The Gist

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Universal Orlando's cashless payment app rolls out new features to keep guests immersed

Posted By on Thu, Feb 25, 2021 at 3:23 PM

Universal Orlando now makes buying things on-site easier than ever — no bracelet needed. In a recent update, the Universal Orlando Resort app began offering contactless payments via the wallet tab. The app, which debuted in 2014 after a similar app launched a few years prior, has allowed some...

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Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Disney Cruise Lines will remain docked through May

Posted By on Wed, Feb 24, 2021 at 1:18 PM

Disney Cruise Lines announced on Wednesday that all ships would remain docked through the spring, with sailings canceled through May 31. In the most recent Temporary Suspension & Travel Updates advisory posted online, the company confirmed the May cancellations and pledged to use the time to continue working on safety...

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Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Orlando Philharmonic will bring the movie soundtracks of John Williams to life in March

Posted By on Tue, Feb 23, 2021 at 12:53 PM

Composer John Williams has provided stirring orchestral soundtracks for some of the 20th century's most iconic cinematic moments, and the Orlando Philharmonic will be bringing those sounds to life in March as part of their Pops Series. John Williams: Big-Screen Blockbusters will present unforgettable Williams themes from Star Wars,...

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The Scripps National Spelling Bee finals are happening in Orlando this summer

Posted By on Tue, Feb 23, 2021 at 11:24 AM

A number of fiercely competitive contests that push the human body to its limits have restarted at the Walt Disney World resort during the pandemic — the NBA, the MLS and now … the Scripps National Spelling Bee. 2020's National Spelling Bee was canceled for the first time since World War II...

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Monday, February 22, 2021

Clearwater Marine Aquarium is set to debut its most immersive whale exhibit ever — minus the whales

Posted By on Mon, Feb 22, 2021 at 7:56 PM

With a recent expansion that quintupled the amount of public space, the Clearwater Marine Aquarium is going big with its newest exhibit. Whales: Living With Giants stretches across 20,000 square feet, an area that could hold more than 12 average American homes. In it, guests will find multimedia exhibits,...

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Bok Tower's 95th annual Easter Sunrise Service will stream virtually again this year

Posted By on Mon, Feb 22, 2021 at 10:17 AM

For the second year in a row, Bok Tower Gardens will host its annual Easter sunrise service virtually. The 95th annual service will be streamed live via Facebook and Bok Tower's website on Sunday, April 4, at 7 a.m. Rev. Chad Reynolds, senior pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Lakes...

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Leslye Gale's O-Town Lowdown on Magic 107.7 for Monday, Feb. 22, 2021

Posted By on Mon, Feb 22, 2021 at 10:03 AM

Every morning on Magic 107.7 FM, Leslye Gale discusses the most interesting Orlando Weekly stories of the day on "Chad & Leslye." Check out Leslye's picks today. Sitting outside Barnie's Coffee in Winter Park and watching the beautiful people is by far one of my favorite past times. And...

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After years of speculation, Disney finally confirms the biggest celebration in WDW history

Posted By on Mon, Feb 22, 2021 at 9:30 AM

The 50th anniversary celebration at Walt Disney World has been in the works for years, with leaks regarding the plans posted online more than half a decade ago. Now the resort has finally confirmed the upcoming celebration. As was expected, the 18-month event will begin in October on the...

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Sunday, February 21, 2021

New travel guide showcases the South's embrace of civil rights tourism, but Florida is left out

Posted By on Sun, Feb 21, 2021 at 7:49 PM

Florida is beginning to acknowledge the horrific injustices of its past, but it is lagging behind as other states forge ahead. In 2019, Florida attempted to embrace a growing interest in civil rights tourism when it added five sites to the U.S. Civil Rights Trail. The Trail was established...

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A sweet new store at Disney Springs gives us a glimpse at the future of retail

Posted By on Sun, Feb 21, 2021 at 12:33 PM

Candy brand M&M's debuted a new store at Disney Springs this month, and like so many Disney Springs stores, it's a class in experiential retail. From Instagram-worthy photo-ops to sci-fi technology, the 10,000-square-foot store is as much a celebration of the M&M's brand as it is a place to...

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