▪ A new roller coaster will open next year at SeaWorld Orlando, and for a time, it will be the tallest coaster in the city. The park last week announced the 200-foot-high coaster, but released no other details. That height would be the same as SheiKra at Busch Gardens, SeaWorld’s sister park in Tampa. But its reign over Orlando will be short lived — construction is supposed to begin this year on a 500-foot roller coaster that would be the tallest coaster in the world when it opens, probably in late 2017, on International Drive.
▪ Busch Gardens is planning a new attraction too, but so far the park isn’t talking about it — the news leaked out after the park filed a permit application. The attraction will open next year in the park’s Egypt area. It will be in an addition to the building that housed a re-creation of the 1920s dig at King Tut’s burial site, which is now closed.
▪ Star Wars Weekends kick off at Disney’s Hollywood Studios May 15, bringing more than 60 Star Wars characters to the park for five weekends. First-timers this year include Ian McDiarmid, who played Senator/Emperor Palpatine (May 15-17) and Frank Oz, the voice of Yoda (June 12-14). There’s also a new show, Star Wars: Rebels.
▪ SeaWorld Orlando has added another musical act to Viva la Música. Elvis Crespo, a Puerto Rican merengue artist, will perform May 9. The festival runs on Saturdays through May 16.
— MIAMI HERALD STAFF