Can you believe that Pandora: World of AVATAR finally opens this month? Let’s hope it lives up to all the hype that has been generated. Disney is introducing a Na’vi Translator Device for a submersion type experience with the new land. In other news, Disney has released the dates for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. This is great news for those who want to plan a fall visit. Be sure to look at our Closures and Renovations section, especially if you were thinking about seeing Cirque du Soleil: La Nouba.
Security has changed at Disney. They moved some of the metal detectors outside of the Magic Kingdom to the Transportation and Ticket Center. Theoretically, this will cut down on the traffic jam that always clogs the entrance. The resorts on the monorail line also have security set up before guests’ board. This will eliminate the need of having to go through bag check at the entrance. However, anyone arriving by resort buses will still need to go through security measures at the front of the theme park. If you’ve travelled there recently, did you notice a difference? Let us know!
Disney has announced the dates for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party! Dates for MNSSHP are August (25, 29), September (1, 7, 10, 12, 15, 17, 19, 22, 24, 26, 29), October (1, 3, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12, 13, 15, 17, 19, 20, 22, 24, 26, 27, 29, 31) and November 1st. You will still get to see the Sanderson Sisters in the Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular, the “Boo-to-you” Halloween Parade, and the “Happy Hallowishes” fireworks shows.
The dates for MVMCP are November (9, 10, 12, 14, 16, 17, 26, 28) and December (1, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, 12, 14, 15, 17, 19, 21, 22) Included in this special ticketed event are the Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, “Holiday Wishes”, “A Frozen Holiday Wish” and “Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration.” Tickets have not gone on sale yet and no prices have been announced. We will keep you posted on new information as it is released.
On Thursday April 6th, the U.S. Navy Blue Angels flew over the Magic Kingdom in a spectacular display. If you missed it, you can relive the magic here.
Disney’s Photopass has developed a new photo opportunity in the China Pavilion at Epcot. A special light up flower is available to use as a prop for a wonderful evening picture. If you are looking for creative ways to capture your vacation, this seems like a good one.
Photopass photographers are also waiting to make your trip magical at the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. There are several locations around Epcot to be seen with Figment, cute butterflies, and of course your family. This opportunity will disappear, along with the festival, on May 29th.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Star Tours will add a new adventure later this year in honor of the next film in the Star Wars saga, The Last Jedi. The Disney’s Hollywood Studios attraction will add a new destination that features locations and actions from the film making each time you experience the attraction potentially different from the last.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
If you really want to immerse yourself in the world of Pandora, set your eyes on the Na’vi Translator. Coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom this month, the translator helps you learn how to pronounce 90 Na’vi words. The Translator Device will sell for $19.99 which includes 15 cards. Additional cards will be sold separately for $6.99 each. This sounds like a neat way to get guests interacting with each other at the park.
Rivers of Light plus Tiffens equals one incredible evening at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The Rivers of Light Dining Package at Tiffens allows you to enjoy a great meal and get a reserved seating for the new water show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The current cost of the dining package is $67 for adults and $26 for kids ages 3-9. Tiffens is a two-credit restaurant on the Disney Dining Plan.
The Polite Pig opened in April in Disney Springs! The cuisine features barbecue with a twist. You can pair your entrée with delicious southern sides and a choice of over 50 types of bourbon for a pleasurable dining experience. This is a quick service restaurant and is not part of the Disney Dining Plan.
Disney recently announced a new promotion. Save up to 25% on rooms through August 31st. As always there are a few restrictions that apply, but a discount is always nice. Disney announces new promotions often. Check the official Walt Disney World website for current discounts, or contact our recommended travel agency, Destinations to Travel, and they will stay on top of new discounts for you.
In April, Disney World went through the testing phase of a modified Fastpass system for the rides at Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. The tests were not linked to the Magic Band or My Disney Experience app. No word yet on when or if this will be officially added to the Disney water parks.
My Disney Experience recently relaunched their app to make it more accessible and easier to use. There’s a new “My Resort Dashboard” for guests who are staying on property that includes reservation information, directions, and a direct link to the Resort Front Desk. If you don’t like change, this new version is going to drive you nuts. Everything has been remodified and it takes a little getting used to.
The Orange County Convention Center hosted a Star Wars Celebration in April. Many stars were on hand to sign autographs and participate on panels. Some of the guests included Jeremy Bulloch, Hayden Christensen, Peter Mayhew, and Mark Hamill. Also, making a surprise appearance were Harrison Ford and George Lucas. In honor of this celebration, more Star Wars merchandise has been released. Among the new merchandise are Droid Factory droids. You will be able to exchange parts with the pre-packaged figures and the droids you create at the Droid Factory, which can be found at Tatooine Traders in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
If you have a few thousand dollars to spare (okay, maybe about $25,000+) you may be able to buy in to an exclusive club that looks to be coming to Walt Disney World. The famous Club 33, which has been a part of Disneyland for 50 years, will be coming this fall to all four Walt Disney World theme parks. Club 33 is an exclusive membership club. The location in Disneyland costs approximately $25,000 to join and another $10,000+ a year membership fee. There’s no word yet on how much the club will cost in Walt Disney World.
Disney Vacation Club members can now make reservations for a special Mother’s Day Brunch being held on May 14th at the Contemporary Resort. The theme is “You’ll Be in My Heart” and will feature music and “friends” from Tarzan. Food will be traditional brunch buffet fare and there will be mimosas for Moms. Prices are $53.95 for ages 10+ and $29.95 for ages 3-9. Tax and gratuity are not included.
Hellloooooo! Big Summer Blow-out! Actually, it’s just the return of Frozen Summer Games to Blizzard Beach starting May 26th. You will be able to enjoy games, music, and crafts along with the regular water fun at the coolest water park at Disney World. Decide whether you are “Team Kristoff” or “Team Olaf” and kick off summer with some extra fun from the end of May until August 13th.
Although Disney has yet to publicly confirm (or deny) the reports, the internet is on fire with the “confirmed” rumors that a gondola system is coming to the Walt Disney World Resort. The gondolas would theoretically carry up to 10 passengers at a time from Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Pop Century and the Art of Animation to Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot. What do you think about this possible new development? We’ll keep you posted as we hear more.