Disney/Pixar to be Honored May 13 – 15 at Epcot’s Flower and Garden Festival

Walt Disney World has confirmed dates for the highly anticipated Disney/Pixar Weekend celebration during the 2011 International Flower and Garden Festival at Epcot. In honor of Cars 2, Pixar Animation Studios takes center stage during the annual flora-focused festival.

Pixar pals take the stage front and center in the form of much larger-than-life, reaching heights of seven and eight feet tall. At the park’s main entrance, guests will find a sandbox display complete with sandcastle and playground toys featured in Toy Story 3. Also on display will be a brand new topiary of film villain Lotso who will (needless to say) smell like strawberries.

While a topiary Woody has made a brief appearance at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in the past, the 2011 Flower and Garden Festival marks the first year that any Pixar pal is represented as a topiary inside Epcot.

To further that, this year also marks the first time in seven years that new topiaries will be featured in this prized location. According to festival horticulture manager Eric Darden, ‘It created unique challenges and it’s meticulous work. Woody is skinny, and it was a challenge to create his legs. The detail on Buzz is pretty daunting.’

In honor of the new film, the World Showcase Plaza area will feature an all-new Cars 2 display featuring buddies Lightning McQueen and Mater beneath a black-and-white checkered arch, surrounded by floral flags representing Japan, France, Italy and the United Kingdom, just like the destinations of the Cars characters in the film.

Also popping in to say hello will be Winnie the Pooh, Tigger and pals who will appear in topiary form in support of their new movie this summer. They’ll be located at the Hundred Acre Wood wildflower display between Future World and World Showcase.

Other special designated weekends for the festival are: Art in the Garden, March 25-27; Fresh from Florida Farmer’s Market salute April 29-May 1; and Florida Federation of Garden Clubs and Guerlain’s Enchanted Gardens events May 6-8.

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