Mad Tea Party at Disney Parks

First Disney Ambassador Julie Reihm Casaletto Welcomes New Ambassadors

posted on October 11th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Walt Disney Parks and Resorts celebrates 50 years of the Disney Ambassador program, which was first introduced as part of the 10th anniversary celebration of Disneyland. Walt Disney needed someone to act as a representative of Disneyland to audiences in the community and around the world, as well as host VIP guests and foreign dignitaries. Julie Reihm Casaletto, a tour guide for the park at the time, was selected by Walt to be the first Disney Ambassador.

A half-century later, in a ceremony in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland park, Julie joined more than 50 former Disney Ambassadors yesterday morning to welcome the 2015-2016 Disneyland Resort Ambassador team, Jessica Bernard and Allie Kawamoto.

dldldl736991

The 50-year tradition continued at Walt Disney World Resort yesterday, as Caitlin Busscher and Nathaniel Palma were announced as the 2015-2016 Disney Ambassador team, receiving the golden opportunity of sharing the magic of “our world” – and representing nearly 70,000 fellow Cast Members – with the Central Florida community.

dldldl980000

Rounding out the global anniversary celebration, Disney Ambassadors also were announced recently at other Disney Parks around the world. At Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, Sara Hui was selected as the next Ambassador to represent the Asia-based theme park, and Tokyo Disney Resort chose Riina Imaeda as the first ambassador to serve a two-year term in Japan. Sonia Demay and Romina Grochow were welcomed as new Ambassadors at Disneyland Paris earlier this month.

The Disney Ambassador family will grow this year, as Shanghai Disney Resort, scheduled to open in 2015, and Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, will for the first time name Disney Ambassadors.

  • Share: 

Tagged: , , , , , ,

Filed: Aulani, Disneyland Paris, Disneyland Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland, Shanghai Disney Resort, Tokyo Disneyland, Walt Disney World Resort

Kids and Families come out to Play at the KaBOOM! Play Together Tour

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Back in August, we shared that Walt Disney Parks and Resorts was sponsoring the KaBOOM! Play Together Tour. The tour traveled to six cities across America, giving families the chance to tackle a playful obstacle course and enjoy meaningful time together. Nearly 13,000 people came out to play in Anaheim, Sacramento, San Francisco, Chicago, Atlanta and Kissimmee.

Families designed their team flags and made their way through various stations to build tunnels, solve puzzles, and work as a team.

Kids and Families come out to Play at the KaBOOM! Play Together Tour Kids and Families come out to Play at the KaBOOM! Play Together Tour

This tour is just one way we at Disney Parks delivered on our commitment to strengthen families and local communities. It gave us the chance to share our expertise and create a memorable experience for children and their families outside of our parks and resorts.

While we know how important it is for families to spend meaningful time together, we also know the long-term, positive impact this time has on children. At the Discover Together Symposium we hosted in January, researchers at the Center for Childhood Creativity and Search Institute shared their findings – that the quality time children spend with influential adults has a powerful influence on a child’s success in school and in the community. To learn more about the research, visit DisneyDiscoverTogether.com.

The KaBOOM Play Together Tour helped us to bring this work to life around the U.S. Check out the video above for highlights from the tour.

  • Share: 

Tagged: , ,

Filed: Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on October 5th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


As we celebrated five years of stories on the Disney Parks Blog this week, we launched another new, exclusive series especially for the Halloween holiday – 999 Happy Haunts.

999 Happy Haunts: Meet Madame Leota

Each week, 999 Happy Haunts will be offering an up-close look at a different resident of The Haunted Mansion right here on the Disney Parks Blog. And first up, we focused on one of the ladies of the house – Madame Leota.

Visit Jennifer’s original story to find out everything you ever wanted to know about Madame Leota and then let us know what resident you’d like to see next.

@amii91581: 80s Cousins with Goofy @kerinjmb: Throwback Thursday to Disneyland Circa 1988 @KimaFoster:1980′s @heidir313: 1985 @bjjlawson: With my dad @ Autopia circa 1989.

As regular readers know, we’ve been voting for the top Disneyland Resort memory from each decade of the past 60 years, and this week, we went back to the 1980s. Take a look above at the top Disneyland Resort memories we received from the 1980s and then go to Erin’s post to vote for your favorite.

Voting will remain open until 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, October 8. Be sure to check back Thursday, October 9, when we’ll share the top five memories from the 1990s.

For complete rules, click here.

No purchase necessary. 18/age of majority+, 50 US/DC only. Void where prohibited. See Rules for details.

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

Five Things You Might Not Know About Horticulture at the Disneyland Resort – There are some magical details created every season by the Disneyland Resort Horticulture team. Check out some things you might not know about horticulture at the Disneyland Resort.

Time-Lapse Video: Haunted Mansion Holiday Gingerbread House Installed at Disneyland Park – Our video team documented the installation of this year’s Haunted Mansion Holiday gingerbread house. Take a look in this time-lapse video!

Unforgettable Details of Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa: Menehune Bridge – Learn about the Menehune legend that provides the inspiration for Menehune Bridge, the aquatic play structure at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa.

Delicious and Seasonal: Harvest Apple Salad from Carthay Circle Restaurant at Disney California Adventure Park – Get the recipe for the delicious Harvest Apple Salad from Carthay Circle Restaurant at Disney California Adventure Park and even a sneak peek of how Chef Francisco Origel makes it!

Vintage Walt Disney World: Happy Birthday, Magic Kingdom Park! – To celebrate the anniversary of the opening of Walt Disney World Resort, check out an aerial view of Magic Kingdom Park and the surrounding resort area in early 1971.

Eight Signs You Are Craving a Disney Cruise – Check out these 8 signs that say you’re ready for your next vacation with Disney Cruise Line.

  • Share: 

Tagged: , ,

Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

Sign Up for Our Disney’s ‘Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day’ Meet-Up at Downtown Disney

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


UPDATE: This event has been filled to capacity. Please CLICK HERE to view a list of the accepted event attendees. If you are on the list and did not receive a confirmation email by 5 p.m. EST today, please contact us at WDW.BlogMeetUps@disney.com.

We’re kicking off October for Disney Parks Blog readers with the opportunity to be part of a special preview screening of “Disney’s Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” at AMC Downtown Disney 24 at the Walt Disney World Resort before the film opens in U.S. theaters on October 10, 2014.

Alexander_Logo_ev1.0

Our Disney Parks Blog meet-up begins at 1 p.m. EST (doors open at noon) on Saturday, October 4, 2014. At the event you’ll see the film, Disney’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day,” which follows 11-year-old Alexander (Ed Oxenbould) as he experiences the most terrible and horrible day of his young life. Alexander soon learns that he’s not alone when his mom (Jennifer Garner), dad (Steve Carell), brother (Dylan Minnette) and sister (Kerris Dorsey) all find themselves living through their own terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. Here’s a sneak peek:

RSVP for the meet-up now by sending us an email with your name, address and if you’ll be bringing a guest to WDW.BlogMeetUps@disney.com. Only one guest is permitted. A limited number of attendees will be selected for the event, so be one of the first to sign up.

Also, there are a few things you should know:

  • All attendees who sign up for the event must be 18 years or older, but guests do not need to be 18 or older.
  • Limit one guest per registrant.
  • We will send an email to individuals whose valid RSVPs are received by us via email before we reach the planned capacity to confirm their attendance for the event.
  • If confirmed, it will be necessary for the registrant and guest to check in across from AMC Downtown Disney 24 for access to the event. The confirmation will include those details.
  • Valid photo I.D. will be required at check-in.
  • Meet-up confirmations are non-transferrable and have no cash value.
  • Confirmation will be for the accepted registered person and guest.
  • If you do not receive an email from us confirming your reservation, then your RSVP was not accepted.
    The event is subject to change or cancellation.

This post will be updated after capacity has been reached.

Also, here are some other things to know:

  • This is an advance screening of the film. Closed Captioning and Descriptive Video services may not be available.
  • Please arrive early. No one will be admitted late. We may refuse, revoke or limit admission in our sole discretion at any time.
  • NO RECORDING

The screening will be monitored for unauthorized recording. By attending, you agree not to bring any video or audio recording devices (including, without limitation, cameras) into the venue and you consent to a physical search of your belongings and person for recording devices. If you attempt to enter with a recording device, you will be denied admission. If you attempt to use a recording device during this screening, you consent to your immediate removal from the venue and forfeiture of your recording device and its contents. Any attempted unauthorized recording will be reported to law enforcement and may subject you to criminal and civil liability. We reserve the right to pursue any and all available remedies at law and in equity for any unauthorized recording and/or copyright infringement, including without limitation statutory damages of up to $150,000 per violation, and nothing contained in this notice shall be construed to limit our available remedies and/or legal recourse. You assume all risks of personal injury arising from or incidental to attending the screening, whether occurring prior to, during, or after the event. Further, by attending you grant permission to Disney Destinations, LLC, its licensees, licensors, affiliates and agents, to record and utilize your name, voice and likeness to publicize the screening and promote the movie.

Hope to see you there.

  • Share: 

Tagged: , , ,

Filed: Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort

The Disney Parks Blog Celebrates Five Years of Storytelling

posted on September 29th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


UPDATE: Thank you for the wonderful “Happy Anniversary” messages. We’ve reached our limit and are no longer taking emails for a chance to receive a poster. Please keep checking the blog for future opportunities.

Over the weekend, we celebrated a special day for the Disney Parks Blog – our five year anniversary. It’s an exciting milestone for us that would not have been possible without your consistent support and participation during the years.

We’ve paved our path one story at a time on the Blog and we’re thrilled to let you know that there are even bigger plans to grow in the future as we continue to offer the latest, official information about Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Disney Cruise Line and Disney vacation experiences worldwide.

fypfyp737991

Today, we wanted to pause and say thank you with a special photo we’ve saved just for the occasion. The bird’s-eye view of Cinderella Castle was captured by author and Walt Disney World photographer Kent Phillips earlier this year – and it’s one of our favorites.

You can win this poster today if you’re one of the first 150 people to email us a “Happy Birthday Disney Parks Blog” greeting of no more than 50 characters in length (which could be a simple “Hi” or “Happy Birthday Disney Parks Blog” greeting) 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.

Thank you again for all of the support and be sure to keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog as we continue to grow.

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. Limit one (1) entry per person/per email address. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. Subject to complete Official Rules. Ends 09/29/14.

  • Share: 

Tagged: ,

Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on September 28th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we officially welcomed the newest addition to our gorilla family troop at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in our weekly “Wildlife Wednesday” series. The new Western lowland gorilla is the second gorilla birth this year, and the fifth in the park’s history.

cuokbg263748

All Western lowland gorilla babies born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom have been a part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP), which ensures long-term survival of species by helping AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums manage species’ genetic diversity through detailed records of individual animals.

Check out Rachel’s story for more baby gorilla photos from Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

@rBc5FNoura: 70′s decade! Me and My Little Brother in front of Sleeping Beauty’s Castle @eilonwey28: 1970′s Disneyland. Me and Pluto on Main St. – Taken by my Dad in Mar. 1977, on my 2nd birthday. @rdpMW9qguY: 1974 Standing in front of Main Street @rvxaOmLOX6: 1974 Grad Nite From @sIV4quTHq4

And we continued the voting for the top Disneyland Resort memory from the past 60 years with some favorite Disneyland Resort memories from the 1970s.

You can go now to Erin’s story to vote. Voting will remain open until 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, October 1. Be sure to check back Thursday, October 2, when we’ll share the top five memories from the 1980s.

Each decade winner will receive a special Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration prize. Then, we’ll give you the chance to vote for one Grand Prize winner from among the winners of each decade. This lucky fan will win a trip to the start of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration in spring 2015. For complete rules, click here.

No purchase necessary. 18/age of majority+, 50 US/DC only. Void where prohibited. See Rules for details.

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

Halloween Time Snacks and Sweets at Disneyland Resort – Get a look at some of the snacks and sweets we’ve scared up at Disneyland Resort for Halloween Time.

Danny Elfman Reads from ‘Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas’ at Haunted Mansion Holiday in Disneyland Park – Watch as musician, composer and longtime collaborator with Tim Burton, Danny Elfman performs this special reading of “The Nightmare Before Christmas”.

‘Muppets Most Wanted’ Star Constantine Visits Walt Disney World Resort – See the World’s Number One Criminal speak with our very own John Graham, sharing what he loves about visiting Disney Parks.

Planning for a Spooktacular Time at Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland Park – Halloween Time at Disneyland Resort is here! Here are some tips for planning your visit to Mickey’s Halloween Party.

A Home Away From Home at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa: 1-Bedroom Villa – Check out the spacious villas available at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa. Learn more about booking your getaway today!

New Halloween Celebrations at Disney Parks – Special new Halloween-themed gifting experiences from Disney Floral & Gifts are now available at Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort!

  • Share: 

Tagged: , ,

Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

Honors for Innovative Design of Enchanted Storybook Castle at Shanghai Disneyland

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


As many of you know, Disney’s theme parks and resorts exemplify not only storytelling and creativity, but also innovation. We are constantly defining and redefining themed entertainment, and we do that not just in the technology behind our attractions, but also in the way we design them.

With that in mind, we are pleased to share that Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI) has recently received a prestigious professional honor for the innovative design and technology practices that have been used in the development of Enchanted Storybook Castle, currently under construction at Shanghai Disneyland. The American Institute of Architects presented its Technology in Architectural Practice Award to WDI for its successful implementation of Building Information Modeling (BIM). While traditional building design uses 2D drawings and elevations of a planned building, BIM adds three dimensions (height, width and depth) and is a virtual representation of the actual building to be built. Embedded with data, this digital model can be linked to schedules so that designers can see the construction of a building over a period of time. The image below represents a snapshot of the BIM model.

Enchanted Storybook Castle - Shanghai Disneyland - Final Model V

“Our commitment to collaboration, teamwork, and mutual success enables us to create those magical, innovative experiences in a way that only Disney can do,” said David Van Wyk, WDI project management and integration executive. “When the whole organization is thinking about reinforcing each other’s efforts, it allows individuals the ability to focus on what they need to do to accomplish our shared goals. By using BIM processes and technology on this and other projects to be built around the world allow us to work smarter and more efficiently as a team.”

Congratulations to Walt Disney Imagineering on this award and all of the people over in Shanghai working hard to turn these innovative designs into a reality!

  • Share: 

Tagged:

Filed: Shanghai Disney Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on September 21st, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


The 19th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival kicked off this weekend and we shared a few stories on the Disney Parks Blog to help during your visit, including Pam’s post featuring the top ten “must-try” new tastes at this year’s event.

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival: Brazil Marketplace

There are 35 new food offerings this year and Pam recommended 10 to look forward to tasting. At the Farm Fresh Marketplace, there’s the perfect taste of Southern comfort food: griddled “Yard Bird” (chicken thigh) with collards and a dollop of the house-made habanero sauce. The Lobster Alfredo at the Hops & Barley Marketplace also made the list. Go check out the complete list.

@r-g3nrQa5r: Enjoying Disneyland in the late 1960's - A Captured Memory with Minnie! @KrazyKevinWolff: My Dad, Uncles, & Grammy at the ‪@Disneyland ‪#Matterhorn Bobsleds in the late '60s. @rOsRMEpzHS: My Sister and I Excited to Hold Pinnochio's Hand at Disneyland in the 60s. @q7xs4LofoF: Me and My Mom on Burro (and Horse?) Ride in Frontierland, 1964. Maybe This is Why I Hate Hats? ;) @qopsCOPAn-: I Love This Picture of Me and My Brother and Sisters, Think This is Around '1969' Always Loved This Photo, Look at My Trendy Haircut I'm on Mickeys Left with the Pin Curl Sideburns and Sunglasses on My Head 'So Cool' and Talk About Nostalgic Mickey Mouse! Enjoy!

And as you know, to get ready for the upcoming Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, we’re looking for the most magical Disneyland Resort memories from the past six decades. Erin has narrowed down the photo submissions for the 1960s and is now asking for your help to decide which will win. Visit Erin’s story this weekend and let us know your favorite.

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

Fodor’s Travel Names Aulani a Top Hotel – Read more about this distinguished award, and plan your “Beach Getaway” to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa.

‘Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush’ Moseys Out of Disneyland Park September 27 – Every great story must have a great ending – it’s time to bid farewell to ‘Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush’ at Disneyland park. Be sure to visit your friends in Frontierland and Rainbow Ridge before September 27.

#DisneyKids: First Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park – Watch some first Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party experiences at Magic Kingdom Park!

Halloween Time Treats at the Disneyland Resort – Take a first look at some of the delightfully wicked treats debuting this year as part of Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort.

Halloween Time Novelty Items to Materialize at Disneyland Resort – Get a sneak peek at some of the spooky souvenir novelty items coming to Disneyland Resort for Halloween.

Learn to Draw Grumpy from ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ – Watch as Brian James Fichtner from Animation Academy at Disney’s Hollywood Studios gives a quick tutorial on how to draw the perfect grump!

  • Share: 

Tagged: , , , , ,

Filed: Disneyland Resort, Epcot, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

#DisneyKids: First Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on September 19th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Holidays are always special at Disney Parks – and as we’ve learned with our #DisneyKids series, they’re also a perfect time for a “first” memory. Right now, our Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is in full swing at the Walt Disney World Resort, so this week we’re at Magic Kingdom Park featuring first Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party experiences.

This year’s celebration features a lot of must-see Halloween-themed entertainment for children, like the “Boo To You Parade,” “Happy HalloWishes” fireworks, Disney characters in costumes, and much more. You can purchase tickets right now on our Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party page.

And if you’re visiting the Walt Disney World Resort, we’re sharing more fun ideas for the little ones as well as offers designed with your family in mind on our special preschool page.

  • Share: 

Tagged: , , , , ,

Filed: Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Shanghai Disney Resort Debuts ‘Happy Dream’ Float at Festival

posted on September 17th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Shanghai

Today, we’re excited to bring you some news from China. On Saturday, Shanghai Disney Resort made its first appearance in the Annual Shanghai Tourism Festival parade.
MIN6831LARGE

The colorful float, called “Happy Dream,” featured Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Cinderella, Buzz Lightyear and many other popular Disney characters. And Disney dancers added to the fun by performing a Mandarin Chinese version of Disney’s classic “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes,” from “Cinderella.”

“Our performance at this year’s Shanghai Tourism Festival is the result of an international collaboration between Disney experts and talented Chinese artists. We are excited to demonstrate our commitment to bringing the best of Disney experiences to the people of China, even before we officially open Shanghai Disney Resort,” said Laurie Jordan, Vice President, Shanghai Disney Resort Entertainment. “We are thrilled to support the Shanghai Tourism Festival for the first time and to help promote the city as an international tourism destination.”

  • Share: 

Tagged:

Filed: Shanghai Disney Resort