Monday, October 16, 2017

The SlideWheel, Slow and Boring, or Fast and Exciting?

The SlideWheel. Chimelong Water Park will be the first to receive the Wiegand ride. And the prototype is now being tested!

Early last month a new waterslide was announced for Chimelong Water Park. The ride has a small footprint, and the concept is totally awesome. We've all played with the concept in some sort of way on a small scale through boredom or in Physics classes, but when it's blown up to human scale, the idea really is awe-inspiring.

The ride length and the fact that you don't need to climb hundreds of stairs are definitely the positive points, but is the downtime in between each turn a bit much? You can see an official POV below, where the slow parts are cut from the video. It will be interesting to see where this thought goes from here. I love the concept, but not sure I'll love the ride. Your thoughts?

You Like Speed?

Most theme park-junkies are thrill seekers, but what takes it too far? Probably this POV video of a few motorcyclists going about 300kmph on a highway, all the while getting feet from each other.

The video makes it hard to blink. I'm all for speed and adrenaline, but I think this may be the one thing I'll take a pass.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Which Disney Hotels Are Dogs Allowed Into?

It's recently been announced that a few select hotels are now allowing dogs in guest rooms! So, where do you stay?

Starting today, dogs are allowed at select Disney World hotels during a "trial" period, which is likely to stay full-time. The price is a bit... well, pricey. But the option is still nice to have.
Disney hotels allowing dogs.
Art of Animation, one of four hotels now allowing dogs.
The four resort hotels the dogs are allowed at are as follows, along with the nightly rate associated:
A maximum of two dogs per guest room can be accommodated. Each guest room will have easy access to outdoor pet walkways for exercise and green spaces with pet relief areas.
We will also designate certain floors or sections of a hotel as dog-friendly, while the majority of areas will remain canine-free to accommodate Guests with allergies or other concerns.
Dog lovers will find plenty of Disney amenities and special touches for their four-legged friends.
  • At check-in, Pluto’s Welcome Kit includes mat, bowls, a pet ID tag, courtesy plastic disposable bags, puppy pads and dog walking maps. Also included: a Pluto “Do Not Disturb” door hanger indicating to hotel staff that a pet is in the room.
  • Disney enjoys a partnership with Best Friends Pet Care, an on-property full-service facility that can provide assistance with pet daycare and other pet services (fees apply).
  • Pet merchandise is coming soon to participating resorts.
  • While there are no in-room services available at this time, Best Friends Pet Care does provide services like doggie day care at its nearby facility on Disney property.
Dogs that are allowed to stay in guest rooms will be expected to be well behaved, leashed in public resort areas and properly vaccinated. For more information about the new dog-friendly trial program, including other restrictions and policies, guests may contact 407-W-DISNEY. DVC Members should contact Member Services at 800-800-9800. -Disney Parks
Disney Hotels allows dogs at four resorts!
Port Orleans
 Also, it is worth saying that pets are allowed at the Universal Studios hotels as well. And I must say it's a relaxing and great sight to see dogs with their families roaming around the Portofino waterfront in the morning before heading off to the parks! It's pleasant to see people slow down and enjoy some family-time with the doggo! 

Overall it's a great move for pet-lovers, even if the dogs are not allowed in the parks as you would see at a place like Phantasialand in Germany. After all, these are theme "parks," it'd be great to see grassy areas in future theme parks, and these destinations take on a more park-like atmosphere! I mean, that is the whole idea of most vacations isn't it? A place where everyone can relax, coaster enthusiast or not.
A guest with their dog at Phantasialand! (c) GeekDad

Another Log Flume to Bite the Dust.

Another sad day as one of the best family-friendly rides a park can offer, shuts down.

These maintenance nightmares seem to be closing in the multiples each year nowadays. And now it has been announced that this will be Loggers Run's last month of operation. The ride will shut for good on October 29th.  The California's Great America ride has thrilled guests since 1976.

These Arrow log flumes are dropping like flies, and you can see from this article by BGWFans the trouble Busch Gardens goes through to keep their beautiful flume up-and-running, which makes it clears as to why other parks are letting them go.
The Logger's Run Entrance Sign! (c)Youtube
Log Flumes are truly something everyone can enjoy. They have a drop for the thrill seeker, are usually quite well-themed, are tame enough that the old Dads and Moms can ride with you, they make for great fun, and for great family pictures! There's nothing wrong with a good log flume! It's an extremely sad day when one is announced to close.
(c) Six Flags

"The London Resort" New Theme Park Moves Forward With Plans.

A new name with the same big plans, The London Resort moves forward with new details and plans.

“We want to express our sincere thanks to the many members of the Paramount team who have worked with us since we took over the project in August 2013,” he said. “This announcement does not have an effect on the timing of our planned Development Consent Order (DCO) submission in November 2017. We are working closely with the local authorities, landowners and local community, as well as our other stakeholders. We very much look forward to showing our plans to the public as part of our final stage of consultation prior to submitting later this year.”
New Logo for The London Resort (c)

The London Resort, logo revealed

The new theme park’s name – and logo – The London Resort was revealed to Kent business groups. They were also introduced to attendees at the Construction Expo at Detling’s Kent Event Centre.
The attraction is planned for a site on the Swanscombe Peninsula between Gravesend and Dartford, alongside the Thames.  The 535 acre (216 hectare) “tourist attraction of a scale and quality unprecedented in the UK” will be just 17 minutes from London by high-speed rail. LRCH’s plans include a world-class theme park, cinemas and nightclubs together with conference and exhibition space. Popular brands, IPs and stories will be brought to life from film and TV with state-of-the-art rides and attractions. The projected opening date is currently 2023. It is expected to create around 27,000 jobs.
LRCH executives also revealed that partners and intellectual properties would be disclosed by the end of the year. Agreements are still in place with Aardman and BBC Worldwide. This will be ahead of a fifth round of public consultations on the plans next year. -BlooLoop

The full article can be seen on BlooLoop. 

Overall this is good news as plans proceed to move forward, while we can expect more delays, the project continues to move forward, slowly but surely.

Your Awesome Shambhala Framed by Dragon Khan Wallpaper Is Here!

Shambhala. A coaster always rated so highly, I'd have to ride it to say if I agree or not, as the POV does not do it justice.
Crop to your wishes.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Aquatica New Slide Plans

Seaworld's "Aquatica" Plans new waterslide for 2018.

Triple your fun with the three-in-one thrills of Ray Rush, new at Aquatica Orlando. Ray Rush is the fully-loaded water adventure with three ways to slide, splash and soar like never before. First, water jets launch your raft from zero to awesome in just seconds. Your adventure takes a twisting turn as you spin inside a colossal water sphere. Finally, dive into the giant manta wings, swooping up and down a different path each time. Fill your raft with family and friends for three times the thrills on the exciting Ray Rush at Aquatica, SeaWorld’s waterpark. -Aquatica

Ray Rush will be replacing the HooRoo Run, a 6-story, 250-foot, triple-drop water ride. The 7-foot-wide flume currently takes three riders at a time on a straight shot down -- three times! 

The new addition will feature jet propulsion during the ride into an enclosed globe section, a new feature that has not been seen on other rides.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Interesting Read: Orphan Rocker, The Coaster at Scenic World

Orphan Rocker is one of the most infamous defunct/incomplete roller coasters in the world. It is truly majestic to look at and the Flying Pirouettes crew really puts the astounding coaster in perspective. 

Ratatouille Permit shows the ride is well underway.

Ratatouille Ride Concept Artwork.
Permit filed for the plot of land behind the France Pavillion, and to the immediate left, leaving a lot of space for a large ride. 

Walt Disney World is well underway on adding several new attractions to Epcot — including the latest with "Little Chef" Remy at the France pavilion.
A new Disney permit filed with Orange County is for "Project MI," with an address at the France pavilion. The permit is for "core and shell" that includes mechanical, electrical, plumbing, structural steel, concrete and metal work, documents showed. Balfour Beatty Construction is the project general contractor. 
Disney officials were immediately unavailable for response, but the location appears to point to a new ride at Epcot based on "Ratatouille," the popular Pixar film that follows the story of a rat named Remy in Paris with a knack for cooking. 
Disney already has an existing ride at Disneyland Paris — Ratatouille: The Adventure. The 4-D dark ride "shrinks" riders and puts them in a frantic adventure through Gusteau’s restaurant, evading those who aren't keen about seeing rodents in the restaurant. The Epcot ride here may resemble the Disneyland Paris attraction. 
Meanwhile, the permit doesn't indicate when the project will be completed, but Disney has previously said the ride will be open by Walt Disney World's 50th anniversary in 2021. 
The ride is one of many new attractions Disney has in the works that includes a new Guardians of the Galaxy coaster at Epcot, the Star Wars expansion at Disney's Hollywood Studios and a new Tron coaster at Magic Kingdom.
The new Ratatouille attraction provides something fresh for Epcot's World Showcase and will help to keep guests coming back for the latest additions. -Biz Journals
So the final question is if this will be a clone of the Paris ride or something new altogether.  
Ratatouille Ride EPCOT
(c) Google Maps
The ride location is currently a backstage area with storage for the Food and Wine Festival, along with some utility buildings. We expect the ride to take up some of the grass/tree area to the left of the photo, as well as the entirety of the storage/utility area.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Will Universal Finally Create A Night Show That's Good Enough For it to Stick Around?

Universal Studios has a new night show in the works, the resort announced Tuesday.

Universal has always lacked in the night-time show department compared to Disney. Illuminations, the lagoon show at EPCOT, has been around for almost 20 years. At Universal, they've never lasted long, they've always been a bit cheap-looking compared to the shows at the mouse, and they've required ugly structures to be floating in the lagoon all day long. 
(c)Universal Studios Florida
All of these are issues that will hopefully be addressed in the coming show, which we expect would open for late 2018, or 2019. The show replaces the "Cinematic Spectacular, 100 Years of Movie Memories," a lagoon show that replaced "Universal 360: A Cinesphere Spectacular."  in the park's center Lagoon. It featured famous scenes from Universal Pictures films projected onto large waterfall screens mixed with fountains and pyrotechnics. The show was narrated by actor Morgan Freeman and was part of the 100-year anniversary celebration at Universal Studios through 2012.
The Central Lagoon at Universal Studios Florida
Universal has yet to release the name or any further details regarding the show. The new show is one of many new attractions and experiences coming to the Orlando resort.

A Celebration of Harry Potter, Special Guests and Festivity Dates

A Celebration of Harry Potter announces first special guests.

Dates: Jan. 26-28, 2018
Film talent Stanislav Yanevski (Viktor Krum), James Phelps (Fred Weasley), Oliver Phelps (George Weasley) and more will be answering questions in Q&A sessions. As we know, Oliver and James Phelps are no strangers to the celebration, but this will be a first for Stanislav Yanevski. 
Logo for the Celebration (c) Universal Studios
A Celebration of Harry Potter™ takes place over three days inside Universal Studios Florida™ and Universal's Islands of Adventure™, and most of the events are included with Regular Theme Park Admission. -Universal Orlando
 Inside the Magic has a great trailer highlighting the fun from this year's celebration.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Merlin says they have no interest in SeaWorld properties.

Merlin states "We can confirm that Merlin is not involved in any discussions that might lead to an acquisition of SeaWorld or any of its constituent parts,” to Bloomberg.

Is this a sigh of relief? 
After rumors of a takeover of Busch Parks for months, Merlin has now said that it is not interested in the SeaWorld-owned parks. The coaster community has heavily been criticizing the takeover as a bad move for the General Public and state of the Busch Parks. So who is rumored to take over, if anyone?

Spanish theme-park operator Parques Reunidos is among the potential buyers of SeaWorld, according to people familiar with the matter.

Parques Reunidos owns many theme parks around the world, including Mirabilandia, Kennywood, Lake Compounce, and Movie Park Germany.
The entrance of Mirabilandia. Ravenna, Italy
Overall it seems that the whole thing is a bunch of rumors from all different sources, and the takeover will not be known until the deal actually goes through. We'll have to wait and see. What are your thoughts? Will Parques Reunidos be a better alternative to Merlin?

Suzuka Circuit New "Drive-able" Racing Coaster, "Duel GP"

Suzuka New Dueling/Racing Coaster

Suzuka Circuit has announced a new attraction in their "GP Field" area where visitors can experience the joy and intensity of Motorsports with the new coaster "Duel GP."
This new attraction will have two tracks side-by-side, and hold two racers per car, it's the first of its kind in the world. The track layout is modeled after the Suzuka Circuit, and riders are given steering control as they try to gain precious seconds over there opponent. 
If a driver messes up on an input they can also lose speed. On the many technical corners riders will need to be very precise in their machine control, making Duel GP a completely new experience for a racing attraction.

This could be a very interesting ride if it as cool as it sounds. The ride will most likely be powered the entirety of the "coaster." How it exactly work cannot be seen by the pictures, but I Imagine there is some separate component that will let you move the car side to side a foot or two. How this will let you gain an advantage over your opponent is not known, and how the ride will "spin-out" is also not known, but sounds intriguing! 

If you are unfamiliar with the Suzuka Circuit, it really does seem to mimic the Suzuka Layout!! The beginning S-curves and crossover look similar for a coaster, Suzuka is also one of the few figure-8 tracks, so racing should be quite even from track to track. 

What an awesome idea for this park, what a collection of one of a kind coasters they have. (They have another ride that launches quicker based on how loud you yell at the beginning of the launch!) Great Fun!

"At the compound corner, high level control is required, and if it fails, it will spin and the rival will be differentiated. In the last straight section, the power of top speed can be experienced by automatic control." Translated from the Suzuka Circuit Website.