Norway Pavilion at Epcot
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Stave church replica located at the Norway pavilion
|Soft opening date||May 6, 1988|
|Opening date||June 3, 1988|
|Attraction type||Themed Pavilion|
The Norway Pavilion is a Norwegian-themed pavilion that is part of the World Showcase, within Epcot at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, United States. Its location is between the Mexican and Chinese pavilions.
The 58,000-square-foot (5,400 m2) Norway Pavilion is designed to look like a Norwegian village. The village includes a detailed reproduction Stave church, and the exterior of its main table-service restaurant, Restaurant Akershus, resembles its namesake in Oslo. The exhibit showcases 4 styles of Norwegian architecture: Setesdal-style, Bergen-style, Oslo-style and Ålesund-style.
Much of the pavilion is taken up by interconnected shops. These shops are decorated with large wooden trolls and sell assorted Norwegian goods, including clothing, candy, and statuettes of Norse gods and trolls. The courtyard of the pavilion contains the entrance to Frozen Ever After. Kringla Bakeri og Kafé is a bakery, featuring assorted Norwegian pastries, such as cream horns and open-faced salmon sandwiches. The courtyard contains the entrance to Restaurant Akershus, featuring a hot and cold buffet and "Princess Storybook Dining."
The Norway Pavilion is the most recent nation to be added to World Showcase. It soft-opened on May 6, 1988, but the grand opening did not occur until a month later, when Harald V of Norway (then Crown Prince) dedicated the pavilion in a ceremony that was broadcast live to Norway. The original idea was to create a Nordic Pavilion that would combine elements from various countries into one exhibit. Three countries were consulted, but it finally ended up with investors from Norway raising the US$30 million required to create an exclusive national pavilion. Disney contributed the other one-third of the construction cost. In 1992, the investors sold their stake to Disney. Since nearly as many people visit Epcot as live in Norway, the government felt it still was a good promotional tool for their tourism industry. The federal government continued to contribute US$200,000 annually for five years to help fund the exhibit. Renewed in 1997 for a further 5 years, the government stopped payments in 2002, against the recommendations from their American embassy.
In September 2014, Disney officials announced that the Maelstrom attraction would be closed and renovated into a new attraction based upon the company's hit animated film, Frozen. Frozen Ever After, which opened in 2016, features the same ride vehicles and basic course of the original attraction, but with scenes inspired by the film and the Frozen Fever animated short. Due to the popularity and immediate fan base Frozen drew, plans to add the "Frozen Ever After" attraction to the Norway pavilion were set with a very short construction time, this is a major reason why the attraction will so closely resemble the "Maelstrom" attraction previously in its place. The addition of "Frozen Ever After" is intended to bring more attention to Epcot, as well as the Scandinavian culture represented throughout the Norway pavilion.
Attractions and services
- Agent P World Showcase Adventure (June 23, 2012 – present)
- Frozen Ever After (June 21, 2016 - present)
- Anna & Elsa's Royal Sommerhus (opened June 21, 2016)
- Maelstrom (July 5, 1988 - October 5, 2014)
- Kringla Bakeri og Kafe
- Akershus Royal Banquet Hall (Disney Princess Character Dining)
- The Puffin's Roost
- The Wandering Reindeer
- Stave Church Gallery houses an exhibit on Norwegian culture and Norse mythology.
- "Yesterland.com: Myths about World Showcase at Epcot".
- "The Norway Pavilion Epcot". The Norway Pavilion Epcot.
- McNary, Dave (September 12, 2014). "Disney Adding 'Frozen' Attraction at Epcot". Variety. Retrieved September 12, 2014.
- Ben Fritz (June 9, 2015). "'Frozen Ever After:' An Exclusive Look at Disney's Upcoming Attraction". wsj.com. Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Retrieved June 9, 2015.
- "Frozen Ever After water ride coming to Epcot in 2016". latimes.com. Retrieved 2016-02-16.
- Niles, Robert (June 21, 2016). "Fans pack Epcot for Disney World's Frozen Ever After". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
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