I have more theme park-branded mugs, bottles and tumblers than any one person really needs. If it is in cup form and I can refill it for .99, or free (free is always good), I will be the first one to pull out my wallet. For anybody as addicted to the concept of the refillable mug as this traveler, SeaWorld has come out with a conservation-minded cup that fulfills your need for carbonated, caffeinated beverages. And they put penguins on it. Bonus!
In conjunction with SeaWorld Orlando’s greatly anticipated new attraction/ride, Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin, SeaWorld has partnered with Coca-Cola to create the “Cup That Cares.” This super cute penguin-shaped cup has a bit of technology embedded in its cuddly looking body.
Designed to connect with the Coca-Cola Freestyle beverage dispensers located in the new world of Antarctica at the park, the Cup That Cares allows guests to reuse materials and reduce their carbon footprint. An RFID chip embedded in each cup interacts with software at the Coca-Cola Freestyle dispensers to calculate and tell guests how they are being more environmentally responsible by choosing to reuse.
If you haven’t had the experience of using a Freestyle machine, check out this link to get an idea of its extreme awesomeness. Coca-Cola Freestyle dispensers offer more than 100 different beverage brands and flavor combinations. Want raspberry, lime or orange-flavored diet Coke? You got it. Want orange, strawberry or peach-flavored Sprite Zero? They’ve got it. Lemon-flavored Dasani water? Yep. Plain old-fashioned Coke? They’ve even got that. I have personally used one of these space-age machines before and, let me tell you, it is a mind-boggling process. SeaWorld’s Antarctica will also be offering an all-new choice – South Pole Chill – which is a vanilla flavor.
Dan Brown, Chief Operating Officer of SeaWorld, Discovery Cove and Aquatica Parks …
“Just as penguins do within their colonies, humans also can band together to make a big difference through small actions. We see great potential with this new program because it encourages guests to be more aware of their actions – and reduce their carbon footprint – in an easy, fun and innovative way. Each step may be small, but it all adds up when we work together.”
You may be asking “How exactly does this work?” Well, I will tell you right now…
- With each refill at the designated machines, software developed by Coca-Cola and SeaWorld shows an onscreen message that is customized to that guest’s Cup That Cares history.
- The message then thanks the guest for choosing to reuse, tracks how many refills the Cup has been used for and calculates the running total of CO2 the guest has saved from entering the atmosphere.
For reference, each refill prevents the emission of approximately 27 grams of CO2. Are you impressed that I knew that? I hope so because I really didn’t. It was in the press release.
There are two adorable Cup That Cares options from which to choose. Both are available in the new Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin attraction at SeaWorld Orlando.
- Cup That Cares souvenir reusable cup – Available in beverage stations inside the attraction, this cup features photos of Puck, the hero penguin character featured throughout the new realm of Antarctica. It is priced at $9.99.
- Create A Cup That Cares – Guests may build their own personalized penguin-shaped character cup by choosing from various accessories such as eyes, hair, hats, glasses and much more. This cup is sold in the Antarctica gift shop, and includes a free first fill at the nearby Antarctica beverage stations. Create A Cup That Cares starts at $15.95 with the option to add accessories.
Refills throughout the park are .99 for both Cup That Cares options.
SeaWorld will donate $1 from each Cup That Cares purchase to the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund, a non-profit foundation that helps protect wildlife.
Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin is the biggest expansion in SeaWorld’s history. It opens on Friday, May 24 and combines a state-of-the-art ride vehicle with up-close encounters with hundreds of penguins, including gentoos, Adelies, rockhoppers and kings.
The penguins have always been my favorite attraction at SeaWorld. I hope to make it to Orlando sometime soon to see the new world of Antarctica. Is anybody lucky enough to be attending on opening day? If so, please tell me all about it. And, yeah, go ahead and pick me up a cup.