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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on April 19th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


If you’re as excited as we are about the upcoming 24-hour celebrations to kick off summer at the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort, then this was another great week to be checking the Disney Parks Blog.

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This week, we offered 24 suggestions on how you can make the most of this year’s 24-hour celebration at the Walt Disney World Resort. It begins on May 22, and here are some of our favorites:

  • Challenge yourself to get as many photos with Disney characters as possible. The My Disney Experience App will have the latest on appearance times.
  • Join the late night dance parties in your pajamas. That’s what Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Chip, Dale and Goofy will be wearing!
  • Show your #DisneySide by wearing a costume. (Check out the guidelines here).

Check Jennifer’s original story for the complete list and let us know what you’re planning during the 24-hour celebration.

Also, opening on May 22 as part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, the new “Paint the Night” parade will feature some of the most innovative floats, vibrant costumes, dazzling special effects, unforgettable music and energetic performances ever presented at Disneyland Resort. Shawn shared a behind-the-scenes look at performer rehearsals with the Fiber Fairies from the opening unit and the Cars Crew, who join Mack Truck and Lightning McQueen.

Check Shawn’s original story for more details about the “Paint the Night” parade.

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

Closer Look at Nighttime Entertainment and More Coming for Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration – Hear thoughts from Steve Davison, vice president of Parades and Spectaculars, Walt Disney Imagineering Creative Entertainment, on the new nighttime spectaculars currently in development … and watch to the end for your first look at the “Cars” story from the new “Paint the Night” parade!

A Taste of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration – The kickoff of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration is right around the corner, and we have more details to share about some of the new food and beverage offerings sure to dazzle your taste buds.

Mickey Mouse and Friends to Wear Sparkling New Ensembles for Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration – We’ve already shared some of the sparkling new decor, entertainment and merchandise coming for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration beginning May 22. Some of our biggest stars will also sparkle for the celebration!

Disney Parks After Dark: Astro Orbitor Revisited at Disneyland Park – Disneyland Resort Chief Photographer Paul Hiffmeyer shares some special photos of this classic attraction, both in motion and at rest.

Learn to Draw: Sorcerer Mickey from ‘Fantasia’ – This week’s Learn to Draw animation tutorial series continues with a lesson on how to create your own Sorcerer Mickey.

Disney Days of Past: Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge Constructed – Surrounded by over 45 acres of savanna, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge continues to be one of the most spectacular hotels at Walt Disney World. In September 2000, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge was beginning to take shape as construction continued on what is now known as Jambo House.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

24 Ways to Kick Off Our Coolest Summer Ever Event on May 22 at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on April 12th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


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We’ll officially kick off the beginning of summer here at the Walt Disney World Resort on May 22, with a 24-hour celebration at Magic Kingdom Park.

If you’re heading to our park to join in on the fun, here are 24 suggestions on how you can make the most of this year’s event.

  1. Show your #DisneySide by wearing a costume. (Check out the guidelines here).
  2. Join your favorite heroes from “The Incredibles” in the #IncrediblesSuperDanceParty in Tomorrowland, starting at 9:30 a.m.
  3. Join the “Move It, Shake It, Dance & Play It!” Street party to celebrate the start of summer. The first celebration begins at 9:30 a.m.!
  4. Find the paw prints of “Lady and the Tramp” hidden somewhere on Main Street, U.S.A.
  5. Have breakfast in the park. Mickey Waffles, anyone?
  6. Challenge yourself to get as many photos with Disney characters as possible. The My Disney Experience App will have the latest on appearance times.
  7. Catch the fun of the Royal Majesty Makers, who appear throughout New Fantasyland during the day.
  8. Attend the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade,” which features floats from “Tangled,” “Brave” and many more.
  9. Get your picture with Cinderella’s Pumpkin Coach.
  10. May 22 is also the opening date for the film “Tomorrowland.” Celebrate with a ride through Space Mountain or the Tomorrowland Transit Authority People Mover.
  11. Check out the latest Disney merchandise. Memento Mori, a new spot devoted to Haunted Mansion-inspired gifts, is a great place to start.
  12. Catch the patriotic flag retreat on Main Street, U.S.A., promptly at 5 p.m.
  13. Check out the latest additions to the park, including Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and the interactive queue at Peter Pan’s Flight.
  14. Join the late night dance parties in your pajamas. That’s what Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Chip, Dale and Goofy will be wearing!
  15. Enjoy the “Celebrate the Magic” castle projection show.
  16. Gather together for “Wishes” fireworks at Cinderella Castle.
  17. Change costumes at the 12-hour mark. Maybe a “hero” look for the day and a “villain” look at night?
  18. 24 hours means a lot of time for character autographs. How many can you get?
  19. Enjoy a late-night snack at the park. Popcorn or Dole Whip?
  20. Take pictures wearing as many different Mickey Ear hats as you can.
  21. See how many Hidden Mickeys you can find in 24 hours.
  22. Catch two showings of the “Main Street Electrical Parade.”
  23. Enjoy your favorite Disney attractions all day (and night) long.
  24. Take an early morning family photo – if you can make it the full 24 hours!

How will you kick off our 24-hour event? Tell us in the “Comments” section below!

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Filed: Disney Dining, Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

New Breakfast Starts March 20 at Be Our Guest Restaurant in Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort

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


Starting on March 20, Be Our Guest Restaurant in Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort will begin testing a prix fixe breakfast from 8-10 a.m. daily through June 18.

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The fast casual breakfast menu has a decidedly French touch; each meal begins with a pastry basket for sharing. Your entrée options include assorted cured meat and cheese served with marmalade, fresh fruit and a toasted baguette. You can also enjoy eggs Florentine served in a puff pastry shell with country ham and roasted plum tomatoes. Even the open-face bacon-and-poached-egg sandwich has Brie.

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If you’re looking for something a little lighter, choose the scrambled egg whites with roasted tomatoes, multigrain croissant and fresh fruit. Or go with a vegetable quiche with mushroom, zucchini, bell pepper, onion and chive, served with seasonal fruit. The prix fixe menu will also include a selection of self-service beverages.

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But the decadent start to the day is the Croissant Doughnut: a fried doughnut topped with banana caramel sauce, chocolate ganache and whipped cream. (True vacation indulgence!)

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The kids’ menu includes brioche French toast with fresh fruit, scrambled eggs with Applewood bacon and fresh fruit, fruit crepes with yogurt and fresh fruit with a berry foam, cereal and oatmeal.

Guests can make reservations beginning March 17 for dates March 20 through June 18, 2015 via DisneyWorld.com/dine, the My Disney Experience app, or by calling 407-WDW-DINE. Advance reservations are encouraged. Disney Dining Plan will be accepted.

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Filed: Disney Dining, Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

New Viewing Areas for Parades & Fireworks Debut at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on February 27th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Last year, we showed you a preview of the work that we’re doing to make one of our guests’ favorite areas at Magic Kingdom Park even better. Today we’re happy to share that several new sections of the Central Plaza area between Main Street U.S.A. and Cinderella Castle are now open.

New  Viewing Areas for Parades & Fireworks Debut at Magic Kingdom Park New  Viewing Areas for Parades & Fireworks Debut at Magic Kingdom Park

This marks the first milestone in our multi-phase project that will add in sculpted gardens, new pathways, and expanded restaurant seating. And beginning February 27, the FastPass+ viewing location will relocate from the the Rose Garden Fireworks Viewing Area to the Main Street Plaza Gardens (an area adjacent to The Crystal Palace).

New Viewing Areas for Parades & Fireworks Debut at Magic Kingdom Park New  Viewing Areas for Parades & Fireworks Debut at Magic Kingdom Park

Interested in using Disney FastPass+ service for this new area? Check out your My Disney Experience account.

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Filed: FastPass+, Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Coming Soon: Lunch Reservations at Be Our Guest Restaurant

posted on February 6th, 2015 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Be Our Guest Restaurant in Magic Kingdom Park has been a guest favorite since it opened with the New Fantasyland expansion. Beginning February 25, it is with deepest pride and greatest pleasure that we welcome you to make reservations for the fast-casual lunch experience at Be Our Guest Restaurant.

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Guests will also have the option to pre-order their meal 30 days prior up to 5 minutes before their reservation.

Lunch is served daily from 10:30a.m. – 2:30p.m. Reservations can be made beginning February 25 via My Disney Experience, by visiting disneyworld.com/dine, or by calling 407-WDW-DINE.

Don’t forget to try “The Grey Stuff” on the Master’s Cupcake while you’re there … it’s delicious!

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Filed: Disney Dining, Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

New Animated Magic Shots Add Extra Disney Magic to Your Photos

posted on November 7th, 2014 by Marie Quintero, Marketing & Communications Manager, Disney PhotoPass Service


Guests visiting Walt Disney World Resort can now have some Disney animation added to their memories and it is all part of Memory Maker!

When visiting one of the locations listed below, simply ask a Disney PhotoPass Photographer for an Animated Magic Shot.

When you visit MyDisneyPhotoPass.com you’ll be surprised to find that we have applied animation to your photo featuring a Disney character.

As part of your Memory Maker entitlement you’ll be able to download the video file of your Animated Magic Shot to post online and share with friends.

Also, be on the lookout for special Animated Magic Shots coming this holiday season to Magic Kingdom Park and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party nights. I’ll share a sneak peek of those with you soon.

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Filed: Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney PhotoPass Service Simplifies Access to Walt Disney World Photos, Videos

posted on October 28th, 2014 by Sandi Wallace, Walt Disney World Communications


With attraction photos, you can capture some amazing Disney moments. And now, Disney PhotoPass Service is making it even easier for you to collect those memories.

Beginning today, if you’re wearing an active MagicBand on select Walt Disney World Resort attractions, your photos will be automatically associated to your My Disney Experience account. You don’t have to do anything. In fact, if you’ve worn your MagicBand on one of the participating attractions in the last 45 days, you should be able to find that photo in your account now.

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Don’t have a MagicBand? Don’t worry. We’re making it easier for you, too. Today we turned on new touch points at Magic Kingdom Park (Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, Space Mountain, Splash Mountain). So after you ride, simply find your photo on the preview wall and touch your park ticket or Memory Maker card to the touch point to associate your photo. We expect to have photo touch points installed at Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme parks by mid-November.

Beginning soon, guests wearing active MagicBands will have attraction videos automatically associated to their accounts. Videos are currently available for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.

Just like attraction photos, if you’ve worn your MagicBand on one of the participating attractions in the last 45 days, you should be able to find that attraction video in your account soon. Guests will be able to view these videos in their accounts, but a Memory Maker entitlement is required to download and share them.

Just remember that all Disney PhotoPass photos and videos expire 45 days after they are taken. So be sure to log in to your account to secure your memories before they expire.

And watch for more exciting news coming from Disney PhotoPass Service soon!

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Filed: Disney's Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, MagicBands, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney’s MyMagic+ Honored with ‘Innovation by Design’ Award

posted on October 17th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


We’re pleased to share that MyMagic+ – our collection of tools taking the guest experience to the next level at the Walt Disney World Resort – was recently honored with an “Innovation by Design” award by the popular magazine and website, Fast Company.

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MyMagic+ 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. Winning entries were honored as the smartest, most ambitious design experience developed in concert with business and culture.

As we’ve shared here on the Disney Parks Blog, MyMagic+ is a new way for guests to experience an even more magical Walt Disney World vacation, with FastPass+, Disney’s MagicBand and the My Disney Experience website and app.

Congratulations to the MyMagic+ teams working on this award and all of the cast members assisting in the ongoing evolution of the guest experience at the Walt Disney World Resort.

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Capture All Your Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Memories with a One Day Memory Maker

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Kelly Glassburn, Manager of Marketing & Communications, Disney’s PhotoPass Service


Halloween memories are extra special in my family … as it’s the one time of year where I can get my boys to get in a photo without me begging them to pose! There’s something about getting dressed up in their costumes, especially if we are headed out to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party to meet some of our favorite characters.

This is one of my favorites, of my tough guy muscling up to meet our favorite Space Ranger and intergalactic superhero.

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At this year’s event, there’s an opportunity for party guests to purchase a new product that we’re currently testing – a one day Memory Maker.

Now through October 31, a one day Memory Maker entitlement can be added to your Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party ticket for only $39. All of your Disney PhotoPass photos taken on the day your event ticket is used, including character encounters and select dining and attraction photos are included — no matter how many you get or if they were taken earlier in the day before Mickey’s Not-So-scary Halloween Party!

And don’t worry … if you aren’t able to make it to this year’s party, no trick, we’ve got a special TREAT for you! Simply log into your My Disney Experience account and claim PhotoPass ID COMEJOINTHEPARTY to receive a unique Bonus shot of some of our favorite ghosts! HINT: “We’ve got 999 happy haunts here, but there’s room for a thousand ..!”

So don’t delay … visit any ticket booth at the Transportation and Ticket Center for more information and to add the one day Memory Maker entitlement to your Mickey’s Not-So- Scary Halloween Party event. (Don’t worry if you have already purchased your Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party ticket – you can still add the one day Memory Maker test product the night of your event!)

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, My Disney Experience, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

Details About ‘Link-It Later’ and Accessories for Retail MagicBands at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on September 19th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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I recently shared a look at how guests can use retail MagicBands and accessories to show their Disney Side when visiting Walt Disney World Resort. Today, I have additional details about a new option for retail MagicBands called “Link-It Later,” and a look at some of the newest MagicBandits coming soon to select merchandise locations in Florida.

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We offer retail MagicBands for purchase as an option for guests who may not be staying at a Walt Disney World Resort owned and operated hotel but want to take advantage of some cool technology during their visit. Typically, guests must present one of the following for retail MagicBands to be linked at the time of purchase: valid theme park admission, Memory Maker card or an active MagicBand.

With the “Link-It Later” option, guests will be able to purchase solid-colored MagicBands (available in seven colors) and link them to a valid theme park admission at a future date. This new option lets guests purchase MagicBands as gifts.

The graphic MagicBands, like the Haunted Mansion-themed one or the MagicBands featuring characters from Disney’s “Frozen,” can’t be linked later at this time.

“Link-It Later” is currently available in select retail locations at Walt Disney World Resort. It was recently expanded to participating off-site locations including Hotel Plaza Boulevard hotels in the Downtown Disney area, Disney liquidation stores in Florida, and the Disney merchandise shops at the Orlando International Airport.

Guests may visit their My Disney Experience account to associate MagicBands, using the “Link a MagicBand or Card” link.

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I also convinced the retail MagicBand development team to give you a sneak preview of new MagicBandits coming soon. These small characters or icons can be attached to the side of any MagicBand. I particularly like the retro “world” logo seen in the first image above. I also heard they are working on some MagicBandits featuring famous ghosts that like to follow guests home.

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