Avenger’s Campus to Open at Disney California Adventure on June 4th

Recently Disneyland Resort made an announcement that we’ve all been anticipating, that Avengers Campus… an entirely new land dedicated to discovering, recruiting and training the next generation of Super Heroes – will open June 4, 2021 at the Disney California Adventure!

Inside this fully immersive land, guests will be invited to team up with the Avengers and their allies and live out your Super Hero dreams. Avengers Campus is comprised of several super hero locations, each hosted by a different Avenger to share their unique powers, technology and knowledge with recruits.

The first key area is the Worldwide Engineering Brigade, also known as WEB. This area will bring together bright innovators like Peter Parker who have been assembled by Tony Stark to invent new technologies and equip everyday people to become Super Heroes like the Avengers. WEB will house the new WEB SLINGERS: A Spider-Man Adventure, the first Disney ride-through attraction to feature the iconic friendly neighborhood Spider-Man!

The second anchor attraction will be a fan-favorite that opened in 2017, Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!

When it is time to take a break from all of the heroics, several new dining spots at Avengers Campus will offer dishes that are rich in both flavor and storytelling. One of these is Pym Test Kitchen,  a food innovation science lab where the food and drinks tell a story. Just as Ant-Man and The Wasp use “Pym Particles” to grow and shrink just about anything, Pym Technologies applies this science to the creation of shareable bites, inventive entrees and sweet treats. You will be able to savor such items as the Impossible™ plant-based large and micro meatballs with pasta, or the “Pym-ini,” a panini served by the slice or as a long, multi-portion sandwich.

Adjacent to the Pym Test Kitchen, an oversized beer can overhead signals that grown-up beverage tastings are available at Pym Tasting Lab. You can order a craft beer, ranging from a blood orange hefeweizen to an amber lager, or try one of the Pym Research Staff’s Pym Particle-infused cocktail experiments.

Both of these locations will be offering mobile ordering via the Disneyland app.

Guests can visit one of The Avengers favorite food joints, Shawarma Palace. There they can enjoy a shawarma wrap at this food cart, which is decked out with memorabilia for Avenger fans. Lastly, Taneleer Tivan did not limit his collection to lovable misfits; he is also curating a weird and wonderful menu of intergalactic eats at the Terran Treats food cart near Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!

Super Heroes will come to life in more exciting ways than ever throughout Avengers Campus. You may have heroic encounters with Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Black Panther, the Dora Milaje, Black Widow, Ant-Man and The Wasp, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Thor and even villains like Loki, some of whom are making their first appearances at the park.

Guests may even have the chance to witness Spider-Man swinging into action high above Avengers Campus with gravity-defying, acrobatic feats never seen before in a Disney theme park.

At a nearby ancient sanctum, Doctor Strange will be training recruits in the mystic arts by bringing this ancient sanctum to life with powerful spells. At night, the area will glow even more vividly with majestic colors and lights, pulsating with mystic energy.

There also will be plenty of shopping locations.

The WEB Suppliers store will offer the latest inventions, including interactive Spider-Bots much like the ones you will see in the new attraction, WEB SLINGERS: A Spider-Man Adventure. Each Spider-Bot has a remote control, and all eight articulated legs move forward and backward. You may customize your Spider-Bot with tactical upgrades to harness the powers and style of favorite Super Heroes, including Black Panther, Iron Man and Black Widow, as well as Ant-Man and The Wasp.

Other must-have items at WEB Suppliers include a specially-designed backpack to carry Spider-Bots when they are not in action, Spider-Man light goggles, a take-home spider web kit and Funko Pop! vinyl figurines of Spider-Man and Iron Man.

The Campus Supply Pod is the place to power up with official Avengers Campus gear, including performance fleece hoodies and tees, headwear, drinkware and other Super Hero supplies.

Creations Shop Opening this Summer at EPCOT

Walt Disney World announced today that the new flagship merchandise location at EPCOT will be called “Creations Shop” and will replace the former Mouse Gear.  The new shop is scheduled to open this summer.

Creations Shop will feature a bold, sleek design that creates a perfect showcase for large variety of items you’ll find as part of the guest experience at EPCOT.

The new store will include a Mickey Mouse mural along the side wall and homages to him throughout the shop. These large dynamic murals will showcase the global, contemporary icon that Mickey has become for generations around the world.

According to Imagineer Zach Riddley –

Creations Shop features a bold, sleek design that creates a perfect showcase for the rich variety of items you’ll find as part of your EPCOT experience. It will be an open, bright, welcoming environment with huge glass walls that allow sunlight to pour in and make you feel like you’re in touch with nature even while indoors. We are using color, materials and light in new ways with some unique EPCOT touches that connect back to this park’s storied past while looking to the future.

Adjacent to the shop will be a revitalized Club Cool Hosted by Coca-Cola, which will also open this summer.

According to Disney –

This will celebrate Coca-Cola in a fresh new way, while keeping the fan-favorite experience that invites you to explore tasty drinks from around the world. This space will also have some new magic to bring the global experience of Coca-Cola to life for you.

Disneyland Resort Announces Which Attractions Will be Running When Parks Re-Open

The Disneyland Resort has announced which attractions, restaurants and shops that will be operating and which ones that won’t be when Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure re-open to guests on April 30th.

Disneyland Attractions That Will Be Open –

  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Astro Orbitor
  • Autopia
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
  • Casey Jr. Circus Train
  • Disneyland Railroad
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant
  • Gadget’s Go Coaster
  • Haunted Mansion
  • Indiana Jones Adventure
  • It’s a Small World
  • King Arthur Carrousel
  • Mad Tea Party
  • Main Street Vehicles
  • Mark Twain Riverboat
  • Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run
  • Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Pinocchio’s Daring Journey
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin
  • Snow White’s Enchanted Wish
  • Space Mountain
  • Splash Mountain
  • Star Tours — The Adventures Continue
  • Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance
  • Tarzan’s Treehouse
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  • Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room
  • Surprise character sightings

Disneyland Dining That Will Be Open –

  • Bengal Barbecue
  • Cafe Orleans
  • French Market Restaurant
  • Galactic Grill
  • Gibson Girl Ice Cream Parlor
  • Jolly Holiday Bakery Café
  • Little Red Wagon
  • Market House
  • Milk Stand
  • Mint Julep Bar
  • Plaza Inn — with modified service and menu
  • Red Rose Taverne
  • River Belle Terrace
  • Ronto Roasters
  • Ship to Shore Marketplace
  • Stage Door Cafe
  • The Tropical Hideaway
  • Churros, popcorn and ice cream carts

Disneyland Shops That Will Be Open –

  • Adventureland Bazaar
  • Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique — For merchandise only, no makeovers
  • Black Spire Outfitters
  • Candy Palace and Candy Kitchen
  • Creature Stall
  • Cristal d’Orleans
  • Crystal Arts
  • Disney Clothiers
  • Disney Showcase
  • Disneyana
  • Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities
  • Droid Depot
  • Emporium
  • First Order Cargo
  • It’s a Small World Toy Shop
  • Kaman’s Art Shoppe
  • Le Mascarade d’Orleans
  • Little Green Men Store Command
  • The Mad Hatter in Fantasyland
  • Main Street Magic Shop
  • Pieces of Eight
  • Pioneer Mercantile
  • Savi’s Workshop — Handbuilt Lightsabers
  • The Star Trader
  • Toydarian Toymaker
  • Balloons and glow carts

Disney California Adventure Attractions That Will Be Open –

  • Games of Pixar Pier
  • Goofy’s Sky School
  • Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: Breakout
  • Incredicoaster
  • Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind
  • Jessie’s Critter Carousel
  • Jumpin’ Jellyfish
  • Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters
  • Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic
  • Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue!
  • Pixar Pal-A-Round
  • Radiator Springs Racers
  • Silly Symphony Swings
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • The Little Mermaid — Ariel’s Undersea Adventure
  • Toy Story Midway ManiaTurtle Talk with Crush
  • Games of Pixar Pier
  • Goofy’s Sky School
  • Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: Breakout
  • Incredicoaster
  • Inside Out Emotional Whirlwind
  • Jessie’s Critter Carousel
  • Jumpin’ Jellyfish
  • Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters
  • Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic
  • Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue!
  • Pixar Pal-A-Round
  • Radiator Springs Racers
  • Silly Symphony Swings
  • Soarin’ Around the World
  • The Little Mermaid — Ariel’s Undersea Adventure
  • Toy Story Midway ManiaTurtle Talk with Crush

Disney California Adventure Dining That Will Be Open –

  • Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats
  • Angry Dogs
  • Award Wieners
  • Carthay Circle Lounge — Alfresco Dining
  • Cocina Cucamonga Mexican Grill
  • Cozy Cone Motel – Cones 1-3
  • Cappuccino Cart
  • Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Café
  • Flo’s V8 Café
  • Ghirardelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop
  • Hollywood Lounge
  • Lamplight Lounge
  • Pacific Wharf Distribution Co.
  • Poultry Palace
  • Rita’s Bajas Blenders
  • Senor Buzz Churros
  • Smokejumpers Grill
  • Sonoma Terrace
  • Studio Catering Co.
  • Churros, popcorn and ice cream carts

Disney California Adventure Shops That Will Be Open –

  • Bing Bong’s Sweet Stuff
  • Collector’s Warehouse
  • Disneyland Backlot Premiere Shop
  • Elias & Co.
  • Kaman’s Art Shoppe
  • Kingswell Camera Shop
  • Knick’s Knacks
  • Off the Page
  • Paradise Pier Sunglass Cart
  • Ramone’s House of Body Art
  • Rushin’ River Outfitters
  • Seaside Souvenirs
  • Studio Store
  • Trolley Treats
  • Balloons and glow carts

Disney also included a full list of attractions that will be closed across the Resort on opening day, many due to refurbishments.

Disneyland Closed Attractions –

  • Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters
  • Chip ‘n Dale Treehouse
  • Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes
  • Disneyland Monorail
  • Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln
  • Donald’s Boat
  • Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
  • Frontierland Shootin’ Exposition
  • Goofy’s Playhouse
  • Jungle Cruise
  • Main Street Cinema
  • Matterhorn Bobsleds
  • Mickey’s House
  • Minnie’s House
  • Pirate’s Lair on Tom Sawyer Island
  • Sailing Ship Columbia
  • Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough
  • Star Wars Launch Bay
  • Storybook Land Canal Boats

Disney California Adventure Closed Attractions –

  • Animation Academy
  • Bakery Tour
  • Blue Sky Cellar
  • Disney Junior Live on Stage
  • Golden Zephyr
  • Grizzly River Run
  • Red Car Trolley
  • Redwood Creek Challenge Trail
  • Sorcerers Workshop

Based on rumors as to what types of attractions the State of California was going to allow to be open, the list of open attractions is much larger than I had expected.

Is there any one particular attraction that you missed the most and are really looking forward to experiencing?

Disneyland Resort Announces Ticket and Park Reservation Information for Re-Opening

As previously announced, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure will be re-opening on April 30, with limited capacity.

When Disneyland Resort re-opens its two theme parks, they will have enhanced health and safety measures, and will limit capacity through a new theme park reservation system that requires all guests to obtain a reservation for park entry in advance. Theme park reservations will only be available online, in advance only, and for a specific date, subject to availability.

Disneyland provided some important information to help you plan ahead:

Theme Park Reservations:

To enter Disneyland park or Disney California Adventure park, both a theme park reservation and valid admission ticket for the same park on the same date are required for guests ages 3 and up. Guests must have a valid theme park admission ticket in order to make a reservation. Theme park reservations will be limited and subject to availability and, until further notice, only California residents may visit the parks, and in groups no larger than 3 households, in line with current state guidelines. 

The theme park reservation system will launch on April 12, and guests with existing valid theme park tickets can begin making park reservations for the days that their ticket is valid. Theme park ticket sales will resume on April 15, and guests without park tickets may begin purchasing tickets and making park reservations. As a reminder, ticket expiration dates were extended for many outstanding tickets. To accommodate as many types of ticket holders as possible, park reservations for select dates may be made available on a rolling basis. Ticket calendars will be updated on a rolling basis. Check for updated availability.

Here are some key dates to remember:

  • April 9: If guests currently hold a theme park ticket, they can check available days for your 1-day ticket type beginning April 9 on Disneyland.com/ParksUpdates.
  • April 12: The theme park reservation system will open no earlier than 8 AM PT on April 12.  Guests who already have valid theme park tickets may begin making park reservations at that time.
  • April 15: Theme park ticket sales will resume no earlier than 8 AM PT on April 15.. Guests without park tickets may begin purchasing tickets and making park reservations at that time.

Disneyland is asking guest to make sure that guests log in to their Disney account first to link valid theme park tickets prior to accessing the park reservation system.

See how to make a park reservation, below –

It is important for everyone to note that a hotel stay DOES NOT guarantee a theme park reservation. Guests with valid theme park admission tickets who are planning a stay at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa will also need to book a theme park reservation.  Disney is advising guest who plan to visit the theme parks during their stay to get their theme park reservation prior to making a hotel reservation.

If you have park hopper tickets, there is some good news. Guests with Park Hopper tickets may choose, pending availability, which theme park to start their day, when making their theme park reservations, and then will be able to visit the other park beginning at 1 PM that day. Guests with multi-day tickets will be required to make a separate park reservation for each day they plan to visit the theme parks.

Park Hours:

At this time Disney is planning that daily park hours for Disneyland and Disney California Adventure will be 9 AM to 7 PM.

Parking:

Theme park parking will be available at the Mickey & Friends and Pixar Pals parking structures, located off Disneyland Drive.

Dining: 

Disneyland Resort is planning to re-open dining bookings for select locations on April 22, with limited capacity. Guests will be able to book their dining reservation 60 days in advance on Disneyland.com or with the Disneyland App, subject to availability.

Disneyland Resort is also encouraging guests to use the mobile order service for a contactless and cashless experience.

Walt Disney World Updates Mask Policy

Walt Disney World has just announced that it will be modifying its mask policy to slightly loosen the requirements for when masks must be worn at the theme parks.

The latest update will begin on  April 8th.  The update will allow guests to remove masks when they are taking photos outdoors while physically distanced.

Specifically the new policy states –

Face coverings are required for all Guests (ages 2 and up) and Cast Members, including those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine. Please bring your own face coverings and wear them at all times, except when dining or swimming. You may temporarily remove your face covering while actively eating, drinking or taking an outdoor photo, but you must be stationary and maintain appropriate physical distancing during this time.

It is important to note that masks must be worn at all other times, in accordance with the original guidelines for the park’s reopening back in July of 2020.

Walt Disney World Updates Resort Hotel Opening Timeline

Since Walt Disney World re-opened to guests last July following the closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Disney has gradually been re-opening its resort hotels.

The following resort hotels are now open and accepting new reservations:

  • Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village
  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
  • Disney’s Beach Club Villas
  • Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
  • Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
  • Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
  • Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
  • Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • Disney’s Old Key West Resort
  • Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
  • Disney’s Pop Century Resort
  • Disney’s Riviera Resort
  • Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
  • Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
  • The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

With the opening of these hotels, Disney has taken a measured and deliberate approach to implement a number of health and safety measures based on guidance from various governmental authorities and health agencies.

Disney Resort Hotels Scheduled to Reopen—and Currently Accepting Reservations

Walt Disney World is planning to open the following resort hotels to booked Guests on the following dates. These Disney Resort hotels are currently accepting reservations.

May 30, 2021 Disney’s Beach Club Resort
June 6, 2021 Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Late July 2021 Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

While a re-opening date was previously shared for Disney’s BoardWalk Inn, it will remain closed until further notice, as the re-opening timeline continues to be re-evaluated.

Everyone needs to remember that future re-opening dates are subject to change and Guests’ reservations could still be modified to other Disney Resort hotels if needed.

Disney has stated that given the current situation, there are some Disney Resort hotels and other areas that are not, as of this time, being scheduled for re-opening yet.

Disney also has stated that they will continue to monitor the constantly changing environment and its impact on the state of Florida as they find the right time to welcome back even more Guests and Cast Members.

The EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival for 2021 to Begin July 15th

Walt Disney World announced today the dates for the 2021 EPCOT International Food and Wine Festival.

This year’s festival will begin on July 15th  and run through to November 20th, which is about the same length as last year’s event.

Most notably absent is that Disney is not assigning the “Taste of” title to the festival, meaning that perhaps we may see  return of a full scale festival for the first time since 2019.

This year’s event will return with Global Marketplaces, including the return of many favorites such as Canada, Greece, Germany, Hops and Barley, Appleseed Orchard and many others.

There will be many ways for guests to enjoy this year’s event, beyond just eating lots of great food:

  • Sample all sorts of delicious cheeses served in fun ways as part of Emile’s Fromage Montage – if you collect a stamp from five different Global Marketplaces, you’ll earn a prize!
  • Remy’s Ratatouille Hide & Squeak will send you on a savory scavenger hunt in search of Remy statuettes hidden all over the park.
  • Take a tasty souvenir home from the new merchandise collections, including a festival collection featuring a spirit jersey, baseball cap and so much more.
  • Listen to musical favorites performed by Voices of Liberty, Mariachi Cobre and the Jammin’ Chefs.

Disney MagicMobile Launches on Apple Devices for All Guests

Today Walt Disney World announced on the Disney Parks Blog that beginning today, all guests with Apple devices will be able to enjoy  the new convenient and contactless option for entering the theme parks and more, as part of the rollout of Disney MagicMobile service!

The new service is now available on the iPhone and Apple Watch and coming soon to other smart devices.  Disney MagicMobile service will be an easy-to-use new way for guests to experience Walt Disney World.

It is important to note that the new service will not be replacing the MagicBand, but will offered in addition to other options such as the MagicBand.

Disney put out a few helpful tips to get started with Disney MagicMobile service:

  • Create A Customized Digital Pass: Guests can create a Disney MagicMobile pass through the My Disney Experience app and add it to the Wallet app on iPhone or the digital wallet on other smart devices. You can customize your pass by choosing from several Disney-themed designs that animate upon use (including special designs just for Annual Passholders and DVC Members)! For added ease, you may also store multiple passes on a single device, a great option for families.
  • Easily Enter the Parks and More: Simply hold your iPhone, Apple Watch, or other smart device near an access point when entering the parks or using other available features, just like you do with a MagicBand. With Express Mode on iPhone and Apple Watch, guests do not even need to wake or unlock their Apple device, or open up the app, to use their Disney MagicMobile pass. As a reminder, valid park admission and a park reservation are required for park entry and must be linked to your account.
  • Discover Other App Enhancements: We’ve also added a new feature in the My Disney Experience app that allows you to automatically link your Disney PhotoPass attraction photos and videos to your profile through your smartphone. Just confirm your settings in advance of riding at participating attractions. The My Disney Experience app also enables Disney Resort hotel guests to unlock their room door using our current digital room key feature.

Guests may use Disney MagicMobile service, a MagicBand or a card interchangeably.

MagicMobile is not currently available at the parking lot entry booths, but it is anticipated that it is going to happen in the near future.

Disneyland Resort Unviels Longterm Expansion Plans

Disneyland Resort has unveiled long-term plans for theme park, retail and parking expansion. Disney plans to work with the City of Anaheim to reimagine what the resort district will look like over the next couple decades.

Disney said that they will be asking the city over the next few weeks and months for more flexibility in plans that were approved in the 1990s in order to be able to add a mix of theme park, hotel, retail, dining and entertainment on the eastern and western edges of the Disneyland resort.

Disneyland portfolio executive for Walt Disney Imagineering Jeanette Lomboy said during a media briefing on Thursday, that the DisneylandForward plan includes what could be possible in the future at the Disneyland resort with more flexibility and approvals from the city.

Because of the current rigid district structure, we just need more flexibility.  We’re excited about the possibilities and ready to dream. Believe me, we have no shortage of ideas, content or stories to tell or build.

The westside expansion envisions a theme park on the Downtown Disney and Lilo and Stitch parking lots woven around the Disneyland Hotel and Paradise Pier Hotel.

Disney officials stated that the westside site bounded by Katella Avenue, Walnut Street, Magic Way and Disneyland Drive as more of a theme park expansion than a new “third gate.”

Concept art of the site shows a central mountain surrounded by water with buildings interspersed on the south end of the property. A mountain ridge to the west separates the theme park from nearby neighborhoods.

The westside site will connect with Downtown Disney near the unused AMC Theater and ESPN Zone.

Concept art of the northern end of the westside site shows an Autopia-like car course and a Dumbo-like spinning ride.

The eastside expansion would bring together theme park experiences, hotels, retail, dining and entertainment on the Toy Story parking lot next to the Anaheim Convention Center.

Concept art of the eastside retail area features a central lagoon surrounded by shops and a low-rise hotel with a parking structure near the corner of Katella Avenue and Haster Street.

Lomboy added –

What we do know today is that guests need and want more.  In order to give guests what they want, we need more flexibility here in Anaheim. Guests are demanding immersive integrated experiences that are not singular in their uses. We no longer think of uses as separate. Retail, dining, entertainment, theme parks and hotels are all part of the same experiences in the same place. And we need the space in our lands to create story-rich environments.

The DisneylandForward plan also includes possible new parking along Disney Way.

Walt Disney World Begins Test of Facial Recognition for Park Entrance

Today Walt Disney began testing at the Magic Kingdom a new way for guests to enter the theme park through facial recognition.

The test is optional and will be conducted from today until April 23rd.

The new system employs a touchless system that is designed to eliminate the need for the fingerprint scanners that have been used for many years at the Walt Disney World.

The technology captures an image of a guest’s face and converts it into a unique number, which is then associated with the form of admission being used for park entry.

Courtesy of WDWMAGIC

Children under 18 will need to be in the presence of their parents or guardian and have consent before participating in the test.

When visitors enter the park, they can enter through the lane designated for the test program. They must remove accessories, including hats, visors or sunglasses, and have their face mask on.

Courtesy of WDWMAGIC

Here is Disney’s statement on how the data will be collected and how the information will be used –

At Walt Disney World Resort, we’re always looking for innovative and convenient ways to improve our Guests’ experience—especially as we navigate the impact of COVID-19.

With the future in mind and the shift in focus to more touchless experiences, we’re conducting a limited 30-day test using facial recognition technology (length of test subject to change).  The technology we’re testing captures an image of a Guest’s face and converts it into a unique number, which is then associated with the form of admission being used for park entry.  Participation in this test is optional. For those interested in volunteering to participate in this effort, please make sure you arrive with valid theme park admission and a Disney Park Pass reservation.