D23 Expo Day 3 Recap (9/12/09)

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As we did on the second day of the D23 Expo, here is a recap from today’s events at the Anaheim Convention Center. Today held some of the biggest announcements of the D23 Expo so far. First up is the much anticipated Walt Disney World Fantasyland expansion:

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Here we see concept art of the new Fantasyland. As you can see, most of the princesses have been the inspiration in the development of the new attractions and restaurants. Pixie Hollow is also being developed fully, complete with the hometree and a Pixie play area. Many of the Disney Princesses will be getting their own realms in Fantasyland, including Belle, Cinderella, and Aurora

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Another princess getting her own portion of the park is Ariel. Like its sister park on the west coast, Disney World’s Magic Kingdom is inviting Ariel to be part of its world with a new Little Mermaid section of Fantasyland. The area will be dominated by Ariel and Eric’s castle, with a statue of our favorite little mermaid perched on a rock amongst the water surrounding the castle

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The classic staple, Dumbo, is also getting a facelift–a second set of ride vehicles, and a three ring circus atmosphere to incorporate the feel of the original film. The ride will be “completely queue-less” with a waiting area set up with bleachers for parents. Riders waiting until their feather is called can be entertained by playing a variety of interactive games

Finally, with fanfare, a group of storm troopers, and an appearance from Darth Vader himself, Jay Rasulo announced Star Tours 2

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The updated, 3D ride will entertain guests in both Walt Disney World and Disneyland with various Star Wars experiences, including a high-speed pod race

Construction for the Fantasyland expansion is expected to start sometime in early 2010, while Star Tours is expected to close in October 2010. Star Tours II is set to open in 2011, while Fantasyland and Pixie Hollow are expected to open in 2012 and 2013 respectively.

I hope you’ve been enjoying our coverage of the D23 expo. Stay tuned to WDW News Today for a round-up of day 4 of the Expo tomorrow.

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About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]

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