SeaWorld reported its fifth straight record quarter for the three-month period between April and June of this year, but attendance hasn’t quite recovered from the pandemic.
The theme park chain reported $504 million in revenue and $234 million in earnings for the second quarter and in-park guest spending hit a record $36.61 per visitor. Attendance for the quarter was 6.3 million, up 500,000 from last year (a 7.8 percent jump) but still 200,000 less than the same period in 2019.
“We have room in our parks,” SeaWorld Entertainment CEO Marc Swanson said, noting that international visitation is still down by 50 percent compared to its pre-pandemic levels.
Though the chain has attractions on the horizon for 2023 — including new coasters in Orlando and Busch Gardens Williamsburg — the only announcement of new investment during the earnings call was a new stock repurchase authorization of $250 million.
New permits filed for Toy Story Land restaurant
The long-delayed Roundup Rodeo BBQ at Toy Story Land in Disney’s Hollywood Studios may be nearing completion, judging by two new permits.
As reported by Blog Mickey, the permits filed by Walt Disney Imagineering are for theming work. Permits like this are typically filed towards the very end of the construction process.
The restaurant was first announced back in 2019, with the opening eventually delayed until 2022.
Santa’s Village hosting Halloween drive-thru attraction starting Oct. 1
Santa’s Village Amusement Park in East Dundee, Illinois is launching a new Halloween event this fall.
Dubbed Halloween Spooktacular Drive-Thru, the park said it will feature “family-friendly scenes” that include witches, mad scientists, aliens, and not-so-scary monsters. Hot chocolate, funnel cakes and photo opportunities will also be offered at the end of the experience.
Seasonal drive-thru events began out of necessity for theme parks during the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some parks, including Six Flags Great America in Gurnee, Illinois, kept them in 2021, even after being allowed to return to full capacity.
The drive-thru event at Santa’s Village will cost $25 per car, with season passholders getting one free admission, and will be offered on Oct. 1-2, 7-9, 14-16, 21-23, and 27-31. The park will still offer a more traditional car-less Halloween event called Merry Trick-or-Treat during the day on weekends from Oct. 8 through 23.
Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly called the Santa’s Village event Not-Too-Spooky Halloween Spooktacular Drive-Thru. While the park’s original Facebook post did refer to the event by that name, park management said its official name is Halloween Spooktacular Drive-Thru. Theme Park Tribune apologizes for the error.