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New Additions to 20th Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival
January 29, 2013 Destinations

Walt Disney World’s Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival is an annual harbinger of spring, and showcases the theme park in all its spectacular glory.  New additions for the 20th annual festival include a “Land of Oz” themed playground (to correspond with the release of Disney’s Oz The Great and Powerful), illuminated nighttime gardens, and garden dining that brings a hint of the Food and Wine Festival to the event.  Would you like some rum with your Dole Whip?  Continue reading for more details on the 20th Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival presented by HGTV that runs March 6 – May 19, 2013 at Walt Disney World Resort.

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

From Walt Disney World’s Press Release:

Whimsical Disney topiary spectacles and sweeping garden landscapes set the colorful scene this year for new festival additions that include food-and-beverage Garden Marketplaces, a circus-like “Land of Oz” play area and nighttime illuminated gardens.

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

Debuting at the 20th Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

  • Garden Marketplace culinary creations ranging from smokehouse barbecue and shrimp with grits and Zellwood corn to sweet “frushi” made with fresh fruits and coconut rice.  Chefs are perfecting menus for marketplaces that will include Florida Fresh at World Showcase Promenade, Smokehouse Barbecue and Brew at American Adventure courtyard, Primavera Kitchen at Italy showcase, Hanami at Japan showcase and eight others.  Around the World Showcase promenade
  • Garden Marketplace refreshing libations with a kick like Hot Sun Tomato Wine from Florida Orange Groves Winery and Dole Whip with Spiced Rum, as well as non-alcoholic drinks like Frozen Desert Violet Lemonade and Wild Berry Slush.  Beverage specialists will feature brews and beverages at food marketplaces and at Fruits by the Glass and Pineapple Promenade.  Around the World Showcase promenade
  • A new, circus-like “Land of Oz” play area based on the Disney fantastical film adventure “Oz: The Great and Powerful” to be released March 8, 2013.  The interactive children’s play zone will feature play systems adorned with giant flowers and designed to stretch kids’ imaginations and muscles.  Midway-style games, red-and-white circus-themed tents and the “Oz Movie Garden” of intriguing plants will capture the spirit of the upcoming film.  Also on tap: photo opportunities and the “great and powerful Oz’s” crashed hot-air balloon.  Imagination Walkway
  • Larger-than-life Fab Five Disney character topiary.  Floral versions of Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Pluto and Donald Duck (with Daisy Duck in a cameo) star in a celebratory cookout scene in living topiary color.  The 14-foot-tall Goofy topiary will bobble an anniversary cake while Donald and Daisy play badminton, Mickey fires up the grill, Pluto swipes a link of hot dogs and Minnie chills out on a colorful blanket of blossoms.  Epcot Front Entrance
  • Illuminated Gardens in the park’s Future World and World Showcase will twinkle and glow over the festival’s world-famous Disney gardens and topiaries each festival evening. Epcot Future World and World Showcase

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

Throughout the 75-day garden party, guests will discover festival surprises around every corner including new topiary triumphs, a butterfly bounty, whimsical children’s play areas, HGTV celebrity designers, daily hands-on gardening seminars and a Festival Center packed with events that offer innovative ideas, gardening know-how and design tips.  Weekends, top Flower Power rockers of the 1960s and ’70s will perform.

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

Every Friday through Sunday, HGTV design celebrities will host Festival Center seminars.  During opening weekend, March 8-10, Chris Lambton of “Going Yard” will appear; other designers scheduled to take the stage include David Bromstad of “Color Splash” and Meg Caswell of “Meg’s Great Rooms.”  Full schedule of HGTV celebrity appearances can be found on the Disney Parks Blog.

Other Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival Highlights Include:

  • “Monsters University” topiary:  Floral representations of Mike and Sully from the hit Disney-Pixar film “Monsters, Inc.” and stars of Disney-Pixar’s June 2013 release, “Monsters University,” will join the festivities as new topiary family members.  On the Future World Walkway
  • Phineas and Ferb topiary:  The popular Disney Channel animated celebs limit their shenanigans to go green for a family photo-op.  Behind Spaceship Earth
  • “Radiator Springs” interactive play zone:  Race car Lightning McQueen and tow truck “Mater” of the Disney-Pixar film “Cars 2″ will be the well-maintained topiary stars of this play area.  On the Test Track Walkway
  • Flower Power Firsts1970s top disco band The Village People (April 19-21) and 1960s singer-songwriter Tommy Roe (May 3-5) bring on the Flower Power beat when they take the concert stage.  At America Gardens Theatre
  • Tinker Bell’s Butterfly House: Eight fanciful fairy topiaries of Pixie Hollow, including Tinker Bell, Fawn, Vidia and Terrence, take over the Butterfly House this year where hundreds of colorful winged beauties flit to life.  On the Imagination Walkway

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

In all, more than 100 topiaries, 240 floating mini-gardens, dozens of flower towers and sweeping beds of multi-colored blooms will add floral splendor to the park landscape.  Speaking of “flower power,” the Flower Power concert series kicks off March 8-10 with Micky Dolenz (“I’m a Believer”)  and continues each weekend with pop favorites including:

March 15-17: Chubby Checker & The Wildcats

March 22-24: The Guess Who

March 29-31: Nelson

April 5-7: The Turtles featuring Flo & Eddie

April 12-14: Paul Revere & the Raiders

April 19-21: The Village People (new!)

April 26-28: The Orchestra, Featuring Former Members of ELO and ELO II

May 3-5: Tommy Roe (new!)

May 10-12: Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone

May 17-19: Starship starring Mickey Thomas.

While Disney guests celebrate spring during their Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival visit, they also can explore the reimagined, design-centric Test Track Presented by Chevrolet, the hang-gliding sensation of Soarin’ and other high-tech Future World marvels.  In World Showcase, where the spotlight will shine on topiaries of Disney princesses, storybook characters and even pandas and trolls, guests will discover the attractions, shops and restaurants that represent cultures and cuisine of 11 countries.

Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

So what do you think of the new additions to the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival?  Are you a regular visitor?  I’ll be at Walt Disney World with my family in May for the runDisney Expedition Everest Challenge, and I’m sure we’ll stop by for a peek.  Please leave a comment and share your thoughts below.  For more family travel news, reviews, and trip reports, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on twitter and “like” our facebook page too.

"3" Comments
  1. Pingback: Barenaked Ladies and Goo Goo Dolls at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay

  2. Lisa Christensen

    Thank you for posting about the Flower and garden festival we are going as a family for the first time to Disney world and this post has really helped us learn what the flower and garden festival! just curious, are you able to see all the topiaries in one day? I feel like it will be amazing to see and you could spend all day just looking at the gardens!

    • Hi Lisa, yes, it will take some walking, but you can definitely see all the topiaries in a single day. Especially if you are not waiting for rides at all, you can easily just stroll around and take in the gardens and topiaries. Have fun!

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