One Grand Prize winner will receive round-trip airfare to Orlando for a 5 day/4 night stay with hotel accommodations, a special Family Reunion VIP Party, a special behind-the-scenes experience at a major theme park, two one day passes to the winner’s choice of Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando or Sea World and one day admission to two other area attractions.
Five runner-ups will receive a 4 day/3 night vacation for four in Orlando with hotel accommodations and car rental along with two one day passes to the winner’s choice of Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando or Sea World.
There will also be a third prize winner in each state who will receive a $100 gift card from Pizza Hut
Sweepstakes ends November 28. For additional information and to enter, visit Pizza Hut Reunion
ORLANDO, Fla., July 16 — Endangered species and habitats under stress will get a much-needed lift this week thanks to $700,000 in grants being awarded by the non-profit SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund to wildlife protection projects in the U.S. and around the world.
The Fund’s board of directors approved grants to 83 projects, including wildlife rescue and rehabilitation efforts, research of little-known species, protection of critical habitat, and grassroots education efforts aimed at increasing awareness and changing behaviors.
One of the Fund’s 2009 grant recipients, Save the Elephants, is working to protect the Earth’s largest land animal, using technology in unexpected and effective ways to reduce conflicts with humans.
1) The attraction features 10 aquariums, totalling nearly 250,000 gallons of water. Special features include a pop-up aquarium where smaller guests can ‘pop up’ in the middle and surround themselves with the tank’s inhabitants and a 220 square foot overhead viewing panel. That panel alone weighs almost 16,000 pounds (8 tons) and is the largest of its kind ever produced by the manufacturer, Nippura. The salt-water habitats at the attraction consist of 71,000 pounds of salt.
2) More than 3,000 animals are on display at the attraction, including a giant Pacific octopus. There are 300 rays in the all-around-you aquarium, comprised of eight separate species of ray: cownose, spotted eagle, roughtail, southern, shark ray, giant guitarfish, white blotched river ray and (of course) Manta. In the wild, there are more than 400 species to be found in both saltwater and freshwater. A group of rays is known as a ‘fever.’ Most give live birth to litters of anywhere between five and fifteen rays. Now that’s a fever!
3) Manta, a spinning, flying roller coaster, features four showcase inversions: two in-line spins, one flat spin and one pretzel loop
4) Specially crafted rails make Manta one of the world’s smoothest coasters
5) In a sure-to-be-remembered moment, Manta’s speeding train and guests in the queue line are separated only by a waterfall — Manta on one side, and waiting guests on the other. In line, visitors will feel the punch of air as the train flies past at highway speeds. On the ride, guests will gasp as they dart within 2.5 feet of the gushing water.
6) Approaching the end of the ride, but with a few twists and spins still to be had, Manta’s train seems to skim the surface of the lagoon, throwing out a 14-foot high, 60-foot long spray of water.
7) Manta’s loading platform was designed to hide the boarding process from riders. SeaWorld’s experts wanted the head-first, face-down launch to be a surprise. (Surprise!)
8 ) Manta by the numbers: Vehicle Wing Span – 12 feet; Length of train – 72 feet, 2 inches; Weight per train (empty) – 33,100 pounds; Wiring per train: 2,524 feet; Track length – 3,350 feet; Weight of steel used: 2,772,600 pounds; Number of bolts used – 12,186; Maximum height – 140 feet; Maximum drop – 113 feet; Top Speed – 56 miles per hour; Height requirement – 54 inches.
9) Manta’s design is so efficient, the first drop provides all the power the flying cloaster needs to speed for the rest of the ride, inversions and all. In fact, if the track were flat after the drop, the train could coast for nearly two miles.
10) The coaster was designed by Bolliger & Mabillard (B&M) in Switzerland, designers of Kraken, Sheikra, Montu, Kumba, Griffon and more. According to a recent poll from Amusement Today, B&M is responsible for four of the top ten steel coasters and twenty out of the top fifty.
Information courtesy of SeaWorld.
ORLANDO, Fla. – (2009) SeaWorld Orlando seamlessly blends adventure and education into a treasured experience with all-new tours that connect guests to amazing animals in unique ways.
Elite VIP Tour
SeaWorld rolls out the red carpet for private groups during the Elite VIP Tour. Accompanied by a SeaWorld expert, unforgettable memories will unfold as guests fly, glide and soar headfirst like a ray aboard, Manta, SeaWorld’s new flying coaster opening May 22. The fun continues as families and friends get splashed by an 11,000 pound killer whale, encounter amazing animals and meet one of SeaWorld’s “coolest” residents, a tuxedo clad penguin. Topping off the day guests dine in the company of some of the toothiest dwellers of the sea at Sharks Underwater Grill, a full-service restaurant.
Themed Entertainment Association and Economics Research Associates Post International Theme Park Numbers for 2008
The TEA/ERA Attraction Attendance Report identifies the top commercial theme parks and waterparks around the world and reflects their performance in 2008. Global attendance data is broken down by geographic region, by chain and by type of venue. This vital report is issued annually and jointly produced by the TEA (Themed Entertainment Association) – the leading international trade alliance for the creators of compelling experiences and places – and ERA (Economics Research Associates) – a top international consulting firm providing economic analysis for the entertainment and leisure industry worldwide.
Burbank, Calif. USA — April 16, 2009 — The TEA/ERA Attraction Attendance Report for 2008 is now posted on the TEA and ERA websites. It reveals 2008 visitation totals for top theme parks and waterparks worldwide.
The report summary is included here (see below). To access the full report including attendance charts, visit:
Orlando, Fla., (April 15, 2009) – For the first time in four decades SeaWorld’s star killer whale is communicating in something other than clicks, squeaks, whistles and trills. Shamu has joined Twitter.
www.Twitter.com, a free social networking/micro-blogging community, allows users to communicate in 140-character blog posts, also known as “tweets.” Shamu, who writes under the Twitter handle “RealShamu,” started tweeting at 1:16 p.m. April 7, attracting close to 1,000 followers in his first week.