{Editor’s Note:  Today we are joined by one of my best friends in the blogging world, Heidi from Heidi’s Head!  She has graciously agreed to write a post about the Imagination Pavilion in Epcot’s Future World!  Thanks Heidi!}

My family and I spent 10 days before Christmas at our favorite place on earth – Walt Disney World! I tried to use that time to break away from social media a bit (wonderful! I highly recommend it every once in awhile!); but I just so happened to sign on to Facebook one evening to see a question posed by Mike — “Does anyone have experience with the Imagination Pavilion at Epcot?” Considering that my family had just been there the day before, I answered in the affirmative. Next thing you know, I have a “job” writing for My Dreams of Disney!

See, as it turns out, Mike has a dirty little secret . . . he hasn’t actually visited the pavilion since the early 80’s! The shame! (Actually, in all honesty, if my family hadn’t fallen in love with Figment back in 1988, I’d probably avoid this pavilion too! But, I feel a sense of loyalty to that silly purple dragon!) So, here we go . . .

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A Look Back

I wish I had a copy of that original Birnbaum’s Guide – the one my parents handed to me back in 1987 and told me to read it and plan our family’s upcoming (and first ever) trip to Walt Disney World (in January of 1988). I’d love to read the description of the Imagination Pavilion from that first book because there was obviously something about it that appealed to me. I still remember bits and pieces of that first trip through the ride. I remember laying eyes of Figment. My mom seemed to take an instant liking to him! (Ever since, we are always attracted to Figment souvenirs and often bring them home for her!)

Times sure have changed! If you can’t quite remember the original attraction with Figment and Dreamfinder, or if you never had opportunity to experience the original attraction, I’d recommend doing some research. Here are a bunch of great images to refresh your memory. Or, if you’re more into words, check out Wikipedia’s description of the 1983-1998 version of the ride. I also had fun searching for videos on YouTube – here’s a great place to start, then click on other video links from there.

During those early years, the pavilion also housed some other attractions, such as Captain EO (a tribute, of sorts, to Michael Jackson), which has recently been resurrected. Not being a fan of Jackson, I have never experienced this attraction, so I can’t speak for it. I’ve definitely read mixed reviews. Another very popular attraction in the pavilion was Honey, I Shrunk the Audience, based on the “Honey, I Shrunk. . .” movies starring Rick Moranis. In it’s defense, I’ve never been a huge fan of 3-D shows; but that one, in particular, with the giant snake that jumped right out at your face . . . well, needless to say, it wasn’t a favorite on my list!

Today

Let’s take a look at what the Imagination Pavilion looks like today.

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The sign above is situated at the entrance to the pavilion and introduced you to what you will find inside. Let’s take a peek at each attraction.

Journey Into Imagination with Figment

Sure, it’s a shadow of its former version, but at least Figment is still there! This ride will take you through the Imagination Institute, where Figment keeps barging in on Dr. Nigel Channing’s work and sharing his own! Yes, Dreamfinder is no longer; but at least Figment is still there! Fans of the original attraction will be glad to know that the original theme song – “One Little Spark” – is back. (I can’t help but sing along!)

Imageworks – the “What If” Labs

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Journey Into Imagination exits into the labs. However, if you want to skip the ride, you can enter the labs by walking around to the left-hand side of the building and going in through the gift shop. While my husband and younger two kids decided to take another “journey into imagination”, my oldest daughter and I used the time to explore the labs.

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This is one of those areas that a curious kid could spend hours exploring! It’s bright, colorful, and educational. As you can see from the pictures above, there were stations set up where you could “create your own Figment character” among many other things. One of my favorite things to do is have your picture taken on your choice of background (of course, there’s an extra cost to this, if you choose to buy).

Captain EO

As previously stated, I have no experience with this attraction, but Birnbaum’s Guide says it’s only there for a limited time. (Fine by me!)

More Fun!

Even if you choose to bypass this pavilion (like Mike), I would highly recommend that you take the time to enjoy the fountains outside. Not only are the beautiful (especially at night), but they are extremely entertaining!

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The water in the fountain appears to be flowing UP, not down. Now, that takes some imagination, doesn’t it?! And, even more fun, are the jumping fountains. Trust me, they are worth stopping by. You might find yourself visiting for awhile!

I hope I have adequately shared the Imagination Pavilion with you. Mike, I appreciate your allowing me to post here at My Dreams of Disney! Maybe someday you’ll share with my readers at Heidi’s Head.

Have YOU enjoyed the Imagination Pavilion? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Comments

comments

5 Replies to “Heidi takes us to the Imagination Pavilion”

  1. Thanks for the opportunity to write for My Dreams of Disney, Mike! And you are one of my best pals in the Disney blogging world (and beyond) as well! There should be more people like you in the world. ;)

    1. Thank you for doing it, Heidi! Let me know when you want me to write a post for you — not that it would be anywhere as good as your posts, but still!

      Thanks again,
      Mike

  2. My son loves the pavilion, but he can’t stand the ride! He’s 4, so that’s saying something…

    When I was at D23 in August I attended a presentation given by Tony Baxter and Josh Shipley. This was the presentation where Tony was surprised with his future Window on Main Street. As a short celebration of his career the company had painstakingly recreated a video ride-through of the original Journey Into Imagination attraction. Pieced together from bits of publicity film, guest recordings, archival photos and guest photos, it was nothing short of incredible.

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