Category Archives: Central Florida

New Public Hearing Set for Dec. 18 on Universal Orlando Expansion Roads

Universal Orlando and Orange County will build major roads, including the extension of Kirkman Road, in the theme park giant’s expansion territory through a public-private partnership, but the cost of the projects and the bill for local taxpayers hasn’t been calculated.

Very little new information was presented at the first public meeting on the project held Thursday night at the Orange County Convention Center. For the first time, the Florida Department of Transportation displayed a map confirming the proposed route for the project, which has been envisioned for decades but has never gotten to a design phase.

“The project is currently in the preliminary design phase. Neither a timeline nor funding for construction has been identified. Orange County is pursuing grant funding,” according to a joint statement about the project released by the county and the Florida Department of Transportation.

A new public hearing was announced for 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 18, in the same place — the convention center’s West Concourse Room W315, 9800 International Drive.

According to the DOT, the Kirkman Road Extension will provide another north-south corridor for the busy tourism area and is also part of Orange County’s 10-year, long range plan.

The county, the DOT and Universal’s lobbyists have been meeting for at least a year to discuss the issues, but the state is only saying at this point that “funding sources are subject to partnership agreements that are in the process of being defined. Orange County always contemplated the Kirkman Road Extension to be a public/private partnership and its participation is being addressed in the coming weeks.”

Universal lobbyist John McReynolds and spokesman Tom Shroeder were at the meeting Thursday but declined to comment on the road plan or Universal’s bigger plans for the property.

Universal’s long-range plans also call for increased connectivity, since any future development in this immediate area by Universal, or others, could impact traffic flow in this active and busy region of Orange County, according to the joint statement.

Universal has acquired more than 1,000 acres for expansion in the area — property which it had sold off years ago. Speculation has been rampant that the new park could carry Nintendo or Dreamworks themes, like Mario Bros., Legends of Zelda or Shrek. That would be in addition to Universal’s current parks in Orlando: Universal StudiosIslands of Adventure and Volcano Bay water park.

Once built, the new theme park would put Universal in a more competitive position with Walt Disney World. That’s because Universal would be more able to keep people in its parks for extended stays or long weekends, which is something Disney has been doing for decades in Orlando, especially since it added Animal Kingdom in 1998.

But getting people from the existing Universal theme parks to the new expansion territory could pose a challenge, and the extension of Kirkman Road is part of that problem.

Technically, the extension of Kirkman will run from Carrier Drive on the north, down to Universal Boulevard at the south end — wrapping around the east side of the Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Plant.

The theme park giant has started rolling out plans for its new property, including 530,000 square feet of warehouse space and 94,000 square feet of office space along Sand Lake Road, just east of Lockheed.

Universal hasn’t provided any further comment on its plans. The office and warehouse construction could be to move existing offices and storage, freeing up land around Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. Or it could be to support the new theme park that would be just south of there.

http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/disney-updates/~3/QYm4J9WCEg8/


Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party 2018 Strategy Guide

Castle-1Facebookhttp://feedproxy.google.com/~r/disney-updates/~3/sBHkrgk2VDY/


Casey’s Corner to Celebrate the Holidays with the 12 Days of Christmas Dogs

CaseysTwelveFacebookhttp://feedproxy.google.com/~r/disney-updates/~3/OfdJOXO_QSY/


SeaWorld Orlando Tour Gives Up-Close Look at Park’s Killer Whales

A new tour at SeaWorld Orlando invites guests to engage with the Park’s killer whales, including meeting trainers and participating in a unique interaction.

New Killer Whale Up-Close Tour at SeaWorld Orlando

Visitors to SeaWorld Orlando now have the opportunity to experience the park’s majestic killer whales in a brand-new way. The Killer Whale Up-Close Tour gives guests the opportunity to meet the park’s killer whales in ways never before offered at the park. The 45-minute tour includes learning from the park’s killer whale trainers, meeting the whales and understanding their unique personalities and even taking part in an interaction with one off the whales.

 A new tour at SeaWorld Orlando invites guests to engage with the Park’s killer whales, including meeting trainers and participating in a unique interaction.

During the tour, which takes place daily, SeaWorld’s trainers share stories and information about the killer whales, demonstrate how the whales take part in voluntary husbandry sessions and discuss their healthcare, feeding habits and more. The engaging and interactive tour also gives participants the chance to try their hand at a session with the whales alongside a trainer. Throughout the entire experience, guests can take photos to help forever preserve the memory of the one-of-a-kind experience.

 A new tour at SeaWorld Orlando invites guests to engage with the Park’s killer whales, including meeting trainers and participating in a unique interaction.

The Killer Whale Up-Close Tour is the latest in the SeaWorld’s collection of memorable, educational and inspirational tours. Popular guest experiences, including the Dolphin Up-Close Tour and Penguin Up-Close Tour provide hands-on interactions with some of the park’s most popular animals while encouraging guests to care about all of the animals found in the oceans. The Behind-the-Scenes Tour, a guest favorite, provides an inside look at the park’s amazing animal rescue operation and ends with the opportunity to touch a shark and meet a Magellanic penguin.

 A new tour at SeaWorld Orlando invites guests to engage with the Park’s killer whales, including meeting trainers and participating in a unique interaction.

The Killer Whale Up-Close Tour begins at 10:00 a.m. and lasts approximately 45 minutes. Space is limited, and guests are encouraged to make reservations online in advance. Prices start at $79 per person. For more information on SeaWorld’s tour programs, park hours and to purchase tickets, visitSeaWorldOrlando.com.

https://www.destinationsinflorida.com/blog/2017/07/12/seaworld-orlando-tour-killer-whales/


Food & Fun for Nov. 14-21: Holiday cakes, potluck for singles, a home tour, works of art

[unable to retrieve full-text content]http://rssfeeds.floridatoday.com/~/579328748/0/brevard/entertainment~Food-amp-Fun-for-Nov-Holiday-cakes-potluck-for-singles-a-home-tour-works-of-art/


Disney Springs flows along, 10 years after Pleasure Island

Category : Central Florida , Orlando

It’s been 10 years since the rotating dance floor at Mannequins Dance Palace went for a spin.

The building that housed that Pleasure Island nightclub is now home to Morimoto Asia, a stationary restaurant surrounded by shops, eateries and themed experiences. That’s just one change of many in the…

http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/orlandosentinel/business/custom/tourism/~3/F3qWj5rx6Ys/os-cfb-s4-downtown-disney-springs-update-20181108-story.html


Fun Spot: New Sky Sled a feat for feet

Category : Central Florida , Orlando

Acrophobiacs, beware. There’s a new high-flying option available at Fun Spot. Actually, it’s more of a freefalling attraction as SkyCoaster riders can now head out feet-first, thanks to its new Sky Sled.

“It’s truly, like, backwards from what we usually do,” says John Arie Jr., Fun Spot’s CEO.

http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/orlandosentinel/business/custom/tourism/~3/l3MLrTiC90s/os-et-fun-spot-sky-coaster-sled-20181106-story.html


Magic Kingdom shuts down for a night to honor veteran Disney employees

Category : Central Florida , Orlando

The guests were ushered out as Magic Kingdom — the world’s busiest theme park — shut down at the unusually early hour of 4:30 p.m.

No weddings or Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party or any other late-night moneymakers were happening. Instead, some Disney employees had the amusement park all to…

http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/orlandosentinel/business/custom/tourism/~3/lUNB2F5i8X8/os-bz-disney-magic-kingdom-shutdown-20181107-story.html


Ultimate Guide to My Universal Photos

Ultimate Guide to My Universal Photos

Share this post:

There are two ways most people go about taking photos on vacation: having someone in your party not be in the photo or asking a stranger to take the photo for you. Here at Universal Orlando Resort, we have an ideal third option—My Universal Photos.

My Universal Photos takes the stress out of your vacation by helping you capture your unforgettable experiences here and share them with friends and family. With all of the awesome photo opportunities throughout the parks, we’ve got you covered—whether you’re screaming your face off on one of our high-speed coasters or coming face-to-face with spectacular, cinematic icons.

Here’s how it works:

1. Purchase Your Preferred Package

My Universal Photos at Raptor Encounter

My Universal Photos has three different packages to make sure you’re properly set up for your day (or days) of play:

  • 1-Day Photo Package: This package gives you one full day of photos at any of our three parks with exclusive pricing on park photo prints and unlimited digital downloads. It also includes a My Universal Photos themed lanyard and card, discounts on photo gift products, as well as one 4×6 and one 5×7 photo print at time of purchase.
  • 3-Day Photo Package: This option allows up to three consecutive days of photos in the parks beginning on the day you pick up your My Universal Photos lanyard and card. You also receive one free 5×7 print in a folder and one free 4×6 print valid in-park or online, plus a few other exclusive discounts.
  • 1-Day Photo Package at Volcano Bay: If you’re just looking for a slice of Waturi paradise, this package is for you. With your one day of photos at Universal’s Volcano Bay (as with all packages), you get unlimited digital downloads and the ability to view and share your photos forever.

2. Time to Have Some Fun!

Universal's Volcano Bay TapTu Snap

Once you’ve ordered your package, show your confirmation email at a merchandise location where Universal Express Pass is sold or at the My Universal Photos stores in the parks. A Team Member will give you your photo card and then you’re all set! There are three different ways to capture your vacation memories:

  • Have one of our professional photographers scan your card before taking a photo.
  • Scan it yourself at one of our selfie stations.
  • Scan it at a kiosk at the end of any participating rides.

The photos automatically show up on your My Universal Photos account, which you’ll be emailed a password and link to.

3. Photos at Your Fingertips

Make your friends jealous by sharing your adventures with the Amazing Pictures Mobile App. Download the app and log in with your email address and the password you were given. The photos you take during your day will be uploaded automatically. Once you see them, share them to your heart’s content. Click on a photo and send it via text, post it on social media, or even just download it to your camera roll. It’s super easy to share the fun.

4. Memories that Last a Lifetime

My Universal Photos at Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit

Relive your fun-filled moments and choose which ones you want to keep forever. When you’re in the park, head to a standalone photo store or a ride photo location to get an individual print. You can also order prints of your favorite pics from home or print them on items like mugs, Christmas ornaments and more. There are tons of products to choose from.

It’s as simple as that. With over 30 locations to smile or scream, all you need to worry about is deciding which ride to go on next. Click here to get started. Say cheese!

Share this post:

Ultimate Guide to My Universal Photos


Pan Asian Planned for Pointe

Lotus Asia House booths

More Asian food is scheduled to come in off the street when Lotus Asia House opens at Pointe Orlando next year. The new restaurant will take over the space formerly held by RA Sushi.

Lotus Asia House is being developed by restaurateur Karim El Sherif along with chef/consultant Scott Drewno. El Sherif’s Linkedin profile says that he has been owner of Lotus since July of this year. Previously, he was director of food and beverage/taskforce consultant at the Waldorf Astoria, The Roosevelt in New Orleans.

Drewno is the chef-owner of Chiko in Washington,D.C., and previously worked with Wolfgang Puck at various restaurants, including The Source.

In a statement provided by Pointe Orlando, El Sherif said of Lotus Asia House, “We want to make this an area where people will want to sip creative cocktails and sample Pan-Asian cuisine, inspired by street food vendors found all over Asia.”

The menu will offer Chinese, Thai and Vietnamese cuisines as well as sushi. The decor, shown here in artist renderings, will feature a sculpture of Buddha at the entrance to the lounge, because, you know, it’s Asian. Seating will be at large round booths and communal tables. There will also be an indoor-outdoor sushi bar. Outdoor sushi is fun in the Florida summers.

No date has been set for the opening, but expect it early 2019. The previously announced Hopdoddy Burger Bar, which is going into the former Funky Monkey Wine Company space, should open shortly after the New Year if not before.

Lotus Asia House Rendering bar

Tony Roma

 https://www.scottjosephorlando.com/news/4548-pan-asian-planned-for-pointe


Bullet Point Buffet: Cake, Wine, Beer and Noodles

RamenRumble2 SM copy

  • TastyChomps, the Ricky Ly-led blog, has announced plans for its second Ramen Rumble in association with Osprey Tavern. Ramen Rumble 2 will take place Dec. 10 at the Baldwin Park restaurant from 6 to 9 p.m. The rumbling chefs this time around are: Yuhi Fujinaga, Executive Chef Morimoto Asia at Disney springs; Kevin Kel Phanhvilay, Chef/Owner Sticky Rice Lao Street Food; and Travis Cliff, Head Chef Jade New Asian. (No one actually rumbles but knives might be drawn.) Tickets here.
  • Congratulations to The Glass Knife on its first anniversary. I didn’t bake a cake but chef Stuart Whitfield did and he’ll share a slice with the first 365 guests Sat., Nov. 10. It’s for dine-in customers only, so don’t just hop out of the car with the engine running and expect to grab a slice to go.
Tony Roma
  • Yellow Dog Eats is celebrating its 20th anniversary, also Nov. 10, at the Gotha location. The restaurant is actually 22 years old but it’s two decades in Gotha (almost; it moved from Winter Park in 1999). There will be a $20 food special but there’s no mention of cake. But I know where they can get one.
  • Also on Saturday, at the other end of the 408, you can have a Taste of Orlando at the Waterford Lakes Town Center. It’s $15 in advance or $20 tomorrow. It starts at 11 a.m. and the site says it runs “all day,” so don’t yell at me if you get there late and it’s over. If you want to save the five bucks on tickets, click here.
  • Here’s something else going on at the Osprey Tavern. It’s the Inquisitor Wine Dinner. When? you ask. Sunday, Nov. 11, at 6 p.m. $95 for chef’s tasting menu and $40 for the South African wines pairings. How is it a wine dinner without the pairings? Inquisitive minds want to know. Call 407-960-7700 for the answer and a reservation.
  • If beer is more your thing, you might be interested in the 12 Beers of Christmas at Morimoto Asia in Disney Springs, Sunday, Dec. 2, from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. It will feature multiple stations of local brewers pouring holiday themed brews paired with pan-Asian bites. Morimoto, the Iron Chef himself, will be on hand as host. $55 per person; tickets here.

https://www.scottjosephorlando.com/news/4552-bullet-point-buffet-cake-wine-beer-and-noodles


15 Events Happening During Sanford Beer Week November 13 – 19

Sanford Beer Week 2018

Next week, the city of Sanford is celebrating its 4th Annual Sanford Beer Week with a multitude of brewtastic events! Sanford has been at the forefront of Central Florida’s craft beer scene and is home to countless breweries and taprooms, making it the perfect place for this craft beer extravaganza. From beer dinners to free tastings and even a beer and cheese pairing, we have the details on where you can celebrate each day. 

Tuesday, November 13th

Beer Week Progressive Dinner
Through November 15, 4pm-10pm
Da Kine Poke, Buster’s Bistro, and Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe
To kick things off, you’ll be enjoying a special Beer Week Progressive Dinner featuring three courses and beer pairings from Da Kine Poke, Buster’s Bistro, and Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe. Make sure to grab your punch card at any one of the three participating locations. Each location will be serving one course/pairing and you can complete your pairings in any order you choose. Once finished, drop your card off at Tuffy’s Bottle Shop & Lounge for your chance to win a Sanfording gift basket. The opportunity to partake in the progressive dinner will be available November 13-15 from 4-10pm.
A la cart; menu prices vary

Buster's BistroBuster’s Bistro | Image credit: @drinksanford

Sanford Beer Week at Luisa’s Cellar: International Beer
6pm-8pm
Luisa’s Cellar is celebrating Beer Week with a different theme every night. Tuesday’s wine tasting is free and the theme is International Beer, giving you the chance to sample beer from all over the world.
FREE tasting

Wednesday, November 14th

Brewery Walkabout – Sanford Brewers Celebrating Craft for Sanford Beer Week
November 14-30
Go on a self-guided walking tour of 5 breweries in Sanford: Tuffy’s Bottle Shop & Lounge, Deviant Wolfe Brewing, Inner Compass Brewing Company, Sanford Brewing Company and WopsHops Brewing Company. Pick up a punch card at any participating location. You’ll receive a punch for every location where you purchase a pint. Complete the full excursion and earn a special souvenir while supplies last. This beer week celebration continues through the end of the month, so you’ll have plenty of time to get your punches!
A la cart; menu prices vary

Wop’s Hops Brewing Company | Image credit: Stephanie Patterson

Beer Week Progressive Dinner
4pm-10pm
Da Kine Poke, Buster’s Bistro, and Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe
See above

Sanford Beer Week at Luisa’s Cellar: IPAs
6pm-8pm
Luisa’s Cellar is celebrating Beer Week with a different theme every night. Wednesday’s theme is IPAs, and it is free to attend and sample.
FREE tasting

Beer and Cheese Pairing
5-9pm
The Imperial at Washburn Imports-Sanford
What better combination than beer and cheese? There will be three different beer and cheese pairings offered. The event runs from 5-9pm, so aim to get there early to ensure all pairings are still available.
$8/pairing

Image credit: Imperial at Washburn Imports

Thursday, November 15th

Beer Week Progressive Dinner
4pm-10pm
Da Kine Poke, Buster’s Bistro, and Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe
See above

Sanford Beer Week at Luisa’s Cellar: Welcome to the Dark Side
6pm-8pm
Luisa’s Cellar is celebrating Beer Week with a different theme every night. On Thursday, the theme will be Welcome to the Dark Side, where you’ll learn about and sample different stouts, porters and malts.
FREE tasting

Irish Beer Flight Night
5-11pm
The Sullivan, A Public House
Make your own Irish Beer flight! Your flight will consist of 4 different 6 ounce samples, which you’ll select from a choice of 9 beers. While you find your new favorite beer, enjoy live music from Cahir O’Doherty from Ireland.
$10/flight

Friday, November 16th

Beer 101 and Tapas at Luisa’s Cellar
6:30pm
This class will teach you the basics of beer and the art of beer pairing.
$25

Sanford Beer Week 2018Image credit: Luisa’s Cellar

Saturday, November 17th

Tom & Dan “Bad At Business” Beerfest
12pm-5pm
West End Trading Co.
You’ll need to call an Uber or Lyft after partaking in the festivities with Tom & Dan. This free beer fest takes over a few blocks in downtown Sanford, allowing you to indulge in countless beer samples while listening to live music from Melodic Dissent. Over 17 breweries will be on hand with samples including Wolf Branch Brewing, Red Cypress Brewing, Intuition Ale Works, and Ten 10 Brewing Company.
FREE

Sanford Beer Week at Luisa’s Cellar: German beers
6pm-8pm
Luisa’s Cellar is celebrating Beer Week with a different theme every night. Saturday’s event is free and the theme is German beers.

Sunday, November 18th

Sofas & Suds
2-6pm
Celery City Craft
This fun and free event pits local businesses against each other in a friendly race using modified couches. Spectators should grab a spot by Palmetto and 2nd Street to obtain the best view of the shenanigans. The event will be hosted by Tom and Dan from A Mediocre Time with Tom and Dan. A special VIP ticket is available which grants you complimentary beer, wine, spirits, access to food trucks, and pit row access. 
FREE; $35 for VIP in advance, $45 for VIP day of

Sanford Beer Week 2018Sofas & Suds | Image credit: sanfordbeerweek.com

Sanford Beer Week at Luisa’s Cellar: Sour Sunday
6pm-8pm
Luisa’s Cellar is celebrating Beer Week with a different theme every night. Sunday’s theme is Sour Sunday and the special will be $1 off all sour beers all day long.
Menu prices vary

Monday, November 19th

Sanford Craft Beer Summit 2018
5pm-8pm
Celery City Craft
Held at Celery City Craft, the final Beer Week event will be The Sanford Craft Beer Summit. The summit will feature a number of craft beer veterans who will discuss observations made during Beer Week. All attendees are welcome to join in the discussion.
FREE

Sanford Beer Week 2018 - Celery City CraftCelery City Craft | Image credit: Kristen Manieri

About the Author/Photographer
Arlene Laboy is a photographer and writer, UCF alumna, and lover of all things local. A wife and a mother, Arlene shares her love for adventuring around Florida through her Instagram account, @arlenemlaboy. Find out more about Arlene here.

Feature image credit: Stephanie Patterson

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

Related Posts

15 Events Happening During Sanford Beer Week November 13 – 19


Upcoming Events

  1. 2018 Fall Family Festival

    October 12 @ 3:00 pm - November 14 @ 1:00 pm UTC+0
  2. Miami/Brickell Festival of the Arts

    October 20, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - January 15, 2019 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  3. NOVEMBERFEST 2018

    November 14 @ 4:00 pm - November 18 @ 8:00 pm UTC+0
  4. SpaKitty Dinner

    November 14 @ 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm UTC+0
  5. The Festival of Trees

    November 15 @ 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm UTC+0
  6. FIU’s 32nd Festival of the Trees

    November 15 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm UTC+0
  7. School Day at the 2018 Florida Tiny House MUSIC Festival

    November 16 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm UTC+0
  8. 10th Annual OrlandoJobs.com Job Fair and Career Expo

    November 16 @ 11:00 am - 3:00 pm UTC+0
  9. Florida Tiny House Music Festival (3rd Annual)

    November 16 @ 12:00 pm - November 18 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  10. Orlando Balloon Glow

    November 16 @ 5:00 pm - November 18 @ 10:00 pm UTC+0

Upcoming Events

  1. 2018 Fall Family Festival

    October 12 @ 3:00 pm - November 14 @ 1:00 pm UTC+0
  2. Miami/Brickell Festival of the Arts

    October 20, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - January 15, 2019 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  3. NOVEMBERFEST 2018

    November 14 @ 4:00 pm - November 18 @ 8:00 pm UTC+0
  4. SpaKitty Dinner

    November 14 @ 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm UTC+0
  5. The Festival of Trees

    November 15 @ 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm UTC+0
  6. FIU’s 32nd Festival of the Trees

    November 15 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm UTC+0
  7. School Day at the 2018 Florida Tiny House MUSIC Festival

    November 16 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm UTC+0
  8. 10th Annual OrlandoJobs.com Job Fair and Career Expo

    November 16 @ 11:00 am - 3:00 pm UTC+0
  9. Florida Tiny House Music Festival (3rd Annual)

    November 16 @ 12:00 pm - November 18 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  10. Orlando Balloon Glow

    November 16 @ 5:00 pm - November 18 @ 10:00 pm UTC+0

Join our Fun Network

  1. 2018 Fall Family Festival

    October 12 @ 3:00 pm - November 14 @ 1:00 pm UTC+0
  2. Miami/Brickell Festival of the Arts

    October 20, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - January 15, 2019 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  3. NOVEMBERFEST 2018

    November 14 @ 4:00 pm - November 18 @ 8:00 pm UTC+0
  4. SpaKitty Dinner

    November 14 @ 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm UTC+0
  5. The Festival of Trees

    November 15 @ 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm UTC+0
  6. FIU’s 32nd Festival of the Trees

    November 15 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm UTC+0
  7. School Day at the 2018 Florida Tiny House MUSIC Festival

    November 16 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm UTC+0
  8. 10th Annual OrlandoJobs.com Job Fair and Career Expo

    November 16 @ 11:00 am - 3:00 pm UTC+0
  9. Florida Tiny House Music Festival (3rd Annual)

    November 16 @ 12:00 pm - November 18 @ 6:00 pm UTC+0
  10. Orlando Balloon Glow

    November 16 @ 5:00 pm - November 18 @ 10:00 pm UTC+0