Disney World has some new attractions coming in September to celebrate the park’s 50th anniversary, but that means a couple of older attractions will need to close down to make room. According to a report by Walt Disney World News Today, the fireworks displays “EPCOT Forever” and “Happily Ever After” will both be “retired permanently” on Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2021. New shows built around the anniversary theme will then launch to take their place.
Disney World’s fireworks shows are legendary, and fans often grow attached to the different displays after years of revisiting the park in Orlando, Florida. The “Happily Ever After” show, for example, has been running since May of 2017, so fans are pretty devastated to hear that it will be coming to an end. According to Disney, it and “EPCOT Forever” will “sparkle into Disney history” at the end of this summer. In their places, new shows called “Harmonious” and “Disney Enchantment” will debut on Friday, Oct. 1, 2021. That is the 50th anniversary of the park, so the whole place will be overtaken by an event called “The World’s Most Magical Celebration.”
It’s hard to explain to the uninitiated at times, but familiar events like this do grab ahold of frequent park guests, who mourn their discontinuation. Some even commented on how heartbroken they were and vowed to return and see the show again before the year was over. In that sense, the announcement may have been a clever sales tactic in a way.
“What a terrible decision. I have no words… I’m heartbroken I won’t get to see it again. It seems like it’s just bad decision after bad decision lately,” one person wrote. Another added: “I never got to see it… I’m so sad I’ve always wanted to go and this is heartbreaking. I will never get to see what it was like. I cried when I saw this,” while a third wrote: “Man, Disney just doesn’t understand their Guests at all!”
While this change is expected to be permanent, some Disney fireworks shows have reportedly been known to return years later, so there is hope for fans of “Happily Ever After” and “EPCOT Forever.” Some fans commented about other past shows they are still pining after, and others remarked on their excitement for the newly announced ones.
Disney World opened in 1979 in Bay Lake and Buena Vista, Florida. It has since spawned a whole theme park industry in the area, driving tourism and creating a must-see destination for fans. It has slowly amassed a die-hard following with an enormous presence on social media.
That following has been particularly active over the last year and a half or so, as the COVID-19 pandemic prevented them from visiting the parks and threatened the whole tourism economy. As Disney attempts to kickstart its theme parks once again, those fans are watching every step they make.