Major Change at Whispering Canyon Cafe in Disney World’s Wilderness Lodge

UPDATE: According to Disney, the antics at Whispering Canyon Cafe have been toned down as opposed to being quieted entirely, with a goal of being considerate of other guests at the Lodge. We will continue to monitor this story as it develops. 

It was always fun to be in on the joke that the “Whisper” in Whispering Canyon Cafe was an intentional misnomer, as this Wilderness Lodge Table Service restaurant was not reflective of the actual atmosphere of the location.

Whispering Canyon Sign

Whispering Canyon Sign

It was always filled with hootin’ and hollerin’, brought about and encouraged by the wacky hijinks of the serving staff.

Warning -- Good Times Ahead -- Click to Enlarge

“The Goings-On Can Get a Little Loud…”

Dining Room During Morning Races

Dining Room During Morning Races

It WAS, that is. We received notification from a DFB Reader (thank you, Caitlyn R.!) that on her recent visit to Whispering Canyon Cafe, she was informed that the Cast Member servers are no longer playing the loud and rowdy part, as per new instruction. So, it appears that the days of asking for a little ketchup and receiving this

Someone Asked for Ketchup . . .

Someone Asked for Ketchup . . .

… are gone…at least for now.

The reason for this change is unknown. In the past if diners did not wish to participate in the antics at their table, they could opt out by using a flip card on the table which easily notified their server of their preference.

Flip Card --Green " Jump and Play" Side

Flip Card –Green ” Jump and Play” Side

Flip Card -- Red "Watch from the Fence!" Side

Flip Card — Red “Watch from the Fence!” Side

As of publishing, the change has NOT been reflected on Disney World website, which still spotlights the ways they like to “horse around” at the Cafe. This gives us hope that maybe the change was just temporary and they’ll eventually return to the fun antics Whispering Canyon is known for. As we know, the only consistent thing about Disney restaurants is that they’re inconsistent ;-D So changes can always be temporary.

Whispering Canyon Cafe page screenshot

Whispering Canyon Cafe page screenshot

But in case you do have an upcoming Advance Dining Reservation and the silly and fun atmosphere was a major reason your traveling group wished to visit the Whispering Canyon Cafe, we wanted to let you know. And IF you do have an upcoming ADR, let us know what your experience is here — fun antics, or just standard hotel dining?

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What do you think of this change to Whispering Canyon Cafe? Please let us know with a comment below!

Comments

  1. Nancy says

    We just had lunch at Whispering Canyon on Mother’s Day and they were still doing some of the antics – the ketchup was the main thing we saw. I hope they don’t take the antics away, because that’s what made Whispering Canyon so special.

  2. Carolyn says

    This is such a stupid change. There are so many restaurants without antics available, that if you wanted a normal dining experience without them you could go to. This really takes away what the major draw of WCC was, and hopefully they change it back. I don’t think we’ll bother eating there unless it changes back.

  3. Michael says

    I ate there for breakfast on Mother’s Day and they were still doing the Ketchup and other antics so I’m not so sure this is fact as of yet.

  4. Hannah says

    This would be disappointing. I hated being part of it but loved watching it. If I’m not in the mood, I don’t have to go. Don’t ruin the fun novelty of this place. We did have a room, one time, right above Whispering Canyon. So what….it was only a bit loud when we opened the door to leave. Sad day if a few can really ruin it for many.

  5. John Lester says

    We have made 14 trips to DisneyWorld through the years and have always enjoyed the fun at Whispering Canyon. Our family is VERY DISAPPOINTED to receive this news. It appears to be just another cut that the “higher ups” in the corporate office is making to cut their cuts. We do not like the continued decrease in events (i.e. parades, etc.), and services at the resorts. They are pricing themselves out of a rather large share of the middle class families in the U.S.A.

  6. Mike V says

    I am extremely upset at this decision and sick and tired of this mindset of making everything politically correct.
    People had fun here with the antics and now because some few probably were “offended” for some unknown reason we all have to pay.
    And shame on you Disney for listening to the minority and getting sucked in…..Really pathetic!

  7. Katie says

    My brother works at Prime Time Cafe. He confirmed that this is true, and Prime Time is no longer interactive as well. I don’t know the reason for it.

  8. KellyD says

    It’s notnoveratating to call this a major blow to my family. Both my kids adore this restaurant, strictly because of the antics. They’ve been anticipating our August trip for 2 years, especially our arrival day ADR at WCC. I just asked them and they said there is no point eating there without “the funny waiters.” So sad!!!!

  9. Janis says

    I am in the minority I suppose but I found the antics out of hand. At Christmas time we treated our son and daughter-in-law to a DBeautiful Andy vacation complete with stay a two the Wilderness LOdge. We had ADR for bfast at Whispering Canyon Cafe ( We had eaten bfast there before but earlier close to their opening. The experience was very good) not so the s econd time. Reservations meant nothing. We had to wait 40 minutes for table Then another ten unites to place our order. Meanwhile, all servers and staff were shouting ‘where’s the ketchup’ and carrying on with such rancor we could not hear each other at our own table. Forty minutes passed but no food was brought outt took to us, no coffee refill. We could not see our server anywhere. Finally she showed up and handed us our bill and told us to have nice day. I responded that it is customary to be served before presenting the bill. She was not aware we had not received our food. It took another fifteen minutes to get the eggs and waffles. Which were not even hot. When the focus is on the antics and not the service, count us out. We were not alone in this sentiment.

  10. says

    I really hope that this isn’t going to become permanent. The antics are the reason most people went to the restaurant. Everyone has the option to opt out if they don’t want to participate. It’s all done in fun.

  11. Mike V says

    Well it sounds like bad service not about the flare that this place brings.
    If you didn’t “see your server anywhere” it doesn’t sound like the antics of the server are questionable.

  12. Lisa says

    I have a reservation here for October and the atmosphere was why we chose this place. I’m disappointed that we might not get to experience all the great fun that I’ve read about. If it has changed then we might have to find another restaurant. And I was looking forward to my teenage son asking for ketchup!

  13. Phil says

    There are hundreds of dining options. Don’t like it eat elsewhere. These are the same people that complain the parks are busy and they actually have to wait in lines like everyone else

  14. Kris says

    This news is absolutely pathetic! Wilderness lodge is my fav resort…..
    .and management is ruining the fun!!! I have reservations next month and will let my disappointment be known to Thea Sargent the manager!

  15. Lori says

    This has nothing to do with “political correctness”. It’s about time and money, plain and simple. The antics took time, which affected service and slowed down the turn over of tables. Eliminating the antics makes each table move faster, which makes more money by fitting more sittings in. I also seriously doubt that those of us who hated the antics were a tiny minority.

  16. Lizzie says

    We’ve eaten here a couple of times in the past couple of weeks and still seen all the antics going on so I’m not sure if this is true?

  17. Sam says

    I always asked for my birthday meal to be at Whispering Canyon. We’ve dined there about 6 times. We loved the antics. That’s part of what made it great. It clearly states what might happen if you dine there. If you do not want to hear the noise or be involved dine elsewhere . I really do think it might be about the money. If so shame on you Disney. Looks like we will be going to 50’s Prime Time.

  18. Laura says

    We’ve been eating at WCC since our honeymoon 20 years ago and the novelty of the staff’s rowdy antics is what keeps us coming back for more, not just the food. At our most recent visit my 16yr old son and 50 yr old bro-in-law participated in the horse races! We had so much fun hootin’ & hollerin’ with the other guests- and when it came time to pass the ketchup, we ended up with 20 bottles on our table. You dont get a dining experience like that at just any disney restaurant. WCC is reserved for those who want to enjoy a unique dining experience- I hope they keep it that way! It wld not surprise me though if Disney’s decision to change the dining experience was based on fiscal advantage because that’s what their focus is…to increase revenue. It’s just sad when it comes at the expense of our nostalgia.

  19. Merina Gorman says

    I dined there for breakfast about a week ago, and our server had a few funny exchanges with another server but that was about it. My boyfriend who was with me eats ketchup With breakfast so he did ask for some, and when our server brought it, he told us to come back for lunch or dinner sometime to get the full experience. He said they weren’t allowed to be so loud and rowdy in the morning anymore, so the time of day you go may affect the experience. The server who joked with ours seemed to be more into the experience as she went and sat right down with a table next to us to take their order, and we could hear a lot of laughter coming from their table. Overall we loved the food and the service was wonderful, so regardless of anything else, I think it is still a great place for a meal

  20. Rhonda says

    Well, I’m glad I was able to take my grandson before they ended it. I’m like most everyone else in saying why not choose another resturant if you don’t like the antics? Will Chef Mickey’s and others end soon because some are offended by the characters? You know what you’re in for when visiting WCC. That’s the main reason people want to go there.

  21. Kim says

    My family and I always plan a dinner at WCC. We really enjoy the fun activities there. Last time we went, my introverted husband, sang and acted out “I’m a little tea pot” please don’t take away the uniqueness of the WDW dining experiences. Might as well eat off property. Those reasturants are all the same too.

  22. Barbara disbrow says

    Please don’t take away the fun antics. Most of us go there just for that fun time. That ,plus the good food, are what bring is there. If others do not enjoy that, there are many other restaurants that they can go to eat.

  23. Michael says

    Ridiculous, absurd, disappointing, and unnecessary.

    No reason to go there or to the Prime Time (if the above comment is true) ever again.

  24. Frank says

    Never been to Disney before. 62 years old and going there for the first time with my two grandsons and 5 other family members. Read about Whispering Canyon and immediately made a reservation to eat there one night. I’m now cancelling it. We were hoping for a fun, silly evening. Now that’s out. Hey, we can always eat off the resort – most likely cheaper. It’s always a few ruining it for everyone else. Like someone else posted – you know what it’s like. If you don’t like it – stay or eat somewhere else.

  25. Debra says

    As an adult that visits Disney without kids – I really don’t mind the antics – I get that it’s trying to be old wild west with the attitude. I choose not to play along – but I don’t mind that others do. The only thing I’ve complained about it the wastefulness of throwing all of the plastic straws on the table to just be thrown away. There are other resorts that are doing away with plastic straws all together because of the damage they are causing with the planet and our sea life. Just stop it with the plastic straws!

  26. Dean says

    Went for dinner tonight, saw the ketchup thing once. Other than that, no antics to be found from any of the servers. Highly disappointing, we loved that part, it made the experience!

  27. John Locke says

    I think the folks who hated the antics were part of a VERY LOUD minority who are slowly ruining the world because they want EVERY PLACE to exist only as they wish it to exist. The interactions with the waitstaff are well known at Whispering Canyon and 50s prime time are well known and these folks, instead of just picking another restaurant, want to ruin it for everyone else.

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