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Hurricane Irma: Disney's Fort Wilderness closing before storm


Hurricane Irma’s threat has encouraged Walt Disney World to close its Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground ahead of the storm’s arrival.

Fort Wilderness campers need to have their vehicles out of the resort by 2 p.m. Saturday, a Walt Disney World spokeswoman said Thursday afternoon.

Guests are being given the option of staying at another on-property resort, according to a letter written by Fort Wilderness general manager and distributed on visitors’ vehicles.

Also asked to leave are visitors staying in the Treehouse Villas of Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort. Those units are elevated about 10 feet off of ground level.

Fort Wilderness, which opened in 1971 about a month after the debut of Magic Kingdom theme park, has about 800 campsites — for recreational vehicles and for tents — and 400 cabins, which are designed to sleep as many as six adults. It faces Bay Lake and is near Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. It’s also home of the long-running Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue.

So far, Walt Disney World has said it is monitoring the weather but all four of its theme parks are scheduled to operate as usual. On Thursday afternoon, it announced the cancellation of the second evening of the Night of Joy event at ESPN Wide World of Sports set for Saturday and called off the Sunday edition of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom.

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