I feel like people will enjoy the ride when they're in the park, I'm just skeptical that anyone's going to be driving down I-4 and see an Infinity Falls billboard between the Harry Potter billboard and the Pandora billboard and plan a trip to SeaWorld... especially since Disney and Universal already have very similar attractions.
I just don't know if a ride with a heavy staffing commitment that's expensive to operate is the right move for SeaWorld unless it actually draws some gate. I'm sure it'll be fun and I'm sure they'll make it look great and maybe this is why they get paid the big bucks and I don't but I'm pretty confused by Infinity Falls.
That said, I love the Sesame Street move. I love it even more because it's opening in the same year that Star Wars land and Potter coaster are opening. SeaWorld can't compete with that, so capitalizing on a strong kids IP that appeals to an entirely different demographic than those areas seems brilliant. I don't know how much faith I have in Infinity Falls moving the needle though.
coasterbill wrote:I just don't know if a ride with a heavy staffing commitment that's expensive to operate is the right move for SeaWorld unless it actually draws some gate. I'm sure it'll be fun and I'm sure they'll make it look great and maybe this is why they get paid the big bucks and I don't but I'm pretty confused by Infinity Falls.
I'm as ignorant as anyone about the industry but I would guess that the initial cost of the attraction was considerably less than Mako or another full size coaster. Concrete is a lot cheaper than steel so maybe the costs of the project off set the long term operations expense.
coasterbill wrote:I feel like people will enjoy the ride when they're in the park, I'm just skeptical that anyone's going to be driving down I-4 and see an Infinity Falls billboard between the Harry Potter billboard and the Pandora billboard and plan a trip to SeaWorld... especially since Disney and Universal already have very similar attractions.
I mean realistically would anything SeaWorld built attract people over Universal or Disney? I feel like generally speaking people come to Orlando for multi day trips to Disney and Universal, then maybe add on some other parks/attractions here and there in between so similar rides at other parks maybe isn't that big of a deal. If it does matter then maybe this will tick of Universal enough to build a Flying Dinosaur Coaster in Jurassic Park haha.
"Oh you wanna build a rapids ride huh, two can play this game, get B&M on the phone! stick to you're fish shows and Sesame Street....." -Some Universal Executive (probably not)
At the end of the day I don't know, and that's why I don't work in marketing for SeaWorld. I'm 100% confident that Universal and Disney have zero interest in what SeaWorld does, but SeaWorld has mentioned on conference calls that they're very in tune with what everyone else is doing because they pretty much have to be. Hell, they even blamed the late opening of Diagon Alley for their attendance drop once.
Again, I hope I'm wrong and Infinity Falls is a huge hit.
It really feels like this attraction was designed to give Sea World a great water ride (for the Florida heat) and a tag line (big drop on a river rapids ride). I don't think this ride will make tourist change their plans but, it gives Sea World a nice new ride to attract those local passholder crowds. With Florida's population now the 3rd biggest of any state, with over 20 million, they may just find their new growth model with becoming the 'ticket' for locals.
Hopefully this ride will be ready to go soon. It looks like a great addition to the park. I think once the landscaping grows in over the next few years it will really complement Sea World's beautiful grounds.
The new store.
It looks like this ride will really shine after dark.
So the second half of the tower spiral thing is just for decoration... right? It looks like the actual ride is about half way up where the stairs are. Or am I completely missing something. Just seems weird to me? (shrug)
Holiday giant Thomas Cook has announced it will stop selling trips to animal parks that keep killer whales.
The firm said more than 90% of its customers were concerned about animal welfare.
The two parks it will stop selling tickets to as a result are SeaWorld, in Florida, and Loro Parque in Tenerife.
"This was not a decision we took lightly," chief executive Peter Fankhauser said as he announced the new policy.
In a blog post, he acknowledged that both parks had met standards and had made improvements to how animals were kept.
But, he said: "From next summer, we will no longer sell any animal attractions that keep orcas in captivity.
"We have actively engaged with a range of animal welfare specialists in the last 18 months, and taken account of the scientific evidence they have provided.
"We have also taken feedback from our customers, more than 90% of whom told us that it was important that their holiday company takes animal welfare seriously.
"And when so many of our customers are so clear in their view, I could not allow our business to ignore them," Mr Fankhauser said.
"I am clear about the kind of business that we want to be. That's why we introduced our animal welfare policy 18 months ago, and that's why we've taken this decision today."
Criticism of keeping orcas in captivity has intensified since a 2013 Netflix documentary Blackfish about a performing killer whale called Tilikum.
SeaWorld's visitor numbers fell, although the theme park described Blackfish as "manipulative".
Last year, Thomas Cook began an audit of 49 animal parks to see if they met its policy on animal welfare, based on standards set by ABTA (the Association of British Travel Agents). Some 29 failed, and the travel firm stopped selling tickets.
The latest ban was announced on Sunday.
Mr Fankhauser said: "We will work with both [theme parks] over the next 12 months to prepare for our exit.... We will also continue to work ourselves to identify more sustainable alternatives.
Ugh, Blackfish. I'm into animal rights. I don't believe circuses should be using elephants, tigers, etc. I don't eat meat. I think it's disgusting what we do to animals on a daily basis. BUT even I found Blackfish to be very one sided. Most documentaries are so skewed for the audience to see what the filmmaker wants them to see. I don't understand how people don't realize this. I support Sea World and their conservation efforts. They said they're stopping breeding the Orca, what more do people want? They can't be released into the wild. I'm gonna stop because I could go on forever about this subject. I love that Cook won't sell to parks that have substandard care for their animals, but Sea World isn't one of them.
Sounds like they're saying that Sea World met their standards but they're still not selling tickets. That seems biased to me, like they did this audit of the 49 parks specifically to exclude SeaWorld, and when their own audit showed SeaWorld's one of the good ones, they just went according to their pre-conceived idea anyway.
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