Tag Archives: Epcot

Figment Living Seas Mural Festival of the Arts 2018

Festival of the Arts in Epcot

Festival of the Arts is the newest festival to grace Epcot and has quickly become my favorite.  After a successful first year in 2017, Festival of the Arts expanded in 2018 and will continue each winter, covering several weeks in January and February.  Festival of the Arts spans the time between Festival of the Holidays (between Thanksgiving and New Years) and Flower & Garden Festival in spring.

festival of the arts entrance

The great thing about these festivals is that is takes little advance planning to get full enjoyment out of them.  It’s still good to know what to look out for!

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snow on hollywood boulevard

Trip Report November 2016 – Day 2

Our first day in the parks was one I worked hard to prepare for.  On paper it was just a morning in Epcot with a lunch at Garden Grill.  In practice it was the shining glory of a chipmunk toddler.

Since the Garden Rooms at the Boardwalk are not located near the Innkeepers Club Lounge I went up and brought breakfast for all of us back on a tray.  After finishing that we walked to Epcot.  We arrived 40 minutes after park opening and did the Seas, Turtle Talk, Imagination, checked out the DVC Lounge, and Fastpassed Living with the Land in 2 hours.

chip n dale costume

Waiting for Turtle Talk with Crush

Our lunch at Garden Grill might be the most magical memory we’ve made in the parks, rivaling baby Goofy meeting Minnie and Pluto.  Our little chipmunk had fantastic interactions with the characters and all the staff went above and beyond in making our meal great.

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Candlelight Processional 2016 at Walt Disney World

The Candlelight Processional is Christmas traditioperformed nightly in Epcot. The Candlelight Processional uses a choir, orchestra and celebrity narrator to tell the Christmas story from a biblical perspective.


The show runs after Thanksgiving and before New Year’s Eve (November 25-December 30, 2016).  It runs three times a night in the American Gardens Theatre, 5:00 PM, 6:45 PM, and 8:15 PM and is about 45 minutes long.  IllumiNations, with a special holiday tag, starts at 9:30 during the Christmas season.  If you enjoy the 8:15 show, you’ll want to find your viewing spot around the lagoon immediately after the show is over.

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Trip Report January 2016 – Day 2

Day 2 of our January 2016 trip started like 95% of our vacation days do – late.  It was my resolution for this trip that we would be at the parks as close to park opening as possible.  We have a night owl baby, which means we have to wake him up to accomplish this.  After already running late, halfway to the monorail platform I realized I forgot a key part of the baby’s costume and had to run back to the room.  Ok, I speed walked after about 5 seconds of running.  Running is a poor choice for me overall, especially so when the overnight low was 31.


Grand Floridian

Once on the monorail, it was only a 30 minute journey from leaving the Grand Floridian to arriving at Epcot.  I meandered around Mission Space and Innoventions West while the other adults rode Test Track with a Fastpass.  I bought a Starbucks mug at Fountain View to add to the Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios mugs we have already.  I got in line for Baymax, but had to leave the line before meeting him.


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2009 Candlelight Processional Narrator Update

Back on November 23rd, we provided the updated list of narrators for the 2009 Candlelight Processional.  Well, it’s changed again.  Vanessa Williams will not be participating at all now – and has been replaced by Chita Rivera for Dec 12-13.

Here is the latest list:

America Gardens Theatre: 5:00pm, 6:45pm & 8:15pm.

Nov 27-29 Isabella Rossellini 
Nov 30, Dec 1-2 John O’Hurley 
Dec 3-5 Steven Curtis Chapman 
Dec 6-8 Anika Noni Rose 
Dec 9-11 Andy Garcia 
Dec 12-13 Chita Rivera 
Dec 14-17 Abigail Breslin 
Dec 18-20 Whoopi Goldberg 
Dec 21-23 Brian Dennehy 
Dec 24-26 Edward James Olmos 
Dec 27-30 Angela Bassett & Courtney B Vance

2009 Candlelight Processional Narrators

The 2009 Candelight Processional narrator list has been published.  Originally, Vanessa Williams was supposed to appear on the 14th, but has been replaced by Abigail Breslin.

CandleLight Processional: America Gardens Theatre 5:00pm, 6:45pm & 8:15pm. 

Nov 27-29:  Isabella Rossellini 
Nov 30/Dec 1-2:  John O’Hurley 
Dec 3-5:  Steven Curtis Chapman 
Dec 6-8:  Anika Noni Rose 
Dec 9-11:  Andy Garcia 
Dec 12-13:  Vanessa Williams 
Dec 14-17:  Abigail Breslin 
Dec 18-20:  Whoopi Goldberg 
Dec 21-23:  Brian Dennehy 
Dec 24-26:  Edward James Olmos 
Dec 27-30:  Angela Bassett & Courtney B Vance

Epcot Flower & Garden Festival Details Announced

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The 17th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival kicks off March 3 – earlier than ever – and continues for 75 days through May 16, 2010, with bold strokes of seasonal color and brand-new topiary whimsy. Last year’s festival began March 18; now Walt Disney World guests get a head start on the gardening season as they explore exhibits and activities geared toward discovery and outdoor fun.

Even before spring has sprung, Donald Duck and his topiary pals set up camp in full floral color to celebrate the Great Outdoors at the Epcot front entrance. The elaborate topiary with a North American theme, live waterfall and pond features Goofy in a fly-fishing misadventure, Daisy Duck roasting marshmallows over a campfire and Pluto in his “pup tent.” It’s a must-stop photo op for guests as soon as they pass through the park turnstiles.

“The advantage of starting earlier is that we’ll be able to feature more brilliant color than ever, with richly hued petunias, violas, snapdragons and other hardy flowers,” says festival horticulture manager Eric Darden. “By starting earlier and going through mid-May, it allows more guests than ever to experience the festival and to plan ahead for their spring and summer gardening.”

New This Year!

Up to 700 butterflies flutter into an expanded and relocated, futuristic-themed Bambi’s Butterfly House – double the size of previous years’ Minnie’s Magnificent Butterfly Garden. The new butterfly abode in Future World West, at 3,500 square feet, allows hundreds of the winged beauties to flit among the lush foliage of a larger screened enclosure, where guests can wander and watch as multiple butterfly species light on flowers filled with nectar and as caterpillars emerge from their chrysalis in a special discovery exhibit. Bambi joins butterfly floral topiaries to welcome guests to the enclosure.

Special gardens, events and children’s play areas throughout the park offer more reasons to visit the 17th annual festival:

New Victory Garden – Disney’s “fab five” topiary pals – Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto and Goofy – gather at American Adventure to tend tomatoes, beans, peppers, herbs and other edibles in their first Victory Garden as a salute to the history of World War II gardens, the new White House vegetable garden and the many community gardens being planted across the country.

Newly Expanded Pixie Hollow Fairy Garden – Colorful topiaries of Tinker Bell and friends from Walt Disney Pictures’ latest DVD release “Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure” will sprinkle pixie dust over this playful, expanded garden for kids. New characters on display with returning fairy favorites are fast-flying, sharp-tongued Vidia and charming Terence, dispenser of pixie dust. Tinker Bell’s Nook has hands-on activities. In a synergistic turn, the “Lost Treasure” DVD includes a bonus feature on “The Making of the Fairy Garden,” featuring Disney cast members who designed and built Pixie Hollow, along with the movie’s producer and director, who helped plan the garden.

First-Ever American Gothic Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse – Topiary experts pull out all the stops to create an American Gothic Mickey and Minnie topiary scene based on the 1930 Grant Wood painting. At World Showcase Plaza.

Pirates Adventure Zone – Peter Pan, Captain Hook and Croc topiaries will lure young swashbucklers to this interactive space designed for exploration and adventure. Next to the Germany pavilion.

Throughout the festival, more than 70 topiaries plus sweeping floral beds and exhibits will decorate the park landscape and showcase the extraordinary craftsmanship of Disney gardeners. A Fragrance Garden at the France pavilion will tell the “love story” of plants and perfume, and the art of bonsai will “wow” guests at the Japan showcase.

Festival highlights also include:

Flower Power concerts – Popular bands will rock the open-air America Gardens Theatre every Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 5:15, 6:30 and 7:45 p.m. Jose Feliciano is scheduled to kick off the concert series March 5-7. On subsequent weekends, the lineup is slated to feature pop favorites like Davy Jones, Chubby Checker & The Wildcats, Tony Orlando, former Boston lead singer Fran Cosmo, and other top acts.

Disney Gardening at Home presentations – Disney horticulturists will share gardening tips and lead guests in a hands-on, take-home activity.

The Great American Gardeners series – Gardening celebrities and authors from across the country will reveal their gardening secrets. Opening weekend, Robert Bowden, author and director of lush Harry P. Leu Gardens in Orlando, kicks off the series.

The Garden Town Festival Center – Guests can shop for festival merchandise, attend speaker presentations and demonstrations and ask gardening questions of the experts.

Special Festival Celebrations – An Art in the Garden celebration of plein air artists is scheduled March 26-28; a Florida Farmer’s Market celebration is April 23-25, and the popular I Dig Bugs event is set for April 30-May 2.

More information about the 17th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is available by calling 407-WDISNEY (407-934-7639) or by visiting www.disneyworld.com/flower. The festival, including all gardening programs and exhibits, is included in regular Epcot admission.

Sum of All Thrills Opens Today

The new Sum of all Thrills attraction officially opened today at Innoventions in Epcot.

Sum of all Thrills is a simulator that lets you create a ride design on a computer and then board a robot arm-mounted simulator pod to take a spin on your own creation. It’s sponsored by Raytheon.

The height requirement is 48″ if you design a ride with no inversions, and 54″ with inversions.

Sum of All Thrills Rendering

Sum of All Thrills Rendering


2009 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

EPCOT will be hosting the 14th annual International Food & Wine Festival from September 25 – November 8, 2009.

This 45-day delicious event, presented by Vanity Fair, EPCOT celebrates food from cities around the world.  Take a leisurely stroll around the World Showcase and indulge in authentic flavors at more than 25 International Marketplaces.

View or download the official guide in PDF format here.