Monday, April 22, 2013

Happy Birthday Animal Kingdom!

Today marks Disney's Animal Kingdom Park's 15th Birthday!  Now while I will be the first to admit that I do not visit this park on every Disney vacation, Animal Kingdom stands out to me in some very important ways.  First, I love what this park stands for:  conservation and care of the Earth and it's inhabitants.  Animal Kingdom is not just a zoo that you visit to see neat animals (although there are some pretty amazing animal exhibits here).  The cast members and animal care staff at this park make the most of every opportunity to impart a love of animals and that we need to care for our planet.  They have such enthusiasm for the work that they do and it shows.
Second, I believe that Animal Kingdom houses two of the best live performance shows in all of Walt Disney World:  Finding Nemo - the musical and Festival of the Lion King!  Both of these shows have stirring soundtracks and incredible performers.  The puppetry in Finding Nemo is astounding!  But as much as I love the Nemo show, Festival of the Lion King holds my heart.  For some reason, even with all the fun acrobatics of the tumble monkeys, to Timon's jokes, to the amazing costumes & set changes, the performance of the Circle of Life brings me to joyful tears every single time!!  If you haven't taken the time to see these shows, please make time to do so because they alone are worth going to Animal Kingdom park.

Finally,  no matter how much I love the other parks, Animal Kingdom has to be my favorite park to photograph.  There is so much beauty here from the landscaping to the architecture to the animals.  There is something to see and something to photograph around every corner.  So with that, I will leave you with some of my favorite photos from my personal Animal Kingdom collection.  Enjoy, and Happy Birthday Animal Kingdom!!