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Luck is on Your Disney Side this March at Disney Parks

posted on February 24th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


This March, think green and luck is sure to be on your Disney Side! Here are a few ways you can celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at Disney Parks.

Look for a specialty gourmet apple inspired by St. Patrick’s Day: dipped in caramel, enrobed in sweet milk chocolate, decorated with green sanding sugar and yellow jelly beans topped with a marshmallow hat.

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Your luck continues with the re-introduction of March’s Triple Chocolate gourmet apple. This chocolatey confection has been dipped in creamy caramel, enrobed in sweet milk chocolate, rolled in a mixture of semi-sweet chocolate chips and white chocolate chips and drizzled with milk chocolate, dark chocolate and white chocolate. Fun Fact: This apple has been the #1 favorite among you, our Disney Parks fans for the past two years. Will its luck continue or will you choose another? Only time will tell. Mark your calendar for March 1, as these divinely delectable treats will go fast. Find them at Candy Palace on Main Street, U.S.A., in Disneyland park; Trolley Treats on Buena Vista Street in Disney California Adventure park; and Marceline’s Confectionery in the Downtown Disney District.

Perhaps our ‘lucky’ Mickey Mouse plush will help you find that pot of gold you’ve been looking for and the luck of the Irish will be on your side. This year’s brand-new St. Patrick’s Day pin features none other than Jessica Rabbit — a good luck charm.

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Don’t miss out — The plush and pin are available now at select locations at the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts!

Which Disney Parks merchandise will be lucky enough to go home with you?

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney District

Day 12 – Experience a Fairy Tale Proposal

posted on February 12th, 2015 by Jean Volante, Manager of Dream Making, Disney Floral & Gifts/DEG


For those who’ve tuned in to learn the voting results from yesterday’s post, we have the outcome. We asked you to vote for your favorite Valentines gifting idea and you have spoken. The winner of the best Valentines magical moment is The Valentine’s Collection. Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or another special occasion, you have ideas to create a special Disney moment for a loved one.

Speaking of winning magical moments, let’s talk about some winning fairy tale proposal ideas! If your love is a Princess at heart or Disney enthusiast, then getting engaged at the place where dreams come true is the ultimate proposal location. But, who do you contact and what are your options?

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As part of our Disney 14 Days of Love series, today I’m sharing Disney Floral & Gifts proposal ideas at Walt Disney World. If you’re wondering what this series is all about, check out our first story and take the Discover your Disney Side quiz to learn more.

So, back to you, our favorite topic! Proposing is a big event in your life, and we’ve learned you’re looking for charming ideas at special locations like a romantic Disney restaurant or the Cinderella Castle right before the fireworks. Your ultimate goal? To create the most enchanting proposal and celebration experience your loved one will talk about for years to come.

To help we recently enhanced our engagement/proposal page to feature four proposal ideas such as:

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  • Be our guest and make reservations at a romantic Disney dining location to set the stage for your proposal with Crown Her a Princess.

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  • Offer a “Once Upon a Time” proposal at a carriage ride, dining location or even in the privacy and comfort of your resort room.

The possibilities are endless really, simply because we can deliver your proposal surprise to Disney dining locations, excursions and resort rooms. The ideas called out above though help to provide you with established experiences.

So here’s what to do:

  1. Take a look at the four proposal ideas on our engagement/proposal page and select the location and gifting experience you like best. Next, make reservations with that location. For example, for Disney dining reservations, call 407-WDW-DINE. For carriage ride reservations, call 407-WDW-PLAY. Our Dream Makers arrange for delivery of your gift and celebration, but can’t book your dining or excursion reservations at this time.
  2. Order your proposal gift for delivery to that location.
  3. Order your romantic celebration for your resort room. You’ll especially want to check out From Mickey and Minnie with Love, Presenting Your Royal Princess-Adult and my favorite, “A Wish Come True – Two Day Romantic Experience

Take time to review your options so you feel comfortable with next steps. You can order online, yet, we also understand this is a big event and you may want to speak with a Dream Maker to walk you through the process, that’s totally fine! After the proposal, your gift will become a keepsake to remember, one they’ll be able to share for years to come. Only at Disney can you receive a “glass slipper” and be proclaimed a Princess by your Prince Charming.

And speaking of creating a moment to remember, you have to watch this video featuring a real life proposal here at Walt Disney World. Jake, did such a good job convincing his sweetheart, Maria, that this was just a photo shoot, that when he actually proposed using the Wishing Rose and bracelet proposal idea, she said yes! Take a look!

And while we’re talking about surprises, tomorrow is Friday the 13th. I have this dreadful feeling something villainous is stirring. This is not good! #Disney14DaysofLove

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Haunt Your Disney Side Winners Celebrate with Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on February 12th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


If you remember our “Haunt Your Disney Side” contest, the grand prize was an experience only Disney Parks could deliver – a private party inside the Haunted Mansion followed by an overnight stay in Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park. Our winners, The Kummer family from Florida, recently joined us for a once-in-a-lifetime experience that we wanted to share with readers.

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The Krummers kicked off their dream Disney Side celebration with an unforgettable after-hours party inside the Haunted Mansion at Magic Kingdom Park. Their visit included a special performance by the Cadaver Dans, visits from spirits and late-night snacks inside the attraction.

Cinderella Castle Suite  Ready for the Winners of the 'Haunt Your Disney Side' Contest Haunt Your Disney Side Winners Celebrate with Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience at Magic Kingdom Park

After the spooky Haunted Mansion visit, the family headed to Cinderella Castle where Major Domo welcomed the family with a special proclamation. The Krummers spent the night in the Castle Suite – decorated especially for the occasion.

Thank you to everyone who entered the “Haunt Your Disney Side” contest. Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog for one-of-a-kind opportunities like this in the future.

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10 Million & Counting: MagicBands a Hit with Walt Disney World Resort Guests

posted on January 30th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


If you enjoy MagicBands and all they can do as much as my family does at Walt Disney World Resort then you’re probably not surprised that we’re already celebrating a significant milestone – 10 million MagicBands distributed.

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Since our original announcement, MagicBands have become a favorite way for guests to make their visit easier, more personal and magical. The colorful MagicBands link your entire MyMagic+ experience together and can serve as a theme park ticket, access to FastPass+ selections, PhotoPass card as well as a room key for Disney Resort hotel guests. You travel lighter with MagicBands at Walt Disney World Resort.

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Recently, MagicBand was named one of Fortune Magazine’s “26 Coolest Gadgets of 2014.” MyMagic+ was also honored with an “Innovation by Design” award by the popular magazine and website, Fast Company. It received the top spot in the “Experience Design” category when Fast Company revealed the 10 best designs of the year at their annual “Innovation by Design” Awards and Conference in New York City.

As regular Disney Parks Blog readers know, you receive a MagicBand if you stay at a Disney Resort hotel or you are a Walt Disney World Passholder. If you are not staying at a Disney Resort hotel and are not a Passholder, you receive a card when you purchase park admission—and you have the option to purchase a MagicBand online or at select retail locations at Walt Disney World Resort.

Keep checking the Disney Parks Blog in future weeks for some new ways you can personalize and show your Disney Side with MagicBands.

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Filed: FastPass+, Hotels & Resorts, MagicBands, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Sports Style: How To Show Your #DisneySide

posted on January 29th, 2015 by Aubrey Hang, Sports Marketing Community Manager, runDisney


Hello! My name is Aubrey Hang and I’m the Sports Marketing Community Manager for runDisney and ESPN Wide World of Sports. I am thrilled to be the newest author on the Disney Parks Blog, sharing updates on the amazing fashion seen during the eight runDisney race weekends and other events at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

First of all, everyone has a different sports style. Guests love to show their Disney Side by incorporating a character’s style into their own fashion. We have athletes who might just add a touch of Disney, to those who are “DisneyBound” and finally those who wear full costume from head to toe. We see people of all ages dress up for the occasion with many wearing group and family coordinated outfits. The creativity put into these outfits is unbelievable and so much fun to watch cross the finish line.

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We’ve teamed up with Leslie Kay of DisneyBound to help put looks together for upcoming events and speak at our runDisney Health & Fitness Expos. My favorite outfit Leslie recommended so far was for the Dopey Challenge. Using pieces from Champion and New Balance, she put together a look to resemble Dopey!

In this blog series, I will focus on fashion recaps from our past events as well as ideas and inspiration for upcoming ones. I’m excited to give tips on how to create fun looks for runDisney races, as well as share with you the fashion seen at our ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex events! Here’s a sneak peek at some of my favorites from past runDisney events:

Have you shown your #DisneySide during a runDisney event? Which character inspired your look? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Filed: Walt Disney World Resort

New Merchandise Artwork Sparks Fond Memories of First Disney Parks Vacation

posted on January 28th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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As time passes, my memories of my first visit to Walt Disney World Resort in July 1983 become more like something from a dream. I remember the Speed Room from If You Had Wings in Tomorrowland, the warm lights of Main Street, U.S.A. at night, and the dinosaurs in Universe of Energy at EPCOT Center. The essence of those dreamy images was recently captured in new merchandise found at Disney Parks. I caught up with Disney Design Group Creative Director Eric Caszatt to learn more.

“Each year, we create an art program that we call ‘Storybook,’” explained Eric. “That art traditionally features many characters grouped together around icons from Disney Parks. This year, we took a different design approach. Unlike the dated 2015 artwork that has characters showing off their Disney Side, we wanted to capture the feelings guests may have when first visiting Disney Parks. We internally called this program ‘Project Fairytale’ as it captures the emotions, the fantasy, and the wonder that guests may experience during a Disney vacation.”

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Disney Design Group artist Ron Cohee was the lead character artist on the project. He created two beautiful main images and a few smaller vignettes for both Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort. Each vividly colorful image melds together attractions, icons and experiences from Disney Parks. The images are similar in design layout for each coast, yet they feature things specific to each Disney destination.

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The finished artwork was added to a style guide for all merchandise categories to use. The artwork was then applied to various items such as apparel, home décor, souvenirs, plush and more. Elements from the artwork that Ron created were sometimes combined to make unique images (best seen on some of the apparel items).

Here is an image gallery of other products that you can currently find in select merchandise locations at Disney Parks. You can also find some items on our Disney Parks online store – http://www.DisneyParks.com/Store.

I’d love to hear about your memories from your first visit to Disney Parks. Please share in the comments below.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort

Spotlight on New Pins Coming to Disney Parks in 2015

posted on January 13th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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From new retail MagicBands to upcoming Orange Bird products, I’ve recently been sharing previews of items coming to Disney Parks in 2015. This time, I turn the spotlight on Disney pins, which are a fun way to show off your Disney Side when visiting Theme Parks and Resorts.

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For years, we’ve offered various “pin-of-the-month” collections, which have new pins released monthly (or sometimes quarterly) for guests to collect. This year, the “Best Friends” collection will contains two individual pins that are great for sharing with your best friend. The “Wonderfully Wicked” collection showcases some of the most famous Disney villains. Both of these monthly collections will be found in select locations at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.

Guests in Florida will find the “Shields of Fantasy” collection. These hinged pins open to reveal Disney
characters who reside in Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park.

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The “Piece of Disney History” collection returns this year. First introduced in 2005, these limited edition pins contain actual pieces of attractions, shows, or parades from Disney Parks. This year, we continue our “Piece of Disneyland Resort History” collection for guests in California, while guests in Florida will find a continuation of the “Piece of SpectroMagic history.”

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With the “Generation D” collection, we are counting down to the annual Disney Trading Event that will be held in September at Epcot in Walt Disney World Resort. Each of these 13 limited edition pins will have an edition size of 500 and will be released monthly.

We also have a few surprise pins planned including a collection featuring Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” for Disneyland Resort. When placed next to each other, the pins will form a complete picture. Guests in Florida will find pins celebrating the themed lands of the Magic Kingdom Park. Both of these pin collections will be released at random times throughout the year.

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Finally, if you are headed to Disney’s Hollywood Studios I invite you to stop by our newest Disney pin destination at Sunset Market Ranch on Sunset Boulevard. This location is now the main headquarters for all things pins inside the theme park.

As a reminder, new pins are typically released on Thursdays at Disney Parks. Look for one-sheets highlighting key pin releases toward the beginning of each month on the official Disney Pin Trading website – http://www.DisneyPins.com.

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

The Winner of the ESPN Cheer On Your Disney Side Contest is …

posted on January 12th, 2015 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


The votes are counted and the results are in. The winner of the ESPN Cheer On Your Disney Side contest is – Rutgers University!

After casting more than 47,000 votes, you selected the Scarlet Knights as the top cheer and dance squad in the national competition sponsored by ESPN, in collaboration with Disney Parks and Varsity Spirit.

Dozens of schools from across the country submitted routines choreographed to one of four Disney Parks inspired songs. Four finalists were selected by a panel of judges; Auburn University, Louisiana State University, Rutgers University and Santa Monica College. Today, Rutgers will be announced as the winner on ESPN during the network’s pre-game coverage of the College Football Playoff National Championship.

The Scarlet Knight dance squad wins a $100,000 grant from ESPN and a team trip to Walt Disney World Resort.

The Knights winning routine was inspired by “it’s a small world” and featured team members dressed as their favorite Disney princesses. Lacking energy and enthusiasm, the Scarlet Knight brings the princesses together to inspire the squad and bring back their spirit.

Congratulations to Rutgers University and all the schools who shared their Disney Side.

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Third Tween-Directed ‘Direct Your Disney Side’ Short Debuts

posted on January 2nd, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Last year, we introduced the “Direct Your Disney Side” project, in which our Yellow Shoes Creative Group (partnered with McGarry Bowen and Adolescent Films) worked with three tween filmmakers to bring their #DisneySide-inspired short films to life.

The final short in the series, “Soar,” will appear in theaters nationwide starting today, as a part of the NCM First Look pre-show content (which will run before film previews begin). “Soar,” by 15-year-old Claire Jantzen, tells the story of a female heroine who braves many dangers and villains to rescue a boy and fly off to a happily ever after.


Watch the other shorts in this series here:

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Fifteen Reasons to Visit Walt Disney World Resort in 2015

posted on January 1st, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


It’s a new year – do you have a Disney Parks vacation on your bucket list for 2015?

Whether it’s new dining experiences, sports milestones, holiday celebrations or the return of annual theme park festivals, there’s a lot to look forward to at Walt Disney World Resort in 2015. Here are 15 reasons you should consider planning a trip this year.

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1. Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s Boardwalk – The newest Disney restaurant just opened its doors a few days ago. The menu features authentic Italian cuisine and wines – and is now an option on the Disney Dining Plan. Yum!

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2. Exposition Park Food Trucks – While we’re on the topic of food, 2015 will give you time to check out the recently opened food trucks at Downtown Disney. This dedicated outdoor area also has live entertainment at night (subject to change, of course).

3. 2015 runDisney Races Are Off & Running - Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend will take place January 7-11. (Check out a sneak peek at the merchandise that will be sold at this year’s event here). Space is still available in the Kids Races!

4. Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto – This nightspot is based on the popular themed lounge at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, and is set to open here in spring. Trader Sam’s will offer tiki cocktails served in souvenir mugs, as well as smaller food offerings. Keep your eye on the Disney Parks Blog for more on this fun new location.

5. Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic – Soccer fans can get their kicks at the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic February 1-March 1 at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. In it, eight pro teams, including six Major League Soccer squads, will compete in 16 games.

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6. Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend Returns – This princess-themed weekend of running events returns to Walt Disney World February 19-22.

7. Starbucks to Open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – A new Starbucks location will open at the park in February, 2015. The new location, dubbed The Trolley Car Café, will be themed to a classic trolley car along Hollywood Boulevard and offer a unique experience for coffee lovers visiting the park.

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8. The Atlanta Braves Return For Spring Training – The Braves will return to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex for their 18th consecutive year of spring training. Tickets will be available through Ticketmaster by calling (800) 745-3000 or visiting ticketmaster.com, as well as at the sports complex box office.

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9. The 22nd Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival: A Spring Tradition Returns March 4-May 17 – Character topiaries, home gardening seminars, floral displays and much more will return to the park’s festival in 2015.

10. Star Wars Weekends Returns – This annual event will return to delight fans of the Force and the Empire May 15 – June 14 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

11. “Tomorrowland” Debuts In Theaters May 22 – While it isn’t a theme park offering, how could any Disney Parks fan possibly miss out on seeing this one? AMC Downtown Disney 24 at Downtown Disney may be the perfect location. The trailer looks amazing!

12. Annual Events – 2015 means the return of our favorite annual events, including The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Parties, and more. Keep watching the Disney Parks Blog for news and dates on our 2015 special events.

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13. New Eats at Downtown Disney – The area continues to evolve into Disney Springs, and in 2015, The Landing, the first of four interconnected neighborhoods will open to guests. Keep your eye on the Disney Parks Blog for more dates and details on the openings of Morimoto Asia, THE BOATHOUSE and STK Orlando, three restaurants planned for the area, as they come available.

14. Another Year of #DisneySide Fun - Guests loved showing their Disney Side – that side each one of us has that isn’t afraid to have fun and show our silly sides – at our parks in 2014. This year we’ll continue the fun by encouraging all of you to show your Disney Side at our parks (and at home) throughout 2015.

15. Your Family Vacation – If this is the year for your family’s vacation to the Walt Disney World Resort, then there’s nothing to look forward to more than your family’s special time together. If you visit our parks in 2015, we hope you have a wonderful time.

Which event or new offering are you looking forward to most? Let us know in the “comments” section below.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Hotels & Resorts, Magic Kingdom, Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World Resort