All Aboard the Hogwarts Express At Universal Orlando

Universal Orlando Resort Reveled New Details About The Magical Journey Guests Will Experience Aboard The Hogwarts Express Hogwarts Express Universal Orlando Resort Diagon Alley Harry Potter

Universal Creating First-Ever Experience that Will Allow Guests to Actually Ride

the Iconic Train Between London and Hogsmeade – Just Like in the Books and Films

 

Reading the Harry Potter Series of books the one thing that I always wanted to do was to walk through to Platform 9 ¾ to board the Hogwarts Express, and now Universal Orlando is releasing more details about this experience coming to the Parks later this summer.

httpv://youtu.be/5gmSf4R2Ac4

This is going to be a ground breaking experience, because for the first time guests will be able to hop aboard this interactive ride between the two world of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

The Hogwarts Express will connect the new land in Universal Studios Florida with The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade in Islands of Adventure – allowing guests with park-to-park admission to enjoy a real journey aboard the iconic locomotive.

Once you are in your cabin, storytelling will be taken to the next level through state-of-the-art animation and special effects coupled with live action.

Can you imagine…

· Being transported from the Muggle world to the wizarding world as you pass through the brick wall at King’s Cross Station to arrive at Platform 9 ¾

· Watching in amazement as the Hogwarts Express pulls into the station – its billowing steam and authentic whistle beckoning you to hop aboard

· Sitting in one of the train’s cabins with your family and friends and actually riding the Hogwarts Express – just as your favorite characters did in the Harry Potter films

· Looking outside your cabin window and enjoying a scenic, breathtaking journey through the British countryside as you encounter magical creatures, some of your favorite Harry Potter characters…and even Dementors…

And since you will be traveling between Hogsmeade and King‘s Cross Station in London, the two trips will be completely different!

Guests aboard the train’s cabins will be able to watch out of their windows to see as your magical journey plays out. Some things you will be able to see along the way are  Hagrid pulling alongside the train on his flying motorbike, Buckbeak the Hippogriff swoop gracefully over the black lake, the Weasley twins on brooms and up to their usual antics, and the Knight Bus swerving through London traffic. I’m sure that there will also be a ton of great surprises along the way, too!

Here are some sample animation grabs that you might see out of your window.

Hogwarts Express Universal Orlando Resort Diagon Alley Harry Potter

Hogwarts Express Universal Orlando Resort Diagon Alley Harry Potter

Hogwarts Express Universal Orlando Resort Diagon Alley Harry Potter

Continuing on their comittment to creating a detailed and authentic experience in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the Creative Team at Universal Orlando has been colaborating with Warner Bros., Stuart Craig, and the production team from the Harry Potter Films. They have been diligently working to produce a family-friendly ride that is authentic, even down to the paint colors and whistle.

It is important to keep in mind one key thing about the addition of the Hogwarts Express. If you are going to ride on the Hogwarts Express you’ll need Park-to-Park Admission to board in either King’s Cross Station or Hogsmeade Station. Or you can visit either land with a Single Park Admission Ticket without access to the Hogwarts Express. 

We can’t wait to continue to bring you coverage of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley expansion at the Universal Orlando Resort! So make sure you keep up with our latest adventures and pictures on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram!

 

 

 

 

 

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Fun Photo Spots In Toon Lagoon

Toon Lagoon

A visit to Toon Lagoon at Universal Orlando Resort’s Islands of Adventure is quite different right now, because Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls is currently closed for rehab and the cold temperatures make riding Popeye & Bluto’s Blige-Rat Barges not really an option.

So as I spent some time this weekend in the now quiet Toon Lagoon area of the park, I found that I had been walking by a really fun and unique photo opportunity that was a lot of fun!

As you walk along the row of shops on Comic Book Lane in Toon Lagoon, look up and you will find several cartoon dialogue balloons above the stores and restaurants that make for some terrific photos.

Toon Lagoon

These balloons and thought bubbles can be found on lamp posts, trees, and are even part of the store signs in front of almost every location on this lane that’s full of ‘character’.

When you are taking the pictures, make sure that you take a peek at each side because they say different things!

I had an absolute blast taking these pictures!

I can’t wait to go back with my daughter and friends to see what kind of pictures they take!

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Week In Review And News – January 3, 2014

With the start of a new year and with so much going on after the holidays, I thought it would be a great time to restart our Week in Review and play a little catch up on this week’s highlights and news from the Orlando and Central Florida Attractions and Venues!

Week in Review – December 30, 2013 to January 3, 2014

Walt Disney World Resort

The Disney Parks Blog announced a new contest where you can win a 5-day/4-night vacation for four to either the Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort.

We’ve just launched disney.com/resolutions where Disney celebrities are sharing how they plan to resolve to spend more time with family in 2014. A new video will be uploaded everyday in January.

 

On disney.com/resolutions, we are also awarding a vacation-a-day from December 31, 2013 through January 31, 2014! So enter every day for your chance to win because this is the year to spend more quality time with the people you love most. Good luck!

 

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Void where prohibited. Open only to individuals, who are, as of Entry, legal residents of, and physically located within, the 50 U.S., D.C., Puerto Rico or Canada (excluding Quebec) and who are not Minors. Sweepstakes starts 12:01 AM (EST) on 12/31/13 and ends 11:59:59 PM (EST) on 1/31/14. Click here for Official Rules.

runDisney

With Walt Disney World Marathon weekend right around the corner, runDisney was everywhere when they released details about the Limited Edition runDisney 2014 New Balance shoes!

httpv://youtu.be/C8YXAZu9kCE

You can find out more about these shoes here.

Universal Orlando Resort

Harry Potter Diagon Alley Week in Review

With construction on Diagon Alley ramping up, A Celebration of Harry Potter drawing close, Cabana Bay opening reservations being taken, and CityWalk undergoing a HUGE transformation, the Universal Orlando Resort is buzzing with energy!

Diagon Alley Construction on December 29, 2013. Week in Review
Diagon Alley Construction on December 29, 2013.

Antojitos Update Week in Review

I don’t know about you, but I am so excited for everything that is coming to the Universal Orlando Resort!!!

SeaWorld Orlando

SeaWorld Orlando

January is Passholder appreciation month at SeaWorld Orlando, and they are offering some great deals!

Bring a friend for FREE! SeaWorld® Orlando Pass Members receive a friend for free ticket*. Online registration is required. Valid for one single-day admission by January 31, 2014. Register Now.

Double Your Discount**

  • Save 20% on dining in all of our cafeteria-style restaurants
  • Save 20% on merchandise in our gift shops

*Pass Member must be present for guest to gain admittance. Free ticket offer valid for active SeaWorld Orlando 1-Year, 2-Year and FL Platinum Pass Members. Not valid for Fun Cards, Teacher’s Study Passes or Friends & Family Passes. Free ticket is non-transferable, not for resale and may be revoked for misuse.

**Offer only valid between Jan. 1-31, 2014. Must present active SeaWorld Orlando 1-Year, 2-Year, or FL Platinum Pass to receive savings. Not valid with any other discounts or offers. Not valid on All-Day Dining offers. Merchandise offer valid for in-park purchases only.

Amway Center

The Circus is coming to town!

Ringling

Ringling Bros. Barnum and Bailey Circus LEGENDS is coming to the Amway Center January 9-12, but Monday the circus train rolls into Orlando.  Fantastic photo opportunities will be available as the Ringling Bros. pachyderm performers parade to the Amway Center. 

The Ringling Bros. animal performers will unload at 8:00 p.m. and walk beginning at 8:30 p.m. Animals will unload at railroad tracks near 1035 W. Amelia,  then travel east on Amelia, south on North Hughey Ave., then west on West South St. and enter the GEICO Garage behind Amway Center. (Note: route and time are subject to change without notice.)

Tickets are still available and start at $16. Ticketmaster service charges and facility fees not included.  All seats are reserved. Tickets are available atwww.ringling.com or www.ticketmaster.com, at any Ticketmaster outlet, by calling 800-745-3000, or at the Amway Center box office (phone:407-440-7900).  For group ticket sales and information, call 866-248-8740.

LEGOLAND Florida

If your house is anything like mine, you have watched the trailer for ‘The LEGO Movie’ four times daily and I was excited to see that they are going to be having a weekend of activities in February!

httpv://youtu.be/fZ_JOBCLF-I

LEGOclubweekend [3]

February 8 & 9, 2014 Enjoy fun for all with activities to celebrate “The LEGO Movie”, the first-ever, full-length theatrical LEGO adventure featuring an all-star cast and set to open in theaters February 7. Guests will enjoy a special movie-themed building activity, movie-themed scavenger hunt in Miniland USA and meet and greet sessions with costume characters Emmet and Wyldstyle, who play leading roles in this epic movie.

Busch Gardens Tampa

BG Bring a friend for free Week in Review

January is also Passholder appreciation month at Busch Gardens Tampa!

Double the Fun – Bring a Friend for FREE

During January, Pass Members can bring a friend for free! Online registration required. Limit one free ticket per active Pass Member. Offer valid between January 1-31, 2014. Other Restrictions Apply. Log in now to register your friend’s ticket and learn more about this limited time offer.

Triple the Savings – 30% off merchandise, food, and beverages

All month long, Pass Members get 30% off merchandise, food and beverages when you visit the park! Offer valid between January 1-31, 2014. Other Restrictions Apply.

Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex

A Falcon 9 rocket is targeted to lift-off during a dramatic SpaceX launch scheduled for January 3, launch time is subject to change but the launch window of 5:05 p.m. to 7:17 p.m. EST. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex guests may view the launch from the Apollo/Saturn V Center, the closest possible public viewing area, or special areas at the Visitor Complex.

Launch viewing from the Apollo/Saturn V Center, located in Kennedy Space Center, includes live mission control commentary and is available for Visitor Complex guests for $20 plus the cost of admission. Admission to the Visitor Complex is $50 plus tax for adults and $40 plus tax for children 3-11. Bus boarding for the Apollo/Saturn V Center begins at 3:15 p.m.

Launch viewing, featuring live mission control commentary, also is available from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex and is included in regular admission.

Week in Review- Posts from On the Go in MCO

Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Staycation

New Year’s Eve at the Walt Disney World Resort

Wordless Wednesday – Happy New Year

Merchandise Spotlight – Walt Disney World Resort

Thanks for joining us for this Week in Review, and if this is indication of how jam packed 2014 is going to be I am really excited!

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Wordless Wednesday – Christmas in Orlando

Wordless Wednesday – December 25, 2013

We want to wish everyone celebrating today a very Merry Christmas!

We hope that you all have a day full of family, fun, and love!

Merry Christmas from Orlando!!!

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A Celebration of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Details

Harry Potter Stars James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, and Evanna Lynch

to Appear at A Celebration of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort

Celebration of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando

3-Day Event to Feature a Harry Potter Tribute, Cast Member Q&A’s,
Wand Combat Masterclass, Pottermore Demonstrations and More

 

Harry Potter film stars James Phelps, Oliver Phelps and Evanna Lynch are slated to appear at “A Celebration of Harry Potter” – a special event hosted by Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment that will celebrate all of Harry’s adventures, from the beloved books to the feature films.  Creative talent also set to appear includes KazuKibuishi, the award-winning artist who recently re-imagined the Harry Potter book covers, and Eduardo Lima and Miraphora Mina ofMinaLima, who established the visual graphic style of the Harry Potter films.

From January 24 – 26, 2014 at Universal Orlando, fans will enjoy unforgettable experiences – including a Harry Potter Tribute on Friday night, a Harry Potter Expo, panel discussions with film talent and crew, and more.  Additional details about “A Celebration of Harry Potter” will be released early next year.

Access to “A Celebration of Harry Potter” is included with regular theme park admission or with an annual pass.  Those without an annual pass can experience the full offering with a 3-day park-to-park ticket.  Admission into panel events will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis.

 

A Celebration of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Event Details

A CELEBRATION OF HARRY POTTER PANEL DISCUSSIONS

The panels will be held in a theater-style setting and will include discussions and Q&A’s with Harry Potter film talent and crew.  Admission into the theaters will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Specific panel times will be released at a later date.

  • A Harry Potter Tribute

“A Celebration of Harry Potter” will kick off with a special evening event starring several cast members of the Harry Potter film series and award-winning artist Kazu Kibuishi, who recently re-imagined the Harry Potter book covers for Scholastic and beautifully captured pivotal scenes from the enchanting Harry Potter stories.  Guests will enjoy film clips, Q&A sessions with cast members, and get a glimpse of new details about The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley, opening summer 2014.

  • My Life on the Harry Potter Film Set: Talent Q&A’s

Actors from the Harry Potter films share what it’s like to work on a major motion picture and be part of film history.

  • Duelling Demonstration & Wand Combat Masterclass with Paul Harris

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter will present a spellbinding masterclass with the world’s only Wand Combat Choreographer, Paul Harris.  Paul choreographed the epic battle scene in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and will be on hand to teach you the technique behind wielding a wand.

  • Graphic Design for the Harry Potter Films with MinaLima

Graphic designers Eduardo Lima and Miraphora Mina from the studio MinaLima will discuss their ten-year involvement in establishing the visual graphic style on the film productions of Harry Potter and present some of the iconic props they created for the films, including the Marauder’s Map, the Daily Prophet and The Quibbler.

  • Bringing the Harry Potter Films to the Theme Park – Set and Prop Design of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Harry Potter film and theme park Set Designer Alan Gilmore and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Prop Master Eric Baker will present a look at how ideas move from the books to screen, and then become real-life theme park experiences.

  • Go Behind the Scenes of Pottermore.com from J.K. Rowling

Pottermore’s Creative Director gives an exclusive insight into the creation of Moment artwork for Pottermore.com, and a look at the next installment of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.  Plus, get ready for an exclusive reveal as he shares his favorite upcoming new entry from J.K. Rowling. 

A Celebration of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Expo Booths

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 booths and exhibits that will give guests deeper insight into the various manifestations of the Harry Potter series.

  • Harry Potter: The Exhibition

Guests will get an up-close look at the artistry and craftsmanship that went into creating the iconic costumes that have appeared throughout the Harry Potter film series. They will also have the opportunity to get sorted into Hogwarts houses during a Sorting Hat experience.

  • Warner Bros. Studio Tour London

This interactive experience will feature a duelling presentation by the world’s only Wand Combat Choreographer, Paul Harris.

  • MinaLima

Limited edition artworks and reproductions based on original prop designs will be on display, including iconic pieces, such as the Marauder’s Map and the Daily Prophet.  A selection of original graphic props from the films will also be on display, and on-hand to meet guests will be Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima.

  • Pottermore from J.K. Rowling

Go behind the scenes of Pottermore.com from J.K. Rowling.  Find out how Moments from Harry’s story are created from the first sketch to the final splash of color, get an exclusive look at artwork that has not yet been released, and experience Pottermore.com for yourself – defeat your opponent in a wizard’s duel or try your hand at brewing magical draughts and potions.

  • Scholastic

Celebrate the 15th anniversary of the U.S. publication of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and share your message about what Harry Potter means to you.  Award-winning artist Kazu Kibuishi, who recently reimagined the Harry Potter book covers, will be signing posters at limited times throughout the weekend.

  • United States Postal Service

Guests can check out the limited-edition Harry Potter collection of 20 new Forever stamps, featuring images of Harry Potter, the extraordinary boy wizard, and the adventures he encounters with the friends, heroes, villains and creatures that make up his world. Also, see collectible products featuring the stamps, meet the stamp art director, and get special cancellation postmarks commemorating this celebration.

For more information about the event and tickets, visit www.universalorlando.com/celebration.

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Pick Six: Universal Orlando CityWalk Announcements

While I am still putting together a lot of my final ideas for a larger post on icFlorida about yesterday’s Universal Orlando CityWalk Announcements (You can find the Press Release here), I wanted to take a moment to look at my initial reactions to what we were shown.

Universal Orlando CityWalk

1. Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley

Universal Orlando CityWalk

I had a lot of A-ha moments during The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley presentation! Originally I looked at how close the construction of Diagon Alley was to Universal Studios Florida, and I always wondered why it had to be so close to the existing park. And yesterday, when they spoke about how Diagon Alley was wedged into London everything clicked for me! And while I am positively giddy about riding on the Hogwarts Express, given the detail that is going into the streets of Diagon Alley and the Leaky Cauldron (especially the ceiling) I want to camp out now! The current Wizarding World of Harry Potter is one of my most favorite places in any theme park, and I am beyond hopeful about Diagon Alley!

2. Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort

Universal Orlando CityWalk

Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort is going to be everything that you wish a Walt Disney World ‘Value’ Resort would be! The resort will have 900 Rooms and 900 Family Suites at opening with a fun 60’s retro feel. Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort will also boast several large pools for each section of the resort, dining options, high-energy bowling alleys, and more at a manageable walking distance to the parks. I love fun resorts, and with the proximity to the park this ‘Value’ resort really has value.

3. The Cowfish / The Hot Dog Hall of Fame

The Cowfish and The Hot Dog Hall of Fame that will be coming to Universal CityWalk are fun and quirky! The Cowfish is a mix of sushi and burgers in a fun environment (there will be tablets in the Sushi Bar for people to surf as they sit under Pop Art), and the result is ‘Burgushi’ which include sushi rolls created using burger components and sandwiches created using sushi elements. The Hot Dog Hall of Fame boasts signature Hot Dogs from around the country and a Mustard Bar with custom mustards created from a partnership from the National Mustard Museum. If you love Hot Dogs, how can you not be excited about this restaurant coming to Universal Orlando CityWalk? Amid Bars and themed restaurants, I am looking forward to the fun options and atmosphere that these two locations will bring to the mix of CityWalk!

4. Starbucks / Menchies / Cold Stone Creamery

Universal Orlando CityWalk

While I would have loved to see all original offerings at the Universal Orlando CityWalk announcement, I have to say that choosing to expand the Starbucks presence and adding Menchies and Cold Stone Creamery to CityWalk make more sense and go with the ‘best in class’ mind-set that is going into the renovation of Universal Orlando’s CityWalk. Starbucks moving downstairs and into a larger space that will be filled with seating (Yay!) and innovative touches is a win for everyone, because it is more accessible and adds another location to grab a quick breakfast at the parks which has always been an issue with my family. Menchies and Cold Stone Creamery are solid yogurt and ice cream places that are family favorites, which is important when you have a little (or big) kid who needs a treat after a long day in the theme parks!!!

5. Antojitos / The Red Oven / Bread Box / Pranzo

Universal Orlando CityWalk
Work is well under way at Antojitos at Universal Orlando CityWalk!

And now we come to the unique restaurants that are coming to Universal Orlando CityWalk! Antojitos is a going to be more of a culinary journey than passive restaurant experience. The themed facade of Anotjitos is where you start your trip to cantinas, street carts, and markets of Mexico for tapas-style dining with authentic Mexican food.The Red Oven is open now, and amid an modern Italian atmosphere you can find a huge variety of brick oven pizzas and salads. The Bread Box will feature hand made breads and sandwiches with fresh ingredients to capture the feel of the Deli of your childhood or movies! Pranzo will feature modern Italian foods and hand made pastas. The common thread between the variety of restaurants is that there will be a focus on using only fresh ingredients, that are hand-made, and sometimes even created as you watch. While I am a HUGE Mythos fan (aren’t we all though…Universal butter, bread that you can’t stop eating, and delicious dishes), I always find myself wanting more of a fresh feel to my meal. So beyond beautiful decor, I am excited to find these kinds of foods offered in a Theme Park Area.

Universal Orlando CityWalk

6. Shopping!

I will admit that the shop-a-holic in me really wished there was more on this front, I am excited to see what the new Universal Studios Store will offer! The design will also boast more interactivity and fresh design elements. It is a great place to catch those souvenirs that you said you would go back to pick up that you might have forgotten.

With all these locations opening as the first phase of a Universal Orlando CityWalk revitalization by June of 2014, it makes me really excited to see what phase 2 is going to bring besides me spending more time there!

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Universal Orlando CityWalk Announcements For 2014

Universal Orlando Resort Unveils Expansion

Plans for its

Universal Orlando CityWalk Entertainment Complex

Universal Orlando CityWalk

Historic Expansion Kicks off an Epic Year for Universal Orlando Resort

This is the Press Release about the Universal Orlando CityWalk Expansion, you can find more of an opinion piece on the expansion here!

Universal Orlando’s CityWalk will undergo a historic expansion during 2014 – all part of an epic year for Universal that will include the opening of the destination’s largest hotel, Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort, and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley.

Universal Orlando announced Thursday that it will open eight new venues across CityWalk throughout 2014 as part of a bold growth strategy designed to complement the entertainment complex’s already popular collection of national brands.

The expansion comes after a nationwide search for culinary concepts that include a mix of established national brands, up-and-coming concepts and Universal’s own creations. The new venues will share an overall theme that includes inviting common areas, al fresco dining, open kitchens and more.

“We want Universal CityWalk to grow along with the rest of our destination,” said Ric Florell, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Resort Revenue Operations at Universal Orlando. “We are bringing our guests an amazing new collection of experiences that will be world-class and offer something for everyone.”

The new venues include Hot Dog Hall of Fame, featuring iconic hot dog creations from some of our nation’s most famous ball parks. Universal partnered with Steven Schussler, the global culinary concept creator behind popular restaurants like Rain Forest Cafe, Backfire Barbecue and more, to bring his Hot Dog Hall of Fame concept to CityWalk. They also include CowFish, an innovative and trend-setting concept out of Charlotte, North Carolina with a signature dish called “Burgushi;” and popular frozen treat spots Cold Stone Creamery and Menchie’s.

Original concepts include Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food, a unique tapas-style restaurant, Bread Box, a home-style sandwich shop; A new modern Italian kitchen concept, where guests can watch as the culinary team handcrafts their pasta from scratch; and Red Oven Pizza Bakery Universal’s first-ever Neopolitan-style pizza bakery, which is now open.

A full list of new venues and descriptions can be found below. Exact opening dates will be released at a later time.

Since its opening in 1999, Universal CityWalk has served as the “entertainment capital of Orlando,” quickly becoming the hottest place in town among locals and visitors to grab a bite to eat, catch a movie, dance the night away and more. The two-tiered, 30-acre complex features a collection of nightclubs, restaurants and shops themed after some of the most recognizable names in entertainment, including Bob Marley – A Tribute to Freedom, Emeril’s Restaurant Orlando, Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville and Bubba Gump Shrimp Company. Universal CityWalk is also home to Rising Star – an energetic karaoke club where guests can perform with a live band and backup singers, the 36-hole mini-golf course, Hollywood Drive-In Golf, and the indescribable, nationally-renowned live show, Blue Man Group.

For more information about Universal CityWalk, visit: https://www.universalorlando.com.

New Universal CityWalk Venues

Opening Throughout 2014

NOW OPEN – Red Oven Pizza Bakery: Take a quick trip to Italy for authentic, artisan pizza–made fresh, while you wait–at Universal CityWalk’s first-ever Neopolitan-style pizza bakery. The combination of the highest quality ingredients and a traditional 900-degree stone-lined oven ensures every slice is pizza perfection.

Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food: Take a journey through the cantinas, street carts, and markets of Mexico for unique tapas-style dining at Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food. Only the freshest ingredients are used to create craveable, made from scratch Mexican street fare in an environment of unmatched authenticity.

Hot Dog Hall of Fame: Strike out your hunger at Hot Dog Hall of Fame with some of the most iconic hot dog creations from our nation’s most famous ballparks. Take a seat in the bleachers and enjoy a loaded Chicago dog with all the toppings, a perfectly charred Boston brat, a monster LA dog and more.

The Cowfish: Innovative sushi joins forces with creative burgers for an untraditional dining experience at this reincarnation of the popular North Carolina hotspot. The result: “Burgushi”. A cutting-edge fusion of burger and sushi, burgushi items include sushi rolls created using burger components and sandwiches created using sushi elements.

A new modern Italian kitchen concept (Pranzo): Immerse yourself in the essence of modern Italian cuisine at this new restaurant created by Universal Orlando. Watch as the culinary team handcrafts your pasta from scratch to create fresh takes on classic dishes in a clean, contemporary dining atmosphere.

Cold Stone Creamery: For more than 25 years, Cold Stone Creamery has served up the finest, freshest ice cream, cakes, smoothies and shakes using only the highest quality ingredients and their signature process of preparing your custom ice cream creation on a frozen granite stone.

Bread Box: With a Bread Box sandwich, you’ll be transported back to your childhood kitchen or your favorite street corner deli. Here you’ll find that the combination of quality meats and vegetables, fresh bread, and simple preparation can transform a sandwich into something more.

Menchie’s: One of the world’s most popular frozen yogurt shops is coming to Universal CityWalk. The dream was to create a place where people from all walks of life and ages could enjoy themselves—not only with great tasting, quality frozen yogurt and an expansive self-serve toppings bar, but with a unique experience in a fun and happy environment that makes you smile.

Universal Orlando Logo Universal Halloween Horror Nights

About Universal Orlando Resort

Vacation like you mean it at Universal Orlando Resort – where every heart pounding, jaw-dropping, goose-bumping second counts. With two incredible theme parks, Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure, three magnificently themed on-site hotels and a nighttime entertainment complex, Universal Orlando is the only place where you can turn spending time with your family into spending time as a family. Together, you can soar above Hogwarts with Harry Potter, swing above the streets with Spider-Man, become a Minion in the hilarious and heartwarming Despicable Me Minion Mayhem ride, and join Optimus Prime in the fight to save mankind on the new mega-attraction, TRANSFORMERS: The Ride – 3D.

Universal Orlando Resort is part of NBCUniversal, a Comcast company. Follow Universal Orlando Resort on Facebook, Twitter, Instagramand YouTube.

 

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Wordless Wednesday – Outside Hogwarts

Wordless Wednesday – October 2, 2013

Wordless Wednesday Universal Islands of Adventure

This week’s Wordless Wednesday takes us to just outside of Hogwarts in Universal’s Island of Adventure at the Universal Orlando Resort. I could seriously spend all day in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter wandering the streets of Hogsmeade!!!

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Universal Orlando Hosts Harry Potter Special Event

“A Celebration of Harry Potter” will Feature Exciting Activities Across Both Universal Studios and Universal’s Islands of Adventure from Jan. 24 – 26

Harry Potter 

Vacation Packages with Exclusive Benefits, Including Access to a Private Evening Reception in
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter,

Go on Sale Thursday, August 22 at Noon EST

Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. announced today that they will host “A Celebration of Harry Potter”– a special event for fans of all ages that will celebrate all of Harry’s adventures, from the beloved books to the Warner Bros. feature films.

Beginning January 24, 2014, fans will enjoy three days of unforgettable experiences – including interactive Q&As with Harry Potter talent and more.  Special event vacation packages will go on sale August 22 and will include exclusive benefits such as access to a private evening reception held in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.   Full vacation package details are below.

Guests will have the opportunity to:

  • Attend Q&A sessions with Harry Potter talent, filmmakers, and other special guests (talent attendees will be announced at a later date)
  • Revisit some of their favorite Harry Potter film moments during a film tribute with Harry Potter talent and filmmakers (talent attendees will be announced at a later date)
  • Learn the art of “duelling” at a wand masterclass that’s featured at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter and hosted by Paul Harris – the choreographer who trained the cast of the Harry Potter films
  • And much more!

Guests will also have access to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, located in Universal’s Islands of Adventure, where they can soar above Hogwarts on the thrilling attraction, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, sip Butterbeer at the Hog’s Head pub, see a wand choose a wizard inOllivanders, explore iconic shops like Honeydukes, Zonko’s, and more.

While most of the activities for “A Celebration of Harry Potter” will be open to all Universal Orlando park guests and annual passholders, only guests who purchase the special event package will enjoy exclusive benefits and reserved seating for select events.  Packages are extremely limited and go on sale at noon EST on Thursday, August 22.  See below for full package details.

Packages for “A Celebration of Harry Potter” at Universal Orlando Resort

On Sale at Noon EST on August 22, 2013

On-Site Hotel Celebration Vacation Package ~ Starts at $675 per adult, tax inclusive ·       3-night accommodations at one of Universal Orlando’s award-winning on-site hotels – including complimentary Universal Express access to select rides and attractions·         3-day park-to-park ticket to both Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida·         Access to the exclusive evening reception held in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

·         Reserved seating for select events – including the Harry Potter film tribute, Q&A sessions and the wand masterclass

·         Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and breakfast at the Three Broomsticks

Off-Site Hotel Celebration Vacation Package ~ Starts at  $395 per adult, tax inclusive ·         3-night accommodations at a Universal Partner Hotel near Universal Orlando·         3-day park-to-park ticket to both Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida·         Access to all celebration activities– including reserved seating for select events and access to the exclusive evening reception in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

·         Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and breakfast at the Three Broomsticks

·         Note: This package does not include complimentary Universal Express access

Access to select events within “A Celebration of Harry Potter” is included in regular admission to Universal Orlando or with an annual pass.  For more information about the event, tickets and vacation packages, visit www.universalorlando.com/celebration.

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Wordless Wednesday – The Lost Continent

Wordless Wednesday – July 24, 2013

This week’s Wordless Wednesday takes us to one of my favorite places in Universal Islands of Adventure, The Lost Continent. I love this area because you really can’t go wrong with Poseidon’s Fury & Mythos!

Wordless Wednesday

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Universal Orlando Resort Harry Potter Expansion Announced Today

Universal Orlando Harry Potter Expansion

THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES:
THE WIZARDING WORLD OF HARRY POTTER – DIAGON ALLEY
IS COMING TO UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT

‘London’ and Diagon Alley Will Come to Life at Universal Orlando in 2014

World’s First Centrally Themed, Multi-Park Experience

 

Building on the global phenomenon that is The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment today announced an expansion of historic proportion with the entirely new themed environment, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley.

Scheduled to open in 2014, the world’s first centrally themed, multi-park experience expands The Wizarding World of Harry Potter across both Universal Orlando theme parks and allows Universal’s creative team to bring an unparalleled vision to this unique project.  The new area will bring to life some of the experiences and places found in and around London in the Harry Potter books and films, offering brand-new adventures for fans and theme park guests from around the world.

Diagon Alley and ‘London’ will be located within the Universal Studios Florida theme park, which is adjacent to Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park, where guests now experience Hogwarts and Hogsmeade.  The new area within Universal Studios will be just as expansive, immersive and authentic as the existing themed environment.

And – just like in the books and films – guests will be able to travel between ‘London’ and Hogsmeade aboard the Hogwarts Express.

Work on the new area is already underway.  When complete, it will feature shops, a restaurant and an innovative, marquee attraction based on Gringotts bank – all directly inspired by the fiction and films.

More details on The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley will be released over time.

To bring Diagon Alley and ‘London’ to life, Universal’s creative team is working closely with Warner Bros. and the production design team from the Harry Potter films – just as it did for Hogwarts and Hogsmeade.

“I’m so pleased that The Wizarding World of Harry Potter has proved so popular to date, and I’m sure that the attention to detail in creating the new Diagon Alley area will make this an even better experience,” said J.K. Rowling.

“We are continuing the journey and adding an entirely new level of adventure,” said Tom Williams, Chairman of Universal Parks & Resorts.  “And we are bringing the same drive, commitment, enthusiasm and innovation to this project as we did to the first.”

“We are thrilled to offer the legions of fans the opportunity to embark on this new journey and experience Diagon Alley as it was brought to life in the books and films,” said Brad Globe, president, Warner Bros. Consumer Products.

“Our vision is to create two amazing theme park experiences that combine into one, complete, magical journey,” said Alice Norsworthy, executive vice president, marketing and sales for Universal Orlando Resort.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade opened at Universal’s Islands of Adventure in June 2010 as a fully immersive Harry Potter themed environment – bringing to life the bestselling books by J.K. Rowling and the blockbuster feature films from Warner Bros.  Since that time, it has become a global phenomenon, entertaining millions of people from around the world.

Visitors to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter are swept into the adventures of Harry Potter.  They can tour Hogwarts castle, shop in Hogsmeade and dine at the Three Broomsticks.  They can soar above Hogwarts with Harry, be chosen by a wand at Ollivanders, sample Butterbeer and much more.

The Announcement of the Universal Orlando Resort Harry Potter Expansion from the Universal Orlando Resort Facebook Page:

Building on the global phenomenon that is The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment today announced an expansion of historic proportion with the entirely new themed environment, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley.

Scheduled to open in 2014, the world’s first centrally themed, multi-park experience expands The Wizarding World of Harry Potter across both Universal Orlando theme parks and allows Universal’s creative team to bring an unparalleled vision to this unique project. The new area will bring to life some of the experiences and places found in and around London in the Harry Potter books and films, offering brand-new adventures for fans and theme park guests from around the world.

Diagon Alley and ‘London’ will be located within the Universal Studios Florida theme park, which is adjacent to Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park, where guests now experience Hogwarts and Hogsmeade. The new area within Universal Studios will be just as expansive, immersive and authentic as the existing themed environment.”

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Weekly Review – Our Week On The Go September 10-14

Weekly Review – Our Week On The Go September 10-14

Weekly Review time!!! This past week here at On the Go has been full of great stuff, and now it’s time to look back at all that happened September 10-14!!!

Let’s Go!

Monday started with a review of Walt Disney Pocahontas and Pocahontas II: Journey into a New World action-packed animated musical adventure Pocahontas and Pocahontas II: Journey into a New World debut for the first time ever in vivid High Definition on August 21, 2012.

walt disney pocahontas - Weekly Review
Walt Disney Pocahontas and Pocahontas II is available on Blu-Ray on August 21, 2012.

Aurora shares some of her highlights from Nights of Joy with Shalon at the Magic Kingdom. Included are links to our many performance videos on YouTube and Facebook Albums of pictures!

Night of Joy - Lecrae - - Weekly Review
Lecrae putting on an AMAZING Show in front of Cinderella’s Castle!

Wordless Wednesday took us to the roofs of Hogsmeade at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Wordless Wednesday - Weekly Review
Wordless Wednesday – The Roofs of Hogsmeade

It’s almost time for Oktoberfest in Celebration, and if you are in the area you will want to swing by because it is a lot of fun for the whole family!

Celebration Florida - Weekly Review
Celebration, FL

Mayor Buddy Dyer and Orlando City Soccer’s President are visiting other parks in the Kansas City area, including Livestrong Sporting Park, to explore stadium options for the Citrus Bowl.

Orlando City Soccer - Weekly Review
Orlando City Soccer

Betsy had the chance to attend a Lunch and Learn for Joe’s Crab Shack, and their new menu additions look delicious!!!

Joe's Crab Shack - Weekly Review
Joe’s Crab Shack entrance

The Orlando Solar Bears announced today that they have agreed to terms with defenseman Derick Martin.

Orlando Solar Bears - Weekly Review
Orlando Solar Bears

Star Wars Celebration VI was held at the Orange County Convention Center, and Cheryl shares some of her preparations and pictures!

Star Wars Celebration VI - Weekly Review
Star Wars Celebration VI Logo

The Orlando Solar Bears announced that single game tickets for the 2012-13 season will go on sale beginning Wednesday, September 19.

Orlando Solar Bears Opening Night Logo - Weekly Review
Orlando Solar Bears Opening Night Logo

Thanks for joining us this week at On the Go, and we can’t wait to bring you even more posts next week!!! We are going to be dedicating a lot of our posts to one of our favorite events at the Magic Kingdom…Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party!!!

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Wordless Wednesday – The Roofs of Hogsmeade

Wordless Wednesday
Wordless Wednesday – The Roofs of Hogsmeade
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