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“it’s a small world” Holiday at Disneyland Park

Watch ‘Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade’ Live from Walt Disney World

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


Our exclusive series of Disney Side holiday live events at Walt Disney World Resort continues this weekend with another special surprise from Magic Kingdom Park.

We’re live streaming “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade,” on November 30, 2014 right here on the Disney Parks Blog.

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At 8:30 p.m. EST, we’re hosting coverage of “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade” as it happens on Main Street, U.S.A. To see it, just visit the front page of the Disney Parks Blog beginning at 8:20 p.m. on November 30.

During the live stream, “Frozen” favorites Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf will join Disney Characters, gingerbread men, elves and others for a procession down Main Street, U.S.A. You can also see a special appearance from Santa, wishing guests a “Merry Christmas!” from his sleigh.

“Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade” is best experienced in person at Magic Kingdom Park. You can see the parade during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party nights on December 2, 4, 5, 7, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18 and 19, 2014.

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Made With Magic Items Now Available at Disney Parks

posted on November 25th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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I’m happy to announce that Made With Magic items are now available at Disney Parks. You may recall my recent Disney Parks Blog article about Made With Magic, the new name for products that light up and interact with select Disney experiences at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. I recently visited Fantasmic! at Disney’s Hollywood Studios to get a first hand look at these new products.

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As the sun set on another beautiful Florida day, I saw these items in action at the top of the Hollywood Hills Theater just before seating opened for the first Fantasmic! show. We currently offer a Disney ear hat, a Minnie Mouse headband and a Sorcerer Mickey wand. A light-up Mickey Mouse glove will be coming to Disney Parks in spring 2015. Each Made With Magic item has a retail of $25.00 (that retail includes tax).

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My favorite item is the Sorcerer Mickey wand as it has the ability to change other Made With Magic items. It’s pretty easy to use. To change the color patterns on the wand, press the artist pallet button. Once you find a color pattern you like, you can press the wand button to change other Made With Magic items. I changed an entire display of Disney ear hats with just one wand (I wonder if I can use this wand to clean up my apartment as that would be amazing).

Look for these items in select merchandise locations at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and at Magic Kingdom Park in Florida. Guests in California can find these items in various merchandise locations in Disneyland park and in Disney’s California Adventure park.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Before/After: Magic Kingdom Park Transforms for the Holidays

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


If you enjoyed this month’s behind-the-scenes look at the overnight installation of holiday decorations at Magic Kingdom Park, then you’ll love today’s special look at the transformation from Disney photographer Charlie Champagne. Scroll back and forth to see the transition from Halloween to Christmas at the Walt Disney World Resort.

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Entrance to Magic Kingdom Park

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Making Plans for New Year’s Eve at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on November 24th, 2014 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


It may still be November, but I bet many of you are already thinking ahead and starting to make plans for New Year’s Eve. Well, if you’re going to be ringing in 2015 at Walt Disney World Resort, here’s a rundown of some of the entertainment we have planned for this year’s celebration.

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  • Epcot – It’s a night-long party throughout Epcot, with unique entertainment including a DJ and light show at the Future World Fountain Stage, dancing under flame effects and a smoke-billowing dragon in China, a British blast to the past in United Kingdom, Euro-pop and lasers in Italy, and a Latin band and DJ on the America Gardens Stage. Cap it all off with one of two showings of “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth” fireworks, at 6:00 p.m. or 11:40 p.m., followed by a countdown and pyrotechnic salute to the new year.
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios – Exclusive specialty drinks and food items are available throughout the night, as the Event Stage comes alive with an energetic DJ and performances by Mulch, Sweat & Shears. As midnight approaches, the band takes the stage to count down to 2015 and plays live during a jaw-dropping fireworks spectacular.
  • Magic Kingdom Park – You can get a head start on the festivities, with a special New Year’s Eve eve presentation of “Fantasy in the Sky” fireworks at 11:50 p.m. on Tuesday, December 30. The same show will be repeated on December 31.

So tell me … what are you doing New Year’s Eve?

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Listen As Rusty Cutlass Pirate Band Plays Holiday Tunes at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on November 21st, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Even pirates tend to catch the holiday spirit during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Parties, and there’s no better example than this – a holiday musical performance by Rusty Cutlass band.

In the video below, the pirates gather to play “one of the prettiest Christmas songs they know.” What do you think?

Look for the pirates to perform in Adventureland during party nights at 7:45, 8:45, 9:45 and 10:45 p.m.

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

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.

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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.”

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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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Filed: Disneyland Paris, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Tokyo Disneyland, Walt Disney World Resort

Room With A View: ‘Theme Park View’ Suite at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

posted on November 18th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Today, we’re kicking off a new series on the Disney Parks Blog, featuring suites at 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, and one of its most impressive features is the amazing sight of Magic Kingdom Park during the day and the spectacular fireworks at the park when the sun sets.

Of course, the view inside this 1,428 square foot suite is just as impressive. There’s unique artwork throughout the suite, and the open living room is set up with Bose surround sound as well as a DVD and stereo systems.

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The living room and bedroom have an oversize balcony with lounge chairs to enjoy the view of Magic Kingdom Park. The suite also features two full bathrooms and a separate living area.

You can book this suite now at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. To find prices and availability for this suite, visit our Disneyworld.com page.

We’re just getting going with this series, so let us know if this is your favorite resort view or if you have another at Walt Disney World Resort.

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Filed: Hotels & Resorts, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Decking the Halls with Holiday Novelty Items at Disney Parks

posted on November 18th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and festive food and beverage offerings and holiday souvenirs are popping up at Disney Parks! Our teams are decking everything from souvenir popcorn buckets to sippers and more.

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Santa’s elves have been hard at work creating these Mickey sipper steins, perfect for sipping hot cocoa or carrying a snack on the go. Twice as nice is the matching souvenir popcorn bucket. Look for these in Disneyland park, Disney California Adventure park and Magic Kingdom Park.

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As part of the Merriest Place on Earth celebration at Disneyland park, look for souvenir soup cups featuring Mickey, Minnie and Goofy ice skating in front of Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle. The cups are available at Jolly Holiday Bakery Café and the turkey leg cart near Sleeping Beauty Castle. While you’re in Disney California Adventure park, look for special cone-shaped snowy sippers at the Cozy Cone Motel. Since this is a world where two holidays collide, “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas” novelties will also be available through the holiday season.

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Since the holiday season is all about sharing the joy of the season with your friends and family, here’s a peek at the artwork you’ll find on popcorn buckets and souvenirs throughout Disney Parks!

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Which souvenir would you love in your stocking?

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Fifteen Fun Facts For Mickey Mouse’s Birthday

posted on November 18th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


As the famous Walt Disney quote says, “I only hope that we never lose sight of one thing—that it was all started by a mouse.” – and today we’re celebrating that Mouse on the Disney Parks Blog.

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Mickey Mouse made his official film debut on November 18, 1928, in the film “Steamboat Willie,” and has since become a famous face at Disney Parks around the world.

In honor of today’s milestone, here are 15 fun facts about Mickey Mouse you may not know:

  1. Walt Disney wrote the first script for “Plane Crazy,” the first short created to star Mickey Mouse, while traveling on a train from Chicago to Los Angeles.
  2. Walt initially named Mickey Mouse “Mortimer,” until Walt’s wife, Lily, suggested “Mickey” was a better choice.

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  1. Disney Legend Ub Iwerks was the sole animator for Mickey Mouse in “Plane Crazy,” and produced an estimated 700 drawings per day for the film, some during the day (as a part of a secret project for Walt) and others after hours in Walt’s garage.
  2. The short film “Steamboat Willie” was the first short starring Mickey Mouse released, but was actually the third created. The first two, “Plane Crazy” and “The Gallopin’ Gaucho,” initially failed to find distributors, but were picked up and released later.
  3. When penning Mickey’s movements, early animators drew inspiration from popular comedic film stars of the day – like Charlie Chaplin.
  4. The first Mickey Mouse Club was formed by theater owner Harry Woodin in Ocean Park, California. On his own accord, Woodin devoted Saturday afternoons in his theater to showing only Mickey Mouse shorts and led children in a Mickey Mouse pledge. Walt later partnered with Woodin and spread the idea of Mickey Mouse Clubs to movie theaters across the nation.
  5. The first Mickey short in which Mickey spoke was “The Karnival Kid,” the ninth Mickey short, which was released in July 1929. His first words: “Hot dog!”
  6. Walt Disney wasn’t satisfied with the first few actors chosen to provide a voice for Mickey Mouse, so he did it, and continued to do so through about 1947.
  7. A Mickey Mouse comic strip, penned by Ub Iwerks, launched in January 1930, and at its height was printed in 40 newspapers in 22 countries.
  8. The first piece of Mickey Mouse merchandise was a tablet of paper that featured the mouse, designed for children. The first Mickey Mouse doll was designed in 1930.

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  1. Mickey Mouse made his debut appearance in the “Macy’s Santa Claus Parade” (now “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade”) in 1934. Measuring 40-feet-tall, the balloon was handpainted and guided by men and women dressed in Mickey/Minnie Mouse costumes.
  2. When Walt was contemplating a name for his first theme park (Disneyland park), he once considered calling it “Mickey Mouse Village.”
  3. Mickey Mouse was the first animated character to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, which was given on his birthday (November 18) in 1978.
  4. Mickey Mouse has been a prominent feature at Disney Parks since Disneyland park opened its doors in 1955, with guests interacting with him in character meet and greets, viewing him in parades or snapping up Mickey Mouse merchandise.

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  1. The Partners Statue, a sculpture of Walt and Mickey holding hands, debuted at Disneyland park on Mickey’s birthday in 1993. A second Partners Statue debuted at Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort in 1995.

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Filed: Disney History, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Closer Look: ‘A Frozen Holiday Wish’ at Magic Kingdom Park

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


Earlier this month, we began our Disney Side holiday video series with a live stream of the all-new “A Frozen Holiday Wish” from the Castle Forecourt Stage at Magic Kingdom Park. It was such a hit that this week we’re sharing a closer look at the show. Disney Show director James Silson has a special look for Disney Parks Blog readers.

“A Frozen Holiday Wish” is now being presented nightly through December 31, 2014 at Magic Kingdom Park. Here’s how you can see it this holiday season.

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