MickeyBlog News for April 5, 2021
MagicMobile has arrived at the parks, police have arrested an idiot, and a beloved attraction has gotten delayed again.
Let’s spend our Easter together thinking about Disney in this week’s MickeyBlog News!
MagicMobile Is Live
Walt Disney World has entered the modern era this week, as MagicBands appear on the way out.
Okay, I may be getting ahead of myself, but Walt Disney World has definitely provided park guests with a Plan B.
As of this week, visitors may use MagicMobile to enter the parks. This new system works on your phone via My Disney Experience.
When you access the app, you’ll press the three bars on the lower right-hand side of the home page.
On the next page, you’ll find a new section between Photos and Play. It says Disney MagicMobile Pass.
When you click this button, you can add an Express Pass to your photo.
Disney indicates that the “pass works automatically without FaceID or your passcode.”
In other words, you don’t even need to unlock your phone. Instead, you take it to the entrance area at a Walt Disney World theme park.
At the place where you’ve historically tapped your MagicBand, you can now place your phone instead.
You’ll face the display screen toward you and the phone’s back toward the kiosk. The system will read your Express Pass and light up.
You’ve now got access to the Disney park, thanks to MagicMobile!
In fact, if you’re traveling with a large party, you can set up your Express Pass in a way that your friends can use it, too!
The system will automatically recognize who should receive an Express Pass on their phones, too!
Parents can add up to five passes on their devices as well. Disney has thought of everything here.
Remarkably, this functionality isn’t the only thing you can do, either.
Guests will soon get to charge payments to their rooms! You can buy food or merchandise on your folio, thanks to MagicMobile!
The Return of a Full Festival
We’re all wondering how Disney will handle the second half of 2021. After all, current projections indicate that herd immunity should occur by July.
That fantastic proposition encourages speculation about when various theme park amenities will return.
Park officials unintentionally (?) provided some insight with an unexpected announcement.
The 2021 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival will debut on July 15th. And yes, I got the full name correct.
Disney will drop the “Taste of” from the title for this year’s Food & Wine. The naming convention signals that EPCOT is ready to return to normal.
That date also comes with a deeper meaning. It’s the first anniversary of EPCOT’s reopening.
Disney wants to celebrate a successful year of operation during an impossible circumstance, a pandemic.
The upcoming event will last longer than any festival I can ever recall. The scheduled closing date is November 20th. That’s 128 days for the festival!
On a side note, we also know when the Taste of the 2021 EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival will end.
The last scheduled date is July 5th. So, you can spend Independence Day weekend at EPCOT.
Then, the park will move on to the next thing on that Tuesday, opening the next festival the following week.
Moron Gets Arrested
Disney faced another Covidiot on the Orlando campus this week, and this one was a doozy.
A Louisiana man went native and tried to pull a full-fledged Florida Man stunt.
This dude decided that he’d had enough of Disney’s fair-minded safety measures, the ones that keep guests healthy and COVID-free.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, the vacationer lost his mind and tried to skip a temperature check at Disney Springs.
As a reminder, the temperature check takes about two seconds, no exaggeration.
Rather than spend those two seconds protecting everyone’s well-being, the man decided that a better use of his time would be to avoid the test.
He ducked away from the tent and made a break for the rest of the Disney Springs campus, where I guess he thought he’d got lost in the crowd.
I may be giving him too much credit for thinking at all. Security pursued and caught up with the man near The BOATHOUSE.
At this point, the man refused to leave Disney grounds, arguing that he shouldn’t have to take his temperature since he’d spent $15,000.
What he should have spent was two seconds getting his temperature taken. Instead, he spent the night in jail after getting arrested.
Hilariously, the trespasser lost his conviction when faced with the prospect of getting arrested.
He offered to get his temperature taken once the handcuffs came out. At this point, an officer hilariously informed him that the temperature test would happen at the jail.
The pandemic has really brought out the worst and the dumbest in some people.
Speaking of the pandemic, let’s quickly examine some of the most important recent updates.
Sources indicated that the President of the United States was working on a system to let people prove they’d been vaccinated.
Soon afterward, Florida’s governor passed an executive order preventing the practice of vaccine passports in his state.
Disney enjoys autonomy, and the executive order is poorly worded enough that this story isn’t over.
The company could easily invent a system that still employs vaccine passports. A federal order would override a state one, too.
So, anything that you’ve heard about vaccine passports remains up in the air from a Disney perspective.
You can still use a vaccine passport to get a free donut every day at Krispy Kreme through the rest of the year, though. That’s reason enough for me.
In clearer news, the CDC announced safety guidelines for vaccinated Americans. You’re gonna like this:
“Americans who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 can safely travel at home and abroad, as long as they take basic precautions like wearing masks.”
This update loosens restrictions mightily. You can travel to Walt Disney World without the need to quarantine on your return.
Yes, you still must wear masks, maintain social distancing, and sanitize your hands. Still, vacations just got a lot easier.
Along those lines, Unite Here! Local 362 posted something fascinating on its Facebook page.
According to this post, Disney will pay some of its cast members for four hours’ worth of work to get vaccinated.
The documentation indicates that workers may schedule their shots on workdays without being declared absent, too.
Obviously, the company can benefit a great deal by having healthy, protected employees. So, this incentive makes sense for both sides.
One of these days, we’ll have a slow news week again, but it definitely hasn’t happened for a while.
This week alone, we learned that the Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover won’t reopen in April as promised.
Disney has pushed back the ride’s return until May. Cast members have tested the ride on many occasions lately.
Nobody can provide a definitive explanation for why the delays keep recurring.
In park news, Disney is now hiring. Specifically, the company’s searching for a new Principal Fireworks Designer. You can read the job description here.
This person will become the “creative leader and overall representative for the Disney Live Entertainment Fireworks & Special Effects Design department.”
That sounds like someone important, right?
Finally, in some reopening news, Kali River Rapids has returned from its annual refurbishment.
Disney had announced the comeback date as April 2nd. However, the crew ran ahead of schedule, allowing Disney’s Animal Kingdom to bring it back early.