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Yakitori House Restaurant at Epcot

Bookings Begin July 30 for Premium Events for Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on July 16th, 2015 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


There are more ways than ever to celebrate at the 20th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival September 25-November 16 – and while plenty of events are included with park admission, we look forward each fall to the over-the-top “premium events.”

Get ready to book your reservations when the phone lines open at 7 a.m. on Thursday, July 30: 407/WDW-FEST (939-3378). And while some favorites fill up fast, there are lots of new events to celebrate the festival’s 20 years at Walt Disney World Resort. Some events can be booked at epcotfoodfestival.com: culinary demos, beverage seminars, mixology seminars, general admission for Party for the Senses and general admission for the Rockin’ Burger Block Party. Check out all the events at the website, then get set to dial or book online!

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Beginning today, you can go to epcotfoodfestival.com to choose your own lineup, but here are our top picks:

  • Get a glimpse of the cast of ABC TV’s “The Chew” at a new premium event on October 8 in World ShowPlace: the Rockin’ Burger Block Party, with specialty burgers and sliders inspired by top names in the music industry such as Dave Matthews and his Dreaming Tree Wines and Carlos Santana’s Casa Noble Tequila. (Two additional Burger Block Parties are set for September 25 and November 6.) This one includes VIP seating with a specialty cocktail toast, premium bar and more.
  • One of a series of popular Party for the Senses premium events will be the first-time Yelloween Masquerade Party for the Senses October 31, an elegant, dance-the-night-away, gourmet tasting party with Champagne, wine, craft beers and specialty cocktails paired with food. (You’ll want to masquerade in chic yellow and black.)
  • Another Party for the Senses we don’t want to miss is October 24 with Disney chefs from the United States, Europe and Asia cooking their favorite cuisine that represents their cultures as well as the Disney Parks and Resorts they call home. Additional Party for the Senses dates are October 3, 10 and 17, and each evening starts with a reserved seat at the Eat to the Beat concert series at the America Gardens Theatre. Following the show, head to World ShowPlace for a sensational evening with more than 50 tasting stations. (And Cirque du Soleil is back!)
  • What’s Cookin’ With … begin the morning with a delightful plated brunch and sparkling wine toast. Culinary celebs will demo a favorite dish and then sit down with the emcee to answer questions from the audience and share secrets of their successes. The brunch happens every Friday and Saturday at 10 a.m.

Guests include:

  • September 27: Andrew Zimmern
  • October 2: Amanda Freitag presented by Mylan
  • October 4: Bryan Voltaggio
  • October 9: Jamie Deen
  • October 11: Carla Hall
  • October 16: Gale Gand
  • October 18: Cat Cora
  • October 23: Allen Susser
  • October 25: John Ash presented by Verlasso
  • October 30: Robert Irvine
  • November 1: Erika Davis
  • November 6: Buddy Valastro
  • November 8: David Guas
  • November 13: Alex Guarnaschelli
  • November 15: Sarah Fioroni

Others premium events we look forward to trying: the Mexican Tequila Lunch, Japanese Craft Beer Tasting and the new French Family Meal Traditions.

Included in regular Epcot admission are the new Back to Basics series, special book signings, Eat to the Beat concerts, cultural adventures, Marketplace Discovery Passport and attractions and park entertainment.

Entertainment and Events are subject to change without notice.

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Today in Disney History: ‘Hocus Pocus’ Casts a Spell in Theaters

posted on July 16th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


On July 16, 1993, Disney’s “Hocus Pocus” opened in theaters, and the world was introduced to those wacky and wicked Sanderson sisters: Mary (Kathy Najimy), Sarah (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Winifred (Bette Midler). After wreaking havoc on Salem, Massachusetts, the sisters returned to the great beyond, only to be heard from during annual Halloween showings of the movie on Disney Channel.

Now, 22 years later, the Sanderson sisters are set to return during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, in the all-new show “Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular.” Winifred, Mary and Sarah will have only a few hours to run amuck, using their magic and the power of some fiendish Disney villains to throw the best, evil Halloween party this side of the graveyard!

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The show will feature memorable songs from the film, like “Come Little Children” and “I Put a Spell on You,” along with appearances by Dr. Facilier, Oogie Boogie, Maleficent and more.

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party will be held on select nights at Magic Kingdom Park, beginning September 15. Tickets are still available, but will go quickly, so be sure to get yours soon.

My family likes to go the party early in the run and stretch out the Halloween fun as long as possible. Plus, this year I just don’t think I can wait until October to see “Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular!” In fact, I might even have to fire up my Disney Movies Anywhere app and watch “Hocus Pocus” tonight! Who’s with me?

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Ice Palace Boutique Coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios for Frozen Summer Fun This July

posted on July 16th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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I’m excited to announce the Ice Palace Boutique will join Frozen Summer Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios starting July 26. This wintry salon is where guests ages 3-12 can undergo a magical transformation as they prepare for Coronation day revel in a flurry of “Frozen” fun. The Ice Palace Boutique will be located on Commissary Lane across from ABC Commissary in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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Unique to this location, guests can purchase select packages where families can also join in the “Frozen” fun. Additional party members can enjoy the exclusive Ice Palace Café, an immersive “Frozen”-themed café with included snacks while they wait for their Anna or Elsa.

The party will also get reserved seating at one show of “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration” at Hyperion Theater.

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The “Frozen”-inspired packages include:

  • Frozen Summer Fun Boutique Package – This package includes Anna or Elsa-inspired shimmering makeup palette, face gems, nail polish, a braided hair piece with sparkling snowflake accessory and an exclusive photo opportunity. Package retail: $75, includes tax.
  • Ice Palace Boutique Package – This package includes the items offered in the Frozen Summer Fun Boutique Package. It also includes access to the Ice Palace Café and reserved seating at one of the “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration” shows. Package retail: $175, includes tax.
  • Ice Palace Boutique Deluxe Package – This package includes an Anna or Elsa costume plus the items offered in the Ice Palace Boutique Package. Package retail: $240, includes tax.

The Ice Palace Boutique Package and the Ice Palace Boutique Deluxe Package is for up to 6 guests, including the child getting the magical transformation.

Reservations can be made in advance and are highly recommended. To book your appointment starting July 17, please call 407-827-7400. Guests under 18 years of age must have parent or guardian permission to call. The location may be able to accommodate guests without reservations on a limited, first-come, first-serve basis each day.

Ice Palace Boutique will only be offered during Frozen Summer Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios which continues through September 7, 2015.

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Disney Parks Backyard Barbecue on Pinterest

posted on July 16th, 2015 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


The peak of summer is upon us, and we invite you to celebrate with a backyard barbecue inspired by Disney Parks and Resorts.

Recipe for Sweet Potato-Rosemary Biscuits from Blue Bayou Restaurant in Disneyland Park Recipe for Flame Tree Barbecue Sauce from Flame Tree Barbecue at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Printable Menu and Place Cards

Visit the Walt Disney World Pinterest page to find everything you need to host the perfect summer barbecue. We made it easy, providing recipes for some Disney Parks food favorites (Flame Tree Barbecue Sauce anyone?), drinks, and even printable napkin rings and a menu and place cards to tie it all together. Click through to download and print the recipes, or pin them to your recipe board to make later.

Featured recipes include:

Which recipe are you going to try at your next summer party?

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Filed: Disney Dining, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Hotels & Resorts, Walt Disney World Resort

Show Your ‘Inside Out’ #DisneySide For a runDisney Race! Part IV: JOY

posted on July 15th, 2015 by Aubrey Hang, Sports Marketing Community Manager, runDisney


Throughout your journey you have felt a mix of emotions including FEAR after signing up for a race, DISGUST at the thought of a long run on the weekend, and ANGER for having to make sacrifices while training. You have now put in the hours training, and have physically and mentally prepared. Once you cross that finish line, there is no other feeling than pure JOY!

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Celebrate by wearing this “Inside Out” inspired look after a runDisney race from Champion, New Balance and the Disney Store!

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What emotions did you feel after finishing your first runDisney race?

The Disney•Pixar film “Inside Out” ventures inside the mind of Riley and introduces us to the Emotions that guide her – Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust and Anger. Based in Headquarters, the five Emotions are hard at work, led by lighthearted optimist Joy, whose mission is to make sure Riley stays happy. “Inside Out” is directed by Academy Award winner Pete Docter (“Monsters, Inc.”, “Up”) and produced by Jonas Rivera (“Up”) with an original score by Michael Giacchino (“The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille,” “Up”). “Inside Out” is in theatres now in 3D and is rated PG.

For more from our “Show Your ‘Inside Out’ #DisneySide For a runDisney Race” series, visit the posts below:

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#DisneyFamilia: Juntos (Together) in Walt Disney World Resort

posted on July 15th, 2015 by Sarah Domenech, International Public Relations Manager


Hola (Hello)! I’m Sarah Domenech, Public Relations manager for the Hispanic and Latin American markets. I want to welcome you to our latest series.

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Walt Disney World Resort is the perfect place to bring your whole family for the vacation of a lifetime! And Latinos surely know how to make the most of their time off together. However, traveling to our parks with the whole familia (family) can be a little bit overwhelming. We know it takes a lot of time and effort to plan the perfect vacation para todos (for all).

Travel expert Sonia Gil, also known as the “Hada Madrina (Fairy Godmother) of Travel,” offers you valuable tips to plan that perfect Walt Disney World Resort vacation in a new video series called “Sonia’s Best of Walt Disney World.”

From where to stay, shop and eat to her favorite things to do, Sonia will show you how easy it is to plan an amazing vacation.

Be sure to visit Disneyworld.com and select your preferred language to get more information.

Do you have other tips for spending quality family time juntos (together) at Walt Disney World Resort? I would love to hear from you!

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Celebrate Sunday with Kirk Franklin’s Gospel Brunch at House of Blues Orlando

posted on July 14th, 2015 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


Joyful, uplifting, and enthusiastic … that’s how I’d describe my first experience at Kirk Franklin’s Gospel Brunch at House of Blues Orlando. Whether you’re a fan of gospel or not, a regular churchgoer or an occasional attendee, everyone is welcome here! With gospel songs personally selected by legendary producer and artist Kirk Franklin, and an amazing all-you-can-eat buffet featuring breakfast favorites, southern specialties including my favorite: chicken and waffles, and desserts, it’s impossible to choose what I enjoyed most.

Check out the video below to learn more about this spectacular Sunday offering.

Ready to book? Choose your showtime – 10:30 a.m. or 1:00 p.m. – then call 407-934-2583 or book online.

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QUIZ: How Well Do You Know Spaceship Earth?

posted on July 14th, 2015 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


Spaceship Earth has been Epcot’s icon for more than 30 years now. But how well do you know this attraction? Test your knowledge below – and let us know how you did in the comments section, too!


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Spaceship Earth at Epcot

Who is the current narrator of Spaceship Earth?
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How tall is Spaceship Earth?
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Which game is NOT an option for you to play at Project Tomorrow at the end of Spaceship Earth?
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What's the diameter of Spaceship Earth?
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How many aluminum facets cover Spaceship Earth?
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Prince Harry’s Invictus Games Coming to Walt Disney World Resort in 2016

posted on July 14th, 2015 by Darrell Fry, Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World


We have a truly royal announcement to share today. Prince Harry is bringing his Invictus Games to Walt Disney World Resort next year. See video here.

The event celebrates our wounded servicemen and women from around the world competing in a variety of sports events at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, May 8-12, 2016.

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The Invictus Games drew more than 400 athletes from 13 countries – plus some 65,000 spectators – in its inaugural year in London in 2014, which was seen by more than 10 million more fans on TV.

The Invictus Games at Disney next year will be the first time the event takes place in the U.S. and is expected to involve a similar number of athletes from up to 14 nations competing in 10 sports – archery, cycling, indoor rowing, sitting volleyball, swimming, track and field, triathlon, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis.

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The idea behind the Invictus Games is that the event uses the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect for all those who serve their country as well as their families and caregivers.

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In case you’re wondering, the word Invictus means “unconquered” and became famous after William Ernest Henley’s 1878 poem “Invictus” which is about strength during times of adversity. The word embodies the fighting spirit of the wounded service personnel who are on the journey to recovery.

We will have more details on this inspirational event in the coming months, so follow this blog for all of the latest developments.

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#DisneySide Doodles: Anna & Elsa Find Favorite Frozen Treats

posted on July 13th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week’s #DisneySide Doodle shows royal sisters Anna and Elsa enjoying some of their favorite frozen park treats. Looks like they really are fans of chocolate! Mmm …

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Thanks to artist Ashley Taylor for the Doodle.


For more from our #DisneySide Doodles series visit the posts below:

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