- Disney After Hours:(hard ticket required; park entry at 7 p.m., event hours vary by published date)
…at Magic Kingdom:
- May 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30
- June 6, 13, 20 & 27
- July 1, 11, 18 & 25
- August 1 & 8
- May 1 (30th Anniversary), 4 (Star Wars), 10, 17, 24 & 31
- June 14, 21 & 28
- May 7, 14 & 21
- June 4, 11 & 18
- Disney Vacation Club Moonlight Magic:(registration required)
- May 13 & 20, 2019
- Registration filled
- 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
- 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
- Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival – March 6 – June 3, 2019
- Dapper Days at Walt Disney World (Unofficial Events) - April 26-28 and November 16-17, 2019
April 26: Disney Springs; April 27: Magic Kingdom; April 28: Epcot
- Disney's Hollywood Studios 30th Anniversary – May 1, 2019
Includes ceremony, one-day-only parade, and the debut of "Wonderful World of Animation" projection show
- 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)
- 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
Walt Disney World Resort Update for April 23-29, 2019by Alan S. Dalinka, contributing writer
Walt Disney World Resort Update for April 23-29, 2019
Writer's note: After a strong storm passed through Central Florida during the day on Friday, this past Easter weekend saw some of the nicest weather around Walt Disney World Resort so far this year. Easter Sunday saw midday temperatures in the mid-seventies with unlimited skies and very low humidity. With many school districts around the country having already had their spring breaks long before this year's fairly late Easter weekend, crowds in the parks were quite reasonable (much lower than some of the recent peak weekends).
Of course, starting May 1, the only smoking inside the parks will be that created by Disney fire-effects; this map of in-park smoking areas at Epcot will soon become obsolete. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
While the biggest news of the week was for Disney's West Coast parks (see Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix's Disneyland Resort Update for April 22-28, 2019) we have some News and Views around Central Florida too, with some bigger items coming up as we head towards summer…
News and Views
Headlines are auto-generated here
Disney's Animal Kingdom to Update Rivers of Light
Disney's Animal Kingdom's nighttime show, Rivers of Light debuted just over two years ago. The long-anticipated show suffered from several technological delays before its debut on Discovery River between the base of Expedition Everest and the Theater in the Wild (home of Finding Nemo: The Musical) in DinoLand U.S.A. Not billed as a nighttime spectacular like the nighttime shows at the other parks, and without fireworks that could disturb the park's animal residents, the beautiful show has not been the sortthat packs in guests performance after performance. While live performers were eliminated from the show several months ago, the show has always centered on its illuminated lantern floats, projection screens, and other special effects.
Yesterday, Disney Parks Blog announced that the show will be updated starting Memorial Day Weekend with a new title, Rivers of Light: We Are One, which "weaves together the original musical score and familiar Disney themes to create a powerful arrangement that inspires and caries us through moments of discovery, fun, friendship, fear, love, and family." Other updates to the show will include imagery from Disneynature films and "classic moments" from Disney animation.
Memorial Day is Monday, May 27. "Disney weekends" sometimes begin as early as Thursday; we will share the exact debut date on social media when we get that information and will publish it in a future edition of the Update.
Back in February 2017, we shared a 4-minute condensed video of the entire original show, including live performers. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
Celebrate Disney's Hollywood Studios 30th Anniversary on May 1
Next Wednesday, May 1, Disney's Hollywood Studios, the Walt Disney World park currently undergoing a massive transformation, turns 30 years old. Regular readers know by now that the next phase of the park's transformation is scheduled to take place on August 29, with the opening of the first phase of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge's 14-acre immersively themed area. But before that monumental day, the little park that started with the notion of a great movie ride addition to Epcot and, instead, became the Resort's "third gate" with the opening day name "The Disney-MGM Studios Theme Park" will celebrate its "past, present, and the new, exciting future" with a one-day roster of special events and the debut of limited supply anniversary merchandise and food and beverage offerings.
Buzz Lightyear in Toy Story Land (which opened last June) looks toward Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge which opens August 29, as the park changes its focus from "behind the scenes" of the movies from being immersed into the worlds represented by the movies. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
The main billed event of the day is Disney's Hollywood Studios 30th Anniversary Star-Studded Celebration, a cavalcade starring Mickey Mouse and friends, stepping off at 10 a.m. and heading down Hollywood Boulevard, presumably along the old parade route from near the park's entrance, past the Chinese Theatre and over to the parade gate next to Star Tours. Guests entering the park will be able to pick up a special 30th anniversary commemorative guide map and button as well.
Though the park's gates officially open on May 1 at 9 a.m., the special 30th anniversary merchandise goes on sale at 8 a.m. The merchandise will include a new adult T-shirt, baseball cap, Tervis 24-oz tumbler, MagicBand, and an ornament. There will also be Passholder-exclusive merchandise.
Special anniversary food and beverage items will be sold throughout the park, including Kylo Ren cupcakes, Incredibles macarons, tres leches verrine, and more. The Disney Parks Blog Foodie Guide for the event shows off many of the items and lists a number of "legacy offerings," dishes that are offered at the park year-round that have been around since Day One. For those that miss the Sorcerer's Hat icon, the ABC Commissary and Fantasmic! food carts will even offer a lemon sponge cake tribute.
Many of the banners celebrating the park's upcoming 30th anniversary are themed for attractions nearby; here, Queen Elsa is near the "For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration" at the Hyperion Theatre.
At 9:05 p.m., the park will debut its new nighttime projection show, Wonderful World of Animation on the facade of the Chinese Theatre. The new show, replacing Disney Movie Magic, will feature moments from the Disney and Pixar animated libraries, including Sleeping Beauty, The Incredibles, and Coco, among others. The nightly showing of Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular follows at 9:30 p.m.
For those that want to celebrate even more, that night the park hosts a special edition of its Disney After Hours (separate admission required) event. In addition to the event's usual offering of little to no-wait for many park attractions, the Chinese Theatre Courtyard will host "beloved Disney characters" for meet and greets, and more will be available at Star Wars Launch Bay. After Hours attendees will also be able to catch an encore performance of "Wonderful World of Animation" during the event.
What will not be open, however, will be any of the park's Day One attractions. All of them, including the park's Great Movie Ride"which served as the anchor for its creation and was formerly housed inside the Chinese Theatre, have been retired. The longest-running show in the park, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular debuted shortly after the park's opening, and it is scheduled for five performances throughout May 1.
Back at D23 Destination D: Celebrating Mickey Mouse last Fall, Disney said that Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway would open inside the Chinese Theatre this fall. However, in Friday's Disney Parks Blog post announcing the addition of the same attraction to Mickey's Toontown at Disneyland in California in 2022, the penultimate paragraph noted that the attraction is now "planned to open at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World Resort in spring 2020." (Emphasis added.) No information about the delay has been given by Disney, but with the park focused on the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge on both coasts before this fall, it is not a major surprise.
Mickey & Minnie as depicted in current Disney Channel shorts inspire the new Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway now slated for a Spring 2020 debut inside the park's Chinese Theatre. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Coverage note: we have been invited to a media preview of the 30th Anniversary Celebration on April 30 and to the Celebration itself on May 1. Since the preview falls the day after our next Update, for those looking for the lastest information about the celebration, be sure to follow @MousePlanet on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. We will provide live streamed and near-live coverage as technology and the events permit.
Walt Disney World Resort Celebrates Earth Month
Yesterday, April 22, was Earth Day. Disney's Animal Kingdom opened on Earth Day 21 years ago (April 22, 1998), and the park celebrated this weekend with its three-day "Party for the Planet" offering "family-friendly experiences and specialty offerings" to give guests the opportunity "to explore, engage and connect with the magic of nature." The event offered special PhotoPass opportunities, character appearances, entertainment, and opportunities to meet Disney animal care experts and educators, as well as its conservation experts. Joe Rohde, Walt Disney Imagineer and Portfolio Executive, was also on hand for a Tiffins Talk, art work signing, and, based on his Instagram posts, general strolling through the park that he was one of the major creative forces behind from its inception as well as its addition of Pandora-The World of Avatar in 2017.
The parks entry also was decorated for Party for the Planet and, just beyond (and to the left), guests entering the park could see the "larger-than-life" sculpture celebrating the latest Disneynature film, "Penguins.""
The Fairy House Ladies, a local business that often participates at Epcot festivals and sells fairy houses made with items from nature and recycled materials, sold their creations at the park during the Party for the Planet. They will next appear at Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival starting May 7.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney says it celebrates Earth Day everyday. As you have read in our Updates and elsewhere, Disney has publicized a great deal of its recent environmental efforts over the past several years. Most notable to some is the Disney company-wide effort to reduce its consumption (and guest availability) of single-use plastic, like plastic straws. Disney's Animal Kingdom, of course, has only ever offered paper straws for its guests' use for the safety of its animal residents.
Disney buses note the Disney Transport's fleet-wide use of 50% renewable biodiesel fuels to run the buses. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Last week, Disney also invited us to help it celebrate "#EarthMonth" by providing invited media with a tour of its new 270 acre, 50-megawatt solar facility. Located on the western side of Walt Disney World property along FL-429, the solar facility was built in collaboration with Reedy Creek Improvement District (the governmental body that acts similar to a county government over the Resort area) and solar developer Origis Energy USA. The facility is expected to generate sufficient energy to operate two of Disney's four Florida theme parks (or about a quarter of the Resort's overall needs during peek sun hours) and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 50,000 tons per year (equivalent to removing about 10,000 cars from the road annually).
Angie Renner, Environmental Integration Director for Disney Parks, Experiences & Consumer Products spoke to us about the new solar facility. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
Over a half million solar panels have been installed in the new facility. This one which media was invited to sign will not be used to generate power, but will be put on display at a Disney science facility. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
The solar facility also has been designed to provide a habitat for native wildlife, and especially pollinators. Test gardens were set up near FL-429, to allow Disney environmental and horticulture experts to find plants and conditions that would be welcoming habitats for butterflies, bees, and helpful insects, as well as endangered and other at-risk species. Nearly two-thirds of the facility is designed to be pollinator-friendly.
All told, the new facility is Disney Parks' largest endeavor in solar energy. While the solar facility is not among the largest in the world, the Origis representative said that it is unique in its size for a facility located so close to a major metropolitan area. Disney and Reedy Creek representatives say that the facility is as large as the useable land permits, particularly with the wetlands on Disney property. In 2016, Disney, in collaboration with Reedy Creek Improvement District and Duke Energy put a 22-acre, 5-megawatt solar facility shaped like Mickey Mouse online near Epcot.
Unlike the Mickey-shaped solar facility near Epcot, the new solar facility has been created with sun-tracking capability so that the panels follow the sun in the sky from the east to the west each day, reaching approximately position parallel to the ground at mid-day. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Walt Disney World Resort Celebrates Easter
In recent weeks, we have been sharing Easter Egg photos from the lobby of Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa as well as Epcot's annual "Egg-stravaganza" scavenger hunt, Easter Sunday over this past weekend fell well-past many school district's Spring Break, making the parks feel a bit more spacious than they have been lately. Magic Kingdom celebrated the holiday with a mini-parade ahead of Easter Sunday's showing of Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade. Over this past week, Contributor Donald Fink got a look at the culinary team's Easter Egg creations over at Disney's Yacht & Beach Club and I took a look at those at Disney's Contemporary Resort and Bay Lake Tower.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
We streamed the Easter mini-parade featuring the Azalea Maids of Mobile, Alabama, led by similarly attired Daisy Duck live on @MousePlanet Twitter on Easter Sunday from Magic Kingdom. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney's Yacht & Beach Club Resorts
Photos and captions by Donald Fink.
Disney's Contemporary Resort and Bay Lake Tower
The Easter Eggs at Disney's Contemporary Resort will also be on display until April 28. Minnie Mouse and Mickey Mouse decorated eggs flank a center egg that was decorated with an ink that could only be seen under black light.
The egg at left celebrates the Society of Explorers and Adventurers (S.E.A.) which makes up the backstory for several Disney Parks attractions around the world, including The Jungle Cruise and Skipper Canteen at Magic Kingdom.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Epcot Concerts & Candlelight Processional News and Calendar
This year's 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) and will run a record 87 days, through November 23. The three-times-nightly Eat to the Beat Concert Series will only run August 29 to November 19, to allow the America Gardens Theatre stage to be prepared for the 2019 edition of Epcot's Candlelight Processional. The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays will run November 29 through December 30, including the three-times-nightly retelling of the traditional Christmas story by a celebrity narrator accompanied by a mass choir and live orchestra. Eat to the Beat performers and Candlelight celebrity narrators have not yet been announced.
In the meantime, the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival continues its Garden Rocks Concert Series on the America Gardens stage three times nightly through June 3. For more information or for reserving dining packages with guaranteed concert seating, call (407) WDW-DINE or visit FreshEpcot.com. Passholders can save 10% on food and beverages (except alcohol and excluding tax and gratuity) on dining packages for themselves and up to three guests.
Before the Food & Wine Festival this summer, Guardians of the Galaxy-Awesome Mix Live! will return to the stage from June 14 through August 18. Star-Lord and Gamora (along with an "alien" band) will take a "musical journey" that showcases hits from Star-Lord's Awesome Mix tapes. The show will be performed multiple times daily.
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.
For the convenience of our readers, all of the scheduled Garden Rocks Concert Series performers at America Gardens Theatre are shown in our Google Calendar of Epcot Events. All of the Guardians of the Galaxy-Awesome Mix Live!, Eat to the Beat Concert Series and Candlelight Processional dates are now noted as well, though we do not yet know the scheduled performers or celebrity narrators. Where our Google Calendar of Epcot Events includes a list of the scheduled 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 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, as 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 and keep it updated, 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 all over the "World" this week. Let's get to them and, as always, be on the lookout for more little bits of news in the captions!
Construction has gotten underway for the Transportation and Ticket Center arrival experience (as we predicted recently). Tram service currently does not travel under Seven Seas Drive between the parking lot and tram stop, but does run from near this location to all areas of the parking lot. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
The current "temporary" configuration of the tram station (with hedge-walls and concrete highway dividers) was created about two years ago when the main security bag check for Magic Kingdom moved here from just outside the park gates. It is likely that this area will be extensively enhanced and themed in coming months now that construction has begun. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
Ever looked up above the buildings facing Cinderella Castle around the Central Plaza Hub? The screen here on the southwestern side of the plaza appears to be exactly the shape of the Castle viewed from that location and is positioned in front of one of the digital projectors (a similar screen is located on the southeastern side).
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
A crane lowers steel in place for construction of the space-themed restaurant next door to Test Track. No opening date has been announced for the new restaurant that will be run by Patina Restaurant Group (the same group that manages food operations at Italy and several restaurants at Disney Springs.)
International Gateway reconfiguration is underway, likely ahead of the expected opening of its nearby Disney Skyliner gondola transportation center later this year. The touchpoints to enter the park have been relocated under the temporary white shade structures.
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney's Animal Kingdom
Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.
Disney's Coronado Resort
Gran Destino Tower overlooking Lago Dorado, the central lake at Disney's Coronado Resort, is scheduled to open in July, adding 545 rooms to the moderate resort which hosts many conventions. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.
This and That…
…Following the fire that severely destroyed the historic eight-century old Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, France last week, The Walt Disney Company committed $5 million to aid in its reconstruction. As has been true since Epcot opened in 1982, the film Impressions de France at Epcot includes scenes of the landmark cathedral. The film's pre-show lobby includes a museum exhibit about the Cathedral as well.
Notre-Dame is a beacon of hope and beauty that has defined the heart of Paris and the soul of France for centuries, inspiring awe and reverence for its art and architecture and for its enduring place in human history. The Walt Disney Company stands with our friends and neighbors in the community, offering our heartfelt support as well as a $5 million donation for the restoration of this irreplaceable masterpiece.
—Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company
…Disney Parks Blog showed off the current progress being made testing the new Disney Skyliner gondola transportation system expected to debut this fall. The nearly 300 cabins can each accomodate up to 10 guests, including guests using wheelchairs or other assistive devices, and will connect four Disney resort hotels with Epcot and Disney's Hollywood Studios "in minutes."
Disney Parks Blog shows off the interior of one a Disney Skyliner guest cabin and provides more details about the new transportation system expected to begin service later this year. Video ©Disney.
…On Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 12, Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort's Garden Grove will present a special brunch buffet featuring Disney character dining. The Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet will be served from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Garden Grove's Mother's Day Brunch Buffet is priced at $38.99 for adults and $19.99 for children ages 3-9. Themed after the tranquil gardens of Central Park, guests who step into Garden Grove will immerse themselves under a beautiful 25-foot oak tree adorned with twinkling lights and paper lanterns. For reservations and more information on Garden Grove, please visit https://www.swandolphinrestaurants.com/gardengrove/index.html or call (407)934-1618.
…REMINDER: Last week, we shared the news that Disney Vacation Club Member sales have begun for its 15th proposed property, Disney's Riviera Resort at Walt Disney World, and that Member bookings opened April 10 for those with it as a home resort, and will open starting May 16 for other eligible Members for stays starting December 19. Now, as posted on Disney Parks Blog, general sales have begun as well (with some limited time incentives available). Disney Vacation Club also has announced a sweepstakes to win a stay at the new resort. Visit RivieraResortSweeps.com to read the rules, watch a short video, and complete the registration form to enter for a chance to win a 5-day, 4-night Disney Vacation Club getaway—for you and up to 7 Guests—that includes: Accommodations in a Two-Bedroom Villa at Disney’s Riviera Resort, 3-Day Walt Disney World Theme Park Tickets with Park Hopper Option, and airfare (but only if the winner lives more than 250 miles away from Walt Disney World Resort).
…REMINDER: a sneak peek preview of Disney's new live-action version of the film Aladdin has debuted inside Walt Disney Presents at Disney's Hollywood Studios. The limited-run preview also is shown aboard ships of Disney Cruise Line and at the Main Street Opera House at Disneyland in California.
Two of the stars of the film, Will Smith and Mena Massoud, introduce a preview to the preview that opened at Disney Parks and Disney Cruise Line on April 19. Video ©Disney.
…Beyond Walt Disney World Resort, Disney Cruise Line introduced Captain Minnie Mouse and launched new nautical youth programs and scholarships designed to empower girls and young women to pursue careers in the cruise industry. Read more and see how Minnie looks in her new uniform on the Disney Parks Blog which, also shows off some of the merchandise saluting Captain Minnie and announced the new shipboard-exclusive Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique Captain Minnie Mouse makeover available for your children.
…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.
As we noted last week, the Disney Springs Ticket Center is now open in the Town Center area near the Welocme Center and Blaze Fast Fire'd Pizza. You can read more about its available services on Disney Parks Blog.
More Parking Now Available at Disney Springs
The new Grapefruit Garage on Buena Vista Drive opened to the public last Tuesday, April 16, 2019. It is located on the south side of Buena Vista Drive, across the street from the Lime Garage (and, according to Reedy Creek Improvement District Cast Members, Disney Springs Cast Members are required to park in the new garage). The two older Disney Springs garages, Orange and Lime, have been undergoing technology work relating to the systems used to indicate where spaces are available, and, at least, as of last week, both still had some work ongoing that could still interfere with traffic flow and limit the number of spaces available in those garages.
We’re excited to share the Grapefruit Garage, the third parking garage along Buena Vista Drive, will officially open April 16! The new garage provides even more parking for guests & a new pedestrian bridge allowing for convenient and safe access directly to the Marketplace. 🚗 pic.twitter.com/9jlYD1zCkE— Disney Springs (@DisneySprings) April 9, 2019
The stairway to the Grapefruit Garage may seem a bit longer than the stairs to the Lime or Orange garages. That's because it is. Entry to the Grapefruit Garage is on level three. On the other garages, it's on level two. Of course, if you're not interested in the extra climb, there is an elevator just behind the stairs. (BF)
There are two right turn lanes on Buena Vista Drive into the Grapefruit Garage. These lanes are in front of the Racetrack gas station and approach from the west, in the eastbound traffic. There are no left turn lanes from westbound Buena Vista into the garage. The left-most of the right turn lanes will take you into the garage on Level one. The right lane will proceed to the upper levels of the garage without first driving through level one. (BF)
The pedestrian walkway from the Grapefruit Garage crosses Buena Vista Drive and enters Disney Springs near the World of Disney. Guests enter the walkway from the third level of the garage which is different from the Lime and Orange garages. (DF)
Grapefruit Garage is equipped with elevators and escalators. Like the Lime and Orange garages, escalators and elevators service all levels except level five. Level five is accessed by elevator. And of course, all levels can be accessed by stairs. (DF)
The Grapefruit Garage has four charging stations. They're on level three. One of the EV stations is also a Disabled Person parking spot. According to a Reedy Creek Cast Member we spoke with, you can park in the Disabled Person EV charging station whether or not you have a vehicle that needs charging, but if you intend to park there and charge your vehicle, you'll also need a Disabled Person sticker. (DF)
NEW Photos and Captions by Bonnie Fink (BF) & Donald Fink (DF).
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 Mother's Day, May 12, Terralina's menu will have Maine lobster and sweet corn ravioli with mascarpone and chives in a saffron cream ($36).
For Father's Day, June 16, Terralina's menu will include braised osso Bucco in a rich spicy tomato and fennel ragu ($34).
For Mother's Day, May 12, Paddlefish's menu features Lobster Ravioli ($33) paired with a blush mimosa ($13).
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.
For April's Burger of the Month, The Edison is offering its "Prime Pretzel Twist Burger," which features its sinature blend of sirloin, short rib, and brisket topped with sautéed mushrooms and shaved prime rib au jus on a freshly baked pretzel roll. The Edison's recommended adult beverage pairing for the burger is a tall glass of "Booker's Tea," a southern-inspired cocktail featuring Knob Creek Barrel Bourbon, Ketel One Peach & Orange Botanicals Vodka, simple syrup, honey, Woodford Orange Bitters, and fresh brewed herbal tea.
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.
►Hendricks Gin, Saturday, May 4, 2 p.m., $60 per person
►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
Meet Disney Artist Ashley Taylor in WonderGround Gallery in the Marketplace Co-Op
- April 26, 3-6 p.m.; April 27 & 28, 12-3 p.m; & April 29, 3-6 p.m.
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
2020 Resort Events
- Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend - January 8-12, 2020
- Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend - February 20-23, 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 accomodate TRON construction (reopening to be announced). Guests can visit a Walt Disney World Railroad train at Main Street Station.
- Tomorrowland Speedway – Closed as of January 2, 2019 for track adjustment to accomodate TRON construction (expected reopening mid-May).
- 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 published scheduled showing April 30, 2019
Wonderful World of Animation (projection show) scheduled to debut 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 debuts Memorial Day Weekend
- Conservation Station – Rafiki's Planet Watch – Wildlife Express Train - Closed - announced reopening Summer 2019
Disney Water Parks
- No known closures.
- 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.
- 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
- 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.
Just click the category you want to expand (or close).
4-Park Magic Tickets
On January 18, 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.
Sun & Fun Room Offer
- Save up to 25% for stays most nights April 28 through May 27, 2019 when you book through May 27, 2019
- Save up to 30% for stays most nights May 28 through September 30, 2019 when you book through March 24, 2019
The Soak Up the Sun and Fun Offer varies by resort category and the savings depend upon dates which may also have length of stay requirements. In addition to the link, you can call (407)827-7393 for more information and availability, or you can contact your travel agent.
Save Up to 20% on Rooms
If your travel dates do not line up with the Sun & Fun Room Offer, you may still be able to save up to 20% on rooms for stays most nights through April 27, 2019, at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels. The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Get more information and check availability this page of DisneyWorld.com, or call (407)939-2769 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.|
Passholders visiting Epcot during the 2019 Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival can get a complimentary Daisy Duck-themed passholder magnet at MouseGear or Port of Entry by showing your pass and matching photo ID (while supplies last).
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.
Spring Florida resident hotel rates starting at $88/person per day for a 3-night/4-day package for a family of 4 at a select Disney's All-Star Resort for travel through April 27, 2019, are available 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.
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
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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