Legoland Florida will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and will be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday, in glaring contrast to the seven-day, late-night schedules of the established theme parks in the Orlando area.
Read more from The Ledger.
We bought our APs not knowing the limited schedule but this doesn't come as a big surprise to me. For a park that is going to primarily draw elementary school aged children (and maybe a little middle school) it shouldn't be a big surprise that they aren't expecting to draw much during the week. Being closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays makes sense...at least until they see how the park is received.
I do think this will hurt the hotels in town because now it is that much easier to stay over in Kissimmee and get to the park at opening without getting up terribly early.
Since we will be commuting from South Florida these times are the likely times we'd be in the park anyway. I'm sure the Tampa crowd and the SW Florida crowd will be similar.
I like the strategy coming out of the gate...so to speak.
As was pointed out they are using the operating model that was utlized (and still is for the most part) at the California park. It is a prudent move , not to mention that it has been proven to work. Yes, as it sits now Legoland Florida is a one day park, however if they plan to expand their offerings like the Cali park it will develop into a multi day attraction. It just won't happen all overnight.
Did Cypress Gardens run on an abbreviated operating week? Just curious, if it would've mattered.
My understanding is that in the pre ride park days the Gardens closed at dusk. Someone who is more familiar with the operation after the installation of the iron rides will have to comment about that.
There is a major park in Florida tha is open late night? Seems every time I go down there the BIG parks all close at 5pm or 6pm if I am lucky. I don't consider Fun Spot to be a big park.
Okay so that's how it is in November. But even so, it seems any time the Florida parks get away with shorter schedules than the seasonal parks do.
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
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Dave, you're doing it wrong.
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My Disney visits have all been off-season, and every time there is at least one park during my stay open until midnight or later for "Extra Magic Hours." You've gotta stay on-property, but there you have it.
Moving to from California to Orlando I noticed that Florida parks always close a few hours earlier and I could never figure out why. I guess to get you into City Walk and Downtown Disney. On comparable days Disneyland, Knott's Berry Farm, and Six Flags Magic Mountain would be open to midnight or later, but the Florida parks close at nine or ten at the latest, eleven if your lucky.
Here is a News Plus Notes link to a 2006 brochure with "closing times vary" printed on the back.
Both of my trips to Legoland California have been early in the summer and the park closed about 6pm (and opened at 10am) both times. This isn't the kind of park where the target audience still has strength to catch a nighttime event -- even if it would mean lucrative dinner business.
And it needs to be said that Carlsbad is a wealthier area than Winter Haven. There won't be too many well-to-do stay-at-home parents that can take their pre-school kids to Legoland during the week. The park will obviously be open 7 days a week during the summer. I think this is the smart approach.
I'm going to go out on a limb... I love it out there on the limb... Jeff called Cheetah Hunt the sleeper hit of the summer, he's right, its a great ride... I'm going to call Legoland Florida the flop of the summer. I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think it's going to make it.
Seeing as how it doesn't open until October, yeah, I don't think you'll make it there this summer.
I don't see Legoland suffering. If it is priced right (and the Florida resident deals so far have been VERY good) and they can build upon the initial offering then I think it is going to work.
Now, I'm not convinced it is going to do as much for the Winter Haven community as they are hoping it will but I think they will draw a steady attendance. There are a LOT of Lego lovers in the world and they are willing to shell out hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on Legos. They will want to make a trip to the park too.
And, since Merlin is planning on growing their presence in the Orlando area then I think they are in it for the long haul.
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