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TPA Bids Aloha to Winter Nights at Don’s 2015

Winter_Nights_at_Dons_2_0636In December of 2014, Theme Park Adventure hosted its Christmas Bash at a brand new meeting spot – Don the Beachcomber, in Huntington Beach, California! Since then, we have formed a tremendous relationship with the team at Don’s, and the iconic tiki restaurant has become the official gathering place for TPAers each month!

On Sunday, February 15, we hosted our final Winter Nights at Don’s mixer of 2015, with more than 100 fans, haunters and industry professionals in attendance to eat, drink and laugh the night away in the Hidden Village, our tropical oasis of thatched tiki huts and hanging string lights! Not that we ever had one, we all gathered to bid farewell to the winter season, and look forward to spring and all of the fun it’s sure to bring with its arrival.

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LA Zoo and Aquarium of the Pacific Combo Tickets Available

Hippo Baby 3974-Jamie PhamSpring is the perfect time to see new life in the animal and ocean world at the Los Angeles Zoo and at the Aquarium of the Pacific in LA County’s coastal city of Long Beach. You can visit baby sharks and baby penguins at the Aquarium of the Pacific this spring. You’ll see a baby hippo, giraffe, and chimps at the Los Angeles Zoo. The aquarium and the zoo are offering visitors the chance to visit both places with a discounted combo ticket, which can be purchased online or at either attraction and used on different days.

In addition to seeing the bounty of babies, visitors to both institutions can enjoy special exhibits and activities. The L.A. Zoo offers a variety of engaging opportunities to learn more about animals with close-up encounters, special feedings and shows, all free with paid Zoo admission, including Elephants of Asia Training Demonstration, World of Birds Show, Marsupial Talk, Hawk Training Demonstration, Keeper Talks and more.  At the Aquarium of the Pacific, you can explore the Wonders of the Deep to see animals that live in the dark depths of the ocean, from glowing flashlight fish to moon jellies you can touch. You’ll also be able to touch sharks, rays, horseshoe crabs, and tidepool animals at the aquarium and feed colorful lorikeet birds. Visitors to the Aquarium can also watch feeding sessions with sea otters, seals and sea lions, penguins, and other animals as well as underwater SCUBA diver shows in its largest exhibits. The zoo/aquarium combo ticket is available for $39 per adult (12+), $26 per child, and $38 per senior (ages 62+).

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Civil War Days Coming to Old Tucson

IMG_7642.jpgOld Tucson, The Arizona Sonora Western Heritage Foundation and the Arizona Civil War Council present Civil War Days at Old Tucson on Saturday, February 28 and Sunday, March 1.  The event will feature a daily flag raising ceremony and presentations by the Arizona Civil War Council including displays and demonstrations illuminating Arizona’s territorial days and its brief tenure as a Confederate territory.

Visitors to Old Tucson will learn about the Civil War and the lives of Union and Confederate troops including talks on topics like the Civil War in Arizona, period weaponry, and life as a soldier.  The Council also will present live demonstrations including the firing of period weapons.  This family event includes interaction with guests who may be “recruited” to participate in a march through the streets of Old Tucson!

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Forever Charlie Wilson Tour Coming to Mandalay Bay

CharlieWilsonJohnMandalay Bay Resort and Casino welcomes GRAMMY-nominated artist Charlie Wilson to the Events Center Saturday, March 28 at 8 p.m. Wilson will be joined on the Forever Charlie Tour by highly regarded R&B artists Kem and Joe, both of whom will perform their individual sets.

Tickets priced at $50, $90 and $130, not including applicable tax and service fees, are now on sale and available at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith’s Food and Drug Centers and Ritmo Latino). To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at mandalaybay.com or ticketmaster.com.

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Disneyland Parking Lot – Throwback Thursday

IMG_20150225_0001Not many people would get excited about parking lot pictures. But when it’s the Disneyland parking lot – then you have fans’ attention, right?!

Today’s Throwback Thursday feature isn’t a deep dive into history or a wordy recollection of the way it was. However, what is cool about the few images we want to share with you, is that they capture a really interesting moment in Disneyland’s history – as it began its transformation from a theme park to a resort destination.

There are no dates scribbled on the backs of these photos, so I will guess that they are circa 1997 – 1999, as Disney California Adventure’s construction had just started (at least, in one of the shots, it has).

This first photo shows two generations of Disneyland parking lot tram sitting side by side in the parking lot. In fact, I do believe this was the first of the Walt Disney World-style trams that eventually replaced Disneyland’s iconic blue and gold trams, which you can see in the background. Just a neat snippet in time, as the new trams come on the scene and the old ones begin their fade into the history books.

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Hong Kong Disneyland Celebrates Chinese New Year

hong-kong-disneyland-chinese-new-yearHong Kong Disneyland Resort (HKDL) this week hosted a Chinese New Year celebration with guests in the park, kicking off a month of festivities at the resort for the Year of the Sheep. HKDL also officially announced a HK$2,500,000 grant from both The Walt Disney Company and HKDL for several youth programs this year, which have been created with support from the Hong Kong Design Centre, the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups and local institutes. The funding aims to encourage creativity in the younger generation and positively impact the community through happiness.

Bill Ernest, President and Managing Director, Asia, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, and Andrew Kam, Managing Director of HKDL, were joined by a number of officiating guests at the ceremony. They included the Guest of Honor, Carrie Lam, Chief Secretary for Administration of the Hong Kong SAR Government; Elina Lee, Director of Partnership, Marketing & Communications, Hong Kong Design Centre; and Andy Ho, Deputy Executive Director of the Hong Kong Federation of Youth Groups. Alongside God of Fortune Goofy, they greeted guests and wished the people of Hong Kong a prosperous Chinese New Year.

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Another Lowland Gorilla Birth at Busch Gardens Tampa

Gorilla_Birth_At_Busch_Gardens_TampaBusch Gardens Tampa has welcomed another endangered western lowland gorilla. The female gorilla was born on Feb. 6 at 8:30 p.m. and is being cared for by 27-year-old mother Mary.

Guests will be able to see the baby gorilla on the Myombe Reserve habitat in the coming days, along with the rest of the gorilla troop.  Or, check out the Busch Gardens YouTube channel now for a first look!

“The first month will be the critical period as the mother, Mary, and the infant begin to integrate into the current gorilla troop, so the Busch Gardens animal care team will be monitoring their progress closely,” said Jeff Andrews, vice president of zoological operations for Busch Gardens.

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Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk Seeking Marriage Proposal

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk - looking for a special marriage proposal!The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk needs to fill an important role in their 2015 summer television special. They’re looking for someone who is ready to propose marriage to their sweetheart, on camera at the Boardwalk.

“We hear from people all the time who want to propose or take engagement photographs at the Boardwalk because it’s such a special place for them,” said Boardwalk advertising director Sondra Woods.   “We know that somebody with a connection to the Boardwalk is already out there, ready to propose. We just want to capture it on camera.”

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Wild Wild West Con 4 Steampunk Fest Coming to Old Tucson

old-tucson-steampunk-conOld Tucson and the Arizona Steampunk Society present the Wild Wild West Con 4 Steampunk Convention & Festival on Friday, March 6 thru Sunday, March 8, 2015 from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.  Wild Wild West Con is America’s first and only Steampunk convention/festival to take place in a western-themed town and is the largest Western-style Steampunk Convention in the United States!  Hundreds of devotees will descend upon Old Tucson outfitted in full Steampunk regalia. The Con’s Mad Science theme is sure to be reflected in Steampunk fashion and accessories.

Visitors to Old Tucson will get a glimpse of this growing phenomenon where it belongs – in an Old West setting.  The unique atmosphere of Victorian sensibilities combined with retro-futuristic technology presents Old Tucson guests with fabulous photo opportunities as well as access to selected Con activities including the WWWC4 Steampunk Costume Contest, a Kids Zone, an absinthe tasting ($20 charge – limited capacity), performances by Loop Rawlins, a Steampunk vendor village with more than 60 vendors, street performers and Old Tucson shows and activities.  Old Tucson admission is $17.95 for adults and $10.95 for children ages 4 to 11 (children 3 and under are admitted free).

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Okapi Calf Explores Habitat at San Diego Zoo Safari Park

Strutting His Stripes, Baby Okapi Steps Out in New HabitatA four-week-old okapi calf at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park is ready to explore his outdoor habitat. Until now the male calf, born on Jan. 18, has been spending time in the okapi barn and outside yard. But after showing signs of curiosity, staff provided the calf and his mother, Makini, access to the main forested habitat, which is viewable by guests.

The young okapi, named Amaranta, cautiously explored and walked around his shady habitat with his mother as he experienced the excitement of being in the new environment. The calf, which now weighs around 100 pounds, observed as his mother ate hay and acacia browse that keepers had placed in feeders around the exhibit, simulating grazing opportunities that okapi would experience in the wild.

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