New Show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom to Feature Russell, Dug from Disney•Pixar’s ‘UP’

Today Walt Disney World announced an all-new show coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Spring 2018 featuring Russell and Dug from Disney•Pixar’s “UP.”

Beginning just in time for the 20th anniversary of Disney’s Animal Kingdom next year, this new experience will offer guests the chance to see Senior Wilderness Explorer Russell and his furry friend Dug as they discover species of birds from around the world in their newest adventure at the Caravan Theater in Anandapur village. There will be “UP” close encounters each day with amazing winged creatures!

As you plan ahead, we also wanted to let you know that in order to begin to prepare for the new show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, December 31, 2017 will be the final showing of Flights of Wonder. Until the end of this month, you can still experience Flights of Wonder at the park.

From The Disney Parks Blog

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Disney Reveals Details of Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort Transformation

In January Disney announced that Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort at Walt Disney World would undergo some transformations. Today Disney shared new colorful details about those enhancements debuting late this summer!

Old Port Royale at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort will be reimagined as the port of entry where guests will check in before embarking on their island vacation. This centralized location will offer resort guests more convenient access to services, amenities and dining, including an all-new Centertown Market for casual eats, an all-new Shutters restaurant offering waterfront dining adjacent to the new Banana Cabana outdoor bar and lounge, and Calypso Trading Post for shopping.

Centertown Market will be expanded and enclosed, creating a quick-service restaurant with an indoor street market vibe. Guests will enter the space under a large palapa-like structure, accented with glowing colored light pendants made from glass bottles. The market will feature open shutters, wooden light posts, awnings, ornamentation and unique seating areas. Guests will also have access to the Grab n’ Go market for a specialty coffee and quick bites.

Shutters, a Caribbean-inspired table-service restaurant, will be located on the waterfront of Old Port Royale, transporting guests to a beachfront home in the tropical islands. Large open shutters will allow the sun to cast a warm light into the space adorned with handmade items that appear as they’ve been found on the islands. Leaves and floral design motifs will fill the space, celebrating the natural beauty of the Caribbean.

A festive poolside bar, Banana Cabana will be a great place to gather for food and drinks, immersing guests into the fun and relaxation of island life. Cabana-style drapes will flank seating areas and re-purposed steel drums will illuminate a central communal table made from a wooden boat.

Forget something? No worries! With its history of being the port’s import and export facility, Calypso Trading Post will offer shoppers Disney merchandise and other vacation essentials.

From the Disney Parks Blog

Disney Announces Performer Line-Up for Epcot International Festival of the Arts Broadway Series

Walt Disney World has announced the performer line-up for the 2018 Epcot International Festival of the Arts – Disney on Broadway Series.

The Disney on Broadway Series takes place on Fridays through Mondays at the America Gardens Theatre, with showtimes at 5:30, 6:45 and 8:00 PM, and is included with theme park admission. Dining packages with reserved seating are also available.

The performer line-up is:

  • January 12-15 and 19-22: New this year, Kara Lindsay will join returning performer Kevin Massey, performing songs from Tarzan, Aladdin, Newsies, and Frozen.
  • January 26-29 and February 2-5: Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White, performing songs from Tarzan, The Lion King, Aida, Aladdin, and The Little Mermaid.
  • February 9-12 and 16-19: Ashley Brown and Josh Strickland, performing songs from Beauty and the Beast, Tarzan, Mary Poppins, Newsies, and Frozen.

#DisneyParksLIVE to Stream ‘Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!’ Live on December 4

As a part of the “Flurry of Fun” park-wide holiday celebration at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the park lights up each night with the high-spirited projection show “Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!”

The show, which takes place nightly throughout the holiday season, stars elves Wayne and Lanny from “Prep & Landing.” In it, Christmas Day is almost here, but Jolly Old Saint Nick is nowhere to be found. Luckily, Wayne and Lanny are on the job, and they won’t rest until the big guy is back at the North Pole. Watch in wonder as buildings and rooftops come alive, and immerse you in beloved scenes from “Mickey’s Christmas Carol,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Pluto’s Christmas Tree,” “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas” and more.

The Disney Parks Blog will stream the full performance of “Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!” live from Disney’s Hollywood Studios on Monday, December 4, at 7:55 p.m. EST, on the Disney Parks Blog. To tune in, simply visit the Disney Parks Blog just before the viewing begins or add a Facebook reminder to your calendar here.

To follow along on Twitter, use the hashtags #DisneyParksLIVE.

From the Disney Parks Blog

Walt Disney World to Celebrate Mickey’s Birthday Saturday

The Magic Kingdom will be celebrating Mickey Mouse’s birthday on Saturday November 18th with special entertainment, merchandise and desserts.

The day will kick off with a special Welcome Show birthday moment and rope-drop, followed by a Tomorrowland birthday-themed dance party, birthday celebration during Move it! Shake it! Dance & Play It! Street Party, and finally a Happily Ever After pre-show birthday moment.

Guests arriving at any of the Walt Disney World theme parks will also receive a birthday button.

If you’re celebrating Mickey tomorrow, be sure to pick up one of his tasty treats and wish him a happy birthday. All of these items will be available all weekend, November 17-19

Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Found at Trolley Car Café

  • Mickey’s Birthday Cupcake – Cookies and cream-flavored cupcake with cookies and cream frosting

Magic Kingdom
Found at Main Street Bakery, Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn and Cafe, Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Café and Pinocchio Village Haus

  • Steamboat Willie Cookies ‘n Cream Cheesecake – Cookies and cream cheesecake with chocolate glaze, whipped cookies and cream panna cotta and Steamboat Willie garnish
  • Found at Tony’s Town Square Restaurant, Cinderella’s Royal Table, Be Our Guest Restaurant and Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen
  • Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Hat Chocolate Cake – Layers of flourless chocolate cake with caramel mousse, milk chocolate pearls and a red glaze

Disney’s Contemporary Resort
Found at Contempo Café

  • Mickey’s Red Velvet Cake – with cream cheese filling and white chocolate glaze

Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts
Found at Beach Club Marketplace and Market at Ale & Compass

  • Mickey’s Birthday Celebration Cupcake – Large peanut butter cupcake

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Found at Narcoossee’s

  • Happy Birthday Mickey Dessert – Almond-crusted cheesecake

Disney Springs
Found at the Ganachery

  • Strawberry Ganache Lollipop
  • Mickey Mouse-themed Milk Chocolate Bar

Found at Amorette’s Patisserie

  • Mini Mickey Dome Cake – Chocolate chiffon, milk chocolate mousse and orange blossom pâte de fruit
  • Mini Pluto Dome Cake – Banana and peanut butter-flavored
  • Mickey-Shaped Chocolate Macaroon

Epcot
Found at Sunshine Seasons

  • Mickey’s Cookies ‘n Cream Cheesecake

Found at Rose & Crown Dining Room

  • Kid’s Bangers and Mash with Mickey-Shaped Potatoes
  • Scotch Egg with Mickey-Shaped Puff Pastry
  • Mickey-Shaped Cheese in Cheese Plate
  • Mickey Banoffee Tart – Banana, Jameson Irish Whiskey-Caramel, sweet cream and chocolate

Found at The Garden Grill

  • Mickey-Shaped Cucumber Salad

Found at Fountain View and Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe

  • Mickey’s Celebration Cupcake – Vanilla cupcake with white chocolate mousse and vanilla buttercream

Found at Le Cellier Steakhouse

  • Mickey Nanaimo – Chocolate cake with peanut butter cream covered in red glaze with graham cracker-coconut streusel and toasted coconut ice cream

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
Found at Kona Café

  • Mickey’s Hau’oli lā Hānau – Coconut mousse, crispy vanilla pearls, tropical fresh fruits and dragon fruit sorbet

Found at Capt. Cook’s

  • Mickey’s Chocolate Celebration Birthday Cupcake – Chocolate cupcake filled with strawberry guava ganache and topped with white chocolate mousse

Disney’s All-Star Resorts
Found at Disney’s All-Star Music Resort

  • Mickey’s Pumpkin Mousse Marshmallow Tart – Pumpkin mousse with spiced marshmallow dipped in chocolate

Found at Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort

  • Steamboat Mickey’s Cupcake – Chocolate cupcake with Oreo buttercream

Found at Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort

  • Mickey’s Pumpkin Whoopie Pie – Pumpkin whoopie pie with cream cheese buttercream

Disney’s BoardWalk
Found at BoardWalk Bakery

  • Heritage Mickey Dessert – Black and white tart with white chocolate mousse and topped with a dark chocolate Mickey dome adorned with chocolate ears, tail and buttons

Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Found at Roaring Fork

  • Mickey’s Mischievous Rice Krispy Treat – Mickey-themed crispy treats

Found at Whispering Canyon

  • Mickey’s Birthday Dark Chocolate Dome – Dark chocolate Mickey dome with raspberry sauce and Chambord cream

Found at Geyser Point

  • Mickey’s Birthday Celebration Brownie – Mickey brownie with dark chocolate mousse and white chocolate face

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
Found at The Mara

  • Mickey’s Charm – Lemon rose cremeux, caramelized milk chocolate mousse tart

Found at Jiko – The Cooking Place

  • Fantasmic Entremet – Spiced chocolate and cherry entremets

Found at Boma – Flavors of Africa

  • Steamboat Willie Cheesecake – Oreo cheesecake tartlets

Found at Sanaa

  • Tropical Mickey Tart – Coconut lime cremeux, passion fruit mousse tart

Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Found at Creature Comforts, Kusafiri Coffee Shop & Bakery and Isle of Java

  • Safari Mickey Cupcake – Yellow cake filled with banana pastry cream, dipped in chocolate ganache and topped with buttercream and fondant and red chocolate balloon

Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park
Found at Leaning Palms and Happy Landings Ice Cream

  • Mickey’s Birthday Cupcake – Vanilla cupcake with white buttercream icing and Happy Birthday Mickey chocolate topper

Found at Typoon Tilly’s and Snack Shack

  • Mickey’s Birthday Cupcake – Chocolate cupcake with buttercream icing and red chocolate Mickey glove

Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort
Found at Trail’s End Restaurant

  • Mickey’s Birthday Celebration Cupcake – Yellow cake with strawberry filling, buttercream icing, sugar cookie Mickey Ears, chocolate buttons and tail

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
Found at ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill

  • Mini Mickey Dome Cake – Chocolate chiffon, milk chocolate mousse and orange blossom pâte de fruit

Disney’s Pop Century Resort
Found at Everything POP Shopping & Dining

  • Mickey Cupcake – Vanilla cupcake covered with buttercream frosting and topped with Oreo cookies and crumbles

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
Found at Landscape of Flavors

  • Mickey Cupcake – Vanilla cupcake with buttercream icing, Oreos and white chocolate buttons

Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
Found at Artist Palette

  • Happy Birthday Mickey! – Funfetti cake with vanilla buttercream

Disney’s Old Key West Resort
Found at Good’s Food to Go

  • Mickey Funfetti Mini Cake – Yellow cake with vanilla bean filling

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
Found at Centertown

  • Mickey’s Birthday Celebration Cupcake – Red velvet cupcake filled with chocolate mousse and fondant Mickey topping

Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside and French Quarter
Found at Riverside Mill Food Court and Sassagoula Float Works and Food Factory

  • Mickey’s Birthday Celebration Cupcake – Red velvet cupcake filled with chocolate mousse and fondant Mickey topping

Star Tours Gives Guests First Peek at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Planet

Scott Trowbridge, Portfolio Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering, released a statement in the Disney Parks Blog regarding the new Star Tours sequence that is debuting today at both Walt Disney’s World and Disneyland….

“This morning, guests on Star Tours – The Adventures Continue boarded Starspeeders at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disneyland park to discover a thrilling new journey to the farthest reaches of space and found themselves landing unexpectedly on a planet in the outer rim of the Star Wars galaxy – a planet known to C-3PO, and now to us, as Batuu.

This remote outpost on the galaxy’s edge was once a busy crossroads along the old sub-lightspeed trade routes, but its prominence was bypassed by the rise of hyperspace travel. Now home to those who prefer to stay out of the mainstream, it has become a thriving port for smugglers, rogue traders and adventurers traveling between the frontier and uncharted space. It’s also a convenient safe haven for those intent on avoiding the expanding reach of the First Order. While Batuu may be new to us, it is clearly already familiar to many characters from the Star Wars saga as a stepping off point for epic adventures.

As the Creative Executive on these projects working alongside so many talented Imagineers and Lucasfilm partners, I look forward to sharing more updates from Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge as we further explore the stories and adventures you’ll be invited to discover when our new lands open in 2019.”

Disney’s Magical Express Changes Pickup to 4 Hours Before Flight Departure

Effective November 17th, Disney’s Magical Express will begin picking up guests four hours prior to their flight departures.

Due to enhanced Transportation Security Administration (TSA) security measures, Orlando Airport is now advising travelers to arrive at least 3 hours before their departure time.

Disney’s Magical Express is making the change for both domestic and international flights to accommodate the TSA change.

Resort airline check-in desks at resort hotels will operate from 4am to noon daily, and guests using the resort airline check-in service must now check in for the flight at least four hours prior to departure.

Orlando International Airpot expects to be operating the enhanced security through early January 2018.

Walt Disney World Announces Dates for 2018 Flower and Garden Festival

Walt Disney World has announced that the 2018 Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival will take place over 90 days, from February 28 through May 28.

Epcot will be celebrating 25 years of the event in 2018.  Some highlights of next year’s event include:

  • Disney Character Topiaries
  • 15 Outdoor Kitchens serving creative, flavor-rich cuisine that highlights spring garden offerings
  • Garden Rocks music series – with its classic rock ‘n’ roll stars from the ‘60s, ‘70s ‘80s and ‘90s. Garden Rocks Dining packages will be available for certain Epcot restaurants – pairing a meal with reserved seating for your favorite concert
  • Garden Tours – Including Gardens of the World Tour (spring edition); the English Tea Garden Tour; and Royal Tea Garden Tour (extra fee required)
  • New interactive kids play areas
  • Egg-Stravaganza scavenger hunt

Splash Mountain at Magic Kingdom Closing for Most of January 2018 for Another Refurbishment

Disney has scheduled Splash Mountain at the Magic Kingdom for another refurbishment early next year.

The refurbishment is scheduled to begin on January 8 and last through February 1, with a reopening to guests on February 2nd next year.

Currently Splash Mountain is nearing the end of a major refurbishment, which began on August 28th and lasting through November 16th.

The January refurbishment has been rumored for some time. The closure seems to have been confirmed because Disney has now begun cancelling FP+ selections during that time frame.

Pirates of the Caribbean in Walt Disney World Closing in February for New Auction Scene Installation

Pirates of the Caribbean will be closing this coming February for a three week refurbishment that is expected to see the introduction of the new auction scene.

The refurbishment is scheduled to begin February 26th and last through March 18th and  reopening to guests on March 19th.

Disney has previously announced that the iconic auction scene will see the redhead play a new role, joining the pirate ranks and overseeing the pirate auction of the townspeople’s valuables.

A similar scene opened at Disneyland Paris this past summer, and the change will come to both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort in 2018.

Pirates of the Caribbean last saw a major change with the introduction of characters and elements from the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise back in 2006.