Live IAAPA Expo 2014 Updates
Over the next few days we are going to be sharing some IAAPA updates on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. So if you are looking for live up to the minute updates, be sure to check there.
But we'll be updating this column as often as possible so you can get a look at all the coverage in one place.
Day Three - Wednesday
Scroll down to see updates from Monday and Tuesday.
More info on the LEGOLAND Florida Hotel coming in 2015. Adventure and Pirate themed rooms. Close proximity to park entrance just like in CA.
3 new attractions coming in 2015 to I-Drive Orlando.
IAAPA isn't just about rides, lots of games to try out.
An overview of the show floor ... it's quite large, and this isn't even all of it.
That's going to wrap it up for Day Three. Hope you enjoyed!!
Day Two - Tuesday
Some video of the AA's in action. Sally Corp has really outdone themselves.
Some POV and off-ride footage of Switchback coming to ZDT's Amusement Park in TX
We aren't sure what else will be announced today, the Expo closes in about 45 minutes (as of the updating of this article) but we'll have MUCH more tomorrow.
Day One - Monday
The Expo doesn't actually begin until Tuesday but that doesn't mean the IAAPA fun doesn't start Monday night with a great IAAPA Connect at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom. It's basically a great night to start off the festivities where the vendors can get together and mingle.
Last week we were invited out to Legoland California as they announced their new attractions for 2015.
The park announced both a new Star Wars "Death Star" Mini-Land and a Lego Friends Heartlake City area. Both will be opening in 2015. For all the information on those announcements see the full Press Release.
Today we are going to take a look at the preparations that are already taking place for these new attractions as well as a look at preparations for Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights.
Later this week we'll take a look at the rest of the park as it's truly one of our favorites.
2015 Park Additions
As we arrived it was a beautiful but warm day in Carlsbad.
The park set up a nice little continental breakfast for the gathered media. Always nice to see after having a 3 1/2 hour drive in the early morning.
The announcement was held in the nice air conditioned 3D theater.
Media Rep Jake Gonzales welcomes us all to Legoland
General Manager Peter Ronchetti announces the first of two attractions, the Death Star Mini-Land
The next few pictures should look pretty familiar to anybody reading this.
The Force will be with you ... always.
Lego R2D2 came out to join Peter for the announcement, we need to get one of these for any future Park Journey meets, because it's awesome.
Next the Lego Friends came out to announce Heartlake City. I have to admit, I'm unfamiliar with the Lego Friends because my kids are a bit older than the target audience, but the area looks like it's going to be very well done and I think I'll bring my 7 year old Niece to see this when it opens. She'll love it.
Peter and the Lego Friends
A close-up of Lego R2D2, be sure to visit him when you are at the park.
It looks like work has already started on the Death Star miniland, which if you are familiar with the Star Wars Miniland is next to the Hoth set.
The park would neither confirm or deny that this was the spot of the Death Star Miniland, but it would make sense.
Star Wars Death Star Miniland opens on March 5, just in time for Star Wars Days on March 7 and 8.
The park also didn't announce where Heartlake City will be, but in looking at the artwork, it appears to be taking over some of the WaterWorks area, which makes sense because Heartlake City will also have a water feature.
We'll have much more on these two new additions in the months to come and we'll of course be there for the opening of the new Miniland in March.
Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights
Preparations are also underway for Holiday Snow Days and Winter Nights, including an ice skating rink at the front of the park.
I've personally never seen Legoland at night so I'm hoping we'll get to see the event this year.
Trees heading to Miniland have received lots of lights.
The Fun Town Police and Fire Academy is closed and is getting snow for the holidays. Hope it doesn't melt before then. =)
Lego Christmas Tree
Splash Battle is closed for an offseason refurbishment
This is a really great attraction and it's great to see it get love every offseason.
There's always something fun getting added to Miniland and this offseason it looks like the San Francisco Miniland is getting some attention.
Just hope they aren't adding a San Francisco Giants parade. =)
Lego Movie Experience
Lastly, the new addition for 2014 was the Lego Movie Experience. This has been open since the Spring but we were unable to make it down. So we wanted to share with you this great walk-through.
Everything is Awesome!!!
Any Lego fan would be in heaven in this workspace.
That's going to wrap it up for this Legoland update. We'll have more from Legoland later in the week as we take a look at the rest of this awesome park.
After our crew headed out from Six Flags Great Adventure's Zumanjaro: Drop of Doom "Media Day" (Click the link to see that report) they headed over to Luna Park to check out the all new Thunderbolt.
Below are some great pictures of the ride as well as Chris' review. Thanks to Chris and Bill for the pictures!!
If you'd like more info on Luna Park you can visit their website.
Info on Thunderbolt's opening from the park:
The Thunderbolt Has Opened!
The Thunderbolt is the first custom built roller coaster in Coney Island since The Cyclone in 1927. Thrilling riders with speeds of 65 miles per hour, the 125 foot tall roller coaster, featuring over 2,000 feet of track, it sits near the historic B&B Carousell and the new Steeplechase Plaza, and marks another important milestone in Coney Island’s rebirth.
Chris' review and some great pictures.
In true Coney Island fashion (weather wise), the ride was running with sustained winds of 30+mph
There is absolutely no line ever because the first ride cost 10 dollars, even when it is 92 degrees on a beach day in the middle of the summer.
That being said, it was kind of awesome. Awesome in a way that this is the coolest coaster within 50 miles of my house.
It's like a euro fighter without head banging so it's tough to describe.
I came off the ride thinking, that was fun but again, somewhat perplexed.
Gauging the ride based upon stuff I actually love:
Is it worth 10 dollars a ride? Absolutely not. Is it really cool and easily the best roller coaster in New York? ABSOLUTELY.
Unfortunately, due to the weather and the cost, the only time we actually saw the ride run was when we rode it, so sadly no pictures of the ride in action.
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