Hi there! Welcome to our weekly roundup of the most interesting theme park news around the Walt Disney World Resort, the Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld Orlando and other theme parks.
Here Are This Week’s Theme Park Highlights:
- It's time for a celebration! Disney Parks Blog shared that Splash Mountain attractions at both Disneyland Park and Magic Kingdom Park are going to be reimagined with a new storyline, one that all park-goers can connect with. And who would be a better fit in Critter Country, New Orleans Square and Frontierland than Princess Tiana? That's right, guests will be "goin' down the bayou" with Princess Tiana, Prince Naveen, Louis, Ray, Mama Odie and other favorites from the film "Princess and the Frog" to continue the adventure post-kiss and join the hoppin' Mardi Gras celebration. To quote Tiana, these frogs think it'll be "the bees knees!" Both parks will reopen with the current version of Splash Mountain, with no dates for the refurbishment on the calendar just yet. Gonna take you down, gonna take you down, gonna take you all the way down ...
- We have good news (ribbit!) and bad news (croak). Downtown Disney has released some health and safety information ahead of its reopening, set for July 9. The rest of Disneyland Resort, however, is not going to open July 17 as originally announced since its reopening plan hasn't received government approval. You can stay on top of Disneyland reopening news, including new policies and procedures in place at Downtown Disney, here (and we promise to keep it updated as we hear more!).
- Guests can now say "howdy" to the enhanced Tri-Circle-D Ranch at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort & Campsites! The ranch, which houses Disney World's draft horses and ponies, reopened along with the resort June 22. The new stable features larger stalls for the horses, including 10 additional stalls, all equipped with automatic water stations. The barn is more than twice the size of the original barn, with two tack rooms, a wedding harness room showcasing tack for Cinderella’s ponies and the return of the museum dedicated to Walt’s love of horses. Along with the museum, the "Happiest horses on Earth" brought an iconic piece of Disney history back to the barn — the 1907 Dragon Calliope. Walt Disney purchased the horse-drawn musical wagon for Disneyland Park in the 1950s, and it is currently on display at the campground, where guests can even listen to its music! And making Tri-Circle-D's grand reopening even more special is the addition of a brand-new resident ... baby Violet, a pony foal, was born recently to mom Elsa.
- ICYMI, Disney's Park Pass theme park reservation system went live this week! Check out our step-by-step guide to reserving your Park Pass for all of the details, including when you can book your next trip. (Disney World, here we come!)
- Drumroll, please ... Walt Disney World Resort has released even more hotel reopening dates! Select Disney Vacation Club resorts across the property reopened this week, with even more resort hotels opening their doors to guests from July through October. Plus, Disney's released more information about the health and hygiene enhancements hoppening all around the hotels to keep guests safe. (Did we mention that 2021 Disney World Resort hotel stays are now available to reserve? Be sure and hop to it!) We can't wait to hear "Welcome Home!" again!
- Spaceship Earth's refurbishment has been paused for now, which means you can blast off on the OG version of the attraction for a while longer once EPCOT reopens July 15! You can see a full list of the attractions and experiences that will open with the parks here.
- Universal Orlando Resort is back, and so are your favorite characters! While traditional meet-and-greets are unavailable at this time, that doesn't mean that Universal characters aren't out and about and ready to mingle with guests! Check out what meeting characters is like right now at Universal Orlando.
That’s it for the theme park news this week! Have a great weekend.