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Spaceship Earth at Epcot

Disney Cruise Line Crew Members Create Magical Holiday Moments

posted on December 23rd, 2015 by Rebecca Peddie, Manager, Public Affairs

Our Disney Cruise Line crew members – along with Mickey and Minnie – recently spent some time off the ships to create magical moments this holiday season for children in need at ports of calls in the Caribbean and United States.


They helped inspire children’s love for reading at Albury Primary School in Nassau by donating 600 “Finding Nemo” Read-a-Long books, one for each student. Captain Mickey and crew members also paid a special visit to Shriners Hospital in Galveston, Texas to visit with children and their families. And, in the Ports of St. Thomas, Grand Cayman and Cozumel, crew members interacted with children from local schools and charitable organizations.


There’s nothing quite like bringing a smile to a child’s face, especially this time of year, and we’re so grateful for the support of our dedicated crew members who help make moments like these possible.

The Disney Cruise Line annual holiday visits are part of our Disney VoluntEARS program, which provides opportunities for cast and crew members to volunteer their time to positively impact communities around the world.

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Filed: Community Outreach, Disney Cruise Line

Recipe: Christmas Red Velvet Cupcakes from Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats

posted on December 21st, 2015 by Kelly Vanarsdall, Food and Beverage Standards Manager, Disney Cruise Line

Still deciding on the perfect sweet treat to make this week? Our Christmas red velvet cupcakes from Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats on the Disney Dream are great for holiday gatherings. Plus, decorating the cupcakes makes for a fun family activity!


Christmas Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes 15 large cupcakes

Ingredients: Red Velvet Cupcakes

  • 9 Oz All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Oz Cocoa Powder
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • .5 tsp. Salt
  • 7 Oz Unsalted Butter
  • 12 Oz Granulated Sugar
  • 3 Eggs
  • 7 Oz Sour Cream
  • 7 Tbsp. Whole Milk
  • 2 Tbsp. Red Food Color
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Paste (found in specialty stores or online)
  • 1 tsp. Cupcake Liners
  • 1 tsp. Assorted Candies for Decorating


  1. Sieve the dry ingredients together and set aside.
  2. Beat the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl, until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time until mixture is combined.
  3. Mix in the sour cream, milk, food color and vanilla paste.
  4. Gradually beat in the flour mixture on low speed until just blended. Do not over beat.
  5. Place the cupcake liners into a large cupcake pan and spoon in the mixture. Bake at 360 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until the center is baked.

Ingredients: Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 14 Oz Cream Cheese / Softened
  • 11 Oz Unsalted Butter / Softened
  • 11 Oz Confectioners Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Paste


  1. Beat together all ingredients until light and fluffy.
  2. Spoon the mixture into a pastry bag with a large plain nozzle.
  3. When the cupcakes are cool and ready for frosting, pipe on top of the cupcake and decorate as desired.

Find out more about Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats from my previous posts:

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Travel Weekly Honors Adventures by Disney, Disney Cruise Line and Walt Disney World Resort

posted on December 18th, 2015 by Amanda Adler, Public Relations Manager

Adventures by Disney is among the best of the best in group adventure travel, and now you don’t just have to take my word for it!


The readers of Travel Weekly also put us at the very top of the list. In the trade publication’s newly released 2015 Readers Choice Awards, Adventures by Disney took the No. 1 spot in the “adventure” category for tour operators.


Travel Weekly presents its annual Readers Choice Awards to travel industry suppliers who lead the way in product and service excellence. Adventures by Disney provides incredible trips and innovations, and it’s an honor to be recognized.

Travel Weekly readers also named Disney Cruise Line as the “best family experience” in the cruise line category and Walt Disney World Resort as the best “theme park.” This means that no matter how you chose to travel with Disney, you’re truly in for a fantastic experience!

This is the second award Adventures by Disney has received this year. Travel Age West presented Adventures by Disney with a 2015 Wave Award for Best Tour Operator, Multi-Gen Travel.

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Filed: Adventures by Disney, Disney Cruise Line, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney by Land and Sea: Tips from the Disney Parks Moms Panel

posted on December 17th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line

Planning your first land-and-sea vacation with us? Here are some great tips from the experts on the Disney Parks Moms Panel

Check out my past posts about a land-and-sea vacation with Disney:

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Filed: Disney Cruise Line, Vacation Planning

New Hyperlapse Video: See What’s Included on a Disney Cruise in 100 Seconds

posted on December 15th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the thousands of pictures in our new hyperlapse video say it all. This fast-paced look at a Disney cruise to the Bahamas gives you an exciting glimpse at what’s included on a Disney Dream voyage – in just 100 seconds. Check it out!

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Recipe: Oreo Cookies from Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats

posted on December 7th, 2015 by Kelly Vanarsdall, Food and Beverage Standards Manager, Disney Cruise Line

Just in time for the holidays, over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing recipes of delicious items for purchase at Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats on the Disney Dream. Today’s recipe – Oreo cookies with a twist – are perfect for holiday party favors and gift baskets.


Oreo Cookies filled with Raspberry Chocolate Cream
Makes 15 cookies

Ingredients: Raspberry Chocolate Cream

  • 1 Cup Raspberry Puree
  • 16 Oz White Couverture Chocolate / Chopped
  • 4 Oz White Coating Chocolate / Chopped
  • 1 Pkg Oreo Cookies
  • 1 Pkg Lollipop Sticks
  • 1 Pkg Dark Coating Chocolate
  • 1 Pkg Miscellaneous Candies or Nuts for Decorating


  1. In a saucepan, bring the raspberry puree to a boil over medium heat.
  2. Pour the hot puree over the two different white chocolates in a bowl and mix until combined and smooth. Set aside to cool.
  3. Take 15 Oreo cookies and separate each to form two portions, with frosting on one end of each. Place the cookie half with the frosting on a tray, frosting side up.
  4. When the raspberry cream is firm, spoon the mixture into a pastry bag with a plain piping tip on the end.
  5. Pipe the filling on top of the frosting on the Oreo Cookie, and then place a lollipop stick in the middle, leaving one end of the stick out of the cookie.
  6. Firmly place the plain half of the Oreo on top of the raspberry cream, forming a sandwich again.
  7. Clean the sides to make a perfect cookie with the lollipop stick coming out. Set in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  8. Melt the dark coating chocolate in a bowl over a double boiler saucepan on a low heat. Dip the Oreo in the chocolate to coat. As you remove the cookie, scrape the excess chocolate before placing on baking paper.
  9. Decorate dipped cookies as desired.

Find out more about Vanellope’s Sweets and Treats from my previous posts:

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Filed: Disney Cruise Line, Disney Dining

Raising the Curtain on ‘Tangled: The Musical’ Aboard the Disney Magic

posted on December 4th, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line

Last month, guests aboard the Disney Magic experienced the magic of “Tangled” in a completely new way … as an original Disney Cruise Line stage spectacular! This amazing show—now presented during every Disney Magic sailing—retells the thrilling adventure of Rapunzel and Flynn as they face ruffians, thugs and a budding romance on an exhilarating journey of self-discovery.

Tangled: The Musical” features three brand-new songs by music legend Alan Menken, stunning costumes by a Tony Award-winning designer, Broadway-style production numbers, storybook sets, favorite characters from the film and more. Check out the video below to see some of our favorite moments from the show.

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How to Have a Very Merry Time with Disney Cruise Line

posted on December 3rd, 2015 by Christiaan Abbott, Cruise Director

Our Very Merrytime Cruises have been underway for weeks now, getting Disney cruisers young and old into the spirit of the season. If you’re joining us in December, follow this five-step guide to combine maritime fun with holiday cheer for a very merry time!


Step 1: Stop and smell the gingerbread. From the moment you walk onboard, your senses will be heightened with sparkling lights, colorful decor, holiday music and—my favorite—sweet-smelling gingerbread. Be sure to pause for a whiff of the lobby’s hand-crafted gingerbread house and pose for a family photo in front of the oversized glittering tree.


Step 2: Say “ho, ho, ho” to Santa and Mrs. Claus. Friends from the North Pole are onboard for the season, and deep belly laughs are in store for all who visit with this cheerful couple. Welcome the guests of honor at a winter wonderland ball, sit down with Santa to give him your wish list, and gather ’round the tree with Mrs. Claus to hear her favorite Christmas stories.


Step 3: Meet and greet old and new friends. Mickey and the gang, plus plenty of other Disney friends, are spreading cheer and creating magical moments onboard and at Castaway Cay. Don’t miss your chance to get photos with them in festive attire, dance together at our holiday parties, and wave hello as you pass by them throughout the voyage.


Step 4: Join the magical festivities. Holiday cruises are jam-packed with fun for the whole family, including a tree-lighting ceremony the first night, a tropical party up on deck and a special holiday edition of the last night’s farewell celebration. Also, be on the lookout for impromptu performances by Dickens-inspired carolers singing holiday classics throughout the ship.


Step 5: Eat, drink and be merry. The holidays are a time for sweet indulgences, and there’s no shortage of yummy food and drinks aboard a Disney Cruise. Special desserts like the Double Chocolate Yule Log, along with holiday coffees and festive cocktails, are sure to leave your belly full and your taste buds happy.

Happy holidays from Disney Cruise Line. Hope to see you onboard soon!

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Wildlife Wednesday: ‘Star’ring Peach at Epcot

posted on December 2nd, 2015 by Jackie Ogden, Ph.D., Vice President, Animals, Science and Environment, Disney Parks

Meet Peach, a red cushion sea star at The Seas with Nemo & Friends at Epcot. The Animal Care team often finds this adventurous sea star striking yoga-like poses, climbing corals or scaling the acrylic windows. Although Peach is always on the go, she will definitely slow down when lunch is served.


Sea stars feed by extending their stomachs outside their body. How cool is that? Their stomachs stretch outward to cover an item of food and then secrete fluids that dissolve their prey, so they can digest it. They can even pry open a clam shell just enough to squeeze their stomach inside to eat it!

Sea stars can survive in many different habitats, including coral reefs, rocky shores and sea grass. Coral reefs, in particular, are home to 25 percent of all ocean species, so they are critical for many species’ survival. Unfortunately, there are numerous threats to coral, including increases in ocean temperature, ocean acidification and disease. The Disney Conservation Fund has supported coral conservation work around the world, and we have developed our own unique coral-restoration project led by scientists at The Seas with Nemo & Friends and Disney Cruise Line.


The next time you are visiting Crush at Turtle Talk or helping Marlin and Dory find Nemo, don’t forget to take time to explore the aquariums upstairs where you will find Peach. If you’re lucky, you may even catch her doing yoga or eating lunch!

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

Watch What Happens When You Give the Gift of a Disney Cruise

posted on December 1st, 2015 by Jonathan Frontado, Disney Cruise Line

Are you giving the gift of a Disney cruise this Christmas? Watch this video to see what could happen when you tell your kids. (We’ve interpreted their reactions for you!)

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Filed: Disney Cruise Line