Home / News / DISNEY NEWS ROUNDUP: Smokehouse Menu & Photos, Mickey is Moving, Passholder Holiday Specials & Magnet Set Revealed, Villains After Hours Returns, runDisney Race News & More

DISNEY NEWS ROUNDUP: Smokehouse Menu & Photos, Mickey is Moving, Passholder Holiday Specials & Magnet Set Revealed, Villains After Hours Returns, runDisney Race News & More

More food news! We got our first look that the menu along with some delicious food photos from Regal Eagle Smokehouse, the new barbeque quick service restaurant coming to Epcot. We also got a peek at a slew of new food items celebrating Frozen 2. Mickey Mouse is making a move you need to be aware of, and Disney Villains After Hours is returning. Disney revealed the new holiday passholder magnet set and some special passholder discounts and events for the holiday season. The holiday transformation of Disney World is well underway and we got a sneak peek at the new Animal Kingdom offerings and sweet new holiday merchandise. runDisney revealed 2020 race and registration dates along with a brand-new bucket list race.

All this a more below in this week’s news round up!


1 – Menu & Photos of Regal Eagle Smokehouse Coming Soon to Epcot

Barbecue lovers rejoice! The menu and photos of dishes coming to the new Regal Eagle Smokehouse have been released! We can’t wait to try this place when it opens in “early winter.” Learn more at the link below.

Click here to see the menu and photos of the upcoming Regal Eagle Smokehouse.

2 – Mickey Mouse Moving to New Location in Epcot in Early 2020

Mickey Mouse moved to a temporary meet and greet location in September due to the construction of the upcoming reimagined Epcot. We now know where and when Mickey will be heading to his new home. Find out more at the link below.

Click here for more on Mickey’s new location in Epcot. 

3 – More Disney After Hour Dates & Disney Villains After Hours in Spring 2020

With the popularity of Disney After Hour events rising, Disney has added more event dates this spring at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom. Disney also announced the return of Disney Villains After Hours with 14 more additional dates being added to the calendar. For more details, including reviews of the events, click the links below.

Click here for details on Disney After Hours in spring 2020.

Click here for details on Disney Villains After Hours returning to Magic Kingdom in spring 2020.

4 – Holiday Transformation from Halloween to the Holidays

Goodbye, Halloween! Hello, holiday season! This week marked the end of the Halloween season and the beginning of the holidays at Walt Disney World. Holiday decorations are already up at Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios! The Jingle Cruise, the Jungle Cruise with a holiday overlay, has returned and is now sailing. Also, the first ‘Frozen Holiday Wish’, the castle lighting show debuted on Sunday, November 3. The first Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdome, Sunset Seasons Greetings, and ‘Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!’ at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, new holiday experiences at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and the Christmas Tree Trail at Disney Springs open on Friday, November 8.

Click here for video of ‘Frozen Holiday Wish’ Castle lighting from our Instagram account.


5 – Holiday Passholder Magnets Revealed

If you’re a Walt Disney World annual passholder, you’ll want to get this year’s holiday magnet set! While the holidays are in full gear at the other parks, the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays will not begin until Friday, November 29. Catch all the details at the link below.

Click here for photos and what you need to know about the Epcot International Festival of the Holidays.

6 – New runDisney Race Announced & 2020-2021 Race & Registration Dates Released

2020 race and registration dates have been revealed for the many runDisney events in the US. Additionally, A new princess race has been announced for Disneyland Paris. Get all the details at the link below.

Click here for information on the new race and the race calendar.

7 – Foodie Guide to Frozen 2 Offerings at Walt Disney World

The highly anticipated ‘Frozen 2’ opens Friday, November 22, but Walt Disney World is already celebrating with new merchandise and treats! This week we got a look at all the fantastic food and beverages that you can get during November! Catch all the details at the link below.

Click here for the Foodie Guide to the Frozen 2 offerings.

8 – Another Sneak Peek at the Holiday Offerings Coming to Animal Kingdom

This year will be the first time Disney’s Animal Kingdom will offer new festive entertainment and holiday décor in every land. This week we got another look at what we can expect to find at the park.  Disney cast member Shawn Slater shares more:

When you visit Disney’s Animal Kingdom this holiday season, you’ll find festive new entertainment and  holiday  décor in every land. It all begins on Discovery Island, where you’ll be surrounded by a celebration of winter. The village is filled with sparkling white holiday decorations and colorful, animal-inspired luminaries. Throughout the day, the area springs to life with a Merry Menagerie of winter animals, accompanied by serenading musicians as they create a playful atmosphere of festive fun.

The team at Disney Parks Live Entertainment realized this collection of reindeer, foxes, polar bears, penguins, and more in the form of life-size, artisan-sculpted puppets, each designed and hand-crafted using natural materials and fabrics. The animals were then brought to life through a variety of theatrical techniques that will allow them and their performers to interact directly with guests like never before.


You’ll be able to meet this Merry Menagerie for yourself, when the spirit of the holidays comes alive with magic, starting November 8 at Disney’s Animal Kingdom!

 9 – Annual Passholders Enjoy Special Holiday Offerings at Walt Disney World Resort

If you’re an annual passholder, be aware of some special discounts during the holiday season. Disney cast member Thomas Smith shares more:

This holiday season, there are exciting new experiences coming to Walt Disney World Resort and the best way to enjoy everything is with a Walt Disney World Resort Annual Pass!

Today, we’re sharing some new upcoming holiday offers for Annual Passholders:

“Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!” Dessert Parties – This year, there’s a new Passholder discount for “Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!” dessert parties at Disney’s Hollywood Studios from November 8 through November 23.

Credit: Disney

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Annual Passholders receive discounted tickets to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom Park during the holiday season. Guests can save up to $15 per ticket when purchased in advance.

New Holiday Hotel Offers – There are also new offers for select hotels during the holiday season. And Annual Passholders receive great holiday rates at Disney Resort hotels as well.

To learn more about the Walt Disney World Resort Annual Passholder program, visit

10 – Holiday Merchandise Arrives at Walt Disney World Resort

With the holiday season arriving at Walt Disney World, you can be sure you’ll find lots of holiday merchandise for your entire family! Watch the video below for a preview of some of the items available.


Check out the new holiday headgear by clicking here.

12 – Construction Update on Tron Lightcycle Run at Magic Kingdom

Time for our monthly update on Tron Lightcyle Run, the new coaster coming to Magic Kingdom just in time for Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary in 2021. The coaster is really coming along with more supports being built. The exterior frame is being constructed over portions of some of the track.

Click here to see a video of the construction progress on our Instagram page.

13 – runDisney Celebrates 10 Years of Disney Wine & Dine Half-Marathon Weekend

The runDisney Wine and Dine Half-Marathon weekend is one of our favorite race weekends. This year the race celebrated its 10thAnniversary! Learn more at the link below.

Click here to learn more at the Wine & Dine Half-Marathon.


14 – Enjoy Some of the New Plant-Based Dishes Now Available at Walt Disney World Resort!

Last month we announced that Walt Disney World will be getting hundreds of new plant-based dishes. Some are now available with many more coming soon. Disney cast member Thomas Smith has all the details below:

Hundreds of new plant-based dishes have landed on menus at Walt Disney World Resort!

Just last month, we shared that all of our major quick and table service restaurants would be dishing up delectable new options at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort – accompanied by a new plant-based menu icon, a green leaf. Now, we’re excited to introduce you to more of these tasty offerings, including some delicious new choices.

Each one is made from plant-based ingredients like vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes – and without animal meat, dairy, eggs, or honey. From sweet treats to three-course meals, and everything in between, there are more than 400 craveable creations to choose from.

Planning a trip to Walt Disney World Resort? Check out the brand-new Guide to Plant-Based Dining on the resort’s website to learn where these dishes – and many more! – can be found during your visit.

  • (Top) Panna Connie’s Congo Lime Delight from Jungle Navigation Co. LTD Skipper Canteen at Magic Kingdom Park – Tasty lime ‘panna cotta,’ served with mango-lime sorbet, fresh fruit, and a Brazil nut cookie.
  • Marrakesh Falafel Platter from The Mara at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge – This delicious plate features falafel alongside creamy hummus, soy yogurt, tabbouleh, and a cucumber-tomato salad – and don’t forget the pita bread!
  • Chocolate Mint Financier from Flying Fish at Disney’s BoardWalk – This tempting chocolate financier is accompanied by a creamy frozen mint scoop.
  • Lavender Donuts from California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort – Don’t miss these delightful lavender donuts with blueberry gin jam, pistachio crumble and blueberry “faux yo” (plant-based frozen yogurt)!
  • Chickpea Panisse fromCinderella’s Royal Table at Magic Kingdom Park – Crispy chickpea panisse, tomato jam, roasted carrots, chermoula-spiced garbanzos, and chive powder make this dish fit for royalty.
  • Loaded Slaw Dog from Casey’s Corner at Magic Kingdom Park – You can’t go wrong with this plant-based sausage, topped with pickled slaw, barbecue vegan aioli, and roasted corn relish – plus your choice of french fries or apple slices.
  • Quinoa Salad from Kusafiri Coffee Shop & Bakery at Disney’s Animal Kingdom – Served with dried fruit and fresh herbs, this salad makes for a tasty snack any time of day!
  • Le Fou Festin Breakfast from Be Our Guest Restaurant at Magic Kingdom Park – Get your day started with this spread of plant-based eggs, sausage, and bacon served with breakfast potatoes and fresh fruit.

These are just a few of the amazing plant-based bites you can discover across the resort! With so many dishes to discover – like the Mushroom (Lobster-style) Salad from Coral Reef Restaurant at Epcot or the Carrot Gnocchi from The Turf Club Bar and Grill at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa – there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

15 – More About the Disney Wonder’s Recent Enhancements

The Disney Wonder recently got some exciting new enhancements. Disney cast member Melanie Curtsinger shares more below:

You may have heard by now that the Disney Wonder recently debuted a collection of brand-new enhancements for guests. From the French Quarter Lounge, where the wonderful world of Princess Tiana comes to life, to spaces exclusively built for adults and teens in the Cove Café and Vibe, several areas on the ship were reimagined and are delighting families as we speak!

In this video, our Director of Entertainment Operations Christiaan Abbott gives us a closer look at what your family can expect the next time you step foot on the Disney Wonder.


Whether your family has plans to visit Alaska, the Mexican Riviera, Caribbean or Bahamas, start planning your Disney Cruise Line vacation now to experience these recent enhancements on the Disney Wonder firsthand!

16 – First Look-Mosaics in the Making at Disney’s Riviera Resort

This week we got a first look at the mosaics that will be at Disney’s Riviera Resort. Here are all the details from Disney cast member Yolanda Cade:

Artistry, inspiration, and imagination are everywhere to be found at Disney’s Riviera Resort, the newest upcoming Walt Disney World Resort, and Disney Vacation Club property. Today, I’m thrilled to give you a first look at a truly splendid element of the resort.

A walkway tunnel at Disney’s Riviera Resort will feature two stunning mosaic murals showcasing Disney storytelling of European tales. The original stories that inspired these murals were included in the collection of over 300 books that Walt Disney sent back to his studios while traveling Europe in the 1930s. The use of mosaics for the murals celebrates the beauty of the art style, materials, and craftsmanship.

Credit: Disney

Both mosaic murals will be massive installations, recessed into the tunnel walls, and spanning across the arched ceiling. Each of the two pieces will feature a unique story set along the tunnel wall and will be joined at the top by a shared mosaic sky, rising 20 feet in the air.

The mural you’re seeing today shows a magical scene of London at night, with Peter Pan, Wendy, Michael and John flying off to Never Land. More than 500,000 hand-cut tiles were laid by hand to create this amazing mosaic!

Now that you’ve seen a sneak peek at one of the two magnificent murals coming to Disney’s Riviera Resort, what’s your guess at the beloved story the other mosaic will depict?

Disney’s Riviera Resort is under construction now and projected to open December 16, 2019.

Click here for the 8 reasons we can’t wait for Disney’s Riviera Resort.


What’s New at Walt Disney World!

It’s a very exciting time growth and development at Walt Disney World. In fact, there are so many new things opening, coming and happening, it’s hard to keep track. Here’s a cheat sheet to help keep things straight and make sure you haven’t missed anything.

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge – Now Open

Click here for everything you need to know at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival – Now Open Through November 23

Click here for our 2019 Epcot Food & Wine Preview

Disney Skyliner – Now Open

Click here for what you need to know about the Disney Skyliner

Epcot Forever – Now Open

Click here to learn more about Epcot Forever.

The Epcot Experience – Now Open

Click here to learn more about the Epcot Experience.

Reimagined Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort – Now Open

Click here for our review and walkthrough with photos and video.

NBA Experience at Disney Springs – Now Open

Click here for our review and what you need to know about this fun new experience.

Coming Soon to Disney World!

2019 Holiday Season – Begins November 8, 2019

Click here for the top 14 offerings we’re most excited for this holiday season at Disney World

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance – Opening December 5, 2019

Click here for what we know so far about Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance

Epcot Reimagined – Now Through Fall 2021 for Walt Disney World’s 50thAnniversary

Click here for a complete rundown of what’s coming to the new Epcot including closures.

New Cirque du Soleil Show – April 17, 2020

Click here for everything we know about this new show!

Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary Celebration – 2021

Click here for our rundown of everything that’s coming for Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary!

Star Wars Hotel – unknown

Click here for Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser-What We Know So Far About the Upcoming Star Wars Themed Hotel Coming to Disney World

Disney Cruise Line’s Lighthouse Point – Disney’s 2nd Island in the Caribbean – unknown

Click here for everything we know about Lighthouse Point!

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!