Why You Want to Stay at a Disney World Resort during a Hurricane

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Should you stay or should you go with a hurricane in the forecast???

Let’s take a moment and talk about what happens when a hurricane decides to take a Disney World Vacation.

If you find yourself stuck in Florida with a hurricane bearing down on you, you might want to consider booking a room at a Disney World Resort hotel.

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Every trash can at every Park and Disney Resort is tied down or filled with water ahead of the storm.  Think about those numbers for a minute!

Safety & Security

Disney World boasts some of the best infrastructure found in Florida’s Hurricane Territory. Every window and doorway of each building is built to withstand hurricane-force winds, up to major Category 4 winds.

Plan on arriving 12 hours before the storm as you will be asked to stay safely sheltered inside your home-away-from-home resort until the hurricane passes.

Disney’s Hurricane Rideout Teams will be activated to provide 24 hour service, entertainment, and security to guests. The cast members are asked to commit to a minimum 72 hour shift!  The resort’s exterior doors will be locked and some will be zip-tied shut.

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Signs advising Disney resort guests to keep exterior doors closed during Hurricane Dorian’s approach.

The gates in the parking lots will be down barring admittance.  (The security guards don’t man the guardhouses during hurricanes.)  Everything outside that could be blown around will either be removed or tied down.

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Everything that can be blown around or damaged in high winds is securely tied down.

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When Disney moves the Grand Floridian car into safe storage you know a bad storm is coming!!!

The parking lots having relatively good drainage and you’re possibly less likely to experience flooding at a resort than at home.

We think you’re probably safer staying at Disney World than staying at home!

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Don’t expect to be able to fly into or out of Orlando International Airport for the 12 hours before or 24 hours after a hurricane. Expect 1,000s of flights to be cancelled ahead of a storm.

Quality Care & Crowd Control

If your flight home or Disney cruise gets canceled and you find yourself stranded in the path of a hurricane, cast members will do everything in their power to find you and your family a room or two to extend your stay. There are over 36,000 rooms on property, all very nice, and some are very, very nice!!!

swansDisney has it’s own power plant and emergency generators all over the property.

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Hurricane Irma, Sept. 2017: Cast members went door to door in all the resorts and personally handed out flashlights to guests. They also handed out small boxes of cereal and shelf stable milk. Characters were in the resort lobbies meeting guests until the late evening.

During Hurricane Irma in Sept. 2017, cast members went door to door at the resorts and handed out free flashlights, along with single serving boxes of cereal and shelf stable milk in case the power went out overnight.  Nice!

Pet Friendly

Disney World compassionately adopts a very pet-friendly policy during hurricanes. Pets are welcome to stay in your room with you at no extra charge.

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Artist Point at Wilderness Lodge is normally a very pricey place to dine!

Buffet Food

To ease waits at restaurants, the quick service locations stay open in the resorts, along with the onsite convenience shops.  At least one restaurant will try and serve food buffet style to feed the stranded hordes.  During Hurricane Dorian in Sept. 2019, Artist Point at the Wilderness Lodge served delicious buffet breakfasts for just $12.

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Mickey and Minnie in their safari gear visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge during the storm.

Magical Memories with Characters

Despite the pouring rain and the howling wind outside your window, you’re still in a Disney World Resort hotel. The magic doesn’t stop just because the parks are closed.

Expect unannounced character appearances in the lobby. Guests trapped in their hotels are treated to marathons of Disney Classic Movies and Mickey Mouse Cartoons, and cast members set up board games and scavenger hunts to keep the little ones entertained.

Yes, hurricanes are scary, especially for those who are visiting Florida for the first time. But, if you do find yourself facing one on your Disney World vacation, remember that you are in one of the safest, nicest, and definitely the most magical place on earth!

hurricaneDisney World’s Hurricane Policy

Check out Disney World’s official Hurricane Policy for more information regarding cancelling or rescheduling your vacation during a hurricane. During hurricane watches or warnings, this is where Disney will post updates at least 2x/day.

Disney Hurricane Policy:  If a hurricane warning is issued by the National Hurricane Center for the Orlando area—or for your place of residence—within 7 days of your scheduled arrival date, you may call in advance to reschedule or cancel your Walt Disney Travel Company Disney Resort Hotel Package and most room only reservations (booked directly with Disney) without any cancellation or change fees imposed by Disney.

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September 4, 2019 8am:  Update on Hurricane Dorian’s position and wind speed.

Want to read more about how Disney Parks prepared for Hurricane Dorian over Labor Day Week 2019?  Read our blog about it:  How Disney World kept the Magic Alive for Guests as Hurricane Dorian threatened Florida

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We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

#TwoDisneySisters

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How Disney World kept the Magic Alive for Guests as Hurricane Dorian threatened Florida

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Storm’s a’coming!!!

As Hurricane Dorian charged toward the Florida coast over Labor Day weekend, the Walt Disney Company faced a tough dilemma: How to keep guests safe without ruining the magic of a typical – and expensive – Disney World vacation?

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Hurricane Dorian, September 5, 2019.

The emergency “Hurricane Rideout” teams at Disney World sprang into action. Lucky for Disney World-goers, the Category 2 hurricane swept past Florida on Thursday, September 5th, bringing rain and wind but no damage to the theme park.

What happens at Disney World during a hurricane threat?

Disney World theme parks closed early on Tuesday, September 3rd afternoon (3pm) and reopened normally on Wednesday morning.

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Sept. 3rd:  Operational hours ahead of Dorian.

Cast members and security staff in the theme parks and at all the resorts on property tied down signs, landscaping elements, and lighting fixtures.

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Every trash can at every Park and Disney Resort was tied down or filled with water ahead of the storm.

Anything that could become a projectile in a high velocity wind was removed or secured.

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All the new Skyliner cars have been removed from the cable system and are being stored over at the Caribbean Beach Station this week

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Signs advising Disney resort guests to keep exterior doors closed.

Signs advised guests to stay indoors, and doors were secured with heavy zip ties to prevent access to outdoor areas.

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Repair trucks standing by.

Outside the parks, battalions of utility trucks were in place in Orlando waiting to restore power if needed (the power did not go off).

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Pool area of the Wildness Lodge. Closed Tuesday afternoon as the storm approached.

Emergency storm operations began over the weekend at the Wilderness Lodge. Workers closed off all public balconies and removed all furniture from guest room balconies as well. Pools remained open through Tuesday afternoon. The lifeguards that usually manned the swimming areas were charged with entertaining guests as the pools closed. An impromptu game and activity station was created as cast members prepared to entertain and engage with the high volume of guests returning to the resort.

Special Character Visits at the Resorts

The Hurricane Rideout Team at the Wilderness Lodge was charged with staying voluntarily for the duration of the storm.  Cast members had to commit to staying onsite until Thursday, September 5th regardless of the impact Dorian had on the area. The resort was fully staffed and Disney characters roamed the lobby, engaging and interacting with guests.

Though rides and attractions weren’t available Tuesday evening, other amenities at the resort were. Up on the seventh floor, the concierge team at the Old Faithful Club planned for a busy night, preparing treats and decanting wine. Many guests opted to stay for additional nights to wait out the storm as 1,000s of flights into and out of the Orlando International Airport were cancelled. The normally quiet lounge and seating area was full with both kids and adults played board games, and keeping an eye on the flat-screen TV display showing Dorian’s progress up the coast.

The clatter of claws on the polished floor was heard throughout the lobby; evacuees from all over Florida arrived at the Wilderness Lodge, and pets were welcome to shelter at the resort during the storm. Several leashed dogs roamed the lobby, while a few unhappy cats howled from travel bags. The pets, like their owners, had arrived from the south, following the evacuation routes outlined when Dorian began to roll toward Florida. Other guests came from the Disney Cruise Line; the closure of the Miami seaport, which reopened Tuesday, meant many cruise guests were getting temporary accommodations at Disney World to ride out the storm.

Big Al Dorian

Big Al visiting Wilderness Lodge as guests waited out Hurricane Dorian.

Down in the lobby, a huge Jenga set and some oversize board games were set up, and lifeguards ran activities through the night for kids of all ages. Teens and young children abandoned their phones and mobile devices to take part in a game of hide and seek. Disney characters playfully engaged with guests and kept the lobby lively into the late evening.

Special Buffet Set Up for Guests

A few steps away, the character dining experience at Artist Point restaurant was ready to serve up Mickey Mouse waffles and other treats instead of their normal fare. This impromptu buffet ($12) was designed to eliminate waiting at the resort’s other dining locations.

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Artist Point

Mickey waffles

Yum!

Even the gift shop team was ready, rapidly restocking pantry items, filling shelves with reading materials, toys, and snacks to help pass the time.

Despite the closure of rides, Disney World worked to keep resort guests entertained. Many guests enjoyed the disruption of the normal hotel routine. The youngest guests were delighted with the change, making new friends and settling in for fun activities and snacks.

Guests that opted to stick out the storm saw a huge reduction in theme park crowds on Wednesday and Thursday with all the parks experiencing very light crowds.

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September 3, 2019: Very light afternoon crowds at the Magic Kingdom. Over 2,000 flights into Orlando Airport have been cancelled this week.

Historically, tourist attendance drops within the five days after a major storm or hurricane. New arrivals typically cancel or delay their trip as air and ground transportation is disrupted.

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Mickey and Minnie in their safari gear visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge during the storm.

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How Floridians felt about Hurricane Dorian.

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Mickey Flower Face Two Sisters Magic Kingdom

Spending the day at the Magic Kingdom.

We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover

Adventures in the Animal Kingdom

book Two Girls

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

#TwoDisneySisters

two-disney-sisters

Two Disney Sisters

*****

wilderness

We love staying at the Wilderness lodge!

What Happens to the Animals at Disney’s Animal Kingdom During Hurricanes?

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August 30, 2019: Hurricane Dorian forecast path update.  Category 1 Hurricane forecast for Orlando next week.

Many guests are wondering with the fast approaching Hurricane Dorian what Disney Parks does with the inhabitants of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom’s is home to some 1,700 animals representing 250 different species throughout the 500-acre park.

That’s a lot of wildlife to keep track of before, during, and after a hurricane hits!

Welcome to my park!

Welcome to Disney’s Animal Kingdom!

Disney doesn’t evacuate their animals off property.  They have safe locations for them behind the scene, aka “backstage”, at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park. All of the wildlife pens and barns are built of reinforced concrete and designed to be able to withstand a Category 3 Hurricane with little to no damage.

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Caroline working at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

As a Disney Cast Member, Caroline went on a cast-exclusive DAK ‘backstage’ tour.  She learned how the animals get called back to their pens in the evening with special whistles and signals.  The animals actually can’t wait to return to their overnight pens because they know that food and water, along with fresh bedding, is waiting for them!  The whole process takes 3 hours to complete every afternoon/early evening.

Disney Hurricane Preparedness Plans call for all cast member zookeepers, trainers, and veterinary staff to be on hand during a hurricane event.

These experts monitor the behavior of the animals and continually checked on them both before, during, and after the storm passes.

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The alligators are OK in their enclosures, just like they are in the wild.

Some water-dwelling creatures, such as the alligators and turtles, are left in their outdoor man-made habitats since this is where they are the safest.

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One of the many birds that will be cared for inside during a hurricane.

All birds are brought inside before hurricanes as they all could be gravely injured by high wind and debris.  (The native Florida birds that live at DAK – and there are a lot of them! – are left outside.)

Disney takes every precaution with their animals, ensuring that they all are kept safe.

In September 2017, not one animal was harmed during Hurricane Irma with winds that topped 80mph in Orlando!  All animals were safe and sound when the park re-opened after being closed for two days due to the storm and for debris clean-up.

If you’re interested in seeing the animal pens and how well Disney treats all their animals, you can take a backstage tour at DAK called Backstage Tales!

For tickets, $90/guest: Backstage Tales at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

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September 2017: Mickey and Minnie greeting hurricane stranded guests at DAK Lodge during Hurricane Irma.

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For Hurricane Irma:  DAK closed early on Saturday (9/09/17) afternoon and park tie down started happening. Cast members wrapped all the turnstiles at the front entrance to keep them protected from wind damage.

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Property damage after Hurricane Irma: One of many trees blown down – or onto – DAK Lodge.

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Day after Hurricane Irma passed: Lots of wind damage all over DAK, but the paths were cleared for guests by opening time on Tuesday morning.

When a Hurricane Warning is in effect, Disney Parks activates the Hurricane Rideout Teams across the WDW property.

These crews are made up of volunteer cast members who agree to stay in their park or resort for at least 72 hours during the storm.  (Because of family commitments, not all cast members can stay on-site during a hurricane.  It’s all volunteer and they get overtime pay.)

Read more about the Disney World’s Hurricane Rideout Teams and what they do before and during a hurricane:

Hurricane Rideout Teams at Disney World

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August 30, 2019: Guest wearing this celebration button at the Magic Kingdom!

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August 31, 2019: Hurricane Dorian approaching Florida.

Know your hurricanes!  The higher the number, the more damaging the winds!

Category Sustained Winds Types of Damage Due to Hurricane Winds
1 74-95 mph Very dangerous winds will produce some damage: Well-constructed frame homes could have damage to roof, shingles, vinyl siding and gutters. Large branches of trees will snap and shallowly rooted trees may be toppled. Extensive damage to power lines and poles likely will result in power outages that could last a few to several days.
2 96-110 mph Extremely dangerous winds will cause extensive damage: Well-constructed frame homes could sustain major roof and siding damage. Many shallowly rooted trees will be snapped or uprooted and block numerous roads. Near-total power loss is expected with outages that could last from several days to weeks.
3
(major)
111-129 mph Devastating damage will occur: Well-built framed homes may incur major damage or removal of roof decking and gable ends. Many trees will be snapped or uprooted, blocking numerous roads. Electricity and water will be unavailable for several days to weeks after the storm passes.
4
(major)
130-156 mph Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.
5
(major)
157 mph or higher Catastrophic damage will occur: A high percentage of framed homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months. (Hurricane Maria was a Category 5 storm that hit Puerto Rico in 2017.)

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Mickey ears DAK  Two

Wearing our Minnie Ears at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover

Adventures in the Animal Kingdom

book Two Girls

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

#TwoDisneySisters

two-disney-sisters

Two Disney Sisters

*****

DAK Mickey Ears

Looking for the Yeti!

Disney World Closures and Cancellations Ahead of Hurricane Dorian

MK Dorian Castle

September 4, 2019:  Hurricane Dorian is moving north up the coast and the sun has come out at the Magic Kingdom.

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September 5, 2019: Hurricane Dorian moving north towards the Carolina’s.

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September 4, 2019, 8am Update:

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September 4, 2019 8am update on Hurricane Dorian’s location

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September 4, 2019, 8am: Disney World Operational Update.

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September 3, 2019: Very light afternoon crows at the Magic Kingdom. Over 2,000 flights into Orlando Airport cancelled.

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September 3, 2019, 11am update:

PARK UPDATE: Walt Disney World has announced that instead of closing at 3:00 p.m. today, Epcot will remain open until 7:00 p.m. and Disney Springs will stay open until 8:00 p.m. All other closures and adjustments noted previously remain the same.

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The Disney World theme parks will close early today – September 3, 2019 – as a result of Hurricane Dorian.

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September 3, 2019, 8am

Here are the adjusted hours of operation:

Magic Kingdom: 8am to 3pm

Disney’s Hollywood Studios: 7am to 3pm

Disney’s Animal Kingdom: 8am to 2pm

Epcot: 7am to 3pm

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party will still continue for Monday, September 2nd, but a modified (shortened) version of the Not-So-Scary fireworks will be shown

Illuminations: Reflections of Earth has been canceled for September 3rd

Disney’s Hollywood Studios will present a modified version of Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular

The Rivers of Light show has been canceled at Disney’s Animal Kingdom for September 3rd

Disney has not made any statements as to the operational status for the theme parks beyond September 3rd and will assess the parks after the storm passes and update guests with park hours.

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September 2, 2019: Today’s Update

Hurricane Dorian

Shortened operational hours for September 3, 2019.

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September 3, 2019, 10:30am: At the Magic Kingdom. Closing early today.

 

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The Grand Floridian car has been moved inside to keep it safe.

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The Grand Floridian car, which Richard used to stand next to all day, being towed away into safe storage ahead of the hurricane’s arrival.

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Storm’s a’coming!!!

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September 2, 2019 forecast:  Heavy rain and wind is in the forecast for Disney World this week!

September 2, 2019, Today’s 12 p.m. Update: The National Hurricane Center shows that Hurricane Dorian remains over Grand Bahama Island and is moving WNW at 1mph. Maximum sustained winds are at 155mph with gusts up to 190mph.

The Walt Disney World Resort is partially located in both Osceola and Orange Counties and the National Weather Service has just placed both counties under Tropical Storm Warnings.

The Storm Surge Warning has been extended northward along the east coast of Florida to the Flagler/Volusia County Line.

The Hurricane Warning along the east coast of Florida has been extended northward to the Flagler/Volusia County Line.

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September 2, 2019: 2pm update.

The Hurricane Watch has been extended northward to Altamaha Sound Georgia.

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97 cast members who live on Castaway Cay were not evacuated by Disney prior to arrival of Hurricane Dorian.

97 cast members were NOT evacuated off Castaway Cay before Hurricane Dorian arrived and were left to rideout the storm.  The sand island has an elevation of about 12 feet at it’s highest point.

Many relatives of the Cay’s cast members were greatly concerned about their safety.

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The Disney Cruise Line has issued an update to their original statement regarding their crew on Castaway Cay.

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September 1st: Castaway Cay Update

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TROPICAL STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FOR ORANGE COUNTY

A Tropical Storm Warning means tropical storm-force winds are expected somewhere within this area within the next 36 hours

* LOCATIONS AFFECTED

– Orlando

– Apopka

– Christmas

* WIND

– LATEST LOCAL FORECAST: Equivalent Tropical Storm force wind

– Peak Wind Forecast: 35-45 mph with gusts to 65 mph

– Window for Tropical Storm force winds: Tuesday morning until Wednesday evening

* FLOODING RAIN

– LATEST LOCAL FORECAST:

– Peak Rainfall Amounts: Additional 3-6 inches, with locally higher amounts

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September 2, 2019

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September 1, 2019 HURRICANE DORIAN UPDATES

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Tropical Storm Warning for Orlando

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September 1, 2019: Hurricane Dorian is a monster Category 5 hurricane.

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September 1, 2019: Updated forecast of hurricane path.

Hurricane Dorian Updates

(8/30/19) – The National Hurricane Center issued a 5pm advisory update this afternoon. Hurricane Dorian is a Category 3 major hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 115 mph.

It is expected to impact Orlando as a Category 1 Hurricane early next week.

(8/30/19) All of Florida is under a State of Emergency

Every county in Florida is under a state of emergency as the state prepares for what may be the strongest hurricane to hit its east coast in nearly three decades.

At 115 mph, Dorian is the strongest storm of the Atlantic 2019 Hurricane Season so far. If it makes landfall as a Category 4 storm on Monday as forecast, with sustained winds of around 130 mph, it will be the strongest hurricane to strike Florida’s East Coast since Hurricane Andrew in 1992.

castle Irma

Hurricane Irma Preparation, 09/09/2017, Saturday afternoon: All the scrim and banners were taken down. Tie down of all trash cans and light fixtures.

(8/30/19) – Disney Parks has issued a statement on Hurricane Dorian

Walt Disney World Resort is operating under normal conditions. We are closely monitoring the path of the projected weather, as nothing is more important than the safety of our Guests and Cast Members.  Link: Disney World Weather Updates

We are taking precautions, including cancelling weekend sporting events and closing Disney’s Blizzard Beach on Sunday.

We are also contacting Guests with current and upcoming reservations at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, Copper Creek Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Treehouse Villas at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa and the Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort to plan for anticipated weather impacts.

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August 30th: Disney Parks operations statement.

(8/30/19) – Disney’s Blizzard Beach Closing

Disney’s Blizzard Beach water park will be closed September 1st, 2nd, and 3rd ahead of Hurricane Dorian.  Cast members will spend Sunday securing the water parks ahead of the hurricane.  Typhoon Lagoon is operating on shortened hours, 10am – 3pm.

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Currently, Blizzard Beach is closed August 31 – September 3, 2019.

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Hurricane Irma, Sept 2017:  Typhoon Lagoon preparation – all picnic tables turned over.

(8/31/19) – Updated: 

Orlando International Airport has decided to keep operations running on Monday.

The airport decided to change there plan on Saturday, which originally had them halting commercial flight operations Monday starting at 2 a.m.

Officials said they will continue to monitor Hurricane Dorian and other activity in the tropics and provide additional updates as needed.

Officials are still telling passengers to check with airlines for updates regarding specific flights.

The Daytona Beach International Airport will close at midnight on Sunday. Passengers should check with individual airlines for any changes on Sunday.

Orlando Melbourne International Airport has pushed back closing until 6 p.m. on Monday. All airline, rental car and parking operations will be suspended until Hurricane Dorian has passed.

Orlando Sanford International Airport will close Sunday, at 11:59 p.m .due to Hurricane Dorian.

To find the operating status of other major airports, visit Fly.faa.gov.

(8/30/19) – The Orlando International Airport will be ceasing flights beginning on Monday, September 2nd at 2am.

Orlando International Airport will be ceasing all commercial operations early Monday morning in anticipation of Hurricane Dorian.

Airport officials announced Friday they had decided to cease commercial flight operations at 2 a.m. Monday out of an abundance of caution. The decision came after a meeting that included aviation leaders, airline officials and federal agencies.

“Hurricane Dorian has strengthened and slowed. Our plan currently is to run full operations through Sunday,” Greater Orlando Aviation Authority CEO Phil Brown said in a statement. “We don’t know exactly where Dorian is going but we do know that it will have a significant impact on the entire state of Florida.”

Passengers are being urged to check with individual airlines for additional flight information and schedules.

(8/30/19) – Crews have begun securing the Disney Skyliner gondola system ahead of Hurricane Dorian’s arrival.

Crews were out today securing the Skyliner cables to the support beams.

All gondola cars have been removed from the cable system and are grounded to prevent excessive swinging in the wind.

Disney-Skyliner-Hurricane-Dorian-Caribbean-Beach

All the Skyliner cars have been removed from the cable system and are being stored over at the Caribbean Beach Station this week

gondola

All the Skyliner gondolas are grounded now and the entire system will have to be reinspected by the engineers later on in the week.

(8/30/19) – Disney Cruise Line Updates Cruise Itineraries

August 30, 2019 – 5:00 p.m.:  Tropical Weather Update

We continue to closely monitor the path and progress of Hurricane Dorian to ensure our guests enjoy safe and comfortable cruises, and to make certain our ships steer clear of the storm. The safety of our guests and crew is always our foremost concern. Since all tropical storms and hurricanes are inherently unpredictable, our plans may change from day to day based on the most current information. Please check this site often for the most up to date information.

Disney Fantasy – Saturday, August 31

At this time, based on the current predicted storm timing and path, we do not anticipate any changes to the Disney Fantasy sailing on Saturday, Aug. 31.

Disney Dream – Monday, September 2

Based on our most recent conversations with ports in Florida and to help our Guests better finalize their travel plans, we have decided to turn this cruise into a two-night sailing, with an expected departure from Port Canaveral on Wednesday, September 4, and an expected return to Port Canaveral on Friday, September 6.

At this time, we anticipate Disney Dream will visit Disney Castaway Cay on Thursday, September 5, dependent on whether it is impacted by Hurricane Dorian.

Guests that choose to continue with this sailing will receive a 50% refund of your voyage fare and a $250 onboard credit per stateroom.

Guests who do not want to sail on Wednesday must call us at 866-325-3905 or 407-566-7032 by noon on Sunday, September 1. Guests will then have until October 31, 2019 to choose a new sail date. They may change their reservation to a later date without incurring a change fee, though there may be a difference in price depending on the new sailing selected.

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dorian

August 31, 2019: Hurricane Dorian slowly approaching Florida.

Know your hurricanes!  The higher the number, the more damaging the winds!

Category Sustained Winds Types of Damage Due to Hurricane Winds
1 74  – 95 mph Very dangerous winds will produce some damage: Well-constructed frame homes could have damage to roof, shingles, vinyl siding and gutters. Large branches of trees will snap and shallowly rooted trees may be toppled. Extensive damage to power lines and poles likely will result in power outages that could last a few to several days.
2 96 – 110 mph Extremely dangerous winds will cause extensive damage: Well-constructed frame homes could sustain major roof and siding damage. Many shallowly rooted trees will be snapped or uprooted and block numerous roads. Near-total power loss is expected with outages that could last from several days to weeks.
3
(major)
111 – 129 mph Devastating damage will occur: Well-built framed homes may incur major damage or removal of roof decking and gable ends. Many trees will be snapped or uprooted, blocking numerous roads. Electricity and water will be unavailable for several days to weeks after the storm passes.
4
(major)
130 – 156 mph Catastrophic damage will occur: Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls. Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months.
5
(major)
157 mph or higher Catastrophic damage will occur: A high percentage of framed homes will be destroyed, with total roof failure and wall collapse. Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas. Power outages will last for weeks to possibly months. Most of the area will be uninhabitable for weeks or months. (Hurricane Maria was a Category 5 storm that hit Puerto Rico in 2017.)
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Hurricane Dorian is a monster of a hurricane!!!

Hurricane party cakes!  Only in Florida!

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Publix vs. Walmart hurricane cakes. 🙂

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More hurricane “Go Away” party cakes!!!

Hurricane Dorian cookie

Hurricane Dorian giant cookie at Publix.

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Yup. This about sums up Hurricane Dorian.

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August 30, 2019: Hurricane Dorian forecast path update.

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epcot rain (2)

Walking around Epcot’s World Showcase in the pouring rain is still fun! 🙂

We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover

Adventures in the Animal Kingdom

book Two Girls

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

#TwoDisneySisters

two-disney-sisters

Two Disney Sisters

*****

US-CARIBBEAN-WEATHER-HURRICANE

Choose your footwear wisely over the next few days! Up to 6″ of rain is in the forecast for Tuesday and Wednesday this week!

Hurricane Dorian forces Cruise Lines to Change Itineraries

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August 30, 2019: Hurricane Dorian forecast path update.

Hurricane Dorian is disrupting the cruise industry, causing a change in travel plans for many ships in the Caribbean.

Disney Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, and Carnival have all announced itinerary changes. At least 12 cruise ships’ itineraries from Disney (1), Royal Caribbean (7), & Carnival (4) were modified to avoid the rough seas around Hurricane Dorian.

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Disney Cruise Line Latest Update

(8/30/19) – Disney Cruise Line Updates Cruise Itineraries

August 30, 2019 – 5:00 p.m.:  Tropical Weather Update

We continue to closely monitor the path and progress of Hurricane Dorian to ensure our guests enjoy safe and comfortable cruises, and to make certain our ships steer clear of the storm. The safety of our guests and crew is always our foremost concern. Since all tropical storms and hurricanes are inherently unpredictable, our plans may change from day to day based on the most current information. Please check this site often for the most up to date information.

Disney Fantasy – Saturday, August 31

At this time, based on the current predicted storm timing and path, we do not anticipate any changes to the Disney Fantasy sailing on Saturday, Aug. 31.

Disney Dream – Monday, September 2

Based on our most recent conversations with ports in Florida and to help our Guests better finalize their travel plans, we have decided to turn this cruise into a two-night sailing, with an expected departure from Port Canaveral on Wednesday, September 4, and an expected return to Port Canaveral on Friday, September 6.

At this time, we anticipate Disney Dream will visit Disney Castaway Cay on Thursday, September 5, dependent on whether it is impacted by Hurricane Dorian.

Guests that choose to continue with this sailing will receive a 50% refund of your voyage fare and a $250 onboard credit per stateroom.

Guests who do not want to sail on Wednesday must call us at 866-325-3905 or 407-566-7032 by noon on Sunday, September 1. Guests will then have until October 31, 2019 to choose a new sail date. They may change their reservation to a later date without incurring a change fee, though there may be a difference in price depending on the new sailing selected.

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August 29, 2019 Update:

Disney’s Fantasy cruise ship was rerouted to a western Caribbean route because of the storm, according to a spokeswoman.

Trips to Tortola in the British Virgin Islands on Tuesday and St. Thomas on Wednesday were replaced with stops in Grand Cayman and Cozumel.

“We will continue to monitor the path of Hurricane Dorian and make additional itinerary changes as needed,” the spokeswoman said. The ship returns to Port Canaveral on Saturday.

The U.S. Coast Guard closed Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Island cruise ports ahead of Hurricane Dorian earlier in the week.

cruiseRead daily updates from Disney Cruise Line Blog:  Hurricane Dorian Sailing Updates

We continue to closely monitor the path and progress of Hurricane Dorian to ensure our Guests enjoy safe and comfortable cruises, and to make certain our ships steer clear of the storm. The safety of our Guests and crew is always our foremost concern.

Disney Dream – Friday, August 30

Based on Hurricane Dorian’s current location and projected path, we have determined that it is safe for Disney Dream to set sail on Friday as originally scheduled. Once the ship departs Port Canaveral, it will keep a safe distance from the storm. Depending on its path, there is a possibility that we may need to modify the itinerary, including not being able to return to Port Canaveral on Monday. We will continue to monitor weather forecasts throughout the sailing and adjust as needed.

Guests that do not want to sail on Friday, must call us at 866-325-3905 or 407-566-7032 by noon on Friday. Guests will then have until October 31 to choose a new sail date. They may change their reservation to a later date without incurring a change fee, though there may be a difference in price depending on the new sailing selected.

Disney Fantasy – Saturday, August 31

At this time, based on the current predicted storm timing and path, we do not anticipate any changes to the Disney Fantasy sailing on Saturday, Aug. 31.

Disney Dream – Monday, September 2

We are closely monitoring potential implications for the Disney Dream sailing on Monday, Sept. 2. We encourage Guests to monitor our website for updates.

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Disney cruises are the best, but not in rough seas!!

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Disney Dream cruise

Aboard the Disney Dream

We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover

Adventures in the Animal Kingdom

book Two Girls

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

#TwoDisneySisters

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Two Disney Sisters

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Castaway Cay

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Hurricane Dorian is Heading Straight for Florida!

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Current predicted path.

August 29, 2019, 11am: Update on Hurricane Dorian

Hurricane Dorian is now forecast to make landfall on Florida’s east coast as a strong Category 4 hurricane sometime midday on Monday, September 2nd.

The European, Hwrf and UKMet forecasting models all have it coming in much farther south, closer to Miami, than the American Model.

We’re still 24 to 36 hours away from narrowing down the Cone of Uncertainty.

Once it crosses over Florida, it will hit the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and re-strengthen.

Florida may get hit by Hurricane Dorian 2x next week, once on the east coast and then again in the Panhandle.

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Current forecast path and hurricane strength.

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hurricane1Want to learn more about how Disney Cast Members prepare Disney World for a hurricane?

Hurricane  Dorian

See you real soon!

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September 2017: Disney World closed because of Hurricane Irma.

Read our Hurricane Irma blog here: Disney World Hurricane Recovery Teams Have Been Activated!

Disney World’s Hurricane Policy link: Disney World Hurricane Cancellation Policy

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More Hurricane Dorian Updates from CNN:

Hurricane Dorian is now forecast to be a Category 4 storm — with sustained winds of around 130 mph — when it makes its expected landfall in the US on Monday, likely somewhere along Florida’s Atlantic coast, the National Hurricane Center says.

Dorian, having swept across the British and US Virgin Islands and whipped Puerto Rico with rain Wednesday, was moving northwest in the Atlantic Thursday morning with sustained winds of up to 85 mph.

Warm waters are expected to strengthen Dorian over the next few days. It’s on track to smack Grand Bahama island on Sunday and likely crash somewhere along the Florida or Georgia coasts around Monday morning.

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A run on food and gas today in Florida ahead of the hurricane.

Because it’s four days out, the range of potential landfall spots is vast — from the Florida Keys to southeast Georgia. And the center may pause at sea shortly before landfall — leaving its outer bands to drench much of Florida with lots of rain, CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said.

“That’s … heavy rain potential,” Myers said. “This will not be a compact storm when it gets there.”

The affected areas in the US will feel tropical-storm force winds — at least 39 mph — as early as Saturday evening. And the center could pause before it runs into land — potentially whipping cities with “inches and inches of (rain) an hour,” Myers said.

“People have got to be ready before Sunday,” Ken Graham, director of the National Hurricane Center, told CNN’s “New Day” on Thursday morning.

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hurricane2We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Amazon.com: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover

Adventures in the Animal Kingdom

book Two Girls

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

#TwoDisneySisters

two-disney-sisters

Two Disney Sisters

*****

US-CARIBBEAN-WEATHER-HURRICANE

Choose your footwear wisely when there’s a hurricane coming!!

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