*Attached video: A looking inside the Disney immersive experience in Cleveland.
(NEXSTAR) – Unlike the flume rides at other amusement parks, the Imagineers at Disney insist on creating an intricate storyline to explain why guests are lining up to plunge into some pond water.
Disney’s latest efforts to create just such a storyline were revealed this week, amid the ongoing “reimagining” of its Splash Mountain rides at Disneyland and Disney World.
The rides, as previously announced, are being re-themed after the 2009 animated film “The Princess and the Frog.” The decision was reportedly made following an outcry on social media concerning the original storyline for the attraction, which featured elements from Disney’s controversial 1946 film “Song of the South.”
The new rides — to be known as Tiana’s Bayou Adventure — are instead being presented as a trip to the bayou with Tiana, the protagonist from “The Princess and the Frog,” as she plans a Mardi Gras party for the community.
Guests will also learn that Tiana has grown her restaurant into an entire prepared-foods empire after the events of the film. In doing so, she purchased a large plot of land surrounding a salt mine, where she grows “a wide array of vegetables, herbs and spices for her recipes,” as the story goes.
Despite this, Tiana is apparently missing a crucial ingredient for one of her party recipes — and so she invites visitors to meet her at the company’s HQ to “help with the missing ingredient” for the party, according to Disney Parks.
Judging by previously released artists’ renderings, the storyline will then — somehow — require that everyone be seated in a buoyant log.
Disney first announced plans to overhaul its Splash Mountain attractions back in June 2020.
“The retheming of Splash Mountain is of particular importance today,” a representative for Disney Parks wrote in a blog post at the time. “The new concept is inclusive — one that all of our guests can connect with and be inspired by, and it speaks to the diversity of the millions of people who visit our parks each year.”
Splash Mountain at Disney World closed in Jan. 2023. A closing date for Splash Mountain in Disneyland has yet to be announced. Both of the attractions are scheduled to re-debut as Tiana’s Bayou Adventure in late 2024.