Aug 062014

Walt Disney World Closures and Refurbishments

Magic Kingdom

  • Updated – Astro Orbiter is closed through September 27.
  • Updated – The Yankee Trader in Liberty Square will be closed from July 30 through September 30. The store is being changed into a Haunted Mansion gift shop.
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic will be closed for refurbishment from September 8 – 19.
  • Walt Disney World Railroad will be closed for refurbishment from September 28 through November 8. Email notification is being sent to guests who had booked the ‘Disney’s Magic Behind Our Steam Trains Tour.
  • Carousel of Progress will close for a refurbishment from September 22 -27.
  • Walt Disney World Railroad will be closed for refurbishment from September 28 through November 8.
  • The Magic Carpets of Aladdin will be closed for refurbishment from November 10 through to November 21
  • Cinderella’s Royal Table will be closed for refurbishment from January 5 – March 6, 2015.
  • Cinderella Castle moat has been drained. This work is being done as part of a larger project that will create a second ring around the current hub that adds more walkways and dedicated viewing areas for Magic Kingdom fireworks and parades, as well as sculpted gardens. This multi-phase enhancement project will be completed in 2015.


  • No refurbishments at this time.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • New – Fantasmic! will be closed for refurbishment from November 19 through November 21
  • The American Idol Experience will close in January 2015 according to a joint announcement by Disney and FreemantleMedia. There is no word yet as to what may fill the vacant space in the future.


Disney’s Animal Kingdom

  • It’s Tough To Be A Bug is closed through August 11.
  • New – Wild by Design Tour will be discontinuation permanently beginning September 26
  • Disney Parks has announced a long-term relationship with James Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment and Fox Filmed Entertainment to bring the fantasy world of AVATAR to life at Animal Kingdom Park. The new Avatar-inspired Land will feature multiple attractions, entertainment, merchandise locations, restaurants and other immersive elements. In preparation for the new land, Camp Minnie-Mickey has closed permanently.  Construction on Avatarland is expected to wrap up around 2017.

Water Parks

  • Typhoon Lagoon will be closed for refurbishment from October 26 through December 20.
  • Blizzard Beach will be closed for annual refurbishment from January 4 through March 14.


Downtown Disney (WDW)

  • Forty Thirst Street will be closed through August 11.
  • Updated – Roadwork on Buena Vista Drive will take place through March 2016. Due to heavy roadwork, expect delays on Buena Vista Drive. It is recommended that Guests use complimentary Walt Disney World Resort transportation from Parks and Resorts to Downtown Disney and plan to arrive early for reserved dining and entertainment experiences.
  • Downtown Disney will undergo a multi-year transformation into Disney Springs. New and completed areas will open in phases, and the project is expected to be complete in 2016. 


Disneyland Resort Closures and Rehabs


  • Captain EO has closed and in its place at the Magic Eye Theater is a sneak preview of Marvel’s upcoming “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie. Captain EO is expected to return at a later date.
  • New – Haunted Mansion will be closed from August 25 through September 11.
  • New – Sailing Ship Columbia will be closed from August 26 through August 28.
  • New – Big Thunder Ranch will be closed from September 1 through September 11.
  • New – Main Street Photo Supply will be closed from September 2 through September 23.
  • New – Jungle Cruise will be closed from September 2 through September 4.
  • New – Pirate’s Lair on Tom Sawyer Island will be closed from September 3 through September 4.
  • New – Horse-drawn Streetcars will be closed from September 3 through late October.
  • Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage will be closed for refurbishment through September 26.


Disney’s California Adventure Closures and Refurbishments

  • Blue Sky Cellar is closed through September 27.


Outside the Theme Parks

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Aug 062014

When you get in trouble and you don’t know right from wrong
Give a little whistle! Give a little whistle! – Jiminy Cricket

We are a mature couple that live in the UK and have always loved coming to see Mickey Mouse as often as possible. For the last two years have bought each other Annual Passes for presents to each other. My question is next time we visit in November, I would like to take my husband on a short Disney cruise (3 Days) and wondered if we would get any discounts with our Annual passes? Many thanks! (Submitted by Janet T.)


Hi Janet!

Wow! What awesome presents that you buy each other each year! (My husband and I have bought APs before too as gifts.)

Unfortunately, being a Disney Annual Passholder doesn’t give guests any sort of discount for the Disney Cruise Line. (Boy how I wished it did, given that I too have an AP and love to cruise on DCL.)

The best advice I have on getting the best deal for a Disney Cruise is to always book early, as soon as you know your travel dates and that they are available. I would also suggest booking your cruise through a travel agent (and may I of course suggest The Magic For Less Travel?) because they can often offer special Shipboard Credits, which while those aren’t discounts, they are nice perks as you’ll have extra money to spend on the fun little extras you want to take part in on the cruise. (Like if you want to imbibe in a cocktail or enjoy a relaxing massage in the spa.) The Shipboard Credit can help you pay for those.

Cruising on Disney Cruise Line is one of the most relaxing experiences though and I hope you all have a magical time! Bon Voyage!

Aug 062014

In each issue we share tips from our readers. If you have a tip to share send it to us at

The Fall is rapidly approaching and both Disneyland and Walt Disney World will be gearing up with lots of festivities. If you have a tip about touring the parks in the Fall, make sure to share them with us at!


During the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival, and you either don’t have a MagicBand or you haven’t added charging privileges to it, do make sure to pick up a Food & Wine themed mini Disney Gift Card . It is a fast, easy and secure way to carry your money on your wrist, and having one is simply the best way to experience the Festival. The Disney Gift Card is offered as a convenient mini-sized wristlet, or as a full-sized card. You can load or reload the card with any amount you desire (starting with as little as $5) and all you do is simply swipe at the Marketplace Booths – you’re spared the trouble of getting out your credit card or cash when you want to pay for food, merchandise and more. You can reload your card as many times as you wish using cash, credit cards, or debit cards at most of festival kiosks. Plus, when purchasing the wristband mini gift card option, you can choose from one of six different colors.


Best of Be Our Guest Podcast


Each issue we will feature a snippet of what you could learn by listening to the Be Our Guest Podcast.

Be sure to check back each issue for more fun.

Episode 735 – Mike’s June 2014 Port Orleans – Riverside Trip


Mike is back from his summer Walt Disney World vacation and shares details about staying at Port Orleans Riverside and why he not only loves this resort, but specifically the Princess-themed rooms, his experiences with the rolling FastPass+ option, and reviews of Garden Grill and Maya Grill.

Hear more about Mike’s fantastic vacation on this episode!

Listen to the podcast every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at Be Our Guest Podcast!

Aug 062014




Last time, Ms. Lost could be located near the France Pavilion where someone was painting something beautiful, it would seem near the water’s edge. Congratulations to Douglas B.!

This week, Ms. Lost almost got crushed by this apparatus. Where can you find her?

If you think that you can help, please email your answer to:

Send in your guess by August 16. Please be as specific as possible, noting not only the park but the specific ride, attraction, or section where the picture was taken. For instance, instead of saying, “Epcot,” say, “At Epcot at Maelstrom” (which isn’t this week’s answer). One random entry from all correct entries will receive a Disney trading pin.See Lost photos from past issues.