Sunset Over the Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Disney Billboards: More than Meets the Eye

posted on July 30th, 2014 by Russ J. Stacey, Writer, Yellow Shoes Creative Group


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When was the last time you looked at a billboard — I mean really looked? Ever spot a facet of one that you missed at first glance? Something that made it pop?

When it comes to Disney theme park billboards, bet you didn’t realize all that’s entailed into making them so exceptional, filled with sly references and artfully hidden gems. Well, those creative whizzes at Disney’s Yellow Shoes Creative Group know how to ensure they don’t just look amazing and enticing, but also tell a story. But why go the extra mile?

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“We hope to remind guests of how much fun they had on the attractions or that they create a sense of anticipation to want to go on them if they haven’t,” explains Yellow Shoes Senior Art Director Steve Carsella. “Having all the details in the billboards is in line with a Disney theme park experience by adding something special wherever you look.”

For instance, on one of the latest Expedition Everest billboards, subtle yet oh-so-clever tidbits include the Yeti’s footprints in what looks like random texture in the snow, an authentic Tibetan carving embedded in the “T” in the word “EVEREST” and the Yeti’s shadow disguised as a rock cropping. Meanwhile, a new Twilight Zone Tower of Terror board includes a falling brick that is actually an old-timey radio that’s a prop from the attraction’s queue and a Hidden Mickey stamped on another brick.

Disney Billboards: More than Meets the Eye Disney Billboards: More than Meets the Eye
Disney Billboards: More than Meets the Eye Disney Billboards: More than Meets the Eye

When designing and implementing billboards, there are general creative tenets that are taken into consideration, of course. Does it accurately depict the attraction? Is it readable? Does it feel cinematic? Are there strong details that don’t impede the message? But it takes that Disney magic of adding just enough originality and ingenuity that assures they are always surprising, dynamic and uncommon.

“I think it follows in the steps of Walt himself to pay attention to the details and to offer our guests something out of the ordinary,” Steve says.

So now that you know, maybe next time you’ll take the time to appreciate all the thought and effort that go into Disney billboards. Just wait until it’s safe to check them out!

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Filed: Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World Resort

Delicious New Tastes for ‘Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush!’ at Disneyland Park

posted on July 30th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Frontierland or Rainbow Ridge – Have you chosen your alliance in Frontierland at Disneyland park? “Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush!” lets you become part of a Wild West story – and you know there’s food involved.

With stations throughout Frontierland like the Sheriff’s Office and Jail, the Hideout, the Trading Post, a Telegraph Station and a game of cards and more inside Golden Horseshoe, you can create a character (are you a peacekeeper or an outlaw?) and interact with cast members in really fun ways. (See Erin Glover’s earlier post on the Disney Park Blog.)

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All that running about works up a thirst, and L.B.’s Extraordinary Elixirs includes three soft drinks worth a sip: Knowledge, a tea infused with lime, passion fruit, vanilla and a “zap of pureed ginger – for smarts”; Luck, a tea infused with apple, cotton candy, lime, lemongrass and mint, all stirred with a lucky horseshoe; and Charm, lite lemonade infused with desert pear, blackberry and “Tabasco for personality plus.” We’ve heard that they each grant mystical power to citizens of Frontierland and Rainbow Ridge.

Over at the Golden Horseshoe, there’s a new “secret” menu (wink, wink) and they’ve doctored up the root beer in three flavors – one with wild raspberry (Wild style), one with toasted marshmallow flavor (Campfire style), one with vanilla (Plain Jane) and one with caramel (Eureka style). And if you really want to live life on the edge, go with “Outlaw Style” toppings for chili fries, the chili bread bowl or the crispy chicken salad – that means you add a mixture of black beans, roasted white corn, red onion, serrano chiles, tomato, green, red and yellow peppers, garlic, cilantro, Tabasco, olive oil and lime. (It’s worth a taste.)

That’s plenty of Wild West grub to keep you fired up for all the Frontierland fun!

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Filed: Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

Wildlife Wednesday: On Your Mark, Get Set… Let Them Go! – Sea Turtles Set Off On Migratory Journey

posted on July 30th, 2014 by Anne Savage, Ph.D., Conservation Director, Disney’s Animal Programs


This past weekend, Disney’s Vero Beach Resort hosted the Sea Turtle Conservancy’s annual “Tour de Turtles” event which allows sea turtle fans to follow the marathon migration of 12 sea turtles from their nesting beaches to their foraging grounds.

This year, Olaf’s summer dream in the Academy Award winning Disney Animation Studios film “Frozen” inspired us to feature him in our event and name the turtles after his friends Anna and Elsa. The morning began as each loggerhead sea turtle was outfitted with a satellite transmitter. Now that the females have finished nesting for the season, it is time for them to head to their foraging grounds so that they can begin feasting on those tasty crustaceans. The transmitters allow us to track the path to Anna and Elsa’s favorite foraging grounds.

Wildlife Wednesday: On Your Mark, Get Set… Let Them Go! – Sea Turtles Set Off On Migratory Journey Wildlife Wednesday: On Your Mark, Get Set… Let Them Go! – Sea Turtles Set Off On Migratory Journey

As the “turtle safe” adhesive dried, guests had the opportunity to participate in various activities as they learned more about sea turtles and earned stamps for completed activities in their nature journal. Guests watched as Disney’s Animal Programs cast members conducted a nest inventory and counted the number of eggs in a recently hatched sea turtle nest; discovered ways they can help hatchlings including knocking down sand castles after they leave the beach, and realized how difficult it could be for a sea turtle to free itself if tangled in plastic debris.

Wildlife Wednesday: On Your Mark, Get Set… Let Them Go! – Sea Turtles Set Off On Migratory Journey Wildlife Wednesday: On Your Mark, Get Set… Let Them Go! – Sea Turtles Set Off On Migratory Journey

Each sea turtle involved in “Tour de Turtles” acts as an ambassador to raise awareness about a specific threat to sea turtles. Sea turtle ‘Anna’ (sponsored by Disney’s Animal Programs and Disney’s Vero Beach Resort) is swimming to raise awareness about light pollution. Many don’t realize that bright beachfront lighting from buildings and flashlights from people walking on the beach can deter nesting turtles, draw hatchlings inland and prevent them from safely reaching the ocean. It’s important to close your curtains to prevent light from shining on the beach or using sea turtle-friendly fixtures that shield the light from the beach and never use a flashlight during sea turtle nesting season at night! Sea turtle ‘Elsa’ (sponsored by the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund) is focused on the troubling amount of plastic debris in oceans around the world. The debris breaks into small pieces that are eaten by sea turtles and other marine wildlife, which causes the animals severe digestive troubles. Over the years, the consumption of this plastic debris has caused the deaths of over 100 million marine animals and floating marine debris can also lead to turtles becoming entangled in plastic, fishing line, nets and more. You can help by picking up litter, purchasing reusable grocery bags, recycling, and not releasing balloons.

Youth from the local Boys & Girls Club learned all about how scientists develop tracking devices to monitor sea turtle migration pattern in the ocean and had a front row seat to watch Anna and Elsa’s return to the ocean. Everyone wished Anna and Elsa well on their ocean journey and we look forward
to their return when they are ready to lay more eggs in two years. Check out the gallery below for more photos from the event!

You can cheer on Anna, Elsa and other turtles that are part of Tour de Turtles by logging on to http://www.tourdeturtles.org/. You can track the migration paths of 4 species of sea turtles and learn more about sea turtle conservation.

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For more from the “Wildlife Wednesday” series, check out the posts below:

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Filed: Hotels & Resorts, Walt Disney World Resort

Chefs Add More Gluten-Free Goodies to Walt Disney World Menus

posted on July 30th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


The Disney chefs love to tinker in the kitchen, and especially enjoy creating new tastes for guests with allergies.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Walt Disney World Resort

Show Your Pet’s Disney Side on Animal Planet’s ‘America’s Cutest’

posted on July 30th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


A national search is under way for the cutest video celebrating the Disney Side of pets – and I know Disney Parks Blog readers are up for the challenge. The popular Animal Planet America’s Cutest TV show is producing a special Disney Side edition for a Howl-O-Ween Pet-acular that’ll air later this year and they want to hear from you.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

Meet the Horses of the Disneyland Resort: Finn and Bug

posted on July 29th, 2014 by Donna Fisk, Public Relations Manager, Disneyland Resort


Greetings from Circle D Ranch at the Disneyland Resort. Let’s meet two more of the lucky horses that live here.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

A Perfect Recipe for National Lasagna Day July 29

posted on July 29th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Yes, it’s a little warm to crank up the oven, but in honor of National Lasagna Day, we’re proposing that you do just that and make a generous pan of this lasagna Bolognese from the chefs at the new Trattoria al forno opening this fall at Disney’s BoardWalk. The leftovers are delish.

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A VIP ‘La Nouba’ Experience Debuts with ‘L’Experience’ at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on July 29th, 2014 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


Last month, I told you about the new clown duo that recently joined the cast of “La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil.” I hinted that something “behind-the-scenes and amazing” was coming. Today, I have more to share and I’m certain that the experience of “L’Experience” will not disappoint!

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort

Treat Yourself to the Pretzels and Peanut Butter Gourmet Apple at the Disneyland Resort

posted on July 29th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


I’m a pretty big peanut butter and pretzel fan. So what happens when you combine those two ingredients with an apple at the Disneyland Resort? We wanted to find out, so we challenged our Disneyland Resort Candy Makers to come up with the perfect recipe and here’s what they have to share with us.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney District

Anna and Elsa’s Royal Tour with Disney Cruise Line

posted on July 29th, 2014 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line


“Frozen” fun has gone nautical! If you sailed with us recently, you may have seen these two royal sisters for the first time in forever together on a Disney ship. Princess Anna and Queen Elsa kicked off their Royal Tour of our ships and are surprising Disney cruisers with special appearances on select seven-night or […]

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Filed: Disney Cruise Line