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Manta at Sea World Orlando!

15 May

I’m not sure why I haven’t written about this yet…So maybe I know why…

The sign at the entrance

The sign at the entrance

Manta is the newest roller coaster at Sea World Orlando and is Central Florida’s first “flying coaster.” It is also my first flyer! That is right, with all the coasters I’ve been on, I’ve never ridden on a flyer!

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A Sad, Sad Day

11 Jan

My parents, Rob and I are heading down to Busch Gardens Tampa Africa today to have our last turn at Busch Garden’s Brewmaster Club.

As you probably know, a foreign company has purchased the previous “All American” Anheuser-Busch. That company InBev has already started doing what I expected them to do. They are laying off thousands of Americans in order to ship their jobs overseas, they jacked up prices at the theme parks (that they don’t really want) and now are doing away with anything at the park that doesn’t make money. Free beer doesn’t make money…or as they say “it has limited appeal.”

I don’t know about the regular tourist, but I’ve never seen the Hospitality House (at either park) not have a line for the beer and the Brewmaster Clubs have plenty of people getting reservations. That lets me know that the “appeal” isn’t quite so “limited.”

About the money thing, yes, it is free beer. You can get two free cups of the beer of your choice inside the Hospitality House AND you can sign up for the Brewmaster Club which allows a sample of four different types of beer. Each sample is about 1/4 of a beer. So that is three free beers for everyone, but not everyone will take full advantage. Also, there are many AB beers that I had never heard of, nor tasted before my Brewmaster Club experience.

Some of these I have purchased. For example, I currently have Winter Cask Ale, Stone Mill Pale Ale and a variety of Michelob “craft” beers all BECAUSE I went to the Brewmaster club. I absolutely would NOT have purchased these beers had I not sampled them first.

The Busch family wasn’t just giving away free beer, they were giving away a sample as a lure to get you to buy more beer! And it works!

Christmas Presents!

9 Jan

So it is a little later than I wanted, but I thought I would recap some of my Christmas presents from X-Mas 2008!

First, the BIG present this year is that the parents and I now have seasonal passes to Walt Disney World! This means that we have passes to all four Disney World parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom), Universal Orlando parks (Universal and Islands of Adventure) and the Florida Busch Entertainment parks (Busch Gardens Africa, Sea World Orlando and Aquatica).

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Sea World Elite Adventure Tour!

7 Dec
Isnt she cute?

Isn't she cute?

Some of you may know that on Friday I went to Sea World Orlando with my parents and my mom’s dental office, Verardi Dental (free plug!). We got an Elite Adventure Tour (or at least that’s what I think it was called) and it was a blast! Below is picture heavy recap of what we got to do!

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Fruity Beer

3 Aug

Fruity beer seems to be the new thing in beer. Well, I guess fruity is just the new thing in everything!

Anheuser-Busch is now selling a beer called “Wild Blue” which is a blueberry ale. As the Anheuser-Busch press release says “Not suited for timid or reserve beer drinkers…” this is a real alcoholic beverage with an alcohol content of 8%. That is more than your average beer (Budweiser is 5% – check out this cool list I found!) but it isn’t noticeable at first. That is because this beer is absolutely, by far, the sweetest beer I’ve ever tasted. We got to taste it at my first visit to Busch Garden’s Brewmaster’s Club (Yes, now I’ve been to BGT’s and Sea World Orlando’s!).

This is not a beer you drink when you are looking to finish off a six pack by yourself and I wouldn’t recommend pairing this beer with most “beer food.” So don’t crack this open while you are grilling those chops!

While this Blueberry Ale is starting to spread throughout the US, I saw a report on Slashfood.com linking to this page talking of the upcoming arrival of Früli in America. Früli is a Belgium Wheat mixed with strawberry juice, yum?

I like strawberries more than I like blueberries, but beer? I just don’t know if I can be a fan of fruity beer!

Don’t they make shirts for that?

18 Jul

That is what I was thinking while sitting in Sea World’s Whale and Dolphin Stadium waiting for the show. I guess its my fault, I picked the seats. I sat us down next to a very nice family with three small children. One of which I would learn was still nursing…

So I googles and found that they do make shirts for that. Not only that, but they make a gazillion different styles of openings. OK not a gazillion, but nine. NINE!?!? And she just had a regular shirt…

Now, the family was British, or at least I assume so from their British accents. So maybe they don’t ship to the UK…I don’t know.

I don’t mind boobs, I don’t mind the need for women to nurse, but I think that with anything there is a time and place. A very crowded theater isn’t the best choice. Also, changing your seats with your young daughter because the large hairy American man is scaring her and sitting shoulder to shoulder with that man while you small child kicks him, causing said American man to turn and look may not be proper.

I’m scarred for life! OK, I’m not, but its something that popped into my head to write about. Other than that and the constant gray skies and rain (looked more like Seattle than Orlando) it was a good day. We did some water parking then hung out at Sea World. Gotta love the free beer!!!

A sad, sad day!

14 Jul

I guess I knew it was coming, but this evening it was leaked that Anheuser-Busch has agreed to InBev’s buyout offer. Reports say that the takeover is estimated at about $50 billion and will create the largest brewery in the world. InBev will allow the Anheuser-Busch corporate offices to remain in St. Louis, but Anheuser always bragged about being the last American owned major brewer. Miller is owned by South African Breweries as SABMiller. Coors is owned by the Molson Coors Brewing Company and they are Canadian.

While I understand that in America we have a free market system, and rich people like Warren Buffett will make millions off of this deal (The Busch family will make very little because they sold off their shares years ago and only own about 4%) but what about the whole “made in the USA” crap. Our car companies are going bankrupt because everyone buys Toyotas and now all of our beer is owned by outsiders. What is America going to do when 80% of the companies owning most of the property around the country are owned by people overseas? Most countries don’t allow this sort of thing, but we do.

Also, on a personal note I’m very VERY worried about the theme parks. Busch Gardens and Sea World are places that I love to go to and have annual passes to and it is doubtful that Busch’s new Belgian owners will want to keep these “non-core assets.” Busch also spends billions of dollars every year on the environment and being “green” is a very American thing (although we just do it as lip service), just look at were our Olympians will be choking for air next month. InBev will see this spending as waste and eliminate it immediatly.

Farewell America! We barely knew thee!

You can read the news in this Yahoo! article.

Great Orlando Wheel UPDATE!

29 Jun

So, the Great Orlando Wheel that I spoke of in my previous post is now official! It is said to be opening in 2010. The real reason I am updating is to show you this photo of its exact location and a video talking about this MASSIVE Ferris wheel. First a still shot:

 Great Orlando Wheel

 The very large (wide not tall) building just above the wheel is the West Concourse of the Orange County Convention Center (where I work). The road in the upper left is I4 and the overpass you see is the end of the Bee Line Beach Line (I hate that name) lets just call it the 528.

And now a video:

Great Orlando Wheel

21 Jun

So this isn’t new but it was new to me. The Great Wheel Corparation has purchased a large chunk of land near the Orange County Convention Center to build a 400+ foot tall Ferris wheel type thing! Fully enclosed and air conditioned means it will be very similar to the London Eye. In fact, according to this article about the purchase The Great Wheel Corp was founded by members of the team that built the London Eye. Continue reading

Brewmaster’s Club

17 Jun

Bud WaterDo you like beer? Have you ever been to Sea World or Busch Gardens and thought “These two free beers a day are great, but can I have more?” The answer is yes! But no they don’t have any Bud drinking water. Continue reading