The FATE of IllumiNations! What DID You Decide? What’s MY Take?

Happy Friday, folks!  It’s finally here!  Hey, I really want to jump into Food & Wine “frivolity”, but we’re not quite done with poll recaps, I’m afraid.  Good news?  Just a few more to review!  First, let’s deal with …

The FATE of IllumiNations!

Can I chime in with my two cents?  Let me share my feelings.  On the last night of any trip to Walt Disney World, IllumiNations has always found a way to energize my courage to return to “real” life.

A few years ago, wanting to bring that strength home with me, I purchased the soundtrack.  By the way, if you’re a Spotify user, search for this playlist – Epcot IllumiNations Pre-Show.  Good stuff.

Anyway, when rumors of replacement popped up again a few weeks ago, I began listening to both the playlist and the soundtrack multiple times per day.  Plainly said, the loss of IllumiNations simply horrifies me.

In our recent poll, what did you say about this phenomenal attraction?  If we focus on the votes, 55% of you want the show to be ‘Retained’.  45%, on the other hand, support ‘Replacement’.  Not the landslide of support for which I had hoped.

When I read your comments, however, a different pattern emerged.  The most popular statement I saw was “Replace!”  It makes me sad.  Here’s a short and quick sampling …

  • “They’re replacing everything else. Might as well do this.”
  • “I loved the previous show better than the current one.”
  • “Replace. I like the music, but I felt bored during the show because of the lulls.”
  • “Replace. With the evolution of drone technology, having a choreographed drone light show above World Showcase Lagoon makes so much sense.”

The comments were so numerous, my friends, that I can’t ignore them.  Voting gets thrown out the window when you add, what seems to be, the true voice of the Disney-verse.

The verdict?  I’d love to say it’s a split decision.  However, I’m compelled to give the comments greater weight.  So.  What did you decide?   IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth?  You gotta go!

Retain? Or, Replace? – IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth

Good morning, folks!  Did you register your opinions on yesterday’s post?  How would you rank World Showcase’s pavilions?  Go back and weigh in – before it’s too late!

In the meantime, I have another burning Epcot item to address.  In fact, I want to settle this emotionally-charged, superhot issue once and for all!

A few days ago, we learned that Siemens will be ending their sponsorship agreement with Disney Parks.  That raises several questions.  Like, what does this mean for Spaceship Earth?  Or, what happens to IllumiNations?

We’ll come back to Spaceship Earth – and the rest of the rumored re-imaginations of Epcot – at a later time.  For now, let’s focus on Illuminations.

Catch WDW Main Street Podcast – Episode #370 – Our Weekly News! to hear what the group thinks of the rumored big changes coming to Epcot!

A little over a year ago, I ran a similar poll to the one you’ll find below.  It concluded with, what I would call, mixed results.  Today, I’m going to be much more direct and blunt with my “challenge”.

My friends?  IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth.  Retain?  Or, Replace?  Cast your VOTE but also give us your thoughts.  You can leave them, here, in the comments on this post or on social media.  Do you want to replace?  Then, please tell us why!

What’s YOUR Favorite WDW Nighttime Spectacular?! [Polls]

My thanks go out to John Peters for his two great posts – published yesterday and the day before.  With …

Disney’s Animal Kingdom is Brightened by Rivers of Light! – and – Want Your Own Piece of Rivers of Light? Here’s Some “Merch”!

… he’s inspired me to ask you a few quick questions.  What questions, you ask?  Well, what is your Favorite WDW Nighttime Spectacular?

The “landscape” is changing, isn’t it, folks?  For example, as John pointed out, Wishes nighttime spectacular ends in a few short weeks – on May 11th.

In its place, starting May 12th, the Magic Kingdom will present the Happily Ever After nighttime spectacular.

What in “The World” is that, you wonder?  Described by Disney Parks Blog, it will … “inspire guests to seek out and find their own ‘Happily Ever After’ by showcasing some of the greatest adventures Disney characters have taken to achieve their dreams.

The show will feature the latest fireworks and pyrotechnics and original animation, plus a heart-tugging original score.”  Also, “more Disney characters than ever before will be featured in the show.”

In addition, it will include “moments from Moana, Brave, Big Hero 6, Zootopia, The Princess & The Frog, Aladdin and many others.”

Wow!  Sounds great, eh?  Well, I guess we’ll have to wait until May 12th to see.  Hey!  Maybe if we’re lucky, John will pop in on Opening Night to give us a live report!

In the meantime, I’d like you to answer me this … of the FIVE attractions that John listed in yesterday’s post, what is your favorite?


Now, let me complicate things a bit.  You’ve read the description above.  What is your favorite when I replace Wishes with Happily Ever After?

Three new attractions.  Two old favorites.  Which will win?  One of the shiny, new, exciting “newbies”?  A beloved, traditional “gem”?  Let’s see!

World Showcase “Challenge” – Italy Trivia Revealed!

Did you “play” our World Showcase “Challenge” yesterday?  I hope so.  Well, here’s the “solution” to that “puzzle” …

In some ways, it would have been fair to answer “all of the above” (though, that wasn’t a choice), but the response I was really looking for was Venice!  Why?

Wikipedia tells us that, “The Italian Pavilion features a plaza surrounded by a collection of buildings evocative of Venetian, Florentine, and Roman architecture.  Venetian architecture is represented by a re-creation of St Mark’s Campanile (bell tower) and a replica of the Doge’s Palace.”

Let’s face it, when we think of Italy’s World Showcase pavilion, we think of that tower.  Yes?


Interestingly, Wikipedia continues to say, “The original plans for the pavilion called for an expansion that would be built in Epcot’s ‘Phase II’ of construction.  The expansion would have included a gondola dark ride and a Roman ruins walk-through.  When ‘Phase II’ was canceled, the pavilion was left incomplete.”

Does anyone know what brought the pavilion to its long-awaited completion?  Nothing other than the All in WDW Readers’ Favorite Epcot Table Service Restaurant – Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria!

Have a great Sunday evening, folks!


Can You Conquer a Bit of World Showcase Trivia?!

Since we’re in Epcot already – you did see this morning’s Food & Wine post, didn’t you? – I thought we’d tackle a bit of World Showcase trivia.

Before that, though, did you see this morning’s piece?  It’s the All in WDW Readers’ “Ridiculously Early” Food & Wine ’14 Top 13!  You should really go back and take a look!

OK.  Back to trivia.  An easy question today … I think.

People ask me all the time, “Where do you guys like to watch IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth, Bob?”

Here's the umbrella table, the ravioli, and the wine.  Where's the dark and the fireworks?  Ah, just wait!

Here’s the umbrella table, the ravioli, and the wine. Where’s the dark and the fireworks? Ah, just wait!

Our favorite spot is to sit at a tall umbrella table at the front of the Italy pavilion.  We secure a quartino of red wine from Tutto Gusto, take our seats, and enjoy the show!

Of course, the best time of the year to enjoy our favorite viewing location is during Food & Wine … with a helping of Italy’s tasty Ravioli!

So, speaking of the Italy pavilion, it was designed to be set in the Italian city of __________.  Which city?