Disney World Facts

Ricky Clements, Business Manager

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Walt Disney World is an entertainment complex in Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista, Florida. It is located near the major cities of Orlando and Kissimmee, Florida. The property covers 27,258 acres (43 square miles), featuring four theme parks, two water parks, 27 themed resort hotels, nine non-Disney hotels, several golf courses, a camping resort, and other entertainment venues, including the outdoor shopping center Disney Springs. “The Florida Project” was intended to present a distinct vision with its own diverse set of attractions separating itself from the Disneyland theme park in Anaheim, California. First announced in 1965 by Walt Disney, the Florida Project began construction in 1966. Walt Disney’s original plans also called for the inclusion of an “Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow” (EPCOT), but was delayed for another 11 years after the opening of Magic Kingdom.

The first park to be built of the four was Magic Kingdom. Without Disney spearheading the construction, the company created a resort that was like Disneyland. They completely abandoned the experimental concepts for the planned community. Opening on October 1, 1971, Magic Kingdom started the massive complex of today. Then in 1982, EPCOT was opened, followed by Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 1989, and the most recent, Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 1998. In the 46 years of being open, Disney World has only closed five times, first in 1999 for Hurricane Floyd, second and third times in 2004 first with Hurricane Frances and then with Hurricane Jeanne, Hurricane Mathew forced it to close for the fourth time in 2016, and then the most recent closing in 2017 due to Hurricane Irma.

At the end of every night in three of the four parks (Animal Kingdom does not do fireworks because it could harm the animals) there is a firework show. The cost of the fireworks shows is estimated around $41,000 to $55,000 per show at each of the three parks. Disney does not release how much they spend on fireworks for there shows but the estimated budget per year is 52.5 million.

Disney World is always adding new areas and rides to the parks. In 2017, Avatar- the World of Pandora, opened in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. In Hollywood Studios two new areas are being built. One is Toy Story Land, inspired by the Toy Story series, which is set to open June 30, 2018. The second new area is Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. It is expected to open in 2019. In Magic Kingdom, a Tron themed ride is due to open in 2021. And in EPCOT, new attractions related to Guardians of the Galaxy and Ratatouille are due to open at the end of 2021. “My current favorite ride is Soarin’ in EPCOT because of the motion and creativity of it,” said Mrs. Linn. Disney World has been around for 46 years and will probably be around for at least 46 years or more, but one thing that Disney World holds themselves to is that it is a place where dreams come true.

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Disney World Facts