Via Napoli Restaurant, Italy Pavilion at Epcot

New Quick Bites at Two Epcot Restaurants

posted on September 24th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


When you’re on the run, it’s fun to find creative quick-service eats – and two Epcot restaurants are upping their games with diverse new menu items.

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In World Showcase, American Adventure’s Liberty Inn has four new dishes. The Red, White and Blue Salad features field greens, Ocean Spray craisins, pecans, apples and blue cheese with a sherry vinaigrette ($7.99). The burger gets an inspired makeover with “Surf and Turf” flavors: 1/3-pound Angus burger stacked with a house-made crab cake and spicy tartar sauce ($11.49). Or keep it simple with the Maryland Crab Cakes with a side of Old Bay fries ($10.99). Louisiana-style Shrimp is served in a creamy Cajun tomato broth with roasted green peppers and onions and served over hot rice ($9.99).

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In Future World, the popular Electric Umbrella adds a French Dip Burger – a hefty 1/3-pound Angus burger topped with beef brisket, crispy onions and Muenster cheese ($10.99). The Sausage and Pepper Sandwich is another generous meal with slowly-stewed Italian sausage, peppers, onions, tomatoes and Provolone cheese ($9.49). The lighter Veggie Naan Wich features broccoli slaw and edamame with a drizzle of tofu wasabi dressing on warm naan bread ($9.49). And for chocolate fans, there’s a new chocolate cupcake, just simple and sweet.

Have you tried any of these new quick bites?

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10 Things To Love About Fall at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on September 23rd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Today is the first day of fall, and here at Walt Disney World Resort that means it’s the official start of a whole new season of fun.

Here are 10 reasons that fall is a great time to visit our parks.

Mickey's Boo-to You Halloween Parade

  1. Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties – This special after-hours Halloween party at Magic Kingdom Park is a must-do during a fall visit. Bring your Halloween costumes, get ready to trick-or-treat and expect to see some amazing Halloween entertainment and fireworks! More details on this offering here.
  2. Villain’s Sinister Soiree - Available only on Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party nights, guests can book this special package that offers a wicked good time that includes VIP viewing for the parade and fireworks, as well as an exclusive dessert party that features some of your favorite Disney villains, musical entertainment and some delectable treats. The package costs $99 per person and more details can be found here.

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  1. Pumpkins! (And Generally Amazing Fall Decor) - Fall at Magic Kingdom Park offers up some amazing photo opportunities, as our photography team showed in this blog post earlier this month. What I love most are the pumpkins along Main Street, U.S.A., which each feature their own unique design. Take a moment to check them out.

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  1. Haunted Mansion Merchandise Shop Set To Debut - This fall will see the debut of a new dedicated merchandise shop that Haunted Mansion fans are guaranteed to love. Steven Miller offered a sneak peek at some of the items that will be available at the shop in this post. Stay tuned for more on the shop’s opening.
  2. Epcot International Food & Wine Festival - Each night through November 10, Epcot will come alive with food and fun thanks to the return of one of our most popular events, the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. This year, 25 marketplaces will show off the talents of 270 chefs, including some of Disney’s finest, as well as some celeb chefs.
  3. Celebrity Chef Appearances - This year’s festival will feature appearances by celeb chefs Jamie Deen, “Cake Boss” Buddy Valastro and Allen Susser, among others.
  4. Eat To The Beat Concert Series - While we’re talking about fall fun at Epcot, the Eat to the Beat concert series is already underway with several new acts – including Fuel, Jim Brickman, Los Lonely Boys and David Cook – in the lineup. (Concerts are included in park admission).

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  1. runDisney Races Return – Two race weekends - The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™ 10-Miler Weekend and Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend – will return to Walt Disney World Resort October 3-4 and November 7-8, respectively. Registration for Kids Races and after parties are still available.
  2. Special Fall Treats - Even snacks are dressed up for the holiday, with new Maleficent cups, Zero popcorn buckets and more now appearing in parks.

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  1. Fall Savings on Resort Rooms - Guests visiting Walt Disney World Resort this fall can save up to 30 percent on rooms at select Disney Resort hotels, including Deluxe Villa Resort rooms and Deluxe Resort rooms. This offer is valid for stays most nights October 4 through November 25, and November 29 through December 23, 2014 and must be booked by October 3, 2014. (Some restrictions apply). To book, visit DisneyWorld.com/fall or call 407-WDW-1896.

What’s your favorite part of visiting Walt Disney World Resort during the fall season? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Filed: Epcot, Hotels & Resorts, Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on September 21st, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


The 19th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival kicked off this weekend and we shared a few stories on the Disney Parks Blog to help during your visit, including Pam’s post featuring the top ten “must-try” new tastes at this year’s event.

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival: Brazil Marketplace

There are 35 new food offerings this year and Pam recommended 10 to look forward to tasting. At the Farm Fresh Marketplace, there’s the perfect taste of Southern comfort food: griddled “Yard Bird” (chicken thigh) with collards and a dollop of the house-made habanero sauce. The Lobster Alfredo at the Hops & Barley Marketplace also made the list. Go check out the complete list.

@r-g3nrQa5r: Enjoying Disneyland in the late 1960's - A Captured Memory with Minnie! @KrazyKevinWolff: My Dad, Uncles, & Grammy at the ‪@Disneyland ‪#Matterhorn Bobsleds in the late '60s. @rOsRMEpzHS: My Sister and I Excited to Hold Pinnochio's Hand at Disneyland in the 60s. @q7xs4LofoF: Me and My Mom on Burro (and Horse?) Ride in Frontierland, 1964. Maybe This is Why I Hate Hats? ;) @qopsCOPAn-: I Love This Picture of Me and My Brother and Sisters, Think This is Around '1969' Always Loved This Photo, Look at My Trendy Haircut I'm on Mickeys Left with the Pin Curl Sideburns and Sunglasses on My Head 'So Cool' and Talk About Nostalgic Mickey Mouse! Enjoy!

And as you know, to get ready for the upcoming Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, we’re looking for the most magical Disneyland Resort memories from the past six decades. Erin has narrowed down the photo submissions for the 1960s and is now asking for your help to decide which will win. Visit Erin’s story this weekend and let us know your favorite.

Here are some of the other stories we worked on this week

Fodor’s Travel Names Aulani a Top Hotel – Read more about this distinguished award, and plan your “Beach Getaway” to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa.

‘Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush’ Moseys Out of Disneyland Park September 27 – Every great story must have a great ending – it’s time to bid farewell to ‘Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush’ at Disneyland park. Be sure to visit your friends in Frontierland and Rainbow Ridge before September 27.

#DisneyKids: First Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park – Watch some first Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party experiences at Magic Kingdom Park!

Halloween Time Treats at the Disneyland Resort – Take a first look at some of the delightfully wicked treats debuting this year as part of Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort.

Halloween Time Novelty Items to Materialize at Disneyland Resort – Get a sneak peek at some of the spooky souvenir novelty items coming to Disneyland Resort for Halloween.

Learn to Draw Grumpy from ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ – Watch as Brian James Fichtner from Animation Academy at Disney’s Hollywood Studios gives a quick tutorial on how to draw the perfect grump!

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New Wearable Disney Gift Card Designed for Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on September 19th, 2014 by Virginia Scanlon, Manager Alliance Management, Disney Gift Card Services


When visiting the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, complete your experience with our new wearable Disney Gift Card created especially for this year’s event.

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In addition to the many features of a Disney Gift Card, this year’s Festival-themed card comes with a wristband to ensure quick and easy access for convenience at festival kiosks. Activate your Disney Gift Card with as little as $15 and just swipe to pay as you sample your favorite food and beverages throughout the event.

The fun doesn’t have to end after the festival! Reload your Disney Gift Card on property and use it for practically all things Disney throughout Walt Disney World Resort and at other Disney destinations nationwide.

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For more about this year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival presented by Chase, visit the posts blow:

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Our Top 10 New Tastes for 2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on September 18th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


All sorts of special events, cooking demos and parties make the 19th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival worth the trip, but for us, it’s the simple pleasure of noshing and sipping our way around World Showcase that is one of the most memorable parts of the 53-day festival (the longest ever) that debuts Friday, September 19, and runs through November 10.

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival: Brazil Marketplace

This is the seventh year that Epcot Executive Chef Jens Dahlmann has been at the helm, and every year he gets a little more authentic, a little more creative. Thirty-five new food offerings debut this year, requiring multiple visits to truly savor each taste.

And while it may be nearly impossible to appreciate every single dish paired with tasting-sized servings of wine, beer (and non-alcoholic beverages) at the 25+ Marketplaces, we’ve done a little homework and are suggesting the Top 10 new, “don’t-miss” dishes for 2014.

Here, in no certain order, are 10 of the new dishes worth a taste, even if you have to share to make it all the way around:

  1. Lobster Alfredo at the Hops & Barley Marketplace, a bowl with warm macaroni noodles, generous bits of lobster and a crunch topping. Add a 6-ounce pour of crisp Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat.
  2. Eat dessert first: you don’t want to miss the rich, velvety caramel crème brûlée with fleur de sel at the France Marketplace. Pair it with a flute of Sparkling Pomegranate Kir.
  3. A hearty, healthful dish is Patagonia’s Verlasso salmon, served with quinoa salad and a flourish of garlicky arugula chimichurri. Add a pour of the fruity Cono Sur Bicicleta Viognier.
  4. At the Farm Fresh Marketplace, there’s the perfect taste of Southern comfort food: griddled “Yard Bird” (chicken thigh) with collards and a dollop of the house-made habanero sauce. Just for fun, add a Florida wine (yes, Florida), the Key Limen-Key Lime Wine from Florida Orange Groves.
  5. Also at Farm Fresh, the Florida grass-fed beef slider with a scoop of kicky pimento cheese melting over the warm burger was another don’t-miss. We added the Beer Flight (four 4-ounce servings): I-4 IPA, Ba Ba Black Lager, Duke’s Cold Nose Brown Ale and Florida Cracker Belgian Style White Ale.
  6. Even if the idea of snails is not for you, give it a try. They’ve jazzed up the escargot in France, now served with three tender snails in pastry with lots of garlic, spinach, bacon and Parmesan. Be elegant and pair with a cool Chardonnay, Macon-Villages, La Côte Blanche.
  7. The Greece marketplace has added hearty Vegetarian Moussaka, made with eggplant and potatoes and a rich béchamel sauce. Try it with Domaine Skouras Moscofilero, a white wine with rich flavors of citrus and tropical fruits. (We also loved sipping the Tzatziki martini featuring Crop Organic Cucumber Vodka and BOLS Natural Yoghurt Liqueur.)
  8. For a taste of the tropics, it’s the Ensalada de Carrucho, Caribbean conch salad with onion, tomato and cilantro at the new Puerto Rico Marketplace along the Rose Walk leading to World Showcase Plaza. Pair it with Medalla light beer.
  9. Canada’s Seared Rainbow Trout with Bacon, Frisee and Maple Minus 8 Vinaigrette deserves a pour of the Canada Mission Hill Family Estate Syrah.
  10. Desserts & Champagne Marketplace is always our final stop, and we can recommend this year’s trio: Passion Fruit Coconut Creamsicle, Blueberry Lime Cheesecake Roll and Chocolate Espresso Opera Cake. Best of all, they’re now serving Dom Pérignon Champagne. Life is good.

And we still have to make room for a few returning favorites: the grilled lamb chop with mint pesto and crunch potato chips in Australia; crispy pork belly with black beans, tomato and cilantro in Brazil; Kālua pork slider with sweet and sour Dole pineapple chutney and spicy mayonnaise in Hawaii, and the kimchi dog with spicy mustard sauce in South Korea.

Also, here’s a link to all the menus. Get out there and share your favorite Marketplace dishes with us!


For more about this year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival presented by Chase, visit the posts below:

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Taste Your Way Around the World In Style With New Dooney & Bourke Bags Coming to Epcot on September 29

posted on September 17th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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With the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival returning to Walt Disney World Resort, I wanted to share some exciting news. For the first time, the Disney Theme Park Merchandise team is releasing a specially designed Dooney & Bourke collection inspired by the annual festival of culinary delights.

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When designing the new colorful pattern, Disney Design Group artists were inspired by marketing artwork featuring Chef Mickey Mouse. Three of the items will contain a unique leather hangtag that has the event logo (the wristlet will not have this hangtag). I love the subtle designs used on these new bags as sometimes less is more.

The four new items will be released at the Festival Center in Epcot starting September 29.

The Festival Center is located between the Universe of Energy and Mission: SPACE pavilions in Future World. We will have these items on display in that location when the event kicks off on September 19. This Dooney & Bourke collection will not be available on our Disney Parks online store at this time.

I wonder how many Kālua pork sliders I can carry in one of these bags (they are my favorite thing from the event!). I hope to see you at Epcot!

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‘Frozen’ Attraction Coming to Epcot

posted on September 12th, 2014 by Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts


When Walt Disney promised that Disneyland would never be completed, so long as there is imagination left in the world, he made a promise to our guests that we take seriously at all our locations around the world. This year, one particular product of imagination — Disney Animation’s blockbuster hit “Frozen” — captured the hearts and minds of people around the world and gave us a new opportunity to make good on Walt’s pledge.

We’ve made “Frozen” a part of the guest experience in a number of ways already and our guests have both loved them and asked for more. So I’m pleased to say that we’re starting construction at Walt Disney World Resort on a brand new “Frozen” attraction at the Norway Pavilion in Epcot. The new attraction, which replaces Maelstrom, will take our guests to Arendelle and immerse them in many of their favorite moments and music from the film. The pavilion will also include a royal greeting location where Anna and Elsa can meet our guests. We think these “Frozen” elements are great complements to the Norway Pavilion, which showcases the country and region that inspired the film.

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“Frozen’s” popular characters will also have a bigger presence at Magic Kingdom Park this holiday season. In addition to the ongoing character appearances, Queen Elsa will use her powers to transform Cinderella Castle into an ice palace every night starting in early November. And Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party-goers can see Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf in “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade.”

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We’re extending some favorite elements of Frozen Summer Fun LIVE!, too, so that guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios can continue singing along to “Frozen” songs with Queen Elsa and Princess Anna. Wandering Oaken’s will set up shop closer to the show through the holiday season and will feature a larger play area with real snow (in Florida!).

From the moment we screened the film several months before its release, we were inspired by the possibility of bringing this great story to life for our guests. Frozen Summer Fun LIVE! has been extremely popular, and now we’re looking forward to doing even more to allow our guests to experience the “Frozen” phenomenon.

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

Vintage Walt Disney World: Happy Anniversary Morocco (Pavilion!)

posted on September 4th, 2014 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


This weekend is the 30th anniversary of the opening of the Morocco pavilion in World Showcase at Epcot. Here’s a look at the pavilion under construction in March 1984. This pavilion was the first country to be added after the park’s opening. Happy Anniversary, Morocco!

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Disney Parks After Dark: Future World Lights Up at Epcot

posted on August 28th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week’s “Disney Parks After Dark” image is of a place that appeals to the inner child in just about all of us – the light-up walkway through Future World at Epcot.

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Exiting through this part of the park at night always makes me smile. How about you?

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Walt Disney World Resort Event Snapshot – September 2014

posted on August 28th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Wondering what merchandise events are headed your way this September at Walt Disney World Resort? Take a look!

September 3 – 7: Artist Greg McCullough will be appearing this month at Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace, September 3 – 7 and September 17 – 21. Learn more.

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September 7: A limited number of tickets to the Vinylmation Showcase for the Disney Trade Celebration 2014 – Imagination Gala taking place at World ShowPlace in Epcot, are still available. Get yours today! Learn more.

September 8 – 11: Meet international artist Larry Dotson, who will appear be appearing this month at Walt Disney World Resort. Find him September 8 – 11 at Art of Disney in the Downtown Disney Marketplace and September 18 – 28 at Art of Disney in Epcot. Learn more.

September 12 – 13: Join Master Sculptor Hiko Maeda as he introduces an all-new Disney Showcase Collection figurine and ornament, only available at Disney Parks. This new piece titled, “Let Your Light Shine” is available as a figurine for $50, plus tax, and as an ornament for $28, plus tax. Look for special appearances by Hiko Maeda, September 12 from 4 – 6 p.m. at Main Street Cinema in Magic Kingdom Park and September 13 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 3 – 5 p.m. at Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Not able to make it to the event? No problem! A limited number of signed pieces will be available for pre-order through Wednesday, September 10, 2014 at 5 p.m. EDT. Learn more.

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September 18 – 22: Look for the latest releases from Precious Moments doll designer and artist, Linda Rick, including her newest collection inspired by “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” Linda will appear throughout the day (each day), September 18 – 21, at Once Upon A Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Learn more.

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September 27: The next hand-painted Ink & Paint Cel, titled “Summertime Pals,” is set to debut at Animation Gallery in Disney’s Hollywood Studios on September 27, 2014. Meet the artists from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.– 5 p.m. on the day of release. Not able to make it to the event? Disney Event Services is taking pre-orders via www.disneyurl.com/CelPreOrder now through September 25, 2014 at 5p.m. EDT. Learn more.

Which event are you most excited about?

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