MickeyBlog News for May 24, 2021
Walt Disney World has ended many of its pandemic-related practices.
Meanwhile, on the other coast, Disneyland will change quite a bit on June 15th.
I’ll explain the details in this week’s MickeyBlog News!
Walt Disney World Changes
Last week, Disney wiped out a nearly year-old policy at 11 p.m. on a Friday night. At the time, the company decided that the pandemic was mostly over.
Since then, the Walt Disney World campus has undone many of its COVID-19 prevention methods.
The sudden reversal in policies has given some park guests whiplash. Still, it means that the second half of 2021 will be business as usual at Disney.
To wit, Disney has removed barriers from several attraction line queues, making them feel less claustrophobic.
In the process, several lines have grown cooler. All the plexiglass walls increased the heat in line queues.
So, we all welcome the quick removal of these temporary barriers. Also, Disney has started loaded all seats on many attractions.
I’ll discuss the impact of this decision in next week’s ride wait-times article.
However, you can figure out why it matters. When Disney only fills 60 percent of a ride cart, fewer guests experience the attraction per day.
Now that cast members load every seat, capacity has returned to normal on several attractions. It’ll happen with the rest in a matter of weeks.
Another change involves eating and drinking at the parks. For the body of a year, guests couldn’t eat or drink while walking.
Some people abused the face-covering rules by faking eating or drinking. So, Disney tightened the policy. Now, it’s okay, though!
Whenever you’re roaming the parks, you may eat or drink to your heart’s content. After all, you no longer must wear a mask while outdoors!
Disney also removed the audio recordings that remind guests to honor social distancing and face mask guidelines.
In a matter of days, the parks will bear no signs of the pandemic year!
California officials had previously announced that the state will reopen on June 15th. However, we lacked clarity on what that entailed until recently.
California has now revealed its upcoming changes for June 15th, and they’ve allowed Disneyland Resort to plan ahead.
In short, we know a lot more about Disneyland this summer than we did at this time seven days ago.
For starters, temperature checks will end on June 15th. That goes for tourists and cast members alike.
Disneyland had already received some good news the other day. Orange County gave the parks the greenlight to expand from 25 to 35 percent capacity.
As I said when the same thing happened at Walt Disney World, I know this doesn’t sound like much.
However, when you do the math (10/25), you’ll appreciate that it’s 40 percent more guests.
Remarkably, Disneyland is only getting started, though. Once California fully reopens, large gatherings won’t face any capacity limits.
Also, face-covering requirements and social distancing practices would go away as well.
Disneyland officials haven’t officially commented yet, but CEO Bob Chapek made his feelings clear during a recent Q&A session.
He believes that face masks aren’t desirable during the summer. So, if California gives Disneyland the all-clear sign, face covering rules may vanish.
Park officials could feasibly announce significant changes at any time now. Please keep checking MickeyBlog for additional updates.
No matter what, I think it’s fair to say that Disneyland and Walt Disney World will look vastly different by the end of the summer.
Other Walt Disney World Park News
We’ve had kind of a crazy week at Walt Disney World.
Several places returned after extended absences. We learned details about an EPCOT favorite’s triumphant comeback, too.
Three different restaurants reopened over the past few days, and MickeyBlog somehow kept up with all of them!
For starters, here’s a video of the first dinner service at Chef Mickey’s in more than a year! Team MickeyBlog even had a private booth here!
Later, Cape May Café came back for the first time since the start of the pandemic.
Randomly, Disney assigned our team the same table for both meals!
Also, BoardWalk Ice Cream has debuted at Disney’s BoardWalk. It’s the replacement for the former Ample Hills Creamery that closed.
Once again, MickeyBlog appeared live on the scene to show guests what the grand opening was like.
Long story short, you should be reading (and following) our Facebook feed! That’s where the action is!
The other big Walt Disney World news involves Club Cool. Disney has confirmed that it’ll return soon…and the floor will be made of Coke bottles!
Next, Kali River Rapids fans should know that this attraction opens an hour later than the rest of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Many guests don’t want to get drenched at the start of a park day. So, Disney is accounting for that by giving the ride a later start.
More Disney Park News
First, you may have heard about a monorail incident. That’s true, although it’s not Disney’s fault.
A giant Badger truck was driving around when, unbeknownst to the driver, the extension was lifted.
This part of the truck struck the bottom of a monorail track between Disney’s Contemporary Resort and Magic Kingdom.
The contact messed up the electrical wiring and even detached a small piece of the beam’s bottom. Imagine a plank coming off the floor of a building.
Understandably, park officials dropped everything to perform maintenance here. In the interim, the monorail line closed for a while.
Unlike other recent monorail incidents, this one is funny rather than alarming. That poor truck driver has some explaining to do!
Elsewhere at the parks, the audio-animatronics for the Three Caballeros have returned to their rightful home!
The Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros suffered a meltdown a few months ago, as captured by MagicalNewsLive.
Imagineers needed this long to make the repairs!
Also, the Disney College Program has returned in force. It’s fully open to applications now, indicating that Disney will prioritize the program soon.
In refurbishment news, I have two essential updates. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad will close from June 7th through June 12th for quick renovations.
Meanwhile, the Disney Skyliner will take some much-needed downtime for refurbishment next January.
Specifically, it’ll be offline from January 23rd through January 28th. Plan your vacation accordingly!
In unconfirmed news, Minnie Vans signs have appeared near the entrance to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
I’m referencing the signs that direct guests on where to go once they’re done with their park visits.
The sudden appearance of Minnie Vans on these signs suggests that they’ll return soon. Yes, rumors of their demise were greatly exaggerated!Options