Soft opening days set for new parks

January 22, 2008, 9:33 AM · Eager to visit the new parks opening this year? Well, mark your calendars, 'cause we've got opening dates set.

SeaWorld Orlando's Aquatica water park will soft-open on March 1, and the Hard Rock Park in Myrtle Beach, S.C. will soft-open on April 15.

Soft openings mean that the park is open to the public, but has not had its official opening for the news press yet. With new parks, attractions very often are either not yet ready or are operating at much lower capacity during a soft opening. Basically, soft openings are a chance for parks to "work the kinks out" before the reporters and TV cameras show up.

Of course, since so many visitors now get their information about theme parks from the Web, not local papers or TV, and because websites don't wait until official media openings to post information about a new park (heck, we here at TPI won't!), parks really don't get time to operate under the radar anymore.

Which is my way of saying, if you are at Aquatica on March 1, or Hard Rock Park on April 15, your fellow TPI readers are counting on you for trip reports, attraction ratings and many, many pics. ;-)

Replies (4)

January 23, 2008 at 2:53 AM · Hi,

Thanks for this good news !
My trip to Orlando will end on the 5th of March, I hope to be able to visit Aquatica... and post pictures once I'm back in France.

January 23, 2008 at 6:32 AM · We in UK keenly await to learn the VFM factor re Hard Rock Cafe ...not least because their VFM here is dismal at (very) approx $40 for a burger and chips - as we know 'fries' - at the Hard Rock presence here.
January 23, 2008 at 9:32 AM · It's going to be an exciting Spring time with those two parks opening. If Sea World/Busch Gardens holds true to what they told Passport Members that they will receive an invitation to a Aquatica Sneak Peek Preview for Passport members only, then I should be able to get into the park before March 1, 2008.

Grand Openings are set for April 3, 2008 for Aquatica in Orlando, and April 4, 2008 for Jungala at Busch Gardens Africa in Tampa. I hope to be able to attend both of them.

January 23, 2008 at 2:00 PM · That's pretty cool. I'll have to go check that out!

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