How to Spend a Day with the Muppets at Walt Disney World

by | Mar 16, 2022 | EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, WDW Blog, WDW Resorts

2023 WDW Magazine Wall Calendar- Featuring Disney Castles of the World! Pre-order today for free US shipping!

Wondering where to see the Muppets at Walt Disney World? We’ve mapped out a whole day centered on Kermit, Miss Piggy, and co at the Most Magical Place on Earth.

Over the past decade, Disney has tried several times to revive and reboot the Muppets franchise. Some of these projects, such as the 2011 film, The Muppets, were successful, while others, including the 2015 ABC mockumentary, The Muppets, and 2020’s Disney+ show, Muppets Now!, seemed to fall short of audience expectations.

However, one thing is for sure: The timelessness and joy given to people by the “most sensational, inspirational, [and] celebrational” Muppets have continued across generations and transcend a number of different groups.

Capitalizing on the cultural significance of the Muppets, Disney has ensured that the beloved felt puppets have a presence in Walt Disney World, allowing for “lovers [and] dreamers” to become a part of Kermit and Miss Piggy’s world.

Believe it or not, you can make an entire day of visiting Muppet attractions at Walt Disney World! Here’s how:

10:00 AM: Courtyard of the Chinese Theater—Hollywood Boulevard, Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Your first stop on your tour of all things Muppets at Walt Disney World is Disney’s Hollywood Studios, the best place for Muppets experiences.

As you make your way up Hollywood Boulevard, hundreds of fellow guests rush past you on their way to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge or Sunset Boulevard to get in line for the most popular attractions at Hollywood Studios. At times, you also have to weave your way around PhotoPass photographers taking pictures of families in the middle of the street, holding their hands out awkwardly in anticipation for the Magic Shot which will be inserted by photo technicians at a later time.

But at last, you arrive at the park’s icon, the Chinese Theatre. Instead of hopping in line for Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway, however, you make your way for the courtyard immediately in front of the theater.

jim-henson-kermit-handprints-hollywood-studios_muppets-walt-disney-world_d23

Jim Henson and Kermit leave their handprints at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Photo courtesy of D23

Guests in line give you a suspicious look, as though they expect you to jump in line. However, your attention is focused on the squares of concrete around your feet. You scan the ground until you find it: a green tinted square with the names “Jim Henson” and “Kermit the Frog” engraved with a finger tip, the date, “8/28/89” marked in the corner.

Kneeling down, you place both of your hands on top of two sets of handprints—one human and one amphibian—that have been pressed into the square, curious how your 21st-century hands compare. You stand up, dust off the knees of your pants, and wave back at a small smiling bust of Kermit that has also been traced in the concrete, his hand upraised in greeting. 

10:40 AM: Muppet*Vision 3D—Grand Avenue, Disney’s Hollywood Studios

You arrive at Grand Avenue full of anticipation—and with a full bladder. Even though you’ve passed a half dozen restrooms since you entered the park, you held out until you arrived at Gonzo’s Royal Flush, located adjacent to PizzeRizzo; while not overtly themed to the Muppets, the simple reference to Gonzo and the 2011 film warrant the stop.

Besides, you plan to spend more time in your favorite attraction—Muppet*Vision 3D—than its 17-minute run time. Before entering the queue, you snap a selfie with the flat of Sweetums with his 3D paddleball.

muppet-vision-3d_muppets-walt-disney-world_wang

Muppet*Vision 3D is the hallmark Muppets attraction at Walt Disney World. Photo by Cliff Wang

Excited guests rush past you as you step into the shade of the hallway, stepping around the turnstiles to lift up the welcome mat to make sure the key is still there. While you’ve done it several times, you take your time to read—and laugh heartily at—the notes on the various bulletin boards hanging through the queue.

Upon entering the pre-show room, you wander around through three full cycles of the video presentation gazing at the various props and references to various Muppet projects. You salute the image of the puppet Jim Henson hidden in the rafters, and you excitedly point out to a nearby family a bunch of green and orange cubes hanging over guests’ heads. IT’S A NET FULL OF JELLO!” you squeal in delight. The father gives you a strange look, while the mother wraps her arms around her children and shuffles them away.

Finally, you make your way in front of one of the displays to watch the pre-show video, loudly reciting the show’s dialog in all of the various Muppet voices. When Sam Eagle explains it is time to enter the theater and the doors open, you rush into the theater, making your way to the front row.

The show begins, and your favorite characters emerge before you in the felt. You swat at Waldo as he bounces on the heads of the penguins, duck as the Swedish Chef shoots the cannon at the screen, and find yourself offended when Statler points out that you are wearing a “Goofy mask.”

When Sweetums comes out looking for Bean Bunny, you jump out of your seat and run up to him, pointing into the left balcony. As he continues to walk across the theater, you grab his arm and try to show him where the bunny is, but before too long, a pair of Cast Members have grabbed you and pulled you to the exits. You’re disappointed that you can’t finish the show. But then again, you never have—this seems to happen to you every time.

11:10 AM: PizzeRizzo—Grand Avenue, Disney’s Hollywood Studios

As it approaches noon, you realize you are getting hungry! You cross the courtyard to PizzeRizzo, taking a moment to enjoy the large electric sign topping the brick building.

pizzerizzo-exterior_muppets-walt-disney-world_wang

The exterior of PizzeRizzo. Photo by Cliff Wang

Entering the restaurant, you step up to the counter to order your personal-sized pepperoni pizza and Caesar salad. The restaurant doesn’t seem to feature a whole lot of Muppet references, taking cues more from a New York pizzeria, with the red-and-white checkered tablecloth pattern and 4” curtains between the tables.

pizzerizzo-interior_muppets-walt-disney-world_wang

The interior of PizzeRizzo. Photo by Cliff Wang

Black-and-white photos of New York City, pizza parlors, and subway maps line the walls, while along one wall a series of caricatured Muppet drawings are hung. You walk up the stairs, tray in hand, and make your way into Rizzo’s Deluxe Supreme Banquet Hall, the seating area where you feel closest to the Muppets.

Evidently the room is set up for a wedding reception, with a disco ball hanging from the ceiling, colored lights flashing, and a playlist featuring the “greatest wedding hits of all time!” Before you leave the restaurant that serves “the best pizza on the planet,” you stop by a series of locked corkboards to read the numerous advertisements, many of which feature your favorite characters. 

12:45 PM: Stage 1 Company Store—Grand Avenue, Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Not far from the main entrance of PizzeRizzo’s is the Stage 1 Company Store. As you wander into the store, you find yourself transported into a series of soundstages depicting some of the sets from the Hollywood classics, The Great Muppet Caper and The Muppets Take Manhattan.

How you long to stand on the balcony near the ceiling and recreate the “Happiness Hotel” scene from The Great Muppet Caper. Because it is generally frowned upon to climb the walls and hang from the ceiling, you decide instead to attempt to squeeze yourself into one of the lockers near the store’s back entrance that the homeless Muppets inhabited in The Muppets Take Manhattan. Much to your chagrin, you are too large. Instead, you find a plush of Kermit the Frog and a vintage shirt featuring The Muppet Show and sulk out of the store.

2:30 PM: Germany Pavilion—World Showcase, EPCOT

By 2 PM, you are allowed to park hop. Leaving Hollywood Studios, you wander to the Skyliner Station to catch a gondola to EPCOT.

You disembark at the International Gateway entrance to EPCOT, casually wandering along the shores of World Showcase Lagoon until you finally arrive at the Germany Pavilion. While the miniature train set is always cool to look at, that is not your destination. Instead, you find yourself making a beeline toward a set of topiaries that most guests wander past without a second thought.

kermit-topiary_how-to-find-all-the-topiaries-at-the-epcot-flower-&-garden-festival_lazar

Kermit topiary. Photo by Tatjana Lazar

There they are: Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy in all their floral-and-ivy glory. Luckily, the fence that separates you from your heroes is only waist high, allowing you to nearly reach the two figures. (Note: You can only have this Walt Disney World Muppets experience during the four-month-long Flower & Garden Festival.)

miss-piggy-topiary_epcot-topiary-locations_flower-garden_lazar

Miss Piggy topiary. Photo by Tatjana Lazar

You take selfies with Kermit and Piggy from every angle and camera orientation, already planning in your mind how you will use the photos. The portrait style picture of you standing between the Muppet lovers will be your phone lock screen, while the landscape photo of you with your head thrown back in laughter at something you imagine Kermit saying would look fantastic printed on a coffee mug or mousepad. Other guests walk past, seemingly noticing the topiaries for the first time. The thought that they may in fact be looking at you and your interaction with a pair of mute and inanimate plant-puppets never goes through your mind.

Did You Know? You used to be able to interact with Beaker and Dr. Bunsen via the Muppet Mobile Lab at EPCOT. This experience, alas, has been discontinued.

5:00 PM: Regal Eagle Barbecue—The American Adventure Pavilion, World Showcase, EPCOT

After a long day (and maybe a couple quick rides or margs at EPCOT), you decide that it is time to get some dinner. A short distance from the Germany Pavilion is the American Adventure Pavilion where you can get a bite at a restaurant that serves as a salute to all barbecues—but mostly America’s.

regal-eagle-smokehouse-interior_muppets-walt-disney-world-epcot_dpb

Inside the Regal Eagle Smokehouse. Photo courtesy of Disney

When you open the door, the smell of smoked meat hits you in the face like Lew Zealand’s flying fish. Not only does this restaurant help stoke your pride in America and its food with a number of options from across the country, but it also fulfills your desire for more Muppets: The Regal Eagle in question is none other than Sam Eagle, whose likeness is featured prominently in the restaurant’s logo and signage.

The Muppet references within the restaurant are more overt than those at PizzeRizzo, but still subdued enough to avoid posing a chaotic dining experience. Colonial-style silhouettes of various characters hang on the wall near the counter, while caricatures of Gonzo, Rowlf, and Janice hang in a display that educates your fellow diners on the various types of American barbecue.

At the conclusion of your meal, you realize that you had been eating like Animal; your suspicions seem to be confirmed when someone at a nearby table mutters “Miss Piggy” under their breath. You wipe the barbecue sauce off your face with your last onion ring and pop it into your mouth before carrying your tray to a nearby trash can and making your way back outside into the courtyard of the pavilion.

6:15 PM: The American Adventure—World Showcase, EPCOT

As you leave the Regal Eagle, you feel the need to be inspired and exhibit pride in the things your great country, the United States of America, has accomplished over its past two-and-a-half centuries. You noticed earlier in the day on the Times Guide that The American Adventure would be showing at 6:30 and decide to take in the show as your last attraction of the day.

american-adventure-show-epcot_jim-henson-disney-world_ramos

Watch for Jim Henson and Kermit during the American Adventure show. Photo by Rich Ramos

You await impatiently in the attraction’s lobby, run up the stairs to the theater, and sit through nearly 20 minutes of the attraction. It isn’t Franklin and Jefferson’s scene about the Declaration of Independence that inspires you or the “Two Brothers” song that brings you to tears. Instead, when the final song of the show, “Golden Dream” begins, you scoot to the edge of your seat and lean forward slightly awaiting his appearance.

Finally, on the right side of the screen, you see them: Jim Henson smiling alongside Kermit. Your heart leaps, tears springing from the corners of your eyes. But don’t get too emotional; you’ve got to let the rest of the show play out.

9:30 PM: Lobby Display—Disney’s Pop Century Resort

After leaving the darkened theater, you meander your way through EPCOT, wandering around World Showcase Lagoon and toward the entrance of the park. If you are lucky, perhaps a surprise performance of “The Rainbow Connection,” which had initially been announced as an exclusive show for the Festival of the Arts, is performed across the LED-infused surface of Spaceship Earth.

rainbow-connection-spaceship-earth_muppets-walt-disney-world_sapp

The “Rainbow Connection” show on Spaceship Earth. Photo by Laurie Sapp

From here, you head back to the International Gateway to catch the Skyliner to your resort. Upon arriving at Disney’s Pop Century Resort, you head into the lobby building. Rather than continuing straight toward the Hippy Dippy Pool and your hotel room, you turn to the right into the main lobby of the resort, where a display of shadowboxes holding historical artifacts from the decades of the 20th century are on display. That’s right: There’s one more way to experience the Muppets at Walt Disney World before you call it a day.

You wander the interactive timeline, making stops in the 1960s section, where a small box displays items from Sesame Street, while a box in the 1980s portion shows an image of Miss Piggy. Standing before these two displays, you sigh and smile, thinking fondly of your childhood.

Realizing you are the only one in the lobby staring at the wall as the clock nears bedtime, you allow the wave of nostalgia to carry you out the back doors of the lobby building and to your resort room, thanking your lucky stars that this is a Disney resort and not The Happiness Hotel.

And with that, you’ve done it: a day full of the Muppets at Walt Disney World. Mahna Mahna!

Not sure if you’re going? You can just get more information about a potential Disney vacation.

Destinations To Travel 2021 Disney World ReservationsKnow your dates?
Disney Travel Agent Quote
Just need advice for now?
Disney Vacation Planning Help

The Muppets Mayhem Is Coming to Disney+

Welcome Foolish Muppets: All the Muppets Haunted Mansion Easter Eggs

Today in Disney History, 1992: The Muppet Christmas Carol Debuted

Written by Andrew Kiste

epcot-clothing_creations-shop_chiu
Andrew Kiste is a high school history teacher who has written several books about Disney history, including his popular A Historical Tour of Walt Disney World, Walt Disney and the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair, and biography of Walt Disney book series. More can be found about Andrew and his work on his author website, www.KisteTheHistorian.com.
Andrew Kiste

Written by Andrew Kiste

Andrew Kiste is a high school history teacher who has written several books about Disney history, including his popular A Historical Tour of Walt Disney World, Walt Disney and the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair, and biography of Walt Disney book series. More can be found about Andrew and his work on his author website, www.KisteTheHistorian.com.
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]