A big new way to play is coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios this summer

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BELOVED CHARACTERS COMING to Toy Storyland at Walt Disney World Resort (Lake Buena Vista, FLA) – Buzz Lightyear, Sheriff Woody and Jessie the Yodeling Cowgirl from Disney•Pixar’s “Toy Story” Films will interact with guests in the new Toy Story Land when it opens June 30 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Lake Buena Vista, FL. This new 11-acre land will transport Walt Disney World guests into the adventurous outdoors of Andy’s backyard where they will feel like they have shrunk to the size of a toy. (Photo by David Roark)

By Elaine Hegwood Bowen, M.S.J.

It’s a joy-filled, toy-filled world as only Disney can create, and it opens June 30, 2018. The all-new Toy Story Land at Walt Disney World Resort is inspired by Disney•Pixar’s Toy Story films.

Guests in Toy Story Land – located at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – will feel like they have shrunk to the size of a toy as Woody, Jessie, Buzz, Slinky Dog, the Aliens, Green Army Men and other fun-loving Toy Story characters come to life in the larger-than-life outdoor setting of Andy’s backyard.

And what a backyard! In a rich and colorful landscape straight from his vivid imagination, Andy has set up his toys for the best playtime ever. Guests will be surrounded by giant building blocks, game board pieces and more.

Across 11 fun-filled acres, Toy Story Land will include two all-new attractions and one expanded favorite. Guests will whoosh along on a family-friendly roller coaster behind Slinky Dog, take a spin with flying saucers in toy spaceships and score high on the midway.

Toy Story Land will also celebrate what once defined entertainment for a generation. Crayons, Rubik’s Cubes, Cooties, Green Army Men and other toys and games will pour on the nostalgia for park-goers. Even the lampposts will be shaped like Tinkertoys.

SARGE AND THE Green Army Men from the hit Disney•Pixar “Toy Story” films will interact with guests in the new Toy Story Land when it opens June 30 at Walt Disney World Resort. The Green Army Men will “toy” with guests, leading them to a fun and interactive boot camp where potential recruits are tested in their abilities with Pixar balls and oversized crayons. Located at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the new 11-acre Toy Story Land will make guests feel like they have shrunk to the size of a toy in the setting of Andy’s backyard. Guests will whoosh along on the family-friendly Slinky Dog Dash roller coaster, take a spin aboard Alien Swirling Saucers and score high on the midway at Toy Story Mania! (Photo by Matt Stroshane)

“With set pieces, staging, attractions and experiences Toy Story Land represents the best of Walt Disney Imagineering’s collaboration with our storytelling partners at Pixar Animation Studios,” said Bob Chapek, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “This new land will place guests inside the wondrous world of Woody, Buzz and their pals – and invite everyone to experience the joy of being a toy.”

Here’s the rundown:

  • Slinky Dog Dash. Andy has assembled his roller coaster kit for maximum family fun. Tracks and supports in bright colors of red, orange, yellow and blue are put together according to Andy’s hand-drawn plans, with Rex and Jessie lending a hand. And to complete his creation, Andy picked up everyone’s favorite floppy-eared dachshund with a strrrrretch-ing slinky coil belly and dropped it on to the coaster track. Get ready to ride inside Slinky Dog’s coils! Slinky Dog Dash is inspired by the delightful pooch spinoff of Slinky, the 1950s American toy classic. Riders of all ages will delight as Slinky Dog bends and twists his coils around curves, hills, bridges and drops in the Slinkyest coaster ever. Riders will zip around and above Toy Story Land, serving up panoramic views of all that the new land has to offer. Andy’s colorful creation will stretch Slinky Dog and his coils to the max – from his head to his upturned tail – and be fun for the entire family.
  • Alien Swirling Saucers. Brace yourself for out-of-this-world thrills because the aliens have powered up their flying saucers! Alien Swirling Saucers will immerse guests in the playful world of Andy’s toys. This galactic space toy is designed as a play set that Andy won at the Pizza Planet restaurant. Adorable little Toy Story green Aliens swirl about in their flying saucers with guests in tow in their rocket-ship toys, while “The Claw” hangs overhead. This space adventure is bathed in music reimagined for intergalactic fun, dappled with multi-color lighting and sound effects from throughout galaxies.
  • Toy Story Mania! While Andy’s away, the toys will play. One of the most beloved attractions at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Toy Story Mania!, gets an all-new colorful toy carnival game box entrance when the new land opens. In fact, this is the box that the Toy Story Mania! game came in. Recently updated with a third track, the popular attraction will put even more guests in the carnival playset action taking aim at 3D objects – using everything from baseballs to cream pies – in a variety of whimsical, fast-paced games. To the high-scorer go bragging rights.

When it’s time for on-the-go refreshments, Woody’s Lunch Box will serve up tasty meals and old-fashioned soda floats from a walk-up window in a setting surrounded by Andy’s favorite toys and a giant vintage thermos.  Woody’s Lunch Box will also feature Mini Babybel – the Official Snack Cheese of Walt Disney World Resort.

Fun facts:

  • More than 400 toy blocks fill Andy’s backyard.
  • In Toy Story Land, Andy’s footprint is about 25 feet long or the equivalent of a size 240 shoe.
  • It would take a Green Army Man roughly 12 steps just to travel the length of one of Andy’s shoeprints.

You would need a backpack the size of a school bus to carry the Buzz and Woody figures that tower over Toy Story Land.

The weight of the Slinky Dog Dash track and support columns weighs almost as much as 125,000 gallons of milk.

Together Rex and the Jenga Tower are as tall as 7½ Green Army Men standing on top of one another.

Toy Story Land is part of a multi-year reimagining of Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the largest expansion in the theme park’s history. Next year will see the premiere of the all-new, 14-acre Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. This new land will allow guests to visit a remote trading port on the edge of wild space, where Star Wars characters and their stories come to life – and where guests will find themselves in the middle of the action.

Also coming in 2019 is Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway. The first ever Mickey-themed ride-through attraction will feature new technology, dazzling visual effects and mind-boggling transformations that put guests in the whacky and unpredictable world of a Mickey Mouse cartoon short.

I will have an update in a future column. For more information now, visit Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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