September may have lasted only thirty days but a LOT happened in that small time period.
At the D23 Expo held in Anaheim, California, Disney revealed future plans as well as some prospective plans. They announced that a Coco, Encanto, or a Villains-themed land could come to Magic Kingdom…
…and a Zootopia and/or Moana land could replace Dinoland, U.S.A. in Animal Kingdom. Both of these ideas are currently just that — ideas.
A Figment meet-and-greet is coming to EPCOT! Yes, you’ll finally be able to meet everyone’s favorite dragon in person.
The Hatbox Ghost character, currently found only in Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion, is coming to Disney World in 2023.
And finally, Happily Ever After fireworks will be returning to Magic Kingdom somehow.
Phew! That’s a LOT of news. What are you most excited about?
Kite Tails Closure
Disney Kite Tails debuted with Disney World’s 50th anniversary at first as a regularly scheduled show and later it was modified to shorter and more frequent showtimes. This show involved Cast Members on jet skis pulling large, inflatables inspired by The Jungle Book and The Lion King.
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to catch KiteTails anymore! KiteTails closed permanently in Animal Kingdom at the end of September. Disney has not yet announced plans for a different show, so stay tuned.
Breakfast will return on October 27th and reservations are open now.
Characters returned to Crystal Palace! Until October 27th you can only visit Crystal Palace for lunch or dinner, but the characters of the Hundred Acre Wood will now be part of your meal.
During our lunch, we saw Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and Eeyore. Browse the buffet and meet with characters — yes, please!
And a new restaurant is coming to the Swan and Dolphin Resort! Rosa Mexicano will be opening its first Orlando location in early 2023.
This restaurant will replace the existing Fresh Mediterranean Market in the Dolphin hote.
If you visited any of Disney’s websites after the COVID-19 pandemic, you probably noticed the COVID health and safety measures banner on the front pages of the sites. After United States President Joe Biden said “the pandemic is over,” the COVID warning was removed from Disney websites.
If you’re visiting the parks soon, note that masks are not currently required in Disney World or Disneyland,
Disney World has since resumed normal operating hours, but keep in mind that that’s subject to change at any time.
Festival of the Holidays
EPCOT’s 2022 Festival of the Holidays Kitchen Booths were announced! The event will kick off on November 25th, 2022 with 21 different booths.
There will be one new booth to visit and a lot of returning favorites!
The Cookie Stroll will also be back! This activity outlines a selection of cookies to be purchased in your Festival Passport and once you’ve tried every cookie, you can redeem your passport for a special cookie prize!
There are eight cookies to choose from and you just need to purchase five of them to collect your reward.
The Candlelight Processional features celebrity narrators telling the story of Christmas along with a choir and an orchestra, and it will be back in EPCOT in 2022.
This year’s ceremony will have new and returning celebrity narrators, including the additions of Simu Liu of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Mariska Hargitay of Law and Order: SVU, and even Josh Gad (Olaf!!!).
The new walkway between the Polynesian Village Resort and Grand Floridian Resort opened. It connects the resorts while the existing walkway is unavailable due to the construction of the Polynesian Resort’s DVC Villas.
There are signs to help you navigate so you don’t get lost and it’s a great way to travel between the resorts and the Monorail stations!
The Tree of Life Awakenings nighttime show is coming back to Disney’s Animal Kingdom, which is a projection show on the Tree of Life. It typically shows every 10 minutes until the park closes, and it tells stories of small animals.
The Beacon of Magic availability may also change, so keep that in mind if you hope to catch that projection show.
Disney After Hours events are also coming back! While holiday events have returned, non-holiday Disney After Hours events have continued to be missing.
Disney After Hours events are separately ticketed events that have historically offered complimentary treats, attraction access, exclusive offerings, and more.
September was BUSY in Disney World! Keep following AllEars for more news as we move into October.
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Did you visit Disney World in September? Tell us in the comments!