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Irene Jewell Celebrates 90th Birthday with First Visit to Disneyland Park

posted on March 26th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Last month, on her 90th birthday, Irene Jewell, legendary dancer and wife of Disney cinematographer Stuart Jewell, visited Disneyland park for the first time. Known for her impressive height, Irene performed under the name Ricki Covette in the course of her 30-year career. She later met Disney cinematographer Stuart Jewell, known for his camera work on Disney’s “True-Life Adventures,” including “The Living Desert” and “The Vanishing Prairie.” He also produced much of the now-iconic time-lapse footage from the construction of Disneyland.

But despite her own legendary status and connection to Disneyland history, Irene had never visited the park! So she thought her 90th birthday would be the perfect occasion.

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Irene arrived with her “Special Complimentary Main Gate Admission” ticket in hand, which she held onto for years. (She got to keep it, by the way.) She went on to enjoy a day of fun, including Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean and “it’s a small world” – three attractions she had specifically been looking forward to.

When I asked whether Stuart has shared any of his Disneyland memories with her, Irene said, “He told me about opening day – they didn’t expect so many people! It was getting crowded, so he grabbed a camera and took a picture of Ronald Reagan, Bob Cummings and Art Linkletter that appeared in the paper.”

If you’d like to see some of Stuart Jewell’s work, take a look at this time-lapse video, which we shared earlier this week. In the first few seconds, you can even see Stuart and his team prepping and installing the cameras!

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Enjoy ‘Frozen Fun’ Before it Melts Away and Stay Close to the Magic with Disneyland Resort Hotel Offer

posted on March 25th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


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If you haven’t experienced all of the frozen fractals during “Frozen Fun” at Disney California Adventure park, there’s still time! Whether you’re planning a spring or early summer visit to the Disneyland Resort, or you want to see “Frozen Fun” before its limited-time engagement ends May 15, this new Disneyland Resort Hotel offer puts you closer to the magic.

Make reservations at any Disneyland Resort hotel from March 25 through May 7, 2015, to save 20 percent on premium rooms and 15 percent on standard rooms on Sunday through Thursday nights from April 5 to June 16, 2015.

Don’t let the “Frozen” fun and this great offer melt away! Click here for more details.

Savings based on the non-discounted price for the same room at the same hotel. Travel must be completed by 06/17/15. Ask about savings in other room types. Not valid on previously booked rooms. Advance reservations required. Subject to availability as the number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Excludes applicable fees and taxes. Limit two (2) rooms per reservation and five (5) people maximum per room. Not valid in combination with any other hotel discounts or offers. Subject to restrictions and change without notice. Separate Theme Park admission required to enjoy “Frozen Fun” and the Parks.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Hotels & Resorts

Rare Time-Lapse Video Shows Disneyland Park Construction

posted on March 24th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


As we prepare to celebrate 60 years of memories and magic during the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, we’ve been looking back at key moments in our history – times when Disneyland pushed the limits of what was possible and created new, innovative experiences for our guests. Searching our archives, we came across this amazing time lapse footage of Disneyland construction. Blink and you might miss some amazing moments!

My favorite parts are the clock tower on the Main Street Train Station being lifted into place and the first guests flowing through the turnstiles. What are yours?


See more about the construction of Disneyland park in George’s “Building the Dream” series:

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Smokejumpers Grill Opens Today at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on March 20th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


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We recently told you about the new expansion of Grizzly Peak at Disney California Adventure park, and today we’re excited to open the all-new Smokejumpers Grill. This new quick-service location is the first phase of the Grizzly Peak Airfield addition to this land, in the space formerly known as Condor Flats. As you can see in these photos, Smokejumpers Grill honors the brave men and women who fight wildfires in our California forests. Take a closer look in the gallery below.

The location will also feature an updated menu with tasty items like a Bacon Cheddar Burger, Grilled Chicken & Jack Sandwich and Chili Cheeseburger, so stop in during your next visit!

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

Disney Parks Blog Time Capsule: March 2013

posted on March 19th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Two years ago this month, we were looking forward to exciting things at Disney Parks, but we were also looking back at some memorable milestones. Take a look at these three trips back in time that we took our readers on in March 2013.

“Today

Today in Disney History: Journey Into Imagination Opens at Epcot
Jennifer took us back to March 5, 1983, for the opening of Journey Into Imagination at Epcot.

The Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom Under Construction in January 1997

Vintage Walt Disney World: Building an Animal Kingdom
Nate took us back in time for a look at the construction of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

“Opening

A Look Back: 1958 Opening of the Grand Canyon Diorama at Disneyland Park
George shared these rare photos of Walt Disney at the 1958 opening of the Grand Canyon Diorama.

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Filed: Disney History, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

A Unique Point of View: ‘a bug’s land’ at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on March 17th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


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It seems a bit repetitive to talk about unique points of view in a land that is meant to be just that … a unique point of view from the perspective of a bug. But I just loved these photos by Disneyland Chief Photographer Paul Hiffmeyer so much that I had to share them with you. Paul takes us up close and personal with some of the famous residents of “a bug’s land” at Disney California Adventure park, showing them as they appear to us when we shrink to the size of a bug upon entering this amazing and larger-than-life land.

A Unique Point of View: ‘a bug’s land’ at Disney California Adventure Park A Unique Point of View: ‘a bug’s land’ at Disney California Adventure Park

What is your favorite unique perspective in “a bug’s land”? Tell us in the comments.

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This Week in Disney Parks Photos: Disneyland Resort in the Community

posted on March 14th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


This week, Kevin Rafferty, Jr., showed us some fun ways that the Disneyland Resort is helping its local community in Southern California.

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In his recap of the recent 17th annual “Flashback,” Kevin told us how a record 500 Disneyland Resort cast members volunteered more than 39,000 hours of rehearsal time to produce the popular show, which raised $25,000 for ACT Anaheim (Accelerate Change Together).

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And in his post about the new Teaching Garden at Walt Disney Elementary School in Anaheim, Calif., Kevin gave us an update on this project in which Disney VoluntEARS joined students to enjoy the garden’s first harvest.

Want to learn more about how the Disneyland Resort impacts its local community? Check out the Disneyland Resort in the Community Facebook page!

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24-Hour Event to Launch Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, May 22-23

posted on March 11th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Thomas Smith told you earlier this morning about the upcoming 24-hour event to kick off the “Coolest Summer Ever” at Walt Disney World Resort, and I’m excited to follow up and let you know that we’re kicking off summer and launching the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration with a 24-hour event of our own, May 22-23!

Mickey Mouse and his Friends in their Pajamas in Front of the Main Street Train Station at Disneyland Park

The all-day/all-night celebration will begin at 6 a.m. on Friday, May 22 and will conclude 24 hours later at 6 a.m. on Saturday, May 23. The event will include dancing and special character encounters at locations in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, along with enchanting Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration décor throughout the resort and, of course, the shows and attractions that our guests love.

Here’s a look at what is coming when the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration begins May 22:

  • “Paint the Night” Parade – After dark, along the Disneyland park parade route, 24-hour event guests will be among the first to see the new “Paint the Night” parade, showcasing beloved Disney characters in dazzling parade scenes illuminated with more than 1.5 million individually controlled lights – the first all-LED parade in Disneyland Resort history.
  • “Disneyland Forever” Fireworks - Disneyland park itself plays a starring role in the “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular, also premiering during the 24-hour event. Breathtaking fireworks shows have long been a Disneyland Resort tradition and “Disneyland Forever” soars to new levels, immersing guests from the tips of their toes to the brilliant pyrotechnic bursts above, thanks to special effects that turn the storefronts of Main Street, U.S.A., the Matterhorn and the facade of “it’s a small world” into gigantic projection screens filled with color, characters and surprises.
  • “World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” – Award-winning actor Neil Patrick Harris and Mickey Mouse will be the hosts of the all-new “World of Color” show, premiering May 22 during the 24-hour event. “World of Color – Celebrate!” illuminates the night in a fun-filled and inspirational journey exploring Walt Disney’s decades-long legacy of memorable animated moments and his dream of Disneyland park.

We’ll be sharing more details as the 24-hour event draws closer, so keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog!

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

Video Rewind: Disneyland Resort at Dawn

posted on March 10th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


One of my favorite series here on the Disney Parks Blog takes readers to a very special, very rare time of day – Disneyland Resort at Dawn. In these serene, almost surreal videos, my fellow author Shannon Swanson shows the parks in a way that many people have never seen before.

See the sun rise over the Cadillac Mountain Range in this video from Cars Land at Disney California Adventure park.

According to this post, fishing is best along Big Thunder Trail in the early morning.

Shannon tells us in this post that the inspiration for this series came from walking through Mickey’s Toontown at Disneyland park early one morning. She was fascinated by all of the sounds and details she had missed during the daytime.

The very first video in this series is probably my favorite: a time lapse video of Sleeping Beauty Castle shot from 6:30 a.m. until 8:00 a.m.

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New Smokejumpers Grill Opens March 20, Part of Grizzly Peak Expansion at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on March 9th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


The recent expansion of Disney California Adventure park gave us even more ways to immerse our guests in new stories, and we’re excited to continue this expanded storytelling this year with the addition of the Grizzly Peak Airfield.

Smokejumpers Grill at Disney California Adventure Park, Courtesy of Walt Disney Imagineering Smokejumpers Grill at Disney California Adventure Park, Courtesy of Walt Disney Imagineering

The first phase of this expansion, the all-new Smokejumpers Grill, opens March 20. This new quick-service location takes inspiration from the brave men and women who fight wildfires in our California forests. In addition to a whole new look, the location will feature an updated menu with tasty items like a Bacon Cheddar Burger, Grilled Chicken & Jack Sandwich and Chili Cheeseburger!

Grizzly Peak Airfield at Disney California Adventure Park, Courtesy of Walt Disney Imagineering

This is just the beginning of the Grizzly Peak expansion, which will bring new building exteriors, landscape features and more to the former Condor Flats area. Lush pine trees will bring cool areas of shade, making our guests feel they have been transported to California’s High Sierras.

Grizzly Peak Airfield at Disney California Adventure Park, Courtesy of Walt Disney Imagineering

When the rest of the area opens later this spring, Soarin’ Over California will also reopen with updates to its screen and projection system, bringing a visually enhanced experience. We’ll have more details to share here on the Disney Parks Blog as the project progresses.

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