By Nicole Heubusch
The holiday season is approaching and there are many ways to celebrate around town. Whether an adult or child, the following events are for all ages and are family friendly.
Universal’s Islands of Adventure is continuing its tradition of bringing guests the magical transformation of Seuss Landing into the holiday favorite of Grinchmas. There will be a live retelling of Dr. Seuss’s classical holiday tale, starring none other than the Grinch and featuring music recorded by Mannheim Steamroller. The characters will come to life both onstage and off, as Whos from Who-ville stroll through Seuss Landing, ready to say hello and spread good cheer. It will run Tuesday, December 2 through January 3, 2015. For more information and ticket pricing, visit www.universalorlando.com/Events/Holidays/Grinchmas.aspx.
Breakfast with Santa and Holiday FantaSea at The Florida Aquarium
On Saturday, December 20, Santa will be making his way to the Florida Aquarium. Breakfast with Santa will be from 8-9:30 a.m. and will include assorted French toast sticks, scrambled eggs, bacon and more. Since Santa’s elves are hard at work, he will be accompanied by Florida Aquarium trainers and staff, along with special animal guests. This package includes free parking and admission to the aquarium for the day. Space is limited so those interested should register as soon as possible. Tickets are $29.95 for adult non-members, $19.95 for adult aquarium members, $21.95 for child non-members and $11.95 for child aquarium members. Children under 2 are free. For more information and to register, visit www.flaqua rium.org/event-calendar.aspx.
Also at the Florida Aquarium, from December 26-30 is the Holiday FantaSea. The event will take place those select dates from 9:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Guests will enjoy the coolest water wonderland at the aquarium, and experience the snow play area, light shows, holiday themed activities and see the exhibits that will be open late. For more information, visit www.flaquarium.org/event-calendar.aspx.
Watch the Lowry Park Zoo transform into a whimsical world of holiday magic with 16 nights of holiday delights, running December 6, 12-14, 18-23 and 26-30 from 6:30-10 p.m.
Guests can meet Santa and his reindeer in the Reindeer Games area. More happiness awaits with a million twinkling lights, a charismatic colony of African penguins, charming animated displays, Florida “flurries,” free zoo rides and traditional holiday treats.
Follow Wild Wonderland on Facebook for more information, www.facebook.com/WildWonder landTampaZoo.
Ice Palace at International Plaza
Open now through Wednesday, December 24 during mall hours, watch the mall on Westshore Blvd. transform into an Ice Palace, which includes a 30 ft. dome that will be covered in snow, a light show and interactive snow globes that will portray scenes from the Disney movie Frozen.
Adults and children can leave their hand print on ice at the Icy Hand Experience, and they will be able to see how it compares in size to Sven and Olaf, and they will also get their picture taken with a plush Olaf at the Ice Throne. For more information, visit www.shop internationalplaza.com/holidays.
Kids Free Ticket at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration
This holiday season kids will get into Seaworld Orlando for free with the purchase of a paid adult admission. This promotion will end Wednesday, December 31. SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration tales place select dates from now until Wednesday, December 31.
Enjoy holiday shows like Elmo’s Christmas Wish, O Wondrous Night, The Polar Express Experience, Shamu Christmas Miracle, Winter Wonderland on Ice, and take a walk through the magical Sea of Trees, a forest with over 100 sparkling trees and lights.
For more information and ticket pricing, visit seaworldparks.com/ en/seaworld-orlando/christmas/.