Via Napoli Restaurant, Italy Pavilion at Epcot

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on June 1st, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is officially open – and for this week’s grand opening at New Fantasyland, we were joined by some special guests — seven “Littles” and their “Bigs” from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Florida along with Orlando Magic stars Victor Oladipo and Tobias Harris.

If you missed it, we also shared a new version of the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train poster, created by Disney artist Mike Britton. Be sure to check out the terms of use about using the wallpaper before you download it.

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And mark your calendars, “Festival of the Lion King,” the popular musical stage show that originated at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 1998, will debut at the brand-new Harambe Theatre in the Africa section of the park on June 1.

The show is a daily park offering and is performed multiple times a day (check your My Disney Experience App or the park’s Times Guide for showtimes. Entertainment is subject to change). Let us know what you love most about the show in Jennifer’s original story.

Here are some of the other stories we worked on this week.

Time Lapse: Olaf Sand Sculpture Takes Shape at the Disneyland Resort – Watch a giant sand sculpture of summer’s biggest fan – Olaf from Disney’s “Frozen” take form in this special video!

Journey Through Cast Member Mike Larson’s 50 Years at Disneyland Resort Meet Mike Larson, Disneyland Resort cast member for 50 years.

Tangaroa Terrace Menu Gets Makeover, Plus Three New Drinks at Trader Sam’s at Disneyland Hotel – Get a taste of the new food items offered at Tangaroa Terrace, and the special cocktails available at Trader Sams.

Unforgettable Details of Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa: Kapa Name Tags – Get an inside look at how the special name tags at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa are made.

A Family Affair on the Re-imagined Disney Magic – Contemplating a cruise? Check out the family fun offered on the Re-imagined Disney Magic in this special video.

runDisney Joins the Force for Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort – Run, don’t walk to Disneyland Resort for Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend. First-time rookies (and Wookies) are welcome.

More Details to Make You Hungry for Fun at 19th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival – Click through to learn what’s new at the 19th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival this year at Walt Disney World Resort!

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#DisneyKids: First Pony Ride at Walt Disney World Resort

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


As we continue our series of firsts at Disney Parks, we thought we’d take a look at an experience known for making faces light up with joy at Walt Disney World Resort – a first pony ride.

Interacting with Mickey’s petite ponies at the Tri-Circle-D Ranch is often an unforgettable experience for children and parents. And it’s not uncommon for a parent who had a first ride here to visit years later with their children.

The pony rides are an experience for the child and adult and it’s unique that Disney does this, according to Robin Walker Zoological manager at the Tri-Circle-D Ranch. Rides are offered daily near Pioneer Hall at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground.

Let us know about your first pony ride or another special, memorable or even life changing first visit to Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort in the comments below and then check back for our new #DisneyKids series.

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Celebrate Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Attraction in New Fantasyland With a Special Poster

posted on May 27th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


UPDATE: We’ve reached our limit and are no longer taking emails for a chance to receive a “Seven Dwarfs Mine Train” poster. Click here for a list of recipients.

In just hours, the “crowning jewel” of New Fantasyland, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train attraction, officially opens at Walt Disney World Resort. And to celebrate its debut, we’ve created a special poster especially for Disney Parks Blog readers.

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To enter for a chance to win one Seven Dwarfs Mine Train poster, be one of the first 100 people to email us a “Celebrating Seven Dwarfs Mine Train” greeting of no more than 50 characters in length to WDW.Sweepstakes@Disney.com and include your full name and mailing address in the email. Once the potential winners are determined, we’ll send notifications via email. See the sweepstakes rules and eligibility requirements here.

Sweepstakes open only to persons who, upon entering, are not deemed minors in their jurisdiction of primary residence and are legal residents of, and physically located within, the 50 United States or D.C. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. Subject to complete Official Rules. Ends 5/27/14.

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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on May 25th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we kicked off summer with 24 straight hours of fun during our Rock Your Disney Side party at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort. During our live coverage of the event, we shared more than 30 stories here on the blog and many more photos. Check out our newest video from the celebration.

During the Rock Your Disney Side party, many of you chose which Disney characters appeared in the “Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It!” parade, watched the experiences on our live video feeds and showed off your #heroside or #villainside with some amazing costumes.

Guests Rock Their #HeroSide at Magic Kingdom Park Guests Rock Their #VillainSide at Magic Kingdom Park

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We had a blast sharing 24 hours worth of special experiences, tastes and sights and even meeting some of you during the event. Now, it’s time to look forward to all of the summer experiences at Disney Parks.

Here are some of the other stories we worked on this week.

Summertime is Underway at Disney Parks – With the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event over, get a preview of what’s on tap for the summer at Disney Parks.

Rock Your Disney Side Parties on Into the Night at Disneyland Park – The party was still going strong in the middle of the night at Disneyland park.

Disney Villains Appear in ‘It’s Good To Be Bad’ Pre-Parade – Disney villains took over the park after dark during the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event.

Heigh-Ho! It’s Off to Find Snow White and Seven Dwarfs Merchandise I Go – Some new Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs goodies are available, to mark the opening of The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.

Rockin’ Your Disney Side at the Disneyland Resort Can Be a Real Treat! – Get a taste of some new treats that debuted as part of the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event.

VIDEO: Disneyland Resort Kicks Off Summer During Rock Your Disney Side 24-Hour Event – Watch the highlights from the opening of Disneyland for the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event!

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Goodnight from Walt Disney World Resort

posted on May 24th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks



5:50 a.m. EDT / 2:50 a.m. PDT

That’s it – our Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event fun just ended here at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. And it ended where it began, at the Railroad Station in Town Square on Main Street, U.S.A. with a wave goodbye from some of your favorite Disney characters.

We’ve had a blast sharing 24 hours worth of special experiences, tastes and sights from the Walt Disney World Resort and even meeting some of you at Magic Kingdom Park during the event. Now, it’s time to head to the parks for some summer fun.

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#DisneySide Map: Are You a Hero or Villain to Kick Off Summer?

posted on May 23rd, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks



8:30 a.m. EDT / 5:30 a.m. PDT

We’ve just launched a special Rock Your #DisneySide map showing where in our parks guests are tweeting about their #heroside or #villainside during the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event.

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It’s easy to participate if you’re visiting Magic Kingdom Park in Florida, and Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park in California from now until to 6 a.m., May 24, 2014, local time. Simply launch Twitter and tweet if you’re showing your #Heroside or #Villainside with the #DisneySide hashtag.

First, enable geotagging on your Twitter account by going to the Settings, and selecting the “enable geotagging” option. Then, simply launch Twitter and tweet if you’re showing your #Heroside or #Villainside with the #DisneySide hashtag.

Throughout the 24-hour party, our #Heroside, #Villainside leaderboard – located at the bottom of the map – will be updated. So, which are you? Let us know.

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Rock Your Disney Side 24-Hour Party Begins at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on May 23rd, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks



6:15 a.m. EDT / 3:15 a.m. PDT

Our Rock Your Disney Side 24-Hour event has officially begun in Florida with a special opening moment that included a surprise visits from some of your favorite hero and villain characters.

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Guests joined the blog team outside of Magic Kingdom Park as early as 4:45 a.m. this morning to be among the first to enter and kick off the Memorial Day Weekend – the traditional start of the family travel season.

We’ve only started our 24 hours of coverage here on the Disney Parks Blog so be sure to keep checking back throughout the day and night for complete coverage of the party at the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland ResortErin will be joining us with updates soon.

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Live Video: Rock Your Disney Side Party Inside Magic Kingdom Park

posted on May 23rd, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


UPDATE 5/24: Rock Your Disney Side live stream coverage has concluded.


5:30 a.m. EDT / 2:30 a.m. PDT

Our Rock Your Disney Side party to kick off summer is underway at the Walt Disney World Resort and for the next 24 hours, we’re giving you a live peek inside the park from Main Street U.S.A., at Magic Kingdom Park. Also, check us out on your mobile device.

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Summer Begins at Disney Parks With 24-Hour Rock Your Disney Side Party

posted on May 23rd, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


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On May 23, Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park at the Disneyland Resort celebrated a 24-hour kick-off to summer party.

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And for a full 24-hours, our team of Disney Parks Blog authors shared photos, videos and stories from the event.

For a full summary of Rock Your Disney Side Summer Kick-Off Party coverage, click here.

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Interactive Image: 360-Degrees of Disney Characters at Disney Parks

posted on May 22nd, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Tomorrow, we’re kicking off summer with a Rock Your Disney Side 24-Hour event featuring 24 hours of magic at Disney Parks. And as we close in on the Memorial Day Weekend celebration, I wanted to share a special 360-degree panorama from our original invitation to the party. (The image is best viewed on a desktop computer).

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Earlier this year, the 140 characters invited you and your family to Rock Your Disney Side at the 24-hour event. During that day, photographer Matt Stroshane also captured some other images you won’t see every day at Magic Kingdom Park.

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Magic Kingdom Park in Florida and Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park in California will be filled with Disney characters from 6 a.m., May 23 to 6 a.m., May 24, 2014, local time.

And during the 24-hour party, you’re also invited to show your Disney Side by dressing as a favorite Disney hero or villain. Let us know who you’ll be dressing up as – #heroside or #villainside?

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