Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and whatever I forgot to add earlier – by Laurie
DisneyQuest is not closing. The NBA backed out of the deal. The building is oddly designed on the inside even though the outside is a plain box. Floors 3 – 5 have a core area and two side rooms. Currently there are cafes in that core on the 4th and 5th floors. This core has elevators and bathrooms. What business other than a church would want a building divided into small areas. They could do gourmet cafes and bars on each floor but Disney Springs has too many restaurants. Until Disney can find a solution they are stuck with DisneyQuest. They offer evening discounts often.
Animal Kingdom (AK) will be changing to a late night schedule like other parks on May 27th. From much of the park guests will see the Tree of Life covered in projections of images in the Tree of Life Awakens nightly event. Projections have been used before to put images on Spaceship Earth and other buildings.
Discovery Island Carnivale will be a street party with dancing and music. In Africa is Harambe Parti with entertainers and acrobats. This should be where the giant puppets from Mickey’s Jammin’ Jungle Parade will appear. People push large metal frames shaped like animals while manipulating the characters so they move. This will be in the evenings.
May 27th sees Tiffins and the Nomad Bar opening in Discovery Island. The bar will offer appetizers and Tiffins will offer table service dining. Both will offer exotic food but Nomad Bar will offer exotic bar food like ribs and wings.
The nighttime safari will offer a twilight appearance. The grand finale is along the Discovery River in Asia. The Jungle Book will be the theme of the new Rivers of Light show until the real show is up and running. Only 5000 FP and dinner package seats will leave guests scrambling for a view along the river. It will be like World of Color in Disney’s California Adventure. Out west, where guests have a theater for viewing and all around, the show is waterfront seats and standing. Disabled and kids should be prepared for camping out as there are few spots offering kids and the disable without camping out.
I hoped and prayed for things to not be what they are at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (DHS) but with a sad heart I tell you that the water tower is gone. The Muppets, Writers Stop, and the Sci Fi diner are all that will remain of backstage, backlot, and most of the original park. Why cry? MGM Studios was a few shows, the tour, and the Great Movie Ride. This demolition is like removing Main Street or Future World. We rocked with Mulch, Sweat, and Shears while kids played around the fire hydrant. Though they were newer additions we loved the stunt show, shops, pretzels, Osbourne Lights, and that feeling of being on a big city street.
What is a shame is that the playground, Coke bottle mister, fire hydrant play area, pretzels, food vendors, shops, and street performances are not being replaced. For those without an annual pass, CM admission, or park hopper ticket there is only a half day park for the cost of a full day park. Olaf, Mickey, and Minnie will get a meet and greet but we can see Mickey elsewhere in the parks. They have not added anything to replace shops or places like Herbie’s, the Pretzel Garden, High Octane, and Studio Catering. There are no new attractions offering 15,000 guests per day something to replace the stunt show. STAR WARS is not a replacement because over the past years they had Star Wars Weekend and Summer entertainment. Launch Bay replaces Watto’s Grotto but not all the other lost venues. Walt got booted from One Man’s Dream that now is a movie preview center. Kylo Ren has 10 minute wait on busy days so how about some characters that interact with characters.
As we told you, Pixar Avenue is a dead end with nothing but a quiet area, Green Army Men, and a smoker’s area. Nothing has been added to this area to replace things lost. Sunset Boulevard is a dead end street. Muppet Courtyard is a dead end. WORST OF ALL … About an hour before fireworks is the closure of Pixar Avenue, Commissary Lane, the Great Movie Ride, the area between the stage and the Great Movie Ride, Launch Bay, and Animation Courtyard. This is the same schedule as for fireworks in the past.
The Star Wars show will project images against the theater as the stage, in theory, retracts the screens. There will be a dessert party that costs more than dinner, tax, tip, and dessert at some nice restaurants. Dessert parties tend to serve mass produced goods and there is no seating to disabled and kids cannot see. The vegan and special diet offerings are usually store bought snacks like a hard cookie.
I told the manager about the dead end so they now have a big sign telling people to turn around. Also it reads that there is a smoking area ahead. Now for some activities and snacks down there. As for how long to spend at DHS that is up to you. After the shows and rides there is just the Star Wars show and Fantasmic. Maybe one should sleep in and do Fantasmic and fireworks at night. We, the writers, photographers, and site owners try to encourage readers to come to WDW for a full day of fun. I can waste time on silly things that interest few people. Even I could not make DHS a full day. The only way for a full day is to start at opening for Toy Story Mania then see everything offered, no matter how bored you get.
Fulton’s Crab House in Disney Springs has lost part of the signage and they are stripping her of her showboat ornate architectural details. She will be a big boxy coastal cruiser when they are done.
DVC is coming to Fort Wilderness eventually. Rumor is that River Country will return but there is no way Disney can afford to change the water system and repair the park. Discovery Island also died and won’t come back.
Overall this Summer is going to be packed with nighttime fireworks, shows, and entertainment a long with new or improved attractions. You will stroll along shops in Disney Springs like San Antonio’s Riverwalk. Like my hometown there will musicians to entertain you while you bring food and drinks from local shops. Spend the Summer with friends near a concert with cocktails, cupcakes, gelato, and donuts. Did you forget or lose something? Disney Springs will carry almost everything you need for your travel needs as well as awesome gifts for the holidays. Animal Kingdom will be a full day of rides and shows as well as animals and education then PARTY THE NIGHT AWAY!! Olaf was right about Summer.