Halloween at the Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on October 12th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we captured an unusual sight in the sky above Magic Kingdom Park – a rare lunar eclipse called a “blood moon.”

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The moon added the perfect spooky atmosphere to our parks, especially Magic Kingdom Park, which is already decorated for Halloween. Photographers David Roark and Matt Stroshane were on hand to document the moon’s path over our parks.

Check out Jennifer’s original story for more photos of the blood moon.

@StarrFae: Me and My Favorite Coaster Growing up in the 90′s @nicole77brady: Family Vacation 1996 Making Family Memories at our Favorite Place with our Favorite Mouse @nic_alodeon: 1990s Disneyland. Circa 93! @mssmith702: This was in 1999 and was Dominic’s First Visit to Disney. I Always Thought this Pic Should be a Postcard. I Miss these Days! This Pic Makes Me #Happy @malloryhicks: Fun Time in the Disneyland Tea Cups. #1999

And voting continued this week for your favorite Disneyland Resort memory from each decade of the past 60 years. Take a look above at the top Disneyland Resort memories we received from the 1990s and then go to Erin’s post to vote for your favorite.

Voting will remain open until 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 15. Be sure to check back Thursday, Oct. 16, when we’ll share the top five memories from the 2000s to today.

For complete rules, click here.

No purchase necessary. 18/age of majority+, 50 US/DC only. Void where prohibited. See Rules for details.

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

How to Make the Most of Pirate Night on Your Disney Cruise – Learn how to embrace the pirate lifestyle with swashbuckling line dances, delicious pirate grub and more!

Fans Show Their Spooky Disney Side Aboard the Disney Parks Blog Creepy Cruise Meet-Up – See some spooky photos from the deck of the Sailing Ship Columbia, with 200 Disney Parks Blog readers aboard.

Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort Offers Shivery Tricks and Spooky Treats For Halloween Time – Get the details on some of the new seasonal offerings at Downtown Disney District, including “Frozen”-themed makeovers from Anna & Elsa’s Boutique.

Wildlife Wednesday: Congratulations to Disney’s Animal Kingdom – Awarded Prestigious Conservation Award at AZA Conference! – Disney’s Animal Kingdom received Top Honors (1st place) as the 2014 Edward H. Bean Award recipient for our Taveta golden weaver sustainability program.

Anna & Elsa’s Boutique Opens in Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort – Read more about this “cool” new shop in Downtown Disney District, offering an array of “Frozen”-inspired merchandise worth melting for.

Today in Disney History: New Disneyland Sign Debuts, 1989 – Take a look at these past Disneyland landmarks and how the original Disneyland Sign was retired.

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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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‘America’s Funniest Home Videos’ Celebrates 25th Anniversary by Joining the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


America’s Funniest Home Videos,” the longest running prime time entertainment show in ABC history, celebrates its 25th anniversary season this year! To mark this occasion, the show is joining in the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration – our 60th anniversary celebration – with a special prize. Here’s Emmy-winning host Tom Bergeron with a hint for Disney Parks Blog readers!

So don’t miss this celebratory season of “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” premiering this Sunday, Oct. 12, at 7|6c.

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Pumpkin Mania at Disneyland Resort

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


‘Tis the season – for pumpkin, that is. The ubiquitous gourd takes center stage at Disneyland Resort this time of year, flavoring everything from coffee to soups, and yes, even old-school pumpkin pie.

Disneyland Resort Bakery gets in on the fun with pumpkin beignets, pumpkins twists, pumpkin muffins and pumpkin cream cheese muffins sold throughout the parks and hotels. We got hooked on this pumpkin cheesecake that you’ll find at Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta at Disney California Adventure park, Jolly Holiday Bakery Café and French Market in Disneyland park and White Water Snacks at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa. The graham cracker crust with a pinch of ginger, classic cheesecake filling and a drizzle of chocolate on top create a trifecta of yum.

Beyond the bakery, there’s pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks, and Boudin Bakery’s pumpkin-shaped sourdough at Pacific Wharf Café, the Pacific Wharf bread cart and Mortimer’s Market, all at Disney California Adventure park.

And if you’re in search of that good ol’ pumpkin pie, you’ll find it at Plaza Inn, Carnation Cafe, Village Haus Restaurant, River Belle Terrace and French Market Restaurant in Disneyland park, and at Flo’s V-8 Café and Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta at Disney California Adventure park.

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Pumpkin Cheesecake
Makes 9-inch cheesecake

Crust

  • 1 1/2 cups crushed graham cracker
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/3 cup butter-melted

Cheesecake Filling

  • 3 (8-ounce) blocks cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 15-ounce can pumpkin purée
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 5-ounce can evaporated milk
  • Chocolate syrup, for drizzling

For crust:

  1. In a bowl combine the crushed graham cracker, sugar and ginger. Melt the butter and stir into mixture.
  2. Spray bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Press crust mixture into bottom of pan using your hands.
  3. Place pan on a large piece of foil and wrap foil tightly up sides and around pan.

For cheesecake filling:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Beat cream cheese, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Scrape down sides of bowl.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down sides of bowl.
  4. Whisk together pumpkin purée, cornstarch, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium bowl until well combined. Add pumpkin mixture to cream cheese mixture, beating until well combined. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add evaporated milk, mixing well.
  5. Slowly pour cheesecake filling onto crust mixture in prepared pan. Drizzle with chocolate syrup.
  6. Place foil-wrapped pan inside a larger roasting pan. Place oven rack and carefully add enough hot water to reach halfway up sides of springform pan.
  7. Bake 1 hour, or until center moves only slightly when shaken.
  8. Turn oven off. Crack open oven door, and allow cheesecake to cool inside oven 1 hour.
  9. Remove pan from water bath and set on a wire rack to cool completely. Cover top of pan with foil and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Cook’s Notes: Wrapping foil around springform pan prevents water from the water bath from getting into the cheesecake. The slow cooling inside the oven prevents cheesecake top from cracking.

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

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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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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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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Vote Now for the Top Disneyland Resort Memory from the 1990s

posted on October 9th, 2014 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Don’t put away those neon T-shirts and that hairspray just yet – it’s time to vote for your favorite Disneyland Resort memory from the 1990s! As we look forward to next year’s Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, we’re continuing the voting for the top memory from each decade of the past 60 years. We asked you to submit your most magical Disneyland Resort memories, and now we’re narrowing down the submissions to decide which will win!

Here are the top Disneyland Resort memories we received from the 1990s:

1990s - 1

From @StarrFae: me and my favorite coaster growing up in the 90′s

1990s - 2

From @nicole77brady: Family vacation 1996 Making family memories at our favorite place with our favorite mouse.

1990s - 3

From @nic_alodeon: 1990s Disneyland. Circa 93!

1990s - 4

From @mssmith702: This was in 1999 and was Dominic’s first visit to Disney. I always thought this pic should be a postcard. I miss these days! This pic makes me #happy

1990s - 5

From @malloryhicks: Fun time in the Disneyland tea cups. #1999

So, which is your favorite? Vote now!

Voting will remain open until 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 15. Be sure to check back Thursday, Oct. 16, when we’ll share the top five memories from the 2000s to today.

Each decade winner will receive a special Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration prize. Then, we’ll give you the chance to vote for one Grand Prize winner from among the winners of each decade. This lucky fan will win a trip to the start of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration in spring 2015.

For complete rules, click here.

No purchase necessary. 18/age of majority+, 50 US/DC only. Void where prohibited. See Rules for details.

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Fans Show Their Spooky Disney Side Aboard the Disney Parks Blog Creepy Cruise Meet-Up

posted on October 8th, 2014 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Fans Show Their Spooky Disney Side Aboard the Disney Parks Blog Creepy Cruise Meet-Up

Last night, 200 Disney Parks Blog readers showed their Halloween Time inspired Disney Side at the Disney Parks Blog Creepy Cruise Meet-Up. The evening began with a cruise around the Rivers of America in Disneyland park, aboard the Sailing Ship Columbia. But something spooky was happening on deck …

Halloween Meet-up (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland Resort)

The ship was haunted by the ghosts of Disneyland past! Our ghost host for the evening, Father from Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress, introduced special guests throughout the cruise – each representing special moments of dearly departed Disneyland history.

Halloween Meet-up (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland Resort)

Guests were visited by Miss Pumpkin Festival from the Main Street Pumpkin Festival, a dancer from the Tahitian Terrace, one of Miss Lily’s can can dancers from the Golden Horseshoe Revue, the Deputy Mayor of Toontown who once appeared in Mickey’s Toontown Morning Madness, Becky Thatcher from Tom Sawyer’s Island and even one of the Kids of the Kingdom!

Halloween Meet-up (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland Resort)

The Creepy Cruise concluded with a special serenade from the Cadaver Dans.

Halloween Meet-up   (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland Resort)

As guests disembarked from the Sailing Ship Columbia, they found Frontierland filled with surprises, like their favorite Disney characters dressed in their Halloween costumes, a trio of Disney Villains, a bounty of special Halloween Time treats and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, continuing its runaway train trips just for them.

And of course, guests turned out to show their Disney Side! Many of our meet-up guests arrived in costume, and you can see some of our favorites in the gallery above.

Did you attend the Disney Parks Blog Creepy Cruise Meet-Up? Tell us about it in the comments!

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Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort Offers Shivery Tricks and Spooky Treats For Halloween Time

posted on October 8th, 2014 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


What’s your favorite scary experience for the Halloween season? The shops, restaurants and entertainment venues in the Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort are providing plenty of Halloween Time atmosphere for the season.

Build-A-Bear Workshop is offering a grizzly change of pace: you can build a werewolf; House of Blues will host a Halloween costume contest on October 31; and seasonal treats are available at Starbucks, La Brea Bakery, Haagen-Dazs, Jamba Juice, Marceline’s Confectionery and other locations throughout the Downtown Disney District.

Special Halloween artwork may be found at WonderGround Gallery and Kaman’s Art Shoppe. Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen offers both a Haunted Gingerbread House Building Workshop (October 25 and 26) and “The Password is Murder” interactive murder mystery show including champagne reception and four-course dinner (October 22). We’ll share more information about these and more over the next few weeks.

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Would-be trick-or-treaters, ages 3-15, in search of a “Frozen”-themed makeover for the holiday will find what they’re looking for at the newly opened Anna & Elsa’s Boutique. And watch for some ghostly décor to appear around the portal entry and common areas of the Downtown Disney District as Halloween approaches!

If you have a taste for classic spooky movies, AMC Downtown Disney 12 has a special Thursday night series for you.

  • October 9 features two vintage classics: “Dracula” with Bela Lugosi at 7 p.m. and “The Wolf Man” with Lon Chaney Jr. at 9 p.m. For those who can’t get enough of the world’s most famous vampire, “Dracula Untold” is opening in IMAX at AMC Downtown Disney 12 that same night!
  • October 16 offers somewhat lighter fare: “Casper” with Christina Ricci and Bill Pullman at 7 p.m.
  • October 23 turns the spotlight on Boris Karloff, starring in the original “Frankenstein” and “The Mummy” chillers.

AMC Downtown Disney 12 also will present a special, limited time return engagement of Disney’s “Maleficent,” starring Angelina Jolie, Friday, Oct. 24, through Thursday, Oct. 30. Experience this wickedly fun twist on the classic Sleeping Beauty tale as Disney’s most iconic villain is brought to life like never before. Audience members may receive special gifts, including Maleficent horns, while supplies last, during the run. “Maleficent” is new on Blu-ray & Digital HD November 4 and on DisneyMoviesAnywhere.com. Also watch for screenings of “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas” on Friday and Saturday of Halloween weekend, October 31 and November 1.

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