Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Food as Merchandise at Disney Parks

posted on August 8th, 2011 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


Disney Parks Blog Author Steven Miller Enjoys a Turkey Leg at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Thankfully, I can now cross “eating a turkey leg” off my bucket list. In the many years I’ve visited and worked at Disney, I had not tried one until the photograph above. Following a dare by my fellow Disney Parks Blog author Jennifer Fickley-Baker, I made my way to Disney’s Animal Kingdom to try this iconic feast of meat while sporting the rather humorous Turkey Leg shirt. Upon my return to the office, I asked product developer Laura Caszatt how she came up with the idea for my new favorite shirt.

“Doug Strayer, Design Manager with Disney Design Group, and I were thinking of concepts for new tee-shirts,” explained Laura. “The monorail shirt with the phrase, ‘Por favor manténgase alejado de las puertas,’ has been one of our most popular selling shirts. We wanted other shirts using similar iconic things from Disney Parks. Of all the ideas we considered, we kept returning to the idea of a shirt picturing a turkey leg. The thought of [such a shirt] made us laugh, so we knew others would laugh too.”

Disney Parks Snack and Play Pin Sets

As it turns out, Disney Theme Park Merchandise loves putting food on merchandise. We have created magnets, a “Snack and Play” set (which includes a turkey leg!), cookbooks, Disney ear hats, Disney pins and more.

Of the latter, Julie Young, Developer for Disney Pins, recently paid tribute to breakfast with some two-pin sets. Two words – coffee and donuts (my ideal breakfast)! I too used food as inspiration when I once developed Hidden Mickey pins for Disney Parks. The Dole Whip from Adventureland and the mint julep from New Orleans Square were some of my favorite pins I created.

Disney Parks 3-inch Vinylmation Figures

One category that has embraced food since its inception is Vinylmation. The image above is just a sampling of the various 3-inch figures that have either been released or are coming soon. Look carefully and you will see some figures from an Epcot Center show that I love (“There are no substitutes for we…”).

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival-themed Merchandise

Speaking of things I love, I have a special sneak preview of merchandise coming to the International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot on September 30. This festival is one of the many reasons I love working for Disney. We used the poster artwork created by Maryanne Schmidt as inspiration for several items. And for the first time, we will offer a unique boutique of select items from the festival via our Disney Parks On-line Store! The on-line store will open around the start of the festival.

With all this talk of food, I’m hungry! Why doesn’t a Dole Whip shirt exist?!



Want to see more themed merchandise from Disney Parks? Take a look at the posts below:

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

22 Comments 8 Replies

1

Jeffrey on August 8th, 2011 at 9:50 am

I think I see the Mustard from Kitchen Kabaret – one of my favorite past attractions. Was there a whole set of Kitchen Kabaret Vinylmation – or just a few characters? My fav is the Broccoli with the purple sunglasses – did he/she have a name? I’d love to know. (That mustard AA figure was on display at the D23 WDW 40th archives exhibit and I got my picture with him – hooray!)

 

Jennifer Fickley-Baker on August 8th, 2011 at 11:33 am

Steven, I’m going to pipe in here since I’m obsessed with Kitchen Kabaret! Broccoli did NOT have a name. The only name listed in the attraction’s script that refers to him is the band name: “Colander Combo and Fiesta Fruit” sing “Veggie Veggie Fruit Fruit.”

2

Jennifer from NC on August 8th, 2011 at 10:24 am

DOLE WHIP SHIRT!!!! Now THAT’S a t-shirt I would buy!!!! Bring it on!

3

Sean on August 8th, 2011 at 10:45 am

Put my wife down for one medium dole whip shirt please.

 

Steven Miller on August 8th, 2011 at 11:42 am

@Jeffrey – Ah, so you found them. Yay! They are coming – not released yet.

@Jennifer – Thanks for the reply about the name. You beat me to the response. So when can I hear you sing their song? I did eat the Turkey Leg for you. :-)

@Jennifer from NC and Sean – Glad to know I’m in good company. I’m thinking a Dole Whip meet up is in order! Who is with me?

4

Erin from RI on August 8th, 2011 at 10:54 am

Love it, love it, love it! I picked up the cupcake pins in February and I so want the snack magnets. You all in merchandising do know the way into a girl’s pocketbook!

 

Steven Miller on August 8th, 2011 at 11:45 am

@Erin – Yes! That’s a great set with artwork created by Disney Design Group Artist Susan Foy. We also used that artwork to create Vinylmation figures. Thank you :-)

For those interested, here are those cupcake pins:

http://www.disneystore.com/disney-parks-authentic-pins-pins-art-collectibles-disney-character-cupcake-pin-set-7-pc/mp/1285607/1000809+1000211/

And now I’m hungry again!

5

Shanna on August 8th, 2011 at 11:07 am

I love it!

6

Ben on August 8th, 2011 at 12:18 pm

Are the turkey leg shirts available at Disney now? If so, where?

Thanks!

 

Steven Miller on August 8th, 2011 at 12:28 pm

@Ben – Yes! They are available in a variety of locations in both Florida and California. I know I have seen them at MouseGear at Epcot, Mickey’s of Hollywood at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and a few other places. It is currently sold out on the on-line theme park store but should be back in stock in a few weeks. Needless to say, it has been a popular shirt (just about as popular as an actual turkey leg – there was quite a line when I posed for the photograph above).

Here is a link to the on-line store:

http://www.disneystore.com/disney-parks-authentic-clothes-men-turkey-leg-walt-disney-world-tee-for-adults/mp/1288760/1000809+1000204+1000764/?int_cmp=SOC-intDPFY11Q3FoodAsMerchandiseAtDisneyParks05-08-11@0001

7

Philip on August 8th, 2011 at 12:42 pm

I spotted several Kitchen Kabaret characters in the Vinylmation picture, including the Mustard Jar, Mr. Dairy Goods (the milk carton), Mr. Hamm (of Hamm & Eggz) and Mr. Brocoli (of the Colondar Combo).

When will those figures be made available? I’d love to have them. :)

8

Jeff from OH on August 8th, 2011 at 12:48 pm

Love the Turkey leg shirt!

Great idea

9

Cindy on August 8th, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Are the Kitchen Kabaret Vinylmations going to be part of a set like the Steampunk set?

 

Steven Miller on August 8th, 2011 at 6:29 pm

@Philip – Good eye!

@Cindy – Stay tuned. They figures will be released as part of a future Vinylmation Park Series. Think set. :-)

10

Charles on August 8th, 2011 at 1:33 pm

I would really like to see more of the Food and Wine Festival merchandise..

I would also LOVE to see what is being released on 10/1/11 for THE 40th anniversary!!

11

Ashley on August 8th, 2011 at 2:03 pm

OMG! There *NEEDS* to be a Dole Whip shirt! (Can you imagine a plush Dole Whip? I’d cuddle up to it every night! lol!)
It also needs to be available through online ordering since it will be a long while before I get back down to the World. I have a newborn daughter and it’ll be several years before she is ready to visit and enjoy a Dole Whip! :)

 

Steven Miller on August 8th, 2011 at 6:32 pm

@Charles – There will be some additional articles coming about the 40th Anniversary of Walt Disney World merchandise. I recently turned in one about the pins being released on October 1, 2011. But there are other cool things that I hope you will like.

@Ashley – LOL! That’s too funny. More than likely, if a Dole Whip shirt was made it would be carried via the on-line store like the Turkey Leg shirt. So far, it seems like readers would like to see one. I’m still hoping to install a Dole Whip dispensing machine in my suite!

12

Erin on August 8th, 2011 at 3:39 pm

I love the play food. Is this something that will be sold online as well? My kids would LOVE to play with it in their little kitchen as they rein-act our recent visits. Thanks!

13

Jennie on August 8th, 2011 at 4:10 pm

I’ve eyed down every employee for that Mint Julep one at Disneyland.. No luck. Is it even out yet? I can’t find it on eBay either. Maybe in October *fingers crossed* it’s an awesome pin <3

14

Jeffrey on August 8th, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Thanks for the responses. Perhaps there needs to be a Kitchen Kabaret support club? Ahh, memories. Maybe a Tables in Wonderland commemorative KK dinner? Are the Imagineers that worked on that particular attraction still around? I hope they know they have a fan club.

 

Steven Miller on August 8th, 2011 at 6:38 pm

@Erin – I will need to check with the online store team as I don’t believe it is being carried online at the moment.

@Jennie – Unfortunately, the mint julep Hidden Mickey pin has not been released yet. It’s coming soon! The artwork was actually based off a photograph of me enjoying that delicious beverage in New Orleans Square in September 2009. I could go for one right now!

@Jeffrey – I’m a proud member of that fan club too! And I’m pretty sure that Jennifer Fickley-Baker would also be a member. I have many fond memories of listening to the official EPCOT Center album when I was younger: http://disneyparks.disney.go.com/blog/2011/01/a-look-back-at-epcot-center-merchandise/

15

Marshal from FL on August 8th, 2011 at 6:24 pm

I hope the Kitchen Kabaret vinyls are sold separately, since the sets are SO DANG EXPENSIVE! I just want one to start! Oh, and thanks Steven for getting music stuck in my head “Veggie, Fruit, Fruit, Veggie, Veggie, Fruit, Fruit!”

P.S. I think, just for kicks, a Food Rocks set comes out a year after the Kitchen Kabaret one :)

16

Diana from NY on August 8th, 2011 at 6:46 pm

I have two magnets on my filing cabinet at work that I purchased at WDW in the early 2000s. One is a giant Mickey Ice Cream Bar, and the other is a sprinkle-covered Mickey pretzel. I get compliments on them all the time, but I haven’t seen them in the parks for a few years.

I love food-themed merch (or frankly, any unique merchandise, resort-specific merch…attraction-specific merch…you get the idea – I really love the unique stuff :) .

17

Crystal from VA on August 8th, 2011 at 7:07 pm

I saw the magnets in three different stores on our last trip and decided that was a sign I needed them to come home with me. I get such a grin every time I walk into my kitchen now. I love unique items like that!

18

Michael on August 8th, 2011 at 8:07 pm

As much as I love food, I have to admit that I thought food-based merchandise was kind of a headscratcher. It is strange to me to see that turkey legs have a shirt at the Magic Kingdom, when years ago I had to struggle to find anything related to the more iconic Space Mountain. It’s connected gift shop had two shirts in 2006, but I returned in early 2007 and all Space Mountain stuff was removed for High School Musical.

Good to see Monorail merchandise. I know people who call it their favorite attraction!

19

Melanee from AL on August 9th, 2011 at 10:31 am

I bought the Turkey Leg t-shirt for my husband while we were there in February! He loves it! Found it at World of Disney in Downtown Disney

20

Diane on August 9th, 2011 at 12:25 pm

Are the 4 mickey food magnets (pretzel, pizza, ice cream bar, krispie treat) for sale on-line anywhere? Thanks! :)

 

Steven Miller on August 9th, 2011 at 4:35 pm

@Erin and Diane – One option to consider is our Merchandise Guest Services team. You can call 1-877-560-6477 or send an email to: merchandiseguestservices@disne​y.go.com

Reference the following SKUS when contacting them.

The Snack Play Set – 400000077369
The food magnet set – 400000233710

21

Sonja on August 10th, 2011 at 11:05 am

I also bought the turkey leg shirt for my hubby a few month’s ago. Turkey legs are his favorite, he buys one wherever we go, and always at WDW. I found the shirt at the America pavilion in Epcot.

22

Chaz on August 11th, 2011 at 4:40 pm

Where at Disney World parks do they sell those shirts? I was at MK and Hollywood Studios yesterday, and I didn’t see them anywhere…

22 Comments