During the D23 Expo Disney fan event, the A Boundless Future: Disney Parks, Experiences and Products presentation gave us a look into what’s to come for favorite Disney Destinations. We’re taking a look at some of the most impactful announcements for Disney Vacation Club Members. There’s a lot to look forward to and plan into your next trips! I’m sure many Members were hoping to get some Disney Vacation Club specific updates but unfortunately we didn’t hear anything about the Disneyland DVC tower or other pending projects. Rides, fireworks, lands, characters and magic at sea? There was plenty of that. Let’s jump in.
D23 Expo Disney Parks Announcements
Happily Ever After Returns in 2023! Josh D’Amaro, Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, started the presentation with a firework of a performance: Jordan Fisher singing the beloved Happily Ever After theme song to share the exciting news that the nighttime spectacular will return. The 50th anniversary celebration of Walt Disney World concludes March 2023. We can probably expect Enchantment to retire at that point and for Happily Ever After to debut in April.
With so much love for the Mandolorian show, Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland is getting some new characters. Guests will be able to see Mando and Grogu starting mid November.
Kevin Feige, Chief Creative Officer of Marvel Comics, Marvel Television, and Marvel Animation, came to share some Marvel magic. Mark Ruffalo also came in via video to suggest a little green needed to be added to the Avenger’s area. And so, the much talked about exoskeletons will debut at Disneyland with Hulk in Avengers attire for a limited time starting next week.
A third attraction is coming to Avengers Campus. A new version of Thanos, who won, will be featured in a new Multiverse attraction.
Pacific Wharf in Disneyland California will be reimagined into San Fransokyo from Big Hero 6 including shopping, dining and a Baymax meet and greet.
Paradise Pier Hotel will be renamed and refurbished into Pixar Place Hotel featuring beloved characters and art.
New shopping and dining options will be coming to Downtown Disney including Din Tai Fung, Porto’s Bakery & Cafe.
runDisney races will Return to Disneyland in 2024.
El Capitoon theater will include a celebration of all things Mickey from different generations. Runaway Railway will be slightly different at Disneyland so that it fits into Toontown. Guests can enjoy this attraction in early 2023.
Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, the attraction replacing Splash Mountain on both coasts, will debut at Disneyland and Walt Disney World in late 2024. The story takes place after the animated film where Tiana has become a business owner and community leader. ‘We want this attraction to be a love letter to New Orleans,’ an Imagineer shared. Several of the film’s voice actors will lend their talent to the attraction in including Price Naveen, Louis, Mama Odie and Tiana. In research, Imagineers spent time with the daughter of the chef who is the inspiration for Tiana.
Walt Disney World Announcements
A new nighttime show for Epcot is debuting during the later part of 2023! That makes Harmonious limited time magic so see it before it’s gone.
Journey of Water and the rest of the front of Epcot will be open late 2023.
Figment, the fan favorite purple dragon, will return to meet guests in the park in 2023 also.
Hatbox Ghost is coming to Walt Disney World’s Haunted Mansion attraction in 2023.
Also at Magic Kingdom, Tron / Lightcycle Run is opening in Spring of 2023.
Chris Beatty and Jennifer Lee came on stage to talk about Imagineering and Animation going through the blue sky dreaming process and working together. We then got a peek at concept art for an incredible Animal Kingdom expansion potentially coming to Dinoland including Zootopia and a Moana water ride.
Then it was on to new frontiers and what could be beyond Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. A Coco Dia de los Muertos celebration and an attraction where guests ride on an alebrije. Also shared, vague ideas about Encanto’s casita and discovering your own magical gift. Then, an area overrun by villains was talked about. Early concept art was shared for this imaginative Magic Kingdom expansion but not much else.
Disney Cruise Line Announcements
The next ship, called Disney Treasure, will be sailing in 2024. The Disney Treasure is focused on adventure with an atrium that looks like a gilded palace with influence from Asia, Africa and Agrabah.
The Disney Wonder will head to Australia and New Zealand starting in late 2023. Disney Cruise Line will feature destinations like Fiji and Samoa.
The Disney private island, Lighthouse Point, is coming along and will use 90% solar energy. Bahamian culture will inspire design and offerings on the island.
Disney 100 Years of Wonder
Disney 100 Years of Wonder is the official theme of the centenary celebration of the company. Josh D’Amaro announced Disneyland will be the heart of the celebration with two new nighttime spectaculars launching in January of 2023. A fireworks show at Disneyland, Wondrous Journeys, will include all 60 Walt Disney Animation Studios films. World of Color – One will also debut at Disney California Adventure for the celebration.
Also Magic Happens parade will return in the spring of 2023!
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