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Showing posts from August, 2017

Ear Hat Embroidery Coming to the Discovery Trading Company Shop

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Discovery Trading Company (a shop located on Discovery Island at Animal Kingdom) will offer ear hat embroidery beginning Monday, Sept. 4. Embroidery is exclusive to ear hats at this time and is not available on towels, ear headbands, baseball hats, or clothing. Basic embroidery will be $3.99 for gold, black, or dark pink text in a traditional font. Premium embroidery will also be available for $7.99 per line (maximum two lines), including gold, white, or red text in a script or kid’s font.

Chef Mickey's to Temporarily Relocate at the Contemporary Resort

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Due to kitchen maintenance and to our ensure Guests have a seamless dining experience, the all-you-care-to-eat buffet with Chef Mickey and friends will be temporarily relocating to the convention center at Disney’s Contemporary Resort from late November through December 2017 (the restaurant is expected to reopen in mid-December). The buffet offerings, characters, and Disney PhotoPass experience will be exactly the same in the temporary location.

PHOTOS: New Kiosks Open in the CityWalk Hub at Universal Orlando

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As recently reported, two new kiosks recently opened in the CityWalk Hub at the Universal Orlando Resort. Located near the security checkpoint that most Guests will have to go through after parking their car in one of the two parking garages, the new Fresh Eats kiosk offers a delicious assortment of sandwiches and pastries, as well as a selection of Starbucks beverages. Guests can also find a new merchandise location just a few steps away, which offers shirts, hats, sunglasses, and more.

Slinky Dog Dash Ride Vehicle Arrives at Hollywood Studios

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The Slinky Dog Dash attraction, currently under construction in Toy Story Land, celebrated a major milestone today with the reveal of the coaster’s first Slinky Dog ride vehicle. In Toy Story Land, an 11-acre expansion that’s set to open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Summer 2018, Guests will shrink to the size of a toy and explore the world of Andy’s backyard on two fun family attractions – Slinky Dog Dash (a family roller coaster) and Alien Swirling Saucers (a flat ride).

The Walt Disney Company will Donate $1 Million for Hurricane Relief

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The Walt Disney Company and its owned ABC television station KTRK in Houston today jointly announced a $1 million cash commitment to the American Red Cross in support of recovery efforts for communities affected by Hurricane Harvey in the city and other areas of Texas. In addition to that, on Thursday, August 31,  the Disney/ABC Television Group (DATG) will host a “Day of Giving” to benefit those that have been impacted by this truly devastating hurricane.

Splash Mountain Closed for Refurbishment Aug. 28 - Nov. 16

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Guests planning on visiting the Magic Kingdom Park should be aware that Splash Mountain will be closed for refurbishment through November 16. As a reminder, the Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid attraction (located in Fantasyland) will also temporarily close to Guests at 7 p.m. on August 31 for routine maintenance. The attraction will resume normal operations on September 1. Be sure to visit the My Disney Experience app for the most up-to-date attraction information.

Roaring Fork Restaurant Reopens at Disney's Wilderness Lodge

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The rustic Roaring Fork has reopened to Guests at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. Located in the main building near the Copper Creek Springs pool area, this quick-service restaurant is a convenient stop for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, with a spacious indoor dining room and a newly-covered outdoor seating area. Breakfast is served 6-11 a.m., and while there are still plenty of grab n’ go options, the location now offers new Banana Foster’s French Toast and 10-hour Pulled Pork Cheese Grits.

My Disney Experience App Update Includes New Features

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A new version of the My Disney Experience app launched just a few days ago. The updated app now includes new features that further enhance the Guest experience by offering added convenience and flexibility for those on the go. For example, Guests staying at Disney Resort hotels can now keep track of their room charges and dining plan entitlements in the app, while Annual Passholders can now use the app to renew their passes and avoid having to stop by the ticket booths.

Islands of Adventure Update: Dragon Challenge Markers (PART 1)

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Dragon Challenge will permanently close in less than a week, meaning that Guests visiting Islands of Adventure have just a few hours left to experience these two amazing coasters before they get replaced by a brand-new attraction (there's also a possibility that a few other additions will join the new ride). The two "dragons" are expected to disappear fairly quickly, and that's confirmed by the fact that markers are now visible in specific areas where the coaster track is currently standing.

Islands of Adventure Update: Dragon Challenge Markers (PART 2)

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Thank you for joining us in the second part of our newest Islands of Adventure photo-report! As always, be sure to also check out PART 1 of this update to find more photos taken around the park. In the previous part we walked around the Port of Entry, Seuss Landing, the Lost Continent, and Hogsmeade (where we explored the queue area of Dragon Challenge and pointed out some markers that are now visible around the area). Let's continue our tour of this amazing theme park.

Walt Disney World Road Closures and Attraction Refurbishments

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Guests visiting the Walt Disney World Resort should be aware of the following road closures:
Beginning Sunday, Aug. 20, several single lane closures and ramp closures will take place in the Epcot Center Drive area. Remember to always travel safely throughout property and remain alert, as roadways continue to change in that particular area. Additionally, the westbound Osceola Parkway ramp onto northbound World Drive will be closed from noon-2 p.m. on Monday, August 28.

Indiana Jones Stunt Show Celebrates 28 Years of Operation

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With the recent closure of The Great Movie Ride, Disney’s Hollywood Studios now has a new longest-operating attraction (it's actually a show): the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular! Michael Eisner (former CEO of The Walt Disney Company) and George Lucas (the creator of Indiana Jones) opened the show in a special dedication ceremony on August 25, 1989, not long after the opening of the theme park itself. That was the first appearance of the Indiana Jones character in a Disney Park.

New "Epcot Legacy Showplace" Coming Soon to the Odyssey Pavilion

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The 21st annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival begins Thursday, August 31. This year's event will celebrate Epcot's 35th anniversary by featuring 35 unique Marketplaces, bringing back some heritage foods, and more! One of the new offerings will be found in the Odyssey pavilion, which will become the Epcot Legacy Showplace. Featuring displays of Epcot's rich history and a selection of throwback treats, the Legacy Showplace will be open until the end of the festival.

Special Offer Available at SeaWorld's Sharks Underwater Grill

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Sharks Underwater Grill, the fine dining restaurant at SeaWorld Orlando, is the only establishment in a theme park participating in Visit Orlando’s Magical Dining Month sponsored by American Express. Each fall, Visit Orlando teams up with over 100 local restaurants to offer incredible three-course-dinners for an amazing value: $35 per person. During Magical Dining Month, Guests can make a reservation at the restaurant and select an appetizer, dinner, and dessert at this limited-time rate.

Self-Service Locker Rentals Now Available at Disney's Theme Parks

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Guest lockers have been upgraded at all Walt Disney World theme parks. As part of this update, the process for renting a locker has changed, as each locker location is now equipped with a self-service kiosk. Guests paying with cash or credit card may now proceed directly to the kiosk to rent a locker. Guests paying with a MagicBand or gift card must see a Cast Member at the nearest merchandise location (the Cast Member will provide the Guest a code to access one of the lockers).

Cinderella’s Royal Table Closing for Refurbishment in 2018

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Cinderella’s Royal Table (the very popular table-service restaurant located at the Magic Kingdom Park) will be closed for refurbishment February 28-March 2, 2018. This closure will soon be visible on operating calendars and My Disney Experience. As an alternate option, Guests looking for a princess character dining experience may be interested in Akershus at Epcot (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) or 1900 Park Fare at the Grand Floridian Resort (dinner). Reservations are recommended.

Force Friday II Merchandise Event Coming Soon to Disney Springs

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On Sept. 1, Force Friday II will give Guests the opportunity to be among the first to purchase new Star Wars and Star Wars: The Last Jedi themed merchandise. Guests can register for this free event beginning on Aug. 31 at 6 p.m., near the World of Disney entrance closest to Basin. After registering, Guests will receive a numbered wristband on a first-come, first served basis and will be invited to return to World of Disney by 11:30 p.m. to line up. Doors will open at 12:01 a.m. on September 1.

Universal Studios Update: The Day of the Solar Eclipse (PART 1)

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Monday, August 21, 2017 was a special day for many people in the United States, as the solar eclipse was visible in a number of states across the country. While Central Florida visitors only witnessed a partial eclipse, the excitement was obvious, as it's a very rare event that many will only get to see once or twice during their lifetime. Right after the event, we decided to visit Universal Studios Florida to check on the work being done in the site of Fast & Furious: Supercharged.

Universal Studios Update: The Day of the Solar Eclipse (PART 2)

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Thanks for joining us for the second part our newest Universal Studios Florida photo-report! As always, we'd like to remind you to check out PART 1 of this update if you haven't already done so. Previously, we checked out the entrance of Universal Studios Florida, Production Central, the New York City backlot, and parts of San Francisco (where the new Fast & Furious ride is currently under construction). Let's now continue to walk around the park to see what else is new.

New Hollywood Studios Guidemaps to Be Available Starting Aug. 27

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Updated guidemaps are coming to Disney's Hollywood Studios on Sunday, Aug. 27. The guidemap is dated August 2017 and features Guests riding Toy Story Midway Mania! on the cover. One of the major changes will be the removal of The Great Movie Ride and “The Music of Pixar LIVE! A Symphony of Characters” (which will have its final performance on August 27). The guidemap includes an updated English map, as well as all five translations and the Guide for Guests with Disabilities.

Mobile Order Expands to 23 Walt Disney World Resort Locations

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Now it’s easier than ever for Guests to personalize their Walt Disney World Resort experience through the My Disney Experience app. My Disney Experience continues to add new features – including the new Mobile Order and Online Mobile Check-in at Disney Resort hotels – while still helping Guests plan their vacation experience and make changes on the go through helpful tools like online ticket purchasing,  FastPass+, Disney PhotoPass, and so much more.

Select Disney Restaurants Participate in Magical Dining Month Event

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For the very first time, select Walt Disney World Resort hotel restaurants will be part of Visit Orlando’s popular Magical Dining Month that starts tomorrow (Friday, August 25) and runs through October 1, 2017. Magical Dining Month gives these restaurants a chance to showcase the talents of their top chefs by offering special three-course meals for $35 per person, plus applicable tax and gratuity. Menu offerings vary, so be sure to check at the location for additional information.

Hollywood Studios Update: The Great Movie Ride is Gone (PART 1)

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The Great Movie Ride is no more. Even though this opening-day attraction closed weeks ago, we still cannot believe that this iconic ride is gone forever. That being said, we shouldn't forget that there are plenty of amazing new experiences that await Guests visiting Disney's Hollywood Studios in the near future. By the end of 2019, there will be at least five new rides to check out, without counting other additions (including new shows) that have not been officially announced yet!

Hollywood Studios Update: The Great Movie Ride is Gone (PART 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our newest Disney's Hollywood Studios photo-report. Don't forget to check out PART 1 of this update to enjoy photos taken in other areas of this theme park. In the previous part, we walked around the main entrance of the park, Hollywood Boulevard, the Center Stage, Animation Courtyard, and Pixar Place. Let's continue our tour of the park by moving on to the future Grand Avenue, Muppets Courtyard, Echo Lake, and Sunset Boulevard.

New Headwear and More Now Available at D-Living at Disney Springs

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As previously reported, the D-Living store recently reopened with a new overlay at Disney Springs featuring the latest in park headwear, fashion accessories and apparel, including a brand-new Interchangeable Bow collection. Guests can now customize their Disney look with a variety of character-inspired Minnie Mouse bows! The starter headband includes a removable, sequin-covered bow and three distinct spaces where the bows can be clipped.

LEGOLAND Offering Discounted One-Day Tickets Through Sept. 15

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Now through September 15, Guests can save $30 off the price of a one-day LEGOLAND Florida Theme Park ticket or a one-day Theme Park & Water Park ticket combo. Tickets bought at this discounted price are good for visits from October 1 through November 19, 2017 (please, note that LEGOLAND Florida and the adjacent water park are closed on select dates, so be sure to check the operating calendar before planning a visit to avoid the inconvenience of finding the parks closed).

AVATAR Land Opening Procedures Have Changed at Animal Kingdom

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Beginning immediately, all Guests who wish to experience Pandora - The World of Avatar when Animal Kingdom opens for the day must enter and exit the land via the bridge next to Tiffins (located on Discovery Island). Access via the Harambe bridge (located in Africa) will not be available until the queue for Avatar Flight of Passage has been limited to one side of the bridge, which typically occurs between 10 a.m and noon daily. Cast Members will be available to assist Guests.

Gondola Station Construction Begins Near Hollywood Studios

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Construction related to the new Disney Skyliner (click here to learn more about this project) began on Sunday, August 20 near the main entrance of Disney's Hollywood Studios. A temporary fence has been installed near the charter bus lot, surrounding a grassy area bordering the nearby pond. These walls will remain in place through the completion of the project. No other areas are expected to be impacted by this construction project, even though work continues to take place in the parking lot.

New Offerings Now Open in the Hub of Universal's Parking Garages

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For the majority of Guests visiting the Universal Orlando Resort, the CityWalk Hub (the large plaza connecting the parking garages to the walkway leading to CityWalk and the two theme parks) is their first and last stop. Over time, the rotunda has undergone a series of renovations including the installation of security terminals, digital screens communicating the expectations of the security process, and a merchandise location stocked with shirts, hats, sunglasses, and other accessories.

Special Offers Available at Disney Springs This Week (Aug. 20-26)

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Every week, select stores, restaurants, and attractions around Disney Springs offer special discounts to Guests. One of the discounts available to Guests is offered by Cirque du Soleil. La Nouba tickets start at $49 for category 4 seating through December 16. Florida resident Fun Packs are also available, starting at $129 for four Category 3 seating tickets (Guests must purchase a minimum of three tickets, valid through December 16). Call 407-WDW-SEAT to learn more.

Grand Floridian Resort Refurbishments & Advisories for August 2017

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Guests visiting the Walt Disney World Resort in the coming days should keep in mind that, due to the solar eclipse, the marina at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa will be closed on Monday, August 2. The marina will resume normal operations on Tuesday, August 22. As a reminder, other attractions and offerings around the Walt Disney World Resort will also be temporarily unavailable on August 22 due to the solar eclipse (click here to learn more about these closures).

Epcot Update: Getting Ready for the Food & Wine Festival (PART 1)

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This year's International Food & Wine Festival will begin earlier than ever at Epcot. In less than two weeks, Guest visiting the park will be able to enjoy food and beverage samples from around the world in the numerous kiosks located across Future World and World showcase. One of the major differences that fans will notice is that most of the kiosks used this year are brand-new, featuring an incredible amount of details that hardly makes them look "temporary. Let's take a look around...

Epcot Update: Getting Ready for the Food & Wine Festival (PART 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our newest Epcot photo-report, Orlando Theme Park News Readers! As always, we invite you to check out PART 1 of this update by clicking on this link. In the previous part we walked around the first six World Showcase pavilions: Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, and The American Adventure. Let's continue to explore the remaining countries (Japan, Morocco, France, the United Kingdom, and Canada) to see what else is new.

New Water Attraction Coming to Adventure Island Water Park in 2018

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Yesterday afternoon, representatives of Adventure Island stated that "a new type of thrill" is coming to the water park in 2018! Located next to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, Adventure Island has always been a popular destination for locals and Guests with multi-park tickets. Just like other water parks in the area, though, Adventure Island has received few additions over the past few years, but that is about to change. Continue reading to watch the teaser video released by the park.

Muppets Courtyard to Become Grand Park at Hollywood Studios

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As previously announced, a portion of the former Streets of America is being re-imagined to become a new area called Grand Avenue. Inspired by present-day downtown Los Angeles, Grand Avenue is where vintage office buildings and warehouses are being converted to exciting new uses. Guests will soon see facades for “merchants” appearing in this area for a music shop, loft apartments, a tailor and more, with each window on the street featuring charming displays.

Mobile Order Coming Soon to Harambe Market at Animal Kingdom

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Mobile Order will be available at Harambe Market (the outdoor quick-service location found in Africa at Disney's Animal Kingdom) beginning August 21. Using the My Disney Experience app, Guests are able to select menu items, customize their order and pre-pay for their meal. When they arrive at the restaurant, they will tap the “I’m here” button in the app, which notifies the kitchen to prepare the meal. When ready, Guests are alerted through the app to pick up their meal at a designated window.

Solar Eclipse to Impact Select Walt Disney World Attractions

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On Monday, Aug. 21, a solar eclipse will be seen across the United States from coast to coast. During the eclipse, the moon will pass in between the Earth and the sun, causing a shadow on Earth (you can learn more by clicking on this link). This rare, natural event is expected to be visible in the Central Florida area from approximately 1:15-4:30 p.m. For this reason, select attractions located across the Walt Disney World Resort may be temporarily unavailable due to low visibility.

Epcot Update: Universe of Energy Closes, Mission: SPACE Reopens

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The Universe of Energy is now gone. This classic EPCOT Center attraction already received some changes in the 1990s, but they were not as major as the changes that are coming to this pavilion in the coming years. The ride system, Audio-Animatronics, and theme will be completely new when the ride reopens as a Guardians of the Galaxy ride. The nearby Mission: SPACE was also recently refurbished and a new mission was added. Let's take a quick look around and see all that's new.

Coca-Cola Freestyle stations Now Available at LEGOLAND Florida

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Guests visiting LEGOLAND Florida are now able to refresh and refill at the new Coca-Cola Freestyle stations located around the park. More than 100 beverages are available at four themed Coca-Cola Freestyle stations (The Beginning, Land of Adventure, LEGO NINJAGO World, and LEGOLAND Water Park). Souvenir cups are available for $13.99 plus tax ($12.99 each plus tax for two souvenir cups; $10.99 each plus tax for three or more souvenir cups), which includes unlimited refills for the day.

Wine Bar George to Open to Guests in Early 2018 at Disney Springs

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Master Sommelier George Miliotes will bring his renowned wine expertise to Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort when his new venture, Wine Bar George, opens in early 2018. Originally scheduled to open before the end of 2017, Wine Bar George will be the only Master Sommelier-led wine bar in Florida that will also include a food menu featuring small plates, family style items, and a selection of cheese and charcuterie designed to complement the wine list.

Disney Introduces Fantasmic! Dessert & VIP Viewing Experience

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Disney’s Hollywood Studios will be introducing an all-new dessert experience at the nighttime spectacular, Fantasmic!, on Sept. 8. In addition to reserved seating for the show, the Dessert & VIP Viewing Experience offers offers an adult or child snack box with sweet and savory items (including chocolate covered strawberries and cheese and crackers), one bottle of water, one specialty beverage (alcoholic or non-alcoholic), reserved seating for the show, and a souvenir light-up cup.

Islands of Adventure Update: Dragon Challenge Closes Soon (Part 1)

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Just two days ago, theme park fans had to bid farewell to two Disney attractions: the Universe of Energy pavilion at Epcot and The Great Movie Ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Fans will soon have to get ready to say goodbye to yet another attraction (they're actually two separate coasters, but they coexist under the same name) that has been operating at Universal's Islands of Adventure since opening day: Dragon Challenge. Guests have less than a month to ride them one last time.

Islands of Adventure Update: Dragon Challenge Closes Soon (Part 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our newest Universal's Islands of Adventure photo-report. As always, we invite you to check out PART 1 of this update to enjoy even more photos taken around the park. In the previous installment, we visited Jurassic Park, Toon Lagoon, and certain parts of Marvel Superhero Island. It's time to complete our tour by walking around the rest of this themed land as well as the nearby Seuss Landing, The Lost Continent, and Hogsmeade. The adventure continues...

This Week's Special Offers at Disney Springs (August 15-19)

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Every week, select stores, restaurants, and attractions around Disney Springs offer special discounts to Guests. One of the best discounts currently available is offered by Cirque du Soleil. La Nouba tickets start at $49 for category 4 seating through December 16. Florida resident Fun Packs are also available, starting at $129 for four Category 3 seating tickets (Guests must purchase a minimum of three tickets, valid through December 16). Call 407-WDW-SEAT to learn more.

Express Transportation Suspending Operation at Walt Disney World

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The Express Transportation add-on service that has been available for the past few months at the Walt Disney World Resort will suspend operation beginning Thursday, August 24. The last day for Guests to purchase this service is Wednesday, August 16. Guests who purchase a multi-day Express Transportation ticket will be able to use this service until Wednesday, August 23. Walt Disney World Resort Guests may continue to use all other on-site transportation options.

SeaWorld to Host Final Electric Ocean Performance in September

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SeaWorld Orlando’s summer entertainment line-up may be coming to an end, but not without a final bow for park guests. Indeed, Guests will be able to enjoy extended hours and two nights of fireworks September 2 and 3. On Saturday and Sunday of the holiday weekend, SeaWorld will be open until 10 p.m. and until 7 p.m. on Labor Day, Sept. 4. The summer dance party and evening celebration Electric Ocean will begin at 8:00 p.m., culminating in the fireworks finale at 9:30 p.m.

Hollywood Studios Update: The End of the Great Movie Ride (PART 1)

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One of the most iconic Walt Disney World attractions is now gone. The Great Movie Ride was one of the few Audio Animatronic-heavy rides that are still in existence today (most attractions today features screens and are less than 6 minutes long), and it was the perfect attraction to represent Disney's Hollywood Studios. While the artwork and brief video about the new Mickey Mouse-themed ride seemed to be very underwhelming, we are confident that the new attraction will be spectacular.

Hollywood Studios Update: The End of the Great Movie Ride (PART 2)

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Welcome to the second part of our newest Disney's Hollywood Studios photo-report, OTPN Readers! Be sure to check out PART 1 of this update to find even more photos taken around this theme park. In the previous part, we walked around the entrance of the park (including Hollywood Boulevard and the Center Stage), we headed inside The Great Movie Ride one last time, and then we headed to Sunset Boulevard and the future site of the Grand Avenue area. Let's explore the rest of the park.

Stitch’s Great Escape Returning to Seasonal Operation on August 20

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Guests visiting the Magic Kingdom Park later this month should keep in mind that Stitch’s Great Escape (the theater-in-the-round attraction located in the Tomorrowland area of the Magic Kingdom Park) will close on August 20 as it returns to seasonal operation. Its final day of summer operation will be August 19. The future of Stitch’s Great Escape is still uncertain, but the attraction is currently scheduled to reopen again before the end of the year. We will continue to keep you posted.

The Great Irish Hooley Returns to Disney Springs September 1-4

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The sixth annual Great Irish Hooley returns to Disney Springs this Labor Day weekend at Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant. This year, Guests can celebrate Irish song, dance, food, and drink September 1-4. Featuring Celtic face painting, contemporary Irish cuisine and one-of-a kind live entertainment, the Great Irish Hooley is sure to be fun for families and revelers alike. The Great Irish Hooley, Central Florida’s only boutique Irish festival, will host its most diverse lineup yet!