Drones — the newest attraction at theme parks
The past two years have been a roller coaster ride for most amusement parks. Covid-19 not only disrupted businesses but also plans for new attractions. However, through the many ups and downs of 2020 and 2021, we did see signs that a new attraction was gathering steam — drone light shows.
Drones are not new to theme parks, but the trend has certainly been helped along with the addition of drone light shows to the summer programming at the Dollywood theme park in the US. Integrated into a choreographed firework show, the drone light show at Dollywood makes for an epic multi-sensory performance.
In Europe, several theme parks including Futuroscope, Vulcania and Puy du Fou have integrated drone shows very successfully for a few years now. In fact, the Puy du Fou in France has the distinction of being the first theme park in the world to use drones as part of their nightly entertainment.
Going by theme park insiders, 2022 will see many more entertainment venues partner with leading drone show companies like Intel and Dronisos whose drone light shows have bedazzled audiences on the world’s largest stages including the Tokyo Olympics and the World Expo in Dubai. With several parks set to finally reveal their delayed projects, 2022 is shaping up to be an exciting year.
These sensational shows mark a true evolution in traditional theme park entertainment, where hundreds of drones are used to beautifully animate the theme of the parks, often narrating complex stories. The drones used are purpose-built and offer an almost infinite combination of movements and colours. Thus offering theme park managers and show creators endless artistic possibilities.
Drone light shows are noise and chemical pollution free. With theme parks and the world in general today being extremely environmentally conscious, this is indeed a big plus. Many parks offering overnight stay packages to their visitors also love the fact that the drone shows are quiet spectacles allowing them to control the music and decibel levels around the park.
With the increase in popularity of drone shows coupled with the added economic advantages that they offer over traditional fireworks, it is only a matter of time before drone light shows become a staple in theme park entertainment. A drone show system once purchased and installed has relatively low recurring costs. Experts suggest that in the near future we will not only see drone shows replacing fireworks but also used as part of rides and attractions. As the technology evolves and passenger drones become a reality, who knows, what we could see. All we know is that the future looks very promising for drones in theme parks.