Muppet*Vision 3D at Disney California Adventure Park

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

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


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This week, we featured some “must-see” time-lapse videos on the Disney Parks Blog, including an amazing look at the all-new Disney’s Contemporary Resort Gingerbread Holiday Ice Castle inspired by Disney’s blockbuster film, “Frozen”.

Watch our video and try to find Olaf. He’s hidden 14 places in the display. Pam also included more details about the 17-foot-tall masterpiece in her original story.

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We also kicked off a new series at Disney’s Contemporary Resort this week. Our “Room with a View” stories will feature suites at the Walt Disney World Resort that have something special in common – a spectacular view.

Our first room with a view is a Club Level 1 Bedroom Theme Park View Suite on the 14th floor of Disney’s Contemporary Resort. You can see more images as well as book a stay at the Resort in our original story.

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

Mad T Party Steps Out of Disney California Adventure Park and Back Through the Looking Glass November 30 – Mad T Party will leave Disney California Adventure park after its November 30 performance. This is your chance to travel down the rabbit hole one more time!

Disneyland Resort Entertainment Team Shares Their Favorite Festive Feature for ‘it’s a small world’ Holiday – Watch as the same team behind Haunted Mansion Holiday’s magical makeover tells us about their favorite holiday enhancements at another famous attraction!

Visions of the Future Spring Up at Downtown Disney – Get a few more glimpses of the future as Downtown Disney continues to undergo its transformation into Disney Springs.

Planning for a Day at Castaway Cay – Dolly from the Disney Parks Moms Panel shares some of the excellent activities to take part in on this island paradise!

Unforgettable Details of Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa: What’s in the Name? – Learn the significance behind the name of Disney’s beautiful resort on O’ahu, and how it seeks to celebrate Hawai‘i’s rich legacy of storytelling.

Runners Show Off Their ‘Super Hero Side’ at Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon – Meet some of the super heroes who ran the inaugural Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon last weekend.

December 2014 Merchandise Events at the Disneyland Resort – Disney Parks Blog author Michelle Harker shares some of the details on merchandise events coming to Disneyland Resort in December.

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This Week in Disney Parks Photos: A Happy Birthday to Mickey Mouse

posted on November 22nd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Earlier this week, we celebrated Mickey Mouse’s birthday with a “Mickey takeover” of the Disney Parks Blog.

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Our favorite pal was brought into existence by creator Walt Disney on November 18, 1928. Be sure to click through the gallery above to see photos of Mickey Mouse throughout the history of our parks.

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The Beautifully Disney ‘Frozen’ Collection Debuts at Disney Parks

posted on November 21st, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


A flurry of excitement is swirling at Disney Parks. Why? The ‘cool’ new collection from Beautifully Disney debuting in stores now will undoubtedly melt your heart with its spectrum of colors inspired by the award-winning film, “Frozen.”

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New to the collection this year is the Rollerball Eye Shadow set. Designed with rollerball tip for effortless application, the lightweight, shimmering silver-toned Elegant Ice and golden-toned Sparkling eye shadows glide on with seamless precision for illuminated eyes. The shimmery loose shadows add dimension and light, creating a delicate dance of glistening crystals for your eyes. Tip: Simply glide the rollerball directly onto the eyelid for a subtle touch of glamour.

Do you want to build … the perfect manicure? The whimsical winter colors of Spiraling Snow, Magnificent Power, Frozen Queen and Miss Royal Pants will help you do just that! Sparkling Snow is, of course, one of my favorites as it leaves me with a glittering feeling of fallen snowflakes on my fingertips. Those who are a bit more daring might find Magnificent Power a bit cooler for their taste.

One of this year’s must-have items includes the newly designed eye shadow palette featuring eight different shades ranging from warm earth tones to fun frosty hues. Discover the magic inside as you mix and match colors to create your own look. Tip: Use colors like Crystal Snowflake and Powers Unleashed to create a classic and regal looking cat-eye. Or try shades like Touched By Magic and Follow Your Heart for a simple yet elegant twist.

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Your look is almost complete … the final touch: the lips. Find which one of the mini-lipstick sets suits your style, whether it is the soft pink of Regal Beauty, the rich mauve of Radiant Heart, the vibrant fuchsia of Queen To Be or the daring violet shade of Optimistic. Tip: These mini lipsticks are easy to take with you and create the perfect application for any occasion.

Look for this new collection and other fan favorites in stores now at the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts, including the following locations:

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  • Downtown Disney DistrictDisney Vault 28
  • Disneyland park – Disney Clothiers
  • Disney California Adventure park – Elias & Co.
  • Walt Disney World Resort

  • Downtown Disney MarketplaceMarketplace Co-OpBeautifully Disney
  • I know this new collection is on my list of things to pick up this holiday season. Is it on yours?

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    Disneyland Resort Cast Members Grant Nearly $2.2M to Southern California Nonprofits Since 1997

    posted on November 21st, 2014 by Melanie Vogel, External Communications Specialist, Disneyland Resort


    Cast members say that one of the best parts of working for the Disneyland Resort is the encouragement we receive to give back to our communities.

    This year, Disneyland Resort cast members granted 85 Southern California nonprofit organizations a total of $415,000 in grants through the Disney VoluntEARS Community Fund (DVCF). That’s nearly $2.2 million since the program’s inception in 1997!

    DVCF is funded entirely by cast members through regular payroll deductions or one-time donations. Those who contribute during the year have the opportunity to nominate an organization of their choice. The organizations, from local schools to social service agencies, received up to $5,000 each. Organizations that received a grant this year include American Heart Association, Boys & Girls Club, Make-A-Wish and Sam Dimas Mountain Rescue.

    Check out the video below and watch Christine Ludin, a hotels cast member at the Disneyland Resort, present $5,000 to the Southern California Special Olympics!

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    First Look at the New Gingerbread House at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa at Disneyland Resort

    posted on November 21st, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


    Happy National Gingerbread Day! To celebrate, I’m giving you a sneak peek at the brand-new gingerbread house coming to Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa at Disneyland Resort.

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    Opening on November 27, this gingerbread house was created by a talented team of 25 artists, engineers and bakers, and it will take a total of 1,400 hours to bake and create the edible portion alone! The house measures in at a whopping 7 ½ feet tall and 12 feet wide. Which might leave you wondering: what goes into a gingerbread house of this scope?

    • More than 500 pounds of gingerbread
    • 60 gallons of frosting and icing
    • 100 pounds of isomalt sugar
    • 50 pounds of granulated sugar
    • 50 pounds of powdered sugar
    • 2 gallons of egg whites
    • 1 quart of lemon juice

    Want to bring home a piece of the holiday magic? Seasonal offerings for sale include:

    • Gingerbread shingles and other assorted holiday cookies
    • Holiday cookie-decorating kits
    • Gingerbread house kits
    • Specialty hot chocolate and cider

    Run, run, run as fast as you can to Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa on November 27 to check out this sweet masterpiece!

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    Disney Parks After Dark: Things That Spin in the Night at Disneyland Resort … Revisited

    posted on November 20th, 2014 by Paul Hiffmeyer, Chief Photographer for Public Relations, Disneyland Resort


    Back in 2011, I started a Disney Parks Blog series called “Things That Spin In the Night.” It featured motion-blurred images of attractions at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks. I thought it would be fun to revisit that series today.

    The photos from “Things That Spin In the Night” included after-dark images of Astro Orbitor, Mad T Party, Mickey’s Fun Wheel, Silly Symphony Swings, and the Golden Zephyr. I realized that there was a particular photo of the Golden Zephyr that I didn’t take the first time around. The first time, I focused more on getting three attractions in one photo. This time, I focused on getting the name of the attraction in the photo. As you can see, the Golden Zephyr sign in the front of the attraction is quite attractive, especially at night when it has a blue glow.

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    Click on the links below to see more of the “Things That Spin in the Night” series:

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    A Celebration of Disney Trains at the Walt Disney Family Museum

    posted on November 20th, 2014 by Jeffrey Epstein, Manager, Marketing


    As The Walt Disney Family Museum unveils its new exhibit, All Aboard: A Celebration of Walt’s Trains, we look back at some rarely seen photos and a very special moment in Disney train history.

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    On May 10, 2005, at 7 a.m., a ceremony took place before Disneyland opened for the day. On the occasion of Disneyland’s 50th anniversary, about 100 people gathered at the New Orleans Square Station of the Disneyland Railroad to honor animator and Disney Legend Ollie Johnston, one of Walt’s Nine Old Men, for how he inspired Walt Disney with his love of trains. Ollie inspired Walt to build his backyard railroad, the Carolwood Pacific Railroad. Walt’s love of giving people rides on this little steam train in his backyard eventually led to the building of Disneyland.

    After the speeches that early May morning, Ollie was presented with a plaque from the Carolwood Pacific Historical Society. Then everyone heard a toot of a steam whistle and up pulled a gleaming steam train. Ollie at first thought it was a Disneyland engine, then his son Ken leaned down and said, “Dad, that is your engine.” Ollie then realized it was his beloved Marie E. and he started to cry. And then so did everyone else.

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    I then told Ollie that the Marie E. needed a real engineer to drive it around Disneyland and asked if he would like to do it. “Boy, would I!!” was his answer. He climbed up into the cab of the Marie E. with the help of the amazing Disneyland Railroad crew and they strapped him in with seatbelts borrowed from one of the old Matterhorn bobsleds.

    At 94 years old, Ollie expertly engineered his Marie E. — the only outside train ever run on the rails of Disneyland — three times around Disneyland to the cheers of everyone there.

    It was said that of all of the year-long events celebrating Disneyland’s 50th anniversary, the morning of May 10 was by far the most special.

    - John Lasseter

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    This memory told by John Lasseter, Chief Creative Officer, Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, recalls a very special moment in Disney train history. It’s one of many train tales being celebrated in All Aboard: A Celebration of Walt’s Trains, a new exhibit at The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco, Calif. On view through February 9, 2015, this comprehensive exhibition explores the influence that railroading had on Walt Disney’s life and work. It also tells the story of how his railroading legacy lives on to this day in Disney films and theme parks around the world.

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    The arc of this exhibition doesn’t start and end with just Walt, though. All Aboard explores the interest and passion for railroading of Walt’s friends and staff, including Ollie Johnston. The Disney Legend was able to make his Disney railroad dreams come true at Disneyland before he passed away in 2008.

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    Disney Parks Honored with Several Industry Awards

    posted on November 20th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


    I’m happy to report that earlier this week, two prestigious organizations honored Disney Parks projects with multiple industry awards.

    Park it's a small world

    On Tuesday, the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) announced their annual Thea Award winners. Among the honorees, TEA announced that “it’s a small world” at Disneyland park, currently celebrating its 50th anniversary, is the recipient of the Thea Classic award, honoring attractions that have withstood the test of time and have endured for 20 or more years. TEA said in their announcement that the attraction “continues to captivate audiences around the world with pure charm, melded with a profound message deceptively hiding in a simple and astonishingly catchy song … This timeless classic continues to engage generation after generation. Surely “it’s a small world” is the very definition of a Classic.”

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    Also, Bistrot Chez Remy, the new French restaurant at Walt Disney Studios Park in Paris that is inspired by the Disney∙Pixar film “Ratatouille,” is the winner of the Award for Outstanding Achievement – Themed Restaurant. “It is a truly charming and thematically thorough dining experience, where oversized objects are reused in every possible way to create tables, chairs, architectural elements, and props … [E]verything is very well-conceived and delivered to create an illusion that is both convincing and coyly self-aware. The exterior of the attraction looks like a typical Parisian café, but on closer inspection, one realizes that this is the world of Paris from the film, where there are no straight lines – a perfect blend of fiction and reality. This venue exhibits thoroughness, conceptual clarity, dedication to narrative detail, and exceptional finish.”

    Wilderness Explorers Opens at  Disney’s Animal Kingdom

    Finally, Wilderness Explorers at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, an interactive experience that combines badge collecting, guest interaction and learning about the natural world, is the winner of the Award for Outstanding Achievement – Interactive Park Attraction on a Limited Budget.

    “Disney has incorporated storytelling and gaming to create an experience that is intimate and personal in its connection to the guests, yet wisely recognizes that technology would be a distraction and remove guests from nature. Guests are given a role in the story – becoming a Wilderness Explorer – that was a poignant, aspirational story of a core identifiable character from the Pixar film. This intersection point between film story world, live animals and the beautiful habitats within Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a huge part of why this attraction is effective … This unique attraction is worthy of honors as much for its craft as for the authenticity and cleverness of implementation within a unique park environment.”

    TEA is an international non-profit association representing the world’s leading creators, developers, designers and producers of compelling places and experiences. Thea Awards will be given out at an awards ceremony at the Disneyland Hotel on March 21, 2015.

    On Wednesday night, the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) awarded their Brass Rings Awards for Live Entertainment Excellence and “Once Upon a Time” at Tokyo Disney Resort won for Best Multimedia Spectacular.

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    IAAPA is the largest international trade association for permanently situated amusement facilities and attractions, and is dedicated to the preservation and prosperity of the attractions industry. The IAAPA Brass Ring Awards mark achievements of excellence throughout the global attractions industry.

    Congratulations to all who worked to create and bring these wonderful projects to life!

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    New ‘Frozen’ Disney Trading Pins Come with the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card

    posted on November 20th, 2014 by Virginia Scanlon, Manager Alliance Management, Disney Gift Card Services


    Be on the lookout for this year’s Disney Gift Card Holiday Pin Series throughout Walt Disney World Resort and the Disneyland Resort. These cards come in four different designs featuring your favorite characters from Disney Animation’s hit movie “Frozen”.

    New Elsa Disney Pin That Comes With the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card New Olaf Disney Pin That Comes With the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card New Kristoff Disney Pin That Comes With the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card New Anna Disney Pin That Comes With the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card

    Each of these Disney Gift Card designs are available with a starting balance of $75 and also comes with a Disney Trading Pin. Complete your Disney Trading Pin collection with these four new pins, which feature “Frozen” characters Anna, Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf. These pins can only be found with this year’s Disney Gift Card Holiday Pin Series.

    New 'Frozen' Disney Trading Pins Come with the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card New 'Frozen' Disney Trading Pins Come with the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card New 'Frozen' Disney Trading Pins Come with the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card New 'Frozen' Disney Trading Pins Come with the Purchase of a Holiday Pin Series Disney Gift Card

    Giving a Disney Gift Card is simple for you, and perfect for friends and family! The Disney Gift Card can be used for practically all things Disney at Walt Disney World Resort, the Disneyland Resort, Disney Cruise Line, Adventures by Disney, Club Penguin, Disney PhotoPass, DisneyMusicOnline.com, Disney Store locations in the U.S. and online and at DisneyStore.com. For more information or to shop for more holiday designs, please visit DisneyGiftCard.com.

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    Runners Show Off Their ‘Super Hero Side’ at Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon

    posted on November 19th, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


    If you participate in a runDisney event, or simply come out to support a runner, one of the first the first things you notice is the variety of costumes runners wear during the race. From beloved Disney character-inspired outfits to dressing for the theme of the race, the creativity is amazing and unique to a runDisney event. And this weekend’s inaugural Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon at Disneyland Resort set the bar a little higher.

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    For several years now, I have had the privilege to stand at the start and finish lines for several runDisney events, and in my humble opinion, costumes this past weekend rank #1. Runners went above and beyond expectations in creating and designing their super hero alter ego. It was my observation that the most popular costume for men and women was Captain America, closely followed by Thor and Hulk. Thanks to our runners, I was introduced to super hero characters I didn’t know existed.

    It really was amazing and now I can’t wait to see what Star Wars runners do in January!!

    On Sunday, Disney photographer Matt Stroshane went in search of ‘super’ creative costumes. We hope you will enjoy the photo gallery featuring a few super heroes who took on and defeated 13.1 miles at the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon.

    For more information and to register for an upcoming runDisney event, visit runDisney.com.

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