Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Disney Animal Kingdom News for February 15, 2017: New birds and meetand greets

More information on the bird demonstrations:  We have gotten more information of the new bird shows testing throughout the park. There will be 2, one is in Dinoland and one in Harambe. In each show, three to four species will be used with the one in Dinoland emphasizing the relationship between bird and dinosaur. The Dinoland show will occur at 3:30 and 4:30 pm and will use a temporary stage. The African show will not be listed on the times guides and will use the stage already in the middle of Harambe. It should be noted that these shows will change the schedule at Flights of Wonder, with less performances there. Please check your times guide for same.

macaw during an early bird show at Harambe circa 1998

Doc McStuffins: A meet and greet of the Disney Junior character will be coming to Rafiki's Planet Watch. She will greet guests near the Veterinarian area of the Planet Watch. The character is a doctor for toys so I suppose it is somewhat theme appropriate.  She will be replacing Chip and Dale as the meet and greet character in the area. Rafiki will continue greeting guests, as well.



Park Hours for this week are....
Thursday February 9 9 am- 8 pm
Friday February 10 9 am-8 pm
Saturday Febraury 11 9 am- 8 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Sunday  February 12 9 am- 8 pm
Monday February 13 9 am- 8 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Tuesday February 14 9 am- 8 pm
Wednesday February 15 9 am- 8 pm

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Episode 105 of Radio Harambe - Safari Mike's First Ever Solo Trip to DAK!

It's another trip report from Safar Mike as he discusses the good, the bad, the ugly and the new from his recent first-ever solo trip to Walt Disney World. Dave and Mike also discuss the release of a new photo that looks to be part of the e-ticket attraction coming to Pandora at Disney's Animal Kingdom.


If you have any questions or comments about the show, please email us at jamboeveryone@gmail.com

Visit Pandora

Disney has released a brand new website. We welcome you to Visit Pandora. The hype leading up to opening of Pandora, World of Avatar begins now.



The conceit of the site is that Alpha Centauri Expeditions, ACE, the fictional travel company taking you to the planet, has released a website to give you information for your upcoming "tours." The site has a page dedicated to the experts hired by ACE for these expeditions, giving you bios for the river guide, the banshee expert and other guides and scientists involved in the project.



The other part of the site, for now anyway, gives a brief description of the 2 attractions plus the area all of this is set in, Mo'ara Valley. We do find out some more details about the area. For example, the river you are on for the boat ride is called the Kaspavan River. On that journey, you will travel under a canopy of glowing plants and animals on the move. The banshees will take you under the floating mountains and through stone arches.


Finally, Rivers of Light

This morning Disney has announced that Rivers of Light is finally, after all this time, starting. And the date is next week. Friday, February 17th will be the grand opening for Rivers of Light and fast passes have already been released into the system. The show on February 17 has a 7:15 pm start time.



Dining packages are now on sale through Tusker House and Tiffins. At Tusker House, guests must arrive to dine no later 2 and half hours before their show time. At Tiffins, that window is pushed to 3 hours. All meals are available. The price point for Tusker is $39 for adults for breakfast and $52 for lunch/dinner. At Tiffins, the lunch/dinner package is $67 for adults.

photo courtesy of Disney

You can now see the schedule for the show through June of this year. The show will only happen every other day in February with showtimes at 7:15 pm. The every other day schedule continues into March but the shows get pushed way back to 8:45 pm during the month. In April, some nights will have two performances at 8:30 and 9:45 pm. By early April, the show turns to a nightly event. In May, there is one show at 9:15 pm although Disney is still listing the park hours as 9 am to 7 pm, but that is obviously going to change.



As many of you know, the show debuted during a special event this week. And unlike the cast member previews from some months ago, video taping was permitted. I will start off by saying, I have only seen videos of it so any criticisms might not be fair as a result, and I certainly may change my mind once I see it in person.



But I found it a little ho hum, no real oomph. There certainly is plenty to like such as the sound track and the lotus flower fountains. The water screens seem a vast improvement to the Jungle Book show, but I can't promise that for every seat. The shamans don't really keep the story together at all. And there are real dry spots in the tempo of the show.



I know Disney won't or can't use fireworks due to animal safety and welfare, but something else I think is needed. Perhaps drones like the ones used recently at Disney Springs during the holidays. Of course, that damn flying dragon from a few years back would be perfect but what are you going to do.

By Safari Mike 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Disney's Animal Kingdom News for February 8, 2017: More Birds?

New Bird Show?: According to Orlando Park News, testing is about to begin on a new bird demonstration in Dinoland USA. Cast members will be getting a sneak peek on Friday, February 10th, for a demo that will start later this month. This is continuing the trend at the park for more animal demonstrations. Recently, animal handlers have been popping up in the Oasis with live reptiles for a brief talk. Kids often get to gently touch the animal, as well. This is part of Disney's partnership with NEI, who performs these types of shows across the country.


Winged Encounters may be one of three bird shows

Avatarland Date: During an earnings meeting, Bob Iger officially announced what has been guessed at for the last few weeks, the opening of Pandora, the World of Avatar set as Memorial Day weekend. The land in its entirety will open May 27, 2017.




Park Hours for this week are....
Thursday February 9 9 am- 7:30 pm
Friday February 10 9 am-7:30 pm
Saturday Febraury 11 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Sunday  February 12 9 am- 8 pm
Monday February 13 9 am- 8 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Tuesday February 14 9 am- 8 pm
Wednesday February 15 9 am- 8 pm

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Disney's Animal Kingdom News for February 1, 2017: Terra changes and animal encounters

Terra Treats: The old Terra Treats has replaced its once allergy friendly menu. Its now serving chicken wings. Oh, and beer.



Animal Encounters: During my recent visit, I was able to spot one of the new animal experiences. In my case, a keeper was walking around with a boa. I have seen pictures of other reptiles, such as a bearded dragon also being shown close up to guests. People were allowed to briefly touch the boa.



No more BBQ sauce: In a further move to the bad, Disney is replacing the signature barbecue sauce at the Flame Tree BBQ with the rather generic Heinz BBQ sauce. For the time being, you can still but bottles of the sauce at the shops in the park and at the lodge and Disney is not getting rid of the sweet and spicy sauce at the eatery. However, Flame Tree has steadily gotten worse over the years and although its still beautiful, the food is now sub par and this change certainly won't help.

Park Hours for this week are....
Thursday February 2 9 am- 7:30 pm
Friday February 3 9 am-7:30 pm
Saturday Febraury 4 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Sunday  February 5 9 am- 7:30 pm
Monday February 6 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Tuesday February 7 9 am- 7:30 pm
Wednesday February 8 9 am-7:30 pm

Monday, January 30, 2017

Who misses Camp Minnie Mickey

Its been a couple of years since Camp Minnie Mickey went away. It closed on January 5, 2014 just over three years ago. So I will just put up some pictures of the old land....




Who remembers to sort of dragon on the site of the future Beastlie Kingdomme? 











Avatar is getting ever so closer, so it's kind of fun to take a little look at the old days.

By Safari Mike 

Friday, January 27, 2017

Photo of the Day: the Discovery River

One of my favorite spots on the Animal Kingdom. This pretty shot was taken just as you cross the bridge into Asia with Drinkwallah on your right. 



We, of course, are looking forward to Rivers of Light (if that ever happens), but the theater does kind of spoil the tranquility of this portion of the Discovery River. 

By Safari Mike 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Disney's Animal Kingdom News for January 18, 2017: New baby otters

Baby Otters: Lots of animal news recently at the park. This week Disney has begun exhibiting baby small clawed otters on the Tree of Life trails. The pups were born a few months ago but now can be seen on stage.



Celebrity sighting?: Safari Mike will be heading down to the world this week. So make sure you are on the lookout for him. And don't be shy, make sure you say hello.


Park Hours for this week are....
Thursday January 19 9 am- 7:30 pm
Friday January 20 9 am-7:30 pm
Saturday January 21 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Sunday  January 22 9 am- 7:30 pm
Monday January 23 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Tuesday January 24 9 am- 7:30 pm
Wednesday January 25 9 am-7:30 pm

Monday, January 16, 2017

The Dangers of Africa

There are some great graphics along the Gorilla Falls trail. At the hippo exhibit, there is this gem showing 2 of the most dangerous animals in Africa. 


The hippo is extremely unpredictable and territorial. So when small boats or other animals get close, they get angry, and in the water they are fast and dangerous. The nile crocodile is also dangerous and both these animals have been known to kill humans. 

By Safari Mike 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Disney Animal Kingdom News: January 11, 2017: New Animals at the park

New Elephant Baby: Disney has recently announced the birth of Stella, a new baby African elephant born to Donna. Donna became pregnant in January 2015. Yes, that's right, 2015. This is Donna's third calf, with the 2 previous babies born in 2005 and 2010. The herd now numbers 10 elephants with three males and seven females. Stella is on exhibit periodically be on the lookout.

photo courtesy of Disney

New Experiences: Disney will be testing some new animal experiences around the park. Disney has an agreement with Natural Encounters, Inc. to provide small animal encounters. Testing will mostly occur off hours but it is possible that some testing will occur during park operating times. Testing areas are said to include Dinoland, Discovery Island and Harambe. Live animal demonstrations could include birds, reptiles and small mammals.




Park Hours for this week are....
Thursday January 12 9 am- 7:30 pm
Friday January 13 9 am-7:30 pm
Saturday January 14 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Sunday  January 15 9 am- 7:30 pm
Monday January 16 9 am- 7:30 pm Extra Magic Hour in the morning
Tuesday January 17 9 am- 7:30 pm
Wednesday January 18 9 am-7:30 pm

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Episode 103 of Radio Harambe - Our 2017 DAK Wishlist

It's our first podcast of the New Year and that means we present our wishlist of what we would like to see at Disney's Animal Kingdom in 2017. Dave and Safari Mike each get six choices, 3 little, 2 medium, and one big and then they get to throw in a bonus wish for the rest of Walt Disney World. They also look back at how their repsective lists panned out from last year. If you have any questions or comments about the show, feel free to email us at jamboeveryone@gmail.com. Asante Sana and Happy New Year!


The guys also discussed the passing of their friend Alan Mize, and here is the link to a GoFundMe drive being held to benefit the college education for Alan's daughter. Thank you