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Showing posts from November, 2016

LEGOLAND Beach Retreat Officially Opening April 7, 2017

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LEGOLAND Beach Retreat will welcome its first guests to discover endless fun in the sun when it opens April 7, 2017. LEGOLAND Florida Resort announced the grand opening date today during an exclusive media preview of the all-new accommodations. Designed with the same attention to detail that made the LEGOLAND Hotel an immediate hit, LEGOLAND Beach Retreat is a village-style vacation resort with 83 beach-themed bungalows offering 166 rooms.

Temporary Attraction Hour Changes at Animal Kingdom

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Select attractions will no longer operate from park open to park close at Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park in the next few weeks. Kali River Rapids will be open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Dec. 4-17, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. on Dec. 18-24, and 9 a.m.-7 p.m. on Dec. 25-31. Additionally, the character greeting with Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse at the Adventurers Outpost will operate from park open until 4:30 p.m. daily. These changes will be reflected in the upcoming Times Guides.

New Internal Shuttle Now Available at Port Orleans Resort

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To make it even more convenient for Guests that wish to travel in and around Disney's Port Orleans Resort, a dedicated internal shuttle is now available daily beginning at 6:30 a.m. The shuttle services all resort bus stops (which include the following: French Quarter and Riverside South, West, North, and East) until 12:30 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. In addition to that, the morning bus service at Riverside was recently modified.

Volcano Bay Construction Update: Multiple Slides Installed

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Universal's Volcano Bay water park continues to take shape near Cabana Bay.
This amazing new water park promises to bring new experiences that the whole family will be able to enjoy, including plenty of interactive water features, a multi-directional wave pool, incredible water slides, private cabanas, and much more. Today we invite you to come along with us and take a look at the progress that has been made so far. Just like you, we seriously cannot wait to visit this park.

Highway in the Sky Dine Around Coming to Disney World

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Walt Disney World Resort Guests will soon have the opportunity to embark on a gourmet dining adventure that's unlike any other with the "Highway in the Sky Dine Around," a progressive dinner along the iconic Walt Disney World Monorail System beginning December 2. This five-course epicurean journey will feature stops at several resort hotels for cocktails, appetizers, dinner and dessert, along with a VIP guide and private viewing of the Wishes nighttime spectacular.

Universal Reveals More Details About New Nintendo Lands

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Imagine the fun of stepping into a larger-than-life Nintendo adventure. Gigantic Piranha Plants spring to life. Question blocks, power-ups, and a number of other amazing objects previously only seen in video games surround you. And Mario and all his friends are there to pull you into a brand-new world. You'll be able to enter an entire realm filled with iconic Nintendo excitement, gameplay, heroes, and villains. And it is coming to three Universal theme parks around the globe. 

Flower & Garden Festival Adding New Offerings in 2017

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Celebrating 24 years when it returns on March 1, 2017, the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival will jump-start spring with gardens of earthly delights plus new character topiaries, entertainers, and plenty of food and drink offerings.
“A lot of people... are serious foodies now, and they have lots of questions about gardening,” says Eric Darden, the festival horticulture manager. “I think we’ll be creating more gardeners because people can see what’s possible.”

Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away Temporarily Unavailable

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Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away will be temporarily unavailable at Disney's Hollywood Studios from November 29 until December 7, 2016. The show will begin to be performed as normal starting from December 8. A Cast Member and some temporary signs will be located in front of the Chinese Theatre to help communicate this downtime to Guests. Guests looking for similar experiences should check out Star Wars: March of the First Order or Star Wars Launch Bay.

LEGOLAND to Announce Beach Retreat's Opening Date

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LEGOLAND Florida's second on-site hotel, the LEGOLAND Beach Retreat, will officially open its doors to Guests next year. On November 30, park officials will publicly announce the opening date of this beach-themed resort and will offer an exclusive sneak preview of the all-new accommodations to media members.
When complete, LEGOLAND Beach Retreat will include a themed pool, a sandy beach area, and a lighthouse featuring a restaurant. Click here to learn more.

Rivers of Light Review: Amazing Technology, Lack of Story

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Animal Kingdom's new nighttime show may not be ready to debut to the public yet, but the Walt Disney World Resort gave Cast Members working at the park - and their invited Guests - the opportunity to preview Rivers of Light on Sunday, November 27, 2016 (another preview will take place tonight). Being the park's very first permanent nighttime spectacular, many are undoubtedly excited for it, as it will give Guests another reason to stay in the park after the sun goes down.

Territory Lounge Coffee Shop Adds New Food Offering

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The Territory Lounge is brewing specialty coffee and baking up some delicious pastries for Guests to enjoy while staying at Disney's Wilderness Lodge.
In the past few days, the food & beverage location added a fresh sticky bun, smothered in a warm caramel and walnut sauce. The lounge now also offers a Wilderness Bark Latte, with Nutella latte, whipped cream and chocolate drizzle, as well as a Gold Rush Latte, with vanilla and caramel drizzle whipped cream.

New Resort Buses Debut at the Universal Orlando Resort

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The streets around the Universal Orlando Resort just got a little brighter this month with the introduction of new vehicles transporting Guests to the on-site hotels and - very soon - to the resort's new water park. The all-new fleet of blue Resort Shuttle Buses feature some fan favorite characters on the outside (such as the minions from "Despicable Me" and characters from "Shrek") and offer an even more comfortable guest experience on the inside.

Bus Stop Pizza Kiosks Open at Disney's All Star Resort

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On Wednesday, November 23, two new pizza kiosks opened at Disney's All-Star Music Resort and Disney's All-Star Movies Resort. Guests will be able to pick up fresh pizzas from these new locations every evening from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Conveniently located near the bus load zone areas, the "Intermission Express" (located at All-Star Music) and the "World Premiere Express" (located at All-Star Movies) offer limited menu items including cheese and pepperoni pizzas. 

New Themed Music Nights Coming to Atlantic Dance Hall

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Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday during the month of December, the Atlantic Dance Hall (located within Disney's BoardWalk Resort) is going to take you back with throwback jams from the 90s and 2000s and drink specials from 9 p.m.-2 a.m.! "Take you back Tuesdays" will feature songs from the 90s, "Way back Wednesdays" will feature hits from the 2000s, and "Thump Thursdays" will feature electric dance music and mixes. Sounds like a lot of fun, doesn't it?

Blue Man Group Introduces Enhanced VIP Experience

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Blue Man Group is giving Universal Orlando guests an unforgettable opportunity to go behind-the-scenes at the Orlando show with an enhanced VIP Experience.
On this tour, guests will explore backstage areas and inner workings generally not open to non-show personnel and a glimpse into the work it takes to produce the show night after night. “We are thrilled to offer this unique and exclusive experience to our guests,” said Ola Wawryn, Resident GM of Blue Man Group.

New Nighttime Rendering of Star Wars Land Released

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During D23’s Destination D: Amazing Adventures on Nov. 19, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek unveiled a stunning new image that shows just how incredible the Star Wars-themed land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will look once the sun goes down. This new image reveals a closer look at what Guests will discover in this all new 14-acre land, which will include a signature attraction that will allow Guests to take the controls of the Millennium Falcon.

Hidden Springs Pool Area Expansion at Wilderness Lodge

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Those who’ve visited Disney’s Wilderness Lodge recently may have noticed that the Disney Vacation Club accommodations formerly known as The Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge recently assumed a new name: Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. This new name aims to reflect more accurately the railroad theming of Disney’s Wilderness Lodge while complementing the storyline of the resort. But that’s not all that’s changing at this amazing resort.

SEA LIFE Aquarium Welcomes a Loggerhead Sea Turtle

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SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium has welcomed a loggerhead sea turtle named Ted to its new home in Orlando. This new addition is a rescue turtle acquired by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Ted received his name after being one of the first turtles used to test at-sea Turtle Excluder Devices (TEDs) in scallop/whelk fisheries by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).
TEDs are escape hatches in fishing nets that allow turtles to escape if trapped.

“Rivers of Light” Cast Member Previews on Nov. 27-28

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As Walt Disney World puts the finishing touches on the new “Rivers of Light” nighttime spectacular, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Cast Members will be able to preview the show on Sunday, November 27 and Monday, November 28 at 8 p.m. This offer is available for Cast Members and the number of Guests on their Main Entrance Pass. Photography and recording will not be permitted during this Cast-exclusive opportunity to preserve the magic for other Guests.

Animal Kingdom Update: New AVATAR Lanterns (PART 1)

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Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park continues to receive plenty of attention ahead of the debut of the brand new AVATAR-themed land, which will open next summer. In addition to the refurbished (and enhanced) DINOSAUR attraction, the pathway behind the Tree of Life recently reopened to park Guests and the expanded seating area of Flame Tree Barbecue restaurant is now available. And that's not all! Come along with us and explore this amazing theme park.

Animal Kingdom Update: New AVATAR Lanterns (PART 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our new Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park photo-report! Don't forget to also check out PART 1 by clicking on this link. In the previous part, we focused on Discovery Island and what's currently visible of the new Pandora - The World of AVATAR. We will now continue to explore our favorite Orlando theme park by visiting Africa, Asia, and even DinoLand U.S.A. There's still so much more to see! We hope you will enjoy the rest of this update.

Tiana’s Riverboat Party Debuts Nov. 29 at Magic Kingdom

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Guests visiting the Magic Kingdom Park will soon be able to enjoy sweet treats and exclusive viewing of the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade while aboard the Liberty Square Riverboat as part of the new Tiana’s Riverboat Party: Ice Cream Social and Parade Viewing. The experience will include a scenic cruise on the Rivers of America after the parade, while Guests mingle with Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen. Pricing is $49 for adults and $29 for children (ages 3-9).

New "Secret Life of Pets" Float Coming to Universal Studios

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Starting this December, guests will experience some of the most hilarious and memorable moments from Illumination Entertainment's smash hit, “The Secret Life of Pets” as they come to life in Universal’s Superstar Parade. The all-new parade float will give guests the chance to interact with their favorite characters from the film and get a glimpse into what happens when the pet owners are away. “The Secret Life of Pets” float will be divided into two very detailed units. 

ABC Commissary Dinner Changes at Hollywood Studios

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Beginning Nov. 30, ABC Commissary at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will offer a fast-casual dining experience for dinner, providing Guests an enhanced menu with an emphasis on made-to-order, healthful and specialty items at this quick-service location. After ordering their meal at the register, Guests will receive a pager and find a seat amid the Art Deco setting that features film posters from past and present while their food is prepared and brought directly to their table.

Epcot International Festival of the Arts Launches Next Year

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Combining visual, culinary and performing arts from around the world, the first-ever Epcot International Festival of the Arts will create a global masterpiece for 6 inspired weekends. Held from January 13 through February 20, 2017 (Fridays through Mondays), this great festival will feature new art every week, making each weekend original. From the pieces of historical Disney artists to current ones, Guests visiting the park will be able to watch the creative process live.

Star Wars Celebration Coming to Orlando in Spring 2017

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Tabbed as “The Greatest Celebration in the Galaxy,” Star Wars Celebration will make its way to Orlando in Spring 2017. Billed as Lucasfilm's "love letter to Star Wars fans," this amazing spectacle showcases all-star appearances by beloved Star Wars characters, first-looks at new Star Wars merchandise, and some truly amazing, fan-built creations. This special Star Wars Celebration is scheduled to take place April 13-16, 2017 at the Orange County Convention Center. 

New "Kingdom Cabanas" Coming to Magic Kingdom Park

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Building on the popularity of cabanas offered at Disney's water parks, Disney Cruise Line, and select Walt Disney World Resort hotels, Disney will introduce new cabanas to Magic Kingdom Park on Nov. 27. Situated in an out-of-the-way area of Tomorrowland near Space Mountain, cabanas will accommodate up to 8 Guests and will be available for a daily rental price of $649. Amenities include private seating, snacks and reserved viewing for parades and fireworks. 

Disney Releases New AVATAR Land Renderings, Video

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On the morning of November 19, 2016, Bob Chapek (the current Chairman of Disney Parks and Resorts) gave a look into the future of the newest addition to the Walt Disney World Resort, unveiling some exciting new updates about the new themed land coming soon to Disney’s Animal Kingdom: Pandora – The World of Avatar. As part of Chapek’s conversation with D23 host Jeffrey Epstein, he revealed the new entry bridge to Pandora – The World of Avatar.

Moana Meet and Greet Coming Soon to Hollywood Studios

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Disney’s next big adventure, the sweeping new animated feature “Moana,” sails into theaters this week, introducing a bold new wayfinder with big plans. Soon, Moana will set out on another journey, to visit with Guests at Disney destinations around the world. Moana arrived at Aulani Resort in Hawaii earlier this week, to meet Guests and recount tales of adventure. Later in the month, she will make her way to the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Park in California.

LEGOLAND Florida Resort to Offer "Brick Friday" Deals

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The LEGOLAND Florida Resort will offer an awesome assortment of deals and discounts starting on Black Friday (November 25) and continuing through Cyber Monday (November 28). The resort is launching multiple, simultaneous offers on the day that has been dubbed "Brick Friday." As part of this event, Guests can enjoy savings on everything from park tickets to annual passes, and stays at the popular LEGOLAND Hotel and the eagerly awaited LEGOLAND Beach Retreat.

Walt Disney World Resort to Introduce New "MagicBand 2"

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The Walt Disney World Resort is constantly looking for innovative ways to help Guests further enhance their experience. For this reason, Disney is introducing the new MagicBand 2, which will be more versatile and customizable as Guests unlock the wonders of a Walt Disney World vacation. MagicBand 2 aims to allow The Walt Disney Company to continue to push the boundaries in technology wearables over the next few years, and evolve and expand even further.

Walt Disney World Introduces New 4-Park Magic Ticket

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With so many new attractions and experiences to discover at each of the four Walt Disney World Resort theme parks, there's never been a better time to plan a visit to Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and a brand-new special ticket offer, the 4 Park Magic Ticket, provides one admission to each of the four theme parks on four separate days for only $70 per day plus tax, making it a very appealing deal for many Guests.

SeaWorld Orlando Announces Great Deals for “Blue” Friday

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As the nation prepares for the biggest shopping day of the year (November 25), SeaWorld Orlando recently released details on the return of its exclusive “Blue” Friday deals. Special pricing is available on many exclusive park experiences and admission to SeaWorld, Aquatica, and Discovery Cove. For the first time in the park’s Blue Friday history, shoppers can now give the gift of Discovery Cove with discounted admission packages and choose their own reservation date.

Disney's Animal Kingdom Times Guide to Be Enhanced

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Starting from Sunday, November 20, the Disney's Animal Kingdom Times Guide will include enhancements to improve the experience of Guests as they travel through the park. All park experiences (including attractions and shows) are now aligned by themed lands so Guests will be able to see all the available offerings before moving on to the next area. In addition to that, the overall layout has been streamlined for easier reading. The new Times Guide will be posted here.

Typhoon Lagoon to Be Closed Nov. 21-22 for Cold Weather

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Guests visiting the Walt Disney World Resort should keep in mind that, due to forecasted cold weather (high 60s to low 70s), Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park will be closed Sunday, November 20 and Monday, November 21, 2016. The park is scheduled to operate as normal on Tuesday, November 22. As a reminder, Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park is closed for refurbishment at this time. Blizzard Beach is currently still expected to reopen on December 25, 2016.  

Busch Gardens Tampa Wins Prestigious Award at IAAPA

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Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has been recently awarded the prestigious Liseberg Applause Award from the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) during the opening ceremony of the 2016 IAAPA Attractions Expo in Orlando. Since 1980, the Applause Award has been honoring parks “whose management, operations and creative accomplishments have inspired the industry with their foresight, originality and sound business development.”

Portable Charging Batteries Coming to Disney Resorts

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Beginning November 16, FuelRod kiosks with portable charging batteries will be introduced and available to Guests for purchase at Disney's All-Star Resorts and Disney's Coronado Springs Resort. In addition, these FuelRod kiosks are also available at all Walt Disney World theme parks, Disney Springs, and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex locations. Each battery comes with a set of USB cables able to charge a Guest’s mobile phone, tablet, and many other devices.

The Boneyard's Closing Time Changing at Animal Kingdom

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The Boneyard (a themed kid's play area located in DinoLand U.S.A.) will soon begin to follow updated operating hours based on the closing time of Disney's Animal Kingdom. When the park closes at 8 p.m. or earlier, The Boneyard will close one hour before park close. Whenever the park closes after 8 p.m., The Boneyard will close one and a half hours prior to park close. The Boneyard will continue to open daily at 10 a.m. Check the Times Guide for more details.

Universal Studios Update: Coke Store Opens Soon (Part 1)

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There's plenty going on around Universal Studios this year. While no new rides or attractions opened in the park in the past months, many new entertainment acts were added (including the new Marilyn Monroe show), with even more new offerings coming soon (such as the new float for Universal's Superstar Parade).
While we wait for these additions, let's take a look around the park to check on the progress that has been done so far in areas that are still under construction.

Universal Studios Update: Coke Store Opens Soon (Part 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our newest Universal Studios Florida photo-report. As usual, be sure to check out PART 1 of this update before proceeding. In the previous part, e checked out the entrance of the park, Production Central, and a section of the New York City-themed area (which includes the future Race Through New York ride). We will now head to other themed lands, including San Francisco and the nearby World Expo. We hope you will enjoy the pictures.

Intersection Closure at Buena Vista Drive November 14-16

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The intersection of Buena Vista Drive and Bonnet Creek Parkway will be closed for road work from 4 a.m. Monday, Nov. 14, until 4 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 16.
During this 48-hour closure, there will be no left turns from Buena Vista Drive onto Bonnet Creek Parkway or from Bonnet Creek Parkway onto Buena Vista Drive. A detour is currently in place using Overpass Road and Backstage Lane. Be sure to plan for extra travel time and follow any posted detour signs.

Disney Springs Celebrates Black Friday November 25-26

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As the official start of the busiest shopping season of the year, Black Friday will kick off at Disney Springs on November 25-26. With earlier opening hours at 8 a.m. and deals in every neighborhood, Disney Springs provides a one-of-a-kind shopping experience with extra entertainment and breakfast offerings including mimosas and small bites from dining locations across the property. While all of the special offers are subject to availability, there's a lot to choose from.

SeaWorld Parks to Reveal New Attraction Details at IAAPA

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IAAPA Members and Guests are invited to learn more about SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment‘s 2017 new attractions, one of the largest new attraction years in the company’s 53-year history. Company executives will host a press event on Tuesday, November 15, followed by three ride vehicle reveals on IAAPA Expo's show floor (please, note that IAAPA Attractions Expo is not open to the public). Additionally, the company will reveal more details about these new attractions.

Updated Epcot, Hollywood Studios Maps to Debut Soon

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Updated guidemaps for both Epcot and Disney's Hollywood Studios will soon become available to Guests visiting the Walt Disney World Resort. Epcot 's will go into circulation on Tuesday, Nov. 15 and will feature Soarin' Around the World on its cover. Changes include the removal of the Food & Wine Festival offerings.
the new map of Disney's Hollywood Studios will debut on Nov. 14. Changes for this revision include the addition of Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! and PizzeRizzo.  

Reimagined Sassagoula Food Factory Reopening Nov. 19

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On Saturday, November 19, the re-imagined Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory will reopen to Guests at Disney's Port Orleans Resort after having been closed for refurbishment since July 11. This food court-style dining location will offer American cooking inspired by the flavors of New Orleans. The location will also feature a completely redesigned interior, including the eye-catching “float” almost ready to make its parade debut. Continue reading to learn more.

New Merchandise Locations Coming to Disney Springs

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This winter, Disney Springs will welcome multiple brand-new locations to expand its diverse retail offerings. Opening this week on the Village Causeway (located in the Marketplace), LiveTrends will offer living works of art featuring a variety of plants including bamboo, succulents, air plants, and much more. Additionally, Stance will offer high-quality socks and underwear. This store (which will feature self-proclaimed "Masters of Knit") will open in the Town Center later this year.

Newly Redesigned Park Maps Debut at Universal Orlando

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In response to guest feedback, the Universal Orlando Resort recently introduced a new park map that focuses on the most important information to help Guests plan their day. The new guidemap features Universal’s Islands of Adventure on one side and Universal Studios Florida on the other. In addition, the new map includes many new features, including a calendar graphic for each park’s map to denote, and more clearly represent, the park operating hours (for 2 weeks).

Magic Kingdom Update: Main Entrance Changes (PART 1)

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We are slowly approaching one of the busiest times of the year in the Central Florida area. After some fairly quiet weeks, Guests should expect to see higher wait times and busier theme parks, just like it happens every year. To prepare for the crowds, the Magic Kingdom Park is introducing some changes, aiming to make simplify the process Guests go through before being able to enter the park itself. This is needed, as the bag check process is becoming increasingly slower.

Magic Kingdom Update: Main Entrance Changes (PART 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our newest Magic Kingdom photo-report, OTPN Readers! Be sure to click on this link to go back to PART 1 of this update.
In the previous part, we checked out the main entrance of the park, Main Street U.S.A., Tomorrowland, and more more. Let's now continue to take a look around this amazing place and check out what's new in Fantasyland, Liberty Square, and Frontierland. We still have plenty to see around the Magic Kingdom Park.

Magic Kingdom Update: Main Entrance Changes (PART 3)

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Welcome to the third part of our latest Magic Kingdom Park photo-report. Don't forget to also check out PART 2 of this update if you haven't already done so. In the previous two parts, we walked around all of the themed lands of the park, with the exception of Adventureland. The final part of this large photo-update will mostly focus on the Swiss Family Treehouse, which recently reopened after a lengthy refurbishment. As usual, we hope you will enjoy the rest of the pictures!