NBA Experience at Disney Springs is Now Open!
NBA Experience, is a one-of-a-kind environment where guests of all ages can enter the world of professional basketball. This family fun destination was created by Disney in collaboration with the NBA to make you feel what it’s like to walk in the footsteps of NBA and WNBA champions.
NBA Experience is packed with 13 different basketball-related activities – that are designed for the whole family to enjoy – across 44,000 square feet and two floors. One of the activities is Dribble, it works on your ball-handling skills. Then there is Dunk! it features an adjustable rim so you can make a highlight-reel slam. Over in the Arcade, you can challenge your friends and family to get the high score in the classic Pop-A-Shot game or check out Trivia to see who knows the most about the NBA and WNBA.
- All About the Guest – This place is all about you – almost every activity encourages you to be an active participant. I recommend you complete the optional registration once you’re inside; this allows you to customize and personalize your experience by adding your own nickname and choosing your favorite NBA or WNBA team. Your team’s logo will be associated with you throughout your stay on various leaderboards and signage, and when you try the Shoot! activity, the court magically transforms to make it feel like you’re in your favorite team’s home arena! Plus, you can choose different basketballs to best fit your hand size (NBA, WNBA or Youth) and set your own skill level – if you’ve never even picked up a basketball before, don’t worry, NBA Experience has you covered.
- Immersive Environment – Walking into NBA Experience feels like stepping onto the center court of an arena, complete with huge overhead video monitors, pulsing music and swirling lights. Whether you’re a huge NBA fan or wouldn’t know what the inside of a basketball arena looks like, you will get swept up in the energy. That stunning entry sets the tone for the whole place; I lost track of time as I moved from one activity to the next, completely absorbed in what I was doing.
- Authenticity – Walt Disney Imagineering worked closely with the NBA to ensure NBA Experience is authentic. The hoops are regulation size (unless you need them adjusted to dunk!), and team and league logos are all over. Everything just feels right. For those new to the game, this is a great way to learn all about the league, its players and the game as a whole, straight from the source. If you’ve ever been curious about the NBA or WNBA, let your journey into fandom begin here!
- Interactive Technology – For how physically fun NBA Experience is, it’s also a high-tech environment. When I first entered the building, I immediately went over to the massive touchscreens in the Champions area and started looking up my favorite championship teams. You can dive deep into league history, with notes about each of those legendary teams along with photos and video highlights. I also thoroughly enjoyed Replay, the activity that challenges you to make the right call in three different scenarios using your own personal interactive replay station; you can view the play from different angles, zoom in on key moments, and move the video forward and backward before deciding to confirm or overturn the call. Going back to my earlier point, Replay feels so real – I could easily imagine NBA or WNBA replay officials sitting at a very similar setup every night of the season.
- Inspirational – After spending a good amount of time inside NBA Experience, I realized there’s a fundamental principle that runs throughout the entire place – it’s inspirational. Everyone around me was constantly encouraging me to do my best. Or, sometimes, the activity itself is the inspiration all its own, such as Dribble. Here a virtual coach kept saying things like “Good job! Keep it up! Keep going!” as I was working my way through a series of ball-handling drills. NBA Experience focuses on your successes, and always encourages you to do better.
Check out the Grand Opening LiveStream replay from Disney Parks LIVE.
Will you be adding a visit to the NBA Experience on your next trip to Walt Disney World, let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook Page, or you can join the conversation in our Facebook Group Disney Superfans Clubhouse.