Walt Disney World (FL)

Frozen Summer Games Returning to Blizzard Beach This Summer

by on April 17, 2017

Frozen Summer Games

©Disney

Last year, Frozen fans could be found in droves at Disney’s Blizzard Beach taking part in the inaugural Frozen Summer Games. Well, this year, the festivities are once again taking place, meaning even more summer fun for the park, that is once again taking advantage of the freak snowstorm that has happened over Central Florida.

Beginning May 26 at the popular water park, Guests can join Team Olaf or Team Kristoff in a variety of fun activities including a Snowball Toss, Slide Races, Ski Pole Limbo and Ice Pail Relays. There will also be crafts, games, and yes, a DJ on hand throughout the day for Guests to enjoy.

Even better news is that this year, Guests will be able to meet and take photos with both Kristoff and Olaf! (This is the first time Guests will have the opportunity to meet Kristoff at Walt Disney World.)

Don’t delay though! The Frozen Summer Games are a limited time event and will end on August 13!

 

Club 33 Is Coming to Walt Disney World

by on April 13, 2017

©Rikki Niblett

Have you ever wished you could join Club 33, but traveled more frequently to Walt Disney World than Disneyland? Well, it appears that now, not only will you have one, but you’ll soon have four different versions of Club 33 at the Walt Disney World Resort.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, versions of Club 33 will be built at Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Epcot, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. As of right now, details about this project are still very sketchy. We do not know where exactly Club 33 will be built inside the four theme parks, and we have no idea how much it will cost to join the club. (I’m gonna expect it’ll be pricey!) However, one thing is for sure – getting to experience Club 33 is on many Disney fans’ bucket lists, and it looks like Disney is attempting to make it a little bit easier for those of us on the East Coast to mark it off our lists. (Or I should say easier for those who have the cash?)

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Ask It Results: Bring Back a Parade

by on April 12, 2017

The results are in! Last week we asked you:

Which Disney Parade Would You Bring Back?

Disney fans love their parades, and there were a couple write-in suggestions as well, including bringing back the Main Street Electrical Parade (currently showing at Disneyland), or bringing back Paint the Night (which I would love to see come to Walt Disney World), or bringing back Block Party Bash, and even votes for Celebrate a Dream Come True and Mickey Mania. And of course the ever popular “Just bring back something to Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and to the nighttime hours at Magic Kingdom. But in the end, there was one clear favorite among the choices. With more than 1,500 votes cast, here are the results.

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First Look at Night of Joy 2017

by on April 11, 2017

©Disney

Each September, Walt Disney World holds its annual Night of Joy event. The popular event is a Christian music festival that invites Guests to celebrate with fun and fellowship. This year’s event will take place on Friday, September 8 and Saturday, September 9 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports.

Last year was the first year for the event to be held at the ESPN Wide World of Sports and because of that, the event was able to be expanded with Guests having more options than ever with ample seating at indoor and outdoor venues, amazing performances on multiple stages, including Champion Stadium, activities and more.

This year, the Night of Joy event will be hosted by Matthew West.

Performers for each night include:

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Dining Showdown: The Best Burgers at Walt Disney World

by on April 10, 2017

I thought ranking the best pizza at Walt Disney World was pretty challenging, but that was nothing compared to my next dining showdown, an epic quest to find the best burgers at Disney World. Nearly every theme park and resort features a restaurant serving some kind of burger, and in recent years, several standout options have emerged as upscale restaurants have joined the burger bandwagon. I’ve tried so many burgers around Walt Disney World, but the ten options below are my favorites based on the quality of the patty, toppings, and yes, even the sides that accompany the burger. Let’s count them down!

The Rankings

  1. D-Luxe Burger's El Diablo BurgerEl Diablo Burger at D-Luxe Burger (Disney Springs; quick service; $10.99)

Though D-Luxe features several beef-patty burgers, this chorizo and signature blend burger is a standout (and just happens to be the first burger I tried there during my review). Since opening, this burger’s flavor has grown, with the fried banana peppers, pepper jack cheese, grilled onions, and chipotle mayonnaise on top offering a bit of spice to the perfectly caramelized chorizo patty. I find the addition of any one of D-Luxe’s signature fry sauces to the burger elevates the flavor as well, a fun customization you can make with little effort. This is the cheapest burger in my top 10, but one word of warning: this burger does not come with anything else (fries are available for purchase on the side, and are highly recommended, despite the cost).

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Ask It Results: Favorite Nighttime Show at WDW

by on April 5, 2017

The results are in! Last week we asked you:

What is your favorite current nighttime show at Walt Disney World?

With some of the polling done on Twitter, we’re limited to four choices, but there are more than four nighttime shows at Walt Disney World, so there was an enthusiastic write-in campaign for one fan favorite! Here’s the results, from least votes to greatest, with more than 1,800 votes cast.

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Ask It: Bring Back a Parade

by on April 5, 2017

This week’s Ask It fires up the wayback machine, looking at parades that are no longer around. Here’s this week’s question:

Which Disney Parade Would You Bring Back?

  • Spectromagic (57%, 395 Votes)
  • Tapestry of Nations/Dreams (22%, 150 Votes)
  • Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade (16%, 109 Votes)
  • Disney Stars and Motorcars Parade (5%, 33 Votes)

Total Voters: 687

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We picked one parade from each of the Walt Disney World theme parks, but feel free to comment with other ideas, too. Happy voting!

Walt Disney World Crowd Calendar – April Preview

by on April 4, 2017

When looking at April Crowds at Walt Disney World it all starts with Easter. This year Easter Sunday falls on April 16. Historically, Sunday is not the busiest day of the Easter season although you can expect to see very large crowds every day around the holiday. The Christmas peak season that we see every year happens between December 27 and January 1, a few days after the holiday itself. For Easter, the busiest days at the Disney World parks happen before the holiday. Guests of the Disney parks can expect to see peak Easter crowds on the Tuesday through Thursday before Easter (April 11 – April 13).

Easter is very busy but not as extreme as Christmas and New Year’s Eve

Easter is not the only date of interest on the April calendar. In fact, April is chock-full of special events. Here is a breakdown of what’s happening in April and how it might impact crowds in the parks.

Flower & Garden Festival at Epcot

Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival continues throughout all of April. Guests can expect the parks to be extra busy on weekends, especially in the afternoon. The festival includes temporary food kiosks all around the park which bring in curious locals who come for the food but don’t ride the rides. This is why you might see very crowded parks with manageable wait times at the attractions. Avoid weekends unless you have no choice or if you are visiting for a specific concert.

Grad Nights

Grad Nights are back but now they are at Typhoon Lagoon. We don’t think those grads will spill over to the other parks in great numbers but beware if they do. There may be a premium on arriving early at the parks on days around Grad Nights – they tend to sleep in.

Easter

The Disney World Crowd Calendar is predicting very busy parks during the second week of April (April 10 – April 17). Two-thirds of the largest school districts are off at least one day that week and that means large crowds at Disney World. The good news is that park hours are extended to accommodate the influx of guests so the savvy planner can take advantage and arrive as early as possible. Do that and you will be ahead of the game. After the Easter break, 95% of school districts are back in class so we expect to see the parks return to moderate crowd levels fairly quickly after Easter Monday.

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My Disney Experience App Sees Redesign

by on March 31, 2017

My Disney Experience For those of you planning your summer Walt Disney World vacations, you’ll want to make sure you download (or update) to the newly redesigned My Disney Experience app!

With the updated My Disney Experience app, Guests will still be able to experience all things Disney. So you can still access FastPass+ information, wait times, dining information, PhotoPass photos, maps, merchandise, and more, but it’s all so much more spelled out. The app now opens to the park maps to help guests find attractions, restaurants, restrooms things easier.

The app now also has a new feature called “My Resort Dashboard.” This helps Guests who may be staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel access their reservation details all in one place. My Resort Dashboard gives directions to the resort, a map showing the location of a Guest’s room (once you know what it is) and a link to directly call the Resort Front Desk.

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Julia’s Best Week Ever, March 30, 2017: Eggs and Tea

by on March 30, 2017

Towards the end of the week, one of my neighbors stopped by and asked how Spring Break was going. I looked at her and said “Going? I think you mean GONE!” This year is flying by, and it seems that every item on my to-do list that disappears is replaced by one or more overnight. Of course it doesn’t help the feeling of time flying by that Orange County schools schedule their Spring Break for several weeks before Easter. But having Spring Break for this week meant family coming into town, and that meant we got to do a few things that were out of the norm…

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