Jimmy Fallon opened the Universal Orlando ride “Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon” on Thursday morning with his wife, Nancy Juvonen, and adorable daughters, 3-year-old Winnie Rose 2-year-old and Frances Cole. Jimmy was all smiles as his highly-anticipated ride was welcomed by fans who are eager to see the faux New York City at Universal Studios, Orlando. Beaming and proud of his work, Jimmy gave a heartfelt welcoming speech to the crowd, but it was his two daughters that stole the scene from their dad.
Jimmy Fallon stars in the new attraction. Aside from The Tonight Show ride, fans will see him in Orlando as he takes us on a journey through New York. Saying that Fallon made a grand entrance is an understatement; his crew members — The Tonight Show mascot Hashtag the Panda, Higgins, the Roots, and the Ragtime Gals — were onboard a Tonight Show-themed float. Accompanying the assorted crew members was Fallon’s family, which includes his wife Nancy Juvonen, their children, and Fallon’s parents.
The television host has been spotted in the city earlier this week as he made the final arrangements for the new ride while the production staff filmed a few episodes about the theme park. Fallon started his speech with a shout-out to the show’s previous hosts such as Steve Allen, Johnny Carson, Jack Paar, Jay Leno, and Conan O’Brien. Jimmy started hosting for the long-running late night talk show in 2014.
Jimmy Fallon’s theme park was greeted with hundreds of guests as they toured around a miniature NYC block.
“We have a ‘Tonight Show’ ride. This is a big moment. I’m so proud of it. As a kid from Upstate New York, I never imagined I’d even be a talk show host let alone have my own ride. It just goes to show keep on dreaming big, anything is possible,” said Jimmy.
The 3D dynamic motion ride based on the late-night talk show took three years to finish, and the surreal ride presentation paid off.
Continuing his speech, Jimmy said, “I want to thank New York City, the most exciting city in the world, and hopes this lives up to your reputation. Like life, this ride is unpredictable. It’s fast, it should be the most fun. I wish you all the smiles and the fun you could possibly have on this earth.”
Jimmy Fallon’s two daughters certainly stole some of their dad’s spotlight. As the Tonight Show host was giving his speech, Winnie danced and wiggled on stage. Her younger sister fared better as she pointed something in the audience and shouted “Bob!” when she the Despicable Me Minions in the crowd.
The “Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon” wouldn’t be complete without the man who designed it all, Creative Director for Universal Studios Jason Surrell. The 3D sci-fi/late night show features the “the world’s first flying theater” as audiences take a seat on simulator seats. These seats are replicas of the Tonight Show audience seats in the studio. The only difference: They moved, and you literally get to chase Jimmy Fallon who flies and drives his Batmobile version of a car: The Tonight Rider.
As you chase host Jimmy, you get to experience the animation and 3D effects of NYC lookalike. Guests will go through the streets of Manhattan, dive under the East River (where you will encounter Bruce the shark from the movie Jaws), go up to the empire State Building (only to find yourself stuck in a duel with a panda), and travel to the moon (where you will meet mascots of the talk show).
[Featured Image by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images]