Epcot
Overview
 
Epcot is a theme park in the Walt Disney World Resort
Walt Disney World Resort
Walt Disney World Resort , is the world's most-visited entertaimental resort. Located in Lake Buena Vista, Florida ; approximately southwest of Orlando, Florida, United States, the resort covers an area of and includes four theme parks, two water parks, 23 on-site themed resort hotels Walt...

, located near Orlando, Florida
Orlando, Florida
Orlando is a city in the central region of the U.S. state of Florida. It is the county seat of Orange County, and the center of the Greater Orlando metropolitan area. According to the 2010 US Census, the city had a population of 238,300, making Orlando the 79th largest city in the United States...

. The park is dedicated to the celebration of human achievement, namely international culture and technological innovation
Innovation
Innovation is the creation of better or more effective products, processes, technologies, or ideas that are accepted by markets, governments, and society...

. The second park built at the resort, it opened on October 1, 1982 and was initially named EPCOT Center. In 1994, the "Center" was dropped from the park's name, and by 1996, the park was simply named Epcot. In 2010, Epcot hosted approximately 10.83 million guests, ranking it the third most visited theme park in the United States, and fifth most visited theme park in the world.

EPCOT is an acronym of Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, which was the name originally given by Walt Disney
Walt Disney
Walter Elias "Walt" Disney was an American film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, animator, entrepreneur, entertainer, international icon, and philanthropist, well-known for his influence in the field of entertainment during the 20th century. Along with his brother Roy O...

 to a conceptual Utopian city of the future that he had wanted to build on the site that is now Walt Disney World.
Discussions
Encyclopedia
Epcot is a theme park in the Walt Disney World Resort
Walt Disney World Resort
Walt Disney World Resort , is the world's most-visited entertaimental resort. Located in Lake Buena Vista, Florida ; approximately southwest of Orlando, Florida, United States, the resort covers an area of and includes four theme parks, two water parks, 23 on-site themed resort hotels Walt...

, located near Orlando, Florida
Orlando, Florida
Orlando is a city in the central region of the U.S. state of Florida. It is the county seat of Orange County, and the center of the Greater Orlando metropolitan area. According to the 2010 US Census, the city had a population of 238,300, making Orlando the 79th largest city in the United States...

. The park is dedicated to the celebration of human achievement, namely international culture and technological innovation
Innovation
Innovation is the creation of better or more effective products, processes, technologies, or ideas that are accepted by markets, governments, and society...

. The second park built at the resort, it opened on October 1, 1982 and was initially named EPCOT Center. In 1994, the "Center" was dropped from the park's name, and by 1996, the park was simply named Epcot. In 2010, Epcot hosted approximately 10.83 million guests, ranking it the third most visited theme park in the United States, and fifth most visited theme park in the world.

EPCOT is an acronym of Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, which was the name originally given by Walt Disney
Walt Disney
Walter Elias "Walt" Disney was an American film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, animator, entrepreneur, entertainer, international icon, and philanthropist, well-known for his influence in the field of entertainment during the 20th century. Along with his brother Roy O...

 to a conceptual Utopian city of the future that he had wanted to build on the site that is now Walt Disney World. Disney's original vision of EPCOT was for a model community, home to twenty thousand residents, which would be a test bed for city planning and organization. Disney's vision was not realized as funding and permission to start work on his Florida property would not be granted until he agreed to build the Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom Park is one of four theme parks at the Walt Disney World Resort located near Orlando, Florida. The first park built at the resort, Magic Kingdom opened Oct. 1, 1971. Designed and built by WED Enterprises, the park's layout and attractions are similar to Disneyland in Anaheim, California...

 first. Disney died before the Magic Kingdom opened and the Walt Disney Company decided that it did not want to be in the business of running a city.

The theme park originally was known as EPCOT Center to reflect the fact that the park was built to embody the ideals and values of EPCOT the city. The park consists of two sections; Future World and World Showcase, laid out in an hourglass shape. Both sections are patterned after the types of exhibits found at world expositions. In its early years, Epcot was often called a "permanent World's Fair."

EPCOT Center was constructed for an estimated $800 million to $1.4 billion and took three years to build (at the time the largest construction project on Earth). Covering an area of 300 acres (121.4 ha), it is more than twice the size of the Magic Kingdom. The parking lot serving the park is 141 acres (57.1 ha) (including bus area) and can accommodate 11,211 vehicles (grass areas hold additional 500+ vehicles).

Dedication

The planned community

The name Epcot derives from the acronym EPCOT (Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow), a utopian city of the future planned by Walt Disney
Walt Disney
Walter Elias "Walt" Disney was an American film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, animator, entrepreneur, entertainer, international icon, and philanthropist, well-known for his influence in the field of entertainment during the 20th century. Along with his brother Roy O...

 (sometimes using the word "City" instead of "Community" when expanding the acronym). In Walt Disney's words: "EPCOT... will take its cue from the new ideas and new technologies that are now emerging from the creative centers of American industry. It will be a community of tomorrow that will never be completed, but will always be introducing and testing and demonstrating new materials and systems. And EPCOT will always be a showcase to the world for the ingenuity and imagination of American free enterprise."

Walt Disney
Walt Disney
Walter Elias "Walt" Disney was an American film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, animator, entrepreneur, entertainer, international icon, and philanthropist, well-known for his influence in the field of entertainment during the 20th century. Along with his brother Roy O...

's original vision of EPCOT was for a model community, home to twenty thousand residents, which would be a test bed for city planning and organization. The community was to have been built in the shape of a circle, with businesses and commercial areas at its center, community buildings and schools and recreational complexes around it, and residential neighborhoods along the perimeter. Transportation would have been provided by monorails and PeopleMover
PeopleMover
The PeopleMover, sometimes referred to as the WEDWay PeopleMover, was a transport attraction that operated from July 2, 1967 to August 21, 1995 in Tomorrowland at Disneyland in Anaheim, California. Guests boarded small trains that ran on elevated tracks for a "grand circle tour" above Tomorrowland...

s (like the one in the Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom Park is one of four theme parks at the Walt Disney World Resort located near Orlando, Florida. The first park built at the resort, Magic Kingdom opened Oct. 1, 1971. Designed and built by WED Enterprises, the park's layout and attractions are similar to Disneyland in Anaheim, California...

's Tomorrowland
Tomorrowland
- Tomorrowland 1955–1967 :The first Tomorrowland opened at Disneyland on July 18, 1955, with only several of its planned attractions open, due to budget cuts. The construction of the park was rushed, so Tomorrowland was the last land to be finished. It became something of a corporate showcase,...

). Automobile traffic would be kept underground, leaving pedestrians safe above-ground. Walt Disney said, "It will be a planned, controlled community, a showcase for American industry and research, schools, cultural and educational opportunities. In EPCOT, there will be no slum areas because we won't let them develop. There will be no landowners and therefore no voting control. People will rent houses instead of buying them, and at modest rentals. There will be no retirees; everyone must be employed." The original model of this original vision of EPCOT can still be seen by passengers riding the Tomorrowland Transit Authority
Tomorrowland Transit Authority
The Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover , formerly known as the WEDWay PeopleMover until 1994 and the Tomorrowland Transit Authority until 2010, is a PeopleMover system in Tomorrowland in the Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort...

 attraction in the Magic Kingdom park; when the PeopleMover enters the showhouse for Stitch's Great Escape!
Stitch's Great Escape!
Stitch's Great Escape! is a Tomorrowland attraction at the Magic Kingdom theme park within the Walt Disney World Resort. It is a "theater-in-the-round" experience starring the title alien from Walt Disney Pictures' 2002 animated comedy Lilo & Stitch. It opened November 16, 2004 and is the fourth...

, the model is visible on the left (when facing forward) behind glass. This vision was not realized. Walt Disney was not able to obtain funding and permission to start work on his Florida property until he agreed to build the Magic Kingdom first. Disney died before the Magic Kingdom opened.
After Disney's death, The Walt Disney Company
The Walt Disney Company
The Walt Disney Company is the largest media conglomerate in the world in terms of revenue. Founded on October 16, 1923, by Walt and Roy Disney as the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio, Walt Disney Productions established itself as a leader in the American animation industry before diversifying into...

 decided that it did not want to be in the business of running a city. The model community of Celebration, Florida
Celebration, Florida
Celebration is a census-designated place and a master-planned community in Osceola County, Florida, United States, located near Walt Disney World Resort and originally developed by The Walt Disney Company...

 has been mentioned as a realization of Disney's original vision, but Celebration is based on concepts of new urbanism
New urbanism
New Urbanism is an urban design movement, which promotes walkable neighborhoods that contain a range of housing and job types. It arose in the United States in the early 1980s, and has gradually continued to reform many aspects of real estate development, urban planning, and municipal land-use...

 which is radically different from Disney's modernist and futurist
Futurist architecture
Futurist architecture is an early-20th century form of architecture characterized by anti-historicism and long horizontal lines suggesting speed, motion and urgency. Technology and even violence were among the themes of the Futurists. The movement was founded by the poet Filippo Tommaso...

 visions. However, the idea of EPCOT was instrumental in prompting the state of Florida to create the Reedy Creek Improvement District
Reedy Creek Improvement District
The Reedy Creek Improvement District is the immediate governing jurisdiction for the land of the Walt Disney World Resort. As of the late 1990s, it comprised an area of within the outer limits of Orange and Osceola counties in Florida...

 (RCID) and the Cities of Bay Lake
Bay Lake, Florida
Bay Lake is a city in Orange County, Florida, United States. The population was 23 at the 2000 census. According to the U.S Census estimates of 2005, the city had a population of 22. It is named after Bay Lake, a lake east of the Magic Kingdom. Most of the Walt Disney World Resort, including...

 and Reedy Creek (soon renamed Lake Buena Vista
Lake Buena Vista, Florida
Lake Buena Vista is a city in Orange County, Florida, United States. It is mostly known for being home to the Walt Disney World Resort. It is one of two Florida municipalities controlled by The Walt Disney Company, the other being Bay Lake....

), a legislative mechanism which allows the Walt Disney Company to exercise governmental powers over Walt Disney World. Control over the RCID is vested in the landowners of the district, and the promise of an actual city in the district would have meant that the powers of the RCID would have been distributed among the landowners in EPCOT. Because the idea of EPCOT was never implemented, the Disney Corporation remained almost the sole landowner in the district allowing it to maintain control of the RCID and the cities of Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista; Disney further cemented this control by deannexing Celebration from the RCID.

The theme park

The theme park originally was known as EPCOT Center to reflect the fact that the park was built to embody the ideals and values of EPCOT the city. In 1994, the name was changed to Epcot '94 and subsequently Epcot '95 a year later. The naming convention reflected a similar style used at world's fairs and expos
World's Fair
World's fair, World fair, Universal Exposition, and World Expo are various large public exhibitions held in different parts of the world. The first Expo was held in The Crystal Palace in Hyde Park, London, United Kingdom, in 1851, under the title "Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All...

. Starting in, the year moniker was dropped, and the park was known simply as Epcot, a non-acronym, mixed-case word.

The original plans for the park showed indecision over what the park's purpose was to be: some Imagineers
Walt Disney Imagineering
Walt Disney Imagineering is the design and development arm of the Walt Disney Company, responsible for the creation and construction of Disney theme parks worldwide...

 wanted it to represent the cutting edge of technology, while others wanted it to showcase international cultures and customs. At one point a model of the futuristic park was pushed together against a model of the international park, and EPCOT Center was born—a theme park with the flavor of a World's Fair
World's Fair
World's fair, World fair, Universal Exposition, and World Expo are various large public exhibitions held in different parts of the world. The first Expo was held in The Crystal Palace in Hyde Park, London, United Kingdom, in 1851, under the title "Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All...

.

Opening day

Before the park debuted on October 1, 1982, Walt Disney World Ambassador Genie Field introduced E. Cardon Walker, Disney's chairman and CEO, who dedicated EPCOT Center. Walker also presented a family with lifetime passes for the two Walt Disney World theme parks. His remarks were followed by Florida Governor Bob Graham
Bob Graham
Daniel Robert "Bob" Graham is an American politician. He was the 38th Governor of Florida from 1979 to 1987 and a United States Senator from that state from 1987 to 2005...

 and William Ellinghouse, president of AT&T
American Telephone & Telegraph
AT&T Corp., originally American Telephone and Telegraph Company, is an American telecommunications company that provides voice, video, data, and Internet telecommunications and professional services to businesses, consumers, and government agencies. AT&T is the oldest telecommunications company...

.

As part of the opening-day ceremony, dancers and band members performed We've Just Begun to Dream. The Sherman Brothers
Sherman Brothers
The Sherman Brothers are an American songwriting duo that specialize in musical films, made up of Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman ....

 wrote a song especially for the occasion entitled, "The World Showcase March
The World Showcase March
"The World Showcase March" was written in 1982 for the Grand Opening of Epcot Center in Florida. It was written by the Academy Award winning songwriting team of Robert and Richard Sherman...

". During the finale, doves and many sets of balloons were released.

Performing groups representing countries from all over the world performed in World Showcase. Water gathered from major rivers across the globe was emptied into the park's fountain of nations ceremonial containers to mark the opening.

Located at the front of the park is a plaque bearing Walker's opening-day dedication, as seen above.

Park layout

The park consists of two sections—Future World and World Showcase—laid out in an hourglass shape. Both sections are patterned after the types of exhibits found at world expositions. Epcot is often referred to as a "permanent World's Fair."

Future World

Future World consists of a variety of pavilions that explore innovative aspects and applications of technology. Originally, each pavilion featured a unique circular logo which was featured on park signage and the attractions themselves. The logos, including that of Epcot itself, have been phased out over recent years, but some remnants still remain scattered throughout the park.
  • Spaceship Earth
    Spaceship Earth (Disney)
    Spaceship Earth is the iconic and symbolic structure of Epcot, a theme park that is part of the Walt Disney World Resort. One of the most recognizable structures at the Walt Disney World Resort, it is not only the centerpiece and main focal point of Epcot, but also the name of the attraction housed...

  • Innoventions
    Innoventions (Epcot)
    Innoventions is a pavilion at Epcot in Walt Disney World, Florida. It focuses on technological advancements and their practical applications in everyday life. Innoventions is a portmanteau of the words "innovation" and "invention"....

  • Universe of Energy
    Universe of Energy
    The Universe of Energy is a pavilion located in the eastern half of Future World at Epcot. The pavilion contains one attraction, its second since its 1982 opening, entitled Ellen's Energy Adventure, starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye the Science Guy...

  • Mission: SPACE
    Mission: SPACE
    Mission: SPACE is a motion simulator thrill ride at Epcot. It simulates what an astronaut might experience aboard a spacecraft on a mission to Mars, from the higher g-force of blastoff to the speculative hypersleep....

  • Test Track
    Test Track
    Test Track is an attraction at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, sponsored by General Motors The ride is a simulated excursion through the rigorous testing procedures that General Motors uses to evaluate its vehicles, culminating in a high-speed drive around the...

  • The Seas with Nemo and Friends
  • The Land
    The Land (Disney)
    The Land is the name of a pavilion that sits on the western side of "Future World", one of two themed areas of Epcot, a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. It opened on October 1, 1982 as part of the Phase I features for the grand opening of what was then...

  • Imagination!
    Imagination!
    Imagination! is a pavilion on the western side of "Future World", one of two themed areas of Epcot, a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA...



Each Future World pavilion was initially sponsored by a corporation who helped fund its construction and maintenance in return for the corporation's logos appearing prominently throughout the pavilion. For example, Universe of Energy
Universe of Energy
The Universe of Energy is a pavilion located in the eastern half of Future World at Epcot. The pavilion contains one attraction, its second since its 1982 opening, entitled Ellen's Energy Adventure, starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye the Science Guy...

 was sponsored by Exxon
Exxon
Exxon is a chain of gas stations as well as a brand of motor fuel and related products by ExxonMobil. From 1972 to 1999, Exxon was the corporate name of the company previously known as Standard Oil Company of New Jersey or Jersey Standard....

 from 1982 to 2004, and The Land
The Land (Disney)
The Land is the name of a pavilion that sits on the western side of "Future World", one of two themed areas of Epcot, a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. It opened on October 1, 1982 as part of the Phase I features for the grand opening of what was then...

 was sponsored by Kraft
Kraft Foods
Kraft Foods Inc. is an American confectionery, food and beverage conglomerate. It markets many brands in more than 170 countries. 12 of its brands annually earn more than $1 billion worldwide: Cadbury, Jacobs, Kraft, LU, Maxwell House, Milka, Nabisco, Oscar Mayer, Philadelphia, Trident, Tang...

 from 1982 to 1993, then Nestlé
Nestlé
Nestlé S.A. is the world's largest food and nutrition company. Founded and headquartered in Vevey, Switzerland, Nestlé originated in a 1905 merger of the Anglo-Swiss Milk Company, established in 1867 by brothers George Page and Charles Page, and Farine Lactée Henri Nestlé, founded in 1866 by Henri...

 from 1993 to 2009. Each pavilion contains a posh "VIP area" for its sponsor with offices, lounges, and reception areas hidden away from regular park guests. In the years since the park's opening, however, some sponsors have decided that the branding wasn't worth the cost of sponsorship and have pulled out, leaving some of the pavilions without sponsors. Disney prefers to have sponsors helping to pay the bills, so pavilions without sponsors have an uncertain future. After General Electric
General Electric
General Electric Company , or GE, is an American multinational conglomerate corporation incorporated in Schenectady, New York and headquartered in Fairfield, Connecticut, United States...

 left Horizons
Horizons (Epcot attraction)
Horizons was the name of a dark ride attraction at Epcot , a theme park at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. Located on the eastern side of the "Future World" section of Epcot, the attraction used Disney's Omnimover conveyance system, which took guests past show scenes depicting...

 in 1993, it closed for a couple of years, then reopened temporarily while neighboring attractions Universe of Energy
Universe of Energy
The Universe of Energy is a pavilion located in the eastern half of Future World at Epcot. The pavilion contains one attraction, its second since its 1982 opening, entitled Ellen's Energy Adventure, starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye the Science Guy...

 and World of Motion
World of Motion
World of Motion , sponsored by General Motors, was the former tenant of the Transportation pavilion at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort...

 were renovated. Horizons closed permanently on January 9, 1999 and was demolished in the summer of 2000 to make room for the opening of Mission: SPACE on October 9, 2003. Metlife sponsored Wonders of Life
Wonders of Life
The Wonders of Life pavilion was an attraction at Epcot at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The pavilion was devoted to health and body related attractions. It is located inside a golden colored dome between Mission: SPACE and the Universe of Energy...

 from 1989 to 2001, until that area was closed. However, the Wonders Of Life pavilion is still mostly intact and is used for both the Flower and Garden Festival and the Food and Wine Festival. Test Track
Test Track
Test Track is an attraction at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, sponsored by General Motors The ride is a simulated excursion through the rigorous testing procedures that General Motors uses to evaluate its vehicles, culminating in a high-speed drive around the...

 opened in the World of Motion pavilion and is still sponsored by General Motors. Mission: SPACE
Mission: SPACE
Mission: SPACE is a motion simulator thrill ride at Epcot. It simulates what an astronaut might experience aboard a spacecraft on a mission to Mars, from the higher g-force of blastoff to the speculative hypersleep....

 is sponsored by Hewlett-Packard
Hewlett-Packard
Hewlett-Packard Company or HP is an American multinational information technology corporation headquartered in Palo Alto, California, USA that provides products, technologies, softwares, solutions and services to consumers, small- and medium-sized businesses and large enterprises, including...

. Spaceship Earth
Spaceship Earth (Disney)
Spaceship Earth is the iconic and symbolic structure of Epcot, a theme park that is part of the Walt Disney World Resort. One of the most recognizable structures at the Walt Disney World Resort, it is not only the centerpiece and main focal point of Epcot, but also the name of the attraction housed...

 was sponsored by Bell System from 1982 to 1984, then AT&T
American Telephone & Telegraph
AT&T Corp., originally American Telephone and Telegraph Company, is an American telecommunications company that provides voice, video, data, and Internet telecommunications and professional services to businesses, consumers, and government agencies. AT&T is the oldest telecommunications company...

 (Bell System's parent company, following the Bell System Divestiture
Bell System divestiture
The Bell System divestiture, or the breakup of AT&T, was initiated by the filing in 1974 by the U.S. Department of Justice of an antitrust lawsuit against AT&T. The case, United States v...

) from 1984 until 2003. It was not sponsored between 2003 and 2005. It is now sponsored by Siemens
Siemens AG
Siemens AG is a German multinational conglomerate company headquartered in Munich, Germany. It is the largest Europe-based electronics and electrical engineering company....

.

World Showcase

World Showcase contains pavilions representing eleven countries—click on the links below for more information about each. In clockwise order, the pavilions are: Mexico
Mexico (Epcot)
The Mexico pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:The Mexico pavilion resembles a Mesoamerican pyramid. The nightly fireworks show "IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth" is controlled from a small office atop the building...

 Norway
Norway (Epcot)
The Norway Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:The Norway pavilion is designed to look like a Norwegian village. The village includes a detailed Stave church, and the exterior of its main table-service restaurant, Restaurant Akershus,...

 China
China (Epcot)
The China Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:Visitors enter the China Pavilion through a large Chinese gate...

 Germany
Germany (Epcot)
The Germany Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-History:The original design of the pavilion called for a boat ride along the Rhine river. It was to have focused on German folklore, in a similar manner to the Mexico and Norway rides. According to the...

 Italy
Italy (Epcot)
The Italy Pavilion is a part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:The Italian Pavilion features a plaza surrounded by a collection of buildings evocative of Venetian, Florentine, and Roman architecture. Venetian architecture is represented by a re-creation of...

 The American Adventure
The American Adventure
The American Adventure is the host pavilion of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort. It is also the name of the pavilion's main attraction, an Audio-Animatronics stage show of American history.-Layout:...

 Japan
Japan (Epcot)
The Japan Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-History:The Japan pavilion is one of the original World Showcase pavilions and had been in planning since the late 1970s. Many attractions have been proposed for the pavilion and one show building was...

 Morocco
Morocco (Epcot)
The Morocco Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort. It was the first expansion pavilion to be added to World Showcase, opening on September 7, 1984.-Layout:...

 France
France (Epcot)
The France Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:The France pavilion is themed to look like a Paris neighborhood with a pool and fountains and with a view of the Eiffel Tower in the distance. Most of the shops on the streets are actual shops...

 United Kingdom
United Kingdom (Epcot)
The United Kingdom pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:The United Kingdom Pavilion, designed to look like a typical British village, looks like 1/100 villages that are in the UK, although it could be argued that it is more stereotypical, with...

 Canada
Canada (Epcot)
The Canada Pavilion is part of World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.-Layout:The Canada Pavilion is designed to remind guests of the Canadian outdoors. It includes a canyon, a waterfall, gardens, a pool with fountains, and totem poles. The main attraction is O...



Of the eleven pavilions, Norway and Morocco were not present at the park's opening, and were added later. Each of these contains representative shops and restaurants and is staffed by citizens of these countries, as part of the Cultural Representative Program. Some also contain rides and shows. The only pavilion that is sponsored by the country it represents is Morocco. The remaining country pavilions are all sponsored by private companies.

Pavilions for Russia, Spain, Venezuela, United Arab Emirates, and Israel never made it past the planning phase. An Equatorial Africa pavilion was planned but never built. It would have featured a large African presentation film hosted by Alex Haley
Alex Haley
Alexander Murray Palmer Haley was an African-American writer. He is best known as the author of Roots: The Saga of an American Family and the coauthor of The Autobiography of Malcolm X.-Early life:...

. A small African themed refreshment stop is now in its place, known as the Outpost. After Disney's Animal Kingdom—an African-and-Asian-themed animal preserve and park—opened, any plans for an African Pavilion were dropped.

The World Showcase usually opens two hours after park opening and remains open later than the Future World section of the park, however most major attractions in Future World including Test Track, Soarin', Mission Space, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, and Spaceship Earth remain open until park close.

Unlike the Magic Kingdom, which does not serve alcohol, many stores and restaurants in the World Showcase do serve or sell alcoholic beverages from their respective countries, and beer is sold at refreshment stands throughout the park.

There is an entrance to the park between the France and United Kingdom Pavilions known as the International Gateway. Guests staying in a number of the Epcot Resorts
Epcot Area Resorts
The Epcot Resort Area is the area between Epcot and Disney's Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort which consists of five individual resorts that are interconnected via footpaths and waterways surrounding a large central lake known as Crescent Lake.-Resorts:*Disney's Yacht Club...

 and guests coming from Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Disney's Hollywood Studios is a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort. Spanning 135 acres in size, its theme is show business, drawing inspiration from the heyday of Hollywood in the 1930s and 1940s...

 can access this gate by walkway or boat.

Kim Possible World Showcase Adventure

Based on the Disney Channel
Disney Channel
Disney Channel is an American basic cable and satellite television network, owned by the Disney-ABC Television Group division of The Walt Disney Company. It is under the direction of Disney-ABC Television Group President Anne Sweeney. The channel's headquarters is located on West Alameda Ave. in...

 animated series Kim Possible
Kim Possible
Kim Possible is an American animated television series about a teenage crime fighter who has the task of dealing with worldwide, family, and school issues every day. The show is action-oriented, but also has a light-hearted atmosphere and often lampoons the conventions and clichés of the...

, the World Showcase Adventure is an interactive attraction taking place in several of the World Showcase pavilions. The attraction is an electronic scavenger hunt
Scavenger hunt
A scavenger hunt is a game in which the organizers prepare a list defining specific items, using which the participants — individuals or teams — seek to gather all items on the list — usually without purchasing them — or perform tasks or take photographs of the items, as specified...

 that has guests using special "Kimmunicators" (in actuality, stripped-down cell phones) to help teenage crime-fighters Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable solve a "crime" or disrupt an evil-doer's "plans for global domination." The "Kimmunicator" is able to trigger specific events within the pavilion grounds that provide clues to completing the adventure. Launched in January 2009 and presented by Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless
Cellco Partnership, doing business as Verizon Wireless, is one of the largest mobile network operators in the United States. The network has 107.7 million subscribers as of 2011, making it the largest wireless service provider in America....

, the Adventure is included in park admission.

World Showcase Lagoon

World Showcase Lagoon is a man-made lake located in the center of World Showcase. It has a perimeter of 1.2 miles. "FriendShip" launches ply the waters of the lagoon, transporting guests from Future World to the opposite end of World Showcase.

Epcot Character Spot

Epcot Character Spot is an attraction where kids of all ages can meet and greet their favorite Disney Characters and take the opportunity to pose for photos with them. Originally called the Character Connection, Epcot Character Spot welcomed its first guest in May 2007. On June 8, 2010, Kevin and Jacqueline Fink became the Epcot Character Spot's 3 Millionth guest, while celebrating their one year wedding anniversary.

IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth

This award winning night time show takes place in the World Showcase Lagoon every night at the park's closing time (usually 9:00 pm). The show features fireworks
Fireworks
Fireworks are a class of explosive pyrotechnic devices used for aesthetic and entertainment purposes. The most common use of a firework is as part of a fireworks display. A fireworks event is a display of the effects produced by firework devices...

, lasers, fire, and water fountains timed to a musical score over the World Showcase Lagoon. A large rotating globe with curved LED screens is the centerpiece of the show and is used to display images of people and places. The current version premiered as part of the park's Millennium Celebration in 2000. The show tells the story of Earth and is divided into three movements titled "Chaos," "Order," and "Meaning." The music has an African tribal sound to it, to emphasize the idea of humanity as a single unified tribe on this planet; the lagoon is surrounded by nineteen large torches signifying the first 19 centuries of the common era, and the show culminates in the globe opening like a lotus blossom to reveal a twentieth torch, representing the now-completed 20th century.

Annual events

Epcot hosts a number of special events during the year that have proven very popular with guests.
  • The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, inaugurated in 1993, uses specially-themed floral displays throughout the park, including topiary
    Topiary
    Topiary is the horticultural practice of training live perennial plants, by clipping the foliage and twigs of trees, shrubs and subshrubs to develop and maintain clearly defined shapes, perhaps geometric or fanciful; and the term also refers to plants which have been shaped in this way. It can be...

     sculptures of Disney characters. Guests can meet gardening experts and learn new ideas they can use in their own home gardens. The 18th annual event is scheduled for March 2 – May 15. Each event takes more than a full year to plan and more than 20,000 cast member hours.
  • The Epcot International Food and Wine Festival debuted in 1995. The festival draws amateur and professional gourmets to sample delicacies from all around the world, including nations that do not have a permanent presence in World Showcase. Celebrity chefs are often on-hand to host the events. In 2008, the festival featured the Bocuse d'Or USA
    Bocuse d'Or USA
    The Bocuse d'Or USA is a biennial chef championship, where the winner is selected to represent the U.S. in the international Bocuse d'Or competition...

    , the American semifinal of the biennial Bocuse d'Or
    Bocuse d'Or
    The Bocuse d'Or is a biennial world chef championship. Named for the chef Paul Bocuse, the event takes place during two days near the end of January in Lyon, France at the SIRHA International Hotel, Catering and Food Trade Exhibition, and is one of the world's most prestigious cooking...

     cooking competition.
  • Holidays Around the World is Epcot's annual holiday celebration. The World Showcase pavilions feature storytellers describing their nation's holiday traditions, and three nightly performances of the "Candlelight Processional" featuring an auditioned mass choir and a celebrity guest narrating the story of Christmas. During "Holidays Around the World," Illuminations: Reflections of Earth features a special extended ending.
  • On New Years Eve the park offers a variety of additional entertainment including live DJ dance areas throughout the park and a special New Years Eve countdown edition of IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth.

1960s

  • In 1966 Walt Disney produced his final film, a promotional where he tells Florida residents the plans for Walt Disney World and EPCOT.

1970s

  • October 1, 1978: Card Walker
    Card Walker
    Esmond Cardon Walker , commonly known as E. Cardon Walker or Card Walker, was a top executive at Walt Disney Productions in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. He was born in Rexburg, Idaho.-Early life and career:...

    , CEO of Walt Disney Productions, reveals plans for the theme park
  • October 1, 1979: Official groundbreaking and construction of the park begins

1980s

  • October 1, 1982: EPCOT Center opens with Spaceship Earth
    Spaceship Earth (Disney)
    Spaceship Earth is the iconic and symbolic structure of Epcot, a theme park that is part of the Walt Disney World Resort. One of the most recognizable structures at the Walt Disney World Resort, it is not only the centerpiece and main focal point of Epcot, but also the name of the attraction housed...

    , Universe of Energy
    Universe of Energy
    The Universe of Energy is a pavilion located in the eastern half of Future World at Epcot. The pavilion contains one attraction, its second since its 1982 opening, entitled Ellen's Energy Adventure, starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye the Science Guy...

    , World of Motion
    World of Motion
    World of Motion , sponsored by General Motors, was the former tenant of the Transportation pavilion at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort...

    , Journey Into Imagination (Magic Journeys
    Magic Journeys
    Magic Journeys is a 3-D film created by WED Enterprises for presentation at Disney theme parks. It was featured at four different parks over the course of its 11-year run.-History:...

    and ImageWorks
    ImageWorks (Disney)
    The ImageWorks is an interactive exhibit area at Epcot's Imagination! pavilion, described in the closing spiel of the original Journey Into Imagination as "the creative playground of the future". Originally, the attraction was in the upstairs area of the pavilion in the glass pyramids...

     only), The Land
    The Land (Disney)
    The Land is the name of a pavilion that sits on the western side of "Future World", one of two themed areas of Epcot, a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. It opened on October 1, 1982 as part of the Phase I features for the grand opening of what was then...

    , CommuniCore
    CommuniCore
    CommuniCore was a pavilion dedicated to technological advance located at EPCOT Center in Walt Disney World, Florida. It occupied two semi-circular buildings behind Spaceship Earth at the center of Future World. The two buildings were known as CommuniCore East and West and housed rotating exhibits...

    , and 9 of the 11 current World Showcase countries
  • March 5, 1983: Journey Into Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination With Figment is an attraction which is contained within The Imagination! Pavilion at the Epcot theme park at Walt Disney World and opened on March 5, 1983. It has been through three incarnations over the years, two of them featuring Figment, a small purple dragon, as a...

     opens.
  • October 1, 1983: Horizons
    Horizons (Epcot attraction)
    Horizons was the name of a dark ride attraction at Epcot , a theme park at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. Located on the eastern side of the "Future World" section of Epcot, the attraction used Disney's Omnimover conveyance system, which took guests past show scenes depicting...

     opens
  • October 1, 1984: Morocco
    Morocco (Epcot)
    The Morocco Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort. It was the first expansion pavilion to be added to World Showcase, opening on September 7, 1984.-Layout:...

     opens
  • January 15, 1986: The Living Seas opens
  • February 9, 1986: Magic Journeys closes, to reopen at the Magic Kingdom
    Magic Kingdom
    Magic Kingdom Park is one of four theme parks at the Walt Disney World Resort located near Orlando, Florida. The first park built at the resort, Magic Kingdom opened Oct. 1, 1971. Designed and built by WED Enterprises, the park's layout and attractions are similar to Disneyland in Anaheim, California...

  • September 12, 1986: Captain EO
    Captain EO
    Captain EO is a 3-D science fiction film starring Michael Jackson and directed by Francis Ford Coppola that was shown at Disney theme parks from 1986 through the 1990s...

    starring Michael Jackson
    Michael Jackson
    Michael Joseph Jackson was an American recording artist, entertainer, and businessman. Referred to as the King of Pop, or by his initials MJ, Jackson is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by Guinness World Records...

     opens
  • July 1, 1988: Norway
    Norway (Epcot)
    The Norway Pavilion is part of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort.-Layout:The Norway pavilion is designed to look like a Norwegian village. The village includes a detailed Stave church, and the exterior of its main table-service restaurant, Restaurant Akershus,...

     opens
  • July 5, 1988: Maelstrom
    Maelstrom (ride)
    Mælstrom is a dark ride and a traditional film attraction located in the Norway pavilion of the World Showcase at the Epcot theme park at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Visitors ride boats that are patterned after Viking ships and pass through various scenes with...

     opens at Norway
  • October 19, 1989: Wonders of Life
    Wonders of Life
    The Wonders of Life pavilion was an attraction at Epcot at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The pavilion was devoted to health and body related attractions. It is located inside a golden colored dome between Mission: SPACE and the Universe of Energy...

     opens

1990s

  • 1993: First annual Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival
  • 1994: Name changes from EPCOT Center to Epcot '94
  • January 30, 1994: CommuniCore closes
  • March 26, 1994 Food Rocks
    Food Rocks
    Food Rocks was an attraction at Epcot's The Land pavilion presented by Nestlé in the Walt Disney World Resort. It was a musical stage show, with audio-animatronic figures.-Synopsis:...

     opens
  • July 1, 1994: Innoventions
    Innoventions
    Innoventions is the name of two technology-oriented Disney attractions:* Innoventions , at Walt Disney World in Florida* Innoventions , in California...

     opens
  • July 6, 1994: Captain EO closes
  • November 21, 1994: Honey, I Shrunk the Audience
    Honey, I Shrunk the Audience
    Honey, I Shrunk The Audience! was a 3-D film spin off of the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids film series that was shown at several Disney theme parks.-Synopsis:...

    opens
  • 1995: Name changes from Epcot '94 to Epcot '95
  • 1995: First annual Epcot International Food and Wine Festival
  • 1996: Name changes from Epcot '95 to Epcot
  • January 2, 1996: World of Motion closes
  • September 15, 1996: Universe of Energy reopens, now starring Ellen DeGeneres
    Ellen DeGeneres
    Ellen Lee DeGeneres is an American stand-up comedienne, television host and actress. She hosts the syndicated talk show The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and was also a judge on American Idol for one year, having joined the show in its ninth season....

     and Bill Nye
    Bill Nye
    William Sanford "Bill" Nye , popularly known as Bill Nye the Science Guy, is an American science educator, comedian, television host, actor, mechanical engineer, and scientist...

  • October 10, 1998: Journey Into Imagination closes in its original form
  • January 9, 1999: Horizons closes
  • March 17, 1999: Test Track
    Test Track
    Test Track is an attraction at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, sponsored by General Motors The ride is a simulated excursion through the rigorous testing procedures that General Motors uses to evaluate its vehicles, culminating in a high-speed drive around the...

     opens
  • September 29, 1999: The Mickey Mouse
    Mickey Mouse
    Mickey Mouse is a cartoon character created in 1928 by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks at The Walt Disney Studio. Mickey is an anthropomorphic black mouse and typically wears red shorts, large yellow shoes, and white gloves...

     arm holding a wand is dedicated with "2000" (later changed to "Epcot") over Spaceship Earth. The wand and "Epcot" sign were removed in 2007
  • October 1, 1999: Journey Into Imagination reopens as Journey Into Your Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination With Figment is an attraction which is contained within The Imagination! Pavilion at the Epcot theme park at Walt Disney World and opened on March 5, 1983. It has been through three incarnations over the years, two of them featuring Figment, a small purple dragon, as a...

    , Millennium Village
    Millennium Village
    The Millennium Village was located in Epcot and was the centerpiece of Disney's Millennium Celebration. The pavilion opened up its doors to the public on October 1, 1999 and was closed down on January 1, 2001. It is, however, used on occasion...

     opens, and Millennium Celebration begins
  • October 1, 1999: Tapestry of Nations
    Tapestry of Nations
    The Tapestry of Nations was a parade at the Epcot theme park in Walt Disney World, Florida, USA, that ran around the World Showcase Lagoon from 1999 to 2001, after which it was rethemed as Tapestry of Dreams. The parade had a unity and world peace theme and featured a variety of large puppets and...

     parade opens.

2000s

  • January 1, 2001: Millennium Village closes, marking the end of the Millennium Celebration
  • October 8, 2001: Journey Into Your Imagination closes
  • June 1, 2002: Journey Into Imagination reopens as Journey Into Imagination With Figment
    Journey Into Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination With Figment is an attraction which is contained within The Imagination! Pavilion at the Epcot theme park at Walt Disney World and opened on March 5, 1983. It has been through three incarnations over the years, two of them featuring Figment, a small purple dragon, as a...

  • May 22, 2003: Reflections of China
    Reflections of China
    Reflections of China is a Circle-Vision 360° movie which is located in the China pavilion of the World Showcase in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort. The show is narrated by an actor playing Li Bai, an ancient Chinese poet, who takes the viewer on a tour of the Chinese countryside and historical...

    replaces the former Wonders of China
  • October 9, 2003: Mission: Space
    Mission: SPACE
    Mission: SPACE is a motion simulator thrill ride at Epcot. It simulates what an astronaut might experience aboard a spacecraft on a mission to Mars, from the higher g-force of blastoff to the speculative hypersleep....

     opens
  • January 3, 2004: Food Rocks
    Food Rocks
    Food Rocks was an attraction at Epcot's The Land pavilion presented by Nestlé in the Walt Disney World Resort. It was a musical stage show, with audio-animatronic figures.-Synopsis:...

     closes
  • January 5, 2004 Wonders of Life
    Wonders of Life
    The Wonders of Life pavilion was an attraction at Epcot at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The pavilion was devoted to health and body related attractions. It is located inside a golden colored dome between Mission: SPACE and the Universe of Energy...

     becomes seasonal
  • May 5, 2005: Soarin' opens at The Land
  • October 2006: The Living Seas is refurbished and becomes The Seas with Nemo & Friends
  • January 1, 2007 Wonders of Life
    Wonders of Life
    The Wonders of Life pavilion was an attraction at Epcot at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The pavilion was devoted to health and body related attractions. It is located inside a golden colored dome between Mission: SPACE and the Universe of Energy...

     closes
  • January 2, 2007: El Rio Del Tiempo
    El Rio del Tiempo
    El Rio del Tiempo was a dark ride housed within the pyramid-shaped Mexico pavilion, in EPCOT Center at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. The ride carried passengers on a slow boat ride through various scenes from Mexico's history...

     closes in its original form
  • April 6, 2007: El Rio Del Tiempo reopens as Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros
    Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros
    Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros is a dark ride housed within the pyramid-shaped Mexico pavilion, at the Epcot theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, United States.-Synopsis:...

  • July 9, 2007: Spaceship Earth closes for major renovation
  • September 1, 2007: O Canada!
    O Canada! (Disney)
    O Canada! is a Circle-Vision 360° movie. It is an attraction at the Canada Pavilion at the Epcot World Showcase at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. Its name derives from Canada's national anthem...

    re-opens in an updated form, hosted by comedian Martin Short
    Martin Short
    Martin Hayter Short, CM is a Canadian actor, comedian, writer, singer and producer. He is best-known for his comedy work, particularly on the TV programs SCTV and Saturday Night Live...

  • October 1, 2007: Epcot celebrates its 25th Anniversary with a rededication ceremony, special fireworks display, a gallery exhibition showcasing EPCOT Center memorabilia, and exclusive presentations by Disney Legend Marty Sklar
    Marty Sklar
    Martin A. "Marty" Sklar was The Walt Disney Company's International Ambassador for Walt Disney Imagineering, the subsidiary of the company which designs and constructs the Disney theme parks and resorts across the world...

    .
  • February 15, 2008: Spaceship Earth reopens with new sets, narration, soundtrack, and interactive ending
  • January 28, 2009: Kim Possible World Showcase Adventure opens

2010s

  • May 9, 2010: Honey, I Shrunk the Audience
    Honey, I Shrunk the Audience
    Honey, I Shrunk The Audience! was a 3-D film spin off of the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids film series that was shown at several Disney theme parks.-Synopsis:...

    closes
  • July 2, 2010: Captain EO
    Captain EO
    Captain EO is a 3-D science fiction film starring Michael Jackson and directed by Francis Ford Coppola that was shown at Disney theme parks from 1986 through the 1990s...

    reopens

The Official Album of Walt Disney World Epcot Center

The Official Album of Walt Disney World Epcot Center was the official album for EPCOT Center in 1983. It was originally released on LP and Cassette and is no longer in print.

Track listing

Side 1
  1. "Main Entrance Medley (Instrumental)" – 3:22
  2. "Golden Dream" – The American Adventure
    The American Adventure
    The American Adventure is the host pavilion of the World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort. It is also the name of the pavilion's main attraction, an Audio-Animatronics stage show of American history.-Layout:...

     in the World Showcase – 3:27
  3. "Energy (You Make the World Go 'Round)" – Universe of Energy
    Universe of Energy
    The Universe of Energy is a pavilion located in the eastern half of Future World at Epcot. The pavilion contains one attraction, its second since its 1982 opening, entitled Ellen's Energy Adventure, starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye the Science Guy...

     – 1:48
  4. "The Computer Song" – Epcot Computer Central – 2:32
  5. "Magic Journeys
    Magic Journeys
    Magic Journeys is a 3-D film created by WED Enterprises for presentation at Disney theme parks. It was featured at four different parks over the course of its 11-year run.-History:...

    " – Journey Into Imagination – 3:36
  6. "Canada (You're A Lifetime Journey)" – Canada
    Canada (Epcot)
    The Canada Pavilion is part of World Showcase within Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.-Layout:The Canada Pavilion is designed to remind guests of the Canadian outdoors. It includes a canyon, a waterfall, gardens, a pool with fountains, and totem poles. The main attraction is O...

     in the World Showcase – 3:22

Side 2
  1. "Universe of Energy" – Universe of Energy
    Universe of Energy
    The Universe of Energy is a pavilion located in the eastern half of Future World at Epcot. The pavilion contains one attraction, its second since its 1982 opening, entitled Ellen's Energy Adventure, starring Ellen DeGeneres and Bill Nye the Science Guy...

     – 2:14
  2. "Listen to the Land" – The Land
    The Land (Disney)
    The Land is the name of a pavilion that sits on the western side of "Future World", one of two themed areas of Epcot, a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. It opened on October 1, 1982 as part of the Phase I features for the grand opening of what was then...

     – 2:59
  3. "One Little Spark" – Journey Into Imagination – 3:40
  4. "It's Fun to Be Free" – World of Motion
    World of Motion
    World of Motion , sponsored by General Motors, was the former tenant of the Transportation pavilion at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort...

     – 2:14
  5. "Makin' Memories" – Journey Into Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination
    Journey Into Imagination With Figment is an attraction which is contained within The Imagination! Pavilion at the Epcot theme park at Walt Disney World and opened on March 5, 1983. It has been through three incarnations over the years, two of them featuring Figment, a small purple dragon, as a...

     – 3:26
  6. "Kitchen Kabaret Medley" – The Land
    The Land (Disney)
    The Land is the name of a pavilion that sits on the western side of "Future World", one of two themed areas of Epcot, a theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida USA. It opened on October 1, 1982 as part of the Phase I features for the grand opening of what was then...

     – 2:20
    • Boogie Woogy Bakery Boy
    • Meat Ditties
    • Veggie Veggie Fruit Fruit

Further reading

  • Alcorn, Steve
    Steve Alcorn
    Steve Alcorn is an American entrepreneur, engineer, inventor, author and teacher best known for his involvement in the theme park industry...

    and David Green. Building a Better Mouse: The Story of the Electronic Imagineers Who Designed Epcot. Themeperks Press, 2007, ISBN 0-9729777-3-2.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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