The Imagineering Common Area - A Discussion Thread

WowFactor

Well-Known Member
Animal Kingdom is always worth it to me, but I love that park a little too much (if that's possible).

Maybe consider park hopping between the two for a day? Get your BG for Guardians and rope drop Epcot to check out Remy and a few other must do's before having lunch in WS. Epcot is still rough in the central spine. Animal Kingdom is very manageable in the afternoon with many folks leaving, so makes a good time to park hop there arriving plus it looks great during waning hours. We typically avoided Dinoland anyway and the rest of the park is in good shape. Get a dining reservation close to park close at AK perhaps to take advantage of the park hours.
Looks like a good plan. Tank you!
 

WowFactor

Well-Known Member
We had to delay the plan to july instead the initial thoughts, so AK was today. Curious that we've found a different kind of hidden Mickey over there 😉

49EC2181-1E58-49F0-AED3-86706E0D0073.jpeg
 

TheOriginalTiki

Well-Known Member
I made it out to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom for the first time in 14 months. The last time I was there it was a bit of a disaster. The new for 2022 Sidewinder Safari literally broke down three different times when I tried to ride it leading to a rather humiliating on-camera panic attack that I stupidly uploaded and like...instantly got called out on in the comments. That on top of just being a super crowded day with some very poor operations left a bad taste in my mouth and I felt no real desire to go back any time soon.

Well I'm happy to report that today's trip actually blew me away, and I barely even rode anything! That's right, I think hands down this is THE best the park's animal areas have ever looked, probably including the old pre-Six Flags "Africa USA". I was truly blown away by the work that's been done over the past year to revitalize what was quickly becoming a sad and forgotten corner of the park.

First of all, I just love that Sidewinder Safari actually gives people a reason to go back to the animal area in the first place. It's a really great "Weenie" and a stroke of genius when it comes to placemaking. Sidewinder is nothing special as a coaster (outside of a surprisingly powerful little airtime pop at the very end) but I adore it for how it distributes the crowds more evenly and for being a really well themed family coaster...something the park's lineup desperately needed.
366948313_6821093694596401_7988106885617157294_n.jpg


The BABY COUGARS!!! I saw them, they're freaking adorable, they'll be featured in a vlog I'll be uploading later this week. Another big surprise was the makeover Tiger Island got into this...
367479437_6821070461265391_139156107599296980_n.jpg

I've definitely heard rumors for a couple years that the park was getting cheetahs, but I never expected them to completely revitalize what it very much geographically THE very back of the park like this. I'm a sucker for good placemaking and this is a great secondary draw to get people deeper into the animal areas. The wolves, lions, and giraffes are always a treat to see in this area as well, and it looks like they've even building a tortoise exhibit.
367471049_6821093271263110_326230589352949351_n.jpg

Before I talk about the two big draws for the animals this year, I do want to address that as far as operations go the park was killing it. Two trains on anything that could possibly run two trains, fast dispatches, and hardly any closed flat rides. It's nice to see previously standing but not operating rides like Voodoo, Hammerhead, and Tasmanian Devil just get straight up removed as their presence was really making the park's overall reliability look bad. The only rather unfortunate operation hiccup I encountered was Superman being weirdly unreliable, but to trade off for that I waited in two 30+ minute lines for Sidewinder with absolutely zero downtime. It was also wonderful to see The Flash actually running.
366748424_6821093961263041_727470410742143136_n.jpg


Alright, so let's get into the headliners. The new Shark Experience and the Butterfly Habitat's transformation into the Rainforest Trail. The shark experience...on paper, is really strong. There's a ton of new theming elements including a "boardwalk" at the start and atmospheric lighting that puts the original incarnation to shame, along with a really killer new sign and entrance featuring a light bit of rock work and even a small little running water feature. Unfortunately I found myself underwhelmed with the actual content of the exhibit. It's pretty evident they've lost a lot of sharks over the years so the aquarium just doesn't feel very populated. We also lost a small area where you could sit down and watch an educational film, which was a really unfortunate loss as the only area in the exhibit where you could get off your feet. The theming is really on point and impressive, but in some ways I prefer the original version as an actual aquarium.
367384342_6821070007932103_132846942101467372_n.jpg
367491677_6821070121265425_3415510445527197485_n.jpg


The Rainforest Trail though? OMG, what a huge surprise. It's kind of the opposite effect of the sharks. Thematically not much has changed at all from the old Butterfly Habitat, but what they have added is a TON more butterflies...like, a very, VERY noticable and substantial increase in them, to the point where you really can't go more than a couple feet without they flying all around you. I'm not entirely sure, but it feels like they really beefed up the foliage as well especially around the famous waterfall cave (my early childhood exposure to the "backside of water" ;) )
367399633_6821016747937429_1130890221880346742_n.jpg

367458238_6821017331270704_7888795144422876364_n.jpg

Technically the attraction is still in tech rehearsal mode as there's a couple animal enclosures that still don't have anything in them, but at the end of the trail came one of the most delightful theme park surprises I've had in recent memory.
367487488_6821017544604016_8200099877721323244_n.jpg

I mean, what a memorable finale, right?? Watch my vlog about the Rainforest Trail below where you can see Ginger the sloth in action (and for a sloth, she was REALLY moving!!) All in all I'm so happy with the day I had at the park, and I'm very grateful that my home park has embraced theming and atmosphere as much as it has. There's a bunch of signs cryptically teasing that 2024 they're "elevating the park to new heights" and with the recent announcement that Six Flags is going to go back to much bigger investments, I've honestly never been more excited for the park's future! (One of said signs was in front of a closed down Kong. Can we PLEASE have something, anything in that thing's place?!?!?)
 
Last edited:

PerGron

Well-Known Member
I made it out to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom for the first time in 14 months. The last time I was there it was a bit of a disaster. The new for 2022 Sidewinder Safari literally broke down three different times when I tried to ride it leading to a rather humiliating on-camera panic attack that I stupidly uploaded and like...instantly got called out on in the comments. That on top of just being a super crowded day with some very poor operations left a bad taste in my mouth and I felt no real desire to go back any time soon.

Well I'm happy to report that today's trip actually blew me away, and I barely even rode anything! That's right, I think hands down this is THE best the park's animal areas have ever looked, probably including the old pre-Six Flags "Africa USA". I was truly blown away by the work that's been done over the past year to revitalize what was quickly becoming a sad and forgotten corner of the park.

First of all, I just love that Sidewinder Safari actually gives people a reason to go back to the animal area in the first place. It's a really great "Weenie" and a stroke of genius when it comes to placemaking. Sidewinder is nothing special as a coaster (outside of a surprisingly powerful little airtime pop at the very end) but I adore it for how it distributes the crowds more evenly and for being a really well themed family coaster...something the park's lineup desperately needed.
366948313_6821093694596401_7988106885617157294_n.jpg


The BABY COUGARS!!! I saw them, they're freaking adorable, they'll be featured in a vlog I'll be uploading later this week. Another big surprise was the makeover Tiger Island got into this...
367479437_6821070461265391_139156107599296980_n.jpg

I've definitely heard rumors for a couple years that the park was getting cheetahs, but I never expected them to completely revitalize what it very much geographically THE very back of the park like this. I'm a sucker for good placemaking and this is a great secondary draw to get people deeper into the animal areas. The wolves, lions, and giraffes are always a treat to see in this area as well, and it looks like they've even building a tortoise exhibit.
367471049_6821093271263110_326230589352949351_n.jpg

Before I talk about the two big draws for the animals this year, I do want to address that as far as operations go the park was killing it. Two trains on anything that could possibly run two trains, fast dispatches, and hardly any closed flat rides. It's nice to see previously standing but not operating rides like Voodoo, Hammerhead, and Tasmanian Devil just get straight up removed as their presence was really making the park's overall reliability look bad. The only rather unfortunate operation hiccup I encountered was Superman being weirdly unreliable, but to trade off for that I waited in two 30+ minute lines for Sidewinder with absolutely zero downtime. It was also wonderful to see The Flash actually running.
366748424_6821093961263041_727470410742143136_n.jpg


Alright, so let's get into the headliners. The new Shark Experience and the Butterfly Habitat's transformation into the Rainforest Trail. The shark experience...on paper, is really strong. There's a ton of new theming elements including a "boardwalk" at the start and atmospheric lighting that puts the original incarnation to shame, along with a really killer new sign and entrance featuring a light bit of rock work and even a small little running water feature. Unfortunately I found myself underwhelmed with the actual content of the exhibit. It's pretty evident they've lost a lot of sharks over the years so the aquarium just doesn't feel very populated. We also lost a small area where you could sit down and watch an educational film, which was a really unfortunate loss as the only area in the exhibit where you could get off your feet. The theming is really on point and impressive, but in some ways I prefer the original version as an actual aquarium.
367384342_6821070007932103_132846942101467372_n.jpg
367491677_6821070121265425_3415510445527197485_n.jpg


The Rainforest Trail though? OMG, what a huge surprise. It's kind of the opposite effect of the sharks. Thematically not much has changed at all from the old Butterfly Habitat, but what they have added is a TON more butterflies...like, a very, VERY noticable and substantial increase in them, to the point where you really can't go more than a couple feet without they flying all around you. I'm not entirely sure, but it feels like they really beefed up the foliage as well especially around the famous waterfall cave (my early childhood exposure to the "backside of water" ;) )
367399633_6821016747937429_1130890221880346742_n.jpg

367458238_6821017331270704_7888795144422876364_n.jpg

Technically the attraction is still in tech rehearsal mode as there's a couple animal enclosures that still don't have anything in them, but at the end of the trail came one of the most delightful theme park surprises I've had in recent memory.
367487488_6821017544604016_8200099877721323244_n.jpg

I mean, what a memorable finale, right?? Watch my vlog about the Rainforest Trail below where you can see Ginger the sloth in action (and for a sloth, she was REALLY moving!!) All in all I'm so happy with the day I had at the park, and I'm very grateful that my home park has embraced theming and atmosphere as much as it has. There's a bunch of signs cryptically teasing that 2024 they're "elevating the park to new heights" and with the recent announcement that Six Flags is going to go back to much bigger investments, I've honestly never been more excited for the park's future! (One of said signs was in front of a closed down Kong. Can we PLEASE have something, anything in that thing's place?!?!?)

Interesting! I’m glad to see six flags putting some effort into their animal stuff!
 

Register on WDWMAGIC. This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.

Back
Top Bottom