Earlier this year the Tomorrowland Peoplemover was having several issues that led to multiple unexpected down times. That had caused Disney to close the attraction up until the eventual theme park closure which closed due to covid-19.
Well the theme parks have reopened, but the peoplemover is still closed and many guests have been wondering why the attraction has not been open recently. Well according to insiders, Blog Mickey, and Cast Members at the entrance of the attraction, Disney has decided to a full refurb of the attraction starting soon and lasting for nearly two months.
During this refurb Disney will replace every single LIM (Linear Induction Motor) along the track and these motors are custom made leading the ride to be down for a pretty extensive time period. At one point it was also rumored that the scenes inside the attraction were going to be updated for Walt Disney World’s 50th Anniversary, but due to budget cuts those additions have been cancelled, so this will be a purely maintenance based refurb.
Following in Disney Springs’ footsteps, Universal has announced that Citywalk in Orlando will be reopening Thursday May 14th.
Select locations will be open from 4pm-10pm each day. Dining locations such as Bubba Gump, Margaritaville, Red Oven Pizza Bakery, Voodoo Doughnut, and Auntie’s Anne’s Pretzels will be open. On the retail side of things, the Universal Studios Store, Airbrush, the retail section of Huntington Tattoo Company will be reopening with the same hours as the restaurants.
Just as I mentioned on my livestream yesterday, I was hearing that Disney Springs and Universal Citywalk would begin reopening this month. I keep hearing Citywalk is slated to partially reopen May 11th and it is now confirmed that Disney Springs will partially reopen May 20th.
The shopping district will reopen with limited capacity for dining and parking as well as reduced operating hours. I encourage you to check disneysprings.com as the date nears for more information on hours and what stores and restaurants will be open. Guests will be required to wear a face covering when dining or shopping.
Earlier today there was a heavy police presence at Walt Disney World’s Contemporary Resort. It was reported a woman jumped from the window of the resort in an apparent suicide. At around 4pm EST the police were called to the area. There is no more information to provide at this time, but this story will be updated as more news develops. This is the latest in a string of weird incidents at the Walt Disney World Resort including a major breakdown on the Haunted Mansion that occurred last night.
Walt Disney Imagineers last night installed the marquee sign for Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway. The ride is set to open March 4th, which is less than a month from now so things are really getting into high gear in terms of finishing touches during this home stretch. To check out a scene by scene layout of the attraction click right here!
This attraction replaced The Great Movie Ride and will be the first ever attraction based on Mickey and Minnie in any Disney park! Are you excited to ride this ride next month? Will you be riding it? What do you think of the final look of the marquee? Let me know in the comments below and follow this blog for constant Disney updates!
Photos have been circulating on social media of smoke billowing out of the People Mover at the Magic Kingdom. There have been reports of at least fifteen firefighters going towards the attraction. The My Disney Experience App shows that the People Mover and Buzz Lightyear are temporarily closed. This story will be updated as it develops, but comment below what you see and provide any updates on the situation if you have any! Happy New Year and check back here for more stories weekly!
UPDATE: This photo provided by Blog Mickey shows that the People Mover is back open and the moving walkways are stopped which means guests just have to walk up and down the ramps.
In somewhat of a surprise, Disney Parks Blog went live this evening and revealed a plethora of opening dates for expierences coming to Disney World in the very near future and I am going to break each of them down right here! Before we proceed please note that all photos and concept art are courtesy of Disney.
Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
This attraction will be open at Hollywood Studios March 4th, 2020.
Mickey Shorts Theater
This theater will be located in Hollywood Studios and will play Mickey Shorts from the Disney Channel animated series, “Mickey Mouse”.
This attraction will be opening in Summer 2020 in the France Pavilion at Epcot and Disney shared this new look at the ride vehicle and one of the scenes from the attraction. On this attraction you will be scurrying through Chef Gasteau’s restaurant.
Disney’s Ducktales World Showcase Adventure
This is an interactive game experience coming to the Play Disney Parks App that will have you joining all of the ducks in search of a priceless treasure. You will be going on several missions that will take you all around the World Showcase at Epcot.
New Circle-Vision Films to Debut at Epcot
Starting January 17th, 2020 three new films will debut at Epcot. The first will be called “Awesome Planet” and will be a ten minute long film showcasing the diversity of Planet Earth. The second film will be a “Beauty and The Beast Sing Along” and will be located in the France Pavilion. It is produced by Don Hahn who produced the Beauty and The Beast films and will invite guests on a journey on a tale as old as time. This new film will rotate with the “Impressions de France” film which is slated to receive an upgrade to 4K.
Space 220 was supposed to be open by now, but was delayed until sometime this winter, most likely January based on job postings on Pantina’s website.
Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts and BBQ
This is a brand new fast casual restaurant that will open at the American Adventure in Epcot this winter. It will obviously be serving BBQ style food and craft beer. This is somewhat of a surprise to me as I had no previous knowledge this restaurant was even in the planning stages.
Roundup Rodeo BBQ Restaurant
Lastly, Toy Story Land is finally getting the proper sit down restaurant it deserves next year at Hollywood Studios. This restaurant will also serve BBQ and have immersive indoor seating.
So what do you make of all these announcements? Will they entice you to start planning trips to Florida over the next year? Let me know in the comments below!
Pieces for the new Icebreaker coaster have arrived on site at Sea World Orlando. Lots of curved orange pieces arrived today on flatbed trucks in preparation for installation soon in Orlando adding to their already impressive coaster roster.
Are you excited to ride this coaster next year? Are you happy that Sea World is leaning away from animals and towards more themed lands and coasters as a way to change its image? Let me know in the comments below!
An awesome news story came out today via the website France 24 saying that guests who enter Universal Beijing will be able to use facial recognition technology instead of showing a ticket. The story also notes that the park is partnering with popular Chinese tech company Alibaba so that guests can use Alipay to purchase meals and merchandise.
I think this is fantastic news and is yet another sign of the theme park industry advancing every year implementing new technology into their parks and enhancing the guest experience in large and small ways. Universal is probably also thinking that this is a way to take a jab at Shanghai Disneyland and all of the fancy high tech rides they have over at that park.
Usually Disney and Universal use their international parks to test out new ride tech and new tech to enhance the guest experience. If successful these new ideas usually make there way to the domestic parks (ie: Tron Power Run) I would like to see facial recognition make its way to Universal and Disney parks in the United States and hopefully both companies start to implement this advanced tech into the parks in the coming years and completely take away the need for paper tickets.
What do you think of this new technology? Would you like to see Apple or a tech company partner with Disney or Universal and implement Apple Pay and facial recognition into the parks? Let me know in the comments below!