This column is jam-packed with lots of announcements related to all things Harry Potter and Star Wars, so let’s jump right into it!
Walt Disney World
Disney dropped a lot of major news this past month, and most of it was about Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Not only did we get a look at the cast member costumes for the new land, but we also got to see some of the land’s merchandise, food and beverage offerings, new concept art, and a full rundown of the queues for the attractions Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run and Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.
Galaxy’s Edge will open at Disney’s Hollywood on Aug. 29, but the Rise of the Resistance ride won’t open until sometime after that this year.
New details have been revealed on the upcoming transformation of Epcot for the resort’s 50th anniversary. This park-wide transformation includes a new “Play Pavilion” replacing the former Wonders of Life pavilion and a revamped entrance plaza filled with new pathways, green spaces, and a newly reimagined fountain.
Kevin, the large, exotic bird from Disney/Pixar’s “UP”, is now meeting and greeting guests at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. You can find this new feathered friend roaming around Discovery Island intermittently throughout the day.
Wreck-It Ralph and Vanellope from Disney’s animated film “Ralph Breaks the Internet” are now meeting at Epcot in a newly-designated area in the ImageWorks section of the Imagination! pavilion. Guests can now meet them every day in this new spot.
Guests visiting Epcot’s World Showcase can now watch Mariachi Cobre perform the story of Disney/Pixar’s “Coco” at the Mexico Pavilion. The musicians are joined by Folklórico dancers as they tell the tale of Miguel Rivera and his love for music.
A new Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique location has been announced to open this summer at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. This new location will be the third to open at Walt Disney World, and will be located inside what is now the Ivy Trellis Salon.
Reusable shopping bags are now available at Walt Disney World for guests looking for a more conservative option when taking home their purchases. The Resort now offers seven different bag designs, and each design is available for purchase in three different sizes.
The 270-acre, 50-megawatt solar facility at Walt Disney World is now officially online! This facility is expected to generate enough power from the sun to operate two of the four Walt Disney World Resort parks annually.
Universal Orlando Resort
Universal Orlando has finally revealed the opening date and official name of the Harry Potter roller coaster coming to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade. Called “Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure,” this new experience will open on June 13, 2019.
Universal recently introduced a brand-new DreamWorks’ Trolls character for guests to meet: Guy Diamond, a naked, glitter-farting troll. The character immediately went viral after making his debut this past month. You can find him meeting on weekends in KidZone at Universal Studios Florida.
A surprise announcement has revealed that a brand-new nighttime projection show, “Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle,” is coming later this year. This new show will debut at Universal’s Islands of Adventure later this year, and feature the most fearsome creatures and villains from the Wizarding World.
The long-rumored Today Show cafe has been officially announced to open this spring in Universal Studios Florida’s neck of the woods. This new cafe will make guests feel as though they’re stepping into Studio 1A as they start their theme park day.
SeaWorld Orlando’s Discovery Cove recently announced they are now the first all-inclusive animal interaction park in the country to be designated as a Certified Autism Center. The park received this designation after completing a staff-wide autism sensitivity and awareness training, as well as an onsite review of the park property and its guest experience.
The brand-new Sesame Street area will open on March 26!
Busch Gardens Tampa Bay
Busch Gardens Tampa is celebrating 60 years in style all March long with the park’s new pin trading program, the 5th Annual Food & Wine Festival, and the #YearOfBeer celebration throughout 2019.
Busch Gardens also recently debuted a brand-new animal show, “Critters Inn Charge,” at the park’s Pantopia Theater. This new show is the replacement for “Opening Night Critters,” which ran for four years.
Legoland Florida Resort
Legoland Florida’s newest restaurant, Kick’n Chicken Co., is now open and offering a delicious chicken-filled menu that will delight your taste buds.
Look for Lego Movie World to open on March 26!
Catch more theme park happenings, news, and updates here next month or every day at AttractionsMagazine.com.