How Disney Parks ‘Upcycle’ Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond

By: Greg Gately

How Disney Parks 'Upcycle' Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond
How Disney Parks ‘Upcycle’ Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond

How Disney Parks ‘Upcycle’ Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond.

If you haven’t heard, Disney is going all out for Earth Month this year with National Geographic to share how we are working to protect, restore and celebrate ourHOME. One of the most notable ways we’re making a difference? Upcycling – or transforming materials into a product of higher quality – for a brand-new purpose! 

Sustainable Costumes at Disney World

Female cast member wears Tron costume made from recycled plastics

Over at Walt Disney World, the thematic costumes at attractions such as Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind incorporate recycled polyester, with 70% of the base fabrics composed of recycled material. And we can’t forget about the TRON Lightcycle / Run  or in this case, upcycled – costumes at Magic Kingdom Park that are made from recycled polyester along with our passionate resort food and beverage teams who sport aprons that are made from 100% recycled materials. 

Circulating Smiles With Upcycled Tote Bags at Tokyo Disney Resort 

tote bag from Tokyo Disney Resort made from recycled materials with colorful Mickey Mouse design
How Disney Parks ‘Upcycle’ Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond

Related: New Disney World Passholder Lounge Coming to the Morocco Pavilion in Epcot

The upcycling magic doesn’t stop there. Tokyo Disney Resort has embraced upcycling too through their “Circulating Smiles” program. Made directly from costume fabric of Tokyo Disneyland’s restaurant “China Voyager,” these tote bags are now able to be purchased at Adventureland Bazaar in Tokyo Disneyland and Steamboat Mickey’s at Tokyo DisneySea. 

badges made from upcycled Space Mountain costumes at Tokyo Disney

And now, Space Mountain fans in Tokyo can get ahold of patch badges made from upcycled costumes worn by Space Mountain cast members themselves. These badges can be attached to bags, pouches, clothes and more, serving as the perfect memorabilia of this fan-favorite ride. 

Upcycled Creations on Disney Cruise Line 

At Disney Cruise Line, costumes of crew members at locations like deck bars and Cabanas have been replaced with fabrics made from recycled water bottles. And if you’ve had the pleasure of catching the Disney Wish theatrical adaptation of “Disney The Little Mermaid,” there’s something extra special about those dazzling costumes and set pieces. Thanks to the innovative work of fabric technology experts, more than 60% of all fabric used in the show was made from recycled plastic fiber, some of which was recovered straight from the ocean. Crafted from recycled plastic materials, these stunning creations that feel and look just like silk, chiffon and cotton are a testament to the fact that recycled pieces can be just as beautiful as ordinary ones. Learn more about these designs and see them in action by checking out the Disney Parks Blog.

Ensemble posing during theatrical production of The Little Mermaid onboard the Disney Wish cruise ship
How Disney Parks ‘Upcycle’ Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond

Hong Kong’s Repurposing Project 

Over at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, broken wooden slats from onstage benches have been ingeniously repurposed into cabinets, turnstiles, and brand-new benches. Through environmentally conscious initiatives, 300 pieces of wood have been transformed to craft cabinets and turnstiles at Jungle River Cruise dock, Raft to Tree House and Theater in the Wild. And by the end of 2024, 1,500 pieces are planned to be repurposed. These pieces will find new life at the Park Promenade and even beyond the park borders at Inspiration Lake Recreation Centre through this remarkable project! 

Hong Kong Disney cast member drills wooden bench used in upcycled project
Hong Kong Disney cast member using drill on wooden beam

From Tokyo to Florida, Hong Kong and beyond, our cast members are thrilled to keep the sustainability momentum going – not just during Earth Month, but all year round. This is just one of the many ways we are taking meaningful and measurable action to support a healthier planet for people and wildlife, a commitment we call Disney Planet Possible. So next time you find yourself at the parks, keep an eye out for these upcycled creations and join us in spreading love to ourHOME.

How Disney Parks ‘Upcycle’ Across the World for Earth Month and Beyond

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