Jimmy Fallon, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando Resort

Universal Has Fallon Fever! 

Jimmy Fallon and his Tonight Show posse arrived in Orlando sometime over last weekend. Jimmy himself was seen in the Tonight Shop this past Sunday before he went to Wrestlemania (and allegedly sat next to Mark Woodbury) and took photos with some guests! Notice his Team Member name tag?

Photo courtesy of Trey Morningstar. Follow his Instagram @tmorningstarphoto

The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon will be filming all this week at Universal and culminating this Thursday with the grand opening of his attraction “Race Through New York”. 

Sign for the new Jimmy Fallon attraction in Citywalk

The front area of the park has exploded with Fallon signs about the tapings, the opening of the ride, and sets for filming of the show. They even put some merchandise at the front of the Universal Studios Store.

Race Through New York merchandise at the entrance to the Studios Store
 

Guests attending the Fallon tapings check in at the entrance to the Blue Man Group path. Even though the tapings don’t start until 2pm, guests can (and have) check in as early as 9am! Joey and I will be attending the “red carpet” grand opening for the attraction on Thursday morning. 


Hashtag the Panda, the Tonight Show mascot, has been meeting guests in front of the Tonight Shop the last couple days
Musical guests for the Tonight Show tapings will perform on the Rockit stage. That’s the same stage where the Mardi Gras concerts are held. These performances are free for anyone that has a park ticket and obviously limited to capacity. These aren’t full blown concerts. Just one or two songs from the artists. Performers include Pitbull featuring Stephen Marley, Blake Shelton, Flo Rida featuring 99 Percent with The Roots, and Jason Derulo featuring Ty Dolla Sign. 


Just like the last time he came to town, this is a very exciting time to visit the Universal Parks while Fallon is here! We are looking forward to the grand opening of the ride on April 6th! Be sure to look for a Facebook live broadcast as well as photos and other videos from the day!


See you in the parks!

-Mikey @MagicCityMayhem on Twitter

Jimmy Fallon, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando Resort

#FallonRide has soft opened

(Possible vague spoilers about the queue and ride. Read ahead with caution if you don’t want to be spoiled.)

As you probably have heard by now, Race Through New York starring Jimmy Fallon has soft opened at Universal Studios Florida. This is also called a “technical rehearsal” and I decided to give it a whirl a couple mornings ago. 

When I entered the building I was handed a plastic purple card with instructions on it. Then I walked down the long hallway to the first waiting area. Walking down that long hallway kind of reminded me of Twister. 

The best way for me to describe the first waiting area is, it’s like “One Man’s Dream” from Disney, but themed after The Tonight Show. Multiple windows showcasing props and memorabilia from different eras of the show’s history fill the room. Tv screens everywhere showing clips of the different hosts from over the years. I did a Facebook Live broadcast in this room. You can watch the replay ➡️here⬅️. 

When my color was called, myself and about 20 other people went upstairs. The next room I encountered had digital games on tables, and just a couple tvs here and there. We weren’t able to go into the next room ahead where it looked like the live entertainment would be. I was there before 10am so I might’ve just been too early to see it. Here’s a quick look around this area:


Then it was time to get hyped for “the show”! The next room was where we watched a brief video of Jimmy riffing with The Roots. And then we hear the safety spiel before boarding our Tonight Riders for our Race Through New York. 

I’m not going to mention too many details of the actual ride. I sat in the front row and thought it was pretty cool. It probably would’ve been better 2 or 3 rows further back. I wouldn’t consider myself a huge fan of the show, but the attraction was really fun from top to bottom. I look forward to going back and seeing the live entertainment (Hashtag the Panda, and the Ragtime Gals), but overall I consider this a definite upgrade from Twister. When you get a chance to go on it, let me know what you thought! The ride officially opens on April 6th. 

See you in the parks!

^Mikey @MagicCityMayhem on Twitter

Halloween, Halloween Horror Nights, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando Resort

Halloween Horror Nights in the Prop Shop


If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter (and if you don’t, what are you waiting for?!) then you know we pop into “The Prop Shop” just about every visit to Universal Studios Florida. The Prop Shop is a very unique retail location where the old magic shop was next to Mel’s Drive-In on Hollywood Blvd. In there you’ll find items that were actually used in various locations within the parks and some items that are just inspired by things in the parks. Today we are going to talk about the items based on my favorite event, Halloween Horror Nights!


Located straight back from the entrance to the shop, you’ll find a treasure trove of amazing props, signs, and other random objects from the annual event. These one of a kind items are available all year long! And even if you find some of these things too pricey to purchase, it’s still fun to browse and treat the section of the store like a museum. 



Just about everything has a price tag on it and just about everything is for sale! Currently you can find things specific from the last two events (HHN 25 & 26), but there are other “random” props that may have been used in Horror Nights prior. If you’re unsure of where and when the item is from, the Team Members that work the store are very knowledgeable about all the items!


Probably one of the most expensive items in the store is the life size replica of Chance the Clown, coming in at a whopping $4,500! One of the TMs that works in the Prop Shop told me that the Lucille Ball character that walks the streets of Hollywood came in and exclaimed, “Her face is too fat!” which is really quite funny for some reason. 



If you’re a huge fan of Halloween Horror Nights like I am, a trip to the Prop Shop to check out this memorabilia is worth the quick visit. Tell them Mikey and Joey sent you! And if there’s some money burning a hole in your pocket, that Chance mannequin would make a sweet present for yours truly! 

See you in the parks, Magic City Maniacs!

^Mikey @MagicCityMayhem


Beer, Harry Potter, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando Resort

The beer that shall not be named

Every Friday at 5pm, Joey and I like to cheers to the weekend and have a beer from somewhere around Universal. (Spoiler alert: it’s not live and we usually film it during the week.) For the February 17th episode, we had a very special beer. We heard a rumor that there was a beer in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter that was kept a secret. The fan community referred to this beer as the “Deathly Hallows”.


It’s a three layered beer made with Guinness, Strong Bow, and Wizard’s Brew. Since the symbol of the Deathly Hallows is a triangle, this “triple” is appropriately named. But because it’s not officially on the menu, and the creative minds behind the Wizarding World have a strict policy of sticking to the blueprint, you might not be able to order this drink by that name. Depending on how nice you are and how cool the bartender is, you may have to ask for “the triple” or specifically ask for all three beers in one cup. Give them a little wink wink, and hopefully you’ll be served up this tasty libation! 


I recently learned that they make a variation of this over at Finnegan’s in Universal Studios. And again, you might have to ask for it very nicely with a little wink wink. Joey and I are going to attempt to get the Finnegan’s version on a future episode of “5 o’clock Friday Beer”. 

Head on over to our Facebook page and be sure to give us a like and join us every week on Friday as we cheers to the weekend! You can watch us enjoy “the beer that must not be named” below. Maybe someday you can join us in the park for a 5 o’clock Friday Beer! 

^Mikey

Christmas, Minions, The Grinch, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando Resort

Islands of Christmas 

There’s a Christmas centric store in almost every theme park nowadays. And the Universal parks are no exception. There’s one in Universal Studios, but here we are going to look at the Port of Entry Christmas store. 

Open all year long, you can find just about any sort of Christmas item that’s Universal branded here. Ornaments, stockings, tree toppers, you name it!

If you’re ever missing the “most wonderful time of the year” (which to me happens to be Halloween), you can stop in here to browse around and get that special seasonal feeling. This store at IOA is much bigger than the one at USF and offers a wider selection of merchandise. 

What Universal Orlando Resort related holiday items would you get to help celebrate the season? Tell me down in the comments! Look for a post soon about the Christmas store over at the Studios. 

Happy holidays, Magic City Maniacs! And be good for goodness sake!

^Mikey

Mardi Gras, Theme Parks, Universal Orlando Resort

Universal Mardi Gras parade 2017

The biggest bash this side of the bayou kicked off last Saturday with food, a parade, and Trace Adkins in concert! This year, Universal Orlando is treating us to their Mardi Gras parade every night from February 4th through March 25th! The French Quarter Courtyard will also be opened every night through the run of the event. 


February 7th was the only time this season to experience the parade at 5pm. Until we move the clocks ahead on March 12th, this seemed like a prime opportunity to see the parade with some sunlight! And it was awesome!


Everything that makes the Universal Mardi Gras parade amazing is back and it feels like there’s more of it all! More beads, more performers, and new floats! Six new floats to be exact! Each accompanied by dancers, stilt walkers, and other colorful performers that match the theme of the float. All the new floats are based on “mythical creatures” so keep your eyes peeled for some phoenix, dragons, and garden sprites! 


Visit Universal Orlando’s official website for details on what time the parade starts each day. We are working on a video of the parade and should be up soon. Until then, check out the replay of our Facebook Live broadcast! We can’t wait to get back to enjoy more of the party! FEET DON’T FAIL ME NOW! 💛💜💚