How should Walt Disney World celebrate it’s 40th Anniversary?

Now that the 2010 promotion for Disneyland and Walt Disney World has been revealed with a bit of a huh? I think it’s time to look forward to 2011 and Walt Disney World’s 40th Anniversary.

In 2011 the Fantasyland Princess expansion will still be under construction and Star Tours II will be in a different park, so what ever Disney does at the Magic Kingdom will have to be spectacular enough to draw guests on its own.

I was at Disneyland all summer for its 40 Years Of Adventure promotion. They had opened the Indiana Jones Adventure and designed the whole concept around that theme. They had The Lion King Celebration parade (my favorite parade of all time). And the released a new Disneyland park map. That may not seem like much to you, but it was a big deal at the time as it had been years since Disneyland sold a park map. Then there was the 40 days of summer where the park gave away a trading card every day for 40 days in a row. That was absolutely crazy trying to get to the park on nights when it closed at 6pm.

Walt Disney World is at a different place in its evolution than Disneyland was at its 40th. It got a head start using lessons learned at Disneyland. WDW also has a different target market. They need to attract families who want to stay for 4-7 nights, preferably on property.

What would you like to see at the Magic Kingdom as it celebrates its 40th year? What would make you bring your family to the MK for it’s 40th Anniversary?

My wishes are for two new parades, and I mean new. Don’t recycle existing ones. Spectromagic can go visit some other Disney park, the Magic Kingdom should get a new parade that uses modern technology to really wow. Leave out the show stops though, can you say Light Magic? I think the Day parade should be a highlights parade bringing back some of the more memorable moments from Florida and the park’s past.

I would also like to see Disney reach out to the Florida community in a way that lets everyone know we’re in this boat together. Other than that it needs a snappy name and a catchy tune that we all leave the park humming.

Put on your thinking cap and post your ideas below.

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11 Responses to How should Walt Disney World celebrate it’s 40th Anniversary?

  1. Sara says:

    If that community service thing is the “promotion” for all of 2010 I’m going to be pretty mad. This year they did buy-4-get-3 and then free dining for the whole end of the year. I expected something similarly good next year since the economy is still down. I’m planning a trip for March or April and was waiting to find out what kind of deal they would offer. If that’s all they’ve got, I might just have to cancel my plans.

  2. Rich Koster says:

    In honor of all the Fantasyland construction walls at Magic Kingdom, 2011’s theme should be “WALLy World” ;-)

  3. John Frost says:

    I think you’re confusing promotion with discounts. They’re usually not related. That said, I’m pretty sure Disney World will have to continue their discount offerings until the economy recovers. They’ve pretty much said as much in their quarterly conference calls.

  4. Maria says:

    New parades! Parade at Epcot featuring all the countries. Illuminations could be changed.
    free dining plan, buy 4 get 3 nights free. Maybe a parade with all the past,and new characters from cartoons to movies. Like The jungle book,3 little pigs,dumbo,lion king, the sword and the stone, steamboat mickey etc.. They need to celebrate the 40th anniversay with a BIG BANG!! something magical, SPECTACULAR. and CHEAP so that people can come and enjoy at reasoable rates!! Can’t wait to go I’m sure to be there!! by the way 2011 is also my husband 40th B-day so we will celebrate his b-day there too.

  5. Disneyland and Disney World just announced their 2010 promotion – http://is.gd/3PsN6 – Now let's look forward to WDW's 40th in 2011. Ideas?

  6. John Frost says:

    I do think that affordability should be a key part of their marketing for the 40th. Perhaps they could make a big deal about making it a 40 dollar admission (minimum 5 day ticket).

  7. Chris Wade says:

    All Disney theme parks should get to celebrate! Rally they did it for Disneyland’s 50th, why not Disney World’s 40th?

  8. Mike says:

    I agree with the first comment by sara, because even though it is wonderful that disney wants there guest to give back to the community they should definetly be focusing on celebrating disneyland’s 55th anniversary! As for WDW 40th birthday bash I think they should find a really cool way to decorate all the parks like they kinda did for the 25th anniversary, there should be 4 new parades so they can have one for each park and there should also be a new castle stage show that brings back the kids of the kingdom or just one with all characters like Cinderella’s Surprise Celebration! But do you guys think we will even have a 40th anniversary? Think about it, WDW hasn’t had a anniversary celebration for WDW since 1996 for the 25th anniversary! Hopefully Team Disney Orlando will give us one after 14 years of waiting so patiently!

  9. (Note: This comment is written on my Wii.) The way I see it, since the Magic Kingdom first opened its gates on the 1st of October and Halloween is on the last day of that month, I think WDW should theme its 40th Anniversary around Halloween! It would be WDW’s first Halloween season celebrated resort-wide instead of just in the Magic Kingdom like they usually do. They need to do Halloween differently in the other three parks to keep “Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party” in the Magic Kingdom unique only to that park. Here are my suggestions: Disney’s Hollywood Studios could borrow Tokyo DisneySea’s Masquerade event, even going as far as to adapt the “Mysterious Masquerade” show for the stage usually showing the “Beauty and the Beast” stage show; Epcot could use the “Candy Corn Acres” theme at Disney’s California Adventure while each of the country pavilions would showcase its Halloween tradition; as for Disney’s Animal Kingdom, the normally human cast members could dress up as animals (hey, it’s the best I could do with limited resorces). Since it’s themed around Halloween, the anniversary doesn’t have to last all year long. It would only be for the month of October, but it would definately be lots of fun. After all, who doesn’t like Halloween?

  10. John Frost says:

    Hey. I really like this idea and Halloween is my least favorite Holiday… how about extend the holiday concept to include other holidays throughout the year.

  11. Rick says:

    I agree with Mike. A new parade for each park. Some new live shows on and off throughout the day and nite at all the parks. Also, bring all the characters out for meet and greet. Some of them have been in mothballs for years.

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