Universal Orlando Resort Partners with Veterans Advantage to Launch Exclusive Military Benefits
Universal Orlando Resort and Veterans Advantage have collaborated to create two new benefit packages that give military veterans, active duty, National Guard and reservists, retired military, and their immediate families the opportunity to save on vacation packages to Universal Orlando Resort.
Veterans Advantage members now receive up to 10 percent off the following packages:
The 2-Park Getaway Vacation Package, which includes a three-night hotel stay and a two-day Park-to-Park ticket
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Exclusive Vacation Package, which includes a four-night hotel stay, three-day Park-to-Park ticket and breakfast at the Leaky Cauldron and more
Veterans Advantage members can customize their vacation package to their choosing and enjoy special benefits. Both packages include early park admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, access to select live entertainment venues at Universal CityWalk and more.
Additionally, qualified Veterans Advantage members and active duty or retired military have access to an Exclusive Military Vacation package to Universal Orlando Resort. This package includes three-night hotel accommodations plus a one-day park-to-park ticket with two days free.
“We honor veterans and their service and we are excited to offer them a special opportunity to enjoy Universal Orlando Resort with their families,” said Bill Davis, president of Universal Orlando Resort and a Vietnam War veteran. “We want to help them make memories that will last forever.”
Veterans Advantage currently partners with a robust lineup of leading travel providers, which include United Airlines, JetBlue, Amtrak, Greyhound, Avis and Budget, and AIG Travel Guard, offering special savings and exclusive benefits for Veterans Advantage members.
“We are excited to launch this exclusive travel benefit with this world-class vacation destination and premier theme park provider,” said H. Scott Higgins, CEO of Veterans Advantage and a Vietnam War veteran. “With more than 15 years of experience serving the needs of Veterans Advantage travelers, we know this will create a lot of excitement in our community,” Higgins added.
Universal Orlando News: A Celebration of Harry Potter Line-Up
Harry Potter Film Stars Rupert Grint, Matthew Lewis, Katie Leung, Bonnie Wright, and Evanna Lynch to appear at ‘A Celebration of Harry Potter’ at Universal Orlando Resort
Three-Day Event to Feature Film Talent Q&A Sessions,
Interactive Panels & Demonstrations, the Sorting Hat Experience and More
Harry Potter film stars Rupert Grint, Bonnie Wright, Matthew Lewis, Evanna Lynch, and Katie Leung will appear at “A Celebration of Harry Potter” – a special event hosted by Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Consumer Products. Creative talent also set to appear includes Pierre Bohanna, head prop maker for the Harry Potter film franchise,Paul Harris, the world’s only Wand Combat choreographer, and designers Eduardo Lima and Miraphora Mina of MinaLima, who established the visual graphic style of the Harry Potter films.
“A Celebration of Harry Potter” will take place from January 29 – 31, 2016 at Universal Orlando, allowing fans to celebrate all of Harry’s adventures, from the beloved books to the feature films and more. Guests will enjoy three days of incredible experiences, including Q&A sessions with Harry Potter film talent, special panels and demonstrations with creative talent, and access to the Harry Potter Expo – where fans can enjoy the Sorting Hat experience, an interactive mini tour from Warner Bros. Studio Tour London and more.
Guests can also experience Harry Potter’s world for themselves by visiting The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida. Vacation Package guests and those with a park-to-park ticket will also be able to board the iconic Hogwarts Express and enjoy a unique journey as they travel between King’s Cross Station and Hogsmeade Station.
Access to “A Celebration of Harry Potter” is included with regular theme park admission or with an annual pass, with admission to certain activities being granted on a first-come, first-served basis. While most of the activities for “A Celebration of Harry Potter” will be open to all Universal Orlando park guests and will take place at both Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida theme parks, guests who purchase the exclusive event vacation package will enjoy certain special benefits and reserved sections for the panels and demonstrations.
Here’s the A Celebration of Harry Potter Event Line-Up:
HARRY POTTER EXPO (Universal Studios Florida theme park) The Harry Potter Expo will be held inside a Universal Orlando soundstage and will be open to guests throughout the weekend. The expo will include the following booths and exhibits that will give guests deeper insight into the global phenomenon that is Harry Potter:
Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter
Warner Bros. Studio Tour London offers visitors the chance to relive the magic through the eyes of the filmmakers who brought the Harry Potter film series to life. Visitors can step on to authentic sets and admire the real props and costumes used during filming at the series’ production home in England, UK.
The Studio Tour is bringing an interactive taste of the experience to ‘A Celebration of Harry Potter’ 2016, giving you the chance to see the incredible behind-the-scenes talent that went into creating the iconic film series.
Harry Potter: The Exhibition
Sorting Hat Experience
Are you a Gryffindor or a Slytherin? A Hufflepuff or perhaps a Ravenclaw? At the beginning of each school year the Sorting Hat places new Hogwarts students into a house, and now you too have the opportunity to get sorted in a Great Hall setting inspired by the blockbuster films.
Step inside the Expo and the red carpet is rolled out welcoming you to an area celebrating the global impact Harry Potter: The Exhibition has had during its 7-year, 13-city tour, including an exclusive Quidditch inspired photo opportunity.
Graphic designers Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima worked for ten years on the Harry Potter films, creating countless unforgettable graphic props, some of which will be on display including iconic pieces such as The Marauder’s Map, Daily Prophet and Hogwarts school books. Since working on the films, they created the MinaLima Store selling authentic reproductions of the film artwork with limited edition art prints and stationery. They are currently in production on the new feature film from Warner Bros. Pictures, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
Pottermore from J.K. Rowling
Pottermore is the digital heart of J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World and if discovering more about her magical universe excites you, Pottermore has a surprise in store for fans attending this year’s Celebration of Harry Potter. And keep your eyes peeled for their new Pottermore Correspondent (Rita Skeeter she certainly isn’t), who’ll be there hunting out exclusive scoops and bringing you updates on pottermore.com from the weekend’s activities.
Celebrate Harry Potter at Scholastic’s booth by sharing a message about what Harry Potter means to you. Color in a magical page from our brand-new Harry Potter coloring book. Be sure to enter daily raffles for a chance to win a copy of the new illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, a box set of all seven Harry Potter books, or a Harry Potter coloring book. Collectible giveaways are available for Harry Potter fans of all ages.
“A CELEBRATION OF HARRY POTTER” PANELS AND DEMONSTRATIONS (Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida theme parks)
Demonstrations and Q&A sessions will be available featuring Harry Potter film talent and crew, with special panels and demonstrations for kids. Admission into panels and demonstrations will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Specific times will be released at a later date.
Behind the Scenes: Harry Potter Film Talent Discussion
Enjoy a fascinating and interactive Q&A session featuring some of your favorite actors from the Harry Potter films. Discover what it was like to work on the most successful film franchise in history.
Behind-the-scenes of the Harry Potter props with Pierre Bohanna
Ever wondered how long it takes to make a wand? Or where the inspiration for the hundreds of wand designs in the Harry Potter film series came from? Warner Bros. Studio Tour London presents head prop maker for the films, Pierre Bohanna, who will answer these questions and more. Once you’ve discovered how they were made, raise your own wand as Death Eaters invade the stage to demonstrate how battle scenes were brought to life.
The Global Impact of Harry Potter: The Exhibition
Join us in celebrating the touring attraction that’s visited 13 cities in 9 countries and hosted almost 4 million guests. Harry Potter: The Exhibition is in a unique position to reflect on the global impact of the franchise. Get an exclusive look at the exhibition’s creation and the excitement it continues to deliver to fans around the world. Panel will include exhibition creators, film producers, and film actors who have participated in the openings.
Graphic Design for the Harry Potter Films with MinaLima
Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima, from the graphic design studio MinaLima, will share insights into their role as graphic prop designers, and how their paths crossed at the WB film studios while working for 10 years on the Harry Potter movies. They will discuss and show some of the iconic props they created for the Harry Potter films, including The Marauder’s Map, the Daily Prophet, and The Quibbler, amongst others. Still immersed in all things Harry Potter, they will also talk about their involvement in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley, for which they designed all the street and store graphics. During the panel they will welcome questions from the audience.
This year’s “A Celebration of Harry Potter” will also include kids’ demonstrations and interactive experiences such as a ‘Dance Like a Beauxbatons and Battle Like a Durmstrang’ experience, as well as Harry Potter film trivia.
To join the conversation, use #HPCelebration. For more information about the event, tickets and available exclusive event vacation packages, visit www.universalorlando.com/celebration.
Blue Man Group will host a sensory-friendly show, suitable for children with autism spectrum disorders, supporting Autism Speaks on Saturday, December 5 at 6 pm at Universal Orlando Resort.
Co-founder Phil Stanton on why this partnership is an important step for Blue Man Group:
“We’ve heard from many families affected by autism that their children responded to the Blue Man character in a very moving way. We don’t know the exact reason. We can only speculate that it has to do with the Blue Men communicating in their own unique way — non-verbally, through visuals, touch and sound. Their message often resonates on a deeper, more sincere level,” says Phil Stanton, Blue Man Group Co-Founder, “Once we knew that we could be helpful or provide an outlet for those affected by autism, we felt it was important to do more. With our sensory-friendly shows, we want to create a safe and welcoming environment for individuals and families affected by this disorder, in the hopes that they can have an entertaining and joyful experience together.”
Slight modifications will be made to the show including:
Reducing sound and light levels at various moments during the performance.
Sound reducing headphones will be available upon request.
The Blue Men will limit the amount of direct audience interaction and keep their approach to the audience more subdued.
Blue Man Group will also create calming environments in the theater’s lobby for families seeking a break from the excitement.
Tickets start at $49 (plus applicable fees) with a portion of proceeds from the event going directly to the nonprofit. The fastest growing developmental disorder in the U.S., autism spectrum disorder affects one in 68 children and one in 42 boys. Characteristics include social challenges, communication difficulties and repetitive behaviors. This year, Blue Man Group is supporting autism programs in all of its markets, including Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas and New York, with a minimum donation of $25,000 given to the cause. As a non-verbal, visually-stunning show, Blue Man Group serves as a great fit for all children and families.
The Universal Orlando Resort continues to celebrate their 25th Anniversary with their amazing Concert Series that returns next week.
On select nights November 14 – November 28 after you experience a full day at Universal Studios with your favorite attractions, shows, and food, the Music Plaza Stage at Universal Studios will come alive with amazing live performances from some of the hottest artists around.
Saturday, November 14, 2015: Jason Derulo – 7:00 pm
Saturday, November 21, 2015: Colbie Caillat – 7:00 pm
Sunday, November 22, 2015: FLO RIDA – 8:00 pm
Friday, November 27, 2015: Carly Rae Jepsen – 8:00 pm
Saturday, November 28, 2015: Daughtry – 8:00 pm
Here are some things to keep in mind if you are thinking about attending Universal Orlando’s 25th Anniversary Concert Series:
Concerts are Included with your Universal Studios Admission
If being close to the stage is important to you, you will be able to queue up earlier in the day. The Team Members at the Music Plaza Stage are really helpful!
Event occurs rain or shine.
No rain checks, returns or refunds.
Prices, dates, times, attractions and entertainment subject to availability and may change without notice.
Universal Orlando Resort Presents Special Taping for 2015 Nickelodeon Halo Awards, Hosted by Nick Cannon and Featuring Walk the Moon Performance on November 7, 2015
On November 7, Universal Orlando guests can be part of a special taping for the 2015 Nickelodeon HALO Awards, hosted by Nick Cannon and featuring a performance by alternative-pop band WALK THE MOON. The concert is included in admission to Universal Studios Florida and will take place at the Music Plaza stage at 7 p.m.
WALK THE MOON will perform a six-song set that includes their multiformat No. 1 triple-platinum hit single, “Shut Up and Dance,” along with their new track, “Different Colors.” Both songs are off the band’s acclaimed sophomore album, TALKING IS HARD. WALK THE MOON consists of Nicholas Petricca (lead singer, songwriter and keyboard player), Eli Maiman (guitar, vocals), Kevin Ray (bass, vocals) and Sean Waugaman (drums, vocals).
Hosted, created and executive produced by Nick Cannon, the 2015 Nickelodeon HALO Awards is a one-of-a-kind concert event that honors young leaders from across the country. Now in its seventh year, the awards show recognizes real-life kids that are doing extraordinary things in their communities by “Helping and Leading Others” (HALO). In addition to being awarded a grant for their organization and scholarship funds, each HALO Award honoree is given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet and connect with celebrities that share their same passion for service. The 2015 Nickelodeon HALOAwards will be simulcast Sunday, Nov. 29, at 7 p.m. (ET/PT), across Nickelodeon, TeenNick, Nicktoons, TV Land, CMT, Nick.com and the Nick App.
For more information about the 2015 Nickelodeon HALO Awards taping at Universal Orlando Resort and WALK THE MOON’s performance, visit blog.universalorlando.com.