Walt Disney World Resort Update for February 25 - March 2, 2020

by Alan S. Dalinka, staff writer

Walt Disney World Resort Update for February 25 to March 2, 2020


Writer's note: Busy times ahead!

Around publication time next week for the Update, I expect to be getting my first look at the new Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway and the new Mickey Shorts Theater. On March 4 (a week from tomorrow), the new attractions open at Disney's Hollywood Studios and, on the other end of the waterway through the Epcot Resorts area, the 2020 edition of the Epcot International Flower & Garden Show begins. Sometime between now and then, the invited media event also is scheduled to include a preview of the new Drawn to Life show by Disney and Cirque du Soleil coming to Disney Springs this spring.

And, of course, those busy times are not just for me and other members of the media. As Spring Break periods vary greatly from place to place, we tend to see above-average size crowds around the parks at this time of year all the way until after Easter in mid-April. If you are coming for a visit and have not done it yet: do some homework! If you have not done it yet, download the My Disney Experience app and register your party if you have not already done so. If you would like to dine at table service restaurants, take a look to see what reservations are still open; if you want to have FastPass+ reservations for attractions, watch your booking windows and act timely (60 days for Resort guests with reservations in participating hotels, 30 days for members of the general public and passholders with park tickets and varying sorts).

Regular readers know that just since the beginning of the year, Disney's Hollywood Studios changed its FastPass+ tiers and added two new attractions (Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run and Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway) with just a few weeks' notice. We know that Remy's Ratatouille Adventure is opening this summer at Epcot, but we do not yet know whether or when its FastPass+ reservations will open. We do not know if or when Star Wars: Rise of Resistance will alter its virtual board group system for allowing guests to experience that attraction. Follow @MousePlanet on social media for the fastest heads-up we can give you to help you make your visit that much more special.

Now on to the news and views for the week…

News and Views

Headlines are auto-generated here

Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Now Open at Epcot

There were a few days last week where Epcot was quite short on quick service dining locations. Liberty Inn at The American Adventure closed back in July for reimagining into Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts and Barbecue. Electric Umbrella closed in Future World on February 16. Fortunately, Regal Eagle opened to guests on Wednesday, February 19.

The new fast-casual restaurant draws its theme from The Muppets and, specifically, Sam Eagle, its "regal eagle." As the story of the venue goes, it hosts "Sam's Centennial Cook-Off: A Salute to All Cook-Offs but Mostly Barbecue." The "contest" features "classic backyard barbecue selections from across the country" and, when you look around the restaurant, you will see that the competitors (and regional winners) are other Muppet characters.

The menu includes BBQ dishes such as Kansas City smoked chicken, Memphis dry-rub pork ribs, North Carolina chopped smoked pork butt, and a Texas beef brisket sandwich. Lighter options include the Power Greens Salad with fresh citrus fruit, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, and radishes drizzled with a fresh citrus vinaigrette and topped with chilled pulled chicken. The restaurant also offers a plant-based BBQ Jackfruit Burger served on garlic toast. The full menu is available on this page of DisneyWorld.com and the My Disney Experience app.

Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.

The bar's menu features craft brews and ciders on draft and west coast wines. The bar also offers specialty regional cocktails like Tennessee Lemonade with whiskey and peach as well as a non-alcoholic Berry Punch with white grape juice, strawberry, peach, and blackberry. The venue is "hosted" by Coca-Cola, and its fountain beverages are available both at the quick service counter and the bar.

The merchandise cart in the plaza also includes a selection of exclusive Sam Eagle items.

Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Complete

This past weekend was the Disney Princess Half Marathon weekend, the third of the four runDisney weekends at Walt Disney World Resort during the 2019-20 race season. Kelly Wehman of Ringgold, GA, won with a time of 1:24:26, finishing ahead of Kellie Nickerson of Albuquerque, NM (1:24:46) and Saeger Fischer of Portsmouth, NH (1:25:38).

The winner of the 2020 Disney Princess Half Marathon was welcomed by Disney Royalty on Sunday. Photo ©Disney.

runDisney banners saluted the Disney Princess Half Marathon weekend at Disney Springs. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

The race weekend also included a 5K, a 10K and several kids races. Among the 21,000-plus runners in the half marathon was Marko Cheseto of Orlando, who was the fourth overall runner to cross the finish line despite losing both of his legs to frostbite a few years ago. The final race of the season is the Star Wars Rival Run in April.

Race weekends re-direct traffic all around Walt Disney World Resort and even in the neighborhoods around the resort. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

Folks looking for other running opportunities around Walt Disney World Resort can find many Fun Run opportunities at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels. Courses ranging from 1.2-1.8 miles at the following resorts offer some scenic views: Disney's Coronado Springs Resort, Disney's Riviera Resort, Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney's Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter, Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort, Disney's Yacht & Beach Club Resorts, Disney's BoardWalk Resort, Disney's Old Key West Resort and Disney's All Star Resorts. Each of these experiences are offered at $15/person (plus tax) and include a custom bib, finishers prize, and a selection of snacks. Guests 2 and under are free, and strollers are welcome during the runs. To reserve a spot, call (407)WDW-PLAY.

Mickey Shorts Theater Opens March 4

Disney's Hollywood Studios will open two Mickey and Minnie Mouse-centered attractions on March 4. As we have known for some time, Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway will open in the Chinese Theatre on March 4. In that attraction, the premiere of Mickey's latest Short (in the style of the current series of Mickey Shorts on Disney Channel), "Perfect Picnic," is being held in the theater and then guests have an opportunity to enter that world where "mouse rules" apply for an adventure aboard the Runamuck Railroad. Cast Member previews are underway there now and we have been invited to get our first look during a media preview on March 3.

In front of the Chinese Theatre, posters advertise the attraction opening on March 4 and the new sign has been installed above the doors. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

As you may recall from following along our "This and That" section for the past seven weeks, digital posters appear on the walls inside the Chinese Theatre paying tribute to other Mickey Shorts that have appeared on Disney Channel, and Disney Parks blog has been sharing looks at those posters and links to see those shorts. Last year, Disney announced that a new Mickey Shorts Theater was being added to Disney's Hollywood Studios in March as well. We now now that it will also open on March 4 in the Echo Lake area of the park (in the "newly re-imagined" theater previously home of the "Path of the Jedi" film and "Sounds Dangerous" before that).

The new Mickey Shorts Theater will show another new animated short which is exclusive to Disney's Hollywood Studios. This short, entitled "Vacation Fun," will include some of Mickey and Minnie's favoriate vacation memories and new adventures. The new short will include new animation along with clips from previous Mickey shorts, including "Panda-monium," "Couples Sweaters," "Potatoland," "Croissant de Triomphe," "Entombed," "Dumb Luck," "Al Rojo Vivo," "Yodelburg," and "Outback at Ya!." Some of those shorts were featured in digital posters highlighted earlier. From its description, the new short sounds like it will be a theme park version of what television viewers may recognize as a "clip show" featuring "best of" moments with new material. As Disney often says about these attractions, "stay tooned."

Vacation Fun
A new attraction poster for "Vacation Fun" has been created in the style of the digital posters for previous Mickey Shorts. The Mickey Shorts Theater opens March 4. Image ©Disney.

The show's exit area will include walk-in photo opportunities inspired by Mickey Shorts from the television series. The announced scenes include: "Yodelburg," "Potatoland," "Entombed," and "Panda-monium."

Epcot Festivals News & Calendar

All the latest details about the on-going and up-coming Epcot Festivals are covered in order in this section.

Flower & Garden Festival

With the fourth annual Epcot International Festival of the Arts now concluded, the transition to spring at Epcot is underway. The longest running Epcot festival—the one that started them all back in 1994 as "a 38-day celebration of Disney-style gardens and topiaries"—returns as the 90-day 2020 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival from March 4 to June 1, 2020. The official website for the festival is FreshEpcot.com.

The 27th edition of the Festival includes the Garden Rocks Concert Series, three times nightly at America Gardens Theatre. The list of scheduled performers includes both returning and new names including: Peabo Bryson, STARSHIP, Sister Hazel, Rick Springfield, Plain White T's, Don McLean, Herman's Hermits, Tony Orlando, Air Supply, Christopher Cross, Daughtry, and Survivor. The full list of performers (which is subject to change) is shown on our Calendar below. The Festival also sells Garden Rocks Concert Series Dining Packages where booking a breakfast, lunch or dinner package at select Epcot restaurants provides guaranteed concert seating for a 5:30, 6:45, or 8 p.m. show.

Herman's Hermits Starring Peter Noone, perennial Epcot guest performers, are scheduled to return to the Garden Rocks Concert Series again this year. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka

This is the Festival that features the most topiaries and gardens around the park. New this year will be a Remy topiary that will be unveiled as the centerpiece of Ratatouille Garden at France pavilion. The garden will include vegetables that make up the traditional ingredients of a ratatouille recipe. Remy's Ratatouille Adventure attraction opens at the pavilion during the summer, with a specific date not yet announced. The full list of topiaries and gardens announced for this year's Festival is on this page of the official FreshEpcot website.

Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.

The Goodness Garden Butterfly House returns in a new location this year. It will be located further west in Future World west than in past years—between The Land and Imagination pavilions. There will be two playtime areas for kids: Bo Peep's Playtime Training Ground near the Test Track walkway in Future World East, and the Health Full Trail along the Imagination Walkway will again be where you will find the Play Full Garden. The Floating Mini-Gardens, Flower Towers, and more bedded blooms will be planted as well. Behind the scenes tours are available during the Festival from the no-additional-charge 20 minute English Tea Garden tour to the Spring edition of the 3 hour Gardens of the World tour ($85/person plus tax).

Like the other Festivals, Flower & Garden Festival will include food and beverage kiosks. This year, 16 "Outdoor Kitchens" and other "stops" will include three Florida-centric locations: The Honey Bee-stro, The Citrus Blossom, and Florida Fresh. The full list of Outdoor Kitchens and other special food offerings, along with their menus, is now available on this page of the official FreshEpcot website.

Spike sipper
A Spike the Bee Sipper will be available while supplies last at The Honey Bee-stro and will contain Honey-Peach Freeze. Note that last year, Orange Bird sippers sold out rather quickly at the beginning of the Festival, but stocks were replenished a few weeks later. Image ©Disney.

Spike's Pollen Nation Exploration scavenger hunt also returns for the entire run of this year's Festival. Purchase maps for $6.99 plus tax (Passholder discounts available) at Port of Entry and other marked locations, search for Spike the Bee around the park, and return your completed map to Port of Entry for a prize. The Egg-stravaganza Scavenger Hunt will also return for a limited time during the Festival, from March 27 through April 12, and the $6.99 plus tax (Passholder discounts available) maps for the Easter-themed scavenger hunt will be available at Disney Traders, Pin Central (in its new location under Spaceship Earth on the west side), and World Traveler; completed maps will be redeemed at Disney Traders for its prize.

The new location of Pin Central is under the western legs of Spaceship Earth. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

New to this year's Festival is the expansion of Disneyland's Disney Channel Fan Fest. Guests at Disney's parks in California will have a one-day-only opportunity to mix and mingle with the casts of several popular Disney Channel shows and a cavalcade down Disneyland's Main Street U.S.A. will feature many Disney Channel celebrities which will be live streamed on Disney Parks Blog and on Disney Channel YouTube on Saturday, May 9. After that, kids and families at Epcot during three of the Festival's weekends—May 16-17, May 23-24, and May 30-31— will experience Fan Fest events as well. The details and schedule has not yet been announced, but Disney Parks Blog says:

Fan Fest events include stars from "ZOMBIES 2," "Gabby Duran & the Unsittables," "Raven's Home," "Just Roll With It," "Sydney to the Max," "Coop & Cami Ask The World, "BUNK'D," and the upcoming "Disney Fam Jam" and "Upside-Down Magic." The learn-to-draw sessions will feature the creative teams behind "Big City Greens," "The Owl House," "Amphibia" and "DuckTales."

Annual Passholders can pick two complimentary magnets during the 2020 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. The "Donald Duck with Spike the Bee" magnet will be available March 4 to April 19. The first-ever “Orange Bird” magnet will be available April 20 to June 1. Look for signs outside the temporary location of Mouse Gear in Future World East (which may now only be accessed by the walkway on the Guest Relations side of Spaceship Earth if walking from the park's front gates or via the bridge from Odyssey or the walkway next to the flower gardens at the eastern ponds). Passholders must have a valid Annual Pass and photo ID; magnet supply is not guaranteed to last the length of the time periods (though the supply usually does last).

Passholders can pick up two magnets during the 2020 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival by visiting during the specified dates and heading over to Mouse Gear with a valid pass and Photo ID. Images ©Disney.

During the Festival of the Arts, magnet distribution signs pointed to the back door of the current location of Mouse Gear. File Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

Passholder-Exclusive merchandise like t-shirts and pins, will be available for sale during the Festival as well. Passholder 20% merchandise discount available. The discount also applies to purchases of maps for Spike's Pollen-Nation Exploration Scavenger Hunt which will be available at Mouse Gear, World Traveler and select Festival Markets (the marked kiosks around the park).

Passholders are also eligible for 10% discount on dining packages that include guaranteed seating for Garden Rocks Concert Series performances, and for 15% discounts on the Behind the Seeds and Gardens of the World tours.

Food & Wine Festival

The 2019 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival concluded back in November. Disney Parks Blog lists the 25th anniversary edition of the Festival among the 20 Reasons to Visit Walt Disney World Resort in 2020, but the park has not yet announced its specific dates. It is a very safe bet that the hugely popular festival will return for a near 90 day run in the late summer/fall. The official website for the festival is TasteEpcot.com.

The runDisney Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend which traditionally takes place during the Festival has been scheduled for November 5-8, 2020. 

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic will be held November 6 to 7, 2020.

Festival of the Holidays

2019 Performances of Candlelight Processional, wrapped up on December 30, along with the park-wide Epcot International Festival of the Holidays. The celebrations, no doubt, will return late in 2020, and, as in recent years, we will probably start getting specific details to share in the summer, probably with a Christmas in July media event or promotion. The Festival's official website is: EpcotHolidays.com.

Festivals Calendar

For the convenience of our readers, the scheduled performers for this year's Garden Rocks Concert Series are shown in our Google Calendar of Epcot Events. You can add the entire Event calendar to any calendar that supports the iCal format (like iPhone and Mac) by copying this link and, as we get additional information and update the calendar, the calendar will update on your subscribed device as well.

While our Google Calendar of Epcot Events lists announced performers, it is still always best to check the My Disney Experience app, Times Guide, and, yes, sometimes even signs posted at the park entrances and at the theater noting any last minute changes. The calendar is provided as a courtesy "as is, where is" without any guarantees. We do respectfully request that you do not post our entire calendar on another site without first asking our permission. Walt Disney World Resort does provide schedules in the My Disney Experience app, but does not allow you to add dates to calendars outside the app itself.

Views Around the World

This week, our views include a few from the final days of the Fourth Annual Epcot International Festival the Arts and the latest major construction changes we spotted around Epcot as its historic transformation continues. In case you have been wondering, we have also seen in some press materials, Disney has gone back to using all capital letters for the name of the park again, while all the road signs around the Resort and even the sign over the parking toll plaza still only capitalizes the "E" – EPCOT or Epcot? Take your pick!


Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.

The final three Disney on Broadway Concerts for 2020 closed the Fourth annual Festival of the Arts. Singers Ashley Brown, Josh Strickland, Syndee Winters and Michael James Scott took the stage together for the final performances of the year. Video by Alan S. Dalinka.

Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.

This and That…

…In yesterday's Disneyland Resort Update, Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix noted that Fresh Baked Disney learned about an update at Millenium Falcon: Smugglers Run at Disneyland that unlocks a special "Chewbacca Mode" on the attraction at Disneyland. In short, it removes Hondo's commentary and provides only audio from Chewbacca (in his Wookie language, of course). We have not investigated whether the video game-type hack also works in Florida at Disney's Hollywood Studios, but the most interesting part is that it requires everyone aboard to cooperate and act quickly, so if you want to give it a try, be sure that you get your party of six all on the same page before you board the Falcon.

…Starting in March at Disney's Riviera Resort, guests can experience The Chocolate Workshop Presented by The Ganachery on Sundays at 11 a.m. This new $60/person (plus tax) hands-on workshop is lead by a Chef Chocolatier from The Ganachery chocolate shop at Disney Springs, who will teach how to properly taste chocolate, demonstrate how ganache is made, and assist in the creation of chocolate truffle pops for the attendees. Reservations are available by calling (407)WDW-PLAY.

…Returning on select dates starting March 1, Mermaid School returns at more Disney hotels than in the past. The $55/person (plus tax) class for guests ages 4 and older gives guests "the chance to live out their mermaid dreams by participating in fun pool activities while wearing a swimmable 'tail' – just like Ariel." Experiences will be offered at Disney's Art of Animation Resort, Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney's Yacht and Beach Club Resorts, Disney's All-Star Music Resort, Disney's Polynesian Village Resort, and Disney's Riviera Resort. Reservations are available by calling (407)WDW-PLAY.

…Captain Hook's Pirate Crew at Disney's Beach Club Resort, the $55/person (plus tax) immersive group experience for kids ages 4-12 that includes "an epic pirate adventure with Captain Hook and his crew as they search for hidden treasure," and a Pirate feast is now offering a 10% discount for Annual Passholders through May 31. Disney Vacation Club Members are also eligible for a 10% discount (with no scheduled discount end date). For more information and reservations, call (407)824-KIDS.

…For Disney Vacation Club Members and their guests registered to attend Moonlight Magic at Magic Kingdom on March 3, April 21, or April 28, DVC has created an extra opportunity to dine at Cinderella's Royal Table. While the meal cost is not included with event admission, it is a rare opportunity to make a reservation to dine there without having kept a careful eye on your calendar six months out. Call Member Services at (800)800-9800 to book a reservation, but only if you have a confirmed registration for one of those Moonlight Magic events. Oh, and it appears that April 21 and April 28 events are not yet filled, so eligible DVC Members may still be able to reserve an event admission too. See this page of the DVC Members Website and be prepared to log in with your Member ID.

…REMINDER Interested in a chance to win a stay in the Cinderella Castle Suite in Magic Kingdom? Interested in additional bonus chances to win by making donations that benefit Orlando Magic Youth Foundation? Omaze has a sweepstakes (with lots of fine print on its site that you need to read and we have no affiliation with or responsibility for it) with a grand prize offering of a two-day, one-night vacation that includes a night in the Suite for up to four people, plus park tickets, a VIP tour guide for a day, and dinner at Narcoossee's. Donation or purchase not required for the single entry, but bonus entries are included with different donation levels. The deadline to enter is April 7, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. Pacific (which is April 8, 2:59 a.m. Eastern) with the winner to be announced on or around April 22, 2020.

Disney Movie Insiders is also offering a sweepstakes for a chance to win a 5-day, 4-night getaway to Walt Disney World Resort, including hotel, airfare, multi-day tickets, a VIP guide for a day, and more. First entry is free and the sweepstakes round ends on February 29. (We also have no affiliation with or responsibility for this sweepstakes.)

…Beyond Walt Disney World Resort, Disney Cruise Line announced its summer 2021 sailing schedule yesterday which includes a return to Greece, new itineraries through and beyond Europe, Alaska, and its usual destinations in the Bahamas and Caribbean. Bookings open to the public on February 28, 2020, with Castaway Club members at different levels having some early booking opportunities. Visit DisneyCruise.com or call (888)DCL-2500 or your travel agent for more information and booking.

…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.

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Disney Springs News & Views

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). Some items are repeated week to week until they occur, while other items NEW to the Update are marked accordingly. For even more of the latest news around Disney Springs, follow its official Twitter Feed: @DisneySprings.

NEW Personalized Disney Merchandise

The D-Tech on Demand at Marketplace Co-Op is now offering a broader range of customized and create-your-own Disney merchandise under the brand name "MADE." Customizable phone cases, MagicBands, magnets, and commemorative bricks remain available. The expanded offerings at Marketplace Co-Op (and Tomorrowland Light & Power Co.) now include customized apparel items with choices of Disney art, color, and adding your name, with pick-up in a few hours, delivered to your Disney resort, or shipped.

Disney Parks Merchandise Team is evolving the customizable merchandise under the MADE brand. Current D-Tech on Demand locations now or soon offering items under the "MADE" brand include Magic Kingdom locations (Tomorrowland Light & Power Co., Frontierland Trading Post, and Curtain Call Collectables), Hollywood Studios locations (Star Wars Launch Bay and Celebrity 5 & 10 Shop), and Disney Springs locations (Marketplace Co-Op and NBA Experience). Apparel customization currently is only available at Tomorrowland Light & Power Co. and Marketplace Co-Op.

Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant

Raglan Road's Might St. Patrick's Festival will run Friday, March 13 through Tuesday, March 17, 2020. It is complimentary March 13-16 (and reservations are accepted); on March 17, seating is first-come, first served, and there is a $10 cover charge for guests 18 years old and above. The full Festival entertainment schedule will be posted at RaglanRoad.com, and the highlights will include: Strings & Things, TradGad, MACA, Fia Rua, Mike Waters, and Emily Furlong.

Raglan Road now has St. Patrick's Day merchandise in stock. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

Maria & Enzo's Ristorante

Concluding February 29, Carnevale has returned to Maria & Enzo's Ristorante. The festival, known in Venice as Carnevale and as Mardi Gras outside of Italy, includes festive decor, glamorous costumes, food and celebrations. At the restaurant, from 5-10 p.m., the restaurant has special menus with signature dishes as well as special items, special beverage offerings, special dessert offerings, and nightly live entertainment. Reservations are recommended by visiting MariaAndEnzos.com or by calling (407)560-8466.

Carnevale at Maria & Enzo's continues until February 29, 2020. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

The Edison

The Edison hosted its inaugural Masquerade on Saturday, February 22. Ticketed guests (ages 21 and above), dressed incognito were entertained with "a magical evening shrouded in an air of secrecy" which included live music, aerialists, and more, along with trays of passed appetizers and themed cocktails. Patina Restaurant Group invited us to attend this first-of-its kind event which it may run again in the future (stay tuned).

Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.

Vivoli il Gelato

Throughout February, Vivoli il Gelato is serving a "Love Potion" concoction of vanilla gelato and Fanta Strawberry, topped with whipped cream and garnished with sprinkles and rock candy. It is served in a novelty "Be Mine" cup.


On Saturday, March 21, from 11:30 a.m. until 3 p.m., Jaleo is holding a Paella Block Party in celebration of its one-year anniversary. Taking over the sidewalk on the West Side and inside the restaurant, the ticketed event features four Festival Paellas, unlimited tapas, flamenco dancers, a DJ, a photo booth, and more. Visit this EventBrite page for more information and tickets. Early bird tickets are available now until February 23: All-Inclusive (age 21 and over) is $75 plus $6.20 fee; Food and non-alcoholic beverage ticket (all ages) is $40 plus $4.06 fee; children 10 and younger are free. UPDATE WITH NEW PRICES on February 24.

NEW Views Around Disney Springs

Photos by Alan S. Dalinka.

The next Disney-Pixar film "Onward" opens March 6. Photo by Alan S. Dalinka.

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Resort Events

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).

2020 Resort Events
  • Disney After Hours: (hard ticket required; park entry at 7 p.m., event hours vary by published date and park)
    …at Magic Kingdom:
    • March 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30
    • April 5, 13, 20 & 27
    • May 5, 11, 18 & 25
    …at Disney's Animal Kingdom
    • February 27
    • March 5, 12, 19 & 26
    • April 1, 7, 14 & 22
    • May 2, 9, 16, 19 & 26
  • Disney Vacation Club Moonlight Magic: (Eligible Member reservations required for wristband entry)
    • Disney's Animal Kingdom: February 25, 2020
      Registration full.
    • Magic Kingdom: March 3, April 21 & 28
      Registration subject to availability. The March 3 event is sold out.
    • Epcot: May 4 & June 29, 2020
      Registration for Members with Resort reservations opens: March 11, 2020
      General Member Registration: March 18, 2020
    • Disney's Typhoon Lagoon: July 27 & August 10, 2020
      Registration for Members with Resort reservations opens: June 17, 2020
      General Member Registration: June 24, 2020
    • Disney's Hollywood Studios: September 15 & 22; October 6, 2020
      Registration for Members with Resort reservations opens: July 15, 2020
      General Member Registration: July 22, 2020
  • Disney Villains After Hours: (hard ticket required; park entry at 7 p.m., event hours vary by published date)
    • February 28
    • March 6, 11, 18 & 27
    • April 3, 10, 17 & 24
    • May 1, 8, 14, 22, 29
    • June 5, 12, 19, 26 & 29
    • July 6 & 10
  • Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival – March 4 to June 1, 2020
  • Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway debuts at Disney's Hollywood Studios – March 4, 2020
  • "Drawn to Life" (by Cirque du Soleil and Disney) – previews begin March 20, 2020, premiere April 17, 2020
  • Star Wars Rival Run Weekend – April 16 to 19, 2020
  • Earth Day Celebrations at Disney's Animal Kingdom – April 18 to 22, 2020
    April 22 itself is the 22nd Anniversary of the park's opening; it is also Earth Day's 50th Anniversary
    & it is the 25th Anniversary of Disney Conservation Fund
  • Dapper Day – Spring Weekend (unofficial events) May 1 to 3, 2020
    ♦ May 2 - Disney's Hollywood Studios ♦ May 3 - Epcot
  • Gay DayS #RedShirtDays (unofficial events) – June 4 to 7, 2020
    ♦ June 4 - Disney's Animal Kingdom ♦ June 5 - Disney's Hollywood Studios
    ♦ June 6 - Magic Kingdom ♦ June 7 - Epcot
  • Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend – November 5 to 8, 2020
  • Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic – November 6 to 7, 2020
  • D23 Destination D: Fantastic Worlds – November 20 to 22, 2020

2021 Resort Events
  • Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend &nash; January 6-10, 2021
  • 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.

Magic Kingdom
  • Splash Mountain – closed for seasonal refurbishment January 6, 2020 through late February, 2020.
  • The Muppets Present...Great Moments in American History – its final scheduled shows were performed October 5, 2019
    Given its brief re-appearances during the final days of 2019, it may reappear "seasonally."
  • Move it! Shake it! MousekeDance it! Street Party – two performances scheduled daily now through February 2020.
  • Royal Majesty Makers – no longer has scheduled appearances in Fantasyland as of October 2019.
  • Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirate Tutorial – Final show was September 29, 2018.
  • Stitch's Great Escape – My Disney Experience lists as "available seasonally throughout the year"
    It is unlikely it will ever reopen; the attraction's lobby is used for greeting Stitch
  • Walt Disney World Railroad – Closed as of December 3, 2018 to accommodate TRON construction (reopening to be announced).
    Guests can visit a Walt Disney World Railroad train at Fantasyland Station.
  • Test Track – Closed for refurbishment through February 26, 2020.
  • Reflections of China – the film will be retired and will be replaced with "Wondrous China" presented in a seamless 360° digital format.
  • Future World "transformation" closings – Major transformation announced at D23 Expo 2019.
    Closings and relocations include:
    • Future World itself will become three new lands: World Discovery, World Nature & World Celebration
    • Spaceship Earth will close for a major renovation starting at a date to be announced
    • Innoventions - all exhibits now permanently closed, effective September 8, 2019
    • Club Cool closed September 8, 2019 (to reopen in "a new capacity at a future merchandise location")
    • Fountain of Nations closed September 8, 2019
    • Fountain View featuring Starbucks closed September 8, 2019 (new temporary Starbucks location now open near Refreshment Port)
    • Meet Disney Pals at the Epcot Character Spot - closed September 8, 2019 (check guide maps for character locations)
    • Electric Umbrella (quick service restaurant) closed February 16, 2020. (New dining options to be announced)
    • Mouse Gear closed its original location for refurbishment January 4, 2020. (It moved to a temporary home nearby)
    • Art of Disney has relocated to the former Heritage Manor at The American Adventure
  • Ellen's Energy Adventure at Universe of Energy – Permanently closed on August 13, 2017.
    Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind to open in its place in approximately 2021.
  • Illuminations: Reflections of Earth – Show retired: September 30, 2019.
    Epcot Forever debuted October 1 for a limited run which will be followed by a new nighttime spectacular "HarmonioUS" in 2020
  • Liberty Inn - the fast-casual restaurant closed for reimagining starting July 8, 2019.
    Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue is now open in its place.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away – final performances on Saturday, February 22, 2020.
  • March of the First Order – concluded parades down Hollywood Boulevard on July 6, 2019.
    First Order Stormtroopers have "redeployed" inside Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge
  • Star Wars: Path of the Jedi – Permanently Closed.
    Theater to reopen as venue showing Mickey Mouse Shorts in March 2020.
  • The Great Movie Ride – Permanently closed August 13, 2017.
    The new Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway attraction to open in Chinese Theatre on March 4, 2020.
Disney's Animal Kingdom
  • Kali River Rapids – closed for seasonal refurbishment January 6, 2020 through late March 2020.
  • Primeval Whirl – is now listed as "Operates Seasonally"
    My Disney Experience shows the attraction closed as of publication of this Update
    No FastPass+ service is available for the attraction through at least March 19, 2020.
Disney Water Parks
  • Disney's Blizzard Beach Water Park
    daily operating hours are published, but be aware that cold weather closures can occur.
  • Disney's Typhoon Lagoon Water Park is closed for seasonal refurbishment during the winter
    daily operating hours are published starting Monday, March 29, 2020.
Disney Springs
  • Bongo's Cuban Café– Closed in August 2019
    Beatrix restaurant from Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises coming to the site at a date to be announced.
  • DisneyQuest – Closed as of July 3, 2017.
    The NBA Experience opened on the site on August 12, 2019.
  • La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil – Show closed on December 31, 2017.
    A new Cirque du Soleil, "Drawn to Life," begins previews March 20, 2020, and will have its world premiere April 17, 2020.
Disney Resorts & Vicinity
  • McDonald's restaurant near Disney's All-Star Resorts – closed October 30, 2019, for an extensive renovation; expected to reopen in March, 2020.
  • Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge - Jambo House – Due to Resort construction, the Disney Vacation Club Value category accommodations are not available for stays from December 2019 through early spring 2020
  • Disney's Art of Animation Resort – The Big Blue Pool will close for refurbishment beginning in approximately 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.

As regular readers know, Walt Disney World Resort theme park tickets are rarely offered at deep discounts unless you are a resident of Florida or eligible for U.S. Military Personnel benefits. It is increasingly true that non-Florida residents tend to benefit the most by purchasing tickets in advance (and, of course, being mindful of the rules relevant to those tickets). As prices go up, it becomes even more important to pay heed: Don't get scammed! Never buy tickets from an unofficial or secondary outlet, such as through eBay or Craigslist. Never rent or purchase tickets from people approaching you outside Disney property stating they have remaining days or leftover tickets. This practice is against the terms of use for Walt Disney World Theme Park admissions, and may result in denial of entry. There is no way to determine if these tickets are valid until you try to use them to enter the parks. Only purchase Disney theme park tickets directly from Disney, an authorized seller, or a travel agency like MousePlanet travel partner Get Away Today. 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.

Get Away Today Logo

For more discounts and offers we know about, click the category below that you want to expand (or close).

For Everyone

4-Park Magic Ticket

The 4-Park Magic Ticket is once again available for purchase at Disneyworld.com/4ParkMagic. For $356 plus tax (ages 10 and up; less for ages 3-9), it provides one visit to each of the four Walt Disney World Theme parks (one park per day). Guests must select a start date on or before September 30, 2020, and the ticket expires seven days after the selected start date. (Certain start dates will lower the price of the Ticket further.)

For an additional $40 plus tax (ages 10+; less for ages 3-9), the ticket will also provide admission to one water park and one visit to NBA Experience at Disney Springs.

Mid-Day Magic Tickets

Disney has introduced a new park ticket that provides one admission per theme park each day after 12:00 p.m. Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for more information.

Summer Free Kids Dining Plan

Get a free dining plan for kids (ages 3 to 9) when purchasing a non-discounted 4-night/4-day package that includes a room at select Disney Resort hotels, theme park tickets and a dining plan (for everyone else in the room ages 10 and up). The offer is available for arrivals on most nights May 25 through August 28, 2020, when booked by February 26, 2020. Offer is valid for any of the three dining plans (Disney Deluxe Dining, Disney Dining, or Disney Quick-Service), but everyone in the reservation has to be on the same package. The theme park tickets in the package are valid on the date of check-in and must be used within 7 days.

Child must stay in a room with an adult to qualify for the offer. Dining plans do not include gratuities, and, as always, Table-Service restaurants may be fully booked (the plans do not guarantee seating). Offer excludes the following room types: 3-bedroom villas, campsites, Cabins at Copper Creek villas & Cabins at Disney's Wilderness Lodge, Bungalows at Polynesian Villas & Bungalows, Little Mermaid Standard Rooms at Disney's Art of Animation Resort.

Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for details and availability.

Sun & Fun Room Offer - Save Up to 25% on Rooms During Spring & Summer

Save up to 25% on rooms in select Disney Resort hotels for stays most nights from April 1 through September 12, 2020, when booked by February 26, 2020.

Discounts vary by travel dates and booking dates (some are available for booking as late as July 9, 2020). The only Resorts offering dates with 25% discount are Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge and Villas (Jambo House and Kidani Village), Disney's BoardWalk Inn and Villas, Disney's Old Key West, Disney's Saratoga Springs, Disney's Riviera, Disney's Grand Floridian (not including Villas), and Disney's Yacht Club. Other Resorts offer discounts between 10% and 20%.

Additional per-adult charges may apply if more than 2 adults per room at Disney Value, Moderate and Deluxe Resorts and Studios at Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts. Offer excludes the following room types: campsites, 3-bedroom villas, Cabins at Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows.

Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for the discount chart, details, and availability.

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.
Discounts and Benefits

The updated list of PASSHOLDER benefits and discounts is located at DisneyWorld.com/PassBenefits. (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).

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. For the 2019 Holiday Season, many of the Disney Springs and Bonnet Creek hotels are offering special room rates to Passholders from this page too.

Passholders can save up to 35% on select Rooms at Disney Resorts through April 25, 2020. See this page of DisneyWorld.com for details.

The Passholder version of the "Sun & Fun" offer lets guests save up to 35% on select Rooms at Disney Resorts on most nights though July 9, 2020. See this page of DisneyWorld.com for details.

With the recent changes to stroller and ECV delivery policies around the resort, the Magic Strollers Passholder offer is no longer listed among the available Passholder benefits.

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 (U.S. orders only)

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, including blockout dates. Note that a 20% gratuity will be added to each spa service.

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

2020 Military Promotional Tickets

January 1 through December 18, 2020

  • Four-Day Park Hopper Tickets –$265.00
  • Four-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $315.00
  • Five-Day Park Hopper Tickets – $283.00
  • Five-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $333.00
  • Six-Day Park Hopper Tickets – $301.00
  • Six-Day Park Hopper Plus Tickets – $351.00

Prices do not include tax. Six-Day Tickets must be purchased by December 13, Five-Day Tickets by December 14, Four-Day Tickets by December 15. Tickets may be used from January 1 through December 18, 2020.
Prices may be lower at U.S. military base ticket offices.

U.S. military personnel can also purchase the Memory Maker product for $98 from January 1, 2020, through December 18, 2020.

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. No more than two Memory Maker products may be purchased at the special price by the service member or 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. For 2020, discounts are available most nights January 1 through April 4, and April 19 through December 18, 2020, when booked by December 18, 2020. 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. For more information and details, visit this page or call (407)939-7825.

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
Expect to be required to show proof of Florida Residency for discounts and benefits.
Florida Resident Discover Disney Ticket

Florida Residents that want to visit the parks in the first half of 2020 may purchase the new Florida Resident Discovery Disney Ticket The 4-Day Ticket is $195/person plus tax ($49/day) and the 3-Day Ticket is $175/person plus tax ($59/day) for one park per day admission on any dates through June 30, 2020, with no block-out dates (Park Hopper and Park Hopper Plus upgrades available for extra charges). Tickets must be purchased by June 27, 2020. Details and on-line purchasing via this page of DisneyWorld.com.

Other Florida Resident Tickets and Room Offers

Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for all current Florida Resident theme park ticket offers, including a link where Florida Residents can save 40% on 4-Day Tickets and 30% on 3-Day Tickets compared to the non-resident prices of the same tickets when selecting specific visit start dates.

Visit this page of DisneyWorld.com for Florida Resident room rates at select hotels, including the opportunity to save up to 30% on rooms for most nights through April 25, 2020.

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.

Call DVC Member Services at (800) 800-9800 to take advantage of most other available 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 Canada Residents

Canadian residents are eligible for some specials that are similar to residents of the U.S.A. See the current listing on this page of DisneyWorld.com.

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.

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. For bookings by 1st April 2020, the site advertises a package including free dining, $100 gift card, and 14-Day Ultimate Tickets for the price of a 7 Day Ticket with Memory Maker.

If you know of an offer we haven't listed, please drop us an email with the details.

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