6 Confirmed Refurbishments Coming Soon to Walt Disney World (January 2017)By Amanda Kondolojy, Tuesday, January 10, 2017 04:11
5. Kali River Rapids (Disney's Animal Kingdom)
Dates: January 3, 2017 to January 29, 2017
Just as it does every year, Kali River Rapids closed earlier this month for the ride to be drained, the paint is touched up, and the vehicles are cleaned. Because of the routine nature of this refurbishment, we're not expecting any major alterations to the ride experience, and since this attraction will be closed during what should be the chilliest weeks of the year (at least in Florida), there probably isn't that much of a rush to reopen this attraction during this cold season.
6. The Hall of Presidents (Magic Kingdom)
Dates: January 17, 2017 to June 29, 2017
Of course, while the majority of these refurbishments will bring small, behind the scenes improvements and upgrades to Walt Disney World attractions, one of the most extensive refurbishments of the new year will (potentially) totally reinvent a classic Magic Kingdom attraction.
As you probably already know, the United States will have a brand new president in just a few days, and in just a few days the Hall of Presidents will close for what is expected to be a massive update to this attraction And while we already know that part of this refurbishment will include the installation of a new animatronic of incoming President Donald Trump, given the long length of this refurbishment, we are assuming that massive changes will be coming to this attraction's pre-show as well.
The last time the show was overhauled was back in 2009 after Barack Obama was elected, with new film segments, narration by Morgan Freeman, and the addition of George Washington as the third speaking president added to the attraction. And while some of these show elements could remain, the addition of a new president provides Disney with an opportunity to make substantial changes to this attraction yet again, and given the six month closure, we'd wager that the current narration as well as George Washington's speech are going to be cut while (hopefully) something new is added.
In addition to the potential show improvements, another reason for the length of this refurbishment is to give the new president time to record his voice for the attraction. Ever since the addition of Bill Clinton in 1993, all sitting presidents have recorded their own voices for their respective Hall of Presidents audio animatronics, and it is assumed that Donald Trump will continue this tradition in 2017, recording his voiceover for this Magic Kingdom attraction sometime after his inauguration next week.
Though we only know about these few refurbishments for January, there's no doubt that 2017 will bring even more changes to Walt Disney World, especially with the opening of Pandora - The World of Avatar at Disney's Animal Kingdom potentially drawing crowds away from other attractions that could use some downtime. Are there any refurbishments on your Walt Disney World "wish list" that you would like to see the resort tackle in the new year?
Note: We keep a track of all upcoming Walt Disney World refurbishments over in our Rehab Watch section.