Disney Parks Blog Celebrates the 15th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roller Coaster at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Today in Disney History: Walt Disney Pictures Releases Tim Burton’s ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Twenty years ago today, two distinct holidays came together in a new, annual Disney tradition. “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas” brought Halloween and Christmas together in a spooky spectacular which brought us new classic Disney characters like Jack Skellington and Oogie Boogie. A few years later, Jack and his creepy crew began another Disney tradition: Haunted Mansion Holiday here at Disneyland park.

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Now in its 13th season, Haunted Mansion Holiday welcomes guests for a “Scary Christmas” as Jack takes over the mansion for the entire Halloween and Holiday seasons.

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The attraction takes on a whole new life (or afterlife?) as the usual residents vacate the mansion while Jack Skellington brings the world of Tim Burton’s “A Nightmare Before Christmas” to life each year.

Celebrate a 'Scary Christmas' with Jack Skellington at Haunted Mansion Holiday Celebrate a 'Scary Christmas' with Jack Skellington at Haunted Mansion Holiday

Like many guests, my favorite scene in Haunted Mansion Holiday is the “graveyard that’s covered in ghostly white snow,” featuring singing jack-o’-lanterns and giant ice angels.

What is your favorite part of Haunted Mansion Holiday at Disneyland park?

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Guests Are ‘Blessed With a Good Smile’ At Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


“You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.” – Walt Disney

Everyday, Walt Disney World Resort cast members work to make Walt’s dream a reality by delivering outstanding customer service to guests. But, as in any organization, there are always a few people that have a little something extra.

If you have visited Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa and entered through the front doors chances are you received a hello, a smile and possibly a hug from 88-year-old Richard Gerth. For more than 22 years as a cast member, Richard has greeted thousands of guests and assisted thousands of brides with wedding photos on their special day.

In a way Richard has become an attraction of his own. As guests make plans to ride Space Mountain, see characters and catch parades and fireworks, they also make plans to stop by and say hi to him. Recently, while standing in the resort lobby with Richard, two generations of one family reflected on all the years they have greeted each other on vacation. After commenting on how their trip to Walt Disney World Resort would not be complete without seeing him, one guest said to me, “Richard is the Grand (Floridian).”

Richard is not only a legacy to the Grand Floridian and to thousands of guests, but also a legacy to The Walt Disney Company. He credits two things for his success, longevity and “I was blessed with a good smile.”

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The Happy Haunted Horseshoe Offers Halloween Fun at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


The Happy Haunted Horseshoe is open for business at Magic Kingdom Park.

Hostess Miss Betty Blue Dearly Departed Stan the Piano Player Magician Abner Cadaver
The Cadaver Dans Hostess Miss Betty Blue

As a part of “Limited Time Magic“, the Diamond Horseshoe has been transformed into Halloween central, with plenty of tricks and treats in store, including performances by the Cadaver Dans and Dearly Departed Stan the piano player, plenty of “tricks” provided by magician Abner Cadaver, Halloween-themed snacks and more.

Check out the fun in this video – and be sure to stop by, now through November 1. For more on how we’re celebrating Halloween at Walt Disney World Resort this year, be sure to check out the list of “related stories” below.

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New Disney Side Photo Series Features Disney Character Lookalikes

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


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Today, we’re sharing a first peek at a series of Disney Side images that just may make you do a double take.

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It’s a new photo series of lookalikes created for our DisneySide.com site featuring someone showing their Disney side with their Disney character doppelganger.

New Disney Side Photo Series Features Disney Character Lookalikes - Captain Hook New Disney Side Photo Series Features Disney Character Lookalikes - Captain Hook

Photographer Tony D’Orio captured each person’s Disney side and will be adding more images to DisneySide.com before the end of the year. The series follows our first-look blog post and video about the idea of showing your Disney side – the side of you that says “yes” more often, laughs louder and lives life to the fullest.

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So, what’s your Disney side? Share it with the hashtag #DisneySide across our social channels, including Twitter, Vine, Instagram, Google+ and Facebook.

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Commemorate Twenty Twisted Years of Tim Burton’s ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’ with New Merchandise at Disney Parks

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


This October marks the 20th Anniversary of Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” This amazing stop-motion feature is a classic in the Miller house, especially around Halloween (my children love the film!). To commemorate this milestone anniversary, here are a few of the newest themed merchandise I found created especially for Disney Parks.

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From October 29 to November 4, 2013, the Disney Parks online store will release an exclusive T-shirt and a D-Tech on Demand case for the iPhone 5/5S featuring the artwork shown above. Guests can order these items by visiting http://www.Disneystore.com/ParkEvents starting October 29. Once orders are complete, please allow six-to-eight weeks for delivery.

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The Timepiece team recently introduced two 20th Anniversary watches as part of their Artist Watch program. The watches are available with either black or white leather straps. Presented in gift boxes, each watch has a retail of $75.00 (plus tax). Look for them in the following locations at Disneyland Resort: Fortuosity Shop and Port Royal in Disneyland park; Off the Page at Disney California Adventure park; and World of Disney in Downtown Disney District. For guests at Walt Disney World Resort, look for these items at Uptown Jewelers in Magic Kingdom Park or Art of Disney at Downtown Disney Marketplace.

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On October 31, the Vinylmation team is releasing a limited release mystery series celebrating several characters from the film. Disney Design Group artist Casey Jones, whom you may recall from Hatbox Ghost shirt fame, designed this second series that builds off the first (and now retired) Vinylmation series from a few years ago. Look for this set at the D Street locations in California and Florida, and the Disney Parks online store once released.

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Finally, the last item is more like a preview of things coming in 2014. I invite you to mark your calendar for June 14, 2014, as we will be hosting a trading event at the Disneyland Hotel that was inspired by Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” Look for more details in the coming months. I’ve seen the artwork for several items and they are outstanding!

Here are a few other items that I found including new winter weather attire coming to Disney Parks in November.

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New Surprises in Store for ‘it’s a small world’ Holiday at Disneyland Park

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Holidays at Disneyland Resort just got merrier… and they’re about to get a little brighter, too!

Evenings beginning November 12, the smiling clock at the front of “it’s a small world” Holiday will mark every quarter hour in a surprising new way. Using advanced 3D projection technology, the façade of the entire attraction will be transformed into an enormous, clockwork mechanism.

Gingerbread House Projection at 'it's a small world' Holiday Toy Factory Projection at 'it's a small world' Holiday

The gears and springs pull back to reveal a world of holiday wonders hidden behind the clock, from an incredible toy factory to a scrumptious gingerbread house that builds itself!

Show Director John Addis gave us a sneak peek:

Discover the fun inside “it’s a small world” Holiday, this holiday season at Disneyland park.

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Grab Your Sneakers! Inaugural ‘On the Road to Disney’ Meet-Up Coming to Atlanta

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


UPDATE: Click here for a complete list of attendees. If you have questions, please ask them on the Disney Parks Blog and we will do our best to answer them. Stay tuned for more unique opportunities in the future.

UPDATE: We have reached capacity! Thanks for everyone’s interest in the Atlanta “On the Road to Disney’’ Meet-Up and we appreciate your quick responses. We will be posting the list of attendees soon. Please check back later for the complete list of attendees.

We have staged runDisney Meet-Ups during our runDisney race weekends at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts the past few years, and they have become wildly popular. But now for the first time ever we are packing our bags and taking our runDisney Meet-Up on the road. Our destination: Hotlanta.

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If you are going to be in or around the Atlanta area on November 16, pay attention because runDisney is hosting a unique “On the Road to Disney” Meet-Up for 100 selected participants that will be unlike any other we have done. Selected participants will go on a 2-mile fun run through the streets of Atlanta. Naturally, we’ll make a turn through Turner Field, home of our long-time partners, the Atlanta Braves, who play their spring training seasons at Walt Disney World Resort.

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The event will also include running industry speakers, as well as elite runners who will share tips and advice for average runners and people wanting to live a healthier and more active lifestyle. Plus, we will share some exciting new insights into some Disney Sports initiatives. And, of course, we will pack some classic Disney magic and bring it along to share with everyone in attendance.

As always, space is limited. If you don’t want to miss this runDisney road trip, RSVP right now to WDW.SportsMeetUps@Disney.com. Only a limited number of qualified runners will be selected to participate, so be one of the first to reply. Remember to include your name in this email and only one RSVP per individual.

A few important details:

  • All selected participants must be available for a 6 a.m. ET start time on Saturday, November 16.
  • Qualified applicants will be selected on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • A valid photo ID is required at check-in. Participants must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Limit one RSVP per individual. Applicants sending RSVPs from more than one email address will be disqualified.
  • Only RSVP for yourself. RSVP’s for someone other than the email sender will be disqualified.
  • Valid RSVP’s must include your name. RSVP’s that include more than one person or are missing information (e.g. incomplete names) will be disqualified.
  • Admittance to the event is non-transferable and limited to the selected applicant; no additional guests please.
  • The event and individual/celebrity appearances are subject to change or cancelation without notice.
  • Because this is running-oriented, we require that applicants be experienced runners, able to maintain a 16-minute per mile pace (qualified).

We will send an email to selected applicants who sent their valid RSVP via email before we reached capacity to confirm their attendance for Saturday, November 16. If you do not receive an email from us confirming your reservation and your name does not appear on the list of selected applicants, your RSVP was not selected.

I will give an update at the top of this post when capacity has been reached. Hope to see you in Atlanta!

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Walt Disney World Merchandise Event Snapshot – November 2013

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Check out what’s happening in the world of Disney Theme Park Merchandise at the Walt Disney World Resort this November!

November 1 – 3: Artist Rob Kaz will be on hand to showcase some of his “Food & Wine” inspired artwork from his Disney Fine Art collection during the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival from 1 – 10 p.m. at Art of Disney in Epcot. Works will include Mad Tea Party, Cuisine for Two, Vineyard Harvest and Decorating Fun! Looking to find out more about Rob Kaz? Visit DisneyFineArt.com. Learn more here.

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November 2: Pick up a copy of the “Epcot International Food & Wine Festival 2013 Cookbook Taste Your Way Around the World,” loaded with delectable dishes and recipes inside for beverages, entrees, desserts, Marketplace favorites, Festival Special Event picks and more. Executive Chef, Epcot, Jens Dahlmann will be on hand for a special appearance and signing November 2 from 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. at Port of Entry in Epcot. Learn more here.

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November 7: Luck is on your side this month! Join us as we welcome back Disney Design Group Artist Susan Foy, 5 – 7 p.m. at Disney’s Pin Traders, in celebration of the release of the latest pin from the Good Luck/Bad Luck series featuring Belle. Learn more here.

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November 8: It’s a Vinylmation-Palooza! Meet Maria Clapsis, Ron Cohee and Thomas Scott, the Disney artists behind collections such as the Vinylmation 5th Anniversary Eachez, Meet & Greet Mickey, Festival of the Masters Eachez and the Disney’s Animal Kingdom set. Maria, Ron and Thomas will be on hand for a special appearance and signing from 10 a.m. to 12 Noon at D-Street in Downtown Disney West Side. Look for a special post from Disney Parks Blog author Steven Miller.

November 8 – 10: Details on all of the Festival of the Masters art debuting, special artist signings and live performance art taking place will be available in the coming weeks, so keep an eye out!

November 13 – 16: Make sure you stop by Art of Disney in the Downtown Disney Marketplace to meet Disney inspired artist Greg McCullough, who will appearing daily. Look for additional appearances by Greg, November 27 – December 1 at Art of Disney in Epcot. Learn more here.

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November 18 – 23: Look for fan favorite and Disney inspired artist, Larry Dotson, who will be appearing daily at Main Street Cinema in Magic Kingdom Park. Learn more here.

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November 22 – December 29: The holiday collection from Precious Moments doll maker Linda Rick will debut at Once Upon A Toy in the Downtown Disney Marketplace. Only visiting Epcot? Beginning November 25, make sure to stop by Heritage Manor at the American Adventure pavilion where the dolls will also be featured. Representatives will be on hand daily at both locations, so be sure to stop by and find new ones to add to your collection, or pick one up for someone on your holiday list Tip: Look for a special appearance by Linda Rick over Thanksgiving weekend at our Epcot location. Learn more here.

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November 29: Vinylmation Park Series 13 is making its debut at D-Street this month. Look for special appearances by Disney Design Group artists from 5 – 7 p.m. I have no doubt you will lose your head over this collection. Care to make a trade?

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November 29 – December 30: Look for a special post next month as we take you on a journey inside our Holidays Around the World Merchandise, with special appearances and signings by notable artists. Watch for more information.

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November 30 – December 1: Join us as we welcome back renowned American folk artist Jim Shore, who will be on hand for a special appearance and signing of some of his latest releases in the Disney Traditions collection, including new holiday pieces for 2013 as well as Disney Parks exclusives such as the Cheshire Cat in the Tea Cup. Meet Jim between November 30 from 1 – 4 p.m. at Art of Disney in the Downtown Disney Marketplace, and December 1 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Heritage Manor in the American Adventure Pavilion at Epcot. Learn more here.

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November 29 – 30: Become captivated by the dazzling and sparkling fine jewelry collection from the Freeman Family, featuring some classic Disney icons and characters including Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Tinker Bell, among others. Take part in this special trunk show with the Freeman family throughout the weekend at World of Disney Store in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Learn more here.

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November 30: Meet Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge, otherwise known as The Fabulous Beekman Boys, for a special appearance and signing as we celebrate the release of their best-selling book, “The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook,” which features over 100+ recipes tied to their families history and roots, with their own signature twist. Look for another post shortly with all the details.

Mark your calendars now, and join us for all of the great events and artist showcases taking place this November!

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Word Search: The Haunted Mansion

posted on October 29th, 2013 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


We have a new treat for you Haunted Mansion fans today – a special word-search puzzle that’s themed around the mansion itself.

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There are a total of 11 hidden Haunted Mansion-inspired words hidden in the puzzle above. How many can you find? Tell us in the “Comments” section below and we’ll update the blog post later today with the full answer key!

Read the rest of this entry »

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Hear Smash Mouth October 28-30 at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on October 28th, 2013 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


If you’re heading out to the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival over the next few days, be sure to check out Smash Mouth, the next act taking the stage in this year’s Eat to the Beat concert series.

Eat to the Beat! Concert Series: Smash Mouth
The group’s concerts are included in Epcot admission and are performed on the America Gardens Theatre stage at 5:30, 6:45 and 8 p.m., daily.

The schedule of remaining 2013 Eat to the Beat acts are:

  • October 31 – November 1 NEW! Spin Doctors “Two Princes”
  • November 2-3 NEW! Christopher Cross “Sailing”
  • November 4-5 Hanson “Give a Little”
  • November 6-8 Dennis DeYoung, original member of the group STYX “Come Sail Away”
  • November 9-11 Big Bad Voodoo Daddy “Go Daddy-O”

(Songs listed are for artist recognition only and may not be included in the concert play list.)


For more on the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, click the links below:

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