Good-to-geaux: A first look at Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

Good times are guaranteed on Tiana’s Bayou Adventure.

On a day that fittingly felt like the Louisiana bayou, News 6 got a preview of Walt Disney’s World’s newest attraction.

Based on Disney’s beloved animated film “The Princess and the Frog,” Tiana’s Bayou Adventure picks up where Tiana’s story left off. The log flume ride is a “festive party” during Mardi Gras season that Tiana throws to “thank her family, friends and the entire community for all the support they’ve given her as a successful business owner.

Besides Cinderella’s Castle, it’s the only other attraction at Walt Disney World with a Disney princess’ name attached to the title.

“This is her story and the attraction we get to bring to life for her,” said Sarah Riles, Vice President of Magic Kingdom. “She’s just a fantastic character, wonderful music and she’s just happy. When you get off this attraction, you’re going to be happy and excited.”

The attraction features dozens of new audio-animatronics figures. New friends include an otter, a rabbit, a racoon, a beaver, a turtle and more. Their spirited stylings make going down the Bayou a toe-tapping time with Zydeco, Rara and Afro-Cuban music authentic to the region of New Orleans.

The voice of Tiana, Anika Noni Rose poses with Tiana’s Bayou Adventure Imagineers: Carmen Smith, Charita Carter & Ted Robledo.

The ride features an original song “Special Spice”, alongside favorite tunes from the film, created in collaboration with award-winning artists PJ Morton and Terence Blanchard.

Artwork from Louisiana artist Malaika Favorite will delight guests as part of the queue, and guests can see an original metalwork weathervane from third-generation master blacksmith, Darryl Reeves and his apprentice, Karina Roca. New Orleans artist Sharika Mahdi’s artwork has inspired the attraction from the beginning.

The sights, the sounds and the smells capture the spirit of New Orleans. Guests might notice a nose full of the sweet scent of beignets being kept warm in the oven – reminiscent of strolling through the French Quarter – as part of the attraction queue.

“We wanted to be able to give this love letter to New Orleans,” said Ivan Chan, Sr. Project Manager at Walt Disney Imagineering. “You’re just going to have to come back and ride it over and over again to just be able to see all the little secrets that we put into the attraction.”

It was 2020 when Disney made the official announcement that the Frontierland attraction would go through a new era and closed Splash Mountain in 2023.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure officially opens June 28.

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