Sailing Ship Columbia at Disneyland Park

Top Five Walt Disney World Resort Stories in 2011

posted on December 27th, 2011 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Mickey Mouse at a Meet-and-Greet Experience at Magic Kingdom Park

Walt Disney World Resort sure had a memorable year – from celebrating major anniversaries to marking continued progress on new attractions, the Disney Parks Blog team really had a lot of exciting news to cover in 2011.

That said, here are our picks for the top-five Walt Disney World Resort stories of the year. What would you add to the list?

  1. Magic Kingdom Park Marks 40 Years – I was lucky enough to cover this milestone in person at Magic Kingdom Park on Oct. 1.
  2. Mickey Tests Some Magic Words at Walt Disney World – In my opinion, this was one of the most amazing videos we posted in all of 2011. It shows a Mickey meet-and-greet experience that was tested earlier this year at Magic Kingdom Park.
  3. AVATAR Coming to Disney Parks – Social Media Director Tom Smith broke the story of a new land coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom back on Sept. 20. The new area is based on James Cameron’s award-winning film, “AVATAR.”
  4. Beast Castle: Behind the Scenes with Walt Disney Imagineers – This blog post was our first inside look at the new Beast Castle, currently under construction in New Fantasyland. The area will begin opening in phases in fall 2012.
  5. Walt Disney Imagineers Install Nemo Icons at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – This video post gave our readers their first look inside this new resort, which is set to open in phases beginning in May 2012.
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9 Comments

1

Alison on December 27th, 2011 at 12:01 pm

I would add the Times Square augmented reality video from NYC and I do have a lot of fun with the “caption this!” articles. =)

What a good year for Disney. Can’t wait for 2012 and happy holidays to the Disney Parks staff!

2

Diana from NY on December 27th, 2011 at 4:27 pm

I agree with the 40th as #1, but I think the Star Tours 2 launch should be up there as well. Although I’m only a casual SW fan, I eagerly watched the webcast, avoided spoilers on social media, and loved my first ride (finally) back in August. The webcast and posts surrounding the launch really captured the excitement and brought together the fan community!

3

Trish on December 27th, 2011 at 4:42 pm

I caught a glimpse of Beast’s castle in Fantasyland. It is going to be AMAZING!

4

dan on December 27th, 2011 at 11:28 pm

I’d be curious to know which story of the past year got the most user comments…. In other words, which story got people talking the most?

5

Carrie from TX on December 28th, 2011 at 4:28 am

I agree with you most of the events. But what about the SW weekend that unveiled the ride revamp? Even George Lucas was there! After watching everything about the revamp, and having waited so long, We were really excited to get to ride it in August!

6

Keith on December 28th, 2011 at 9:12 am

I’m simply glad the 40th did not involve a re-emergence of the “Pepto Castle-cake” from the 20th.

While we enjoyed both Star Wars Weekends and the revamped Star Tours, I think the nod has to go to the marketing folks and their “Darth goes to Walt Disney World” advertisement. That campaign was a stroke of genius between the sword in the stone, the Mickey bars, and the teacups. It made you laugh, but it also made you want to see the revamped attraction. Thumbs up!

7

Erin from CO on December 28th, 2011 at 2:28 pm

The Fantasyland expansion is going to be wonderful when it’s complete. Although I do hope that they find a new home for Mickey and Minnie’s houses.

Avatar in AK is such a disappointment. Very un-Disney and seems like a money hungry attempt at competing with Harry Potter world at Universal. Disney should stick to being it’s unique self instead of trying to compete with lesser themeparks.

8

patricia on December 28th, 2011 at 8:13 pm

I ABSOLUTELY LOVED AND TOTALLY ENJOYED WALT DISNEY WORLD’S 40TH CELEBRATION! IT WAS ALSO MINE AND MY HUSBANDS 40TH WEDDING ANNIVERSARY! WE BOTH ADORE THE PARK AND WAS HONORED TO SHARE OUR ANNIVERSARY WITH THEM. WHILE WE WERE THERE IN NOVEMBER. WE WORE THE 40TH ANNIVERSARY BUTTONS THROUGHOUT THE PARK EVERY SINGLE DAY WE WERE THERE AND EVERY CAST MEMBER MADE US FEEL SO SPECIAL! IT WAS A GREAT FAMILY VACATION SPENT WITH MY CHILDREN WHO TREATED US FOR THE OCCASION! YES ‘LIFE IS GOOD’! KEEP UP THE GLORIOUS WORK AT YOUR PARK! WE KNOW THAT YOU CERTAINLY WILL! HAVE A MAGICAL FUTURE, PAT AND SAL AMATO

9

Salvatore from FL on December 28th, 2011 at 11:14 pm

I was also at the 40th Anniversary as well and got to talk with Disney Legend and retired Archivist Dave Smith. I also enjoyed riding the revamped Star Tours Ride and even though I wasn’t there at the re-opening, I think having George Lucas at DHS should be in the top five.

9 Comments