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Heidi Klum Meets Mickey Mouse at Disneyland Park

posted on June 4th, 2014 by George Savvas, Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort


Heidi Klum and her family visited the Disneyland Resort last week, just a few days before her birthday, and we met up with her in Adventureland over at the Jungle Cruise.
Heidi Klum Meets Mickey Mouse Aboard Jungle Cruise at Disneyland Park

Mickey Mouse stopped by to surprise her and we got this fun picture just before the expedition began. No shortage of fun skippers here!

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Disney 365 Live Video Shoot at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex with Disney Channel Star Jake Short

posted on March 24th, 2014 by Faron Kelley, Director, Marketing & Communications, Disney Sports


We gave you an exclusive sneak peek of the filming of the Disney 365 video shoot at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex with Jake Short (of Disney Channel‘s “A.N.T. Farm” and Disney XD‘s “Mighty Med“) a few months ago, and now it’s time to reveal the Disney 365 special. Take a look at the competition at the incredible ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex where Short tested his soccer skills during the Disney 3v3 Soccer Championships.

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Tina Fey and Katie Holmes Visit Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on March 19th, 2014 by Gary Buchanan, Social Media Managing Editor


Stars of stage and screen were spotted at Disney’s Hollywood Studios this week, with Katie Holmes and Tina Fey each making visits to Walt Disney World Resort.

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While here, they both took time to pose with a few of our favorite furry friends. Holmes met Minnie Mouse on the Streets of America, and complimented Minnie on her special dress which was adorned with hearts. Fey visited Muppet*Vision 3D and posed with one of her “Muppets Most Wanted” co-stars, Sweetums. “Muppets Most Wanted” opens in theaters on Friday.

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A Look Back at Celebrated Disneyland Resort Guests: Nat King Cole – 1963

posted on March 17th, 2014 by George Savvas, Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort


The great singer Nat King Cole was born on this day in 1919, and today we look back at a visit he made to Disneyland park more than 50 years ago.

Nat King Cole and His Son, Nat Kelly Cole, in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland Park in 1963.

Pictured with his son, Nat Kelly Cole, the legendary voice behind such timeless hits as “Mona Lisa,” “Stardust,” and “Unforgettable” was photographed in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle in June of 1963.

Do you have a favorite Nat King Cole song? My personal favorite also has the distinction of being featured in a Disney film. Can you guess which one?

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A Look Back at Celebrated Disneyland Resort Guests: Jerry Lewis – 1955

posted on March 14th, 2014 by George Savvas, Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort


Legendary entertainer and humanitarian Jerry Lewis celebrates his birthday this weekend, so today we’re looking back at a visit Jerry made to Disneyland park in August 1955, just a few weeks after we first opened our gates.

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This first photo is a triple treat for Disney fans. Television star Milton Berle, aka “Uncle Miltie,” joined Jerry outside the Main Entrance, along with future Disney Legend, Tom Nabbe, who was holding a custom edition of The Disneyland News with a headline that read, “Welcome Miltie & Jerry To Disneyland.”

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Then it was over to Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, where Jerry was joined by his son (and future musician), Gary Lewis. When I see this photo, I think can actually hear that iconic voice going through Toad Hall!

Happy Birthday, Mr. Lewis!

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Strike Up the Bands, Cue the Choirs: Music In Our Schools Tour Makes Surprise Appearance at Festival Disney’s 10th Anniversary

posted on March 11th, 2014 by Tim Hill, Director of Disney Youth Programs


'The Voice' Winner Danielle Bradbery at Classen School for Advanced Studies During the 'Music In Our Schools" Tour
This past weekend, we kicked off the 10th anniversary of Festival Disney in a big way – with a surprise performance by Danielle Bradbery, the 17-year-old country music sensation and winner of The Voice. Her Saturday-night appearance was a highlight of the awards ceremony for the annual music festival that we host for school bands, orchestras, choirs and other ensembles.
Danielle Bradbery and Mickey at Festival Disney
It was also Danielle’s final stop on the Music In Our Schools national bus tour that kicked off at Disneyland Resort on March 2. Sponsored by Disney Performing Arts, the week-long tour was a collaboration with the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) and Big Machine Label Group.
Danielle Bradbery Performing at Festival Disney
Singing songs from her self-titled debut album, including the current “Top 15” single “The Heart of Dixie,” Bradbery gave an unforgettable Festival Disney performance that had our 3,000 participants on their feet, dancing and singing along.
Danielle Bradbery at Eldorado High School During the 'Music In Our Schools' Tour

Festival Disney was the perfect place to close out the Music In Our Schools tour. As we wrote about in last week’s post, Bradbery traveled across the country visiting high schools to inspire and encourage students and to create awareness about the importance of music education.
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Each of the five schools she visited received a grant from NAfME’s Give a Note Foundation and a Disney “Mousecar” Award. Another highlight of each stop was a performance by Danielle.

Check out this video of tour highlights:

Being involved in the Music In Our Schools tour was an honor for our Disney Performing Arts team because we believe there’s nothing more important than inspiring young people to follow their passions, fulfill their dreams and celebrate their accomplishments. Together with NAfME and Danielle, we hope we inspired students and encouraged them to recognize how music education can help them learn, achieve and succeed.
Walt Disney Ambassadors Rich Tamayo & Tye Arnold With Danielle Bradbery at Festival Disney
If you’d like to learn more about Disney Performing Arts, check out our Facebook page.

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Disney Performing Arts is ‘On the Road’ This Week

posted on March 3rd, 2014 by Tim Hill, Director of Disney Youth Programs


The Music In Our Schools national tour launched at the Disneyland Resort yesterday, with 17-year-old country-music sensation Danielle Bradbery off to visit high schools in five cities – Albuquerque, Houston, Oklahoma City, Nashville and Charlotte – before the tour wraps up at Walt Disney World Resort on March 8. Our Disney Performing Arts team is thrilled to sponsor this week-long event that celebrates the importance of music education and the benefits music teachers bring to their students and school communities.

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Danielle is a great tour spokesperson, since she’s living the dream of so many participants in our Disney Performing Arts programs by performing live in front of thousands of people. Originally gaining fame as winner of The Voice, season four, Danielle added to that success with the release of her first self-titled album and her single “My Day,” which was a signature song leading up to the 2014 Winter Olympics.

At each high school Danielle will talk about her personal journey, participate in a question-and-answer session and perform songs from her new album. One of our Disney Ambassadors will also be at each high-school event, serving as co-host and emcee.

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The Music In Our Schools tour is a collaboration with the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) and Big Machine Label Group. Our team chose to be involved because Disney Parks has had special affinity for music education since 1955. That’s when Walt Disney personally invited California high schools to perform at the grand opening of Disneyland park.

What Walt knew then is still true today – the company he founded relies on the talents of musicians, composers and other artists across its many businesses every day. And it wouldn’t surprise me if future Disney musicians say they got their career inspirations from the Music In Our Schools tour.

Be sure to check the Disney Performing Arts Facebook page for all the latest tour happenings.

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David Wise Celebrates Gold at the Disneyland Resort

posted on February 27th, 2014 by George Savvas, Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort


“David Wise, you’ve just won the first-ever gold medal in ski halfpipe, what are you going to do next?” Well, you know the rest, right?

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On Tuesday, we caught up with the Wise family on Matterhorn Way, where Mickey Mouse stopped by to say hello.

Just one week earlier, David made headlines around the world when he took home the first gold medal for halfpipe skiing. David’s wife, Lexi, made the trip to Sochi, but they were only reunited with their two year-old, Nayeli, the day before their Disneyland trip. How much more could there be to celebrate? Well, it also happened to be David and Lexi’s wedding anniversary!

This was Nayeli’s first visit to the Disneyland Resort, and David said he hadn’t been here since he was her age, so it felt like the first time for him too. Their first Disneyland park attraction as a family? Dumbo the Flying Elephant (Nayeli’s favorite). Later, the family wrapped up their daylong celebration with “World of Color” at Disney California Adventure park.

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If I had to sum up the reaction of Disneyland Resort guests as they encountered us taking this picture of David at Sleeping Beauty Castle, I would say, as so many of them did, “Congratulations, David – way to go!”

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A Look Back at Celebrated Disneyland Resort Guests: Johnny Cash – 1961

posted on February 26th, 2014 by George Savvas, Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort


Music legend Johnny Cash was born on this day in 1932, and today we’re sharing a rarely seen photo of “The Man in Black” during a visit to Disneyland park..

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This picture of Mr. Cash in the wheelhouse of the Mark Twain Riverboat was taken in the summer of 1961.

He really seems to fit the part, don’t you think?

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‘Countdown to the Oscars’ Special Airs Feb. 27 Featuring Military Heroes at Disneyland Resort

posted on February 24th, 2014 by Kevin Rafferty, Jr., Communications Specialist, Disneyland Resort


Earlier this month, Disneyland Resort cast members cheered the arrival of dozens of military heroes — accompanied by film star Gary Sinise — to the Disneyland Resort as part of a week of surprises arranged by the actor’s foundation in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the film, “Forrest Gump.”

The servicemen and women, who arrived from Walter Reed Military Medical Center, Fort Belvoir and Naval Medical Center San Diego, visited several Southern California landmarks. They were honored at the Disneyland Resort during a special flag retreat ceremony, which you can see footage of in this video.

Parts of their trip will be aired on ABC during a “Countdown to the Oscars” special Feb. 27. The special will offer viewers a backstage pass to this year’s 86th annual Academy Awards celebrating movie heroes and include interviews with this year’s nominees. Tune in to see what other surprises were in store for this group of heroic Americans!

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