If you’ve flown around the country in the last decade you have undoubtedly seen Shamu One (pictured) parked or taxiing on an airport runway. Or perhaps you have seen one of the other three Southwest planes painted in Sea World regalia. Sea World, which operates a large amusement park complex in Orlando has long been a target of Animal Rights activists. The volume of protests against Sea World grew exponentially last year after the airing of the Blackwater Documentary on CNN (It is important to note Blackwater was produced by an independent film company and aired on CNN but was NOT a CNN production).
Yesterday, it was reported that Southwest Airlines is after over a quarter century terminating its sponsorship deal with Sea World. Regardless of how this is spun, it is a blow to the Amusement Park. We will have more analysis of this situation and sponsorship termination in the near future.