Attraction briefs: May 23-29

May 23, 2013 

ATTRACTION BRIEFS

Big Cat Habitat Switches to Summer Hours: Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary, a nonprofit safe haven for big cats, bears and other animals in need, will operate its summer schedule now through October. Sunset Safaris are 4:30-7 p.m. Wednesdays-Sundays. Visitors can have an up-close view of the exotic and other animals in the sanctuary on self-guided tours with special animal encounters daily at 5:30 p.m. Admission: $15 adults, $7 children ages 12 and younger. Reservations are not required. Parking is free. Refreshments are available for purchase. The sanctuary is at 7101 Palmer Blvd., Sarasota. Information: 941-371-6377 or www.bigcathabitat.org.

DinoQuest2 at Lowry Park Zoo: Rediscover a limited engagement outdoor exhibit of lifelike and life-size dinosaurs at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, which features 22 animatronic creatures ranging from the treacherous T-Rex to the gargantuan Giganotosaurus and other prehistoric pals during regular park hours 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily through May 28. Visit the park and take a Zoo School program featuring primitive predators or have a dynamite time after dark at Dino Nites for a unique experience. Dino Nites are 6:30-9:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through May 25 and are $9.95 a person and includes the DinoQuest exhibit. DinoQuest2 daytime admission: $4. The park is at 1101 W. Sligh Ave., Tampa. Information: www.LowryParkZoo.com.

Monstrous Summer "All-Nighter": Walt Disney World resort will kick off a Monstrous Summer by keeping three theme parks open for 24 hours nonstop, 6 a.m. May 24-6 a.m. May 25, marking the beginning of a summer of fun inspired by the upcoming Disney Pixar comedy adventure "Monster University." Walt Disney World is on Lake Buena Vista Dr., Lake Buena Vista. For detailed information visit www.disneyparks.com/monstroussummer.

Star Wars Weekends: Star Wars Weekends returns to the Walt Disney World Resort galaxy every Friday, Saturday and Sunday May 24-26, May 31-June2 and June 7-9. Among the features are special Star Wars-themed parades, appearances by Star Wars celebrities, special additions to Jedi Training Academy, Star Wars-themed talk shows, behind-the-scenes presentations, limited edition merchandise, a nightly dance celebration and more. This special event is included in regular park admission to Disney's Hollywood Studios. The park is at 351 S. Studio Dr., Lake Buena Vista. For a detailed schedule, ticket prices and other information, call 407-824-2222 or visit www.disneyworld.com/starwardsweekends.

Bank of America "Museums on Us": Bank of America's "Museums on Us" is offering cardholders to celebrate spring with free admission to some of the most exciting cultural venues in the United States June 1-2. Bank of America and Merrill Lynch cardholders can get free access to more than 150 participating museums in 94 cities and include the Florida Holocaust Museum and Tampa Museum of Art in Tampa and the Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg. Present your Bank of America or Merrill Lynch credit or debit card along with a photo ID to gain free general admission. The offer is valid for cardholders only, guests are not eligible. The program excludes fundraising events, special exhibitions and ticketed shows the first full weekend of each month. Information: http://museums.bankofamerica.com.

Busch Gardens "Summer Nights": "Summer Nights," an end-of-night show packed with energizing live musicians, singers, dancers and artists from around the world and finale fireworks returns to Busch Gardens will be June 8-Aug. 11. Summer Nights is included with any daily admission, Fun Card or Annual Pass to Busch Gardens. The park is at 10165 N. McKinley Dr., Tampa. For park hours and tickets, call 888-800-5447 or visit http://seaworldparks.com.

Space Shuttle Atlantis: The countdown is on for the launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, the new home of the historic spacecraft, opening June 29. This one-of-a-kind experience delivers extraordinary access to Space Shuttle Atlantis - from only a few feet away, guests of all ages will be awed and inspired with an up-close, 360-degree view of the orbiter, the wear of its 33 missions apparent on its protective external tiles. Space Shuttle Atlantis features state-of-the-art multimedia presentations and more than 60 interactive exhibits and high-tech simulations. Kennedy Space Center is at State Road 405, Kennedy Space Center. For hours, admission prices and detailed information, call 877-313-2610 or visit www.KennedySpaceCenter.com.

Museum of Science and Industry: "Sea Monsters Revealed," an exhibition of 18 of the world's largest plastinated sea creatures, is now on display at the Museum of Science and Industry, for an up-close and personal look at the most mysterious creatures the deep sea has to offer. Visitors will not only see the outside, but also the inside of the most elusive aquatic life ever discovered, including a 6-foot-wide manta ray, a 15-foot long mako shark, a giant squid, and an 18-foot-long, 3,000 pound whale shark. All specimens in the exhibitions are authentic and have been carefully recovered in accordance with the highest animal protection standards. The exhibit also includes more than 150 individual organs and smaller specimens that define the life of the sea. The exhibition's theatrical and scenic elements take visitors back in time to an 18th century oceanographer's study and will descend in a specially-built submersible to the depths to explore the sea floor and meet renowned ocean explorers such as Fabian Cousteau and Sylvia Earle and walk on the ocean floor among the giants of the deep. The exhibit will be on display through Sept. 2 Museum hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, and 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Reservations are highly recommended. The museum is at 4801 E. Fowler Ave., Tampa. For ticket prices and detailed information, call 813-987-6000 or visit www.mosi.org.

Museum of Fine Arts Summer Admission: The Museum of Fine Arts announced it will lower its admission from $17 to $10 for everyone through Sept. 30. Groups of 10 or more adults pay only $8 each and groups of 10 or more students, $4 a person. On Thursday nights when the Museum presents "UnchARTed: Random Acts of Culture," college students with current I.D. pay $5 or can buy one admission, get one free. The Museum is at 255 Beach Dr. NE., St. Petersburg. Information: 727-896-2667 or www.fine-arts.org.

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