This week the Walt Disney World Resort ended its 50th anniversary celebration on March 31. It was tough to see the 50th medallion removed from Cinderella Castle. However, with every ending, a new beginning is made. This week and throughout this month each of the 4 theme parks at Disney World offer new and returning experiences to get excited about.
Magic Kingdom Park
The anticipation surrounding the official opening of Tron: Lightcycle Run on April 4 was matched only by the emotional return of “Happily Ever After” nighttime spectacular the night before.
Tron: Lightcycle Run
It has been YEARS of waiting, but Tron: Lightcycle Run opened in full digital force this past week. Destination DizN was among the crowd of guests at the park to experience the attraction.
There are only 2 ways to ride Tron: Lightcycle Run at this time. Like Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind in Epcot there is no stand-by line. Guests can try to join a virtual queue at 7am (from anywhere) or 1pm (inside Magic Kingdom) to secure a spot to ride. You can also choose to purchase an individual Lightning Lane selection at a variable rate per person per day.
Both options are available through the My Disney Experience App and both are subject to availability. Spots sell out very quickly!
In addition, a new quick service kiosk has opened in Tomorrowland which is themed to the new Tron attraction. “Energy Bytes” serves up Joffrey’s cold brew coffee, breakfast donuts, as well as digitalized dumplings and more. For a closer look at menu items, click HERE.
The Return of “Happily Ever After” Nighttime Spectacular
Following the 50th anniversary celebration, the fan favorite nighttime firework/projection show “Happily Ever After” returned to Magic Kingdom April 3. The return is taking the place of “Enchantment” which ran its course during the anniversary celebration.
Although the new version of the original show received some tweaks and changes, the big difference seemed to be the addition of projections down Main Street USA. Grab your tissues and head toward Cinderella Castle if you would like to witness that emotion grabbing wonder once again that is “Happily Ever After”.
“Enchantment” isn’t the only nighttime spectacular that made an exit following the close of the 50th anniversary celebration. “Harmonious” at Epcot ended this week making a path for “Epcot Forever” to return temporarily. A NEW show will debut later this year. Stay tuned for all the details as they are released.
As a result, the barges in the middle of World Showcase Lagoon won’t be blocking the beautiful landscape and view soon!
Animal Kingdom Park
Disney takes “Earth Month” (April) to all new levels. The company has long been committed to taking tangible actions that inspire people to live sustainably. Per Disney,
“By reducing our environmental footprint, investing in animal care and conservation, and telling stories that inspire action, we are continuing our longstanding work to ensure that people, plants, and animals have a healthy place to call home.”
No place is this more evident than at Animal Kingdom Theme Park. The park itself opened on Earth Day 1998, and this month will celebrate Its 25th anniversary. There are new characters to greet guests in the park. There are also new specialty treats and dishes to be tried at both the parks and resorts. For a closer look at the food and beverages available for Earth Month click HERE.
On March 24, Woody’s Round-up Rodeo officially opened to guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This is a brand-new table service restaurant at the park, and the first for Toy Story Land. Take a look at the DizN team’s firsthand experience at this new eatery below.
Woody’s Round-up Rodeo has an all you care to enjoy backyard BBQ style menu created by Andy for YOU, his toys. The creativity and theming inside the dining location matches the detailed Toy Story Land perfectly. This is a MUST-DO!
You can find a full description of the menu HERE.
Just the Beginning
In addition to the new experiences above, Disney World has plans for this year to enhance guest experiences throughout the parks and resorts. At Epcot, “The Journey of Water, inspired by Moana” in World Nature and “CommuniCore” in World Celebration are both set to open later this year. At Magic Kingdom, “Tiana’s Bayou Adventure” attraction is taking shape.
Some resorts are also getting upgrades including the renovation of Disney’s Boardwalk Inn and the addition of a new DVC villa building at the Polynesian Village Resort. Lastly, room refurbishments continue at quite a few Disney Resorts.
The Boardwalk will also open a new table service restaurant, “Cake Bake Shop Restaurant”, in the space where ESPN Sports occupied. No official opening date yet. Disney Springs is opening a new table service location, “Summer House on the Lake” as well as a retail location for Corkcicle.
Although it’s sad to see the ending of the 18 month long 50th anniversary celebration at Disney World Resort, we are happy to look forward. The opening of Tron: Lightcycle Run and the return of fan favorite nighttime spectaculars make the transition less of a downer.
We can also look forward to more new experiences at the Most Magical Place on Earth this year and once again have a beautiful view across World Showcase Lagoon- Sans barges.
What will you miss most about the 50th anniversary celebration? What are you most looking forward to this year? Comment below!
If you are thinking about taking a trip to Disney World or any Disney destination this year, don’t hesitate to reach out to our friends at DizN Vacations for a free no obligation quote.