UNIVERSAL CITY (CNS) - After 22 years of carrying guests on a watery trip through dinosaur-infested jungles, Jurassic Park -- The Ride at Universal Studios Hollywood will be closing in September, but it will make way for the higher-tech Jurassic World Ride opening next year.
The existing ride opened in 1996, based on the "Jurassic Park" films, and it was hailed at the time for its technologically advanced dinosaurs that dazzled and roared at visitors as they floated by on packed boats floating along a jungle river -- culminating with a watery plunge.
But the ride will officially become extinct on Sept. 3, when it permanently closes and construction begins on the Jurassic World Ride. Universal Studios officials said the new ride will introduce even more technological advancements, offering "never-before-seen dinosaurs, enhanced storytelling, lush scenic design, an entirely new color scheme and uncompromised state-of-the-art technology."
The opening date of the ride has not been set.
In conjunction with the announced closure of the existing ride, Universal will be holding a three-day 25th anniversary party for the original Jurassic Park film with a specially priced after-hours event.
Lucky ticketholders will be given access to special exhibits of movie props and photos, live entertainment, after-hours turns on the existing ride, a fan costume show and a private screening of the original film at Universal Cinema on CityWalk.
As of Thursday afternoon, tickets for the event on Friday and Saturday nights were already sold out, but some were still available for Sunday.
Information is available online at www.universalstudioshollywood.com.