Attraction briefs: Aug. 29-Sept. 4

August 29, 2013 

The world’s first Simpsons-themed environment is now open at Universal Orlando Resort. Springfield the expansive, new area in Universal Studios invites guests to step inside the hometown of America’s favorite animated family, The Simpsons, like never before. Anchored by the mega-attraction, The Simpsons Ride, the newly-themed area includes iconic eateries and knick-knack nooks from the hit animated series, The Simpsons, and an all-new outdoor attraction based on the show’s “evil” alien duo, Kang & Kodos, pictured above. For more information, visit www.universalorlando.com. PUBLICITY PHOTO

KEVIN KOLCZYNSKI — UNIVERSAL ORLANDO

ATTRACTION BRIEFS

Dakin Dairy Farm Festival: Dakin Dairy Farms, 30771 Betts Road, Myakka City

Registration is now open for Dakin Dairy Farm's Mac and Cheese Contest and 5-Mile Ranch and Kids Run which will be part of Dakin Dairy Farm Festival 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 5 celebrating five years of Farm Tours, Birthday Parties and Corn Maze. There will be a Calf Scramble, a Bean Bag Toss, Himalayan salt demonstrations, local artists, various "Agri" vendors and exhibits, and live music by Kim Betts and the Gamble Creek Band. For festival details and registration, call 941-322-2802 or visit www.DakinDairyFarms.com.

TreeUmph! Nighttime Adventure Course Tours: TreeUmph! Adventure Course now offers exciting nighttime tours for thrill-seekers ages 12 and older beginning at 7:30 p.m. Fridays at 21805 State Road 70 E., Bradenton. Visitors can conquer the challenge of wobbly bridges, bungee swings, a 650 foot long zip line and more in a different light. Organized groups of 20-30 climbers of all skill levels venture along a guided tour through the treetops wearing headlamps to light the way. TreeUmph provides sandwiches, snacks and beverages before the expedition starts, and guides are dispersed throughout the course to ensure safety. Every participant is required to complete the Harness Course, where they will learn the rules of the park, how to use the climbing gear, and the mandatory safety procedures. Some height, weight and age restrictions do apply. Cost: $59.95. Reservations are required. Information: 855-322-2130 or www.TreeUmph.com.

Food Truck Madness: The Museum of Science and Industry will host another Food Truck Madness 6-10 p.m. Aug. 30, featuring some of Tampa's biggest and best food trucks as part of the MOSI After Dark event series. This event will be the Bay area's last opportunity to explore MOSI's world premiere exhibit, Sea Monsters Revealed, at night. Enjoy great games, music and even conquer MOSI's Sky Trail Ropes Course and Zip Line. MOSI's standard exhibit galleries will also be open at a discounted rate. Admission to Food Truck madness is free. Additional fees apply for Sea Monsters Revealed, the Sky Trail Ropes Course and Zip Line, IMAX movies and MOSI general exhibits. The museum is at 4801 E. Fowler Ave., Tampa. For ticket prices and detailed information, call 813-987-6000 or visit www.mosi.org.

Bank of America "Museums on Us": Bank of America's "Museums on Us" is offering cardholders free admission to some of the most exciting cultural venues in the United States Sept. 7-8. 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.

Universal Orlando's Halloween Horror Nights 23: Experience an incredibly horrifying Halloween at Universal Orlando's Halloween Horror Nights 23 on select nights Sept. 20-Nov. 2 featuring highly-themed, disturbingly-real haunted houses that are based on everything from hit films like "The Cabin in the Woods" to worst nightmares, and streets filled with hundreds of specially-trained "scareactors." The park is at 6000 Universal Blvd., Orlando. For hours, ticket prices and detailed information, call (407) 363-8000 or visit www.HalloweenHorrorNights.con/Orlando

Busch Gardens' "Howl-O-Scream": Evil comes out to play at Busch Gardens' Halloween event "Howl-O-Scream" for 14 select nights Sept. 27-Oct. 26 featuring an overgrown, dark and sinister park with adult-targeted fun, riding adrenaline-fuelled coasters at night, including Cheetah Hunt and tormenting surprises and unexpected terrors around every corner. Howl-O-Scream hours are 7:30 p.m.-1 a.m. Thursday nights and 7:30 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday and Saturday nights. The park is at 10165 N. McKinley Dr., Tampa. For ticket prices and detailed information, call 888-800-5447 or visit www.HowlOScream.com

Ringling free admission: The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art will offer free admission to the entire estate Sept. 28 as part of the Museum Day Live! Annual event, hosted by Smithsonian magazine. The museum is at 5401 Bay Shore Road, Sarasota. Information: 941-359-5700 or www.ringling.org.

Busch Gardens' "3-Park Summer Sizzler": Florida residents can explore some of central Florida's hottest theme parks, all at an unprecedented value with the 3-Park Summer Sizzler for $99. Guests can enjoy unlimited admission to Busch Gardens and unlimited weekday admission to Adventure Island and Aquatica, SeaWorld's Waterpark in Orlando through Sept. 2. The offer is valid for Florida residents only, photo ID is required. For park locations, hours and tickets, call 888-800-5447 or visit http://seaworldparks.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. Guest can get 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 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.

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 on 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.

SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment Salutes Military with "Waves of Honor Program": SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment is honoring the men and women of the U.S. armed services through its Waves of Honor military salute program, providing free admission to the SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Parks, and Sesame Place through 2013. The program provides one complimentary admission through 2013 to the participating parks for the service member and as many as three of his or her dependents. Service members need to register either online at www.wavesofhonor.com or in the entrace plazas of the parks. All dependents 10 and older must present a valid military dependent identification of entry into the park. For park locations, hours and tickets, call 888-800-5447 or visit http://seaworldparks.com.

Busch Gardens and SeaWorld Weekday Tickets Offer: Explore Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin and the wonders of the sea at SeaWorld Orlando, or experience thrilling attractions and amazing land animals at Busch Gardens Tampa with the all-new $50 weekday ticket Mondays-Fridays through Dec. 20. For park location, hours and tickets, visit www.SeaWorldOrlando.com or BuschGardensTampa.com.

Space Shuttle Atlantis: Historic spacecraft Space Shuttle Atlantis' is permanently on display at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. 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.

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