Halloween at the Walt Disney World Resort

‘Frozen’ Attraction Coming to Epcot

posted on September 12th, 2014 by Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts


When Walt Disney promised that Disneyland would never be completed, so long as there is imagination left in the world, he made a promise to our guests that we take seriously at all our locations around the world. This year, one particular product of imagination — Disney Animation’s blockbuster hit “Frozen” — captured the hearts and minds of people around the world and gave us a new opportunity to make good on Walt’s pledge.

We’ve made “Frozen” a part of the guest experience in a number of ways already and our guests have both loved them and asked for more. So I’m pleased to say that we’re starting construction at Walt Disney World Resort on a brand new “Frozen” attraction at the Norway Pavilion in Epcot. The new attraction, which replaces Maelstrom, will take our guests to Arendelle and immerse them in many of their favorite moments and music from the film. The pavilion will also include a royal greeting location where Anna and Elsa can meet our guests. We think these “Frozen” elements are great complements to the Norway Pavilion, which showcases the country and region that inspired the film.

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“Frozen’s” popular characters will also have a bigger presence at Magic Kingdom Park this holiday season. In addition to the ongoing character appearances, Queen Elsa will use her powers to transform Cinderella Castle into an ice palace every night starting in early November. And Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party-goers can see Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf in “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade.”

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We’re extending some favorite elements of Frozen Summer Fun LIVE!, too, so that guests at Disney’s Hollywood Studios can continue singing along to “Frozen” songs with Queen Elsa and Princess Anna. Wandering Oaken’s will set up shop closer to the show through the holiday season and will feature a larger play area with real snow (in Florida!).

From the moment we screened the film several months before its release, we were inspired by the possibility of bringing this great story to life for our guests. Frozen Summer Fun LIVE! has been extremely popular, and now we’re looking forward to doing even more to allow our guests to experience the “Frozen” phenomenon.

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Vintage Walt Disney World: Happy Anniversary Morocco (Pavilion!)

posted on September 4th, 2014 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


This weekend is the 30th anniversary of the opening of the Morocco pavilion in World Showcase at Epcot. Here’s a look at the pavilion under construction in March 1984. This pavilion was the first country to be added after the park’s opening. Happy Anniversary, Morocco!

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Filed: Disney History, Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks After Dark: Future World Lights Up at Epcot

posted on August 28th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week’s “Disney Parks After Dark” image is of a place that appeals to the inner child in just about all of us – the light-up walkway through Future World at Epcot.

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Exiting through this part of the park at night always makes me smile. How about you?

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

Walt Disney World Resort Event Snapshot – September 2014

posted on August 28th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Wondering what merchandise events are headed your way this September at Walt Disney World Resort? Take a look!

September 3 – 7: Artist Greg McCullough will be appearing this month at Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace, September 3 – 7 and September 17 – 21. Learn more.

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September 7: A limited number of tickets to the Vinylmation Showcase for the Disney Trade Celebration 2014 – Imagination Gala taking place at World ShowPlace in Epcot, are still available. Get yours today! Learn more.

September 8 – 11: Meet international artist Larry Dotson, who will appear be appearing this month at Walt Disney World Resort. Find him September 8 – 11 at Art of Disney in the Downtown Disney Marketplace and September 18 – 28 at Art of Disney in Epcot. Learn more.

September 12 – 13: Join Master Sculptor Hiko Maeda as he introduces an all-new Disney Showcase Collection figurine and ornament, only available at Disney Parks. This new piece titled, “Let Your Light Shine” is available as a figurine for $50, plus tax, and as an ornament for $28, plus tax. Look for special appearances by Hiko Maeda, September 12 from 4 – 6 p.m. at Main Street Cinema in Magic Kingdom Park and September 13 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 3 – 5 p.m. at Art of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Not able to make it to the event? No problem! A limited number of signed pieces will be available for pre-order through Wednesday, September 10, 2014 at 5 p.m. EDT. Learn more.

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September 18 – 22: Look for the latest releases from Precious Moments doll designer and artist, Linda Rick, including her newest collection inspired by “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” Linda will appear throughout the day (each day), September 18 – 21, at Once Upon A Toy in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Learn more.

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September 27: The next hand-painted Ink & Paint Cel, titled “Summertime Pals,” is set to debut at Animation Gallery in Disney’s Hollywood Studios on September 27, 2014. Meet the artists from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.– 5 p.m. on the day of release. Not able to make it to the event? Disney Event Services is taking pre-orders via www.disneyurl.com/CelPreOrder now through September 25, 2014 at 5p.m. EDT. Learn more.

Which event are you most excited about?

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Filed: Art of Disney, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Downtown Disney, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Latin Flavors Shine During Hispanic Heritage Month at This Year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on August 28th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Fabulous flavors and the vibrant music of Puerto Rico, Patagonia and Mexico brighten up World Showcase for an extended celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month September 19 – November 10, during the 2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival presented by Chase.

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How about Puerto Rico’s Ensalada de Carrucho (Caribbean conch salad with onion, tomato and cilantro with Medella Light Beer; or Carne Guisada con Arroz Blanco (slow-braised beef with Puerto Rican-grown rice) with a frozen San Juan Breeze? Patagonia marketplace will showcase the tastes of Argentina and Chile with dishes such as sustainable Roasted Verlasso Salmon with Quinoa Salad and Arugula Chimichurri; Grilled Beef Skewer with Cimichurri Sauce and Boniato Purée, paired with Chilean Cono Sur Bicicleta Viognier and Argentinean Terrazas Reserva Malbec. The Mexico marketplace features three popular dishes: Shrimp Taco with Fried Shrimp, Pickled Habanero Pepper and Onions on Flour Tortilla; Rib Eye Taco with Marinated Ribeye, Roasted Chipotle Salsa and Grilled Scallions on a Corn Tortilla, and Sweet Corn Cheese Cake. Sip a Dos Equis Beer, Sangria or a Mango-Strawberry Margarita – or get a lesson in tequila with a flight of diverse vintages.

National Hispanic Heritage Month is officially September 15 – October 15, but the celebration will continue throughout the Epcot festival. Celebrating Hispanic and Latino Americans’ contributions to the United States since 1968, Hispanic Heritage Month is steeped in the centuries-old traditions that reflect the ethnic and cultural customs of their communities.

The festival also will present Hispanic and Latin culinary stars hosting dining events and demonstrations.

At the festival’s Puerto Rico experience and marketplace, guests will be transported against a colorful backdrop of Old San Juan created by Walt Disney Imagineering as the festival’s first two-story marketplace. There, guests can explore the history and culture of Puerto Rico. More tastes will include Frituras Sorullitos (sweet polenta fries), Bolitas de Queso (cheese fritters with mayo ketchup) and FlanCocho (vanilla caramel custard with chocolate coffee cake).

Puerto Rico also will host “Experience Puerto Rico – The All Star Island” gala, a premium event in the park’s World ShowPlace pavilion at 7:30 p.m. on September 20. Guests can enjoy the foods, beverages and entertainment of Puerto Rico during the island’s premier dining celebration.

More than 25 festival marketplaces in the park’s World Showcase will feature flavors of six continents. Culinary demonstrations and beverage seminars at the Festival Center in Future World will present recipes and beverages from many cultures, including Puerto Rico, Argentina and Chile. The lineup of notable chefs includes Puerto Rico’s Maira Isabel, who will create a variety of recipes with Puerto Rican ingredients at scheduled culinary demonstrations and during the September 20 gala.

Some Festival Center activities and all Eat to the Beat concerts and park attractions are included with Epcot admission. Premium wine and culinary programs require reservations and separate event admission. Guests can call 407/WDW-FEST (939-3378) to make reservations. Information and reservations for select programs are available at www.epcotfoodfestival.com.


For more about this year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival presented by Chase, visit the posts blow:

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Filed: Disney Dining, Epcot, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

New Entertainment Experiences Coming to World Showcase at Epcot

posted on August 28th, 2014 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Today, we have news about some updates coming to World Showcase at Epcot. One of the best parts of the World Showcase experience is feeling fully immersed in the culture of each country, and the live entertainment presented in the international pavilions plays a large role in creating that atmosphere. Beginning this fall, we will be refreshing the atmosphere entertainment around World Showcase with the addition of new acts and enhancements to some existing performances.

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New experiences debuting over the next several months will contribute to the rich mix of entertainment at Epcot, and provide fresh experiences for our guests. In the near future, you can look forward to enjoying a traditional Berber music and dance troupe in Morocco, a corps of dynamic flag-waving performers in Italy, a thrilling lumberjack-inspired show in Canada, a Celtic folk music ensemble at the United Kingdom, and more.

As we embark on this enhancement of World Showcase entertainment, we bid a fond farewell to Mo’Rockin’, Off Kilter, Spirit of America Fife & Drum Corps and World Showcase Players. We thank these performers for all they’ve done to make the Epcot guest experience enjoyable and memorable, and we invite you to come out and see them in their farewell performances over the next few weeks.

More details will be shared, as they become available, about the timing of certain transitions, as well as each of the exciting new entertainment additions coming to World Showcase.

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

Experience the Ultimate Day VIP Tour at Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on August 15th, 2014 by Russ J. Stacey, Writer, Yellow Shoes Creative Group


What could possibly be better than enjoying all there is to enjoy at the acclaimed Epcot International Food & Wine Festival? Enjoying it via the Ultimate Day VIP Tour!

Delicious Desserts Tempt the Sweet Tooth

Begin the daylong festivities at the VIP Lounge hidden within the Festival Center at the Wonder’s Retreat. This special tour includes Champagne, a beverage tasting, six-course tapas-style lunch, wine, private backstage tours, time on some of the most popular Epcot attractions, food and beverage pairings with Disney chefs, VIP seating at the Eat to the Beat Concert Series, reserved seating for IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth fireworks spectacular and more. Whew!

Sip, taste and enjoy as you travel World Showcase at Epcot. You won’t want to miss this extraordinary celebration of all things culinary, the grape and brew as your Disney VIP Guides accompany you throughout, highlighting special moments not everyone gets to experience.

Occurring rain or shine Thursday and Sundays on select dates September through November, this private tour lasts six and a half hours and costs $399 per person (21 and up only). Call 407-WDW-TOUR (939-8687) for reservations. You can also access the online VIP Tour Services brochure here for more info.


For more about the 2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festive, visit the posts below:

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Wildlife Wednesday: Celebrating Shark Conservation for Shark Week

posted on August 13th, 2014 by Kim Sams, Director, Corporate Citizenship, Conservation Programs, The Walt Disney Company


Summer is usually the time of year that we hear a lot about sharks! Whether it’s a news segment showing aerial video of sharks swimming off popular Florida beaches or a week dedicated to celebrating these unique animals, sharks continue to inspire wonder and capture our imaginations.

Wildlife Wednesday: Celebrating Shark Conservation for Shark Week. Photo Credit: Neil Hammerschlag, R.J. Dunlap Marine Conservation Program, University of Miami Wildlife Wednesday: Celebrating Shark Conservation for Shark Week. Photo Credit: Neil Hammerschlag, R.J. Dunlap Marine Conservation Program, University of Miami

The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF) is committed to protecting sharks and the marine habitats where they live. Since 1995 the DWCF has:

  • Contributed more than $6.3 million to projects focused on conserving marine ecosystems and wildlife.
  • Supported 27 projects working to protect sharks and rays worldwide.
  • Funded organizations like Conservation International, Mote Marine Laboratory and the University of Florida to advance shark conservation and engage communities in their protection.

Our team recently had the opportunity to visit one of the shark conservation projects the DWCF has supported since 2011 with the University of Miami’s RJ Dunlap Marine Conservation Program. This program is an outstanding example of the kind of projects funded through the DWCF’s annual conservation grant program. The research of University of Miami’s faculty, students and volunteers focuses on several shark species in the Atlantic Ocean and is both advancing our understanding and providing leverage to better protect these iconic animals. The program is also a fantastic example of inspiring the next generation of conservationists, and last year brought more than 1,000 students along on their research trips to learn about and participate in shark conservation first-hand! We are happy to debut a video of this great program and thank the many guests whose DWCF contributions have helped initiatives like these.

Interested in discovering more about sharks during your next visit to Walt Disney World Resort? Stop by The Seas with Nemo & Friends at Epcot where you might find Blacknose, Sandbar and Sand Tiger sharks alongside several different types of rays. You can take a photo with Bruce from “Finding Nemo” and explore a maze filled with fun facts about sharks. You can also talk to educators to learn more about these animals, the threats they are facing and how you can be a shark conservationist through simple actions like contributing to the DWCF!

Happy Shark Week!

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort

New Alex and Ani Disney Bracelets Make Two Seasons Collide at Disney Parks

posted on August 11th, 2014 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Those of you who visit the Disneyland Resort every holiday season know what happens when holidays collide – in two words … Jack Skellington. So it should be no surprise to find one of our favorite Halloweentown characters on our Alex and Ani bangles.

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So treat yourself, as this is no trick, and get ready for Halloween a little early this year. Look for the new Jack Skellington bangle starting today at the following Disney Parks locations or online.

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Online – Shop Now!

So what comes after fall and Halloween? Winter of course! Just like Elsa, the cold never bothered me anyway, and these “Frozen”-inspired bangles, featuring Anna and Elsa are bound to be hot! Look for them in stores and online beginning September 8.

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Keep watching the Disney Parks Blog and follow us on across our Disney Parks social channels for more details on these new arrivals.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Downtown Disney District, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Caption This: Snacking at The Universe of Energy at Epcot

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


One of my fondest memories of visiting Epcot for the first time in the 1980s was this attraction, the Universe of Energy. I was mystified by these towering dinosaurs who look so unbelievably lifelike and watched us with curiosity as our ride vehicle passed by.

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The attraction opened with the park in 1982 – which means these guys have been snacking on plantlife for more than three decades. What do they think of all the guests who pass by with delicious Disney Parks treats? You tell us – go ahead and “Caption This!”

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Filed: Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort