SeaWorld Orlando took, perhaps, a bit longer than they should have, but they finally have issued what I consider a very effective response to the people and forces behind the film ‘Blackfish.’ I guess they couldn’t hold off any longer after CNN’s airing of the… Read More »SeaWorld Response to Blackfish
TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards recently voted SeaWorld Orlando’s Discovery Cove as the #1 theme park in the World. Definitely well deserved. Here’s Discover Cove’s Vice President Stewart Clark justifiably crowing a bit and sharing some fan memories: We visited Discovery Cove in May and wrote… Read More »Discovery Cove Voted #1 Park in the World
Editor’s Note: I have not been presented the opportunity to view Blackfish and urge you to consider both sides of the argument before drawing any conclusions. A good place to start is this NY Times article on SeaWorld Park’s and Entertainment‘s response to the movie and what it sees as distortions of the facts and message. I want to thank Mike Bastoli for continuing to post here on the blog; even when I’m not 100% comfortable with his topics, I’m glad I can provide a forum for his ideas.
First of all, I’d like to thank John for giving me the opportunity to comment on Blackfish here. Even though we are of different opinions on whether orcas—killer whales—should continue to be kept in captivity at SeaWorld and places like it, we both agree that everyone should have an opportunity to evaluate the facts and make up their own mind on the issue. Really, we are the jury.
Blackfish begins with a black screen and a terrifying 911 call: “A whale has eaten one of the trainers,” the voice on the phone tells the dispatcher. That call was made on February 24, 2010, moments after SeaWorld Orlando trainer Dawn Brancheau was killed by Tilikum, a 12,000-pound male orca who had taken human life twice before.
For 25 years Shamu One has flown through the sky bringing joy to airplane passengers everywhere knowing their journey to SeaWorld begins at their home airport. It’s a relatively small thing, but it brings a lot of joy.
Today Southwest Airlines and SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment celebrated 25 years of partnership with the unveiling of the airline’s newest specialty aircraft, Penguin One —- a Boeing 737-700 co-branded with images of one of SeaWorld’s iconic animals — penguins.
One of the hidden treasures of the new Antarctica opening at SeaWorld Orlando is a conservation-minded program that let’s you interact with Coca-Cola freestyle machines in the area to see how big an impact your drink refills are making on the environment. The Cup That Cares – a reusable cup initiative – encourages guests to help the planet one refill at a time in a cup they create themselves when visiting the realm.
SeaWorld also collaborated with Coca-Cola to create a new custom coca-cola flavor served up only at Antarctica – South Pole Chill. I had a number of cups and enjoyed the light vanilla flavor served without any of the dyes that add color to normal colas.
Here’s a quick video introduction to the Cup That Cares program:
The new Cup That Cares engages guests in a personalized manner to reuse materials and reduce their carbon footprint. An RFID chip embedded in each Cup That Cares interacts with software at Coca-Cola Freestyle dispensers to calculate and tell guests how they are being more environmentally responsible by choosing to reuse.
What to say about SeaWorld Orlando’s newest land and attraction – Antarctica. I was invited to SeaWorld for a special press preview, but was only able to experience the attraction as designed once. It broke down on my second ride and then they kicked us out for a VIP party. So I have a few opinions, but they’re mixed results based on incomplete data. Since they did invite me to the event, I will do my best to explain.
Antarctica as a land encompasses an attraction, a store, and a restaurant, but sadly no restrooms. The store and the restaurant I found to be top quality. Although I did not get to sample the food, I’m sure Chef Hector did a great job preparing the international flavored options (American, Italian, and Asian). The store, as you might expect was full to the brim with great penguin themed merchandise. They’ve also introduced a build your own penguin cup booth. More on that in a future post.
While SeaWorld is in competition with the other local parks, they’ve taken a different angle to their themed design. Unlike Belle’s Village in New Fantasyland or Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Islands of Adventure, SeaWorld is not trying to put you ‘in the movie’, just ‘in the mood.’ The mood being set by tons of hand carved ‘ice’, various south pole elements, and some fun penguin representations. There’s no story being told, but you do feel like you’re in a wondrous place representative of Antarctica. Read More »My Journey Through Antarctica at SeaWorld Orlando