Mission: SPACE at Epcot

Celebrate Release of ‘Frozen’ on Blu-ray Combo Pack at Once Upon a Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace on March 18, 2014

posted on March 14th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


The award-winning, Disney animated featured “Frozen” comes to Blu-ray combo pack on Tuesday, March 18. To celebrate the day at Walt Disney World Resort, we are holding a release party at Once Upon a Toy in the Downtown Disney Marketplace from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. There will be a DJ spinning some great tunes throughout the day (weather permitting), as well as a photo backdrop available for guests to take pictures.


In addition to the Blu-ray combo pack, the Downtown Disney team will offer a small assortment of “Frozen” merchandise including kids’ T-shirts, books and D-Tech on Demand iPhone cases (see my previous Disney Parks Blog story for an update on new and upcoming merchandise).


Finally, Once Upon a Toy will have some pre-designed, kids’ T-shirts from the nearby Disney Design-A-Tee location that day. Look for three different styles including the one shown above with Olaf. Adults can design and personalize similar “Frozen” T-shirts at the Disney Design-A-Tee shop if interested.

I hope you are able to stop by during the party.

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Finding ‘Frozen’ Merchandise at Disney Parks

posted on March 11th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I’ve found it’s no secret that Disney’s “Frozen” continues to be popular with guests of all ages visiting Disney Parks. Recently, my son made a drawing for Anna and Elsa, which he gave to them during a visit to Norway Pavilion at Epcot. On the back of the image, he wrote that he “couldn’t wait for their film to be released on DVD.” With the upcoming DVD and Blu-ray release for this award-winning, animated feature on March 18, I wanted to give you an update on where to find “Frozen” merchandise at Disney Parks.

You may recall my previous story last fall that gave an overview of merchandise created for the film. Since that time, we’ve received some additional shipments of guest favorites and introduced several new things.

Two of those favorites are the dresses for Anna and Elsa created especially for Disney Parks. We have additional orders arriving at locations in the coming weeks. Once available, the dresses will also be offered as a part of the Castle Package at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique locations at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.

In the category of new items, there are new Anna and Elsa T-shirts for girls. I also found T-shirts for kids and adults featuring Olaf. You should also look out for new D-Tech on Demand cases for the iPhone 4/4S and iPhone 5/5s, and some new Disney books such as “An Amazing Snowman” or “The Art of Disney’s Frozen.”

The popular Anna and Elsa dolls have also returned along with several action figure playsets.

Finally, I learned that additional items are currently in development. For ladies, we will have four new T-shirts available around the beginning of summer. I convinced the softlines team to let me give you a sneak preview of the artwork for those shirts.

Here is a list of locations where you may find select merchandise during your next visit. Please note that availability of inventory may change without notice.

Disneyland Resort

Walt Disney World Resort

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Space Mountain Shirts Cleared for Launch on Disney Parks Online Store March 10-16, 2014

posted on March 10th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


“Space shuttle, this is flight safety…”

I can still recall my first ride on Space Mountain during my first trip to the Walt Disney World Resort in July 1983. The attraction was my first Disney coaster and, despite some tears after that first ride, it quickly became a favorite thing at Magic Kingdom Park. During subsequent family vacations, you could usually find me at the attraction with a giant video camera in hand (I love the queue, particularly the atmospheric music). Today, I’m happy to announce that Space Mountain will be the next attraction poster T-shirt for the Disney Parks online store. We will be offering two different shirts online only from March 10-16, 2014.

The first T-shirt shown above was inspired by an attraction poster from 1977. According to the wonderful book “Poster Art of the Disney Parks” by Danny Handke and Vanessa Hunt, the original attraction poster was designed by Jim Michaelson, Ernie Prinzhorn and Rudy Lord. Disney Design Group artist Richard Terpstra created the design featured on this shirt.


Richard also designed the second shirt that was inspired by a Walt Disney World Resort attraction poster from 2010 by Josh Holtsclaw.


In related news, Josh’s poster design from 2010 will be included on drinkware coming to the recently discussed Disney Centerpiece location. Above is an image of those items together, which will join similar drinkware and more when the Marketplace Co-Op opens at Downtown Disney Marketplace in a couple of months.

For now, I invite you to visit http://www.DisneyStore.com/ParkEvents to order the Space Mountain shirts from March 10-16. They will ship in 6-8 weeks once orders are completed (express shipping is not available).
You are cleared for launch!

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First Look Inside Festival Center for 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

posted on March 6th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


With the 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival officially underway, I stopped by the Festival Center to get a first look at the set up. This location, found in Future World between the Universe of Energy and MISSION: Space pavilions, is home to a variety of things including demonstrations and a merchandise shop. When I arrived, the event team was putting finishing touches on several areas inside the pavilion. I snapped a few photographs of the merchandise store that I thought you may enjoy.


The sound of running water filled the air as I walked around the merchandise shop. The center of the shop had a nice garden-like setting complete with trees and fountains. I spotted several garden items throughout the display including wind chimes, garden stakes and other decorative goods.

First Look Inside Festival Center for 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival First Look Inside Festival Center for 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

In a previous article, I shared a look at some of the new merchandise we’ve created for this annual event. I enjoyed seeing the two different visual statements of these items displayed along the walls.

There were a few other things that caught my eye including new, instant photograph-inspired T-shirts for adults, kids and Passholders. There was also a jar-shaped plastic tumbler complete with the event logo. I particularly liked the calendar that contains images of the character topiaries featured throughout Epcot. This is the first time we’ve offered a calendar like this for the event.

Here is a gallery containing a few other items that I liked. The 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival runs through May 18, 2014. I invite you to join the conversation on social networks by using the hashtag #EpcotInSpring. You can also find more information about the event by visiting EpcotInSpring.com.
I hope to see you at Epcot; I’ll most likely be at my favorite Outdoor Kitchen, the Pineapple Promenade!

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Spotlight on Disney Centerpiece Coming to Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace in 2014

posted on March 4th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


Today, I’m beginning a series of articles that will highlight the six boutiques coming to the Marketplace Co-Op in Downtown Disney Marketplace at Walt Disney World Resort. You may recall last November that we announced this location that will serve as a testing space for new Disney retail concepts, shops and products. The first boutique I’m showcasing today is Disney Centerpiece, which will contain home products for guests who want a splash of Disney in their everyday lives. I spoke with Dana Harchar from the Global Retail Development team about the hand-crafted display fixtures you will find in this location once the shop opens in a couple of months.


“Disney Centerpiece will have an eclectic mix of display fixtures for the merchandise,” explained Dana. “The neutral color fixtures will have a well-loved and repurposed feel. I chose a few accent colors that complement some merchandise created for this shop. Hand-made Hoosier cabinets will line the exposed brick walls. My teammate Bert McCumber printed three-dimensional models that we shared with the store operations team and other cast members working on this shop.”

The smaller fixture model shown above that resembles bench swings stacked on crates will house new decorative pillows. While speaking with Dana in her office, she showed me the computer image she created to determine exactly how many pillows that fixture will hold (she even included miniature Orange Bird pillows – awesome!).


The merchandise coming to this location looks amazing; it’s like they pulled these things directly from my brain!


There is an entire new collection of goods inspired by Adventureland and Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room. I love the ceramic Orange Bird figure and the miniature ceramic Dole Whips! The home décor team also made several small plates containing artwork with my favorite word, “Aloha!”


Several attraction posters from Disney Parks will be included on glassware, small plates and coasters.

Finally, there will be an entire line of retro-inspired merchandise featuring some of the themed lands found at Disneyland park in California or Magic Kingdom Park in Florida. I love the salt and pepper shakers that resemble ride vehicles from the Mad Tea Party attraction.

Look for these items and more when Disney Centerpiece opens at the Marketplace Co-Op in a couple of months. Select items will also be carried on our Disney Parks online store at a future date.

Which items are your favorites? Please share in the “Comments” below.

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New Men’s Apparel to Show Your ‘Disney Side’ Now Arriving for Spring 2014 at Disney Parks

posted on March 3rd, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


A few weeks ago, I gave a look at new spring 2014 apparel for women and girls at Disney Parks. Today, I’m turning the spotlight on new apparel for men who want to show their “Disney Side” this spring at Disney Parks. From fun graphic T-shirts to woven gingham shirts, I found several new items during a recent visit to World of Disney at Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida.


One of my favorite new programs this spring includes some great tropical imagery with Grumpy, Mickey Mouse, Goofy and Donald Duck. These shirts make me long to be on a beach on the coast of somewhere beautiful!


You may also notice a new hat that has vintage character labels. They were designed by several Disney Design Group Artists and will also be included on new raglans. Tyler Dumas created the artwork for Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse, while Tim Whalen created the artwork for Grumpy. My favorite is the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit label, which was drawn by Dave Keefer.


The softlines team also introduced some graphic-focused designs. The left image features four, all-over tapa print T-shirts which remind me of Adventureland, Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room or Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge (the Disneyland Resort also has versions of these too).

For the shirts on the right, the team added some colorful patterns to the classic standing Mickey Mouse silhouette.


Finally, bright colors are the focus of new color block resort logo T-shirts.

These items will be released in select locations at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts. You may also find select items on our Disney Parks online store. The best place to check first is the “New Arrivals” page on that website.

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New Merchandise and ‘Rebel Rendezvous’ Event Coming to Star Wars Weekends 2014 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on February 28th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


One of my favorite events returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 16, 2014 – Star Wars Weekends! Today, I’m delighted to give you a first look at some of the new merchandise we’ve created for this year’s event. I also have some details about a new merchandise ticketed event coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 15, the day before Star Wars Weekends officially opens. I’ll share more about that event in a moment, but first let’s take a look at the new merchandise poster.

“This year’s merchandise poster contains a few nods to the upcoming Disney XD animated series ‘Star Wars Rebels,” explained Disney Design Group artist Tyler Dumas. “The color orange in the poster was inspired by the ‘Star Wars Rebels’ series’ logo, while the non-specific battle scene is supposed to take place between the events of Episode III and IV. This is similar to the storyline of the upcoming animated series. We also included a Star Speeder 1000 and R2-MK as tributes to Disney Parks.”


This poster will be used on a variety of items including the ever popular Disney pins. The Disney pin team will also release a few other items like concept artwork cards with pins, a limited release mystery set and, my favorite, a Battle of Yavin lanyard with medal.


The toy team created several new items this year including a limited edition figures set; a lenticular 1,000-piece puzzle; a Jabba the Hutt latex character; and a Queen Amidala and Princess Leia Deluxe Fashion Set.


The limited release Vinylmation mystery series Star Wars: Series 4 will also debut during Star Wars Weekends. Look for a limited edition 9-inch and 3-inch figure set featuring the Rancor and his keeper this year.

To round out the preview, the arts and collectibles team have designed four medium-sized figures (Pluto dressed as an AT-AT is my favorite!).

I promised some details about a merchandise ticketed event on Thursday, May 15. The “Rebel Rendezvous” will be held between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Attendees will receive exclusive access to Darth’s Mall one day before it opens to the public; a limited edition recruitment pack with items like a custom messenger bag, cadet hat, tumbler, lanyard, pin and medal set; preferential opportunity to purchase select 2014 Star Wars Weekends merchandise; and special meet and greet opportunities with characters and Disney artists.

Registration for the event will begin on March 4, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. EST at www.DisneyParksMerchandise.com, but you can visit the site now for additional details and restrictions. A catalog with additional merchandise images will be published on March 4.

May the Force Be With You!

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

First Look at Merchandise for 2014 Princess Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 20th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I’m looking forward to this weekend as my fiancée will be participating in the 2014 Princess Half Marathon and the inaugural Glass Slipper Challenge at Walt Disney World Resort. She’s the runner in our relationship, so that means I’ll get to take pretty pictures of her before and after the races. Naturally, she was curious about the merchandise created for this runDisney event. I spoke with Mary Myers, merchandiser for events, who gave me an overview of what participants will see this weekend.


As with previous events, there are a variety of softlines created to commemorate the various events this weekend.


Mary also developed a few new items this year for those who may be cheering from the sidelines like me. There are new kids’ tees and a shirt for steadfast husbands (I guess I could wear the latter one).


Besides softlines, participants will see familiar favorites including Sweaty Bands with some fun event slogans (“Run like it’s the stroke of midnight” cracks me up!). There will also be Bondi Bands, a new Disney ear hat with pink veil, light-up tiara, Disney pins, drinkware and more. I was also told that there will be car magnets, yet samples were unavailable to photograph at the time of press.


Another popular item returning this year is specially designed Dooney & Bourke handbags. These items will each have a leather hangtag with the event logo.

Finally, the image above contains a sampling of some items for the inaugural Glass Slipper Challenge.

Look for these items at the Disney Fit for a Princess Expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The expo will be open on the following dates and times:

  • Thursday, February 20 – 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Friday, February 21 – 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 22 – 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

We will be offering select items celebrating this event on our Disney Parks online store from Friday, February 21 to Sunday, March 2, 2014. Just visit http://www.DisneyStore.com/runDisneyEvents.

I wish nothing but the best to those who are participating. I hope to see you this weekend!

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Eau de World Showcase – A Fragrant Journey Around Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 17th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager

I’ve long associated Epcot with a variety of wonderful scents. A sniff of an orange, a rose or a campfire reminds me of my three favorite Future World pavilions – Horizons, Journey Into Imagination and Spaceship Earth respectively. In World Showcase, there are also many delightful things to smell, from the signature restaurants (hello, Cheddar Cheese Soup from Le Cellier in Canada pavilion) to the several merchandise locations that offer a variety of fragrances. I recently strolled around the “world” in search of the perfumes, lotions and more you can take home or give as gifts.


My journey began in Norway pavilion where I found fragrances for women and men by Geir Ness. You may recall my previous interview with Geir about his perfume “Laila” which he named after his mother.


Next, I made my way to Italy pavilion where the Il Bel Cristallo shop offers several items by Fendi, Prada, Acqua di Parma, Bvlgari and Valentino.


The Mitsukoshi Department Store in Japan pavilion has a small assortment of perfumes and colognes by Shiseido (my personal cologne of choice!) and Issey Miyake. This pavilion is also one of three World Showcase pavilions that carries incense. I love the sandalwood incense sticks from Japan (I consider it the official scent of my apartment). Look for other incense options in China pavilion and Morocco pavilion.


The France pavilion is home to two different fragrance destinations. The Plume et Pallette shop is home to designer French fragrances from Chanel, Escada, Givenchy, Lacoste and more. In La Signature, you can choose from over 70 different French cosmetics and fragrances, including Guerlain.


Finally, I made my way to United Kingdom pavilion where I found a small assortment of lotions and other goods from Buckingham Palace. The Lords & Ladies shop also had gift sets and fragrances by the Berkeley Square Cosmetic Company.

After all this talk of scents, I wish my computer monitor had a scratch and sniff option.

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See ‘Blank – A Vinylmation Love Story’ at Premiere Theater in Disney’s Hollywood Studios from February 14-17, 2014

posted on February 11th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


With Valentine’s Day weekend just around the corner, I’m delighted to share that “Blank – A Vinylmation Love Story” will be coming to Premiere Theatre in Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort from February 14-17, 2014. This 39-minute, stop-motion, animated short tells the story of an unpainted Vinylmation figure on a quest that alters the destiny of his entire world. You may recall that I first discussed this short last August on the Disney Parks Blog (read the story here).

We will have several showings of the film throughout the four day engagement at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Show times are 11:30 a.m., 1:00 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Separate theme park admission is required to attend, and seating is available on a first-come, first-serve basis.


We will also have special screenings for Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club Members on select days.

On February 14 and February 16, a showing for Passholders only will be held at 10:00 a.m. Please present a valid annual pass at the entrance to the Premiere Theatre.

On February 15 and February 17, a Disney Vacation Club Members only screening will be held at 10:00 a.m. Please present a valid Disney Vacation Club Member ID card at the entrance to the Premiere Theatre.

Annual Passholders and Disney Vacation Club Members are welcome to attend the other screening times throughout the four days.


We have created a few items to celebrate the debut of this Vinylmation-themed short. At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, look for 3-inch, create-your-own Blank and Bow figures, T-shirts and D-Tech on Demand cases for the iPhone 4/4S and iPhone 5/5S.


From February 14-23, we will be offering select “Blank” items and more via our Disney Parks online store. You will find the two shirts and D-Tech on Demand iPhone cases shown above as well as some unique custom figures.

There will be 50 blank, 3-inch Vinylmation figures with custom artwork by Disney Design Group artist Thomas Scott. Each figure will be individually numbered.

We will also offer a handful of sets featuring 3-foot Vinylmation figures that resemble Blank and Bow (pictured above). One of these 3-foot figure sets will be signed by the Disney Interactive team who worked on the short.

Please allow 8-10 weeks for delivery of all items ordered online at http://www.DisneyStore.com/Blank.

You can see more about “Blank – A Vinylmation Love Story” at http://www.BlankAndBow.com. If you are active on social networks, join the conversation using the hashtag #BlankAndBow.

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