Fireworks at Disneyland Park

Do You Want to Draw a Snowman? Learn How To Draw Olaf At Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on March 17th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Earlier today, we shared a look into the Animation Academy at The Magic of Disney Animation. Recently, a few characters from Disney’s “Frozen” were added into the rotation of Disney characters our character artists teach guests how to draw every day.

With the popularity of “Frozen” – which happens to be released on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack tomorrow, March 18 – it’s no surprise that Olaf has become one of the most requested characters at the experience. During our filming, character artist Brian James Fichtner was gracious enough to give us a step-by-step lesson on how to draw this lovable snowman-come-to-life. Grab a pencil, paper and check out the full tutorial below!

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World Resort

Learn to Draw Disney Characters at Animation Academy at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on March 17th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Disney’s Hollywood Studios will mark its 25th anniversary on May 1, 2014. I was lucky enough to visit the park during its opening year and remember being absolutely fascinated by it – especially The Magic of Disney Animation, where you could learn about the process of hand-drawn animation and see firsthand how films are created. Did you know that films like “Lilo & Stitch” and “Brother Bear” were created within this very building?

Today, guests can stop into the pavilion’s Animation Academy and learn how to draw a real Disney character from one of our character artists – and new characters are added to the artists’ repertoires all the time, most recently Anna, Elsa and Olaf from Disney’s “Frozen.” I recently stopped in to check it out. Take a look in the video below.

Oh, and be sure to check the Disney Parks Blog later today for a step-by-step tutorial on how to draw Olaf from “Frozen!”

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World Resort

Charming Treats for St. Patrick’s Day 2014 at Disney Parks

posted on March 15th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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With St. Patrick’s Day celebrations planned for both Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts, I visited one of our consumables locations to survey some of the yummy, holiday-themed treats they have made this year. You may recall that several of our merchandise locations contain a show kitchen, which is an on-stage kitchen where cast members make delicious goodies for all to see. This year, the cast members in the show kitchens have added a splash of green to some of their most popular items including Mickey Mouse-shaped cake pops and crispy treats.

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They also have created my favorite treat – pretzel rods covered in green sugar or sprinkles. The pretzel rods join sprinkle-covered or chocolate-dipped marshmallow wands.

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Finally, I spotted a Leprechaun-like candy apply complete with chocolate, green sugar and a marshmallow. Nearby, I found a character apple that resembles Kermit the Frog from The Muppets. I figured I’d include him in this story because he’s green (plus, I can’t wait for “Muppets Most Wanted” to be in theatres on March 21!)

If you are visiting Disney Parks during St Patrick’s Day, please stop by these locations:

Disneyland Resort

Walt Disney World Resort

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

Finish That Disney Parks Sign: Seeing Monsters at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on March 12th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week’s Disney Parks Sign can be found at the fun “Monsters, Inc.” meet and greet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Have you seen this sign recently? One word is blurred out here – what’s their full slogan? Tell us in the “Comments section below and we’ll update the post later today with the answer.
Can You Finish This Disney Parks Sign From the “Monsters, Inc.” Meet and Greet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Read the rest of this entry »

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New Muppets Merchandise Comes to Disney Parks

posted on March 5th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


I’m sure many of you have your favorite Muppets characters. Which one do I relate to the most? I don’t know – I love them all! However I may have a little “Animal” in me. So naturally, when I found out we were going to have new Muppets-themed products at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts I knew it was time to play the music and light the lights, because “Muppets Most Wanted” is opening soon.

There are T-shirts for kids and adults, both long sleeve and short sleeve as well a fleece, all featuring iconic characters, logos and humorous phrases. My top picks? Take a look!

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For those of you who are a bit more subtle in showing your Muppets side, consider one of our new mugs which will debut this April! These mugs feature a cast of characters, Dr. Bunsen Honeydew and Beeker (meep, meep) and of course, Kermit the Frog. I mean let’s be honest, is there a better way to start your day off than with a cup of coffee in a favorite mug? Other than maybe a breakfast prepared by Swedish Chef, of course.

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Want to nail a look so perfect even Miss Piggy would approve? Try one of the new nail polishes from “Muppets Most Wanted” 2014 Collection from OPI. Be sure to keep an eye out for it!

So where can you find some of these great new items? Look for them Studio Store in Disney California Adventure park and Stage 1 Company Store at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

If you can’t get enough Muppets, look for a special themed topiary at the 2014 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival this year. Tip: You can find it between the Italy and Germany pavilions.

If the Muppets theme song is now in your head … or you can’t wait to check out some of these great new offerings, well, than my job is done! I hope you love it all as much as I do.

Do do do do do, Mahna Mahna!

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

New Merchandise and ‘Rebel Rendezvous’ Event Coming to Star Wars Weekends 2014 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on February 28th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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One of my favorite events returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 16, 2014 – Star Wars Weekends! Today, I’m delighted to give you a first look at some of the new merchandise we’ve created for this year’s event. I also have some details about a new merchandise ticketed event coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 15, the day before Star Wars Weekends officially opens. I’ll share more about that event in a moment, but first let’s take a look at the new merchandise poster.

“This year’s merchandise poster contains a few nods to the upcoming Disney XD animated series ‘Star Wars Rebels,” explained Disney Design Group artist Tyler Dumas. “The color orange in the poster was inspired by the ‘Star Wars Rebels’ series’ logo, while the non-specific battle scene is supposed to take place between the events of Episode III and IV. This is similar to the storyline of the upcoming animated series. We also included a Star Speeder 1000 and R2-MK as tributes to Disney Parks.”

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This poster will be used on a variety of items including the ever popular Disney pins. The Disney pin team will also release a few other items like concept artwork cards with pins, a limited release mystery set and, my favorite, a Battle of Yavin lanyard with medal.

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The toy team created several new items this year including a limited edition figures set; a lenticular 1,000-piece puzzle; a Jabba the Hutt latex character; and a Queen Amidala and Princess Leia Deluxe Fashion Set.

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The limited release Vinylmation mystery series Star Wars: Series 4 will also debut during Star Wars Weekends. Look for a limited edition 9-inch and 3-inch figure set featuring the Rancor and his keeper this year.

To round out the preview, the arts and collectibles team have designed four medium-sized figures (Pluto dressed as an AT-AT is my favorite!).
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I promised some details about a merchandise ticketed event on Thursday, May 15. The “Rebel Rendezvous” will be held between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Attendees will receive exclusive access to Darth’s Mall one day before it opens to the public; a limited edition recruitment pack with items like a custom messenger bag, cadet hat, tumbler, lanyard, pin and medal set; preferential opportunity to purchase select 2014 Star Wars Weekends merchandise; and special meet and greet opportunities with characters and Disney artists.

Registration for the event will begin on March 4, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. EST at www.DisneyParksMerchandise.com, but you can visit the site now for additional details and restrictions. A catalog with additional merchandise images will be published on March 4.

May the Force Be With You!

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Walt Disney World Event Snapshot – March 2014

posted on February 26th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


March 5 – May 18: Looking to ‘grow’ your collection or ‘pick’ the perfect item from this year’s assortment of 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival merchandise? Now you can! Fellow author Steven Miller recently shared details about some of this year’s new merchandise, among other items. See what’s in bloom and be sure to keep an eye out because several of our beloved Disney artists will be on hand for special appearances and signings throughout the festival as well as during the Art in the Garden Weekend taking place Mar. 28 – 30. Tip: Passholders be sure to keep an eye out for special merchandise created just for you!

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March 5 – 9: Meet renowned artist Larry Dotson who will be appearing daily at Art of Disney in Epcot. Be sure to stop by and say hello as you check out some of his latest releases. Learn more.

March 12 – 16: Artist Greg McCullough will be appearing at Art of Disney in Epcot, Mar. 12 – 16 and Mar. 26 – 30, as we celebrate the release of some of his latest pieces. Learn more.

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March 15: Stop by Animation Gallery inside Disney’s Hollywood Studios for the limited edition release of “Off the Page – 25 Years,” which features Sorcerer Mickey as he conjures various images from “Fantasia,” and meet the artists from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. – 5 p.m. Learn more. Can’t make it to the event? Order yours now!

March 18: Mark your calendars for the DVD and Blu-Ray release of “Frozen” and “Saving Mr. Banks,” two of my personal favorites. More details on these releases will be available shortly, so keep watching the Disney Parks Blog.

March 21 – 26: David E. Doss will be appearing daily at The Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Stop in and find a new piece of art to add to your collection! Learn more.

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March 26 – 27: Are you a fan of Ridley Pearson? Are you ready for the release of “Kingdom Keepers VII: The Insider”? If your answer was yes, then be sure to check out all of the details on Ridley Pearson’s appearances and details on the last book in the beloved Kingdom Keepers series. Learn more.

Which artist showcase and event are you most excited to attend?

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The Rebel Alliance Adds Another Weekend to Star Wars Weekends 2014 in Response to a Decree Issued by the Evil Sith, Emperor Palpatine

posted on February 21st, 2014 by Gary Buchanan, Social Media Managing Editor


As the Rebel Alliance continues its fight for freedom and democracy in the Star Wars galaxy, the phantom puppetmaster himself, Darth Sidious (aka Emperor Palpatine), has issued a new galactic decree about Star Wars Weekends 2014 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

While some of his blue-hued holographic transmission was garbled, the Emperor has ordered his Galactic Empire to create a demonstration of force and power that can be seen high above Disney’s Hollywood Studios during Star Wars Weekends 2014. This has caused much talk in the galaxy that a gala fireworks show featuring Star Wars music will be presented each evening this year.

When consulted, several protocol droids further translated the Emperor’s message. These translations reinforced the conclusions that there will be a new evening experience for Star Wars Weekends guests on Hollywood Blvd. in the Walt Disney World Resort theme park.

However, that’s not the end of this story.

When the Rebel Alliance secretly learned of the Emperor’s plans from a hidden message decoded from an astromech droid, they decided to extend the galactic gala one more weekend in 2014.

In order to convince more guests to join the Rebellion, a 5th weekend is now being added to Star Wars Weekends 2014. The new event dates are every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 16-June 15, 2014. The theme for this year’s event is, appropriately, “Join the Rebellion.”

  • Weekend I: May 16 – 18, 2014
  • Weekend II: May 23 – 25, 2014
  • Weekend III: May 30 – June 1, 2014
  • Weekend IV: June 6 – 8, 2014
  • Weekend V: June 13 – 15, 2014

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In addition to offering a first-look at this year’s event logo above, we’re pleased to announce James Arnold Taylor will return to Star Wars Weekends 2014 as the event’s official celebrity host. Taylor, a Star Wars Weekends fan favorite, is the voice of hundreds of animated characters, including Obi-Wan Kenobi on “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.”

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This Week in Disney History: The Muppets Join the Disney Family

posted on February 20th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Today on the Disney Parks Blog, we’re celebrating one of the most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, Muppetational moments in Disney history – the 10th anniversary of the day when The Muppets officially joined the Disney family!

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Although Kermit, Miss Piggy and the rest of the gang were officially welcomed into Disney in 2004, the partnership between Disney Parks and The Muppets started years earlier, with a Muppet*Vision 3D attraction debuting at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort in 1991. The attraction was later added to Disney California Adventure park at Disneyland Resort in 2001.

Stay tuned for more Muppets coverage today!

Thanks to Jason “Tiki” Tackett for the special Disney Parks Blog logo.

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

Kingdom Keepers VII: The Insider Set To Debut at Disney Parks

posted on February 18th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Don’t miss your chance to meet acclaimed author Ridley Pearson, as we celebrate the release of his newest book, “Kingdom Keepers VII: The Insider,” the much-anticipated, final addition to the Kingdom Keepers saga. Ridley will be making special appearances on the following dates:

Walt Disney World Resort*:

Disneyland Resort:

  • March 29 – Disneyana, Disneyland park (10 a.m. – Noon)

Here’s a look at the cover as well as what you can expect from this new book:

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The Kingdom Keepers’ senior year in high school is almost over. For more than three years, things have been quiet. Their battles are long behind them, they agree, the threat to the Disney realm silenced albeit at great cost. But inside the catacombs of the Aztec temple where Finn Whitman faced down his nemesis, the monstrous Chernabog, a new threat brews.

Deception and betrayal rock the Kingdom Keepers as the merciless group of Disney villains known as the Overtakers stage an unexpected comeback. But a discovery by the Keepers provides them with one hope of victory-a lost icon. It was believed to be gone forever. The Keepers have one last chance to preserve the heart of the Kingdom-Disneyland-from a terrifying destruction decades in the making.

Be sure to visit DisneyParksMerchandise.com for event information, details on wristband distribution (where applicable) and more.

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort