Just Published: Theme Park Insider: 2016 Year in Review
Joyland (Kansas) – Apparently not all teenagers are too concerned with overly violent video games and the trifecta of S, D & RR to participate in society. A group called “Project Hope", led by 17-year-old Alex East, is attempting to get city council behind a plan to reopen Joyland. Alex earns kudos of the week for taking over when the adults have failed miserably.
Shanghai Disneyland – OK, I was wrong on what I reported a while back on this project. They are currently constructing the roads first…and then the FastPast kiosks. My bad…
Hello Kitty Park – OK, maybe I just don’t understand the whole Hello Kitty thing, but some genius is going to spend $215 million on a Hello Kitty Amusement Park in Anji, China. Not to sound too snotty here, but isn’t that about what they spent on Hard Rock Park? Wouldn’t more people like music than a poorly drawn cat rip-off of Snoopy? What was that saying….something about something and his money are soon parted…..or was it three nuns carrying Hello Kitty dolls walk into a bar…..I don’t know….
Islands of Adventure – Another scene of Spiderman is now being projected in digital. The Electro scene and the Hydro scenes have graduated from rehab for celluloid dependency.
Busch Gardens Williamsburg – Many plans, blueprints, and technical documents were posted on the BGWFans website. They have unfortunately been pulled off of the site. The good news is that Screamscape had reposted them with permission and still has them online. Take a look while they are still up. There are plans showing what the buildings look like, the interior of the mystery building, a CG rendering of the bridge, lotso lotso stuff. Gimme Verbolten!!
Universal Studios – The announcement is on Thursday, May 19. The smart money right now is predicting that Universal Studios Florida is going to announce their Grand Opening. Feel free to join us in the speculation, rumor mongering, and agonizing over what it could be. Click here for Terri Pierce’s “USF Announces" Speculation thread
Six Flags Over Georgia – Dare Devil Dive is doing full cycle test runs. The coaster is scheduled for a May 28th opening with a Passholder preview the day prior.
Bush Gardens Tampa – The Cheetah Hunt mascots Kasi and his best buddy Labrador puppy, Mtani, appeared on the Jay Leno show….a move that will make a lifetime of solitary confinement much more palatable.
Universal Studios Singapore – The Madagascar Ride is now open. There is a discussion thread open on this that has a link to a ride through. The ride is much longer than I would have expected, considering they took the entire second story of the building out. There are some signs of surgery in the plot of the ride… Daniel Etcheberry’s Madagascar Opening thread
Disneyland – Cast Member previews are in full swing now. Posted on the interwebs are some pretty good ride accounts of what happens. Before you click on the following link, this article is so full of spoilers, that you will easily imagine that you are actually on the ride yourself, and protein spill because you just ate. With great care, click the following (Theme Park Insider is not responsible for cleaning expenses): I can’t possibly wait another moment before reading everything there is to know about Star Tours II
Universal Studios Hollywood – Actual headline “Students Take Over Universal Studios". Their first order of business was to, like other executives, grant themselves golden parachutes and massive raises.
If I have missed anything (and I have, so no worries there) please post below. If you have some inside information, more news, more rumors, first rides, please share with the rest of us.
Sources: Screamscape, Amusement Today, and whatever else I happened to read this week...
Busch Gardens Tampa - Cheetah Hunt has been tested with live people. Expecting them to soft open the ride soon.
While the idea of a Hello Kitty theme park in China seems like a foolish venture to you, I'm thinking maybe the folks in charge looked at Sanrio Puroland, which pulls in 1.5 million people a year. Hello Kitty and the other Sanrio characters are HUGE in Asia.
And Hard Rock Park cost $400 million.
I really hope that someone in that area can make things happen again before it's too late. Lord knows that if I lived in that area, I would have tried to do something years ago. There still is a place in this country for the small local amusement park, and there also is a sustainable model as long as there are enough people around to enjoy it.
Walt Disney World
Tokyo Disney Resort