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Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-11 22:02:24

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Ok, so here is my lengthy and candid trip report of the park. Just because I'm a huge fan/advocate doesn't mean I can't be objective!

So here we go:


-- Part 1 --

Well, got back from the park yesterday and had a great time! Of course it was nearly impossible to get my son to leave! Anyway, here goes:

I knew the parking lot opened at 9am, so I decided to get there early. We arrive at about 9:15 and waited around a bit before heading towards the entrance. I briefly talked with a parking attendant who said that a tram was coming soon, but it was in the certification stages. Glad to hear that, I'd hate for people to start their day at the park tired already!

Didn't wait long before they pre-opened the gates for The Beginning. Fun Town was still off-limits until 10am, but we got to check out The Big Shop and take photos of the models. My son was getting into the photo taking too.

We headed over and hopped on the Island in the Sky, which was a favorite of both of ours back in the CG days. They now have a recorded narrator that gives the aerial tour. Frankly, the only words I remember was "The Island in the Sky has been an icon of Winter Haven for nearly 30 years..." Another thing is that won't let you stand up anymore. Kind of annoying to have some tweenie bopper telling you to sit down, especially since I've been going on that ride since before she was born!



After Fun Town opened, we headed over to the castle... I wasn't sure if it was going to rain or not, so I wanted to get my son on The Dragon coaster. This was his first roller coaster ever and I had been preparing him for months by showing him YouTube videos of the Okeechobee Rampage... There was no wait, but when I asked what to do with my umbrella the front attendants said they weren't allowed to hold on to anything. I really just wanted to set it down at the exit to the coaster and the ride attendant set it on the railing for me.



The castle scenes go by pretty fast... I've seen the video of the California version and it seems longer. Also the red Dragon himself isn't themed as good as the CA version. The gold isn't as noticeable as it's on the other side on him (your eyes are drawn to the dragon and you can easily miss all the gold stuff.) Plus there was some walls that were blank except for a colored light pattern. The coaster part is just as fun as ever and slightly longer since they added some track sections to lead back into the castle. I did notice that the paint was already wearing off... they might want to use something more durable!

Next we checked out The Forestmen's Hideout. My son took the camera up there and got some rather unique shots! I now know where the wolves are kept! This was a pretty cool play area for the kids.



Then we headed over to the Lost Kingdom Adventure. I love the theming outside! I had a feeling they'd make Lego hieroglyphs on the outside walls and I was right! (Although no R2-D2 and C-3PO like from Raiders of the Lost Ark.) The ride was a blast and I can see why this is a favorite! (I only wish they had themeing on the ceilings.)



Another favorite of my son's was the Pharaoh's Revenge attraction where they shoot foam balls at each other. I guess I could have left him there for a couple of hours... Seems the kids loved this structure, but I was too big to go in... Miniland was nearby, so I took some shots from there.

So I had intended to go towards Lego City next, but my son couldn't stand it anymore and wanted to see Miniland. We probably spent an hour there taking photos of everything (well, almost.) It's just amazing... There's a story going on in every square inch of it. My son had already seen the "Treasure Hunter" and wanted to find it. I noticed quite a but of gunk growing in the water and one of the MC's said he thought that was intentional. Personally I doubt they want it to look THAT gross!

Saw the shuttle... I thought the countdown was 00:30 seconds so we waited... Turned out it was actually 08:30! Wow, I figured they'd have it on a shorter countdown than that! Saw Vegas, NY, DC, Pirate land... Somehow manged to miss a photo of the Capital building... Maybe that's due to my feelings towards Washington these days... Oh well. I'll get it next time. Also asked one of the MC's about Star Wars Miniland. He wasn't sure about if it was coming or where it was going, but we know from our buddy Manngunn that it'll be coming next year sometime. There is plenty of room between Miniland and the lake where it can go, assuming that's not protected land.

Dunno what else can be said about Miniland that hasn't been said already. It's truly amazing and don't sell it short as one of the primary reasons to visit.

(Stay tuned for Part 2!)

See all the photos here!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by LEGOLANDfan2011-10-12 07:48:51

LEGOLANDfan
Orlando, Florida

Purple Peg
93 Posts
Great report! I'm just a bit sad about your description of the Dragon. I've already seen the Lost Kingdom Adventure, and it was great, but I was really looking forward to see the Dragon... Now, I'm afraid I will be a bit disappointed.
 
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LEGOLAND Florida - a playful World of LEGOŽ adventures.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-12 09:32:51

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Well, it's possible they still have some stuff to add. And maybe it will slow down a bit once (if) they add the 2nd train. Still a fun ride though.
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Sean2011-10-12 17:45:07

Sean

--Guest--
Nice trip report Greg...glad your son had a great time. Look forward to reading part 2.
Quote:
I noticed quite a but of gunk growing in the water and one of the MC's said he thought that was intentional.
Hmmm...maybe it was intentional; it fits in perfectly with their botanical garden theme.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-12 20:54:29

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
-- Part 2 --

After Miniland we headed towards the Ski Show area stopping at the Lakeside Sandwich Shop, which was beautifully refurbished. We were looking for a soft-drink, but this place only stocked water, vitamin water, juice, wraps, and sandwiches and stuff. I think I will be coming back here sometime for food, but I really wanted a cola (I'd say "Coke" but Legoland is a Pepsi park) so we stopped off a Brickbeard's Burger shop.

At this point, the wife and son headed towards the Technic area while I went to inspect the Gardens. It was a quick run through, but I still got a lot of photos! I think everything looks great except for the water and the statute of St. Francis which was nearly black with mold. Of course the Florida pool was off-limits and there were fences blocking the path well in advance of it. Also saw the Wave Runner parts over the fence. Wonder if they'll be using it for the water park?

So the gardens look great, and I went to find the wife and kid. They had gone on the Power Towers and the Aquazone Wave Racers and loved both. I was not about to over-exert myself on the Power Towers, so I took a ride on the Wave Racers. Those things look kinda boring, but they're really a TOTAL BLAST! Also, the area on the map looks kind of small, but it's really HUGE. They'll be able to add a lot more stuff in there if they want. One nitpick about the Wave Racers... The entrance is on the far side if you're coming from Lego City. I kinda wished they had flipped it around. No big deal though.



We went back to the Ski Show and ate hamburgers at Brickbeard's right before the show started. The show was pretty good for kids. There weren't a lot of stunts but there was a LOT of narration... I'd rather see more action and less talking. You'll definitely get wet if you sit in the first 1/2 of the stadium as they have water canons facing the crowd. Also, we had a bit of a surprise at our show since the actress fell into the water at her introduction. She got right back up soon after and the show didn't miss a beat. Definitely see it at least once.

Then I wanted to see Lego City so we headed over to the Boating School first. The wife and son went on this and I watched. There were a lot of Lego characters around, but the one thing I was fascinated with was the MC who was in the water guiding the boats into the docking at the end. What an awful job THAT must be!



Next we moved over to Driving School. The MC seemed very excited about the Lego Ford Explorer outside before he showed us the video of it being made (the same one you've probably seen on YouTube a million times.) Then there was a brief video explaining the "rules of the road" for the kid drivers. I did notice that the rooms inside Driving School were plain grey with nothing on them. No paintings or sculptures or anything. I hope they add something to it (maybe windows?) So the boy drove around on the road. He was very careful and had to navigate around several cars that were not being used. When he was done he said he liked that much better than the Boating School.



So I took a quick jaunt up to see the Swampthing... err... Flying School! They've done a good job making the walk up to it worthwhile, but I hope they add more attractions along the way. The queue line was nicely themed with the hangar and the plane decoration out front. There's also a photo station you'll come to at the end of the ride. Up here they've also done a pretty good job hiding Splash Island, but I did see a building over there with the old Splash Island logo on it.



At this point, we were ready to head back, but I wanted to go through Land of Adventure since I missed Coastersaurus and the Safari Trek ride earlier. There's definitely a jungle theme going on at this 1/2 of the LOA section and the Coaster feels like a scene from Jurassic Park. Great theming here. The Safari Trek was a bit of a disappointment. Seemed kind of short, but the models looked very cool.



Then my son wanted to hit every ride we missed from before! He went on the Royal Joust, The Dragon (again, but this time with the wife), Lost Kingdom Adventure, and Merlin's Challenge (with me.) Thankfully he liked the Dragon better then 2nd time around. I think he was getting used to it. Merlin's Challenge was pretty cool if you're into those type of rides. I was ready to get off about 30 seconds into it though. I also took a quick glance at the Princess area. I think little girls are going to go crazy for all the dresses and stuff they have there!

(Stay tuned for Part 3!)

See all the photos here!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by LEGOLANDfan2011-10-12 21:35:37

LEGOLANDfan
Orlando, Florida

Purple Peg
93 Posts
I'm very happy to know that the Aquazone Wave Racers' area is bigger than it looks on the map. From the drawing it looks way too small, with the entrance to Test Track almost attached to the back of the Wave Racers.

Thanks again for the great review.

By the way, just 2 more days before the Grand Opening!!
 
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LEGOLAND Florida - a playful World of LEGOŽ adventures.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-12 22:39:54

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Yeah, there's a lot of space (just about everywhere) for new additions. I didn't think there would be after years of walking through CGAP!

Also, I'm slowly getting through all my photos. The reason it takes me so long is because I'm trying to create a narrative (with captions) and want to keep all the related photos together. I don't want to slap them up willy-nilly like some other sites! (That, and I only have a short amount of time each night to sort them!)

I just added the Duplo Area tonight. Next will be the Castle area. I think I will save Miniland for last because I've broken that up further into the different areas and there's a LOT for me to figure out where it all goes. So, thanks for being patient.
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-12 23:45:22

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
-- Part 3 --

So we finally *tried* to head out... I checked out Dulplo briefly and took some photos. This area is HUGE and they have a lot of room to expand. Can't wait to see what else comes of it.



The wife got some Apple Fries... Not what I expected... I thought the fries would be more solid, but they were kind of hollowed out, much like shoestring french fries. They were great though and I'll be getting them again (when the wife isn't looking!)

Then my son wanted to go on the Carousel which made me happy. We have a very special photo of him on that Carousel on our refrigerator where he is reaching out toward me with a carefree smile on his face. This time though he didn't ride a horse, but sat on the upper deck bench. Guess he's getting too old for horses! As for the Carousel, it looks wonderful and I'm delighted that Legoland kept it!



We next checked out the Lego Factory, which was less than I expected. I wanted something that looked "real" not the plastic fake stuff that was there. The lady attending it was from California and had a special gold name tag. She said that Lego is constantly updating and adding things, so that left me with a great deal of hope.



At the end of the Factory is the Pick-a-Brick. Again, not as grand as I expected. I had hoped to see practically every specialty brick ever made, but alas, it was mostly standard bricks, flat bricks, studs, some hinges, wheels, axles... All but a few were the standard square shaped pieces and I really wanted some large flat triangular pieces for a special project. One thing that they DEFINITELY need at Pick-a-Brick are *TABLES*. I think kids would spend a lot of time in here making stuff if they could sit down to do it.

Over at the Minifigure Market they had a small selection of minifigure parts. Seemed to be less than 5 different parts for each section (head, body, legs, and hat/hair.) I hope they get a wider variety in the future!



It was about this time that I saw Adrian Jones walking through the park with a co-worker. I almost called out, but thought better of it. I hoped to see him near the exit, but he was gone. Maybe I'll get to say "hi" on Saturday at the opening.

Final thoughts: They've done a great job revamping the park into Legoland and I'm certain that we're in store for more attractions and theming in the future. A couple of things I've noticed is that the matching attractions seem about 10-20% smaller than their California counterparts. Driving School, Boating School, The Dragon, the Factory Tour, the Power Towers and Safari Trek all seem like mini-versions of the originals. Which I guess is okay as long as you get the same experience out of it.

Another thing I noticed was that there were a LOT of employees around. Even on rides where one person would do, there were 3 or 4 hanging around. My guess is that these extra employees will be moved over to the water park or resort areas when they open.



Here's some comments from my son, aka the REAL person they need to listen to about the park!
Quote:
I like the Island in the Sky. The Lego Technic Zone was fun because of the Wave Racers. I really liked the Driving School. I found the Treasure Hunter and the sunken ship in Miniland. I like taking pictures of all of the Lego things. I liked getting something that I built at the Pick-a-Brick store. The Dragon coaster was thrilling and it felt like you were going to fall off. The dark ride was very fun. I liked going in a place where you can get balls and place them in guns and shoot people. The pirate show was very fun. I thought Brickbeard was going to come out of the captain's cabin. Instead he appeared on a jet-ski. I really liked the Power Towers. I went on them two times! I didn't like the Boating School because I kept bumping into walls. The Forestmen's Hideout was like it was haunted because there was no one in it. The Carousel was nice to go on again since Cypress Gardens closed. I liked going on the Royal Joust. I like Legoland because it was fun and exciting.

So if you're wondering if you should go to Legoland Florida, I would first ask: Do you have kids under 12? If so, it's a definite must. They will love it and you will love seeing their joy. If you are an adult with no kids, you won't get as much out of it except for Miniland and the coasters (see the post on adult attractions at Legoland.) Older folks will still enjoy the gardens, the ski show, and Miniland. EVERYONE will like the Apple Fries... Also if you're a Cypress Gardens fan, you have to come out at least once to see all the amazing changes! Again, looks like they still have some finishing work to do, but I think they'll be adding/updating the park constantly. So my overall score: 8.5 of 10.

BTW, we'll be going again on opening day. I imagine it will be crazy insane there, but if you see me roaming around (probably wearing a St. Louis Cardinals shirt) be sure to say "hi!"

See all the photos here!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by LEGOLANDfan2011-10-13 07:32:51

LEGOLANDfan
Orlando, Florida

Purple Peg
93 Posts
So, I'm again a bit worried after reading this:

Quote:
I've noticed is that the matching attractions seem about 10-20% smaller than their California counterparts. Driving School, Boating School, The Dragon, the Factory Tour, the Power Towers and Safari Trek all seem like mini-versions of the originals.


I thought that all the rides at LEGOLAND Florida were going to be at least twice as big as their counterparts on the West Coast, since they continually advertise it as the WORLD's BIGGEST LEGOLAND park... Sure, they will add a lot of things in the future (in Duplo-land, I'm expecting at least Fairy Tale Brook. I liked it very much when I was younger), but it still disappointing to know that rides like the Dragon,the driving school and boating school are smaller.

I've personally only been to LEGOLAND Windsor, but I don't know how these rides compare to those over there. I guess I will find out on October 15! (By the way, I'll say hi if I see you! ).

EDIT: I just saw an on-ride video of the Dragon coaster (I couldn't resist!), and I compared it with LEGOLAND Windsor's, and I noticed that it goes much quicker through the dark ride section! That may be the real problem. They should slow it down.
Also, I agree with the comment you made about there being very few props. The dragon's room looks incredibly empty! They'll sure add a lot of other things in the ride, in the near future.
 
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LEGOLAND Florida - a playful World of LEGOŽ adventures.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Chitown2011-10-13 08:32:08

Chitown
Sarasota, Fl.

Elemental
153 Posts
^World's biggest Legoland park pretty much just means acreage wise.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Chitown2011-10-13 09:41:39

Chitown
Sarasota, Fl.

Elemental
153 Posts
I really hope since this park is destined to be successful that they add a second train to Flight School and Coastersaurus.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-13 09:49:42

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
@LEGOLANDfan, no need to worry. Good things come in small packages!

Yeah, "World's Biggest" has always meant acreage, not number of attractions. The California park has more rides, but they've also had many more years to build it up. LLF will get there. They have plenty of room for growth! It's going to be a lot of fun to watch it grow in the coming years!

Dunno how they could do 2 trains on Flight School... Unless they extended the track. Coastersarus I can see it because there's a lengthy return at the end, but then they'd have to reprogram the braking and I have no idea what would be involved with that!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-13 10:23:33

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Another thought: I'm sure what Legoland is doing is using their past research to bring over the most popular rides and stock to begin with. As I said about Pick-a-Brick, it doesn't have *ALL* of the Lego parts, but I'm sure it has the most popular ones. It wouldn't make sense to include parts that only sell one or two units per month when you could use that shelf space for parts that DO sell.

Anyway... These are all minor nitpicks that I'm sure will go away as they build up the park. It'll only get better from here!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by LEGOLANDfan2011-10-13 11:54:03

LEGOLANDfan
Orlando, Florida

Purple Peg
93 Posts
Quote:
They have plenty of room for growth! It's going to be a lot of fun to watch it grow in the coming years!


I'm absolutely sure about that!
 
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LEGOLAND Florida - a playful World of LEGOŽ adventures.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-13 23:38:28

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
So far I've completed (the first round) of these galleries. This is by no means the last photos I'll add for these galleries. I already have plans to fill in whatever is missing. And of course I'm always adding things as we go.

Galleries Completed (for now):

The Beginning
Fun Town
Duplo Village
Lego Kingdoms (And I can proudly say that thanks to my son we have the world's most comprehensive photo collection of The Forestmen's Hideout. Whoopie...)
Land of Adventure
Lego Technic
Lego City
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by MSAP Fan2011-10-16 00:49:34

MSAP Fan
Norfolk, Virginia

Brickster
234 Posts
So how did they redesign Okee into Dragon Coaster? Is the beginning of the ride like a dark-ride on the taxi motors then it goes outside to basically the good old Okee's layout?
 
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Let's hope that new MSAP can pull off one of the greatest homecomings Panama City Beach ever had! The Starliner shall rise again!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-10-21 14:27:28

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Quote:
So how did they redesign Okee into Dragon Coaster? Is the beginning of the ride like a dark-ride on the taxi motors then it goes outside to basically the good old Okee's layout?

That's it exactly. Only they added an extra curve at the end to bring the train back into the castle.
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by MSAP Fan2011-10-21 15:28:10

MSAP Fan
Norfolk, Virginia

Brickster
234 Posts
Sounds pretty cool, though I had kinda hoped Herschend would have bought Okee and replaced the aging Ant Farm Express with it at Wild Adventures. I always rated Okee better than the Ant Farm when I would compare WA to CGAP. Ant Farm is looking kinda worn out, and its trains weren't as nice as Okee's. But then again, Merlin would have had to buy a whole new mini-coaster for the Dragon had they done that.
 
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Let's hope that new MSAP can pull off one of the greatest homecomings Panama City Beach ever had! The Starliner shall rise again!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-11-20 19:14:36

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Finally had a chance to go to the park untethered (ie: no kids.) Got some interesting shots and some information... (Got the money shot for the gardens!)

Over in the Garden Shop, they now have hats, t-shirts and carry bags with the "Cypress Gardens" logo on them. The shopkeeper didn't know much about what was going on, but he did say that the Conservatory is supposed to open in January 2012. I think that's a bit unrealistic though.



Since he was so in the dark, it made me think that maybe upper management needs to give them a FAQ or something. I remember when I worked at Disney they had a cast-member only newsletter called "Eyes and Ears" which had all kinds of news from around the parks. Maybe Legoland needs to do something similar? I don't think it leaves a good impression for an MC to have to keep saying "I don't know" to questions.

Anyway, new photos coming soon...
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2011-12-18 20:11:58

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Went today... Lot of little changes being worked on or done. Photos coming soon...

The early "opening" time appears to have changed. Today there was a HUGE line to get to the ticket takers. I guess now they're actually starting at 10:00 causing the line to get bad.

The Castle Stage is about to be used for the first time. It's some kind of Speed Painting thing.

The Panini Shop is coming along nicely. Looks like it will be done within the next few weeks.

Half of the area here is blocked off with plywood.

Also, the two doors read "Imagination I" and "Imagination II"

The yellow Belle has been moved to be in front of the Cypress Gardens sign.

The Big Shop is now carrying more hard to find sets. Super Heroes (Batman, Green Lantern) and a line called "Dino" which I've never heard of before. Also, they're also carrying what appears to be girls line of Legos called "Belville."

Photos coming soon...
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2012-03-11 22:15:34

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Had a chance to go it alone today. And I made the most of it!

Hero Factory is open for business! They had all new graphics outside the wall and the kids were going in and out... It's a small venue though so they had a lady at the door playing traffic cop.



The Fresh From Florida agriculture tour is almost ready. Just about 2 weeks to go. (Although one MC said they would have a soft opening before that.) Outside is a small (real) garden with Lego bunnies, a Lego scarecrow, a deer, a squirrel, woodpecker, and some owls.



It's looking pretty good inside. (And while I was loitering around I saw Jason Miller give a co-worker a brief tour.) Inside looks like it has a mini Miniland of a farm. Plus there's a giant (non-Lego) cow, and a rooster that pops out of the barn.



Sean you will be elated to know that 99% of the duck weed is gone. And I think I learned why they added the small fence in the big lagoon... To keep out alligators... I saw a small one near that fence today. Also added were brand new signs all through the gardens (the old CGAP alligator sign is gone.) And St. Francis is all cleaned up too! Still no access to the Florida pool, but from what I could see it was just a blue as ever. So they are taking care of it.



The Friends Shop has a new sign. Gone is that placard that sat out front. Now there's a proper sign on the building, and it's in 3D.



Showtimes appear to have changed. I noticed that the ski show is now at: 11:45, 1:15, 2:45, 4:15, and 5:30. And they've added back a third Lego Racers show (I think it was at 5:30 too, but I didn't take a photo of the new times, darn it.) So, if they advertise shows at 5:30, wonder how long it will be before they make the 6pm closing time permanent?

The Island is the Sky is sporting a new weather station atop it's apex. The lady said it was for measuring wind speed. (But I don't think they were paying it much attention today as I felt knocked around up there.)



Work is definitely progressing on the old animal area. The Gator Bites building is gone and there are even more piles of bricks being stashed there. Sheba the Jaguar's enclosure is being demolished too. Strangely there's so sign that the old "When Radios Were Radios" building is being torn down. I wonder if they plan to keep it?



So that concludes my latest report. New photos in the galleries.
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Sean2012-03-12 18:48:46

Sean

--Guest--
Quote:
Sean you will be elated to know that 99% of the duck weed is gone. And I think I learned why they added the small fence in the big lagoon... To keep out alligators... I saw a small one near that fence today. Also added were brand new signs all through the gardens (the old CGAP alligator sign is gone.) And St. Francis is all cleaned up too! Still no access to the Florida pool, but from what I could see it was just a blue as ever. So they are taking care of it.
I noticed most of the duck weed was gone for the past few weeks. I wasn't sure if that was because LL had it removed or if the windy weather blew most of it away. Either way, it's a welcome development...let's hope LL keeps it looking clean. Another positive development is the park finally updated the Cypress Gardens portion of its website with better pictures and a more flattering write-up about the gardens.

I recently spoke to a gardener and inquired about the Oriental Gardens. I was told the area will reopen but there are other priorities the landscaping staff has to address first such as the Fresh from Florida exhibit and the Water park. The park recently hired 3 new gardeners...I hope this will speed things up a bit.

Greg, I don't think the small picket fence is there to keep out alligators but to keep out small children.
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2012-03-12 20:16:21

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Quote:
I recently spoke to a gardener and inquired about the Oriental Gardens. I was told the area will reopen but there are other priorities the landscaping staff has to address first such as the Fresh from Florida exhibit and the Water park. The park recently hired 3 new gardeners...I hope this will speed things up a bit.

That's good news!

Quote:
Greg, I don't think the small picket fence is there to keep out alligators but to keep out small children.

Maybe, but the gator notion popped in my head when I saw this:



Notice how close this guy (bottom left corner) is to the fence. While it's not likely he'd climb up and head towards the Gazebo, there would be nothing to stop him except for the fence.

That truly was a surprise. I never thought they could get over that darker wood barricade between the grass and the water. But looks like they can!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Sean2012-03-13 17:19:20

Sean

--Guest--
Yeah, I've often seen an alligator or two sunning itself on the grass near the lagoon. The other day I saw a small alligator in the pool at the base of the small waterfall in the gardens. Shortly before CG closed in 2009, a mother alligator had made a nest in the lagoon area. You could see a dozen of her babies hanging around the lagoon bridge with mother nearby. Here's an interesting press photo from 1970 that shows some alligators by the lagoon:
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2012-03-13 18:57:43

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Holy cow, that woman is crazy!
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Ed2012-03-14 09:36:03

Ed
Merritt Island

Lego Star V
956 Posts
Looks like opening the rest of the historic gardens has the lowest priority. Well at least some gardner claims thay will be opened someday when everything else is done.

Edit: Ed, this is a Trip Report thread. Hijacking it into yet another complaint thread will not be allowed. --Greg
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2012-03-17 18:46:14

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Well, I saw the new Ice Cream shop they're replacing the Candy Corner shop with in Fun Town. Glad it will be a scoop ice cream shop rather than the pre-packaged stuff like they have over near the 4D theatre.



Also I noticed a new food wagon going in across from Coastersaurus. (In the place where the old Adventure Grill used to be.) Too bad they tore down Adventure Grill, they could have used it instead of building a temporary style shop.



Here's the old Adventure Grill:


Anyway, today's photos coming soon.
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Anon2012-03-19 06:44:41

Anon

--Guest--
This will be a trailer serving pulled pork sandwiches. They are sure to be a success!!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2012-03-19 18:11:40

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Quote:
This will be a trailer serving pulled pork sandwiches. They are sure to be a success!!

You mean "Pulled Dinosaur" sandwiches?
 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Greg2012-03-31 17:05:36

Greg
Winter Haven, Florida

Master Builder
1451 Posts
Back from another trip! It was mega-busy today as the Girl Scouts were celebrating their 100 year anniversary.

The Fresh From Florida greenhouse is open, and it's a lot better than I expected! There's something interactive every step of the way. There's "Guess the Seed" hands on, a squirting water tower, a hand-powered water pump, a spraying Lego man, cows you can "milk", a light-up map, and of course a Lego building station. I noticed it was very cool inside too, so it's a good place to get a blast of air if you are hot. They also had a lot more actual crops that I thought. They have a peach tree, strawberries, corn, squash, watermelons, broccoli, onions, sunflowers, peanuts, radishes, tomatoes, and pumpkins. My wife said she saw some blueberry bushes... But I'm looking at my photos and I don't see any.



Next we checked out the Game Zone. Wow, here's another nice A/C spot! There were several stations here. Wii, PlayStation, Xbox, and even iPad. They had Lego Harry Potter, Lego Batman, Happy Feet, and Elmo games (for Xbox Kinect.) As I look at my photos, I'm realizing they did an AWESOME job of hiding the systems and the cabling. (I hate seeing that stuff.) Other than iPads, there's no actual systems to be seen! Plus there's a nice open feel to this area as it has plenty of windows looking out. I was a little concerned they'd black out the windows, but they left them as they were, which is great.



Next was the BBQ and Waffle Spear place. The pulled pork comes with cole slaw on a flatbread and was very good (I'm craving more as I type this!) The waffle spears are made fresh on spear shaped waffle irons. Then you can get powdered sugar or chocolate dripped on them. Very tasty!



Last but not least was Sunny's Ice Cream shop. Again, very nice inside. From the menu I saw before, I didn't expect there to be that many selections, but there are 24 different flavors of Breyers ice cream. My son just wanted a scoop of vanilla in a cup which was $1.50. I can see this will be a popular spot, hopefully it will draw out the Pizza buffet people as they expect.

 
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I am Legoland Florida's most zealous advocate!
 
re: Post Your Trip Reports! by Ed2012-04-02 16:10:20

Ed
Merritt Island

Lego Star V
956 Posts
I might be missing something here but exactly why would someone rush out of an all you can eat pizza buffet to pay at least another $1.50 a person to immediately eat ice cream? When there is a line to any food establishment people should eat and leave so others can be seated. But today most folks only care about themselves and will sit there as long as they wish. Now if they were to get free ice cream if they leave the buffet within 1/2 hour of being seated - then you will get them out!
 



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