SeaWorld to Unveil Fresh 2018 Attraction Details Today


Infinity Falls

The ride vehicle for SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment's "Infinity Falls" will premiere during the press event on Tuesday.

 By Scott Fais

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This morning at IAAPA Attractions Expo 2017, SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment will release new details on the world’s tallest river-rapids ride set to debut next year, as well as a new focus for the company’s broader attraction philosophy.
“You’re going to hear a lot from SeaWorld about ‘From Park to Planet.’ It’s part of the new visioning and positioning of what a theme park experience can be,” said Brian Morrow, vice president of theme park development with SeaWorld Entertainment’s Deep Blue Creative group.
SeaWorld will host a press conference—open to all Expo attendees—to talk about details, beginning at 10:15 a.m. at Booth #3428 across from IAAPA Central; the event will then progress to Intamin (Booth #3424) for the vehicle debut of “Infinity Falls,” a multi-level raft ride featuring several unique elements.
Portions of the ride will pass a flamingo habitat while zipping along rushing rapids. The raft will encounter three separate lifts; one will include a vertical elevator, lifting rafts 40 feet high before a final drop.
“It’s all very topography driven,” Morrow explained of the ride, which will navigate channels, sometimes dipping 15 feet below grade. Like “Mako,” the hyper coaster from Bollinger & Mabillard introduced in 2016, “Infinity Falls” will feature an original score that follows rafts throughout the duration of the more than five-minute experience.
The rainforest-like jungle setting for the new ride is a departure for the Orlando park. Up to this point, Morrow said the Orlando property has primarily been known for saltwater environments.
“‘Infinity Falls’ represents freshwater ecosystems of the world,” Morrow said. “We’re expanding the stories and experiences we give our guests beyond the ocean.”
Recognizing freshwater spaces, and how we are connected to all water and the entire ecosystem,  is just one part of the new “Park to Planet” initiative from SeaWorld. The campaign is currently running in Southern California, with a national rollout planned for 2018. The company hopes visitors will become inspired while visiting a SeaWorld park and take that enthusiasm home, where they’ll be motivated to protect the environment.
“We’re in this unique position to harness the power of our experiences, entertainment, and animal interactions, and inspire our guests to work together to help the planet,” Morrow said.
To highlight the effort, several animal ambassadors will also visit the Intamin booth throughout the morning.  “‘Park to Planet’ will be the anchor story we will offer our guests in our parks next year,” Morrow said.
In 2018, Morrow’s team will open a total of seven new attractions at parks across the United States from a wide array of manufacturers. “Oscar’s Wacky Taxi,” a new family wooden coaster from Gravity Group (Booth #4006) will debut at Sesame Place in Langhorne, Pennsylvania. Oscars Wacky Taxi

Busch Gardens Williamsburg will open “Battle For Eire—Action VR Ride.” The attraction from Falcon’s Creative (Booth #2291) blends a motion-based theater simulator with 360-degree virtual reality headsets. “Steel Eel,” a 150-foot-tall launched coaster from Premier Rides (Booth #5100), is headed to SeaWorld San Diego. Aquatica in Orlando will open the “Ray Rush” water slide from WhiteWater (Booth #2240), while the “Vanish Point” slide from ProSlide (Booth #2259) is already under construction at Adventure Island in Tampa, Florida.
No fewer than 35 press conferences are scheduled through Friday afternoon. For a complete listing, download the IAAPA Expos Mobile App.