THEME PARK ADVENTURE LATEST STORIES, NEWS AND FEATURES

For the past 20 years, Theme Park Adventure has been an industry standard for fans and professionals alike. Predating the internet, TPA began as a printed newsletter that reached enthusiasts around the globe as we covered such stories as Luxor Las Vegas’ First Anniversary, the construction and opening of The Indiana Jones Adventure at Disneyland Resort, the creation of Blizzard Beach at Walt Disney World, and the Farewell Season of the Main Street Electrical Parade in Anaheim. At the same time, Theme Park Adventure was also unintentionally becoming the pioneer of covering Halloween events, such as Knott’s Scary Farm in Buena Park, California. Over the past two decades, TPA has indulged in the haunted attraction industry, from small home displays to professional stand-alone Halloween events and major theme park productions such as Universal Studios’ Halloween Horror Nights! Our fan base consists of many haunt enthusiasts and producers – an unintentional portion of the themed entertainment industry that we are thrilled to be a part of on an on-going basis! TPA owners Rick West and Johanna Atilano are both professionals within the themed entertainment industry, making this site not only an incredibly fun hobby, but a valued and important part of their lives; a creative and informative extension of who they are and what they do professionally. Each month, Theme Park Adventure hosts large mixers, which fans and themed entertainment professionals attend in a virtual who’s who that is absolutely open to everyone! Theme Park Adventure has become more than just a magazine or fan site; we are a community of creative individuals who share a love of entertainment, theme parks and the spookiest season of them all – Halloween! We invite you to sit back and enjoy all that we have to offer here, from stories and reviews to videos and image galleries; partake, discuss, and become part of the TPA community we we take you on a ride through the past, present, and the future!

Blackout: House in New York and Los Angeles 2014

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houseDeemed the ‘the most terrifying of the United State’s 3,000 haunted houses’ (The Guardian), BLACKOUT celebrates its 5th anniversary this year opening this month in NYC (Oct 9) and LA (Oct 16) — with a new show, BLACKOUT: house and a new set of rules.

Infamous for its strict solo-entry policy, forcing participants to face their darkest fears alone, BLACKOUT: house will be a group experience this year. And if you think that means the experience will be any easier — think again. This year’s iteration takes the creators’ special brand of immersive horror to the next level by breaking even more conventions than previous years and incorporating group dynamics into the experience.

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REVIEW: Universal Studios Hollywood’s Halloween Horror Nights 2014

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Horror_Nights_2014_2269Universal Studios Hollywood’s Halloween Horror Nights 2014 opened to the masses on Friday, September 19th this year, making it the first large-scale Halloween event of the season here in Southern California. With temperatures all week above 90 degrees, it was hard to believe that Halloween had arrived; clearly, Mother Nature hadn’t received the memo. Strangely enough, opening day of Halloween Horror Nights was overcast and much cooler than the rest of the week; it appears that the event’s Creative Director/Executive Producer, John Murdy, called in a favor with the powers that be! Or perhaps he made an even more sinister offering of sorts – come to think of it, we haven’t seen his design counterpart, Chris Williams, for weeks

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SeaWorld Orlando – Home to Really Cute Chicks

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Flamingo_Chick_Hatches_at_SeaWorld_OrlandoThe SeaWorld Orlando Aviculture Team recently welcomed two new additions to their family – a Caribbean flamingo and a tawny frogmouth chick.

The flamingo chick hatched on August 16, weighing just a pound.  Although today it stands about 18 inches tall and weighs three pounds, when fully grown it will be five feet tall and double its weight. Its characteristic pink feathers start developing at three months, but the chick won’t gain its full color until it’s about three years old.  Flamingos’ bright pink feathers come from the carotenoid pigments they consume as part of the crustaceans found in their diet.

Guests can see the chick with its parents in the flamingo habitat located near Manta. Did you know that both flamingo parents share feeding responsibilities?  The chick is fed crop milk that comes from the parents’ upper digestive tract.  As the parents feed the chick, they actually lose their pink color – and their feathers turn a pale pink or even white.  Their color is regained as the chicks become more independent.  Caribbean flamingos, native to South America and the Caribbean, are by far the brightest and one of the largest of all the flamingos.

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25th Annual L.A. Zoo Photo Day Announced

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Photo: Sherry Yuen-RuanThe 25th Annual L.A. Zoo Photo Day on Sunday, November 9, 2014, presented by the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association (GLAZA) and Paul’s Photo, features one-of-a-kind photo opportunities for film and digital photographers of all ages and skill levels.  Among activities for participants in the event, from 7:30 am to 4 pm, are hands-on workshops with instruction for novices on the basics of wildlife and nature photography as well as opportunities for accomplished shutterbugs to explore new horizons while focusing on the art and science of outdoor photography.  Also included in the admission price are use of loan equipment from major manufacturers, one-on-one time with manufacturers’ representatives, catered lunch, guest speakers, t-shirt, early admission to the Zoo, animal close-ups for photography, and a photo contest with prizes.  Experts from Paul’s Photos, based in Torrance, and representatives from the top brands in photography provide participants with a full day of photography and education.  The deadline to register is October 15.

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Thomas and Percy’s Halloween Party at Roaring Camp Railroads

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Roaring Camp Railroads' Thomas and Percy's Halloween PartyAmerica’s favorite No. 1 engine is chugging into Roaring Camp alongside his pal Percy for a special event: Thomas and Percy’s Halloween Party. Junior engineers  are invited to wear their Halloween costumes and bring the entire family for a fun-filled day at Thomas and Percy-themed activities.

Entertainment includes Thomas & Friends storytelling, magician, juggler, bounce houses, an Imagination Station with face painting, temporary tattoos, and more!

The roundtrip Thomas The Tank Engine and Percy train excursion travels along the scenic San Lorenzo Valley River Gorge and Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park. Trains depart from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. Tickets: $24 for guests ages 2 and up.

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Safe and Super Halloween 2014 at Fairytale Town

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Safe & Super Halloween at Fairytale Town 6The mythological world of Rick Riordan’s “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” will come to life at Fairytale Town’s annual Safe and Super Halloween event. Families can enjoy three nights of fun and trick-or-treating at the storybook park on October 24, 25 and 26 from 5 to 9 p.m.

Young heroes can go on a quest to Mount Olympus to meet the infamous Olympian Zeus. Families will enjoy exploring the lair of Polyphemus the cyclops, the replica Parthenon, the Oracle of Delphi and Medusa’s garden. Seventeen candy stations will be scattered throughout the park for trick-or-treaters to visit. The evening also features a nightly costume parade at 8:30 p.m. and hands-on activities inspired by the books and Greek mythology.

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Roaring Camp Railroads Ghost Train 2014

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Roaring Camp Railroads Ghost TrainRelive “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” this Halloween at Roaring Camp Railroads Ghost Train as you ride vintage railway cars through a Redwood forest; named one of the top 10 Halloween events by USA Today. Costumed actors re-enact scenes from hillside stages as the story is narrated during the one-hour and fifteen minute ride. Designed for young children and the young-at-heart, the event is a light and lively adaptation of the famous tale.

Ghost Trains depart at 6:15 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 8:00 p.m., and 8:15 p.m. Advance reservations are required. Ticket prices are $28 adults and $20 children (2-12 years). Parking is $8. For tickets and information, call 831-335-4484 or visit www.roaringcamp.com.

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Zombie Joe’s Urban Death Tour of Terror 2014 Announced

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URBAN_DEATH2On Friday and Saturday nights, October 10 – November 1, the doors to Zombie Joe’s Underground Theater will creak open once again to bring guests inside to experience URBAN DEATH TOUR OF TERROR.

Now in its second year, TOUR OF TERROR takes ZJU’s signature show, URBAN DEATH, and transforms it into an immersive haunted experience designed to explore the deepest and darkest terrors fathomable.

Last year’s inaugural event was heralded by fans and critics alike for the imaginative quality of the scares and the talent of the performers within the maze.

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Disney California Adventure 101: Grizzly Peak

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Grizzly-Peak1Walt Disney on respecting nature: “Physical America — the land itself — should be as dear to us all as our political heritage and our treasured way of life. Its preservation and the wise conservation of its renewable resources concerns every man, woman and child whose possession it is.”

Overview: Grizzly Peak takes Disney California Adventure Park guests to rugged Gold Rush country. The rocky mountain summit looks like a grizzly bear roaring into the sky, but the beast is much more than a pretty face. The history of the mountain is a combination of legend and Disney imagination. The tale goes like this: A long, long time ago, a coyote met a grizzly bear at the top of the mountain and asked the bear to protect the land. One day, people came to the mountain to chase the grizzly bear down, but the bear held his ground. The coyote turned the grizzly bear into stone so that the bear could never be driven away. Today, some observant mountaineers claim they can hear the bear’s spirit when rafting through the windy caverns of Grizzly Peak.

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Roaring Camp Railroads Steam Fair & Harvest Festival 2014

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Roaring Camp Railroads Steam Fair and Harvest FestivalIn the spirit of pioneers of the old and new west, Kinetic Steam Works and Roaring Camp Railroads present The Steam Fair and Harvest Festival on October 4 and 5.

View steam-generated displays and gadgets that showcase the creativity and imagination of inventors, tinkerers and do-it-yourselfers. Engage in heritage activities such as gold panning, candle making, or scarecrow making.  Visit the Marshall’s office, blacksmith, print shop or Box Car Theatre.  Sit for an old-fashioned family picture at the Photo Shoppe.

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