All the big news is below but first, here’s just a few smaller, noteworthy additions and changes that we saw today.

[list style=”2″] [li]DarKastle’s preshow and fireplace have both been restored to what they were back when the ride first opened. We also noticed a few smaller changes such as some new off-screen (physical) scenery. Overall, these small details breathe a ton of new life into this still very impressive attraction.[/li] [li]Europe in the Air seems to have been reprogrammed once again as well. It’s still a pretty bad ride, but it has become ridable again which is always a good thing.[/li] [li]As expected, the park opened with Coke instead of Pepsi this year and sadly, there don’t seem to be any Freestyle machines in the park- at least not yet.[/li] [li]The Easter Bunny is back in Oktoberfest again this year. Like last year, the path connecting Rhinefield to Oktoberfest has been themed to the Easter Bunny’s Trail and you can now say hello and get your picture taken with the bunny himself in Der Marktplatz.[/li] [li]The bathrooms in Rhinefield have been extended and completely redone. The structural differences in the front of the building actually make the whole area look considerably better.[/li] [li]Pompeii’s outdoor theming has all been replaced with a sundial. Disappointing but true. The photo booth is also now closed.[/li] [/list]


For those of you who don’t know, Entwined is the park’s new stage show for 2012 that is replacing the park’s longest running show ever: This is Oktoberfest. The show takes a bunch of German fairy tales and mixes them all together into one musical (hence the name). Currently, the show is just running “previews” similar to what the park did with Mix It Up last year but I believe the stage is nearly complete. Walking into Das Festhaus and seeing decorations that look like the belong in a Cirque Du Soleil stage show or a rave is, well, stunning. It’s not necessarily bad, but it is an extremely dramatic change from the traditional Das Festhaus feel that has been present in that building since Oktoberfest opened. The preview was very bare-bones and far from finished but what they did show felt very Disney-ish in style. The show has potential but it’s walking a fine line. People loved This is Oktoberfest- Entwined has some huge shoes to fill and I’m not sure that a Disney-style musical stage show is the way to do it. It will be very interesting to see what happens with this show as it gets closer to its official debut.


Since we didn’t get to go on the hard hat tour, this was the first time I had seen Verbolten in person since Christmas Town. The ride looks, to put it simply, amazing. The theming is modern but surprisingly, it doesn’t feel out of place. I was honestly blown away. Pictures simply don’t do the work they’ve put into theming this ride justice. Anyway, the pictures are ordered by how you’d experience the ride once it opens to the public. Enjoy!

A huge thanks to Shane from the forums for providing some additional shots!

Now I’ll leave you with an amazing shot that Shane took today. If you’d like the full quality version, you can find it here.

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