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This Week in Disney Parks Photos: Fun at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on October 4th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival is well underway and our guests are loving every minute. Earlier this week, the band Hanson stopped by to perform at the Eat to the Beat concert series and show off their Mmmhops Pale Ale.

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Aside from checking out Eat to the Beat artists, our guests are tasting and sipping their way around the park. Check out the other fun that’s to be had at this year’s event in the gallery above.

Will you visit the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival this year? Tell us in the comments section below!

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13 Reasons to Love Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on October 3rd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


I adore Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. This after-hours event at Magic Kingdom Park is something I look forward to attending each fall, and can’t get enough of the special Halloween entertainment that comes alive throughout the park.

In case you haven’t been to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party before, here are 13 reasons you should check it out for yourself this year.

"Happy HalloWishes" fireworks show at the Magic Kingdom

  1. “Happy HalloWishes” fireworks – This villains-themed fireworks show lets Disney’s biggest “baddies” light up the sky above Cinderella Castle in a special show only offered during the Halloween parties.
  2. Trick-Or-Treating (even for adults!) – As I shared in an earlier blog post, we’ll be handing out a whopping 261 tons of candy at our parties this year. Read more on that here.

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  1. Halloween Costumes – Not only are Disney characters dressed in their Halloween best, but you’re welcome to dress up, too! Parties are also great for people watching – it’s amazing to see the costumes that other guests come up with.
  2. Event-Exclusive “Pirate Helmsman” Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom Card – This year’s exclusive Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom Card was inspired by the Pirates of the Caribbean and can only be obtained by attending a Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. Cards are complimentary (one per guest), and guests must show their party ticket and event wristband in order to get one.
  3. The Headless Horseman Rides Again - If you pick a parade spot early enough, you just may catch the riding past of the Headless Horseman. It’s an amazingly spooky moment that you don’t want to miss!

Boo to You!

  1. “Mickey’s Boo-To-You Halloween Parade” - This parade is packed with Halloween fun, including appearances by some of the “happy haunts” from the Haunted Mansion – including the Hitchhiking Ghosts. Mickey Mouse and many of his friends are also in the lineup, of course.
  2. Villain’s Sinister Soiree Dessert Party – For guests who can’t get enough of the Disney villains, there’s a new, additional ticket offering called “Villain’s Sinister Soiree Dessert Party: A Wicked Takeover of Cinderella Castle” that offers entertainment by Lady Tremaine and Cinderella’s stepsisters, as well as appearances by other Disney villains – and some amazing desserts. Attendees also get VIP viewing for fireworks and the parade. More info on that here.

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  1. Haunting Decor on Main Street, U.S.A. - After the sun sets, Main Street, U.S.A., becomes ablaze with illuminated pumpkins of all sizes and shapes, among other eerie lighting effects. This part of the park is a must for photos.
  2. Monstrous Scream-O-Ween Ball – This Tomorrowland dance party is a true monster mash, which features favorite friends from Monstropolis. Get your dance moves (and your camera) ready!

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  1. Special Halloween Treats – Think pumpkin spiced waffle sundaes, candy corn cupcakes, and more. Check your event map for special treat locations.
  2. Special Character Greetings – The event also features special character meet and greet opportunities with many Disney characters dressed in Halloween costumes, making for some cute photo opps! (All entertainment subject to change, of course).
  3. Magic Kingdom Park Attractions – In addition to all of the Halloween fun, most attractions are open for you to enjoy – Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, anyone?
  4. The Haunted Mansion - This attraction is always great fun, but it is simply a must during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties. Be on the lookout for the mansion’s maids and butlers to be a bit spruced up on party nights.

What’s your favorite part of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party? Tell us in the comments section below!

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New Halloween Trick-or-Treat Totes at Disney Parks

posted on October 3rd, 2014 by Jean Volante, Manager of Dream Making, Disney Floral & Gifts/DEG


When you were a kid, did you get with the neighborhood gang to talk candy strategy for trick-or-treat night? We were all over it back then, remember? We covered our neighborhood, then went into adjoining neighborhoods, all in a quest to create the ultimate stash we’d call our own. Now as adults, the kid in us still comes out when it comes to candy during the Halloween season. Think about it – in your office, who comes to mind with the bowl of candy available for everyone? Only as an adult, we have to act more civilized. No running or screaming or shoving candy in our mouth – in public that is.

At Disney Parks, we get that inside every adult is a child that still loves to play and enjoy life to its fullest. So each year, our creative team talks about how we can top last year’s experience, so check this out.

For 2014 our Disney Floral & Gifts creative team developed a new Not-So-Scary Halloween Treat Bag for Walt Disney World Resort. Take a look at this exclusive canvas bag, featuring a Mickey pumpkin with battery-powered light-up eyes. Did you notice that at the bottom of the bag there’s “tattered fabric” to create a spooky look? The trick-or-treat letters glow in the dark, too. Then, our creative designer filled the tote with popular mouth-watering treats, including Mickey’s crispy treats, candy from Goofy’s Candy Company and more. It also comes with a Mickey pumpkin light-up lanyard for lighting up those spooky nights, temporary glow-in-the-dark eyeball tattoos and your very own autograph book to collect favorite character signatures. And get this, it comes in a Mickey and Minnie version for boys and ghouls.

Minnie Not-So-Scary Halloween Treat Bag Mickey Not-So-Scary Halloween Treat Bag

And, where would you want to take these bags? To Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, of course! So here’s the inside scoop, for third year in a row, I got ahold of the candy maps for the party so children and adults could start planning for their ultimate candy adventure! This year the Magic Kingdom Park has stocked up with even more candy than ever before. There will be two trick or treat trails, featuring over nine trick or treating locations where you may see some of your favorite characters all dressed up. Oh, and you may have heard that one of the many new experiences that are being launched this year revolves around the evil side of Disney at the Diamond Horseshoe in Liberty Square. The Club Villain Dance Party will feature a few of your favorite mischievous characters dancing the night away, so you gotta check that out. Want to see more of the Villains? Then, stay for the Happy Hallowishes Nighttime Spectacular and Villains Cast Show!

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Walt Disney World Resort Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Walt Disney World Resort

For those of you who can’t make it this year to the party, we can kind of send a party to you. Our Not-So-Scary Treats Tote is also part of our ship to home offerings with just a few different twists.

If you’re headed to the Disneyland Resort this season, to celebrate the holiday, it’s all about Mickey’s Halloween Party! Our Floral & Gifts team in California created Haunted Halloween Buckets to enjoy in the resort as well as in the parks! Special Tip: The Mickey pumpkin bucket features battery-operated glowing eyes and a collection of treats to keep you energized for the night!

Mickey Haunted Halloween Bucket Minnie Haunted Halloween Bucket

Of course, we got our hands on the Halloween party map as well! Make sure to catch the Halloween Screams – A Villainous Surprise in the Skies Fireworks hosted by Jack Skellington and eight trick or treating locations throughout Disneyland park.

Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland Resort Mickey's Halloween Party at Disneyland Resort

I’ve got a few more “tales to tell” about new gifting experiences this year. One includes “orchestrating a Halloween surprise” and building your own gift from our collection of tricks and treats. So stay tuned. And remember, you can also add Mickey’s Spooktacular Celebration to your Disney World vacation and a Disney Villainous Halloween to your stay at the Disneyland Resort. Our Halloween gifts are available now through October 31st or while supplies last.

Oh, and you can also add these trick or treat totes and buckets to your Halloween In Room Celebration available at Walt Disney World or Disneyland.

If you have questions, call a Dream Maker at 407-WDW-GIFT for Walt Disney World Resort or 714-781-GIFT for Disneyland Resort.

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‘Frozen’ actor Jonathan Groff, ‘Scandal’s’ Joe Morton confirmed for Epcot Candlelight Processional

posted on October 1st, 2014 by Charles Stovall, Public Relations Manager


Just when you thought we couldn’t work Disney’s hit animated film “Frozen” into ONE MORE blog post, we are excited to announce the addition of Jonathan Groff to the lineup of celebrity narrators for the 2014 Candlelight Processional at Epcot.

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Groff, who voices the character of Kristoff in Disney’s “Frozen,” is also a Tony-nominated veteran of the Broadway stage (“Spring Awakening”) and TV (“Glee”).

This year’s event will also have a little “Scandal” with everyone’s favorite Gladiator Papa Pope Joe Morton, who plays Kerry Washington’s secret-agent-father on Scandal. Morton’s career has spanned more than 40 years with hits on Broadway, TV and in film.

Groff and Morton join an illustrious list of celebrity narrators for this year’s event including newcomers Ana Gasteyer and returning favorites like Whoopi Goldberg and Neil Patrick Harris. They will be just part of the Holidays Around the World celebration at Epcot, the Candlelight Processional is one of the most beloved holiday traditions at Epcot – a joyous retelling of the Christmas story by a celebrity narrator accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra and a glorious mass choir.

  • Jodi Benson – 11/28 – 11/29
  • Neil Patrick Harris – 11/30 – 12/2
  • Jonathan Groff – 12/3 – 12/4
  • Whoopi Goldberg – 12/5 – 12/6
  • LeVar Burton – 12/7 – 12/9
  • Edward James Olmos – 12/10 – 12/14
  • Chita Rivera – 12/15 – 12/17
  • Ana Gasteyer (New) – 12/18 –12/20
  • Marlee Matlin – 12/21 – 12/23
  • Isabella Rossellini – 12/24 – 12/25
  • Blair Underwood – 12/26 – 12/27
  • Steven Curtis Chapman – 12/28 – 12/30

The Candlelight Processional is presented three times per night at the American Gardens Theater at Epcot. Show times are 5 p.m., 6:45 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. (Narrators are subject to change without notice.)

For more information on Holidays Around the World at Epcot and the Candlelight Processional or to make reservations for a Candlelight Processional dinner package, check out http://www.disneyworld.com/holidays. And check back to the Disney Parks Blog for updates on who fills those last coveted slots in our narrator lineup.

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Halloween Celebration Begins at Disneyland Park Paris October 1

posted on September 30th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Halloween is on its way to Disneyland Park (Paris), with the return of the park’s Disney’s Halloween Festival on October 1.

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During the event, which runs through November 2, guests can watch The Maleficent Disney Villains Promenade or Mickey’s Halloween Celebration (which features Disney characters dressed in Halloween costumes), visit their favorite villains in Maleficent’s Court, or take photos in one of the park’s many seasonally decorated photo locations.

Here’s a sneak peek at the fun.

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Hanson Appears at Eat to the Beat Tonight

posted on September 29th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


The band Hanson (“I Will Come to You”) will take to the stage tonight at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival in the event’s Eat to the Beat concert series.

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Earlier today, the band, which is made up of brothers Isaac, Taylor and Zac Hanson, took a break from performing to showcase their their new beer brew, Mmmhops Pale Ale, to Epcot guests in the Festival Center.

Hanson will take the stage tonight at 5:30, 6:45 and 8 p.m. at the America Gardens Theatre and shows are included in theme park admission.

The remaining acts in this year’s Eat to the Beat concert series are:

  • Sept. 30-Oct. 2 – Air Supply
  • Oct. 3-5 – STARSHIP starring Mickey Thomas
  • Oct. 6-8 – Sugar Ray
  • Oct. 9-10 – Fuel
  • Oct. 11-12 – Sister Hazel
  • Oct. 13-14 – Richard Marx
  • Oct. 15-16 – Billy Ocean
  • Oct. 17-19 – Night Ranger
  • Oct. 20-22 – Smash Mouth
  • Oct. 23-24 – Jim Brickman
  • Oct. 25-26 – Los Lonely Boys
  • Oct. 27-28 – Wilson Phillips
  • Oct. 29-31 – Dennis DeYoung, original member of STYX
  • Nov. 1-2 – 38 Special
  • Nov. 3-5 – Boyz II Men
  • Nov. 6-7 – David Cook
  • Nov. 8-10 – Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
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Disney Parks After Dark: A Spooky City Hall at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on September 25th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week’s Disney Parks After Dark image was snapped by Disney Photographer Charlie Champagne – and what an ominous shot of City Hall at Magic Kingdom Park it is!

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Taken during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, this pic perfectly shows how haunting the park can look on Halloween nights.

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Planning for a Spooktacular Time at Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland Park

posted on September 24th, 2014 by Tyler Slater, Public Relations Manager, Disney Destinations


“This is Halloween, everybody make a scene!”

With fall settling in and the Mickey Pumpkin welcoming guests to Disneyland park, Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort is in full swing! Between Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy (my favorite seasonal attraction overlay) and all the delicious seasonal food offerings, fall is providing some fair competition to my favorite time of year, Holidays at the Disneyland Resort. The first Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland park is just days away and today I wanted to share some tips for planning your visit to the special ticketed event. As always, I love reading your tips in the comments below!

  • Show your Disney Side with your Halloween costume: Everyone attending Mickey’s Halloween Party is encouraged to dress up in their favorite Halloween costume! Your costume should be child-friendly, with no sharp objects. It also should not be obstructive, offensive or violent. Keep in mind you’ll be walking around at night, so be mindful of a costume that may drag along the ground. In addition, masks must not obstruct your vision or cover your eyes.

Mickey’s Halloween Party in Disneyland Park

  • Mickey’s Hide and Go Treat Trails: It wouldn’t be a Halloween party without the opportunity to trick-or-treat! Be sure to pick up a trick-or-treat map at the Main Entrance to Disneyland park to guide you to the numerous Halloween treat stops! You especially won’t want to miss Phineas and Ferb’s Rockin’ Treat Trail at Innoventions in Tomorrowland and the Piratepalooza Treats in Frontierland!

Mickey's Costume Party Cavalcade at Mickey's Halloween Party in Disneyland Park

  • Exclusive Mickey’s Halloween Party Entertainment: My favorite part of Mickey’s Halloween Party is the exclusive entertainment offerings. Don’t miss the Cadaver Dans floating along the fog-filled Rivers of America! Also, if you’re a Disney Villains fan, stop by Main Street, U.S.A., to see these wicked tricksters conjure up some spooky surprises. You can also celebrate Halloween with some of your favorite Disney characters during Mickey’s Costume Party Cavalcade. For me, the highlight of Mickey’s Halloween Party experience is always “Halloween Screams” fireworks spectacular, hosted by none other than Jack Skellington, taking place at 9:30 p.m. Keep in mind that all entertainment offerings are subject to change without notice.

Still need to grab tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party? Purchase them here and get ready for a screaming good time!

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10 Things To Love About Fall at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on September 23rd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Today is the first day of fall, and here at Walt Disney World Resort that means it’s the official start of a whole new season of fun.

Here are 10 reasons that fall is a great time to visit our parks.

Mickey's Boo-to You Halloween Parade

  1. Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties – This special after-hours Halloween party at Magic Kingdom Park is a must-do during a fall visit. Bring your Halloween costumes, get ready to trick-or-treat and expect to see some amazing Halloween entertainment and fireworks! More details on this offering here.
  2. Villain’s Sinister Soiree - Available only on Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party nights, guests can book this special package that offers a wicked good time that includes VIP viewing for the parade and fireworks, as well as an exclusive dessert party that features some of your favorite Disney villains, musical entertainment and some delectable treats. The package costs $99 per person and more details can be found here.

Playing a Halloween Tune

  1. Pumpkins! (And Generally Amazing Fall Decor) - Fall at Magic Kingdom Park offers up some amazing photo opportunities, as our photography team showed in this blog post earlier this month. What I love most are the pumpkins along Main Street, U.S.A., which each feature their own unique design. Take a moment to check them out.

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  1. Haunted Mansion Merchandise Shop Set To Debut - This fall will see the debut of a new dedicated merchandise shop that Haunted Mansion fans are guaranteed to love. Steven Miller offered a sneak peek at some of the items that will be available at the shop in this post. Stay tuned for more on the shop’s opening.
  2. Epcot International Food & Wine Festival - Each night through November 10, Epcot will come alive with food and fun thanks to the return of one of our most popular events, the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. This year, 25 marketplaces will show off the talents of 270 chefs, including some of Disney’s finest, as well as some celeb chefs.
  3. Celebrity Chef Appearances - This year’s festival will feature appearances by celeb chefs Jamie Deen, “Cake Boss” Buddy Valastro and Allen Susser, among others.
  4. Eat To The Beat Concert Series - While we’re talking about fall fun at Epcot, the Eat to the Beat concert series is already underway with several new acts – including Fuel, Jim Brickman, Los Lonely Boys and David Cook – in the lineup. (Concerts are included in park admission).

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  1. runDisney Races Return – Two race weekends - The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™ 10-Miler Weekend and Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend – will return to Walt Disney World Resort October 3-4 and November 7-8, respectively. Registration for Kids Races and after parties are still available.
  2. Special Fall Treats - Even snacks are dressed up for the holiday, with new Maleficent cups, Zero popcorn buckets and more now appearing in parks.

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  1. Fall Savings on Resort Rooms - Guests visiting Walt Disney World Resort this fall can save up to 30 percent on rooms at select Disney Resort hotels, including Deluxe Villa Resort rooms and Deluxe Resort rooms. This offer is valid for stays most nights October 4 through November 25, and November 29 through December 23, 2014 and must be booked by October 3, 2014. (Some restrictions apply). To book, visit DisneyWorld.com/fall or call 407-WDW-1896.

What’s your favorite part of visiting Walt Disney World Resort during the fall season? Tell us in the comments section below.

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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!

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