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Walt Disney World Resort Event Snapshot – February 2015

posted on January 30th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


This February, fall in love with some of the latest releases debuting at Walt Disney World Resort!

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February 5 – 23: Meet representatives from Precious Moments Dolls at Once Upon A Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace as we celebrate the release of the Valentine’s themed collection. Or make a special stop February 20 – 22 and meet creator and designer Linda Rick. Learn more.

February 9 – 15: Artist Greg McCullough returns this month with special appearances and signings at Art of Disney in Epcot. Be sure to stop by and see what’s ‘in store’ for you! Learn more.

February 12 – 16: Meet renowned international artist Larry Dotson this month at The Art of Disney, Downtown Disney Marketplace and add a new piece to your collection. Learn more.

February 13: Drop in if you dare, as we celebrate Friday, the 13th with a special artist showcase featuring Brian Blackmore, Tyler Dumas, Quynh Kimball and Richard Terpstra from 4 – 6 p.m. at Tower Hotel Gifts at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, as we celebrate the release of some of their new pieces in the Hollywood Tower Hotel authentic collection. Keep an eye out, Steven Miller will be sharing more details on this new collection on the Disney Parks Blog in the coming weeks. Learn more.

February 19 – 22: Beloved artist David E. Doss will appear at Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace February 19 – 22 and again February 26 – March 1. Be sure to stop in and say hello! Learn more.

Which artist are you most excited to see?

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Filed: Art of Disney, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

Hollywood Tower Hotel Authentic Merchandise Drops Into Disney Parks on February 13, 2015

posted on January 26th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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Last summer, I gave you a first look at a new merchandise collection called “Hollywood Tower Hotel Authentic” that was inspired by the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror attraction at Disney Parks. Today, I’m excited to announce that this line will drop into Disney Parks starting Friday, February 13 (what a perfect day!). These new products will be found inside Tower Hotel Gifts in both Disney California Adventure park at Disneyland Resort and Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort. I recently visited the merchandise presentation offices at Disney’s Hollywood Studios where I found a display of several new items.

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The merchandise presentation team set up a display to show what Tower Hotel Gifts may look like when the product is set. They told me they will be making adjustments to props, fixtures and lighting in the shops to complement the new merchandise.

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Disney Design Group artists were inspired by the Haunted Mansion Authentic program released last year when designing this artwork. You will notice similar design elements such as the use of vintage advertisements. The Hollywood Tower Hotel logo was also included on several items that could have been sold in the hotel gift shop before that one stormy night long ago.

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I love the tote bag that looks like vintage luggage and the bellhop cap is perfect! I was glad to see the bell was updated with new artwork (you can see the difference in this story from July 2013).

Guests will also find new apparel items for adults and kids. My son will be beyond thrilled that there will be a kid’s T-shirt with a character from his favorite episode.

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In addition to apparel and other souvenirs, the Disney pin team will release some new open edition pins as part of this collection.

Finally, I invite you to meet some of the Disney Design Group artists behind this collection on Friday, February 13. This event will be held at Tower Hotel Gifts inside Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Disney Artists Tyler Dumas, Brian Blackmore, Richard Terpstra and Quynh Kimball are scheduled to attend.

The Twilight Zone® is a registered trademark of CBS, Inc. and used with permission pursuant to a license with CBS, Inc.

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

Learn to Draw Special Edition: ‘Frozen’ Voice Actor Josh Gad Tests His Skills at Drawing Olaf

posted on January 21st, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


One of the most popular videos we ever shared in our “Learn to Draw” series is a step-by-step tutorial on how to draw Olaf, the lovable snowman from “Frozen.”

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Check out what happens when actor Josh Gad, who voiced Olaf in the film, stops by The Magic of Disney Animation to test his own skills at drawing his animated friend. Josh, a Florida native, also shares what he loves about Disney Parks and talks about how it’s “surreal” to see “Frozen” characters added into the mix.



For previous animation tutorials on some of your favorite Disney characters, check out the list below:

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Spotlight on New Pins Coming to Disney Parks in 2015

posted on January 13th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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From new retail MagicBands to upcoming Orange Bird products, I’ve recently been sharing previews of items coming to Disney Parks in 2015. This time, I turn the spotlight on Disney pins, which are a fun way to show off your Disney Side when visiting Theme Parks and Resorts.

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For years, we’ve offered various “pin-of-the-month” collections, which have new pins released monthly (or sometimes quarterly) for guests to collect. This year, the “Best Friends” collection will contains two individual pins that are great for sharing with your best friend. The “Wonderfully Wicked” collection showcases some of the most famous Disney villains. Both of these monthly collections will be found in select locations at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.

Guests in Florida will find the “Shields of Fantasy” collection. These hinged pins open to reveal Disney
characters who reside in Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park.

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The “Piece of Disney History” collection returns this year. First introduced in 2005, these limited edition pins contain actual pieces of attractions, shows, or parades from Disney Parks. This year, we continue our “Piece of Disneyland Resort History” collection for guests in California, while guests in Florida will find a continuation of the “Piece of SpectroMagic history.”

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With the “Generation D” collection, we are counting down to the annual Disney Trading Event that will be held in September at Epcot in Walt Disney World Resort. Each of these 13 limited edition pins will have an edition size of 500 and will be released monthly.

We also have a few surprise pins planned including a collection featuring Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” for Disneyland Resort. When placed next to each other, the pins will form a complete picture. Guests in Florida will find pins celebrating the themed lands of the Magic Kingdom Park. Both of these pin collections will be released at random times throughout the year.

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Finally, if you are headed to Disney’s Hollywood Studios I invite you to stop by our newest Disney pin destination at Sunset Market Ranch on Sunset Boulevard. This location is now the main headquarters for all things pins inside the theme park.

As a reminder, new pins are typically released on Thursdays at Disney Parks. Look for one-sheets highlighting key pin releases toward the beginning of each month on the official Disney Pin Trading website – http://www.DisneyPins.com.

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

Replay Our Live Stream of The Walt Disney World Marathon

posted on January 11th, 2015 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


This is your chance to share in the excitement of a runDisney start and finish line. You can now watch a replay of your friends, family and thousands from around the world start and finish the Walt Disney World Marathon presented by Cigna. The 26.2-mile journey started just outside Epcot on Epcot Center Drive, and took runners through the Magic Kingdom, on the track of the Walt Disney World Speedway, through Animal Kingdom, ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Epcot, and finished in the shadow of Spaceship Earth outside Epcot.

Below is a choice of two live streams. The first includes the start line, multiple cameras and social media feeds. The second, an uninterrupted stream from the finish line.

You can join in the runDisney social media conversation by using #WDWMarathon.

For more information on the half marathon, marathon and other runDisney event weekends, visit runDisney.com.

Walt Disney World Marathon:

To view the full size version of the Walt Disney World Marathon, click here.

Walt Disney World Marathon Finish Line:

To view the full size version of the Walt Disney World Marathon Finish Line, click here.

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

‘Cinderella’ Sneak Peek and Golden Coach Coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on January 9th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Who else is getting excited to see Disney’s dazzling, live-action feature “Cinderella” when it comes out this spring? Well, for a limited time starting January 17, you can head to Disney’s Hollywood Studios for an exclusive preview of “Cinderella” at the park’s ABC Sound Studio. This special sneak peek will be presented through March 21.

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The original golden coach from the film is also on its way to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, where it will soon be on display outside the movie theater façade on Streets of America. There, you will have an opportunity to capture your own close-up with this stunning set piece from “Cinderella.” This one-of-a-kind, red carpet appearance of the coach will be available February 1 – April 11, 2015.

On New Year’s Eve, guests visiting Magic Kingdom Park were treated to a glimpse of the magical coach and other “Cinderella” surprises. Here’s a look at what happened when they discovered how “Midnight Changes Everything!”

Inspired by the classic fairy tale, “Cinderella” brings to life the timeless images from Disney’s 1950 animated masterpiece in a visually dazzling spectacle for a whole new generation. Directed by Academy Award-nominee Kenneth Branagh from a screenplay by Chris Weitz, the film stars Lily James in the title role, Richard Madden as the Prince, Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett as the infamous stepmother Lady Tremaine, and Academy Award-nominee Helena Bonham Carter as the Fairy Godmother.

“Cinderella” arrives in theaters March 13.

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Learn to Draw Mickey’s Pal, Pluto, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on January 8th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


I have to say that of the “Fab Five” Disney characters (Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Donald and Goofy), my favorite sidekick for Mickey Mouse of these has always been Pluto. This week, our Learn to Draw animation series continues with a lesson on how to draw one of Mickey’s best friends.



For previous animation tutorials on some of your favorite Disney characters, check out the list below:

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It’s a Pizza Planet Party: Actor Tim Allen Meets Buzz Lightyear at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on January 5th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Actor and comedian Tim Allen, who voiced Buzz Lightyear in the Disney•Pixar “Toy Story” series of animated films, recently stopped by Disney’s Hollywood Studios for a visit with his animated counterpart.

TIM ALLEN MEETS BUZZ LIGHTYEAR AT WALT DISNEY WORLD RESORT

Tim, who also starred on the hit TV series “Home Improvement” and in films like “The Santa Clause,” met Buzz on his recent New Year’s Eve trip to Walt Disney World Resort.

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

Book Spring/Summer Walt Disney World Vacations Now With Our Latest Offer

posted on January 5th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Considering a vacation at Walt Disney World Resort this spring or early in the summer? If so, now is the perfect time to book, as guests can save up to 30% off on stays at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels with our latest offer.

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Springtime at Walt Disney World Resort means the return of the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, Star Wars Weekends at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and so much more.

Vacations must be booked by March 28, and the trip must take place between March 2-June 15, 2015. Get more details on this offer – and learn how you can also upgrade to a package with a (minimum) 4-day park ticket and receive an additional ticket day free – by clicking here.


For more about visiting Walt Disney World Resort in 2015, visit the posts below:

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Fifteen Reasons to Visit Walt Disney World Resort in 2015

posted on January 1st, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


It’s a new year – do you have a Disney Parks vacation on your bucket list for 2015?

Whether it’s new dining experiences, sports milestones, holiday celebrations or the return of annual theme park festivals, there’s a lot to look forward to at Walt Disney World Resort in 2015. Here are 15 reasons you should consider planning a trip this year.

Trattoria al Forno Brings the Italian Countryside to Disney's BoardWalk

1. Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s Boardwalk – The newest Disney restaurant just opened its doors a few days ago. The menu features authentic Italian cuisine and wines – and is now an option on the Disney Dining Plan. Yum!

Exposition Park Opens for Disney Food Trucks at Downtown Disney

2. Exposition Park Food Trucks – While we’re on the topic of food, 2015 will give you time to check out the recently opened food trucks at Downtown Disney. This dedicated outdoor area also has live entertainment at night (subject to change, of course).

3. 2015 runDisney Races Are Off & Running - Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend will take place January 7-11. (Check out a sneak peek at the merchandise that will be sold at this year’s event here). Space is still available in the Kids Races!

4. Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto – This nightspot is based on the popular themed lounge at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, and is set to open here in spring. Trader Sam’s will offer tiki cocktails served in souvenir mugs, as well as smaller food offerings. Keep your eye on the Disney Parks Blog for more on this fun new location.

5. Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic – Soccer fans can get their kicks at the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic February 1-March 1 at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. In it, eight pro teams, including six Major League Soccer squads, will compete in 16 games.

PRINCESS HALF MARATHON AT DISNEY WORLD

6. Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Returns – This princess-themed weekend of running events returns to Walt Disney World February 19-22.

7. Starbucks to Open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – A new Starbucks location will open at the park in February, 2015. The new location, dubbed The Trolley Car Café, will be themed to a classic trolley car along Hollywood Boulevard and offer a unique experience for coffee lovers visiting the park.

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8. The Atlanta Braves Return For Spring Training – The Braves will return to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex for their 18th consecutive year of spring training. Tickets will be available through Ticketmaster by calling (800) 745-3000 or visiting ticketmaster.com, as well as at the sports complex box office.

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

9. The 22nd Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival: A Spring Tradition Returns March 4-May 17 – Character topiaries, home gardening seminars, floral displays and much more will return to the park’s festival in 2015.

10. Star Wars Weekends Returns – This annual event will return to delight fans of the Force and the Empire May 15 – June 14 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

11. “Tomorrowland” Debuts In Theaters May 22 – While it isn’t a theme park offering, how could any Disney Parks fan possibly miss out on seeing this one? AMC Downtown Disney 24 at Downtown Disney may be the perfect location. The trailer looks amazing!

12. Annual Events – 2015 means the return of our favorite annual events, including The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Parties, and more. Keep watching the Disney Parks Blog for news and dates on our 2015 special events.

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13. New Eats at Downtown Disney – The area continues to evolve into Disney Springs, and in 2015, The Landing, the first of four interconnected neighborhoods will open to guests. Keep your eye on the Disney Parks Blog for more dates and details on the openings of Morimoto Asia, THE BOATHOUSE and STK Orlando, three restaurants planned for the area, as they come available.

14. Another Year of #DisneySide Fun - Guests loved showing their Disney Side – that side each one of us has that isn’t afraid to have fun and show our silly sides – at our parks in 2014. This year we’ll continue the fun by encouraging all of you to show your Disney Side at our parks (and at home) throughout 2015.

15. Your Family Vacation – If this is the year for your family’s vacation to the Walt Disney World Resort, then there’s nothing to look forward to more than your family’s special time together. If you visit our parks in 2015, we hope you have a wonderful time.

Which event or new offering are you looking forward to most? Let us know in the “comments” section below.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Hotels & Resorts, Magic Kingdom, Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World Resort