New year brings new theme park options

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What: Just for Kids festival

Where: SeaWorld Orlando, off BeachLine Expressway, southwest of Orlando.

When to go: Four consecutive Saturdays, beginning Jan. 14

What to know: SeaWorld introduces a kid-centric concert series, featuring groups such as LazyTown and the Doodlebops. Tickets will be distributed at 9 a.m. each day for shows at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. at Nautilus Theater. Elsewhere: "Elmo and Abby's Treasure Hunt" stage show and Shamu's Party Zone.

What it costs: Included in park admission — a one-day pass is $81.99 general, $73.99 ages 3-9

More info: or 407-351-3600

What else: More adult fare is on the way with the annual Bands, Brew & BBQ events, beginning Feb. 11 with a concert by Foreigner.

Skate of the union

What: Iceploration

Where: Busch Gardens, 40th Street and Busch Boulevard, Tampa

When to go: Its debut is Feb. 2.

What to know: The 30-minute show will use figure skaters, puppetry and live animals to travel the world, including stops at the Great Barrier Reef, Amazon rain forest and Antarctica — all in the confines of the park's Moroccan Palace Theater.

More info: or 813-987-5082

What else: Busch Gardens' Real Music Concert Series begins Jan. 18 with the Terry Myers Orchestra and the Swing Sisters. (Also on the list: Tony Orlando, the Osmond Brothers.)

New Orleans East

What: Mardi Gras

Where: Universal Studios, Kirkman Road and Interstate 4, Orlando

When to go: Select dates, beginning Feb. 11

What to know: The annual concert series — plus parade and bead mania — returns. The musical lineup has not been revealed, with the exception of Kelly Clarkson, who will appear on the Music Plaza stage on Feb. 18.

More info: or 407-363-8000

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