SeaWorld Orlando Announces New Tours to Bring Guests Closer to Their Favorite Animals

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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.

ALL-NEW TOURS

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.

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Characters In Flight Grand Opening Ceremony to Take Place April 21

Image (c) Disney

Image (c) Disney

PARIS, Apr 17, 2009 — TUESDAY, April 21st at 9:00am (EST), Aerophile will celebrate its newest venture as the Characters in Flight Operated by Aerophile balloon in Downtown Disney enjoys its grand opening!

Jerome Giacomoni, president and co-founder of Aerophile, along with the balloon’s ground crew and pilot cordially invite you to attend the official inauguration of Characters in Flight Operated by Aerophile.

Come witness, cameras in hand, this breathtaking moment at Downtown Disney’s West Side!

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Space Mountain Refurb Got You Down? Head to Frontierland or Liberty Square During Morning EMH

Beginning next week, Splash Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Haunted Mansion have been added to the attractions open during morning Extra Magic Hours at the Magic Kingdom. Hang on to your hats and glasses and please, please, please don’t forget your death certificate. After all, you can’t run from trouble, there ain’t no place that far.

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KB Home Offers Free Tickets to Disneynature’s EARTH and Sweepstakes

Visit Any Participating KB Home Community to Receive FREE Movie Tickets to EARTH, the First Film from Disneynature, and Enter to Win a Trip for Four within the Continental U.S.

LOS ANGELES– KB Home (NYSE: KBH), one of America’s largest homebuilders, is teaming up with Disney to celebrate Earth Day. Visitors to any participating KB Home community from April 18-26, 2009 will receive two flyers redeemable online for free movie tickets, while supplies last, to EARTH, the first motion picture from The Walt Disney Company’s new film label Disneynature. EARTH opens in theaters on Earth Day, April 22, 2009, and Disneynature is planting a tree in honor of every moviegoer who sees the movie in its opening week.

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The Muppets’ “Ode to Joy” Nominated for Best Music Video in the 13th Annual Webby Awards

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Burbank, CA, April 17, 2009 — Burbank, CA based Soapbox Films announced today that its “Ode to Joy” web video, starring Beaker from the Muppets, has been nominated in the Music category for Online Film & Video in the 13th Annual Webby Awards.

Hailed as the “Internet’s highest honor” by the New York Times, The Webby Awards is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet.

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First-of-a-Kind, Handheld Device Brings Magic of Disney Theme Parks to Guests with Disabilities

Disney Close CaptionLAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., April 16, 2009 –  Disney engineers have taken recent advances in wireless technology one step further, creating a first-of-a-kind, handheld assistive device to bring the magic of Disney theme parks to guests with visual and hearing disabilities.

Disney’s Handheld Device combines multiple functions – assistive listening, handheld captioning, and closed captioning activation – into one small, easy-to-use platform. The assistive listening system provides amplified audio, while handheld captioning enables guests to read captions while enjoying specific theme park attractions. Closed captioning is also activated by the handheld device in pre-show areas where TV displays narrate the upcoming experience.

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Harbor Nights Primavera at Universal Orlando’s Portofino Bay Hotel Set for May 8

On Friday, May 8, a wine tasting, gourmet food and jazz event at Harbor Piazza in the Italian-themed Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando will be taking place from 6:30 – 9:00 pm. Featuring select wines and sparkling wines, gourmet food samples, live music performance by Michael Andrew & Swingerhead and a balcony music show paying tribute to Mama (Mia).

Tickets are $35 for general admission or $60 for reserved seating (includes private wine station and passed hors d’oeuvres). To purchase online, visit LoewsHotels.Tix.com. For more information, call 407-503-1200. Parking is free with $5 valet parking available.

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Five Reasons I Absolutely, Positively Won’t be Riding Characters in Flight (Maybe)

As photos and video of experiences on Downtown Disney’s newest venture emerge onto the interwebs, I started to see a sharp decline in my own personal enthusiasm for being able to experience the 400 foot flight on a tethered balloon myself. I kid you not, I was very excited at the proposition – initially. Despite the $16 price tag, I was all set to ride this thing 10x minimum: sunrise, sunset and everything in-between. What could possibly have changed my mind, you ask? Let me count the ways. Continue reading…

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Walt Disney Signature Line Enters Home Theater Market

The upscale Walt Disney Signature collection has expansion plans for the upcoming High Point Market and will be adding home theater seating and case goods, as well as an outdoor furniture line.

The home theater line is designed by designer Theo Kalomirakis and will be produced by German manufacturer W. Schillig. The outdoor line is being offered through Veneman Collections.

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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:
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