The Holidays are Coming to Disney's Animal Kingdom This Winter



For the first time, all four theme parks at Walt Disney World will celebrate the holidays, each in their own unique way, for the 2019 winter season. Magic Kingdom, of course, will host Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party. Hollywood Studios will have the return of Flurry of Fun and Epcot will host the Festival of the Holidays once again. But new for 2019, Disney's Animal Kingdom will feature entertainment and special holiday decor in every single land of the park come this winter. At this point there is no official named event for Animal Kingdom, but I am sure this will be elaborated upon even more in 2020.

It all begins when you cross the bridge to Discovery Island, finding yourself in the midst of a celebration of winter, hand-crafted by the eclectic community of artists who make the island their home. The village is filled with sparkling white holiday decorations. Colorful, animal-inspired luminaries line the rooftops, and wireframe lanterns in the shape of beautiful birds can be found perched throughout the area. And during the day, Discovery Island springs to life with a holiday gathering of winter animals, realized in the form of life-size, artisan-sculpted puppets. Reindeer, foxes, polar bears, penguins and more interact with guests, accompanied by serenading musicians as they create a playful atmosphere of festive fun.


Some of the parks existing entertainment offerings will also feature a holiday makeover. The Tree of Life Awakenings projection show will feature wintery tales that highlight the beautiful carvings found throughout the tree. Donald's Dino-Bash!, which continues to be enjoyed by fans currently, will also feature a holiday overlay with festive decorations and an updated dance party with Chip & Dale. Over in Africa, the various musical acts will also feature holiday updates, Tusker House will have a holiday update when it comes to the menu and more. Africa will blend the inspiration and style of western traditions with the colors and textiles of authentic African celebrations. Even Pandora will be filled with holiday cheer as the ex-pats living on the planet will pull together a fun display at Pongu Pongu of kitschy holiday décor, combining vintage pieces from Earth with items handcrafted from materials indigenous to Pandora.


Back in 2018, the Asia section of the park did start introducing other holidays celebrated around the world during the late fall season. Diwali, a Hindu festival celebrating the victory of light over darkness, good over evil and knowledge over ignorance, was briefly introduced by the Caravan Theatre. For 2019, the residents of Anandapur will decorate the theatre district in celebration of Diwali. Glowing flowers, lanterns and more will illuminate the square between Anandapur Theater and the waterfront stage, home to authentic cultural performances.


At this time, there is no official start date for these new entertainment offerings and holiday displays. Magic Kingdom will kick off the holidays on November 8th with the first Christmas Party. Epcot's Festival of the Holidays will begin later than usual on November 29th. There is currently no official start date announced for Flurry of Fun at Disney's Hollywood Studios. The question is, will there be new holiday food items at Disney's Animal Kingdom as well?

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