Halloween at the Walt Disney World Resort

This Week in Disney Parks Photos: Snapping Rare Moon Photos at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on October 11th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week, some of the most unusual photos snapped at Walt Disney World Resort were taken by David Roark and Matt Stroshane at Magic Kingdom Park, where they were perfectly positioned to catch a Blood Moon move over our park.

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Be sure to check out the full gallery above. And for full details on this rare event, click here.

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First Disney Ambassador Julie Reihm Casaletto Welcomes New Ambassadors

posted on October 11th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Walt Disney Parks and Resorts celebrates 50 years of the Disney Ambassador program, which was first introduced as part of the 10th anniversary celebration of Disneyland. Walt Disney needed someone to act as a representative of Disneyland to audiences in the community and around the world, as well as host VIP guests and foreign dignitaries. Julie Reihm Casaletto, a tour guide for the park at the time, was selected by Walt to be the first Disney Ambassador.

A half-century later, in a ceremony in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland park, Julie joined more than 50 former Disney Ambassadors yesterday morning to welcome the 2015-2016 Disneyland Resort Ambassador team, Jessica Bernard and Allie Kawamoto.

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The 50-year tradition continued at Walt Disney World Resort yesterday, as Caitlin Busscher and Nathaniel Palma were announced as the 2015-2016 Disney Ambassador team, receiving the golden opportunity of sharing the magic of “our world” – and representing nearly 70,000 fellow Cast Members – with the Central Florida community.

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Rounding out the global anniversary celebration, Disney Ambassadors also were announced recently at other Disney Parks around the world. At Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, Sara Hui was selected as the next Ambassador to represent the Asia-based theme park, and Tokyo Disney Resort chose Riina Imaeda as the first ambassador to serve a two-year term in Japan. Sonia Demay and Romina Grochow were welcomed as new Ambassadors at Disneyland Paris earlier this month.

The Disney Ambassador family will grow this year, as Shanghai Disney Resort, scheduled to open in 2015, and Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, will for the first time name Disney Ambassadors.

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Filed: Aulani, Disneyland Paris, Disneyland Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland, Shanghai Disney Resort, Tokyo Disneyland, Walt Disney World Resort

Capture All Your Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Memories with a One Day Memory Maker

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Kelly Glassburn, Manager of Marketing & Communications, Disney’s PhotoPass Service


Halloween memories are extra special in my family … as it’s the one time of year where I can get my boys to get in a photo without me begging them to pose! There’s something about getting dressed up in their costumes, especially if we are headed out to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party to meet some of our favorite characters.

This is one of my favorites, of my tough guy muscling up to meet our favorite Space Ranger and intergalactic superhero.

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At this year’s event, there’s an opportunity for party guests to purchase a new product that we’re currently testing – a one day Memory Maker.

Now through October 31, a one day Memory Maker entitlement can be added to your Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party ticket for only $39. All of your Disney PhotoPass photos taken on the day your event ticket is used, including character encounters and select dining and attraction photos are included — no matter how many you get or if they were taken earlier in the day before Mickey’s Not-So-scary Halloween Party!

And don’t worry … if you aren’t able to make it to this year’s party, no trick, we’ve got a special TREAT for you! Simply log into your My Disney Experience account and claim PhotoPass ID COMEJOINTHEPARTY to receive a unique Bonus shot of some of our favorite ghosts! HINT: “We’ve got 999 happy haunts here, but there’s room for a thousand ..!”

So don’t delay … visit any ticket booth at the Transportation and Ticket Center for more information and to add the one day Memory Maker entitlement to your Mickey’s Not-So- Scary Halloween Party event. (Don’t worry if you have already purchased your Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party ticket – you can still add the one day Memory Maker test product the night of your event!)

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Kids and Families come out to Play at the KaBOOM! Play Together Tour

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Back in August, we shared that Walt Disney Parks and Resorts was sponsoring the KaBOOM! Play Together Tour. The tour traveled to six cities across America, giving families the chance to tackle a playful obstacle course and enjoy meaningful time together. Nearly 13,000 people came out to play in Anaheim, Sacramento, San Francisco, Chicago, Atlanta and Kissimmee.

Families designed their team flags and made their way through various stations to build tunnels, solve puzzles, and work as a team.

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This tour is just one way we at Disney Parks delivered on our commitment to strengthen families and local communities. It gave us the chance to share our expertise and create a memorable experience for children and their families outside of our parks and resorts.

While we know how important it is for families to spend meaningful time together, we also know the long-term, positive impact this time has on children. At the Discover Together Symposium we hosted in January, researchers at the Center for Childhood Creativity and Search Institute shared their findings – that the quality time children spend with influential adults has a powerful influence on a child’s success in school and in the community. To learn more about the research, visit DisneyDiscoverTogether.com.

The KaBOOM Play Together Tour helped us to bring this work to life around the U.S. Check out the video above for highlights from the tour.

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Making a Greener Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Russ J. Stacey, Writer, Yellow Shoes Creative Group


Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is one of the most anticipated events of the year here at the Disney Parks. It’s a guest favorite and loads of fun. But are you aware of all the eco-friendly efforts that go on behind the scenes?

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Lawrence Whiteside of Magic Kingdom Environmental/Recycling recently shared with the Disney Parks Blog what goes into this green endeavor and why they do it.

“For the last 13 years, the MK Recycle Team and its partners have committed to support our corporate goals and standards. I hope our actions provide a deeper knowledge and understanding of our environmental efforts, and to also inspire others to take action and make even more of a difference.”

Conservation at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is serious business. For instance, some of the initiatives during last year’s party included recycling 25,000 cardboard boxes and 500 pounds of shrink wrap, salvaging Craisin boxes to store over 3,000 pounds of scrap electronics and repurposing “Monsters University” cardboard boxes to help out with the Toys for Tots drive.

The due diligence of the MK Recycle Team during this event just keeps getting greener, according to Lawrence.

“Our environmental successes and stories are a rich part of our history and a key focus of our growth. We not only recycle on stage but, through a collaborative effort, recycling happens backstage to reduce waste and our carbon footprint.”

The Walt Disney Company has a longstanding tradition of corporate citizenship. From providing children’s environmental education programs to pledges to reduce energy and waste consumption on property, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party’s goals fall right in line with this environmental stewardship.

So, while you’re enjoying Mickey’s “Boo-To-You” Halloween Parade, your favorite spooktacular Disney characters, the Happy HalloWishes fireworks spectacular and all the rest of the festivities, maybe you can take a moment to consider the concentrated effort put forth to giving back to Mother Earth.

Though he was speaking specifically of the U.S.A., Walt Disney’s words of wisdom could easily be applied to the big picture: “Its preservation and the wise conservation of its renewable resources concerns every man, woman and child whose possession it is.”

Lawrence echoes those sentiments. “Personally, I think everybody needs to play a role in preserving our planet,”

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2014 Travelers’ Choice: TripAdvisor Names Victoria & Albert’s One of Top 5 Restaurants in U.S.

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa was honored as one of the Top 5 restaurants in the United States in TripAdvisor’s 2014 Travelers’ Choice awards.

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The Walt Disney World Resort restaurant is the only Florida restaurant on the illustrious list. “One-of-a-kind dining experience in Orlando – worth it!” and “A special meal in a special place,” reads the TripAdvisor website.

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Victoria & Albert’s also is a AAA Five-Diamond Award winner, one of just two in Florida. Under the helm of Chef Scott Hunnel, maître d hotel Israel Perez and Pastry Chef Erich Herbitschek, the restaurant features some of the very best seasonal ingredients from local markets, as well as from around the world.

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TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, according to the website, reaching nearly 280 million unique monthly visitors and more than 170 million reviews and opinions covering more than 4 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions.

The awards honor top travel spots worldwide based on millions of reviews and opinions from TripAdvisor travelers. Award winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of reviews for restaurants worldwide, gathered over a 12-month period.

Congrats to Chef Scott, Israel, Chef Erich and the entire Victoria & Albert’s team!

For more on Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, visit the posts below:

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

999 Happy Haunts: Meet The Hatbox Ghost

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week’s look at the ghosts of The Haunted Mansion focuses on the Hatbox Ghost – aren’t familiar with him? That’s because he was originally planned as a part of the attraction but never, well, materialized.

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(Art by Austin Hillebrecht)

According to Jason Surrell’s book “The Haunted Mansion: From The Magic Kingdom To The Movies,” this ghostly apparition was supposed to appear across from the Bride in the attic scene, holding a hatbox. With every beat of the Bride’s heart, the Hatbox Ghost’s head was supposed to disappear and reappear in the hatbox he was holding. Alas, the Hatbox ghost was eventually cut from the plan due to technical difficulties.

Which Haunted Mansion ghost would you like to see featured here next week? Tell us in the comments section below!

For more about the ghosts from The Haunted Mansion, visit the post below:

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

Disney Parks After Dark: Gondolas at the Italy Pavilion

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


How fun is this post-“Illuminations” shot of World Showcase Lagoon from the Italy pavilion? Photographer Tom Bricker snapped it just as the show was ending.

Anyone up for a late-night gondola ride?

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Disney’s ‘Frozen’ Fever at Bridal Fashion Week

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Korri McFann, Worldwide Marketing & Business Development Director, Weddings & Honeymoons


There’s something about New York City in the fall – the leaves are turning, the air is crisp … and there’s tulle. Everywhere! Bridal fashion week takes over Manhattan and it’s a chance for designers to preview their spring collections. This year was extra special for us here at Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings because we added a new dress to our traditional eight Disney princess-inspired gowns line up – Elsa from Disney’s “Frozen.” A true modern day bride, Elsa is bold and daring while remaining regal and elegant. And she’s the only queen that could bring snow – yes, snow – to the runway for our fashion show finale!

The Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings gowns will be available starting January 2015 in Alfred Angelo retail stores and are offered in signature colors in addition to white and ivory.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Weddings & Honeymoons

Play Games, Build Fireworks Shows & More With Kellogg’s Storybox App

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Have you heard about our latest Disney Parks app?

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Disney Parks has teamed up with Kellogg’s to create a new mobile app called Kellogg’s Storybox that will add a little Disney magic to your breakfast table.

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Step one is to download the free app, which is available on iTunes, Google Play or in the Amazon App store. Then pick up a specially marked Kellogg’s cereal box and scan it with your smartphone to unlock an interactive storybook to use within your app. There are three different volumes you can unlock, and each one features games and activities based on Disney Parks, such as a balloon-busting game based on Toy Story Midway Mania and storybook surprises inspired by Radiator Springs Racers. Yours can also create their own Disney fireworks spectacular in the app.

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