The magic and fun of Sesame Street will soon be coming to California. A new Sesame Place theme park will open in San Diego, California, in spring 2021, becoming only the second Sesame Street-themed amusement park in the country. SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, the company behind Sesame Place San Diego have been operating the original Sesame Place just outside Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, since 1980.
Sesame Place San Diego will enable parents and children to "share in the fun, laughter, and learning of Sesame Street," according to a recently launched website for the forthcoming park. The park is set to feature live character shows and a parade alongside seven family-friendly rides and 11 different water attractions, including a 500,000 gallon wave pool. But perhaps most exciting to fans of Sesame Street, is the fact that the park will even feature an interactive neighborhood where kids can snag photos with characters and sit on the show's iconic stoop at 123 Sesame St.
News of a second Sesame Place park was announced earlier this week by Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit media and education organization that owns Sesame Street, and SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc., the theme park and entertainment company behind SeaWorld, Busch Gardens, Discovery Cove, and the original Sesame Place.
"As we celebrate Sesame Street’s 50th Anniversary, we are excited to share the news of a major opportunity for kids and families to connect with and learn from the brand and its beloved characters," Sesame Workshop President Steve Youngwood said in a press release. "The opening of Sesame Place San Diego will give guests a unique and powerful way to experience Sesame Street, enable us to connect with even more families, and further our educational mission."
In a press release put out Monday, SeaWorld Entertainment Interim CEO Marc Swanson stressed that the theme park and entertainment company shared Sesame Workshop's goal of leaving generations of children both entertained and educated. "The opening of a second park, the only one of its kind on the West Coast, furthers our company mission to provide guests with extraordinary experiences," he said, adding that SeaWorld Entertainment was "thrilled to be able to grow the presence of Sesame Place theme parks."
The newest Sesame Place park is also set to follow in the footsteps of its sister park in Philadelphia by opening as a Certified Autism Center (CAC), according to a note on its website. Along with training staff in autism sensitivity and awareness, the park is also expected to incorporate designated quiet spaces complete with adjustable lighting into its design. Parents will be able to obtain sensory guides to the park from its website ahead of their trip, enabling them to plan a day at the park full of activities that meet their child's specific needs.
"We are proud to be opening this new park as a Certified Autism Center and are committed in our efforts to offer families inclusive activities for children with autism and other special abilities," SeaWorld Entertainment Interim CEO Marc Swanson said in a statement. "Providing fun and memorable experiences through exceptional service is a part of that."
Sesame Place San Diego will open in spring 2021 and will be located where the current Aquatica San Diego is, so start planning your family's next trip now.