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The SATURDAY SIX News Desk: A Look at Recent Stories From Disney, Universal, and SeaWorld

first_imgShare This!This week’s SATURDAY SIX is undoubtedly a special one as we once again dust off the blue blazer and step behind the SATURDAY SIX News Desk. It has been a whirlwind of theme park related news lately. Our long national nightmare is over as purple MagicBands are available for your WDW resort stay, Disney started a new subscription service themed to the Haunted Mansion for the low low price of just $200 (oh, and it has already sold out), the Orlando Eye did its first baby reveal, and a worker at Art of Animation was caught on video using a dirty mop to clean a table. That was just the tip of the iceberg.So – as usual – we took a page out of our old college playbook, chugged down a case of 5 Hour Energy, and pulled an all-nighter, cramming as much information as we could into our tiny brains so that we could report back to you, Dear Reader, with all the relevant facts (and before we forget it all tomorrow). So sit back, know that you are getting all the news that’s fit to print (and plenty more that’s not), and let’s begin our countdown starting with…–# 6 – That sound you hear? KONG IS COMING.As Donald Trump would say, it was a yuge week of King Kong news over at the Universal Orlando Resort. As theme park merchandise fanatics, we loved that a whole bunch of new merch arrived for the upcoming Skull Island: Reign of Kong attraction. Then, Universal dropped a bombshell with their reveal of the incredible ride vehicles along with a couple other tasty tidbits: This would be Universal’s first trackless ride system, and the vehicles would be “driven” by one of five characters. While Universal hasn’t released an official opening of the attraction yet, we have a sneaking suspicion we may hear something around the time the Syfy show Face Off features an entire episode (the season finale no less) dedicated to creating characters for the attraction. Stay tuned Wednesday, March 30th at 9PM EST on Syfy.Universal’s Kong is almost here, but Disney has Avatar and Star Wars in the near future…. (photo by Matt Cleary)–# 5 – SeaWorld Admits to Ordering Employees to Spy on Animal Rights GroupsReaders of the SATURDAY SIX may remember one of  last year’s annual Turkeys of the Year awards went to a SeaWorld employee who was caught spying on the animal rights group PeTA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals). At the time, SeaWorld management was shocked, SHOCKED at this behavior and put out the story that the employee had gone rogue. Fast forward to this month and during another disastrous investor’s conference, SeaWorld CEO Joel Manby admitted that employees did go undercover in animal rights groups and, more importantly, did so per order of the company.Believe it or not this was the most “wow” SeaWorld story of the week until the atomic bomb the company dropped Thursday morning announcing they were ending the breeding of Killer Whales and will also be ending all the theatrical shows featuring orcas (to be replaced by exhibits).Disguised as famous YouTube personality Tim Tracker, Shamu himself was able to go completely unnoticed within the PeTA ranks. (photo by Michael Sheehy)–# 4 – StoryMaker Debuts at It’s a Small World“Do you believe in miracles?” – Al MichaelsOriginally slated to debut with MyMagic+ several years ago, StoryMaker was probably the thing the majority of Disney guests were most excited for. By reading information off our MagicBands, this was the technology that was going to let meet and greet characters like Talking Mickey or the Disney Princesses know our names before they met us. It was also going to be used in attractions around the park, including It’s a Small World. Years ago, the idea was that guests would be able to design a IASW-like character at home, and then come to the Magic Kingdom to see it displayed on a screen at the end of the ride. As we all know, that didn’t happen, but just this past week – out of nowhere – screens at the end of IASW started to display the names of guests. Thankfully theme park bloggers, the real heroes, were immediately called into action and shared their story with the world.The bad news? The screens may already have been turned off. C’est la vie.One day you too, Dear Reader, may see your own name inside a Walt Disney World attraction…just pray it isn’t Stitch’s Great Escape. (photo by Banks Lee and Matt Cleary)Theme Park Bloggers, is there anything they can’t do?–# 3 – New Chocolate Based Restaurant to Debut in Universal CityWalkAbout a week ago, the wrestling world was buzzing that a WWE Hall of Fame was going to open at Universal CityWalk, replacing NBA City. This didn’t make too much sense for Universal, as WWE business ventures outside their core business of professional wrestling have been some of the biggest financial flops in modern times (including the XFL and The World restaurant in Times Square). There is also the elephant in the room of WWE’s biggest demographic, which traditionally do not have the type of household income that a family needs for a theme park resort vacation (which is one of the reasons why wrestling has a hard time getting – and keeping – big name advertisers despite great TV ratings).Well, turns out the “exclusive story” wasn’t true at all and Universal themselves unveiled what is actually coming to CityWalk: The Toothsome Chocolate Factory & Savory Feast Emporium. One part steampunk, one part Willy Wonka, and one part Cheesecake Factory, The Toothsome Chocolate Factory looks to continue Universal’s hot streak of great restaurants including Red Oven Pizza Bakery, Antojitos, and Vivo Italian Kitchen. The restaurant promises unique twists on your standard restaurant menu (steak, seafood, pasta, burgers, etc) but it also looks to debut the first ever E-Ticket milkshakes.The Toothsome Chocolate Factory & Savory Feast Emporium becomes the most unfriendly Twitter name for a restaurant EVER. (photo courtesy of the Universal Orlando Resort)Seriously, look at those shakes!Is that an actual cupcake on the top of a milkshake? Yes, yes it is. We are truly #blessed.Okay, who wants to get chocolate wasted?!Disney Springs will not be taking this news about Toothsome lying down. Look for exciting gastro counterpunches soon!–# 2 – 1 if by land, $2 if by RESORT FEE.The world of theme park social media was rocked earlier this week when word got that some Disney guests were receiving a survey that asked questions about resort fees. Now we all know – and despise – hidden resort fees. They’ve become so commonplace at hotels that it has become like baggage fees at the airlines, you know that, no matter what you are going to get screwed. Disney has always had their resort fees built into the cost of the room, so you pay one cost upfront and don’t have to be nickel and dimed over amenities such as parking, wi-fi, and even MagicBands.The survey threw out the number of $15 for a resort fee at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort or the BoardWalk. Included within this $15 fee would be: Disney’s Magical Express, MagicBands, Priority FP+ planning, WiFi, Extra Magic Hours, and parking at the resort and theme parks. Basically, everything you are getting now. Now many in the community – such as Pete Werner of the DisUnplugged podcast say that this is Disney just softening the blow for announcing resort fees that are surely coming. Others, such as Josh EasyWDW say resort fees are “absolutely 100% not coming to the WDW resorts.”While certainly not everything Disney puts into surveys comes to fruition, a similar survey came out last year tossing out the idea of tiered ticket pricing, something which Disney put into reality on February 28th.“How much is your penny candy?” “Surprisingly expensive.” – The Simpsons–# 1 – Walt Disney World Testing Preferred ParkingNot a good week for those hoping their Walt Disney Resort vacation would become cheaper. At both the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT, Disney tested premium parking for a fee. Many other theme parks, including Universal, already offer “up charge” parking that allows guests to park closer to the parks. This test by Disney rolls out a few months after testing paid parking at some of the WDW resorts. Unlike the resort fees mentioned above, this is an up charge that probably wouldn’t affect the average guest. Many people use Disney transportation to get to the parks, and for those that drive their own vehicles the actual distance between the regular parking areas ($20) and the premium parking ($35) is not all that big.Possible DHS parking on a peak day (photo by Michael Sheehy)–UPDATE: Early reports of preferred parking have guests not exactly lining up to pay for the shorter walk to the parks. We’ll see how this changes when more guests understand what preferred parking includes and if Disney cuts down on the amount of trams to “encourage” the upgrade.EPCOT preferred parking. (photo by Brandon Glover)EPCOT preferred parking. (photo by Brandon Glover) So there you have it: The SATURDAY SIX News Desk once again delivers all the news that is fit to print (and even more that isn’t). See you next weekend for the latest installment of the SATURDAY SIX, where we’ll look at something fun from the world of Disney and Universal. If you enjoyed yourself, be sure to check out The Magic, The Memories, and Merch! articles, or, for your listening pleasure, check out the E-Ticket Report podcast. You can also follow Your Humble Author on Twitter (@derekburgan)If you enjoyed this article, you will surely like the following:SATURDAY SIX News Desk: January 2016 (FP+ Line Starts Here!, Star Wars Land, Pizza Planet refurb and more)Six Things We Wish Theme Park Fans Would Stop Complaining AboutInaugural 2015 Theme Park Awards (AKA ” The Burgys”)Six Great Souvenirs From the Universal Orlando ResortSpecial Thanks to crack staff photographer Brandon Glover, master photo manipulator Matt Cleary, noted rabble rouser Michael Sheehy, the great Banks Lee, and blogger to the stars Megan Stump for their invaluable assistance with this article. Be sure to also check out Brandon on The Park Blogger podcast with co-hosts Aengus Mackenzie and Brian Carey.It truly takes a village.last_img read more

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Africa urged to invest in artists as visionaries

first_imgArtists and the economy was discussed on the second day of the fourth African Union Pan-African Cultural Congress, with speakers calling on governments and private sector leaders to invest in the arts and heritage as a means of uniting Africa through its diversity. N’Goné Fall says artists are visionaries. “An artist is about education, capacity building, empowerment, et cetera. Artists are probing political issues, spiritual and cultural issues. They rely on history in order to inspire the present, the future.” (Image: Media Club SA) Melissa JavanThe impact artists made on the economy was one of the topics discussed at the fourth African Union Pan-African Cultural Congress (PACC4), running from 25 to 27 May at the Sandton Convention Centre.This congress, which promotes diversity, is a partnership between the South African Department of Arts and Culture and the African Union Commission; its theme is “Unity in cultural diversity for Africa’s development”. Cultural leaders from across the continent are discussing how Africans can connect and improve their economies.N’Goné Fall is an independent curator, art critic and cultural engineering consultant. She spoke about the lack of government investing in contemporary and modern arts, yet internationally there was a huge market for it.“Europe and the United States have the biggest auction houses and art fares in contemporary and modern art. This boosts the economy, but does not affect us [Africans] locally, because artists are going as individuals to Europe,” she said. “The artists are not seen [by the government] as important and [are] still seen as entertainers.”She knew of many top South African and Nigerian scholars with PhDs in history of art, but who lived in the US. “Their research grounds are that side. We have not training grounds for them here, so now there are teaching that side. And it’s a pity.Artists as visionaries“African governments and the African Union need to realise that they should make art and culture as a component of importance.”Fall saw artists as visionaries and activists. “An artist is about education, capacity building, empowerment, et cetera. Artists are probing political issues, spiritual and cultural issues. They rely on history in order to inspire the present, the future. They are change agents.”Mike Dada, the president of the All African Music Awards, reminded the audience that Africa had a lot to offer the world. The “African brand”, however, was created by Western media and observers. “Often times their facts are out of context and distorted. Through that lens [of Africa] we mostly see hunger, war poverty, hopelessness, et cetera.”He asked the audience, packed as it was with African leaders and representatives, whether they wanted to continue to have others telling African stories, or whether they were “ready to tell our story”.“The global village, the people, the investors, the young and the old, everyone from different walks of life, they want to listen to African stories.”Telling our own storiesUsing visuals of leaders such as Nelson Mandela and Robert Mugabe, as well as of hungry children, Dada added: “Our people all contribute to the perception of Africa.”Dr Webber Ndoro of the African World Heritage Fund said that heritage must be a cornerstone of sustainable development in Africa. “Heritage provides potential to create dialogues between developers and communities.”Although tourism played a huge role in heritage being a cornerstone, locals did not benefit much, he said. His statistics on tourism’s share market showed that 72% went to international companies and less than 5% went to local communities.“If we look at Victoria Falls and Livingstone as an example, of the 29 hotels and lodges in the area only five of them buy from the local communities,” said Ndoro. “We are trying to improve it. That’s why we are targeting individuals and families.”Of the 1 007 properties listed as World Heritage sites, he added, only 89 were in sub-Saharan Africa. The process of nominating a heritage site for the list took two years. “Besides lack of interest, there is a lack of capacity for African governments to compile a heritage site to the nomination list.”The objectives of the congressAccording to the African Union, cultural experts, policy makers, members of the private sector and civil society organisations working in the arts and culture sector are attending the congress. Its objective is to take stock of the challenges and record good practices on harnessing cultural diversity to enhance development.Specific goals include:Facilitating the exchanges of ideas and experiences among arts and culture professionals, researchers, creators/producers of culture, decision/policy makers in the area of cultural diversity in Africa;Gathering inputs and best practices for the formulation and implementation of cultural policies and programmes in Africa in the area of cultural diversity;Mobilising partners to engage in private and public partnerships for the finance the cultural sector;Accelerating the implementation of the Plan of Action on cultural and creative industries as a tool for the creative economy and sustainable development;Organising a thematic exhibition on African shared values and the spirit of pan-Africanism to showcase Africa’s creative and cultural potential with a view to boosting sustainable development; and,Providing pointers for the development of the first 10-year implementation plan for Agenda 2063 as it pertains to Aspiration 5 and related focus areas and flagship projects.The union said cultural diversity was critical “in the sense that the achievement of the Agenda 2063 vision for an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa will depend on the capacity of Africa to overcome the continent’s major post-colonial conflicts by bridging the gap between cultures and promoting mutual understanding among peoples”.last_img read more

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SOA: Back from the Dead?

first_imgFour months ago the Burton group declared SOA dead and the analyst and blogger communities chimed in with agreement. Now Gartner disagrees. Or at least they characterize SOA not as dead, but as recovering from a “trough of disillusionment” and now entering into the “slope of enlightenment” phase. It was a quick blip of disillusionment.Gartner sees mainstream companies as continuing to increase their adoption of SOA. But the reason for their adoption is that so many vendor products have been retooled to be positioned and as targeted as SOA-ready. Customers of new software are getting SOA even though they may not have consciously decided to take the SOA leap. Maybe Burton Group was still right — they pronounced SOA dead as a business initiative, but one that would live on as a viable IT architecture.Gartner predicts that more companies will be using SOA whether they are planned or not. And they predict of the companies that do, the ones that have failures will be as a result of not complementing their SOA initiative with an adequate policy around governance.last_img read more

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Fortune Cookie Security Advice – May 2009

first_imgEveryone wants information security to be easy.  Wouldn’t it be nice if it were simple enough to fit snugly inside a fortune cookie?  Well, although I don’t try to promote such foolish nonsense, I do on occasion pass on readily digestible nuggets to reinforce security principles and get people thinking how security applies to their environment.Common SenseI think the key to fortune cookie advice is ‘common sense’ in the context of security.  It must be simple, succinct, and make sense to everyone, while conveying important security aspects.Fortune Cookie advice for May:Fear and anxiety will lead to poor risk analysis conclusionsStay focused on the available facts, use a dose of reality to fill in the gaps, and trust reliable risk models to generate analytical conclusions.Excerpt from the /javascript:;: In our world of information security, we must take a step back from the limitations and biases we possess and stay true to proper forms of analysis in order to see the truth.  It is far too easy for us to slip backwards and inaccurately measure risk of situations we don’t understand.  Let’s continue to remind each other of this fact and challenge risk assessments, especially in situations where concern is more prevalent than fact.So am I contributing to the problem of over simplifying security? Or am I reaching out to those who might not take an inordinate amount of time necessary to understand the complexities and nuances of our industry? You decide and feel free to share your knowledge-nuggets./javascript:;/javascript:;/javascript:;/javascript:;/javascript:;/javascript:;last_img read more

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Chennai Super Kings’ fate to be decided after Madras High Court hearing

first_imgThe Indian Premier League Governing Council that is slated to meet late Thursday evening here will deliberate on the next course of action based on the Madras High Court’s hearing on Chennai Super Kings’ petition due on the same day.”Everything now hinges on the High Court hearing. We’ll deliberate on the way forward after the order and the Board’s legal cell will work accordingly,” a GC member said.Two-time champions Chennai Super Kings, who have been slapped a two-year ban along with Rajasthan Royals because of their team owners involvement in 2013 IPL spot-fixing, had moved the Madras HC challenging the suspension.The first bench of the High Court had found the petition maintainable and issued notice to the BCCI as it will be up for hearing on Thursday.Also read: Michael Clarke likely to make an IPL comeback The BCCI’s last working committee meeting before the AGM due in September will be held on Friday and the IPL GC matter will be 12th in the list of agenda which will deal with various cricketing matters, including deliberating on the affiliation issues to Bihar and Uttarakhand.”There will be various cricketing matters on the agenda including NCA, umpires, women’s, finance, legal, marketing and affiliation committees,” a CAB official said.The annual report and accounts will also be submitted besides deciding on the date and venue of the upcoming AGM, he added.last_img read more

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Champions League final: Tottenham and Liverpool chase biggest win of all to drop loser tag for good

first_imgAmong the rewards for the Champions League winners on Saturday will be silverware, status and history but the greatest prize awaiting Liverpool or Tottenham might be an end to the agonising wait. Combined, it has been 18 years – seven for Liverpool, 11 for Tottenham – since either lifted a trophy, despite huge strides made in recent years under the much-praised Jurgen Klopp and Mauricio Pochettino.Related News England, France seal their place in Euro 2020 England sports stars and their WAGs sizzle for event at hotel in London Klopp and Pochettino have been singled-out as two of Europe’s best coaches after crafting teams that reflect their personalities — Liverpool thrilling and fearless, Spurs brave and unrelenting. And while scepticism has greeted the perfection of Manchester City’s star-studded squad in England, approval has also followed Liverpool and Tottenham’s nurturing of youngsters. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Harry Winks came through the clubs’ youth systems while Andrew Robertson, Dele Alli and Kieran Trippier joined aged 24 or younger. All of them could start at the Wanda Metropolitano. But any admiration still comes with an asterisk. Liverpool’s last trophy was in 2012, a League Cup that remains their only success since they won the FA Cup in 2006. And Tottenham’s barren spell goes further back to the League Cup in 2008, which was their first trophy since winning the same competition in 1999. Pochettino has tended to bristle at suggestions his team have a habit for coming close but failing to get over the line. When asked in January if the club needed a trophy, he said: “I don’t agree with that, it’s good for the ego. But in reality the most important thing is to build a team that is always going to be in the top four.” The expectations are higher at Liverpool, where Klopp’s vow to win something within four years of taking charge reaches its end-point this weekend. “It didn’t happen yet,” said Klopp in April. “How long it will take I have no clue.” Klopp’s also denied a personal need for silverware after having lost six cup finals in a row as coach, three of them with Liverpool. “I don’t think that way at all,” he said earlier this month. “In football if you want to win you have to accept that there are occasions when you also might lose.” – Falling short -=================The pressure on Liverpool may be more intense, not just because of their success-laden past but because of a craving for satisfaction after a season in which they amassed 96 points in the Premier League but still fell just short of champions City. They will be favourites, having beaten Tottenham home and away already this season and with their experience of last year’s final in Kiev. In the Spurs squad, only Toby Alderweireld has played on this stage, losing with Atletico Madrid in 2014. For a shot of belief, Pochettino might instead turn to Harry Kane, who has declared himself fit after recovering from an ankle injury. Kane has not played a competitive match since April 9 and Tottenham have survived without their star striker, even if a storming run in the Champions League belied a collapse in form domestically. If he is fit, Kane’s goal threat means he will start, most likely at the expense of Lucas Moura, despite the Brazilian’s dizzying hat-trick against Ajax in the semi-final. Liverpool’s own front man, Roberto Firmino, is also expected to play after sitting out the last three matches with a groin strain. Harder to predict will be Klopp’s selection in midfield, where he must choose three from James Milner, Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnaldum and Fabinho. Considerably more than the 32,000 ticket-holding fans were predicted to descend on Madrid, with police deploying “unprecedented security” around the final, involving drones to monitor behaviour and 4,700 personnel. When the Spanish capital was picked as host, there was an added lure for Real Madrid, who might have defended the title in their own city, and Atletico, who could have snatched it off them at their own home ground. Instead, after Barcelona crashed out, Spain was left with no European finalists for the only second time in 10 years. A new era, perhaps, for the Premier League. For Liverpool and Tottenham, another chance to end the wait. Players to watch out for: Mohamed Salah: The Egyptian striker has been in scintillating form for Liverpool in the last couple of years and on his night he can win a match for Liverpool against any team in the world. Harry Kane: England’s star striker Harry Kane is known to score by the buckets when he is in form and will be shouldering all of his team’s goal-scoring responsibilities in the final. Catch up on all the latest IPL News and updates here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates Kane, Ron do the ‘trick last_img read more

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Will evaluate how long I can continue playing after India series: Lasith Malinga

first_imgVeteran Sri Lanka pacer Lasith Malinga says he will assess his future in international cricket after the current limited overs series against India, saying he will call it quits the moment his performance drops.Malinga took his 300th ODI wicket when he dismissed Virat Kohli in the fourth match, which the hosts lost by 168 runs to concede a 4-0 series lead last night.”I’m playing after 19 months following a leg injury. In the Zimbabwe and India series I couldn’t play well. I’ll see where I’m at after this series, and evaluate how long I can play given the way my body is.”No matter how experienced I am if I can’t win a match for the team and do what the team needs, there’s no point in me being here. I’ll see if I can make up for that 19 months and regain that form over the next 3 or four months,” Malinga said.A day before the match, which the hosts lost by 168 runs, he had expressed hope of playing until the next World Cup. But based on his form lately, he admitted that the future is up for consideration.”I’ll see the number of games that I get. If not I’ll have to consider the state of my body, and what is expected of me. If I can’t deliver that, then I’ll happily retire.”The stand-in skipper has said that the 219-run partnership between Kohli and Rohit Sharma took the game away from them as they couldn’t counter their attacking hundreds.advertisement”Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma played really well. We didn’t consistently bowl a good line and length. I think on this kind of wicket our length is very crucial and we have to concentrate more on that. The first 30-40 runs Virat got very quickly,” Malinga said at the post-match press conference.The pace spearhead added, “I feel there was a bit of grass on the wicket and bowling first, we tried to swing the ball. Then we went for a bit of runs. It’s a learning process for the young players. We tried to swing the ball earlier, and that’s why we went fuller. But it didn t happen. That’s the game of cricket.”Kohli (131 runs off 96 balls) and Rohit (104 off 88) made merry on a batting beauty to guide India to 375 for five, the highest total posted by a visiting team in an ODI in Sri Lanka.”Today was a very hot day. I feel it’s hard for everyone to concentrate on long spells in that kind of heat. That’s why we realised that we needed to bowl short spells and get maximum from the player. Then they have good energy for 2-3 overs,” he added.Malinga absolved the Lankan batsmen from any blame once again, highlighting that they are still gaining in experience and it was the bowlers’ job to contain the scoring on a flat batting track.”We didn’t bowl well in this game. With the batsmen, we only had one experienced batsman Angelo Mathews. Others are young players, but they need time. They are still learning, I feel. I feel they don’t have much confidence to play their natural games, because the last couple of matches they lost and everyone wants to get runs.”That’s why they really concentrated on trying to get runs, I feel. They aren’t playing natural game. Everyone is waiting for a win,” he said.”In the last couple of matches we lost and they didn’t get much runs, they feel they have to score every single match. That’s why we can’t get their maximum in this period. I think maybe in the next couple of months they will work hard and get good mentality. I hope for Sri Lankan cricket they perform well,” he added.He talked about how this has been a trend since the loss to Zimbabwe at home, but again highlighted the inexperience in the side.”Since the last match of the Zimbabwe series, we couldn’t be successful across batting, bowling and fielding in the same match. In that match we only got about 200 and since then we haven’t been able to pass 250.”I think, personally, if we are playing at the international level, it’s when you get experience at that level that you understand how to handle difficult situations.A lot of our players are inexperienced at international level.”I think if we gave some chances to the young players here, we will get players who can play for a long time. If we can give them experience to the team that goes to the 2019 World Cup, then you will have players who have played 30-50 ODIs.advertisement”In previous teams, you had players who had played a 100 ODIs, or at least 50 ODIs. We need that. Every other team in the world has that experience in their XI. We need to get there.last_img read more

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Fans Were Not Happy With The CFB Playoff Halftime Show

first_imgAlabama players walk out onto the field before the Orange Bowl against Oklahoma.MIAMI, FL – DECEMBER 29: Members of the Alabama Crimson Tide takes the field during the College Football Playoff Semifinal prior to the game against Oklahoma Sooners at the Capital One Orange Bowl at Hard Rock Stadium on December 29, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)Having been subjected to a lopsided first half between Alabama and Oklahoma, fans were hoping that the CFP Playoff Halftime Show might provide some added entertainment. But what ESPN did for the halftime production has fans furious.During the broadcast, rather than let viewers watch the live performance by rapper and recording artist Flo Rida, ESPN instead showed a pre-recorded performance by the Dave Matthews Band.Whether you think DMB is objectively better than Flo Rida or not, viewers on Twitter were furious and quickly tore ESPN to shreds for the decision.Nothing gets me amped for a second half of a college football semifinal like a pre-taped Dave Matthews Band performance!— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) December 30, 2018As if the first half wasn’t bad enough for Oklahoma fans at the #OrangeBowl, they also have to listen to the Dave Matthews Band at halftime.— RedditCFB (@RedditCFB) December 30, 2018Dave Matthews Band? What is this 2005?— Tyler Jones (@TylerJonesLive) December 30, 2018Viewers also noted that it appeared to be the exact same performance that ESPN showed during the Peach Bowl halftime show earlier in the day.Isn’t this the same Dave Matthews Band song they showed during the Peach Bowl???????? Am I going crazy????— Rodger Sherman (@rodger) December 30, 2018Meanwhile, the fans who were in attendance at Hard Rock Stadium for the Orange Bowl game got to enjoy a terrific Flo Rida performance.Flo Rida coming with hit after hit. pic.twitter.com/VhqBD93Gcg— Michael Casagrande (@ByCasagrande) December 30, 2018Now for the reason we are all here: Flo Rida’s halftime performance. pic.twitter.com/of9CIVnDpo— Carson Cunningham (@KOCOCarson) December 30, 2018The Alabama fans in attendance were likely having a blast all night.Nick Saban’s team steamrolled Oklahoma, scoring 28 unanswered points in the first two quarters, and went into halftime with a 31-10.The game is on ESPN.last_img read more

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This Bucket-List-Worthy Cruise Will Visit 26 Countries and 5 Continents in 111 Days

first_imgAn ordinary seven-day cruise spent tooling around the Caribbean isn’t likely to top most traveler’s must-do lists. But, a newly announced 2020 excursion from Princess Cruises is slated to be a monster of a sea journey. With stops in 26 countries over 111 days, it might just cross off half of the to-dos on your bucket list.The itinerary will be a reboot of an already over-the-top world cruise announced for 2019. The numbers are impressive; over a total 34,287 nautical miles, passengers will visit 42 destinations, including 12 late-night stays on five continents. The trip includes mainstay travel hotspots like Melbourne, Australia; Cape Town, South Africa; and Seychelles France. But, the big get is the long list of more exotic stops like Kaikoura, New Zealand, and Mayotte, a tiny French protectorate in the Indian Ocean. Passengers will also visit 20 UNESCO World Heritage sites, such as Stone Town, the old part of Zanzibar, Tanzania.The host ship, the Pacific Princess, has a 670-passenger capacity. It’s too small for the “typical” resort-loving cruisegoers who often prefer town-sized, 6,000-passenger mega cruisers like Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas. The Princess experience instead tends to be more intimate, upscale, and relaxed — a throwback to the classic transoceanic cruises of yore. The Adastra Trimaran Is a Luxury Adventure Yacht Unlike Any Other World’s First Hybrid-Electric Cruise Ship Sails the Northwest Passage Not long ago, passing through the Panama Canal or completing an open-ocean crossing of the Pacific was considered epic. Since the 1990s, however, it seems cruise lines around the world have engaged in a heated arms race to outdo their competition with bigger ships, a dizzying array of amenities, and weeks- (sometimes months-) long itineraries. This latest Princess cruise actually pales in comparison to Viking’s Ultimate World Cruise, a 245-day, six-continent, 59-country epic that makes no less than 113 ports of call. However, the former is also half the cost.The price tag for this once-in-a-lifetime cruise is every bit as epic as the journey itself. Per-person rates start at $22,999, but the all-in price rises fast for upgrades like balcony room categories. Early bookers can enjoy additional perks like onboard credits and complimentary gratuities. Passengers can also shave a bit off their vacation cost by opting for shorter, multi-day segments of the entire journey. 1. Mini-suite. 2. Oceanview suite. 3. Full suite. 4. Pacific Princess. World’s First Luxury Space Hotel Promises Climbing Wall, Low-Gravity Basketball Courts Editors’ Recommendations Airbnb Wants to Send You to Antarctica on Sabbatical Witness Antarctica’s 2021 Total Solar Eclipse on an Exclusive Cruise last_img read more