Epcot International Festival of the Arts
2017 was the first year of the Epcot International Festival of the Arts. “Experience the ultimate cultural celebration as food, art and entertainment perfectly merge.” That is how Disney describes it anyway. The Festival of the Arts runs from mid-January to late February, and it will return in 2018. Is it worth a special trip? What will you see? Find the answers as you read on.
Epcot International Festivals
First came the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival in 1994. Topiaries of Disney characters adorn the park. Gardening expos and special presentations by well known experts are given. It is a nice way to kick off Spring.
Then followed the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival in 1995. In addition to the 11 countries in the World Showcase, multiple other food and wine options from around the world are offered. You can attend cooking demonstrations and tastings. The Wine and Dine Half Marathon has become quite popular, too.
Now, the Epcot International Festival of the Arts has been added. Honestly, to me, it does not live up to the others, but you may feel differently.
What to Expect
Throughout the Epcot World Showcase are scattered tents displaying and selling art. Most of the art is, of coarse, Disney related.
You will find original paintings, prints, sculptures, crafts. It is basically a big Disney themed art fair. If you enjoy art, especially Disney art, then you will likely love this.
Multiple food booths dot the World Showcase as well. Each serves small, tapas like plates of food with an artistic flare. Each dish that I saw was quite eye-catching and looked delicious. The prices were quite high, though; even for Disney. Everything was more expensive than the Food and Wine booth offerings. Small tapas ranged from $8 -12.
Special Art Displays
Several special art displays are shown throughout the festival. I caught the works of Mary Blair of whom I am actually a fan.
She is responsible for concept art for the Disney movie classics Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, and Song of the South. She also drew plans for It’s a Small World ride and for the Grand Canyon Concourse in the Contemporary Resort.
Performances and more
In the American Gardens Theater, samples of Disney’s Broadway musicals are performed. Art demonstrations and workshops are given, too.
Who Should Go?
If you are…
- planning on going anyway.
- a first time visitor or if it has been years since you have been to Epcot, then the Festival of the Arts will unlikely add to nor detract from your experience.
- an art lover.
- a lover all things Disney.
- a foodie and don’t mind higher prices.
- looking for a unique Disney souvenir.
Who Should Skip It?
Again, Epcot International Festival of the Arts does not take anything away from the Epcot experience. There is nothing here to keep you from going. If however, you do not fit into one of the categories stated above, then I would not make a special trip.
I am not sure what makes the Festival of the Arts “International.” The best of the International festivals is the Food and Wine. International fits with it, as it showcases food and wine from around the globe. It is also quite fun with delicious samplings.
Epcot is a wonderful park. There is less to do at Epcot now, though, then when we first went as a family in 1999. Epcot, in my opinion, relies on these festivals to keep the park interesting to return visitors.
Fortunately, Disney has announced that Epcot will undergo a major refurbishment. It is about time! I am hopeful that the empty Innoventions building and the former home of Captain Eo will be filled again with quality educational entertainment. The World Showcase disparately needs more countries, too. I officially place my vote for Brazil to be one them.