Walt Disney World will begin celebrating it’s 50th anniversary over an 18-month event beginning October 1.
In 1971, the resort officially opened to guests for the first time and since then the Magic Kingdom park has ranked one of the best theme parks worldwide.
To celebrate, Walt Disney World will be welcoming guests to “The World’s Most Magical Celebration” that includes new attractions, nighttime spectaculars and more.
First off, Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom will feature a 50th anniversary crest and other enhancements.
“Guests will discover new experiences across the resort, where shimmering EARidescence appears as if by magic everywhere from theme parks to Disney Resort hotels to transportation to merchandise and more.” said Disney.
Expanded France Pavilion at EPCOT
The expanded EPCOT France Pavilion will be opening it’s newest family-friendly attraction, Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, on October 1 as well.
“Guests feel as if they shrink to the size of Chef Remy and scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant. They discover Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure in World Showcase as part of a newly expanded France pavilion, where the real is made fantastic in a reimagining of Paris inspired by the film.”
The France Pavilion is also debuting a new restaurant within the expanded section, La Crêperie de Paris, that offers both table and quick-service options.
The menu features sweet crepes, savory buckwheat galettes (naturally gluten friendly), and authentic French hard cider.
The attraction, restaurant, and pavilion expansion are all part of the historic transformation of EPCOT currently underway, bringing a breadth of new experiences to the park as a celebration of curiosity, discovery, and the magic of possibility.
‘Harmonious’ at EPCOT
Harmonious, a new nighttime spectacular will also be debuting on October 1. The new show is one of the largest ever created for a Disney park and celebrates “Disney music that inspires people worldwide”.
“It is a grand, powerful tribute to the unifying power of story and song, embracing new technical magic that incorporates pyrotechnics, choreographed moving fountains, lighting, massive LED panels and media in new ways.” said Disney.
‘Disney Enchantment’ at Magic Kingdom
Along with Harmonious, Disney Enchantment, another new nighttime spectacular will be debuting at Magic Kingdom.
This spectacular “takes guests on a journey filled with adventure, wonder and empowerment” with fireworks, music, enhanced lighting, and immersive projection effects that extend from Cinderella Castle down Main Street, U.S.A.
Beacons of magic at all parks
During the celebration, icons at all of the resort’s parks will transform at night into “Beacons of Magic”.
- Cinderella Castle illuminates Magic Kingdom Park with a dazzling radiance and pixie-dust sparkle.
- At Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, a warm light emanates from the Tree of Life as fireflies gather to usher in the magic of nature.
- The Hollywood Tower Hotel at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is awash in a brilliance evoking the golden age of imagination and adventure.
- And at EPCOT, new lights shine across the reflective panels of Spaceship Earth, connecting to one another like stars in a nighttime sky and creating a mesmerizing symbol of optimism. The iconic structure’s permanent new lighting will continue beyond “The World’s Most Magical Celebration” as a defining feature of the park.
New daytime entertainment at Animal Kingdom
“Disney KiteTails” is a new daytime entertainment offering at Animal Kingdom several times throughout the day at the Discovery River Theater.
“Performers fly windcatchers and kites of all shapes and sizes, while out on the water elaborate three-dimensional kites – some stretching to 30 feet long – depict Disney animal friends, including Simba, Zazu, Baloo and King Louie.”
“These colorful creations dance through the sky to the beat of favorite Disney songs in an uplifting, vibrant experience for the whole family.”
Golden character collection sculptures
Across all of the theme parks, guests will be able to find new “Disney Fab 50 Character Collection” sculptures to honor the anniversary.
Fifth characters are featured in total from a wide variety of Disney entertainment including Miguel and Dante from Coco to Simba Timon and Pumba from The Lion King.
Guests will be able to find the Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse sculptures at Magic Kingdom.
New food and drink items
New menu items can be located throughout Walt Disney World inspired by past offerings throughout the years, these include classics and some of Walt Disney’s favorite items. There are over 150 new items to choose from, here are a selection:
- Cheese Fries with Walt’s Chili at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park.
- Glimmer and Shimmer Pineapple Mousse at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
- Mission to Mars burger at Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Café in Magic Kingdom Park.
- EARidescent Croissant Doughnut at EPCOT.
- EARidescent Ice Dream Cone at Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park.
- Chicken Dinner Cupcake Trio at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground.
- Magical Beacon Cocktail, found at many table-service restaurants, lounges and pool bars at Walt Disney World.
50th anniversary merchandise collection
In October and November, guests will be able to discover new merchandise collections that include apparel, accessories, plush, homeware, keepsakes, collectibles, and more. Some of the collections include:
- The Celebration Collection includes a wide-ranging assortment of commemorative merchandise for the whole family.
- Drawing inspiration from Cinderella Castle, the Disney Castle Collection features everything from collectibles – such as ornaments and charms – to castle-inspired attire and a light-up, 50th anniversary-edition Minnie Mouse ear headband.
- Disney fans and those who love all things vintage will be eager to unlock the Vault Collection that pays tribute to 50 years of Walt Disney World magic with an assortment of retro-themed designs right out of the Walt Disney Archives.
- In line with new décor seen across Walt Disney World during the 50th anniversary celebration, the EARidescent Collectionfeatures a shimmering array of themed fashions and accessories.
- As the name implies, the Luxe Logo Collection offers a range of upscale pieces for the Disney collector.
That’s not all, many more offerings and entertainment will be available at Walt Disney World for the 18-month celebration, all of which can be found on the Walt Disney World website.