7 MORE Character Changes Now in Effect at Walt Disney World (June 2016)

From our good friends over at Theme Park Tourist….


7 MORE Character Changes Now in Effect at Walt Disney World (June 2016)

Character meet and greets are a big part of what makes a trip to Walt Disney World so special, and in recent months Disney has taken it upon themselves to make a number of improvements and changes to their character lineup. While not all of these changes have been popular with guests, Disney is constantly making adjustments to try and make their character offerings as diverse as possible while still keeping things running efficiently around the parks.

While we already went over some of the character changes happening this month around the resort, a ton of additional changes have been made as summer kicks into high gear around Walt Disney World. In recent days, new character experiences have been unveiled, classic characters have been relocated, and we’ve even had to say goodbye to a few favorite faces around Walt Disney World as well.

1. Three princesses get moved around the Magic Kingdom

Image: Jason Wohlford, Flickr (license)

Now that Anna and Elsa have officially moved to the Royal Sommerhus over at Epcot, there have been a couple of character changes in response around the Magic Kingdom. Over at the Princess Fairytale Hall Cinderella and Rapunzel have gone back to meeting guests on opposite sides of the hall, and are now joined by “visiting” Princesses Tiana and Aurora, respectively. As a result, Tiana’s former meeting area is now vacant, and Snow White has moved into the Town Square Courtyard by City Hall, where Aurora was formerly meeting guests.

2. Prince Naveen meet and greet gets the boot

Unfortunately, because of Tiana’s move to the Princess Fairytale Hall, Prince Naveen (who used to meet with Tiana) has been removed from the regular Magic Kingdom character lineup. Prince Naveen was one of the last remaining Disney princes that met guests regularly at the Magic Kingdom (it looks like Aladdin is the last prince standing) and though he’ll probably be back during special events like Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party (and Prince Naveen still appears in the Festival of Fantasy Parade as well as the new Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire show), this is still a tough loss for those who enjoyed meeting non-Princess characters at the Magic Kingdom.

3. Daisy removed from Main Street USA early morning lineup

Image: Jeff Christiansen , Flickr (license)

Several weeks ago Daisy began meeting guests on Main Street USA, along with Stitch, Pluto and other friends during the park’s opening every morning. However, it looks like Daisy’s appearance at the front of the park during opening was just a limited time test, which has come to an end. Daisy has now returned to only meeting guests at the Magic Kingom as part of Pete’s Silly Sideshow in Fantasyland.

4. Rare characters hit Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Image: Captainjacksparrow, Wikimedia Commons (license)

Though the front of the Great Movie Ride has served as a hub of sorts for characters at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and has allowed guests to meet favorites like Goofy, Donald Duck and Daisy Duck, this location has played host in recent weeks to a number of rare characters. According to ultimate Disney character resource Kenny the Pirate, both Max Goof as well as Bolt have been meeting guests in this area in recent weeks. It is unknown if this is a test or a permanent change, but with so many other characters getting the boot recently, it’s nice to see some character additions from the vault popping up around Walt Disney World.

5. Chip and Dale move to a new location at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Image: Disney

And speaking of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Chip & Dale have left the aforementioned Great Movie Ride meeting spot and are now greeting guests on Commissary Lane, down near the DVC kiosk and the Sci-Fi Dine in restaurant. Interestingly, this duo has also shed their Hollywood-inspired getup as well (pictured above), and are now meeting guests without any accessories…or clothes of any kind!

6. Royal Sommerhus now open at Epcot’s Norway Pavilion

Though it wasn’t officially scheduled to officially until June 21st Disney surprised guests last week by opening the Royal Sommerhus character meet and greet at Epcot just a little early. This new attraction has an expansive interior queue that features furniture, toys and other items used by Anna and Elsa when they were children. Eagle-eyed Disney fans may also notice a few low key references to former attraction Maelstrom in the queue as well. Though we were initially dismayed that this attraction does not offer FastPass+, the line moves quickly, and we were able to get from the outside (non-extended) queue to the meet and greet area in less than thirty minutes, which is pretty efficient! Though traffic will likely pick up when Frozen Ever After officially opens, for now this line is at least manageable, even without FastPass+.

After winding around a large interior queue, guests will be led to a beautifully decorated room where Anna and Elsa will meet guests in their usual attire (sorry Frozen Fever fans!) in front of bright, illuminated backdops. You can check out a few photos from inside the Royal Sommerhus below:

7. Mickey’s new look officially comes to the Magic Kingdom

Earlier this year we got an advance look at the evolution of Mickey and Minnie’s in-park character design, thanks to the promotion for Shanghai Disneyland’s opening day. And while we knew these new looks were going to eventually make their way to Walt Disney World, we were surprised to find out that we were getting these new looks much earlier than anticipated as part of Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire. Though Mickey and Minnie are still sporting their classic looks in meet and greets around Walt Disney World and during parades, it will likely only be a matter of time before this new look becomes the standard around Walt Disney World.

Are you a big character fan? Will any of these meet and greet changes affect you? Let us know your thoughts below!

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Don Korta
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