What’s New at Disney World


Mike and Sulley.
Guests can meet and have a photo op with Mike and Sulley.

This summer Walt Disney World in Orlando introduced “Limited Time Magic”—a series of short-lived special events to make your clients’ visit all the more entertaining—as well as several new attractions. “Summer is a time to continue our tradition of presenting experiences that are immersive, fun and innovative,” says Walt Disney World Resort President George Kalogridis. “There is a limited time in life to create special memories for families.”

He adds that the fleeting quality of shared family time is a basis for the company’s creation of the Limited Time Magic events. “Each is meant to be uniquely memorable with a limited window of opportunity,” he adds. There is also much on the Disney plate for older youth, as well as the college crowd, as the summer fun continues well past Labor Day. Here is a brief rundown of some of what’s still ahead.

·         Through September 2, teen guests can make waves on the shores of Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park at the Teen Beach Movie: Beach Party. Disney DJs storm the beach several times throughout the day playing their retro remixes. This Limited Time Magic event ties in with the “Teen Beach Movie,” which premiered on the Disney Channel in late July and is available on demand.

·         Friday, September 13, will be an “Unleash the Villains” day in Disney Hollywood Studios. Captain Hook, Maleficent and other Disney baddies join an evening dance party until the late closing at 1 a.m., which Disney calls “the 13th hour.”

·         Jack Sparrow and his Pirates of the Caribbean will be a major presence in multiple locations. An interactive game called “A Pirate’s Adventure: Treasures of the Seven Seas” has been launched in the Magic Kingdom. Young guest pirates join Jack Sparrow and his crew on five adventures to fight villains and follow maps to buried treasures. Look for a Pirates Week in mid-September.

·        This is also the first summer for “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow” at Hollywood Studios. This is an immersive, walk-through experience in which guests conquer villains from the four Pirates films and meet Jack himself.

·        The Princess Fairytale Hall is slated to open in the Disney Magic Kingdom’s new Fantasyland this fall. It’s a fascinating experience in which guests are royal subjects going to meet such princesses as Cinderella, Snow White, Aurora, Jasmine and Tiana. 

“My Disney Experience”

“My Disney Experience” is a free mobile app for iPhone, iPad and the Android smart phones. Tech savvy guests can use the app as a one-stop shop to find out wait times for shows and attractions, make dining reservations, read restaurant menus, get park directions or learn character appearance times.


·        “Re-Discovering America: Family Treasures from the Kinsey Collection” has opened in the American Adventure Pavilion at Epcot. This exhibit of historic art and documents from 400 years of African-American history will be on display with rotating content from the collections of Bernard and Shirley Kinsey over the next three years.

Disney World has also been promoting mid-2013 as its “Monstrous Summer,” with several attractions connected with Monsters University, the Disney-Pixar animated film prequel to Monsters Inc. that made over a quarter of a billion dollars in the U.S. alone since its release on June 21. Highlights include:

·        The Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor: This interactive show, hosted by “Monster of Ceremonies” Mike Wazowski (the green one-eyed co-star of the movie), is set in a 400-seat comedy club. Kids are invited to text their favorite joke before the lights go down and it could be used in the show.

·        The Monsterail: One of the iconic Monorail trains has been monster-ized with visuals from the new movie.

·        Monsters University Meet Up: Encounter some monstrous friends at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and have a photo op with Mike and Sulley.

·        Monstrous Summer Wake-Up Call: Guests staying at select Walt Disney World Resort Hotels can schedule a call and wake up to the voice of “scare student” Wazowski each morning.

Kalogridis summed up Disney’s management philosophy on the abundance of ongoing new activity at Walt Disney World by quoting the founder. “As Walt used to say, ‘Our parks will never be completed as long as there is imagination left in the world. We are always in a state of becoming.’ ”

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