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Inside Look at Costa Rica with Adventures by Disney

posted on December 28th, 2012 by Jason Lasecki, Public Relations Director, Disney Cruise Line, Adventures By Disney, Disney Vacation Club

New Posters from Disney Design Group Highlight the Luckier Side of 2013

Hi Disney Parks Blog fans! I hope you’re all enjoying this holiday week with your loved ones and looking forward to the New Year. My wife and I decided to do something different to ring in the New Year, so tomorrow we’re heading to Costa Rica! The best part? We’re going with Adventures by Disney, so we haven’t even had to lift a finger for the planning!

Over the next week I’ll be giving you an inside look at our trek through the rainforest, from adventures like zip lining and white water rafting to cultural experiences like Mojito making and visits to sugar and pineapple plantations. If you have any questions about what it’s like to travel with Adventures by Disney or the activities your family will enjoy in Costa Rica, just leave a comment and I’ll be happy to answer you after my trip.

I’m off to finish packing … talk to you next week!

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Filed: Adventures by Disney

Roastie-Toasties at Disneyland Park: A Year in Review

posted on December 28th, 2012 by Shannon Swanson, Public Relations Manager, Disneyland Resort

It took 12 months and 10 dolls on seven carts to create this year-in-review video of the Popcorn Animation Dolls at Disneyland park.

Early photos reveal “popcorn people” existed at Disneyland as far back as 1955. The popcorn wagons were labeled “The Cretors” named after C. Cretors & Co., founded in 1855, the company that originally produced the carts and their clown dolls. Eventually the clowns were transformed to match the land in which they performed.

Trivia Question: Can you name the dolls in the video and the areas they represent? Click below the video for the answer.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Filed: Disney History, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

Return to the Golden Horseshoe for Some ‘Limited Time Magic’ at Disneyland Park

posted on December 28th, 2012 by Erin Glover, Editorial Content Director, Disneyland Resort

UPDATE 1/2/13:

To reserve a seat for “A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue,” guests should visit the podium at the entrance to the Golden Horseshoe on the date of their selected performance. A cast member will issue a ticket for the preferred show time, based on availability, which the guest will use for admission to the show. It is similar to the process that was used during the original run of the “Golden Horseshoe Revue.”

Disneyland APs – we’ve got a special opportunity for you! Please visit to learn about a special Golden Horseshoe dinner package. Booking begins today, so make your reservation soon!

As Thomas Smith told you earlier today, guests visiting Disney Parks in 2013 will find an extra sprinkling of pixie dust each week with “Limited Time Magic.” And here at Disneyland park, we’re excited to kick off this year of limited-time surprises with Three Kings Day, followed by a special tribute to the classic “Golden Horseshoe Revue”!

The Golden Horseshoe as it appeared in 1959

Inspired by the world-famous Frontierland show enjoyed by Walt Disney himself, “A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue” will be an homage to those fun-filled, family-friendly musical variety shows of the past. Hosted by Miss Lily and her Saloon Girls, the show will bring together favorite song and dance numbers like “Hello, Everybody,” “A Good Man Is Hard to Find,” “Belly up to the Bar” and “Can-Can.”

Wally Boag and the cast of the Golden Horseshoe Review, including Donald Novis, left, and Betty Taylor, center

“Of course, it would be impossible to completely recreate that original show without the talents of Disney Legends such as Betty Taylor and Wally Boag,” said Senior Show Director Randy Wojcik, “But ‘A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue’ promises to honor that classic production and celebrate a truly historic venue in grand style.”

Of course, “A Salute to the Golden Horseshoe Revue” will play for a limited time only, every Thursday through Monday, from January 10 to February 4. Be sure to catch this “Limited Time Magic” before it’s time to sing “So-Long, Everybody!”

Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog and for updates on “Limited Time Magic,” and join the conversation on Twitter by using hashtag #LimitedTimeMagic.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

‘Limited Time Magic’ at Disney Parks Begins with Week-Long New Year’s Party, ‘Year of the Ear’

posted on December 28th, 2012 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

There’s nothing like ringing in the New Year at Disney Parks, but if you can’t join us, we’re keeping the excitement going to begin January with some special “Limited Time Magic” at the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort.

'Bling in the New Year' Dance Party at Magic Kingdom Park

First, we’re beginning the New Year at Walt Disney World Resort in Magic Kingdom Park with Tomorrowland’s first ever “Bling in the New Year” dance party. For an entire week, children of all ages can celebrate the start of 2013. You’ll be able to watch live entertainment on Rockettower Plaza Stage, dance to great music and celebrate with some of your favorite Disney characters – all dressed in their New Year’s best. And if you can’t stay up until midnight, there will be a New Year’s countdown every hour leading up to midnight. The celebration begins on December 30 and runs through January 5.

We’re also excited to announce that 2013 will be the “Year of the Ear” at Disney Parks. Every month, Disney Parks will release new ear hats to add to your collection as part of “Limited Time Magic.” January will start with the limited release of Disney Couture Ear Hats. And each month, there will be fun designs to discover.

And we’re not done yet. We’ll have more “Limited Time Magic” information to share today on the Disney Parks Blog, including an exciting announcement to kick off the New Year at the Disneyland Resort. Be sure and check the blog later and remember that you can also find updates on Twitter using hashtag #LimitedTimeMagic and on our web page.

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Still Time to Make New Year’s Eve Plans at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on December 28th, 2012 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer

Celebrate New Year's Eve at Walt Disney World Resort

If you’re still not sure how to ring in the New Year, wonderful options abound all across Walt Disney World Resort. Here’s what we found with insider info on special menus:

At Epcot World Showcase, there are some fab choices. The new Monsieur Paul restaurant at the France Pavilion is offering four special courses, starting with a warm black truffle and artichoke tart or Maine lobster with tomato confit, ending with French sweets. Cost is $195, $275 with wine pairings. Seatings are at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.; call 407-284-0202 for reservations.

World Showplace has a bountiful, family-friendly buffet from 4:30-10:30 p.m. where you can nosh on everything from soups and salads to roasted pork and red-wine-braised chicken, plus key lime and pecan pies and red velvet ganache. Cost is $64.99 plus tax (includes gratuity), $41.99 ages 3 to 11.

In the resorts, the chefs have kicked it up for New Year’s Eve. There are three hot spots at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Cítricos is offering four generous courses – we’re partial to the filet Sicilian with Spanish onions, peppadew and banana peppers, quattro formaggi potato puree and a flourish of rich glace de viande. Cost is $75. Next door, Victoria & Albert’s is offering the most exclusive menu at Walt Disney World Resort, and Chef Scott Hunnel will make this a New Year’s Eve to remember, from Maine lobster and Siberian caviar to hand-cut pasta and crispy pork belly. Cost is $495 and includes wine pairings and gratuity. For reservations, call 407-939-3862. Narcoossee’s is featuring a family-friendly evening with a balloon artist and special viewing for early fireworks. Our pick on the four-course menu is the Australian Kobe-stye Manhattan filet with butter-poached Maine lobster, or the Basque-style bouillabaisse. A sophisticated kids’ menu includes filet mignon and grilled Wild Atlantic shrimp. Cost is $161.85, $77.19 ages 3 to 11 (including tax and gratuity).

Over at Disney’s BoardWalk, there are two diverse options: dance your way into 2013 at Atlantic Dance Hall, or dine in style with Chef Tim Keating at Flying Fish Café. Atlantic Dance fun kicks off a dressy evening at 8 p.m., with a DJ, party favors and Champagne at midnight. The fun goes ‘til 2 a.m. Admission is $37 and includes parking passes with advanced ticket sales. Or, for $80, book a spot in the VIP area with private access to the upstairs balcony with lots of desserts and viewing of Epcot fireworks. Guests must be 21 or older. For reservations, call 407-939-5100.

Flying Fish Café is offering a New Year’s Eve menu that showcases lots of beautiful Florida produce and seafood, such as local tomatoes and cucumbers from The Land Pavilion at Epcot and local day-boat fish. Fans of Chef Keating know to book early – the oak-grilled organic Scottish salmon with a truffled citrus and Vermont butter reduction sounds like a hit. The prixe fixe dinner is $79.88, $26.63 for ages 3 to 11.

Across the water, Yachtsman Steakhouse at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort has three courses for $75 – from chilled shellfish or lobster bisque to a 16-ounce boneless rib-eye. Vegetarians will love the black truffle tortelloni.

It is two table-service entitlements on the Disney Dining Plan for the special menus at World Showplace, Cítricos, Flying Fish Café, and Yachtsman Steakhouse. To make reservations, call 407-WDW-DINE.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Epcot, Hotels & Resorts, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks After Dark: Castle Dream Lights at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on December 27th, 2012 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Editorial Content Manager

This week, we’re heading back to Magic Kingdom Park to take a look at one of my favorite sights to see at the park during the holidays – the Castle Dream Lights.

Cinderella Castle looks amazing, doesn’t it?

Castle Dream Lights at Magic Kingdom Park

What’s your favorite nighttime holiday offering at Disney Parks? Let us know in the “comments” section below.

Want to see more from the “Disney Parks After Dark” series? Take a look at the posts below:

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Every Role a Starring Role – Disneyland Kennel Club Attendant

posted on December 27th, 2012 by Kevin Rafferty, Jr., Communications Specialist, Disneyland Resort

Did you know that the Disneyland Kennel Club opened as the Ken-L Land Pet Motel on January 18, 1958? Participating in the opening ceremonies were Old Yeller’s son, Duke, and Kevin Corcoran, the youthful star of the film who would become a Disney Legend. If you’ve ever boarded your pets at the Disneyland Kennel Club while visiting the Disneyland Resort, you may remember Ginny Bullock, who will tell you about her role as a Disneyland Kennel Club attendant in this installment of Every Role a Starring Role!

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Filed: Behind the Scenes, Cast Member Profiles, Disney Differences, Disneyland Resort

‘Star Wars’ Weekends 2013 Dates Announced

posted on December 27th, 2012 by Gary Buchanan, Social Media Managing Editor

“Luke, We’re gonna have company!” — Han Solo

If your starship can make the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs (I’m still trying to figure out how fast that is), set your hyperdrive for the Disney’s Hollywood Studios sector for May and early June, for the 2013 edition of Star Wars Weekends.

This year’s Force-filled fun will take place every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 17 – June 9, 2013.

James Arnold Taylor and Ashley Eckstein Share a Laugh On-stage at Star Wars Weekends 2012.  The Pair Will Return as Celebrity Hosts in 2013.

While details are still being planned, we’re excited to announce that James Arnold Taylor and Ashley Eckstein are returning as celebrity hosts for the annual special event. James, the voice behind many of the most famous animated characters in film, television and commercials, is known to Star Wars fans as the voice of Obi-Wan Kenobi on the Star Wars: The Clone Wars TV series. Ashley, who started her show business career as a parade dancer at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, is the voice of Anakin’s ambitious Padawan, Ahsoka Tano, on Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

James is the Official Celebrity Host of Star Wars Weekends 2013, and Ashley is Celebrity Host of “Behind the Force,” a live show that takes fans behind-the-scenes in the Star Wars universe.

Be sure to program your scanning droids to check here for the latest updates from the Galactic Senate about Star Wars Weekends 2013.

For guests who may be considering a visit to Walt Disney World Resort for their very first Star Wars Weekends, here’s a short overview video with our own galactic reporter, “Jedi John” (please note his very stylish “mic saber”). While the celebrity appearances for this year have not been announced (stay tuned for those names in an upcoming post), John talks to some Star Wars celebrities from past events to get their thoughts.

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Top Disneyland Resort Stories of 2012

posted on December 27th, 2012 by Erin Glover, Editorial Content Director, Disneyland Resort


It’s been a big year here at the Disneyland Resort. From the changes on Main Street, U.S.A., to the newly refurbished Matterhorn – oh yeah, and the completion of the five-year expansion of Disney California Adventure park – we’ve been pretty busy. Here’s a look at some of the top Disneyland Resort stories we’ve shared with you here on the Disney Parks Blog.

Celebrating the Culmination of a Five-Year Journey with the Grand Reopening of Disney California Adventure Park
On June 15, Disney California Adventure park celebrated its grand reopening, the culmination of a five-year expansion capped off with the addition of Cars Land and Buena Vista Street.

Behind the Wall: Matterhorn Bobsleds at Disneyland Park
When a new snowfall brought brand-new bobsleds to the majestic Matterhorn this summer, the classic Disneyland park attraction received its most extensive refurbishment to date.

Earl of Sandwich Now Open in the Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort
Downtown Disney District visitors got a special treat this fall, when the first Earl of Sandwich restaurant location in California opened at the Disneyland Resort.

Reimagined Disneyland Hotel Evokes History, Nostalgia
In January, the Disneyland Hotel celebrated the completion of its largest renovation.

Space Shuttle Endeavour Treats Guests to ‘Ferry Flight’ Over the Disneyland Resort
On September 21, the Disneyland Resort took part in space travel history when Space Shuttle Endeavour flew over the resort on its way to its new home in Los Angeles.

VIDEO: Disneyland Park Opens for One More Disney Day

We celebrated Leap Day in a big way at Disneyland park this year! Were you there?

An Early Holiday Gift for Disneyland Guests: Twenty Nights of Disneyland Candlelight Ceremony Performances Scheduled for 2012

This holiday season, for the first time, the Candlelight Ceremony and Processional at Disneyland park was extended to 20 nights of performances.

Disney Parks Blog Readers ‘Glow With the Show’ at Disney California Adventure Park
“Glow With the Show” Ears made their debut at “World of Color” this summer and have since expanded their magic to other shows and locations. On July 30, two thousand Disney Parks Blog readers got to try them out at our “Glow With the Show” Meet-Up.

Fall Into the Rabbit Hole at Mad T Party – Coming to Disney California Adventure Park
A new nighttime experience debuted at Disney California Adventure park this summer, as guests were invited to fall down the Rabbit Hole and into the world of Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland.”

Carnation Café Reopens June 13 at Disneyland Park

Another major part of the Main Street, U.S.A., refurbishment was Carnation Cafe, which expanded back into its previous indoor-seating space.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

Most Popular 2012 Time-Lapse Videos on the Disney Parks Blog

posted on December 27th, 2012 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

This year, we’ve shared some really cool time-lapse videos that give just a taste of how much work goes into some of your favorite events, attractions and happenings at Disney Parks. A big favorite on the Blog came at the end of the year – during our holiday transformation.

Planning for the big holiday transformation at Magic Kingdom Park takes months – it begins in summer. But the work of replacing jack-o-lanterns with ornaments and toy soldiers happens in hours.

Here are nine of our other most popular time-lapse videos of 2012. Let us know which is your favorite.

  1. Time-Lapse Video: New Fantasyland Springs To Life

  2. Time-Lapse Video: Watch Two New Castles and a Disney Mountain Emerge in New Fantasyland

  3. Matterhorn Scaffolding Time-Lapse

  4. Time-Lapse: Will You ‘Find Nemo’ At Disney’s Art of Animation Resort?

  5. The Haunted Mansion Transforms for Halloween Time

  6. Flo’s V8 Cafe Timelapse at Disney California Adventure Park

  7. From the Ground Up at Disney California Adventure Park – Cars Land

  8. Disney Cast Members Create ‘Wreck-It Ralph’ CANstruction for Local Food Bank

  9. Three-Story Disney Parks Ice Castle Appears in Times Square
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