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Disney Parks Launches ‘Give a Day, Get a Disney Day’

posted on January 1st, 2010 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

UPDATE: Hats off to each of the one million volunteers!

Thank you to all who have participated. The last day to use the free Disney Theme Park tickets distributed in this program was December 15, 2010.

Although you can no longer use a free Disney Theme Park ticket received in connection with this program, you can still continue to give back to your community by signing up for volunteer opportunities through HandsOn Network.

If you have additional questions please contact customer service.

And don’t forget to share your Disney Parks memories!

Give a Day, Get a Disney Day

Beginning today, Disney Parks is officially launching “Give a Day, Get a Disney Day” — perform a day of volunteer service at a participating organization in 2010 and you’ll receive a free, one-day admission ticket to a Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort theme park.

If you recall, we announced the “Give a Day, Get a Disney Day” program on The Disney Parks Blog in September. Now, you can participate. It’s simple — just sign up, volunteer and redeem.

— First, visit or, search for a volunteer activity and sign up. TThe opportunities are being coordinated by HandsOn Network, the nation’s largest volunteer network. And as you’ll notice, many of the available activities offer opportunities for families to volunteer together.

— Next, you complete the volunteer activity selected.

— Finally, when the completed day of volunteer service has been verified by HandsOn Network, you’ll print out a voucher online (instructions will be included in a follow-up e-mail from Disney Parks) before redeeming it at a Disney Park — in California at Disneyland Resort or in Florida at Walt Disney World Resort – for a one-day, one-park ticket. If a guest determines that they won’t be able to visit a Disney park (vouchers must be redeemed and tickets used by Dec. 15, 2010), they can donate the ticket to a charity designated by Disney: Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern California; Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida; Dreams Take Flight Canada.

Keep checking The Disney Parks Blog for updates on “Give a Day, Get a Disney Day.”

There are also some official details you should know about: You must pre-register and sign up for eligible volunteer opportunity at Ticket quantities for this program are limited. Must be at least age 6 to participate. Other terms and conditions apply. For details, see in the United States and Puerto Rico. In Canada, see

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Filed: Disney Differences, Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort



Ben on January 1st, 2010 at 11:02 am

The website has issues, very slow and keeps hanging


Tonie on January 1st, 2010 at 11:29 am

Have been trying to register for about 4 hours now. Anybody having any luck?


ken on January 1st, 2010 at 12:19 pm

No luck on my computer either! So, is Disney going to fix this?


Thomas Smith on January 1st, 2010 at 1:13 pm

Try now, Ken. If you still have a problem, please keep trying or come back later. Here’s the message currently posted on the site, “Due to strong interest, we are currently experiencing a high volume with the registration process. We apologize for the inconvenience.”


Emily from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 12:59 pm

It’s the first day with lots of interest. Give it some time – maybe check back tomorrow? I’m sure they’ll fix it eventually.


Betty from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 1:35 pm

It’s 10:34 in CA, and I can’t sign-up. Page keeps logging off!


noname from NJ on January 1st, 2010 at 1:46 pm

Both my sister and I in 2 different states have been trying to register and manage acct (from initial sign up) unsuccessfully for the past several hours. I think it’s more than “high volume” issues — more like programming error msgs. This will probably be on the news tonight!


Debi on January 1st, 2010 at 1:51 pm

how awesome that so many people are signing up to volunteer a day of service! I will be doing so myself and will encourage my friends and family to do so as well!


Margaret from MA on January 1st, 2010 at 2:12 pm

No luck signing in to volunteer, it keeps logging me off among other problems. We have been trying all day. Hopefully Disney will get this resolved soon !!! It’s very frustrating , but at least I know we are not alone…!!!


Kristin on January 1st, 2010 at 2:22 pm

How do you search for a specific organization? All I can find are search by distance and generic area of interest. Frustrating!


gerald on January 1st, 2010 at 2:29 pm

Same problems here….:(


Betty from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 2:30 pm

To: #9 Kristin: When you are on the page with the listings, choose ‘Orgainzation Order’ That means they’re in alpha order.


Heidi from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 2:42 pm

How do we know when the 1,000,000 limit is reached – so that we should quit trying?


Thomas Smith on January 1st, 2010 at 7:16 pm

Yes…response has been strong but all 1 million tickets will not be accounted for this weekend.


Richard on January 1st, 2010 at 2:42 pm

Spent the past 6+ hours attempting to register from multiple workstations, using different broswers such as IE 7, IE 8, Firefox and all have had issues. While it is encouraging to see the large numbers of people attemptioing to volunteer, a little disappointing that Disney didn’t plan accordingly for the volume of web traffic. Even posting this comment is taking multiple attempts. Expect more from Disney!


Dale from TN on January 1st, 2010 at 3:22 pm

Not many opportunities for children 9 and under. Other than doing the task, how can my children get a ticket?


Ari from NY on January 1st, 2010 at 3:24 pm

How do we submit a volunteer organization? I’d like to submit, JCorps (located in cities in the USA & Canada)


Joe on January 1st, 2010 at 3:53 pm

Do you know if you’ll be allowed to upgrade the ticket at the park to a 1-day Park Hopper for a nominal fee? I’d be more than happy to pay the difference to convert a 1-park ticket to a park hopper. If not, could Disney consider implementing that policy?


Janell from ND on January 1st, 2010 at 3:55 pm

I was able to get in and sign up within minutes. Guess sometimes it is a benefit living in North Dakota.


Tonie on January 1st, 2010 at 4:01 pm

Has ANYONE been successful at registering? I have several people trying as well with no luck whatsoever. I would feel better if i knew that somebody was able to complete the process. Many of the people that I have recruited are ready to give up. Not looking good for the volunteer organizations who are losing out.


Jennifer on January 1st, 2010 at 4:22 pm

I was easily able to sign up in Los Angeles, but I wasn’t signing up for a specific day and time. Now I’m waiting for an email back in the next 5 days.

I’m pretty sure that the million tickets won’t be gone any time soon. It will take quite a few months to get there, so don’t panic if you can’t sign up today…


Tonie on January 1st, 2010 at 4:39 pm

Thanks Jennifer – I feel better knowing at least someone is getting through. We are trying to sign up for a beach clean-up project in South FL scheduled for January 23rd. I guess I’ll just keep trying. I might try setting my alarm for about 3:00 am and see if I can get through then.


Cindie from NJ on January 1st, 2010 at 4:49 pm

I have been trying since 12:01 am and still cannot sign up. Anyone have any ideas of how long this will last?


Amber from CO on January 1st, 2010 at 4:50 pm

Like Jennifer said in post 19, the tickets may not run out soon. But dilemma for many of us is that the number of opportunities for families with children to volunteer is very limited, very few allow kids under 15. For us, if the opportunities are not there, then that is almost the same as running out of tickets.

We tried to sign up for hours, we where able to finally do so, got a response for the organization we signed up with, got email link from Disney to verify, but the link is not working now. We are trying the link in both Firefox and Safari.

Good Luck to everyone! But mostly… Stay Happy!


Cheryl from FL on January 1st, 2010 at 5:49 pm

Been trying all day, finally thought it was completed, hit continue then wouldn’t go to next page, haven’t got passed information on volunteering since.


Jasmine on January 1st, 2010 at 5:52 pm

I’m able to fill in my information but can not see the security code. When I click on the option to have the security code read to me, it goes to a page with a quicktime icon and a question mark on it. I have the latest quicktime so not sure why this is happening. I am on a mac and have tried on safari and firefox. My sisters who are also on macs have had no luck. how frustrating. This does not seem like a busy getting through issue but more of an issue that maybe the mac compatibility isn’t working. grrr


Richard on January 1st, 2010 at 5:56 pm

Still no luck, get numerous errors and ultimately never get to register. Missed the first day I wanted to volunteer for, trying for my second choice now. Been trying pretty much all day with no luck!


Amber from CO on January 1st, 2010 at 6:06 pm

Finally got the email link to work that I recv’d after finally getting to register, but the link looks like it took me right back to the same registration form (looping?). So I started filling that out again, but the “Add a family Member” button not working, then it froze again.

This may have been the final confirmation page, but it sure looked like it was the first form I filled out.

Will some1 “in-the-know” please post what we all should do? Do we really keep trying for hours on end?


David from NC on January 1st, 2010 at 6:24 pm

I agree with post no. 26 (Amber from CO) that someone in the know needs to step forward and make a statement and explain what is going on and what they are doing to fix the problem. Do we keep trying for hours and hours and waste our time?


Tricia from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 6:56 pm

Fantastic idea and great there’s so much interest, but, really a big FAIL on Disney’s part. After the relentless promotion and advertising counting down to the launch of this campaign, how could they not have been better prepared for the massive interest and Web traffic?


Claire on January 1st, 2010 at 7:05 pm

I am glad to know that I am not the only one having problems. This is so frustrating; I have spent hours on this today when I could have been volunteering my time for a good cause. And I agree with an earlier post, this today is more than a traffic issue – there definitely seem to be programming issues.


David from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 7:16 pm

The main problem appears to be unresponsive servers hosted by for the cname disneyparks. Among other issues, if that domain is not sending out kaptcha images (those scrambled pictures of text that need to be entered to verify one is a human being), no one will be able to submit a completed registration form. When is someone at Disney going to make an effort to provide some information and/or advise those coming here for answers.


kelly from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 7:33 pm

I have been working on this for 8 hours now. Am afraid that the choices that include my children will be gone. After numerous tries, I finally got through the Disney site and was sent to the hands on network site and got a message saying an error occurred please contact customer support, without a link to do so. So, am I signed up or not? I don’t know?


Amanda on January 1st, 2010 at 7:53 pm

Has anyone else had any trouble with the Submit button? I got to the registration page but nothing happens when you click on the submit button. You can’t even right-click on it.


Charles from MA on January 1st, 2010 at 7:55 pm

HandsOnNetwork is now crashed, “Please try back in 30 minutes”


Agata on January 1st, 2010 at 8:02 pm

I have tried numerous times today and FINALLY I was so happy to get through, complete the registration for me and my husband for the opportunity we wanted (Ronald McDonald house). Get everything set, verify, then it links me to the Hands On Network website to register there to “finish” my registration process. Well, as soon as I got to that website and I hit “continue”, it gave me an error message saying “error. Contact admin. <>” I tried it twice and each time I have gotten to the same screen and got the same error message. It’s frustrating, but I realize that there are tons of people out there and there are bound to be glitches. And now I can’t try to register again because both of my email addresses are pending. It says if I was unable to register with Hands On Network, I have to wait till tomorrow to try again. Booo. The opportunity we want keeps filling up, as of an hour ago there were only 3 spots left and I thought I was lucky enough to grab two of them before all the error messages…


Agata on January 1st, 2010 at 8:04 pm

#31 Kelly – I am getting the same thing. We are not registered because our registration with Hands On Network did not go through. The message said that there was “missing disney data”. It’s like the info we’re putting in on the disney parks website is not transferring over to Hands On Network. If you’re registered, you would have gotten a confirmation email from the Hands On Network.


Richard on January 1st, 2010 at 8:27 pm

At 8:25 EST time tonight, quite literally 12 hours after I started trying, I was able to successfully complete the entire process and received my confirmation email from Hands on Network. My only advice for everyone is to keep trying


Janet from CA on January 1st, 2010 at 8:28 pm

All signed up, thank you! If we have tickets already, can we use these as a fastpass? If so, is it one ticket per person or if I turn my ticket over does it work as a fastpass for my party of 4?


Cheryl from FL on January 1st, 2010 at 8:29 pm

Kelly 31 that happened to me to, I tryed to sign up again and it said my e mail was pending, not sure what that means.


gerald on January 1st, 2010 at 9:04 pm

Finally, after 9 hours, got through the process (I thought) – on to the Hands on Network – and it failed to get the info from Disney!!! Here’s the error – not sure if they will get our request or not. Sad group of kiddos around here today – especially after that brief period of hope!


Amber from CO on January 1st, 2010 at 10:31 pm

1 – Registered the family and got our “HandsOn Network Volunteer Opportunity Portal”

2 – Got the email from the organization we signed up with who provided the dates we can serve.

3 – Am stuck on the 3rd step of trying to open the confirmation link in the “HandsOn Network Volunteer Opportunity Portal”. I understand this is the last step, but necessary nonetheless. The link keeps failing for a variety of reasons. Have been stuck on this step since 12:30p.


David from NC on January 1st, 2010 at 10:37 pm

Well I finally made it to the final phase where you confirm the date and time with Hands On and I keep getting an error Stack Overflow. This process has been going on since early this morning. If I can get this last click to go through I think I will be finished. I hope the system will allow the last click to go through.


Marci on January 1st, 2010 at 10:47 pm

I’ve had the same problem all day… I keep getting a ‘page cannot be displayed’ error message whenever I click ‘Register’.


Marsha from AZ on January 2nd, 2010 at 1:25 am

11:28 pm AZ time, which is 1:28 AM eastedern, still can not get in. Plus my zip code is unrecognized, it says I am in Puerto Rico. I’ll keep trying, sadly the nearest opportunities are at least 39 miles away.


Nilda on January 2nd, 2010 at 1:55 am

I have been trying all day with no luck. I am going to try again in a few hours.


Heidi from CA on January 2nd, 2010 at 6:19 am

Almost 24 hours later and I’m still trying… Now that it is the middle of the night, I did get a little closer but hit another wall. Help anyone? This time I made it all the way through the initial sign up page, hit submit, then verified my information. However, when I tried to hit the second complete button and proceed to the Hands On Network website – the system dropped me again. When I tried to back up and do it again, it said my e-mail address is in a pending account and I would have to use a different e-mail address or wait until tomorrow. I tried this several times using the different e-mail addresses from everyone in my family and each time it did the same thing. I am out of e-mail addresses and almost out of hope! Is there any way to find this “pending account” and continue the process from here? What do I do now?


Michele from MN on January 2nd, 2010 at 7:37 am

I finally got through the Disney sign-up portion this morning, however, at the final step to confirm the volunteer opportunity on the Hands-On Network site – it returns a web error and stack 48 line error. Not sure what to do now – start over or keep trying to submit at this point?


David from NC on January 2nd, 2010 at 8:54 am

Has anyone had any luck through the night. I tried several times through the early hours of the morning and still received the error message stack overflow. Very frustrating! Does anyone at Disney have an answer yet!


Claire on January 2nd, 2010 at 9:01 am

After hours, and hours of trying yesterday, I was able to register without issue on the first try this morning.


Meredith from MA on January 2nd, 2010 at 9:06 am

In final registration I am getting an error that states “error-in-use”.


Amber from CO on January 2nd, 2010 at 10:10 am

After getting through 3 of the steps yesterday, turns out that my suspicion that the 3rd step of confirming the date to serve was was looping back to the original sign up/info page.

Started from the beginning today. Got all the way through. The final email is also from

HandsOn Network Volunteer Opportunity Portal

but this one showS the exact event and date we have signed up for.

All went very smoothly… HURRAY!