Innovations at Disneyland Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on February 27th, 2010 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


It was the week many of you were waiting for – “Captain EO” returned to Disneyland Park. More than 500 guests lined up to see the first official showing and many more followed that day. If you missed it, we posted highlights of the reopening on the blog.

We also celebrated the relaunching of the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World. Marquee pro athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB, LPGA and the Olympics turned out Thursday night for the official re-launch.

Here are a few other of our most popular stories of the week.

Your Favorite Memory of ‘Captain EO’ is… — To find out why guests are so eager to see it, we went into the Park and asked them, “What is your favorite memory of Captain EO?”

Mickey Notes — We had some fun celebrating volunteerism with 25,000 pieces of colored paper and a 10-foot wall to create “Mickey Notes.” This video shows Walt Disney World Cast Members moving sticky notes around by hand – no video cameras were used. Also, there were no post-production “tricks” used to create the giant sticky note Mickey Mouse, the background or to “animate” the pieces of paper. See for yourself.

Every Role a Starring Role — We went behind the scenes with Disneyland’s window display designers.

Behind the Scenes: Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival — Backstage at the Walt Disney World Nursery things are growing. We gave a behind-the-scenes look at the Festival. Now in its 17th year, this Festival will have more topiary, container gardens and flower beds filled with color than ever.

A Dooney & Bourke Special Event — Ian Ray, of Dooney & Bourke, was at Tren-D for a special event debuting some exciting new products.

Seasonal Gifts for St. Patrick’s Day & Easter — Check out this Irish-looking leprechaun from our Vinylmation Holiday Series. With a little luck you can add it to your very own collection. And don’t miss out on a pair of St. Patrick’s Day ears.

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Snowy Egret: A Fleeting Moment

posted on February 26th, 2010 by Paul Hiffmeyer, Chief Photographer for Public Relations, Disneyland Resort


Snow Egret

I learned early on as a photographer that I need to have my camera ready because you never know what’s around the next turn. For instance, in this photo I only had seconds to take this shot before the Snowy Egret flew away. Not only did I capture the egret’s image, but I also caught this interesting reflection of the bridge in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle.

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Video: ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Relaunches

posted on February 26th, 2010 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Relaunches

Last night we relaunched ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in grand fashion and if you weren’t able to attend or watch the streaming video you missed an incredible Disney moment.

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Relaunches

Lucky for you we had video crews and photographers there to document every magical moment. Check it out, and next time you take a trip to the happiest place on Earth we hope you plan to make a stop at the complex where sports dreams come true.

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Disney Parks ‘Quick Hits’ – February 26th, 2010

posted on February 26th, 2010 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Epcot

We tweeted it but you may have missed news that the updated guide is posted for this year’s Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival. Included on the schedule is a new Garden Town Breakfast that’ll feature a selection of ingredients from the Land Pavilion as well as the opportunity to learn some garden techniques from professional horticulturists. I’ll be trying it and you can too by calling 407-WDW-Fest.

Here are a few more items of interest that didn’t make it to the blog this week.

The Art of Disney Event — Disney Design Group artist Brian Blackmore will debut his work at Downtown Disney on March 19.

Moms Panel: Visiting WDW
— The Walt Disney World Moms Panel answers the question, “What are the cheapest times of the year to visit Walt Disney World?”

Magic Kingdom Restaurants
– Have you eaten at the Columbia Harbour House or The Crystal Palace? Here’s a list of our other MK restaurants.

Flower Power Concerts – Find the latest schedule by clicking the “Concerts” tab. Flower Power concerts begin March 5 at Walt Disney World.

Mickey Mouse Pin — Check out this new “referee” Mickey Mouse ESPN The Weekend pin.

Moms Panel: Disney’s Polynesian Resort — Kara, from The Walt Disney World Mom Panel, shares some benefits of staying at Disney’s Polynesian Resort.

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Celebrity Athletes, Governor Crist Help Kickoff ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Event

posted on February 25th, 2010 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


Celebrity Athletes Kickoff ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Reopening

Marquee pro athletes from the NFL, NBA, MLB, LPGA and the Olympics turned out Thursday night for the official re-launch of ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.

Olympic gold medal gymnast Shawn Johnson, NFL star Chad Ochocinco, LPGA legend Annika Sorenstam, NFL star Maurice Jones-Drew, Olympic softball gold medalist Jennie Finch and 2009s Super Bowl MVP Santonio Holmes were just a few of the athletes in attendance along with several popular ESPN personalities and Florida governor Charlie Crist. Instead of a Hollywood-style red carpet, the celebrities walked a turf carpet painted with yard lines to resemble a football field. The sports complex, already the leading multi-sports venue in the nation, was officially re-launched when New Orleans Saints’ Super Bowl champion kicker Garrett Hartley booted a football, held by Minnie Mouse, over the complex entrance gate amid waves of fireworks and confetti.

Afterwards, the celebrity athletes and ESPN talent attended a private reception at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill. Then some of them watched a special performance by the Harlem Globetrotters and even got into the act.

The complex at Disney was re-designed with the signature elements of ESPN – 56 HD video cameras, 40 HD video screens, 20-zone audio system, ESPN SportsCenter desk – that create a one-of-a-kind ESPN-style youth sports experience for the two million athletes, coaches and fans who come to the complex each year. Now, in addition to playing on the same fields and courts as some of the biggest names in sports, youth athletes who compete at the sports complex will also feel as if they’ve reached the “big-time’’ and made it onto ESPN.

Geez, where was all of this when we were kids?

*Check in tomorrow for a photo and video recap of the event

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LIVE: ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Red Carpet Event

posted on February 25th, 2010 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


UPDATE: The live stream is complete, however you can watch the replay for the next few days.

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

Are you ready for some red carpet action? We are and we hope you enjoy this special live feed of the red carpet event marking the relaunch of ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex and the grand reopening moment coming up at 5 p.m.

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Click & Watch The Event Live

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Every Role a Starring Role – Behind the Scenes with Window Designers

posted on February 25th, 2010 by Heather Hust Rivera, Senior Manager, Corporate Communications, The Walt Disney Company


There are a lot of unique jobs at the Disneyland Resort and the people who hold these jobs have some interesting stories to tell about what’s happening “backstage.”

Last week we gave you a peek into the Ambassador role, and today we’re sharing a new video that puts the spotlight on window display designers.

The designers have the unique job of theming, fabricating and installing window displays throughout the Resort. Although their job is done behind the scenes, their work influences guests every day.

To find out how the window displays you see in the parks are created, check out this video featuring Mark Apepe and his colleagues on the Resort Enhancement team.

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Diamonds for Disney

posted on February 25th, 2010 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Disney's Boardwalk

Hi everyone…I wanted to share some quick news that six Disney resorts made the 2010 AAA Four Diamond lodgings list – one for the very first time. Disney’s BoardWalk Inn joined five other Walt Disney World Resort hotels: Disney’s Beach Club Resort, a winner for seven years; Disney’s Contemporary Resort, three years; Disney’s Polynesian Resort, three years; Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, 19 years, and Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, 21 years.

The American Automobile Association annually evaluates more than 60,000 lodging establishments and rates them on a scale of one to five Diamonds.

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Streaming Live: ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Red Carpet Event

posted on February 25th, 2010 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Globe

Sports fans – if you aren’t able to make it to the relaunch of ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex we have set up a way for you to stay in touch with all the red carpet action.

The Disney Parks Blog will be streaming live as some of your favorite athletes and ESPN personalities walk the red carpet. Once the red carpet is over get ready for a grand moment done Disney AND ESPN style. Let us know what you think, and we’ll see you on the blog Thursday at 5pm.

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A Celebration for Any Season, Day or Time…

posted on February 24th, 2010 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


This time of year it seems like there is a reason to celebrate every time you turn around. Whether it’s a traditional holiday, a religious holiday, a pseudo holiday or just a holiday from holidays… it seems there’s something around every corner. Here are a few helpful hints on seasonal gifts for St. Patrick’s Day and Easter, in case you want to get started shopping early.

A Little Luck Can Go A Long Way…

Ever wish just once you could find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? I know I do. In March we celebrate the Irish, with traditions of corn beef and cabbage, wearing green, picking four-leaf clovers and even kissing the blarney stone. Here are a few things that might bring you a little luck this St. Patrick’s Day.

It will certainly take a “lucky” pick to find this Irish-looking leprechaun from our Vinylmation Holiday Series #1, since you don’t know what you get until you un-wrap it. But with a little luck you can add it to your very own collection.

Vinylmation Series - Leprechaun

If you’re looking for something a little more traditional, try on a pair of our St. Patrick’s Day ears or our Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse plush inspired by St. Patrick’s Day. If it’s a small gift you seek, our antenna toppers or pins are just the ticket.

St. Patty's Day Ears
Reminder: While you’re picking up your St. Patrick’s Day goodies, it’s a good time to remember that Easter is just around the corner, so get a “hop” on your Easter shopping and find something for that special some “bunny.” Just like the product seen for St. Patrick’s Day, the stores will offer an array of Easter-inspired merchandise including an ear hat, 3” Vinylmation figures, antenna toppers, plush, pins and more.

In just a few weeks be sure to check back on DisneyParks.com/blog. I’ve been given a sneak peek at some of the new attraction-inspired items from our Disney Theme Park Merchandise team and want you to be the first to see it. Indiana Jones fans beware…

(Star Wars and Indiana Jones © 2010 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM)

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