This weekend, the Themed Entertainment Association gave Disney some big honors! The Thea Awards are considered some of the highest accolades that theme parks could receive and this week, Walt Disney Imagineering received two!

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance

I truly believe that there is no surprise that Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance was one of the Thea Award winners. This trackless dark ride brings an experience like no other! With everything from an interactive queue that brings you into the story to the latest animatronics, this ride is one of the greats. The Themed Entertainment Association said it was “the most technologically advanced theme park attraction in existence today… The entire attraction, from front to back, is one massive magic trick that leaves riders gobsmacked and represents the absolute pinnacle of how our industry can entertain an audience at a theme park.” That’s pretty incredible praise if you ask me!

Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway

This year, Disney’s Hollywood Studios got its newest addition. This trackless dark ride is actually Mickey Mouse’s first attraction all about him! The ride took the place of The Great Movie Ride and has had guests coming back for more! In fact, you just may hear guests whistling “nothing can stop us now” after they get off this attraction. The Themed Entertainment Association said “with a combination of physical sets, Audio-Animatronics figures, animated media and projection-mapping techniques, all syncing in time with trackless vehicles and a catchy original song and musical score, it turns a two-dimensional cartoon world into an immersive, eye-popping experience. Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway raises the bar for all dark rides to come.”

Bob Weis

Outside of the attractions, the president of Walt Disney Imagineering Bob Weis was honored with the Buzz Price Thea Award. This award honors Weis for his lifetime of distinguished achievements with Walt Disney Imagineering. Bob Weis started his career with the beginning of Tokyo Disneyland Resort and has kept the magic coming for years!

In 2016, Bob Weis made the jump from the top creative executive for Shanghai Disney Resort to the president of Walt Disney Imagineering. We could not be more thrilled to see him recognized for his lifetime of achievement!

Have you gotten to take a trip on either of the attractions that received Thea Awards? Which was your favorite and why? Be sure to connect with us on Twitter and Facebook to let us know!