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Universal Orlando picks up the pace with construction of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

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Universal Orlando picks up the pace with construction of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

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Nancy and I spent the latter part of yesterday afternoon checking out "The Holiday Cheer That You Can Only Hear Here" at the Universal Orlando Resort. We first caught a performance of "Grinchmas"  over at Universal's Islands of Adventure.


Photo by Nancy Stadler

Then we hustled on over to Universal Studios Florida. Where we grabbed a curbside seat for the Macy's Holiday Parade ...


Photo by Nancy Stadler

... which features several authentic floats & balloons direct from this year's running of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in NYC.


Photo by Nancy Stadler

And as Nancy and I were walking back to our car through Universal CityWalk, we happened upon this mob scene out in front of Emeril's Restaurant Orlando ...


Photo by Nancy Stadler

... where -- as it turns out -- Emeril Lagasse was signing copies of his latest cookbook, "Emeril 20-40-60: Fresh Food Fast" (HarperStudio, October 2009).


Photo by Nancy Stadler

"So what was your favorite part of yesterday's trip to the Universal Orlando Resort?," you ask. To be honest, Nancy and I (along with thousands of Universal Guests and at least one other webmaster) spent a lot of time peering through cracks in construction fences ...


Photo by Nancy Stadler

... and/or staring longingly across Islands of Adventure Lagoon at the Hogsmeade Village construction site. Where Stuart Craig's production designs for the "Harry Potter" films are being brought to life by the herculean effort of an extremely talented & dedicated group of construction workers.


Photo by Nancy Stadler

Nancy and I spent about a half hour watching these guys scrambling up into the scaffolding that still covers about 60% of this 20-acre construction site ...


Photo by Nancy Stadler

... marveling at all the forced prospective that Craig & Universal Creative are using to give Universal Orlando Resort Guests the impression that The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is far larger than it actually is.


Photo by Nancy Stadler

Trust me, folks. When all of the scaffolding finally comes down and the castle's paint job is complete (More importantly, when all those tiny little fake trees are finally put into place) you're going to buy into the idea that the IOA version of Hogwarts Castle is significantly taller & grander than it actually is.

Did the above photos whet your appetite for a trip to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. If so, make plans now to fly or drive down to IOA in 2010. Which is when Phase One of this "land" that was inspired by J.K. Rowling and the characters, settings & stories that she created comes down off the screen and then enters reality (Well ... As real as things can typically get inside of a theme park).

Soooo ... Once The Wizarding World of Harry Potter opens next year, will you folks be making a special trip to Universal's Islands of Adventure just to check out Harry Potter. And if not, why not?

Your thoughts?

Given the holiday-related tone of today's article, I'd just like to remind you folks that there are now less than 10 shopping days left 'til Christmas. And if you planning on doing any last-minute shopping on Amazon.com ... Well, before you begin bargain hunting, could you please click on the above banner?

If you do that, Jim Hill Media then gets a teeny tiny chunk of whatever you spend. Which would be an awfully nice way to show your appreciation for all the great articles that you've read on this site over the past year.

Happy Holidays!

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  • Wow, just looking at those pics is getting me so excited! I can't wait to get down to Florida and visit once it opens.

  • I'm curious what's in phase 1 vs. what's coming later...

  • This post was mentioned on Twitter by JimHillMedia: Universal Orlando picks up the pace with construction of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter: Jim Hill s... http://tinyurl.com/y9238de #D23

  • This will get me back to Universal (and the fab Hard Rock Resort)

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