Hurricane Ian brought its destructive winds and rains to Central Florida on Thursday, causing damage to numerous homes and leaving hundreds of thousands without power. Popular theme parks weren’t saved from the destruction, but are soon ready to invite guests back.
Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort saw several inches of rain, which caused parking lots to flood. However, that doesn’t seem to have put a damper on the parks as they announce plans to reopen, which could be as soon as Friday.
Though depending on the park, not everyone will be allowed to immediately return.
Here’s the reopening plan for each park:
Universal Orlando Resort
Universal Orlando is conducting a phased reopening starting Friday, exclusive to its hotel guests.
Only certain “destinations” will be open on Friday, meaning portions of Universal Orlando or Islands of Adventure may not be accessible to visitors.
Images on Twitter show part of the Incredible Hulk roller coaster at Islands of Adventure partially submerged, as well as a large hole in the side of the Jurassic Park River Adventure building.
— Camtravels (@Camtravels1) September 29, 2022
Universal has not clarified what time the parks will open doors nor what rides will be available. News on whether Halloween Horror Nights will reopen Friday has yet to be announced.
SeaWorld, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has announced all of its parks will remain closed through Friday and are expected to reopen on Saturday.
The extended closure is in effect for Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, Adventure Island, SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica Orlando and Discovery Cove.
Walt Disney World
Walt Disney World also will implement a phased reopening of its theme parks and Disney Springs starting Friday.
“We continue to closely monitor weather conditions as we assess the impact of Hurricane Ian on our property,” Disney said in a statement. “While theme parks and many operating areas remain closed to guests today, we anticipate weather conditions to improve this evening.”
What Theme Parks Will Reopen on Friday:
▪ Magic Kingdom will reopen at 10 a.m. Disney Resort Hotel guests can enter at 8 a.m.
▪ EPCOT will reopen at 11 a.m. Disney Resort Hotel guests can enter at 9 a.m.
▪ Hollywood Studios will reopen at 12 p.m. Disney Resort Hotel guests can enter at 10 a.m.
▪ Animal Kingdom will reopen at 1 p.m. Disney Resort Hotel guests can enter at 11 a.m.
When Shopping, Dining and Special Events Reopen:
▪ Disney Springs will reopen at 10 a.m. on Friday.
▪ Drawn to Life presented by Cirque du Soliel and Disney’s Friday show has been rescheduled from 5:30 to 8 p.m.