Did you know we are just a few months away from a very big moment here in Orlando, Florida? On October, 1st 2021 prepare yourself for the world’s happiest celebration, Disney World’s 50th Anniversary, here at the Magic Kingdom and the rest of the Walt Disney World Resort. So this event is pretty far away why are we even talking about this so ridiculously early? That’s because first we love to plan in advance and second Disney doesn’t just simply celebrate a birthday, they have an all-out bash! And I will mention this is a big birthday it’s crazy to think that Disney World will soon have been open for fifty years. It’s the diamond anniversary which we saw beautifully celebrated several years ago at Disneyland.
So here is a look at what you need to know about planning a trip to Disney World in 2021 for Disney World’s 50th Anniversary.
When is Disney World’s 50th Anniversary?
The official birthday for the Magic Kingdom and Walt Disney World resort is October 1st, 2021. For this celebration, the whole event kicks off on the day of the anniversary. Beginning October 1, we welcome you to be immersed in a sparkling EARidescent experience like no other—The World’s Most Magical Celebration. Come celebrate the small stuff. The big stuff. And all the in-between stuff. Share the magical memories you helped create over the last 50 years. And kick off the next era where the best is yet to come.
The anniversary will be chronicling all the magic to be found during the 18-month-long event. So keep checking back here on the Disney Parks Blog for the latest updates on what promises to be something to remember for the next 50 years.
Disney World 50th Celebration Events
It looks like the offerings for this events are more minimal than normal. The festivities mostly are centered around lighting up each of the park icons.
Cinderella Castle Makeover
As part of the celebration, Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park will add to its royal makeover from last year. As you can see in this new artist rendering, the castle will feature golden bunting and a 50th-anniversary crest as part of its festive new look.
The castle will add even more magic at night, joined by icons at each of the other three theme parks as they transform into Beacons of Magic. Pixie dust on Cinderella Castle.
Nighttime Spectacular Disney Enchantment
A new nighttime spectacular, “Disney Enchantment,” will help kick off the 50th anniversary festivities when it debuts Oct. 1 at Magic Kingdom Park. Created to launch with “The World’s Most Magical Celebration,” this evening extravaganza will take guests on a journey filled with adventure, wonder, and empowerment. Inspiring everyone to believe in magic, “Disney Enchantment” will feature music, enhanced lighting, stunning fireworks, and, for the first time, immersive projection effects that extend from Cinderella Castle down Main Street, U.S.A.
Tree of Life Fireflies
At Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, a warm light will emanate from the Tree of Life as magical fireflies gather to usher in the magic of nature. Watch as magical fireflies inhabiting the Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park.
New daytime entertainment is stirring at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, as “Disney KiteTails” will come alive several times daily beginning Oct. 1 inside the Discovery River Amphitheater. Performers will fly windcatchers and kites of all shapes and sizes, while out on the water elaborate three-dimensional kites – some stretching to 30 feet long – will depict Disney animal friends, including Simba, Zazu, Baloo and King Louie. These colorful creations will dance through the sky to the beat of favorite Disney songs in an uplifting, vibrant experience for the whole family.
Tower of Terror Projection Show
Special new touches coming to life on the Hollywood Tower Hotel. The Hollywood Tower Hotel at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will be awash in a brilliance evoking the golden age of imagination and adventure.
Joining Magic Kingdom’s new firework show, Disney Enchantment, will be Harmonious at EPCOT, one of the largest nighttime spectaculars ever created for a Disney park. This new show will bring the globe together at World Showcase Lagoon in a celebration of Disney music that inspires people worldwide.
It’s a grand, powerful tribute to the unifying power of story and song, embracing new technical magic that incorporates pyrotechnics, fountains, lighting and media in new ways. “Harmonious” will feature new interpretations of classic Disney songs, reimagined in more than a dozen languages by a diverse group of 240 artists from around the world.
Spaceship Earth Lights
At EPCOT, new lights will shine across the reflective panels of Spaceship Earth, connecting to one another and resembling stars in a nighttime sky. This permanent new lighting will continue beyond “The World’s Most Magical Celebration” as a defining feature of the park.
New lights will shine across the reflective panels of Spaceship Earth, connecting to one another in a symbol of optimism resembling stars in a nighttime sky.
Grand Opening of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
The grand opening of Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure will be Oct. 1, inviting guests into the flavorful world of Disney and Pixar’s Academy Award®-winning “Ratatouille.” In this family-friendly attraction, guests will feel as if they shrink to the size of Chef Remy and scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant. They will discover Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure in a newly expanded area of the park’s France pavilion, where the real is made fantastic in a reimagining of Paris inspired by the film.
Also debuting Oct. 1 in this section of the pavilion will be a delicious new restaurant, La Crêperie de Paris, offering both table- and quick-service options. The menu will feature sweet crepes, savory buckwheat galettes (naturally gluten friendly) and authentic French hard cider. The attraction, restaurant, and pavilion expansion are all part of the historic transformation of EPCOT currently underway, bringing a breadth of new experiences to the park as a celebration of curiosity, discovery, and the magic of possibility.
Special Anniversary Character Outfits
Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy, Pluto and Chip ‘n’ Dale will also be dressed in sparkling new looks, custom-made for this special occasion. Highlights of these celebratory designs include beautifully embroidered impressions of Cinderella Castle backed by fireworks, as well as a brocade in multi-toned, EARidescent fabric – all punctuated with pops of gold.
You’ll also want to keep an eye out for Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse, who will have sparkling new looks for the celebration. As hosts of the event, they’ll be dressed for the occasion in custom-made fashions of EARidescent fabric with gold highlights.
Wearing new EARidescent nametags designed for the 50th anniversary, cast will demonstrate yet again why they are renowned for their commitment to service, consistently exceeding guests’ expectations by going above and beyond to make visits to The Most Magical Place on Earth special.
Golden ‘Disney Fab 50’ Sculptures
Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, Pluto and Chip ‘n’ Dale will be part of a new collection of special golden character sculptures debuting Oct. 1 across the four Walt Disney World theme parks. There will be 50 characters featured overall, and guests will be able to interact with the “Disney Fab 50” in surprising ways as part of the 50th anniversary celebration.
New Rumored Disney Attractions for the 50th Anniversary
Like all past major birthday milestones, Disney is planning on bringing in a whole lot of new for the resort’s 50th anniversary.
“It’s a Small World”
If you have been on the Small World attraction out in Disneyland you already know that our version here in Florida is well, lacking. We should expect to see some new yet familiar faces in “It’s a Small World” by 2021. Similar to Disneyland’s Version that opened back in 2009, Disney World will be adding in classic character dolls throughout the attraction. This means you should expect to see dolls like Cinderella, Peter Pan and more!
Wreck-it Ralph Attraction
Ever wonder just what is going to happen to the building that used to hold Stitch’s Great Escape? Well, fingers crossed that it’s better than Stitch! With the strong rumor of a Wreck it Ralph attraction by 2022 I have high hopes!
Carousel of Progress Updates
A World’s Fair Original this Disney World attraction is a classic that has been around forever. However, I will say this attraction is getting a little rusty to say the least. In this moving circular theater, you follow a family through a century 1900, 1920, 1940, and 1990. After riding this attraction just the other week I can say the final scene that is supposed to represent the future is sorely outdated. Virtual reality gaming is a here along with home automation (yes even that voice control smart stove). I certainly hope that the rumors stirring about, that they will update the final scene and take it into the 21st century, are true.
Yes, this is the same roller coaster that is loved out in Shanghai Disneyland. The completion date is unknown with construction delays from the pandemic. You can see so much of the progress being made on this ride, situated behind Space Mountain. If you are looking to check it out before it opens for the anniversary, then I recommend going for a spin on the People Mover and getting a look at how construction is progressing.
This park is getting a major makeover according to Disney. The whole front of the park is pretty much in the process of getting ripped out and redone. Gone is the Fountain of Nations from my childhood and they even bulldozed my morning stop of Starbucks. At least they have a temporary location that is right by Canada in the World Showcase.
Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind
Greeting Terrians! Zandarians are happy to be coming to Epcot to show us an out of this world adventure. But that sounds a little boring right? So enter Rocket to jazz things up a bit. This all-new attraction is being labeled as the largest indoor roller coaster ever! So thrill fans get ready for another big addition to the Disney ride lineup. The exterior of the building is currently finished and looms large and blue against the Florida sky.
As mention earlier Future World at Epcot is getting what feels like a complete redo. If you visit Epcot today the front of the park is basically in the process of being torn down in preparation to rebuild. Many temporary walkways and short cuts to the rest of the park are in place. The nice thing is Disney has transformed the Odyssey into a preview center complete with a live 3D model that turns into a continual show where you can catch a sneak peek of plans for the park.
Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
There is a new ride at Hollywood Studios! This park after years of construction is finally coming back to life. The action takes place at the El CapiTOON Theater, where Mickey and Minnie are premiering their newest short, “Perfect Picnic.” Before you enter the cinema, you’ll experience a special exhibit created by the Toontown Hysterical Society featuring costumes and props from the toon world.
Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway puts you inside the wacky and unpredictable world of Disney Channel’s Emmy® Award-winning “Mickey Mouse” cartoon shorts! Once you step into the cartoon world of Mickey and Minnie, you’ll board a train with Goofy as the engineer. Then, one magical moment after the next leads you to a zany, out-of-control adventure filled with surprising twists and turns. Disney cast members are currently being trained to operate the ride!
Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser
This all-new hotel at Walt Disney World Resort will be a new, first-of-its-kind vacation experience aboard a glamorous starship called the Halcyon. Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will offer a two-night itinerary where all guests arrive and depart together, similar to the Disney Cruise Line. Unlike any typical cruise, though, you can become the heroes of your own Star Wars story in a new type of immersive experience that only Disney could create.
Will you be visiting for Disney World’s diamond anniversary in 2021? Let us know in the comment section below if you will be here and what you are looking forward to most.
I have been visiting the parks annually since my parents first brought me at just a year old. Recently I was able to fulfill my life long dream of being a Florida local and moved from the wintery Northeast to the sunshine and fun of central Florida. Now I am hoping to share my Disney knowledge with you so you can have the best vacation possible!