World News: May 25th

A day late, but not a dollar short! I wanted to wait to let some more news flesh out as both Monday and Tuesday were pretty packed with updates around Walt Disney World. Seeing as this weekly post is more reactionary than “breaking news” I decided to let the dust settle. Here’s what we learned the past few days:

This tweet from WDW News Today tells you all you need to know. That tweet happened around 11:25am. The park wasn’t closed to media, nor was it a low crowd day at Walt Disney World. In fact, one user replied with “it was over 300 minutes yesterday!” This is a result of the third Toy Story Midway Mania track opening at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Everyone speculated that the third track would alleviate the wait times a bit, but this is far more than we ever expected.

There has been tons of speculation around the new track, with many claiming it will serve as a line for FastPass+ holders only. The results, thus far, prove that it does help the wait time. I’m interested in seeing how this continues to play out. I’ll be keeping an eye on TSMM throughout the summer and during the busier weeks, such as July 4th weekend. It’ll be interested to see how high Christmas-like crowds affect the wait times. If it continues to be as low as 60 minutes or less, it may be worth saving your FastPass+ for another ride! That’s something I never thought I’d type!

Orlando Sentinel – STK at Disney Springs opened its doors last night for a grand opening party filled with bites, music and cocktails.

The Orlando Sentinel, as well as many others, were posting photos of STK’s grand opening party last night and it was everything I expected. It was swanky, posh and elaborate. The inside decor is ultra chic and I’d predict that the prices will make it the most expensive restaurant at Disney (not counting Victoria & Albert’s.) Get ready for the storm—if you thought that BOATHOUSE’s prices were met with backlash, you haven’t seen anything yet.

All things considered, it’s worth it. I’ve dined at STK in New York City before and the experience is pretty awesome. The steaks are cooked to perfection and it has a party, club-like atmosphere. I do wonder if they’ll push a more family friendly atmosphere or if they’ll remain in-line with STK’s culture. Based off the photos, it looks like they’re pushing the STK clubby culture. I guess it’ll all come down to whether they stick with Disney Spring’s target of locals or open themselves to being more of a guest-friendly Disney-like restaurant. Personally, I’ll be dining at Yachtsman or Narcoossee’s for steak at Disney.

InsideTheMagic- Via Napoli sold its one millionth pizza on Monday. As I’ve said time and time before, I’m yet to find Italian food that I really like at Disney World. I enjoy Il Mulino and the pizza at Wolfgang Puck, but Trattoria Al Forno and Tutto Italia didn’t do it for me. This year, we’ll be trying Via Napoli as our family friends and fellow New York Disney fanatics rave about the pizza and recommended it. Either way, Via Napoli has become somewhat of an institution, cementing itself as the go-to for pizza at Disney. And if it tastes as good as it looks, it’ll make a believer out of me!

WDW News Today– Opening in late-2016, guests can experience “Pizza Rizzo” in the Muppets Courtyard at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The restaurant will continue to operate as a counter service pizza restaurant, but guests will find an entirely new theme and better-quality food when it reopens this holiday season. The new name was confirmed by internal documents and permits filed in relation to the ongoing project.

I’m excited about this, as I always felt that the Muppets needed more respect at Hollywood Studios. How about an update to the show? I always laugh at the end of the Muppets show, after the hole has been blown through the theater’s wall. It’s so obvious that the video was recorded in the late 80’s, early 90s that it’s almost cringeworthy.

Anyway, a Muppets restaurant could be fun and has a ton of potential. I always said that they should open a Muppets restaurant similar to Dick’s Last Resort. The servers wouldn’t be rude, per se, but Statler and Waldorf would sit high above the restaurant and poke fun at diners. Maybe they’d have entertainment throughout your meal, like a performance by Ms. Piggy. A fake “kitchen” would be off to the side where the Swedish Chef would cook in pure chaos. All ideas, Disney—are you listening?!

It’s a fun time at Disney. Disney Springs continues to open up some awesome food spots, Hollywood Studios is showing signs of life and the new Soarin’ is opening at EPCOT.




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