Cats in the Hat NEW Pressed Pennies | Universal’s Islands of Adventure

I visit Universal’s Islands of Adventure quite often, and one of the “islands” is Seuss Landing which more often than not I find myself just passing through. It’s very color and does indeed give the feeling of hopping right inside a Dr. Seuss book, but if certainly designed more for younger guests.

In the past I have taken my daughters here and they of course love this area of the park. My youngest prefers the carousel, while my oldest is more info the High in the Sky Seuss Trolly ride. I however am usually the only one interested in going on the Cat in the Hat ride which do enjoy more just out of nostalgia. It’s a classic dark ride that certainly is in need of some updating. The animatronics inside are a bit rough around the edges and don’t seem to work as well as they used to. I also remember a lot more spinning of the ride vehicle from past visits, but now it only spins a couple times right near the end.

When you finish your ride through the Cat in the Hat attraction you exit down a hallway towards the Cats, Hats and Things gift shop. Just before you enter the gift shop we came across a brand new pressed penny machine.

This machine cabinet is really fun, and that is something that many of the penny machines throughout Seuss Landing have in common. They all seem to have been designed by Dr. Seuss with no straight angles and some even seem to look like they shouldn’t be able to stand up straight.

The penny designs here are all themed around the Cat in the Hat story including the Cat himself, Thing one and Thing two, Fish and of course the kids whose house the Cat visits.

Now this ride is not very thrilling, other than a few spins towards the end. But if you are someone that is not interested in riding that is no issue at all you can still access the penny machine just by visiting the Cats Hats and Things gift shop.

Head straight back through the store and you will see the hallway where the ride guests are exiting and the machine is right there. The team members working in this store are always so friendly that if you have any difficulty finding the machine just ask them and they will point you in the right directly. There used to be a 3-design penny machine in this store up near the front entrance but that has been removed and assumed to be retired.

There are quite a few other penny press machines throughout Seuss Landing and most have had the same designs for quite a few years now. I’m hoping maybe this means we will see some other new machines in the near future and of course plenty of new designs. With so many great Dr. Seuss books they have plenty of characters that deserve their own penny designs. Keep on Pressing!


Pressed Penny Stickers on Etsy

As much as I love tracking down and pressing new pennies, I’m also always on the look out for any sort of unique pressed penny related items. In the past I’ve shown jewelry, art work, porcelain figures and many more. Lately I’ve been spending a lot of time perusing the online marketplace Etsy and have found some really interesting items.

First I came across the seller Vickidi Bobbidi Boo‘s store who was offering these cute little stickers designed to look like a couple pressed pennies with “The Mouse” listed on both. I think we all know who these are designed after, but obviously due to copyright concerns these have been slightly tweaked. They are a bit larger than an actual pressed penny but I thought these were a fun idea and I’m hoping they come out with some other new designs in the future.

A similar online seller named Core Memory Creations‘s offered the above sticker designed to look like those classic 3-design electric pressed penny machine. I love this one. It would have been nice if it was a little bit larger, as when it came I was surprised at how small it was. But this still makes a fun way to decorate one of your binders or booklets that contains your penny collection, or if you are like me I’ve got them stuck to my laptop that I’m currently using to write this post and edit our YouTube videos.

If you are interested in checking out either of these items I have the Etsy Shops linked above. I love to see how our little elongated coins are starting to spread out into the crafting and art worlds. Hopefully this is just the beginning and I’ll be on the look out for more of these unique items to share. If you have come across any unique items like these please let me know down in the comments below because I would love to check it out.

Keep on Pressing!

Universal Studios Store NEW Pressed Pennies

With so many theme parks here in central Florida they are always updating their offerings to complete with each other. Some guests who have been coming for many years are always the first to complain when one of their favorite attractions is replaced. Disney still has quite a few classic attractions in their parks, but Universal is one that doesn’t seem to hesitate when removing some of their most loved attractions. I remember visiting when I was young and riding taking a trip back in time with Back to the Future, or a nice leisurely boat tour on Jaws, but one of my all time favorites was Kongfrontation. Some people say this is for the best and we now have much more advanced attractions to enjoy but there is 1still that nostalgia that I do miss when thinking about those rides.

One thing Universal does do very well is have call backs to those long gone attractions either as an easter egg in their seasonal tribute store, or in the queue for the new attraction. But more than anything else they will inundate us with merchandise and most of it can be found right at the entrance to the park in the Universal Studios Store.

We have gone through this store numerous times in the past documenting new merchandise for more recent movies and attractions, to those classic oldies we loved so much.

I found this fancy button up shirt that had most of my favorites all together in quite the mashup. All it was missing was Kongfrontation and I probably would have picked it up.

Along this pathway down the middle of the store used to be the location of a couple old 3-design penny machines. These machines had designs available for some of these classic attractions. They had also been the last remaining machines to only cost $0.50 and allowed you to use your own penny. However on this recent trip as you can see in the above picture those machines are now erased from existence.

Thankfully all is not lost and Universal did replace it with a new 8-design digital touchscreen machine. I really like the wood cabinet of this machine, that fits in nicely with the nearby store fixtures and the fun little details along the bottom that remind me of an old movie theater marquee.

The penny designs available at this new machine are a mixture of old and new attractions within the Universal parks. Included is Jaws, the famous Back to the Future Delorean license plate to represent the historical park attractions, then we have E.T., MIB, Spider-man and Velocicoaster as currently available attractions. Does this mean we are getting a new Iron Man attraction soon? If Disney has anything to do with things, I highly doubt it and does seem like a strange design to include with this set. Too bad we couldn’t have a Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure design instead. Oh well maybe some day.

Thanks for tagging along as we took a quick visit into the ever changing Universal Studios Store. Like the merchandise you just never know what you may find inside. Stay tuned for some other upcoming Universal posts, there is plenty more new stuff still on the way. Have a fantastic week and as always Keep on Pressing!

Orange Bird Pressed Coins – Privately Designed

I have made it no secret that my favorite snack at Disney is the world famous Pineapple Dole whip. I love the float version that includes pineapple juice, but more recently they have been experimenting with some other flavors and you know I’ve tried them all. There has been raspberry, key lime, lemon, coconut, strawberry, watermelon, cherry, pistachio and quite a few more. All of them were great but the original pineapple is my absolute favorite.1

Sometimes however I’m in the mood for something a little different and out of all these other flavors my next top choice is the Citrus Swirl. Now first I’ll mention there are two very similar options that are sometimes mixed up. One is the Orange Cream which is Orange dole whip twisted with vanilla ice cream basically a pretty standard creamsicle flavor. The second option is the Citrus Swirl which is a frozen orange juice twisted with vanilla soft-serve, it’s much more tart and in my opinion more refreshing and amazing. Now why am I brining all this up, well first I love talking about dole whip and Disney snacks but for the main purposes of this post it has to do with a special character that has become synonymous with this citrus swirl treat.

Who is this character you may ask. Well it’s the cute little Orange Bird that you may have seen all around the Florida Disney parks. He has shown up on all sorts of merchandise but it doesn’t stop there, our friend and fellow collector Don Cade has created many fantastic elongated coins including a special Orange Bird design. But first let’s review a bit of history.

Back in 1969 Disney was looking for corporate sponsors to help pay for the construction of their new park Walt Disney World. The Florida Citrus Commission was eager to be involved and Disney encourage them to sponsor the Tropical Serenade attraction that would eventually be renamed the Enchanted Tiki Room. For $3 million dollars and a 10 year commitment they would sponsor the attraction along with a connected juice bar that would sell orange juice and there snacks. The juice bar would be called the Sunshine Tree Terrace. Once caveat the Citrus commission required was some kind of character identifier they could use, and that’s when Disney came up with the Orange Bird.

The partnership continued until 1987 when the Florida Citrus commission decided not to renew the sponsorship, and with that loss the orange bird went absent from the parks for 17 years. Then in 2004 in the Japan parks the Orange Bird made a come back with some specialized merchandise and guests loved it. Anticipation was mounting for his return to Florida and eventually in 2012 he officially came back as the icon for Sunshine Tree Terrace once again.

Now it’s location can be a bit confusion. Originally it was located next to the Enchanted Tiki Room and Aloha Isle offering the Pineapple dole whip was near the Swiss Family Treehouse. Then in 2015 these locations switched places. So if you are in the mood for a Citrus Swirl be sure to head towards the big Treehouse.

To celebrate this piece of Walt Disney World history Don Cade created these amazing pressed coins. I saw these listed online and had to reach out to get a set for my collection.

I’ve mentioned in the past about the TEC Facebook group and all it’s benefits. This is one place that Don makes his designs available to other collectors. No membership needed, but the information that all the members share and offers for custom coins like these are just too good to pass up. Stay tuned for more privately designed coin designs, there are just so many out there and I can’t wait to share them with you.

We Want You PPM #14 – Pressed Penny Mafia

In the past I’ve posted about the wonderful Facebook Group Pressed Penny Mafia – PPM which I am a card carrying member. The group is filled with many fellow collectors and share all sorts of fun knowledge about our favorite hobby elongated coin collecting. But a big perk of the group is that Boss Lady Amy is continuously creating new penny designs for the group. Not too long ago I showed off Lucky #13 which you can read about here.

It didn’t take Amy long to release the fourteenth design in her set and it is another great one, and acts as a great recruiter coin. I always look forward to these new PPM penny designs and placed my order as soon as they were available. As always a huge thank you to Amy for all she does with the Facebook group. If you are not a member I included the link to the group at the top of this post. It is completely free to join and there is just so much great information available there plus you can then contact Amy to order your own special PPM pennies.

Remember We Want You….to keep pressing plenty of elongated coins.
Stay safe and have a wonderful weekend!

Expedition Everest NEW Pressed Pennies | Disney’s Animal Kingdom

My daughter has recently become obsessed with roller coasters at Disney. I am not a big coaster fanatic so we kind of started this journey together. we started small with Goofy’s Barnstormer at the Magic Kingdom, then slowly moved up to Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Big Thunder Mountain, and then Space Mountain. It was only a matter of time before we moved up to the more “advanced” coasters at Disney and after some Youtube videos she decided our next step up was Expedition Everest in the Animal Kingdom.

Once inside the park we headed towards the Asia section and could immediately see the forbidden mountains soaring high in the background. Expedition Everest is certainly one of the most popular attractions here in Animal Kingdom and the line to ride can be pretty long.

Even if you have a long queue line to wait in, the details you pass by are incredible. Plus you will learn about the mysterious Yeti that is rumored to be up in the mountains.

This was certainly one of the more intense coasters my daughter and I had experienced so far. It wasn’t unbearable, but I think no matter how many videos we watched online it was a completely different experience in person. My daughter loved it, I on the other hand was a little wobbly legged when I got off.

When you exit off the ride you of course are taken through a gift shop. For those of you that are not interested in riding the coaster, fret not you can still go in and explore the gift called called the Serka Zong Bazaar.

Inside this store the incredible details continue. It’s setup to look like a place you would load up on supplies before climbing mount Everest. Plus of course with plenty of Disney merchandise and Yeti inspired items.

In the back of the store near where you can view and purchase your on ride photo is where I came across a brand new penny press machine.

If you’ve been following my travels, not too long ago Animal Kingdom went through a phase where they were updating the penny machines to the new $1 price point. This location did have a machine before but it was only a 3-design model. That machine has been removed and replaced with this beatiful piece of art work. The wood cabinet of this machine has some gorgeous carvings, and details to it that just fits with other “hard-carved” detailing that can be found throughout the store.

Some of these penny designs we have seen before in previous machines found here at Expedition Everest but I was happy to see them return. I love the “I Conquered Expedition Everest” design and made sure to press an extra penny for my daughter as a souvenir of our riding this attraction for the first time. The rest of the designs here are all themed well for the location and I think it makes for a great semi-new set of pennies for our collection.

With one more coaster under our belts my daughter is already checking out what is next for us to try. Rockin’ Roller Coaster in Hollywood Studios seems like a good option, but she is really looking at the new Guardian of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind coaster in Epcot that just recently opened. No pennies so far over there for that one, but stay tuned because as soon as some are released (fingers crossed) we will be over there to ride the attraction and press some more pennies.

Keep on Pressing!