Wild Florida Celebrates Gator Week May 6–11

Get ready to go Wild… for FREE May 6–11! Wild Florida is celebrating their 3rd annual Gator Week with free admission for everyone to its Gator Park plus exciting events lined up for each day.

Daniel holding a gator at Wild Florida. Photo by Kelly Green

To many, alligators are viewed as fierce carnivores on the hunt, but that’s not the case. Like many misunderstood creatures, myths develop based on a lack of knowledge and focus too much on fear. Because of this, Wild Florida decided to dedicate an entire week to educating guests, debunking common myths and developing a more positive attitude towards these reptiles.

Jordan Munns, co-owner and co-founder of Wild Florida, says, “The most common emotional response to alligators is fear and that can lead to negative outcomes for wild predators. We hope to convert that fear to a healthy respect and appreciation for these incredible animals. ”

Wild Florida’s mission has always been to provide an unforgettable Everglades experience that promotes a connection with animals while inspiring education and conservation.


May 6: Alligators and crocodiles rank in the top two for having the strongest jaws in the animal kingdom. During day one of Gator Week, this power will be displayed during a live demonstration as alligators and crocodiles smash fruits and vegetables with their jaws. Later in the day, there will also be a gator water polo game in the Gator Pond.

May 7: Just like cats and dogs, alligators make very distinct sounds that everyone can master. At 12:00 p.m. inside Wild Florida’s Exotic Animal Pavilion, Wild Florida will host a Gator Call Competition. Later on, the Wild Florida team will host their first “Clock-the-Croc” demonstration, where, using a speed timer, the team will record the speed of one of their crocodiles on land and in the water.

May 8: During day three of Gator Week at Wild Florida’s Gator Feeding Show Pavilion, the Wild Florida team will measure the bite force of a snapping turtle, freshwater crocodile, alligator, and caiman. After the bite force test, stop by the Chomp House Grill as the Wild Florida team tries to break the world record for longest gator po’ boy!

May 9: Wild Florida’s popular Gator Jumpathon returns! At 11:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., Wild Florida’s 3rd Annual Gator Jumpathon takes place inside their Gator Pond, where you can witness the true power of these animals and see just how high they can jump to catch their prey. Then, guests will have an opportunity to jump like a gator themselves and participate in the first-ever “Gator Jump Competition.” There will also be bounce houses available for kids to enjoy throughout the day and educational seminars from experts on alligator hatching, mating and farming.

May 10: Everyone might be used to seeing alligators during the day, but what about at night? Wild Florida will stay open after dark and do a special gator feeding show with their biggest alligator, Crusher. They will also host a Wild Paint Night Out, where Wild Florida’s albino alligators Snowflake and Blizzard will be the stars of the show. Guests will get to paint these impressive animals and see them up close while enjoying a delicious buffet dinner. Wild Florida will also be offering discounted night airboat tours to give guests a unique experience of seeing how wild the swamp is in the moonlight.

May 11: Capping off another year of Gator Week, there will be a Gator Week Corn Hole and Gator Slushy Drinking Competition where the winner from each competition will win a special prize.

Be sure to follow Wild Florida on social media for updates, fun polls, educational tidbits, myth-busting stories, and giveaways throughout the week. Also, check out www.GatorWeek.com for a full schedule of activities.

Admission to Wild Florida’s Gator Park is only $10 for adults; Florida residents receive a 50 percent discount year-round. Admission to the Park is free for any guest who purchases a Wild Florida airboat tour or animal encounter. Learn more about Wild Florida’s offerings at WildFL.com .

Wild Florida Airboats and Gator Park, which opened on Lake Cypress in Kenansville in 2010, focuses on educating individuals about Central Florida’s natural resources. The Wild Florida team is dedicated to protecting, conserving, and enhancing Florida’s diverse ecosystem to ensure that future generations can enjoy the wonders of wild, native Florida.

Ka-Chow! Richard Petty Ride-Along Now Features CARS Cars

Tomorrow Disney Pixar Piston Cup Cars will be unveiled at the Walt Disney World Speedway. Petty Holdings, LLC, Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney World have brought to “life” two characters from the Academy Award-nominated 2006 animated feature film “Cars” — Aiken Axler and Sage VanDerSpin — and we’re SO excited to meet them!

Number 28 car

Aiken Axler, Car 28, likes exercising and Tai Rod meditation when he’s not racing.

Starting Saturday, June 14, Kids ages 6 to 13 (and at least 48 inches tall) will be able to ride in the front passenger seat of a 600HP race car, driven by a racing pro at the Walt Disney World Speedway. Piston Cup Cars Jr. Ride-Alongs will be first-come, first-serve basis. Guests simply show up to the track to queue and then wait their turn to take a spin in what will seem like the “real” Piston Cup! The cost is $59 + tax.


Sage VanDerSpin, Car #80, is the youngest winner of the Junior Piston Cup Pro Series and has mad dodgeball skills when he’s off the track.

Now, you need to know my son has not seen a lot of movies. (He’s more into cooking shows, DIY, and programs that highlight engineering marvels, LOL.) He does, though, LOVE “Cars” and all the personalities (and “Planes,” for the record!). His favorites are Mater, Mr. The King (voiced by Richard Petty, you’ll recall), Lizzie, and the Sheriff. (My favorite is Sally Carrera because I think Bonnie Hunt is just awesome, if you were wondering.)

Getting to touch a movie hero in life will, no doubt, be one of those childhood memories my son will re-live over and over, kind of like the lap after lap action in his (and his dad’s favorite) NASCAR action. I, for one, am excited to see the ear-to-ear grin on his face as that little gentleman “starts [his] engine!”

Just for Kids Saturdays at SeaWorld

Jellyfish welcome visitors to SeaWorld Orlando's Just for Kids FestivalThis year SeaWorld’s Just for Kids Festival will be held Saturdays through April 12, 2014. Kids will enjoy up-close animal interactions, dance parties, interactive experiences and more. New this year is the Rockin’ Rockhopper Party in Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin where kids can groove with a DJ and meet SeaWorld’s coolest star: Puck!

D with puck no csxWe always enjoy the Ocean Adventures educational treasure hunt! Sea Star icons can be found throughout the park to mark activity locations. Once completed, kids collect a stamp and a limited edition Explorer’s card. After stopping by all four, they receive a coupon to redeem for a special SeaWorld prize at select gift shops.

We’re also enjoying getting up closeER than usual to animal friends at SEA Garden including an opossum, and an Olive Crested Cara Cara.

JFK gamesOur personal favorite part of Just for Kids is the roll out of The Hydro-Jet X-Stream 3000! The Longshoremen Comedy Troupe (found most days “Along the Shore”) have a little something bubbly for the kids (and I don’t mean champagne!). Find them Saturdays by the boat at 2:10 and 4:05. They also can be seen on Just for Kids nights at the Village Square “Shamu Dance Party” (by the front gate). You’ll know them by their bright yellow pants and goofy smiles! (Boss sometimes has a scowl, but it’s just because Chester and Lester occasionally get things a bit… convoluted!)


At the party, which begins one hour prior to park closing and ends a half hour after park closing, features a stilt walker emcee, line dancing and party faves.

Throughout Just for Kids, and during the entire 18-month-long 50th Anniversary Celebration, keep an eye out for the SeaWorld “Surprise Squad.” You could win hats, shirts, and some special BIG prizes, too!

See you there! (We big kids have just as much fun as the littles.)