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Friday, July 1, 2022

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Celebrate Soulfully at Walt Disney World and Experience What’s NEW!

Disney Days are my favorite! I love them so much that I started a brand new Instagram account just to tell you all they ways I love to spend my Disney Days!

Last week, I was invited to check out the newest celebration that spans across the Parks and Disney Springs to honor Black History Month with the theme of “Celebrate Soulfully.”

With new music, food, art and more that honors Black culture and heritage, we enjoyed a full day at Disney and more! We loved the all-new “The Soul of Jazz” exhibit at the American Adventure in Epcot and new musical acts at Disney Springs that are among the new experiences that will be available throughout and beyond this Black History Month.

It was a beautiful Disney Day to celebrate Black History Month at Walt Disney World! Here are some of the newest ways to “Celebrate Soulfully” the next time you visit!

New Experiences at Disney Springs

We kicked off our Disney Day in Disney Springs.  I absolutely love to walk around, taking in the atmosphere that is 100% Disney magic!  And with new experiences always popping up, I was so excited to be back to try a few new things I hadn’t tried before!  It truly is a new adventure coming to Disney Springs every time I visit!

New Hot Spots

new at Disney World Disney Springs M&M store

  • M&M’s –Have you always wanted an entire jar on orange M&M’s? Did you know you can put your picture on an M&M?! If you have something special coming up, might want to make sure the image is on your phone and you can have it imprinted onto an M&M of your choice!  The newest store to open at Disney Springs this year is a world of fun if you love this sweet nostalgic treat!
  • Everglazed Donuts – Seriously, my new favorite place for something sweet here at Disney Springs! Gourmet creations that will feed your whole crew for days! $5 get you a donut that will feed my 4 kids! All the crazy flavors and caffeine you need to start your Disney Day the Disney way!
  • Amorette’s Patisserie – The beautiful new petite cakes celebrate Princess Tiana and Joe Gardner, the African American jazz musician at the heart of the movie, “Soul.” They are even more delicious than they are beautiful!

Art

  • Discover four new art displays located throughout Disney Springs, including “Soul” inspired wall art near the Lego Store. I love the mural by Bee Harris that was a part of her Made with SOUL art! She created a design for the Made with Soul collection called “The Village” which highlights the 4 Black women in the main character Joe’s life. It’s beautiful!

Entertainment

  • Enjoy special performances from live musical acts including Motown in Motion, the Tonya Staples Duo and Joseph Jevanni at AdventHealth Waterside Stage, Waterview Park, and in Town Center. Motown Mondays, Jazz Thursdays and Smooth Sundays round out a line up of music that will fill your soul. The smooth sounds of their music fill the air as you enjoy your Disney Day.

Food and Wine

new at Disney World Disney Springs Wine Bar George

  • Wine Bar George introduced me to Andre Hueston Mack, winemaker and master sommelier, who at 30, decided to compete for and won the Best Young Sommelier in America. He was the first African American to win this distinguished award. He founded Maison Noir Wines and his wine “O.P.P” (which stands for “other people’s pinot”) is now my new favorite wine.

Pro Tip– Purchase a Wine Bar George Corkcicle and get a free drink! And any wines her pair perfectly with the Mac and Cheese Bites!

  • Shopping
  • Retail locations throughout Disney Springs are highlighting Black designers, artists and visionaries. Be sure to check out special offerings all throughout Disney Springs! Did you know that the House of Blues Orlando is home to the largest permanently displayed collection of Outsider and American Folk Art in the country? More than 150 untrained, self-taught and mostly African-American artists created emotional, raw, primitive and powerful pieces which server as Visual Blues throughout the venue! Definitely stop in the next time you visit!

EPCOT

As the Taste of EPCOT International Flower and Garden Festival is on the horizon, be sure to take in some of the new happenings! We checked out “The Soul of Jazz,” a new exhibit at the American Adventure. Featuring Joe Gardner from Disney and Pixar’s “Soul,” it will take you on a musical tour of America to learn more about this inspiring genre of music.

It was so cool to see this very colorful history of jazz music. The paintings and artifacts on display really take you on a journey across America and dives into the cities where the soul of jazz was born.  Louis Armstrong’s trumpet was by far my favorite piece of history on display.

new at Disney World Soul for Jazz

There’s even a music trivia challenge on the Play Disney Parks app too that you can play while you are waiting in lines too!

If you haven’t already seen “Soul” on Disney+, it’s an amazing movie that the follows a middle school teacher and jazz musician, Joe Gardner, on his journey to discover the answer to some of life’s most important questions. It’s a great Friday night family movie!

Continue to “Celebrate Soulfully” throughout Black History Month and beyond and make sure to follow the DisneySprings Instagram account as they celebrate Black cast members, artists, chefs, designers and visionaries and where you can find their work at Disney Springs and beyond!

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Laura Byrne
Laura Byrne is an award-winning former television news journalist who spent 15+ years in newsrooms across the state of Florida including Sarasota, Tallahassee, Fort Myers and right here in Tampa Bay where she still freelances on occasion. She covered the political beat, crime beat and every day breaking news during her time in Florida newsrooms, but is now focused on sharing positive news stories and events with families in Tampa Bay. She is a proud mommy of two little boys who keep her on her toes and laughing every day. Her goal is to inspire families just like yours to get out and play and experience all that Tampa Bay and our great state of Florida have to offer! She encourages you to share your stories and upcoming events so we can spread the good news.

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