Vote of the Week: Will Disneyland or Universal Studios Hollywood Own the Summer of 2015?
Harry Potter and Disney's New Fantasyland put Orlando in the spotlight in the summer of 2014. But in 2015, it's Southern California's turn. Disneyland will kick off its 60th anniversary Diamond Celebration in two weeks with a 24-hour party that will introduce its new "Paint the Night" parade and "Disneyland Forever" fireworks. Next door at Disney California Adventure, Disneyland's second gate will celebrate the anniversary with a new version of "World of Color" as well as the opening of the rethemed Grizzly Peak Airfield later this summer.
On the other side of town, at Universal Studios Hollywood, that park is marking its 50th anniversary, as well as the next steps in its multi-billion-dollar "Evolution" transformation, with the dedication of its new "Simpsons"-themed Springfield land next week, followed by the debuts of "Fast & Furious- Supercharged" and the nighttime version of the Studio Tour in June and July, respectively.
Concept art courtesy Universal
Other area parks are premiering attractions, as well. Next week, Knott's Berry Farm introduces its new 3D shooter ride, Voyage to the Iron Reef. And on the 23rd, Six Flags Magic Mountain drops Southern California's first Iron Horse-style steel retrack of a wooden coaster with Twisted Colossus, which will be the world's longest hybrid coaster.
We will be on-site covering all of these openings over the next two weeks, as well as new attraction debuts at Six Flags Over Texas, Six Flags New England, and Hersheypark. (So, please, keep reading the site and telling your friends about all our great coverage!) But, for theme park fans, we're betting that the most popular new attractions of the year will be the ones debuting at Southern California's top two theme park destinations — Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood.
But which of these two industry rivals will own the summer of 2015? Will Disneyland's line-up of new shows and refurbished classics be the summer's top draw? Or will fans favor instead Universal's new land, new 4D Fast & Furious encounter, and its re-take on its classic Studio Tour?
It's Vote of the Week time!
What new attractions are you most looking forward to experiencing this summer, in Southern California or anywhere else around the world? Tell us your summer theme park travel plans, in the comments.
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Oh boy. Prepare yourselves, everyone, we're about to see a Disney vs Universal flame war of epic proportions. I myself voted for Disneyland, only because I know that much, much more people will be flocking over there for the 60th anniversary celebration. In terms of personal taste though, it's a tie for me.
Universal Hollywood cannot compete until Harry Potter is complete. Ask the same question in a year and Universal will own Southern California for a few years with nothing new coming to Disneyland for at least for a couple of years.
Rides usually are more popular than shows. Universal might get more interest with Fast and Furious especially with it as a top movie at the box office. Disney could obviously counter with Avengers meet and greet at Innoventions at Disneyland, but no announcement was made. Although I voted with Universal, Disney could still win with the sheer combination of everything it has to offer. Look: New Peter Pan, New Hat Box Ghost in Haunted Mansion, new parade, new fireworks, new World of Color.
My theory on voting polls is that whatever is the most popular at that time will always come out on top. Anything Disney related will always generate more votes regardless. I agree the attractions at Universal have been much better than what Disney been putting out. I would take it a step further and say I think some of the coasters and rides that other theme parks are bringing out are more exciting than what Disney has or will be offering. All depends on what you look for when you visit a theme park.
The winner is..... SoCal theme park visitors!
I voted Universal. I'll take new attractions anyday over refurbishments. Unless it's something completely uninteresting for me like tales with belle.
Our family has passes for Knott's and Universal Studios, plus two-day park hoppers in hand for Disneyland/DCA. For our kids, the new attraction they are most looking forward to (and the tipping point for renewing our passes for 2015) is Voyage to the Iron Reef, the new interactive ride at Knott's.
As someone else mentioned SoCal FTW! It's about time the west coast gets some love instead of Florida. I want to see the new Paint The Night parade, but the nighttime tram tour is definitely at the top of my list.
For 2015, I have to go with Disneyland. Dark ride improvements and new shows are a little more exciting to me than a new stop on the Studio Tour. However, I'm personally more interested for the new attractions at Six Flags Magic Mountain and Knott's Berry Farm than anything opening at Disney or Universal this year. Next year, Universal pretty much wins regardless of what everyone else does and until Disney finally adds a Star Wars or Marvel land I'll likely be visiting USH more than the Disneyland Resort.
This was an easy vote for me... Universal. In terms of the new stuff for this year a new ride-like experience in Fast and Furious which promises to be awesome (Universal is really going all out with this), a nightime studio tour, and a new highly immersive themed space/eatery in Springfield... Disney cant compete with new parades and firework show. Refurbishments are nice but I kind of feel its an excuse to not add something completely new.
Universal is constantly working overtime to create exciting new attractions. Meanwhile Disney sits around, does nothing and still comes out on top. Today's Disney is a short term stockholder's dream and a long-time fan's nightmare.
...And here we go!
Comment from above: "Disney doesn't take long to build attractions 'cause their lazy, it's 'cause they're taking as much time as they need to make it perfect."
Disney, even though I'm excited for King Kong, simple things like hatbox and the new paint job at sorin' are making me more excited. Not to mention the paint the night parade.
i voted disney. will wait to hit universal when potterverse shows up. will hit disney resort for both parks post-summer blitz for hatbox ghost, new matterhorn abominable(s), etc. wont miss twisted colossus this summer - most excited about it in socal over any other new ride or reason to visit a park.
In the past 10 years DCA has gone from Disneyland's crappy neighbor to one of the best theme parks there is . Disneyland has been fairly stagnant, but DCA hasn't. Disney stepped up to the plate and fixed DCAs many problems. Disneyland is a park that thwt has largely been ignored In favor of other parks. But the last 10 years Disneyland has seen major improvements. They may not be new attractions but they have improved the park. There's still work to be done, but overall Disneyland is much better than it was 15 years ago. Disney World has now become the neglected resort, at lest by Disney standards. Universal's growth is unsunstainable, just like Disney's was. Universal is playing catch up. Universal will run out of room, and Disney will keep gradually improving its parks, which are far bigger and attract far more people than Universal, as well as they've done lately.
I am glad I am going to SoCal this year. The Murphy's make the pilgramage every 5 years to the park that started it all.
I'm gonna to Disneyland's Diamond Celebration with new Night time parade called Paint The Night: New Electrical Parade, New Firework show with a projection mapping on Sleeping Beauty Castle, Main Street USA, Matterhorn, Fantasmic Stage show in Rivers of America, and Its a Small World, A World of Color: Celebrate! Wonderful World of Walt Disney, A new Hatbox Ghost on Haunted Mansion, A new projections and scene in Peter Pan's Flight, A new Yeti animatronic in Matterhorn, A new land will open in Disney California Adventure Grizzly Peak Airfield.
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