ORLANDO, Fla. - This weekend at the D23 Expo Japan 2018, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek shared new details, opening dates, and projects for the Disney Parks around the World.
“We are hard at work creating even more ways to experience Disney magic at our parks and resorts around the world,” said Bob Chapek, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “And with our incredible library of beloved stories and characters, we know exciting adventures and magical memories are in store for all our guests.”
While there were announcements for projects for the Disney Parks around the world, I really wanted to take a closer look at the new information that we learned about projects here at Walt Disney World.
Toy Story Land
The fun will soar to infinity and beyond beginning this summer with the opening of Toy Story Land. This playful new 11-acre land will transport guests into the adventurous outdoors of Andy’s backyard where guests will feel like they have been shrunk to the size of Woody and Buzz, as they are surrounded by oversized toys. Using toys like building blocks, plastic buckets and shovels, and game board pieces, Andy has designed the perfect setting for this land that includes two major new attractions.
Slinky Dog Dash is a family-friendly coaster that will send riders dipping, dodging and dashing around turns and drops through the world of Andy’s toys. Guests can also spin around with little green aliens aboard Alien Swirling Saucers and quick refreshments will be on tap at Woody’s Lunch Box.
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
This highly anticipated new land is set to open in 2019, both at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disneyland Park – on a grand scale – including the creation of a full-sized fleet of X-wing star fighters and a life-size Millennium Falcon starship.
The totally immersive land will include two jaw-dropping attractions that allow guests to have control of their experiences. One attraction will put guests in the middle of a battle between the First Order and the Resistance—inside a Star Destroyer. In the second attraction, guests will have the chance to fly the Millennium Falcon – the most famous ship in the galaxy. Throughout the land, guests will also have the chance to interact with Chewie, the lovable BB8, and members of the First Order.
We also learned more about the marketplaces that guests will also be able to explore when Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opens! One that I am really excited about is a street market run by a Toydarian, a character first introduced in “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace”, and among his wares will be handcrafted toys made by local artisans.
Imagineers are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible as they prepare to place fans in the middle of the action where they can live their own Star Wars stories next year.
Immersive Star Wars-Themed Hotel
Fans can live out their Star Wars adventures beyond the theme parks with an immersive experience at a groundbreaking new Star Wars–themed hotel concept. The epic new experience will take guests to a galaxy far, far away and will be seamlessly connected to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the new land set to open in 2019 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Unlike anything that exists today, the new luxury resort will completely immerse guests in an authentic Star Wars story. The journey through space begins the moment guests arrive, as everyone boards a starship and departs together for a multi-day Star Wars adventure. An opening date for the new hotel has not been announced.
Guardians of the Galaxy Attraction at Epcot
Larger-than-life Super Heroes will descend upon Epcot with the opening of a Guardians of the Galaxy attraction. Based on the rockin’, action-packed “Guardians of the Galaxy” movies, this one-of-a-kind family attraction will feature a brand-new, innovative ride system – and will be one of the longest enclosed roller coasters in the world! Coming to Epcot Future World, the new attraction will open in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021.
Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
The first ever ride-through attraction themed to Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse will delight guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios beginning in 2019. Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway will feature a new original story and lovable theme song, as it takes guests on a journey inside the wacky and unpredictable world of Disney Channel’s Emmy Award-winning “Mickey Mouse” cartoon shorts. New technologies will transform the two-dimensional cartoon world into an incredible multi-dimensional experience.
A New Family-friendly Show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Just in time for the 20th Anniversary of Disney’s Animal Kingdom, a new, family-friendly show will debut at the theme park April 22. Featuring Russell and Dug from Disney•Pixar’s “Up,” guests will get a chance to see their favorite Senior Wilderness Explorer and his furry friend as they discover bird species from around the world.
New Adventures by Disney experience in Japan
Today, Adventures by Disney made an exciting announcement: A new Japan vacation is coming in 2019! The trip will offer immersive, cultural experiences, such as visiting
temples in Kyoto, learning sword techniques with a master samurai, exploring the bustling city of Tokyo and more.
The Adventures by Disney Japan vacation will open for booking later this Spring, so look for more details on this trip in just a few months. In the meantime, save up that vacation time and plan for an unforgettable Adventures by Disney family vacation to Japan in 2019.
Incredible Summer at the Walt Disney World Resort
And while this wasn’t announced at the D23 Expo in Japan, this summer at Walt Disney World is going to be Incredible.
Starting Memorial Day Weekend, May 25-27, Walt Disney World Resort will launch an incredible summer for 2018 with guests being immersed in their favorite Disney films, entering the worlds of their beloved characters and experiencing exciting new attractions and entertainment at all four Parks and Disney Springs.
Some highlights include:
- At Magic Kingdom, favorite Disney•Pixar super heroes will take over Tomorrowland – celebrating all things super. Guests will party with Mr. Incredible, Elastigirl, and Frozone from Disney•Pixar’s “The Incredibles” and upcoming “Incredibles 2.” And, for the first time ever, guests will get to see Edna Mode, the greatest superhero costume designer. These Supers will interact with guests throughout the land. And the festivities culminate with a “SUPER” dance party on the Rocket Tower Stage. “Incredibles 2” opens in theaters nationwide June 15, 2018.
- Super Heroes take over the America Gardens Theatre at Epcot. Star-Lord and Gamora from the Guardians of the Galaxy will join an alien band, taking guests on a journey through the cosmos. The party will feature hits from Awesome Mixtapes 1 and 2 – fun and favorite tunes from the two movies’ soundtracks – building the anticipation for a new Epcot Guardians of the Galaxy attraction.
- This summer, Disney’s Animal Kingdom is celebrating its 20th anniversary with two super new experiences: A “dino-tastic” celebration where Donald Duck takes over Dinoland U.S.A. with prehistoric elements in a new and exciting character celebration; and Explorers Meet UP! A Great Bird Adventure, where Senior Wilderness Explorer Russell and his furry friend Dug, from the Disney•Pixar hit film “Up,” discover species of birds from around the world.
We are really excited about these and other announcements that are on the horizon for the theme parks of Central Florida, and you can be too by following @icfloridaevents on Twitter and Instagram for even more updates and breaking news!
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