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Universal's Merry 'Grinchmas'

November 16, 2000|JORDAN RAPHAEL | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Tying in with the movie release of "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas," Universal Studios Hollywood is hosting "Grinchmas," a Christmas-themed celebration with a Whovillian twist.

"We're doing Christmas in a big way," said Pat Moloney, the theme park's vice president of entertainment. "It's a totally immersive behind-the-scenes experience."

For "Grinchmas," which runs Friday through Jan. 1, Universal Studios has installed "Mount Crumpit Snow Plummet," a 100-foot-long sledding hill packed with several tons of real snow. This being Southern California, sledders won't need mitts or galoshes to zoom down the mountain; specially designed inner tubes will keep riders' extremities from hitting the snow. "You can go down in shorts and T-shirts if it's warm enough," Moloney said.

"Grinchmas" revelers can also wander through "The Grinch's Cave Maze," a re-creation of the Grinch's cavernous home decorated with props from the movie, including the furry green grouch's bed and X-ray machine. "It's taken pretty much directly from the designs in the film," Moloney said.

The townsfolk of Whoville will also be at the park, singing, juggling and performing in a show called "The Whoville Whobilation." And an outdoor ice-skating rink has been erected at Universal CityWalk.

Attendees at the "Grinchmas" celebration shouldn't be concerned about leaving with a Grinch-like aversion to holiday cheer. "It's got a happy ending just like the story does," Moloney said. "At the show, he comes out at the end and lights the Christmas tree and wishes everyone a happy Grinchmas."

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