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Brand-New Live-Action Stunt Show The Bourne Stuntacular Coming to Universal Studios Florida

 

Bourne fans get excited because, “the chase is on!” This coming Spring 2020, the Universal Orlando Resort will welcome its newest show. This brand-new live-action stunt show will be called, The Bourne Stuntacular! The Bourne Stuntacular will debut at Universal Studios Florida. This new live-action show is based on Universal Pictures’ blockbuster Bourne film franchise. The Bourne Stuntacular will use cutting-edge effects that will literally have you on the edge-of-your-seat! Universal has shared that this epic live show will blur the lines between stage and cinema in a hybrid form of entertainment that has never been seen before!

 

The Bourne Stuntacular will follow lead character Jason Bourne around the world as sinister characters pursue him. This action-packed show will feature thrilling chase scenes, punishing fistfights, death-defying leaps and danger at every turn. All of this action will all happen right in front of you with live performers, interactive props and a massive LED screen! We know this level of immersion will make it impossible to determine where the live-action ends and the screen begins! Universal Orlando has stated that with this show “You won’t just watch it – you’ll feel it.”

 

We are so excited that this brand-new live-action stunt show will soon be calling Universal Studios Florida home! Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations Travel Planner today to plan your next visit to the Universal Orlando Resort!

Universal Orlando Announces New Park – Universal’s Epic Universe!

 

Last week the Universal Orlando Resort made a HUGE and truly EPIC announcement! They will be building a brand-new theme park! This will be the fourth theme park for Universal Orlando, joining Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and Volcano Bay!

 

This brand-new theme park will be called Universal’s Epic Universe! Universal’s Epic Universe will bring with it an entire new level of experiences! Universal has shared that this level of immersion will forever change theme park entertainment!

 

 

Visitors will venture beyond their wildest dreams, traveling into beloved stories as they explore these vibrant lands! Universal says that guest’s adventures here will be ones where the journey is as astounding as the destination!

 

The brand-new location of Epic Universe will feature a theme park, an entertainment center, hotels, shops, restaurants and more! We can’t wait to see what the Universal Orlando team has in store with this massive expansion that will not only be adding a brand-new park but also new hotels, shops, restaurant and an entertainment complex!

 

 

Universal has stated, “Ultimately, this expansion will create more space and freedom to let loose and create lasting memories with the people you love.”

We know that so many people will love making those last memories here! Our team of travel planners are excited to send our clients to Epic Universe in the future!

Contact you Kingdom Magic Vacations travel planner today to plan your next visit to the Universal Orlando Resort!

Universal Orlando Hotel Events! Part 2

 

This week we continue our list of the amazing events that you can enjoy at the Universal Orlando Resort Hotels! The Universal Hotels are home to so many wonderful offerings! These events can be a great extra to add on to your vacation to make even more memories during your travels! Let’s take a look at more Universal Resort Hotel events!

 

Harbor Nights at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel

Enjoy the Harbor Piazza under the dazzling star-filled sky at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel. Harbor Nights is a seasonal event that takes place four times a year. This event features gourmet food stations from all of the hotel’s restaurants, as well as unlimited wine selections! As you enjoy these great food and drink offerings you can also take in the musical stylings of a live band. Regular and VIP tickets are available for this event. VIP ticket includes reserved seating, additional hors d’oeuvres and food and wine stations exclusively for VIP guests only.

 

Jake’s Beer Festival at Loews Royal Pacific Resort

Taking place in the spring and fall, Jake’s Beer Festival at Loews Royal Pacific Resort brings together beer fanatics from all around to enjoy an extensive selection of craft and specialty beers from local and regional breweries. Guests will have the opportunity to try all of these beverages and enjoy paired hors d’oeuvres. Regular and VIP tickets are available for this event. VIP tickets include a private reception before the festival in Jake’s Clipper Room with additional beer tastings and collectible pint glasses!

 

Jake’s Beer Dinner at Loews Royal Pacific Resort

Taking place once a quarter, Jake’s Beer Dinner- at Loews Royal Pacific Resort- invites guests to an expertly prepared five-course dinner event with craft and specialty beer pairings from local and regional breweries. Before being seated for this event, enjoy a cocktail reception with light refreshments and hors d’oeurves!

 

Wine Riffs at Hard Rock Hotel Orlando

Sometimes as a rock star, you need to take a break and relax! What better way to do that than with Wine Riffs at the Hard Rock Hotel! Wine Riffs explores the mix of wine, food and music in a way you can only experience at Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando! Guests will enjoy a multi-course dinner menu and wine pairings from the featured winery. This event is a wine dinner like no other!

 

Rum Dinner at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort

Rum fans will love this specialty Rum Dinner at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort. Guests of this event will enjoy a light reception with refreshments and passed hors d’oeuvres. Participants will then be seated for a five-course dinner paired with craft rums from the Caribbean. The party doesn’t stop there as the evening wraps up with an afterglow in this island paradise!

 

Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations Travel Planner today to plan your next visit to the Universal Orlando Resort and get to enjoy one of these amazing events for yourself!

Bigfire Restaurant Now Open At Universal CityWalk!

 

Universal Orlando’s new original dining concept – Bigfire – has now officially opened at Universal CityWalk! This brand-new sit-down restaurant draws inspiration from the nostalgia of cooking over open flames! Think back to memorable summer vacations, camping and backyard barbecues! That is the environment that this restaurant strives to take you back to!

 

 

When you first step inside this restaurant, you will feel as though you have stepped into a lakeside summer house! It is an atmosphere of being surrounded by friends and family. Bigfire features many natural design elements. Features include mix and matched fabrics, cast iron, camp lanterns and more! All of these decor elements tie together to create an outdoor ambiance inside the restaurant!

 

 

An incredible element of Bigfire and what truly serves as the heart of this restaurant is the custom wood fire grill where chefs will prepare signature dishes inspired by the style of open-fire cooking! The chefs here artistically match the food items with wood species that have been carefully chosen based on the flavors they exude. This cooking techniques result in the creation of delicious dishes, sides, desserts – and even cocktails that have been infused with smokey spirits!

 

 

Be sure to save room for dessert because at Bigfire you can make s’mores AT YOUR TABLE! Such a perfect way to bask in that summer nights nostalgia!

 

 

Bigfire can be found between VIVO Italian Kitchen and Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville on the edge of the lagoon! This location offers amazing views of Universal CityWalk!

Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations Travel Planner today to plan your next visit to Universal Orlando or to whatever destination you are dreaming of traveling to next!

Food and Drinks Coming to Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites!

I think everyone can agree that a very important area when it comes to planning out your vacation is the food and beverage offerings that you will get to experience! We all love to indulge in some delicious food and drinks while on vacation! Universal Orlando’s newest extra-affordable Value Hotel, Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites will be a foodie paradise! This brand-new Universal Resort opens on June 27! Let’s take a first look at a few of the amazing culinary offerings you will be able to experience at Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites!

You will find a casual dining food court at Surfside Inn and Suites called Beach Break Cafe, here you will be able to take a break from your adventure in the parks to enjoy some incredible surfer-inspired dishes! These offerings will feature Southern California flavors and highlight many fresh ingredients! Just like in surf culture, Beach Break Cafe dares to be different! In this spirit the eatery will offer food and drink items from around the world! The atmosphere will be care-free, cool and exciting, from early in the morning to late at night, all within this great new family-friendly Universal hotel!

This casual dining food court will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The eatery has been inspired by food trucks, local joints and backyard BBQs! Beach Break Cafe’s menu will be very affordable and offer something for everyone from unique cuisine to comfort food! Here are just a few of the great items you will find at Beach Break Cafe!

Breakfast

Bacon Egg and Cheese Croissant

Served with Breakfast Potatoes

 

Breakfast Pizza

Sausage Gravy, Bacon, Scrambled Eggs, Mozzarella, and Cheddar Cheese

 

Lunch and Dinner

Italian Ciabatta

Ham, Capicola, Genoa Salami, Provolone, Red Onion, Tomato, Shredded Romaine, Pepperoncini, Red Wine Vinaigrette

SoCal (Southern California) – Cobb Salad

Southern California is a region known for light, clean and unique flavors.

Chopped Lettuce, Tomatoes, Avocado, Blue Cheese, Bacon, Hard Boiled Egg and Avocado Ranch Dressing

 

 

Caprese Panini

Tomato, Mozzarella, Fresh Basil, Balsamic Glaze

 

Pipeline Burger

This burger is inspired by the classic wave — one of the most famous and most photographed waves.

Beef Patty, Topped with Caramelized Onion, Bacon Jam and Provolone Cheese Served with Crisp Lettuce and Vine Ripe Tomatoes on a Toasted Bun Tofu Power Bowl with Baja Sauce

 

 

Tofu Power Bowl with Baja Sauce

If you’re more of a carnivore, you can choose chicken or carne asada for this dish as well.

Cilantro Lime Rice, Quinoa, Kale, Red Cabbage, Pickled Carrots

 

A great vacation always includes some time spent relaxing by the pool! As you soak up the sun you can indulge with some refreshing drinks! Head over to the resort’s pool bar, aka the Sand Bar! Here you will find a laid-back atmosphere where you can hang loose! Here’s a taste of some of the drinks you can enjoy poolside.

 

 

Orange Surf Board

– Orange Vodka, Coconut Rum, Triple Sec, Orange Juice and a splash of Cranberry

Tidal Wave

– Endless Summer Rum, Peach Vodka, Gin, Peach Schnapps, OJ and Pineapple Juice

Surf En La Paloma

– Tequila, Blood Orange, Grapefruit Juice and Soda

Epic Sunset (Frozen)

– Vodka, Mango Colada and Strawberry Island Oasis

Toasted Coconut Mango Mojito (Frozen)

– Coconut Rum, Mango and Mojito Island Oasis

Are you ready to plan your stay at Universal’s new Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites?! This amazing new resort opens just in time for summer 2019! Contact you Kingdom Magic Vacation Travel Planner today to book your trip!

Grand Opening of Today Cafe at Universal Studios Florida!

 

TODAY Cafe has officially opened at Universal Studios Florida! This dining location will bring visitors a unique experience crafted to make you feel like you have stepped onto the TODAY set! This experience is paired with specialty food and beverage offerings! You can enjoy TODAY Cafe which is now officially open at Universal Studios Florida, serving up a unique experience designed to feel like you are stepping onto the TODAY set paired with specialty food and beverage options. Enjoy fresh pastries baked in-house, salads and sandwiches. Additionally you will find a selection of locally-roasted coffees, including the exclusive TODAY Cafe Blend!

 

 

Universal opened this one-of-a-kind cafe with NBC’s Al Roker and the TODAY team broadcasted live from location in Universal Studios Florida to lead the celebration! This exciting celebratory moment included a TODAY “orange carpet” that was lined with some of Universal Orlando’s most popular characters! There was a countdown to a pop of orange and white confetti to ring in the opening! During his visit Al also lent a hand at the cafe by serving specialty menu items to guests, like his first seasonal dish – Al’s Avocado Toast, the organic acai bowl and the Chinatown Chicken Salad!

 

 

Here are a few of the things that you will enjoy during your visit to TODAY Cafe:

  • A venue inspired by TODAY – complete with stage lighting and Studio 1A theming.
  • Specialty breakfast, lunch and snack options.
  • Seasonal dishes inspired by co-anchor Al Roker’s favorite recipes. The first seasonal dish is Al’s Avocado Toast, which is topped with cherry tomatoes, artichokes, roasted red onions, tomato aioli, and is accompanied by bread and butter pickles.
  • TODAY’s live broadcast – allowing you to catch up on top headlines of the day, all while refueling for more theme park thrills.
  • In the afternoon hours, and in tribute to the fourth hour of TODAY, you can enjoy wine and beer on tap with a delicious cheese platter for two.

Be sure to start your day at Universal Studios Florida with a visit to TODAY Cafe! Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations Travel Planner today to plan your next universal Orlando Vacation!

5 Movies You Didn’t Know You Could Experience at the Universal Orlando Resort!

 

From its very beginnings, Universal Studios has been known as the theme park destination where you can “Ride the Movies!” At the Universal Orlando Resort, you can step inside of the movies and become part of the action! You are probably aware of the fact that films such as Harry Potter and Jurassic Park can be found at the Universal Orlando Resort, but today we are going to look at 5 films that you may have not realized you can experience at the Universal Orlando Resort.

 

  1. DreamWorks Trolls

Are you ready to boogie with your favorite character from Trolls? You can take a family photo with Branch, Poppy and the newest member, Guy Diamond! You can also see these guys star in Universal’s nighttime lagoon show, Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration.

Location:

  • Meet and Greet: KidZone in Universal Studios
  • Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration: Viewing area is located at Central Park in Universal Studios

 

  1. Universal Pictures The Secret Life of Pets

 

You can see the stars of The Secret Life of Pets everyday in Universal’s Superstar Parade! During select times throughout the day, you can even get up close and talk with the pets as they pull the parade float out in the Character Party Zone across from Mel’s Drive-In. You can also check out The Secret Life of Pets merchandise to take home a piece of your favorite film! You can find everything from t-shirts to stuffed animals!

Location:

  • Universal’s Superstar Parade: Throughout the streets of Universal Studios
  • Character Party Zone: Select times throughout the day across from Mel’s Drive-In in Universal Studios
  • Merchandise: Universal Studios Stores in Universal Studios and CityWalk

 

  1. DreamWorks Madagascar

You can have the opportunity to meet the popular characters from Madagascar, including the Penguins, Alex the Lion and King Julien. Additionally, you can get the chance to see them and the rest of the Madagascar crew every winter in Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s!

Location:

  • The Penguins: Hollywood Blvd. near the Garden of Allah in Universal Studios
  • Alex the Lion and King Julien: Port of Entry in Islands of Adventure

 

  1. DreamWorks Kung Fu Panda

You can show off your Kung Fu moves with Po from Kung Fu Panda! You will also have the chance to pick up fun merchandise in the Universal Studios Stores!

Location:

  • Port of Entry in Islands of Adventure

 

 

  1. DreamWorks Puss in Boots

Many may know about Universal’s attraction, Shrek 4-D! This is a top attraction at the park! However, did you know you can meet Shrek and Donkey’s friend Puss in Boots? Puss in Boots even does meet and greets with his companion Kitty Softpaws!

Location:

  • Port of Entry in Islands of Adventure and Production Central outside of Shrek 4-D in Universal Studios

 

 

Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations Travel Planner today to plan your next visit to the Universal Orlando Resort or to whatever destination you may be dreaming of traveling to next!

Perfect Way to End Your Day at the Universal Orlando Resort – Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration!

 

Let’s Take a look at the newest nighttime show now calling Universal Orlando home! Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration is showing on select nights at Universal Studios Florida. This night-time spectacular is a great way to end your day at the Universal theme parks. You can look forward to seeing all the best moments and memories from your day come to life right before your eyes! These breathtaking scenes become reality in the middle of the lagoon on massive water screens! Scenes include clips from Illumination’s Despicable Me, Jurassic World, Harry Potter, The Secret Life of Pets and so many more!

 

 

All these movie moments that we know and love come together to create an incredible celebration of some of our favorite characters and stories! The show is made possible with some amazing projection mapping, pyrotechnics, lasers, dancing fountains and more.

 

 

Be sure to catch Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration during your next visit to the parks! If you are looking for a unique way to experience Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration and Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s than look no further than the Exclusive Holiday Viewing Area & Dessert Party! This special add-on experience gets you exclusive viewing areas for Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s and Universal’s Cinematic Celebration. Also included are specialty and seasonal desserts, sparkling wine, sparkling cider, hot chocolate, coffee, and other non-alcoholic beverages.

 

 

Plan your next visit to the Universal Orlando Resort by contacting your Kingdom Magic vacations Travel Planner. Our knowledgeable team is excited to help you put together the perfect vacation that will be memorable for you and your family!

 

Holiday Treats and Beverage Offerings at The Universal Orlando Resort!

 

The holiday season is upon us! This season is filled with decorating, celebrations, parties and of course… FOOD! Food plays a big role in many of our holiday celebrations and festivities! What better way to rejoice in this wonderful season than spend time with those you love and enjoying some of your favorite treats! You get the picture! Holiday foods and goodies are an iconic part of our holiday season and Universal Orlando Resort has you covered!

 

 

Let’s take a look at the festive food and beverage offerings now available for the holiday season at Universal Orlando! These items can be enjoyed now through January 6, 2019!

 

Holiday Treats!

 

 

A popular holiday treat this year is the Red Velvet Yule Log. The red velvet adds a fresh twist on this holiday classic!  You can find this treat in Universal’s Islands of Adventure at Croissant Moon Bakery. You can also find this festive favorite in Universal Studios Florida at Beverly Hills Boulangerie and San Francisco Pastry Company.

 

 

For many apple strudel hot from the oven is a holiday staple! Universal has put a spin on this holiday classic by putting it on a stick and adding a drizzle of frosting! Be sure to try this treat for yourself in Universal’s Islands of Adventure at Croissant Moon Bakery. You can also find it in Universal Studios at Beverly Hills Boulangerie and San Francisco Pastry Company.

 

 

Additional treats include reindeer cupcakes, waffles on a stick, cheesecakes, ribbon pastries and an array of classic sugar cookies! All of these goodies can be found at multiple locations throughout the parks!

 

 

Festive Sips

 

 

With all these amazing holiday treats, you are going to want a festive beverage to wash it all down! Here are some of the new holiday drinks that have premiered this year.

Cranberry Margarita

First up we have the Cranberry Margarita. This holiday margarita can be found at Finnegan’s Bar & Grill in Universal Studios and at Mythos over at Islands of Adventure.

Ingredients: Tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice and cranberry juice shaken and served on the rocks. Garnish with a lime wedge, fresh cranberries and a sugar/salt rim.

Pumpkintini

Next up is the Pumpkintini! This fun pumpkin martini can be found at Mythos in Islands of Adventures.

Ingredients: Dark rum, orange liqueur, apple cider and pumpkin puree garnished with a cinnamon sugar rim.

 

 

Apple Cider Irish Mule

Another favorite, the Apple Cider Irish Mule! This can be found at Lombard’s Seafood Restaurant in Universal Studios.

Ingredients: Irish whiskey stirred with apple cider, topped with ginger beer and a cinnamon stick and apple slices for garnish.

 

You can also find a Harvest Margarita with great pumpkin and apple flavors when visiting Confisco Grille! Find an Apple Pie on the Rocks – a blend of vanilla vodka, apple juice and cinnamon at Finnegan’s. Discover the Jack Frost with vodka, prosecco mixed with lemonade and a sugar rim over at Lombard’s and Confisco Grille.

 

 

Universal also has some festive non-alcoholic drinks. Guests can enjoy the Candy Cane and Eggnog frozen beverages, hot cider or hot chocolate! These beverages are all served park-wide at all the food & drink carts.

There are so many delicious treats to discover this season at the Universal Orlando Resort! Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations Travel Planner to plan your next visit!

NEW Marvel Character Dinner Experience at Universal’s Islands of Adventure! Universal Orlando Resort

 

We all love super heroes! They are the definition of bravery and inspire us each and every day! Many of us have a special place in our hearts for these heroes, which is why you will be so excited to hear that you can actually dine with Marvel super heroes during the brand-new Marvel Character Dinner experience at Universal’s Islands of Adventure at the Universal Orlando Resort! The Marvel Character Dinner is held inside Cafe 4. This experience allows you to meet several marvel characters as you enjoy your meal! It is the best way to guarantee you get to meet with all the characters you want during your vacation and you can enjoy the convenience of not having to wait in line! The characters come to you throughout your time in the restaurant!

 

 

Here are a few tips to make the most of your experience at the Marvel Character Dinner!

 

  1. Start taking it all in the moment you arrive!

As you head towards Cafe 4 from the entrance of Universal’s Islands of Adventure, you are first greeted by the roar of The Incredible Hulk Coaster! The perfect sight to get you in the Marvel spirit! Throughout the Universal theme parks you can enjoy many Marvel attractions such as The Incredible Hulk Coaster and The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man!

 

  1. Get ready for your super hero welcome!

Make sure you pick up your tickets at the park entrance before you make your way to the main entrance of Cafe 4. Upon arrival, you and the other guests of the Marvel Character Dinner will have the restaurant all to yourselves. You will soon be greeted by some amazing and enthusiastic Universal Team Members who will be ready to help start your super hero-filled night! This dining experience offers a variety of seating times available for you to book. Make sure you reserve your dining early to guarantee you get the seating time that works best for you and your party.

  1. Get settled and prepare for some amazing food and awesome drinks! (Adults…you can even enjoy a “grown up” beverage!)

Your waiter will help you begin your super meal with a variety of great beverage choices! Your server will also guide you through an overview of the buffet offerings! From an assortment of pizzas, pastas and salads to giant meatballs, cupcakes, cookies and so much more, you will be sure to find something for everyone in your party! As always, the wonderful Universal culinary team is always ready to help with any special food requests that you and your family may have. The buffet is all you care to enjoy so you can help yourself to as many plates and trips through the buffet line as you like!

 

  1. The BEST part! The Marvel Super Heroes!

You will be so amazed by the amount of meet-n-greet time you and your group will have with your favorite Marvel Super Heroes! This quality character time is worth the price of admission alone! The Marvel Super heroes don’t just stop by to pose for a quick picture, they truly take their time to stop and chat and laugh with you and your party! You are sure to be best friends with all the heroes by the end of the meal! Remember to bring your autograph books and any merchandise you would like the Marvel super heroes to sign for you! Make sure your camera and phone batteries are fully charged so you can capture every amazing moment with the characters! These interactions are truly memorable and something you will want to look back on! You can also plan to take advantage of ‘My Universal Photos.’ With this service, Universal Orlando’s professional photographers capture all the fun of your super hero encounters for you! Later, you can view, purchase, download and share these high-quality memories! Included with your Marvel Character Dinner, you will receive one free digital photo download!

 

  1. Take a ride!

The fun doesn’t stop once your meal is over! After your dinner is the perfect time to hit up your favorite Marvel attractions like, The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man ride! Depending on what time your meal ends, the rides may be closed. However, you can still always end your fun-filled evening by taking some last-minute photos in Marvel Super Hero Island!

 

You are sure to have a SUPER time at the Marvel Character Dinner! This is an incredible way to meet the most characters possible all while enjoying a great meal! Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacation Travel Planner to start planning your next visit to the Universal Orlando Resort or to whatever destination you are dreaming of next!

 

FESTIVE FUN FACTS About Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s at the Universal Orlando Resort!

 

This past week we celebrated Thanksgiving! I am still enjoying the leftovers now! I don’t know about you but for me and my family a holiday tradition for us is to always watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade! This is a tradition for so many families that look forward to seeing those dazzling musical performances and towering character balloons each year! If you have ever dreamt about going to watch the parade live but don’t want to fight through the New York City crowds or deal with the frigid winter conditions then I have great news for you! You can experience a version of the Macy’s holiday parade all season long at the Universal Orlando Resort in sunny Orlando Florida!

 

 

Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s guests can look forward to experiencing light snowfall, twinkling lights, joyful music and a mix of both merry and mayhem! This parade made it’s debut last year in 2017 and was an instant hit with park-goers! The festive parade will return as part of Universal’s resort-wide Holidays celebration, running Nov. 17 – Jan. 6. The parade’s theme is inspired by beloved childhood memories and brought to life by many popular Universal characters!

 

Despicable Me, Shrek, Madagascar and Holiday Favorites Spread the Cheer in the New Universal’s Holiday Parade Featuring Macy’s

 

Here are a few festive fun facts about Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s:

 

  • The parade will travel a grand total of more than 26 miles as it makes its way down the Universal Studios Florida streets each night!

 

  • There is no question that the highlight of the parade is its 15 intricately hand-crafted floats featuring characters from Despicable Me, Madagascar, Shrek and more. And these floats are MASSIVE. You can’t miss them!

 

  • The float featuring Shrek, Fiona and Dragon rivals the size of two large African elephants. This float Weighs in at about 30,000 pounds and measures 35 feet long! Also thanks to Dragon’s 16-foot wingspan, it’s also one of the widest floats!

 

  • It’s not a holiday parade without those classic Macy’s star balloons! The star balloons in the parade measure 24 feet wide! That’s the same size as the width of five taxi cars!

 

  • Piloting floats and balloons of this size requires a lot of practice! Training begins each summer for Universal’s team of nearly 300 people, including float operators, balloon handlers and parade escorts!

 

  • Guests will see more than 100 dancers and characters during the parade! They are all dressed to impress in their holiday best!

 

  • Last year, over 220 gallons of snow machine fluid were used to create a special Florida snow flurry during the parade’s finale!

 

Watch our videos from last year’s Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s:

 

Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s is a dazzling experience that you have to see for yourself! There is still time to plan a last-minute getaway to the Universal Orlando resort this holiday season! Contact your Kingdom Magic Vacations travel planner today!

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Bats Receive Special Treatment for Halloween

Animal Kingdom BatsAs Halloween approaches, several creatures of the night are getting a series of treats from a team of medical experts at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Around this time each year, veterinary care specialists conduct annual wellness checks on a roost of endangered bats as part of Disney’s commitment to excellent animal care.

The bats, known as Malayan flying foxes, receive complete physical examinations, including blood analysis, vaccination and dental cleaning in front of thousands of Guests who view the procedures from a large, on-stage window into a state-of-the art veterinary hospital. With a wingspan close to six feet, the Malayan flying fox is one of the largest bats in the world and can be seen on exhibit along the Maharajah Jungle Trek in the Asia section of the theme park.

“Guests are always fascinated with the amount of care provided to our animals,” said veterinarian Dr. Mark Stetter, director of animal health for Disney’s Animal Programs. “During this time of year, when there’s an increased interest in bats, we have a perfect opportunity to dispel some of the myths about bats and explain the important role bats play in the eco-system.”

Malayan flying foxes are mammals that eat and rest in trees and roost at dawn. As fruit-eating animals, bats assist in pollination and seed dispersal for a great variety of plants that are useful for lumber, food, medicine and other products. Bats are also helpful around the neighborhood where they eat mosquitoes and other bugs.

In addition to receiving annual exams, the male bats at Disney’s Animal Kingdom voluntarily cooperate in their own medical care, making veterinary treatment much easier and safer. Through training, bats willingly allow themselves to be weighed, spread their wings for inspection, or open their mouths for dental evaluations. The intent is to help the animals become comfortable with husbandry practices that help monitor their well-being.

About Malayan Flying Fox

Flying foxes have long, sharp, curved claws on their toes, which allow them to hang effortlessly upside-down in trees. The skin between the fingers is smooth and strong while the rest of the bat’s body is covered with soft fur. As the name suggests, the head resembles that of a small fox because of the small ears, long snout and large eyes.

Unlike most other warm-blooded animals, bats maintain a warm body temperature only when active. While sleeping during the day, their body temperature drops to the temperature of the air around them. In warmer temperatures, bats cool themselves by fanning their wings, licking their chest and wings, and by panting. When flying, legs work in unison with the wings, somewhat like swimming through the air.

Bat Facts:

  • Bats are the only mammals that fly. Other mammals may glide through the air, but bats flap their wings and fly.
  • The life span of a bat is about 20 years.
  • Females of a colony give birth during a specific season, although the peak varies geographically. Most births occur in May and June.
  • Gestation takes about 180 days, and usually a single pup of around 133 grams is born. Twins are rare.
  • The young nurse for two to three months. The mothers carry their young for the first few days; then, the bats are left in the roost tree while the mothers forage for food.
  • Sexual maturity is attained in 18-24 months.
  • For the first few days, the mothers carry their young while they forage for food. Soon, though, the young bats are left behind during these hunts for food.

Click Here to Book your Disney Vacation Now!

 

Ghost Hunters Experience HHN 21 at Universal Orlando Resort

Ghost Hunters Experience HHN 21

Steve Gonsalves and Dave Tango, stars of the hit Syfy Channel series, “Ghost Hunters,” were hosted by Universal Orlando Resort to experience its annual Halloween Horror Nights event. While visiting, the duo encountered the cursed souls within The Forsaken, one of eight haunted houses featured at this year’s event. One of the top-rated reality shows on Syfy Channel, “Ghost Hunters” features Gonsalves, Tango and a group of real-life paranormal researchers as they investigate haunted places across the nation. Named “the country’s best Halloween event” for four years in a row, Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights brings to life guests’ most intense nightmares on select nights this fall through October 31.

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Universal Orlando Resort’s Holidays Event Returns in 2011

Macy's Holiday Parade Universal orlandoThere’s no better place to enjoy the Holidays with your family this year than at Universal Orlando Resort. It’s the only place you can come face-to-face with The Grinch and the Whos from Whoville, watch a cheerful holiday parade filled with big, colorful Macy’s balloons and sing along to the classic sounds of the season as you stroll through a holiday-trimmed theme park with your loved ones.

The Holidays fanfare runs from December 3, 2011 through January 1, 2012, offering guests incredible entertainment themed for the season at both Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure.

At Islands of Adventure, adults and children alike will be entertained when the popular Dr. Seuss book “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” is brought to life in Grinchmas. Guests can see the live stage show featuring The Grinch and the Whos from Whoville with an original recorded musical score by Mannheim Steamroller. Guests will also have the opportunity to meet The Grinch and the Whos, and on select dates, purchase a spot at a special character breakfast with the mean, green one himself.

At Universal Studios, the Macy’s Holiday Parade will celebrate its 10th Anniversary of partnership with Universal Orlando by filling the streets every evening with some of the same iconic elements seen winding through New York City each year at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The beloved event features colorful holiday characters, fantasy-filled floats – including one specially-designed to commemorate the 10-year milestone – a tree-lighting ceremony by Santa Claus and dozens of larger-than-life balloons. The Macy’s Holiday Parade also welcomes select park guests to participate in the procession as real balloon-handlers guiding the helium giants, a truly unique and exclusive experience to Universal Orlando.

Returning this year with more concerts than ever before is Mannheim Steamroller – the masters of Christmas music with more than 40 million albums sold worldwide. The acclaimed musical group will take to the Music Plaza stage in Universal Studios six times this year to play their memorable holiday hits for guests, performing on December 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 and 18.

Also at Universal Studios, guests can enjoy special holiday-themed versions of their favorite shows, and nightly a capella holiday music in the nearby Holiday Village, which is filled with hand-blown glass ornaments, caramel apples, hot chocolate, roasted chestnuts and a cupcake decorating location.

The celebration continues at Universal Orlando’s three on-site hotels – Loews Portofino Bay Hotel, Hard Rock Hotel and Loews Royal Pacific Resort – all of which will glisten with holiday decorations. Hotel guests will be immersed in the spirit of the season with tree-lighting ceremonies, special musical performances, holiday pool-side “dive-in” movie presentations and holiday buffets and dining events. Loews Portofino Bay Hotel kicks off the season on Friday, November 25 with ‘Holiday Harbor Nights’, a wine tasting, food and jazz celebration on the piazza, along with a tree lighting ceremony. Hard Rock Hotel welcomes Santa to The Kitchen restaurant on Fridays in December and Loews Royal Pacific Resort rings in the new year with a family-friendly dinner and celebration.

All holiday entertainment – including the Mannheim Steamroller concerts – is included as part of two-park or multi-day admission to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. There’s never been a better time to start a new family tradition at Universal Orlando’s Holidays event!

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Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom to Premiere in Early 2012

CMerlinruella de Vil, meet the apprentice sorcerers!

And you, too, Scar. And, for that matter, a legion of other Disney villains!

When Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom premieres in early 2012, Merlin the magician will recruit guests as apprentice sorcerers to undertake missions to subdue the “baddies” in what Disney Imagineering calls an “immersive role-playing adventure.”

Armed with what appear to be nothing more potent than cards, guests engage with villains at special locations throughout the park. But the fact is: The cards have magic powers players can use in their quest to defeat the villains.

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