Fall begins Monday with the autumnal equinox, and visions of holiday happenings already are dancing in our heads! The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays presented by AdventHealth is gearing up for a glittering music-and-entertainment-filled, treat-forward kickoff Nov. 29. The annual event, enhanced park-wide with sparkling holiday lights and festive decor, will continue through Dec. 30, 2019.
Disney has already announced quite a few celebrity narrators for this year’s beloved “Candlelight Processional,” and now we have two more vibrant stars slated to appear. Film and television actress, director and wildlife conservationist Isabella Rossellini will be the Candlelight storyteller Dec. 8-10; and actress, author, activist and Oscar winner Marlee Matlin will appear Dec. 27-28. They join a stellar cast of narrators that kicks off with Ming-Na Wen, actress and voice of Disney animated heroine Mulan, Nov. 29-Dec. 1. Performed at the America Gardens Theatre, the “Candlelight Processional” is a heartwarming and rousing show featuring a live orchestra, massed choir and celebrity telling of the traditional Christmas story.
From day one of the festival, 13 Holiday Kitchens plus additional food-and-beverage locations (more than 25 in all) across Epcot will serve a delectable array of bites, sips and creative treats. Your holiday tasting journey might begin with Slow-Roasted Turkey, Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans and Cranberry Sauce at the American Holiday Table (this was one of our favorites in the past couple of years!) Between the Morocco and France pavilions, you’ll find the new Smoked Salmon Potato Latkes at the L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen (where the Pastrami on Rye with House-made Pickles and Deli Mustard is a returning favorite). Then discover other new bites including Canadian Wild Rice and Ham Soup with Pretzel Roll at the Yukon Holiday Kitchen, which also brings back its popular Seared Verlasso Salmon with Crown Maple Whisky Glaze, Parsnip Silk, Apple Chutney and Hazelnut Croquant.
The Holiday Cookie Stroll is rewarding fun for the family and gives everyone a chance to explore the festival with baked goodies offered at several Holiday Kitchens. As your taste buds tingle just thinking of these mouth-watering treats, we decided to list each location for your planning and strolling pleasure – choose any five cookies featured in your Festival Passport, collect matching stamps and receive a complimentary Santa Mickey Sugar Cookie at the Holiday Sweets & Treats location:
- Bavaria Holiday Kitchen: Linzer Cookie
- American Holiday Table: Gingerbread Cookie
- Yukon Holiday Kitchen: Peppermint Pinwheel Cookie
- Feast of the Three Kings: Chocolate Crinkle Cookie
- L’Chaim! Holiday Kitchen: Black and White Cookie
The “Candlelight Processional” is performed three times nightly at 5, 6:45 and 8:15 p.m. – guaranteed seating is available by booking a Candlelight Processional Dining Package at EpcotHolidays.com or by calling 407-WDW-DINE.