclusive Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom card from the Firehouse on Main Street U.S.A.
After the fireworks, a sizable portion of the attendees at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party will leave the park, so it is always a good idea to watch the second parade. BUT keep in mind that A Frozen Holiday Wish and Holiday Wishes fireworks only happen once during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.
Skipping the first parade also means shorter wait times for treats and attractions during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party! Yes, you are seeing at 5 minute wait for Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin!
Celebration, Florida’s Now Snowing event celebrates 20 years of snow
Now Snowing, Central Florida’s original and premier “Snowing” event, offers one of the area’s only synthetic ice rinks, special community performances by some of the area’s top young talent, and special concert events throughout the season.
Now Snowing is a month-long Winter Wonderland Spectacular featuring strolling Charles Dickens style Carolers, photos with Santa, horse drawn carriage rides, ice skating, train rides, and nightly snowfall at 6:00, 7:00, 8:00 and 9:00 PM. It’s a true throwback to the traditional family style holiday.
In addition to the everyday fun at Now Snowing Nightly, you can catch A Countdown to Christmas on December 15th – an evening filled with young talent from across the United States and featuring talent seen on national television and radio, and more. These free concerts are in addition to the everyday fun already a part of Now Snowing.
A special Radio Disney Holiday concert filled with surprise performances will take place on December 8th. Past performances have included All-Star Weekend, Drew Seeley, Ryan Beatty, Justin Bieber, Keke Palmer and more.
Parking is Free in Open Lots. The town will enforce parking laws, and tow vehicles illegally parked or parked in unauthorized areas at owner’s expense. Please pay close attention to parking and street signs.
** Additional Parking available at the Celebration K-8 School- $5.00 donation **
Free Nightly Snowfall at 6:00, 7:00, 8:00 and 9:00 PM
everyday November 24th-December 31st *
*weather permitting. Inoperable during heavy rain or temperatures below 32 degree (F)
Cost to Skate*: $10.00 (ice skates included) for 30 minutes of skating
Hours: 4:00 pm-10:00 pm Nightly November 24th-December 31st.
For more Information: 407-566-2526
*Synthetic ice rink
CELEBRATION EXPRESS TRAIN
Hours: 5:00 pm-close Nightly November 24th-December 31st.
For more Information: 407-566-1500
HORSE AND CARRIAGE RIDES
Cinderella Carriage $65.00 for up to four riders, $10 each additional
Christmas Sleigh: $55.00 for up to four riders, $10 each additional
Vis a Vis (Small Carriage): $45.00 for up to four riders, $10 each additional
Wagon Rides: $5.00 per person
(infants under 1 year of age-no charge)
Hours: 5:00 pm-close Nightly November 24th-December 31st.
For more Information: 321-624-6380
Cost: Depends on Package Purchased
Hours: 5:30-9:00 PM Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturday and Sunday through December 24th and 6:00-9:00 PM Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays through December 24th
Margaritaville Resort Orlando Announces Island H2O Live! Water Park Details
Island H2O Live! water park set to bring chills and thrills to Central Florida in Spring 2019
I don’t know about you, but I am STOKED for the opening of the Margaritaville Resort Orlando in Spring 2019!
And as I’ve been driving by the site, I can’t help but notice the HUGE water park area that is taking shape next to 192 in Kissimmee.
Today I was excited to learn that Central Florida’s newest and most immersive water park will be called Island H2O Live!, and will be opening with the Margaritaville Resort Orlando in Spring 2019.
Island H2O Live! will unleash the power of pure play and enthusiasm with nine different thrill rides, a lazy river, a wave pool, a kids’ area, and a river raft ride for the whole family. Designed to enable guests to customize their experience and share it with the world, the park uses a new RFID wristband system that will enable guests to personalize the music and lighting they experience on select rides, making every time very unique.
The park, owned by Horizon Waterpark, LLC and developed in collaboration with Encore Capital Management and Innovative Attraction Management, will change the way people think about water parks.
“Water parks are known for exhilarating rides and attractions, but Island H2O Live! will let guests be playful in interactive ways that have never been seen before,” said Albo Antenucci Jr., Executive in Charge, Horizon Waterpark, LLC. “These incredible opportunities for engagement will be what Island H2O Live! is all about.”
BEHIND THE TECHNOLOGY
The wristband system at Island H2O Live! is called Vantage and is the latest offering from water slide manufacturer WhiteWater West.
The Vantage system works through an app that guests download either before or when they arrive. Once they arrive at the park, guests sync the app to their wristbands and the fun begins, as a scanner on certain slides will read their wristband and automatically play songs and lighting effects from the previously established selections.
On some slides, the technology will enable cameras to snap pictures and video and share the content directly to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, or other social media sites. Guests can also use their creativity and personal style to produce their own slide experience by choosing music playlists, lighting preferences and tagging their social media handles for easy sharing.
Another high-tech feature: “Be Live” invites guests to sing karaoke or star in other audio/visual experiences with clips from these sessions shared through the app.
The gamified app also allows guests to earn loyalty points with every ride. Guests can win prizes such as free food and beverage items, skip-the-line passes, and more.
“These features speak to the ‘Live’ part of our name,” Albo Antenucci Jr. “Customization offers guests the creative space to develop their own adventures, to be in the moment, but then capture those moments and share them in real-time.”
The experience at Island H2O Live! will be all about creating your own, unique, customized experience. For those looking to soak in the island vibe, listen to music, and have some chill with their thrill, tropically-inspired havens will abound with hammocks, cabanas and soft sand beaches around every turn and adult-only areas will offer cocktails only steps from your beach chair.
To keep the fun going. Island H20 Live! is within walking distance or a short trolley ride to Margaritaville Orlando Resort hotel and cottages, and Sunset Walk, the resort’s retail, dining and entertainment district featuring everything from Studio Movie Grill, to Rock & Brews, BurgerFi, Capone’s, Ford’s Garage, GameTime, Sketchers and more.
Island H20 Live! admission will offer the most fun you can have in the water at a great value. Please visit IslandH2OLive.com for specific ticket pricing or to book tickets call 407-910-1401.
Everything you need to know to plan a festive evening at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party!
There’s no better way to celebrate Christmas than a evening at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World!
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, a special hard ticketed event not included with regular theme park admission, takes place on November 8, 9, 12, 13, 15, 16, 25, 27, 29 and 30; and December 2, 4, 6, 7, 9, 11, 13, 14, 16, 18, 20 and 21 from 7pm until midnight.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party gives guests the opportunity to meet with some of their favorite Disney friends in their holiday finest, enjoy holiday entertainment, exclusive fireworks, a high-energy parade, complimentary treats throughout the park, and more topped off with a ‘snowfall’ on Main Street U.S.A.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Treats
Let’s talk about those complimentary treats you can find during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, because it is more than just hot cocoa and sugar cookies!
Throughout the Magic Kingdom there are seven locations, marked with a giant inflatable candy stick, offering a wide variety of holiday treats until midnight.
Here is a list of where you can find the treats throughout the Magic Kingdom:
Tortuga Tavern (Adventureland): Snowman Soft Pretzel and Blue Sno-Cone
Liberty Square Ticket Office (Liberty Square): Ginger Molasses Cookie and Eggnog
Pinocchio Village Haus (Fantasyland): A variety of Holiday Favorite cookies and Hot Chocolate & Apple Cider
The Friar’s Nook (Fantasyland): Variety of DOVE Chocolate and Chilled Sparkling Apple Cider
Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe (Tomorrowland): Snickerdoodle Cookie and Hot Chocolate
Auntie Gravity’s Galactic Goodies (Tomorrowland): Santa Claus Cookie and Blue Sno-Cone
If you have dietary concerns, there are allergy-friendly and alternative healthy options available upon request at each location.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Entertainment
Another huge part of the celebration is the event exclusive holiday entertainment, and this year the returning favorites are fantastic!
Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration: Mickey and his pals invite some of their friends over for an unforgettable Christmas party filled with music, dancing, color and fun on the Cinderella Castle Forecourt Stage! The celebration features medleys of delightful holiday songs both classic and contemporary, along with special effects, magical projections and beloved Disney characters including Woody and Jessie from “Toy Story,” Fantasyland friends such as Peter Pan and Snow White.
A Frozen Holiday Wish: Arendelle royalty and their lovable snowman visit Magic Kingdom Park to help everyone feel the wintry chill in the air and love in their hearts. “A Frozen Holiday Wish,” presented on the Castle Forecourt Stage, features Anna, Elsa, Olaf and Kristoff. As a gift to the kingdom, Elsa lets it go and uses her icy powers to transform Cinderella Castle into a sparkling palace of ice. (Keep in mind that this only happens once a night during the party, but will happen before the party officially begins if you arrive early)
“A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas”:Buzz Lightyear, Mike Wazowski and Stitch join host Haley Comet for an intergalactic musical revue on the Rockettower Plaza Stage. The show is full of modern twists on classic holiday songs and the coolest dance numbers in town!
Club Tinsel: located inside Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Café in Tomorrowland, becomes the coolest place to get down with a DJ and some North Pole pals in the cheeriest dance party this side of Santa’s Workshop!
The Edge Effect: Experience the incredible vocal harmonies in an unforgettable, a cappella holiday concert live on the the Rockettower Plaza Stage.
Storybook Circus Disney Junior Jingle Jam: Young partygoers can get their groove on with their favorite Disney Junior Characters.
Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade
Stepping off in Frontierland, the Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade fills the streets of the Magic Kingdom with holiday fun and cheer featuring some of your favorite Disney characters, iconic marching soldiers & prancing reindeer, and ending with the big guy himself.
The Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade happens twice during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, and typically the second parade is less crowded.
Holiday Wishes Fireworks – Celebrate the Spirit of the Season
Holiday Wishes Fireworks – Celebrate the Spirit of the Season is the holiday nighttime fireworks and pyrotechnic spectacular that lights up the skies above Cinderella Castle that is set to some familiar and favorite holiday songs with touches of Disney magic.
PLEASE keep in mind that this only happens once during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, so if this is a priority make sure you keep track of the time. The best viewing areas are in front of Cinderella Castle, and while getting there early is still a good idea it isn’t a necessity.
Special Disney Character Appearances during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Throughout the Magic Kingdom you can find characters, their locations are marked on the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party maps with a Mickey Mouse silhouette and in the My Disney Experience app, during the party that are exclusive to the event.
Here are the character locations from 2017’s Mickey Very Merry Christmas Party:
Main Street U.S.A.: Santa Claus and Mickey Mouse
Adventureland: Aladdin, Jasmine, Genie and Abu, Captain Jack Sparrow, Moana, and Peter Pan
Frontierland: The Country Bears
Liberty Square: Sandy Claws aka Jack Skellington
Fantasyland: Ariel & Prince Eric, Rapunzel & Flynn, Cinderella & Prince Charming, Belle, Pooh & Friends, Seven Dwarfs, Snow White & Prince, Aurora & Prince Phillip, Elena of Avalor, Minnie Mouse, Scrooge McDuck, Donald & Daisy, Santa Goofy, Mary Poppins & Bert, and Tiana & Naveen.
Tomorrowland: Nick Wilde & Judy Hopps
It’s important to know that these appearances can change at any time, so make sure you talk to the Cast Members around the entrances to the lines to make sure you are in the correct place.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Event Merchandise
It wouldn’t be a special event at Walt Disney World without exclusive event merchandise that includes everything from ornaments to MagicBand, and this year the merchandise has a really fun retro vibe.
Here is where you can find this year’s merchandise:
Full Event Collection: Emporium (Main Street U.S.A.), Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe (Liberty Square), Big Top Souvenirs (Storybook Circus), & Mickey’s Star Traders (Tomorrowland)
Trading Pins: Emporium (Main Street U.S.A.), Frontier Trading Post (Frontierland), & Mickey’s Star Traders (Tomorrowland)
MagicBand: Frontier Trading Post (Frontierland) & Tomorrowland Light & Power Co. (Tomorrowland)
Walt Disney World Annual Passholder Merchandise: Emporium (Main Street U.S.A.) & Mickey’s Star Traders (Tomorrowland)
To purchase Walt Disney World Annual Passholder exclusive merchandise, you will need your Walt Disney World Annual Pass and photo id.
Exclusive Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party PhotoPass Pictures
This year the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party ‘Magic Shots’ from their PhotoPass photographers are AWESOME!!!
They range from the addition to some of your favorite Disney characters to fun holiday themed videos.
The Disney Parks Blog has examples of all the shots you will find at this year’s party!
New this year at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
This year at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, guests will be able to experience these new offerings during the festivities:
Very Merry Morsels Await – Guests will find festive new treats at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, such as the Sugar Rush Jumbo Red Velvet Cupcake or the Vanellope Éclair with rainbow cereal topping.
Holiday Music Happening in Tomorrowland – A new a cappella group will sing holiday favorites in Tomorrowland during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. Look for them in between performances of “A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas”!
New Sweet-and-Savory Party Debuts on Town Square – Tony’s Most Merriest Town Square Party will debut this year as part of Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. In this special experience, guests will discover a mix of sweet and savory treats including Tony’s famous meatballs, red velvet cupcakes and much more. The $99/person ticket also includes beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages, as well as special reserved viewing for Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade.
Purchasing Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Tickets
Ticket pricing for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party varies by date and range in price from $95 to $125 plus tax for adults (ages 10 and up), $90 to $120 plus tax for children (ages 3-9), and children under 2 are free.
You will save some by purchasing your tickets in advance, and there are select dates that have discounts for Walt Disney World Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club owners.
As with any & every purchase, I only suggest buying tickets directly from Walt Disney World by using their website or by calling (407) 939-5277. Don’t take the chance that what you purchase is a lump of coal!
KIDZ BOP Kids Bringing Live Concert Tour Back to LEGOLANDFlorida Resort November 10-12
Exciting LEGOLAND Florida Theme Park Kidz Bop Weekend to Feature High-Energy Stage Shows and Meet-and-Greets — All Included with Admission!
For the second year in a row, The KIDZ BOP Kids will bring their national concert tour to the place #BuiltForKids during KIDZ BOP Weekend, a music-filled event set for November 10-12 at the LEGOLAND Florida Resort.
Following the success of last year’s “Best Time Ever” tour, which sold out multiple shows across the country, The KIDZ BOP Kids are hitting the road again in 2018. KIDZ BOP announced the launch of the all-new North American Tour, “KIDZ BOP Live 2018,” kicking off June 1 in Toronto, with dates in more than 30 cities, including New York, Los Angeles and Boston.
During the three-day KIDZ BOP Weekend, The KIDZ BOP Kids will perform two live concerts each day at LEGOLAND Florida’s KIDZ BOP Stadium, an outdoor venue on the picturesque shore of Lake Eloise, followed by an exclusive meet-and-greet with the performers. All activities during KIDZ BOP Weekend, including the concerts and meet-and-greets*, are included with all forms of theme park admission. No extra ticket required!
This spring, KIDZ BOP will debut an original musical collaboration with LEGOLAND, one that highlights all the awesomeness that awaits at the popular vacation destination. In 2016, LEGOLAND Florida Resort named KIDZ BOP its official music partner as part of a multi-year alliance that included the creation of a music video for The KIDZ BOP Kids’ performance of “The Weekend Whip,” the theme song of the long-running animated TV series, “LEGO NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu.”
“KIDZ BOP Live 2018” is the ultimate family concert experience, “sung by kids for kids.” The KIDZ BOP Kids – Billboard Magazine’s No. 1 Kids’ Artist for eight consecutive years (2010-2017) – will headline the new show, performing some of today’s biggest hit songs. Just in time for the new tour, three new talented young performers – Olivia (12), Shane (13), and Indigo (11) – are joining the existing group of KIDZ BOP Kids: Ahnya (13), Cooper (14), Freddy (14), Isaiah (11) and Julianna (13). Four KIDZ BOP Kids will take the stage for each performance.
Hold your breath, mouth-breathers. You’re invited to join the search party for Will Byers on Stranger Things Day at Universal Studios Florida.
On November 6, the day that Will disappeared, from 11am – 7pm, all Universal Studios Florida guests will have the opportunity to walk through the Stranger Things haunted house from Halloween Horror Nights one last time in celebration of Stranger Things Day.
This marks the first time ever in the history of the Universal Orlando Resort that during the day, you can take on a fully fear-filled-house from Halloween Horror Nights, the World’s Premier Halloween Event, only at Universal Studios Florida.
The full house experience, as well as select food and beverage options at Benny’s Burger Tent, San Fran Pastry, and Boulangerie will be open to guests with valid park admission for Universal Studios Florida and Annual and Seasonal Passholders. And as an added bonus, passholders will have access to the express queue line for the house.
Step into the shoes of Mike, Dustin, and Lucas as you venture into The Upside Down with the help of Eleven to rescue Will from the clutches of the Demogorgon.
But first, here’s a couple important details to know before you go to Stranger Things Day:
WHEN: Tuesday, November 6, 11am-7pm
WHERE: Universal Studios Florida
– Must have a valid theme park ticket for Universal Studios Florida or be a Universal Orlando Annual or Seasonal Passholder.
– House will be open only on Nov. 6 from 11am-7pm
– No other Halloween Horror Nights houses, scare zones or shows will be open during this date
– Dates, times and entertainment are subject to change and availability
– As always, no costumes or masks allowed
– Experience may be too intense for young children and is not recommended for children under the age of 13
We can’t wait to be at the first Stranger Things Day…Will we see you there?
LEGOLAND Florida Resort Honors U.S. Veterans for Entire Month of November
U.S. veterans and active military personnel can take advantage of free admission, standard parking, and special discounts
During the month of November, the LEGOLAND Florida Resort will once again honor U.S. veterans and active military personnel with free theme park admission, freestandard parking, 50 percent off tickets for up to six guests, and up to 25 percent off overnight stays.
It’s our way of saying thank you to the men and women who have served in the U.S. armed forces.
To receive free admission and parking, U.S. veterans must present valid military ID or proof of veteran status at the theme park ticket windows and parking toll plaza on the day of their visit. To book a discounted overnight stay, visit www.legoland.com/veterans. This offer is not available online or by phone.
On Veterans Day (Sunday, November 11th) only, LEGOLAND Florida Resort will further honor veterans with these exclusive offers:
A 10 percent discount on retail purchases and food and beverage items
Receive a second 6×8 photo free with purchase of the first photo
Receive two plays for the price of one on skill games (not including “prize every time” games)
Valid military ID or proof of veteran status is required to receive all offers. To receive free admission and purchase discounted tickets, please visit a LEGOLAND Florida Resort ticket window on the day of visit.
For the purposes of this promotion, U.S. veterans are defined as retired or non-active duty members of the U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines and U.S. Coast Guard in possession of valid military ID or other proof of veteran status. The discounts described above are exclusive and cannot be combined with any other offers, including annual pass discounts.
In addition, active duty U.S. service members receive complimentary admission to LEGOLAND Florida Theme Park and LEGOLAND Water Park all year long! This offer is available only at the theme park ticket windows with valid military ID, and is not available online or by phone.
November 2018 Theme Park Events, Celebrations, and More!
We are coming off of a super busy October in the parks, but things aren’t slowing down in November 2018 as we kick off the holiday season and have some new and returning events to talk about!
Walt Disney World – November 2018
The holidays are kicking into high gear at the Walt Disney World Resort, but there will also be a celebration for Mickey’s 90th Birthday in November 2018!
It was all started by a mouse, and this year Mickey Mouse will be celebrating his 90th Birthday this November.
Walt Disney World will celebrate Mickey’s birthday from November 16-18 with special merchandise and food & beverage items as well as the chance for guests to celebrate at Magic Kingdom Park during the “Move It! Shake It! Dance & Play It!” Street Party, sing “Happy Birthday” along with the Dapper Dans on Main Street, U.S.A., and join in a special birthday dance party at Rockettower Plaza Stage in Tomorrowland.
Then in 2019, the World’s Biggest Mouse Party, a limited-time celebration of Mickey and Minnie, comes to the Walt Disney World Resort. While we don’t have a lot of details yet, we do know that other Disney parks around their world will celebrate with new nighttime spectaculars, merchandise, specialized food and beverage offerings, and more.
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is a special hard ticketed event, meaning it’s not included with regular theme park admission, that takes place in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World on 22 select nights in November & December beginning November 8th.
During Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party guests have the chance to meet with some of their favorite Disney friends in their holiday finest, enjoy holiday entertainment, exclusive fireworks, a high-energy parade, complimentary treats throughout the park, and more topped off with a ‘snowfall’ on Main Street U.S.A.
We’ll be talking more about Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party soon, but keep in mind that you will save money by purchasing your tickets in advance.
Epcot International Festival of the Holidays
Discover a festival like no other, featuring the joyous holiday traditions of Epcot’s 11 World Showcase nations from November 18th through December 30th.
The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays, included with admission to Epcot, surrounds guests in the wondrous sights, sounds and flavors of the season, as celebrated by cultures near and far.
During the festival guests can enjoy stirring live musical productions, savor seasonal food & beverage specialties at the expanded Holiday Kitchens, and take a festive global tour as costumed performers bring time-honored traditions to life throughout World Showcase.
The highlight of the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays is the moving Candlelight Processional.
Each night, a celebrity narrator tells the biblical tale of a savior born to a virgin in Bethlehem. While gorgeous choral pieces are woven into the production as a 50-piece live orchestra and choir provide an inspirational backdrop with songs of hope and joy.
This dazzling presentation happens each night with multiple shows from November 22nd through December 30th at the American Gardens Theater, and does not require an additional ticket to attend.
Here is a look at the narrators and dates:
Chita Rivera – November 22 to 23, 2018
NEW! Helen Hunt – November 24 to 25, 2018
NEW! Alfonso Ribeiro – November 26 to 27, 2018
TBD – November 28 to December 2, 2018
Flurry of Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
It is a Flurry of Holiday Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios as their holly, jolly celebration is brimming with magical merriment!
Delight in festive shows, enchanting “snows”, holiday décor, Toy Story Land cheer, and so much more from November 8, 2018 through January 6, 2019.
You definitely won’t want to miss the colorful projections on The Hollywood Tower Hotel during Sunset Seasons Greetings. This year the show has new laser effects and “snow,” plussing the returning favorite that includes stories, songs, and holiday cheer brought to you by friends like Mickey, Minnie and Olaf.
But starting a few days earlier on November 6th, Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM will end each day with a Santa-sized spectacular that is jam-packed with holiday music, fireworks, special effects, and state-of-the-art projections.
Holidays at Disney Springs
Disney Springs will once again be filled with Christmas cheer and fun in addition to their great shopping and dining experiences from November 8, 2018 until January 6, 2019.
I especially love the Holidays at Disney Springs, because parking and most of the activities are free!
During the celebration guests at Disney Springs will enjoy seasonal tasty treats and beverages, seasonal entertainment, a Christmas Tree trail featuring some of your favorite Disney character, a join Stitch’s Holiday Gift Hunt to help experiment 626 find his Ohana’s lost gifts, and even meet with the big guy himself at his Chalet.
Universal Orlando Resort– November 2018
Holidays are Universal as you celebrate Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, visit all the Whos down in Whoville with Grinchmas, and watch some of your favorite characters in the new Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s from November 17, 2018 until January 6, 2019.
Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
The Magic of Christmas at Hogwarts Castle is back in November 2018. Revel in a dazzling projection of holiday spirit nightly in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade in Universal’s Islands of Adventure.
While in Hogsmeade, take in the festive décor, listen to the Frog Choir sing holiday themed songs and grab a Hot Butterbeer.
Then head over to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley in Universal Studios Florida to see more stunning holiday decorations throughout London and Diagon Alley.
And you won’t want to miss the talented Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees singing their holiday hits.
Universal’s Holiday Parade Featuring Macy’s
Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s is returning to the streets of Universal Studios Florida. This colorful parade fills the streets with music, confetti, and some of your favorite characters, including the Despicable Me Minions, Shrek and Fiona, King Julien, the Penguins of Madagascar, and more!
And, of course, there’s a visit from Santa as he rides high in the sky on a beautiful float, wishing everyone a Merry Christmas. It’s the perfect way to celebrate the holiday season.
Grinchmas at Universal’s Islands of Adventure
Grinchmas is returning to Universal’s Islands of Adventure. Hear the tale of the Grinch and help the Whos down in Whoville save Christmas during a wonderful live stage show. Sing along to all your favorite songs and get into the Grinchmas spirit.
You can even start your morning off with breakfast with the Grinch himself (reservations required). Then stroll through Seuss Landing, all decked out for Christmas by the bustling Whos as they get their final preparations in order for Christmas.
Fan-favorite Mannheim Steamroller will also be returning to perform live on the Music Plaza Stage. Their performances will take place on select night during the months of November and December.
SeaWorld Orlando– November 2018
In November 2018, the event lineup at SeaWorld Orlando offers something for everybody with three unique opportunities to add value to a visit to the park and events taking place every Saturday and Sunday.
Jack Hanna Weekend
World-renowned animal expert “Jungle Jack” Hanna is back for another weekend of excitement and storytelling at SeaWorld Orlando on November 3rd and 4th. The internationally-known conservationist, author, television personality and lifelong adventurer will share animal facts and his travel tales during captivating and interactive presentations at 1pm & 3pm inside the Nautilus Theater.
In addition to shows included with park admission, SeaWorld will have several additional opportunities for guests to personally interact with Jack Hanna at the park including meet-and-greets, autograph signings and exclusive dining packages.
Jack Hanna Reserved Show Seating (Saturday and Sunday November 3 – 4) – Save time and enjoy one of the best seats in the house for Jack Hanna. Prepare for Jack to entertain with animal facts, stories and answers to questions from you. Pricing begins at $20 per person and Pass Members receive a special discount.
Up-Close Dining at Shamu Stadium Jack Hanna Dinner (Saturday, November3rd) – Enjoy a delicious dinner and mingle with Jack Hanna at Up-Close Dining at Shamu Stadium. The package includes a buffet dinner and a meet-and-greet with Jack Hanna. Dinner is at 5pm. Pricing begins at $49 per person. Pass Members receive a special discount on all dining package purchases.
Craft Beer Festival
Calling all beer connoisseurs, SeaWorld Orlando has a brand-new festival worth raising your glass over. The SeaWorld Craft Beer Festival will feature 100+ brews on draft at 18 locations around the park on from breweries across the state of Florida, plus a few domestic and international craft favorites on November 3rd, 4th, 10th, and 11th.
Park guests can enjoy brews from local breweries such as Orlando Brewing Company, Crooked Can, and Dead Lizard Brewing. In addition, the event will also feature a variety of beverages from Florida based craft breweries in Tampa, Gainesville, Jacksonville, and St. Petersburg.
The festival will also feature 20+ unique food items designed to perfectly pair with the event brew selection. Enjoy unique renditions of some bar food staples as well as a few new concepts designed to complement the festival’s draft beer selection. Some festival exclusive items include:
Infused Bacon Cheddar Pretzel Bites with Beer Cheese – Buttery Pretzel Bites Infused with Bacon and Smothered in Beer Cheese
BBQ Brisket Mac-n-Cheese – Jalapeño Cheddar Pepper Jack Cheese Sauce and BBQ Brisket Topped with Spiked BBQ Sauce and a Parmesan Garlic Crust
Bison Slider- Served with Lager Bacon Onion Jam and Minorcan Mustard
Jumbo Chicken Wings – Chicken Wings Tossed in a Pilsner Buffalo Sauce Served with Tangy Slaw
Fish and Chips- Traditional Fish and Chips with Beer Battered Haddock and Sea Salt Fries
Chorizo Potato Skins – Topped with Queso Fresco, Onions, Cilantro, and Avocado Crema
Candied Bacon Lollipops – Sweet and Savory Candied Bacon Served on a Wood Skewer
Buffalo Burger Quesadilla – Pepper Jack Cheddar Cheese Blend, Balsamic Onions, Baby Arugula, Crème Fraiche, and Roasted Tomato Salsa
Guests looking to taste their way around the Florida craft beer scene can take advantage of SeaWorld’s sampling packages designed for the most adventurous beer fans.
SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration
SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration is where holiday traditions are made, with delicious food, stunning live shows, delightful holiday shopping and joyous entertainment.
SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration brings together family fun and holiday traditions on select nights from November 17 – December 31, 2018 and is included with park admission.
I am really excited for the official start of the holiday season in the parks, and can’t wait to share all the latest news and reviews of the celebrations with you.