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Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth

You’re going on vacation to Walt Disney World! The only problem? You’re not sure which attractions are right for you and your kiddos and you have questions. Which attractions are too intense for little ones? What rides do I really need a FastPass+ reservation for? What’s the disability access like for certain attractions? We’re answering all those questions and more in our Everything You Need to Know attraction series with today’s focus on Spaceship Earth at EPCOT!

What is Spaceship Earth?

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth
Photo courtesy of Disney.

Spaceship Earth is EPCOT’s flagship attraction and housed inside of its signature 18-story geosphere. The attraction itself is a slow-moving dark ride showcasing major moments in the history of communication.

Where is Spaceship Earth?

Spaceship Earth is located at the main entrance of EPCOT and inside of the park’s icon.

What is the History of Spaceship Earth?

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth Spaceship Earth opened with the park on October 1, 1982. To date, there have been four versions of this attraction even though the experience and story has remained largely the same through the years. Changes have typically involved a change in narrator and sponsor, as well as adjustments to scenes, score, and some effects. One of the most substantial changes involved the removal of the ride’s descent scenes leading to the unloading area.

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth To celebrate the year 2000, a Mickey Mouse arm holding a magic wand with the number 2000 appeared next to Spaceship Earth. In 2001, the number of the year 2000 was replaced by the word Epcot. These additions were later removed in 2007.

What You Need to Know About the Queue for Spaceship Earth

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth
Using a FP+ reservation to ride Spaceship Earth, just tap your band and go.

Much of the queue for Spaceship Earth is outside of the attraction and consists of a series of switchbacks. around the base of the attraction.

What You Need to Know About the Ride Experience

Guests experiencing Spaceship Earth slowly move past animatronic scenes representing major moments in the history of communication as narrated by Academy Award winner Judi Dench.

Guests riding Spaceship Earth will ride through scenes showcasing cave paintings, the Phoenicians using their alphabet to trade goods, Gutenberg’s printing press, and then later the rise of computers. The attraction finale is a projection of Earth from the perspective of space before the ride vehicles gently turn backwards and slowly descend down to the unloading area.

During that descent, guests use an interactive screen to personalize an animated video about their possible future.

What You Need to Know About the Ride Vehicles

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth Spaceship Earth employs an omnimover system–a continuously moving ride system. Guests step aboard a car from a moving walkway. Each car contains four hard seats with two in the front and two in the back. There are no safety restraints.

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth Each row has a single interactive touch screen which comes into play towards the end of the attraction. There is one controller per row so you may want to seat kids in separate rows with an adult so each child can control their interactive experience.

What You Need to Know About Accessibility

Guests must transfer to a standard wheelchair and then to the ride vehicle. Guests boarding the attraction should be prepared for a small step up from a moving walkway into the moving vehicle.

Due to the nature of the experience, Guests with service animals should check with a Cast Member at the attraction for boarding information.

What You Need to Know About the Health and Safety Advisories

Disney doesn’t recommend this attraction for guests who are made uncomfortable by enclosed dark spaces; but honestly, there are only a few moments where guests might feel discomfort or confined. For those who are concerned, Spaceship Earth is nothing like what guests experience on Mission: SPACE.

Also, a small number of guests with motion sensitivity may experience discomfort when the vehicle slowly rotates and moves backward at the end of the ride. However, this rotation and backwards movement is very slow and gentle in motion.

What are the Height Requirements?

There is no height requirement for Spaceship Earth! Everyone in the family can enjoy this attraction together.

Does Spaceship Earth Offer FastPass+?

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth
©Rikki Niblett

Yes, but it may not be necessary depending on what time of day you plan to ride it.

If you want to ride Soarin’ and Test Track before you head to World Showcase, try to get a FastPass+ reservation for around 1 p.m. Or, if you plan on spending the afternoon in Future World and don’t want to use FastPass+, try to ride after 3 p.m.

Does Weather Affect Spaceship Earth?

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth A June storm pops over World Drive as a rainy afternoon gets started.

Since this attraction is located indoors, inclement weather will not affect the ride’s operation; however, guests waiting in the extended queue may be exposed to the elements.

What’s the Best Time of Day to Experience Spaceship Earth?

Because Spaceship Earth sits at the main entrance of the park, guests tend to ride it first. Try to check it out before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m.

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth Spaceship Earth Wait Times

This chart shows you roughly how long you’ll wait for Spaceship Earth when you visit on a day with a given EPCOT Crowd Level. The blue bars represent the average “peak” wait time (that is, how long the line will be at its busiest). The bottom and top black lines represent the range of peak wait times to expect (for you fellow nerds out there: it’s the 5th percentile and 95th percentile of peak wait times). Please note that these are estimates, and for a better forecast for your travel dates, see Spaceship Earth Wait Times.

What is the Future of Spaceship Earth?

Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth Spaceship Earth

Spaceship Earth was slated for closure and an extensive redo where guests would still travel through time, but the focus would be on storytelling and the human experience.

However, due to the lengthy COVID-19 shutdown, Spaceship Earth is currently scheduled to reopen in its current form on July 15 with its redo rescheduled for some time in the future.

Did I answer all of your questions about Spaceship Earth? Is this attraction at the top of your family’s vacation to-do list? Let us know in the comments.

The post Everything You Need to Know About Spaceship Earth appeared first on Blog.

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Filed Under: Attractions, Epcot, Walt Disney World (FL), Disney Attractions, disney world, FastPass+, Spaceship Earth, walt disney world

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We’ve Got ALL the Disney NEWS and REVIEWS This Week!

We’ve been hard at work scoping out all the latest news for you this week. Today we have all the details on what’s happening that affects the Disney Parks.

Disney Springs

Due to the current global situation, Disneyland, Tokyo Disneyland, Hong Kong Disneyland, and Disneyland Paris theme parks will be closed until further notice. Shanghai Disneyland reopened in mid-May and Disney World is REOPENING on July 11th! See all of our coverage HERE. And Disney Springs has REOPENED! Now — we still have a LOT to share with you this week, so let’s jump right in… .

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NEW DFB YouTube Videos

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New DFB Video — RARE THINGS in Disney World and How to FIND THEM!

Have you subscribed to the DFB YouTube Channel? We’ve got FOUR brand new videos EVERY WEEK showcasing our adventures in Disney World and Disneyland! This week, we’re sharing our latest video: RARE THINGS in Disney World and How to FIND THEM! — and don’t forget to subscribe here.

Deal of the Week: Order the 2020 DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining for 25% off

It’s time to order the DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining 2020 e-book!

Get the 2020 DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining

With over 700 pages of full-color photos, tips on the best restaurants, an ENTIRE chapter on snacks — including the best snack credit values throughout the parks and resorts — and a full break-down of whether the Disney Dining Plan is worth it for your family, now’s the time to get started!

What’s in the DFB Guide?

The DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining is full to overflowing with tools and features to make your trip go smoothly, including:

  • A 5-Step Strategy for Disney Dining Planning, covering everything you need to know from budgeting and booking to kids’ meals, dining discounts, and fireworks.
  • A comprehensive and in-depth look at EVERY Disney World restaurant, kiosk, bar, and lounge, including our personal tips to ensure a positive and stress-free dining experience.
  • Four free, downloadable worksheets for planning your trip. These worksheets are designed to help you execute all the steps of planning the perfect Disney dining experience. And they’re reusable for all of your future trips!
  • Seven sample one-day dining itineraries for a head-start on planning.
  • A comprehensive index of bars and lounges WITH reviews. An often under-appreciated option for both dining and entertainment, the e-Book devotes a whole index to the topic.
  • The ability to be read on your mobile device or computer! It’s fully portable right in your pocket!

You can order your copy today for 25% off the cover price! Just use code WDW2020!


On to the Round-Up!

Mickey Fix shared this pretty Disney Plate Set.

WDW for Grownups shared a review of The Polite Pig in Disney Springs.

Disney Parks Blog shared a recipe for Shrimp Ceviche.

Disney Family shared a recipe for Soup Spoon Cookies.

Don’t Miss ANY Disney Food News! Join the DFB Newsletter to get all the breaking news right in your inbox! Click here to Subscribe!

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The Top 10 Most Evacuated Rides in Disney World!

Disney World can seem like the perfect place in theory, but that’s not always the case.

Frozen Ever After

Sometimes things just happen to go wrong — yes, even in Disney World! It’s happened to most of us. We’re pumped for our favorite ride only to find that it’s inexplicably closed. Or perhaps we’re halfway THROUGH our favorite ride when it randomly STOPS! Whatever the case, we know big breakdowns happen. Let’s check out the top ten most evacuated rides in Disney World!

This data is pulled from an Orlando Sentinel report on the Reedy Creek Fire Department (Disney’s own!) reported evacuations from July 27th, 2016, through July 18th, 2018. Keep in mind that these dates WOULDN’T catch newer rides like the popular (and often reported to break down) Rise of the Resistance!

10. Spaceship Earth

Coming in at tenth place for most evacuations we have the most iconic and recognizable ride in Epcot — it’s Spaceship Earth! In the measured period, this ride had 15 evacuations. Not too bad, but there are a whole lot of rides that had fewer!

Spaceship Earth

Though the report does not include the causes for breakdowns, Spaceship Earth is an original 1982 attraction with some significantly complex ride pathways through the sphere. Its age and complexity could be part of the issue.

Is Spaceship Earth NOT closing for refurb now?? Click here!

9. Toy Story Mania!

Just BARELY beating out Spaceship Earth is the relatively new Toy Story Mania! in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This attraction racked up 16 evacuations in the two-year period.

Toy Story Mania

Toy Story Mania! is a super technologically advanced ride so a failure of the software could potentially be a reason for evacuation. Still, Disney doesn’t report the reason for evacuations (unless there’s an injury) so it’s hard to say.

Want to get the highest score in Toy Story Mania? Click here!

8. Splash Mountain

Next up on our list is Splash Mountain! This beloved attraction (one of the favorites among our readers) had 21 evacuations in the period reported. We’ve definitely been on this one more than a few times when it’s broken down for a while!

Does Everyone Want To Ride Splash Mountain??

Splash Mountain might be prone to big breakdowns simply thanks to the fact that it is a water ride. Log flume rides are notorious for being difficult to maintain. Maybe when things go wrong at Splash Mountain, the fixes aren’t so easy.

To learn how Splash Mountain stacks up with other attractions, click here!

7. Peter Pan’s Flight

A little bit of a jump here as this next attraction had about ten more full evacuations than Splash Mountain. Peter Pan’s Flight came in at 31 evacuations in the two years.

Peter Pan’s Flight

Surprisingly, this is the ONLY opening day attraction to make this list (guess those other OG rides really hold up)! Not only is Peter Pan’s Flight an older ride, but it also uses a unique suspended system. That’s why people love it so much, but it’s also what makes it a little more challenging to run.

Click here to check out some SWEET upcoming merch inspired by Peter Pan’s Flight!

6. The Barnstormer

The Barnstormer starring the Great Goofini (previously The Barnstormer at Goofy’s Wiseacre Farm) is a favorite for many little ones thanks to it being an easily conquerable rollercoaster.


Still, despite not being as impressive as the other coasters of Disney, this one has some of the most evacuations with 32 in the period. Why? We’re stumped!

Want to see how our readers feel about The Barnstormer? Click here!

5. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh

Alright! We made it to the top five! Just barely edging out Barnstormer and Peter Pan’s Flight is The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh with 33 evacuations in the period.

Winnie the Pooh at The Crystal Palace

There are few incidents reported for this ride and it is a traditional dark ride. Maybe it’s just the wily Heffalumps up to no good!

To find out which Tiger King person we matched up with The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, click here!

4. Kali River Rapids

We’ve got a pretty big jump for this next one again — and get used to it, because the evacuation counts on the final three are gonna climb quick! Not quite in the final three is Kali River Rapids with 44 evacuations in two years.

Kali River Rapids

Kali could suffer from the water ride maintenance woes as part of the reasoning behind the frequent evacuations. There have also been reports of monitoring sensors being triggered on this ride. These are triggered when the ride system thinks someone isn’t where they should be or something is wrong and it automatically stops the ride, per WESH.

Click here to read about our Kali River Rapids MISTAKES!

3. Space Mountain

Okay folks, we’ve made it. Let’s talk about our top three. We’re talking about our BIGGEST breakdown offenders. Taking the third spot is Space Mountain with a leap up to 64 evacuations in a two year period!

Space Mountain

Though the ride had no reported injuries in the measured period, that doesn’t mean that there weren’t medical reasons for stopping the ride. Space Mountain can be intense and it has had some incidents reported in the past. Plus, Space has been around since 1975! That’s an old coaster! Sometimes, things just might need some extra attention for the ride to get up and running again.

PRO TIP: If this ride DOES break down for a prolonged period, hop on the PeopleMover. It travels through Space Mountain even if it’s closed and you can possibly get a really cool look at the ride with the lights on!

Want to see come collectible Space Mountain merch? Click here!

2. Pirates of the Caribbean

Our runner up for most breakdowns is Pirates of the Caribbean. Well, wouldn’t you know it! Another water ride — and an old one too. Pirates of the Caribbean has been around since 1973. That’s a lot of time, a LOT of animatronics, and a lot of water making some room for things to go a little sideways.

Pirates of the Caribbean

Maybe those are the reasons that Pirates of the Caribbean is dealing with a HIGH record of evacuations. We’re talking really high — like 72 evacuations in two years high. Maybe it’s that tricky ghost George that’s to blame! 😉 Shockingly though, there is one ride that has MANY more evacuations than even this number.

To learn how Pirates of the Caribbean makes us feel things, click here!

1. Frozen Ever After

Coming in first place, the NUMBER ONE MOST EVACUATED RIDE is Frozen Ever After! On paper, that might sound surprising since it’s so new, but most of us have witnessed Frozen Ever After closed for downtime at some point or another. Just how many evacs did it have, you ask? 113 evacuations in two years! Phew!

Frozen Ever After Ride

Again, Disney doesn’t release the reasoning behind these evacs but we have some theories. The ride ticks a LOT of the boxes that we’ve mentioned as breakdown potential.

Water ride? Check. Older ride? Frozen is new but it’s predecessor Maelstrom opened in 1988 so…check! Complex technology? Definitely check! This was the first ride to use the new animatronics (ever ridden the ride mid-breakdown and see Anna and Elsa with their faces TURNED OFF? We have!). That sounds like a pretty decent recipe for high evacuations to us!

Click here to learn how you can ride Frozen Ever After — after hours!

So now you know the top ten most evacuated rides at Disney! To quote a Disney statement, “Our rides operate at a high degree of reliability, and while occasional downtimes and full-ride exits are a part of normal operations, they represent a very small part of the total operating day and overall guest experience.”

Despite some of these trickier ride systems, Disney actually had a pretty great track record with keeping rides running smoothly. Still, it makes for a unique story if you’ve ever been evacuated from a ride! Maybe we’ll go hop on Frozen Ever After…

Love in-ride photos? Click here to see what rides we think NEED one!

Have you ever been caught on a broken-down ride? Tell us in the comments!

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Filed Under: Animal Kingdom, disney parks, disney’s hollywood studios, Epcot, Featured, magic kingdom, Walt Disney World, Frozen Ever After, kali river rapids, Peter Pan’s Flight, Pirates of the Caribbean, Ride Evacuations, space mountain, Spaceship Earth, splash mountain, the barnstormer, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Toy Story Mania

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NEWS: EPCOT’s Spaceship Earth Refurbishment Reportedly Postponed Indefinitely

As part of a multi-year transformation of Walt Disney World’s EPCOT, Spaceship Earth — the attraction that also serves as the park’s icon — was set to undergo a major refurbishment of its own.

Spaceship Earth

That refurbishment was supposed to begin on May 26th. And, in fact, even at press time, Spaceship Earth is still listed as being closed for refurbishment on Walt Disney World’s website.

However, according to an article by the Orlando Sentinel, the refurbishment of Spaceship Earth has been postponed indefinitely. The article shares information provided by Eric Clinton, leader of the Local 362 union.

Spaceship Earth

In discussing cast members who will be returning to Walt Disney World for the reopening of the theme parks this summer, Clinton noted that employees will be needed to staff Spaceship Earth since the ride will be open to guests.

So, it looks as though we will see the “grand and miraculous” attraction that we have known for a long time now…

The Birth of the Rennaissance scene in Spaceship Earth

… when EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios welcome guests back starting July 15th. They will follow the opening of Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom on July 11th, and you can find more information on the upcoming reopening of Walt Disney World by visiting any of the links below.

Source: Orlando Sentinel

What do you think of this latest development about Spaceship Earth? Please let us know with a comment!

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  3. Check Out This GRAND AND MIRACULOUS Spaceship Earth Accessory Spotted in Disney World!

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Filed Under: disney parks, Epcot, Featured, Walt Disney World, delay spaceship earth refurb, Disney World reopening, Spaceship Earth, spaceship earth refurbishment

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News! Disney World to Start Calling Thousands of Theme Park Cast Members Back to Work SOON

Earlier we reported some Disney World restaurants and hotels had started notifying their employees about returning to their jobs. With Disney World reopening on July 11th, there is a lot to do around the parks and there are lots of new procedures that Cast Members need to learn.

Animal Kingdom Lodge

And while Disney hasn’t officially released a statement, thousands of furloughed employees are also gearing up to go back to work at the parks.

First reported by The Orlando Sentinel, Local 362’s leader Eric Clinton says full-time Cast Members (as well as a significant number of part-timers) will be called back to work this month.

According to Clinton, “Beginning in June, all Disney full-time attractions and custodian workers, as well as a significant number of part-timers, will get called back to work.”

There is a need for Cast Members that will clean around ride queues and for people to take positions that maintain social distancing in lines while guests wait for their temperatures to be taken prior to entering the parks.

Magic Kingdom

Since Disney World’s water parks aren’t expected to reopen right away, Union members who work at these parks can transfer to other jobs where there are shortages. Especially since Disney World’s future cultural and college programs have been canceled this year and aren’t likely to resume anytime soon according to Clinton.

Also mentioned was that cultural ambassadors will be replaced by domestic employees for the time being (which you can read more about here). 

Disney World

“…There’s going to be a massive need for attractions workers across property. …There’s going to be a lot of work that needs to be done.” Clinton said.

As many as 8,000 Cast Members could be called back to help clean the theme parks and get them ready to receive guests again. And as mentioned previously, Cast Members will need to undergo temperature checks before they’re allowed to work. Clinton emphasized Cast Members who have a temperature over 100.4 degrees will be sent home but get paid time off while they quarantine.

Magic Kingdom Sign

According to Clinton, “Employees will also need to staff Spaceship Earth, the ride inside Epcot’s iconic globe, since the ride’s rehabilitation is postponed indefinitely and will remain open.”

Read MORE about Spaceship Earth’s halted refurbishment HERE! 

Spaceship Earth

As you may know, Disney has postponed fireworks and parades for the time being. Clinton went into detail and also stated Hollywood Studios’ Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage might not resume, at least not initially. This is one of the first times a specific show has been mentioned, so we will continue to look for more updates on the status of entertainment offerings.

We’ll continue to follow this developing story and keep you informed of any official statements released by Disney. We know that this is a crazy time and that a lot of new information is being released. So if you have ANY questions, please let us know and we will do our best to get you the answers you need.

Read MORE about Disney’s reopening plan here! 

Are you excited about Cast Members returning to work at Disney World and Spaceship Earth’s refurb being postponed? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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Filed Under: Animal Kingdom, Disney News, disney’s hollywood studios, Epcot, Featured, magic kingdom, Walt Disney World, attractions, cast member, cast members being called back, college programs, custodial, disney cultural exchange program, Disney World, furloughed workers, paid sick leave, return to work, sick leave, Spaceship Earth, theme parks, transfer, transfers