Home / News / NEWS ROUNDUP: Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge Opens, WDW Feels Impact of Dorian, Food & Wine Festival Kicks Off, Plus a Chance to Win a Free Vacation to Disney World

NEWS ROUNDUP: Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge Opens, WDW Feels Impact of Dorian, Food & Wine Festival Kicks Off, Plus a Chance to Win a Free Vacation to Disney World

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.

Disney Gives Sneak Peek and Details on Rise of the Resistance as Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Debuts

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser – What We Know So Far About the Upcoming Star Wars Themed Hotel Coming to Disney World

Limited Time Eats Celebrating Star Wars: Galaxy’s edge Now at Disney World

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.

To read more about how Disney World prepares for hurricanes, 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.

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Survival Guide – What You Need to Know Before You Arrive

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – What You Need to Know

Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – What You Need to Know

Dining in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – What You Need to Know

Merchandise in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – What You Need to Know

Unlock Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge with Plan Disney Pars App – What You Need to Know

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!

Click here to see our photos of the menu boards on our Instagram page.


 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

Credit: Disney

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.


About Chad & Cindy Nykamp

After years of multiple Walt Disney World vacations, Cindy and Chad's dream of living in Orlando came true in 2010. After friends and family made them their go-to-people for Walt Disney World advice, Cindy and Chad launched in August 2015 to share their knowledge and love of Disney. Chad and Cindy have been Disney World Annual Passholders for years, DVC members, together have raced more than 70 runDisney races, and particularly love cruising on the Disney Cruise Line. Chad and Cindy also regularly represent at Walt Disney World media events. While attending these events, they get an insiders view of all the new things that have come to Walt Disney World. These experiences have helped them gain knowledge and expertise they happily pass on to their followers. They still can't believe how lucky they are to have such an amazing opportunity and will continue to share Disney with anyone who will listen!