This morning Universal Orlando opened their Jurassic Park 30th Anniversary Tribute Store to excited guests at their resort! Located in the Hollywood section of the park, the store acts as a sort of museum dedicated to the production, release, and impact of one of the most influential films in all of film history. Featuring several rooms crammed with rare production archives and props, exclusive merchandise, and unique foods, it is going to be a must stop-shop for the summer months at the resort for guests.
The latest tribute store is the newest Jurassic offering of the Orlando destination. In the last few years there has been the opening of Jurassic World VelociCoaster (which was awarded Best Roller Coaster two years in a row,) a Jurassic World Tribute Store (which ran the summer months of 2021 in the previous Tribute Store location in the New York section of the park,) and the Great Movie Escape which features a Jurassic World themed escape room experience.
While most of the additions to the park have been centered around the Jurassic World brand, the new tribute store transports us back to the 90’s and centers entirely around the film that started it all- Jurassic Park. Acting as a sort of museum that harkens back to the vibes of the “Dinosaurs of Jurassic Park” traveling exhibit, the store is divided into several different rooms that takes guests on a journey through the production of the film all the way through to its release and impact.
Before entering the store, the guests come face to face with the infamous sick Triceratops lying on its side, which is absolutely breathtaking (and I fully admit to tearing up upon seeing it up close.) Just before entering the store you’re surrounded by scaffolding, stage lights, and banners sporting the Jurassic Park logo and the classic sunset imagery. Many noted last week, when signage started going up, that the signage sported a “Making of Jurassic Park,” rather than just Jurassic Park. This tribute store being more of a shine to the overall production of the filmsets it in contrast to the 2021 JW Tribute Store which had more of an “in-universe” feel, and I’m sure it also offered a bit of a creative change for all of the incredibly talented Team Members of Art and Design, fabrication, carpentry, and painters who are involved on the project.
The first room has a focus on the “Pre-Production” (and a bit of “Post-Prod”) of Jurassic Park. It is filled to the brim with concept art of the dinosaurs and characters, film props, maquettes, and footage. It also has sections where they showcase and explain how Go-Motion was going to be the way they brought the dinosaurs to life in the film and how, as we all know now, it was abandoned in favor of computer-generated dinosaurs which revolutionized the film industry forever.
Moving on to the second room, we are now in the “Production” stage of the film. There are several photo-ops where guests can stop and put themselves into key moments of the film. Guests can either get down and hide behind kitchen counters from a stalking Velociraptor, try to appease an agitated Dilophosaurus, or quake in terror while sitting on a toilet in the middle of a rainstorm beneath Rexy herself. There are also lots of production documents and images as well for guests to gaze at and read as they make their way through, including a part that discusses Hurricane Iniki. Just before heading into the next room, guests can come face to face with another Velociraptor in the shed while they can attempt to return power to the island!
Rounding a corner, the guests are able to pass through the legendary Jurassic Park main gates and snag some unique and delicious treats before heading into the final room which illuminates the legacy and impact of the film upon its release. This, personally, had to be one of my favorite rooms in the whole store as it was just like walking into a sanctuary of classic Jurassic Park memorabilia. In display cabinets sits many different Kenner Jurassic toys, posters, magazines, buttons, bookbags, and loads more of vintage Jurassic Park merchandise. For fans of this franchise, whether you were able to experience the Jurassic craze in the 90’s or only wished you were able to, you can relive it here. If the first three-quarters of the store were the “Making of Jurassic Park” documentary come to life, this room perfectly embodies the “Dinosaur Dream Team” Marketing Video, tying the whole experience together.
The Jurassic Park 30th Anniversary Tribute Store proves to be an amazingly well executed, and immersive experience that is filled with fun easter eggs and beautiful set pieces sure to awe everyone who steps through the entrance. As soon as you enter it’s impossible not to feel the love put into this experience by everyone involved, and for fans it will be even harder not to be overwhelmed by it. The exclusive merchandise and collectables lining the walls harkens back to the feeling of shopping in the 90’s and seeing endless shelves and racks dedicated to Jurassic, and a lot of the new offerings are sure to be “must haves” for many. Some of the merch can be found throughout the entire resort at different stores (like Jurassic Outfitters and the Dino Store in the Jurassic Park section at Islands of Adventure,) the store sports of a wider variety of the 30th Anniversary merch as well as the special snacks.
The limited time JP30 Tribute Store is now open at Universal Orlando, during park hours. While there is no word on exactly how long the store will be there, in the past the “summer” tribute store typically runs until the first few weeks of August, at which time it will be closed and construction on the Halloween Horror Nights tribute store will begin. The store is just one of the few ways the Orlando resort is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the film. Guests can also get exclusive food, treats, and drinks at the Thunder Falls Terrace Restaurant at Islands of Adventure (again, no official word on how long the offerings will last,) and June 9th, 10th, and 11th the Cinemark at City Walk will have screenings of Jurassic Park (tickets are not up yet, but keep checking Cinemark/Fandango,) along with possibly some other potential surprises along the way!