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  • Kissimmee Festival Of Lights Parade Returns This Saturday December 10, 2022

    Experience one of Central Florida’s premier nighttime parades as The Kissimmee Festival of Lights Parade will return to the streets of Historic Downtown Kissimmee on Saturday December 10. The Kissimmee Festival of Lights Parade is an annual tradition that is perfect for the whole family to enjoy. Join thousands of residents and visitors for a holiday event full of music, dancing and thousands of holiday lights. The parade will begin at 7:30 pm and we recommend you arrive at least 30 minutes early to find the perfect place to enjoy the event. Before the parade, head over to Kissimmee’s beautiful Lakefront Park Veterans Lawn for holiday festivities from 3 pm to 6.30 pm, including Letters to Santa, the KUA Kids Power Zone, where the kids will love decorating cookies and creating their own make-it-take-it ornaments. Plus, of course, it wouldn’t be a holiday party without Old Saint Nick, and Santa Clause will be ready for the perfect photo, before he makes his way over to the parade at 7:30 pm. The Kissimmee’s Festival of Lights Parade, is the perfect way to celebrate the holidays!

  • Cruise On Over To Downtown Longwood Cruise-In Car Show This Weekend

    Did you know that there is a car show every second Saturday of the month in Longwood? The Downtown Longwood Cruise-In Car Show is on the second Saturday of every month from 5:00 pm until 8:00 pm. in the Historic District of Longwood The evening features music from DJ Don (Cruisin’ Orlando), lots of food, and of course a vast selection of amazing show cars The latest car show is this weekend, on Saturday, December 10, and yes of all its free to attend! Every month on the second Saturday of the month, over 200 cars and trucks park along the beautiful oak shaded brick streets of Downtown Longwood. The Downtown Longwood Car Show takes place in Historic Downtown Longwood, 124 West Church Avenue. The event is presented by The City Of Longwood, and is free to attend and open to all.

  • Cast Members Support Toys For Tots At Disney's Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course

    Disney's Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course at Walt Disney World seems like the perfect location to celebrate the holidays, and Disney cast members from the Global Engineering Team recently celebrated the season of giving together at Disney's Winter Summerland Miniature Golf Course, bringing along donations for this year’s Disney Ultimate Toy Drive supporting the Marine Toys for Tots Program. Joining them for the jolly memories and laughs, were members of the U.S. Marine Corps, who enjoyed played a round with the team before collecting the donations. This event highlights how Walt Disney World's cast members creatively connect with our local community here in Central Florida, helping make a world of difference for local children and families in need this holiday season.

  • Egg-citingly Free Holiday Activity Returns To Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge For The Holidays

    If you are looking for a fun and “egg-citing” activity to get you in the holiday spirit, try decorating a tree ornament with ostrich shells at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. Throughout December, you can create a mosaic-like ornament made from crushed and dyed ostrich eggs. Guests of all ages can make a whimsical ornament that uses real eggs laid by ostriches at the resort and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park. With no male ostriches at the park or resort, these eggs remain unfertilized and go unused by the female ostriches who lay them on a cycle similar to chickens. Once cleaned, the eggs are crushed and colorfully dyed, glued onto an animal-shaped ornament of your choosing and tied off with a recycled telephone wire. Walt Disney World Ambassador Ali Manion shares her “eggs-pertise” creating an ornament, which she plans to hang on her own tree as a special reminder of her time as an Ambassador. This is just one of the experiences at Walt Disney World Resort that helps to engage our guests in learning about animals and protecting wildlife globally. At the end of the activity, you’ll bring home a special keepsake reminiscent of all the wildlife you’ve seen and memories you’ve made during your visit to Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. Guests can participate by visiting the recreation clubhouses at Jambo House from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Kidani Village from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. until December 31.

  • Anaïs Mitchell's Award Winning Musical Hadestown Comes To Orlando Next Week

    The Greek-inspired hit musical Hadestown is making its very first visit to Orlando as part of the Broadway In Orlando series at Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. The production will take place in The Walt Disney Theater this December, from the 13th through until the 18th, 2022 Winner of eight 2019 Tony Awards including Best Musical and the 2020 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album , this acclaimed new show by celebrated singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and innovative director Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812) is a love story for today...and always. Such is the popularity of this production, Hadestown is currently sold out for it's entire Orlando run, but last minute cancellations do occur, and right now select tickets are available. Anyone without a ticket and wanting to see this show is advised to keep checking DrPhillipsCenter.org for tickets, or to contact the venue box office on 407 358 6603. Hadestown intertwines two mythic tales—that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and that of King Hades and his wife Persephone—as it invites you on a hell-raising journey to the underworld and back. Mitchell’s beguiling melodies and Chavkin’s poetic imagination pit industry against nature, doubt against faith, and fear against love. Performed by a vibrant ensemble of actors, dancers and singers, Hadestown is a haunting and hopeful theatrical experience that grabs you and never lets go.

  • Moving Scenes At Disney's Magic Kingdom For The Snowball Express Walk Of Gratitude

    Earlier this week we reported that Actor Gary Sinise and the Gary Sinise Foundation are hosting 800 families of fallen military heroes at Walt Disney World Resort as part of its Snowball Express Program. The five-day experience kicked off on December 3, and runs through today, December 7. The trip began with around 2,000 family members from all across the country flying to Orlando aboard The Snowball Express to enjoy a magical stay here in Orlando, at Walt Disney World. Now, Walt Disney World have shared some incredibly moving scenes from yesterday, as more than 1,000 Disney VoluntEARS lined Main Street, U.S.A. to welcome more than 1,850 children and surviving spouses & families of fallen military heroes during a special Walk of Gratitude as part of the Gary Sinise Foundation’s SnowballExpress. At sunrise, more than 1,850 children and surviving spouses and the families of fallen military heroes were greeted by more than 1,000 Disney VoluntEARS – along Main Street, U.S.A., as they walked toward Cinderella Castle to participate in a moving ceremony to honor their fallen parents. The special Castle stage moment culminated when messages the children wrote to their lost parents were sent skyward for them to read with the help of Disney magic. The Snowball Express is a five-day healing retreat that serves the children of fallen military heroes, surviving spouses, and their families. Throughout the annual event, these families have an opportunity to bond with the only people who can truly understand their loss: one another. Snowball Express was started after the publication of a letter from a soldier to his wife. U.S. Army Private First Class Jesse Givens had left the letter behind when he deployed to Iraq, instructing her in a note on the envelope to only open it if something happened to him. Following his death in Iraq while serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom May 3, 2003, his wife opened the letter. It conveyed how much he loved his family and the things that he wanted them to do. Among his requests was that his wife make sure she took their children to Disney Parks. After the letter was published, readers believed hundreds of other families were in the same situation and took the families to Disneyland Resort in 2006 as most participants lived in California. Gary Sinise became involved with Snowball Express a year later where he would volunteer his band The Lt. Dan Band to perform every year since. As the event grew larger, it moved to Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas in 2009. The program officially became part of the Gary Sinise Foundation in 2017 and moved to Walt Disney World Resort in 2018. “While our hearts are heavy at the circumstances that brought these families together, I am grateful we can honor them, remembering their loved ones who are no longer with us, as we wrap our arms around each and every one of them,” said actor and humanitarian Gary Sinise. “As we approach the holiday season, I am so glad that for the first time since our amazing event in 2019, we are once again able to bring these deserving families together to create new and wonderful memories at the most magical place on earth, Walt Disney World Resort.”

  • Barrio Tacos First Florida Location At Waterford Lakes Now Open

    The much anticipated arrival of Barrio Tacos in Florida has is finally here! Barrio Tacos held its grand opening on Tuesday, December 6 at its first Florida location in Waterford Lakes at 749 N. Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32828. The Ohio-based taco restaurant is well known for its build-your-own tacos, queso and margaritas, and if you dive into the menu you'll also discover savory buffalo chicken queso, pineapple salsa and Tuscan guacamole! At Tuesday's grand opening, a line of excited customers had formed, eagerly waiting to try Orlando's latest food sensation. Similar to the chain’s other 17 locations, this Barrio Tacos has amazing Day of the Dead themed murals throughout the restaurant, created by Cleveland artist Michael McNamara. Barrio is known for having great food & service.We're also known for our vast selection oftequila, whiskey, and beer. The atmosphere is casual with a unique energy that's created from the combination of the themed decor, awesome music, and amazing staff. Want a custom designed taco with all your favorite fixings? At Barrio, YOU get to select as many or as few items you'd like to have on your taco. The new Orlando store is open seven days per week. Sunday: 11:00 am-11:00 pm Monday: 11:00 am-11:00 pm Tuesday: 11:00 am-11:00 pm Wednesday: 2:30 pm-11:00 pm Thursday: 11:00 am-11:00 pm Friday: 11:00 am-12:00 am Saturday: 11:00 am-12:00 am

  • Izzy The Dolphin Finds Her Forever Home At Clearwater Marine Aquarium

    Clearwater Marine Aquarium is now the forever home to a new non-releasable juvenile bottlenose dolphin. Estimated to be 5-years-old and known as Izzy Izzy is a female dolphin that was rescued in June of 2022 by NOAA partners – the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network, Texas State Aquarium, and SeaWorld San Antonio. Sadly, after years of illegal human interaction in the wild caused her health to decline to the point of requiring intervention and medical attention as she wasn't healthy enough to survive on her own. “We are so pleased that Izzy now has a safe place to call home and that she will stand for something,” said Heidi Whitehead, Executive Director of the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network. “Izzy belongs in the wild but despite our persistent efforts to protect her over the course of three years, she became increasingly habituated to humans and boats putting her at high risk for serious, life-threatening injury.” First spotted alone in December of 2019 in canals adjacent to a nearby neighborhood in North Padre Island, Izzy became a popular attraction where the public would seek her out to swim with, ride, jump on, feed, and pet her. Their experiences were being shared via social media which encouraged others to interact with her. Eventually, Izzy, named after the Island or Isla, started showing dangerous behaviors towards people and had signs of injuries likely caused by a collision with a boat. “It’s extremely disappointing that human behavior took away Izzy’s ability to live safely in her natural habitat,” said Kelly Martin, VP of Zoological Care at Clearwater Marine Aquarium. “Our expert Animal Care team is familiar with cases like Izzy’s as our own resident PJ demonstrated behavior which may have also been due to habituation to humans. We will take our time with Izzy and let her tell us when she is ready to be introduced to her new social group with Hope and Apollo,” said Martin. “Above all, we want to establish trust and ensure she is safe and healthy.” Clearwater Marine Aquarium is home to four resident bottlenose dolphins and two rough-toothed dolphins, all have been deemed non-releasable and whose stories serve as an educational opportunity for guests. “We knew Clearwater Marine Aquarium would be a great fit for Izzy because of their experienced animal care staff, veterinarian team, and also because of the social group already established with Hope and Apollo,” said Erin Fougères, Marine Mammal Stranding Program Administrator for NOAA. “CMA’s dedication to educating their guests and followers about the lessons to be learned from each of their resident’s stories is encouraging. We know that Izzy’s experience will serve to teach others about the dangers of interacting with wild dolphins. “ Izzy joins her new pod at the Ruth & J.O. Stone Dolphin Complex at Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s facility in Clearwater, Florida. In 2020, CMA opened an $80 million expansion including the brand new 1.5-million-gallon dolphin habitat. Learn more at cmaquarium.org. “We want to thank the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network, NOAA, SeaWorld San Antonio, Texas State Aquarium, Texas Parks and Wildlife, and the concerned citizens of North Padre Island for their tireless efforts to protect Izzy and get her the medical attention she needs,” said Joe Handy, Clearwater Marine Aquarium CEO. “We are so appreciative of the attention and care she’s received thus far and look forward to giving her the loving, safe forever home she deserves.” Dolphins are protected federally under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The Act provides for both civil and criminal penalties for harassing, feeding, or disturbing the animal. Please view wild dolphins from a safe distance and do not feed or attempt to feed them–it’s illegal and harmful. If you see a marine mammal in distress, do not intervene. Call trained responders at (877) WHALE-HELP. Please remain at a safe distance and, if conditions allow, take photos to share with biologists once they arrive on scene.

  • Universal Orlando Annual Passholder Lounge Moving Into Betty Boop Store At Islands of Adventure

    The Betty Boop Store in Universal Orlando's Islands Of Adventure is closing forever, with Betty Boop waving goodbye to the theme park! The Betty Boop Store in Toon Lagoon at Universal’s Islands of Adventure will be transformed into a new Universal Orlando Annual Passholder lounge. Great news for Annual Passholders, but sadly the current lounge at Universal Studios Florida will close on December 31. The Betty Book store in Islands Of Adventure is currently still open, and no official closing date for the transformation into an Annual Passholder lounge has been announced. Universal has posted a teaser for the move that drops the new location, and a timeline of easy 2023 for the new lounge opening, although no official opening date has been announced.

  • Star Wars Actress Ashley Eckstein Enjoys Intergalactic Fun At Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

    Incoming transmission! After a recent voyage aboard Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, actress Ashley Eckstein joined crew members to reminisce on all the intergalactic fun during an excursion to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – from interacting with new and familiar characters, to learning the art of wielding a lightsaber, tasting otherworldly cuisine and so much more. Ashley Eckstein is best known for voicing the role of Ahsoka Tano throughout the Star Wars franchise, beginning with Star Wars: The Clone Wars in 2008. As well as Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Ashley has voiced Ahsoka Tano in Star Wars Rebels, Star Wars Forces of Destiny, and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Eckstein then reprised her role as Ahsoka with a short voice cameo in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Eckstein was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but was raised right here in Orlando, Florida, where her first job was as a cast member at Disney-MGM Studios! In 2010, Eckstein started Her Universe, a fashion brand of science-fiction-themed clothing targeted at girls and women. In 2012, Disney began selling Her Universe products at Disneyland and here in Walt Disney World.

  • Ring In 2023 At Universal: New Year’s Eve Celebrations Coming To Universal Studios Florida!

    Great news coming from Universal Orlando Resort as this year the resort WILL be celebrating New Years Eve! Universal guests will be ringing in the new year at Universal Studios Florida this year. Although a formal announcement has not been made, it is believed that the celebrations on December 31 will be similar to the July 4 celebration earlier this year. The hours for December 31 at Universal Studios Florida have already been extended until 1:00 a.m. As we await an official announcement from Universal, the resorts social media team have been testing the announcement on social media. The New Years Eve celebrations should be happen from 6:15 p.m. until 1:00 a.m. in the Music Plaza of Universal Studios Florida. Happy New Year!

  • It's The Most Frightful Time Of The Year At Sir Henry's Haunted Christmas In Plant City

    Are you ready for a not so silent night?! Sir Henry's Haunted Christmas event opens this coming Friday, December 9, for 6 nights only. On select nights, December 9 through 18, Sir Henry’s Haunted Trail in Plant City is hosting a spooky, and real twisted Christmas event! Running for two weekends only, Sir Henry’s Haunted Christmas features two terrifying trails, multiple highly-themed escape games, axe throwing, laser tag, and more scarily spooky festive fun than Santa can fit in his sack. The centerpiece of this years Sir Henry’s Haunted Christmas is two highly-themed and story-driven holiday trails: Slay Bells, and Krampusnacht II. Once a place of happiness and merriment, the North Pole has become a place of chaos and terror. As more and more children choose to stop believing in Santa Clause, the magic is being slowly drained away. Mr and Mrs Claus have sunk into a dark depression and can’t seem to find the motivation to get out of their cabin. Leaving the North Pole to the elves, who have become insatiable with anger. Who do these kids think they are? After all that Santa has done for them? Well no more, the elves are taking revenge. Lumps of coal are just child’s play compared to the plans these elves have. They are burning down the North Pole and taking all the non-believers with them. Will you survive the horror that now reigns at the North Pole? Krampus is lurking in the halls....Will you escape him this Krampusnacht?! The Sullivan children are the most spoiled kids in town. Every Christmas, they look down upon the less fortunate and parade their new toys around for all to see, while calling the penniless children names in a cruel fashion. This year, the town’s children have begged and pleaded for Santa to give the Sullivan children lumps of coal, but someone else has heard their pleas. On Christmas Eve, the entitled children wake to strange sounds coming from their living room, and thinking that it’s Santa, they jump out of their beds. Instead, they find that Krampus has come to punish the family. He even brought along his merry band of miscreants to ensure that they learn their lesson. The screams can be heard from miles away, and there is no escape for the Sullivan family. Will Krampus get you, too? The elves have lost it at the North Pole and they are taking their wrath out on anyone who they see fit. Will you survive the terror of "Slay Bells"?! Lil' Jimmy is back and hungry for blood! See if you can escape his evil bake shop before he cuts you up and bakes you into a cookie! "Gingerbread Escape" will be one of 2 escape rooms at this years twisted holiday event. Watch out! You never know who will be lurking for you behind a corner at this twisted North Pole! Tickets are available now and must be purchased online in advance.

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