Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland Park

Festival of the Masters Update

posted on August 20th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


If you’ve been to Downtown Disney or read our Blog lately, you know changes are coming. The area is undergoing the largest expansion in its history. As we prepare for Disney Springs, much of the area that traditionally houses the Festival of the Masters is unavailable due to expansion work and unfortunately we will not be able to host the event.

We appreciate the enthusiastic support we’ve received from the arts community, both locally and nationally, which has contributed to the long-running success of the Festival. Walt Disney World Resort is a strong supporter of the arts and we remain committed to nurturing the arts.

We ask for your patience and understanding during this time of growth and look forward to building new memories with you at Disney Springs.

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A Beautiful Day to Debut a New Bridge and Boat Dock at Downtown Disney

posted on August 19th, 2014 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


Ninety degrees, clear blue skies and the sort of fluffy white clouds you see in magazine advertisements – it was a perfect morning to officially open the new Marketplace Boat Dock and Saratoga Bridge at Downtown Disney Marketplace.

Earlier today, I joined Vice President of Downtown Disney, Keith Bradford, along with cast members and guests who had gathered to celebrate the milestone- one of many that will ultimately take place as the property undergoes the largest expansion in its history, as it transforms to Disney Springs.
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The newly-opened bridge offers a pedestrian-friendly connection between Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa and more than 70 shopping, dining and entertainment offerings available at Downtown Disney. In addition, the Marketplace Boat Dock, now conveniently located near the Marketplace Bus Loop, provides easy access to the West Side and Pleasure Island. Guests aboard the complimentary water taxi may even learn more about what’s on the horizon (literally!) as they travel from district-to-district.

One of my favorite views of Downtown Disney is from this new vantage point; with a view of the entire complex, it’s a great reminder of how much there is to see and do (which, I’ll admit, I sometimes take for granted, since I’m here every day)!
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Want to experience it for yourself? The Marketplace Boat Dock operates daily starting at 10:30 a.m., weather permitting. Take a ride, then let me know what you think in the comments below!


For more on Disney Springs at Walt Disney World Resort, read the posts below:

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All in the Details: Imagineers Unveil the Storyline of Disney Springs

posted on August 19th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


How does Walt Disney Imagineering re-imagine an area of Walt Disney World Resort that guests have enjoyed for more than 40 years?

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That’s the creative challenge our Imagineering team, including Executive Creative Director Theron Skees, has been tasked with – to transform the area currently known as Downtown Disney into Disney Springs, a destination that’s being expanded to include more than 150 shopping, dining and entertainment experiences. From an Imagineering perspective, this means developing a storyline and creating a sense of time and place that influences everything from the architecture to the costumes.

We were also excited to share that our Imagineers will continue to share updates here in our “All in the Details” series in the coming months as their work progresses. Here’s the first piece, in which Theron introduces the Disney Springs project and Imagineering’s role in it.

The first “neighborhood” in Disney Springs – the opening of The Landing – is set for 2015. Construction on Disney Springs will continue into 2016, so be sure to stay tuned to the Disney Parks Blog for more behind-the-scenes looks at the progress happening as Downtown Disney transforms into Disney Springs.


For more about Disney Springs, visit the stories below:

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Top Stories, Walt Disney World Resort

Elsa & Anna’s Boutique and More Thrilling Transformations Coming to the Disneyland Resort

posted on August 19th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Like Olaf, I’m a big fan of summer. However, like you, I also enjoy experiencing “Frozen” fun all year long. That’s why I’m thrilled to announce the introduction of the newest location to the Downtown Disney District, Elsa & Anna’s Boutique. Currently home to Studio Disney 365, this location will undergo a transformation starting September 2, and will re-open in mid-September. I’ll be back soon with details on the new transformations, inspired by beloved characters like Anna, Elsa and Olaf, as well as details on some of the product offerings that will be available. In the meantime, here’s a look at the art for the logo that will grace this “cool” new location.

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Here are a few other things to prepare your crew for if you are planning to visit the Disneyland Resort this Halloween. Set sail in the direction of Halloween Carnival at Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree from September 12 through October 31! Here, a world of themed offerings await you, including special Halloween entertainment and activities, pumpkin carvers, yummy treats and the return of The Pirates League. Recruits three and older can chart their own course, choosing from a selection of pirate-inspired looks that are both swashbuckling and spooky.

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Now, Halloween Time wouldn’t be same without a little help from our Fairy Godmother, or in our case our Fairy Godmothers-in-Training at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. Keeping with their simply sweet tradition, we welcome back the Halloween Minnie Mouse-inspired transformation through October 31. Just a quick reminder, transformations at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique in Fantasyland at Disneyland park are only for our younger fans, ages 3 – 12 years. Quick Tip: Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique will offer extended operating hours on Mickey’s Halloween Party nights for any Trick-or-Treaters in need of a royal transformation.

So if you are planning a visit to the Disneyland Resort to take part in some of these festive Halloween Time experiences through October 31, or if you can’t wait to check out the newly-transformed Elsa & Anna’s Boutique and take part in new experiences they will have to offer, call 714-781-STYLE (7895).

For those of you planning a trip to the Walt Disney World Resort this Fall, be sure to make your appointments for Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique at Magic Kingdom park or World of Disney Store in the Downtown Disney Marketplace, as Halloween packages will go fast. If you ‘arrgh’ hoping to take part in The Pirates League at Magic Kingdom park, chart your course now. Call 407-WDW-STYLE (7895) today!

Reminder: Separate theme park admission is required for transformations venues located inside Disney Theme Parks.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Downtown Disney District, Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Colorful Visit to Zoey & Pickles at the Marketplace Co-Op in Downtown Disney Marketplace

posted on August 19th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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The Marketplace Co-Op has been open in Downtown Disney Marketplace at Walt Disney World Resort for a few months now. I’ve loved hearing from guests about their visits to this exciting new location that serves as a testing space for new retail shop concepts, products and guest experiences. With fall approaching fast, I recently visited Zoey & Pickles, which is one of the boutiques found inside this location. The merchandising team recently reset the location to create a colorful new display.

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Zoey & Pickles is a girls’ destination that contains the latest trends and glamour for the up-and-coming fashionista. The boutique carries a variety of apparel items and accessories that were created especially for the shop. The thing I noticed immediately is that everything in the shop is now organized by color (it’s exactly how I organize my closet at home). The merchandising team said they made the change so guests could easily find their favorite colors to create fun outfits.

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Colorful shoes are one of those unique items that were specifically made for the location. They range from sandals to flats to sequin–covered high tops. In addition to the giant wall of shoes, the teams added select shoes to the various wall displays. That small addition makes it easier to find the perfect shoe to complement an outfit.

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The shop carries a few different items with characters like Tinker Bell or Buttercup from Disney•Pixar’s “Toy Story 3.” You’ll also find a variety of products featuring Mickey and Minnie Mouse. My favorite items in the shop are the shirts that contain power words as seen in the first image of this story. I encourage my daughter to live her life with those simple words – be kind, be magical, and be beautiful.


For more about the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney, visit the stories below:

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Heading to Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World? Don’t Miss These Navigation Tips

posted on August 15th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


We recently shared some exciting updates about enhancements coming to Downtown Disney as the area expands and transforms into Disney Springs, which when complete, will double the area’s number of dining and retail options. Work is already underway to widen Buena Vista Drive which will eventually make it easier to access the area. As expansion work continues through 2016, here are some of our best tips for navigating the property during this time so you can continue to enjoy all of the shopping, dining and entertainment options that Downtown Disney has to offer.

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  • Use Complimentary Resort Transportation – Disney resorts offer complimentary bus transportation to Downtown Disney, which drops guests off at the Marketplace end. Watercraft transportation is also available from Disney’s Port Orleans Resorts, Disney’s Old Key West Resort and Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort. Once at Downtown Disney, all guests can use boat transportation to travel between the Marketplace, West Side and Pleasure Island districts.
  • Follow Parking Signs For The Best Access – If driving, follow the lighted signs to available parking lots, including those at the Casting and Team Disney buildings located across the street.
  • Take Exit 67 on I-4 – If you’re arriving via I-4, take exit 67 to approach Downtown Disney from another direction and continue to follow signs for parking.
  • Arrive Early For Scheduled Entertainment & Dining Reservations – Have a reservation or tickets to a show? Be sure to allow extra time for parking; we’d suggest arriving at least an hour early. Most ticketed experiences at Downtown Disney take place at Downtown Disney West Side, so parking in the Team Disney parking lot is your best bet for those.
  • Valet Parking Is Available – Based on guest feedback, we now have two locations for interested guests to choose from. Valet Parking is available from 10 a.m.-1 a.m. at the Marketplace (via entrance 2) and from 2:30 p.m.-2:00 a.m. on the West Side (via entrance 3). The cost is $20 per vehicle.

Be sure to keep your eye on the Disney Parks Blog for future updates as the Disney Springs transformation continues!

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Plan Ahead for 3rd Annual ‘Great Irish Hooley’ August 29-September 1 at Downtown Disney

posted on August 12th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


What a perfect way to celebrate Labor Day all weekend long – the annual Great Irish Hooley music festival rocks the house at Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant in Downtown Disney.

A “hooley” is a traditional Irish social celebration, and this one combines live music, cool step dancing (you can even learn a few steps) and authentic tastes for a trifecta of fun all in one convivial spot.

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Live music begins at 4 p.m. Friday, August 29, and at noon Saturday, August 30 through Monday, September 1 and continues throughout each day and night. This year’s Hooley band lineup includes:

Scythian- A headliner on the Celtic festival circuit and equally at home in rock venues – the band will release a fan-funded album, “Jump at the Sun,” this month.

The Raglan Rebels- Ireland’s best up-and-coming young band with traditional and modern songs and ballads.

Drops of Green- An exciting new ballad group from the heart of Ireland.

The Brayzen Heads- A popular duo on guitar and banjo playing Raglan Road regularly.

The West Coast Trio- From Connemara, playing traditional and contemporary Irish songs on accordion, flute and guitar with plenty of reels and jigs.

Just tap your toes to the music or get up and dance – from Saturday to Monday there will be free workshops, “From Our Roots to Riverdance,” led by renowned Irish dancer and choreographer Ronan McCormack of the original Riverdance cast. Or try a little “ceili” (kay-lee), a precursor to line dancing, with the award-winning Raglan Road Dancers. The complete entertainment schedule is at www.raglanroad.com.

Of course we think the authentic Irish cuisine at Raglan Road is the best part of this Hooley. Go for classics like beer-battered fish and chips or shepherd’s pie, or try something more contemporary like their butternut squash risotto with shiitake mushrooms, arugula and Parmesan. They also offer gluten-free options (including fish and chips).

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We know we’ll be there for an early (8:30 a.m.) brunch on August 30, when big-screen TVs will be tuned to the University of Central Florida-Penn State Croke Park Classic football season opener taking place in Dublin, Ireland. Start the game with a Guinness, signature Bloody Mary or other favorite morning brew or beverage. Brunch guests can tuck into the chef’s Full Irish Breakfast featuring sausage, black and white pudding, bacon, roasted tomato, mushrooms and fried eggs with potato “roasties.” Smoked salmon omelette and pancakes with crème fraiche, maple syrup and berry compote also are on the menu. Hooley music begins right after.

For reservations, call 407-938-0300.

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New Alex and Ani Disney Bracelets Make Two Seasons Collide at Disney Parks

posted on August 11th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Those of you who visit the Disneyland Resort every holiday season know what happens when holidays collide – in two words … Jack Skellington. So it should be no surprise to find one of our favorite Halloweentown characters on our Alex and Ani bangles.

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So treat yourself, as this is no trick, and get ready for Halloween a little early this year. Look for the new Jack Skellington bangle starting today at the following Disney Parks locations or online.

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Walt Disney World Resort

Online – Shop Now!

So what comes after fall and Halloween? Winter of course! Just like Elsa, the cold never bothered me anyway, and these “Frozen”-inspired bangles, featuring Anna and Elsa are bound to be hot! Look for them in stores and online beginning September 8.

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Keep watching the Disney Parks Blog and follow us on across our Disney Parks social channels for more details on these new arrivals.

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

First Look at the Beautifully Disney Tangled Web Collection at Disney Parks

posted on August 6th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


This delightfully dark seventh collection from Beautifully Disney arrives at Disney Parks on August 9. Paying homage to those vivacious villains who have a flair for the dark side, you’ll be sure to find Tangled Web simply sinister.

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Look for new favorites from our collection of lightweight lip glosses, including De-Vil-icious, Heartless, Eternally Yours and Mistress of Darkness. With its sheer coverage, it’s easy to see why these lip glosses are perennial favorites among princesses and villains alike. As for our mini lipstick set, you’ll find that these pigmented and creamy formulations are a bit more wicked than anything we’ve offered before. The names of these devilishly delicious new colors, how about … Diablo, Vengeance, Bitter Much? and Sinister.

The six new shades of eye shadows in the Tangled Web palette let you create a sinfully smoky eye with ease, especially with the help of the two-in-one brush sets. Every girl has their own beauty trick – with the new synthetic 2-in-1 brush set, you’ll have six. Apply foundation, blush and highlight with ease, then complete your look using the lip, smudge and crease brush heads. Tip: Each brush features two complimentary tips that interlock to form one brush, making it versatile for easy on the go travel.

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Even villainous beauties need some help now and then when they’re on the run. Try one – or several – of the Tangled Web nail appliqués for a fresh new look. Certainly if time is on your side, “‘polish” off your look with a chrome or glittery design from our nail polish collection.

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If you really want to show your devious Disney Side, I recommend the Eye Defining Gel Liner Set. Quick drying and long wearing, these three haunting hues won’t smudge. If you really want to vamp it up, the Femme Royale Eye Lash Set, perfect for day or night, will let you take your look to the next level.

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the fairest of them all? Adding to the lineup of criminally charming and fiendishly functional accessories, is a hand vanity mirror. It may look like a normal hand mirror, but below its baroque exterior lies a folding handle that allows it to prop itself up on any flat surface. Now you can use both hands to fix your make-up and admire the results with just one. Look for the mirror to debut in late summer.

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Now that I have cast a spell over you with this new collection, don’t miss out on special launch events taking place at the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts on August 9.

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Disney Vault 28, Downtown Disney District (5 – 7 p.m.)

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Marketplace Co – Op, Downtown Disney Marketplace (Throughout the day)

Not able to make it to our Disney Parks? Shop Online for this collection in late August.

Isn’t Tangled Web positively evil? Just wait until you see what “materializes” from Beautifully Disney in September. I’m digging up details now.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Downtown Disney District, Walt Disney World Resort

Find the Perfect Look for Halloween at the Disneyland Resort

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


I know summer isn’t quite over yet and I don’t want to be the one to rush things, but Halloween is just around the corner, which means it’s time to start planning your costume! It’s never too early.

Not sure where to start? Consider me your “Costume Consultant.”

I personally think our Disney Princess costumes are quite dazzling. Each gown has been replicated in fine detail, appearing almost identical to those worn by some of Disney’s finest royalty. Don’t be afraid to add a tiara, wand, gloves or other accessories to complete the look.

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Find something that puts you ‘heads’ or ‘tails’ above the rest. There’s certainly no shortage of ear hats or novelty headwear at Disney Parks. Find the one that suits you the best, and show your true ‘character.’ Kids and kids-at-heart, keep an eye out for one of this year’s hottest costume accessories, Disney Tails. Keep an eye out for ‘tails’ inspired by the Cheshire Cat, Marie, Tigger and Sulley in the coming weeks. As you can see on a recent visit to our Disney Theme Parks Merchandise east coast office, I found fellow Disney Parks Blog author Steven Miller, having a ‘monster’ous good time lurking about in search of new information to share with all of you.

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If your little crewmates ‘arrggh’ ready to find their costumes and it’s adventure that they seek, some additional choices include Jack Sparrow and the Boney Pirate. For your Space Ranger, Buzz Lightyear.

Quick Tip: If you are planning a visit to the Disneyland Resort during the Halloween season or specifically for Mickey’s Halloween Party, be sure to book an appointment for a royal transformation at Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or aboard the returning Pirates League.

Are you looking for something a little bit more subtle? This year, I think I’m going to take my inspiration from a recent post about DisneyBounding that my friend and fellow Disney Parks Blog Author, Erin Glover shared as part of the Rock Your Disney Side 24-Hour Event. Create a costume and express your love for Disney through fashion. Not only will you create a trendy, new outfit with clothes you can find in your closet of favorites, but you can also subtly resemble your favorite Disney character.

So where are the best places to find the perfect kids costumes, accoutrements and accessories at the Disneyland Resort?

Halloween Costume stops include:

Those of you located nearer to the Walt Disney World Resort, don’t despair. Here are a few locations for you to check out as well.

Are you ready to trick or treat?

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