Sunday, April 19, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 4/13/15 - 4/19/15








News and Rumors are gathered from various different sources. All rumors are rumors and are to be taken as such.
News


Magic Kingdom

  • Pirates of the Caribbean's refurbishment will now last from June 8 until September 25. 


Epcot 

  • A new entertainment group will be joining the lineup of World Showcase artists, called the Mexican Marimba Trio. They perform unique musical pieces centered around the marimba that celebrate the musical heritage of Mexico and the diverse influences on their music and culture. Mexican Marimba Trio will play on Mondays and Tuesdays at 11:30 a.m., 12:15 p.m., 1:00 p.m., 1:45 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 4:15 p.m., and 5:00 p.m.
  • The 2015 Sounds Like Summer artists have been announced.  The lineup is:  
    • June 7-13: DSB – A Tribute to Journey 
    • June 14-20: 2U – A Tribute to U2 
    • June 21-26: Mike DelGuidice & Big Shot – A Tribute Billy Joel Show 
    • June 27 – July 4: Don’t Look Back – A Tribute to Boston 
    • July 5-11: Fire & Ice – A Tribute to Pat Benatar 
    • July 12-18: Stayin’ Alive – A Tribute to the Bee Gees 
    • July 19-25: Hotel California – A Salute to the Eagles


Disney's Hollywood Studios

  • The Frozen Summer Fun Premium Package is returning for the Frozen Summer Fun LIVE event. The package will cost $69 for adults and $39 for ages 3-9 and will run from June 17 through September 7. The package includes: 
    • Reserved viewing for Frozen Royal Welcome, complete with refreshments—water, a selection of soft drinks, and ice cream
    •  Reserved seating for your choice of (1) show time of For the First Time In Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration
    • Frozen Fireworks viewing with dessert party, private viewing of the fireworks paired with Frozen-themed desserts as well as specialty alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages



Disney's Animal Kingdom

  • Flame Tree Barbeque's refurbishment has been extended through May 22. 
  • For Earth Day (April 22) celebrate with the Party for the Planet. The day will include the option to meet Rafiki or Jiminy Cricket at Rafiki's Planet Watch; see conservation displays and presentations; have caricatures done or get your face painted; visit research stations showcasing behind-the-scenes footage of Monkey Kingdom; purchase unique pieces of art from vendors; and purchase a specialty cupcake.
  • Beginning on April 20 and continuing through June, work will be conducted during the day on the Tree of Life. Although the workers will be visible, this work will not impact park activities.


Downtown Disney

  • Dockside Margaritas will open on April 23. 


General Walt Disney World News


  • Disney will begin to introduce new allergy-friendly menus at approximately 120 quick-service and table-service locations. The menus will provide readily available options for guests with special dietary requests. Menu selection focuses on the most common allergens: gluten/wheat, milk, peanut, tree nut and fish. Guests shouldn’t worry that the chef will not speak with them; guests  will still be able to consult directly with a restaurant chef or special diets trained cast member, if they choose.
  • Disney is testing a new bus route that will bring direct service from the Magic Kingdom to Disney's Wilderness Lodge and Disney's Fort Wilderness Settlement Depot. The shuttle will run from 4:00 p.m. until 11:30 p.m. for four weeks beginning April 20.





Rumors 


  • Could Fulton's be closing eventually with the rehab of Downtown Disney and come back with a new theme?
  • The Hatbox Ghost may eventually also make his way out to the Magic Kingdom, as well.
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Sunday, April 12, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 4/6/15 - 4/12/15



News and Rumors are gathered from various different sources. All rumors are rumors and are to be taken as such. 

News

Magic Kingdom 
  • Guests looking to eat at Be Our Guest Restaurant for breakfast will now be able to pre-order ahead of time, if they choose.
  • Tickets are now on sale for Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, and Night of Joy.

Epcot
  • The Tomorrowland preview will begin on April 17.

Disney's Hollywood Studios 
  • If you are attending Star Wars Weekends, consider purchasing one of the Premium Packages.   The first is known as the Feel the Force Premium Package, where guests will get reserved viewing for the Legends of the Force Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade, complete with soft drinks, water, and snacks, can take part in ONE of the Celebrity Talk Shows in Theater of the Stars, and take part in the “Symphony in the Stars” Fireworks Dessert Party. The cost is $69 per adult (ages 10 and up) and $39 per child (ages 3-9).  Or consider the Feel the Force Deluxe Premium Package where Guests will get to experience the reserved viewing area for the Legends of the Force Star Wars Celebrity Motorcade, but after the parade they will have the opportunity to follow behind the motorcade; get reserved seating for ALL the Celebrity Talk Shows that take place in the Theater of the Stars; all day priority access to Darth’s Mall and a ceremonial lanyard to commemorate the day; and the dessert party for the “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks. The cost for this package is $99 for adults (ages 10 and up) and $64 for children (ages 3-9)

Downtown Disney 
  • There will be three new shops opening at Downtown Disney:
    • Erwin Pearl – offers a fine selection of enamel, precious and semi-precious fashion jewelry marked by style, creativity and outstanding quality.
    • Joffrey’s Tea – specializing in teas featuring custom blends, tea accessories and packaged teas.
    • Vivoli Gelateria – serving Panini sandwiches, espresso drinks and expertly crafted gelato made with fresh, seasonal ingredients.
  • The BOATHOUSE will be in soft openings beginning on April 13. 
  • United World Soccer officially came back to Downtown Disney by opening a new mobile merchandise kiosk near Cirque du Soleil.
General Walt Disney World News
  • As a reminder, selfie sticks are not allowed on attractions. 
  • The Disability Access Service at Walt Disney World will be seeing a change; it will become digital.  Guests will still need to visit Guest Relations and have their photo taken that will be linked to the MagicBands of your entire party. (This means that you will need to make sure to let Guest Relations know the full number of members of your party. This cannot change, without another stop at Guest Relations.) The maximum number of guests per one DAS is 6. There will be no paper card issued, and the DAS will be valid for 60 days. To use the DAS, guests will need to visit the attraction to get a return time.  (Return times do not affect ability to get 3 FastPass+ reservations.)  To get a return time, the guest must speak with a Stand-by Cast Member, who will scan the MagicBand or ticket of one member of the party.  (The guest with the disability doesn't need to be present when requesting a return time, but will need to be present to ride.) After scanning the MagicBand/ticket, the system will automatically assign a return time based on the current wait time of the attraction; the return time will be the current wait time minus 10 minutes. Only one DAS active return time will be able to be used at a time. After you get a return time, you may do whatever you want. When it is time to ride, all Guests wishing to ride must be present in front of the attraction's FastPass+ entrance.  The first MagicBand/ticket to be scanned at the attraction's FastPass+ entrance has to be the one belonging to the Guest with a disability, who has to be present to ride. If the Guest with a disability chooses not to ride, the rest of the party will be unable to use the return time and will be directed to the Stand-by line.
Rumors

  • If you are a fan of The Incredibles at Disney's Hollywood Studios, you may want to see them here soon. 
  • Olaf's Summer Cool Down, part of the Frozen Summer Fun LIVE event, may be a musical performance. 
  • The Disney Chase Visa Meet and Greet at Epcot may be moving over near the Imagination Pavilion.

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Sunday, April 5, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 3/30/15 - 4/5/15



News


Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • The full lineup of celebrities has been announced for Star Wars Weekends.  They include:
    Weekend I (May 15 – 17)

    • Ian McDiarmid: Senator/Emperor Palpatine (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
    • Amy Allen: Aayla Secura (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
    • Tiya Sircar: Sabine Wren (Star Wars Rebels)

    Weekend II (May 22 – 24)

    • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket W. Warrick (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
    • Silas Carson: Ki-Adi-Mundi, Nute Gunray (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
    • Vanessa Marshall: Hera Syndulla (Star Wars Rebels)

    Weekend III (May 29 – 31)

    • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket W. Warrick (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
    • Daniel Logan: Boba Fett (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones)
    • Steve Blum: Zeb Orrelios (Star Wars Rebels)

    Weekend IV (June 5 – 7)

    • Ray Park: Darth Maul (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace)
    • Jeremy Bulloch: Boba Fett (Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
    • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

    Weekend V (June 12 – 14)

    • Frank Oz: Yoda (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi; Star Wars Rebels)
    • Ray Park: Darth Maul (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace)
    • Peter Mayhew: Chewbacca (Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith; Star Wars: A New Hope; Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
    • Taylor Gray: Ezra Bridger (Star Wars Rebels)


Downtown Disney 
  • The BOATHOUSE is expected to open on April 13. Guests will also be able to a water tour on an amphicar, if they choose, which will cost $100 for a 20 minute cruise. There is seating for 3 guests, plus the boat captain - guests will not be able to drive themselves.

General Walt Disney World News
  • The Richard Petty Driving Experience's closing date has changed. It is now expected to close now on August 9.

Rumors

  • The Disability Access Service (DAS) could be seeing a few changes beginning at the end of April.  The new way the system could work would have the FastPass+ system itself directly assign a return time to Guests with disabilities based on the current wait time of the attraction (For example, if the ride's wait time is 60 minutes, the system will assign Guests a return time that is 5minutes in the future). There are two possibilities for how this is to happen.  One is that a guest will need to utilize the touchpoints to make the reservation. The other option will be that guests may be able to make the reservation in the My Disney Experience app.  
  
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Thursday, April 2, 2015

Top 7 Must See Walt Disney World Stage Shows


The stage show is a staple amongst Disney theme parks. They share the drama and the beauty of classic Disney stories with gorgeous costumes, beautiful singing, and spirited dancing for the audience to enjoy. Some are even Broadway caliber.  There really is a stage show for everyone and the best part is that stage shows can be enjoyed by all ages!

So today, I'm sharing the best of the best - The Top 7 Must see Walt Disney World Stage Shows! 
  • Dream Along With Mickey: This show, which takes place at the Magic Kingdom's Castle Stage, has guests help to prepare for a big party.  Of course, something dark is lurking with evil and nightmares threatening to take over the kingdom. Can Donald and crew save the day? This show has some fun songs and of course, fireworks!  This is one of the few shows where Mickey and Gang's mouths move and eyes blink, which helps to add a sense of realism, for sure!  The show lasts about 20 minutes and takes place multiple times a day.

  • Beauty and the Beast - Live on Stage:  This show, which plays in the Theater of the Stars at Disney's Hollywood Studios, relives the magic that is Beauty and the Beast and it features many of the songs that helped to make the movie famous!  It features gorgeously appointed costumes and terrific singing. Do keep in mind that it takes place in an open-air theater.  The show lasts about 25 minutes and Guests can make FastPass+ reservations for it. 

  • For the First Time in Forever - A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration: Frozen was a smash hit that many didn't see coming.  So, when Disney rolled out the Frozen Summer Fun event last year, they threw in this little stage show into the Premiere Theater at Disney's Hollywood Studios.  The show, which is a comedic retelling of the story of Frozen from the Royal Arendelle Historians, also features audience participation sing-along moments.  Do keep in mind that while Anna, Elsa, and Kristoff are all in the show, the focus is on the sing-along and the retelling of the story.  This show will be moving to the Hyperion Theater this summer...and I would suspect that we may see it there for quite a while. The show lasts about 30 minutes and Guests can make FastPass+ reservations for it.

  • Jedi Training Academy: This show gets the kiddos involved! It takes place Here, those ages 4 to 12 can become junior Jedi Knights learn the ways of the Force as they prepare to battle the Dark Side. Due to the limited number of Guests able to participate, Guests must sign their children up at park opening at the ABC Sound Studio and slots are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The show takes place on a small outdoor stage, right next door to Star Tours and lasts about 20 minutes. 
  • Fantasmic: Looking for the ultimate live stage show evening finale? Then look no further than Disney's Hollywood Studios nighttime spectacular Fantasmic! This show brings to life your favorite heroes, princesses, and of course, Disney Villains. Fantasmic takes you into the imagination of Sorcerer Mickey as he brings your favorite Disney characters to his dreams.  Though the Villains take over and wreak havoc. Can Mickey save the day? This show features fireworks, water screens, and lots of characters. It lasts approximately 30 minutes and Guests can make FastPass+ reservations for it.

  • Festival of the Lion King:  The show is the one that many say is the best show in all of Walt Disney World.  It features incredible singing, acrobatic work, puppetry, audience participation, and much more! (Like FIRE! and beautiful aerial ballet.) It plays in the gorgeous and brand new Harambe Theater at Disney's Animal Kingdom. The show lasts about 30 minutes and Guests can make FastPass+ reservations for it. 
  • Finding Nemo - The Musical:  This is my ultimate top show at Walt Disney World.  It takes place in the Theater in the Wild at Disney's Animal Kingdom is a retelling of Finding Nemo.  The best part is that it includes music that was created for the show.  (By the people who wrote the music for Frozen, so you know it's catchy!)  It includes live actors performing with puppets on stage and is an incredibly unique idea for how to perform a show like this.  It is an immersive show with incredible effects. The show lasts 40 minutes and Guests can make FastPass+ reservations for it. 
Of course, these are only my choices, but I am clearly missing some great choices!  Do you think Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular is incredible or that Disney Junior - Live on Stage is the bees knees?  Let me know in the comments!

If you like this article, I shamelessly ask that you spread the word about A Disney World After All!  Share it on Twitter or Facebook...pin the photos on Pinterest, hit up the Google + emblem...just let others know about us here!  Also, make sure to LIKE our Facebook page and find me on Twitter, I'm @RikkiNibs!  


Sunday, March 29, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 3/23/15 - 3/29/15



News and Rumors are gathered from various different sources. All rumors are rumors and are to be taken as such. 


News

Magic Kingdom
  • Aunt Polly's at Tom Sawyer's Island is open for the busy Spring Break season, until April 11.  The restaurant is serving turkey sandwiches and PBJ.

Epcot
  • Captain EO is out and the Tomorrowland preview is in. (At least temporarily, they say.) The preview will be shown in Imagination Theater in April.

Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • D-Tech Me is returning for Star Wars Weekends.  This year, guests can choose from one of six characters to get in 3D figurine form.  They are TIE Fighter Pilot, Jedi Knight, Alderaan Princess, X-Wing Pilot, Stormtrooper, and Carbonite. 
  • Studio Catering Co. will see a new menu. Items include: Deli Sandwich with ham, salami, pepperoni, Provolone cheese, creamy pesto spread, pepper relish and Balsamic glaze; braised pulled brisket sandwich with Munster cheese, arugula, and horseradish; vegetable wrap with garlic herb spread; and a Panini with turkey, Swiss, Provolone and honey mustard with tomato basil soup. 

Downtown Disney
  • The United World Soccer Shop is closing and in its place will be the new Super Hero Headquarters. It will open in early May and feature popular superhero-themed merchandise.

Disney Resorts
  • Trader Sam's at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort is currently in soft opening.  It will have an official opening sometime in April.  The lounge is open from 4:00 p.m. until midnight. 


General Walt Disney World News
  • SMS Audio has partnered with Disney. They will be sponsoring Star Tours, as well as other events within Disney.

Rumors


  • Steam is picking up on the Adventureland Veranda restaurant becoming a Jungle Cruise restaurant. It's said it will be a Quick Service at lunch and Table Service at dinner.
  • The Innoventions Chase Disney Visa meet and greet could potential close in April too. 



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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Disney's Hollywood Studios - A Park in Transition



Disney's Hollywood Studios...it's a park that is vastly different than it was 25 years ago when it first opened.  Matter of fact, it's vastly different than it was this time last year, with the closures of the Studios Backlot Tour, American Idol Experience, and Pirates of the Caribbean - The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow. We all know that massive changes are coming.

I was just in the park two weeks ago at the beginning of Spring Break season and I have to tell you...the park seems to be overwhelmed; lines are long, even for things that used to be short, Fastpasses are hard to come by, and restaurants are full.  Because of all the closures and the fact that the park has been in need of a facelift for a while...while it's running at its current maximum capacity, it feels like it's really running at a minimum.  Even the diversionary areas are packed to the gills with people, simply because they don't have anywhere to go.

While Spring Break is busy, at least Disney has worked out a plan for the summer again, with Frozen Summer Fun LIVE, which is obviously coming back to deal with some of the massive crowds headed to the park for the summer, but even comparing to last year's event....there's less going on, simply because of potential construction.

Unfortunately for us Disney fans, it still seems we have a very long way to go before the park comes into its own.  We've all heard the rumors...Star Wars Land is coming.  Pixar Land is coming.  Both are needed...like yesterday...and both are slam dunk ideas.  But let's be honest--nothing has even been announced officially; we really have no idea what's actually in store for the park, which I think makes the stagnant nature appear even worse.  At least if you know what's on tap, you can get excited for it; it's all on the horizon.  With no announcments, it just makes the park look well...sort of sad, to be honest.

What's most frustrating is that even if they announced both of these rumored upcoming additions, at the earliest, the soonest something could sprout up for guests seems to be late 2016 and that's for off the shelf stuff that's been rumored, such as spinners and other flat rides. Oh and you can't forget the expansion of Toy Story Mania, which is getting a third track.  But the bigger stuff isn't even expected for at least three years...at the earliest. (I say earliest because we all know how long it takes Disney to build things currently.) That means if I'm being optimistic, we have a good almost two years of a relatively empty park.  (Trust me...Disney should be counting their lucky stars that Frozen hit as big as it did and they can incorporate the massive hit into the Studios to breathe some life into it.  If that movie hadn't been as gang busters as it is, well....I fear for the shape the park would be in.)  Two years is a long time of nothing new and a lot of the park closed and shuttered. 

I don't say this to belittle and whine about the park.  It's a good park and it's going to be a great park when all is said and done.  This post is mostly written as a warning.  When visiting Disney's Hollywood Studios over the next two years or so, make sure to manage expectations when entering the park.  Know that you will be waiting in long lines.  Know that things will have waits that never have before.  Know that there's only a handful of attractions to actually do for the time being. Know that the park will soon be littered with seas of construction walls.

Try, if you can, to take in the smaller things and the things you haven't done in a while.  Like for me, this summer might be a good time to catch Lights, Motors, Action...well this is for two reasons....one...because I haven't done it since it opened...10 years ago...and two...because it's likely gonna be on the chopping block eventually.

Disney's Hollywood Studios is in transition and while I can't wait for it to be complete...because its going to be awesome...the growing pains are going to be rough for a while. And that makes me just a little sad, because I know what the park has been in the past and what it can and will be in the future.

What are your thoughts about Disney's Hollywood Studios' transition into whatever the new name of the park will be that Bob Iger accidentally leaked was coming? Let me know in the comments or on Facebook!

If you like this article, I shamelessly ask that you spread the word about A Disney World After All!  Share it on Twitter or Facebook...pin the photos on Pinterest, hit up the Google + emblem...just let others know about us here!  Also, make sure to LIKE our Facebook page and find me on Twitter, I'm @RikkiNibs

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 3/16/15 - 3/22/15



News and Rumors are gathered from various different sources. All rumors are rumors and are to be taken as such. 


News

Magic Kingdom
  • The Tomorrowland Terrace Fireworks Dessert Party will be changing names to the Wishes Fireworks Dessert Party. It will see additional desserts, as well as an increase of cost. It will now cost $49 for adults, and $29 for ages 3-9.
  • Space Mountain will be closed for a quick refurbishment, from April 20-23.
  • Breakfast is now being served at Be Our Guest Restaurant on a trial basis until June 18.  The meal costs $19.99 per adult ages 10 and up and $11.99 ages 3-9. Each breakfast begins with a pastry basket for sharing, a choice of entree, and self service beverage. 
  • Mr. and Mrs. Easter Bunny are now meeting guests on Main Street USA. 

Epcot
  • Innoventions West exhibits, THINK by IBM, Piggy Bank Adventure and Where's the Fire will close on April 29. In addition, the Vision House in Innoventions East will close on April 22.
  • Taste Track serves gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • The For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration show will be moving theaters to the former American Idol Experience theater, which will be renamed as the Hyperion Theater.

Disney Resorts

  • Chef Mickey's will extend operating hours from March 29 to April 11. Breakfast will be extended until 12:30 p.m. and dinner will open at 4 p.m. Hours will go back to normal starting April 12.

General Walt Disney World News
  • Beginning at Disney's Yacht and Beach Club Resort, parking permits will no longer be handed out at check-in.  Guests are now being asked to use their MagicBand for parking access.

Rumors  

  •  The BOATHOUSE could open in April.
  • Anna and Elsa may begin meeting guests at Akershus. 
  • Baymax and Hero may meet guests until the end of summer. 
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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Tips for Visiting Walt Disney World During Spring Break



Spring Break season is here! Trust me...I could feel it while I was visiting the Walt Disney World resort last week.  It was crazy how crowded some of the parks were.  Of course, I was certainly able to have fun, but it was thanks to following a few tips that I've learned throughout the years that allowed me to fully enjoy the parks without wanting to strangle someone. 

The Spring Break season is one of the busiest times of the year for Disney.  It's right behind Christmas Week and Fourth of July.  You know the old saying...when kids are out of school, families are in Walt Disney World.  Add on top of that the fact that it's warm in Florida and people are trying to escape the frigid cold and see something green...you have a recipe for large crowds seeking Disney fun.

With that being said, I thought I'd give you just a few tips on how to get the most out of a Walt Disney World vacation while touring the parks during Spring Break.  Of course, these tips should always be kept in mind during busy periods of the year.  (Not just Spring Break season.)  Hopefully these tips will help you have a great vacation.

  • Arrive at Rope Drop:  I know I'm not one who can usually do it, but if you arrive at rope drop, you get the jump on all the people who are like me who can't make it to the parks early.  Being there at rope drop allows you to be ahead of most of the crowd and see attractions with less of a wait.  I know on the days when I've arrived earlier, I've been more successful in touring. If you can manage it, it really is the way to go when touring during the busiest seasons.  
  • Visit the non-Extra Magic Hour park:  For those who don't know, Disney on-site guests have an added perk of being able to take park in something called Extra Magic Hours.  This is where a select park is open one hour earlier or up to two hours later than scheduled park hours. The schedule is listed on Disney's website.  However, for those who are visiting without Park Hopper tickets in hand, and you want to maximize touring, my best tip is to avoid the park with Extra Magic Hours.  That is unless you have Park Hoppers.  In that case, yes...go to Morning Extra Magic Hours, if you can get up in time, get in a few key attractions, and then leave; head to any other park. Same goes for the Evening offering. If you can visit another park in the day and then that evening, head to the park with Evening Extra Magic Hours, you are golden.  Especially if the Evening Extra Magic Hours last until like 1 a.m.!  If you are staying off-site, then you want to avoid all Extra Magic Hours like the plague.  They will be much busier than the other three parks and since you're staying off-site and attempting to visit in the morning, you'll be well behind the 8 ball. 
  • Have a plan:  it seems stupid.  You are on vacation, right?  But if you plan out a few of the attractions and meals that you want to enjoy, your vacation will run much smoother and you'll be happier.  You don't have to plan out to the minute detail, but just enough to know what you'll be doing for the day.  There's nothing worse than the, "what do you want to do next?" question while examining your map. For more information about effective planning, see the next two points. (PS:  Shameless plug...my friends at TouringPlans have this really cool app called Lines that you should totally check out.  It works so well to help plan your day!) 
  • Schedule your first three FastPass+ reservations for early in the day: Last year, once guests used their first three FastPass+ reservations, Disney started allowing guests to visit a FastPass+ Kiosk, located in the parks to make additional FastPass reservations.  While the stock of available FastPass+ attractions goes down as the day marches on, if you're able to use the FastPass+ reservations early, you'll still be able to obtain FastPasses for other attractions, allowing you to experience more overall!  I wouldn't necessarily schedule them for first thing in the morning...maybe starting around 10:00 a.m. or 11:00 a.m., because if you get to the park early enough, you should be able to get on most attractions with little wait. And don't use the FastPass+ reservations for parades of fireworks, because you are locking yourself in to not being able to make additional FastPasses during the day.  
  • Book Advanced Dining Reservations early and eat at off peak hours:  If you want to make sure you get to eat at a Table Service location in the park, make sure to make Advanced Dining Reservations ahead of time (up to 180 days in advance of your trip). You can do so by visiting the Disney Dining Page.  Also, no matter where you dine, either counter service or table service, try to eat during off peak hours.  (This means not at noon for lunch and not at 6 pm for dinner.)  The earlier or later you can go, the better chances you have of getting to eat where you want and not encountering huge crowds. 
  • Take a mid-day break:  If you are staying on-site, consider going back to your hotel room and taking a break.  Swim, nap, eat a meal.  Do whatever you can to just unwind a bit.  Plus, while you are relaxing a bit, everyone else will be in the theme parks, clogging up all the rides.   If you don't want to leave, try to take in shows, as the wait times will not be as long and shows will give you the opportunity to sit down in the (usually heavenly air conditioned) theater. 
  • Patience is key:  Yes...there will be a lot of people around you.  And yes, people are rude. You will likely get stepped on by someone who's not paying attention, or get rammed into by a stroller, or have someone try to stand in front of you during a parade, or have someone cut in front of you in line, or leave their trays on a table, or stop in the middle of walking down the path; it's bound to happen.  You are in an extremely busy place, surrounded by people who likely don't know where they're going, and don't know what they are doing.  But, if you attempt to have a little more patience, you will have a much better vacation overall. 
Finally, keep in mind these few notes:  Easter Week will usually see the heaviest crowds usually; if you can, avoid the Magic Kingdom on Easter Day.

Also, don't forget to bring sunscreen.  I just did...and I got burnt and am peeling now because of it.  Trust me...nothing is worse than getting super red on your first day of vacation, especially when you've been pasty all winter and then having to live through the pain. 

Overall, you can have a wonderful time at Walt Disney World...even if you travel during the busiest of seasons, like Spring Break.  Just come prepared and know that you will likely have to go with the flow.  Knowing those things will help save you a lot of headaches.

What are your tips for touring during Spring Break?  Let me know in the comments section or on the Facebook page. 

If you like this article, I shamelessly ask that you spread the word about A Disney World After All!  Share it on Twitter or Facebook...pin the photos on Pinterest, hit up the Google + emblem...just let others know about us here!  Also, make sure to LIKE our Facebook page and find me on Twitter, I'm @RikkiNibs!     

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 3/9/15 - 3/15/15



News and Rumors are gathered from various different sources. All rumors are rumors and are to be taken as such. 
News

Magic Kingdom
  • Another 24-hour party will be kicking off the “Coolest Summer Ever" which will take place on Memorial Day weekend from 6:00 a.m. on May 22 and will last until 6:00 a.m. on May 23. Guests will be able to dress up and show their Disney Sides. In addition, there will be special entertainment, merchandise, food and beverages during the day. The event will also feature Disney character greetings, dance parties and special surprises.

Epcot 
  • Voices of Liberty are currently performing on the outdoor stage of the America Gardens Theatre on Mondays and Tuesdays. In addition, the performers wear modern, spring-time outfits, and they sing songs that are more fresh and modern, such as “Let It Go,” “Friend Like Me,”and  "Somewhere Over The Rainbow."

Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • Doc McStuffins will be coming to the Animation Courtyard beginning in May. 
    The Frozen Summer Fun event will be returning for the second year from June 17 through September 7. The events for this year are:
    • The Frozen Procession – This special mini-parade down Hollywood Boulevard will include Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf, plus skaters, skiers, ice cutters, and the Arendelle Flag Corps.
    • Olaf’s Summer Cool Down – Olaf will appear on the event stage throughout the day to cool things down as the summer sun gets hotter.
    • Hot Frozen Nights DJ Dance Party – DJ Chill will be on hand at the event stage spinning great tunes. Guests will be able to share song requests and photos through social media that will be featured onscreen during the party.
    • Frozen Fireworks – Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf will come together at the event stage for a fantastic fireworks spectacular, set to the soundtrack of Frozen!
     
Disney's Animal Kingdom
  • Winged Encounters' landing perch has been relocated in front of the Tree of Life. The show will continue to be performed at 9:15 a.m., 10:15 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.
  • A new Sumatran tiger will be introduced to at Maharajah Jungle Trek on March 17.
  • Five new sable antelope have been added to Kilimanjaro Safaris.
  • The lemurs are back on Discovery Island.

Disney Resorts
  • Beginning April 13, and lasting until at sometime in early 2016, the East Leisure Pool at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort will be under refurbishment.
  • River Roost Lounge at Disney's Port Orleans Riverside will be serving select breakfast items for a limited amount of time from 7 a.m. to noon.  The new menu features select breakfast items including assorted pastries, breakfast sandwiches, cereals, oatmeal and an assortment of specialty coffees. This test will be running until May. 
  • Beginning March 31 from 5:00 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. at Disney's Port Orleans French Quarter will be "Fat Tuesdays" parties where guests will get to take part in activities, enjoy a DJ, and partake in special food and beverage offerings.
  • The Fourth Annual Easter Egg Display at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort will take place from March 20 through April 10.

Downtown Disney
  • Paradiso 37 is undergoing an expansion that will see it doubling its seating capacity and adding an outdoor live entertainment stage.


Rumors
  • Breakfast at Be Our Guest Restaurant will officially begin on March 20.
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Monday, March 9, 2015

Walt Disney World News and Rumors 3/2/15 - 3/8/15


News

Magic Kingdom
  • Aloha Isle and Sunshine Tree Terrace will be swapping places beginning this week.They will also be bringing their menus with them in the switch.
  • Under the Sea - Journey of the Little Mermaid has reopened from its refurbishment. The new upgrades include a darker "Under the Sea" scene.

Epcot
  • A third theater is being built for Soarin'. Soarin' will also see other upgrades, such as updating the screens and projection system. This update will be introduced in late 2016.

Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • Disney has announced that a third track is being constructed for Toy Story Midway Mania. It is expected to debut in late 2016.
  • The Galactic Gathering will take place one day prior to Star Wars Weekends, on May 14 from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. The special event will cost $250 per person and will include: 
    • ‘Rebel’ or ‘Empire’ retail MagicBand
    • commemorative trading pin
    • Darth’s Mall Light Speed Pass, giving expedited entry into Darth’s Mall for all five weekends 
    • first opportunity to pre-purchase select merchandise including personalized Aurebesh nametags, D-Tech phone cases, Dooney & Bourke handbags, Galactic Gathering Disney Gift card, retail MagicBands, limited edition pins and Vinylmation
    • first opportunity to purchase the new designs of Star Wars-themed Disney Gift Cards 
    • a Han Solo-inspired popcorn bucket with popcorn.


General Walt Disney World News
  • A new direct bus service loop will be tested between Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach beginning March 15. The bus service will be available from midday through one hour after park close. 
  • The Magic Kingdom Express Beam will see reduced daytime hours beginning March 10 and lasting throughout the summer.  The affected days will be Tuesdays and Wednesdays when the Express beam will be closed from 11:30 a.m. through 6:00 p.m. 

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