Remy at 2020 Taste of Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

PHOTO REPORT: EPCOT 7/19/20 (Face Mask Policy Changes, A Taste of Food & Wine, Construction Updates, and More)

Bonjour from EPCOT! It’s the fifth day of the park being reopened, and alongside the reopening, the introduction of the 2020 Taste of Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. We’ve checked out both of those, and taken a look at the myriad of construction projects, as well. Let’s dig in!

At the front of the park, we’re of course greeted by two things – Spaceship Earth and construction walls, neither of which should be surprising to anyone at this point.

Taking a look at construction first, the reverse-launch Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind coaster seems like it’s been paused more than rewound, but little progress has been made on the rooftop solar panel mounts since back in March. We’re looking forward to seeing the signature panels returning to this building once again.

Similarly, the nearby Play! Pavilion has seen these roof-mounted crates wear quite a bit throughout the Florida summer.

Innoventions East in Future World remains a literal shell of its former self.

The south end of Innoventions East, former home to Mouse Gear, has still retained the gear graphics but little else beyond a roof.

Innoventions West remains half-standing, and it doesn’t appear that any work has been done to the structure in quite a while.

Outside of Mission: Space, the future home of the much-delayed Space 220 sign remains barricaded behind construction walls.

Also outside of Mission: Space, the purple moon has retained its new, perhaps unintentional, color scheme.

The final, and closest to completion, construction project is the France Pavilion expansion which will feature Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure. The area has come a long way, and work is actively taking place during the day, though the intended summer 2020 opening is unlikely to be achieved.

It appears that walkways, restrooms, and many of the exterior details have been completed, while some smaller work like landscaping and, inevitably, physical distancing markers still need to be added.

You can certainly get your fill of Remy elsewhere in the park, as he’s become the icon for the festival.

Remy is featured in a number of festival displays throughout the park, despite his portion of the France Pavilion not welcoming guests just yet.

Remy isn’t limited to the France Pavilion, though. Look closely over at the Italy Pavilion and you’ll find our small friend, alongside some olive oil, on a rooftop.

You won’t have a ton of competition in Italy if you’re on a Remy scavenger hunt, as many shops and restaurants are closed.

Similarly, the Germany Pavilion is relatively quiet. Obviously this is the case in every pavilion and throughout the park due to capacity reductions.

The Mexico Pavilion is certainly less populated, but still maintains a respectable – but distanced – flow of guests.

Partially contributing to the lack of foot traffic inside the pavilions is the move of entertainment to the America Gardens Theater. Currently, only Mariachi Cobre and the JaMMitors are performing there.

Also contributing to the minimal amount of guests deeper in the pavilions is the festival itself, keeping guests closer to the booths and the main walkway around World Showcase. Once spot that can be easy to miss is World Showplace, a large space nestled between Canada and United Kingdom Pavilions and offering four different food booths.

While the Flower & Garden Festival, and its flowers, came and went pretty quickly, you can still find some spots within EPCOT to have a makeshift festival.

Within World Showplace, the Desserts & Champagne Marketplace booth is serving up this Liquid Nitro Chocolate Cake Pop with Crumbled Twix, alongside two other Liquid Nitro Cake Pops. It looks amazing, and we have a review on all of the new items from this booth – click here to read our thoughts.

If you’re in the mood for a different kind of dessert, today is National Ice Cream Day, so L’Artisan des Glaces in the France Pavilion is a wonderful choice.

One notable health & safety policy change, believed to be a result of the Food & Wine festival, is the addition of wording that guests must be stationary and physically distanced in order to temporarily remove their mask to eat or drink. Beyond adding that wording to the official policy, these decals were added to booths and restaurants during the time we were at EPCOT.

These A-frame signs also appeared, sharing a similar message with guests, but in a much larger form on the main walkways.

Also related to health & safety, the Green Landing family play zone has, quite understandably, not reopened with the park.

Over at the Odyssey Pavilion, it seems as though the inner black hexagon of the icon has gone missing.

While the EPCOT Experience preview has had certain elements removed, the World Celebration poster still features a large and bright festival center whose future is questionable at best.

However, not everything is missing, under construction, or flat out cancelled. Pin trading has returned to the Pin Traders – Camera Center shop, and guests gladly lined up to do their trading today.

Finally, we ended our day the only way we know how at EPCOT – with a picture of the iconic Spaceship Earth. The park in disarray or not, this looming structure makes up for most of it.

Thank you for joining us today, and we hope you’ve enjoyed our trek through EPCOT. Have you had the opportunity to visit the park since it reopened, or do you have a trip planned? Let us know in the comments!

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Chrissy
2 months ago

What’s the Remy scavenger hunt prize this year?

Julie
Julie
2 months ago

OMG – that’s my husband and I pin trading! Lol! Im in the red shirt.

William Kuhn
William Kuhn
2 months ago

I’m a Disney fan, but I won’t be if Disney keeps repressing freedom of speech on Facebook. The bar of public opinion must be the judge, and not a multinational corporation in cahoots with Chinese communism.

Loren
Loren
1 month ago

Thank You for the trip around EPCOT.We enjoy your writing thoroughly!