Beloved Character Meet & Greet Finally Returns to Tomorrowland

The Walt Disney World Resort is getting closer and closer to how it was pre-pandemic every day, and the latest update has brought back a much-beloved character meet and greet experience for the first time since 2020.

The Magic Kingdom has always been home to some of the most popular character experiences at Walt Disney World, with many Guests planning to meet princesses, the occasional villain, and even Mickey Mouse himself right at the Resort’s flagship Park.

In Tomorrowland, Guests can typically expect to see Stitch from Lilo & Stitch (2002) and Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story (1995), among other characters who come and go throughout the year for special events.


Credit: Disney Tips

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When Disney modified several experiences around the theme parks to comply with social distancing guidance of the time, one of the most noticeable changes for Guests was in character meet and greets. During the Resort’s phased reopening, Guests could only see favorite characters from a distance, removing any opportunity for hugs, close-up photos, and autographs altogether.

Of course, Guests at Walt Disney World today are largely able to experience “normal” character meet and greets, though some remnants of social distancing remain, most notably in the form of character cavalcades (or flotillas in the case of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.)

Buzz Lightyear Character Meet and Greet in the Magic Kingdom

Credit: Orlando Fun Tickets

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After over three years, Buzz Lightyear has returned to his traditional meet and greet location near his attraction in Tomorrowland. While the iconic Toy Story space ranger had been greeting Guests from a distance on the Tomorrowland stage since the Park reopened, the theming remained at his prior location where many Guests are thrilled to see him return to.

Buzz Lightyear has only been back at the location since yesterday morning, May 16, 2023, so we would be prepared to wait in a line to meet him. As of this writing, Disney has not updated character greeting times for Buzz on its official website or app, but we recommend checking the My Disney Experience app or speaking with a Cast Member during your trip for the latest updates.

buzz lightyear space ranger spin

Credit: Disney

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More Buzz Lightyear at Walt Disney World

In addition to Buzz Lightyear’s meet and greet, and his nearby attraction, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, the best place to see the character along with others from Toy Story is actually over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. There, Guests can explore Toy Story Land, which features another opportunity to meet Buzz Lightyear, as well as a larger-than-life version of the Buzz Lightyear figure plus hit attractions like Slinky Dog Dash and Toy Story Mania.

Grab your camera (or purchase Memory Maker) and head to Tomorrowland during your next trip to the Magic Kingdom, and be sure to stop by to say hello to Buzz!

About Brittany DiCologero

Brittany is a New England-based writer focused on the history of the Walt Disney World Resort. She is the author of "Red, White, and Disney: The Myths and Reality of American History at the Walt Disney World Resort," and "Brittany Earns Her Ears."