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Disney's Rivers of Light show opening Friday after long delays

After months of technical delays, Walt Disney World's Animal Kingdom on Friday will finally turn on the lights for its new nighttime show, Rivers of Light.

The complex production, on the water in front of a new stadium, features live performers and music, floating lanterns, lasers and special lights, with images projected against a mist.

It was supposed to debut in April 2016 on Earth Day, but was tripped up by unspecified technical issues. When it still hadn't opened by Memorial Day, Disney rolled out a show called "The Jungle Book: Alive With Magic" that received mediocre reviews and closed Sept. 5.

Starting Friday, Rivers of Light will play at 7:15 and 8:30 p.m. on weekends and select evenings until summer, when the park is expected to extend its hours with Pandora: The World of Avatar opening in Animal Kingdom on May 27. The new land based on the hit James Cameron film is expected to be visually stunning.

Rivers of Light doesn't rely on Disney characters but rather sticks to the message of the zoo-like theme park and stays close to the nature theme.

You can book a FastPass or a special dining package that includes reserved seating at the new show. Packages are offered at the buffet-style Tusker House or the new restaurant Tiffins. Reservations can be made at disneyworld.com/dining or by calling (407) 939-3463.

Contact Sharon Kennedy Wynne at swynne@tampabay.com. Follow @SharonKWn.

Disney's Rivers of Light show opening Friday after long delays 02/15/17 [Last modified: Thursday, February 16, 2017 3:00pm]
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