- Holidays at Walt Disney World – began November 8
- Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom:
- November 27, 29, 30
- December 2, 4, 6, 7, 9, 11, 13, 14, 16, 18, 20, 21
- Epcot International Festival of the Holidays – November 18 – December 30
- Candlelight Processional at Epcot – November 22 – December 30
- Disney's Hollywood Studios Flurry of Fun – November 8, 2018 - January 6, 2019
- Includes nightly presentations of Sunset Seasons Greetings and Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!
- Toy Story Land now includes special holiday songs on Alien Swirling Saucers and more
- Disney's Animal Kingdom – began November 8
- Diwali, the holiday Festival of Lights in India, celebrated as part of the UP! A Great Bird Adventure show.
- Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom:
- Disney After Hours
- …at Magic Kingdom: December 3 & 10: 10 p.m. - 1 a.m.
- …at Disney's Hollywood Studios: December 8, 15 & 22 (park entry at 7 p.m.)
- …at Disney's Animal Kingdom: December 4, 12 & 18 (park entry at 7 p.m.)
- Disney Vacation Club Members Annual Meetings – at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort Convention Center
December 13, 2018, doors open 1:30 p.m. (Member online RSVP or telephone (407)566-3844 required). -
Walt Disney World Resort Update for November 27 - December 3, 2018by Alan S. Dalinka, contributing writer
Walt Disney World Resort Update for November 27 - December 3, 2018
Writer's note: With the Walt Disney World Resort very busy over an extended Thanksgiving break for many, it was a very quiet week for news. The crowds subside for a little bit now before the masses descend upon the Resort for Christmas and New Year's breaks. And, to those who celebrate, Happy Hanukkah starting Sunday night!
Yesterday, I was invited to attend the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays Media Day to help bring you the latest information about this year's celebration of holidays around the world at the park. Be sure to get over to our IGTV (Instagram TV Channel) for interviews with Disney leadership about the Festival's Food & Beverage highlights, merchandise, and entertainment offerings, plus video of the Hanukkah storyteller Zachary and some highlights of Candlelight Processional with celebrity narrator Alfonso Ribeiro along with the orchestra and massed choir.
Passholders can get their complimentary holiday-themed Goofy magnet at Mouse Gear or at Port of Entry (with proof of AP and photo ID). As a Passholder, I visited the Festival over the busy Thanksgiving weekend to get mine! Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
News and Views
Headlines are auto-generated here
Epcot International Festival of the Holidays Is Underway - #EpcotHolidays
Epcot's annual celebration of holidays around the world returned on November 18, with the start of the 2018 Epcot International Festival of the Holidays. Running through December 30, in addition to traditional American celebrations of Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa, the park features celebrations of winter holidays all around the world. The Festival combines Holiday Kitchens (food and beverage kiosks) around World Showcase showcasing holiday recipes from around the world and special seasonal additions to menus at permanent food and beverage locations all over the park, with holiday entertainment and storytellers, and holiday merchandise available all over the park (including permanent merchandise locations like MouseGear, seasonal kiosks, and even the participants around World Showcase).
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
For many, the highlight of an Epcot visit at this time of year is attending one of the three-times nightly presentations of Candlelight Processional. In each performance, a celebrity narrator tells the biblical tale of Christmas accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra and massed choir. The Candlelight Processional was first performed as a one-night-only event at Disneyland in 1958. It has returned there each year since, and it has been performed at Walt Disney World since it opened in 1971, finding its current Florida home at Epcot over 20 years ago. In every Walt Disney World Resort Update our Epcot Candlelight Processional and Concerts News & Calendar includes the most up-to-date list of scheduled celebrity narrators and contains links to where to find out more information on getting reserved seating by purchasing a Candlelight Processional Dining Package. Standby seating is also available for each performance, but be aware that separate lines typically form well-before performance time for both those with dining packages and those seeking standby seats.
Candlelight Processional fills the stage at America Gardens Theatre with a 50-piece orchestra, massed choir (including Voices of Liberty, cast members in the living Christmas tree, and schools/community choirs) and a celebrity narrator.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
This year, for the first time ever, Disney Parks Blog will present a #DisneyParksLIVE stream of a performance on December 4, 2018. Starting at 8:05 p.m. Eastern Time, Disney Parks Blog will provide a "behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to bring this beautiful show to life" followed by the entire show with celebrity narrator Neil Patrick Harris. If you cannot watch the stream live, Epcot representatives say that a replay will be available for (at least) a month after the broadcast. In advance of the live stream, Disney Parks Blog encourages everyone to share favorite Disney Parks holiday vacation photos on Twitter with the hashtag #DisneyParksLIVE for possible inclusion in the broadcast stream.
Like last year, JOYFUL! A Celebration of the Season performs during the day on the Future World Fountain Stage. The group's show features Gospel, R&B, and holiday songs celebrating Christmas and Kwanzaa. Starting on December 26, the final days of the Festival will feature JOYFUL! performances focused on Kwanzaa celebrations.
The holiday group, Joyful! A Celebration of the Season, is back on stage at Future World. They perform music of Christmas and Kwanzaa, in the style of modern gospel and R&B. File Photo by Donald Fink.
This year's celebration of Hanukkah during the Festival features the new storyteller Zachary who shares the story of the Festival of Lights on a stage in front of a large Menorah located between the Morocco and France Pavilions, and tells about how the holiday is celebrated in the United States and other parts of the world. (The group Mostly Kosher performed in this location during last year's Festival and is performing at Disney California Adventure again this year, but not at Epcot.) Nearby, the new Holiday Kitchen, L'Chaim, is a Jewish deli-inspired food and beverage kiosk, including Matzo Ball Soup and Pastrami on Rye (though, somewhat surprisingly, not the traditional Hanukkah latkes or gelt).
Also new this year is the Holiday Cookie Stroll. Guests that track their purchases of five specific holiday cookies around World Showcase in the Passport can receive a sixth complimentary holiday "completer" cookie. A glass cookie jar, themed to the Festival, is available for purchase too, to hold the six collected cookies so you do not have to feel compelled to eat them all during your park visit.
Learn about some of the new holiday food and beverage offerings, including the Cookie Stroll. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Finally, because the nighttime spectacular Illuminations: Reflections of Earth is ending in Fall 2019, Epcot is also noting that this is the "Final Holiday Season" to view the long-running show with its "extra-festive holiday finale." The often-called "Holiday Tag" featuring the song "Let There Be Peace on Earth," is shown each night during Festival of the Holidays immediately following the conclusion of the regular Illuminations show. While Disney has announced that a limited-engagement "Epcot Forever" fireworks show will begin to run immediately after the final showing of Illuminations next year until its grander (as yet, unnamed) replacement show debuts in 2020, it has not announced what guests will experience as the kiss goodnight for the 2019 holiday season.
It is likely, though not yet officially announced, that an early evening showing of Illuminations on December 31 will be the final opportunity to see the Holiday Tag. (The showing of Illuminations approaching midnight on December 31 is accompanied by a special countdown to the New Year and finale). Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Epcot Candlelight Processional and Concerts News & Calendar
As we just discussed, the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays also began on Sunday, November 18. Along with the holiday decor and special food offerings, additional entertainment by holiday storytellers and musical acts are now all around the park.
The mariachi band, Mariachi Cobre, is always a treat. They perform at the Epcot Mexico pavilion several times a day. During the holiday season there's an added bonus as they bring with them dancers, who tell the story of Las Posadas, a nine-day celebration where Mary and Joseph travel from inn to inn, looking for shelter along their journey. File photo by Bonnie Fink.
And, of course, Voices of Liberty wear Dickens-inspired attire and sign holiday songs throughout the day at The American Adventure rotunda (and, in this photo, at a concert for invited media). Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Starting on Thanksgiving itself for the first time ever, Candlelight Processional returned to the America Gardens Theatre for the traditional retelling of the story of Christmas with celebrity narrator, live orchestra, and mass choir three times nightly through December 30. Our Candlelight Processional at Epcot Guide lists the dining packages available for breakfast, lunch and dinner around Epcot and its neighboring resorts, and the up-to-date listing of scheduled celebrity narrators. You can also visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for Candlelight dining package information and reservations.
The Candlelight Processional debuted at Epcot this year on Thanksgiving Day, November 22, and is scheduled to run three times nightly through December 30. Pat Sajak is scheduled to return as a celebrity narrator again this year. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Looking ahead to 2019, the Disney on Broadway Concert Series will take the stage three times nightly, from January 18 through February 25 during the Epcot International Festival of the Arts. Also expanded to seven days a week, beginning on March 6, the Garden Rocks Concert Series takes the stage three times nightly through June 3.
For the convenience of our readers, all of the 2018 scheduled Candlelight Processional narrators at America Gardens Theatre are shown in our Google Calendar of Epcot Events. With the dates announced for the Disney on Broadway Concert Series and Garden Rocks Concert Series in 2019, we have added entries for the daily schedule and we will update those as performance details are announced. While our Google Calendar of Epcot Events includes a list of the scheduled performers, it is 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 last minute changes. You can add the whole Event calendar to any calendar that supports the iCal format (like iPhone and Mac) by copying this link and, indeed, if when we get additional information and update the calendar, the calendar will update on your subscribed device as well. The calendar is provided as a courtesy "as is, where is" without any guarantees. Given the effort it took to create it, 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 just a few views to share this week. We will be sharing more on our social media channels from this past week - be sure to follow us!
Magic Kingdom - Space Mountain Exit Ramps
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Walls are going up on the exterior of the future Guardians of the Galaxy-themed rollercoaster building. The walls are a combination of "go away" colors - from sky blue on the upper levels to a few shades of landscape green on the lower portions.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
This and That…
…Orlando Sentinel published a Department of Health warning for customers who dined at Morimoto Asia between November 6 and 16 after one of the restaurant's food service workers was identified with hepatitis A. Anyone who dined there in that period and is experiencing symptoms of the infection, including "abdominal discomfort, dark urine, fever, diarrhea, and yellow skin and eyes" should see a doctor. A vaccine is available that, if administered within two weeks of exposure to the infection, could prevent the disease.
…For a peek behind the scenes of the Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy coming to the Sunset Showcase at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Spring 2019, take a look at the "Disney Parks Presents 25 Days of Christmas Holiday Party" now streaming on the DisneyNOW app and showing on the Disney Channel on December 1 at 8 p.m. EST. Disney Parks Blog provides this description of the new experience:
Taking on the role of rookie racer, you'll cruise into the theater and find yourself face-to-face with Lightning McQueen, appearing live on stage. McQueen and the entire audience are enveloped by a giant, wraparound screen that is nearly two stories tall and stretches more than 200 feet from end to end, pulling everyone into the action! The racing legend is excited to showcase what he's learned over the years. Of course, as Lightning McQueen has discovered throughout his career, things don't always go according to plan, and he has to think fast to get back on course. Friends like Tow Mater, Cruz Ramirez and Lightning’s pals from Radiator Springs chime in with their support, as Lightning gears up for the challenge.
…Walt Disney World Golf pro shops are selling "nearly indestructible, silicone based, pint sized (16 ounce) cups" featuring "Swinging Mickey" (that's Mickey Mouse getting his backswing ready with a golf club in his hands). The "Silipints" are available in a variety of color combinations, are microwave and dishwasher safe, can be used for hot and cold liquids (with some thermal insulation thanks to the silicone), and cost $19.95 plus tax each.
…Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort have announced their slate of holiday festivities for the season. SantasFavoriteResort.com is where you can find all the details and room rates at up to 10% off. The "holiday vacation" highlights include:
- Santa, Mrs. Claus and Kandy Kane, decked out in their favorite Florida vacation attire, will meet guests in Santa's customized Tiki hut on select nights.
- A Florida Snowfall and Tree Lighting Ceremony where, on select nights, guests can join Mrs. Claus in the Dolphin lobby for the lighting of the Christmas tree starting at 6 p.m. followed by hot holiday beverages and crafts for kids at Santa’s Tiki Hut.
- Bedtime Elf Tuck-Ins where, on select nights, elves deliver milk in a souvenir cup, cookies and a storybook to resort rooms, read a bedtime story and tuck children on Santa’s nice list into bed. Price varies by date and a service charge of 24 percent is added, in addition to tax. Reservations are required, and space is limited. To book, call (407)934-4206.
- Life-Size Chocolate Holiday Santa Scene created by two-time world pastry champion and the resort’s executive pastry chef, Laurent Branlard, is showcased in the lobby of the Swan. It features chocolate Santa sitting in his chair; a 7-foot-tall, 400-pound chocolate nutcracker; chocolate fireplace; chocolate Christmas tree; and chocolate toy train throughout December.
- Dancing Lights Show along the outdoor causeway between the Swan and Dolphin each evening from sunset through 10 p.m.
- Magic Keys for Santa on Christmas Eve, available from the concierge desk on December 24, can be hung on room doors by children to help Santa deliver presents to each guest room without a chimney.
…FINAL REPEAT REMINDER: Looking to ringing in 2019, reservations are open for the three parties at Disney's Contemporary Resort: Pixar Party: A New Year's Eve Celebration on the second level of the Convention Center featuring characters from Toy Story, Inside Out, The Incredibles, Up, and Finding Nemo, and lots of kids activities ($190/person including tax and gratuity); Disney Countdown to Midnight: A New Year's Eve Celebration in the Fantasia Ballroom, featuring "cheftainment" and cuisine from California Grill, Flying Fish, Jiko and Narcoosee's, an interactive DJ playing music from the 1960's to today and a New Year's Eve Bash Band ($275/person including tax and gratuity); and the Disney Ink & Paint Club which includes everything in the Disney Countdown to Midnight party plus a VIP Lounge experience in The Sorcerer's Apprentice Ballroom, including even more food and live entertainment ($450/person including tax and gratuity). Call (407)WDW-Dine to book or follow each of those links we provided.
…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. Event items NEW to the Update are marked accordingly. this Disney Parks Blog post highlights even more "limited-time" holiday food and beverage offerings around Disney Springs.
The Christmas Tree Trail, located in the old bus loop at the Marketplace, has 27 themed trees to see, plus specialty beverages and foods, and, of course, Santa in his Chalet. The Haunted Mansion tree is one of the most impressive new additions to the trail this year. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill is Now Open - NEW More Photos!
The new venue located next to the Coca-Cola Store and across from Planet Hollywood Observatory and Chicken Guy, is the fourth "Bar & Grill" location from Celebrity Chef Wolfgang Puck. Disney Parks Blog describes the venue as "[f]eaturing approachable dining with a touch of California elegance ... [in] a dynamic setting inspired by traditional farmhouses and ... a menu designed to suit every occasion - from casual, leisurely meals to lavish, celebratory gatherings." Reservations are available on this page of DisneyWorld.com, but be aware that Dining Plans are not accepted.
The first two photos below are NEW views this week. The rest are from when Donald and Bonnie Fink had a chance to see Chef Wolfgang and take a look around during the venue's soft opening before last week's Update. The photo captions are the comments by the respective photographer.
The new Gelato Bar opens to the outside. It was not completely open when we went through on Saturday night, but it appears that the gelato bar will be a place where guests can stop by and grab a quick gelato, coffee, or other treats without having to sit down in the restaurant. (DF)
Photos and captions by Alan S. Dalinka (ASD), Donald Fink (DF) and Bonnie Fink (BF).
Jaleo NEW Sign Installed
Ralph Breaks VR at The VOID Now Open
Last week's theatrical opening of Disney Animation Studios' Ralph Breaks the Internet was closely followed by the debut of Ralph Breaks VR at The VOID at Disney Springs (and the Downtown Disney District in Anaheim). Like Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, which opened last winter, the "hyper-reality" experience was created by The VOID and ILMxLAB (the immersive entertainment division of LucasFilm). Teams of four join Wreck-It-Ralph and Vanellope von Schweetz to break into the internet disguised as "Netizens" adventuring their way through Dunderdome and Pancake Milkshake Diner to come up against B.E.V. (which stands for "Built to Eradicate Viruses").
Disney Parks Blog shares an inside look at "Ralph Breaks VR." Video © Disney.
For those that have never visited The VOID at Disney Springs Marketplace (or Downtown Disney in Anaheim or elsewhere), the physical space guests explore itself is pretty much a "black box" where the players wear equipment and a helmet that immerses them into a virtual world rather than the place itself. Guests must be at least 48 inches tall and 10 years old. Disney Parks Blog confirms that Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire will continue to operate: check the schedule and get tickets for either (or both) at TheVOID.com.
Chef Art Smith's Homecomin'
Very Merry Saturday Night Shine Party from 10 p.m. to midnight on Saturday, December 1, is a "downhome celebration of ugly holiday sweaters!" Guests are encouraged to join the fun wearing their best "ugly" holiday sweaters and enjoy festive beverages and bites. All December, guests who dine at Chef Art Smith's Homecomin' in a Disney-themed "ugly" Christmas sweater receive a complimentary slice of Chef Art’s signature hummingbird cake with green and red sprinkles with the purchase of an entrée or appetizer (but limit one per table).
Sake & Shine 2.0 teams Homecomin' with Morimoto Asia for a progressive dining event featuring Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and Chef Art Smith on November 30 at 7 p.m. Guests 21 and over start with a three-course Pan-Asian feast complete with sake and beer pairings on the second-story Forbidden Lounge balcony at Morimoto Asia and then continues across the promenade at Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’ with a variety of dessert options including a build-your-own-Florida-strawberry shortcake bar plus slices of Chef Smith’s signature Hummingbird and Shine cakes, and a variety of moonshine-based cocktails. Both Chefs Morimoto and Smith will be there throughout the evening overseeing the meal, mingling with guests and available for photos and autographs. Tickets are $180.72 (plus tax and gratuity) on this page of Patina Restaurant Group's website.
Maria & Enzo's and Enzo's Hideaway
Maria & Enzo's and Enzo's Hideaway at Disney Springs are now offering 40% off to Disney Annual Passholders during lunch through December 31. Not valid with any other offer or during brunch.
Groups of Sunday Brunch diners at Maria & Enzo’s during December that wear matching holiday pajamas receive a complimentary commemorative photo. Plus, kids age 9 and under eat free with purchase of adult entrée! Call 407-560-8466 for full details and to reserve a table.
…All of the Patina Restaurant Group restaurants are offering a $20 bonus card when you purchase a $100 gift card during the holiday season. The bonus cards must be redeemed January 2, 2019-March 31, 2019, and cannot be combined with other offers, promotions or discounts. Visit PatinaGroup.com/bonuscard for more information.
Rooftop Wine Experiences are available on the second Tuesday every month through January on the third "deck." The experience and discussion lead by its Sommelier team features wine flights from around the world and light bites. For more information and tickets, visit its EventBrite webpage. Guests must be 21 or older to attend.
Status of Parking Availability at Disney Springs
Those who visit Disney Springs during the weekends or during busy times of the year at the Resort know that the two parking structures often fill to capacity during those peak times. Even the flat lot on the West Side can fill up during very busy times! Construction continues across Buena Vista Drive at the site of the new "Lemon" garage that will connect to Disney Springs by a series of pedestrian bridges. We have not yet heard whether the new structure will be open in time for the first wave of the holiday shopping rush, but stay tuned and, if you are driving on Buena Vista Drive, observe the overhead signs directing cars to the garages and lots with availability.
The new "Lemon" parking structure is on the opposite side of Buena Vista Drive (next to the Speedway Gas Station) and is connected by a series of pedestrian bridges to Disney Springs. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant
Cooke's of Dublin, the counter-service counterpart to Raglan Road, now offers its own mobile ordering; choose from either direct on its website or its mobile app (available in the App Store or Google Play).
Ireland's Lisa Canny, the ginger-haired vocalist-harpist-banjo player, continues to appear on the Raglan Road Irish Pub stage through December 6.
Wine Bar George
For holiday shopping for the wine enthusiast on your list, check out Wine Bar George's holiday gift offerings, including "the world's best wine tools to books and gift baskets." On Black Friday when you shop you'll receive 25% off your retail purchase (some restrictions apply). The Coravin is on sale from 11/23-11/25 for $199. From November 23 - January 1 receive an $15 additional gift card for $200 spend, $50 for $500 and $125 for $1,000.
A Toro Wine Dinner, Join Victor Ordóñez of Bodegas Ordóñez and Master Sommelier George Miliotes for the venue's first wine dinner featuring Tempranillo from the Toro region of Spain. Start the evening with a vertical tasting of 2015, 2016 and 2017 Avancia Godello paired with the first course. Dinner continues with six different Tempranillos from Toro from two distinct families, the Egurens and Ordóñezs. Each course will feature one wine from each family in ascending order of vine age. The evening will conclude with dessert and 2007 Málaga N°3, Old Vines sweet Muscat from over 100-year-old vines by Bodegas Ordóñez - November 28, 7 p.m. - $150. More information and links to tickets at WineBarGeorge.com.
Amorette's NEWGingerbread & Holiday Pastries
Amorette's annual gingerbread display is now in the front of the shop along with this season's themed dome cakes and pastries.
NBA Experience NEW Construction Photo
Retail (includes some NEW photos)
Walt Disney World Resort would like you to do all of your holiday shopping at the Resort this year. To further that, Disney Springs has launched its special Disney Springs Gift Guide: From Holiday Dreams to Wishes Granted.
The Disney Springs Stitch's Holiday Gift Hunt clue book can be picked up at numerous locations around Disney Springs, especially Disney-operated locations like the Star Wars Galactic Outpost. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
The Disney Style store on the West Side remains open. It now has a stock of "Ugly" Disney Christmas sweaters and features a new animated photo backdrop of the Magic Kingdom's Holiday Wishes fireworks surrounding a Dreamlights-covered Cinderella Castle. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
The Art of Disney Presents Greg McCullough
On November 3 artist Greg McCullough (who has previously been featured at other Art of Disney stores and at the Epcot International Festival of the Arts), began daily residence (except Mondays) from 1 to 7:30 p.m. in a new pop-up shop located in the shop formerly operated by Little Miss Matched in the Marketplace area of Disney Springs scheduled to be open through January 1, 2019. The shop features McCullough's art, including original works, limited-editions and prints. Guests will have a chance to interact with him and have artwork signed.
File Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
"Do more. Wait less."
Save time and money at Walt Disney World. TouringPlans.com can help you avoid falling into the typical tourist pitfalls.
Our Disney Crowd Calendar shows you the least crowded park to visit every day of the year, customized Touring Plans save you hours in line for Disney's best rides, honest restaurant reviews, how to save on Disney tickets, the best hotel rooms to ask for, and so much more. Everything can be accessed on our site or on Lines - Mobile Wait Times App which also shows to current and estimated wait times for attractions.
Below are the predicted resort-wide crowd numbers for select days generated by the TouringPlans professional statisticians as measured for the upcoming week. For the access to the full year and per-park crowd level predictions, visit our Disney Crowd Calendar.
Check out the Disney World Park Crowd Levels page on TouringPlans.com for park-specific predictions and recommendations on which days to visit and avoid particular parks!
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).
2018 Resort Events
2019 Resort Events
- Disney After Hours:
…at Magic Kingdom:
- January 7, 17, 24, & 28: 8 p.m. - 11 p.m.
- February 14, March 7: 9 p.m.– midnight
- January 5, 12 & 19
- February 2, 9 & 16
- March 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30
- April 6 & 13
- January 8, 16, 22 & 31
- February 5, 6, 12, 13, 19 & 26
- March 5, 20 & 27
- April 3
- 2019 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend – January 9–13, 2019
- Mickey & Minnie's Surprise Celebration at Magic Kingdom – January 18 – September 30, 2019
- Epcot International Festival of the Arts – January 18 – February 25, 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 Princess Half Marathon Weekend – February 21–24, 2019.
- Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival – March 6 – June 3, 2019
- Star Wars Rival Run Weekend – April 4–7, 2019.
- Disney's Hollywood Studios 30th anniversary – May 1, 2019.
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. If the menu bar does not work on your screen, please let us know by email (include which Browser and Operating System you are using)!
- Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirate Tutorial – no longer listed in My Disney Experience (final show was September 29, 2018).
- Move it! Shake it! Dance & Play It! Street Party – shows are scheduled multiple times daily through only December 1.
Move It! Shake It! MousekeDance It! Street Party" is scheduled to debut January 18, 2019, featuring new arrangements of classic "Mickey Mouse Club" songs
- Liberty Square Riverboat – closed for refurbishment (return date is still unknown)
- Tom Sawyer Island – closed for refurbishment
- 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 – scheduled closure beginning in December 2018 to accomodate TRON construction
- Tomorrowland Speedway – scheduled 2019 closure for track adjustment to accomodate TRON construction (expected Summer reopening)
- 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. Theater to be repurposed.
- Illuminations: Reflections of Earth – closing during the second half of 2019 for new nighttime spectacular.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
- Star Wars: Path of the Jedi – My Disney Experience lists as closed with no further information.
- The Great Movie Ride – Permanently closed August 13, 2017.
The new "Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway" attraction to open in Chinese Theatre in Fall 2019.
- Pixar Place area – Closed since just after the opening of Toy Story Land
New entrance to Toy Story Mania! and character encounters now inside Toy Story Land
Starting January 18, will become home to Mr. Incredible, Mrs. Incredible, Frozone & Edna Mode.
- Disney Junior Live on Stage – Closed.
Disney Junior Dance Party scheduled to debut December 22, 2018..
Disney's Animal Kingdom
- Flights of Wonder (Caravan Stage) – Show closed on December 31, 2017.
"UP! A Great Bird Adventure" starring Russell and Dug and their bird opened in its place on April 22, 2018.
- Conservation Station – Rafiki's Planet Watch – Wildlife Express Train - now closed - planned reopening Spring 2019
Disney Water Parks
Disney's Blizzard Beach
- Closed for seasonal refurbishment from October 28, 2018, through January 5, 2019.
Disney's Typhoon Lagoon
- Closing for seasonal refurbishment January 6 – March 16, 2019.
- DisneyQuest – Closed as of July 3, 2017.
The NBA Experience expected to open Summer 2019.
- Portobello Country Italian Trattoria – Closed April 24, 2017.
Terralina Crafted Italian has opened in its place.
- 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 is being transformed into Jaleo, a restaurant featuring Spanish cuisine, expected to open 2018.
A new 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.
- 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. 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.
- Iguana Arcade is closed for refurbishment.
- Siestas Cantina poolside quick service dining location is closed for refurbishment
- Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge - Uzima Springs Pool Bar is closed for refurbishment.
- Disney's Art of Animation Resort - The Big Blue Pool will close for refurbishment beginning in Fall 2020.
Walt Disney World Golf
- No known closures.
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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Play, Stay, Dine and Save
You can Play, Stay, Dine and Save up to $500 for a family of four on a five-night/six-day Walt Disney Travel Company room, theme park ticket and dining plan package at a select Disney Resort hotel, for arrivals most nights January 1 through March 9, 2019. he number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited and may be booked through January 2, 2019. Read more about it on this page of DisneyWorld.com.
Gift of Magic Offer
You can save 25 percent on rooms for stays most nights January 1 through April 27, 2019, at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels with the Gift of Magic offer. The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited and may be booked through January 2, 2019. Get more information on this page of DisneyWorld.com.
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 latest offerings during the 2018 Epcot International Festival of the Holidays and more, visit this page of DisneyWorld.com.
Passholder benefits during the Festival include:
- Passholders can obtain a new Goofy Passholder holiday design magnet (with their Pass and Photo ID) on their first visit to the Festival at Mouse Gear or Port of Entry.
- An exclusive Passholder Goofy Gingerbread Cookie will be available for purchase at Taste Track on November 18 only (while supplies last).
- An exclusive Passholder Festival of the Holidays Chip & Dale ornament, T-shirt and other merchandise are available at locations around the park (while supplies last).
- The Passholder 20% merchandise discount applies to the all-new Cookie Jar (that can be filled up during the Holiday Cookie Stroll) as well as the Chip & Dale's Christmas Tree Spree Scavenger Hunt.
For the most up-to-date list of locations offering dining discounts to Annual Passholders, visit this page of DisneyWorld.com. 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 percent discounts during some or all meal periods (also excluding alcoholic beverages, tax and gratuity).
Maria & Enzo's and Enzo's Hideaway at Disney Springs are now offering 40% off to Disney Annual Passholders during lunch through December 31st. Not valid with any other offer or during brunch.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Additional information about available "Passholder Extras" are available here, including specially priced 1-Day Water Park Tickets for $49 plus tax (must be purchased in-person at the water parks and not available online; must be used on or before December 31, 2019), a $35 Sunrise 9 golf offer (including nine holes of golf, a hot breakfast and two beverages between 7:00 and 8:30 a.m., subject to availability, at Disney Golf courses), a $29 Sunset 9 golf offer (including nine holes of golf, a light snack and a beer or soft drink, subject to availability in the late afternoon at Disney Golf courses), an Orlando Magic Jersey Offer for purchasing or renewing an Annual Pass at Amway Center in Orlando, a 15 percent discount on the Ultimate Nights of Adventure VIP Tour at Disney's Animal Kingdom, Spa & Salon Discounts around Walt Disney World Resort, Amphicar Tour discounts at Disney Springs, runDisney Early Registration discounts, Best Friends Pat Care discounts, Children's Activity Centers discounts, and more.
Away from the Resort, Passholders can use code DANCEPARTY to get 20 percent off of tickets to the new Disney Junior Dance Party on Tour in Jacksonville, Melbourne, Clearwater, and Sarasota Florida, for house seats while supplies last. Visit disneyjuniortour.com for more information and tickets.
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 Premier Visa Card or Disney Rewards 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 Premier Visa card or Disney Rewards 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
2018 Armed Forces Salute Tickets
January 1 through December 19, 2018
- Four-Day Park Hopper Tickets –$226.00
- Four-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $266.00
- Five-Day Park Hopper Tickets – $246.00
- Five-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $286.00
NOTE: Tickets must be used by December 19, 2018.
U.S. military personnel can also purchase the Memory Maker product for $98 through December 19.
Disney Military Promotional Tickets may be purchased at participating U.S. military sales outlets by eligible service members (as defined on Disney World.com) 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).
U.S. military personnel can enjoy discounts at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels when booking by December 19, 2018, for stays most nights from April 6 through December 19, 2018. Offer excludes moderate and deluxe resorts. Call (407)939-5684 for information and reservations.
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
Walt Disney World Resort continues to offer Florida resident discount ticket programs. Disney sweetened the offer of saving 30% on a 3-day ticket or 40% on a 4-day ticket by including the Park Hopper option at no additional charge for tickets purchased by December 16, 2018, with a selected start date on or before December 16, 2018. Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for more information and purchasing options. Proof of Florida residence will be required at park entrance
For other currently available park tickets, passes and offers visit this page of DisneyWorld.com.
Florida residents can check out the latest hotel package offers on 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.
MORE DETAILS WILL BE LISTED HERE SOON!
If you know of an offer that you think most Members do not know about, please drop us an email with the details.
For Canada Residents
Canada residents can purchase an adult 4-day or longer base theme park ticket for as low as $316 (that is $79/day; US Dollars not including tax). Upgrades to the Park Hopper Option are also available. Tickets may be purchased on this page of DisneyWorld.com for Canada residents or by phone at (407)939-7648. This offer is available through March 15, 2019, and they may be used through September 27, 2019 (but are blocked December 24, 2018, to January 1, 2019). Tickets must be used within 14 days of first use or by September 27, 2019, whichever is earlier.
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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