Disney parks at the forefront after Iger's return
It’s been six months since Bob Iger canceled his retirement and stepped back into the top role at Disney to right a number of perceived wrongs under his handpicked successor, with one hovering right near the top: reconnecting with the Disney theme park die-hards and restoring their faith in the brand.
TELL US: Will the increase in Disney World ticket prices prevent you from visiting?
Walt Disney World will cost you more in 2023. Prices on most tickets, including single-day, multi-day and annual passes will go up on December 8. The company had just hiked up ticket prices in February. This is the second time in a calendar year that going to Disney parks cost you more.
With new owners, Florida Project motel dwellers must leave
Residents at a motel along a tourist strip not far from Walt Disney World that was used as the setting for the 2017 film “The Florida Project” were told that they must vacate on short-notice because the complex has been sold to another owner.
4 springtime activities we love at Walt Disney World
The resort is currently celebrating its 50th anniversary celebration, and now is the perfect time to celebrate the season and upcoming Easter holiday. If you plan on visiting, we have uncovered a number of fun activities for families to experience while out exploring the theme parks and nearby resort hotels.
Walt Disney World begins testing facial recognition technology
All rights reserved)FILE - In this Jan. 9, 2019, file photo, guests watch a show near a statue of Walt Disney and Micky Mouse in front of the Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. The Walt Disney Co.'s net income fell sharply in its most-recent quarter, as the coronavirus pandemic still weighs heavily on many of its businesses, from theme parks to movies, the company announced Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)ORLANDO, Fla. – Walt Disney World is now testing a new facial recognition technology at its Magic Kingdom theme park. The park rolled out it’s test-system Tuesday at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in Florida. “At Walt Disney World Resort, we’re always looking for innovative and convenient ways to improve our Guests’ experience - especially as we navigate the impact of COVID-19,” leaders said on its website.
Man charged with spitting at Disney guard who asked for mask
ORLANDO, Fla. – A Florida man spat on a security officer at Walt Disney World after she asked him to put on a mask, according to an arrest report released Monday. McKin was outside Disney’s Contemporary Resort when Disney World security officer Kristen Goldstein asked him to put on a mask while he was at the property. McKin told her he would once he was inside the building. The security officer wasn’t directly hit, but some saliva did get on her forehead, the report said. McKin was told not to return to Disney World.
Orlando launches first tourism ad campaign since pandemic
The $2.2 million advertising campaign launched this month is targeted for spring and summer travel to potential visitors living in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas. The campaign, called “The Wonder Remains," includes TV ads, YouTube videos, digital ads, social media ads, e-newsletters and website content. Along with highlighting Orlando's theme parks and restaurants, the campaign emphasizes the safety measures that have been taken at its tourist attractions to protect tourists from the new coronavirus. “I believe this campaign will reach individuals who are prepared to travel to a well-prepared destination for much needed recreation." Before the start of the pandemic almost a year ago, Orlando was the most visited tourist destination in the U.S., attracting 75 million visitors in 2018.
Disney 1Q profit falls but beats expectations due to Disney+
FILE - In this Jan. 9, 2019, file photo, guests watch a show near a statue of Walt Disney and Micky Mouse in front of the Cinderella Castle at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. But the results Thursday surpassed Wall Street's expectations thanks to subscribers flocking to Disney+ and other of the entertainment giant's streaming services. Disney+ subscribers totaled 94.9 million at the end of the quarter, more than double the subscriber base a year ago, when the service had been operating for only about two months. For Disney's fiscal first quarter, net income totaled $17 million, or 1 cent per share, compared with $2.1 billion or $1.16 cents per share a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, net income totaled 32 cents per share, compared with $1.53 per share in the prior-year quarter.
Disney requires all parkgoers to wear masks, even if they’re vaccinated for COVID-19
Guests wear masks as required to attend the official reopening day of the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on July 11, 2020. ORLANDO, Fla. – More and more people are getting vaccinated in the fight against the coronavirus but that doesn’t mean Disney World is rolling back any of its COVID-19 safety requirements, WKMG-TV in Orlando reported. “Face coverings are required for all Guests (ages 2 and up) and Cast Members, including those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine. Please bring your own face coverings and wear them at all times, except when dining or swimming. However, face coverings will not be permitted while experiencing water slides or in the water.
Disneyland ending annual pass program with parks closed
Disney officials said in a statement that extra hand sanitizers were being placed throughout its four parks and more than two dozen hotels. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)ORLANDO, Fla. – Looking to buy an annual pass at Disneyland Resort? The California theme park resort said last week that it's ending its passholder program. Disney officials would not say how many people hold these passes or how much the move will cost the company, adding it would begin issuing pro-rated refunds to eligible passholders. The Florida resort implemented a moratorium on new annual passes last summer, though it will honor those from existing passholders.
Walt Disney World offering 4-day Florida resident ticket deal for $50 per day
Florida residents can now purchase the discover Disney ticket for just $199, plus tax. “The Florida Resident Discover Disney Ticket is a great way to experience the fun and excitement happening across the Walt Disney World parks in early 2021,″ officials said on Disney’s blog. Here is a breakdown of the Florida resident discover Disney ticket offer:2-Day Ticket: $75 per day, $149 per ticket: Ticket valid Jan. 4 through March 11, 2021; subject to the following blackout dates: Jan. 16-18 and Feb. 13-153-Day Ticket: $60 per day, $179 per ticket: Ticket valid Jan. 4 through June 18; subject to the following blackout dates: Jan. 16-18, Feb. 13-15, March 26 - April 11 and May 28-31. 4-Day Ticket: $50 per day, $199 per ticket: Ticket valid Jan. 4 through June 18; subject to the following blackout dates: Jan. 16-18, Feb. 13-15, March 26 - April 11 and May 28-31. Click here to learn more about the discover Disney ticket.
Disney donates wishing well coins to homeless charity
ORLANDO, Fla. – Some $20,000 in coins that tourists tossed into Walt Disney World’s wishing wells and fountains became a Thanksgiving gift for central Florida’s largest homeless shelter. Disney periodically collects, cleans and sorts the coins before donating the total to a Central Florida charity, the newspaper reported. With the region’s homeless population rising, the company decided to give the money to the Coalition for the Homeless, Walt Disney World’s director of external affairs Tajiana Ancora-Brown told the newspaper. In addition, Disney’s chefs cooked up a Thanksgiving feast for 650 coalition residents and other homeless guests. For James O’Donnell, executive chef of Disney’s Hollywood Studios — and the lead chef for the Thanksgiving feast — the effort is a first.
Disney Magic Flex Ticket! | River City Live
Want to experience the magic of Walt Disney World? As a Florida resident, you can get the 4-day Disney Magic Flex Ticket for just $49 per day (plus tax). You can enjoy three or four days at one Walt Disney World theme park per day! You can find out more at https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/special-offers/florida-resident-disney-magic-flex/.
New pink slips bring Disney layoff sum in Florida to 18,000
Disney World said in a letter to state and local leaders Thursday that the 11,350 union workers — mostly part-timers — will be laid off at the end of the year. Company officials previously had said that another 6,400 nonunion Disney employees in Florida would lose their jobs. Disney’s parks closed last spring as the coronavirus began spreading in the U.S. The Florida parks reopened this summer with restrictions on how many people could be in the parks at any given time and new requirements for social distancing and mask-wearing. As of Friday, almost 4,200 Disney World workers had agreed to the job transfers, and almost 1,000 workers had decided to accept a layoff or they hadn't yet agreed to be transferred, said Eric Clinton, president of Unite Here!
The Latest: Kentucky sees near-record number of new cases
(AP Photo/Michael Probst)FRANKFORT, Ky. -- Kentucky reported a near-record number of new coronavirus cases Friday as the surging outbreak continued sending more people to hospitals, Gov. Total statewide COVID-19 cases surpassed 105,000, and the virus-related death toll reached at least 1,476. The new virus cases brought the number of cases statewide to 13,520, according to the Department of Health. The announcement comes as Kenya’s government says a second surge in coronavirus cases has begun in East Africa’s economic hub. The Czech Republic has 310,068 total confirmed cases, with 161,050 cases in the last two weeks.
Disney World lays off 720 performers because of pandemic
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – With many of its live entertainment shows gone dark because of the coronavirus, Walt Disney World on Wednesday laid off 720 actors and singers, according Actors' Equity Association, the labor union representing the performers. “Our hearts go out to all the cast members at Walt Disney World,” said Kate Shindle, president of Actors’ Equity Association. “Disney has made it clear that our members would face work reductions since they announced layoffs of nearly 28,000 employees. Meanwhile, about a dozen city employees in Fort Lauderdale have tested positive for the coronavirus and nearly 30 others are quarantining, officials said. In Fort Lauderdale, City Manager Chris Lagerbloom is among a dozen city employees to test positive for the coronavirus, the South Florida SunSentinel reported.
It’s a boy -- a big boy. White rhino born at Disney World
A 150-pound (68-kilogram) white rhinoceros was born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park at Walt Disney World in Florida over the weekend. The as-yet-named rhino was born to Kendi, who was the first white rhinoceros born at the animal theme park back in 1999. White rhinos are the second-largest land mammal and are an endangered species with a near-threatened status. Disney says it was the 11th white rhino born at Disney World, and two more are on the way. The theme park resort’s animal care team is keeping a watch on two other rhinos expected to give birth next year.
8,800 part-time workers in Florida part of Disney layoffs
ORLANDO, Fla. – About 8,800 part-time union workers at Walt Disney World in Florida will be part of the 28,000 layoffs in Disney's parks division in California and Florida, union officials said Wednesday. The addition of the union workers to nearly 6,500 nonunion layoffs already announced brings the Disney-related job losses in Florida to more than 15,000 workers. Two-thirds of the planned layoffs involved part-time workers and they ranged from salaried employees to hourly workers. The Florida parks reopened this summer, but the California parks have yet to reopen as the company awaits guidance from the state of California. The layoffs of the part-time union workers were announced by the Service Trades Council Union, a coalition of six unions that represents 43,000 workers at Disney World.
Disney to lay off 28,000 at its parks in California, Florida
FILE - In this March 16, 2020, file photo, the entrance to the parking lot at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World is closed in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Squeezed by limits on attendance at its theme parks and other restrictions due to the pandemic, The Walt Disney Co. said Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, it planned to lay off 28,000 workers in its parks division in California and Florida. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)
Gov. DeSantis, Orlando theme park leaders urge visitors to come back
Ron DeSantis on Wednesday praised the response of Orlando-area theme parks to the COVID-19 pandemic as park leaders urged patrons to return. During a round table event at Universal Studios, DeSantis said Central Florida was one of the hardest-hit areas in the state in terms of economic impact due to coronavirus shutdowns. Between March 1 and June 30, people visiting Central Florida decreased by 67% compared to the same period last year, DeSantis said, and hotel room demand in Central Florida decreased between March 1 and June 30 year-over-year by 75%. The major Central Florida theme parks, which each employ thousands of people, were forced to shut down in March at the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak and have slowly reopened in recent months. So were hoping if we can increase visitation increase our hours, increase capacity, we can bring those people back and get them working again, Sprouls said.
What’s that delicious juice concoction Walt Disney World serves?
Stitch juice, jungle juice, POG juice -- the names go on and on. Rumor has it, there is a popcorn stand in Animal Kingdom called Mahindi that even serves up a Jungle Juice Slushy. Combine 21 ounces passion fruit juice, 21 ounces guava juice and 14 ounces orange juice (pulp-free). If following a recipe isn’t your forte, Welch’s Guava Pineapple juice is the closest thing to POG juice in a carton. Whether you make it, buy it, or order it, be sure to have yourself a glass of POG juice the next time you sit down for breakfast.