Make sure that you listen to me on News 95.5 WDBO on Orlando’s Evening News with Tony Marino at 6:30pm EDT to hear all of this information and more to help you plan your weekend as you are On the Go in the Parks!!!
The theme parks of Central Florida are really starting to come to life, and are about to kick into high gear as summer is here!
On the Go in the Parks: May 29-31, 2020
What’s New This Weekend On the Go in the Parks
The First Disney Operated locations opened at Disney Springs this week, which was really cool because it was great to get a look at how the virtual queue works!
Disney Springs is utilizing this system at both World of Disney and the Marketplace Co-Op, and to enter these shopping locations when it is busy you needed to join a virtual queue.
To join the virtual queue find the Cast Member managing the queue near the entrance to the location, give them your cell phone number, and they will send you a text when it is your time to shop.
It’s super simple!!!
The third location that opened was D-Luxe Burger for mobile orders. YUM!!!!
Fun to Experience as You’re On the Go in the Parks
It’s really great to have Disney Springs open again for guests, and it keeps getting better because now you can find Stormtroopers about the AMC theater entrance near Splitsville and in the Town Center above Ever After Jewelry Co. & Accessories.
If you are going to make your way to Disney Springs, make sure that you:
The LEGOLAND Florida Resort will initially open with adjusted operating hours daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the LEGOLAND Waterpark will be open daily from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The LEGOLAND Florida Resort’s extensive plan of enhanced health and safety measures have been endorsed by the Polk County Commission and Winter Haven Mayor Bradley T. Dantzler and now fully comply with Governor DeSantis’ Executive Order 2020-123.
Leadership at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex announced that the visitor complex will reopen to guests effective Thursday, May, 28, 2020 with reduced admission, attendance limits, and some attractions unavailable.
During the initial reopening phase, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will begin new measures and procedures in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendations.
To reinforce guests’ health and safety:
A limited number of attractions and services will be available during this initial, reopening phase.
All guests will undergo a temperature screening upon arrival.
The Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour will not be available due to social distancing guidelines.
Face coverings will be required for employees and guests. Face coverings will be available for purchase at the front entrance.
New physical-distancing measures will be in place.
All guests are required to have a timed ticket, including annual passholders.
Advance ticket purchases are strongly encouraged to ensure entry due to limited capacity.
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will continue the comprehensive and extensive availability of hand sanitizer throughout the park, as well as the increased routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces in the workplace and at workstations, countertops, doorknobs, and ticket counters.
These precautions are temporary and are subject to change at any time based on the recommendations of the CDC, State of Florida, and Brevard County. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex management continues to work closely with local, state, and federal experts to ensure that we are up to date on the situation as it evolves.
Guests will also be able to purchase a space expert-led walking tour through Heroes & Legends featuring the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, the Rocket Garden, Nature and Technology, Journey to Mars: Explorers Wanted, NASA Now, Space Shuttle Atlantis®, Astronaut Training Experience®. This tour, which will be limited to small groups, costs $49.99 and includes admission and a boxed lunch.
During the initial reopening, a limited-time “Explore Today, Explore Tomorrow” package, which will include daily admission, parking and a complimentary ticket to return to the visitor complex in 2021, will be $29.99 for adults and $24.99 for children.
The operating hours will be 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Leadership will continue to assess the situation and make adjustments to the availability of exhibits, tours, and experiences as deemed safe and appropriate. To help protect against the spread of COVID-19 and help ensure guest and employee safety, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex has taken and will continue to take action to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus based on the guidance of the CDC. An inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present.
As part of the reopening, SEA LIFE Orlando and Madame Tussauds Orlando will honor the tireless work of local medical professionals by providing complimentary tickets to healthcare heroes.
For every guest who shares a photo of their visit and tags the attraction in a social media post during their visit, SEA LIFE Orlando and Madame Tussauds Orlando will donate one ticket to a local healthcare worker from a health care partner to be announced soon.
Saturday: 2pm – 10pm
The times for operation vary per day, so make sure to check out their website before you go!
14501 S Orange Blossom Trail, Orlando, FL 32837
Just make sure you stay on the lookout for their Social Distancing Skunk Ape!!!
Fun Spot Orlando
5700 Fun Spot Way, Orlando FL 32819
Friday: 2pm – 10pm
Saturday and Beyond: Noon – 10pm
Officials said masks are not required but encouraged.
Saturday thru Monday: 10am – 5pm
Fun to Experience as You’re On the Go in the Parks
It was really great to have a portion of the Walt Disney World Resort open again for guests, and even better that I had the opportunity to visit!!!
If you are going to make your way to Disney Springs, make sure that you bring your mask, make any dining reservations you would like in advance online, and take the time to be patient as Cast Members are still getting used to new cleaning procedures.
The 27th Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival will bloom at the Walt Disney World Resort filling the park with the sights, sounds, and flavors of Spring daily from March 4 until June 1, 2020.
Imagination blooms around every corner during the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival as breathtaking flower beds, plots of plant life, and wildlife habitats can be found in every area of the park.
Bamboo Garden – As a member of the grass family, bamboo can be found at the China Pavilion in many colors, patterns and sizes.
Bold Bromeliads – Located at the Mexico Pavilion
Bonsai Collection – Take a trip to the Japan Pavilion and discover the ancient art of bonsai with some of the finest living sculptures created by bonsai masters, who carefully shape and tend these miniature works of art—creating peace and balance with the earth.
Chinese Zodiac Natural Sculptures – Located at the China Pavilion
English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings of London – Discover the history and art of tea blending at this elegant English Tea Garden at the United Kingdom Pavilion, featuring plants important to some of Twinings finest tea blends.
Festival Blooms – Located at Future World, this display boasts thousands of flowers form colorful, living panoramas overlooking Future World’s East and West lakes.
Floating Mini-Gardens – Peer upon more than 100 petite plots drifting on the ponds that border the walkway between Future World and the World Showcase.
Garden Italiano – From fresh spaghetti sauce to your favorite pizza topping, this Tuscan kitchen garden at the Italy Pavilion features all the produce and herbs needed to create a classic Italian feast.
Health Full Trail Presented by AdventHealth – Delight in a whimsical area along Imagination Walkway for kids, made to inspire youthful energy and creativity. Your whole family can learn fun and interactive ways to stay healthy at a brand-new playground and outdoor kitchen.
The Honey Bee-Stro – Learn about the importance of honeybees in this immersive garden. You can also enjoy some food options, made possible by their hard work, from the adjoining outdoor kitchen. Find it near Imagination! Pavilion.
Kokedama Garden – Admire fresh expressions of an ancient Japanese art. The Kokedama Garden features skilled bonsai creations.
Growing the Future Presented by Murata – Explore how cutting-edge technology paired with agricultural science can transform the way we feed the world. Discover the possibilities with our friends at Science from Scientists and engage in fun, fascinating, hands-on experiments—opening April 7, 2020.
Shakespeare Garden – Thou shalt adore matching up famous quotes to flowers found within this vibrant garden at the United Kingdom Pavilion. William Shakespeare often used flowers and exotic gardens to help set the scenes for his plays and employed them as symbols and metaphors.
The Goodness Garden Butterfly House Presented by GoGo squeeZ – Visit this foliage-filled exhibit at Future World West to view a kaleidoscope of butterflies and observe several species up close, learning about their life cycles and maybe even witnessing them emerging from chrysalises.
Plant a Garden Perfect for Pollinators – Stop by this display near the Butterfly House and take garden-ready ideas home with you, along with garden crafts and sustainable best practices.
Tropical Rainforest Garden – Visit the Mexico Pavilion and learn how Mexico rainforests are rich with plants and animals that have adapted to a wide variety of light levels and water conditions.
Urban Spice – At the Morocco Pavilion, learn how in many eastern cultures, ancient spices were considered more valuable than gold. Even today, many cultures are defined by their signature spices and herb blends, created from plant leaves, stems, roots, seeds and flowers.
Topiaries with character
The topiaries are the highlight of every Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, and this year 70 hand-crafted topiaries have been created by Disney’s talented team horticulturists.
While there are many returning favorites, there are a few new additions you won’t want to miss!
Here is where you will find the topiaries during the Festival:
Anna and Elsa from Frozen – Located at the Norway Pavilion
Bambi & Friends(Featuring Flower, Bambi and Thumper) – Located in Future World East just outside of the new Mousegear
Beauty and the Beast Located at the France Pavilion
Bo Peep and Her Sheep with Woody – Located at Future World East
Bold Bromeliads – Located near The Land at Future World East
Bromeliad Dragon – Located at the Japan Pavilion
Buzz Lightyear – Located near Mission: SPACE at Future World East
Captain Hook and Peter Pan – Located at the United Kingdom Pavilion
Construction Mickey and Minnie with Goofy, Pluto and Chip ‘n’ Dale – Located between Future World and World Showcase
Donald and Daisy with Huey, Dewey and Louie – Located near Showcase Plaza
Fantasia – Sorcerer Mickey, Brooms, Ostriches and Hippo – Located near Imagination at Future World West
Lady and the Tramp – Located at the Italy Pavilion (their new location on the water is my favorite)
Miss Piggy and Kermit the Frog – Located between the United Kingdom and Canada Pavilions at the France Pavilions
Pandas – Located at the China Pavilion
Pluto and Goofy – Located between Future World and World Showcase
Remy (NEW!) – Located at the France Pavilion
Simba and Friends(Featuring Rafiki, Simba, Mufasa and Sarabi) – Located between The Outpost Shop and the Germany Pavilion
Snow White and Dopey – Located at the Germany Pavilion
Tinker Bell and Fairy Houses – Located at the United Kingdom Pavilion
The Three Caballeros(Featuring Jose, Donald and Panchito) – Located at the Mexico Pavilion
Topiary Butterflies – Located at Future World West
Topiary Flowers – Located near the Main Entrance
Winnie-the-Pooh & Friends – Located at the United Kingdom Pavilion
Interactive Play Scapes
Families can take a step off the Festival path to experience two play gardens filled with hands-on activities and interactive playscapes.
At Bo Peep’s Playtime Training Grounds, located near Test Track, little ones of all ages can enjoy a playful playground and garden inspired by Bo Peep and the rest of your Toy Story pals.
The Play Full Garden, located on the Imagination Walkway, will inspire the entire family to gather for interactive activities that focus on nutrition and wellness.
Family Scavenger Hunts
Gardeners of all ages are invited to participate in Spike’s Pollen Nation Exploration, a springtime scavenger hunt starring Spike the bzzzz-iest honey bee at the Walt Disney World Resort.
Once you have your Spike’s Pollen Nation Exploration map, available for purchase at the Port of Entry for $6.99 plus tax, search for Spike’s best blooms across Epcot’s World Showcase, and once you’ve completed the hunt return the completed map to the Port of Entry store for a special surprise.
Also for a limited time, March 27 to April 12 or while supplies last, Epcot becomes the ‘Hop-piest Place on Earth’ with an Egg-stravaganza Scavenger Hunt around World Showcase in search of Disney character-themed eggs.
Annual Passholders can receive a discount on the purchase of both Spike’s Pollen Nation Exploration and the Egg-stravaganza Scavenger Hunts! Just make sure to show your Annual Pass with ID.
As festival-goers take in all the floral wonders of the Festival, they can also find culinary delights at over a dozen Outdoor Kitchens around Epcot’s World Showcase.
The Outdoor Kitchens open at 11am, and just outside of each location a garden offers inspiration for learning to grow healthy ingredients.
A complete list of Outdoor Kitchens and menus can be found here.
Garden Rocks Concert Series
The popular Garden Rocks Concert Series will rock every evening of the Festival with three performances by chart-topping artists on the America Gardens Theatre stage.
It is such a great way to kick off your evening in the park or wrap up a fantastic day!
Additionally, guests can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner at 15 popular Epcot restaurants with guaranteed seating for a nightly concert with a Garden Rocks Dining Package. Dining packages can be booked by calling (407) WDW-DINE.
You can find the entire Garden Rocks Concert Series and more information on the dining packages here.
Festival Exclusive Guided Tours
Guided tours are available for gardeners of all skill levels who are interested in learning more about nature’s magic exclusively during the Festival.
The Royal Tea Garden Tour, presented by Twinings, takes place each festival morning at the United Kingdom Pavilion and guides guests through the tranquil tea garden to learn the history and artistry behind growing and blending tea.
The Gardens of the World tour, offered on select days, lets guests join a Disney horticulturist for a three-hour walking tour to explore the festival gardens and topiaries discovering new plant materials and gardening techniques to use in their home gardens.
Epcot admission and a fee are required to join these tours. To make a reservation, call (407) WDW-TOUR.
The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, including all gardens and exhibits, is included in regular Epcot admission.