Take a look at that picture, will you? Shameful, right? A beautiful, well-landscaped beach right next to Mexico in World Showcase, and Disney slaps some tacky lawn ornaments on it.
I honestly don’t know what they were thinking. I guess they are trying to recapture a bit of the past. Long time Epcot visitors may recall that for a few years, this space between the Odyssey and Mexico actually housed real live flamingos. You could take pictures of them and everything. Then one day, whoosh! They vanished.
The history of the flamingos is somewhat murky. They may have been transplanted to Epcot when Discovery Island closed. And then when Animal Kingdom opened, Disney might have decided that they couldn’t have live animals in the other parks. Unless you were pulling a trolley up and down a hot street in the Florida sun, you couldn’t be seen in any park outside of Animal Kingdom. So the flamingos packed up and moved over to the AK Oasis, and eventually Discovery Island. The AK Discovery Island, I mean. Not the original Discover Island. It gets confusing with the names, I know.
The prevailing wisdom is that the flamingos got really handy with a yo-yo, bet everything on Fantasia 2000, and then were left penniless and stranded in California when the movie failed to meet box office expectations. Regardless, this stretch of beach is now empty, except during the Flower and Garden Festival, when a Donald topiary moves in.
We miss you, flamingos.