SeaWorld is slated to make their 2017 announcement on Tuesday. However, details have already been released by the company. The biggest news is that Kraken will get the VR treatment by early next summer. Instead of having individual headsets, the coaster will have the VR sets built into the coaster. It will cover your ears and eyes and judging by the concept art, will have you coming face to fang with all kinds of creatures of the deep, including the Mighty Kraken. VR is taking huge strides on not only coasters, but also on huge haunted attractions. This year alone the technology will be used at Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando and Knott’s Scary Farm (among other Cedar Fair Parks). If all goes well with Kraken, you can expect to see more coasters fitted with the new technology at other SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Parks.
Also coming next Summer is Electric Ocean. The new show will feature bio-luminescent lighting, live performers, music, and a fireworks finale. More details will be released over the next few months, but it will headline the huge Summer Nights program. It will take place at Bayside Stadium. On the show front, another show will premiere at the Nautilus theater beginning Memorial Day. There are no details, but it will be the first theatrical show performed in the theater since A’Lure: Call of the Ocean closed a few years back.
SeaWorld will also bring craft beers into the park with the Flamecraft Bar. Located adjacent to the SeaFire Grill along the waterfront area, Flamecraft will provide a great place to pause for a drink in a casual atmosphere. The Flamecraft Bar will feature 16 seasonal craft brews and a new menu to tempt the taste buds.
On the festival front, SeaWorld will be bringing the popular Seven Seas Food Festival from SeaWorld San Antonio and SeaWorld San Diego. The popular food festival includes tastes from all corners of the seven seas, and includes tastes from many different countries. The sister events include cooking demonstrations, and entertainment, and even food sculptures and artists.
The event will essentially absorb the existing festivals, but it will add a total of 14 weekends instead of the current line up. Don’t worry you will still get everything you’ve come to love from events like Bands, Brew and Viva La Musica, but you will also get a lot more. There will be more weekends of food and entertainment, all under the name of Seven Seas Food Festival. Again, the existing events are not going anywhere, but they will just become part of a bigger event.
Another major addition will be the expansion of the Dolphin Nursery. The Nursery will get a complete overhaul, which will include replacing the current concrete walls with acrylic. This will give guests a chance to see the dolphins underwater, and give the baby dolphins some time to interact with guests. There will also be new slide outs, and digital displays that will give conservation information, as well as information about the dolphins in the pool. It will add to the already massive cute factor that the Baby Dolphins already have. It is expected to open next spring.
Passholders, SeaWorld didn’t forget about you. Aquatica Orlando will get it’s very own Passholder Lounge, which will offer sunscreen, a private entrance to the parks buffet, and of course, animal encounters. The new passholder lounge is expected to be open before next spring, and is inspired by the huge success of the SeaWorld Orlando Passholder Lounge. That lounge offers free phone charging stations as well as drinks, and table service food.
There could be more details released in the future, but what do you think about the 2017 additions so far? It’s shaping up to be another big year, after this year’s massive addition, Mako.