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Orlando Attraction Celebrates 15 Years

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

© Disney.

Orlando theme parks update and change out attractions every few years it seems, yet one attraction is celebrating its 15-year anniversary today. Happy anniversary Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster! This attraction starring Aerosmith originally opened at Disney’s Hollywood Studios on July 29, 1999. Now 15 years later, it is still a popular wild ride.

On this ride guests are taken on a tour of the G-Force Records music studio, where Aerosmith band members are wrapping up a recording session. When they realize they are late for a concert, they invite you along for a limo ride like no other! Rocket through the famous Hollywood sign and illuminated landmarks. The ride includes 3 inversions, 2 rollover loops, one corkscrew and hard-rockin’ music by Aerosmith echoing all around you.

Each experience on this Orlando attraction may be different since each vehicle features a different Aerosmith song or medley. You will hear one of nine of the following songs/medleys broadcast through five speakers – four around your head and one subwoofer under the seat:

  • Nine Lives
  • Sweet Emotion
  • Back in the Saddle
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady medley
  • Love in an Elevator
  • Walk This Way medley
  • Young Lust
  • F.I.N.E.
  • Love in an Elevator medley

Guests experience a G-force beween 4 & 5 when entering the first inversion. This never gets old, even though this attraction was the first coaster at Walt Disney World Resort to feature a multiple inversion ride. Many new ride experiences have been developed since 1999, but this is still a thrill.

Other fun facts about this 15-year old attraction are:

  • The giant electric guitar that serves as the attraction’s icon measures 40 feet tall.
  • Each super-stretch limo can fit 24 passengers.
  • A Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster opened at Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris in 2002, and remains open.
  • For today’s occasion, a wallpaper has been designed by artist Mike Britton and is available for download.
  • There are more than 900 speakers located throughout the attraction.

Congratulations on 15 years of rockin’ and rollin’! With all of the changes going on at the Florida theme parks, it nice to see a familiar attraction still going strong. Rock on!

Orlando Theme Park Milestone

Prohibition ended on December 5, 1933 with the ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment (which repealed the Eighteenth Amendment). Last week marked its 79th anniversary without so much as a beer mug toast. However, this week marked a milestone at Universal Orlando in which many a toast were made. They weren’t celebrating the end of prohibition; they celebrated the sale of 5 million butterbeers! The nonalcoholic beverage featuring hints of butterscotch and shortbread made its debut when the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened within the Orlando attraction in June of 2010.

Photo of children holding up butterbeer mugs at Universal Orlando

Photo from Universal Orlando

Even if you are not a fan of beer, sweet drinks, or even Harry Potter, this is a must-try element to experience when visiting this Orlando theme park. Universal Orlando made the announcement on Wednesday, then gave away 1,000 foam-topped beverages to Island of Adventure guests. That’s a lot of butterbeer mustaches!

Here at Capone’s Dinner & Show, we are celebrating a milestone of our own. We are in our twentieth year of entertaining guests with our prohibition era speak-easy! Our new show is being performed nightly and showcases a cast of talented performers. These zany characters will delight your gang of all ages. It’s no wonder our show has been so successful and going strong for 20 years! It’s a blast!

We’ve pulled out the big guns for the all-new gangster shoot out. It is quickly becoming a fan favorite. Guests win prizes and really get into the excitement! You’ll have to experience it yourself while tipping a few drinks back and enjoying the all-you-can-eat buffet at this Orlando attraction.

Butterbeer may be popular at the other Orlando theme park, but here at Capone’s Dinner & Show, the Shirley Temples and other kiddie cocktails are included with your ticket as well as a host of other beverages. Prohibition has been ratified; come thirsty when you come to Capone’s Dinner & Show. Let’s toast! Cheers!

Legoland Florida Update

So far so good at Legoland Florida. The new theme park has been widely accepted and enjoyed by thousands of locals and tourists. The park has introduced a couple of new features to help out their guests since opening.

  1. The Hero Access Pass: Want to go to the front of the line? Then this is the ticket for you! The Hero Access Pass gives front-of-line privileges at a cost of $150 ($130 for ages 3-12). That’s double the normal walk-up admission price at Legoland, but it includes admission to the park. Currently it is only available at the theme park’s front gate, and there are a limited number sold for each day. If you are an avid roller coaster rider, this could be your ticket to the front of the line to Dragon, Coastersaurus, Flying School, Lego Technic Test Track and the dark ride, Lost Kingdom Adventure.
  2. Legoland Florida App: Free and available at the iTunes App Store and the Android market, this app is loaded with information about rides, shows and eating options. Park tickets can be purchased through the app, along with tickets for the shuttle ride from an Orlando outlet mall to the Winter Haven theme park. This app also has directions, weather, a park map, “find my car” feature, Lego quizzes, trivia and more.

If you would like to share your experience at this new Florida theme park, please feel free to post a comment. We would love to hear about your day at Legoland.

Ring in the New Year, Orlando-style

From shows, concerts, great food, dancing, and elaborate pyrotechnic displays, take your pick of all the ways you’ll ring in the New Year in O-town.  There are so many holiday celebrations going on and the area theme parks really know how to throw a New Years Eve party!

Holidays at Universal Orlando Resorts: Kick off 2011 with one of the prime New Year’s celebrations in Orlando! This party features live entertainment by rock star Bret Michaels, from the band Poison.  You’ll also get admission to seven unique clubs, each with live entertainment, and awesome food including jumbo shrimp and filet mignon.  Did I mention that was all-you-can-eat??  Party throughout CityWalk until 2am!  (Even without all that other great stuff, I’d go just to see Bret Michaels!)

Walt Disney World: Although the New Year’s Eve party at the Magic Kingdom is sold out, there are plenty of party hot spots at Walt Disney World Resort.  And, you still can get an up-close view of the dazzling Magic Kingdom fireworks at Tomorrowland Terrace. Another awesome place to catch Magic Kingdom pyrotechnics is the top of Disney’s Contemporary Resort at California Grill.  An open bar, food, DJ, dancing, even a casino-style game room!  Several of the Pavilions at Epcot are hosting New Years Eve Galas as well, AND a primo view of IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth.  You can also dance your way into 2011 at Disney’s BoardWalk Resort, where there will be party favors, lots of dancing, and a midnight champagne toast (VIP ticket available).  Check websites for additional costs.
Note: Magic Kingdom fireworks are at 8:30 p.m. and 11:50 p.m.

New Years Eve at SeaWorldSeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration, Where The Season Meets the Sea is still going on with lots of family fun.  The Polar Express Experience is where this holiday classic comes to life as you board the legendary train.  Don’t miss the special holiday shows such as Shamu Christmas-Miracles, A Sesame Street Christmas, and Clyde and Seamore’s Countdown to Christmas, and the dazzling ice skating extravaganza, Winter Wonderland on Ice.  Then, the countdown at midnight to the Fireworks and Fountains Finale.  (Special Tours available.)  Check the website for show times and additional information.  Celebration runs now thru 1/2/2011.


Some of our other area attractions have special events going on for the holidays as well, including Busch Gardens, with The Guess Who in concert and midnight fireworks show.  For a smaller, more intimate party without the huge theme park crowds, checkout Orlando’s best wise-guy dinner show.  Capone’s Dinner and Show is presenting a special New Years Eve Gala show, which includes their scrumptious dinner buffet and unlimited beverages.  If you’d like to catch the show and hit another spot to ring in the new year, attend the early show. For those of you who want to count down to midnight in this beautifully renovated theatre, the late show (New Years Eve Gala) will include DJ, dancing after the performance, a champagne toast at midnight, along with plenty of party favors and snack bar.

Note:  Be sure to check the individual websites for additional information including cost and show times.

New Year, new updates for Walt Disney World


As we ring in the New Year, we have highlights of some upcoming changes at Orlando’s Walt Disney World resort.  The popular Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend returns Jan. 6-9, 2011, with opportunities for runners of all ages and abilities.  This event drew a record-breaking crowd in 2010, with 55,000 registered runners from all 50 states and 50 countries.   This year, everyone who completes the Marathon will receive a new Mickey Mouse race medal, as well as complimentary admission to a Walt Disney World theme park the Monday after the race.  The Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend is a part of the new runDisney series.  To learn more about endurance events at Disney, or to sign up for any of the runDisney events, go to www.runDisney.com.

In February, the Magic Kingdom will be closing Mickey’s Toontown Fair to allow for the expansion of Fantasyland.  The Toontown characters will move to new locations and will continue to have meet-and-greet with guests.  The Fantasyland facelift will be the biggest overhaul in the theme park’s 38-year history.   The plans indicate they will be expanding the Dumbo attraction, as well as adding a lavish Little Mermaid ride.  They will also feature new interactive areas featuring some of the most popular princesses.  The new attractions will open in phases.

Launching January 16th at Animal Kingdom will be a new Wild Adventure.  This three hour adventure will immerse guests in the wildlife thrills of far-off Africa.  This unique experience lets you navigate a rickety bridge over menacing crocodiles, and get to step to the very edge of a cliff to get close to the hippos and crocs below, while attached to a lifeline.  (Additional purchase/reservations required 407-939-8687)

Also launching January 16th, will be the all-new, high-energy parade at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, “Pixar Pals Countdown to Fun”. This fun-filled procession down Hollywood Boulevard will feature stars from “The Incredibles,” “A Bug’s Life,” “Ratatouille,” “Monsters, Inc,” “Up” and “Toy Story.”  The final date for the “Block Party Bash” parade at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is scheduled for Jan. 1, 2011.

Some new dining options/renovations are in the works as well such as Fulton’s Crab House at Downtown Disney. They have done a complete makeover of the lobby area and the menu, and even a one-of-a-kind crab map so guests can identify where their dish originated.  Kouzzina by Cat Cora at Disney’s BoardWalk also will be getting a facelift, with a new Cat Cora presence in the lobby, and three video monitors showcasing the celebrity chef’s view on family, food, and her culinary journey.  Downtown Disney’s Pollo Campero will be the first out of 300 Pollo Campero restaurants to introduce a new Fresh A-Peel concept with great-tasting, healthy options.  The Disney bars and lounges will be introducing a new cocktail menu with more healthy ingredients, such as organic spirits and fresh fruits, and lower calorie fruit purees.

The Disney Cruise Line will set sail with the new Disney Dream ship on Jan. 26, 2011. Some of the new innovations on this ship will be the debut of the first-ever shipboard water coaster, AquaDuck, which will feature a 765-foot flume and a swing-out loop that goes beyond the side of the ship.    Each inside stateroom will contain a Magical Porthole that displays real-time video from ship-board cameras, as well as some Disney characters.  Throughout the ship, you’ll find Enchanted Art, which looks like traditional art, but is really a LCD screen that senses when a guest is present.  Young guests will enjoy the latest in gaming technology and storytelling activities in the Oceaneer Club and Oceaneer Lab. There is so much to do, fun for all ages!

Ring in the New Year, Disney style!

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