This is going to be an incredibly special year for Walt Disney World. On October 1, 1971, the Walt Disney World Resort, including Magic Kingdom, officially opened to the public. That makes 2021 the 50th Anniversary of The Most Magical Place on Earth!
Disney wants to make this year special, so there are currently several projects in progress and celebrations being planned. We’ve received a TON of info so far about everything that’s going on for the 50th, so we’re here to share it all with you!
It’s Going to be Popular
Milestone anniversaries don’t come often for Disney World, so when they do, the parks tend to get pretty crowded. Disney Park Passes booked up rather quickly for the special day, then reopened again, then booked up again — it has been quite the rollercoaster!
If you plan to visit any Disney World park on October 1st, we suggest you book that date NOW. It’s going to be a very, very busy day, so you’ll want to secure that reservation in advance.
Disney’s Sprucing Up Ahead of Time
Ahead of its anniversary, Disney has been touching things up around the resort, mostly in terms of paint jobs! The main entrances to Walt Disney World are currently in the process of getting made over, and the toll plaza entrance to the Transportation and Ticket Center (Magic Kingdom parking lot) got a new color scheme.
Cinderella Castle has also received a new look! She got a fresh new coat of paint that debuted when the parks reopened (and it was pretty controversial!), and now she’s decked out in special decorations for the 50th Anniversary. It’s looking fancy!
Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure & France Pavilion Expansion
It has been announced that Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and the rest of the France Pavilion Expansion will be opening on October 1st (which also happens to be EPCOT’s anniversary). It’s going to be one busy day in Disney World!
Thanks to this announcement, crowds will likely be split between EPCOT and Magic Kingdom on the big day. It’s a hard decision to make — do you choose to experience the 50th Anniversary celebrations on opening day, or do you be among the first to go on a new ride? If it helps, the new creperie will also be opening that day! 😜
There’s Going to Be a New Fireworks Show
In the most recent batch of announcements, Disney shared that a new fireworks spectacular is coming to Magic Kingdom for the anniversary! The new show will be called “Disney Enchantment” and will even feature projections that run down Main Street, U.S.A.
This show is sure to be absolutely spectacular, and it premieres on (you guessed it!) October 1st. Disney hasn’t shared if this show will be replacing Happily Ever After or if it’ll just be around for the anniversary celebrations, but we’ll let you know when they give an update.
Harmonious Will Premiere At EPCOT
We’ve been anticipating the premiere of EPCOT’s new nighttime show, Harmonious, ever since we first learned about it. It’s going to have some of the most impressive technology Disney has ever seen, and we can’t wait!
This show will also kick off on October 1st, giving even more incentive to visit EPCOT that day. (Man, it really IS a tough choice.) After watching the construction for months, we can’t wait to see the showpieces in action!
A New Cavalcade and Costumes to Match
Mickey and his friends will be hosting “The Most Magical Celebration on Earth” and they’re doing it in style, with brand-new costumes just for the anniversary! They follow the new “EARidescent” color scheme that Disney has chosen (matching the castle!).
Mickey, Donald, Daisy, Goofy, Minnie, Pluto, Chip, and Dale will be showing off their new costumes as they head down Magic Kingdom’s parade route in Mickey’s Celebration Cavalcade. We can’t wait to see them stylin’ and profilin’ down Main Street, U.S.A.!
New Sculptures Are Coming to the Parks
To highlight some of Disney’s most famous characters, the “Disney Fab 50” will be coming for the anniversary — a series of gold sculptures displayed around all four parks. All the characters included will be revealed throughout the next few months, but so far we know that Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto, Chip, and Dale will be on display in the Magic Kingdom.
Disney World President Jeff Vahle has revealed that the sculptures will be dedicated to Cast Members of the past and present and that guests will be able to interact with them! Will they talk? Move? We’ll have to wait and see!
A New Daytime Show Will Premiere at Animal Kingdom
Over at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, the Discovery River Ampitheater will once again be used to entertain guests, this time with a new daytime show! The new show will be called Disney KiteTails.
It will feature some of your favorite characters, including Simba, Zazu, Baloo, and King Louie in kite form, and performers will fly kites throughout the audience to the tune of Disney music. It looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun for the whole family!
The Park Icons Will Come Alive
We previously noted the new decorations on Cinderella Castle, but the other park icons will be getting some makeovers as well! They’ll be transformed into “Beacons of Magic” with lighting and magical touches that enhance the nighttime look.
Spaceship Earth’s makeover at EPCOT will be a permanent fixture of the park, with new points of light installed on the outside of the sphere. We can’t wait to see the ways that the icons light up the night!
What a Celebration!
This 18-month long celebration is going to be MASSIVE! With so much to do and see across all four parks, it’s going to be difficult to fit it all in during your visit — you’ll definitely want to plan a multi-day trip if you can.
We’ll be looking out for more details ahead of October 1st, and we’ll be in the parks on the big day to share all of the information that you need to know. We can’t wait to celebrate this milestone at Disney World!
Which of these projects are you most excited about? Tell us in the comments!