Lari the Armadillo

Meet Lari the Armadillo from Tiana’s Bayou Adventure

Throughout Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, there’s a mischievous fella who always seems to be showing up where you least expect him. Lari the Armadillo is up to something, but what could it be?  Right after being welcomed by Tiana and encouraged by her to meet up with Louis to look for musicians in the bayou, guests will encounter a nine-banded armadillo named Lari. Tiana needs help finding musicians for tonight’s party. After all, Louis is from the bayou and he’s one of the best musicians around.

Who is Lari the Armadillo? Well, he is one of the 19 critters in Tiana’s Bayou Adventure who has a distinct name and personality. However, not all of them are musicians. Lari is more of a fixer and finder, as evidenced by the beignet he sneaks off with at Tiana’s party. He’s a jack-of-all-trades and fabulous raconteur. He can usually find anything before you know you need it. Perhaps he’s even a concert organizer? Whatever the case, you can count on his constant gaze on passersby. 

On the way to Tiana’s party, guests will spot Lari again. This time he’s holding his Second Line umbrella, constructed from found natural and human-made objects. In the bayou, Mama Odie will help guests dig a little deeper to find all the musicians needed for the party, and it turns out Lari may have lent a claw, too. Lari is usually found on the outskirts of New Orleans. He’s a “junk-man” and builds things with his treasures. He may have helped his fellow critters find or construct their instruments simply by sharing what he’s found. They never know what Lari’s next move is, and he tells everyone a different story of how he lost his eye (and he also switches his eye patch)! 

When developing brand-new Disney characters for the attraction, Disney Imagineers based the critters on animals found in Louisiana to be authentic to the region. They had the opportunity to validate the existence of some of these animals in the bayou during research trips to New Orleans. They had in mind some of the animals that were indigenous to the area, but also had other ideas of animals they wanted to include in the attraction and needed to make sure that we were still being authentic. On the last day of one of the research trips, taking reference photos of a wooded area, the Imagineers heard some rustling in the bushes and out came an armadillo!  

Not only were the Imagineers happy to have the literal validation that armadillos are part of the bayou, but they are also just as excited to have one more critter to bring into this brand-new story.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure opens June 28 at Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World, and later this year at Disneyland.

Who is your favorite critter in Tiana’s Bayou Adventure? Let us know in the comments!