The Wonders of Life pavilion was an attraction at Epcot at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. The pavilion was devoted to health and body related attractions. It is located inside a golden colored dome between Mission: SPACE and the Universe of Energy. The pavilion opened on October 19, 1989, and closed on January 1, 2007; the pavilion is currently used for seasonal special events, although, the original attractions within have been closed and partially removed.
The idea of a pavilion devoted to health and fitness dates back to the original concept of the EPCOT Center theme park, but no corporate sponsor could be found to cover the costs. It was not until MetLife signed on that the pavilion was finally constructed, and it featured two main attractions: Cranium Command and Body Wars, the first thrill ride located in EPCOT. Also featured was a theater (home to The Making of Me), restaurant and interactive attractions that evolved around the idea of health and wellness. MetLife ended its sponsorship of Wonders of Life in 2001, which led to the slow decline of the pavilion. On January 4, 2004, Disney made the decision to make the pavilion seasonal operation only. It reopened when the park was projected to hit near capacity during the high spring months and Christmas season. The pavilion’s most recent operational phase was November 26, 2006, through January 1, 2007. In 2007, the pavilion closed permanently, with no official reason given for the closure. While the pavilion is not operational to the public, it is still commonly used for private and corporate events.
In 2007, temporary walls were placed around the existing attractions when Epcot hosted the Food and Wine festival in the Wonders of Life building. The “Celebrate the Joy of Life” and “Body Wars” signs were removed in 2009, and most of the exhibits had been removed. The pavilion also received a paint job inside, which made it to be more mute colors, such as white and light green.
Currently, the pavilion is open seasonally as the center for the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival and the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. For these events, the pavilion hosts seminars, videos, presentations, and more. The pavilion is used as a central merchendise location during the two festivals as well. Presently, all attractions are shut down and their signs removed, and the state of Body Wars is unknown, but Cranium Command still exists. The theater that was formerly used for The Making of Me is still used for various movies and presentations during the events.
On September 11, 2012, Walt Disney Imagineering filed a notice of commencement with the Orange County Comptroller’s office indicating the intentions for a ‘selective demolition’ to take place at Epcot’s ‘Wonders of Life’ pavilion, making the theory of re-opening even more unlikely. The notice came a few weeks prior to the theme park’s 30th anniversary. There were no specifics given on what was going to be demolished at the pavilion.