Recent News

The American Idol Experience Will Close at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

by on June 17, 2014

Copyright Disney

Copyright Disney

We talked earlier about how it was a rumor, but it now is official: The American Idol Experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will close in January 2015.

The attraction, which is based on the experience that performers have in real life on the hit Fox television show, has guests performing in front of a live audience. The audience then, much like on the television show, votes on which performer was the best. The winner of the day receives a Golden Ticket, allowing special front-of-the-line access at any American Idol audition (if their age fell within the television show’s age restriction.)

In a joint statement, Disney and FreemantleMedia said, “After more than five successful years, ‘The American Idol Experience’ will be coming to a close at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park in January 2015. Our partnership with FremantleMedia and 19 Entertainment has been a great addition to the park, and we are very appreciative of the amazing cast and guests who have devoted their time and talent to make this experience special and memorable.”

Since the attraction’s debut in 2009, many of the performers on the American Idol  TV show auditioned and performed first on The American Idol Experience stage. Last year alone, three of the top 13 contestants were discovered originally in the park.

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Walt Disney World Monorails to See New Summer Operating Schedule

by on June 14, 2014

The Walt Disney World monorail system is currently in the process of being updated with an automated operating system. To accommodate for this work, monorail service will be adjusted for the summer. Both Magic Kingdom loops, as well as the Epcot loop, will see service impacted.

Work will begin on June 22 and the monorail line will see a fixed schedule all summer long. Here is a look at the temporary monorail schedule and when you’ll be able to catch a ride on the monorail.

  • Magic Kingdom Resort Beam: 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 midnight
  • Magic Kingdom Express Beam: 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
  • Epcot Beam: 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.

During this time, additional watercraft and buses will be available to transport guests.

When completed, the new automated system will allow for faster switching trains on and off the beams, a more frequent dispatch of trains, a more consistent running monorail, and monorail arrival information.

There is currently no time table for when the monorails will return to their normal operation.

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Aurora and Snow White Moving to Town Square at the Magic Kingdom

by on June 14, 2014

Princesses meet at Walt Disney World  Photo-Disney

Princesses meet at Walt Disney World Photo-Disney

Beginning this Sunday, June 15, two princesses will be moving locations at the Magic Kingdom.

First, we’ll see Aurora (Sleeping Beauty) moving out of Princess Fairytale Hall over to the Town Square Courtyard on Main Street, U.S.A. Aurora will be meeting guests each afternoon, into the early evening. Also, Snow White will be start meeting guests daily at Center Street on Main Street, U.S.A.

Anna and Elsa will continue to meet guests at Princess Fairytale Hall in Fantasyland. Their schedule recently changed; they are now available from park open until about a half hour before park closing. With this change, there will be no “visiting princess” greeting along with the sisters.

Cinderella and Rapunzel will continue to meet guests at Princess Fairytale Hall as per usual.

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Food Truck Event at Downtown Disney on June 21

by on June 12, 2014

New Food Trucks Open Nightly at Downtown Disney

©Disney

If you’ve been to Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World recently, you’ll have noticed that the food truck phenomenon has arrived. Most evenings of the week, Disney has four different food truck options spread throughout the shopping district. They include Namaste Cafe, World Showcase of Flavors,  Fantasy Fare, and Superstar Catering.

However, if you visit Downtown Disney’s West Side on June 21, you’ll have not only get the option to stop and grab a bite from one of the four Disney trucks, but there will also be local trucks on-site. This is part of the first-ever event called “Trucks on the Town at Downtown Disney West Side.”  The event will take place from 5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. in the Cirque du Soleil courtyard. and there will be 14 different options in all for guests to enjoy. Dishes will include empenadas, cupcakes, cheesesteaks, barbecue, seafood, sliders, flatbreads, and more. The trucks that will be featured are:

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Daisy Lauren’s Best Week Ever: June 12, 2014

by on June 12, 2014

Hi, Everyone! I’m very happy to announce this new weekly article bringing you the best of Disney and what to expect in the week ahead. Since this is new, please let me know what you like, what you don’t, and what you’d like to see added. We’re always really happy to hear your feedback. Now, let’s get started with a look at the best week ever!

The Star Wars Weekends event continues to be popular at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, but last weekend wasn’t as crowded as expected. I’ve heard rumors that this was because cast member passes were blacked out. In any case, it was nice to see the streets not quite so packed!

1

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Disney Changes FastPass+ Tiers at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot

by on June 10, 2014

©Disney

©Disney

Disney is still constantly tweaking FastPass+ selections that are available for guests, and a brand new tweak is currently on the horizon. Beginning Monday, June 16, Disney will change up the tiers of attractions available for guests at both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Here is a look at what will be affected.

At Epcot, originally, Living With the Land was a Tier 2 attraction, while the Epcot Character Spot and Maelstrom were Tier 1 options.

Beginning June 16, Epcot’s tier system will be as follows:

Tier 1 (Choose One)

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Guardians of the Galaxy Preview Coming to Disney Parks

by on June 9, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy

©Disney

Late this summer, a brand new Marvel blockbuster called Guardians of the Galaxy will hit theaters. To prepare for this huge release, beginning on July 4, guests at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland can catch an exclusive sneak preview, giving them an extended look at this upcoming film.

At Walt Disney World, guests wishing to see this preview can head to the ABC Sound Studio (the former location of Sounds Dangerous) at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. At Disneyland, the preview will take place at the Magic Eye Theater in Tomorrowland (where Captain EO is currently playing. Disney does say Captain EO is expected to return at a future date).

The preview will be shown in 3D at both locations daily. This is similar to a sneak preview that is currently taking place surrounding the movie Maleficent.

Guardians of the Galaxy hits theaters on August 1.

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Where to Watch the World Cup Live at Walt Disney World

by on June 9, 2014

ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill - ©Disney

ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill ©Disney

Are you a fan of soccer? If so, and you don’t want to miss a minute of the action from the 2014 FIFIA World Cup (which takes place in Brazil from June 12 through July 13), there are a few places around the Walt Disney World Resort where you can partake in the fun.

The main stop you should make, at least while visiting Epcot, will be The Odyssey Restaurant, which is located near World Showcase Plaza, kind of between Test Track and the Mexico Pavilion. The Odyssey will be showing all the games live on multiple screens, and guests will be able to purchase beverages, snacks, and other merchandise in the lobby area.

In addition, at Epcot the Germany Pavilion will be celebrating with a special soccer experience, and guests will be able to stop in the World Showcase Plaza area and have their photo taken with a topiary version of Goofy, who is attempting to play the popular sport.

If you will not be inside Epcot, never fear! There will be many other locations where you can watch the games live. Here is the full list of resort locations where you will be able to watch the action:

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Disney’s All-Star Music Resort Food Court To See Lengthy Refurbishment

by on June 9, 2014

©Disney

©Disney

The Intermission Food Court at Disney’s All-Star Music Resort will see an extremely extensive refurbishment from August 1 until December 20, reopening on December 21.

During the refurbishment work, guests staying at the resort will have a few dining alternatives. First, the Note-able Games arcade, found in Melody Hall, will be converted into a grab-and-go area, featuring sandwiches, salads, desserts, and bakery items. A Rapid Fill refillable mug refill station will be available there, as well. Guests may also choose to visit the Singing Spirits pool bar, which will serve select menu offerings. In addition, in-room pizza delivery will also be available from 3:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m.

For guests looking for a substantial meal, Disney will provide transportation to Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort, where guests can visit the End Zone Food Court,as well as to Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort, where the World Premiere Food Court is available for guests. Guests can also choose to walk to either resort. (Walking to All-Star Sports will typically be the closest option.)

The refurb work that will take place at Intermission Food Court will be similar to what happened last fall at Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort, which concluded in a completely updated seating area, as well as renovated meal stations, featuring many create-your-own meal options.

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Kongstruction: T-Rex Photo Op Relocated

by on June 8, 2014

As PotterWatch construction updates wind down, our Kongstruction coverage will begin increasing to keep pace with progress on Project 340, the yet-unannounced King Kong attraction going into the area behind Thunder Falls Terrace in Islands of Adventure‘s Jurassic Park. This week, let’s check out the newly relocated T-Rex photo op, as well as some earth moving on the construction site.

Project 340 Earthmoving

First, here are a few photos of the current state of the Project 340 lands, located between the Thunder Falls Terrace restaurant and Toon Lagoon:

Kongstruction project 340

Photos by Seth Kubersky

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