Finding New Ways: Following EPCOT’s Lead


Kitchen tables have become makeshift desks. Sweatpants have become acceptable work attire. We’re making do and finding new ways to do our daily tasks these days, and, when thinking about all of the workarounds that I’m seeing friends and family and perfect strangers online coming up with, it’s inspirational. We can – and will – make do and get through.

When pondering the idea of finding new ways this morning, EPCOT came to mind. Specifically, EPCOT on opening day of this year’s Flower and Garden Festival.

If you haven’t kept up with the changes happening in EPCOT, let me summarize: there are construction walls everywhere. They greet you as soon as you walk into the park, they move crowds to new walkways that bypass the center of Future World, and they follow you like the walls of a cattle chute as you traverse said new walkways. They are a necessary evil as the park transforms into the vision that was announced at the 2019 D23 Expo. But, instead of just letting the walls stand dark and green and foreboding, the team at EPCOT is using them in new ways. They’re making do with something that simply must be if a goal is going to be met. They’re using what they’ve been given in creative ways, and the results are surprising and fun to see.



On opening day of Flower and Garden, the main festival-themed flower installation that’s always in the front and center planter as soon as you walk into the park was over to the left. It was something new and different, and while it wasn’t the Spaceship-Earth-perfectly-centered-in-the-background shot, the photos that guests were taking allowed them to get both the flowers and Spaceship Earth in the frame. The flowers were beautiful, and I was glad that such care had been put into the installation. It was different, but it was still lovely.

The topiaries that the festival is so famous for were still there, along with the addition of a topiary featuring Remy. Some of the topiaries were in the spots in that they’ve been in in years past, like The Three Caballeros topiary near the Odyssey. However, the Figment topiary that is usually located on the backside of Spaceship Earth has now taken up residence in front of Journey into Imagination. The former space is currently under construction, and necessity being the mother of invention, it’s now in front of the attraction housing its featured character. Perfect.

During the Festival of the Arts, the construction walls just across the way from the Journey into Imagination with Figment were repurposed as photo ops featuring colorful butterfly wings. Guests loved them! And, in a little wink and a nod moment, this year’s location of the Flower and Garden Butterfly House is near the butterfly wing photo op from the earlier festival.



So, as I sit here and think through having to do the everyday stuff in new and different ways, I’m reminded by the creativity of the Imagineers and the EPCOT cast members to hang in there. It can be done. And, sometimes, in the midst of the new and the scary, beautiful things can be found.

What new ways are you finding these days?

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