A new SeaWorld San Diego theme park aimed squarely at the Legoland demographic will let young kids ride and slide with Big Bird, Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Oscar the Grouch, Cookie Monster and Sesame Street’s other furry characters.
The new Sesame Place San Diego hybrid theme park/water park combo debuts Saturday, March 26 in Chula Vista with about 20 Sesame Street-themed rides, slides, shows and parades.
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SeaWorld has spent the past three years transforming the seasonal Aquatica water park in Chula Vista into the new year-round Sesame Place San Diego theme park.
The 17-acre theme park will be small compared to SeaWorld San Diego, Legoland California and Disneyland. By comparison, the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge themed land at Disneyland is 14 acres.
Aerial view rendering of SeaWorld’s Sesame Place. (SeaWorld)
Sesame Place San Diego will feature theme park rides, water park attractions and Sesame Street character meet-and-greet opportunities geared toward preschoolers, grade schoolers and their nostalgic parents.
The new San Diego park will be similar to the Sesame Place theme park outside Philadelphia that opened in 1980. The Pennsylvania park has 15 kiddie rides and 8 water attractions.
The extensive makeover of SeaWorld’s Aquatica kept many of the water park attractions and added a Sesame Street theme along with a collection of kiddie rides. The highlight of the new park will be a faithful recreation of the “Sesame Street” television show set featuring the famed 123 Stoop, Mr. Hooper’s corner store and Big Bird’s massive nest.
The Sunny Day Carousel at SeaWorld’s Sesame Place. (SeaWorld)
The new Sesame Place kiddie rides include:
The re-themed water park attractions include:
The Hoo Roo Run high-speed body slide with an 80-foot-drop was removed from the Aquatica water park as part of the transformation.
Swimwear will be required on water attractions and shoes must be worn on rides.
Sesame Street Party Parade at SeaWorld’s Sesame Place. (SeaWorld)
The “Welcome To Our Street” stage show in the Sesame Street Theater will find Elmo, Abby, Grover, Rosita and Cookie Monster trying to decide whether to put on a dance show, magic show or cooking show with help from DJ Dani.
The Sesame Street Party Parade will move from SeaWorld San Diego to Sesame Place where it will travel through the heart of the new park with parade floats and dancing, hula hooping and jump roping performers.
The Bike Shop Tricycle Challenge motion-sensing digital game will let visitors use their bodies to control a virtual tricycle to collect numbers before time runs out.
Mr. Hooper’s Store at SeaWorld’s Sesame Place. (SeaWorld)
The new restaurant lineup includes:
Sesame Souvenirs in the middle of the park will have you covered if you forget your suntan lotion, pool towel, water shoes or even your bathing suit. Sesame Street plush dolls, character clothing and souvenirs will be available in Hooper’s Store.
The seasonal event lineup for 2022 includes the Count’s Halloween Spooktacular and A Very Furry Christmas.
Sesame Place San Diego will be a certified autism center, offering designated quiet spaces and awareness training for park staff.
SeaWorld’s Aquatica water park is located in Chula Vista, about 20 miles from the SeaWorld San Diego marine park on Mission Bay. The Chula Vista water park opened in 1997 as White Water Canyon, became Knott’s Soak City in 2000 and then SeaWorld’s Aquatica in 2013.
The new Sesame Place San Diego will be targeted toward families with younger children in pre-school and early grade school, placing the reimagined theme park in direct competition with Legoland California. The 128-acre Carlsbad theme park features more than 60 Lego-themed rides, shows and attractions as well as a separate-admission water park.
The non-profit Sesame Workshop organization behind the “Sesame Street” children’s television show has partnered with SeaWorld Entertainment for four decades. In 2019, SeaWorld Orlando in Florida converted Shamu’s Happy Harbor into Sesame Street Land with a faithful recreation of the famed television set and a daily parade. The Sesame Street Bay of Play — which will remain at SeaWorld San Diego –— debuted in 2008.
SeaWorld’s sister parks feature Sesame Street-themed lands at the Busch Gardens parks in Virginia and Florida. There are also Sesame Street-themed lands at Universal Studios Japan and Spain’s PortAventura. The Parque Plaza Sesamo theme park is located in Monterrey, Mexico.
Construction on Sesame Place San Diego began in 2019 and the park was initially set to open in 2021 before the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the debut.
Sesame Place is offering $129 season passes good for the rest of 2022 with no blockout dates, free parking, 20% discounts on food and merchandise and two free tickets for friends. Single-day tickets cost $50.