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Show Off Your Disney Side at Walt Disney World Resort with Retail MagicBands and Accessories

posted on September 5th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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My fellow author Tom Smith recently shared some details about My Disney Experience – a key component of MyMagic+ at Walt Disney World Resort. Today, I wanted to highlight a fun way to show your Disney Side using another element of MyMagic+ – retail MagicBands and accessories.

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Guests who book a Walt Disney World Resort vacation already receive a MagicBand in their choice of select colors. We also offer retail MagicBands which are great 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.

There are currently seven different colors offered. You may also recall seeing some special graphic MagicBands at events like Frozen Summer Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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I spoke with merchandiser Kevin-Michael Lezotte about how guests can show their Disney Side using MagicBands.

“There are a few ways guests can personalize their MagicBands before or during their visit,” explained Kevin-Michael. “We have ‘MagicBandits,’ which are small characters or icons that attach to the side of a MagicBand. We also have ‘MagicSliders’ and ‘CoverBands,’ both of which can slide over the tops of MagicBands. The latter is offered in large and small sizes depending on the size of a guest’s wrist. These accessories are a fun way for guests to show off their Disney Side while visiting Walt Disney World Resort.”

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The seven solid-color retail MagicBands are $12.95 each plus tax. Retails for other MagicBand accessories vary.

At the time of purchase, guests must present one of the following for retail MagicBands to be linked: valid theme park admission, Memory Maker card or an active MagicBand. If the item linked to is already connected with the guest’s My Disney Experience account, all existing plans – such as tickets, dining reservations, Disney PhotoPass Service, and FastPass+ selections – will seamlessly link and automatically be accessible via the new MagicBand. Guests who don’t have an established My Disney Experience account prior to purchasing a retail MagicBand can easily create one by visiting www.MyDisneyExperience.com.

It is important to note that the touch to pay option will only work for guests staying at Walt Disney World Resort owned and operated hotels who have establish charging privileges on their resort accounts.
You can find retail MagicBands and accessories in several merchandise locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort. The Disney Parks online store also carries select MagicBand accessories.

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Filed: MagicBands, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

New Merchandise Coming to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on September 2nd, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party returned to Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort on September 1, 2014. This fun Halloween-themed event runs select nights from 7:00 p.m. to midnight through October 31. I’ve attended the event a few times during my time with Disney. It’s fantastic! I love that so many guests dress in costume and the entertainment is outstanding (okay, I’m also a big fan of the candy). This year, guests should look for some commemorative items created especially for this event, including apparel, pins, and, for the first time, a limited-edition graphic MagicBand.
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Presented in a decorative box, the limited-edition graphic MagicBand will include the event logo. It will have an edition size of 5,000 and will retail for $29.95 (plus tax). Guests must present one of the following for the MagicBand to be linked to at the time of purchase: valid theme park admission, Memory Maker card or an active MagicBand.
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Guests attending the event will also find a few apparel items for adults and kids, including both long and short sleeved options plus a ladies’ cut T-shirt. A slightly altered event logo was used for the limited-release pin.
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Speaking of pins, guests should look for a couple of different things, including individual limited-edition pins (Chip ‘n’ Dale with Clarice is my favorite), a boxed set, a framed set, and a limited-release mystery pin set.
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One final item wasn’t created specifically for Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party but I thought it was perfectly themed for the event. It’s a limited release, graphic MagicBand that contains the infamous wallpaper from the Haunted Mansion attraction (retail is $24.95 plus tax). This item will also have to be linked at the time of purchase just like the aforementioned limited-edition graphic MagicBand.

Please visit the following Magic Kingdom Park locations to find these products:

Please note the Haunted Mansion-themed graphic MagicBand will only be sold at Magic Kingdom Park at this time. Guests do not have to attend Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party in order to purchase it.

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

365 (Consecutive) Days of Walt Disney World Resort Magic

posted on August 29th, 2014 by Darcy Clark, Marketing Manager, Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World Resort


When one of my Downtown Disney partners told me about Brent Dodge, an Annual Passholder who visited the four Walt Disney World Resort Theme Parks every day for 365 consecutive days, I couldn’t believe it. While I love the parks, just the idea of visiting every day while working full time has me exhausted!

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I wanted to find out more, so I spoke with Brent myself to find out why he did it. First things first, he confessed that he hadn’t really passed through the turnstiles (or, in our new era of MyMagic+, ventured through the main entrance touch points) for a full year, “there were actually three days that I didn’t visit a park. I was on a Disney Cruise” he shared. Well, 365 days of Disney attractions, then. Consider me impressed.

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Brent has been a Passholder since 2009, and currently carries the “Premier” pass, which also grants him access to Disneyland park. (I’d say he’s getting his money’s worth!) This Peter Pan’s Flight lover has visited the place where dreams come true since he was an infant, and when pressed for the “why” behind his latest all-year-long endeavor, he simply states, “Cause I’m a Disney nerd! If I live this close to Walt Disney World Resort, why wouldn’t I go every day? Especially when others are saving up thousands of dollars to go once in a lifetime.” Okay, he had me there.

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The “official” milestone was reached on August 13; of the estimated 2,200 days Brent has spent at the parks over his lifetime, that day ranks among his all-time-top Disney memories. “A friend surprised me with a custom t-shirt from Disney Design-a-Tee at Downtown Disney; it features my favorite character, Scrooge McDuck. A few other friends met me at Magic Kingdom Park with signs to celebrate, and we had a great view of the parade. We got to ride Peter Pan’s Flight, followed by another beloved attraction, Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover – three times!”

I’ll admit, it does sound pretty magical. While most of my days are spent at the Downtown Disney area, now that fall is fast-approaching, I plan to spend more time following in Brent’s footsteps and enjoying all that Walt Disney World Resort has to offer.

How about you … can you imagine a daily visit to the parks?

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Magic Kingdom, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

MyMagic+: Video Captures Your Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Drop at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on August 13th, 2014 by Kelly Glassburn, Manager of Marketing & Communications, Disney’s PhotoPass Service


Why is it that the things that scare us the most are often the experiences we are drawn to again and again? I hate creepy crawlies, but when asked if I want to hold something like a giant tarantula … I always say yes! Or, when presented with the opportunity to drop 13 stories when you are really afraid of heights … you buckle up, close your eyes, and hope that you don’t embarrass yourself in front of a group of fellow thrill seekers.

Better yet, how many times have you wished to have those scary (but exhilarating) moments captured on video? The look, the screams, the panic and ultimately the relief on our faces when the moment is over – what if you could relive that experience over and over again with video? How cool would that be?

Well, guess what? Disney PhotoPass Service has introduced some awesome new technology, which will enable guests with a MagicBand and an active Memory Maker entitlement who ride The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror to receive a video memento of their 13-story drop! The video is automatically associated to your My Disney Experience account, and any linked Family & Friends and Managed guests on your account will also be able to view and share the video. Check it out!

So, get ready for a whole new level of memorable thrills if you have a MagicBand and Memory Maker! And if you are that guy, or that girl, who screams like a banshee on this attraction, we’ll let you relive that magical memory again, and again, and again.

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Visiting Walt Disney World Resort? Check Out These Free Vacation-Planning Tools

posted on August 12th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Are you planning a Walt Disney World Resort vacation but don’t know where to start? Well, there are actually a lot of complimentary vacation planning tools available out there that can help you plan the perfect trip for your family. Here are some of our favorites.

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  • WaltDisneyWorld.com – This essential planning website is where you can begin to explore our theme parks and resorts, buy theme park tickets, make resort and dining reservations, and more. You can also create set up a MyDisneyExperience profile, which lets you organize all of your vacation plans in one place, as well as select FastPass+ for specific attractions you want to experience during your vacation.
  • Disney Parks Vacation Planning DVD – When you order your free Disney Parks Vacation Planning DVD, you’ll discover a world of ways to make family memories together, including special tips on how to make the most of the magic. You can also watch online.
  • Walt Disney World Customized Maps – Our Customized Map tool allows you to explore our different theme parks and select the attractions and entertainment that are specific to your family’s interests and activity level. You can also have the maps printed and have them shipped directly to your door (US only).
  • Ratings & Reviews – Discover what other guests are saying about our Walt Disney World resorts, dining and attractions and start planning your must-sees today!
  • Disney Parks Moms Panel – Got a vacation-planning question? Ask the Disney Parks Moms Panel, our team of talented vacation planners that are ready and waiting to help.

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Filed: FastPass+, My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World Resort

MyMagic+: Personalizing Your Disney Vacation with My Disney Experience

posted on August 6th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Last month, we talked with our creative team about the resort flyovers now available with My Disney Experience – a key component of MyMagic+ at Walt Disney World Resort. Today, we’re talking with some of you about getting started on the web site and mobile app.

New to My Disney Experience? It’s the key to personalizing your entire visit. Getting started is easy – really, it’s done in just three steps.

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First, log on to the My Disney Experience website or download the newly redesigned mobile app to create your own account and customize your visit.

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Next, link any of your Walt Disney World Resort Hotel reservations and park tickets to your account planning page. If you don’t have reservations or tickets, both can be added later.

And the final step is the best part – selecting your favorite Disney attractions, shows and more with FastPass+ and booking dining reservations. You can also set up reminders for fireworks times, parades and character experiences along with many other features.

We’re just getting going with our MyMagic+ series so tell us what you’d like to know more about and check back for our next story.

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Filed: My Disney Experience, MyMagic+, Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World Resort

Enjoy Frozen Summer Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios with New Limited Edition Retail MagicBand

posted on August 4th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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As the “Frozen” Summer Fun celebration continues at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, I have some exciting news to share about a new, limited edition retail MagicBand, featuring Olaf from Disney’s “Frozen.” This item is now available at Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The shop is located between Toy Story Midway Mania and Studio Backlot Tour. I spoke with Kevin-Michael Lezotte, merchandiser for retail MagicBands, about this latest addition.

“We saw a great response from guests when we released two limited edition MagicBands during Star Wars Weekends earlier this year,” explained Kevin-Michael. “This new MagicBand is pre-printed with an image of Olaf ‘chillin’ in summer, and will be presented in a specially designed packaging. These pre-printed MagicBands are another great way guests can show off their Disney Side while visiting Walt Disney World Resort this summer.”

This limited edition retail MagicBand will have an edition size of 5,000, and will have a retail of $29.95 (plus tax).

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You may recall that this new MagicBand will join three open edition MagicBands inspired by Disney’s “Frozen,” which are currently offered in Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post.

As with all retail MagicBand purchases, guests must present one of the following for the MagicBand to be linked to at the time of purchase: valid theme park admission, Memory Maker card or another MagicBand.

These specific “Frozen” MagicBands will not be offered on our Disney Parks online store or via Merchandise Guest Services team.

Guests, however, can find other select MagicBand accessories, like MagicBandits and MagicSliders, online at DisneyParks.com/Store.

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

Two New Ways to Enjoy Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

posted on July 31st, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Update: The schedule for Epcot International Food & Wine Festival – Late Nights LIVE! has been adjusted and guests will have the opportunity to enjoy this event on Thursday nights throughout the festival. Guests who had booked a Tuesday night will be contacted by a Disney cast member for further assistance.

How about an after-hours street party, and an Epcot Food & Wine Festival Premium Package to make the 19th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival even more fun?

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Epcot Food & Wine Festival – Late Nights LIVE! street party will run from 9:45 p.m. to 1 a.m. every Tuesday and Thursday during the festival between the United Kingdom Pavilion and World Showcase Plaza. The event includes six tastes (food and beverages) from select marketplaces, live music, entertainment, and a DJ. Cost is $79, plus tax. Bringing together the love of food with the love of music, it’s the perfect destination for a delicious final bite. Party is subject to capacity and advance reservations are recommended; to book a spot, call 407-939-3378. We know that Greece, Hawaii and Desserts & Champagne will be showcased, along with others that will change throughout the festival.

*Note: Admission to Epcot is not required after 9 p.m. for guests who have purchased credentials to the event. However, if the guest wants to visit Epcot before 9 p.m., valid theme park admission is required. Alcohol will only be served to guests 21 and older.

Now for some brand-new “Premium” fun! From noon-8 p.m. Monday through Thursday during a select festival period (September 22-November 6), the Epcot Food & Wine Festival Premium Package is an opportunity for guests staying in a Walt Disney World Resort hotel (or the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotels) to sip and savor in style. The package includes an in-room gift with wine for guests 21 and older, a festival wine glass, truffles and credential for the Premium Package Areas at the festival – plus an Epcot International Food & Wine Festival MagicBand and a $50 Disney Gift Card to start the fun. The credential gives access to 10 VIP “Premium Package Areas” around World Showcase Promenade where you can order items from Marketplaces and have them delivered to you – no waiting in line. You can also bring your favorite marketplace treats into the Premium Package Areas and just relax. The package also includes one admission to Epcot Food & Wine Festival – Late Nights LIVE!, which you can attend on Tuesday or Thursday night.

Cost is $199 per guest, plus tax, plus Epcot admission.

For the Epcot Food & Wine Festival Premium Package, call 407-939-1889. For more general information on the festival, go to epcotfoodfestival.com.

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

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Filed: Epcot, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

MyMagic+: 3-D Flyovers of Resorts Added to My Disney Experience

posted on July 25th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


If you’ve been following our MyMagic+ updates, then you know My Disney Experience is the key to personalizing your visit. It’s one of several MyMagic+ benefits and tools now available to guests visiting Walt Disney World Resort.

Recently, the team working on My Disney Experience added some new features, including amazing flyovers of our resorts that we wanted to share with readers.

The 3-D modeling and a “camera view” from inside the animation gives you a great perspective – from birds eye to 360-degrees – at resort features (pools, recreation, monorail, amenities) and proximity to our parks.

Ken Oelerich, a design director on the project, was able to layer creative over Walt Disney World Resort maps and create a 3-D environment with the unique “camera” view. Ken says the team was not limited by where a helicopter could fly to bring the resorts to life for My Disney Experience.

Currently, the new flyovers are for Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Disney’s Contemporary Resort and Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa with Disney’s Polynesian Resort coming soon. Go see the flyovers and other new features at My Disney Experience.

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

New Hidden Mickey Pins Arriving at Disney Parks in July 2014

posted on July 11th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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Now that summer has arrived at Disney Parks, guests will soon find new Hidden Mickey pins at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. These unique pins will be distributed to cast members to use for trading with guests by late July 2014. You may recall that we typically release two different waves of pins a year (the first wave this year was introduced back in February). Here is a closer look at what guests can expect to trade in the coming months.

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Cast members at Disneyland Resort will soon receive an assortment of 30 different pins to use for trading with guests. The image above is a checklist to help you identify the new pins coming to California. As a reminder, Hidden Mickey pins typically measure about 1.25-inches and contain the phrase ”Hidden Mickey Pin” on the back of the pin.

I think my favorite series features Disney Birds (I’m partial to birds, especially ones that are orange). The special thing about this series is that there will be five different Disney bird pins found at Walt Disney World Resort that complement the pins at Disneyland Resort. The “Villainous Sidekicks” collection will also feature complementary pins.

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The image above shows the 30 pins that will be distributed to cast members at Walt Disney World Resort. The series that caught my eye in this collection is the character themed MagicBands.

Chaser pins will also be included in this new wave for 2014. These silver-colored pins are rarer to find compared to their full color counterparts.

Which pins do you want to trade? Please share in the comments below.

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Filed: Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort