There is no doubt that 2020 will remain as a black cloud in our memories for quite some time. But I think that makes it even more exciting to look to the future and plan for all of the amazing things coming, especially to the Walt Disney World Resort. On this week’s podcast, we gave you the rundown of all of the new additions and celebrations we have to look forward to in Disney in 2021.
With the vaccine now slowly becoming available in the US, we hope that we’ll soon start to see things moving back toward normal. We predict that masks will be part of our new normal for the majority of 2021, but we are optimistic that things such as restaurant and resort openings, dining plans, nighttime spectaculars and character appearances will start to get back to where they were pre-Covid once the parks begin to increase their attendance. The first sign of our slow return to normal is the return of the Park Hopper option on January 1st. Guests will be able to park hop AFTER 2pm. Park reservations will still be required for the first park you plan to visit that day, but at 2pm, you’ll be able to visit the next park without a second reservation.
The Magic Kingdom
This is the BIGGEST event to get excited about in 2021: The 50th Anniversary of the opening of the Magic Kingdom on October 1st. We predict that the celebration will not be quite as grand as it had been expected to be prior to Covid, but we predict that Disney will still certainly use this event as a reason to celebrate big time! We’ll keep you posted!
The Magic Kingdom has been busy at work on the construction of their newest addition to Tomorrowland, the TRON Roller Coaster. Construction has resumed after a delay in the Spring due to Covid, but the opening date (which was originally scheduled for 2021), has not yet been announced. We are hopeful that this is a priority for this thrill ride to be up and running in time for the 50th anniversary celebration. With the construction going on in this area, the Walt Disney World Railroad was forced to close last year because the current track goes right through the construction area. We are hopeful that the train will reopen and begin running again. It’s a MousekeMom favorite!
Also temporarily closed is the Tomorrowland Transit Authority People Mover. This attraction was breaking down often right after the initial reopening of the parks. Our hope is that Disney has taken the time to complete the refurbishments needed for this iconic ride and that it, too, will reopen in 2021.
Disney’s EPCOT has seen the most refurbishment and transformation in the last several months, gearing up for some amazing new additions ahead in 2021. We saw the addition of the beautiful new structure and fountain at the entrance of the park earlier this month, which is just the beginning for the planned rehaul of this area which will continue into 2021.
Disney officially announced the return of their popular winter and spring festivals. The 2021 Taste of EPCOT International Festival of the Arts will make a comeback January 8th through February 22nd. And the 2021 Flower and Garden Festival will return for a record long run from March 4th through July 5th. This is so exciting as last year’s Flower and Garden Festival really only was able to get about two weeks in until the parks were forced to close.
But the thing these MousekeMoms are MOST excited about for 2021 is the opening of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and La Creperie de Paris set to open in the France Pavilion in 2021 as confirmed by Disney! As early as this week, we are seeing signs that this may even come sooner in 2021 than anticipated!
The Guardians of the Galaxy Roller Coaster is also one attraction that has been getting a lot of buzz. The current opening date is Fall 2021. Although Disney has not announced an official date, all signs have been pointing to prioritizing this opening for the Fall. Construction resumed over the summer and has been steady. Imagineer, Zach Ridley, even posted updates and pictures of the ride vehicles for this attraction on his Instagram page. This is one ride that is sure to thrill and we can’t wait!!
Restaurants & Nighttime Spectaculars
Space 220, the newest dining experience coming to Future World, has experienced delay after delay in its opening. Originally slated to open in late 2019, it was delayed to early 2020 due to construction delays. Then it was delayed once again when the head chef left the project. Then, of course, it was delayed due to COVID. No official word on when this restaurant will finally debut, but we MousekeMoms predict that when the other restaurants that still remain closed due to limited attendance in the parks are able to open once again, we will see Space 220 finally open it’s doors as well.
Disney HarmonioUS, the nighttime spectacular that is the replacement for the long-running Illuminations, will debut in 2021. Disney got us excited about this one last month when they announced that, in addition to being a nighttime show, there would be water features running on the lagoon during the daylight hours as well. Construction resumed over the summer and we predict that this show will debut as soon as the rest of the fireworks shows resume, hopefully by Summer 2021.
Although not as much coming as far as new additions to Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom, there is still plenty to look forward to. Hollywood Studios is already the most coveted park reservation, but there will soon be more to be excited about! Woody’s Roundup Rodeo BBQ will be a new table service dining experience coming to Toy Story Land. Although it has not yet been slated as a character dining experience, it is nevertheless a welcome addition to the lineup of table service venues in Hollywood Studios. It had originally been set to open in 2020 when, like so many other projects, construction came to a halt in the Spring. Work resumed in July with the reopening of the parks and things are moving along. Could we see a push to open following the opening of the remainder of the Walt Disney World restaurants sometime this year?
Nothing new slated for the Animal Kingdom, but these MousekeMoms certainly are hopeful that we will see a return of the live entertainment and shows that graced this theme park- in particular, the Festival of the Lion King and Finding Nemo: The Musical.
A Disney water park will be opening on March 7, 2021 per Disney. Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach have been shuttered since March (which feels like eons ago). Although they did not specify which of the two water parks will open, Disney gave us an official reopening date to get excited about!
Generating its fair share of buzz among Star Wars fans (and non Star Wars fans) over the last several years has been the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser Hotel. This resort will be a two-day all inclusive resort experience which will completely immerse guests into the Star Wars experience. It will be epic (and expensive). Originally, we were supposed to have been able to begin making guest reservations for this experience by the end of 2020 for stays in 2021. There has been no update as of yet, but fingers crossed!
So, you see, there is a lot to get excited about in the coming year! If you think you’d like to be park of the excitement, don’t wait to book your package. There are already early 2021 discounts available! Booking now will guarantee your reservation, your resort and your price and, with flexible change and cancellation policies in place, it’s a no-brainer! Also check out our earlier 2021 predictions article to see what we got right for the new additions and celebrations we have to look forward to in Disney in 2021!
The MousekeMoms, Lori, Jennifer and Juliana, are experienced Disney moms who dole out valuable, honest, no holds barred information on their weekly podcast to help you plan your Disneyland, Walt Disney World or Disney Cruise Line vacation.
After all, Disney moms know best! And they are the best at planning your Disney vacations as the proud agents and owners of Kingdom and Cruise Travel- where vacation wishes come true.
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