News

The latest in themed entertainment industry news…

Midsummer Scream 2017 Tickets on Sale Today!

Midsummer Scream 2017Tickets are on sale today for Midsummer Scream 2017, which will be hosted at the Long Beach Convention Center Saturday and Sunday, July 29-30. After a stellar debut last year, Midsummer Scream returns to Long Beach with a vengeance for a weekend of non-stop Halloween fun, haunted attractions, world-class panel presentations, live entertainment, makeup demonstrations, amazing vendors, and a sinister after-hours party in one of the most iconic paranormal activity locations in the world – the Queen Mary.

Ticket options are available beginning today at MidsummerScream.org.

Fans attending Midsummer Scream 2017 are in for an early Halloween treat, as virtually every aspect of the convention is bigger and better this year, including:

World-Class Presentations and Bigger Main Stage Venue
As the official kick-off event for the Halloween season in Southern California, Midsummer Scream features an unparalleled lineup of major presentations by the largest tourist attractions on the West Coast. This year’s epic Main Stage lineup includes Universal Studios Hollywood Halloween Horror Nights, Knott’s Scary Farm, Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor, and Six Flags Magic Mountain Fright Fest. These Main Stage presentations will be held in the beautiful, state-of-the-art Terrace Theater, which features comfortable seating for up to 3,000 screaming fans.

Read More »

Leave a comment

Mark Woodbury Named Vice Chairman, Universal Parks & Resorts

Mark WoodburyIn a move that doesn’t surprise industry folks, but will resonate very nicely with hard core theme park fans, Universal has named Mark Woodbury Vice Chairman of its Parks & Resorts division.

Fans consider Woodbury to be a big deal – elevated to a place rarely occupied by anyone out of the realm of traditional industry figureheads such as Tony Baxter, Phil Hettema, or Gary Goddard. However, after being heavily involved with projects at Universal for the past 28 years – including of course, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter projects, Mark Woodbury has become a very common name throughout the fan community. He may not be as fan-accessible as other industry leaders, but he’s definitely become synonymous with Universal Creative.

Mark Woodbury will continue in his role of President of Universal Creative, and will continue to report to Tom Williams, the Chairman and CEO of  Universal Parks & Resorts.

“Mark has been a driving force for creativity, innovation, growth and development across the entire Parks group,” said Williams. “As we continue our incredible journey, I am happy that Mark will be by my side, playing a vital role in shaping our future and leading the greatest creative team in the world.”

Read More »

Leave a comment

Reign of Terror Haunted House Special Event in March Announced

Reign of Terror Haunted House in Thousand Oaks has announced that it will be open Saturday night, March 4, 2017 for a special event benefiting local animal rescue charities in the Greater Los Angeles area.

Anyone familiar with the haunted attraction scene here in Southern California is certainly aware of Reign of Terror; it is one of the largest and most elaborate haunts in the United States. We often say that we’re lucky to have ROT in our own backyard here in Los Angeles, as it truly is a spectacle to experience and appreciate year after year.

Read More »

Leave a comment

Universal Orlando Unveils Volcano Bay Virtual Line TapuTapu Band

Universal Orlando Volcano Bay TapuTapu bandUniversal Orlando has unveiled its new TapuTapu band – a wearable accessory that will allow guests to spend more time exploring the resort’s new Volcano Bay water park, and less time standing in a traditional queue while waiting for a water slide or attraction.

TapuTapu will be given to every guest with their admission to Volcano Bay, which opens to the public on May 25, 2017.

Read More »

Leave a comment

Trick Eye Experience Comes to Monte Carlo Resort and Casino Las Vegas

Trick Eye Experience at Monte Carlo Las VegasAs if the Las Vegas Strip wasn’t bursting with crazy, cool, and unique things to see and do, there’s a brand-new experience that’s caught our attention – and is sure to be turning heads. Trick Eye Experience has come to the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino, where it will continue to evolve into 2018.

What is Trick Eye Experience? It’s a series of life-sized 3-D art displays that encourage people to walk up and pose for photos in front of. The unique way in which the art has been created messes with your perception of depth and space, making for some truly fun photo ops! Trick Eye Experience is a collaboration between Monte Carlo and We Talk Chalk, a full-service art firm with West and East Coast studios that offers turnkey 3-D street painting, street art and chalk art solutions for companies and organizations around the world.

Read More »

Leave a comment

Lunar New Year 2017 Sure to Draw Big Crowds to Universal Studios Hollywood

Lunar New Year 2017 at Universal Studios HollywoodWhen you think of Universal Studios Hollywood and its signature annual events, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Halloween Horror Nights, or perhaps Grinchmas, right? How about Lunar New Year? It’s a biggie at the Southern California theme park. Beginning January 21, guests will be able to meet Mandarin-speaking Megatron, enjoy special Chinese food treats, and celebrate Lunar New Year 2017 with many of their favorite characters, who will be wearing traditional festival attire throughout the event.

Speaking of characters, Lunar New Year 2017 brings new, familiar faces to Universal Studios Hollywood – Po and Tigress, from DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda franchise!

Located within Universal Plaza, across from the entrance to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter on the park’s Upper Lot, the Lunar New Year celebration is a cultural celebration that invites families and guests of all ages and race to participate and enjoy. The main entryway into the Plaza is to be adorned with classic red Chinese lanterns and a beautiful plum blossom arch. Once inside the festival area, guests will be able to partake in really fun character meet-and-greets, as well as enjoy Asian treats including as pastries as they take in the elegant decorations and banners featuring the 12 animals that make up the Chinese Zodiac.

Read More »

Leave a comment

Bone Yard Effects Invites Haunt Fans INTO THE BLACK at Pomona Fairplex this Halloween

INTO THE BLACK logoINTO THE BLACK is a brand-new haunt experience for 2017 created by Bone Yard Effects, Inc. that will take visitors on a harrowing journey this Halloween season at the Pomona Fairplex in Southern California.

In 1866, Anton and Isabella Black built a large home deep in the woods, a fair distance from any village. They were reclusive, socially awkward individuals that kept to themselves and were rarely seen in public. Once locals began disappearing, people began speaking in whispers about the Blacks. Some suggested they were murderers. Others claimed that the couple was heavily involved with the occult – and that those who had gone missing were taken as part of heinous Satanic rituals and offerings. It didn’t take long for the woods to be deemed “off limits”. The looming Victorian in the heart of those woods would become known as the House of the Devil. For decades, no one ventured into the woods and eventually, the home and its occupants faded into obscurity. The lore surrounding The Black House was passed down for generations until people began to question the validity of the information at hand.

Recently, paranormal investigation teams and curious thrill seekers have started to return to the area, searching for any sign of The Black House or clues that shed light on whatever happened to Anton and Isabella – or those unfortunate souls who entered the woods all those years ago, never to return. Despite their best efforts, everyone looking for answers emerges empty-handed, casting even more doubt on the stories attributed to “the most evil place on Earth.”

Read More »

Leave a comment

Knott’s for the Cure Begins 4th Year in Partnership with Susan G. Komen Orange County

Knott's for the Cure 2017It’s that time of year again, and while some may think they’re seeing pink at Knott’s Berry Farm because of Valentine’s Day, that’s not the case. Beginning today, Knott’s and Susan G. Komen Orange County enter into their 4th year together helping to raise awareness about breast cancer with Knott’s for the Cure.

What does this mean for park-goers? For one thing, they’ll be seeing a lot of pink. During the event, which lasts from January 9 through March 5, 2017, several of the theme park’s most iconic attractions will be washed in pink lighting after dark, altering the Buena Park skyline dramatically; this includes Supreme Scream (beginning on Valentine’s Day) and the Calico Mine Ride.

The symbolic pink color doesn’t stop there. Guests may now purchase special Pink Tickets that will grant them admission to the park, as well as earmark a portion of each admission to be donated to Susan G. Komen Orange County. Those tickets may be purchased online at Knotts.com. In addition to the Pink Tickets, guests will find pink merchandise for sale throughout Knott’s Berry Farm as well, including special t-shirts, which also provide a percentage of each sale to the foundation.

Read More »

Leave a comment

Santa’s Village in California Opening Date Set for December 2, 2016

sv4It’s been a long time coming, but it appears that Santa’s Village in the San Bernardino National Forest finally has an opening date – December 2, 2016.

When it was first announced that the beloved old theme park in Skyforest had been bought by businessman/realtor Bill Johnson in 2014, fans everywhere became very excited; rightfully so. After closing its gates in 1998, the defunct Christmas-themed park sat abandoned and neglected for years, its wonderful old rides and whimsical buildings falling into a sad state of disrepair and ruin. Vandals left their mark on the closed park, as did the harsh seasons on the mountain just miles from Lake Arrowhead. Over the years, occasional interest was sparked by news of a potential buyer – but nothing ever came of it. When the property was purchased by Johnson, that was a huge step in the right direction, giving us all hope that the little theme park might be restored and returned to operation with a lot of love and a truckload of investment money. The price tag in 2014 for Santa’s Village was reported to be in the neighborhood of $5-6 million. When the 154-acre property was purchased, we cautioned strongly beginning with our May 15, 2014 story about the park possibly re-opening that it would require a lot more than that to get the property back up to modern codes, rebuild its infrastructure, add new attractions, and hire a year-round team, along with seasonal employees.

Read More »

16 Comments

Fire and Law Tribute Days at Knott’s Return

Fire and Law Tribute Days at Knott's Berry FarmOnce again, Knott’s Berry Farm is offering free admission to the park for active fire and law enforcement personnel from November 28 to December 16, and then again from January 9 to January 31 as part of its annual Fire and Law Tribute Days promotion.

As a way of saying “thank you”, Knott’s Berry Farm extends this offer for free admission to active members of fire and law enforcement agencies plus one guest per valid ID. Branches included in this offer are: ATF Agents, Bailiffs, California Dept. Of Forestry, California Highway Patrol Officers, City, County, State and Federal Police (sworn officers and civilian employees/support staff), City, County, State and Federal Fire (sworn officers and civilian employees/ support staff), Correctional Officers, County Sheriff Officers, Ambulance Company Emergency Medical Techs, Department of the Youth Authority, District Attorneys, FBI Agents, Homeland Security, Police Explorers, Peace Officers, Probation Officers, Reserve/volunteer Fire/Law employees, Sherriffs, U.S. Forest Service Personnel, U.S. Marshals, and Wildland Firefighters.

Read More »

Leave a comment