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Walt Disney World Event Snapshot: March 2015

posted on February 28th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Spring is in the air! See what’s happening this March at the Walt Disney World Resort!

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March 2 – 8: Artist Greg McCullough returns this month with special appearances and signings at Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace, March 2 – 8 and 18 – 22. Stop by and find a new piece of art to add to your collection! Learn more.

March 4 – 8: Renowned international artist Larry Dotson is set to appear this month at Epcot. Find him, March 4 – 8 at Art of Disney and March 27 – 29 at Puffins Roost in the Norway Pavilion. Learn more.

March 4 – May 17: Commemorative Epcot International Flower & Garden Merchandise will be in full bloom, beginning March 4! Visit the Festival Center, open Friday through Sunday, or the bridge kiosk at the entrance of World Showcase and find special treasures to help grow your collection. Tip: Check out special artist appearances and chef demonstrations as well as festival showcases. Learn more.

March 6: Meet author and Major League Baseball Legend, Cal Ripken, Jr. Cal will be on hand for a special appearance and signing of his newest book Out at Home at Champion Stadium at ESPN Wide World of Sports during the 2nd inning of the Atlanta Braves Spring Training game. Please note, a game ticket is required to attend this signing. Learn more.

March 6 – 7: Join us as we celebrate the opening of WonderGround Gallery at Marketplace Co-Op in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Take part in a special artist showcase and signing from 1 – 3:30 p.m. with Michael Lewis Glover and Jerrod Maruyama and 5 – 7:30 p.m. with Jasmine Becket-Griffith and Robert Jimenez. Learn more.

March 8: Disney artist Jerrod Maruyama will be on hand for a signing of his Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival inspired piece Spring Has Sprung at the Festival Center from 11a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1 – 2p.m. Learn more.

March 12: Something ‘charm’ing awaits you from the Disney Parks Collection │PANDORA. What you ask? Keep watching, fellow author Steven Miller will have all the details.

March 13: Pick up a copy of Lee Cockerell’s newest book, Time Management Magic at Art of Disney in the Downtown Disney Marketplace. Watch DisneyParksMerchandise.com for more information regarding this event, including signing times.

March 13 – 15: Precious moments doll designer and artist Linda Rick will be on hand for special appearances and signings throughout the day at Heritage Manor at the American Adventure Pavilion in Epcot, as we celebrate the release of her Spring collection. Linda will also appear March 20 – 22. Not able to make it? No problem! Representatives from Precious Moments Dolls will be on hand March 12 – April 12 at Heritage Manor at the American Adventure Pavilion in Epcot and March 12 – April 27 at Once Upon A Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Learn more.

March 25 – 26: Are you a fan of Ridley Pearson? Be among the first to pick up two of his newest releases, Kingdom Keepers: The Return: Book 1: Disney Lands and The Syndrome: A Kingdom Keepers Adventure. Meet Ridley, March 25 from 4 – 6 p.m. at Once Upon A Toy at Downtown Disney Marketplace or March 26 from 9 – 11a.m. at Writer’s Stop in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Learn more. Tip: Wristbands will be distributed to Guests at store open on the day of the signing with each purchase of a book by Ridley Pearson. A wristband from the appearance location is required to meet Ridley Pearson and allows the guest to get two books signed. A limited number of wristbands will be available the day of the signing. Once the wristbands have been distributed, the line to meet Ridley Pearson will close.

March 27 – 29: Celebrate Art in the Garden with us and take part in special artist appearances and signings with David E. Doss and Greg McCullough from 11a.m. – 7p.m. throughout the weekend at the entrance to World Showcase. Watch DisneyParksMerchandise.com to learn more.

March 27 – April 5: We have ‘egg’-citing news. Check out this post on the Disney Parks Blog.

March 28: Add the limited edition hand-painted Ink & Paint cel ‘A Dapper Day in the Parks’ featuring Mickey Mouse looking his best aboard the Main Street Trolley! Ink & Paint artists will be on hand for a special signing from 10 a.m. – 1p.m. and 2p.m. – 5p.m. at Animation Gallery in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Note: The cel will be available in a variety of formats including Unframed; Framed, Framed Cel with Postcard and Framed Cel with Postcard and Pin. Learn more.

Not able to make it? Take advantage of a special pre-purchase opportunity now through March 26 at 5p.m. Eastern. Of course, applicable tax and shipping fees apply. Order now!

Which artists are you most excited to see?

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New Locations Join The Landing at Disney Springs in February 2015

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


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Signs of the future are springing up across Downtown Disney this month at Walt Disney World Resort as the area transforms into Disney Springs. Several new retail locations have opened in area to be known as The Landing. Once complete, The Landing will be home to memorable dining such as STK, Morimoto Asia and The BOATHOUSE and unique boutique shopping. Here is a brief look at these newest additions.

The Art of Shaving at The Landing at Downtown Disney Apex by Sunglass Hut at The Landing at Downtown Disney Chapel Hats at The Landing at Downtown Disney

The Art of Shaving – offers premium grooming essentials for the modern man. The location also has a team of shaving specialists who offer advice to guests on proper grooming techniques. Appointments for a haircut or shave are suggested.

Apex by Sunglass Hut – designed with the athlete, sports and outdoor enthusiast in mind, this shop utilizes innovative technology, such as the Apex Smart Mirror, to help guests find the best choice in sport sunglasses.

Chapel Hats – specializes in fashionable hats and headwear for guests of all ages. The location carries just about any style of hat including fedoras, sun hats, floppy hats, outdoors hats, kid’s hats and more.

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Sanuk – creatively inspired footwear designed with non-traditional materials like yoga-mats.

Havaianas – offering “Make Your Own Havaianas” and “Embellish Your Own Havaianas,” this store features a large assortment of Havaianas sandals for women, men and children, plus kids’ rain boots.

Sound Lion – the latest technology in headphones, earbuds, speakers, and other digital sound and music products can be found in this shop. They also provide education in digital music applications that improve the listening lifestyle.

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Erin Mckenna’s Bakery NYC – this location will offer the same unsurpassed core vegan, gluten-free menu as its flagship bakery in New York City, and its sister bakery in Los Angeles. Look for a full selection of award-winning donuts, cupcakes, cookies, bagels (with vegan butter!), and other savory items daily.

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New Items from Disney Parks Collection by Vera Bradley Arriving This Spring at Disney Parks

posted on February 25th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I’m excited to share with you a first look at new items from the Disney Parks Collection by Vera Bradley arriving this spring at Disney Parks.

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The first of these new items include fuchsia-colored, Microfiber handbags that have a nod to Mickey Mouse. The styles being released include a mini-Hipster, tote, all-in-one Crossbody, and a triple-zip Hipster.

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These Mickey Mouse-themed, Microfiber handbags will also be offered in black, and will have the same styles as their fuchsia counterparts.

Look for these items starting February 27 at Cherry Tree Lane in the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida, and in multiple locations at Disneyland Resort in California. Please note that the black tote will be arriving at a future date.

These items will also be carried online starting in March at http://www.DisneyStore.com/VeraBradley.

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Finally, the items I’m most excited about are the Laser-Cut bags with Mickey Mouse icons. I recall the day I first saw them at Disney Theme Park Merchandise headquarters. I rushed over to the category planner’s office to get a first look as she told me that I’d love them. She was correct; I loved the hidden Mickeys cut into the bags designs as it was something I had not seen before. While I don’t have a confirmed release date, I couldn’t resist giving you a sneak preview because they look really sharp!

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WonderGround Gallery to Expand in Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace This March

posted on February 24th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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Last summer, we opened the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida. This flexible space location serves as a testing ground for new retail shop concepts, products and guest experiences. Shortly after it opened in June 2014, we added a small fixture that featured products from the WonderGround Gallery at Downtown Disney District in California. Today, I’m excited to announce that the WonderGround Gallery will be expanding beginning in early March 2015.

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To celebrate this newest addition, I invite you to attend a grand opening event on March 6-7. We will have a few artists making appearances both days including Jasmine Beckett Griffith, Robert Jimenez and Jerrod Maruyama.

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Moving into WonderGround Gallery’s former space is The Sign Shop, which will carry an assortment of Disney Parks-inspired signs similar to ones offered at Disney Centerpiece and at select Art of Disney locations. We will release some new items including a Hollywood Tower Hotel sign by Disney Design Group Artist Richard Terpstra, a mermaid image by Tony Harris, and some unique photography pieces by Michael Lewis Glover (he will also be attending the grand opening weekend).

I hope to see you there!

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New Menu Items Coming to Downtown Disney Food Trucks

posted on February 24th, 2015 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


The fleet of Disney Food Trucks may have settled into their new home, Exposition Park at Downtown Disney West Side, but their menus continue to evolve.

Superstar Catering, the food truck inspired by Disney’s Hollywood Studios, is getting a brand-new menu. Look for a pork shank served with Gruyere macaroni and cheese and a sausage and caramelized onion flatbread. My favorite on the menu? ‘A Taste of Hollywood Studios,’ which features samplings of the BLT Soup from Sci-Fi Dine-In Restaurant and the Famous Cobb Salad and mini grapefruit cake from The Hollywood Brown Derby.

Game Day Chicken and Waffles

On the Fantasy Fare food truck, look for Game Day Chicken and Waffles — Buffalo-style chicken with Sriracha maple and blue cheese sauce, served with cornbread waffles. Also new to the lineup: sweet potato puffs topped with marshmallow cream and candied pecans; these tasty bites are not to be missed. In addition to these goodies, the classic hand-dipped corndog and grilled ham and cheese sandwiches are now served with waffle fries.

Have you visited the Disney Food Trucks at Exposition Park yet? Which is your favorite? Tell us in the comments below.

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Celebrate ‘Mike & Mike’ Turning 15 at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 24th, 2015 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


Guess who is turning 15 years old? Well, ESPN personalities Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic are both a little older than that, but their widely popular radio show is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year at Walt Disney World Resort and guests can celebrate with them.

The Mike & Mike show which airs nationally on ESPN2, ESPN Radio and ESPNRadio.com, will broadcast live from the Waterside Stage at Downtown Disney Marketplace on Friday, March 6 from 6 a.m.- 10 a.m. Guests are invited to join the festivities and be a part of the live audience.

Celebrate 'Mike & Mike' Turning 15 at Disney

There will be some special surprises in store and seating is limited, so it’s probably best to arrive by 5 a.m. There will be a check in location between World of Disney store and the Ghirardelli Ice Cream & Chocolate Shop. Parking is available in the Hess Station parking lot across from the Marketplace. Starbucks at Downtown Disney will be open early for breakfast.

If you can’t make it out here that morning, you can always catch the Mike & Mike show on ESPN Radio, ESPNRadio.com, the ESPN Radio mobile app and on ESPN2 from Monday through Friday at 6 am ET. Follow the 15th anniversary broadcast on Twitter at #MM15 and #ESPNatDisney.

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New Tastes on Menu at Raglan Road Just in Time for St. Paddy’s

posted on February 23rd, 2015 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Hard to believe it’s been nearly 10 years since Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant opened its doors at Downtown Disney, and the food just keeps getting better. Under the creative eye of Irish Master Chef Kevin Dundon, the kitchen with Chef Heberto Segura continues to shine a spotlight on the very best of Irish food and drink with a focus on seasonal ingredients.

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The spring menu debuts just in time for the Mighty St. Patrick’s Festival March 13-17 (for more info about live music, Irish dance, face painting and other activities, go to www.raglanroad.com).

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We got a taste of the new dishes and craft cocktails, starting with the Rollicking Raglan Weekend Brunch (10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays). Each brunch starts with a complimentary sip of Suave Smoothie, a new seasonal drink with fresh fruit and honey yogurt. Heartier is the Pork Hash Tagged, a generous plate of potato hash with bits of crispy braised pork belly topped with fried eggs and a dollop of shallot puree. Heartiest is Ellis Isle Steak ‘n Eggs, featuring a grilled New York strip steak, roast potatoes and poached eggs that are fried and battered for a whole new taste sensation. If you prefer light, go for the Smoked Salmon Potato Cakes with beautiful smoked salmon atop thin potato cakes (made with mashed potatoes) with crème fraiche and a drizzle of caper dill vinaigrette. A beautiful Irish farmhouse cheese platter rounds out the brunch additions.

Three new items join the lunch and dinner menus. Cod Cornucopia stars perfectly pan-roasted cod with crispy skin atop warm potato salad and a drizzle of chorizo vinaigrette. (Fish is flown in three times a week from Boston, according to Chef Heberto.) Proud Pork is a generous grilled chop with traditional colcannon potato mash with cabbage, buttermilk and onion. The cider port jus took the chops over the top. The table favorite was the Double Joint, a cowboy cut rib-eye steak served with duck fat fries, roast veggies and a lightly dressed salad. Add béarnaise or red wine jus, both served on the side.

New cocktails compete with popular Irish beers and whiskies, all made with cold-pressed organic juices for delightful sipping: grapefruit gin and tonic; Strawberry Fields with Prosecco and vodka (brunch only); Ginger Mojito; Smoking Margarita with tequila and Irish whiskey are just a few gems.

Raglan Road is a true slice of Ireland in a lovely setting with antique bars and Irish antiques, and live Irish music nightly. For reservations, call 407-938-0300.

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Happy National Margarita Day!

posted on February 21st, 2015 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


With National Margarita Day just around the corner on February 22, I wanted to share some of my favorite unique margaritas across Walt Disney World Resort.

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At Disney’s Hollywood Studios, head over to The Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge, where you can enjoy the ‘Citizens Take Flight’ tasting of three margaritas on the charming patio. These sips have character! Sample Bucky Greenhorn’s Derby Margarita, Melivan Macheezmo’s Mango Margarita, and Ready Freddy Fiddlesticks Pomegranate Margarita.

While Cava del Tequila will be a popular spot on National Margarita Day, I enjoy gazing out at World Showcase lagoon at La Hacienda de San Angel while sipping on an Orange Mango Fire Margarita, premium silver agave tequila, ginger liqueur, orange juice, mango puree, fresh lime juice and a hint of Tabasco sauce, served on the rocks with a Tajin chili powder rim. Another delightful take on the margarita is the Italian Margarita found at Gelati in the Italy Pavilion, crafted with frozen limoncello and grappa.

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Parks aren’t the only places you can find one of these satisfyingly sour sips, pick up a drink at BoardWalk Joe’s Marvelous Margaritas for a leisurely stroll around the BoardWalk on a hot day.

Relax after a day in the parks at Rix Lounge at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Their Margarita Flight lets guests sample their five handcrafted margaritas: mango blueberry basil, classic, hibiscus, pineapple and jalapeno.

At Whispering Canyon Cafe, you can sip on a Moonshine Margarita made with Troy & Sons Platinum Moonshine, St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur, fresh lime juice and agave nectar topped with soda water.

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Across property, try the Grand Margarita, with Jose Cuervo Gold Tequila, Grand Marnier, fresh lime juice and sweet-and sour, available at most pool bars. Another popular sip is the Habañero Lime Margarita, on the menu at several lounges and restaurants.

In the “spirit” of National Margarita Day: Coming this spring, look for a new place to enjoy an adult beverage while watching the sunset at Downtown Disney Marketplace.

How will you celebrate National Margarita Day?

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Cross the Finish Line & Race to the ‘Happily Ever After Party’ at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 19th, 2015 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


The Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend presented by Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, is almost here and at Downtown Disney, we’re already prepping for the post-race fun of the “Happily Ever After Party” taking place this Sunday, February 22 from 2:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. at Downtown Disney Marketplace. Whether runDisney athletes complete a 5K, 10K or 13.1 magical miles, this is the way to celebrate a race well run!

Having participated in several runDisney events, I know how much hard work and training it takes to get to the finish line. I totally believe in rewarding yourself for a great accomplishment, so here’s my advice to runners: don’t miss this party!

Indulge in Great Food at the Downtown Disney Food Trucks Grab runDisney Merchandise at D-Tech on Demand at Marketplace Co-Op Grab runDisney Merchandise at Downtown Disney

Here, you’ll have the chance to:

  • Indulge in Great Food – We’ll have one of the Disney Food Trucks on hand; show your finisher’s medal to receive a complimentary themed cupcake with entrée purchased during event hours. Additionally, several Downtown Disney restaurants from the West Side to the Marketplace will offer special discounts* for runners all weekend long.
  • Get the Goods – Need to get your finisher’s medal engraved with your race time? Stop by Disney’s Wonderful World of Memories. Want to make your own celebratory T-shirt? Do it at Disney Design-a-Tee presented by Hanes. Seeking a commemorative sketch? Find it at Art of Disney. Love the idea of a personalized phone case featuring runDisney art? Check out D-Tech on Demand at Marketplace Co-Op. Wish you had picked up more merchandise at the Expo? See what’s stocked on the Disney Merchandise truck. Plus, many retail locations are offering special discounts* for runners all weekend long. (And let’s be honest – Downtown Disney is THE place to let your inner princess shine. Tiaras from Arribas Brothers, anyone?)
  • Let Loose – Take part in the DJ Dance Party to get your post-race groove on. (I know, dancing may sound like the last thing you want to do after running a half-marathon, but it’s a great way to keep your muscles loosened up!)

Admission to the Happily Ever After Party is free and is open to race participants, their guests and the public. The best way for Disney Resort guests to join the fun is via complimentary Disney Resort transportation. If you’re driving, follow signs to available parking which may be located across the street in nearby lots or in the recently opened garage.

Have a great race this weekend and enjoy your happily ever after!

*Participating locations are listed in the Official Event Guide distributed at Packet Pick-Up. All offers subject to change and are at the discretion of individual locations. Runner must present race bib (if prior to race) or medal (post-race) to receive offer. Offer for race participant only unless otherwise noted. Offer valid February 20-22, 2015 unless otherwise noted. While supplies last.

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The Village Causeway Opens to Guests at Downtown Disney Marketplace at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 17th, 2015 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


Excited about the ongoing transformation taking place at the Downtown Disney Area? I am, too! Last Friday was an especially notable day as hundreds of cast members and partners gathered to celebrate the opening of the Village Causeway, a new bridge that connects the area near The LEGO Store across the water to Rainforest Café. Not only is this my new favorite route to work, but it’s quickly becoming a popular guest spot for photos, sunset viewing, and shopping – yes, shopping!

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I recently shared information on two new kiosks at the Downtown Disney Area, and four more have just opened on the Village Causeway:

  • Flour & Sugar – Perfect for guests who want to take a taste of the Sunshine State home with them, this new shop offers freshly baked cookies with Florida flavors like coconut, key lime and strawberry. (I hear the South Beach Toasted Coconut Key Lime Cookie is especially tempting!) You can buy them individually or in easy-to-transport canisters of six.
  • Florida Bath Co. — Lately, I’m loving specialty soaps, and this locale offers products made with home grown ingredients like organic vegetable juices and essential citrus oils. If you love Basin, you’ll love this – they share the same owners.
  • Icon Jewellery by Bico – Want your accessories to have meaning? Check out this shop where concepts like Love and Friendship, Protection, Strength and Luck are represented in pieces crafted from hand-polished fine grade pewter and enhanced with fine materials like Swarovski Crystals, New Guinea Rosewood and genuine leather. The best part … you can customize your jewelry just the way you like.
  • Kate & Leo – No doubt about it, I’ll be buying my nieces toys and games from this charming cart. With items designed to evoke a world of curiosity, creativity and imagination, you’ll find travel games, magnetic story boards, beautiful art supplies and more, no batteries required.
    New Flour & Sugar Kiosk at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort New Florida Bath Co. Kiosk at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort
    New Icon Jewellery by Bico Kiosk at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort New Kate & Leo Kiosk at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort

    During your next visit to Downtown Disney Marketplace, be sure to stroll the Village Causeway – it’s my favorite recent enhancement to the neighborhood and I have a feeling it may become yours, too!

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