Universal Orlando: Potter, Dragon, and Hulk Updates


It’s early March. The countdown to the opening of Harry Potter is just screaming away, and yet the more work they do, the more work seems like it needs to be done. But I’m getting ahead of myself. In this update we have some quick looks around Islands of Adventure, Universal Studios and CityWalk, including some looks at the rehabs going on Incredible Hulk, Dueling Dragons, and of course Harry Potter.

First up, Hulk! I dont know what they’re doing. The monster coaster is in desperate need of a makeover, but time is getting ever close to the Spring Break season. They already have one coaster down with Dueling Dragons, and to have another of their key coasters down during such a busy time would be a death sentence. So instead of closing the whole thing down, it looks as if they are doing it in pieces, with very little done to the tracks yet.

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Around to Toon Lagoon and Jurassic Park. Things are looking great in Toon Lagoon, and Jurassic Park…well… did go down for rehab a few weeks ago but a whole bunch of things were missing. In fact, nothing was working right except for the doors and the Stegos. In sharp comparison, over at the Studios JAWS was completely working…including the flames across the water! Honestly they should have had Hulk down first then worried about taking this ride down later. Back to Toon Lagoon, something was up over the Doghouse…basic cleaning I suppose.

Dueling Dragons went down last week to make the transformation into Dragons Challenge. Nothing really can be seen of it, and some say its not changing….but there is a subtle little change. I wasn’t sure of it at first. But it looks as if they are changing Fire into a deep magenta purplish color. And Ice? Well, I had to take several different shots in different light, but it looks like they are painting that sucker a brighter blue. Subtle differences.

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And now, onto Potter. You would think that with the closure of Dragons things would be flying up all over the place,but the biggest edition to the area seems to be two HUGE flying hog statues at the entrance to Hogwarts. These look like they may be animatronic, or lit up, or they simply have them covered to avoid damage to the facial features. But if you look closely at the wings, you can see they went a very brushed bronze and gave a lot of detail to them. The greenhouse is amazing. It is getting that old used look more and more. The three broomsticks is putting on huts on the back porch. the white aluminum is being painted to give it that wooden look, and I bet we see some thatch going up soon. But the most impressive thing happening at Potter is the light. The lanterns are lit, and in the night light you can see a lot of details that you weren’t able to see in the daylight. The snow on the roofs sparkle like freshly fallen snow, and you can even see some of the icicles coming off the roofs as well. Late last week Universal sent out picture of the Hogwarts Express blowing smoke. If you look closely you can see a ramp leading up to it. Is this just an entrance into the owl post? Or is this just for effect? Maybe we’ll see something else happening over there like perhaps all the students will come from backstage as if they just exited the HE? Exciting!

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CityWalk opened it’s latest venue Fat Tuesday! And we have some great new very detailed pics chronicling every little bit of it. Ready? Hope you can take in this great new venue!

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Can you contain yourself? It’s amazing right? All kidding aside, I see a missed opportunity here. Fat Tuesday is a big party place the world over, and the best that the premiere party spot of Orlando gets is…..A Slurpee Stand? I vote we downsize Latin Quarter, put in a full scale Fat Tuesdays, or even better…so as to not go against Pat O’briens Senior Frogs! In fact I have a plan to revitalize the entire CityWalk complex and add a little more for everyone….in a later article.

That about wraps it up for this week’s update. And now…for some Random Pictures

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