Orlando amusement park suspends ride where patrons shoot targets while perched with laser guns
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An amusement park in Orlando, Florida is suspending operation of a recently announced attraction where patrons use toy laser guns to shoot distant targets in sniper style.
ICON Park has made the decision to suspend the ride after local community protests against the “Bullseye Blast” attraction. Critics cited recent mass shootings in the United States, as well as one at that same city’s Pulse nightclub in 2016.
“Some non-guests and members of the community have said they consider the toy-shooting device previously unresponsive,” a spokesperson for the communications company representing the park said in a statement to Fox35 Orlando. “The attractions industry has many similar games that use similar shooting devices, so that’s what we were limited to when exploring the game. However, we believe that a device can and should be designed without offending anyone in the community. We look forward to leading this new innovation.”
Bullseye Blast is a game in which Florida park goers could ride a ride called The Wheel, a 400-foot-tall “watch wheel” and while perched high above the park, search for hidden targets. on rooftops they can shoot lasers. rifles equipped with sights.
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“It’s in bad taste!” Florida State Democratic Senator Linda Stewart tweeted in response to a news article about the attraction.
International Theme Park Services Inc. CEO Dennis Speigel told the Orlando Sentinel he’s surprised ICON Park executives are moving forward with the game.
“Seeing these simulated guns pointed at you from these heights, from all these cars, just doesn’t seem like the right decision,” Speigel said. “It’s a little weird.”
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When the attraction was first announced last week, social media users were quick to criticize it.
“How did this come off the drawing board? ! Big difference between shooting aliens/robots and practicing our sniper skills in a real urban area,” one person said.
“Mass shooting training,” said another.
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Others, however, didn’t see much in something that was clearly a game, with one Twitter user noting that the game’s main idea was used in other Orlando parks.
“This concept is no different from Buzz Light Year’s Space Space [sic] Ranger Spin at Disney’s Magic Kingdom or Men In Black at Universal Studios,” they said.
ICON Park also recently made headlines following a tragic accident in which a 14-year-old died after riding the park’s FreeFall ride in March.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.