Plus…. Epcot International Festival of the Holidays coming soon to World Showcase, Woody’s Lunch Box announced for Toy Story Land, and more!
The Holiday Season is right around the corner, and there’s a ton of fun and excitement on the horizon at the Vacation Kingdom of the World. So let’s get to it. Time for the November 2017 Edition of the WDW Radio Newswire!
We begin this Edition of the Newswire at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, where a new Holiday Spectacle has just made its debut along Sunset Boulevard: Sunset Seasons Greetings. The 15-minute show illuminates the Hollywood Tower Hotel using projections and lighting effects, and the building is flanked with LED video boards on each side. Additional lighting effects can be found up and down Sunset Boulevard, and snow-making machines are also in place to add to the ambience of the setting. The show features four Disney Character-inspired stories. Mickey and Minnie kick things off with recollections of hometown Christmas memories, followed by the Toy Story crew speculating and discussing which new toys they think will be under the tree this year. The Swedish Chef is up next, with a classic babbling rant that transforms the projections into giant gingerbread houses. The show concludes with Olaf’s Holiday Wish, culminating in a Frozen winter wonderland of falling snow and Aurora Borealis lights pulsating to the unforgettable music of the Frozen soundtrack. Sunset Seasons Greetings will be playing nightly from Thursday, November 9 through Sunday, December 31, with showtimes of [6:30] PM and [8:00] PM.
For more news out of DHS, let’s venture over to Echo Lake. The water has been temporarily drained from the lake these past few weeks, as fresh coats of paint were applied to Dinosaur Gertie and the S.S. Down the Hatch (aka Min & Bill’s Dockside Diner). Holiday decorations have also been put in place around the lake during this refurb, including the giant Christmas tree which has been previously located at the park entrance in year’s past. Work has just wrapped up, and the lake has been refilled to its normal water capacity.
Let’s head over to Star Tours- The Adventures Continue now, where a new film sequence is set to debut at the attraction. The update will feature a journey to the planet of Crait, a destination found in the upcoming Star Wars Episode VIII – The Last Jedi.
For our last bit of DHS news, let’s stroll over to the site of Toy Story Land. A new dining experience has just been announced, as Woody’s Lunchbox is now in the plans for the upcoming land. Woody’s Lunchbox will be a walk-up window/kiosk featuring quick-service meals and small snack items. Old-fashioned soda floats will be on the menu as well. Mini Babybel will play the role of sponsor for Woody’s Lunchbox, so expect their cheeses to be at the menu’s forefront. Woody’s Lunchbox is scheduled to open up along with the rest of Toy Story Land this upcoming Summer 2018.
Time to park-hop over to Epcot now, where the International Festival of the Holidays is set to kickoff. The event replaces Holidays Around the World, and is highlighted by the addition of fifteen food kiosks around World Showcase. The kiosks will feature a regional blend of seasonal foods and drinks. Holiday festivities from year’s past will still be in the mix, including the popular Candlelight Processional emanating from the America Gardens Theater. The Festival gets underway on Sunday, November 19, and will run daily throughout the duration of the Holiday Season.
For more Epcot news, let’s venture over to the Mexico pavilion. Choza de Margarita will be opening up soon in the promenade area in front of the pavilion. The kiosk will be serving up a delicious mix of food and beverage items, including both frozen and on-the-rocks margaritas. Non-alcoholic drinks will also be on the menu, including a signature Mexican fruit punch. Food items will consist of the small plate variety, featuring dishes such as Grilled Pork Soft Tacos and Beef Empanadas. The area is currently behind construction walls, and there’s no official word yet on an opening date for the location. Given the fact that it’s just a small kiosk and construction is underway, I’d expect it to be open for businesses before the end of the calendar year.
Time to head over to Future World now, as a new exhibit has been announced for Innoventions East. The SpectacuLAB, sponsored by Murata, will feature science-based experiments and demonstrations. Real scientists will be on hand conducting these experiments, and audience participation will make this a fun and engaging experience for Guests of all ages. Show highlights will include ultrasonic sensor drums you can play with the wave of your hand, color-changing barometric pressure cubes that you are in control of, and accelerometer sensors which will measure your force when swinging a hammer. The SpctacuLAB is scheduled to be open by the end of this month, and will join Colortopia as the two main exhibits featured at the Innoventions East building.
Time to park-hop over to Magic Kingdom Park now, as a familiar sight from WDW‘s past has returned to Main Street U.S.A. The storefront for the House of Magic is back in its former location. The store space was taken over during the Emporium expansion, playing a disappear act on March 19, 1995. But after a 22-year hiatus, the House of Magic storefront has returned to its rightful place. The inside space is still occupied by the Emporium, but at least a small piece of WDW yesteryear is back in place from a visual perspective as you stroll down Main Street, U.S.A.
For more MK news, let’s follow the hub and take the bridge into Adventureland. The Jingle Cruise has made its annual Holiday return once again, as the attraction overlay is now in place as of November 2. Holiday music, props, and skipper dialogue transform the Jungle Cruise attraction into the fun and festive Spirit of the Season. This marks the fifth consecutive year for the Jingle Cruise, as it made its debut during the Holiday 2013 season.
Time for some news on the MK dining front now, as several quick-service spots have added some new items to their menus. Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe now features a Barbecued Pork Bacon Cheeseburger ($14.99), as well as a Barbecued Pulled Pork Sandwich ($11.99). Both menu items come with your choice of either French fries or green beans. Over at Casey’s Corner, you’ll find a Featured Hot Dog of the Month! The new menu item is priced at $12.29, and accompanied with a side of French fries. Finally, Columbia Harbour House now features the Land and Sea Trio ($14.49). The combo platter comes with Battered Fish, Fried Shrimp, and Breaded Chicken Breast Nuggets, and is accompanied by your choice of either French fries, apple slices, or steamed vegetables.
Time to park-hop over to Disney’s Animal Kingdom now, as there’s more news to report on new menu items. Flame Tree BBQ has added a Ribs, Chicken, and Pulled Pork Sampler to the menu. The combination platter is priced at $18.99, and is served with baked beans and coleslaw. The restaurant has also added a Smoked Pulled Pork Sandwich ($10.99) to the menu, which is topped with coleslaw and served with baked beans. In addition, they’ve also added French Fries topped with Pulled Pork and Cheese ($6.49), as well as Baked Macaroni & Cheese topped with Pulled Pork, Onion Rings, and coleslaw ($9.99).
Our final news bit today takes us over to Asia, as the date of the annual refurb for Kali River Rapids has recently been announced. The attraction will be closed from Tuesday, January 2 through Friday, February 9. This will put the total downtime for the attraction at just under six weeks.
Well, that’s gonna do it for the November 2017 Edition of the WDW Radio Newswire. But I’ll be back again next month with lots more news, notes, and happenings from Walt’s beloved “Florida project!”
(Images © Disney)
To learn more about Don and read his recent posts for WDW Radio, visit his author page by clicking the link on his name at the top of this post.