Monday, January 25, 1999
With a new theme park opening this summer, Universal Studios will raise the price of its Orlando FlexTicket, which provides admission to Universal Studios Florida, SeaWorld Orlando and Wet 'n Wild.
The FlexTicket currently offers unlimited admission for up to seven consecutive days to Universal Studios Florida, SeaWorld Orlando and Wet 'n Wild. The cost is $114.43 for adults, including tax, and $95.35 for children ages 3 to 9.
The three-park ticket will continue to be sold after July 1 when Universal is set to open the new Islands of Adventure theme park. But a four-park ticket will cost $55 extra -- $169.55 for adults and $135.63 for children, 3 to 9.
No word yet on single-day ticket prices for Islands of Adventure.
In recent years, all three theme park companies have raised ticket prices each spring. Last year, prices increased for single-day tickets about $2 to $44.52 for adults. With most of the theme parks adding attractions, it's likely prices will rise again this year.
With Universal Studios CityWalk opening in coming weeks without a mandatory admission price, some have wondered whether it might force Disney World to lift its $20 price for Pleasure Island at Walt Disney World.
When Pleasure Island opened in 1989, people could pay $6 to visit one club or buy a pass to all the clubs for $15. Disney dropped the single-club price a year later, going to a flat fee.
In contrast, CityWalk will charge individual covers at clubs or charge $17.97, including tax, for a Key to the Clubs.
Karl Holz, vice president of Downtown Disney, said he doubts Disney will revert to individual cover charges at Pleasure Island to be competitive with CityWalk.
''That is always a possibility,'' he said. ''Pleasure Island is a unique entertainment complex. It is an adult theme park. I don't know if you can make the comparison'' with CityWalk.
About 60 young burn survivors and their ''burn buddies'' will be at Walt Disney World this weekend for an annual camp that helps burn survivors cope with their trauma.
Started in the early 1990s, the burn camp draws children from around Florida and the Southeast to share a weekend of games, music, and a visit to the theme parks with others who share similar scars and traumas.
The event is sponsored by American Burn Survival Foundation of Clearwater, various corporate sponsors, Disney World and Reedy Creek Emergency Services, the fire department that serves Disney World.
The Children's Burn Camp of Florida runs from Friday through Sunday at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort, a spokesman said. This year's event will host 115 children and their buddies, many of whom are firefighters. The group will visit the Magic Kingdom on Saturday.
Attraction attracting developers
Look for a 365-suite hotel to be developed near the Floridian Hotel in the International Drive area. Brokers say development interest there has soared following Universal Studios Escape's purchase of nearby land for theme-park expansion. The hotel -- the operator hasn't been selected yet -- would be developed by Seymour International Inc. Arranging the financing: Real Estate Mortgages International Inc. of Orlando.
An 18-hole addition
LeeVista Center will add an amenity: a golf course. Richard Lee, president of LeeVista Inc., the project's developer, said the course will be public. ''We have enough private courses in this area,'' he said. Lee said the 18-hole course is likely to be built within three or four years. The mixed-use development next to Orlando International Airport is expected to be a real estate hot spot for the next several years.
Too much of a thrill?
When Universal Studio Escape's Islands of Adventure opens this summer, the debate will start again on which theme park has the scariest ride. IOA's Dueling Dragons roller coasters may be in the running. Word is even the designers, when they rode it for the first time recently, worried they had miscalculated and would slam into a wall at one point. The ride features several near-misses, including near collisions with an oncoming coaster.
Silver Springs and Weeki Wachee are extending free admission to each other's annual holders this month... .
Cypress Gardens is celebrating the millennium with an offer of a new annual pass. Called the Century Pass, the three-year pass is available for $99.99. It includes free parking and 10 percent off food and merchandise... .
Church Street Station will host ''SalsaRengue,'' a Hispanic street party, on Feb. 6. Several bands will play and Hispanic cuisine will be served. Attendees can register to win a round-trip for two to Brazil on TransBrazil Airlines. Admission will be $5 for Florida residents... .
Two Central Floridians recently were named among the most influential African-Americans in the tourism-meetings industry by Black Meetings & Tourism magazine. They are: Tony Jenkins, manager of diversity services for Walt Disney World, and Ernest Boger, director of the hospitality management program at Bethune-Cookman College in Daytona Beach.
Lesley Clark of the Sentinel staff contributed to this report.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times