Theme parks around the world might be canceling or delaying planned new attractions, but Universal Orlando continues work on its still-unannounced Jurassic World roller coaster. Track work appears to be complete, and a couple of new raptors have moved in, too.
One of them actually was planned.
A reader captured the plastic-wrapped Velociraptor statue — dubbed the "Wraptor" — being lowered into place at the park. You can see its tail if you look to the lower left.
Universal made no attempt to sneak this icon for the new ride into the park after hours, choosing instead to drop the thing into the park while everyone was watching.
“Welcome to Jurassic Park” – us to the colossal, ??-shaped package that just appeared near the unannounced coaster in Islands of Adventure. pic.twitter.com/QMRjZrWGL9— Orlando Informer (@OrlandoInformer) August 24, 2020
But this new resident isn't the only raptor to move into the construction site. Look closely at the top of the coaster's track and you might see an osprey — a real-life raptor — that's nested at the ride's summit.
The nest appeared to have been removed at one point, but the osprey returned, anyway. The bird's already got a Twitter parody account.
“If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine” -me, universal osprey. SQUAWK!! https://t.co/lMbURXcUbG— Universal Osprey (@UniOsprey) August 19, 2020
And, of course, Universal Orlando is trying to pretend that none of this is happening.
Everyone: What are you building over there?— Universal Orlando Resort (@UniversalORL) August 25, 2020
Us: Don't be suspicious, don't be suspicious.
Universal is installing rockwork around what a trademark application suggests might be called the Velocicoaster. Whatever the name, the ride is expected to be a "story coaster" in the style of the neighboring Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, with the leading roles here going to Chris Pratt's Owen Grady and his crew of raptors from the Jurassic World films.
If only Universal can convince that real-life raptor to get out of the way, of course.
Based on construction progress, we expect to see the new coaster debut sometime next year — and for Universal Orlando to announce the coaster officially at some point well after that.
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