News: Two New Nighttime Parties Coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom!

After so much waiting, things are finally coming together at Disney’s Animal Kingdom! Mark your calendars for April 22Earth Day — for the debut of the new nighttime spectacular: Rivers of Light!! [Editor’s Update: Please note that since the original publishing of this article, Disney has announced that the Rivers of Light spectacular will be delayed, and they will be releasing further information regarding an updated debut date in mid-late May 2016.]



But while we are still awaiting more details about the timeline of other coming attractions, like Avatarland, we have a couple of other things to look forward to in the near future. Of course, the whole point of all of this is to move Animal Kingdom from a “daytime” to a “ALL DAY” Park.

To that end, Disney is sharing news about two new evening celebrations that will kick off just as the sun goes down: Harambe Wildlife Parti and Discovery Island Carnivale. While Disney hasn’t announced dates for these parties to debut, we’re thinking it will happen in the Spring or early Summer.

Harambe Wildlife Parti

We already enjoy ambling through Harambe, Animal Kingdom’s lively African Outpost Village, during the day. It’s fun to stop for a snack at Harambe Market, enjoy a drink at Dawa Bar, or even take in some of the musical entertainment. But soon, there will be even more to entertain you as evening falls.

Harambe Market

Harambe Market

Like previous Animal Kingdom Summer parties, the Harambe Wildlife Parti will encompass a diverse offering of entertainment. Kick off the fun on the main stage while listening and dancing to the infectious rhythm of the Burudika Band. Beyond there, continue through the village, where you’ll encounter Muziki, the goodwill shaman, and his celebration of music. Children can join in the dancing and drum playing.

Next, enjoy the beautiful singing of the Karibu Sisters. This trio will share dance as well as acapella and acoustic versions of African Pop.

Sausage Fried in Curry Batter from Harambe Market

We Expect to See Exotic Flavors to Enjoy Throughout the Evening at Animal Kingdom

Feelin’ a little sporty? Check out the Harambe Soccer Meerkats, the village’s lively soccer team. They’ll inspire pick-up games in the streets, with their entertaining moves.

Finally, the Harambe Village Acrobats will dazzle crowds with their agility, as they drum, dance, build pyramids, and tumble among the guests.

While specialty food items haven’t yet been announced, we’re pretty sure Animal Kingdom will bring out some favorites for this event.

Discovery Island Carnivale

Discovery Island will be another spot in the Park to enjoy evening entertainment. Guests will revel in a celebration of Carnivale. Listen for Latin rhythms to usher in the evening dance party, which celebrates the beauty of nature. The event culminates with the Tree of Life Nighttime Awakenings, when animal spirits will leap with magic and light from the tree.

© Disney

© Disney

As for food, we anticipate exotic flavors in both food and drink at both parties. We expect to see the flavors of the lands at Animal Kingdom — the continents of Africa and South America as well as India — to enhance the festive tone of the evening. We also can’t wait for the debut of those gorgeous Light-Up Lotus Popcorn Buckets!!

Are you looking forward to new nighttime entertainment options at Disney’s Animal Kingdom — and the new foods that are surely to follow? Leave a comment and tell us what you’re looking forward to the most!


  1. Kathy says

    I have been to this market twice trying to get that corndog! Each time I go the line for that station is the longest and in direct sun. I usually grab a beer from the station next door and say next time. Maybe third time is a charm!

  2. says

    We’re headed to Disney soon (May 2016) and celebrating a birthday. Excited to have a new reason to explore Animal Kingdom. We’re looking forward to the music & delicious foods! See you soon!!

  3. Jennifer says

    The additions to the AK have me more excited any of the other changes coming to WDW. Don’t get me wrong, cant wait for Star Wars land @ DHS, and I cant wait to see Disney Springs, but AK is what I’m looking forward to most. We’re honeymooning @ AKL 10/17

  4. Tarantula says

    @Kathy, I thought you could order any of the items from any of the windows at Harambe Market? Or am I confusing this dining location with another?

  5. Kristy Secord says

    Are there going to be dinner/show combos like Fantasmic? I hope so. Either way we’ll be able to see it. 42 days til we get there.

  6. says

    Julie — It isn’t clear yet whether these are hard ticketed, after hours events, or just activities that happen in the evening. We’ll keep you posted as Disney shares more information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *