On Monday afternoon, the 2017 total solar eclipse is set to take place and it is going to affect schools, places of employment, sporting events, and even Walt Disney World. As it is still summer and a lot of people are on vacation, guests have been wondering what kind of things may take place in the parks in Orlando. Well, nothing celebratory is currently planned, but there will be some parks and attractions which will be affected.
As reported by Live Science, there will be a great American eclipse on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, as the moon moves in front of the sun and blocks the rays from getting to Earth. Some areas will see a total eclipse, while many others will see a partial eclipse, and again, that does include Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
Orlando is expected to get around 88 percent coverage of the sun, and that will cause Disney to alter some hours and operation. Here are all the known changes and effects at Walt Disney World for the solar eclipse on Monday.
The hours for Tom Sawyer Island almost never amount to a full day as it closes at dusk, but on Monday, that will be much earlier. On Monday, the island will open at 11 a.m., but as the official website of Walt Disney World shows, it will close at 2 p.m. during the eclipse and stayed closed for the remainder of the day.
The Festival of Fantasy Parade at 2 p.m. is not expected to be delayed at all and will take place as scheduled.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Since Animal Kingdom became a bit of a night park with the debut of Rivers of Light and opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar, most of the park will be unaffected. According to WDW Info, the animal trails are going to temporarily close during the beginning of the eclipse and start up again as light begins to return.
The water park at Walt Disney World isn’t going to close at any point, but some attractions may end up having to cease operations for a temporary amount of time. Nighttime lighting will be used as the eclipse sets in along with some extra beach entertainment.
A direct bus will also run from Blizzard Beach to Typhoon Lagoon from 1:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m if guests are looking to hop between the two water parks.
Over at Disney’s other water park, the nighttime lights will also be turned on when the darkness sets in on Monday. Other than that, the park and all attractions are expected to operate as normal.
Sammy Duvall’s Watersports Centre
All of the water activities that take place on Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon will not operate on Monday between the hours of 12 p.m. and 5 p.m., according to Sammy Duvalls Watersports Centre. It is not known if this includes the ferryboats and resort boats, but parasailing, fishing, and other activities will not be taking place during those hours on Aug. 21.
When asked about the ferryboats and other types of boat transportation to and from the parks, Disney advised there may be some alterations.
#WaltDisneyWorld will operate as normal during the eclipse with slight adjustments to the operations to account for lighting.
— WDW Today (@WDWToday) August 19, 2017
Considering this eclipse is not a normal occurrence, it is always possible that there could be other delays or attraction closures on Monday. Guests need to be prepared for unexpected closures.
The 2017 total solar eclipse is going to affect a lot of people, animals, schools, and businesses across the United States on Monday. To some, it will only be a partial eclipse, though, and those areas won’t lose light entirely. As for Walt Disney World, the darkness of the eclipse is going to affect some attractions and some parks, which means guests will need to be prepared. If they don’t want to waste a second of the magic, they’ll have to be ready for whatever the darkness may bring.
[Featured Image by Danny Cox]