There are exciting new things popping up every day at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida! Join us every week to read about what’s new “Around the Mouse.” This week’s Walt Disney World news update features: new Fantasy Football Event, Extra Magic Hours Changes, a new restaurant coming to Walt Disney World and more!
Walt Disney World Theme Parks
New! Inaugural ESPN Fantasy Football Conventions Coming to Walt Disney World: On August 22-23, you can officially kick-off sport’s greatest season of the year with ESPN‘s inaugural Fantasy Football Convention, taking place at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The first-of-its-kind event features unprecedented access to ESPN talent including Matthew Berry, Adam Schefter, Chris Mortensen, Sara Walsh, Mark Schlereth, Stephania Bell, Tim Hasselbeck and more! The event includes an epic Tailgate Party, where you can mix and mingle with ESPN talent and be a judge in the first-ever ESPN Chili Bowl by taste testing creations from decorated Disney Chefs from around the world, and breakfast with some of your favorite characters decked out for the gridiron. The Convention includes a live broadcast of Fantasy Football Now. The event finale features the opportunity to take part in a live Fantasy Football draft with the help of ESPN Fantasy Football Experts roaming the floor. And best yet, season winners of leagues created during the Convention will receive a customized trophy. Talk about bragging rights! Price is $349 per person.
New! Extra Magic Hours Changes: Beginning July 13, the evening Extra Magic Hours for Magic Kingdom Park will switch to Saturdays. Here is the Extra Magic Hour schedule effective July 13.
– Sundays: AM at Disney’s Animal Kingdom (NEW)
– Mondays: PM at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
– Tuesdays: AM at Epcot
– Wednesdays: AM at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
– Thursdays: AM at Magic Kingdom Park
– Fridays: PM at Epcot
– Saturdays: PM at Magic Kingdom Park (NEW) and AM at Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Reminder! Sounds Like Summer Concert Series Runs Thru July 26: Nothing sounds more like summer than the rockin’ tunes from some of the most iconic rock bands of all time! From June 8 to July 26, seven bands pay tribute to the hottest rock acts at the America Gardens Theatre at Epcot. Shows are at 5:30, 6:45 and 8 p.m. The lineup is as follows
- July 13-19 – Slippery When Wet – The Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute
- July 20-26 – 2U – A Tribute to U2
New! Candlelight Processional Dining Packages On Sale Now: Guests can start booking their Candlelight Processional Dining Packages. The event starts the night after Thanksgiving (November 28) and runs through December 30. About half of the celebrity narrators have been announced. Read more.
Reminder! ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Sneak Peek at Disney’s Hollywood Studios: As of July 4, “Guardians of the Galaxy” can be found at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in an exclusive sneak peek at ABC Sound Studio in RealD 3D, offering Guests an extended look at scenes from the film before it opens in theaters. “Guardians of the Galaxy” finds space adventurer Peter Quill the object of a bounty hunt after stealing an orb coveted by a treacherous villain, but when Quill discovers the power it holds, he must find a way to rally the quartet of ragtag rivals hot on his trail to save the universe. “Guardians of the Galaxy,” releases in U.S. theaters on Aug. 1.
Reminder! Some Performances of Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It! Cancelled: Due to upcoming concrete work on Main Street, U.S.A., there will not be morning performances of the Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It! Street Party on the following dates: July 9, July 11 and July 25. The parade will only perform at 5:40 and 7 p.m. on these dates. The Trolley Show will use the Main Street Fire Truck.
Walt Disney World Resorts
New! Face Painting Now Available at Port Orleans – French Quarter: During the evenings, Guests can now enjoy face painting at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter. The face painter will sit near Jackson Square Gifts & Desires along with the current caricature artist.
New! Trattoria al Forno Coming to Disney’s BoardWalk: With opening planned for December, Disney has shared the first details for Trattoria al Forno, the new restaurant for Disney’s BoardWalk. A “trattoria” is an Italian restaurant serving simple food, and “al forno” is Italian for “food baked in an oven,” and this new spot will showcase Old World techniques, including handcrafted mozzarella made daily, cavatelli (small dumpling-shaped pasta) and a variety of Neopolitan-style pizzas baked in wood-burning ovens. Slices of paper-thin Italian meats, served with a variety of olives and caponata, satisfying pastas, velvety seasonal risottos and fresh seafood and vegetables will celebrate the delectable diversity of Italian cuisine with authentic ingredients and recipes from Italy’s various regions. Classic Italian desserts and authentic Italian Wines will also be served. This restaurant opens in the space that is currently Kouzzina.
Walt Disney World Resort – General
New! Disney “Planes: Fire & Rescue” Merchandise at Walt Disney World: Disney’s “Planes: Fire and Rescue” opens in theaters July 18, but merchandise is already available at Walt Disney World including The Dusty Do-It-Yourself Foam Plane, the original “Planes: Fire & Rescue” Walt Disney Records Soundtrack, the Piston Peak Fire Air Operations open edition pin and of course, a baseball hat (available in youth size only). Also available are youth tees and fleeces, die-cast cars, play sets, books and more. These items can be found at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park – Creature Comforts, Downtown Disney Marketplace– World of Disney Store, Magic Kingdom Park – Emporium and Mouse Gear – Epcot.
Reminder! Roadwork in Progress Near Downtown Disney: As Downtown Disney paves the way for Disney Springs, July 14 marked a significant milestone as work on Buena Vista Drive (BVD) shifts from the preparation phase to an even more visible roadwork phase. This work will continue through the duration of the expansion project. Guests driving on Buena Vista Drive can expect potential delays and should plan for extra travel time. In addition, speed limits along BVD are now reduced to 35 MPH near Downtown Disney. Please remember to drive slowly and safely! This phase of roadwork will include the following:
- Medians will be paved
- Concrete barrier walls will be used to shift lanes to one side during heavy construction
- BVD will be reduced from three lanes to two lanes going both directions along portions of the road from Bonnet Creek Parkway to Hotel Plaza Boulevard
- Access to Downtown Disney by vehicle will be shifted to: Entrance 2 across from the Hess Station, Entrance 5 across from Typhoon Lagoon, and various entrances and turn lanes may be closed during different phases of this work
Future improvements will include widening BVD to 10 lanes, adding dedicated bus lanes and creating convenient pedestrian bridges that will allow Guests to safely cross over Buena Vista Drive to Downtown Disney.
Reminder! L’Experience – The Ultimate Way to Experience La Nouba: La Nouba™ by Cirque du Soleil® will host a special backstage experience beginning July 11, 2014. Tickets are valid for the 6 p.m. show on Fridays and Saturdays beginning July 11, 2014. The price will be $250+tax for adults and $215+tax for children (3-9). L’Experience includes:
- Front & Center Category Ticket for the 6 p.m. show
- Souvenir Popcorn and Soft Drinks
- Meet & Greet with a Cirque Performer
- Inside Peek at Costuming
- Unique Look Backstage
- Gift bag including Cirque Merchandise
- 10% Discount Coupon for The Cirque Boutique
- New! Experience Very Irresistible Products from Givenchy: Meet specialists from the Givenchy beauty team and try their Very Irresistible line of fragrances and products at the Givenchy Boutique in France at Epcot. From July 17-20 , Guests who purchase $100 or more of any Givenchy product will receive a complimentary fragrance sample.
- July 17-20: Artist Larry Dotson will make appearances throughout the day at Art of Disney, Downtown Disney® Marketplace.
- July 17-28: Artist Showcase with Precious Moments will be held at Once Upon A Toy, Downtown Disney® Marketplace throughout the day, each day.
- July 23-27: Artist Greg McCullough will make appearances throughout the day at Art of Disney, Epcot.
- July 24-27: Artist David Doss will make appearances throughout the day at Art of Disney, Downtown Disney® Marketplace.
- July 25: Get an early jump on your holiday shopping and celebrate Christmas in July with us and Disney artists, Costa Alavezos, Cody Reynolds and Derrick Lirette from 6 – 8p.m. at Disney’s Days of Christmas in Downtown Disney Marketplace.
- July 30-Aug. 3: Artist Greg McCullough will make appearances throughout the day at Art of Disney, Downtown Disney® Marketplace.
Written by Lori Wall: Lori is a lifelong fan and visitor of Walt Disney World! Her love of Disney World has grown through visits with her own family as well as through planning magical vacations for others! Lori is an expert in maximizing vacations while sticking to a travel budget. Contact her about saving an extra 5% off your Disney vacation with an insider tip! Book your vacation with Lori at (845) 698- 0102 or request a price online.