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New Retail MagicBands and Accessories to Kick Off 2015 at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on January 7th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


With the start of 2015, I wanted to give you a look at some new retail MagicBands and accessories coming to Walt Disney World Resort this month.

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At the end of December, I shared a story about dated 2015 merchandise. One item I didn’t include in that story was the retail MagicBand that features Mickey Mouse showing off his Disney Side at Walt Disney World Resort. This limited release retail MagicBand is currently available in select merchandise locations in Florida for $24.95 (plus tax).

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This month, we will release some additional open edition retail MagicBands for $19.95 each (plus tax) on the following dates:

  • Ariel and Cinderella Castle – January 16
  • Belle – January 23
  • Tinker Bell; Sheriff Woody and Buzz Lightyear – January 30

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Guests may also soon notice new retail packaging for MagicBands. I spoke with merchandiser Kevin-Michael Lezotte who gave me some additional insight into this redesign.

“New packaging for retail MagicBands was recently introduced with the release of the 2015-dated Graphic MagicBand,” explained Kevin-Michael. “A team composed of MyMagic+ Products and Services, Merchandising, Disney Design Group Artists and Integrated Supply Chain collaborated on this new design. I like that the artwork is now front and center, which will make finding favorite designs much easier. Guests should look for the new packaging throughout this year.”

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Finally, Kevin-Michael gave me a preview of new MagicBand-its arriving this month. These small items can attach to the side of any MagicBand. I love the Disney cats set!

Look for these items in select Walt Disney World Resort merchandise locations. Select accessories and solid color retail MagicBands can also be found on our Disney Parks online store at http://www.DisneyStore.com/MagicBands.

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Filed: MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Look Ahead to New Disney Parks Merchandise Arriving in 2015

posted on December 31st, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


With the beginning of a New Year, I wanted to give you a look at new merchandise coming to Disney Parks. It was no easy task selecting these items as there are many great things coming in 2015. Here’s my list of favorites in no particular order.

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Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort – I can’t wait to add the mini-figurine created especially for Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort to my tiki collection. This statue was inspired by the figure that will be found inside the Great Ceremonial House. The coolest part is that the torches have lights that flicker.

Dooney & Bourke – We will continue introducing new handbags from Dooney & Bourke in 2015. I love the black and white bicycle artwork in the top image from Disney Design Group Artist Paola Gutierrez.

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Orange Bird – If you’re an avid reader of the Disney Parks Blog, you know that I’m obsessed with the Orange Bird. This year, look for a new 7-inch plush; salt and pepper shakers; a towel set and more.

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Disney Attractionistas – The concept artwork above was created by Disney Design Group Artist Mike Sullivan and features two dolls from a new line called “Disney Attractionistas.” Coming this summer, the dolls were inspired by attractions found at Disney Parks.

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Disney Parks Online Store Shirts – I’m thrilled to give you a preview of new shirts coming to the Disney Parks online store. This year, we are featuring some fan favorites from Disney Parks such as the Harmony Barber Shop on Main Street, U.S.A. or the classic Disneyland park attraction, Adventures Thru Inner Space. Look for the 40th Anniversary of Carousel of Progress tee online from January 15-18 at DisneyStore.com/ParkEvents.

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Pirates of the Caribbean – Avast! Thar be pirates sailin’ in 2015! Building on the success of the Haunted Mansion Authentic program, we will be introducing new Pirates of the Caribbean attraction products. The artwork above shows a few designs from a master style guide created by Disney Design Group.

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Character Nutcrackers – Later in 2015, we will release nutcrackers inspired by themed lands and attractions at Disney Parks. These limited release items were designed by Disney Design Group Artists such as Alex Maher (Main Street, U.S.A.), Costa Alavezos (Tomorrowland) and Natalie Kennedy (“it’s a small world”).

Which items will you add to your Disney collection? Please share in the comments below.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Hotels & Resorts, Walt Disney World Resort

Year in Review: Greatest Hits from Disney Theme Park Merchandise in 2014

posted on December 30th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


This year was an exciting time for Disney Theme Park Merchandise. On behalf of my fellow author Michelle Harker and the entire merchandise team, thank you for your feedback! We loved reading your comments as new things were revealed. Below is a brief list of popular items from 2014. I’d love to know your favorite products from this past year, so please share in the comments below.

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Disney Character Mugs – This past spring, we released several new Disney character mugs. This article was one of the most popular stories of the year, particularly on Pinterest.

Disney Parks Collection By PANDORA JewelryIn August, we announced a new partnership with PANDORA Jewelry. We released a collection of hand finished sterling silver and 14K gold charms developed especially for Disney Parks.

Disney’s “Frozen” – Some of the most requested items this past year were inspired by Disney’s “Frozen.” We introduced graphic MagicBands with Anna and Elsa; Olaf-shaped candy apples, unique headware, and, of course, dresses! Guests could also visit Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post at Disney’s Hollywood Studios or Anna & Elsa’s Boutique, a make-over destination at Downtown Disney District in California.

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Marketplace Co-Op – In June, we opened the Marketplace Co-Op in Downtown Disney Marketplace at Walt Disney World Resort. This location is a testing space for new Disney retail concepts, shops and products and contains some of my favorite places to shop like D-Tech on Demand, Disney Centerpiece or Cherry Tree Lane.

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Haunted Mansion Authentic – In the fall, more than 100 new Haunted Mansion-themed products were introduced at Disney Parks. Part of a program titled, “Haunted Mansion Authentic,” these items were inspired by characters, icons and details from this classic attraction. In August, the attraction celebrated its 45 anniversary at Disneyland park. In October, we opened Memento Mori, a Haunted Mansion shop located in Liberty Square in Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort. The new location is also home to a unique Spirit Photography experience.

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Showing Your Disney Side – Guests showed their Disney Side with products created especially for Disney Parks. We released new colors for the Disney Parks Collection by Vera Bradley. Guests loved combining pixie dust and positive energy with Alex and Ani bracelets. We also released several Dooney & Bourke handbags including some for Disney Cruise Line and the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.

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Shirts, Shirts and More Shirts – I’m sure I’m not the only one who had to clean out their closets to make room for new Disney Parks apparel. From online only tees to exercise apparel, guests had plenty of choices for attire with nods to Disney Parks.

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

Disney Characters Showing Off Their #DisneySide in New 2015 Merchandise

posted on December 26th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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I recently spotted some new 2015 merchandise during a visit to Downtown Disney Marketplace at Walt Disney World Resort. This time of year is usually when the new dated merchandise (that is products that have a specific date) arrives at Disney Parks. I noticed something different about the artwork for these items this year – Sorcerer Mickey was nowhere to be found. When I returned to the office, I caught up with Disney Design Group Artist Thomas Scott to learn more.

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“For the 2015 artwork, we imagined the Disney characters were showing off their Disney Side just like our guests do when visiting Disney Parks,” explained Thomas who was one of the lead designers for the 2015 artwork. “We dressed the characters in products we carry such as the Buzz Lightyear costume tee-shirt that Goofy is wearing. Sorcerer Mickey has been included in the dated art program for a few years. This time, we put a Sorcerer’s hat on Mickey Mouse that resembles the hat we carry in our merchandise shops. I thought it was a great nod to that artwork tradition.”

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Work on the 2015 artwork began about 18 months ago. Thomas told me that several Disney artists collaborated on the style guide. Different product categories use the style guide artwork to create a consistent look for all items. I particularly love the artwork by Disney Design Group Artist Mike Sullivan that shows the characters doing things I do when visit Disney Parks (the selfie photo made me laugh as I have taken many of those).

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The dated merchandise is some of our most popular items sold at Disney Parks (a great way to remember the year you visited). We offer apparel items, seasonal ornaments, souvenirs, pins, plush, home goods and much more that uses this artwork. I love the propeller cap, and I thought the scrapbooking kit was pretty neat too.

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These items are available in a variety of merchandise locations at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. Guests can also find select 2015 items on our Disney Parks online store.

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort

New Merchandise Coming to Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend in January 2015

posted on December 22nd, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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A few weeks ago a shared a look at the new Minnie Run Collection By Champion Athleticwear coming to the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend. In that article, I promised a look at other items created by Disney Theme Park Merchandise for this annual event. As you will see in this story, we’ve created commemorative merchandise for every race taking place January 7-11, 2015 at Walt Disney World Resort.

New Merchandise for the Half Marathon During the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend New Merchandise for the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

For the majority of the races, we will introduce apparel for both women and men including short and long sleeved shirts, jackets, Sweaty Bands, Bondi Bands, pins and vehicle magnets. The Kids Races, Family Fun Run 5K and 10K will also have vehicle magnets this year.

One thing I’m most excited to see is the new limited release retail MagicBand with the runDisney logo (retail $24.95). Like all other retail MagicBands, this graphic MagicBand can be linked later making it a great gift for someone in training for a future runDisney race at Walt Disney World Resort.

New Merchandise for Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge During the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend New Merchandise for the Dopey Challenge During the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

This year marks the 10th anniversary of Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge. All of the merchandise for this particular race this year includes an anniversary logo.

New 'I Did It' Merchandise for the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend New 'I Did It' Merchandise for the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

We also will be offering “I Did It” shirts for both women and men (I included a handful of options in the image above).

Finally, the event team is introducing a new “In Training” line for those who want a jump start on preparing for next year’s runDisney races.

These items and more will be released at Disney’s Health & Fitness Expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Expo will be open during the following times:

  • Wednesday, January 7, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Thursday, January 8, 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Friday, January 9, 9 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, January 10, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

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Filed: MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

These Are the Gifts You’re Looking For At Disney Parks This Holiday Season

posted on December 19th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I know where I will be almost one year from now – sitting in a movie theater with my son as the opening credits roll for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Being a long-time fan of all things Star Wars, it will be the perfect holiday gift to myself next year. I remember receiving many Star Wars-themed gifts growing up in the late 1970s (the Death Star Space Station playset was one of my favorites!). If you are looking for Star Wars holiday gifts this season, I have a few suggestions of items created especially for Disney Parks.

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I love this fun holiday sweater T-shirt featuring Darth Vader, Stormtroopers and other icons (it’s perfect for winter in Florida).

The Disney Pin team released some new holiday pins including a 9-pin mystery set with Star Wars gingerbread characters.

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If you are looking for toys, there are a few different options including the Starspeeder 1000 vehicle playset inspired by Star Tours – The Adventures Continue; a giant Clone Trooper found only at Disney Parks; and Disney Racers die-cast cars which make for great stocking stuffers.

I also like the Star Wars Droid Factory where you can design and build your own Astromech droid action figure. This experience is offered at Tatooine Traders in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Once Upon a Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida, and The Star Trader in Tomorrowland at Disneyland park in California.

You can also find other Star Wars items online at DisneyStore.com/StarWars.

May the Holidays Be With You!

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort

New Retail MagicBands Arriving in December at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on December 16th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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You may recall that my top gift items this year from Disney Parks are retail MagicBands. We recently introduced the “link-it later” option for all retail MagicBands, making them great gifts for guests who may want to show off their Disney Side while visiting Walt Disney World Resort. This month, we are introducing some new open edition, graphic MagicBands on the dates listed below.

  • December 12 – Sorcerer Mickey
  • December 14 – Minnie Mouse’s iconic polka dots
  • December 17 – Stitch
  • December 22 – Disney Princesses

These graphic MagicBands will retail at $19.95 each.

Guests should look for these items in select locations at the four theme parks and Downtown Disney.

You can also find solid color MagicBands and select accessories on our Disney Parks online store by visiting http://www.DisneyStore.com/MagicBands

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Filed: Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Minnie Run Collection By Champion Athleticwear Coming to 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend

posted on December 12th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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This past year, my fiancée has been participating in a lot of runDisney races in both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts. One thing I’ve learned while cheering for her is that the right race attire can make all of the difference. Today, I’m excited to announce a new Minnie Run collection by Champion Athleticwear that is coming to the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend in January 2015.

Inspired by Minnie Mouse, this new collection features a new “Run Your Ears Off” tee-shirt, a seamless bra and seamless capri pants.

I spoke with the Champion Athleticwear team who provide the official performance apparel for runDisney. They said they designed this new collection after extensive research and feedback from runDisney participants over the past few years. The bra and Capri are chafe resistant through innovative seamless technology, which they said is perfect for running. The new tee has Champion Vapor Technology which dries faster as you heat up (I need that kind of shirt for summers in Florida!).

The Minnie Run collection will be sold at the Champion Athleticwear booth during the runDisney Health & Fitness Expo from January 7 – 10 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

Stay tuned in the coming weeks as I’ll offer some additional looks at other items coming to this exciting race weekend at Walt Disney World Resort.

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Filed: Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Merchandise Offers Hanukkah-Inspired Gifts This Holiday Season

posted on December 8th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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During a recent visit to World of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace, I spotted a small assortment of Hanukkah-inspired merchandise. This year, the wondrous eight-day celebration begins in the evening on December 16 and ends in the evening on December 24. Here is a closer look at some gift items for welcoming the festival of lights during this holiday season.

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This isn’t the first time Disney Theme Park Merchandise has developed Hanukkah-inspired items. My former teammate turned Disney Pins merchandiser Erin Catalano shared an update on the Disney Parks Blog back in 2011 as seen in this article.

This year’s assortment includes a decorative banner with bells, a wine goblet, a mug, and a small serving plate that is perfect for traditional treats.

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The Disney pin team also created two different pins this year. The Chip and Dale pin is open edition (item number 400007900547), while the pin with Donald Duck’s nephews is limited edition (item number 400008890380). The latter pin features a dreidel that spins.

Finally, I’m delighted to share that the seasonal team is currently developing a new Hanukkah-inspired assortment that will debut next year.

I wish you a Happy Hanukkah filled with wonder and light!

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort

Gift Ideas From Around the World in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on December 8th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I recently shared details about unique shopping destinations at Epcot for Holidays Around the World. On the same day I took images for that story, I visited all 11 World Showcase pavilions to find some unique holiday gifts. This is one of my favorite articles to write each year because it helps me complete my holiday shopping (plus who doesn’t want to get paid to walk around Epcot for a few hours?). Here are some highlights from my shopping trip around the world.

Gift Ideas From Canada Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From United Kingdom Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From France Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

Canada Pavilion – Look for Hatley pajamas for adults and kids; silver jewelry that’s made in Canada; or “Giggling Goat Soap,” which is the best name for authentic Canadian farm soap.

United Kingdom Pavilion – This pavilion is home to Twinings teas; jewelry and apparel inspired by “Downton Abbey;” and an amazing assortment of new Rose & Crown Pub products.

France Pavilion – This pavilion contains a variety of fragrances, home décor items featuring “La vache qui rit” (the Laughing Cow), chocolate truffles, and wine.

Gift Ideas From Morocco Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From Japan Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From American Adventure in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

Morocco Pavilion – You can find versatile cloth handbags, shoes, decorative vases and more.

Japan Pavilion– The Japan Pavilion has a nice assortment of Bento box accessories, items for wrapping gifts in reusable cloth, wallets, and an awesome food tray for kids.

American Adventure – Find goods from American companies in Heritage Manor Gifts including penny jewelry, wines and sauces. The location also carries patriotic Tervis tumblers.

Gift Ideas From Italy Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From Germany Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

Italy Pavilion – Look for fragrance gift sets in Il Bel Cristallo, beautiful Venetian cat masks, scarves and home goods.

Germany Pavilion – You can find a variety of German-themed ornaments, decorative steins, apparel and Black Forest cuckoo clocks.

Gift Ideas From China Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From Norway Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort Gift Ideas From Mexico Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

China Pavilion – The House of Good Fortune offers Panda-themed handbags, inspirational word stones, lamps and fun three-dimensional puzzles.

Norway Pavilion – Stay warm with apparel by Dale of Norway and Helly Hansen. The location also offers trolls in a variety of sizes and food items.

Mexico Pavilion – Inside the pavilion, you will find items celebrating “Day of the Dead,” beautiful jewelry, handbags, scarves and drinkware.

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort