What to do in Orlando in July 2012
July could easily be the busiest month of the year for Orlando theme parks. With the Fourth of July, concerts, annual summer events and the overall excitement of summer, there is certainly no shortage of things to do this July in Orlando. And to help you navigate all of the fun this season is Best of Orlando’s July monthly guide:

Fourth of July
Legoland Florida will celebrate its first Fourth of July with Red, Brick & Boom where guests will be given 3D glasses to wear that will turn regular fireworks into thousands of exploding Lego bricks. And speaking of fireworks, Walt Disney World ® will light up the Orlando night sky with fireworks displays at three of its parks including “Disney’s Celebrate America! A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky” July 3 and July 4 at 9 p.m. at Magic Kingdom ®; “Rockin’ 4th of July Celebration” at 9:45 p.m. at Hollywood Studios ® and IllumiNations at Epcot ® will include a July 4th presentation called “The Heartbeat of Freedom” at 9:45 p.m.

Concerts and Summer Fun
Summer time always brings in concerts and nighttime events and that’s no different this July as SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Bay celebrate summer with their Summer Nights. The annual event is full of nighttime shows, high-energy performances, food, and fun. Universal Orlando is rocking out this July with their Summer Concert Series and guests to the park can listen to the sounds of Lupe Fiasco on July 7 and Miranda Cosgrove on July 14 at 8 p.m. at the Music Plaza Stage. At Epcot ® you can listen to tributes from some of your favorite artists and bands during Sounds like Summer Concert Series at the American Gardens Theatre in Epcot’s ® World Showcase. The bands include:

•    July 1 – July 7: Slippery When Wet – The Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute
•    July 8 – July 14: The Police Experience - A Tribute to the Police
•    July 15 – July 21: SouthBound and Company - A Tribute to Lynyrd Skynyrd
•    July 22 – July 28: 2U – A Tribute to U2


Races
Daytona International Speedway is exploding with fun this month as the Subway Jalapeno 250 and Coke Zero 400 hit the track for Fourth of July weekend. On July 6 watch as rising stars of the NASCAR Nationwide Series face off against NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers for a 250-mile race. Then on July 7, the stars of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series hit the road for the second major NASCAR race in Daytona – Coke Zero 400. Guests to either race can enjoy plenty of pre- and post-race festivities at the speedway like Grammy Award-winning band Train performing on July 7th.


New Openings
Despicable Me Minion Mayhem officially opened at Universal Orlando today and the line for the attraction is already spilling out into the streets. The new attraction takes riders on a wild adventure with Gru, his three adopted daughters and those silly minions and even turns you into a minion along the way!

Kids can now enjoy the same summer fun adults do at Wet ‘n Wild with the new attraction Blastaway Beach! A large water-play area, Blastaway Beach! features a 60-foot high sand castle, 15 water slides, pools, and plenty of water-soaking activities like cannons, jets, pipes and buckets that dump gallons of water onto screaming kids.


Summer Hours:
With the long summer days, there’s more time for water park and theme park fun that’s why several Orlando theme parks are staying open late all month long:

•    Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon - open from 9am-8pm everyday. The parks will feature Extra Magic hours on certain days and open at 8am (for guests with Extra Magic hours.)
•    Aquatica - 9am-8pm
•    Legoland Water Park - from 10am-7pm
•    Adventure Island - 9am-9pm. The park also hosts Island Nights, live entertainment, Caribbean food and more island fun from 5pm-9pm (Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays)
•    Wet ‘N Wild - 9:30am-9pm
 

Epcot Celebrates Summer With Sounds Like Summer Concert Series

Despicable Me Minion Mayhem officially Open July 2nd!

Epcot’s interactive “Brave” Tournament, The Highland Games

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Celebrates 2nd Anniversary

Discovery Cove Adds SeaWorld Orlando and Aquatica Fun

SeaWorld Orlando Extends the Summer Fun with Summer Nights

Happy 22nd Anniversary to Universal Studios Florida

Zip Line in Florida with EcoSafari’s EcoPark Admission Ticket

Orlando Examined: Living with the Land Provides Food for Epcot

Tips for Memorial Day Weekend at Orlando Theme Parks