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Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Celebrates Family Volunteer Day

posted on November 24th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks


Our parks and resorts around the world give families and loved ones opportunities to make lasting memories together, and that vision continues to drive our citizenship efforts. We are committed to nurture, inspire, and empower kids and families by bringing them together to make lasting change in the world. Last weekend, our VoluntEARS around the world celebrated Family Volunteer Day. Now in its 25th year, this coordinated effort is a national day of service organized by generationOn and sponsored by Disney Friends for Change.

At Disneyland Resort, guests and Disney VoluntEARS made more than 5,000 snack packs for the Orange County Food Bank, wrote postcards to service men and women and built butterfly garden kits for after-school programs. VoluntEARS also spent time assembling food boxes at the Orange County Food Bank.


Walt Disney World guests, cast and their families created 500 Clean the World toiletry kits for Families in Transition in Osceola County. Participants also wrote postcards for Operation Uplift and greeting cards for local children’s hospitals to bring extra smiles for the holiday season. The Disney Kids and Family Zone also stopped by to provide some healthy snacks, fun games and a photo area for even more lasting memories.


VoluntEARS and families from Hong Kong Disneyland refreshed a local campsite for the Physically Handicapped and Able-Bodied Association (PHAB). This is the first campsite in Hong Kong to promote inclusiveness and socialization among visitors, and the work of the VoluntEARS will help even more people to enjoy the space.


Tokyo Disney Resort cast members and their family joined hands with other community volunteers to clean the shoreline of their local Kasai Rinkai Park. VoluntEARS spent the day helping to preserve the park’s pristine nature for everyone to enjoy.

Thank you to all the resort guests and Disney VoluntEARS who joined together for Family Volunteer Day. This is just one of many ways Walt Disney Parks and Resorts VoluntEARS donate hundreds of thousands of hours every single year. Read more about how The Walt Disney Company participated in Family Volunteer Day on the Disney Post.

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Filed: Community Outreach, Disneyland Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland, Tokyo Disneyland, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Entertainment Honored with Industry Awards

posted on November 19th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment

I’m proud to report that two recent projects produced by our Creative Entertainment team have been honored with industry awards from a pair of prestigious organizations.


On Tuesday, the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) announced their annual Thea Award winners. TEA has honored the “Paint the Night” Parade, featured at Hong Kong Disneyland and Disneyland park in California, with the Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement – Parade Spectacular. “Paint the Night” brings Disney’s electrical parade legacy into the 21st century with innovative floats, vibrant costumes, dazzling special effects, unforgettable music and more than 1.5 million brilliant LED lights. The parade made its debut last fall at Hong Kong Disneyland and arrived at Disneyland Resort this past summer as part of the Diamond Celebration.

As part of their announcement, TEA said, “The new Disney ‘Paint the Night’ is a marvel of lighting technology, creative artistry, storytelling, showmanship, live performance and interactivity, centered around beloved Disney characters, both recent and classic.”

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 in Anaheim, California, on April 2, 2016.


Last night at their annual gathering in Orlando, the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) awarded their 2015 Brass Ring Awards for Live Entertainment Excellence, extending additional honors to the “Paint the Night” Parade with an award in the category of Best Multimedia Spectacular.

IAAPA also presented a Brass Ring Award to “King Triton’s Concert” at Tokyo DisneySea Park in Japan, in the category of “Best Overall Production: $1 Million or more.” “King Triton’s Concert” brings to life the under the sea world of “The Little Mermaid” with music, songs, dynamic performances and sensational special effects. The show opened in April 2015 and is presented several times daily at the park’s Mermaid Lagoon Theater.


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 everyone who worked so hard to bring these wonderful projects to life at Disney Parks!

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland, Hotels & Resorts, Tokyo Disneyland

New Year’s Celebrations at Tokyo Disney Resort

posted on October 29th, 2015 by Victoria Lim, Managing Editor, Walt Disney World Public Relations

The Year of the Monkey will be the celebratory theme for guests visiting Tokyo Disney Resort to ring in Oshogatsu (the new year). From January 1 to 5, the entrances to Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea will feature kadomatsu (traditional Japanese decorations), and King Louie and Monkeys in Tokyo Disneyland, and Abu at Tokyo DisneySea.


The New Year’s Greeting at Tokyo Disneyland is a twice daily parade, including Mickey and Minnie in kimono aboard the LiMOUSEine II. At Tokyo DisneySea, Mickey, Minnie and their Disney friends including Abu, will ride aboard a barge to share their New Year’s Greeting three times-a-day.

Souvenir keepsakes like a Japanese tea cup filled with a sesame mousse decorated with sweet black beans and chestnut cream will be decorated with designs of Mickey and Minnie in kimono, King Louie and Abu.

At what Disney Park will you celebrate akemashite omedeto gozaimasu (happy new year)?

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Filed: Special Events, Tokyo Disneyland

‘Frozen’ and Duffy Welcome Winter to Tokyo Disney Resort in 2016

posted on October 16th, 2015 by Victoria Lim, Managing Editor, Walt Disney World Public Relations

Winter offerings at Tokyo Disney Resort may entice you to extend your stay overseas if you’re visiting over the holidays.

The “Frozen” sisters are also popular in Japan, where “Anna and Elsa’s Frozen Fantasy” returns to Tokyo Disneyland on January 12 through March 18, and includes “Frozen Fantasy Parade” which includes Kristoff, Hans and the Trolls, and new floats. The castle show “Anna and Elsa’s Winter Greeting” invites younger guests to sing and dance along. The fun continues into the evening with “Once Upon a Time: Special Winter Edition” which includes scenes of the movie in Japanese. Also in Japanese, girls ages 11 and under will find out what it’s like to be a royalty with “Disney Princess: Welcome Little Princesses.”


Over at Tokyo DisneySea, Duffy is celebrating the 10th anniversary of his debut with a look back at his time with guests over the years in “Journeys with Duffy.” Duffy and ShellieMae host “Sweet Duffy,” featuring cute confections. A new show, “Come Join Your Friends” welcomes Duffy’s new friend, Gelatoni, to the Mediterranean Harbor.

For a different kind of thrill, Tower of Terror: Level 13 “Shadow of Shiriki”, a scarier version of the attraction adds an extra terrifying touch for guests.

So which experience are you most looking forward to – “Frozen,” Duffy or terror?

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Filed: Tokyo Disneyland

Duffy the Disney Bear’s Best Friend ShellieMay Coming to Disney Parks This Fall

posted on October 12th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager

I’m excited to announce that ShellieMay, Duffy the Disney Bear’s best friend, will be coming to Disney Parks this fall. You may recall we introduced plush and accessories for Duffy the Disney Bear in fall 2010. ShellieMay debuted at Tokyo Disney Resort a few years ago, and was later added to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, in August 2014. She has been one of the most requested items from Duffy the Disney Bear fans at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts in recent years.

As the story goes, ShellieMay was made by Minnie Mouse and filled her with joy so that Duffy would have a best friend by his side. We will introduce a 17-inch plush bear along with several costumes for dressing ShellieMay. Guests may also find a “My First ShellieMay” 12-inch plush bear.

Costumes will include fun things like a two-pack of costumes for dressing Duffy and ShellieMay as Cinderella and Prince Charming (please note this item will be arriving in late fall at Disney Parks). Other costumes will feature a deluxe Minnie Mouse costume or a deluxe pajama outfit.

Guests should look for several 12-inch pre-dressed plush including ShellieMay as a cheerleader and another with her enjoying a day at Disney Parks.

Finally, we are releasing a hardcover book that tells the story of ShellieMay along with a plush pillow. Both items will be perfect for bedtime stories. Look for ShellieMay items next to where Duffy the Disney Bear items are offered at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resort. Guests may also find select items on our Disney Parks online store or from the new Shop Disney Parks app that is available as a free download from your favorite app store.

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Filed: Aulani, Disneyland Resort, Tokyo Disneyland, Walt Disney World Resort

Happy Birthday to Oswald the Lucky Rabbit

posted on September 5th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Editorial Content Manager

On this day in Disney history, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit made his on-screen debut in the 1927 short “Trolley Troubles.”

Created by Walt Disney and (now Disney Legend) Ub Iwerks, Oswald was Walt’s first hit animated character, who appeared in 26 shorts and was so popular that Oswald became the first Disney character to inspire a merchandise line. Unfortunately, Oswald was lost to another company in a business deal in 1928. But the loss of Oswald went on to be a blessing in disguise, however, as losing his most successful character yet motivated Walt Disney to create Mickey Mouse, who debuted on screen in late 1928.


The Walt Disney Company regained the rights to Oswald the Lucky Rabbit in 2006, and in the years since, he’s begun greeting guests at Tokyo DisneySea and Disney California Adventure park. He can also be found on merchandise at Disney Parks around the globe.


In addition to his theme park success, Oswald continues to be a fan favorite, especially for those who love Disney history. In 2013, Disney Parks Blog readers voted Oswald as the #1 character they wanted our fellow author and artist, Will Gay, to feature as the subject of his latest downloadable wallpaper. (To get the wallpaper, click on the image above – be sure to check out the terms of use about using the wallpaper before you download it).

And in honor of Oswald’s birthday, we’d like to share with you our popular “Learn to Draw” tutorial so you can learn how you can bring this historic character to life yourself! Check it out below.

Want to learn to draw other Disney characters? Check out our full list of tutorials below.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney History, Disneyland Resort, Tokyo Disneyland

Tokyo Disney Celebration Hotel To Open in 2016

posted on September 3rd, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Editorial Content Manager

Earlier this week, plans were announced for a new hotel – Tokyo Disney Celebration Hotel – which is set to open at Tokyo Disney Resort in 2016.


The hotel will be based on a new concept that is different from the resort’s existing hotels and will celebrate the magic and imagination of Tokyo Disneyland Park and Tokyo DisneySea Park in the guest rooms, the lobby and the courtyards. Guests staying in the Tokyo Disney Celebration Hotel will be surrounded by the ambiance of their favorite Disney Park memories, and will inspire them to relive moments from their time spent in the theme parks and anticipate the fun awaiting them on the next day.

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Looking Back at D23 EXPO 2015 Disney Theme Park Merchandise

posted on August 21st, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort

I know that many of you, our Disney fans, were with us all weekend long at D23 EXPO 2015 in Anaheim, Calif. I mean what an experience, am I right? New film releases, new attraction and lands announced and of course, merchandise!

Those of you who attended the 60 Years of Disney Theme Park Merchandise panel discussion were in for quite a surprise as we took a look at the evolution of ear hats, new artwork set to appear on Twenty-Eight & Main, Disney Boutique, Disney Couture, Princess, Haunted Mansion – Revisited and Pirates of the Caribbean. Of course, it was the What Lies Ahead segment that caught the attention of some folks, with merchandise art reveals for the Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Tokyo Disney Resort, Disney Cruise Line, Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa, and of course, Shanghai Disney Resort. Here’s a quick glimpse at some of the art that was shown and be sure to keep watching the Disney Parks Blog, as I will have posts about all of these and more in the near future.


With the panel also came the world debut of the artists taking part in the We Love Disney compilation album by Verve Records and Walt Disney Records, due in stores October 30. Produced by multi-platinum, 16-time Grammy award winning producer and Verve Music Group Chairman, David Foster, the album will feature some of today’s hottest artists across pop, rock, R&B and country as they deliver their own interpretations of classic Disney songs. I could go on and on about who is featured on this album but why don’t you check it out for yourself including the We Love Disney Box Set here.


The spectrum was broad when it came to finding favorite souvenirs, as there was literally something for everyone. D23 EXPO merchandise, from t-shirts to mugs, handbags to drinkware, flew off the shelves, and of course the R4-D23 was definitely the droid everyone was looking for, and Force For Change t-shirts, fleece and pins weren’t far behind. Tip: Look for Force For Change apparel shortly at select locations at the Disneyland Resort through Labor Day and help us make a difference! If you have the D23 EXPO App, go to Aurasma and watch as the shirt activates before your very eyes.


What did I find? With ALEX AND ANI on hand, it’s no surprise that I spotted my souvenir at their table. While I almost picked up the new Snow White-inspired bangle, available at Disney Parks now, I chose to go a bit simpler with the Mickey Filigree Wrap in the Rafaelian Silver finish. I know you’re shocked! This is one of three pieces ALEX AND ANI pre-launched at D23 that won’t be available in the parks until the fall.

Finally, throughout the weekend, Disney fans were lined up to meet some of their favorite Disney Legends, artists, authors and special guests and the Disney Dream Store did not disappoint. More than 45 special guests and 80 signings took place over the course of the weekend, including a special appearance and signing with the Mouseketeers!

Who were you most excited to meet? What was your favorite part of D23 EXPO 2015?

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

Christmas Offerings Announced for Tokyo Disney Resort

posted on August 20th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Editorial Content Manager

Planning a trip abroad this holiday season? This year, Tokyo Disney Resort will host a variety of must-see holiday offerings from November 9-December 25, at Tokyo Disneyland Park, Tokyo DisneySea Park, and the three Disney hotels.


At Tokyo Disneyland, families will be able to enjoy a “Christmas Fantasy” celebration that this year is themed to “Christmas Storybooks.” Guests will come upon Christmas scenes starring their favorite Disney characters as if they’ve jumped right out of a storybook. The new daytime parade, “Disney Christmas Stories,” will also bring to life pages from Disney Christmas storybooks. There will also be big pop-up storybooks and other decorations around the park that depict Disney characters celebrating the holidays.


Christmas Offerings Announced for Tokyo Disney Resort 'Colors of Christmas' Returning to Tokyo DisneySea This Holiday Season

Tokyo DisneySea will celebrate “Christmas Wishes” with a new entertainment offering called “A Perfect Christmas,” which will feature the Disney characters sharing their dreams of Christmas. The nighttime “Colors of Christmas” will also return this year with its fantastically shining Christmas trees floating on the harbor waters. A signature Christmas tree decorated with snow crystals will appear in front of the luxury ocean liner, S.S. Columbia, and the Cape Cod area will feature a tree decorated by Duffy, ShellieMay and Gelatoni.

After dark, the park will also come alive with “Snow Crystal Illumination” in Waterfront Park at American Waterfront and “Fiesta de la Luz,” (“festival of lights”) at the Lost River Delta.

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Filed: Tokyo Disneyland

Disney Parks Attraction Poster Deluxe Calendar Returns for 2016

posted on August 18th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I’m excited to announce that the popular Disney Parks Attraction poster deluxe calendar is returning to select merchandise locations.


The oversized calendar for 2016 will include posters from Disney Theme Parks around the world including Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Tokyo Disney Resort, Disneyland Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland.

Each poster is suitable for display in a standard 12-inch by 18-inch frame, with perforations above and below each poster for easy removal after its calendar month. The posters were printed on acid-free and lignin-free paper.

You may recall we first introduced attraction poster calendars at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts in fall 2013. That calendar was inspired by the highly recommended “Poster Art of Disney Parks” by Walt Disney Imagineers Vanessa Hunt and Danny Handke as seen in this article. It also paved the way for several apparel items and home goods released in 2014. I’m beyond thrilled to see a new version complete with some of my favorite attractions including the WEDWay PeopleMover, Mickey Mouse Musical Revue and the festive Jingle Cruise in Adventureland.

This calendar (item number is 400009684599) will be found in select merchandise locations at Disney Parks, and will have a retail of $21.95. The calendar may be offered on our Disney Parks online store at a future date.

Which Disney Parks attraction poster is your favorite? Please share in the comments below.

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