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Theme Park

It's All the Little Details That Help Universal Orlando Deliver the Really Big Scares at Halloween Horror Nights 24

Jim Hill | Posted 09.19.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

You can't spell "scare" without "care." And the fiendish folks behind Universal Orlando's Halloween Horror Nights clearly understand this. That's why they put a full year of careful thought and planning into the 24th edition of this seasonal scare-fest. Which officially opens to the public tonight at Universal Studios Florida.

Disney Looks to Avoid the Mistakes That It Made With 'The Little Mermaid' as It Expands Its 'Frozen' Empire

Jim Hill | Posted 09.17.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

If you dropped by your local Disney Store during the 1989 holiday season looking to purchase some The Little Mermaid -themed merchandise, you'd have learned that what little had been ordered in advance had long since been sold out. Most likely, the only item that would have been left in stock was an Ariel doll with long blonde hair.

D23 to Celebrate Discovery Bay, Disneyland's Never-built tribute to Jules Verne and H.G. Wells, at Attraction Rewind Event

Jim Hill | Posted 09.03.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

Thirty-five years ago, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad first began rolling through Disneyland's Frontierland. And while millions of theme park fans have enjoyed it since then, few folks today realize that -- if Disney's Imagineers had had their way back in the 1970s -- this thrill ride wouldn't have just been a stand-alone attraction.

Cedar Fair CEO Matt Ouimet Reveals the Secret of Running a Successful Amusement Park

Jim Hill | Posted 07.28.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

For Ouimet, the president and CEO of Cedar Fair Entertainment Co., a typical day at the office really is a walk in the park.

Kevin Hart REALLY Doesn't Like Roller Coasters

The Huffington Post | Bill Bradley | Posted 06.18.2014 | Comedy

You must be this tall to totally lose it. Kevin Hart stopped by "The Tonight Show" Tuesday, June 17, and since the show is filming in Orlando, Jimm...

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Literally Puts a New Face on the Disney Theme Park Experience

Jim Hill | Posted 07.27.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

When it comes to the Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, it's kind of a tradition that good enough isn't really good enough.

How Is Legoland Becoming Florida's New Must-see Attraction? One Brick at a Time

Jim Hill | Posted 07.26.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

After that brand-new LEGOLAND Florida Hotel opens in 2015, what piece of old Cypress Gardens will Adrian and the Merlin Entertainments team next try to revive / restore?

11 Theme Park Hacks To Tackle Your Trip Like A Boss

Posted 05.20.2014 | Latino Voices

With warmer weather upon us, it’s time for your family to take part in America's favorite family pastime -- and no, we’re not talking about baseba...

The Extremely Hard Lessons That the Themed Entertainment Industry Learned From Hard Rock Park

Jim Hill | Posted 06.16.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

If you're going strictly by attendance levels as well as the amount of money this theme park pulled in during its brief life span, then Hard Rock Park clearly was a failure. If -- on the other hand -- you're going by what happened in themed entertainment circles after 2008... Well, that's where this story gets complicated.

Universal Orlando Will Use Lifelike Animation and Live Special Effects to Recreate Harry Potter's journey aboard the Hogwarts Express

Jim Hill | Posted 05.14.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

It seems kind of counter-intuitive to use a plane to promote a train. But that's exactly what the Universal Orlando Resort did earlier this week. They jetted James & Oliver Phelps (AKA the two talented Brits who played Fred & George Weasley in the "Harry Potter" film series) all over the globe.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley Nears Completion at the Universal Orlando Resort

Jim Hill | Posted 03.25.2014 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

Even though The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley is still basically a construction site, there's really only one word that describes this soon-to-open addition to the Universal Orlando Resort. And that word is magical.

Halloween Never Really Ends for Brooke Walters, Designer of Haunt Mazes for Knott's Scary Farm

Jim Hill | Posted 01.23.2014 | Los Angeles
Jim Hill

For most people on the planet, Halloween will end at the stroke of midnight tonight. Once the witching hour passes and it's then officially November 1, the masks come off, the costumes get packed away and we then turn our attention to all of the other holidays that loom on the calendar. Mind you, I said "most."

Is Venice Getting Their Own Theme Park?

AP | COLLEEN BARRY | Posted 10.31.2013 | Travel

VENICE, Italy -- VENICE, Italy (AP) — An Italian company that built Coney Island's latest attractions and an amusement park in a never-activated nuc...

Celebrate the Start of The Simpsons 25th Season by Touring Universal Studios Florida's Springfield, U.S.A.

Jim Hill | Posted 11.29.2013 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

If you really want to lift a glass at Moe's Tavern tonight and then pay tribute to the official kick-off of The Simpsons 25th season on television, there's really only one place to go.

Hooray To More Fun!

AP | Posted 08.27.2013 | Travel

SANDUSKY, Ohio -- Cedar Point amusement park in northern Ohio says its new rides next year will include one that blends features of a spinning thrill ...

Amusement Rides Have Come A Long Way

AP | TAMARA LUSH | Posted 08.22.2013 | Travel

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. -- Boasting obscure characters and detailed story lines, several new attractions opened at theme parks this summer in Central Flori...

You Seriously Did a Wonderful Job on Your Norwegian-Themed Cultural Adventure Flume Ride

Benjamin Key | Posted 10.12.2013 | Comedy
Benjamin Key

By the by, you did a wonderful job on your Norwegian-themed cultural adventure flume ride. Just wanted to let you know. I can't imagine that was a particularly easy pitch to top brass, so major kudos, seriously.

Bizarre Amusement Parks Around the World

Viator | Posted 09.21.2013 | Travel
Viator

Most theme parks are bizarre. You've got your talking mice, your hallucinogenic landscapes, your rollercoasters based off stories of mutating humans and castles... But we're so accustomed to the strangeness of these everyday theme parks that their novelty has worn off a bit.

Exclusive: A Detailed Look at Diagon Alley, the Highly Anticipated Expansion of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort

Jim Hill | Posted 07.08.2013 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

Building on the success of Hogsmeade, Hogwarts Castle and the award-winning "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey" attraction, Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment today announced an expansion of historic proportion.

The Best Theme Park In The World For Boomers

Donna Highfill | Posted 04.25.2013 | Fifty
Donna Highfill

I remember my grandmother taking us to the local carnival when I was 6-years-old. The rides were typical - - a children's Ferris wheel, the Scrambler, and a tiny roller coaster. The shopping center parking lot smelled like grease, sweat and cotton candy. The people running the rides were the only people in America with tattoos.

Cedar Point's Newest Coaster Will Break Records

Posted 08.14.2012 | Detroit

Cedar Point's newest roller coaster will be a record-breaker. The Sandusky, Ohio theme park announced plans Monday to build the GateKeeper, which will...

Penn & Teller, Universal Orlando Team Up to Create Haunted House for Halloween Horror Nights

Jim Hill | Posted 10.03.2012 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

For years now, their fans had been clamoring for these two to do produce some sort of seasonal spectacular. A Halloween maze or haunted house that perfectly captured this team's twisted sensibilities.

10 TERRIFYING Theme Park Disasters

Greg Rucka | Posted 08.12.2012 | Books
Greg Rucka

I've always had a thing for theme parks and their less-glorious cousins, amusement parks, the carnival midway, and others of such ilk. Partially, and perhaps simply, it's because they're fun places to be. There's a darker side, though, and I confess that's the real attraction for me.

PHOTOS: 8 Surprising 'Inside-Out' Attractions

Conde Nast Traveler | Posted 06.24.2012 | Travel
Conde Nast Traveler

Ray Bradbury once wrote about an indoor dreamworld, the sun dome -- a giant spa and cafeteria centered around one giant, burning star. These attractions are similar -- and actually exist.

What Was It Like at Walt Disney World on 9/11

Jim Hill | Posted 11.07.2011 | Entertainment
Jim Hill

In several of the books that have since been written about 9/11, it's noted that the Walt Disney Company quickly closed its stateside theme parks that day. Reportedly out of concern that the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts might also be on the terrorists' target list.