Walt Disney World Resort Update for June 4-10, 2019
Writer’s note: If you follow any Disney news, you know that last week, on the West Coast, Disneyland dedicated and opened Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. We took the week off from publishing a Walt Disney World Resort Update, and there were no major news stories you missed last week. Here in Florida, I supported our West Coast contributors and, thanks to modern technology, feel like I have (at least, sorta-kinda) been to Batuu while we await the August 29 scheduled opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge near me at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. You can catch the full wrap-up of our West Coast coverage here and it should serve as a good preview of what is to come here on the substantive side. As for how it is going to operate here crowd-wise, remember that Disneyland opened its land with a reservations-required process that will be in effect until June 23; when June 24 rolls around and operation switches to “open subject to capacity controls,” we may get an idea of what crowd flow issues will be like in the Florida version.
And, before we turn to the news, we go back to the video discussion we have been having in this space in the past few Updates. As you may recall, we have been facing the dilemma of going where our viewers are when it comes to video—which, increasingly, has been Instagram’s IGTV. Until a couple weeks ago, IGTV required videos to be formatted vertically, so we increasingly were posting vertical videos which do not look best on televisions, desktop computers, and other wide-screen tablets. Well, on the very day we last wrote about this issue in the Update, Instagram relented and began permitting horizontally-formatted videos. So, at least from me, in future Updates, you will again see far more horizontal videos than vertical ones.
Enjoy a visit to all of Epcot in under 5 minutes by Hyperlapse. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
News and Views
Headlines are auto-generated here
More Details of 2019 “Magical Holiday Happenings” at Walt Disney World
In just over five months, starting November 8, parts of Walt Disney World will begin their 2019 Winter Holidays Celebrations (the rest of the Resort will join in by the end of November). Since our last Walt Disney World Resort Update, Disney has released some new details of this year’s “Magical Holidays Happenings.”
As we noted earlier this year, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party begins its “select nights” run this year on November 8. The separate ticket required event runs 23 nights this year, including performances of Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas, and Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration stage show; Queen Elsa will again transform Cinderella Castle with “glistening ice” when lighting the dreamlights during A Frozen Holiday Wish stage show.
The party will also mark the debut of a new fireworks show, Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks hosted by Minnie Mouse and featuring medleys of holiday songs including “Joy to the World,” “Deck the Halls,” “Up on the House Top” and “We Wish You A Merry Christmas.” Disney Parks Blog say the show will have “an incredible finale you won’t want to miss.” Disney Parks Blog also confirmed that the “Jingle Cruise” will return the seasonal overlay to the Jungle Cruise.
Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime Fireworks will debut during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, starting November 8. Concept Art ©Disney.
The retirement of Holiday Wishes comes as no particular surprise. The long-running show had been showing its aged technology since the 2017 introduction of Happily Ever After. Earlier this year, Disney Parks Blog also announced that “HalloWishes” during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party would be replaced by a new show during those select party nights, August 16 to November 1.
More information and tickets for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party are now available on this page of DisneyWorld.com or by calling (407)939-1872.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Starting November 8, Disney’s Animal Kingdom will expand its holiday celebrations across the entire park this year. Discovery Island, the land guests encounter when crossing the bridge into the “hub” of the park, will be decorated with “sparkling white holiday decorations” that were “hand-crafted by the eclectic community of artists who make the island their home.” During the day, there will be gatherings of “winter animals,” life-size, artisan-sculpted puppets representing reindeer, foxes, polar bears, penguins and more. At night, rooftop “luminaries” and bird lanterns will light, and the Tree of Life awakenings will include “wintry tales, complemented by a familiar and heartwarming holiday-inspired musical score.”
Asia’s Anadapur theatre district will be decorated for the celebration of Diwali, the holiday festival of lights in India. The décor will include glowing flowers, lanterns and other lighting.
In Africa, Harambe will feature a blend of “western traditions with the colors and textiles of authentic African celebrations.” The live entertainment will include holiday-inspired enhancements, including costumes and music. Tusker House character dining will also receive holiday enhancements.
Even Pandora-The World of Avatar will celebrate the holidays this year, thanks to the “ex-pats living and working on the moon of Pandora.” A display will be featured at Pongu Pongu of “kitschy holiday décor, combining vintage pieces from Earth with items handcrafted from materials indigenous to Pandora.”
The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays returns November 29-December 30, including its 3-times-nightly schedule of Candlelight Processional Performances. The Epcot Candlelight Processional & Concerts News and Calendar section below has the latest details about the schedule released so far.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
While the focus at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, no doubt, will be guests going to “live your Star Wars story” in the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge area after its August 29 scheduled debut, the holidays offerings from recent years will return this winter as well (although the exact date has not yet been announced). Olaf will return to the stage in the special holiday finale in For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along. The Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! nighttime spectacular will return to the front of Chinese Theatre, and the Sunset Seasons Greetings projections on Hollywood Tower Hotel, laser effects and “snow” will return to Sunset Boulevard.
Disney Springs will celebrate the holidays from November 8 through January 5. The Christmas Tree Trail will return, as will live entertainment offerings like the toy soldier stilt walkers, carolers, and Living Statues in holiday attire. Santa Claus will greet guests in Santa’s Chalet until December 24, and then Santa Goofy takes over from December 25 to 31. Stitch’s Holiday Gift Hunt also will return.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Updates Nighttime Entertainment
Over Memorial Day Weekend, Disney’s Animal Kingdom debuted some updates to its nighttime entertainment offerings. At the amphitheater on Discovery River that runs from Asia in front of Expedition Everest over to DinoLand U.S.A. in front of the Theater in the Wild (home of Finding Nemo: The Musical), the Rivers of Light show has received an update and revised name: Rivers of Light: We Are One. The revised show still features the floating fountains, boats, animal lantern floats, and mist screens and the title song “We Are One.”
The updated Rivers of Light: We Are One show is performed on Discovery River after sunset. Check the Times Guide or My Disney Experience app for nightly showtimes. Video ©Disney.
The revised show has added a bit more of a storyline than the original show that Disney Parks Blog now describes as telling of “our connection with animals and the emotions and milestones we all share in our journey through the great circle of life.” It incorporates additional images from Disneynature films as well as some animals from the Disney animation library. The show’s new musical score includes aspects of the original, but with some upbeat additions (including “Circle of Life”). The show’s mist screens, however, do not provide particularly crisp viewing from the FastPass+ viewing area where I saw the show on the night of its official open. Indeed, this show is not billed as a “nighttime spectacular” and, like its predecessor, is pretty but does not deliver a “wow” moment or ending.
Some of the projections in the revised show are more colorful. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Enjoy the finale of the revised show: “Rivers of Light: We Are One” on its opening night. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
A new Tree of Life “awakening” sequence inspired by The Lion King also debuted over Memorial Day Weekend. It can be viewed on the tree either from the side of Discovery Island near the bridge to the park’s entrance or along the pathway between Africa and Asia on the “backside” of the Tree of Life. Like other awakenings, there is no published schedule for when you will see any particular version, so you may need to watch several awakenings to see the new Lion King version. Unlike the image quality issues presented by the mist screens, the image quality on Tree of Life is stunning.
A new Tree of Life “awakening” is inspired by “The Lion King.” Video ©Disney.
Enjoy a few moments of “The Lion King” awakening from the “backside” of the Tree of Life. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
More Epcot News Coming at D23 Expo 2019 in August
Here at MousePlanet, we have been repeating the statement Bob Chapek, Chairman Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, made about the coming evolution at Epcot during the 2016 Disney D23 Destination D at Disney’s Contemporary Resort quite a bit: “it will be more Disney, more family, more relevant and more timeless.” Since the 2016 announcement, the details have come out slowly, and we have reported on construction progress: from the on-going construction of the Guardians of the Galaxy-themed indoor coaster and space-themed restaurant coming to Future World, and the Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure at the France pavilion, to the upcoming retirement of Illuminations: Reflections of Earth (September 30), the debut of the temporary Epcot Forever fireworks show (October 1), and, in 2020, debut of a new nighttime spectacular, and the recently announced Play Pavilion replacing the Wonders of Life/Festival Center, and “reimagination” of the park’s main entrance which just got underway and the coming “reimagination” of Future World’s center.
Since our last Update, Disney Parks Blog teased that more details are going to be revealed at the D23 Expo 2019 in Anaheim, August 23-25. We will be there and will report on the latest details (though, admittedly, that news could get lost a bit with Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opening at Disney’s Hollywood Studios just a few days later: August 29).
Epcot Candlelight Processional & Concerts News and Calendar
Yesterday, Disney Parks Blog announced the first four returning Celebrity Narrators for this year’s edition of Candlelight Processional: Whoopi Goldberg (12/6-7), Pat Sajak (12/16-8), Steven Curtis Chapman (12/22-4), and Edward James Olmos (12/25-6). Held at the America Gardens Theatre, the Candlelight Processional combines a live orchestra, massed choir and celebrity narrator in the retelling of the traditional Christmas story three times per night (5:00, 6:45 and 8:15 p.m.) during the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays (November 29-December 30). Guaranteed seating is available by booking a breakfast, lunch or dinner Candlelight Processional Dining Package at select Epcot eateries. Availability is limited and advance reservations are highly recommended and can be made up to 180 days prior to your visit. Bookings for Candlelight Processional Dining Packages will begin on July 3. EpcotHolidays.com is the page where you can find Festival information and Candlelight Processional Dining Packages starting July 3 (or call 407-WDW-DINE).
Yesterday also was the conclusion of the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, so the America Gardens stage will be quiet for the next several days as it is prepared for the June 14 return of Guardians of the Galaxy-Awesome Mix Live! Running multiple times daily through August 18, Star-Lord and Gamora along with an “alien” band will take the audience on a “musical journey” that showcases hits from Star-Lord’s Awesome Mix tapes. Check the Times Guide and the My Disney Experience app for the daily schedule.
With Groot remotely patching “Awesome Mix” music into the headphones of of an alien band, Star-Lord tried to teach them how to become the “Galaxy’s greatest cover band” during last summer’s edition of the Guardians of the Galaxy-Awesome Mix Live! Concerts. Gamora seemed unimpressed. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
As the summer approaches fall, this year’s edition of the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival will debut on August 29 (yes, the very same day that Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opens at Disney’s Hollywood Studios). It runs a record 87 days this year, through November 23, but the three-times-nightly Eat to the Beat Concert Series will only run until November 19. This year, showtimes on Sundays through Thursdays will be the usual 5:30 P.M., 6:45 P.M., and 8:00 P.M., while on Fridays and Saturdays, the showtimes shift an hour later to 6:30 P.M., 7:45 P.M., and 9 P.M. The Concert Series wraps up on November 19 (before the Festival’s end) to allow the America Gardens stage to be prepared for the 2019 edition of Epcot’s Candlelight Processional.
For the convenience of our readers, all of the scheduled Eat to the Beat Concert Series performers and announced Celebrity Narrators for Candlelight Processional at America Gardens Theatre are shown in our Google Calendar of Epcot Events. All of the Guardians of the Galaxy-Awesome Mix Live! dates are noted as well. You can add the whole Event calendar to any calendar that supports the iCal format (like iPhone and Mac) by copying this link and, as we get additional information and update the calendar, the calendar will update on your subscribed device as well.
While our Google Calendar of Epcot Events lists announced performers, it is still always best to check the My Disney Experience app, Times Guide, and, yes, sometimes even signs posted at the park entrances and at the theater noting any last minute changes. The calendar is provided as a courtesy “as is, where is” without any guarantees. We do respectfully request that you do not post our entire calendar on another site without first asking our permission. Walt Disney World Resort does provide schedules in the My Disney Experience app, but does not allow you to add dates to calendars outside the app itself.
Views Around the World
We have views from all four theme parks this week. The newest views around Disney Springs are included in the Disney Springs news section.
Travel across Seven Seas Lagoon, into and around Magic Kingdom in this Hyperlapse. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
Enjoy a full ride on the newly reconfigured Tomorrowland Speedway and see views of the TRON-themed coaster under construction. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
With reconstruction of Epcot’s entrance well-underway, the courtesy tram now stops well away from the park’s gates.
Walking into the park from main parking (even from the courtesy tram) currently requires walking over to sidewalks at the eastern side of the monorail beams (that’s the left when facing Spaceship Earth).
Construction walls now surround the “Leave a Legacy” monuments on the west side of the Epcot entry area. The photos on the monuments will be reproduced and relocated to an area outside the park gates.
The flower beds surrounding the Future World ponds were in peak form in the past couple of weeks just ahead of yesterday’s final day for this year’s Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. Expect the flowers to be removed and sod to be installed soon.
Construction continues at the International Gateway ahead of the expected opening this Fall of the Disney Skyliner station.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
An extended preview of “Toy Story 4” is now playing inside Walt Disney Presents. The new Disney-Pixar film opens in theaters on June 21. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
The Disney Skyliner sign was installed at the station just outside park gates. (Look closely at the shrink wrap to see the project’s original code name.) Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
As the park continues to celebrate “The Lion King” (both the animated feature and the upcoming “live action” version), new banners have replaced the park’s 20th anniversary banners in the entry plaza. (Also, but not shown here, there are “The Lion King” banners in the parking lot.)
The park’s gates now also have “The Lion King” banners.
Baby Augustus the hippo continues to grow at age two.
Two recently born baby giraffes can often be spotted on Kilimanjaro Safaris too.
Spotting a lone African elephant on Kilimanjaro Safaris usually indicates that it is a mature male.
With the successful breeding of tigers at Maharajah Jungle Trek just over a year ago, it is now difficult to tell the cubs from the adults (without asking the trail cast members, at least).
“Toy Story 4” merchandise is plentiful at the park as well.
Construction has begun around the tram loading/unloading area, as the park’s entry experience will be revised like the projects underway at the other parks.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
This and That…
…With Bo Peep being an important part of the upcoming Disney-Pixar film Toy Story 4 (opening in theaters on June 21), she will be making special appearances in Toy Story Land this summer at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. She will also venture into Disney Parks around the world (even Disney California Adventure).
…With the hard ticket H2O Glow Nights underway once again at Typhoon Lagoon on Thursday & Saturday nights through August 24, 2019, Disney Parks Blog has shared its “Foodie Guide” highlighting this year’s bigger menu featuring Kabobs, Brisket, Chicken Noodle Salad, Baked Cod, Cheese Party Platter, “Bathtub Party Sundae,” “Woody’s Rootin’ Tootin’ Milkshake,” specialty soft serve ice cream, and specialty beverages (including adult beverages). Event admission tickets are $59/person ($54 for children ages 3-9) plus tax when purchased in advance (or add $10 when purchasing on same day). More information and tickets are available on this page of DisneyWorld.com.
…Mobile Order service on the My Disney Experience App is expanding to additional restaurants at Disney Resort Hotels. In coming months, Everything POP Shopping & Dining at Disney’s Pop Century Resort, The Mara at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, and Contempo Cafe at Disney’s Contemporary Resort will each add the service. Centertown Market and Spyglass Grill at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort already offer the service.
…REMINDER: Today, June 4, Walt Disney World Golf celebrates Women’s Golf Day 2019. Women’s Golf Day is a one-day event celebrating girls and women playing golf and learning the skills that last a lifetime. To celebrate girls and women, Walt Disney World Golf will offer special pricing and events at its facilities on June 4, 2019. See all of the special pricing on the Walt Disney World Golf Blog. For more information about Women’s Golf Day, visit womensgolfday.com.
…REMINDER: Give Kids the World Village has announced its next two speaker series events featuring legendary Disney Cast Members and Voice Actors. On Disneyland’s 64th anniversary, July 17, Disney veterans Tom Nabbe, Bill Sullivan and Bill Hoelscher will share stories of their fabled careers, stretching from the Disneyland’s launch to the opening of Walt Disney World. On August 3, Paige O’Hara, voice of Belle from Beauty and the Beast, and Linda Larkin, voice of Jasmine from Aladdin, will share stories of the magic behind the scenes of these loved Disney characters. Details:
- Doors open at 6:30 p.m. at Give Kids The World Village, 210 S Bass Road, Kissimmee, FL 34746
- July 17: Legendary Disney Cast Members: General Seating $35; Preferred Seating $50
- August 3: Disney Voice Actors O’Hara & Larkin: General $50; Preferred $75; VIP Package $150
Advanced ticket sales are now available for the July 17 event on this eventbrite.com webpage. Advanced sales tickets are available for the August 3 event on this eventbrite.com webpage. For more information about these and other GKTW events, visit GKTW.org. Since 1986, Give Kids The World Village has welcomed more than 165,000 families to its 84-acre “storybook” resort in Central Florida. Children with critical illnesses and their families are treated to weeklong, cost-free vacations, complete with accommodations, donated attraction tickets, meals and more.
…Congratulations to Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort for being honored as a Marriott Eastern Region Hotel of the Year in the Full-Service Distinctive Premium category. It is the first time the resort has received this distinction since Marriott International, Inc. merged with Starwood in 2016, bringing the resort into the Marriott portfolio.
…The MousePlanet Newsletter is here! The newsletter contains a recap of the week’s articles (in case you miss a day), news that may have developed since the weekly Updates were published, and tips about what’s happening at the Disney theme parks for the coming weekend. We’ll also include a fun bonus, such as an Eye Spy or a trivia question. To subscribe to our free newsletter, just enter your email in the box below.
New & Coming Soon at Disney Springs
This section collects all of the Disney Springs retail and dining events we are aware of in one place along with our most recent views of the area (including those immediately under this paragraph). Event items NEW to the Update are marked accordingly. For even more of the latest news around Disney Springs, follow its official Twitter Feed: @DisneySprings.
Disney Parks Blog shares the Disney Parks Moms Panel’s thoughts about dining at Disney Springs.
Raglan Road recently welcomed its new Irish executive chef, Mark O’Neill. He previously worked with some of Europe’s top chefs in several Michelin-Star restaurants. In Raglan Road’s most recent newsletter, he shared a bit of his vision for the venue: “I’d like to do really great gastro-pub food, to have our team creating really nicely executed dishes like we have back home in Ireland. We’ll be developing fresh, made-from-scratch food that’s vibrant to the palate. It’s important that we stay in front of the modern Irish food trend and keep our guests excited about great new dishes on the menu.”
Strings & Things, the Irish Folk/Trad crossover four-piece band from Tipperary and Galway returns in mid-June for a yearlong residency. The band last performed at Raglan Road from June through September last year and during the pub’s Great Irish Hooley.
Bongo’s Cuban Café
Orlando Sentinel reported that the restaurant will close in August and quotes its owner, Cuban-American pop icon Gloria Estafan as saying as its twenty-two year lease draws to an end this summer, “They are growing in a different direction, and we are growing in a different direction.” Gloria and her husband and business partner, Emilio Estefan, announced that they will open a new restaurant, Estefan Kitchen at the Margaritaville Orlando Resort.
Bongo’s will close its West Side restaurant and shop in August. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka
Wine Bar George
Wine Bar George recently introduced its new “Wine Country Brunch,” which is now offered every Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. until 3 p.m. See the menu online here or download a PDF of the menu here. Reservations are available on OpenTable.
Terralina Crafted Italian
For Father’s Day, June 16, Terralina’s menu will include braised osso Bucco in a rich spicy tomato and fennel ragu ($34).
For Father’s Day, June 16, Paddlefish’s menu includes rib eye, shrimp skewer, bearnaise, whipped potato ($47), and bourbon daddy’s ($15). Just ahead of Father’s Day, on June 15, the venue is hosting a Father’s Day Scotch/Bourbon Tasting and Cigar Rolling event from noon to 3 p.m. ($75) with more details coming soon.
Enzo’s Hideaway Tunnel Bar
The Smuggler’s Series is offered at Enzo’s Hideaway Tunnel Bar monthly through October. Based on our hosted media-invited experience, for those interested in learning a bit about the beverages they drink, these sessions can be quite informative and the restaurant’s culinary team works hard to prepare dishes to compliment the beverages served.
►Terrapin Brewing Company, Wednesday, June 19, 7 p.m., $45 per person
►Bourbon – Tim Hiesler, Bourbon ambassador for Jim Beam, Basil Hayden, Maker’s Mark
Wednesday, July 17, 7 p.m., $60 per person
►Scotch, WM Grants – Balvenie & Glenfiddich, Wednesday, August 21, 7 p.m., $60 per person
►Crooked Stave, Wednesday, September 18, 7 p.m., $45 per person
►Tito’s Vodka, Wednesday, October 23, 7 p.m., $60 per person
The Edison at Disney Springs is hosting “Havana Nights” beginning at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesdays: June 12, June 26, July 10, July 24, August 7, August 21, September 4, September 18, October 2, and October 16. The no additional charge nights feature a five piece band from 8 p.m. to midnight (trading the spotlight with a DJ from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.) playing Latin renditions of musical styles from instrumentals to pop. Complimentary salsa lessons will be available at any skill level, 7:30-11:30 p.m. and Havana-inspired specialty craft cocktails will be available to order during the entire night.
Following the recent opening of the Grapefruit Garage, the upgraded system notifying drivers of parking space availability in the Orange Garage appears complete. The newly-installed signs at parking entrances separately note available medical parking by level in addition to general parking. File photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
NEW Views Around Disney Springs
NBA Experience began testing its video display ahead of its expected August 12 opening. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
The photo backdrop outside the AMC Dine-In 24 Theatres promotes the new live-action “Aladdin” now playing.
Inside the AMC Dine In Theatres, there is a three dimensional display promoting “Aladdin” as well.
The next Disney-Pixar film “Toy Story 4” opens on June 21.
Some exterior work on the Cirque du Soleil theater is underway.
There has still been no announcement about when the new show being developed by Cirque and Disney will debut.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Join Our Networks
Check here to see if a park event might fall during your next trip to the Walt Disney World Resort. If you know of any in-park events, official or unofficial, that should be listed here, please send us an email.
Just click the year you want to expand (or close).
2019 Resort Events
- Disney After Hours:(hard ticket required; park entry at 7 p.m., event hours vary by published date)
…Disney Villains at Magic Kingdom
- June 6, 13, 20 & 27
- July 1, 11, 18 & 25
- August 1 & 8
…at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (including two “special” events):
…at Disney’s Animal Kingdom:
- Disney Vacation Club Moonlight Magic:(registration required)
…at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
- July 18, August 8 & 22, 2019
- Registration opens for Members with Resort Reservations: June 5, 2019 at 9 a.m. Eastern
- Registration opens for all Members: June 12, 2019 at 9 a.m. Eastern
…at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon
- September 18 & October 16, 2019
- Registration opens for Members with Resort Reservations: August 14, 2019 at 9 a.m. Eastern
- Registration opens for all Members: August 28, 2019 at 9 a.m. Eastern
- Mickey & Minnie’s Surprise Celebration at Magic Kingdom – January 18 – September 30, 2019
- Party with Pixar Pals at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – January 18 – September 30, 2019
- 25 Years of The Lion King at Disney’s Animal Kingdom – January 18 – September 30, 2019
- Disney H2O Glow Nights at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon (hard ticket required)
Thursday & Saturday nights from May 30-August 24, 2019.
- Gay Days at Walt Disney World (#RedShirtDays – unofficial events) – August 15-18, 2019
Disney’s Animal Kingdom: August 15; Disney’s Hollywood Studios: August 16;
Magic Kingdom: August 17; Epcot: August 18
- Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom (hard ticket required)
- August 16, 20, 23, 27, 30
- September 2, 6, 8, 10, 13, 15, 17, 20, 22, 24, 27, 29
- October 1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, 14, 15, 17, 18, 20, 21, 24, 25, 27, 29, 31
- November 1
- Epcot International Food & Wine Festival – August 29 – November 23, 2019
(Eat to the Beat Concerts end November 19)
- Dapper Days at Walt Disney World (Unofficial Events) – November 16-17, 2019
- Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend – October 31 – November 3, 2019
- Epcot International Festival of the Holidays – November 29 – December 30, 2019
(includes Candlelight Processional)
- Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom (hard ticket required) — Late Fall/Winter 2019
- November: 8, 11, 12, 14, 15, 17, 19, 21, 22 & 24
- December: 1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 17, 19, 20 & 22
2020 Resort Events
- Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend – January 8-12, 2020
- Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend – February 20-23, 2020
- Star Wars Rival Run Weekend – April 16-19, 2020
- MORE EVENTS COMING SOON!
Refurbishments and Attraction Closures
Note: Not all attraction closures have been officially confirmed by Disney, and are all subject to change at any time. All refurbishment schedules are estimates only. We recommend checking for updates as you plan your visit. All information is subject to change without notice. To get the most recent updates, visit DisneyWorld.com or use the MyDisneyExperience App on your iOS or Android device.
View the different areas of the Resort by scrolling horizontally and selecting the one you want to read about.
- Captain Jack Sparrow’s Pirate Tutorial – No longer listed in My Disney Experience (final show was September 29, 2018).
- Stitch’s Great Escape – My Disney Experience lists as “available seasonally throughout the year”
Be aware that it is increasingly unlikely it will reopen; the attraction’s lobby is usually used for greeting Stitch
- Walt Disney World Railroad – Closed as of December 3, 2018 to accommodate TRON construction (reopening to be announced). Guests can visit a Walt Disney World Railroad train at Main Street Station.
- The SpectacuLAB presented by Murata (in Innoventions) – no longer open or listed in My Disney Experience
- Ellen’s Energy Adventure at Universe of Energy – Permanently closed on August 13, 2017.
Guardians of the Galaxy-themed roller coaster-type attraction opens in approximately 2021.
- Circle of Life: An Environmental Fable – Closed February 3, 2018. (New film entitled “Awesome Planet” announced.)
- Illuminations: Reflections of Earth – Final performance: September 30, 2019.
“Epcot Forever” debuts October 1 for a limited run which will be followed by a new nighttime spectacular in 2020
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
- Star Wars: Path of the Jedi – Currently only available during Star Wars Guided Tours
- Disney Movie Magic (projection show) – final showing was April 30, 2019
Wonderful World of Animation (projection show) debuted May 1, 2019
- The Great Movie Ride – Permanently closed August 13, 2017.
The new “Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway” attraction to open in Chinese Theatre in Spring 2020.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
- Rivers of Light: We Are One – an update to the nighttime show debuted Memorial Day Weekend
- Conservation Station – Rafiki’s Planet Watch – Wildlife Express Train – Closed – announced reopening Summer 2019
- Bongo’s Cuban Café– Closing in August 2019.
- DisneyQuest – Closed as of July 3, 2017.
The NBA Experience is scheduled to open August 12, 2019.
- La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil – Show closed on December 31, 2017.
A new Cirque du Soleil show is now in development with its premiere date to be announced.
- Wolfgang Puck Grand Café – Closed August 1, 2017.
Location has been transformed into Jaleo, a restaurant featuring Spanish cuisine.
A new restaurant, Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill, is now open next door to the Coca-Cola Store.
Wolfgang Puck Express continues to operate in its existing location in the Marketplace.
- Grand Floridian Resort & Spa – Mizner’s Lounge closed for refurbishment; reopening planned for fall 2019 with a new Beauty & The Beast theme.
- Caribbean Beach – The overall construction project at the Resort is expected to be completed 2019–20. The resort’s new lobby, restaurants and other amenities, including Sebastian’s Bistro, Centertown Market, and Banana Cabana are all now open.
- Coronado Springs –The new 15-story “Gran Destino Tower” overlooking Lago Dorado, the resort’s central lake, will open in July, 2019, adding 545 rooms, including 50 suites and concierge level services, and a rooftop dining facility that will include panoramic views of nighttime fireworks shows at the Theme Parks. The Gran Destino Tower will serve as the new main entrance point for the resort. Reservations are now open. The resort’s more than 1,800 existing rooms have been fully updated with new fixtures, furniture and lighting. A second new restaurant is planned to open on an island in the middle of Lago Dorado with new walkways across the water. Disney Parks Blog posted the latest renderings of the project in an article on October 16, 2018.
- Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – The Big Blue Pool will close for refurbishment beginning in Fall 2020.
Walt Disney World Golf
- Disney’s Palm Golf Course – closed for refurbishment June 3-13, 2019.
Current Discounts and Promotions
Note: MousePlanet does not edit past Updates to reflect price increases; for up-to-date prices, check the most recent Walt Disney World Resort Update. For your convenience, we have grouped the discount offers based on the intended audience. Check out the category that best matches you, and pick the offer that works best for you. And keep those tips coming—let us know if you find a better or different offer, so we can share it with other readers.
Be sure to move the calendar to at least seven (7) days out, to see what ticket options and discounts are available for your planned visit.
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NEW Summer One World Ticket
Starting today, June 4, and through August 23, you can purchase the Summer One World Ticket on DisneyWorld.com or from authorized ticket sellers including travel professionals. For $444/person plus tax, it provides one admission to each of the four Walt Disney World Theme Parks and to each of the two water parks. It can be used on any days through August 28, 2019, but, unlike “Hopper” tickets, it allows only one admission to each park. If you would like to visit more than one park on the same day, that would use each park you visit’s admission on that same day. The ticket does not provide admission to separately ticketed park events.
4-Park Magic Tickets
Earlier this year, Disney introduced a new four park ticket that provides one admission per theme park each day that must be used within 7 days of first use or by an expiration based upon price category, whichever comes first. To purchase, call (407)939-7646 or visit this page of DisneyWorld.com
Note that tickets are nontransferable and nonrefundable, do not include admission to hard ticket events and activities. If you purchase the 4-Park Magic tickets for higher-priced dates but use them on lower-priced dates, there will be no credits or refunds issued.
As further incentive to purchase park tickets in advance, for other ticket types, you can save $20 when you buy a 3-day or longer Disney Theme Park Ticket online compared to the price of the same ticket purchased at theme park ticket windows. Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com official ticket purchasing options.
Enchanting Summer Room Offer
Save up to 25% for stays most nights in Deluxe Villas and Resorts and Moderate Resorts, or up to 15% for stays most nights in Value Resorts from May 28 through August 28, 2019 when you book through August 28, 2019.
When booking for arrivals between May 28 and June 30, 2019, guests also receive a Disney Gift Card at check-in for a daily amount per room night based upon Resort Category:
- Deluxe Villas: $25 per room per night
- Deluxe Resorts: $20 per room per night
- Moderate Resorts: $15 per room per night
- Value Resorts: $10 per room per night
The Enchanting Summer Room Offer varies by resort category and the savings depend upon dates which may also have length of stay requirements. The savings is based on the non-discounted price for the same room. In addition to the link, you can call (407)939-7534 for more information and availability, or you can contact your travel agent.
More offers may be available at DisneyWorld.com/save
Quick Service Meal Vacation Package Offer
If you are considering a Walt Disney World Vacation Package that includes a room for four nights at select Moderate or Value Resorts and a 5-day theme park ticket, you can receive one free quick-service meal per person in your party (ages 3 and up) for each night of your stay at more than 90 quick-service dining locations around Walt Disney World Resort when you buy the otherwise non-discounted Walt Disney World Travel Co. package. Offer excludes campsites, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter, Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort and The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. Meals include soft drinks; at many locations, adults 21 and over may opt for certain alcoholic beverages included in the offer. Children ages 3-9 must order from children’s menus where applicable.
Packages for other lengths of stay may also be available. Read more information and check availability this page of DisneyWorld.com, or call (407)939-2745 or your travel agent.
Memory Maker pre-arrival discount
Disney’s PhotoPass service provides a discount on Disney Memory Maker pre-arrival packages. For $199 plus tax, Walt Disney World guests can digitally download any photos associated with their Memory Maker account, including photos taken on attractions. The advanced purchase price is $169, a $30 savings. Applicable taxes are charged to all orders.
Purchase must be made more than three days prior to arrival at the Walt Disney World Resort for the discount. All sales are final, and not eligible for an exchange or refund. Both the immediate and discount version of Memory Maker can be purchased at this page of DisneyWorld.com.
For Annual Passholders
|Expect to be required to show your Passholder Card and matching photo ID to receive a discount and other benefits.|
For the most up-to-date list of locations offering dining discounts to Annual Passholders, visit this page of DisneyWorld.com. (You may need to sign in to see the full list applicable to your pass.) Don’t forget about the dedicated V.I.PASSHOLDER SUPPORT service for questions about Passholder benefits and recommendations. Call (407)WDW-PASS or on-line chat (via chat button on this page of DisneyWorld.com) daily from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern, by email (via a web form), or in-person at Liberty Square Ticket Office in Magic Kingdom, Ticket Central at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, or Ticket Corner at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Many dining locations offer Passholders 10% discounts during some or all meal periods (excluding alcoholic beverages, tax and gratuity).
Through August 31, Passholders save 15% off lunch or dinner at Maria & Enzo’s, Enzo’s Hideaway and The Edison (for the Passholder and up to 10 Guests).
The latest information on this page of DisneyWorld.com lists discounts at many merchandise locations across Walt Disney World Resort, including locations that continue to offer 20 percent discounts off regularly priced merchandise. Remember, not all merchandise locations at Walt Disney World are owned and operated by Disney, but some of the non-Disney participants (including restaurants) offer discounts between 10 and 20% to Passholders as well. Note, the current terms and conditions include, “Discount is for personal use only and may not be used to purchase merchandise with the intent to resell the merchandise.“
The latest information on this page of DisneyWorld.com lists discounts for special events and tours at locations around Walt Disney World Resort.
The latest information on this page of DisneyWorld.com lists discounts for sports, recreation, and spas around Walt Disney World Resort.
For the current list of Passholder Extras visit this page of DisneyWorld.com. Passholder Extras include information about V.I.Passholder Perks, discounts on Disney After Hours events, Animal Encounter and tour discounts, Water Park discounts, Golf discounts, and more.
Magic Strollers, “a Disney featured stroller provider,” offers a $5 discount on stroller rental when staying at a Disney Resort Hotel and using coupon code WDWAP18 to arrange your rental. It is listed on the “Passholders Extras” page of the Passholder website (last checked April 15, 2019).
Visit the DisneyWorld.com Special Offers page (filtered for Passholders) and log in with a My Disney Experience account linked to your Annual Pass for information, or call (407) 939-4232 to book by phone.
If you know of an offer we haven’t listed, please drop us an email with the details.
For Disney Rewards VISA Credit Card Holders
|Reminder to MagicBand users: You must still show your Disney Visa credit card to receive discounts and other benefits. Discounts are not automatically applied even if you have linked your Disney Visa credit card to your MagicBand.|
To conserve space, we have eliminated some of the participating location details of the Disney Visa Rewards offers from this section. Visit Disney Visa Rewards website for the latest participating location information.
20 percent off Joffrey’s coffee/tea kiosks
Disney Visa cardholders receive 20 percent off their entire purchase at Joffrey’s coffee/tea kiosks throughout Walt Disney World, including Tea Traders Café by Joffrey’s, and online at Joffreys.com with code: VISABEANS
15 percent off select guided tours
Disney Visa cardholders receive 15 percent off the non-discounted price of selected guided tours for up to 10 people. The cardholder must participate in the tour, and pay with a Disney’s Visa Card and/or Disney Rewards Redemption Card. Discounts are not available on Premium VIP tours, programs exclusive to groups, or group team building programs.
10 percent off select restaurants
Disney Visa cardholders receive 10 percent off the check when you pay with a Disney’s Visa Card and/or Disney Rewards Redemption Card (be sure to request the discount). Offer excludes alcoholic beverages, merchandise, tobacco, room service, holiday buffets, tax and gratuity. Discount may not be available at all meal times. Visit this page of disneyrewards.com for the latest list of restaurants and restrictions.
10 percent off merchandise
Disney Visa cardholders receive 10 percent off at participating Disney-owned retail location when you spend a minimum of $50 and pay with a Disney’s Visa Card and/or Disney Rewards Redemption Card (be sure to request the discount). Read all of the restrictions on the this page of disneyrewards.com.
Cardholders also receive 10% off select merchandise purchases of $50 or more at the following Walt Disney World Resort Operating Participant merchandise locations including Basin, Basin White, Chapel Hats, Good Fortune Gifts and House of Good Fortune, kidsHeritage, Luxury of Time, Marrakesh Emporium Arts & Crafts, Joffrey’s coffee/tea kiosks and Tea Traders Café by Joffrey’s, Sperry and Volcom.
15 percent off all Disney spa and salon services
Disney Visa cardholders receive 15 percent off the non-discounted price of any salon treatment valued at $45 or greater or any 50-minute or longer spa service most days at the spas and salons at Walt Disney World Resort. Visit this page of disneyrewards.com for participating locations and restrictions.
10 percent off select recreation experiences
Disney Visa cardholders receive 15 percent off the non-discounted price of the recreation experiences listed below:
- Carriage Rides at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort and Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
- Horseback Trail Rides at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
Free character photos at a private meet and greet location at Epcot
Present your Disney’s Visa Card for access to a private character meet-and-greet at Epcot for the cardholder and up to five guests. The event is hosted daily from 1:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Imagination Pavilion at Epcot (enter near the jumping fountains near the exit to the Magic Eye Theater). You’ll receive complimentary downloads of your photos (one time per day), which may be accessed in the My Disney Experience smartphone application (or website).
Free character photos at a private meet and greet location at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Present your Disney’s Visa card for access to a private character meet-and-greet at the Star Wars Launch Bay in the Animation Courtyard at Disney’s Hollywood Studios for the cardholder and up to five guests. The event is hosted daily from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. You’ll receive complimentary downloads of your photos (one time per day), which may be accessed in the My Disney Experience smartphone application (or website).
For Military Personnel
2019 Military Promotional Tickets
January 1 through December 19, 2019
- Four-Day Park Hopper Tickets –$241.00
- Four-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $291.00
- Five-Day Park Hopper Tickets – $257.00
- Five-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $307.00
Prices do not include tax and tickets must be used by December 19, 2019.
Prices may be lower at U.S. military base ticket offices.
U.S. military personnel can also purchase the Memory Maker product for $98 through December 19, 2019.
For more information, definitions and details, visit this page of DisneyWorld.com. Disney Military Promotional Tickets may be purchased at participating U.S. military sales outlets by eligible service members or their spouses (but not both), for use by themselves and only family members and friends, as provided by Disney’s rules. These tickets may not be otherwise transferred, distributed or resold. Limit six (6) tickets purchased by the military personnel (or spouse), and one ticket must be used by that member of the military (or spouse). Each ticket must be used by the same person on any and all days.
Special pricing for Memory Maker is available at Walt Disney World theme park ticket windows when purchased by eligible service members or their spouses. No more than two Memory Maker products can be purchased by an eligible service member or their spouse. Usual Memory Maker restrictions apply and a MagicBand is required to receive some digital content.
Special Rates at Resort Hotels
U.S. military personnel can enjoy discounts at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels when booking by December 19, 2018, for stays most nights through April 13, and from April 26 through December 19, 2018. Offer excludes suites in Moderate and Deluxe Resort hotels, 3-bedroom villas, campsites, Cabins at Copper Creek at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. Call (407)939-4249 for information and reservations. Eligibility details are listed on this page of DisneyWorld.com.
Read more information at militarydisneytips.com, visit your base ticket office, or when at Walt Disney World, visit Shades of Green.
If you know of an offer we haven’t listed, please drop us an email with the details.
For Florida Residents
Florida Resident Discover Disney Ticket
Walt Disney World Resort continues to offer Florida resident discount ticket programs. For the first half of 2019, the Discover Disney Ticket offer has returned. Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for more information and purchasing options. Proof of Florida residence will be required at park entrance
- 3-Day Discover Disney Ticket – $175 plus tax
- 3-Day Discover Disney Park Hopper – $207.50 plus tax
- 3-Day Discover Disney Park Hopper Plus – $232.50 plus tax
- 4-Day Discover Disney Ticket – $195 plus tax
- 4-Day Discover Disney Park Hopper – $232.50 plus tax
- 4-Day Discover Disney Park Hopper Plus – $257.50 plus tax
Discover Disney Tickets are valid for admission to one park per day (unless Park Hopper is added) and can be used anytime through June 30, 2019, with no blockout dates. Tickets must be purchased by June 27, 2019. Proof of Florida residency required. Tickets exclude activities and events separately priced (i.e. “hard ticket” events and such).
The Park Hopper Plus Option permits visits to Disney Water Parks, select Disney Golf courses, and select other opportunities. The 3-Day Plus Option permits 3 visits; the 4-Day Plus Option permits 4 visits.
All tickets and options expire June 30, 2019. A wholly unused ticket can be applied to the purchase of a new ticket with an equal or higher price after the expiration date of the original ticket.
Other Florida Resident Offers
For special tickets, passes and offers available to Florida Residents, visit this page of DisneyWorld.com.
If you know of an offer we haven’t listed, please drop us an email with the details.
For Disney Vacation Club Members
Member Benefits and Discounts may be found on this page of DisneyVacationClub.com. Note: some benefits and discounts are only available to those with a valid Disney Vacation Club Membership Card which is only available to Members owning at least 75 Vacation Points purchased directly from Disney Vacation Development, Inc.
Disney Cruise Line is offering eligible Members a 30 percent discount off original points chart values for select Bahamian sailings aboard the Disney Dream out of Port Canaveral, Florida: 5-night sailings departing June 28, and July 7 and 12, 2019, each featuring two stops at Disney’s private-island paradise, Castaway Cay, as well as select Mexican Riviera sailings aboard the Disney Wonder out of San Diego, California: 7-night Halloween on the High Seas voyages departing October 20 and 27, 2019. More information and eligible itineraries are on this page of the DVC website. The offer is only valid on reservations made through DVC Member Services.
Adventures by Disney is offering eligible Members 20 percent off original points chart values for select river cruises and land-based trips including Danube River Cruises (featuring eight destinations in four countries – Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary) departing June 6, July 12 and December 15, 2019, and Rhine River Cruises (featuring six destinations in four countries – Switzerland, France, Germany and the Netherlands) departing July 15, 22 and 29, 2019. This Adventures by Disney discount is also available for short escapes in the U.S. (with options in Boston, New York City, the American Southwest and more), and lengthier explorations of Europe, Asia, Central America and South America. Discount applies to reservations made entirely with vacation points, or through a combination of vacation points and cash. More information and eligible trips are on this page of the DVC website. The offer is only valid on reservations made through DVC Member Services.
Call DVC Member Services at (800) 800-9800 to take advantage of these offers.
If you know of an offer that you think most Members do not know about, please drop us an email with the details.
For New England Residents
The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort celebrates February’s big football game victory by the team from New England by offering the “Champions Package” to residents of New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. For stays through December 24, 2019 (minimum stay of three nights required), the Champions Package includes $100 meal credit, which can be used at Shula’s Steak House (named for NFL’s winningest coach, Don Shula) or any other restaurant at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. It also includes a “one category complimentary room upgrade that does not include suite upgrades.” Guests must have valid state identification at check-in from an eligible state. More information and details of the offer are available at this page of SwanDolphin.com. More information and reservations are available by calling (800)227-1500 and mentioning “CHAMPS.”
For Canada Residents
All adults using Canada resident tickets or passes must present valid proof of Canada residency that includes government-issued photo ID to exchange the certificate for a valid ticket at the theme park ticket window or Guest Relations prior to first use. The offer itself requires advanced purchase; it is not available at Walt Disney World Resort theme park ticket windows. Tickets and options are nontransferable, nonrefundable and exclude events/activities separately priced. Admission is subject to capacity closures and to other restrictions.
Check https://disneyparks.disney.go.com/ca/ for the latest offers from Disney.
If you know of an offer we haven’t listed, please drop us an email with the details.
For U.K. Residents
You can see the latest offers for U.K. residents on Disney World’s U.K. packages website. It now features an offer where everyone on your booking dines for FREE during their entire stay when you book a Disney Moderate, Deluxe or Deluxe Villa Resort Hotel and Ticket package for a minimum of 5 nights in 2019; also enjoy FREE Breakfast if you stay in a Value Resort Hotel! Plus, enjoy speciality non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages during your stay!
If you know of an offer we haven’t listed, please drop us an email with the details.
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