Walt Disney was a very patriotic man who had deep admiration and pride for his country. This sense of patriotism extended into the plans for Disneyland and eventually the Walt Disney World Resort, with Americana found in the architecture and theming of several attractions and experiences that celebrate the United States.
Since the country has such a long and rich history, there are plenty of ways to celebrate being patriotic, and Guests who spend time at the Walt Disney World Resort can absolutely fill an entire day with experiences that celebrate the United States. From historical attractions, traditional American meals, and classic architecture, there are plenty of amazing experiences waiting for Guests to enjoy on a patriotic day at the Walt Disney World Resort!
Details of The American Adventure Pavilion
The best way to begin a patriotic day at the Walt Disney World Resort is by heading to EPCOT’s World Showcase and enjoying The American Adventure Pavilion. This is the host country of World Showcase, and it is centrally found on World Showcase Lagoon tucked between Italy and Japan with wonderful water views and plenty to explore.
The American Adventure Pavilion is a wonderful example of colonial architecture and details, with the main building being modeled after popular constructions at the time including Monticello and Philadelphia’s Independence Hall. The neat red brick, bright white molding and details, and ornate roofline and clock tower historically demonstrate how architecture has evolved over the last few centuries, and there are also smaller buildings and booths that continue the theme. Guests should be sure to wander and enjoy all of the small details that help to make the pavilion feel as immersive as it is.
Voices of Liberty
Once they have explored the outdoor portion of The American Adventure Pavilion, Guests can head inside of the main building to enjoy several delightful experiences. The interior immediately welcomes Guests with a massive rotunda with ornate ceilings, a second-floor balcony, and walls lined with inspirational quotes from familiar names and paintings that depict life in America over the last few centuries.
Before each showing of The American Adventure attraction, Guests can enjoy listening to the absolutely phenomenal Voices of Liberty. This a cappella group consists of several members who are dressed in traditional colonial formal attire and perform patriotic songs of yesteryear for the crowd. Not only are their voices amazing, but the architecture of the rotunda also makes the sound even more beautiful and Guests can even interact and pose for photos with the members after each performance.
The American Adventure
Once the Voices of Liberty conclude their performance, Guests are invited to move upstairs and enter into the massive theater that is home to The American Adventure. On their way upstairs, they move up large escalators in the Hall of Flags which showcases every version of the American flag that has existed since the country’s inception.
Once inside the theater, Guests can enjoy a distinctly patriotic show that tells the rich and challenging history of the American people beginning with the pilgrims traveling to America on the Mayflower. The show utilizes larger-than-life sets, dozens of audio-animatronics, paintings, photos, film, and several musical numbers to bring momentous moments from the Revolutionary War to modern times to life. The entire experience is narrated by Benjamin Franklin and Mark Twain and ends dramatically with a finale featuring the song “Golden Dream.”
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Lunch at Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue
The final stop in EPCOT’s The American Pavilion on a patriotic day is for lunch at Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue. This quick-service location welcomes Guests into a dining area that continues the colonial architecture theming and serves up delicious barbecue prepared in a variety of styles that are popular across the United States.
Regal Eagle Smokehouse: Craft Drafts & Barbecue is open daily for lunch and dinner and features delicious entrée options including Sliced Texas Beef Brisket Sandwich, North Carolina Chopped Smoked Pork Butt Platter, Memphis Dry-rub Pork Ribs, and Kansas City Smoked Half-Chicken. Guests can also order up a variety of domestic beer and wine to complement their meals as well as indulge in four house-made sauces including Blue Ridge Vinegar League and Sizzlin’ Pit Dry Rub Coalition.
Explore Main Street U.S.A.
After enjoying a morning in EPCOT’s World Showcase, Guests can hop over to the Magic Kingdom to continue their patriotic day. Right when entering the Disney Park, Guests emerge on Main Street U.S.A. which is bursting with patriotism as it honors a classic American small town at the turn of the century. Main Street U.S.A. was modeled on Marceline, Missouri where Walt Disney briefly lived as a child, and Guests are sure to feel transported back in time by the charming theming.
Main Street U.S.A. features several architectural styles that evolve as Guests move from the Walt Disney World Railroad Station down towards Cinderella Castle and symbolize the passing of time. Every single building features an immense amount of detailing, including intricate molding and window treatments, bright paint colors, and special details like balconies and rooflines. With so many wonderful details to take in, Guests should be sure to spend time exploring all corners of Main Street U.S.A.!
The Hall of Presidents
Next up on a patriotic day is The Hall of Presidents in the Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square. The patriotic and historical attraction is housed inside of a colonial-style brick building also inspired by Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, and Guests can pass through a grand entrance into the lobby. While waiting for each show to begin, Guests can explore several small displays that feature personal items from various presidents as well as check out a roped-off area of carpeting that is the only place the Presidential Seal can be found other than the Oval Office.
Guests are then seated inside of the main theater where The Hall of Presidents begins by sharing the history of the end of the Revolutionary War and how George Washington became the nation’s first president. The show then continues sharing how the office continued to evolve before the curtain rises to dramatically reveal an animatronic Abraham Lincoln who stands to address the crowd.
The Hall of Presidents truly takes Guests’ breath away with the final portion of the experience when the curtain fully opens to reveal every single president standing on stage together as one united group. Each president is introduced in turn before the dramatic conclusion where George Washington and the current sitting president both speak. It’s a stunning example of patriotism and showcases just how far America has come in several short centuries.
Details of Liberty Square
After enjoying a showing of The Hall of Presidents, Guests should spend time wandering through Liberty Square and enjoying the patriotic and historical details found all around. The architecture of Liberty Square is similar to Main Street U.S.A. in that it evolves from one end to the other to symbolize the passing of time, and Guests can spot everything from colonial to Dutch gothic styles.
Every corner of Liberty Square features wonderful details that help to bring moments of history to life including a window with two candles referencing Paul Revere’s famous “one if by land, two is by sea” warning, shutters that are slightly askew to represent the traditional leather bounding that was used at the time and would stretch, and a recreation of the Liberty Bell that was created by the same mold that was used for the original. One of the most wonderful details Guests should pause and observe is the Liberty Tree which features thirteen hanging lanterns to represent the original colonies.
Main Street Flag Retreat
One of the most patriotic experiences that Guests can enjoy at the Walt Disney World Resort occurs every single evening on Main Street, U.S.A. The Flag Retreat ceremony typically takes place at five each evening and involves a special process of lowering the American flag on the flagpole in Town Square to be stored overnight.
Several security team members usually run the Flag Retreat ceremony which is accompanied by a special announcement that plays over the speakers on Main Street U.S.A. as well as music provided by the Main Street Philharmonic. Oftentimes, a Guest who is a veteran or active member of service is invited to partake and help to lower the flag. The Flag Retreat is a wonderful example of how Walt Disney’s sense of patriotism and pride for his country are still alive and well at the Walt Disney World Resort.
Dinner at Liberty Tree Tavern
The final experience on a patriotic day at the Walt Disney World Resort is sitting back and enjoying a delicious dinner in a charming and patriotic setting. Liberty Tree Tavern in Liberty Square is a table service restaurant that features a colonial-style theming and menu of traditional American favorites. The interior of Liberty Tree Tavern features exposed brick, roaring fireplaces, and plenty of historical artwork and memorabilia spread throughout several rooms that honor historical figures including Benjamin Franklin, Paul Revere, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Paul Jones, and Betsy Ross.
Dinner features a menu of Thanksgiving favorites prepared by the Sons and Daughters of Liberty Tree Tavern with family-style platters including roasted turkey breast, Pennsylvania pot roast, mashed potatoes, herb stuffing, and the popular Oooey Gooey Toffee Cake. Dinner at Liberty Tree Tavern will transport Guests back to colonial times and is the perfect conclusion to the ultimate patriotic day at the Walt Disney World Resort!