Hyperion Theater at Disney California Adventure Park

Decking the Halls with Holiday Novelty Items at Disney Parks

posted on November 18th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and festive food and beverage offerings and holiday souvenirs are popping up at Disney Parks! Our teams are decking everything from souvenir popcorn buckets to sippers and more.

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Santa’s elves have been hard at work creating these Mickey sipper steins, perfect for sipping hot cocoa or carrying a snack on the go. Twice as nice is the matching souvenir popcorn bucket. Look for these in Disneyland park, Disney California Adventure park and Magic Kingdom Park.

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As part of the Merriest Place on Earth celebration at Disneyland park, look for souvenir soup cups featuring Mickey, Minnie and Goofy ice skating in front of Sleeping Beauty’s Winter Castle. The cups are available at Jolly Holiday Bakery Café and the turkey leg cart near Sleeping Beauty Castle. While you’re in Disney California Adventure park, look for special cone-shaped snowy sippers at the Cozy Cone Motel. Since this is a world where two holidays collide, “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas” novelties will also be available through the holiday season.

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Since the holiday season is all about sharing the joy of the season with your friends and family, here’s a peek at the artwork you’ll find on popcorn buckets and souvenirs throughout Disney Parks!

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Which souvenir would you love in your stocking?

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Fifteen Fun Facts For Mickey Mouse’s Birthday

posted on November 18th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


As the famous Walt Disney quote says, “I only hope that we never lose sight of one thing—that it was all started by a mouse.” – and today we’re celebrating that Mouse on the Disney Parks Blog.

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Mickey Mouse made his official film debut on November 18, 1928, in the film “Steamboat Willie,” and has since become a famous face at Disney Parks around the world.

In honor of today’s milestone, here are 15 fun facts about Mickey Mouse you may not know:

  1. Walt Disney wrote the first script for “Plane Crazy,” the first short created to star Mickey Mouse, while traveling on a train from Chicago to Los Angeles.
  2. Walt initially named Mickey Mouse “Mortimer,” until Walt’s wife, Lily, suggested “Mickey” was a better choice.

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  1. Disney Legend Ub Iwerks was the sole animator for Mickey Mouse in “Plane Crazy,” and produced an estimated 700 drawings per day for the film, some during the day (as a part of a secret project for Walt) and others after hours in Walt’s garage.
  2. The short film “Steamboat Willie” was the first short starring Mickey Mouse released, but was actually the third created. The first two, “Plane Crazy” and “The Gallopin’ Gaucho,” initially failed to find distributors, but were picked up and released later.
  3. When penning Mickey’s movements, early animators drew inspiration from popular comedic film stars of the day – like Charlie Chaplin.
  4. The first Mickey Mouse Club was formed by theater owner Harry Woodin in Ocean Park, California. On his own accord, Woodin devoted Saturday afternoons in his theater to showing only Mickey Mouse shorts and led children in a Mickey Mouse pledge. Walt later partnered with Woodin and spread the idea of Mickey Mouse Clubs to movie theaters across the nation.
  5. The first Mickey short in which Mickey spoke was “The Karnival Kid,” the ninth Mickey short, which was released in July 1929. His first words: “Hot dog!”
  6. Walt Disney wasn’t satisfied with the first few actors chosen to provide a voice for Mickey Mouse, so he did it, and continued to do so through about 1947.
  7. A Mickey Mouse comic strip, penned by Ub Iwerks, launched in January 1930, and at its height was printed in 40 newspapers in 22 countries.
  8. The first piece of Mickey Mouse merchandise was a tablet of paper that featured the mouse, designed for children. The first Mickey Mouse doll was designed in 1930.

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  1. Mickey Mouse made his debut appearance in the “Macy’s Santa Claus Parade” (now “Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade”) in 1934. Measuring 40-feet-tall, the balloon was handpainted and guided by men and women dressed in Mickey/Minnie Mouse costumes.
  2. When Walt was contemplating a name for his first theme park (Disneyland park), he once considered calling it “Mickey Mouse Village.”
  3. Mickey Mouse was the first animated character to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, which was given on his birthday (November 18) in 1978.
  4. Mickey Mouse has been a prominent feature at Disney Parks since Disneyland park opened its doors in 1955, with guests interacting with him in character meet and greets, viewing him in parades or snapping up Mickey Mouse merchandise.

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  1. The Partners Statue, a sculpture of Walt and Mickey holding hands, debuted at Disneyland park on Mickey’s birthday in 1993. A second Partners Statue debuted at Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort in 1995.

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Filed: Disney History, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Infinity 2.0 Ready To Roll Across Walt Disney World Resort This Month

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


I have some exciting news for fans of Disney Infinity. To celebrate the release of Disney Infinity 2.0, guests will soon find five Walt Disney World Resort busses with specially designed wraps. Our partners with Walt Disney Imagineering created these new wraps featuring characters from the game. They are the same team that designed the previous Walt Disney World monorail wraps like my favorite one created for Disney’s “TRON: Legacy“.

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We recently took a photo of one of the busses near Once Upon a Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace. That location is the headquarters for all things related to Disney Infinity 2.0. I attended the early release party with my son a few weeks ago where we picked up the new starter set. We also added a few figures to his ever growing collection such as Baymax from Disney’s “Big Hero 6” now in theatres. He spent the rest of that weekend playing the game and creating new worlds to explore. I’m sure he will love taking a ride on these Disney Infinity-themed busses!

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Closer Look: ‘A Frozen Holiday Wish’ at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on November 17th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Earlier this month, we began our Disney Side holiday video series with a live stream of the all-new “A Frozen Holiday Wish” from the Castle Forecourt Stage at Magic Kingdom Park. It was such a hit that this week we’re sharing a closer look at the show. Disney Show director James Silson has a special look for Disney Parks Blog readers.

“A Frozen Holiday Wish” is now being presented nightly through December 31, 2014 at Magic Kingdom Park. Here’s how you can see it this holiday season.

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Disney Celebrates Opening of New Performing Arts Center

posted on November 17th, 2014 by Andrea Finger, Manager, External Communications


If you’re a theater lover like I am, nothing beats that feeling of anticipation and excitement as you wait for the curtain to rise. That’s how many of us felt as the stage came to life for the very first time Saturday night, at the Walt Disney Theater at Orlando’s new Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts (DPAC).

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George A. Kalogridis, president of Walt Disney World Resort joined local business and community leaders in celebrating the center’s historic Grand Premiere with a glittering gala and the hall’s inaugural performance. A 2,700-seat hall with tiered seating, the Walt Disney Theater is Central Florida’s new home to Broadway-style shows and musical performances. As one of the earliest and largest investors in DPAC, Disney pledged $12.5 million to the development of the center.

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Audiences got their first glimpse of the theater in action during the gala performance, “Broadway and Beyond,” which was developed with the assistance of the Disney Creative Entertainment team. The team also produced the evening’s grand finale – a spectacular fireworks show.

Over the past seven years, cast members from areas such as Walt Disney Imagineering and Creative Entertainment have also contributed in-kind services such as developing marketing materials, producing community events and hosting fundraisers.

So, as we anticipate exciting, inspiring and entertaining performances for years to come, we have one word for our cast members and the Central Florida community partners who made the DPAC dream a reality … Bravo!

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Disney Magic Creates Spectacular ‘Frozen’ Gingerbread Castle at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on November 17th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Take a look at this amazing time-lapse video of the all-new Gingerbread Holiday Ice Castle at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, inspired by Disney’s blockbuster film, “Frozen.”

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Soaring in the resort’s Grand Canyon Concourse, the 17-foot-tall masterpiece is visible from the monorail as guests head to and from Magic Kingdom Park. While it took months to bake all the sweet components, pastry chefs spent five days building the Holiday Ice Castle that’s also inspired by Mary Blair’sit’s a small world.”

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Adorned with sugar snowflakes, gingerbread shingles and chocolate-coated trees, look for Anna, Elsa, Olaf, Kristoff and his sidekick Sven created with sugar, chocolate and an assortment of candy. All in all, the pastry chefs whipped up 311 pounds of honey, 514 pounds of flour, 212 eggs, 67 pounds of spices, 222 pounds of icing and 423 pounds of chocolate. The Ice Castle has more than 1,500 gingerbread shingles!

Can you find Olaf? He’s hidden 14 places in the display.

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of ‘The Little Mermaid’ With Our Latest Disney Parks Blog Wallpaper

posted on November 17th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Today marks the 25th anniversary of the film “The Little Mermaid,” which opened in theaters November 17, 1989.

This film, which is one of my all-time favorites, has inspired many Disney attractions, character meet and greets, parade floats, merchandise and more at Disney Parks throughout the world.

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We’re celebrating today’s milestone by sharing this Disney Parks Blog wallpaper, which was designed by artist Brittany Ungvarsky and focuses on one of Ariel’s most treasured possessions – a Dinglehopper.

Be sure to check out the terms of use about using the wallpaper before you download it. And check out our complete gallery of wallpapers on our special page.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on November 16th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we shared even more holiday experiences happening this season at Disney Parks as well as a special behind-the-scenes peek at how we transform Magic Kingdom Park for Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. If you missed it, take a look at what happens while you sleep.

Our Holiday Services department works year round to make sure everything is ready to be installed at each park and resort at Walt Disney World Resort.

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

Building the Dream: The Making of Disneyland Park – Main Entrance – We continued our “Building the Dream” series on the Disney Parks Blog with a special look at the making of the Main Entrance of Disneyland Park.

First Look: Black Widow and Hawkeye on a Mission This Weekend at Disneyland Resort – Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Black Widow and Hawkeye, are descending upon the Disneyland Resort for the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon!

First Look: Themed Hotels, Disneytown Announced for Shanghai Disney Resort – Get a peek at some exciting updates for Shanghai Disney Resort, including two themed hotels and an area called Disneytown – a spectacular shopping, dining and entertainment district.

Cinderella’s Dining at Cítricos–Breakfast and Brunch with the Disney Princesses at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa – Starting January 8, 2015, the Disney princesses will welcome guests to Cítricos at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa!

Dateline Adventureland: Lost Holiday Shipment Found Aboard the Jingle Cruise at Disneyland Park – See how these lost yule tide trappings are now being appropriated by the animals of Jingle Cruise at Disneyland Park.

Trust Your Training – The Inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend presented by Sierra Nevada Corporation Finisher Medals Revealed – These ARE the medals you’re looking for … see the finisher medals to be be presented at the Inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend!

First Look at runDisney Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Merchandise – Create your own hero identity with merchandise debuting this weekend as part of the runDisney Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon.

Disney Parks After Dark: Very Merry Fireworks at Magic Kingdom Park – See this spectacular image, captured by photographer Mark Willard during the fireworks show, Holiday Wishes: Celebrate the Spirit of the Season.

First Look: Train, Trisha Yearwood, Lucy Hale, Trey Songz and More at the Disneyland Resort for Disney Parks Frozen Christmas Celebration on ABC – Earlier this week we gave our readers the first look at what’s in store Christmas morning from the Disneyland Resort on ABC.

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This Week in Disney Parks Photos: The Building Of Park Icons

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


This week, some of the most compelling images we shared on the Disney Parks Blog were of some iconic buildings guests have enjoyed at our parks for years, specifically the train station and entrance to Disneyland park and Spaceship Earth at Epcot.

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George Savvas shared these amazing construction images of the Main Entrance turnstiles and Main Street Station earlier this week.

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Nate Rasmussen also gave a look at the early construction of Epcot’s theme park icon – Spaceship Earth.

Which other attractions or areas of our parks are you interested in seeing early construction photos of? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Filed: Disney History, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

MagicBands Bring More Pixie Dust to Disney Infinity

posted on November 14th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Disney Interactive’s gaming platform Disney Infinity joined with Disney Parks to offer Walt Disney World Resort guests with a MagicBand a special surprise. In the recently released edition of the game, Disney Infinity (2.0 Edition), only guests with a MagicBand can unlock the enchanting charm of the “it’s a small world” attraction into their very own Toy Box creation.

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Guests unlock the download of “it’s a small world” for their Toy Box by placing a MagicBand over the Disney Infinity Base. The Base will detect the presence of a MagicBand, and then will instantly unlock the “it’s a small world” download with no online connectivity required. Additionally, you’ll be able to enchant other players with the iconic music from the “it’s a small world” attraction in the background. Once you’ve created a saved game, you will always have access to the new content.

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MagicBands are part of MyMagic+, an exciting new way to experience even more of the magic of a Walt Disney World vacation.

Disney Infinity is an interactive gaming platform that brings favorite Disney, Pixar and Marvel toys to life in a world without limits. With Disney Infinity players have endless opportunities to create stories and fun-filled adventures!

MagicBands are intended for use in the United States only.

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Filed: MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort