Today In Disney History ~ April 22nd
Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a zoological theme park at the Walt Disney World Resort in Bay Lake, Florida, near Orlando. Owned and operated by The Walt Disney Company through its Parks and Resorts division, it is the largest theme park in the world, covering 580 acres (230 ha) The park opened on Earth Day, April 22, 1998, and was the fourth theme park built at Walt Disney World. The park is dedicated and themed entirely around the natural environment and animal conservation, a philosophy once pioneered by Walt Disney.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, meaning they have met or exceeded the standards in education, conservation, and research. The park is represented by the Tree of Life, a 145-foot-tall (44 m), 50-foot-wide (15 m) artificial baob tree.
In 2015 it had 10.9 million visitors, ranking it the fourth-most visited amusement park in the United States, behind the other three Walt Disney World parks, and seventh-most visited in the world.
In September 2011, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts announced plans to partner with filmmaker James Cameron, his Lightstorm Entertainment production company, and Fox Filmed Entertainment to develop attractions based on Cameron’s Avatar film series exclusively for Disney theme parks. The first installation is planned for Disney’s Animal Kingdom in the form of an Avatar-based section of the park. While no specifics were announced, the new area was described as being several acres in size and costing an estimated $400 million to build, a scale similar to Cars Land at Disney California Adventure in California. Components from the upcoming sequel films in the Avatar series will be featured, along with new designs not seen in any of the films. Construction began on January 10, 2014, with the land scheduled to open on May 27, 2017.
At the 2015 D23 Expo, Disney confirmed two attractions for the area: Avatar Flight of Passage, a flying augmented reality simulator attraction where guests will learn to fly with a mountain banshee, and Na’Vi River Journey, a gentle boat ride attraction showcasing the native fauna and flora of Pandora
TMSM Today in Graphic by Sherry Rinaldi DeHart; Wiki