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FastPass+ Reservations Now Available For Eat to the Beat Concerts During 20th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on August 26th, 2015 by Victoria Lim, Managing Editor, Walt Disney World Public Relations

If you enjoy toe-tapping tunes as much as tasty treats, you will love this: starting today, you can make FastPass+ reservations for the Eat to the Beat concert series. These nightly shows during the 20th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival span the decades of pop music.

Normal FastPass+ booking guidelines apply. Log onto My Disney Experience to secure a spot for your favorite performers up to 60 days in advance (plus your length of stay) for resort guests, and up to 30 days in advance for Annual Passholders.

David Cook to Perform at “Eat to the Beat” Concert Series

Catch season seven American Idol winner David Cook, who just released a new album. Swoon to Air Supply, which is celebrating 40 years as a duo. And can you believe, Wilson Phillips hit their first #1 single “Hold On” 25 years ago?

The shows are at 5:30, 6:45, and 8 p.m. each night of the Festival. Look for the FastPass+ line at the American Garden Theatre at least 20 minutes before each show, and from there you’ll be led to your special seating area.

Here’s a complete lineup of bands. Which performer are you most excited to see?

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Filed: Epcot, FastPass+, MyMagic+, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Some Favorite Ways to Experience Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Sept. 25-Nov. 16

posted on August 25th, 2015 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer

We’re counting down the days and deciding the best ways to take advantage of all the food, wine, celebrity chefs, live music and more at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.


Looking ahead, here are three ideas to maximize your fun. We love the idea of the new 20th Festival Tasting Sampler that gives you a credential (and a cool collectible pin) to taste your way around the fest. For $59 you get your choice of eight tastes of food or beverages at all of the 30 marketplaces plus priority seating at the nightly Eat to the Beat concert.

Your credential will include ideas for pairing a dish and a drink at the marketplaces – we’re excited to try some of the new dishes such as the pepper bacon mac ‘n’ cheese paired with a hard cider at Farm Fresh Marketplace (both new); lamb meatball with spicy tomato chutney and a pinot noir at New Zealand (both new), and the butter chicken with naan bread with a chenin blanc in Africa. There are 29 new dishes this year, and 72 new cocktails, beers, wines and ciders!

We’ve always had fun at Eat to the Beat, and this year’s dining package includes lunch or dinner at 13 different restaurants from Coral Reef Restaurant and The Garden Grill in Future World to France, Italy, Germany, Mexico, Japan, Morocco and United Kingdom. This is a nice “plan ahead” experience.

Price varies by restaurant, starting at $34.99 for lunch and includes appetizer, entrée, dessert and drink or buffets. And then you get guaranteed seating at the 5:30 p.m. Eat to the Beat concert for lunch reservations, and the 6:45 or 8 p.m. show for lunch or dinner.

Fan favorites are back on the America Gardens Theatre stage, including Wilson Phillips, Smash Mouth, The Pointer Sisters, Jo Dee Messina, Boyz II Men and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. And there are four new acts in the concert series lineup — Tiffany, Everclear, Maxi Priest and Chaka Khan.

For a really special treat, set aside a week for the Food & Wine Premium Package that gives you VIP treatment from noon- 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday at the festival. Eleven shaded “Premium Package” areas are reserved for a spot to eat, drink and relax, and you get to choose an IllumiNations Sparkling Dessert Party to attend, as well as a Festival Center culinary demo or beverage seminar.

Cost is $199, and you also get a gift bag with your own wine glass, a bottle of 20th celebration festival wine, a Food & Wine Fest-themed MagicBand and four food tickets for food or beverage from festival marketplaces.

For reservations, call 407-939-3378. Admission to Epcot is required.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Epcot, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Happy National Waffle Day from Walt Disney Parks and Resorts

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

Happy National Waffle Day from Disney Parks Food and Beverage! What better way to indulge on this delicious holiday than with one of our top 8 waffles from Walt Disney Parks and Resorts:


  1. Mickey Waffles
    Look for these breakfast classics are resort hotels across property, and at Plaza Inn at Disneyland park.
  2. Buffalo Chicken Waffle Slider from Trilo-Bites at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
    This fiery new snack is simply wild!
  3. Waffle Cone from Clarabelle’s Hand Scooped Ice Cream at Disney California Adventure park
    Cool down with this sweet, hand-scopped treat.
  4. Waffle Sandwiches from Sleepy Hollow in Magic Kingdom Park
    Go sweet with the fruit and Nutella waffle sandwich, or try one of the savory lunchtime waffle sandwiches—either way you can’t go wrong.
  5. Waffle Fries at Golden Oak Outpost in Magic Kingdom Park
    Creative toppings make these waffle fries a tasty meal.
  6. Sweet and Savory Waffles from the Belgium Global Marketplace at Epcot International Food and Wine Festival
    Try the Belgian waffle topped with berries or chocolate ganache and whipped cream for dessert or the Potato and Leek Waffle with beer-braised beef and smoked gouda cream for a hearty snack when the festival returns on September 25.
  7. Maple Waffle Breakfast Cone from BoardWalk Bakery
    A practically perfect breakfast on the go.
  8. Buffalo Chicken and Cornbread Waffles from the Fantasy Fare Food Truck at Downtown Disney
    This sweet and spicy treat is sure to satisfy.

What’s your favorite Disney Parks waffle? Let us know in the comments below!

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Epcot, Hotels & Resorts, Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Tickets Going Fast for Rockin’ Burger Block Party, Yelloween Masquerade Party

posted on August 22nd, 2015 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer

While it’s still summertime, tickets are selling fast for special events at Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, opening September 25 for 53 days of fun, through November 16.

If you’re picking and choosing from the hundreds of special events and culinary demos, here are two all-new parties for 2015 – and tickets are going fast.


If you love a designer burger, the Rockin’ Burger Block Party in World ShowPlace lets you pick and choose from more than a dozen sliders at each party – where to begin? How about a coffee-crusted beef short rib burger topped with smoked Gouda, garlic potato string and sangria ketchup? Or a spiced lamb burger topped with feta, pickled watermelon rind and za’atar aioli. Go all out with the mixed grill burger topped with fried egg, bacon grease fries and nacho cheese sauce.

If you’re not a meat fan, there’s still plenty to choose from, such as a shrimp and scallop burger topped with spicy Thai slaw and cilantro-lime mayo (with a side of smoked sea-salted fried edamame), or a grilled grouper patty topped with butter lettuce, vine-ripened tomato and lime aioli.

Along with the burgers, there are finger foods like spicy-sticky pig wings, veggie pot stickers and cheeseburger spring rolls. Mini-rolls, perfect for a bite or two, include moonshine barbecued meatballs, chickpea and roasted corn fritters and Caribbean spiced seafood cakes.

Sweet endings are over the top, too: cinnamon roll fireball bread pudding with cream cheese glaze, snickerdoodle-crusted apple custard crisp and Valrhona chocolate ganache brownies.

It’s an all-you-care-to-eat affair, with burgers paired with craft beers, wines, cocktails and more. And you can burn a few calories – there’s a DJ, so you can shimmy or quick step your way to the next gourmet burger station. (A fun twist: you get to vote on the best burger of the night.)

Dates are September 25, October 8 and November 6 from 7-9 p.m., with hosts of ABC’s “The Chew” joining the fun on October 8. Cost is $99; $119 for reserved table on main floor, early admission at 6:45 p.m., and a specialty cocktail; or $199 for Nosh Pit seating with a private reserved table, early admission at 6:45 p.m., specialty cocktail and premium bar.

And for one night only, we’re planning our chic yellow and black costume for the elegant Yelloween Masquerade Party, a very special Party for the Senses from 7-9:30 p.m. Octpber 31 in celebration of Halloween. “Yelloween” is a reference to the night’s top pour – golden Champagne. Think elegant, and plan to eat, drink and party the night away with special entertainment. Cost is $169 plus tax general admission; $199 plus tax for a reserved table on the main floor with specialty cocktail toast, and $319 plus tax for a private reserved table, early entrance at 6:45 p.m., specialty cocktail toast, artisanal cheese station and more.

For reservations to these and other special events, call 407-939-3378. Admission to Epcot is required.

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Enter ‘The Chew’s’ Sweepstakes for a Chance to Win a Trip to 20th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on August 19th, 2015 by Victoria Lim, Managing Editor, Walt Disney World Public Relations

Want a chance to win a trip to Walt Disney World Resort during our most delicious time of year?

We’re thrilled the Emmy award-winning ABC hit show “The Chew” is joining us for the 20th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival – and they are giving you (and three of your guests) a chance to win a visit too.

The Chew’s Magical Culinary Adventure Sweepstakes includes a visit to Walt Disney World Resort during the week of October 8-12, 2015, the opportunity to attend a live taping of The Chew, a stay at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort (within walking distance of Epcot), and a chance to dine at one of our newest restaurants in Downtown DisneyThe BOATHOUSE. You’ll even get to ride an amphicar.

More than 30 marketplace experiences will be served up for this year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, including new tasting areas in Future World. That’s where you’ll sip, savor and sample in the Sustainable Chew Marketplace, which will offer dishes inspired by the show. At Chew Lab, food and science meet to create hot culinary tech trend treats like the Liquid Nitro Chocolate Almond Truffle with Warm Whiskey Caramel.

Also on the menu for the Festival’s 53 days (September 25-November 16), we’re bringing back some guest favorites from the two decades of the event, the Dominican Republic Marketplace returns, and you can rock out to live music during the Eat to the Beat concerts.

You have until September 18th to enter.

What better combination than food, foodies, and fans of food and foodies to celebrate 20 delicious years?

Good luck!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on 9/18/15. Open to legal residents of the 50 U.S. & D.C., 18 years of age or older. Grand Prize winner must travel between October 8 – 12, 2015. See Official Rules for full details including entry requirements, eligibility restrictions, prize description & limitations. Void where prohibited.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Hotels & Resorts, Walt Disney World Resort

#DisneyFamilia: Traveling Around the World and to The Future at Epcot

posted on August 19th, 2015 by Sarah Domenech, International Public Relations Manager

When people ask me which is my favorite theme park at Walt Disney World Resort, I can never give a definite answer. But I always say that Epcot is the park that I go to most often. Por qué (why)?

Because it’s the only place on Earth that you can walk around the ‘world’ and glimpse into the future at the same time.

In this week’s “Sonia’s Best of Walt Disney World” video, blogger Sonia Gil explores this unique theme park and shows you her favorite spots in World Showcase, where 11 countries celebrate their cultural heritage, arts and entretenimiento. She also talks about her favorite attractions, and things to do at Future World, a land filled with technology and innovation.

One of the things that I love most about Epcot is that it was inspired by what Walt Disney envisioned for it: a showcase for innovation, and a place for guests to celebrate human achievement and experience cutting edge technology. That is the heart of the theme park.

By the way, do you know what Epcot originally stood for?

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Top 10 Things I Discovered at the D23 EXPO 2015

posted on August 18th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


The D23 EXPO 2015 was a blast! There were incredible announcements of upcoming projects throughout the Walt Disney Company (the seven year old me can’t believe that Star Wars Land will be a real place). Besides those major announcements, I wanted to share the top 10 things I discovered during my visit this year.


I Need to Step Up My Aloha Shirt Collection
Being a long time fan of Aloha shirts, I loved seeing John Lasseter’s Studio Collection on display. In 1999, designer Reyn Spooner created a custom shirt for John featuring art and characters from Disney-Pixar’sToy Story 2.” The tradition continues today with shirts for the newest animated features including “Inside Out.”


Incredible Displays
Located nearby the shirt display, I found this wall of Pixar balls (above). The décor found throughout the Expo was over-the-top. I’d love to recreate something like this wall in a future home.


DisneyNature “Born in China”
Ever since I was an attraction manager at China Pavilion in World Showcase at Epcot, I’ve dreamed of visiting China. I look forward to seeing DisneyNature “Born in China” coming soon to theatres. You can see the trailer here


Caring at the Disney Citizenship Pavilion
I loved watching Disney fans make care kits at the Disney Citizenship Pavilion. This pavilion showed what Disney is doing to inspire kids and families to think creatively, live healthier, conserve nature, and strengthen our communities.


Disney Infinity 3.0
I’m beyond excited for Disney Infinity 3.0 which debuts on August 30 this year. I loved seeing a full size image of Sam Flynn from Disney’s “TRON: Legacy” that will be a new figure released later this month. Stay tuned for additional details about an early launch party at Once Upon a Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace on August 28.


Gravity Falls Mystery Shack
There was a full scale recreation of the Mystery Shack from Gravity Falls. I wanted to take everything home with me. A brand new episode debuts on Monday, August 24 at 8:30 p.m. on Disney XD. I can’t wait!


Quest for Trading Cards
Since I spent 7 ½ years as Project Manager for Disney Trading, I was delighted to see trading cards at the D23 Expo. They were part of a Trading Card Quest presented by Disney Visa Card. Fans received a starter pack of cards, and could search for opportunities to collect different cards from locations all over the show floor. I even watched Disney Fans trading cards in my hotel lobby.


Disney Dream Store
I visited the Disney Dream Store a few times. The 3-foot Vinylmation Haunted Mansion-inspired figure by artist Javier Soto was impressive.


D23 EXPO Design Challenge
I was also impressed with the D23 EXPO Design Challenge that my fellow author Jeffrey Epstein first discussed in March 2015. In honor of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, artists were invited to craft their own interpretation of Sleeping Beauty Castle. The image above contains just a few pieces I enjoyed seeing.


The People Who Make the Dream a Reality
My favorite thing I learned attending the D23 EXPO 2015 is Disney fans are incredible people! While I enjoyed seeing a Nav’i from the upcoming Pandora – The World of AVATAR coming to Disney’s Animal Kingdom, I loved meeting people who love Disney as much as me. The costumes some fans wore, such as the one my friend Mary Jo made to honor newly inducted Disney Legend Julie Reihm Casaletto, were outstanding. Stay tuned for a closer look at some of those costumes in a future Disney Parks Blog article.

What was your favorite part of the D23 EXPO this year? Please share in the comments below.

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Filed: Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

New Frozen Ever After, Royal Sommerhus Details & Renderings Released

posted on August 18th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager

New details were released at the D23 Expo on the Frozen Ever After attraction and neighboring Royal Sommerhus that are currently being constructed at Epcot.

The Frozen Ever After attraction will transport guests to Arendelle just in time for the “Winter in Summer” celebration. According to Portfolio Creative Executive Kathy Mangum, the attraction’s project team is currently partnering with many of the talented individuals at Walt Disney Animation who helped bring the original “Frozen” film to life, as well as award-winning composers Bobby and Kristen-Anderson Lopez.


“We’re also expanding the Norway pavilion with the addition of the Royal Sommerhus – a charming cabin where guests will be able to meet Anna and Elsa,” Kathy said. “This cabin is based on an actual historic log cabin in Norway. In fact, in order to make sure we get the character and detailing right, we just sent our project team to Norway on a research trip to study the country and its cultural arts and crafts in person, just as the film team did.

“We’re confident that this attraction will bring more guests to the Norway pavilion and increase their interest and knowledge of Norwegian culture, just as the World Showcase was intended to do.”

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VIDEO: Disney Parks Announces Expansions and Enhancements at D23 EXPO 2015

posted on August 17th, 2015 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort

It was a big weekend for Disney fans! The D23 EXPO 2015 was packed with news from across The Walt Disney Company, including major announcements from Disney Parks. New 14-acre Star Wars-themed lands at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disneyland park, Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Soarin’ Around the World at Epcot and Disney California Adventure park and many more exciting announcements have kept fans buzzing for days. Take a look back!

Check out all the Disney Parks news from D23 EXPO 2015:

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

Remy’s Ratatouille Hide & Squeak Debuts for Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on August 17th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort

We’ve been cooking up something special for Epcot International Food & Wine Festival 2015! Beginning September 25, while supplies last, take part in Remy’s Ratatouille Hide & Squeak and help Remy as he ventures around World Showcase at Epcot collecting ingredients for his signature dish, Ratatouille.


Recipe For Success!
Record your discoveries as you help Remy find each ingredient by placing the corresponding sticker on the specially themed map to represent that location.

Maps and stickers can be purchased for $7.95 $9.95, plus tax at the following locations in the park. Note: Maps, stickers and surprise available while supplies last. No discounts apply. Purchasing limits may apply.

Epcot – Disney Traders, Festival Center, Pin Central, Port of Entry and World Traveler (International Gateway).

Whether you choose to search for each ingredient or not, return your map to the redemption location at Port of Entry by November 16, 2015 at Port of Entry to pick up your surprise.

What’s the surprise? Take a look! You will have the opportunity to receive one of the pins featured here.


Theme park admission is not included, however is required to participate. Maps, stickers and surprise available while supplies last. Information subject to restrictions and change without notice.

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Filed: Epcot, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort