Both Disney World and Universal Studios are set to close due to Hurricane Irma. While the state of Florida is famous for many things, one of the biggest is the large amount of theme parks available for both natives and tourists to enjoy. The two biggest of these are no doubt Walt Disney World and Universal Studios Orlando. Both are so big that they actually consist of several smaller parks residing under the same umbrella.
Both Disney and Universal are usually must-do activities when visiting FL, and thanks to the near-constant sunny weather, both are open just about every day of the year, including holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving. That is unless the other side of Florida's weather shows up, as the state is famous for getting a lot of hurricane activity. The latest such storm to arrive in Florida is the massive Hurricane Irma, which is expected to do the most damage this weekend. This comes not long after Hurricane Harvey destroyed parts of Texas.
As one might expect when faced with such a potentially catastrophic storm, Variety reports that Disney and Universal will both be closing their theme parks this weekend, and re-opening on Tuesday at the earliest. Disney will close all its parks early on Saturday, while Universal is set to close theirs on Saturday at 7pm. The re-opening of both could obviously end up being later than Tuesday, depending on how hard the central part of Florida gets hit.
It makes sense that Disney and Universal are taking the threat of Irma seriously, as Florida governor Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency, and suggested that the massive storm will be even worse than 1992's legendarily awful Hurricane Andrew. Most reports seem to back him up on that, and when it comes to sheer size, Irma is far larger than Andrew was when it hit the state.
At times like this, it's probably for the best that Universal Studios got rid of its Twister ride a few years ago, which was based on the 1996 Bill Paxton disaster flick. That ride simulated the experience of being in the path of a tornado, complete with flying cows, explosions, and high winds. Hurricanes often lead to tornadoes, with 2004's Hurricane Ivan causing over a hundred to happen. Here's hoping for the best for Florida and its residents as Irma bears down upon them over the weekend.
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