Vote of the week: Can 2013 top 2012 for theme parks?
Written by Robert Niles
My kids are getting ready to go back to school next week - we just took our high-school daughter to pick up her textbooks today. So as the beginning of a new school year approaches, another theme park season comes to a close.Tweet
Of course, the big parks in Orlando and Southern California will remain open (and crowded), and we'll keep covering them. But for them many theme park fans, whose attention turns away from parks for the next few weeks and months, this is a good time to take a look back at the past summer, while maybe beginning to think ahead to the next year.
Mickey Mouse welcomes us to the new Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure.
We had some huge debuts in 2012. In fact, this year saw two of the biggest ever - Cars Land, with its highlight, Radiator Springs Racers, at Disney California Adventure, and Transformers: The Ride 3D at Universal Studios Hollywood. Those attractions wowed so many fans this year that great new rides such as Leviathan at Canada's Wonderland and the new Manta at SeaWorld San Diego didn't get nearly the attention they would have in a "normal" year.
But as good as this year was, more's coming next year, too - as it always does. Perhaps by the end of 2013, we'll see a Transformers in Orlando at Universal Studios Florida. Silver Dollar City in Missouri is building what might be the world's most ambitious wooden roller coaster, Outlaw Run, which will feature 81-degree first drop, a 68-mph top speed and a double barrel roll inversion.
Cedar Point's finally getting a new coaster. The expansion at Hong Kong Disneyland will be complete. And SeaWorld Orlando will debut its massive new Antarctica pavilion, with what's promised to be an innovative major new dark ride, along with an up-close walk-through a penguin habitat.
So, what do you think? Will 2013 top 2012? Or was this summer a classic that next year won't be able to match?
Let's put it up for a vote.
This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.
Previous article: Ready, set… dial!*
Planning a trip to Orlando?
Insider's Pick: Get all the best advice from ThemeParkInsider.com in one convenient book! Theme Park Insider Orlando 2014 offers you the insight, background, and how-to skills that will help you enjoy Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando like, well, a theme park insider. Save yourself time and money by learning how to visit the Orlando-area theme parks the insiders' way.
Top U.S. Theme Parks
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Other Top International Parks
Features, News and Advice
"Stories from a Theme Park Insider"
Connect with Theme Park Insider