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Let’s Plan Something to Look Forward To!

Walt Disney World is Reopening with different operations in place. What to know if you want to amend a vacation, plan a vacation, or keep a 2020 reservation.

June 22

Disney’s new Park Pass System opens to guests who currently have a 2020 Disney resort hotel reservation and valid theme park admissions. This does include Annual Passholders. If it is linked in your My Disney Experience, log in and choose which parks you want to go to on which dates. (Note: park hopping is not permitted at this time. You will only be able to choose one park per day)

June 26

The Disney Park Pass System will open to Annual Passholders

June 28

The Disney Park Pass System will open to all other guests who have park passes for 2020

By June 28

Sometime by June 28, Guests will be able to make new Disney Resort hotel package reservations and theme park tickets will go on sale for 2021

Later sometime this Summer

Based on availability and capacity, guests will be able to make Disney Resort Reservations as well as purchase tickets for 2020

If you are ready to have something to look forward to in 2021, contact me so that we can get all the details of your trip planned out. On the 28th, we can be ready to reserve and get your Park Passes.

If you would like to plan a 2020 Disney vacation, please reach out! We can discuss some options and be ready once they open the calendar back up.

Universal

Universal Studios is OPEN! If you are looking to visit in 2020 OR 2021, I can assist with that. Contact me and let’s start making some great plans so you and your loved ones can get an exciting countdown going!

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We’re Going to Walt Disney World

(Virtually, of Course!)

Here is an announcement from Magical Vacations Owner:

Please join us! Reminisce about your favorite trips. What do you pack? Where do you stay? If we cannot be at our Happy Place, let’s visit it virtually!

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International Festival of the Arts 2020

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The International Festival of the Arts is now in full swing at Epcot. There are several events & exhibits that returned from 2019 and there are also many new things to look forward to!

New this year are Life-sizes frames of VanGogh’s Café Terrace at Night and Sunflowers paintings that you can step right into for an amazing photo opportunity.

There are 12 Food Studios that present artful bites & sips that may be too beautiful to consume. Some favorites that are set to return include The Artist’s Table Studio for the Sipping Chocolate Flight of white, milk and dark chocolate as well as the BLT from The Deconstructed Dish Studio. There are lots of new items that have been added to these menu’s this year so stay tuned for some favorites!

If music is one of your favorite forms of art, definitely check out the amazing talent nightly at the American Gardens Theater. The Disney on Broadway concert series is comprised of wonderful arts that have been featured in Disney films:

  • Jan. 17, 20, 21 and 24 – Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White (“The Lion King”)
  • Jan. 18, 19, 22 and 23 – Heidi Blickenstaff (“The Little Mermaid”) and Gavin Lee (“Mary Poppins”)
  • Jan. 25 – Special performance featuring Simmons, White, Blickenstaff and Lee
  • Jan. 26, 28, 29; Feb. 1, 2, 5 and 6 – Kara Lindsay (“Newsies”) and Kevin Massey (“Tarzan”)
  • Jan. 27, 30, 31, Feb. 3, 4, 7 and 8 – Liana Hunt (“Newsies”) and Adam Jacobs (“Aladdin”)
  • Feb. 9 – Special performance featuring Lindsay, Massey, Hunt and Jacobs
  • Feb. 10, 12, 13, 18, 19, 22 and 23 – Ashley Brown (“Mary Poppins”) and Josh Strickland (“Tarzan”)
  • Feb. 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 20 and 21 – Syndee Winters (“The Lion King”) and Michael James Scott (“Aladdin”)
  • Feb. 24 – Special performance featuring Brown, Strickland, Winters and Scott

To secure seats to these performances in advance, you can reserve a Disney on Broadway Dining Package. This will guarantee you a seat on the day you dine in one of several Epcot restaurants and there is no additional cost for it.

Guests that are visiting the festival with little artists will want to check out the Green Landing Family Play Zone. This is a great area for littles to expend some energy while you sit back and enjoy the beautiful surroundings of the Festival.

Another neat artistic addition to World Showcase for the Festival that the whole family can enjoy are images of Disney Characters that are hidden throughout the countries. Can you find Remy & Emile in France? What about Mushu in China? What other favorite Characters can you spot?

I will be visiting this festival in early February and cannot wait to come back with my experiences and photos. If you have any questions or would like to visit the International Festival of the Arts, contact me today! My planning services are free for my guests and it will save you time, stress, and possibly even money. See ya Real Soon!

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Epcot International Festival of the Arts

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Epcot International Festival of the Arts is set to return for 2020. It will kick off on January 17 and run through February 24. This festival is a celebration of Art and how different cultures celebrate it through many different expressions including visual, culinary, and performing arts.

During this event, guests can experience art through the Broadway Concert Series, different culinary kiosks where food seems to jump right off the painters palate, view many different Disney artist’s work, as well as let their inner artist show. It is a fun event and entrance is included with your admission.

Disney on Broadway

The Disney on Broadway Concert series starts off with the beautiful music from “The Lion King”. The talent for this year is bountiful. Here is the schedule:

  • Jan. 17, 20, 21, 24 and 25 – Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White (“The Lion King”) 
  • Jan. 18, 19, 22, 23 and 25 – Heidi Blickenstaff (“The Little Mermaid”; “Freaky Friday”) and Gavin Lee (“Mary Poppins”) Jan. 25 – Special performance featuring Simmons, White, Blickenstaff and Lee 
  • Jan. 26, 28, 29; Feb. 1, 2, 5, 6 and 9 – Kara Lindsay (“Newsies”) and Kevin Massey (“Tarzan”) 
  • Feb. 10, 12, 13, 18, 19, 22, 23 and 24 – Ashley Brown (“Mary Poppins”; “Beauty and the Beast”) and Josh Strickland (Tarzan)
  • Additional dates & artists still to be announced so stay tuned!

New for 2020

  • A new Brunch will be offered at Le Cellier in the Canada Pavilion. Reservations are required.
  • Purchase beautiful art throughout World Showcase
  • Visit and observe artists that are creating right in front of you

Family Fun

  • The “Green Landing” Family play zone where guests of all ages can explore an area dedicated to Wall-E & Eve
  • Several different photo opportunities where guests can “jump right in” to some of their favorite stories
  • Add color to a beautiful wall mural located along World Showcase Plaza
  • Take part in a fun scavenger hunt featuring my favorite; Figment! Travel through World Showcase and find Figment. Hint: He has painted himself into some very famous paintings
  • Create your own artwork!

If you are interested in visiting Disney World and any of Epcot’s wonderful festivals, contact me today! I would be happy to assist in planning your amazing vacation and my services are always free. See ya real soon!

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2019 Walt Disney World Holiday Guide

© Disney

2019 is going to be a Very Merry Holiday at Walt Disney World. There will be new offerings all over the resort as well as the return to several favorites.

Animal Kingdom

For the very first time, Animal Kingdom is going to completely deck the halls! New decor in every land, new street performances and entertainment, holiday lanterns that will glow, and even Pandora will celebrate and Earth Holiday thanks to some of the humans that stayed behind.

In the evenings, all the lands will sparkle with holiday splendor and the Tree of Life will take on a wintery appearance and holiday tunes will be heard. Starting November 8th, come see how the Holidays transform this magical land full of beautiful animals, far off lands, and some of your favorite Disney Pals!

Epcot

The Candlelight Processional will return once again during Festival of the Holidays. Candlelight Processional Dining packages will also be available. From November 29-December 30, guests can discover holiday traditions, festive bites & sips, and special entertainment through 11 countries. In addition to the 11 countries, there will be Holiday Kitchens from additional places around the world. They will also be offering wonderful treats to try.

For the kiddos (and kiddos at heart), you will be able to hunt for Chip & Dal again in their Christmas Tree Scavenger Hunt. We always find this is a great activity to keep the littles busy while we check out the countries.

Hollywood Studios

Many of our favorites will return to Hollywood this year. Olaf will make his grand appearance in a fantastic holiday Finale of “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Holiday Sing-Along”. This ending is different from the normal show and brought me to tears. It was so sweet.

“Jingle Bell, Jingle Bam” is set to return. We loved this display on the Chinese theater. It is a great combination of projections, fireworks, and great music. I recommend finding a good spot about a half hour prior to it starting because that street fills up FAST!

One of the neatest things I found last year was the show on Sunset that was projected onto the Hollywood Tower Hotel. Set to music along with some blustery surprises, this one was one of my kids favorites. It is on a loop so it is not hard to catch. We must have seen it at least four times!

WHO KNOWS what is in store for the holidays at Galaxy’s Edge. I wonder how they will decorate for the holidays! I am excited to visit and find out and maybe pick up a gift for someone special from a Galaxy Far, Far Away!

Magic Kingdom

Magic Kingdom will be decked out in its traditional Holiday decor. The magic really comes to life when you visit during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. There is special stage shows, a beautiful parade concluded with Santa, himself, and NEW this year is a new Holiday Fireworks Display.

Minnie’s Wonderful Christmastime is an all-new Nighttime Spectacular coming to Magic Kingdom this Holiday season. This Park-Wide display will be set to holiday tunes that will warm your heart. HINT: This is the one Fireworks show that we INSIST we watch from Main Street.

The beautiful Once Upon A Christmas Time parade will be back along with other favorites – “Totally Tomorrowland Christmas’ Stage Show, “Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration”, and of course, Elsa’s “Frozen Holiday Wish”

Resorts

We will update these as they are confirmed but as in years past, resorts will be decorated for the holiday. Some of my favorites to visit:

  • Gingerbread House at Grand Floridian
  • Chocolate Display at Contemporary
  • Holiday Tree at Wilderness Lodge, Grand Floridian, and several other resorts that display these themed Holiday Beauties.

Disney Springs

In addition to all the amazing holiday shopping you can get done, Disney Springs is a Holiday Destination all on its own.

You can stroll down the Christmas Tree trail where you can see custom-decorated trees. Each tree will be decorated to a specific holiday theme. I cannot wait to see what themes there will be this year.

Guests are welcome to come visit Santa in his Chalet until December 24th when he has to head back north. From there, Santa Goofy will meet with guests until the 31st.

Need something to occupy the littles with while you get some shopping done? Experiment 626 is hiding in Disney Springs. You and your family can hunt for Stitch in his Holiday Gift Hunt.

These are just some of the few things we already know are lined up. There is so much more to be announced and it will be updated here as I learn of them.

If you are ready to start planning your holiday trip, contact me today for a no-obligation quote! My services are free of charge and I am happy to help you from start to finish with anythin you may need. Let me help plan your most Merry trip ever!

#Adulting · Disney Dining · Epcot · Extra Magical Events · New for Epcot · Walt Disney World

Epcot Food & Wine Festival: 2019

© Disney

Details announced for the 24th International Food & Wine Festival!!

This is one of my favorite festivals all year at Epcot and I am so glad I will be able to check it out once again! This year, the Festival will run from August 29-November 23. This is the longest running Food & Wine Festival yet. It tops out at 87 days and each one will be packed with tasty bites and delicious sips.

Here are some great things we know so far:

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  • Due to the popularity of the “Disney Du jour Dance Party” in Future World, it will now take place 7 days a week.
  • Ratatouille Hide & Squeak will return this year. This is a great activity for the kids while the grown ups enjoy a tasty bite or two.
  • There will be a candy sushi interactive experience again this year
  • Eat to the Beat concert series returns again this year through November 19th
  • There will be a “Party for the Senses” featuring chefs and vintners from all over the world
  • Sunday Brunch will be available with celebrity chefs
  • “Mix It, Make It, Celebrate It!” is a hands on workshop you can be a part of alongside famous chefs, bakers, and mixologists

Stay tuned for further details such as returning food booths, new booths, as well as menu’s and more!

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With all the returning favorites and all of the new wonderful experiences being added, now is definitely the time to book for this fall and take full advantage. Grab your spouse, best friend, or a group of buddies and let’s get you reserved to eat & sip around the world!

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Disney Skyliner: The Interior Revealed!

After many months of seeing the individual cars all shrink wrapped, Disney gave us a peek at what the inside will look like.

© Disney Parks

Recently when I was there I saw them in operation. Those things move!! They will service Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and 4 of Disney’s Resorts:

  • Pop Century
  • Art of Animation
  • Riviera Resort
  • Caribbean Beach Resort

This new mode of transportation makes these four resorts even more desirable! Planning a fall trip to Disney World for the Epcot Food & Wine Festival? Get your group together and stay at one of these resorts – the Skyliner will drop you off right at the back of World Showcase. Hoping to take the kids during their fall break and enjoy all the new offerings? Staying at one of these resorts will be even more fun and exciting for them now that this is a form of transportation! Contact me to start putting a package together and Let’s turn your Dreams into Memories!

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Update: Epcot Nighttime Spectaculars

After two decades, we are sadly saying goodbye to the Epcot Nighttime Spectacular Illuminations: Reflections of Earth. September 30th will be its last show. If this was a favorite of yours, be sure to catch it one more time this Summer!

Coming October 1st, “Epcot Forever” will make its debut. While I am sad to see Illuminations go, I am super excited for this new show. I hold a special place in my heart for a lot of the past attractions of Epcot (Horizons & Kitchen Cabaret!!!) and that is exactly what this new show will celebrate. It will focus on the past, present, and future of Epcot. Our favorite Epcot tunes will be played through the show as well.

Epcot Forever will run into 2020 and then the new, more permanent Nighttime Spectacular will begin. Not much has been announced about it but stay tuned for details.

Wanting to go see Illuminations one last time? Contact me for a no obligation quote and lets turn your dreams into memories!

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Disney Puts New Rules Into Place

© Disney

With all of the big changes coming to Walt Disney World and Disneyland over the next few years, Disney felt the need to restrict a few things. These changes are for the safety and concern of their guests. These new policies & changes will go into effect May 1st.

Strollers

They are restricting the size of stroller permitted into the parks. If you are traveling with a stroller, the new maximum dimensions are 31″ (79cm) wide and 52″ (132cm) long or smaller. This is a GOOD thing. The smaller stroller you have, the easier it is for you to navigate through crowds. If everyone complies, foot traffic will move much smoother.

Wagons

Disney will no longer permit wagons. The wagon style strollers such as the ones made by “Keenz” will not be permitted either, even though you can “push” them like a stroller.

Smoking

Every time I read that, I hear it in Mrs. Doubtfire’s voice. No? Just me? Ok, anyway, there will no longer be smoking sections inside Disney Parks. There will be a designated smoking area outside of the parks near the entrance instead. This will be in effect for all of Walt Disney World, Disney Water parks, Disney Springs, ESPN, Disneyland and Downtown Disney. For guests that are staying in a Resort Hotel or may venture to one for dining/entertainment, they will also each have a designated smoking area. This does include vaping as well.

Loose/Dry Ice

Disney happily let’s us all bring in coolers with our own drinks and food. What they will no longer allow are coolers full of “loose ice” or dry ice. They encourage the use of ice packs and if you require loose ice for any reason, it is available at no charge at their quick service restaurants.

Let me know if you would like clarification on any of these or if you have any questions!

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Breaking!! Epcot Changes

© Disney

This new interactive Play Pavilion is coming to Epcot! Not many details have been given yet but we do know that it will be in the old Wonders of Life Pavilion. I am so glad they are finally re-purposing that area with new content. It looks like it will be a great place for families to interact and play. I got very excited when I saw the word “Wedway” (what Tomorrow Transit Authority used to be called) up above the 3 glass windows in mid-upper right quadrant. I have no idea what it means yet but I am super excited! More details to come so stay tuned!

© Disney

Disney is also re-imagining the entry to Epcot. The Leave a Legacy monuments will be moved just outside the park’s gateway and can still be admired.

They are adding greenery and will update the existing fountain to closer resemble the original. It looks beautiful!

Check back for more information on all the other exciting things coming to Epcot including Guardians of the Galaxy Coaster and the space themed restaurant next to it, a limited-time night time show over the World Showcase Lagoon featuring classic Epcot music, and coming soon in 2020 a brand new nighttime spectacular.