'it's a small world' at Disneyland Park

Disney Parks After Dark: Gondolas at the Italy Pavilion

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


How fun is this post-“Illuminations” shot of World Showcase Lagoon from the Italy pavilion? Photographer Tom Bricker snapped it just as the show was ending.

Anyone up for a late-night gondola ride?

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

Play Games, Build Fireworks Shows & More With Kellogg’s Storybox App

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Have you heard about our latest Disney Parks app?

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Disney Parks has teamed up with Kellogg’s to create a new mobile app called Kellogg’s Storybox that will add a little Disney magic to your breakfast table.

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Step one is to download the free app, which is available on iTunes, Google Play or in the Amazon App store. Then pick up a specially marked Kellogg’s cereal box and scan it with your smartphone to unlock an interactive storybook to use within your app. There are three different volumes you can unlock, and each one features games and activities based on Disney Parks, such as a balloon-busting game based on Toy Story Midway Mania and storybook surprises inspired by Radiator Springs Racers. Yours can also create their own Disney fireworks spectacular in the app.

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Guests Have a Blast at ‘Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day’ Meet-Up at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Our latest Disney Parks Blog meet-up, an advanced screening of Disney’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” took place over the weekend, and boy did our fans enjoy this one.

Guests Have a Blast at ‘Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day’ Meet-Up at Walt Disney World Resort

The film tells the tale of 11-year-old Alexander (Ed Oxenbould) as he experiences the most terrible, horrible day of his young life. He soon learns that he’s not alone, when his family members all find themselves living through their own terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

In addition to a screening of the film, guests at this Disney Parks Blog meet-up were the first to test out our very special Disney Parks Blog photo opp. Learn more about it and see the behind-the-scenes video here.

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort

Blood Moon Sets Over Walt Disney World Resort

posted on October 8th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


If you were up early this morning, you may have spotted an unusual sight in the sky – the brilliance of a rare lunar eclipse called a “blood moon.”

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Here at Walt Disney World Resort, the moon added the perfect spooky atmosphere to our parks, especially Magic Kingdom Park, which is already decorated for Halloween. Our photographers David Roark and Matt Stroshane were on hand to document the moon’s path over our parks.

Here’s how a blood moon works and why it’s significant: Full lunar eclipses happen maybe once each year, but blood moons that light up with color are extremely rare. Their bright red “blood” color happens when planet Earth is perfectly positioned between the moon and the sun – and the sun is able to shine only a small ring of red light past the earth and onto the moon (sort of like a worldwide sunset is reflecting on the moon). This morning’s blood moon is the second blood moon in a rare tetrad (a series of four) that will appear in 2014-2015. The next two blood moons are set to appear on April 4 and September 28, 2015.

Be sure to click through the gallery above to see the blood moon make its way over Walt Disney World Resort.

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Behind the Scenes: Adding ‘Fantasia’ Magic to the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on October 6th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival features the creative talents of many different departments here at Walt Disney World Resort, including our excellent Food & Beverage team. But did you know that Walt Disney Imagineering and Horticulture also play an important part in getting the park ready for the festival?

Check out this video, in which our Walt Disney Imagineers and Horticulture cast members work together to transform the park’s Entrance Planters with “Fantasia”-inspired graphics and topiaries – in just eight hours.

Drawing inspiration from the film, the graphics and horticulture designs illustrate Chef Mickey orchestrating “magical forks” to spread flavor throughout the festival. This theme is carried out throughout the park’s other graphics and horticulture displays.

What is your favorite part of the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Disney Parks Blog Team Unveils Orange Bird Photo Opp

posted on October 6th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


If you attended the Disney Parks Blog’s screening of “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” film over the weekend, you may have heard that we debuted a new photo opp that was inspired by a fan-favorite Disney character – the Florida Orange Bird.

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This seven-foot inflatable, which will accompany us on our future Disney Parks Blog meet-ups and events, was created by Disney’s Creative Services Department, who were nice enough to let our cameras follow them along for a behind-the-scenes look during its creation.

Check out the video to hear why we chose this little guy as our mascot – and be sure to bring your camera or smartphone to our next Disney Parks Blog meet-up or event so you can grab a picture, too!

What do you think? Tell us in the comments section below!

For more Orange Bird, check out the posts below:

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Filed: Walt Disney World Resort

This Week in Disney Parks Photos: Fun at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on October 4th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival is well underway and our guests are loving every minute. Earlier this week, the band Hanson stopped by to perform at the Eat to the Beat concert series and show off their Mmmhops Pale Ale.

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Aside from checking out Eat to the Beat artists, our guests are tasting and sipping their way around the park. Check out the other fun that’s to be had at this year’s event in the gallery above.

Will you visit the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival this year? Tell us in the comments section below!

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13 Reasons to Love Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on October 3rd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


I adore Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. This after-hours event at Magic Kingdom Park is something I look forward to attending each fall, and can’t get enough of the special Halloween entertainment that comes alive throughout the park.

In case you haven’t been to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party before, here are 13 reasons you should check it out for yourself this year.

"Happy HalloWishes" fireworks show at the Magic Kingdom

  1. “Happy HalloWishes” fireworks – This villains-themed fireworks show lets Disney’s biggest “baddies” light up the sky above Cinderella Castle in a special show only offered during the Halloween parties.
  2. Trick-Or-Treating (even for adults!) – As I shared in an earlier blog post, we’ll be handing out a whopping 261 tons of candy at our parties this year. Read more on that here.

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  1. Halloween Costumes – Not only are Disney characters dressed in their Halloween best, but you’re welcome to dress up, too! Parties are also great for people watching – it’s amazing to see the costumes that other guests come up with.
  2. Event-Exclusive “Pirate Helmsman” Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom Card – This year’s exclusive Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom Card was inspired by the Pirates of the Caribbean and can only be obtained by attending a Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. Cards are complimentary (one per guest), and guests must show their party ticket and event wristband in order to get one.
  3. The Headless Horseman Rides Again - If you pick a parade spot early enough, you just may catch the riding past of the Headless Horseman. It’s an amazingly spooky moment that you don’t want to miss!

Boo to You!

  1. “Mickey’s Boo-To-You Halloween Parade” - This parade is packed with Halloween fun, including appearances by some of the “happy haunts” from the Haunted Mansion – including the Hitchhiking Ghosts. Mickey Mouse and many of his friends are also in the lineup, of course.
  2. Villain’s Sinister Soiree Dessert Party – For guests who can’t get enough of the Disney villains, there’s a new, additional ticket offering called “Villain’s Sinister Soiree Dessert Party: A Wicked Takeover of Cinderella Castle” that offers entertainment by Lady Tremaine and Cinderella’s stepsisters, as well as appearances by other Disney villains – and some amazing desserts. Attendees also get VIP viewing for fireworks and the parade. More info on that here.

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  1. Haunting Decor on Main Street, U.S.A. - After the sun sets, Main Street, U.S.A., becomes ablaze with illuminated pumpkins of all sizes and shapes, among other eerie lighting effects. This part of the park is a must for photos.
  2. Monstrous Scream-O-Ween Ball – This Tomorrowland dance party is a true monster mash, which features favorite friends from Monstropolis. Get your dance moves (and your camera) ready!

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  1. Special Halloween Treats – Think pumpkin spiced waffle sundaes, candy corn cupcakes, and more. Check your event map for special treat locations.
  2. Special Character Greetings – The event also features special character meet and greet opportunities with many Disney characters dressed in Halloween costumes, making for some cute photo opps! (All entertainment subject to change, of course).
  3. Magic Kingdom Park Attractions – In addition to all of the Halloween fun, most attractions are open for you to enjoy – Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, anyone?
  4. The Haunted Mansion - This attraction is always great fun, but it is simply a must during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties. Be on the lookout for the mansion’s maids and butlers to be a bit spruced up on party nights.

What’s your favorite part of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party? Tell us in the comments section below!

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

999 Happy Haunts: Meet Madame Leota

posted on October 3rd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


In honor of the upcoming Halloween holiday, we’ll offer an up-close look at a different resident of The Haunted Mansion right here on the Disney Parks Blog each Friday. Today, we’re focusing on one of the ladies of the house – Madame Leota.

999 Happy Haunts: Meet Madame Leota

(Art by Cameron Garland)

Leota first appears in the Seance Circle room, summoning the Mansion’s spirits from within an illuminated crystal ball that appears to float on its own above the table. Her famous line, “Serpents and spiders, tail of a rat. Call in the spirits wherever they’re at!” was recorded by Eleanor Audley, then Disney’s go-to gal for voicing the perfect villainess. (Audley also supplied the voices of Lady Tremaine in “Cinderella” and Maleficent in “Sleeping Beauty”). Leota’s visage was a visual of Imagineer Leota Toombs, an Imagineer/model builder whose face fit the dimensions the team was looking for and agreed to participate in a demo – and nailed it.

The character of Madame Leota appears in another form later on in the attraction. Just before you disembark your Doom Buggie, “Little Leota”, appears up high and beckons guests to hurry back. Here’s a fun fact – although Eleanor Audley supplied the voice for Leota in the Seance Room, it’s both the voice and face of Leota Toombs that combined to create Little Leota.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks After Dark: Sunsets in Morocco

posted on October 2nd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Tonight’s “After Dark” image is a lovely shot snapped in our Moroccan pavilion in World Showcase at Epcot. What a beautiful sunset!

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