Last week was a busy one at the Disney World resort with the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and the start of Epcot’s International Food & Wine Festival. Things were complicated a bit by Hurricane Dorian which presented a threat through the holiday weekend and into the following week. Disney also announced a new sweepstakes offering guests the chance to win a free Disney World vacation. This and more below.
1 – Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Opens at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
The big news of the week, of course, is the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios on August 29. We enjoyed the media preview on August 27-28 and were able to explore and learn everything that the land has to offer. We also got a front-row viewing spot for the grand opening celebration on the 28th. See below for more information on the opening and the news that came out during the preview.
2 – Hurricane Dorian Impacts Disney World
Disney World is bracing for possible impacts from Hurricane Dorian, which is tied for the second strongest Atlantic hurricane on record. Preparations began over Labor Day weekend with supplies and sandbags arriving and work being done to secure the property. Whether the storm is a direct hit, or we only get a glancing blow, there is a lot to be done to make sure Disney World is ready.
Disney has started to announce closures and changes to operating schedules and services. To check on the latest closures click here.
3 – Planning Your Trip to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
We’ve put together a lot of guides to help you have the best visit to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. See below for links to these articles.
4 – Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Now Open
The 2019 Epcot Food & Wine Festival also opened on Thursday, August 29! This year’s festival is a record-breaking 87 days and runs through November 23, 2019. We were there on opening day and grabbed photos of the menu boards with this year’s prices and snack credits to help with your planning. See below for the link to see the boards. We plan to visit the festival many times this year, so keep an eye out for more coverage!
5 – Enter #BackToBatuu Now for A Chance to Win a Free Trip to Disney World
If you are visiting Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge now through September 30, you have a chance to win a free vacation to come back for the opening of Rise of the Resistance in December. Here are all the details from Disney Cast Member Jennifer Fickely-Baker:
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is now open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort! And guests visiting in the months of August and September will want to get their cameras and smartphones ready – because pics you snap in the land over the next few weeks could net you an amazing opportunity!
Starting today, you can enter your best photos into the #BacktoBatuu sweepstakes for a chance to be among the first to help the Resistance topple the First Order when the Rise of the Resistance attraction opens at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at the Walt Disney World Resort in December.
Seventy-seven winners of the #BacktoBatuu sweepstakes will get the chance to return to Batuu to attend a special event at Walt Disney World Resort on December 4. The visit will also include a 4-day/3-night trip for the winner and one guest, including resort accommodations and airfare provided by Southwest Airlines.
To enter, visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge now and post a photo from your experience on Instagram or Twitter. Be sure to tag @WaltDisneyWorld and include the hashtags #sweepstakes, #GalaxysEdge & #BackToBatuu in your post!
For more details, visit BackToBatuu.com.
6 – Watch How Disney Wishes Can Stay with You For a Lifetime
The Make-A-Wish Foundation has been doing incredible work since the 80’s. It allows kids dealing with serious illnesses to make a wish and have it come true. Disney is all about making wishes and because of the partnership between Make-A-Wish and Disney those dreams about the magical world of Disney can come true. Cast Member Thomas Smith shares the details about how special this really is:
Some wishes are so magical, they stay with you for a lifetime. At D23 Expo 2019, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman (and Make-A-Wish Board Member) Bob Chapek shared an amazing video that brought the power of wishes to life – and showed the lasting effect they can have on a wish kid. See for yourself how profound these moments can be:
“Our cast members take such tremendous pride in making every Disney wish experience as unforgettable as possible for kids and their families,” said Bob Chapek. “Wish-granting is such an important part of who we are at Disney, and why we take the responsibility so seriously.”
Since the first wish was granted at Disneyland Resort in 1980, Disney and Make-A-Wish have worked together to make more than 130,000 wishes come true for children facing serious illnesses.
“The powerful relationship between Make-A-Wish and Disney goes back to the very beginning of our organization, and has only continued to grow,” said Richard Davis, CEO of Make-A-Wish. “Disney is the largest wish-granter on Earth, and we’re thankful for everyone who brings magic to life by supporting our organization and making wishes come true.”
As we’ve seen through these powerful stories, a wish is only the beginning. Wish granting is part of the Disney Team of Heroes initiative which aims to deliver comfort & inspiration to families with children facing serious illnesses. Thank you to Make-A-Wish for almost four decades of wish granting, we at Disney Parks, Experiences and Products can’t wait to be part of all the wishes to come!
For a no obligation, FREE Quote on a Disney vacation package, please contact our travel partner Magical Vacation Planner at 407-442-0227 (407-442-0215 for Spanish). You can also request a FREE quote online by Clicking HERE.