Magic Kingdom-The Orlando Times

The Orlando Times

Magic Kingdom

Disney’s Magic KingdomCelebrates50 Years Of Magical Ingenuity 
 

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BY DR. BARBARA J. MCLEAN-SMITH 

Photos: Disney Imagineer Sachi Handke (left) Project Manager Ken O. Facey, Legacy Cast Member, Ambassador (right)

LAKE BUENA VISTA - Disney World’s Magic Kingdom is indeed a land of enchantment, fun and excitement. The Park is an ever glowing and growing place to experience eye popping, jaw dropping and teeth clinching fun and surprises with each adventure featured. In addition to all of the excitement offered at Magic Kingdom on land, Disney Wish, the newest cruise ship will launch its maiden voyage, on June 9, 2022. Disney Wish, offers enchantment at every turn says Imagineer, SachiHandke, Project Coordinator. Mrs. Handke has been a member of the “Disney World Team” for the past 10 years.In describing Disney Wish, the largest ship at sea, she says, “this ship will be like none other. Mrs. Handke explained the various categories of stories that will immerse the guests in elements from Star Wars, Marvel, Pixar and Disney movies. Everything about Disney Wish will be centered around ‘enchantment’. The ship is designed to accommodate all age groups. There will bean adult exclusive lounge area, pools and spas, and other adult only activities; kids clubs; clubs for teens; a private island adventure and a variety of entertainment and dining activities.The 341m-long, 144,000t Disney Wish cruise ship will feature 1,250 guest staterooms to accommodate up to 4,000 guests.Disney Wish will set sail from Port Canaveral, Brevard County, FL offering three (3) and four (4) night itineraries to Nassau, Bahamas and Castaway Cay. Indeed, the attractions of Disney World at Sea. “All Things Disney” along with ‘Enchantment’ will be the motif; imagine a larger-than-life Bronze-cast Cinderella to meet you as you embark for your magical journey. 

Ken O. Facey, Walt Disney Ambassador, wasraised in Brooklyn, NY but wanted to be a part of Disney since he was 4 or 5 years old when his parents brought him here for vacation. He says he wanted to work at Disney for as long as he can remember. He started working for Disney as a Cast member in 1991.As Ambassador Ken has worked in several areas in the Walt Disney arena to include but not limited to hospitality host; Attractions host; Concierge at Disney’s famous Grand Floridian Resort and Spa; and Guest Correspondent. As an Imagineer and an Ambassador, he has traveled to and worked with Disney’s International platforms including Disneyland, Paris, France, Disney Resort and Spa, Shanghai, China and also here in America at Aulani Resort and Spa in Oahu, Hawaii.His primary responsibilities, now, is to assure that Disney is representative of its many guests through Diversity and Inclusion programs throughout the Disney enterprise. Ken enthusiastically says “Every day, I get to work with someone different than me and to share their stories.” Ken fondly talks about his mentor, Floyd Norman, who was hired by Walt Disney himself. Ken further says that hewants to give back to his community and he frequently meets and speaks with high school students in Brooklyn, NY. You can certainly see the fruit of Ken’s labor with the many nationalities that make up the Disney Imagineers and other team members. 

 

Many rides and adventures continue to be a main attraction at the Magic Kingdom.  Children and adults alike find sheer glee as they spin, fly and travel though attractions such as Country Bear Jamboree, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, Astro Orbiter and of course, It’s a Small World. 

 

Pace yourself so you may visit each of the six lands with their very own features. Look for the fun offered in Tomorrow Land; Adventure Land; Liberty Square, Frontier Land and most definitely, Fantasyland.  

 

Fantasyland is, of course, where young and old find much pleasure especially with an awesome makeover of The Castle. The Carousel is still one of the many favorites. A must ride is “It’s a Small World”.Pointedly, diversity and inclusion are evident as you journey through each country that is featured during the ride.  

  

As you wander through Magic Kingdom, look for the “Disney Fab 50 Character Collection” where Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Goofy, Dumbo, and Chip ‘n dale may be found. This collection is made of gilded gold and offers an investigative trek as you look for them. 

 

The next 18 months promise many surprises in each of Disney’s four parks.  Food and Drinks are being showcased throughout each park. Disney’s magical ingenuity will be demonstrated through every turn and taste. The continuing celebration of Disney’s 50thAnniversary is one you will not want to miss as well as a place where you can make lifetime memories.