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We Did An Epcot Festival in One Day: International Festival of the Arts

Updated: Jan 8

How did we do an Epcot Festival in one day?

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A Guide to the

Epcot International Festival of the Arts:

A Creative Experience

(AKA: How to Do An Epcot Festival in One Day)

Get Creative: Frozen Paint Set

Spaceship Earth, Epcot attraction
Epcot International Festival of the Arts

Epcot opened in Disney World in 1982 by combining education and entertainment: edutainment. The park features two main sections. One has rides and attractions that focus on technology, the environment and science presented in the Disney way. The second area is called the World Showcase, a World's Fair type presentation that features 11 countries in permanent pavilions showcasing culture, entertainment, food, merchandise, rides and attractions.

Artists drawing sidewalk art
Chalk Art at the Epcot International Festival of the Arts

There are four Epcot Festivals: the Flower and Garden (started in 1994) March-June; Food and Wine (added in 1995), late August-mid November; Festival of the Holidays, formerly called Holidays Around the World (begun in 1996) Thanksgiving week - December 30 or so and the Festival of the Arts (recently begun in 2017), which goes from January - February.

The youngest of the festivals is the Epcot International Festival of the Arts. Given that Disney started with a mouse drawn by Walt Disney, this seems ironic that an arts festival was not started sooner. The festival is usually mid-January to mid-February. So, read on to see what you can do at an Epcot Festival in one day.

Epcot Festival Art Props
Epcot, Disney World

What's an Epcot Festival anyway? In keeping with the "edutainment" concept, the festivals are more than just eating and drinking. In its full form (meaning, before the pandemic), the Festival of the Arts may have different events: art presentations, animation classes, a concert series, entertainment, a scavenger hunt, and added activities at Kidcot (the children's area in each of the permanent pavilions in the World Showcase). In addition to the normal 11 pavilions, there may be extra kiosks to include other countries, regions and artsy themes. Finally, you can shop for fine art.

Colorful piece of cake
Visit special kitchens for artistic food and beverages

Our 5 Tips for Your Trip to enjoy the Festival (make sure you download the My Disney Experience App and check out the latest information for buying tickets and visiting Disney World.) Just try to be able to stay for a while (since I could only do this festival in one day)!

Artist creating a painting
Visual Art in Performance, Epcot Festival of the Arts

1. Check out the website for the special events that may cost extra and/or require a reservation. The Disney Broadway concert series is free, but if you want to sit up front, you can buy that with a dining package at one of the restaurants. Actually, we managed to see part of the concert while doing an Epcot Festival in one day.

Screen on a stage at a concert
Disney Broadway concert, featuring Disney songs

2. The World Showcase usually opens up 2 hours after the park opens. But, some of the rides in the showcase, like Frozen Ever After or Remy's Ratatouille Adventure, may open up when the park opens. Keep that in mind when you purchase Genie + or Lightning Lane. Obviously, we may not have had time because we did an Epcot Festival in one day!

Statue of Disney Character in Epcot
Remy's Ratatouille Adventure, France Pavilion, Epcot

3. During normal times, it gets more crowded in the evening (normal closing is at 9PM, but check the app). If you have little ones, this might not be a good time to visit. However, it might be hot earlier. So, from 3PM-6PM seems like an happy medium. Also, weekends tend to be even more crowded. Also, sometimes it's harder to find the mascot for the scavenger hunt. Well, we actually tried to do the scavenger, but we did not finish.

Selfie props at Epcot
Be part of a painting with these photo ops

4. The festival is all throughout the park, not just in the World Showcase. So, read the app or pick up the Passport Guide booklet at the entrances of the park for all of the little hidden gems. And then you can decide what to do if you only have one day to do an Epcot Festival.

Painting of an Epcot character
Search for Figment, "hidden" in art masterpieces

5. There are activities for the whole family such as the scavenger hunt or the very popular animation classes, where you draw a Disney character through a guided presentation. And yes, for our one day to do an Epcot Festival, you better believe we did this!

Screen in outdoor theater
Show off your artistic skills in the Animation Academy

outdoor mural
Participate in a community mural at Epcot

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Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.

All photos and videos created and copyrighted by Marcia Crayton, unless otherwise noted.


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