The flight is booked, the hotel reservations are made, you’ve got the park tickets and the family is ready for Disney World! If you’re headed to “the most magical place on earth” this summer, or planning a trip, be sure to check out these attractions.
Live Music at EPCOT and Disney Springs
There are plenty of locations around Walt Disney World Resort for guests to listen to live soulful music this summer. The Garden Rocks Concert Series during EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival will feature performances from Living Colour (6/30-7/1) and Evolution: Motown (7/4-7/5). Later in the summer, artists such as Southern Avenue (8/4-8/5), Ruben Studdard (8/11-8/12), Ayron Jones (8/25 – 8/26) and Baha Men (9/1 – 9/2) are performing live at the Eat to the Beat Concert Series presented by Florida Blue Medicare at the EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival presented by CORKCICLE. Additionally, guests can enjoy the sounds of soulful music from Black musicians like Don Black, Wassalou, Free Cadence and Franchise Players at various stages around Disney Springs.
Go Under the Sea with Ariel from the live-action story
Ariel from the all-new live-action story ‘The Little Mermaid’ is greeting guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Ariel’s meet and greet location at Walt Disney Presents features artwork inspired by the movie that guides guests on a journey from sea to land, ending at the picturesque setting of Prince Eric’s shoreside castle. The location also features replicas of some of Ariel’s favorite “thingamabobs.”
Cooking With Soul
“Cooking With Soul” continues with its collection of soulful culinary dishes found throughout Walt Disney World Resort such as Four-Cheese Baked Macaroni & Cheese. The item was so popular during Black History Month at Contempo Café that it will be returning to the buffet at Chef Mickey’s at Disney’s Contemporary Resort later this month. At Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, the Jollof Rice with Plant-based Sausage is one of the more popular items at Tusker House, as well as the Collard Greens. New this year are yummy under-the-sea offerings based on the live-action remake of Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid,’ including Bubbles at Sea, a delicious beverage featuring Gold Peak sweet green tea, lemon juice, pineapple and guava topped with boba pearls and a splash of shimmer that is available at multiple locations. And, for an even more special treat, The Little Mermaid Sea Salt, Caramel and Chocolate Pop with ocean fondant can be found at The Ganachery at Disney Springs.
The works of four Black artists are on display at the Disney Springs Art Walk. This summer, three new artists will showcase their artistic expression on walls across property at Disney Springs, EPCOT Amani Village and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park. Cape Town-based Street artist Nardstar* will be live painting her artwork, which will celebrate natural hair, at the Disney Springs Art Walk June 15 through 20. Kenyan artist Wise Two begins painting in EPCOT on July 5 and new art at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park will be available in August.
Get a Glimpse of Tiana’s Bayou Adventure
As construction continues on Magic Kingdom Park’s much-anticipated Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, guests will soon be able to see the centerpiece of the attraction, Tiana’s Foods water tower, topped by her signature tiara.
Highlighting Black-Owned Businesses
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park offers a selection of handmade goods from African artisans. Local Green Orlando Food Truck at Disney Springs is a Black-owned eatery that offers fresh, flavorful cuisine served on the fly. And there’s a handful of food and beverage items available at various establishments throughout Walt Disney World made with Uncle Nearest Premium Whisky – the most successful Black-owned distillery in the world.
Watch Talented Athletes
Guests can watch future NBA and WNBA players competing in the AAU Girls and Boys Summer Basketball tournament, July 3-16, at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Likewise, the nation’s top high school talent will be on display at the sports complex during the NBPA Top 100 Camp, June 26-July 2. Soccer fans won’t want to miss the LaLiga Promises international tournament, June 23-25, widely considered one of the most important events in the world for 12-and-under players, and the USYS National Championship, crowning the best youth club teams in America, July 18-23. For more information on the events and tickets, guests can visit www.espnwwos.com/events.
Guests visiting EPCOT better get ready to crank up the mixtape and blast off on an awesome intergalactic chase through time and space in Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind! They can set out on a whitewater adventure through a lush jungle in the heart of Asia on Kali River Rapids at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, put their own concept car to the test on Test Track Presented by Chevrolet, thrill to the speed and excitement of the now-open TRON Lightcycle / Run Presented by Enterprise or be dazzled by incredible fireworks as Happily Ever After Presented by Pandora lights up the night sky, both at Magic Kingdom Park. Guests looking to thrill their taste buds won’t want to miss the newly opened Roundup Rodeo BBQ in Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, which serves up barbecue-inspired fare family style – a perfect to start to the summer barbecue season.