PHOTOS, VIDEO: Full Tour of Mardi Gras 2022 ‘Float Factory’ Tribute Store at Universal Studios Florida
We have an preview of the Mardi Gras Tribute Store at Universal Studios Florida this morning, but the store is now fully open to the public.
As the exterior facade involvesthe Tribute Store is themed around a tank factory, meaning a factory dedicated to designing and building parade floats.
The entrance has a desk with sketches from the Tribute Store.
There are binders labeled for several different Tribute stores.
The plans, illustrations and photos of the store are on a corkboard (all protected by glass).
More sketches and models are on display in a display case.
A whiteboard calendar in the corner contains the first of ‘EARLS Safety Tips’.
The tip says: “Safety Last”.
File folders contain schedules and documents.
Then, the guests enter the Concepts & Ideas room of the warehouse.
A wall reads “Tribute Store Float Factory & Prop Warehouse”.
Banners from previous Mardi Gras events can be seen in the first room.
More safety tips are pasted throughout the store.
A Halloween Horror Nights Tribute Store sign from last year was hidden in a barrel.
The room even has references to Halloween horror nights and other old homage shops.
One wall is covered with giant blueprints and concept images.
There are more offices covered with concepts and ideas.
Part of the Jazz Preservation Hall sign in the Mardi Gras 2021 tribute shop the facade is there too.
These worktables are covered in items you might find in a real factory.
You’ll notice references to the “space gator float” as we move throughout the store.
There’s even a food delivery menu.
A Tribute Store wouldn’t be complete without a Mold-A-Rama machine. This year, guests can make a wax alligator in honor of the King Gator tank.
The little green alligator is $6.
Look up and you will see more accessories at the top of the shelves.
The cardboard boxes are labeled “skeleton”, “dark riding gear”, “silica gel beads” and “skulls”.
The team members had fun with this box called “Crushed Dreams”.
The next room is an extension of the prop warehouse.
In this room, we begin to see models being built.
Here’s our first look at the head of the space alligator.
We love this photo shoot with the HHN bear statue and a throne.
There is even another Mold-A-Rama machine.
At this one, guests can get a wax river boat for $6.
Larger pieces of floats and decorations adorn this room.
Another Halloween Horror Nights Tribute store sign from last year is hidden.
Here’s another EARLS (Earl’s Advanced Rules Leading to Safety) safety tip: clear jokes only.
Looks like we have a rocket to hope for.
Next, guests enter a hallway that transitions between the rooms.
This year’s hallway features photography from previous Universal Studios Florida Mardi Gras events.
Then we enter the Scenic & Paint room.
This piece instantly hits you with more color. Glitter tests for a wave float are on the wall.
Other Mardi Gras posters hang from the ceiling.
This alligator head is about to be painted.
Further in the room are bright and colorful costumes.
Don’t forget your mask.
Here are some wave and gator glitter options.
And before you enter the showroom are several shelves of Mardi Gras-themed paint.
Finally, it’s time to enter the showroom and see the latest tanks.
The main attraction of the Tribute Store is the finished space alligator tank.
The alligator’s head is encased in a custom-made helmet with a transparent visor.
He sits atop a wave-like float covered in streamers and sparkles.
The King Gator itself is quite brilliant. He has a golden headdress.
The ceiling is decorated with garlands and beads.
The goods, food and drink carts in this room also look like floats.
Stay tuned for our reviews of some of these delicious snacks.
There is a float for freshly roasted nuts.
Before you leave, be sure to look for a friendly face.
Of course, Earl the Squirrel wouldn’t miss Mardi Gras.
He even wears his own space helmet for a visit to Planet Mardi Gras, which picks up the colored lights.
There’s a final hallway with concept art for more tanks.
And at the exit is a piano, covered with jazz instruments and surrounded by plants.
A beaded tree bends over it.
The outer fence is decorated with garlands and masks.
Watch our video tour for a closer look at the Tribute Store below.