There is so much going on at Walt Disney World right now that it’s hard to know where to start. Today’s update will take you high above the Star Wars construction site. Then we’ll journey to the Magic Kingdom where refurbishments and minor changes are underway. And we end up at Epcot where the park is positively bursting with color for Flower and Garden Festival.




Now, fasten your seat belts, it’s going to be a fast flight with sharp turns, drops, and sudden stops.

Disney Studios

Thanks to our good friends at Nearmap, we have some awesome aerial photos of major construction at the Studios Park. Nearmap is a high-resolution aerial content location provider. The images are sliders. You can move the bar back and forth to see the before and after photo. The before imagery is from September 19, 2016 and the most recent imagery is from January 24, 2017.

Here’s the future home of Star Wars Land folks! The bottom of this photo is where Lights, Motors, Action was located.

The following photo is called “Star Wars Land 3” by Nearmap.

This is an image of the area just behind Toy Story Mania. This is likely the Toy Story Land which is coming soon. That’s World Drive on the left.

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Magic Kingdom

The pace of refurbishments has picked up at the Magic Kingdom as the park takes advantage of this time between Christmas and Spring Break to get some work done.

Welcome to the Tarp Kingdom! Clearly the Railroad is closed for refurbishment.

 

Emporium is open, but the exterior is getting a facelift.

 

Busy weekend when Pirates is at 60 minutes.

 

Tortuga Tavern was open but not serving anything exciting. They sadly have a menu equivalent of an outdoor vending cart.

 

Railroad closed in Frontierland as well.

 

Hall of Presidents is closed to add Donald Trump. Don’t shoot me folks, I’m just the messenger.

 

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Still one lingering tarp over by Sir Mickeys.

 

Lots of new Beauty and the Beast merchandise with the new live action movie releasing on March 17th.

 

Upgrade tickets and customize MagicBands in Tomorrowland.

 

LONG standby queue for Space Mountain.

 

A new Joffrey’s coffee kiosk is going right to the left of the Tomorrowland stage.

 

It feels very old school Tomorrowland, almost like If You Had Wings.

 

Let’s take one last look back at the Magic Kingdom. We’ve got a long ride over to the other side of the world . . . Walt Disney World that is.

 

Epcot

The 2017 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival starts today, March 1st. New merchandise will be available for purchase at the Festival Center located in Future World at the old Wonders of Life pavilion (between Mission: Space and Universe of Energy).  New artwork, apparel, home décor and the release of 5 Dooney & Bourke handbags are just a few of the items available during the Festival. For this week only, the Festival Center will be open Wednesday through Sunday. The remaining weeks of the Festival, the Center will be open Friday thru Sunday.

But it’s the flowers and the food that really pack people in. Let’s see how the preparations for this year’s event are going. . .

It’s Flower and Garden time.

 

It’s so beautiful here right now!

 

They left the Figment topiary from Festival of the Arts up!

 

Fresh Epcot.

 


Floating flower beds in Future World.

 

Monorail cruising by a butterfly.

 

These new totem poles in Canada look great.

 

Pooh and friends in the UK.

 

Pan is back on the roof!

 

Tinker Bell is where Captain Hook was located in years past.

 

Beauty and the Beast in France.

 

Belle has an entirely new design on her face, and it looks much better than before. It’s no wonder that her name means Beauty.

 

The festival starts today, so over the weekend, some things were still being installed.

 

Lady and the Tramp in Italy.

 

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in Germany.

 

What’s up Doc?

 

Don’t forget about the food booths. They’ve become an important part of this festival.

 

Lion King is between Germany and China.

 

Dragons and pandas in China.

 

The Maelstrom troll has returned to Norway!

 

The Frozen sisters have moved over near their meet and greet location.

 

Some ‘walls’ up near Mexico on the left hand side. Not sure what they are for.

 

Nothing quite like the monorail gliding by those flower beds. It’s the most beautiful time of year at the park!

 

What else is new in the Disney World?

This week Doc McStuffins will start greeting Guests just outside the vet clinic at Rafiki’s Planet Watch inside Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Not to worry, the Star of the Disney Junior animated series will still be available at Disney’s Hollywood Studios as well.

Disney PhotoPass Studio, located at Disney Springs, recently unveiled the Personalized Storybook. This book will be created thru a special customized photo session with your choice of magical theme.
Your child can choose from Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora, Ariel, Mulan, Rapunzel, Anna and Elsa (of course).

Well, that does it for this week’s column. Are you ready for Flower and Garden? Can you believe it is March already? Let us know in the comments below. Thanks for reading!

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