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‘This is not over’: Hurricane sideswipes Florida coast

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Hurricane Matthew sideswiped Florida’s Atlantic coast early Friday, toppling trees onto homes and knocking out power to more than 800,000 people but sparing the most heavily populated stretch of shoreline the catastrophic blow many had feared. Authorities warned that the danger was far from over, with hundreds of miles of coastline in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina still under threat of torrential rain and deadly storm surge as the most powerful hurricane to menace the Atlantic Seaboard in over a…

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Hurricane Matthew spares South Florida, pushes north

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Hurricane Matthew scraped Florida’s Atlantic coast early Friday, toppling trees onto homes and knocking out power to a half-million people but sparing some of the most heavily populated stretches of shoreline the catastrophic blow many had feared. Authorities warned that the danger was far from over, with hundreds of miles of coastline in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina still under threat of torrential rain and dangerous storm surge as the hurricane pushed north. “Remember, it could be the worst of…

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For tourists, storm is Hurricane Who Shall Not Be Named

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Voldemort couldn’t stop Harry Potter, but Matthew did. Three of the world’s most popular tourist attractions, Universal Studios (home to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter), Walt Disney World and SeaWorld all made a rare decision to close their theme parks Thursday ahead of Hurricane Matthew’s arrival. Soggy tourists rushed to cram in a few more rides before their vacations ended, or tried to figure out how to pass the time instead. “I never get time off,” said Amber Klinkel, 25,…

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Power goes out for more than an hour at Universal Studios

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Power went out for more than an hour and a half at Universal Studios in Orlando, forcing passengers to be evacuated from the Men in Black and Transformers rides. Universal spokesman Tom Schroder said that the cause of the power outage Friday was still being investigated. There were no injuries. Schroder says guests coming to Universal Studios were diverted to its sister theme park next door, Islands of Adventure, which never lost power. The Orlando Fire Department was called to…

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Diane Roberts: Yale tells Rick Scott it’s not ready to swap ivy for kudzu

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It’s springtime! and idiocy is in full Florida bloom. The state Supreme Court just ruled that a disingenuous and dissembling solar energy initiative is good to go on this November’s ballot. The proposed amendment, “masquerading as pro-solar” (in the words of dissenting justice Barbara Pariente), is sponsored by utility companies. Yes, utility companies, those nice people who charge the taxpayers for power plants they may not even build, those great environmentalists who want solar about as much as you want…

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When it comes to theme parks, Florida reigns supreme, no-brainer study says

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Florida, particularly the Orlando area, could be accurately named the theme park capitol of the world, according to findings in an AECOM study released Wednesday. Out of 25 top theme parks worldwide, Florida is home to seven of them. That’s more top-ranking theme parks in one place than anywhere else in the world. The fact that they are all within just a few miles of one another makes it all the more spectacular for theme-park-goers. The top-ranked theme park is…

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Universal Orlando announces new King Kong ride for 2016

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King Kong first appeared on screens in New York City in 1933, but next summer, he’ll be in Florida, headlining a new thrill ride at Universal Orlando. “Skull Island: Reign of Kong” will open in the summer of 2016 at Islands of Adventure. Universal executives announced this week that guests participating in the “intense adventure” will board expedition trucks and forge through jungles, temple ruins and past prehistoric beasts before they come face to face with the oversized ape. It will…

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