Hot Takes: Galaxy’s Edge Brings Low Crowds to Disneyland, A “New” Restaurant Brings BBQ to World Showcase, and A Rumored Closure Brings Chaos to Dis Twitter

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Reservation Period Ends at Disneyland… Land Now Open to All Guests

Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run - Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge - Batuu - Disneyland Park - Disneyland Resort - 5/17/19. (Joshua Sudock/Disneyland Resort)

Disney’s Take:

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is now open at Disneyland park. With the ability to join a boarding group when needed, it’s the perfect time to visit the remote planet of Batuu. We’ve pulled together a day-to-night itinerary to help you plan your trip. Let’s go!

Plan ahead and reserve your spot

Business has been booming at Oga’s Cantina and Savi’s Workshop, so reservations are required for entry to either experience. Reservations can be made as early as 7 a.m., the morning of your visit at Disneyland.com/CantinaDisneyland.com/SavisWorkshop or the Disneyland app (subject to change). Be sure to check the Disneyland app or signage inside Disneyland Park to see if the digital queue is operating and whether you need to request to join a boarding group to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

Our Take:

Here at WDW Therapy, we are always happy to admit when we are wrong. We were definitely very wrong when it came to the crowds we expected to descend upon Disneyland once the initial reservation period ended for Galaxy’s Edge. The crowds on the park overall have been some of the lowest in years. It seems we underestimated how many folks, especially locals, would avoid the park out of fear of heavy crowds.

Guest visiting Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland Park

This has resulted in creating the exact opposite effect and lead to one of the best times to visit Disneyland in a long time. Not only are crowds low throughout the park, but you can enjoy the new land with minimal trouble as well.

Boarding passes to enter the land have worked tremendously well. Disney has capped the land attendance at a low enough level to make the land enjoyable while visiting. Wait times for Smuggler’s Run have been very manageable, with those arriving first thing in the morning being able to ride up to 3 times in the first hour.

Inside Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

Even with low crowds, Disney deserves to be praised for how they have handled the opening of Galaxy’s Edge. They created an effective system that has allowed guests to have the best experience possible, something we frankly didn’t think would happen so early in the process. It’s been the exact opposite of the Hagrid fiasco over at Universal Orlando!

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What all this means for Hollywood Studios come August 29, we’re still not sure. It’s definitely true that a lot of folks will avoid Walt Disney World in September specifically because of Galaxy’s Edge. We’ve even heard lots of stories of families cancelling their trips over fear of crowds.

It’s entirely possible that September will be the slowest month WDW sees for a full 18 months after opening. I don’t think it will be dead like DL is now, but I do think it will be more than manageable, especially with the announced extra extra magic hours running until early November.

 

“Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts and Barbecue” to Replace “Liberty Inn” in the American Pavilion of World Showcase

The American Adventure at Epcot

Disney’s Take:

Prepare your taste buds for something special, because a new fast-casual barbecue restaurant featuring craft brews on tap will debut at The American Adventure pavilion in Epcot later this year. 

Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue will take the place of Liberty Inn, which will close July 8 to make way for this mouth-watering experience in World Showcase. 

The new location will be a modern barbecue smokehouse, with all the accompanying sights, sounds, smells and flavors you love – including a large smoker preparing fine food every day right on the pavilion’s promenade. There will also be a redesigned patio for you to enjoy, so get ready to grab a brew, some barbecue, and relax inside Epcot. 

Our Take:

This move is probably a good one overall, but it’s not one that we particularly care about. We never eat at the American Pavilion and this isn’t going to change that. There area simply too many better, more unique options around World Showcase to choose something we can get at literally dozens of other restaurants around Walt Disney World.

A grilled steak with a side of fried shrimp, French fries and broccoli

That being said, we know there are plenty of folks out there who aren’t looking for more adventurous menu options (no judgement here… eat whatever you enjoy), and we are sure this will be an improvement over what Liberty Inn currently serves now (which isn’t very good). The restaurant will add outdoor seating and an outdoor smoker will add some kinetic energy to the area. I imagine it will be quite popular, it’s just not for us..

 

Disney Parks Blog Shut’s Down Rumored Closure of the Tiki Room; But What Does It Really Mean

Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room

Disney’s Take:

A little birdie told us there are some rumors flying around about our beloved Tiki birds at Walt Disney World Resort. We’re sorry that our fans are being fed incorrect information by unscrupulous sources. While “toucan” play at that game, we deal in facts here at the Disney Parks Blog. Although we won’t address every rumor, we want to set the record straight: there are no plans for our feathered friends to fly the coop any time soon. We’re constantly evolving our stories, but these birds will continue entertaining our guests at the Magic Kingdom Park just as they have done since 1971.

Our Take:

This was in direct response to WDWNT’s post which rumored that the Tiki Birds were due to receive a permanent Moana overlay. It was pretty shocking to see Disney address this rumor directly, going as far as to call WDWNT an unscrupulous source.  Generally, it’s Disney policy to take the high road on these things and just ignore all unannounced rumors.

Image result for tiki room meet moana

This has set Dis Twitter ablaze! WDWNT has even gone as far as to declare this as an act of war on Disney’s part. We have made it clear in the past that we feel WDWNT is a reliable source and they do good work; however we are electing to stay impartial on the issue here. Instead let’s take a look at Disney’s official statement and try and interpret it rationally.

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While there very well may be nothing to this rumor, I don’t take Disney’s rebuke as proof that this overlay will not happen either. Disney specifically says that there are no plans for the Tiki Birds to fly the coup, but according to the original rumor, the birds were not going to be removed from the attraction. Rather the Moana overlay would be in addition to the existing birds.

Beyond that, there is Disney’s line of “We’re constantly evolving our stories”.  Back in 2016, Disney denied rumors of a Guardians of the Galaxy overlay to Tower of Terror at Disneyland by saying: “We’re constantly evolving our stories” and then going on to deny that Tower of Terror would be changed. About 1 month later, Mission Breakout was announced.

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So really, there is nothing we can do but wait and see on this one… If nothing else, it’s alarming that there was no mention of the Country Bears on Disney’s part while attempting to debunk rumors.

Update: Disney Parks Blog announces today that Country Bear Jamboree is safe for now and will be around to celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2021.

 

 

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