• Sunday, September 26, 2021

Know Before You Go: Theme Park Updates for July 2021

Happy First of July! After a very long and hard year, things are really starting to feel normal again at all of our favorite theme parks. From lifting mask requirements to full capacity special events, keep reading for all the latest attraction news!

Walt Disney World

As of June 15, vaccinated guests are no longer required to wear masks while visiting Walt Disney World. However, people using Disney transportation like buses and monorails will still be asked to wear them on board. In other big Disney World news, fireworks are BACK at select parks just in time for the Fourth of July! “Happily Ever After” and “Epcot Forever” return to Magic Kingdom and Epcot for nightly showings starting July 1.

Special Events

A Taste of the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival comes to an end on July 5, but the park’s next festival is just around the corner. The Epcot International Food and Wine Festival returns in full form on July 15. This will be the first full-sized event at Walt Disney World since the Flower & Garden Festival was cut short in February 2020!

Restaurant Updates

At Magic Kingdom, Casey’s Corner is back up and running on Mainstreet U.S.A., and Plaza Ice Cream Parlor is set to reopen on July 7. Eight Spoon Cafe at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is also officially open and the popular Pulled Pork Jelly Donut Sandwich is back! Elsewhere in the park, Dino Diner reopens on July 4.

Citricos at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa is newly reimagined and back open for business! The table service restaurant’s makeover is inspired by the “whimsy and elegance” of Mary Poppins Returns. In addition to updates in the dining room’s decor, Chef Andres Mendoza created a delicious new menu including the following dishes:

  • Sweet Corn Bisque: Served with pickled fennel, popcorn, and fennel oil
  • Strawberry Salad: Topped with chamomile-infused goat cheese, frisee lettuce, bacon vinaigrette, and spiced sunflower seeds
  • Butter-Poached Florida Cobia: Served with mashed fingerling potatoes, grilled asparagus, and local mushrooms with a grapefruit beurre blanc
  • Guava Barbequed Short Ribs: Served with aged cheddar creamy grits, roasted poblano, curtido slaw, and brussels sprouts

For dessert, diners can indulge in a variety of sweet dishes created by Pastry Chef Kristine Farmer. Some of the new offerings include:

  • Warm Apple Rose: Seasonal apple, marzipan layers, and frozen coconut milk
  • Chocolate Torte: Dark chocolate financier with dark cherry compote and vanilla bean mascarpone cream

Trail’s End at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort is set to reopen on July 17. The restaurant will exchange its buffet-style experience with family-style skillets for breakfast and dinner. Breakfast now includes:

  • For the Table: A pastry basket and berry granola yogurt parfait
  • Family-Style Skillet: Smoked brisket, eggs, bacon, sausage, cheesy potato casserole, and Mickey waffles

Dinner will also be served in family-style skillets, featuring the following items:

  • For the Table: Hushpuppies and skillet cornbread
  • Smokehouse Skillet: Pecan-smoked brisket, rotisserie chicken, andouille sausage, fingerling potatoes, green beans, and buttered corn on the cob
  • Add-ons: Pork spare ribs, peel’n’eat shrimp, and cornbread crusted salmon

For dessert, you can enjoy a Covered Wagon Sundae. The decadent treat is made from a wagon load of ice cream, toppings, brownies, cookies, and chocolate-covered bacon.

Attraction Updates

While things are getting closer to normal every day, the following attractions are still closed across the parks at Walt Disney World Resort:

  • Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor (Magic Kingdom)
  • Enchanted Tales with Belle (Magic Kingdom)
  • Frontierland Shootin’ Arcade (Magic Kingdom)
  • Casey Jr. Splash ‘N’ Soak Station (Magic Kingdom)
  • Walt Disney World Railroad (Magic Kingdom)
  • The Hall of Presidents (Magic Kingdom)
  • Turtle Talk with Crush (Epcot)
  • Bruce’s Shark World (Epcot)
  • Beauty and the Beast – Live On Stage (Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
  • Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular (Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid (Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
  • Star Wars Launch Bay (Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
  • Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple (Disney’s Hollywood Studios)
  • Finding Nemo – The Musical (Disney’s Animal Kingdom)
  • The Boneyard (Disney’s Animal Kingdom)

Universal Orlando

Although Universal Orlando is mostly back to normal, some attractions are still currently unavailable, including:

  • Curious George Goes to Town
  • Fear Factor Live
  • Jurassic Park Discovery Center
  • Me Ship, The Olive
  • Poseidon’s Fury
  • Fievel’s Playland

SeaWorld Orlando

Electric Ocean takes place each weekend night through September 6. This year’s celebration includes a new live show along with other fun, new experiences.

Attraction Updates

SeaWorld’s Sesame Street Party Parade returns to the park on July 10. The following attractions are currently closed at SeaWorld Orlando:

  • Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin (Penguin Habitat is still open)
  • Wild Arctic (Animal Habitat is still open)
  • Sky Tower

Busch Gardens Tampa

Summer Nights is in full swing at Busch Gardens Tampa, lighting up the park with an incredible new display of fireworks, delicious summer food offerings, and more every night through September 28.

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