HUGE Holiday Updates, Fantasmic! Officially Returns, and MORE Important Disney News

It’s been quite the week in Disney World!

Magic Kingdom at night

The holidays have arrived in a BIG way, we’ve got all kinds of food news, and some things that haven’t been back in YEARS have finally returned. So sit back, relax, and pull up a chair, as DFB proudly presents…your weekly news roundup. 😆

The Holidays Are HERE

First, we start with massive holiday news. The first holiday decorations (some snowflakes!) have arrived in EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios has started to celebrate the season with garlands, ornaments, and more.

Over at Magic Kingdom, the holidays are truly in full swing as festive decor, including the MASSIVE Christmas tree, has officially arrived!

We’re so excited!

When it comes to shopping, there are lots of holiday items to pick from. Online you’ll find Christmas Crocs and all kinds of other goodies. And we’ve seen a whole bunch of holiday merchandise arrive in Disney World as well. There are even some new holiday ears to pick up (and they’re pretty epic).

Hello Gorgeous

If you’re a massive Starbucks fan, then it’s time to celebrate! A Disney holiday Starbucks tumbler has arrived and it’s decked out in Christmas ombre. Plus, you’ll find a new Disney x Starbucks holiday travel tumbler and ornament too. Some of the Starbucks holiday cups are online, but act fast before they sell out!

Speaking of Starbucks, the Starbucks holiday drinks are back in Disney World. You can choose from the Iced Sugar Cookie Almondmilk Latte, the Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino, and the Caramel Brulee Latte, as well as some other sweet creations!

New Christmas Starbucks cups!

Continuing with sweet treats, some holiday treats have arrived in Magic Kingdom, including festive cookies and cupcakes.

And if you’re wondering what holiday snacks will be available at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, we have that FULL list for you right here!

Santa Cookie!

In terms of other updates, within Magic Kingdom, the Jungle Cruise has officially gotten its seasonal overlay and is now the Jingle Cruise! Click here to see what that experience is like.

Holiday theming

And you can’t forget about Disney’s epic gingerbread creations. At Disney’s Beach Club, the gingerbread carousel is on display and it is INCREDIBLE! Themed to the Disney princesses, made out of gingerbread, and the ability to actually spin?! This carousel has it all (plus, you won’t want to miss the treats nearby).


And finally, at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, the massive gingerbread house is under construction and we’re keeping a close eye on its progress.

Once this beauty is open, there will be special treats to grab and all kinds of details to hunt for.

It’s looking good!

The holidays are only just beginning in Disney World, so stay tuned for more news.

Click here for your ultimate guide to all of the 2022 gingerbread displays coming to Disney World

Food News

When it comes to food news, there are a lot of things to catch up on. First, Kona Cafe has officially reopened at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort with a refreshed look. You can see our FULL review of the reopened Kona Cafe (and the breakfast items we got there) here!


Despite holiday decorations taking over the parks, fall and Thanksgiving-themed treats have started to arrive, including one that puts a twist on pecan pie, a milkshake with a whole piece of pie on top, and MORE.

See ALL of our Thanksgiving-time snack reviews (and photos!) here.

Pumpkin Pie Shake

Over at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, buffets are BACK at Tusker House Restaurant. This spot had been serving meals family-style since its reopening, but now you can once again say “hello” to some of your favorite characters after chowing down on all the treats from the buffet stations. Stay tuned for our full review of our experience at this spot with its returned buffet.

So Many Adorable Desserts!

At Disney Springs, new offerings have arrived at Gideon’s Bakehouse (including a Pumpkin Bread Chocolate Crumb Cookie) — see our FULL review of them here!

There’s also a new side dish available at The Polite Pig, and Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew has released a donut that gives us favorite candy bar vibes!


And finally, if you’ll be in Disney World soon, a new DOLE whip float will be available for a limited time (November 3rd-6th) at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

Click here to see the BEST and WORST(!!) things we ate in Disney World in October

Fantasmic! IS BACK!

Get ready to dance away with Mickey because Fantasmic! has officially returned to Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

We got the chance to see the show during a preview event, but some of the show got canceled due to weather issues. That’s a good thing to keep in mind for your trips. Because Fantasmic! is outside, sometimes the show can be impacted by weather concerns so be sure to check and see what the weather will be like during your trip and watch for any updates.

Fantasmic! scene

Fantasmic! isn’t the same as it used to be though. There is a brand NEW scene with some popular characters and other changes that have been made to the show. Click here for a breakdown of the changes made to Fantasmic!


And finally, remember that Fantasmic! can get BUSY! We saw some massive crowds on the show’s official reopening night, so you’ll want to be prepared for that during your trip.

Evening Fant Crowds

You can choose to line up for the show very (VERY) early, or potentially pick up a dining package that’ll help you get reserved seating for the show (along with a nice meal).

Click here for full details about the Fantasmic! dining packages

COVID-19 Updates

In terms of other big updates, there have been some COVID-19-related news items that popped up this week. First, the COVID-19 testing policy is changing in a big way for Disney Cruise Line.

All guests (regardless of vaccination status) will NO LONGER be required to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to sailings that start on November 14th, 2022. This only applies, however, to sailings departing from the United States (at least for now).

Disney Wish

In other COVID-19 news, COVID-19 concerns in China have caused Shanghai Disney Resort to CLOSE (again).


The resort has closed indefinitely and a reopening date has not been announced. We’ll be on the lookout for updates there.

For more updates about travel and COVID-19, click here

Disappearing Plastic Bags, McDonald’s News, and MORE

And finally, we’ve got a bit of a mixture of remaining news items, so let’s check them out rapid-fire-style! First, Toy Story character meet-and-greets are BACK in Disney’s Hollywood Studios (say “hey” to Woody for us!)

It’s Woody and Jessie!

…we’ve got an UPDATE on plastic bag disappearances in Disney World (spoiler alert: we’re seeing select plastic bags REMOVED from certain spots)…

Still over here!

…NEW Black Panther Happy Meal toys are available at McDonald’s


if you’re a Disney+ subscriber, you might be able to get EXCLUSIVE early access to select items online, and ads have arrived on Netflix.

And that’s it for our news roundup for this week! We’ll continue to keep an eye out for more details and information you need to know.

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The post HUGE Holiday Updates, Fantasmic! Officially Returns, and MORE Important Disney News first appeared on the disney food blog.