Central Florida's theme parks will close tomorrow and Thursday, as the state prepares for the landfall of Hurricane Ian.
Ian is currently a Category 3 storm, with sustained winds of 120 mph. It is expected to strengthen, possibly to Category 4, before hitting Florida's Gulf coast on Wednesday. The forecast cone has shifted south of Tampa Bay, which should lessen the storm surge in the Tampa area. However, the center of the storm is now forecast to hit the Orlando area as a Category 1 hurricane or tropical storm on Thursday.
As a result, Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, SeaWorld Orlando, and the Legoland Florida theme parks have announced that they will close tomorrow, September 28 as well as on Thursday, September 28. Busch Gardens Tampa previously announced that it would close today through Thursday due to the storm.
The closure includes Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando, as well as other scheduled events at the parks. Hotels will remain open for guests to shelter, though campgrounds and certain bungalows at Disney will be closed.
Hurricane ride-out crews will be preparing the parks for the storm, including providing for the care of on-site animals. Guests with tickets or reservations should contact the parks, as the resorts now are allowing vacation changes or cancellations without penalty.
For latest on Hurricane Ian, please visit the National Hurricane Center's website at hurricanes.gov.
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