Marine Mammal Experts, Including SeaWorld, Come Together in Attempt to Save Critically Endangered North Atlantic Right Whale Calf
Marine Mammal Experts, Including SeaWorld, Come Together in Attempt to Save Critically Endangered North Atlantic Right Whale Calf
Fernandina Beach, FL (January 17) -- A team located a female North Atlantic right whale and her injured right whale calf off Fernandina Beach, Florida yesterday afternoon. Biologists didn't want to get too close until verifying this was the mom/calf pair. An aerial support crew soon provided confirmation and on-water assessment, giving the on-site veterinarians, including SeaWorld’s Dr. Hendrik Nollens, enough information to determine that antibiotics would benefit this whale. The team was able to remotely administer the drugs with the hopes of staving off infection. Now biologists will continue to monitor the calf during routine aerial surveys. The calf’s prognosis remains poor.
Aerial photos and video are allowing medical and whale experts a chance to examine changes in the wounds and assess the calf's overall behavior, condition, and health over time.
This was a huge effort made possible by many experts from partner agencies all over the country including the field teams made up of FWC Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, the Wildlife Resources Division - Georgia DNR, Clearwater Marine Aquarium, SeaWorld, Blue World Research Institute and International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) and external consultants from across the country that provided technical assessment of the injuries.
January 13: Efforts to monitor and assess a critically endangered and seriously injured North Atlantic right whale calf are underway by a team of marine mammal experts, including SeaWorld, off the east coast of Florida. The calf is just one of four born this calving season to a population of whales believed to number less than 430 individuals, a number critically low to sustain the species, and making the survival of every whale imperative.
The approximately week old calf has significant wounds consistent with a vessel strike. The injuries are concerning because of the severity and location of the wounds. One of the injuries appears to include damage to the calf's mouth which could hamper its ability to nurse and feed.
SeaWorld’s Dr. Hendrik Nollens is one of the lead veterinarians on the mission, which includes the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, IFAW and Blue World Research Institute (BWRI). The current plan is to locate the mother and calf pair and obtain images in order to update the assessment of the calf's injuries, condition and behavior. Antibiotics may be delivered if warranted.
North Atlantic right whales migrate from the waters off New England and Nova Scotia to the waters off the coast of Florida and Georgia during the winter for a calving season. The two most significant threats to the survival of these whales are vessel strikes and entanglement in fixed fishing gear. This past December the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund announced it had committed $900,000 in the fight to save this critically endangered species. In partnership with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) the funding will be primarily used to test alternative non-lethal fishing gear to help avoid these fatal entanglements.
NOAA urges everyone to please give these animals their space. Mom/calf pairs spend the majority of their time at, or a few feet below the water's surface in the Southeast U.S. This is a critical and vulnerable time for right whale moms to bond with their calves - law requires staying away at least 500 yards by air (including drones) and by sea.
For updates on the calf: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/…/north-atlantic-right-whale…
2020 Epcot International Festival of the Arts Celebrates Visual, Culinary and Performing Arts from Around the Globe at Walt Disney World Resort
Disney on Broadway Concert Series, Food Studios and art-inspired family fun await guests, Jan. 17-Feb. 24
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Jan. 13, 2020) – Epcot International Festival of the Arts at Walt Disney World Resort will unveil its annual global celebration of visual, culinary and performing arts Jan. 17 and continue for 39 days through Feb. 24, 2020. The event features visiting artists, an array of foodie delights and opportunities for guests to embrace their own inner artists.
Disney on Broadway Concert Series Returns with New Performers
The popular Disney on Broadway Concert Series returns to America Gardens Theatre with three daily performances headlined by Broadway stars who reprise favorite songs from past performances in award-winning shows. This year’s talent-rich lineup includes:
Food Studios Serve Up the Culinary Arts
Twelve festival Food Studios plus additional food and beverage locations will take culinary arts to the next level with scrumptious, imaginative dishes – artistically sculpted and ready for camera closeups. New this year is the Wonderful Walk of Colorful Cuisine featuring a culinary reward – guests who collect a stamp in their festival passports for each menu item purchased along the Wonderful Walk will fill their “palette” and receive a delicious technicolor treat.
The Food Studios are an edible wonderland of dishes and beverages, from the Deconstructed Reuben and Rainboba drink at The Deconstructed Dish Food Studio, to the Wild Mushroom Risotto and Classic Sidecar with a Chocolate Twist at The Masterpiece Kitchen at the Canada pavilion. The Decadent Delights Food Studio features the sweetest takes on culinary art like the Lemon Blood-Orange Tart and the White Chocolate Figment Puzzle on an Artist Palette. Guests will discover new twists on festival favorites, as well as a broad selection of libations from craft brewers and global wineries.
Also new for the 2020 festival, guests can book a Saturday or Sunday Le Cellier Brunch, a leisurely prix fixe bounty in the Canada pavilion.
Visual Art Displays Pop Across the Park
A kaleidoscope of visual art will surround festival guests, who can immerse themselves in a brand-new Artful Photo Op featuring two Vincent Van Gogh paintings: Café Terrace at Night and Sunflowers; create their own hand-painted take-home item with Artistic Marbling; and design their own custom T-shirt at Enemy Ink. Gallery exhibits showcase cultures around the globe – from Mexico to Norway, Japan to Morocco. Chalk artists will astonish guests as they create multi-dimensional sidewalk masterpieces.
Family fun will be in full swing every festival day:
Several new on-screen experiences open the same day as the festival, Jan. 17:
“Awesome Planet” – This new 10-minute film in The Land pavilion offers a breathtaking look at Earth’s beauty and diversity through spectacular imagery, in-theater effects and an original score from Academy Award-winning® composer Steven Price.
“Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along” – Directed by Don Hahn, who produced the animated and live-action “Beauty and the Beast” films, this magical experience at the France pavilion invites guests to embrace a twist on a “tale as old as time.” Angela Lansbury, who played Mrs. Potts in the original film, narrates the new sing-along that runs in rotation with “Impressions de France,” just upgraded to 4K projection.
“Canada Far and Wide in Circle-Vision 360” – Canada pavilion’s original “O Canada!” is refreshed with dazzling new scenes, a new musical score by Canadian composer Andrew Lockington and insightful narration by award-winning actors Catherine O’Hara and Eugene Levy.
Premium festival experiences that include Paint with a Disney Artist and the World Showcase: Destinations Discovered guided tour are available to guests for a fee. To book one of these experiences, guests can call (407) WDW-TOUR or sign up for openings still available the day of their festival visit. Visit ArtfulEpcot.comfor details.
To book an interactive workshop featuring Ink & Paint Animation, 3D Paper Crafting, Gesture Drawing Basics, Animation 101 or Doodling (additional fee) that take place Saturdays and Sundays at 10 a.m. in World Showplace, call 407-WDW-FEST or visit Guest Relations in the park.
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Jan. 13, 2020) – As part of the ongoing transformation of Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort, three new films will debut Jan. 17, 2020, at the Florida theme park, on the same day the 2020 Epcot International Festival of the Arts begins. These new films provide more ways for guests to experience Disney magic and celebrate the world around them during a day at Epcot.
Weekends Starting January 25th to March 1st
The multi-weekend celebration features new PEANUTS-inspired comic strip photo ops, a brand new stage show, a PEANUTS Football exhibit, plenty of new PEANUTS inspired food items and festive park-wide décor, weekends starting January 25 – March 1, 2020
Buena Park, Calif. –The Knott’s PEANUTS Celebration invites guests to step into the iconic world of Charles M. Schulz comic strips as the characters take over the entire theme park with special activities for everyone including a brand new stage show, HAPPINESS IS. The PEANUTS-themed celebration will take place on weekends beginning January 25th through March 1st, plus select dates. The limited time event welcomes fans of all ages to join in on the excitement with family-friendly options for guests to play and interact with the PEANUTS Gang throughout the park. The celebration includes interactive character experiences, new festive PEANUTS inspired décor, vibrant comic strip photo opportunities including a never-before-seen photo backdrop in Camp Snoopy, live shows, festive merchandise, and all-new themed seasonal food offerings.
The celebration features plenty of surprises hidden around every corner. One-of-a-kind photo opportunities will be available throughout the park allowing guests to step inside a PEANUTS comic strip for a unique and shareable memory. The vibrant décor include full-size comic strip props like Charlie Brown’s kites and his renowned thought bubbles which will adorn the park’s pathways. Guests will have the chance to meet with the beloved PEANUTS characters throughout the day as the characters appear at unexpected locations for personal interactions.
At the Calico Mine Stage the PEANUTS characters will be debuting a brand new musical surprise for guests. During the day Join Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Peppermint Patty and Linus in HAPPINESS IS.., along with their friends as they play, dance, sing and laugh through a medley of popular songs about fun, laughter and the true bonds of friendship. The new show teaches a lesson of self-discovery, being proud of friends and the differences that make everyone special. At nightfall, the stage will transform into a musical extravaganza as the park hosts Woodstock’s Musical Festival. The musical event features the Peanuts Gang joined by the family-friendly indie band The Jelly of the Month Club, performing a high energy rock concert for the whole family.
In Fiesta Village guests will uncover an experience that is guaranteed to make everyone dance with, Discoteca de Silencio, also known as a silent disco. The fun will begin with guests strapping on a set of headphones and enjoying some upbeat tunes. The party will be hosted by Snoopy’s brother Spike. It’s the most fun guests can experience while being quiet.
Camp Snoopy Theater hosts the Space Beagle show featuring Charlie Brown and Lucy, as the world’s most famous beagle becomes the first dog on the moon. It’s out of this world fun for the whole family. Also in Camp Snoopy, the Grand Sierra Railroad invites kids to celebrate with the PEANUTS Gang as they head to the Beagle Bonanza in this fun ride overlay.
The PEANUTS inspired festivities will also be offered at the Bird Cage Theatre as the park offers an experience that gives both the young and the young at heart a lesson on how to draw their favorite PEANUTS characters. The PEANUTS Sketch School will include our resident art teacher who will provide step by step instructions on how to draw the perfect PEANUTS masterpiece. At Calico’s Town Hall, a new family-friendly, inspired PEANUTS exhibit will be open for guests to experience. Organized by the Charles M. Schulz Museum, the Pigskin PEANUTS Exhibit chronicles the enduring cultural legacy of the PEANUTS characters through its football-themed storylines. It also traces the origins of the most iconic PEANUTS gag, Lucy pulling away the football from Charlie Brown.
Franklin and Linus are on a Western escapade as they transform into cowboys in the PEANUTS Cowboy Jamboree at Calico Park. The boys are looking to challenge guests with some of the rootiniest, tootinest games in Calico. Also in Ghost Town, everyone’s favorite messy pal, Pigpen will be joining the rest of the PEANUTS Gang as he hosts a special meetup at the Livery Stables with some of his favorite animal friends. The celebration also adds a special overlay to one of the park’s tallest attractions. Sky Cabin will be donning a festive overlay as an homage to the smallest member of the PEANUTS Gang, by transforming into Woodstock’s Bird’s-Eye View. Guests will be seated on Woodstock’s nest as the loveable yellow bird takes those aboard on a breathtaking journey above the entire PEANUTS Celebration.
On Sunday, February 2nd, Knott’s will be celebrating good ol’ Charlie Brown during the Knott’s PEANUTS celebration. For Charlie Brown day the park will invite guests to show some love to everyone’s favorite blockhead, Charlie Brown by hosting with the largest gathering of Charlie Browns in one picture. To show Charlie just how special he is attendees will be encouraged to pay homage to Charlie Brown by sporting his signature bright yellow zig-zag striped tee, black shorts, and red baseball cap outfit. At a designated time all guests dressed as Charlie Brown will be invited to gather at the Calico Mine stage for a once in a lifetime photo opportunity as a crowd of Charlie Browns poses alongside the boy of the hour.
The best way to enjoy every weekend of the all-new Knott’s PEANUTS Celebration and the upcoming 100th Anniversary Celebration, the Knott’s Family Reunion is with a 2020 Season Pass
A Regular Season Pass includes unlimited admission in 2020 to Knott’s Berry Farm with no blackout dates, and a Gold Season Pass includes unlimited admission in 2020 to both Knott’s Berry Farm and Knott’s Soak City Waterpark with no blackout dates. Regular passes are just $101 or six easy payments of $13.50 after an initial payment and Gold Passes are $125 or six easy payments of just $17.00 after an initial payment. These offers end April 19, 2020. Applicable taxes and fees apply. Payment plans are only available at knotts.com.
For more information about Knott’s Berry Farm please visit knotts.com or download the Knott’s Berry Farm app for your smart phone. For all current Knott’s PEANUTS Celebration assets please visit the event’s electronic press kit. Join the conversation using the hashtag #KnottsPeanutsCelebration
About Knott’s Berry Farm and Cedar Fair Entertainment Company:
What began as a roadside berry stand and chicken dinner restaurant in the 1920s has evolved into Knott’s Berry Farm, one of Southern California’s most popular theme park destinations combining world-class thrill rides with traditional family favorite attractions and entertainment. Knott’s is also home to Knott’s Soak City Water Park, Knott’s Marketplace, and the full-service Knott’s Berry Farm Hotel. Knott’s Berry Farm is owned and operated by Cedar Fair Entertainment Company (NYSE: FUN), one of the largest regional amusement-resort operators in the world, is a publicly traded partnership headquartered in Sandusky, Ohio. Focused on its mission to make people happy by providing fun, immersive and memorable experiences, the Company owns and operates 11 amusement parks, four outdoor water parks, an indoor water park and resort accommodations totaling more than 2,300 rooms and more than 600 luxury RV sites. Its parks are located in Ohio, California, North Carolina, South
WILD ARCTIC SIMULATOR FAREWELL FLIGHT: Park guests have one more chance to soar through the breathtaking, perilous, icy landscapes of the Arctic Circle and embark on a thrilling virtual jethelicopter ride at Wild Arctic! After Jan. 10, the motion-based simulators will close in preparation for an exciting new ride scheduled to open in 2021. The simulators have been a unique and complementary experience for guests at Wild Arctic since it opened as an educational arctic animal exhibit in 1997. Wild Arctic visitors will still be able to enjoy the displays of beluga whales, walruses and seals throughout the development of the new ride.
LUNAR NEW YEAR RINGS IN AT SEAWORLD: Sights, sounds, and savory sensations of Asia will all be part of SeaWorld San Diego’s Lunar New Year. This cultural celebration features jaw-dropping Chinese acrobats performing several live shows a day in the park’s Mission Bay Theater, plus mouthwatering cuisine (including ramen and stir fry) and local performers on the Festival Stage. Upon entering the park, visitors will be immediately immersed in festive red décor and artwork depicting the Year of the Rat — the first zodiac sign in the Chinese zodiac cycle. San Diego’s premier Asian celebration kicks off Jan. 11–12 and continues Jan. 18–20, Jan. 25-26 and Feb. 1–2
EVERY DAY IS PENGUIN AWARENESS DAY AT SEAWORLD: A world leader in breeding, husbandry and habitat creation, SeaWorld celebrates penguins 365 days a year, but on Jan. 20, the marine park will join in the global recognition, Penguin Awareness Day, of this amazing avian ambassador. SeaWorld’s Penguin Encounter is more to nearly 400 penguins representing six species. This season, keepers are celebrating some adorable new arrivals, with the recent hatching of seven chinstrap and one Adélie chick. The baby penguins will be safely housed in corrals until they have waterproof feathers and can join their gentoo, king, emperor and macaroni friends. Out in front of the Penguin Encounter, a colony of Magellanic penguins (a warm-weather species), explore their outdoor habitat. And Humboldt penguins can be seen in a behind-the-scenes habitat during special tours. SeaWorld has been breeding penguins since 1980, and all of the eight species currently at the park are part of Species Survival Programs. SSPs are extremely important given that penguins are the second most endangered group of seabirds. F
SEAWORLD SALUTES TEACHERS WITH FREE ADMISSION OFFER: For more than 50 years, education has been a critical part of SeaWorld’s mission to inform and inspire youth about wildlife and conservation, and in celebration, SeaWorld is offering teachers a complimentary SeaWorld Fun Card for 2020! This offer is available to all currently credentialed K–12 teachers residing in California and Arizona. In addition to the Fun Card, two free, single-day companion tickets are included. Deadline for registration is March 10. To learn more, teachers can visit www.SeaWorldParks.com/SWCTeachers. With the Fun Card in hand, teachers and their guests can enjoy SeaWorld events such as Lunar New Year, Electric Ocean, Halloween Spooktacular and Christmas Celebration. Plus, they can be among the first to ride Emperor, the tallest and fastest dive coaster in California, opening just in time for summer.
PRESCHOOL FUN CARD OFFERS YEAR OF FUN FOR ONE AMAZING PRICE: With a Preschool Fun Card in hand, children ages 3–5 living in San Diego and Orange Counties can enjoy year-round fun at SeaWorld in 2020 for one amazing price of $20. SeaWorld offers an ocean of experiences that are perfect for pintsized guests, including touchpools, aquariums, interactive games, family-friendly rides and the Sesame Street Bay of Play area. A two-park Preschool Fun Card (which includes both SeaWorld and Aquatica SeaWorld’s Waterpark) is also on sale for a limited time for $50. Aquatica (which opens for the season Memorial Day weekend) features slides, pools and play areas for younger guests. Both offers end on March 31. To learn more, parents can visit www.SeaWorldSanDiego.com/Preschool.