Welcome back to this brand new edition of Walt Disney World Newsworthy Notes! (Crowd cheers…ok…maybe not…but a girl can dream.) This week has been very fruitful with little tidbits to share with you all; I’ve got lots of refurbishment news, details on Be Our Guest Restaurant, new information on Avatarland, and more!
Wow! There are a lot of refurbishments that have been scheduled for Walt Disney World. Let’s start at the Magic Kingdom. First, for those traveling in the summer, you will unfortunately not get to experience Pirates of the Caribbean. The attraction, which has been riddled with problems lately, will be seeing a 4+ month refurbishment, from May 11 through September 25, reopening September 26. No word on what the refurbishment will entail, but it is certainly necessary. There will also be a two day refurbishment of Stitch’s Great Escape in early March, March 1 and 2. The attraction will reopen on March 3. For those visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom for barbeque, you’ll have to wait a little longer, because Flame Tree Barbeque’s refurbishment has been pushed back to last until April 22, reopening April 23. At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, it would appear that Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show will be closed for a refurbishment from April 20-24, reopening on April 25. Also, Voyage of the Little Mermaid will be closed September 7-10, reopening on September 11. You can always keep up with the latest refurbishments on our refurb page.
So I don’t usually share the videos that Disney posts, but I will if I find them particularly newsworthy…like today, where they posted one hyping up Avatar for Disney’s Animal Kingdom. It’s nice to finally see some more information about the project. The new concept art shown in the video is quite gorgeous, but what really impressed me was when they finally showed some of the bioluminescent aspects. It almost reminds me of being under the sea, seeing a unique type of illuminated coral. These additions will certainly make Animal Kingdom a destination once the sun sets. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, check out the video:
In a move that surprises no one who’s been following along, Camp Minnie-Mickey, a land found at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, will be closed starting on January 6. (The last day of operations will be January 5.)
With this closure, the characters that were available for meet and greets will move to different locations around the park.
Pocahontas will be found along the Discovery Island Trail.
King Louie & Baloo from The Jungle Book will greet guests along Bradley Falls between Asia and Africa.
Donald Duck will move to the Cretaceous Trail in DinoLand U.S.A., where guests can join him for a photo with Cory the Dinosaur.
As a reminder, Festival of the Lion King will also have its last performance at the current location in Camp Minnie-Mickey on January 5. The show will then be dark for about 6 months and, when it reopens, will be found in a new theater located in the Africa section of the park.
Camp Minnie-Mickey was always supposed to be a temporary land. The area will reopen in 2017 as The World of Pandora, otherwise known as Avatarland.