Plus… Villains Edition of Celebrate the Magic and Prince Eric’s Village Market make their debuts, California Grill ready for its re-launch, and more!
by Don Myers
The calendar has shifted to September, and it’s time to bid a fond farewell to another Summer season. The weather may not reflect it yet, but a change in the seasons is indeed upon us. Soon it will be time for adventures at the pumpkin patch and the cider mill. Hayrides, haunted houses, and trick-or-treating are all on the horizon. A change in the air is also prevalent at the Vacation Kingdom of the World, as the Resort’s flagship park has gone through an Autumn transition seemingly overnight. So let’s get to it. Time for the latest edition of the WDW Radio Newswire…..
We begin this edition of the Newswire inside Magic Kingdom. As indicated in the introduction, WDW’s flagship park has been dressed from head to toe in festive Fall decor. From Main Street Train Station to Casey’s Corner and all points between, Magic Kingdom has been decorated with a vast array of Autumn decorations. Orange and yellow banners cover several of Main Street USA’s most beloved locations, including City Hall, the Emporium, and the Confectionary. Town Square has been converted into a pumpkin patch, complete with a plethora of scarecrows scattered about. Further up Main Street you’ll also find several window displays, and wreaths fitted with Mickey-faced pumpkins adorn the lamp posts.
But the Halloween decorations aren’t the only additions to Magic Kingdom, as the season also brings with it a brand-new incarnation of the Celebrate the Magic projection show. Dubbed the “Villains Edition,” this twist on the show will feature some of the most foul baddies in Disney film history as they attempt a hostile takeover of Cinderella Castle. The Villains Edition made its debut on Sunday September 1st, and the show will play nightly through Halloween, wrapping up its run on Friday November 1st.
Time to make our way into Fantasyland now for an exciting piece of news on a new snack spot. Prince Eric’s Village Market is set to open its doors on Thursday September 5th. Housed near the Under the Sea- Journey of the Little Mermaid attraction, this new snack spot will feature a wide variety of fresh fruit options, including apple slices, watermelon wedges, pineapple spears, and grapes. All-natural lemonade, frozen lemonade, and an assortment of shaved ice flavors are also on the menu.
For more news out of Fantasyland, let’s venture over to it’s a small world. It looks like the attraction will be facing a little bit of downtime this Winter, as small world has just been added to the list of upcoming refurbishments. The refurb is scheduled to begin on Monday December 2nd, with a re-opening date set for Friday December 13th. This puts the total closure time for small world at less than two weeks, and also ensures that the popular attraction will be back in operation just in time for the busy Holiday season.
Now it’s time to board the monorail and cruise over to the Contemporary for an update on the California Grill. The popular dining spot has been closed for renovations since February 1st, but an official re-opening date has been confirmed for Monday September 9th. This will put the total downtime for the restaurant at just over seven months. During this closure several major changes have taken place to both to the decor and menu at California Grill. Let’s begin with the menu, which features a wide variety of beef, pork, and sushi options to choose from. Indulge your taste pallets with a Spicy Kazan roll consisting of crab, shrimp, scallops, and tuna. Or try the “Pork Two Ways,” a new twist on the classic pork and polenta dish previously served at the restaurant. Several of the dishes have received a bit of a taste makeover, but the finest addition to the menu may very well be the 24-hour braised beef short rib filet. The entree is priced at $40 and is served with a side of whipped potatoes and caramelized root vegetables. These new menu options are just the tip of the iceberg, as the interior of the restaurant has also been completely re-designed. A wine wall with shelf after shelf of fine bottles is now in the mix, and the open-view kitchen has been equipped with brand new appliances. The decor has been furnished by Puccini of San Francisco, and reservations are now available for booking by calling: 1-407-WDW-DINE or by visiting the website.
Well, that’s gonna do it for today’s update. But before we call it a wrap, let’s take a look at the results of our previous poll. The question was:
What is your favorite 3-D film attraction at WDW?
. Mickey’s Philharmagic
. Captain EO
. Jim Henson’s MuppetVision 3-D
. It’s Tough To Be A Bug
And the winner is…
Mickey’s Philharmagic with 52% of the votes! MuppetVision 3-D came in second with 25%, Tough To Be A Bug finished third with 15%, and Captain EO rounded out the quartet with 8%. A big thank you to everyone that took the time to vote! Now on to this week’s question:
Don Myers covers news and recent events in Walt Disney World. He has been enamored with the World of Disney since his first trip to WDW in 1986. As they say, the rest is history! Don also has been a contributing writer for Celebrations magazine since 2009.