Wow! That was a crazy 48 hours of Disney news releases. Talk about drinking from a fire hose!
Not surprisingly, a lot of the news centered around the upcoming phased reopening of Disney World. We finally got answers to most of our questions, including the launch of the new park reservation system, resort reopening schedule, what attractions, entertainment, etc. would be available when the parks reopen, and the reopening of the dining reservation system along with a complete list of restaurants available during the phased reopening. Disney also made several HUGE announcements regarding cancellations and changes to fall events, changes to the MagicBands, and a schedule for the resumption of new resort reservations and ticket sales. Significant changes for annual passholders and passholder previews announced. There was some important food news as well, including the recipe for one of our favorite ‘Ohana foods and the announcement of a new bakery coming to Disney Springs with the most incredible cookies you’ve ever seen. All this and more in this week’s Disney news roundup below.
1 – Disney Theme Park Reservation System Debuts
On Friday, June 19, Disney announced the Disney Park Pass System would launch beginning June 22 for Disney resort guests. The morning was filled with problems, long waits, and confusion. Guests kept trying, and many reported they were eventually able to make reservations for the dates they wanted. The next big day for the reservation system is Friday, June 26, when it opens for annual passholders. Existing ticket holders can begin making reservations Sunday, June 28. Check out the links below for what you need to know about the reservations system.
2 – Disney Announced Cancelations and Modifications to Fall Events
Late Thursday night, Disney released important information regarding fall events at Disney World. They announced that Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party would be canceled for the year. While we are super disappointed, without the stage shows, parades, fireworks, and characters – it wouldn’t be much of a party! Also announced is a modified Food & Wine Festival that will have a few elements of the Flower and Garden Festival and will begin July 15. The popular Eat to the Beat concert series and H2O Glow Nights at Typhoon Lagoon have also been canceled. Head the link below for all the important details regarding the cancelations.
3 – Disney Reveals Details on Attractions, Entertainment, and Characters in Theme Parks
This weekend Disney confirmed which attractions and entertainment would be available in the parks when they reopen beginning July 11. We also got an update about how we can expect to see characters in the parks. There is a small PhotoPass policy update as well. Learn more at the links below.
4 – Disney Announces Phased Reopening to Disney Resorts
On June 22, select Disney Vacation Club, Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts, and Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground reopened and welcomed guests.
These select Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts include:
- Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
- Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village
- Disney’s Beach Club Villas
- Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
- Disney’s Old Key West Resort
- Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
- Disney’s Riviera Resort
- Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort
- The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort
To visit these resorts, you need to have a valid resort reservation or a dining reservation.
There have been a lot of questions, for some time, about when the other resorts would be opening. Disney has released a tentative reopening schedule for many, but not all resorts. Learn more at the link below.
5 – Smaller (but important) Details You Might Have Missed
As you can tell, there is a lot of news and a lot of information to keep track of. There are also a lot of small details you might have missed. We’ve put together the 20 things you might have missed from the recent news announcements. Learn more at the link below.
6 – Disney Releases List of Theme Park Restaurants Open During Phased Reopening
Now that theme park reservations are underway, it’s time to start thinking about dining in the parks. At this time, dining reservations are not available for in-park dining experiences. Reservations will resume at a later date. However, Disney has released a complete list of restaurants that will be open during the phased reopening. Learn more at the link below.
7 – Crazy Awesome Bakery Coming to Disney Springs Later this Year
Later this year, Disney Springs will be getting a new popular bakery and we’re so excited. Gideon’s Bakehouse is opening in The Landing at Disney Springs. Learn more at the link below.
8 – Disney Opens Dining Reservations for Resort Guests & New Mobile Check-In
Disney has opened dining reservations for resort guests who have a confirmed reservation for confirmed arrivals June 22 through July 10, 2020. Disney also announced a new Mobile Dine Check-In that will be used for table service restaurants. Learn more at the link below.
9 – 2021 Reservations and Tickets Opening Soon and a MagicBand Surprise
Along with the announcement of the theme park reservation system, Disney announced 2021 resort packages would go on sale this week. Disney also dropped news about a resort perk that is ending this year. Learn more at the link below.
10 – Disney Updates Annual Passholder Policies and Announces Passholder Preview Days
When Disney updated its annual passholders last month, they announced annual passholders would be able to enjoy preview days. Disney has released information about the passholder days and given an update that passholders will be allowed to cancel their passes if they so choose. Get the details at the link below.
11 – New Disney Parks Recipe Released
If we can’t enjoy our favorite Disney World restaurants, the next best thing is to enjoy some of our favorite things form those restaurants at home. On our personal list are the wings at ‘Ohana. Check out the recipe below shared by Disney Cast Member Karen McClintock.
Whatever you have planned to celebrate Father’s Day (and summer solstice – the official arrival of summer!) you can’t go wrong when you include noshing on the popular Honey-Coriander Chicken Wings from ‘Ohana. The perfect balance of sweet, nutty, and spicy, these wings are good cold, too – a great add to a picnic basket if you plan to enjoy a day outdoors with the family.
These deliciously sticky chicken wings are terrific on their own, but if you want extra layers of flavor, you can serve with dad’s favorite dipping sauce (‘Ohana offers peanut and sweet-n-sour sauces with their wings). They are sure to be a hit and a great way to say, “Happy Father’s Day!”
12 – Disney Cruise Line Update
Disney Cruise Line Extends Suspension of Departures for the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy through September 15, 2020
In alignment with the announcement made on June 19, 2020, by the Cruise Lines International Association regarding the voluntary extension of suspended passenger operations from U.S. ports, Disney Cruise Line is canceling Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy sailings through September 15, 2020.
Disney Cruise Line has already suspended Disney Wonder sailings through September 14, 2020, and Disney Magic sailings through October 2, 2020.
Guests booked on affected sailings who have paid their reservation in full will be offered the choice of a cruise credit to be used for a future sailing or a full refund. Guests who have not paid their reservations in full will automatically receive a refund of what they have paid so far. These Guests and travel agents will receive an email from Disney Cruise Line outlining details and next steps.
Guests who booked their reservation through a travel agent should contact them directly with any questions. Those who booked directly with Disney Cruise Line and have questions after receiving their email should call us at (866) 325-6685 or (407) 566-7797.
13 – What You Need to Know About the Phased Reopening of Downtown Disney District at Disneyland Resort, Beginning July 9
Over in California, Disneyland Resort is getting ready for their phased reopening and there’s an update. Here are all the details from Disney Cast Member, Michael Ramirez:
Downtown Disney District will begin reopening on July 9 in line with the state’s reopening guidelines. We are pleased to welcome back a variety of our shopping and dining experiences during this initial phase, including the flagship World of Disney store.
We are following guidelines from health authorities and government agencies, as well as applying learnings from the phased reopening at Disney Springs in Florida to guide our reopening plans. With the health of guests and Disney cast members at the forefront of planning, several operational changes will be implemented based on guidance from health authorities to promote physical distancing and cleanliness throughout the Downtown Disney District.
During the initial reopening phase, Downtown Disney District will have capacity measures in place, as well as limitations on parking and operating hours. Guests will be directed to self-park at Simba lot (at Disneyland Drive and Katella Ave). Please follow signs for clearly defined entrances and exits. In addition, Downtown Disney District hours will be 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., daily. Individual location hours may vary.
Additional measures and information will be shared closer to the reopening date. Please check Disneyland.com/DTD for the most current information.
Pending state and local government approvals, Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park plan to reopen on July 17. In addition, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa and Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel will begin to reopen on July 23.
We look forward to welcoming you back next month to the Downtown Disney District!
14 – Face Coverings Now Required in Orange County, FL
Be aware that Orange County, the county where most of Walt Disney World resides, is now requiring face masks in public. This includes Orlando International Airport.
15 – Tri-Circle-D Ranch Reopens at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
Last year, the Tri-Circle-D Ranch at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground closed for refurbishment and a new barn. Disney has reported that the new barn is now open for guests to visit. The campground reopened on June 22. Learn more at the link below.
16 – Disney Reveals Safety Campaign with the Help of the Incredibles
To help educate Disney World guests on proper safety precautions as the parks reopen, they have enlisted some pretty Incredible help!
Here are all the details from Disney Cast Member Thomas Smith.
Right now, we’re busy preparing for the planned reopenings of Disneyland Resort, subject to appropriate government approvals, Walt Disney World Resort, and soon, Tokyo Disney Resort. We are also happy to have already opened Shanghai Disney Resort, and we welcomed guests again to Hong Kong Disneyland! We’re looking forward to welcoming you back to the magic, because together we can make your next Disney day incredible.
As we take our first steps in the phased reopenings of our Resorts, we’ve reimagined Disney experiences with the well-being of our guests and cast members in mind – and some of our favorite characters will be joining us along the way!
When you plan your next vacation to Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort (and eventually, Disneyland Paris), you’ll soon be receiving some good advice from the Incredibles and their friends that will help make your trip Super. Mr. and Mrs. Incredible, their incredible kids and some other familiar faces will show us how to use our powers to help everyone be well. (Click on any image below to enlarge).
Keep your eyes open for these Super tips and more in the weeks to come as we all get ready for the reopening of more Disney theme parks, following the successful reopening of Shanghai Disneyland last month and Hong Kong Disneyland today.
Just like the Incredibles, we each have a role to play as we watch out for one another and do our part. Because together we are magic … and we all need a little more magic in our lives, don’t you think?
17 – Disney Releases Another Update on Safety Commitment
An Update on Disney Parks from Chief Medical Officer Dr. Pamela Hymel
As we continue with the phased reopening of Disney locations around the world, I wanted to update you on our plans and the principles that guide us as we welcome guests back to the magic.
Josh D’Amaro, our Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, said it best when he spoke about the trust you have in the Disney brand. As we prepare for the reopening of our destinations, this is a responsibility we take very seriously. We know what a privilege it is to continue to earn your trust every day.
Our domestic theme parks were among the first to close earlier this year and they will be among the last to reopen when guests return in July in California, pending state and local government approvals, and in Florida. Disney parks have always been places for families to gather, to celebrate important moments in their lives, and to make memories that will last a lifetime. This legacy of integrity, care, and community is what guides us as we prepare for the return of our cast members and guests.
What to Expect at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort
We’re taking a multi-pronged approach to our reopening, after considering the guidance of various governmental authorities and health agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and recommendations from our team of health and safety experts. We’re also actively working with industry groups and research universities to discuss best practices.
At both parks, this includes reducing capacity; temperature checks for guests prior to entering our theme parks; increasing cleaning and disinfecting, especially in high-traffic areas; adjusting experiences to accommodate physical distancing; requiring face coverings for guests 2 and older; and empowering our guests with options like contactless payments and easy access to handwashing and hand sanitizer locations.
Our deliberate and phased approach at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort emphasizes multiple layers of health and safety measures. And as always, our cast members are at the center of our approach. We’ve already adopted a number of important guidelines for cast members at work at the Walt Disney World Resort, such as increasing the frequency of cleaning in work areas, adjusting our work practices to promote physical distancing, requiring temperature checks and wearing face coverings. We are also working with our unions to responsibly and thoughtfully implement these health and safety guidelines at the Disneyland Resort. As reopening approaches, we’re providing our cast with additional training on both new measures and the continued importance of personal health best practices, such as handwashing, covering coughs and of course, staying home when ill.
Promote Safety Together
Many of the actions we all take in our daily lives to help reduce the risk of spread of COVID-19 are designed to help protect not only ourselves, but others as well. For example, I wear a face covering in public spaces because it may help protect you, and in turn, you wear a face covering because it may help protect me.
When you wear a face covering during your visit, wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or even make the important decision to reschedule to another day if you’re not feeling well, you help make the experience safer for everyone.
This shared responsibility is an important strategy to help reduce the risk of infection. And so, when you join us for the first time after reopening, you will find not only enhanced health and safety measures, but also a special group of cast members that are trained to share information about our new policies. They will be available to explain our new procedures, answer questions guests may have, and encourage everyone to follow these measures so we can all have a safer visit to the parks.
We hope you’ll also be interested in our new Incredibles-themed health and safety campaign. This campaign spotlights healthy behaviors that can help everyone have a magical experience, featuring beloved characters from the Incredibles animated movies.
The Magic Returns
We are looking forward to celebrating the return of Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort with our cast members, our guests and our communities next month.
As exciting as this moment is for all of us, we are still in the early days of our phased approach. We will continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments based on the guidance of local government and health authorities. And in the coming weeks, we will share additional details about the policies and procedures that our guests can expect when we reopen our domestic theme parks.
We will do some things differently when we return, but what has not changed is the special Disney magic that awaits you at each of our destinations around the world.
On behalf of the entire Disney family, be well and take care. We can’t wait to welcome you back very soon!
Dr. Pamela Hymel
Chief Medical Officer
Disney Parks, Experiences and Products
18 – Hong Kong Disneyland Reopens
Hong Kong Disneyland reopened on June 18, becoming the second Disney theme park to reopen. Here is an update from Disney Cast Member Stephanie Young, Managing Director, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort.
We are proud to be part of the Hong Kong community, which has worked hard and shown fortitude in how it has handled the pandemic. As we carefully welcome guests back to our park, we will draw on the learnings from the recent reopening of Shanghai Disney Resort and Disney Springs at Walt Disney World. Similarly, we will also implement new and enhanced health and safety measures following the guidance of our local government and health care officials.
During this initial reopening phase, the park will open with limited attendance. The park will implement social distancing requirements in queues, restaurants, attraction vehicles and at other facilities throughout the park, and will increase the frequency of sanitization and disinfection in high-guest contact areas.
As Hong Kong becomes the second Disney park to reopen, the rest of the Disney Parks family around the world continues to believe in magic and prepare for their own reopening moments. Like us they’re eager to welcome guests back to reunite with family and friends – to imagine all that is possible regardless of the situation, to celebrate postponed milestones and to make magical, new memories.
19 – Disney Magic at Home – Learn to Draw Iron Man at Home
For all you Marvel fans, Disney has shared how to draw Ironman! Here are all the details from Disney Cast Member Anthony Armenia.
In honor of the reopening of Hong Kong Disneyland Resort later this week, I’m excited to bring you an exclusive step-by-step tutorial of how to draw Iron Man as seen in the Iron Man Experience attraction at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort.
Grab your arc reactor, a pencil or two and some paper to join Brian Crosby, Creative Director, Themed Entertainment from Marvel Entertainment for a how-to tutorial on drawing my favorite armored Avenger:
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