We are preparing for “The World’s Most Magic Celebration” – the Walt Disney World Resort’s 50th Anniversary! October 1, 2021 will ring in 50 years of magic and memories in the heart of Florida. Of course, Disney knows how to throw a party and we are all invited! In honor of their 50th, Disney is opening several new experiences including attractions, resorts, dining, entertainment, and everything in between. Much of the work for this incredible celebration is currently underway which means we will benefit with new experiences leading all the way up to the 50th, and beyond. Do you think 50 years is “over the hill?” Disney proves they are just getting started!
1 – A New 50th Logo
With any epic celebration, a logo to set the stage is a must! Well, Disney is setting the bar high for their 50th Anniversary Celebration with a beautiful new logo. Images of the logo show the Cinderella Castle making the perfect silhouette with light, pastel colors that seem to shimmer against the night-sky blue background. A big “50” is centered on the Castle with the phrase “Walt Disney World – The World’s Most Magical Celebration” below it. We have no doubt it will be a magical celebration indeed!
2 – The NEW Epcot
The park that will be undergoing the most drastic changes for the 50th Anniversary is Epcot. And by drastic changes… we mean VERY drastic! A total transformation of Epcot’s Future World is already in the works with a new “Four Neighborhoods” and storytelling theme moving in. A completely renovated entrance will greet Epcot guests. There are fantastic new attractions that will be completed before or by the 50th Anniversary such as Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, PLAY! Pavilion, Journey of Water inspired by Moana, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along, and a Mary Poppins inspired attraction. An exciting new nighttime spectacular called HarmonioUS is being prepared to wow guests. Plus, new restaurants such as Space 220, Regal Eagle Smokehouse, and La Crêperie de Paris will be arriving.
Need to full rundown of the new Epcot? Click here for everything we know about what’s coming to the new Epcot!
3 – Tron Lightcycle Run Rollercoaster
Tron is on its way to Magic Kingdom, and we for one couldn’t be more excited! If you’ve been to Magic Kingdom recently, chances are you’ve seen the mass construction taking place just beyond Space Mountain in Tomorrowland. Keep in mind that the construction requires the temporary closure of the Walt Disney World Railroad. To get a close look at this steel rollercoaster’s progress, take a ride on the Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover. You can also see much of the construction when standing on the other side of Barnstormer in Fantasyland. Finally, if you’re looking for an expansive view, head to the top of Disney’s Bay Lake Tower Resort.
Unlike some of the new arrivals planned for 2021, we already have an idea of what to expect from Tron Lightcylce Run as it is an extremely popular attraction at Shanghai Disneyland Park (with a slightly different name)! It’s a semi-enclosed rollercoaster themed after Disney’s Tron film series. Guests will have the opportunity to sit on what looks like a motorbike (aka “Lightcycle”) and be launched around the coaster track at suspected speeds of 60 mph! Want a sneak peek at what to expect? YouTube Shanghai Tron Lightcycle and ride along. Tron fan or not – this attraction is going to be amazing!
4 – Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser
If you’re a Star Wars fan, you may want to be sitting down for this one! For the first time ever, Disney is preparing for a truly ALL immersive Star Wars experience that we’ve only dreamed of. It’s a resort, but not a resort. An attraction, but not an attraction. Entertainment, but not entertainment. It’s, it’s… a STARCRUISER! Near Disney’s Hollywood Studios, guests board what is called a Halcyon – a Starcruiser known throughout the galaxy for its impeccable service and exotic destinations. Each “adventure” is a 2-night experience with a stay in well-appointed Passenger Cabins offering a view of space. Once onboard the Starcruiser, the Star Wars experiences begin!
- Be prepared to personally dress the part as you set off on this space voyage.
- Don’t be surprised to find characters aboard the Starcruiser right along with you!
- Gather together in the Atrium known as “the heart of Halcyon”.
- Visit The Bridge to try your skills at operating the navigation and defense system of the Starcruiser.
- Test your skills as you Wield a Lightsaber!
- Sneak into The Engineering Room for a little fun.
- Enjoy impressive dining along with a visit to The Silver C Lounge.
- And set off in a Launch Pod for a planet-side excursion to Batuu… aka Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
The Starcruiser is said to arrive in time for the 50th Anniversary. Save those bills now in preparation for this first of its kind voyage!
5 – Reflections – A Disney Lakeside Lodge
A new resort is scheduled to open in 2022, just after the 50th Anniversary in 2021. We still want to include Reflections – A Disney Lakeside Lodge as we suspect reservations to be opening sometime in late 2021. This “lakeside lodge” will be located between Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort and Fort Wilderness for that perfect lakeside theme. Reflections will be considered a Deluxe Resort and Disney Vacation Club’s 16th resort home with 900 rooms, many with views of the beautiful Bay Lake. The wonders of nature will be abundant throughout the modern resort and resort rooms. We know some of the resort rooms will be in an A-Frame structure while there will also be treehouse suites available. Disney stories will be apparent throughout, with the exciting Princess and the Frog inspiring a table-service restaurant on the water! With the close location to Disney’s Magic Kingdom, suggested fireworks views, and upscale setting – we suspect Reflections will be an incredibly popular resort destination.
New”ISH” Experiences in 2021:
- Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway: Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a picnic with the sweet Mickey and Minnie? Well, in Spring 2020, you’ll be able to with the first-ever Mickey and Minnie themed attraction. In the location of the former Great Movie Ride, Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway will feature a ride along experience through a storyline where Goofy as the conductor. This family-friendly attraction is said to be home to the most hidden Mickey’s in any Disney attraction in the whole world!
- Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge: It’s crazy to think that when Walt Disney World celebrates their 50th anniversary, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will be celebrating its 2nd Anniversary! This 14-acre land in Hollywood Studios opened August 29, 2019, with its second attraction, Rise of the Resistance opening December 5, 2019.
- Toy Story Land: Toy Story Land will be celebrating a 3-year anniversary in 2021! Time flies when you’re having fun.
As mentioned above, some of the NEW Epcot will be unfolding all the way up to the 50th Anniversary. A few experiences expected to open later this year are included below. For the full list, click here.
Epcot Forever: Disney is launching a temporary nighttime spectacular called “Epcot Forever” beginning October 1, 2019. This limited-time show will be a celebration of the past, present, and future of Epcot, built around the magical soundtrack guests have come to know and love at the park.
- Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue: A new quick-service restaurant opens in the American Adventure Pavilion “later this year”. This modern barbecue smokehouse will feature American barbecue and brews.
- Space 220: A space-themed table service restaurant opening in December 2019! This restaurant will feature high definition screens that will make dining feel like it’s truly happening on a ship in outer space while you dine.
- Pandora – World of Avatar: Can you believe that in 2021 Animal Kingdom’s newest land, Pandora, will be celebrating its’ 4-year anniversary! Just had to include this must-do land.
- Cirque du Soleil: The original Cirque du Soleil show closed in 2017. Tickets are available now for the new show beginning March 20, 2020, which is said to “set your imagination in motion!” Cirque du Soleil is partnering with Walt Disney Animation Studios and Walt Disney Imagineering to make for one outstanding, live performance show. Click here for more information and to purchase tickets.
- NBA Experience: The NBA Experience has taken over the former DisneyQuest location in Disney Springs. This experience opened on August 12, 2019, and is making for the perfect place for all basketball fans to score big with interactive experiences revolving around NBA.
- Riviera Resort: A stunning European inspired resort and Disney Vacation Club’s 15th Resort home, opens doors to guests in December 16, 2019. Located close to Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Riviera guests will have the opportunity to catch a ride on the Disney Skyliner for easy access to and from Epcot and Hollywood Studios.
- Gran Destino Tower: A massive new tower erupted at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort! As of July 2019, guests have been enjoying their stays in one of the 545 new rooms. Plus, new dining experiences have rave reviews including the rooftop table service restaurant (Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood) and an island restaurant (Three Bridges Bar & Grill).
- Disney Skyliner: Let’s not forget the latest in Disney’s transportation! Opening September 29, 2019, guests can take a ride on the Skyliner to and from Disney Resorts including Riviera Resort, Caribbean Beach Resort, Art of Animation Resort and Pop Century Resort to access Epcot and Hollywood Studios. Take advantage of all the new happenings inside Epcot and Hollywood Studios with an easy ride on the Skyliner.
Don’t wait! Go ahead and begin making plans now to experience “The World’s Most Magic Celebration” for a 50th Anniversary that will be long remembered.
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