SeaWorld and Legoland offer holiday diversions
Stocking stuff scavenger hunts, live camels and reindeer hanging out with Santa, and a 30-foot tree fashioned from 245,000 forest green Lego bricks are among the holiday enticements that SeaWorld and Legoland are offering to lure visitors at a time when COVID-19 restrictions are still limiting visitation to theme parks.
SeaWorld, which is allowed to be open at much-reduced capacity under rules reserved for zoos and aquariums, has added a number of new features to its lineup of Christmas attractions. Among them is “Santa Presents: Christmas Animals Around the World,” an outdoor presentation at Nautilus Amphitheater where Santa will introduce some of his favorite animals, including camels and reindeer, and Stocking Stuffer Christmas Trail, tailored for younger children, who will traverse the park as they collect sweets, small toys and other surprises that will drop into their holiday bags through a chute.
Another new offering, dubbed Christmas Treasure Hunt, allows participants to explore the park in search of Santa’s gifts for all of his eight reindeer. Successful explorers will be rewarded with a special gift.
The holiday celebration, which runs on select dates through Jan. 4, requires a reservation, and capacity at the park is limited to about 25 to 30 percent of normal visitation, said park president Marilyn Hannes.
“This is a time where the whole world has had to innovate and be creative,” she said. “We’ve come up with great and festive ways to do that, so we’re excited about that. And if you’re already a pass holder, this is all included.”
Now that San Diego County is in the most restrictive tier of the state’s color-coded system for reopening during the pandemic, indoor exhibits and attractions are closed. Among those are penguin encounter, shark encounter, turtle reef and Wild Arctic, but the park is still offering its outdoor animal presentations — Orca Encounter, Dolphin Days and the sea lion and otter show.
She advised visitors to check out the park’s website for a number of Black Friday deals for admission to the park.
While Legoland is not currently permitted to be open, it is still able to celebrate the holidays with retail and dining offerings, Lego characters and its Christmas tree.
Lego characters, such as Santa, the Toy Soldier and the Gingerbread Man, will be at the park’s Fun Town area, and a newly themed Miniland USA is also open where Lego ornament-building will be offered.
The holiday festivities will be offered on select dates through Jan. 10, and reservations are required. Tickets can be purchased online.
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