Disney’s Animal Kingdom debuts night safari, ‘Rivers of Light’ show April

NEW YORK — Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom will launch a new nighttime light show along with nighttime safaris April 22.

The new Animal Kingdom offerings will begin 15 to 20 minutes after sunset and will last well into the evening, with the park staying open some nights as late as 11:30 p.m., according to Disney officials who described the new programs at an event Wednesday in New York.

The park has brought in new species of nocturnal animals for the nighttime safaris. Animals being added to the park include African painted dogs and hyenas.

The new nighttime activities will also include a street party with musicians, storytellers, acrobats and more.

The new after-dark light show, called “Rivers of Light,” will be an immersive show combining live performances, floating lanterns, special effects and other imagery, with guests seated around a stage that consists of a body of water.

In addition, Animal Kingdom’s rides, including Expedition Everest, Dinosaur and Kali River Rapids, will also stay open after dark. A new restaurant, Tiffins, is also opening in Animal Kingdom.

The changes at Animal Kingdom are among a number of new offerings at Walt Disney World scheduled to unfold over the next few months, including new shops opening in Disney Springs, a dining and retail area; a new Frozen Ever After boat ride opening at Epcot’s Norway Pavilion themed on the hit movie “Frozen”; a new Soarin’ Around the World attraction, also at Epcot; and new “Star Wars”-themed attractions at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, including the just-opened “Star Wars” Launch Bay featuring artifacts and characters.

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