Epcot’s International Flower and Garden Festival is a feast for the senses! This fantastic yearly festival is full of fun, learning, and beauty! During the festival Epcot blooms in lush colors and rich experiences. The Festival runs from March 6th to June 3rd, 2019. Here’s what you need to know:
1. Concerts Every Night
That’s right, folks, the Garden Rocks Concert Series will be happening 7 days a week for the first time ever! This is awesome news! This means that every night of the Festival, guests will be able to hear some favorite bands rocking out Epcot. With three shows a night, there will be a total of 270 concerts over the course of the festival from the following artists: Steve Augeri, Glass Tiger, Jon Anderson, Tony Orlando, Wang Chung, Simple Plan, Ambrosia, Magic Giant, Air Supply, Berlin, The Smithereens, Rick Springfield, Christopher Cross, The Spinners, Dennis DeYoung, John Michael Montgomery, Sister Sledge, Night Ranger, Sister Hazel, Steven Curtis Chapman, TobyMac, Lonestar, The Orchestra, Herman’s Hermits, Don Felder, A Flock of Seagulls, Marshall Tucker Band, Peobo Bryson, Richard Marx, Starship, Colin Hay, War, The Guess Who, Jon Secada, Blood, Sweat and Tears, and Eddie Palmieri. Phew! Lots to check out! Make sure to add a Garden Rocks Dining Package to your evening for an awesome night at Epcot!
2. Passholder Swag
Man, being a Passholder is sweet. It becomes even sweeter during festivals. Depending on the length of the festival, Passholders need to enter Epcot a certain number of days in order to get a special gift. Generally, this gift is a themed magnet. For last year’s Flower and Garden Festival, Mickey and Minnie graced two separate magnets with flowers and butterflies. I imagine there will be something similar this year, although the exact magnet has not been announced. During Food and Wine 2018 Passholders were also given a special cutting board. No word yet if there will be an extra gift like this for Flower and Garden.
3. Interactive Play Areas
Every year at the festivals Disney provides play areas for little kids to get some extra energy out. This year the new playgrounds include Bo Peep’s Playtime Training Grounds and Play Full Garden. The first, located near Test Track, is a fun playground featuring the Toy Story Gang. This is an interactive area that is great for little ones and big kids! The Play Full Garden is located on the Imagination Walkway and is dedicated to teaching about wellness and nutrition in a fun way. There are activities and play focused on these important topics that the whole family can do together!
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Epcot comes alive during this festival. Flowers spring up and the park explodes in color and fragrance and life. It’s incredible. The topiaries are out of this world works of art. Disney gets so creative and detailed to make these topiaries life-like and unique. The topiaries at the 2019 Flower and Garden Festival include: Anna and Elsa, Bambi and Friends, Beauty and the Beast, the Toy Story Gang, Bromeliad Dragon, Captain Hook and Peter Pan, Chip and Dale, Donald and Huey, Dewey, and Louie, Daisy, Figment, Lady and the Tramp, Lightning McQueen and Mater, Mickey and Minnie (twice, actually), Miss Piggy and Kermit, Pandas, Pluto and Goofy, Simba and Friends, Snow White and Dopey, Stitch, The Three Caballeros, Troll, Pooh and Friends, Topiary Flowers, and the big, lush Welcome Display at the Main Entrance to Epcot. Make sure your camera is ready! Also be on the lookout for some spectacular Memory Maker Picture opportunities!
2. Outdoor Kitchens
The Food and Wine Festival is a major hit because you just get to eat all day. It rocks. A few years back, Epcot decided to bring that popular attraction to the Flower and Garden Festival. So now there are Outdoor Kitchens scattered around World Showcase where guests can try small dishes using fresh ingredients and healthy options. There are also specialty drinks available at these Flower and Garden outdoor kitchens!
3. Fun Exhibits
Epcot offers some super fun exhibits and activities for kids of all ages! This year they’re featuring Spike’s Pollen Nation Exploration: an interactive scavenger hunt around Epcot with a cute little bee who needs to pollinate flower beds across the Park! This is available March 6th through June 3rd. For the Easter season, April 5th – April 21st, there’s the Egg-stravaganza Scavenger Hunt! This exciting hunt let’s you race all around the World Showcase to find Disney character-themed eggs. So fun! Both of these activities require the purchase of an event map for $6.99. Also make sure to check out the Goodness Garden Butterfly House!
Disney likes to bring in artists to feature for their Epcot festivals. They can either be found in the festival center, or placed around the World Showcase. These amazing artists include painters, sculptors, and more. They provide such an extra depth to the festivals. Plus if you support them, you get to bring some of Epcot home with you!
2. Special Tours
Disney also offers some special ticketed tours to go along with the Flower and Garden Festival. There’s the Gardens of the World Tour, which takes guests on a 3-hour walking tour of the World Showcase Pavilions. It’s perfect for the hardcore gardeners. This tour teaches behind-the-scenes techniques and the role of landscaping around WDW. The Royal Tea Garden Tour brings guests through the England Pavilion garden before Park opens to explore and learn about the landscaping. After the garden tour, guests get to stop in The Tea Caddy to try tea and scones! If you don’t want to pay the ticket, you can try the English Tea Garden Presented by Twinings of London for a guided tour without the scones – just make sure to do same-day registration to guarantee a spot. While it’s not Festival specific, the Behind the Seeds tour is a fantastic one-hour walking tour of the Land where guests can learn about the ways in which Disney farms, conserves, and grows.