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Jun 6, 2013
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I know with the current financial situation SEAS is in this isn't really feasible, but I still like the idea. I just got back from my fifth trip to Discovery Cove and it had me thinking just how well that park works. I imagine the finances there are good, since every guest pays to get in every time. It's also perfect for upcharged experiences, which they are capitalizing on without it coming off as a pure money grab.

A few years ago they brought up the idea of more DC parks. I'm sure that's back burner now, but someday I think Williamsburg would be a perfect location. If a Sesame Place Park comes this would only strengthen the location as a great place for a second DC. There may even be enough land near WCUSA already.

Here's my idea for Discovery Cove Williamsburg. It would obviously be seasonal, but I think you could book full May through September. Due to the convenient Mid Atlantic location and shorter operating season I think you could even raise ticket prices to assure financial viability. The park itself would be similar to the one in Orlando is design. The centerpiece would be the Dolphin Swim. This is the big money maker and I haven't heard nearly as much outrage about this as the killer whale stuff. There would still be a freshwater side with a few different animal exhibits, heated lagoon and lounging areas, aviary and forest river. Refreshment stands would be throughout as well as a main dining area, but maybe including some enclosed seating. There would also be a saltwater area, but not as tropical as the Grand Reef. This would have plenty of fish, but more temperate. There would still be a shark section, but also maybe an area for rescued sea turtles.

Instead of polynesian design (we can't mimic it enough due to our plant choices) I think there are two great options. One would be Coastal South with buildings like you see in Savannah or Charleston. Plants would include big live oaks, palms that you grow here (some larger palms with a little winter protection), magnolias, ferns, grasses and flowers. The other would be Nantucket with traditional Cape Cod style buildings. This would feature more pines, grasses, flowers, beach rose, and lots of big rocks. Coastal South would feature a boardwalk type feel and Nantucket would have a harbor type feel for the saltwater side. Both would still have sandy beaches all around and plenty of chairs. Food would correspond with the theme. Southern fare for Coastal South and clams and lobster rolls for Nantucket to give you an idea.

I know this would be a longshot to actually happen, but I think it a would be very profitable and would be a major draw for other local parks.
 
Oct 6, 2018
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I would love that. I just noticed a member promotion for October for Discovery Cove (if you log into the SeaWorld app you can see it even as a BGW member) it is $99 admission including the Dolphin swim select days. I was so excited I booked for two people to go on Oct 31. It will be my first trip to Discovery Cove and am looking forward to it.
 
Mar 9, 2010
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I would love that. I just noticed a member promotion for October for Discovery Cove (if you log into the SeaWorld app you can see it even as a BGW member) it is $99 admission including the Dolphin swim select days. I was so excited I booked for two people to go on Oct 31. It will be my first trip to Discovery Cove and am looking forward to it.

Yes we noticed this! I hope we get to take advantage of it on 10/31, too! Maybe see you there!
 
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Aug 21, 2016
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This will never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever happen. PETA headquarters are nearby.
 
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Aug 21, 2016
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I thought this was for concepts for things that might actually or could happen.
 
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Gavin

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Sep 27, 2009
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Concept threads do not have to be something that could happen. Wanna make a thread discussing what would happen if Six Flags took over BGW? Feel like talking about burning down Forest of Fun and replacing it with a parking lot? Have a cool NoLimits or Planet Coaster creation that goes 500 MPH and is 1000 ft tall that you want the park to build? That’s what the Concepts board is for.
 
Mar 16, 2016
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I like the idea @tursiops ; but given the issue of our winters (and what that means for the animals) did you put much stock in a terrain animal style Discovery Cove?

FWIW I would think they do another Discovery Cove, but SD and SA would be high on that list, likely SD.
 

Nicole

Administrator
Jul 22, 2013
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How do they treat their animals at BGT?

I have done multiple animal tours at both BGT and SWO. Both parks use modern techniques. They rely exclusively on positive reinforcement and provide regular enrichment activities.

For example, on my elephant keeper tour (no longer offered), they actually explained how approaches to elephant exhibits have changed dramatically in the past decades. They no longer make themselves the pack alphas, and they are very careful about how they touch the elephants, because they have very sensitive skin. Incidentally, I last took that tour before Blackfish, so the keepers were not attempting to combat any particular preconceptions; they were just explaining how they work with the animals.

My experiences on every other tour were similar.
 
Apr 5, 2011
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All the SEAS parks are members of the AZA (Association of Zoos and Aquariums). While it is an industry group, they also have animal Care standards that they have to abide by or risk losing that certification. This means that any parks that are members are using industry standard animal care practices and not stuff like cattle prods or whips.
 
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