April was a big month in Disney World! Expedition Everest finally reopened after a months-long closure, Salt & Straw in Disney Springs opened its doors, and traditional character meet-and-greets returned to the Disney parks for the first time in years!
We learned a lot in Disney World in April, so we’ve narrowed it down to 10 things you should take away from a month of Disney World news.
1. Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Returns
Last week, Disney celebrated Halfway to Halloween with some fun treats, a Hocus Pocus watch party, and even a digital wallpaper! As part of the celebration, Disney announced that Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party will be returning to the Magic Kingdom this August. Last year, instead of the Halloween party, we got to experience the Disney After Hours BOO Bash, but we’re so excited that Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party will be returning this year.
Tickets for this event range from $109-$199 and go on sale on May 18th (or on May 12th for Disney World Resort hotel guests). Tickets include admission to the Magic Kingdom and the event runs from 7PM to midnight along with access to treat trails, a special parade, fireworks, and stage show in front of Cinderella Castle!
2. Magnolia Golf Course Closing
Did you know that Disney World is home to not one but two full-size golf courses (plus two mini-golf courses, too!)? Magnolia Golf Course is one of the two full golf courses in Disney World and it is preparing for a major renovation. On April 28th, the second 9 holes closed, so only holes 1-9 are currently available.
Beginning May 9th, the entire course will be closed indefinitely while it undergoes renovation. Disney anticipates it will reopen later this year, but a formal reopening timeline has not been announced.
3. Top of the World Lounge Reopening
Being a member of the Disney Vacation Club (aka, DVC) comes with exciting serious perks. One of those perks is having access to special areas and lounges. The Top of the World Lounge is located within Bay Lake Tower, which is the DVC portion of Disney’s Contemporary Resort.
The lounge has been closed for quite some time, and in April, DVC members got an email saying that the lounge has been reimagined and will be opening soon. An exact timeline was not shared.
4. More Details About Finding Nemo: The Big Blue… and Beyond! Released
As Disney World began its phased reopening in 2020, one thing that notably did not reopen was Finding Nemo: The Musical in Animal Kingdom. We eventually got news that the show would be undergoing a transformation and would be reopening as Finding Nemo: The Big Blue… and Beyond! and April brought us more details about what that transformation will look like!
The new show will be shorter than its predecessor, and will feature some of the music from the old show, plus new music, new set pieces, and characters from Finding Dory! Disney still hasn’t shared details about when the new show will be opening, but we’re patiently (or not-so-patiently) waiting for more information!
5. Online Ordering From Salt & Straw
On its opening day, we learned that you can avoid waiting in the line in Disney Springs and order your ice cream online directly from the Salt & Straw website! All you have to do is select the Disney Springs location, place your order, and then head to the shop when your pick-up window opens!
6. Masks No Longer Required on Transportation
Disney World has slowly been rolling back its face mask policy. It began with masks required everywhere, then masks only being required indoors, then only on indoor transportation. Face masks are now no longer required on any Disney World transportation.
They are still recommended for guests who are unvaccinated when indoors. Guests visiting the First Aid Centers for an extended period of time will also be asked to wear their masks while inside.
7. Character Dining Returns to Some Locations
April brought the return of traditional character meet-and-greets and character dining to the Disney parks! This is a phased rollout, meaning that not all character experiences will return at once.
Some, but not all, character dining experiences are now allowing hugs and autographs and we learned which ones have returned! Some of the ones that have returned include Chef Mickey’s at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Garden Grill at EPCOT, and Topolino’s Terrace at Disney’s Riviera Resort!
8. Expedition Everest Available With Standard Genie+
Expedition Everest in Animal Kingdom recently reopened after a several-month closure. It had previously not been included with your standard Genie+ purchase and was instead an Individual Lightning Lane offering — meaning you would have needed to pay extra for it if you wanted to skip the line.
When it reopened last month, it was included with your standard Genie+ purchase! That means that if you paid the $15 rate (plus tax) for Genie+, you would be able to skip the line at Expedition Everest. Disney shared that this is a temporary change that will remain in place until August 7th.
9. Even MORE Details About Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is opening THIS MONTH in EPCOT (can you tell that we’re excited?)! We got so many more details about the ride in April, including things like what the Cast Member’s costumes will look like, what the height requirement will be (42″), and who the villain we’ll need to defeat is.
We’ve also gotten a look at the soundtrack for the rollercoaster, and we know that Terry Crews will star in it! Previews for the ride have already begun, and we can’t wait to ride it when it opens on May 27th!
10. Changes Coming to Disney KiteTails
Changes are coming to Disney KiteTails in Animal Kingdom! This show debuted as part of the Disney World 50th Anniversary Celebration and has two different versions: one with characters from The Jungle Book and one with characters from The Lion King. In April, Disney announced that changes would be made to the show to make it easier to view from all around the Discovery River Lagoon, rather than just the Discovery River Amphitheater.
The show currently happens about six times per day, but Disney announced that it would be shortened and performances would happen more frequently as part of these changes. Disney did not share when these changes would take effect, so we’ll be on the lookout for more updates!
And those were 10 things we learned in Disney World in April! Make sure to stay tuned to DFB for the latest Disney World news and information!
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What are you most looking forward to in Disney World in May? Let us know in the comments!