|by Brad Tuttle||Amusement and Theme Parks, Disney, Family Travel||1|
Here's a round-up of rides and entire theme parks that have just opened, will open soon, or are expected in the years to come.
Presented in roughly chronological order:
World's first special-needs theme park just opened. Morgan's Wonderland, a 25-acre "ultra-accessible" theme park designed for disabled and special needs children and adults, opened last month in San Antonio, Texas, and starting on May 26, the admission gates are open seven days a week.
Universal Studios' Harry Potter attractions opening June 18. Park-goers will finally be able to enjoy the highly anticipated Wizarding World of Harry Potter starting early this summer. There are already Harry Potter-themed vacation packages being sold too.
August is the last chance to ride Disney's Star Tours. A party is being thrown on August 14 at Disney's Hollywood Studios to honor the Last Tour to Endor, and Star Wars geeks know what that means: The old Star Tours ride is closing. Fear not, however, for the ride will be born again sometime in 2011 as a 3-D adventure based on the pod race scenes from "Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace."
Legoland is coming to central Florida. Plans are well under way for the world's fifth Legoland park to open in the Orlando area with 40 to 50 attractions by the end of 2011.
Bonus: $5 kids' tickets at Sea World. From now through the end of 2010, with each full-price adult admission, you can get a child's ticket (for ages 3 to 12) for just $5. The money collected for kids' admission will be donated to a wildlife conservation project of your choice. For more details, check out SeaWorldCares.com.