Greetings internet dwellerrs!
So, the last week, has been quite interesting. I was down at the park with my friend @jtamagni1976, and my sister. We ventured over towards MIB, as there was some work going on in the extended queue, not too long before that. More specifically, a cherry picker was seen lingering around back there. After we left, @jtamagni1976, had sent me a photo, which showed the framework of a structure going up in the extended queue.
The funny thing about the framework, is that they put it up literally 2 hours after my sister and I, had left the park. This sent off a flurry of conversation on the interwebs. As we all know, last year saw the addition of a new house location, in the extended queue of MIB. The structure used, was a tent. It was a nondescript, white tent, which was rented.
After the photo was passed around, some of us were already convinced that the structure was indeed, the return of a tent in the same spot as last year. Others were quick to point out that Grad Bash was about to get underway, and the spot could be used as a holding area for chaperones. However, I didn't recall a time, when that area was ever used for that purpose. Generally, the chaperone holding area's, are in Cafe' La Bamba, or the Monster Make-Up Show at the Pantages Theater. I also believe Mel's is being used this year, but I can't confirm that. Anyway, flash forward a week later, and we indeed have a white tent; very similar to last year, fully constructed in the spot.
Once images of the the fully constructed tent had made their rounds, I quickly realized a problem. A lot of people, were quick to say that the tent was just that- a tent. I read a myriad of comments about how the tent looks nothing like a Sprung Tent, therefore it can't be used for HHN. My first thought was, do people even remember the tent last year? While this year's "mysterious" tent, has a few minor differences (probably cheaper to rent), it is virtually the same as last year's.
While I can't confirm, nor deny, that the tent will indeed be used for HHN, I wanted to clarify some things. It seems that people are confused by exactly what a Sprung Tent is, and a rental tent. Neither one, are the same, but both have been used at HHN.
WHAT IS A SPRUNG TENT?
First and foremost, a Sprung Tent isn't actually a tent. The "Sprung" in Sprung Tent, is the name of the company that makes them. The Sprung company, doesn't refer to them as tents either. The structures, are designed to be "permanent". The buildings offer fast, lower cost construction, for a multitude of things. The photo on the top left is for a church, while the photo on the right, is from the San Diego Zoo.
It may also be pertinent to note, that they are designed to be movable. In addition, you can also reconfigure them after you move them if you wish. Sprung Tents are also modular, so you can add more on, if you so choose. They are made of aluminum in its substructure, which makes the buildings lightweight, yet durable. The Sprung company offers many different types of outer layers as well, depending on the needs of the client.
Each outer layer, serves a specific purpose, based on the environment the Sprung is in. For instance, in a very cold environment (such as the Arctic), you can choose a specific membrane to protect from the extreme elements. In Orlando, the outer membrane protects against the Florida weather, which can be unpredictable and harsh. We of course, are known for severe storms, hurricanes, and heat. While the Sprung's have been described as "hurricane proof", anyone that has been through one, knows nothing is really hurricane proof. On occasion even, the Sprung tents have been known to flood from time-to-time. The structures are also climate controlled.
When Universal first introduced the Sprung Tents in 2006, they were designed to be used only for Halloween Horror Nights. They were permanent structures, which could be used year after year. That, more than anything, is the biggest difference between a Sprung, and a tent. It's important to keep in mind, that these are buildings, not tents.
THE PARTY TENT
Last year's tent which housed Lunatic's Playground 3D, is similar in nature to the one's above. A few year's ago, I wrote an article speculating where a new house location could be located. The MIB overflow queue, was one of those locations. As Universal needed to find a spot at that time to place a 9th house, we are reaching a bit of a different crossroads today.
As the very real possibility of losing HHN house locations becomes a reality, something like this could be more of a habit in the future. Last year's tent, was a rental. Unlike the Sprung Tents, these are obviously not permanent. They are also easier in a way, to fit in odd locations such as the MIB overflow queue line.
HHN Hollywood, has been using wedding tents like these for years. Unlike Universal Orlando, they have less space to work with, and they do their job well. Unlike California though, a tent of this nature has a few drawbacks in Orlando. For one, unlike the Sprung Tents, these are very flimsy. The summer Florida weather, can realistically be a problem. A severe storm, or hurricane, can eat a tent like this for breakfast. The tent last year, stood strong against the glancing blow of Matthew, but that was just a glancing blow. In a more direct hit, I doubt a tent like this would survive.
Cost here, could also be another drawback. Last year's tent, was a rental. And based on the permit of last year's tent, Universal may have gone over their allotted rental time (post HHN breakdown). While I am sure deals were made with whoever they rented the tent from, the price could still add up. Still, despite what one thinks of the house overall, the tent last year did its job. It in fact did its job well enough, that nobody seems to realize the house was built in a wedding tent.
With the comments about the current tent, just being a tent and therefore can't be used for HHN, one has to laugh a bit. It's exactly what they used last year. Although, I do have to say, I don't remember them reinforcing the tent with a skeletal structure.
These are not Sprung structures. These are tents, in the very simplest of ways. They go up, and they come down after their use. They are a quick, easy solution to place a house.
Just some food for thought, as we go forth and something to keep in mind. The tent in MIB, is in all likelihood, for this year's HHN. One shouldn't dismiss it because it is simply a tent.
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