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This morning, the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) inducted Fred Hollingsworth III, Jack Lindquist, and Tom Williams into the IAAPA Hall of Fame. The IAAPA Hall of Fame honors individuals for their significant and lasting contributions to the worldwide attractions industry. The inductions were announced during the Kickoff Event for IAAPA Attractions Expo 2015 in Orlando, Florida, the premier annual conference and trade show for the global attractions industry.
“We are pleased to welcome Fred Hollingsworth III, Jack Lindquist, and Tom Williams as the newest inductees to the IAAPA Hall of Fame,” said Jack Morey, 2015 chairman of the IAAPA Hall of Fame and Archives Committee and executive vice president of Morey’s Piers. “They are dedicated to creating unique experiences for our industry’s guests, and the products and events they’ve directed have delighted people around the world for decades. Their passion for our business is unmistakable and they deserve this prestigious recognition for their contributions.”
As the Force awakens at the Disneyland Resort, Star Wars Season of the Force debuts Nov. 16, bringing exciting new experiences to Disneyland Park to celebrate all things Star Wars. Adding to the annual Holidays season and the dazzling 60th Anniversary Diamond Celebration, Season of the Force in Tomorrowland will entertain fans of the famous film saga and guests looking forward to the future Star Wars-themed land.
Among the elements entering this galaxy are Star Wars Launch Bay, an interactive space in the newly named Tomorrowland Expo Center; Star Wars: Path of the Jedi, a cinematic overview of the Star Wars saga; a new adventure in Star Tours – The Adventures Continue, and the reimagined attraction, Hyperspace Mountain. Opening Dec. 8, Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple enhances this popular show with new characters and a new villain.
Recently, the ambitious plans for 20th Century Fox World theme park were announced, setting fan and industry-related sites abuzz with commentary and activity around the world. The new resort, which is set to be built in Dubai, is a much larger project than Fox has ever taken on, and by all accounts, this project certainly has teeth.
Theme Park Adventure has scrutinized the project’s press release, tracked down multiple quotes by employees of Rethink Leisure & Entertainment, and has gone over every inch of the fairly-detailed concept art of Fox World Dubai. We’ve drawn our own conclusions and thought it would be fun to share them with you. Whether or not any of them are correct certainly is anyone’s guess. However, it’s helpful sometimes to come at these things from our professional background, to explain our thoughts and educate fans as to why we see things the way we do from time to time. In the end, we simply want our enthusiastic speculation to come off as interesting and thought-provoking to you. TPA usually doesn’t get into this territory; on occasion, something comes along that is so juicy, we can’t resist rolling up our sleeves and getting into the thick of it just for fun!
Fans of Theme Park Adventure no doubt have noticed that we’ve wholeheartedly embraced the new technology of broadcasting via Periscope. We’ve used it to cover media events, take viewers around the world on virtual strolls around theme parks, have late-night nerdy conversation, and more recently, visited Halloween events and chatted in real-time with designers and haunters all over Southern California.
In the event you aren’t yet aware of what Periscope is, it’s an app for both Android and iPhone that allows people to broadcast – and watch live broadcasts – anywhere in the world, as well as interact with the host via on-screen messages and “hearts” – by tapping on the screen during any stream (live or replay), folks watching can express their approval or enjoyment, unleashing a torrent of colorful hearts that correspond with the background color each viewer is assigned when they “join” the broadcast. It can be viewed on computer screens, but for now, that’s only for viewing – all interactive elements are stripped; it’s best to use your phone for the full Periscope experience.
Knott’s Berry Farm announces a complete refurbishment of Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant. Construction began November 2, 2015 and a grand reopening is planned for spring 2016. The project will refresh and preserve the original “tea room” dining room and bring cosmetic and thematic upgrades throughout the restaurant’s other dining areas.
Throughout the restaurant’s four main dining rooms and two banquet rooms, all furniture, flooring, lighting, and décor will be renovated. The large dining room to the right of the main entrance will be remodeled with a look inspired by Mrs. Knott’s kitchen pantry, as the room will be adorned with a potbelly stove and nods to Cordelia’s home kitchen, evoking themes of warmth, family, and togetherness. The main dining room accessible from the courtyard entrance will be divided into two smaller dining rooms, with a theme inspired by farmhouse motifs.
For the first time, a new outdoor seating area on the restaurant’s north side will allow guests to dine al fresco with beautiful and unique views of the MarketPlace fountain, the theme park’s Ghost Town, and the newly restored GhostRider roller coaster.
In 2016, Knott’s Berry Farm’s Ghost Town will celebrate its 75th anniversary with two major offerings next summer. The centerpiece of the summer 2016 celebration is the interactive entertainment experience, Ghost Town Alive!, which immerses guests in new stories and adventures in the familiar town of Calico. The west is about to get even wilder when GhostRider returns from a major restoration project with all new trains that will gallop along over 4,500 feet of new wooden track.
In summer 2016, Ghost Town Alive! will allow guests young and young at heart to live the west through inventive new ways to interact with characters and environments as each day, a different story will unfold throughout all of Ghost Town. From pledging one’s allegiance to notorious bandits, to saving the day alongside courageous cowboys, guests play an active role in shaping the events of the day. Every evening, the day’s story culminates with a town wide celebration of 75 years of Calico.
Absolute Event Solutions (AES) is pleased to introduce the all-new holiday attraction, Winter Fest at the OC Fair & Event Center opening December 18 and continuing through January 3. The festival embodies the spirit of the winter season, bringing fun and merriment to sunny Southern California. Experience ice-skating with a theater-sized screen playing holiday films in the background, ice tubing down a 130-foot, six-lane ice slide, nightly snowfall and tree lighting, festive entertainment, reindeer feedings, and more than 30 carnival rides and games. Winter Fest is filled with seasonal foods, craft cocktails, magical lights, and holiday décor including the world’s largest ornament.
“We love creating events that instantly engage and delight guests of all ages,” Mark Entner, Absolute Event Solutions CEO, says. “This is an affordable holiday experience that ensures a fantastic adventure rain or shine, for seventeen days and nights during the traditional holiday school break. The fairgrounds are the perfect venue for Winter Fest, offering both indoor and outdoor space. The majority of the main attractions and entertainment are within buildings, essentially making Winter Fest ‘El Nino-proof’. We’re thrilled to bring a wintery sense of wonder to Orange County, and we’re inviting the community to join us for what is sure to become an annual tradition.”
In 2017, Jimmy Fallon – host of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and one of today’s funniest comedians – will be the star of a brand-new hilarious ride experience at Universal Studios Florida called, Race through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon. Guests will enjoy the full Tonight Show experience as they’re transported to Studio 6B to race against Jimmy in a crazy adventure that only he could imagine.
Jimmy and his creative team are working closely with Universal to develop the ride’s storyline and bring his vision to life. The experience will seamlessly blend the playful and irreverent world of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon with the incredible technology and imaginative storytelling for which Universal Orlando is known.
With just one click, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter comes to life, transforming computer screens and smart phones around the globe into a virtual tour of the land as Universal Studios Hollywood launches the official website for the West Coast’s much-anticipated entertainment experience, opening in Spring 2016.
Hogwarts is coming to Hollywood, and the dynamic new website will sweep guests through Hogsmeade village to explore the place where magical spells and magical creatures meet dark villains and daring heroes within the soon-to-open The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, inspired by J.K. Rowling’s compelling stories and characters, brought to life in the Warner Bros. films, and being masterfully recreated with impeccable detail into a fully immersive land.
Stylistically designed to be authentic to the tone and feel of the Harry Potter films, the website invites guests to virtually sample the land’s many shops, establishments and attractions through an artfully recreated parchment map.