ORLANDO — Universal Studios is displaying Olympic fever. The theme park has added visual touches for the upcoming Tokyo Games and food options, including sushi.
The park currently is fronted by a medallion in the entrance arch, a spot typically held by Halloween Horror Nights and Mardi Gras signs in the past. The Tokyo disc incorporates subtle images of the city and Mount Fuji.
At the park’s Music Plaza, the stage now has giant banners displaying U.S. athletes such as gymnast Simone Biles, swimmers Katie Ledecky and Caeleb Dressel, and sprinter Noah Lyles, a native of Gainesville. The screens on each side of the stage show segments that spotlight Olympic participants and sports as well as the occasional studio promo.
In the adjacent faux-grassy area, four booths serving Japanese cuisine are set up in the recurring red, orange and purple color scheme. Among the menu items are a lemongrass chicken rice bowl, agedashi dofu, sushi (rainbow roll, California roll, vegan roll), grilled shrimp puffs and cocktails, including a Japanese highball with whisky plus sake.
“Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration,” the park’s nighttime presentation on the lagoon, is now being preceded by “Celebration of the Olympics,” a five-minute salute to athletes of prior Games. Action shots are projected onto water screens accompanied by a John Williams soundtrack.
The lagoon presentation was planned for 2020 but was shelved alongside the Olympics due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Games are now scheduled to run July 23 to Aug. 8. They will be broadcast on NBC, which is under the corporate Comcast umbrella alongside Universal Orlando.