Monday, May 04, 2009

Manta Will Open for Sneak Preview

You’ve been waiting all spring, and now, SeaWorld Orlando is rewarding you for your patience. The aquatic theme park will be opening its new roller coaster Manta early for a special sneak preview this Tuesday, May 5 (Cinco de Mayo). Manta will open at noon that day, as well as every day afterwards through the week until at least the following Sunday, May 10. Though guests should be prepared for periodic closures, it’s still a great chance to ride the ray before it officially opens.

Manta’s official opening date is May 22, but rumors have been circulating for a while now that the ride has come together so quickly and so well that guests will likely get to ride it for limited hours leading up to May 22.

“A lot of the locals and residents want to experience this before summer,” said SeaWorld spokesperson Nick Gollattscheck.

The sneak preview announcement was actually first made by Shamu via Twitter, who pronounced, “I have decided to open Manta early. Tuesday, May 5 at noon. Yes, I have that kind of pull. When you speak of me, speak well.” Needless to say, Shamu’s not a modest killer whale.

Manta will be a first for SeaWorld in many ways – though it’s not the park’s only roller coaster, it will be the first flying roller coaster of its kind in the park and in the world. Riders will begin by climbing into traditional seats and harnesses, but soon enough they’ll see what makes the ride so special as the entire seating assembly rotates forward, positioning riders horizontally.

From there, they’ll soar over the park like a Manta ray, flying headfirst at 56 mph. The coaster features a track-twisting pretzel loop, in-line spins, a close call with a waterfall, and a wing dip just inches from the water that throws out a 14-foot high, 60-foot long spray of water.

Adding on to the incredible experience is Manta’s aquarium; while waiting on line for the ride, guests will get a glimpse into the underwater worlds of tropical fish and rays. Floor to ceiling aquariums will showcase rare leafy sea dragons, colorful clownfish, and mysterious sea anemones. Smaller guests will even get to ‘pop up’ into an aquarium and come face-to-face with the aquarium’s inhabitants – which include three hundred rays and a massive Pacific octopus, which creeps along the interior of Manta’s saltwater habitat.

“Manta takes what SeaWorld does best – animal encounters and thrill rides – and blends
them to create something you can’t find anywhere else in the world,” said Dan Brown,
SeaWorld Orlando’s general manager. “Manta’s actually the next generation of what makes
Orlando so much fun. Orlando is the must-do vacation this summer, and Manta is the must-see."

So what are you waiting for? Get your first look at the must-see attraction of the summer, and grab your discount SeaWorld tickets from We can’t imagine a better way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo than by riding a manta ray at SeaWorld.


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