Best Trip Tips

Best Trip Tips: February Vacationers

February is a wonderful time of year to head to Walt Disney World. The crowds of Christmas has dissipated, the weather is warmer then the frigid temperatures you may be experiencing and there are plenty of special events going on to enjoy. Take a look. If you are heading down sooner, check out the post from last month on what you can expect during the month of January.

February 1st-10th

February 11th-20th

February 21st-28th

February 1st-10th

Epcot’s Festival of the Arts

February 1st-10th

Returning for another year, this festival celebrates all of the arts. From culinary to the performing, painting and sculpting, you can experience it all at Epcot. Whether you want to sit back and enjoy a performance or learn a few new painting skills, there will be something for you and your fellow vacationers at Epcot.

The Performing Arts

There will be live performances found all over the park. From marching bands to jazz performers, folk singers and acrobats. All around Epcot you can stop and enjoy the many artists. At the America Gardens Theatre you will be able to watch choral performances or orchestras at different times throughout the day.

Check out Broadway stars on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday evenings as they perform numbers for Disney’s Broadway productions. February 2nd to 5th you’ll see Kissy Simmons, a previous star of The Lion King and Alton Fitzgerald White, a previous King Mufasa in The Lion King. From the 9th to the 12th you can enjoy a performance from Ashley Brown the original Mary Poppins from the New York Production and Josh Strickland the original Tarzan from the Broadway production. Either set will bring you to your feet with applause.

Get reserved seating for Disney on Broadway Concert Series by enjoying this dining package. Eat breakfast, lunch or dinner at one of the participating restaurants and you won’t have to worry about grabbing a seat for the show. You’ll either enjoy a buffet or 3 course meal, with an appetizer, entree, dessert and non-alcoholic beverage. The restaurants you can choose from are:

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall

Biergarten Restaurant

Coral Reef Restaurant

The Garden Grill Restaurant

Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room

They all range in price and experience. Dining plans are not accepted.

The Culinary Arts

Enjoy food that looks as good as it tastes. Similar to the Food and Wine Festival hosted in Epcot in the Fall, stations will be set up throughout World Showcase featuring foods of many different delicacies. Take a passport and enjoy them all.

The Visual Arts

You can take a workshop, sit in on a seminar or peruse the galleries found around World Showcase. Everyone can get in on the fun. As a family pick up a sticker book and find Figment in pieces of art around the park. When you find them all, turn it in to collect a special surprise. Workshops have an extra cost, some costing $39 whereas premium workshops cost $259. DVC members and annual pass holders receive a 15% discount. Both of these fees are above and beyond park admission. All of the seminars and workshops take place in Odyssey Festival Showplace, which is located on the outskirts of Future World, past Test Track and before Mexico. If any of the below interest you call (407) WDW- TOUR to make a reservation. Otherwise make your way to the showplace to sign up. Many of these workshops are better suited to locals or guests within driving distances. The creations you make during these workshops you will want to bring home with you to treasure, and you don’t want to see these ruined by stuffing them in your suitcase.

Seminars

February 1st. 

1:30pm

Learn about American Music History with Charles Grffin, the founder of the Central Florida Composer Forum

4:30pm

Jason Tackett, a Disney Artist will entice you to explore your creative juices.

February 2nd.

1:30pm.

Watch artists create pieces of art.

4:30pm.

Learn about John Williams music and its important element inside of our favourite films.

February 3rd.

1:30pm

Hear from Paul Briggs, the head of story from Frozen and Big Hero 6 how story gets transformed into pictures by artists.

February 4th.

4:30pm

Kim Minichiello, a former Imagineer, will be teaching you how to create pieces of art to preserve memories.

February 5th.

11am

Watch as Hank Gustafon creates pancakes into pieces of arts.

4:30pm

Jeff Nickel, Disney Photo Imaging, will give tips on how to improve your photography skills so you can capture more memories while at the parks.

February 6th.

1:30pm

Watch as Hank Gustafon creates pancakes into pieces of arts.

4:30pm

Meet the Fairy House Ladies and be inspired by their fairy house creations.

February 7th.

11am

Learn about photo editing tools from Tom Smutny of Disney Photo Imaging and make the pictures you’ve already taken better.

February 8th.

1:30pm

Charles Griffin is back with a tutorial on music of Jazz in the American Culture.

4:30pm

Learn how props and sets are made to suit the story they are helping to tell from local artist Jovon Harkless.

February 9th.

1:30pm

Josh Garrick of “Seeking the Ancient Kallos” will share his tale.

4:30pm

Learn how Imagineers come up with all the amazing ideas that come to life at Disney Parks from Jason Grandt, Creative Director of Walt Disney World Resort.

February 10th.

1:30pm

Meet and learn from a Nation Parks Painter, Patricia Cummins.

4:30pm

Watch and learn how to carve a watermelon into a piece of art.

Workshops

February 1st. 

11am

Mold tea pots with Doug Bringle, from Crealde School of Art.

February 2nd. 

11am

Paul Briggs, head of story for Frozen and Big Hero 6, will tell of how story comes to life from the pages to the screen.

February 3rd.

11am

Bonnie DiCocco and Donna Price from Driftwood Market will be teaching how to make your own wreath with burlap and ribbons. For $39, that’s cheaper than buying a store bough wreath.

February 4th.

11am

Presents by Show Finisher Brittany Smith of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, create a beautiful mosaic with dried foods.

February 5th.

11am

Learn the art of quilling from Walt Disney World Resort, Creative Services Manager, Simone Miranda.

February 6th.

11am

Make your own animated flip book with Todd Bright, a former Disney Animator.

February 7th.

11am

Learn the art of paper quilling from Lois Bandt-Weber.

February 8th.

11am

Make you own work of art on a canvas inspired by the Orlando Museum of Art’s State of Excellence with the help of David Matteson and Jane Ferry.

February 9th.

11am

Create an action figure with Belinda Glennon by using a mix of media.

February 10th.

11am

Learn all you’ve ever wanted to know about Oswald the Lucky Rabbit from David A. Bossert.

Premium Workshops

February 2nd. 

8am

Paint with a Disney Artist.

February 9th.

8am

Paint with a Disney Artist.

National Dance Team Championship

February 2nd-4th

This championship hosts girls from junior high to high school. Expect many cheer teams around the park but also come and enjoy some of the high caliber performances from teams across the United States.

DVC Moonlight Magic Magic Kingdom

February 6th

9pm-12am

Magic Kingdom closes to park goers at 8pm on February 6th except if you are a DVC member and you have a ticket to Moonlight Magic. With the majority of the rides open, complimentary food and beverages, and special character experiences it’s no wonder these exclusive events sell out so quickly.

Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom

February 8th

The gates of the Magic Kingdom close at 8pm on this Wednesday night unless you have purchased an After Hours pass. The event runs until 11pm. It pays to buy tickets early. Ahead of time tickets cost $119 but the day of they’ll cost you $125. DVC members can purchase tickets for $89. This special ticketed event gives you access to your favourite Magic Kingdom attractions and includes some of your favourite snacks and drinks. Only a select number of tickets are sold so you can count on a small crowd.

National High School Cheerleading Championship

February 10th-11th

This televised competition take place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports with teams competing from high schools across the country. For two days you can head here with your family to take in some impressive tumbles, jumps, leaps and cheers that will entertain and impress.

CLOSURES

Liberty Square Riverboat. Magic Kingdom.

Kali River Rapids. Animal Kingdom.

Typhoon Lagoon Water Park

February 11th-20th

Epcot International Festival of the Arts

February 11th-19th

Returning for another year, this festival celebrates all of the arts. From culinary to the performing, painting and sculpting, you can experience it all at Epcot. Whether you want to sit back and enjoy a performance or learn a few new painting skills, there will be something for you and your fellow vacationers at Epcot.

The Performing Arts

There will be live performances found all over the park. From marching bands to jazz performers, folk singers and acrobats. All around Epcot you can stop and enjoy the many artists. At the America Gardens Theatre you will be able to watch choral performances or orchestras at different times throughout the day.

Check out Broadway stars on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday evenings as they perform numbers for Disney’s Broadway productions. From the 9th to the 12th and the 16th to the 19th you can enjoy a performance from Ashley Brown the original Mary Poppins from the New York Production and Josh Strickland the original Tarzan from the Broadway production.

Get reserved seating for Disney on Broadway Concert Series by enjoying this dining package. Eat breakfast, lunch or dinner at one of the participating restaurants and you won’t have to worry about grabbing a seat for the show. You’ll either enjoy a buffet or 3 course meal, with an appetizer, entree, dessert and non-alcoholic beverage. The restaurants you can choose from are:

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall

Biergarten Restaurant

Coral Reef Restaurant

The Garden Grill Restaurant

Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room

They all range in price and experience. Dining plans are not accepted.

The Culinary Arts

Enjoy food that looks as good as it tastes. Similar to the Food and Wine Festival hosted in Epcot in the Fall, station will be set up throughout World Showcase featuring foods of many different delicacies. Take a passport and enjoy them all.

The Visual Arts

You can take a workshop, sit in on a seminar or peruse the galleries found around World Showcase. Everyone can get in on the fun. As a family pick up a sticker book and find Figment in pieces of art around the park. When you find them all turn it in to collect a special surprise. Workshops have an extra cost, some costing $39 whereas premium workshops cost $259. DVC members and annual pass holders receive a 15% discount. Both of these fees are above and beyond park admission. All of the seminars and workshops take place in Odyssey Festival Showplace, which is located on the outskirts of Future World, past Test Track and before Mexico. If any of the below interest you call (407) WDW- TOUR to make a reservation. Otherwise make your way to the showplace to sign up. Many of these workshops are better suited to locals or guests within driving distances. The creations you make during these workshops you will want to bring home with you to treasure, and you don’t want to see these ruined by stuffing them in your suitcase.

Seminars

February 11th

11am

David A Bossert, Disney Historian, will share facts and tidbits about Oswald the Lucky Rabbit and Mickey Mouse.

4:30pm

Join Doug Bringle as he shares the importance of ceramics.

February 12th

1:30pm

Learn from Joshua Vickery the importance of arts in our communities.

4:30pm

Daniel Muni will be teaching the art of creating violins.

February 13th

1:30pm

Tom Smutny returns with tips on how to use your camera when you are taking pictures involving water.

4:30pm

Learn from Christina Eve how she gives sound a picture and a painting a voice.

February 14th

1:30pm

Learn how to use unconventional materials to create floral arrangements.

February 15th

4:30pm

Learn how to paint modern floral oil paintings.

February 16th

1:30pm

Learn more about your camera to get the best pictures from Simone Amaduzzi, professional photographer.

4:30pm

Be inspired by Jason Tiki Tackett, from Disney’s Virtual Magic Kingdom.

February 17th

1:30pm

Learn about the art of latte creations.

February 18th

1:30pm

Come here from Don Hahn, a Disney producer, as he shares from the era of Walt Disney park creations.

February 19th

1:30pm

Tom Smutny is back to teach you how to get the perfect close up shot.

4:30pm

Charles Griffin returns to teach about women composers from the past and the present.

Workshops

February 11th

11am

Paint your own ink and paint cel with Lynn Rippberger from Disney Animation.

February 12th

11am

Todd Bright, a former Disney Animator, will be teaching the skill of quick sketching.

February 13th

11am

Join Paige O’Hara, the voice of Belle from Beauty and the Beast, for a workshop. I would recommend calling ahead for this one as she is a Disney legend.

February 14th

11am

Create a piece of string art with Bonnie DiCocco & Donna Price.

February 15th

11am

Learn how to make your very own shadow box with Dave Avanzino.

February 16th

11am

If you missed her on the 13th, Paige O’Hara, the voice of Belle from Beauty and the Beast returns.

February 17th

Join Don Hahn, a Disney Producer, for a one of a kind look at the art and behind the scenes work of mid-century Disney.

February 18th

11am

Create a piece of art with oil pastels with Patricia Byron.

February 19th

11am

Create your own piece of art inspired by Orlando Museum of Art

Premium Workshop

February 16th

8am

Paint with a Disney Artist

Disney After Hours at Magic Kingdom

February 15th

Tonight the Magic Kingdom is open until 9pm but not for Disney After Hours ticket holders. These guests have access to the Magic Kingdom from 9pm until midnight. With complimentary food and beverages, character experiences and minimal wait times. Tickets cost $119 or $125 the night of. For DVC members and annual pass holders you’ll be charged $89. That price is for both adults and children.

Diamond 9 President’s Day Sun Classic

February 15th-19th

For four days, baseball is the name of the game at ESPN Wide World of Sports. With teams traveling from all over the US in age groups ranging from 10 and under to 18 and under. Come check out these girls compete in some fastpitch on a non-park day.

USA Competitions Presidential Classic

February 16th-19th

If you have a gymnast in the family they may appreciate a few moments to watch their sport on display. With competitors ranging from mid to high level and ages ranging from 5 to 18. You may even find yourself among some future olympians.

Twirl Mania International Championship

February 16th-19th

This competition will not only take place at the Wide World of Sports but performers will be showcased in Epcot and down the streets of Main Street, U.S.A. This competition is like non other. With a variety of solo performers, pairs and groups performing acts that will leave you speechless.

Disney’s President’s Day Soccer Festival

February 17th-19th

For the soccer fan in your party, make your way to the ESPN Wide World of Sports to take in some competition on the field. This is an open registration so the caliber will not be as high as some of the other games that take place at this facility but who knows someone you know may be competing.

February 21st-28th

Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend

February 22nd-25th

This annual runDisney half marathon weekend brings families young and old to run through Cinderella’s Castle. This sold out event begins February 22nd and ends the 25th. There are ways you can enjoy aspects of this weekend without racing. Head to the Expo at the Wide World of Sports Complex or cheer on the runners and walkers. You can purchase a chEar Squad package or simply use some of the transportation to cheer on racers at the finish or in the Magic Kingdom (no entry required). Take a look below at all the events going on throughout the weekend by day.

February 22nd

Expo

Noon-8pm

Make your way to the ESPN Wide World of Sports and peruse the vendors. Find exclusive runDisney merchandise and Princess Half Marathon weekend merchandise. Vendors selling running gear, electronics and highlighting racing series, there is a lot to take in. The expo itself is free. If you or any of your party are runners this is a great place to spend a couple of hours on a non-park day. Be aware you may end up spending some of your merch money here.

February 23rd

Disney Princess 5k

5:30am

Runners and walkers make their way through Epcot. Spectators can cheer these participants on at the World Showcase entrance at Epcot. Or you can head to the Finish Line. With the early start time and the short distance you won’t see runners around the area if you are planning on making this Friday an Epcot day.

Expo

Noon-7pm

Make your way to the ESPN Wide World of Sports and peruse the vendors. Find exclusive runDisney merchandise and Princess Half Marathon weekend merchandise. Vendors selling running gear, electronics and highlighting racing series, there is a lot to take in. The expo itself is free. If you or any of your party are runners this is a great place to spend a couple of hours on a non-park day. Be aware you may end up spending some of your merch money here. When entering the expo check the guest speaker schedule you may be there in time to hear from an Olympian or get great training tips from an expert.

February 24th

Disney Princess Enchanted 10k

5:30am

This race runs through Epcot and past the Crescent Lake resorts. All racers will be done by 7:30am. If you are driving to Epcot on this day you may have a hard time finding parking due to the finish line. If you’re looking to cheer someone on you can simply head to the Beach Club or Yacht Club or Boardwalk resorts.

Expo

9:30am-3:30pm

Make your way to the ESPN Wide World of Sports and peruse the vendors. Find exclusive runDisney merchandise and Princess Half Marathon weekend merchandise. Vendors selling running gear, electronics and highlighting racing series, there is a lot to take in. The expo itself is free. If you or any of your party are runners this is a great place to spend a couple of hours on a non-park day. Be aware you may end up spending some of your merch money here. When entering the expo check the guest speaker schedule you may be there in time to hear from an Olympian or get great training tips from an expert.

Kids Races

Kids Dashes 10:30am-12:30pm

Diaper Dash 12:30pm-1:00pm

One Mile Run-1pm

These races are also sold out. But you can certainly spectate. Also, if you’re planning on checking out the expo, another day may be better because all of these participants will be in the area. The Diaper Dash is hilarious to watch with participants ranging from crawlers to barely walking.

February 25th

Disney Princess Half Marathon

5:30am

This race is the longest distance and therefore will end up affecting part of your morning transportation. Especially if you’re planning on doing an Epcot or Magic Kingdom day. The race makes it way through the Magic Kingdom at approximately 10km. Racers finish the race at the entrance of Epcot. There is a time limit so everything will be done and down by noon. Making it a better Hollywood Studios or Animal Kingdom day. If you’re looking to cheer on racers you can actually go to the Magic Kingdom and spectate on Main Street USA. Simply take the transportation from your resort to the race prep area. Walk to the Epcot monorail, disembark at the Ticket and Transportation Centre and board any Magic Kingdom Monorail. This will take you to the Magic Kingdom where you’ll have free entry to watch those runners and walkers race down that famous strip.

Diamond 9 College Citrus Classic Weekend

February 22nd-25th

Sit in the stands as ladies compete in this college fast pitch event. Top College teams will be putting on their best performance. And you can take in it during your Walt Disney World vacation. Maybe your local college team will be competing.

CLOSURES

Liberty Square Riverboat. Magic Kingdom

Finding Nemo- The Musical. Animal Kingdom.

Typhoon Lagoon Water Park