Griswold’s road trip to the Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon kicks off the opening of the Tonight Show at Universal Studios Orlando with a road trip of his own.

We are at Universal Studios Orlando to see The Tonight Show and to ride Jimmy Fallon’s new ride, Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon.  After a nine hour road trip of our own down to Orlando Florida, we arrived at Universal Orlando Resort at the Loews Portofino Bay hotel.

A quick few minutes to unload the Wagon Queen Family Truckster at Portofino Bay and we are off to Universal Studios production sound stage 19.

We meet up with Heather, who is with The Tonight Show producer, and was wonderful to work with.  After a quick run down with Heather and The Tonight Show crew about the Truckster we are off to enjoy a family vacation at Universal Studios.  No, Universal Studios did not pay for our vacation, this was a just a nice way for use to take the kids to see Universal Studios over our spring break and also do The Tonight Show.

Here is how all this came together.

Jimmy Fallon is opening a ride at Universal Studios Orlando, Ride though New York!  The Tonight Show came down to the Universal Orlando Resort to film the show Monday – Friday the week of the ride opening.  For the opening of The Tonight Show in Orlando they wanted a fun cold open to the show and they did a “Vacation” piece.

Here is The Tonight Show’s Orlando Vacation

This five and a half minute cold open took a great deal of work.  The Tonight Show crew works constantly and the Wagon Queen Family Truckster part of the cold open took three days of car prep and filming.  When you see this on TV you don’t realize all the work that goes into producing something like this.

We also went to The Tonight Show taping on April 4.  We have never been to a show taping before and the energy in the studio was amazing.  The show is taped in real time from about 5 – 6 PM and then the band piece outside at Universal Studios is taped next and it’s all put together for 11:35 PM.  Just watching The Tonight Show I can’t imagine how Jimmy Fallon and the crew keep that level of energy up every single day.  It’s impressive.

To wrap up, we had a fantastic time at Universal Studios and with The Tonight Show.  Another BIG Thank you to Heather and the entire Tonight Show Crew.  Also as a special treat we have some behind the scenes photos from the making of The Tonight Show’s Orlando Vacation.

Enjoy, and we will see you on our next road trip across America,

The Griswolds
Steve, Lisa, Amber and Brooke

Let’s get to the ride!

Jimmy Fallon has been working on the idea for a ride at Universal Studios Orlando for a few years now, and today (April 6, 2017) is the Grand Opening of Ride thorough New York!

We got to ride a few days earlier with our entire family and loved it!
Here is what I love about Ride through New York.

First, I don’t think we will be road tripping in the wagon queen family truckster to NY and dealing with the traffic. I rented a car once in NY and driving in Manhattan was not my idea of a good time. So being able to take the family to NY and see Jimmy Fallon at Universal Studios Orlando is a perfect alternative.

When you enter the studio the first floor is a museum to The Tonight Show.  I grew up watch Jay Leno and I remember the classic Johnny Carson shows too.  My kids are not at the age yet to enjoy the Tonight Show on TV, but the ride, that’s a different story.

The ride offers a virtual que.  This allows you to explore The Tonight Show museum on the first floor as you wait.  After a short wait your NBC host will escort your group up to the second floor of the ride.  The second floor offers The Tonight Show clips and a nice lounge seating area.  There are some interactive tables with video games, and the lounge setup it really nice.  If you are not familiar with The Tonight Show this give you an insight into some of the best Jimmy Fallon clips.

Jimmy Fallon Ride TicketOh, When you enter the attraction you are given a show ticket.  There are different colors based on the NBC peacock colors.  As you can see our show ticket is red.  When you are on the second floor your color show ticket will be announced and this is how you know when it’s your groups turn to enter the ride through New York.

After watching these clips, I have to think everyone goes home and records The Tonight Show if they have not been watching the show already.

Ride Through New York

Brooke is 7 and Amber is 11 so they really have not seen the Tonight Show and just seen some of the Jimmy Fallon clips on YouTube here and there. Brooke was sitting next to me on the ride and giggled and laughed the entire time. That’s what it’s all about. Brooke really has not seen Jimmy Fallon or the show, but she enjoyed every moment. It’s also nice to see a full enclose attraction with AC and no que line.  It was pretty hot a few days in Orlando when we visited and the relaxed virtual que was a welcome addition.

I love that Universal added a family ride to the park. As someone that really can’t ride the next extreme coaster with my kids, it was refreshing to be able to ride to NY together.

Two thumbs up for our Ride through New York at Universal Studios Orlando and I am sure you will enjoy it too.