10 ways to celebrate Jurassic World this week

Jurassic World opens Friday (Thursday evening at select theatres), and I am freaking. Out. Jurassic Park is one of my favorite movies. The main theme even played at my wedding!

I’m not in the Orlando area this week, but I have tips for those of you traveling to Universal Orlando’s Islands of Adventure. Can’t make it? No worries. I have ways to celebrate the dinos at home.

Celebrating Jurassic World at Universal’s Islands of Adventure

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My husband and I at the Jurassic Park Discovery Center

Universal’s Islands of Adventures houses Jurassic Park, an entire area themed after the JP series. The Jurassic Park music plays on a loop. It’s foggy, green, and otherworldly. And, of course, these iconic gates greet you:

A little damp after riding Ripsaw Falls
A little damp after riding Ripsaw Falls

1. Ride Jurassic Park River Adventure

Photo from Universal Orlando
Photo from Universal Orlando

Jurassic Park River Adventure is one of the best-themed rides I’ve ridden, and it’s an Islands of Adventure original. A boat ride with one, plummeting hill, it gives the right amount of thrill for a variety of guests. You WILL get wet, no matter where you sit.

2. **NEW** Experience the Raptor Encounter

Velociraptors have taken over Jurassic Park at Universal Orlando Resort. Beginning Friday, May 22, 2015, guests have the chance to see these magnificent creatures face to face in an all-new experience: Raptor Encounter. The encounter is located in UniversalÕs Islands of Adventure between Camp Jurassic and the Jurassic Park Discovery Center. Universal Orlando Resort is the ultimate vacation destination and home to two incredible theme parks, four magnificently themed on-site hotels and entertainment complex, Universal CityWalk.   © 2015 Universal Orlando Resort. All rights reserved.
© 2015 Universal Orlando Resort. All rights reserved.

The Raptor Encounter opened at Island’s of Adventure May 22, and it has taken the park by storm. Universal Orlando’s Guest Relations recommends arriving around 10:30 a.m. to experience the Raptor Encounter (it opens at 11 a.m.). The Raptor Encounter is located between Camp Jurasic and the Jurassic Park Discovery Center.

3. Discover the Jurassic Park Discovery Center

458933_3402296808773_894314425_oThe Jurassic Park Discovery Center allows guests to experience a hands-on lesson on dinos, with quizzes, dino eggs, lessons in dino DNA, and more. Be sure to grab a bite at Burger Digs upstairs. As someone who doesn’t eat beef, I recommend the veggie burger or grilled chicken sandwich.

4. Make the most of photo ops

Both the JP jeep at the JP tour jeep are at the park.
Both the JP jeep at the JP tour jeep are at the park.

301282_2119684704272_874811062_nThere are plenty of spots to get some cool Jurassic Park pics.

5. Traveling with kids? Go to Camp Jurassic.

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Photo from Universal Orlando

The Camp Jurassic play area is a great place for kids to exert some energy. It’s also home to the fun Pteranodon Flyers ride. Adults cannot ride this ride without a child that is 36″ to 56″ tall for safety reasons, making this a great excuse to bring younger cousins or siblings along to the park (because this ride is really fun. Seriously).

Celebrating Jurassic World at Home

1. Marathon the Jurassic Park series g1368513455306477393If you don’t own the JP series, you should. No worries if you don’t, as you can catch Jurassic Park on many channels this week. If you have Comcast/Xfinity OnDemand, be sure to check the Jurassic Park movies and extras on the homepage of OnDemand

2. Make your office a more adventurous place with theme music

wjjurapI love listening to soundtrack music at work, and Jurassic Park is one of them. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

3. Look for local events in your area

Perhaps an event with ice cream? I hear it's good.
Perhaps an event with ice cream? I hear it’s good.

The science center where I live is hosting a Jurassic Week with fossils, dissections and more. Look around your area; you may be surprised.

4. Get inspired with some source material

9780307291844_p0_v1_s260x420Jurassic Park is based on the novel by the same name by Michael Crichton, so why not read up on what inspired the classic film? I purchased the Barnes and Noble Collectible Edition of Jurassic Park/The Lost World for my husband, and he loves it. Want some more JP merch? Target has plenty, including copies of the movies, books, toys, and this timeless tee.

5. Go see the Jurassic World! (Obviously)

jvgo0n7hitxnpfuxplmcJurassic World officially opens June 12, but check Fandango to see if your local theatre is participating in a Thursday showing.

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