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On Oct. 1, 1971, Walt Disney World Resort officially opened to guests for the first time, the culmination of years spent imagining, planning and developing Walt Disney’s magical dream. In the five decades since, the vacation destination continued to expand with new stories and characters and adventures to cherish for a lifetime. And now with a major milestone approaching, guests can share in “The World’s Most Magical Celebration” beginning Oct. 1, 2021, in honor of the resort’s 50th anniversary.
This 18-month celebratory event will feature new experiences at the resort’s four theme parks and beyond, where shimmering EARidescent décor will appear as if by magic. Shining at the center of it all will be Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park, which will add to its royal makeover from 2020 with new gold bunting, sparkling golden embellishments and other new enhancements, including a 50th anniversary crest warmly welcoming guests to the join the festivities.
New Nighttime Spectacular ‘Disney Enchantment’ to Light Up Magic Kingdom Park
Created to launch with “The World’s Most Magical Celebration,” this evening extravaganza will take guests on a journey filled with adventure, wonder and empowerment. Inspiring everyone to believe in magic, “Disney Enchantment” will feature music, enhanced lighting, stunning fireworks and, for the first time, immersive projection effects that extend from Cinderella Castle down Main Street, U.S.A.
‘Harmonious’ Reimagines Disney Music at EPCOT
Joining “Disney Enchantment” on Oct. 1 will be “Harmonious” at EPCOT, one of the largest nighttime spectaculars ever created for a Disney park. This new show will bring the globe together at World Showcase Lagoon in a celebration of Disney music that inspires people worldwide. It’s a grand, powerful tribute to the unifying power of story and song, embracing new technical magic that incorporates pyrotechnics, fountains, lighting and media in new ways. “Harmonious” will feature new interpretations of classic Disney songs, reimagined in more than a dozen languages by a diverse group of 240 artists from around the world.
Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure at EPCOT
The grand opening of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure will be Oct. 1, inviting guests into the flavorful world of Disney and Pixar’s Academy Award®-winning “Ratatouille.” In this family-friendly attraction, guests will feel as if they shrink to the size of Chef Remy and scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant. They will discover Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure in a newly expanded area of the park’s France pavilion, where the real is made fantastic in a reimagining of Paris inspired by the film.
Also debuting Oct. 1 in this section of the pavilion will be a delicious new restaurant, La Crêperie de Paris, offering both table- and quick-service options. The menu will feature sweet crepes, savory buckwheat galettes (naturally gluten friendly) and authentic French hard cider. The attraction, restaurant and pavilion expansion are all part of the historic transformation of EPCOT currently underway, bringing a breadth of new experiences to the park as a celebration of curiosity, discovery and the magic of possibility.
Beacons of Magic Shine at Walt Disney World Theme Parks
As part of “The World’s Most Magical Celebration,” icons at each Walt Disney World theme park will transform into magnificent Beacons of Magic at night, coming to life with their own EARidescent glow*.
- Cinderella Castle will illuminate Magic Kingdom with a dazzling radiance that sparkles with pixie dust.
- At Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, a warm light will emanate from the Tree of Life as magical fireflies gather to usher in the magic of nature.
- The Hollywood Tower Hotel at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will be awash in a brilliance evoking the golden age of imagination and adventure.
- And at EPCOT, new lights will shine across the reflective panels of Spaceship Earth, connecting to one another in a symbol of optimism resembling stars in a nighttime sky. The iconic structure’s permanent new lighting will continue beyond “The World’s Most Magical Celebration” as a defining feature of the park.
‘Disney KiteTails’ to Take Flight at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park
New daytime entertainment is stirring at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, as “Disney KiteTails” will come alive several times daily beginning Oct. 1 inside the Discovery River Amphitheater. Performers will fly windcatchers and kites of all shapes and sizes, while out on the water elaborate three-dimensional kites – some stretching to 30 feet long – will depict Disney animal friends, including Simba, Zazu, Baloo and King Louie. These colorful creations will dance through the sky to the beat of favorite Disney songs in an uplifting, vibrant experience for the whole family.
Golden ‘Disney Fab 50’ Sculptures to Appear Across the Theme Parks
Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, Pluto and Chip ‘n’ Dale will be part of a new collection of special golden character sculptures debuting Oct. 1 across the four Walt Disney World theme parks. There will be 50 characters featured overall, and guests will be able to interact with the “Disney Fab 50” in surprising ways as part of the 50th anniversary celebration.
Mickey, Minnie and Friends Will Be Dressed for the Occasion
Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto and Chip ‘n’ Dale will also be dressed in sparkling new looks, custom-made for this special occasion. Highlights of these celebratory designs include beautifully embroidered impressions of Cinderella Castle backed by fireworks, as well as a brocade in multi-toned, EARidescent fabric – all punctuated with pops of gold.
Mickey and Minnie will be the hosts of “The World’s Most Magical Celebration,” joined by Walt Disney World cast members at the heart of this event. Wearing new EARidescent nametags designed for the 50th anniversary, cast will demonstrate yet again why they are renowned for their commitment to service, consistently exceeding guests’ expectations by going above and beyond to make visits to The Most Magical Place on Earth special.
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Are you looking forward to the Disney World 50th Anniversary Celebration? Let us know in the comments below.