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    • Taylor Strickland

      (IMPORTANT) What's next for our community   03/24/2016

      Today we're excited to announce the start of our new Facebook group: Universal Community by Orlando Informer. We're also announcing we're closing our forums. This is probably the hardest decision I've made so far with Orlando Informer. This week marks the 2nd anniversary of our forums. Monday will mark 2 years from when I first applied to work with Orlando Informer. I was entering a pool of over 50 applicants, didn't meet the requirements, and didn't think the odds were very high that I'd get the position of Forum Moderator. It never even crossed my mind that not only would I get the position, but that position and these forums would be the start of being able to do what I love as a fulltime job. At its core, our forums have always had two goals: A ) Help families receive specific answers to specific questions, feedback from folks who have been in their shoes, and help them maximize their investment into their vacation. B ) Build a community of people who love to visit Universal, with a foundation of respect and tolerance. I can speak for our entire team on our forums (both past and present), especially our Community Manager @Chuck Plagmann, when I say that we have devoted hours of time every day of the year working towards these two goals. We feel that we've made major strides towards both of our goals, but see the opportunity to help a significantly greater amount of people plan their vacation and add on to our established (and amazing) community. Unfortunately, as time goes on, forums like ours have a tendency to slow down and be replaced by social media. It's the cycle of life for forums. We believe that this Facebook group is the logical next step for our community. Our forums and the content within will remain browseable for the foreseeable future, however you will not be able to submit new content. Our Facebook group, Universal Community by Orlando Informer, will be curated by our same team that ran the OI Forums. @Chuck Plagmann and I will be on the group daily to provide insight and help families plan their vacation. @debi will be monitoring for any Special Needs questions. Our (very talented) authors, like @Marc N. Kleinhenz, will be on the group to talk about their latest articles and your feedback. Finally, @Park Beast will even be dropping by from time to time to talk about our weekly podcast. You can access our Facebook group by searching "Universal Community by Orlando Informer" or visiting UOR.community from any webbrowser. We know this is a substantial change from our forums, but are hopeful you'll be willing to give it a shot. Additionally, we're launching a Facebook group for Universal Hollywood: "Universal Community by California Informer" or visit USH.community. This is the end of the forums, but it is just the beginning of our community. One thing we consistently hear from members of our forums is how different our community is from some of the others found online. We are committed to maintaining this reputation in our Facebook group. I have met a countless number of people, many I call friends, from our OI Forums. I know real bonds (and even relationships) have resulted from the time spent on these forums. I'm looking forward to seeing these bonds develop and new ones form on our new outlet. Please know that this decision was not made lightly or without considering the amount of time many of you have spent on here. I fully believe this is the next step forward to growing our community and helping as many people as possible have the best trip to Universal. I'm looking forward to interacting with everyone for many years to come. As always, please don't hesitate to reach out with feedback -- taylor [at] orlandoinformer.com See you on the Facebook Group, Taylor P.S., Unlimited likes on Facebook, you can thank me in advance.
kirbyo0000

May 2016 - OI Meetup & Special Event.

30 posts in this topic

Oddly, I don't think I saw a topic for this yet like the February and September meetups.  I have to imagine we have a large contingent heading out for this unprecedented event for Orlando Informer.  Truly excited to go see the OI Family, my dates are 5/19 - 5/24 at Cabana Bay.  I will also have my buddy Ian along again as well he's met a few of ya'll and wouldn't miss the event for anything.  I've made him quite the Universal addict he'll be back for HHN as well.  Can't wait!  Also there appears to be a gap of time unaccounted for in the event details.  I look forward to see what  @Taylor Strickland has in store for us.

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Looky Looky here's a thread for the OI event!

 

I was reading the description of the event and it looks like we can get into the area at 8:30 to watch the spectacular with just the party ticket media. Do I need anything more than my PP receipt? If we do then I didn't get another sheet or acknowledgement of payment to print. Maybe Taylor is busy finalizing the menu for the evening? 

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58 minutes ago, HPTR said:

Looky Looky here's a thread for the OI event!

 

I was reading the description of the event and it looks like we can get into the area at 8:30 to watch the spectacular with just the party ticket media. Do I need anything more than my PP receipt? If we do then I didn't get another sheet or acknowledgement of payment to print. Maybe Taylor is busy finalizing the menu for the evening? 

With the event ticket, we don't go into DA at 8:30.  We will meet at another location to see cinematic spectacular.  Then a few minutes for DA to be cleared of guests for the day.  Then we can enter DA.

If you have a park ticket for that day, you will need to get to the group hold area for cinematic spectacular.

 

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1 hour ago, Chuck Plagmann said:

If you have a park ticket for that day, you will need to get to the group hold area for cinematic spectacular.

Seen a few asking on twitter, what if you don't have a valid park ticket?!

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1 hour ago, Chuck Plagmann said:

With the event ticket, we don't go into DA at 8:30.  We will meet at another location to see cinematic spectacular.  Then a few minutes for DA to be cleared of guests for the day.  Then we can enter DA.

If you have a park ticket for that day, you will need to get to the group hold area for cinematic spectacular.

 

I got that part, it was a surprise. Do you know if Taylor will be sending out an additional ticket like we got for the banquet or is the PP receipt our ticket? I know it is early but I want to admire it and hold it dear for as long as I can ;):) 

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1 hour ago, HPTR said:

I got that part, it was a surprise. Do you know if Taylor will be sending out an additional ticket like we got for the banquet or is the PP receipt our ticket? I know it is early but I want to admire it and hold it dear for as long as I can ;):) 

I will let @Taylor Strickland answer these

 

1 hour ago, Dan_Mol said:

Seen a few asking on twitter, what if you don't have a valid park ticket?!

 

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3 hours ago, HPTR said:

Looky Looky here's a thread for the OI event!

 

I was reading the description of the event and it looks like we can get into the area at 8:30 to watch the spectacular with just the party ticket media. Do I need anything more than my PP receipt? If we do then I didn't get another sheet or acknowledgement of payment to print. Maybe Taylor is busy finalizing the menu for the evening? 

 

1 hour ago, Dan_Mol said:

Seen a few asking on twitter, what if you don't have a valid park ticket?!

 

1 hour ago, HPTR said:

I got that part, it was a surprise. Do you know if Taylor will be sending out an additional ticket like we got for the banquet or is the PP receipt our ticket? I know it is early but I want to admire it and hold it dear for as long as I can ;):) 

Hey guys!

In May everyone who registered for the event will receive instructions on picking up their credentials at Universal on May 21. This information will be sent to the email registered on your PayPal account. You will only need a photo ID that matches the name used to make the purchase on PayPal.

HPTR, you'll be able to keep the laminated credential as a memento of the evening.

We also have details on a special hotel rate at Royal Pacific forthcoming.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to shoot us an email at meetup@orlandoinformer.com or give us a call at 844 ORL INFO.

Who's excited? :)

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On 2/17/2016 at 4:41 PM, Taylor Strickland said:

 

 

Hey guys!

In May everyone who registered for the event will receive instructions on picking up their credentials at Universal on May 21. This information will be sent to the email registered on your PayPal account. You will only need a photo ID that matches the name used to make the purchase on PayPal.

HPTR, you'll be able to keep the laminated credential as a memento of the evening.

We also have details on a special hotel rate at Royal Pacific forthcoming.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to shoot us an email at meetup@orlandoinformer.com or give us a call at 844 ORL INFO.

Who's excited? :)

I AM EXCITED! 

How/when are we going to be notified of the special rate at Royal Pacific? Is it just for that night, or can people who are planning to be there for an extended stay get in on the special pricing? (Few days prior/a few days after May 21st)

And...what "gap of time" is @kirbyo0000 talking about? (I'll have to go back and read the itinerary again)

Yeah, one more question...does OI Travel sell Universal annual passes, or do we have to purchase them through Universal? Thanks!

86 days and counting...

2016-02-24 16.43.33.jpg

Yep...another thing just popped into my head. King Kong and Hulk are supposed to open/re-open in Summer 2016. Do you think there may be "soft openings" for these rides around the time of the May OIMeetup?

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1 hour ago, amiller03 said:

I AM EXCITED! 

How/when are we going to be notified of the special rate at Royal Pacific? Is it just for that night, or can people who are planning to be there for an extended stay get in on the special pricing? (Few days prior/a few days after May 21st)

And...what "gap of time" is @kirbyo0000 talking about? (I'll have to go back and read the itinerary again)

Yeah, one more question...does OI Travel sell Universal annual passes, or do we have to purchase them through Universal? Thanks!

86 days and counting...

2016-02-24 16.43.33.jpg

Yep...another thing just popped into my head. King Kong and Hulk are supposed to open/re-open in Summer 2016. Do you think there may be "soft openings" for these rides around the time of the May OIMeetup?

Nice touch to include the cow, I know someone who has a soft spot for the twister cows.

 

On 2/17/2016 at 5:41 PM, Taylor Strickland said:

 

 

Hey guys!

In May everyone who registered for the event will receive instructions on picking up their credentials at Universal on May 21. This information will be sent to the email registered on your PayPal account. You will only need a photo ID that matches the name used to make the purchase on PayPal.

HPTR, you'll be able to keep the laminated credential as a memento of the evening.

We also have details on a special hotel rate at Royal Pacific forthcoming.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to shoot us an email at meetup@orlandoinformer.com or give us a call at 844 ORL INFO.

Who's excited? :)

I am so excited I even gave UOR my money for a wand last week! When I think how many Dragon Scales that would have bought..........

 

Thanks Taylor for all you do to keep it alive

 

 

Edited by HPTR

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2 hours ago, amiller03 said:

I AM EXCITED! 

How/when are we going to be notified of the special rate at Royal Pacific? Is it just for that night, or can people who are planning to be there for an extended stay get in on the special pricing? (Few days prior/a few days after May 21st)

And...what "gap of time" is @kirbyo0000 talking about? (I'll have to go back and read the itinerary again)

 

Per http://meetup.orlandoinformer.com/  .  I believe we will meet at a holding area for 8:30, then Cinematic Spectacular viewing at 9. Then states Daigon Alley private party from 10:30 PM - 1:30 AM.  Now It's been a minute since I've stayed for the Cinematic Spectacular but I'm not sure that covers 1.5 hours until we get to access to DA.  I believe it's actually 20 minutes maybe, so maybe an hour of some ice breaking event, maybe some trust falls?  Who knows I could be completely off.  Just talking out loud.

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2 hours ago, kirbyo0000 said:

Per http://meetup.orlandoinformer.com/  .  I believe we will meet at a holding area for 8:30, then Cinematic Spectacular viewing at 9. Then states Daigon Alley private party from 10:30 PM - 1:30 AM.  Now It's been a minute since I've stayed for the Cinematic Spectacular but I'm not sure that covers 1.5 hours until we get to access to DA.  I believe it's actually 20 minutes maybe, so maybe an hour of some ice breaking event, maybe some trust falls?  Who knows I could be completely off.  Just talking out loud.

Dinner has to be eaten somewhere in that time frame, is my guess.

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This sounds like it will be an amazing experience and I'm so disappointed that I won't be able to go. I'll leave out the part about me seething with jealousy for those of you who'll be attending. Hoping lots of pics and videos get posted and I'll sit at home in my pajamas and pretend I'm along for the ride!

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5 hours ago, amiller03 said:

I AM EXCITED! 

How/when are we going to be notified of the special rate at Royal Pacific? Is it just for that night, or can people who are planning to be there for an extended stay get in on the special pricing? (Few days prior/a few days after May 21st)

And...what "gap of time" is @kirbyo0000 talking about? (I'll have to go back and read the itinerary again)

Yeah, one more question...does OI Travel sell Universal annual passes, or do we have to purchase them through Universal? Thanks!

86 days and counting...

2016-02-24 16.43.33.jpg

Yep...another thing just popped into my head. King Kong and Hulk are supposed to open/re-open in Summer 2016. Do you think there may be "soft openings" for these rides around the time of the May OIMeetup?

Details on special rate at RPR will be going to the email used to purchase the tickets soon. It's valid for up to 3 days prior or following May 21.

OI Travel can definitely help you purchase annual passes!

2 hours ago, kirbyo0000 said:

Per http://meetup.orlandoinformer.com/  .  I believe we will meet at a holding area for 8:30, then Cinematic Spectacular viewing at 9. Then states Daigon Alley private party from 10:30 PM - 1:30 AM.  Now It's been a minute since I've stayed for the Cinematic Spectacular but I'm not sure that covers 1.5 hours until we get to access to DA.  I believe it's actually 20 minutes maybe, so maybe an hour of some ice breaking event, maybe some trust falls?  Who knows I could be completely off.  Just talking out loud.

No comment.

23 minutes ago, amiller03 said:

Dinner has to be eaten somewhere in that time frame, is my guess.

Dinner will be served in Diagon Alley at 10:30.

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11 minutes ago, Taylor Strickland said:

 

 

No comment.

 

Well if that doesn't get everyone talking I'm not sure what will.  TRUST FALLS!  Confirmed.  

Also it can't be mentioned enough,  the quizzical excitement I have to see exactly what my limit will be on the consumption of Butterbeer in all forms.  Hmmm, I may need to inquire if medics will be near being it's after hours and all.  

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14 hours ago, kirbyo0000 said:

Well if that doesn't get everyone talking I'm not sure what will.  TRUST FALLS!  Confirmed.  

Also it can't be mentioned enough,  the quizzical excitement I have to see exactly what my limit will be on the consumption of Butterbeer in all forms.  Hmmm, I may need to inquire if medics will be near being it's after hours and all.  

I'm thinking (wishful, that is) that someone is going to be sitting in the back of the pack shooting out COW T-SHIRTS with a launcher (and other SWAG) for this OIMeetup during the "gap of time"...or perhaps there will be a meet-and-greet with someone that's really hush-hush. Or maybe we get to sample new WWoHP food items and give our first impressions. Or we get our individual pictures with "the cow". Or the trust falls experiment (Hufflepuffs won't let you down--literally!). Or we, the "consumers", get to talk to Universal execs/Creative about what needs to go into the 3rd park. I'd really like to have a group photo taken, if none of this other stuff is acceptable.

NO...WAIT...I GOT IT! Marc Kleinhenz is going to have (finally) an OIPodcast where he speaks with listeners about all things political! (Still waiting to hear his opinion about the Disney Visas, though.) An entire hour all for that...sigh.

Any idea if Hulk/King Kong will have soft openings during the month of May?

LOL :P

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On 2/25/2016 at 11:32 PM, kirbyo0000 said:

Well if that doesn't get everyone talking I'm not sure what will.  TRUST FALLS!  Confirmed.  

fail falls headshot headbutt trust fall

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Guys I'd check your emails and spam about the OI event. Looks like we were refunded by PayPal and asked to repurchase under new proccesor.

 

Anyway I'm all repurchased and hope to see everyone there.

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Started freaking out when I got the email about a refund.  Glad to see that it was just a PayPal problem.  I plan on repurchasing as soon it processes back into my account.  I am so excited to be back in Diagon Alley!

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5 minutes ago, Cassy said:

Started freaking out when I got the email about a refund.  Glad to see that it was just a PayPal problem.  I plan on repurchasing as soon it processes back into my account.  I am so excited to be back in Diagon Alley!

Yes phew!  Just a PayPal snafu.  I really can't wait to see everyone but also the luxury of looking in the shops and not have them cramped.  Always find it uncomfortable because they are jam packed.  Not to mention I'll have a shot of a wand choosing me.

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On 3/1/2016 at 3:27 PM, kirbyo0000 said:

Yes phew!  Just a PayPal snafu.  I really can't wait to see everyone but also the luxury of looking in the shops and not have them cramped.  Always find it uncomfortable because they are jam packed.  Not to mention I'll have a shot of a wand choosing me.

I'm looking forward to that! My son was chosen last year (18 yrs old) and I bought him his wand (interactive). Then he gave it away a few months later! My ticket was re-purchased the moment I got the email. So glad the event wasn't canceled or something weird like that.

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Good morning, OI Fanatics! I see many posts on Twitter about meetups happening yesterday (? Friday, March 4th). I had no idea you all ("we all"?) got together outside of the planned OI Meetups. It looks like you had a blast! Can't wait until May. Unfortunately, I live in TN, and I can't attend as often as I'd like, but when I get there (either the 19th or 20th) I'd like to meet up with anyone who'll be attending the Saturday event. I'm still holding out that my partner-in-crime will make it, but it looks like I'll be coming solo (No, I won't be buying her a ticket!). Would love to match faces with names! Oh, and ride some rides, too. (Love theme parks and coasters)

One question for the powers that be on Travel.OrlandoInforner.com...I've emailed two times in the last 6 months or so about planning my trip and haven't received a response. Is anyone else having this problem? (Remember, I'm not-so-tech-savvy) I believe our firewall keeps out certain emails so I may not be getting them because of that. Should I call instead?

77 days! GO BADGERS!!

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23 hours ago, amiller03 said:

Good morning, OI Fanatics! I see many posts on Twitter about meetups happening yesterday (? Friday, March 4th). I had no idea you all ("we all"?) got together outside of the planned OI Meetups. It looks like you had a blast! Can't wait until May. Unfortunately, I live in TN, and I can't attend as often as I'd like, but when I get there (either the 19th or 20th) I'd like to meet up with anyone who'll be attending the Saturday event. I'm still holding out that my partner-in-crime will make it, but it looks like I'll be coming solo (No, I won't be buying her a ticket!). Would love to match faces with names! Oh, and ride some rides, too. (Love theme parks and coasters)

One question for the powers that be on Travel.OrlandoInforner.com...I've emailed two times in the last 6 months or so about planning my trip and haven't received a response. Is anyone else having this problem? (Remember, I'm not-so-tech-savvy) I believe our firewall keeps out certain emails so I may not be getting them because of that. Should I call instead?

77 days! GO BADGERS!!

Yes, we have a lot of 'meet ups' at Universal.  Some are 'formal' like the May event, and some are 'informal' like when folks happen to coordinate their visits.  This weekend is a more informal meet up.  It is Mardi Gras, and we share the experience.  There were over 10 of us meeting up yesterday.  Check the threads here to see about other meet ups.  We share dates on site, what hotel being used, and a twitter contact.  The September meet up thread is an example.  A lot of people come around this time for Halloween Horror nights.  

I go to the parks on a regular basis.  I would be happy to meet you and say hello.

I have sent a message to understand the OI travel issue.

 

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On 3/5/2016 at 9:00 AM, amiller03 said:

Good morning, OI Fanatics! I see many posts on Twitter about meetups happening yesterday (? Friday, March 4th). I had no idea you all ("we all"?) got together outside of the planned OI Meetups. It looks like you had a blast! Can't wait until May. Unfortunately, I live in TN, and I can't attend as often as I'd like, but when I get there (either the 19th or 20th) I'd like to meet up with anyone who'll be attending the Saturday event. I'm still holding out that my partner-in-crime will make it, but it looks like I'll be coming solo (No, I won't be buying her a ticket!). Would love to match faces with names! Oh, and ride some rides, too. (Love theme parks and coasters)

One question for the powers that be on Travel.OrlandoInforner.com...I've emailed two times in the last 6 months or so about planning my trip and haven't received a response. Is anyone else having this problem? (Remember, I'm not-so-tech-savvy) I believe our firewall keeps out certain emails so I may not be getting them because of that. Should I call instead?

77 days! GO BADGERS!!

Are you using the contact form on http://travel.orlandoinformer.com/?

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9 hours ago, Chuck Plagmann said:

Yes, we have a lot of 'meet ups' at Universal.  Some are 'formal' like the May event, and some are 'informal' like when folks happen to coordinate their visits.  This weekend is a more informal meet up.  It is Mardi Gras, and we share the experience.  There were over 10 of us meeting up yesterday.  Check the threads here to see about other meet ups.  We share dates on site, what hotel being used, and a twitter contact.  The September meet up thread is an example.  A lot of people come around this time for Halloween Horror nights.  

I go to the parks on a regular basis.  I would be happy to meet you and say hello.

I have sent a message to understand the OI travel issue.

 

Chuck...you truly are an "ambassador"! Looking forward to meeting all of you.

44 minutes ago, Taylor Strickland said:

Are you using the contact form on http://travel.orlandoinformer.com/?

Yes...both times, but I've been putting my work email as a contact (firewalls and security are top priority at my company...probably blocking any responses).

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