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Disney World updates for the Horizon West community and how to navigate at the Parks

From March to July, Horizon West residents who had grown accustomed to seeing nightly Walt Disney World fireworks in the sky wondered when their nearest and dearest attractions would open back up. While the sky still remains dark at night, those who live in the Horizon West area are grateful to have a place to stretch their legs while also staying socially distant and safe.

Although Disney is known for it’s whimsy and fun, there is nothing lackadaisical about their safety and cleaning procedures. Temperature checks are required at the main gate before you enter the park. If you do not meet the required temperature range, you will be asked to step into a shaded tent before they take your temperature again to ensure an accurate read. Masks are required everywhere in the park, in accordance with Orange County’s mask mandate.

Disney has also updated their mask requirements to ensure that they consist of two layers of breathable fabric and must be secured with ties or loops to the ear, according to the official Disney Parks website. To further the safety, Disney included a clause to the mask policy stating that the only exception will be for guests sitting or standing stationary while eating. This allows guests to pick a spot and relax while they enjoy the many culinary treats Disney has to offer, including the Food and Wine Festival in Epcot. The Food and Wine Festival offers some of the same classic favorites including Brazilian Pão de Quejo, Canadian Cheese Soup, and Polish Pierogi. The best place to check up on new procedures is the “Know Before You Go Webpage at

When you’re done picking up for your favorite snacks and start to meander toward the rides, you can rest at ease knowing they will be clean and ready for you. Every two hours starting at park open, Cast Members will shut down the ride to ensure each ride vehicle is thoroughly cleaned. Custodial has also increased cleaning frequency and thoroughness and handwashing stations have been added throughout the parks and Disney Springs. Social distancing markers have been spread through the queues of the rides to encourage guests to keep at least six feet apart.

To create some extra magic for both cast members and guests, Disney has announced they are issuing new face masks for cast members with a little extra pizzaz and flair. Not only will these face masks have adjustable ear loops and a more comfortable fit around the nose, but they also have a fun new galaxy design with some hidden Mickeys. Not only are face masks required for cast members and guests, but face shields are also being worn by cast members who are required to have close contact with guests. Disney has also begun selling masks themed to your favorite Disney characters.

Speaking of merchandise, Passholders will be give not only a 30% discount at, but also a 30% discount at all Walt Disney World resort owned merchandise locations on property. This includes most of the shops in the parks and in Disney Springs. This is especially good news to Central Florida’s many Annual Passholders, especially with the introduction of new Halloween 2020 merchandise. These spooky new offerings include a Halloween Spirit Jersey, new Minnie Mouse Witch ears, and a new Disney Villians collection which will be coming soon to

This new Halloween collection may be to make up for the fact that Disney has decided to forgo the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party Festivities. This is ensure the park will not reach new capacity cap that was set by Disney in order to reduce large crowds. In another effort to protect both cast members and guests, Disney has also announced reduced park hours starting September 8th. Epcot will now be open from 11 AM to 7 PM; Magic Kingdom will be open 9 AM to 6 PM; Animal Kingdom’s hours will now be 10 AM to 7 PM and Hollywood Studios will be from 10 AM to 7 PM.

Despite all the changes going on within Disney World, the parks remain a place of comfort for Central Florida. While in Horizon West, it’s not uncommon to see dozens of Annual Passholder or Disney Vacation Club Member stickers. Residents of Horizon West communities close to Disney, like Lakeview Pointe often congregate on the sidewalks outside their homes to watch the nightly fireworks. Although fireworks have not been re-introduced to the parks quite yet, the Walt Disney World resort remains a safe and steadfast location to unwind during the a time of great stress and unsurety.

Mike Spicer local Realtor, lives, works and enjoys Horizon West daily. If you ever have questions about the neighborhoods or homes in the area feel free to reach out to Mike directly he would love to help. This blog written by, the Michael Spicer, P.A. Team.

Michael Spicer, P.A.

Assoc Broker

Keller Williams Realty at the Lakes


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