Theme parks are epicenters for fantastical stories, myths, and legends but sometimes by their very existence they spawn new histories in their own right and such is the case with Earl the Squirrel at Universal Orlando Resort.

Now available as an official walk-around character with whom you can interact, the lovable little guy is actually inspired by a real squirrel who took up residence Universal Orlando Resort. The mischievous scamp who scurried into the theme park’s holiday décor years ago can now be seen sporting a festive “I Love Acorns” holiday sweater on select days beginning Saturday, December 11 in Universal Studios Florida.

Universal Studios Orlando_Earl the Squirrel original

Here’s some more on the squirrel, the myth, the legend:

02_Earl the SquirrelEarl’s origin began more than a decade ago, when Universal Orlando’s Entertainment team discovered a squirrel nestled in the branches of its iconic Christmas tree. Surprisingly, the squirrel had an affinity for blue Christmas lights, often stealing strands and bringing them back to his nest. Over the years, Universal has paid homage to this remarkable incident by placing a lifelike squirrel in the Christmas tree for guests to discover and creating merchandise inspired by its fuzzy friend.

And now, guests can encounter Earl the Squirrel as an actual walkaround character this holiday season. Earl will be available for meet and greets on select days from December 11 through January 2 at Universal Studios Florida. While in the theme park, guests can also enjoy a new assortment of Earl the Squirrel merchandise within a dedicated room in this year’s Holiday Tribute Store – Earl the Squirrel’s Christmas Curios Museum & Emporium.

In addition to celebrating the holidays with Earl, guests can rip open a holiday gift of nonstop awesome as Universal Orlando 2021 holiday season offers roster of fan-favorites.

Universal Studios Orlando_Earl the Squirrel