Around the Mouse: Walt Disney World News, March 20, 2017

There are exciting new things popping up every day at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida!  Join us every week to read about what’s new “Around the Mouse.”  This week’s Walt Disney World news update features: Beauty and the Beast experiences at Magic Kingdom Park, three new otter pups at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, The Dress Shop coming to Disney Springs, and so much more!

What’s New This Week?

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Magic Kingdom Park

New! Celebrate Beauty and the Beast at Magic Kingdom: Celebrate the release of the live-action film “Beauty and the Beast” at Magic Kingdom with one of the following experiences:

  • Be Our Guest Restaurant: Sample from a scrumptious menu of French and American cuisine at Be Our Guest Restaurant at Magic Kingdom Park. Open for quick-service breakfast and lunch and table-service dinner, you can dine inside of some of the iconic scenes from Beast’s Castle, including the Grand Ballroom, the Castle Gallery or the West Wing. Also, Beast meets with you in his study after your (dinner) meal.
  • Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique: Little princesses age 3-12 can receive the royal Belle treatment at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, located at both Disney Springs and inside Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park. They can be transformed with a Belle dress, special hairstyle, nail designs and more. Call (407) WDW-STYLE for reservations.
  • Enchanted Tales with Belle: Relive the timeless tale during a magical reenactment at Magic Kingdom Park at Enchanted Tales with Belle. You will get to share special moments with Belle inside Beast’s library as you have a role in helping to tell this classic story.
  • Gaston’s Tavern: Decorated with hunting trophies and tons of keepsakes dedicated to Gaston, you can grab a variety of pastries and snacks, including LeFou’s Brew, a delicious frozen apple juice beverage infused with a hint of toasted marshmallow.

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Epcot

Reminder! Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival Continues: The Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is an annual spring event taking place from March 1 to May 29, 2017 at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. The festival features an irresistible array of new gardens and character topiaries, popular entertainers and tasty food and drink offerings. Fresh, farm-market food and beverage flavors will debut at the new Northern Bloom and The Berry Basket Outdoor Kitchens that will join 13 returning Outdoor Kitchens. The new generation of princess topiaries (Snow White, Anna and Elsa – the first to be designed and created with topiary facial features) will welcome a brand-new Belle topiary. This year’s Epcot front-entrance topiary garden, “Welcome Spring Fun, Food and Flowers,” inspired by a vintage Walt Disney short film will spring to life with a floral-festooned maypole featuring Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Daisy and Pluto. The popular Garden Rocks concert takes place four days each week, with three concerts each Friday through Monday presenting pop musicians that span multiple genres over five decades. Redesigned interactive play gardens will include the new “Cars”- themed Road to Florida 500 garden introducing the new “Cruz” character topiary from the June 2017 release of Disney•Pixar’s “Cars 3.” Music Garden Melodies play area will return with a new garden design, musical note topiary elements and climbing nets. The Festival Center will showcase an entertaining mix of gardening seminars and DIY workshops.

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Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Reminder! BB-8 to Greet Guests at This Spring: Guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will have more Star Wars fun to look forward to this spring when BB-8, the loyal droid from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, begins character greetings at the park’s Star Wars Launch Bay. BB-8 will appear in addition to Kylo Ren and Chewbacca, two characters from the Star Wars galaxy who guests regularly encounter at Star Wars Launch Bay. BB-8 is expected to be available after Star Wars: Galactic Nights, which is happening April 14.

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Disney’s Animal Kingdom

New! Three Otter Pups Have New Names: The otter triplets at the Tree of Life in Disney’s Animal Kingdom now have names! The playful pups are Asian small-clawed otters which are the smallest of all otters, and the least aquatic. They each have very unique personalities that have contributed to their names. Raakshas is a Hindi word meaning monster. This young male’s favorite pastimes include exploring his enrichment and food with his mouth (unlike his siblings who use their paws) and pouncing on his brother and sister. Pintar is Indonesian for smart or clever. The second male was the first one to discover that if he moved away from his siblings he could catch more fish with less competition. Pitakee Pyaaree (or Pitakee for short) is Hindi for daddy’s girl. Like her father, she was the least enthusiastic about learning to swim. You can see them at Disney’s Animal Kingdom at the otter habitat located on the left side of the Tree of Life.

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Walt Disney World Water Parks

Reminder! ‘Miss Adventure Falls’ Attraction Now Open at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park: Miss Adventure Falls, a new family-style raft attraction, is coming to Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park. The new attraction opened March 12! From your four-person raft, as you twist and turn on this fun-filled white-water experience, you’ll be able to spot several precious treasures and unique artifacts collected by Captain Mary Oceaneer – a sea-faring treasure hunter whose haul was caught in a rogue typhoon. Along the way, you’ll see Captain Mary’s parrot and trusted diving partner, Duncan, who now lives inside of the shipwreck and continues the treasure-hunting tradition. He’s busy chatting, singing and keeping an eye out for even more treasure.

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Disney Springs

New! Hurry to Catch Limited Time St. Patrick’s Day Treats at Disney Springs: At Disney Springs, selections abound for St. Patrick’s Day, including: Corned Beef Poutine from The Daily Poutine – fresh frites smothered in beer cheese and shaved corned beef; seasonal ganache flavors from The Ganachery including Irish Cream, Stout, and Irish Whiskey; green waffle cones and an Irish chocolate cupcake with Belgian dark chocolate cake and a Baileys Irish cream cheese frosting from Sprinkles Cupcakes; Mickey Mouse “St. Patrick’s Day” specialty apples from Goofy’s Candy Co. and Candy Cauldron; chocolate mint milkshakes from D-Luxe Burger; and green beer and Sham-Rock-Aritas from Dockside Margaritas. Of course, this is in addition to all the Irish fare you’ll find at Raglan Road Irish Pub and Restaurant!

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New! Dress Shop Coming to Disney Springs Marketplace Co-Op: A delightful new apparel and accessories collection called The Dress Shop is coming to Walt Disney World at the end of March. This line of clothing is perfect for anyone who wants to emulate their favorite characters or park attractions in a stylish, retro way. The Dress Shop collection drew inspiration from popular nostalgic design trends. Outfits include nods to Disney attractions such as Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, “it’s a small world,” The Haunted Mansion, and the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. There’s an Orange Bird dress that was teased in a Disney Parks Blog sneak preview last December. Other dress designs were inspired by classic Disney characters and stories including Minnie Mouse, Snow White and Alice. When the Dress Shop on Cherry Tree Lane opens inside the accessories boutique at the Marketplace CoOp in Disney Springs on March 31, accessories and handbags will also be available. Special activities will take place that day and throughout the weekend to celebrate the new addition including a trunk show of vintage-inspired apparel.

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Walt Disney World Resort Hotels

Update! Celebration at the Top at Disney’s Contemporary Resort Extended: Celebration at the Top guests will be able to delight in the sparkle of the Magic Kingdom fireworks spectacular from an intimate and private observation deck at California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Guests will check in at California Grill an hour before fireworks. Then, they will be brought up to the California Grill restaurant, which sits on the 15th floor of Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Once inside, guests will be taken to the intimate and secluded banquet rooms to enjoy canapés, a selection of sushi rolled by the expert California Grill sushi chefs, a selection of flatbreads and other small plates. A complimentary bar offering craft beers, California wines, cordials and coffee will also be available. Just before the night spectacular begins, guests will be lead to their private observation deck, which offers stunning views of Magic Kingdom park and the fireworks. Afterward, guests can return to the private room for petit four desserts including decadent chocolate confections and fruit tarts. Reservations for Celebration at the Top are now open for select Sunday evenings from through September 24, 2017. Cost is $99 per person, plus tax and gratuity. Complimentary valet parking is included.

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Walt Disney World Resort – Merchandise

New! Cheer for Your Favorite Walt Disney World Attractions with “March Magic Online” Vote: Back by popular demand, the annual “March Magic” fan vote returns this month with 18 teams inspired by attractions from across all four parks at Walt Disney World Resort. Your votes are needed to determine who will be crowned the title of “Ultimate Disney Attraction. Voting will take place from March 14 to April 3 via the official Walt Disney World Facebook page. Guests will also find graphic T-shirts and posters featuring March Magic 2017 teams on DisneyStore.com from March 14 to April 4, 2017. This year, all items will be carried throughout the duration of the tournament.

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Closures and Refurbishments

Click here to view the latest renovations and closures at Walt Disney World Resort.

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About Siera Duiser

Hello, my name is Siera and I am a travel agent with Destinations to Explore. I have always loved to travel and have had the opportunity to travel to thirteen different countries so far. I have also been to many different parts of the United States. I love sharing about the places I have been and the places I would love to see as well as some tips and tricks I have learned along the way.