new fantasyland

Dumbo Moving to New Home in Storybook Circus

With the holiday rush officially over, it’s time for the Magic Kingdom to expand the walls for its New Fantasyland expansion and start the placemaking that will transform the area behind the castle into a forested wonderland. Part A of that plan is to dismantle… Read More »Dumbo Moving to New Home in Storybook Circus

New Dumbo Spinner Testing in Storybook Circus

Denise and Jeff from MouseSteps just posted some of the least scintillating video to ever get me excited about my next trip to the Magic Kingdom. The new Dumbo spinner entered the earliest phases of testing today (they only have four elephants mounted). The speeds… Read More »New Dumbo Spinner Testing in Storybook Circus

Magic Kingdom Update – New Fantasyland and more! (Part 2)

I was going to write a long introductory paragraph, link to part 1, and then maybe do a little song and dance number. But forget that. Let’s get right to part two of the Magic Kingdom Update from December 19, 2011.

On the left and top you can see the rock work is pretty much done. Wow, that’s certainly a lot of grey. I guess we’ll see how it looks up close when the walls come down.

A little closer look at the ongoing rock work. Beast’s castle sure looks good.

Lots of work on Gaston’s Village, but right on the other side of that wall is also a big pit for the Dwarfs Mine Train roller coaster. Watch out for that first step, it’s a doozy.

Read More »Magic Kingdom Update – New Fantasyland and more! (Part 2)

Magic Kingdom Update – New Fantasyland and more! (Part 1)

I love my walks through the Magic Kingdom. This last Sunday was extra nice. The winter holiday crowds were out in force, but that only makes people watching better. The weather was just on the chilly side of perfect, which suits me fine this time of year. And a lot of changes have transpired since last time we updated from the park. So many, that this is a two part update.

Let’s, as they say, get on with the show:

The Haunted Mansion merchandise cart is gone and walls are up. This is likely the start of the new landscaping and path to Fantasyland that will be built as part of the new restrooms at the old Skyway location.

Over at the old Skyway location, hard to tell if more work has been done. Doesn’t look like it. But it is the last Christmas these particular decorations will be hung. I wouldn’t mind having them for my home.

The full tarp is up around Prince Charming’s Regal Carrousel. Gives riders a new experience inside.

Read More »Magic Kingdom Update – New Fantasyland and more! (Part 1)

Walt Disney World Update – Part 2 of 3

Continuing our stroll through Walt Disney World… Part one had a bunch of Fantasyland Expansion photos, let’s start with a few more:

A lot of rock work is still underway, but those trees you see in the foreground are newly planted. They’ve also been doing some other landscaping, which is behind the wall, so you can’t see it. On the left you can see that more progress has been made on Belle’s cottage.

Here’s a shot showing how close the rock work and castle wall from Beast’s castle comes to the back of Gaston’s Tavern. Note the saddle roof design. Should be really beautiful when finished.

Click image for Larger. Here’s another view where the saddle roofs are more obvious.

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New Fantasyland Imagineer Shares Vision, Timeline Adjusts

Click to view larger size.

Disney has announced some slight updates to the schedule for the phased rollout of the new Fantasyland. The Storybook Circus area will still be the first to start opening up, but it too will open in phases. I also had the opportunity to interview the Imagineer Art Director for the Fantasyland Expansion about how the vision for the Fairytale Forest and StoryBook Circus areas are being realized.

First here is Disney’s recent release on Storybook Circus which will now start opening in phases beginning in early 2012.

Is Dumbo spinning in the wrong direction?

Actually, Dumbo is just reversing decades of flying in counter-clockwise circles. Call it “unwinding,” if you will. And in a new location within Magic Kingdom.

Guests will board Dumbo the Flying Elephant from the lovable critter’s left side — like mounting a horse … and unlike the way guests hop aboard for a whirl at Disney parks on three continents. It is scheduled to begin happening in early 2012 when select experiences in the Storybook Circus neighborhood of New Fantasyland debut just northeast of Mad Tea Party.

Also early 2012, the existing Dumbo attraction near Prince Charming Regal Carrousel will close, be refurbished and be moved to a location in Storybook Circus next to the new Dumbo attraction. The result when completed later in 2012: double Dumbos, one going this-a-way, one going that-a-way … a real circus act, if you will.

There also will be a “big top” that serves as a queue area for the popular attraction. It will feature a variety of interactive experiences currently being developed.

Two other Storybook Circus elements planned for opening early in the year are The Barnstormer and Fantasyland Station. Guests who enjoyed The Barnstormer at Goofy’s Wiseacre Farm will be happy to know the junior coaster thrills of that attraction are back with a thematic change: Goofy has sold the farm and is now a circus stunt pilot and magician, The Great Goofini. The completely re-imagined train station will serve as the gateway to Storybook Circus and all Fantasyland points beyond.

Below the jump is The Disney Blog’s interview with Imagineer Chris Beatty:

Read More »New Fantasyland Imagineer Shares Vision, Timeline Adjusts