12th Annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival Joins in "The Happiest Celebration on Earth"

Flower Fest Invades Epcot April 15-June 5, 2005

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Just when you thought "The Happiest Celebration on Earth" couldn't get happier, the biggest showcase of flowers, trees and shrubs at Walt Disney World Resort gets into the act.

For seven weeks beginning April 15, Epcot will bloom with bouquets of custom displays themed to "The Happiest Celebration on Earth," Disney's global jubilee marking the 50th anniversary of Disneyland in Southern California. Roses, daisies, carnations, chrysanthemums and thousands of other varieties of flowers and trees at the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival will add living color to the largest celebration in Walt Disney Parks and Resorts history.

"The Happiest Celebration on Earth," launching May 5, 2005, and lasting well into 2006, pays tribute to Walt Disney's dream of Disneyland, the original park that introduced an entirely new genre of family entertainment. Disney parks now span the globe and continue to offer the most visited attractions in the world, drawing 100 million visitors on three continents every year -- and still growing.

The Epcot festival showcases topiary displays specially themed to "The Happiest Celebration on Earth" from the park entrance to World Showcase Lagoon, including the signature Spaceship Earth garden, which will feature the "Fab Five" -- Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Pluto and Donald Duck. Last year's entrance display, themed to Magical Gatherings, won an Award of Excellence from the Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association, and the festival's "Power of Flowers" display won the FNGLA's Floriculture Award.

Flower Power concerts return to America Gardens Theatre in World Showcase with nightly musical entertainment of top acts from the 1960s and '70s. Throughout the park, guests can attend gardening seminars and demonstrations. They also can browse among colorful displays that include an all-new Alice in Wonderland maze in Future World, The Ultimate Backyard Garden, presented by The Home Depot, and a Fragrance Garden.

Guests will again discover the hub of program activity at the Festival Center, located inside Innoventions West behind Fountain View Café. Guest speakers and demonstrations will be scheduled daily. Festival merchandise, program guides and information also will be available in this one-stop welcome shop.

Other festival highlights include:

A WaterFULL World Garden focusing on the importance of water conservation and wetlands restoration via a meandering water display lush with native Florida plants.

Dozens of fragrant rose varieties developed through the centuries in a display that touches on the history of roses.

A "see and sniff" Fragrance Garden at the France pavilion highlighting flowers in several perfumes.

The Ultimate Backyard Garden display, presented by The Home Depot, exploring the trend of gardeners enjoying their home gardens as a retreat or entertainment venue.

"More and more people are spending time in their backyards, and we'll focus on the latest ways to enjoy your home's great outdoors beyond puttering in the garden," says Eric Darden, horticulture manager of the festival. "This year, there are more creative ways than ever to enhance outdoor living spaces, and we're looking forward to helping guests develop ideas and plan inviting garden retreats."

Each festival weekend will be themed with special speakers and events.

"Themed weekends allow us to give our guests special treats by focusing on one aspect of the garden experience," Darden said. "Past themed weekends have included I Dig Bugs, Flower Photography and Art in the Garden.

"Mother's Day is also a huge weekend for us, with mothers and kids spending all day together among the flowers at Epcot," Darden said.

Epcot guests who can't get enough of the park's exotic floral displays, gardening tips and other festival activities can make plans for multiple visits to the 12th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival by calling 407/W-DISNEY. The festival is included in regular Epcot admission.

Tentative Flower Power Concert Line-up:
Davy Jones - April 15-18
Gary U.S. Bonds - April 19-21
Paul Revere & The Raiders - April 22-25
The Buckinghams - April 26-28
The Grass Roots - April 29-May 1
The Turtles - May 2-4
Gregg Rolie Band - May 7-8
The Lovin' Spoonful - May 9-11
The Nelsons - May 12-14
Gary Puckett - May 15-17
Orleans - May 18-20
Rare Earth - May 21-23
BJ Thomas - May 24-26
Eric Burdon & The Animals - May 27-29
The Rascals - May 30-June 1
Arlo Guthrie - June 2-5

This is a great festival for all you plant lovers!!!!!