After a year of delays due to the pandemic, Sesame Place San Diego has revealed an opening date of March 2022. The all-new theme park, the first on the west coast to be fully themed to the popular children’s series, is located in Chula Vista, Calif., just south of San Diego on the property of the former Aquatica. The 11 existing water rides will be re-imagined to seamlessly embrace the theme and an additional build out is being completed for the upcoming park. Additionally, the park is expected to add significant economic growth to the area as it is set to employee more than 800 workers including local youth.
By Carly Caramanna
We were recently invited on a hard hat tour of the construction led by SeaWorld Parks Corporate Project manager Clint Brinker. Along with Cookie Monster and Grover, park executives welcomed us into the new property with an unveiling of the entrance. Upon entering, we were able to select a hat of our choice themed to the different characters.
The theme park, which will feature new attractions, shows, and the daily Sesame Street Party Parade Parade, opens up to reveal Sunny Day carousel and an interactive Sesame Street Neighborhood. This area will feature the beloved series characters and offer photo opportunities and the ability for guests to interact directly with them.
The iconic 123 stoop has been brought to life and will undoubtably become a cornerstone of the area. There will be apartment intercoms where guests can ring their favorite friends, including Bert and Ernie. Elmo’s window is situated just around the corner from the stoop and guests will be able to enter his apartment for a special meet and greet. Guests will then exit through the subway where Big Bird’s meet and great will be located. The bird will also play host to story times throughout the day.
Also in the Sesame Street Neighborhood, Hooper’s Store will be brought to life, including the recognizable neon sign. This will serve as the park’s main retail store and house the Sesame Place line of merchandise, including special grand opening merchandise, Sesame Street merchandise, and a line exclusive to the San Diego park. Pin trading will be an element found throughout the park.
Just beyond the neighborhood will be the kid-friendly roller coaster, Super Grover’s Box Car Derby. Each of the coaster’s eight ride vehicles are themed to a different character from the series, including Cookie Monster, Oscar, and Abby Cadabby. The steel roller coaster’s track features a mini dive.
Our tour continued past the existing Aquatica, where the 11 existing attractions will be re-themed. In the artistic renderings, we spotted the multi-level, interactive water-play attraction themed to Count Von Count and Elmo’s Silly Sand Slides. Other water attractions include family raft ride Cookie’s Monster Mixer, Ernie’s Twisty Turny Tunnels, Honker Dinger Dash, Snuffy’s Spaghetti Slides, and Oscar’s Rotten Rafts.
Our tour concluded with a meet and greet with some of the characters that will be spotted in the park. They also teased that the park will hosts family-friendly specials events throughout the year, including Elmo’s Eggstravaganza, Elmo’s Springtacular, Summer Fun Fest, The Count’s Halloween Spooktacular, and A Very Furry Christmas Celebration.
Sesame Place San Diego is slated to open March 2022 with season passes available now for an introductory price.