I’m happy to share that new Hidden Mickey pins are arriving soon to cast members’ lanyards at Disney Parks. For those unfamiliar with these pins, the Disney pin team distributes these pins to Cast Members to use for trading with guests. The Hidden Mickey pin collection was first introduced at Walt Disney World Resort in 2002. Today, they have become something fun for guests to collect or trade while visiting Disney Parks. Jeanne Lewis, merchandiser for Disney pins, recently gave me a look at the first wave of pins for 2014. This year’s collections feature familiar Disney characters and icons from Disney Parks.
For Disneyland Resort, Jeanne included pins that were inspired by the beautiful tile artwork found outside Carthay Circle on Buena Vista Street (you can see a great video about the creation of those tiles in this Disney Parks Blog story). I also love the character tiki face and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit pins.
For Walt Disney World Resort, Jeanne continued the Magic Kingdom Parking Lot sign collection first introduced years ago. There is also a collection featuring the Seven Dwarfs, which is a slight nod to Seven Dwarfs Mine Train coming to New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park in 2014.
There will also be one shared collection between Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. That collection features the “it’s a small world” attraction, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
As a reminder, there are a couple of ways to identify a Hidden Mickey pin. The pins typically measure about 1.25-inches and contain a small Mickey Mouse icon “hidden” in the artwork. The back of the pin will also have the words “Hidden Mickey pin.”
Since last Friday, we’ve been giving you some sneak peeks at a mysterious new float coming this spring to the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade” at Magic Kingdom Park. Today, we’re excited to reveal that this impressive addition represents none other than Maleficent from “Sleeping Beauty” – in the form of an enormous, Steampunk-inspired dragon.
Stretching 35 feet in length and reaching 26 feet above the parade route, the Maleficent Dragon has been designed in partnership with Tony Award-winner Michael Curry, whose previous collaborations with Disney Parks have included the “Tapestry of Nations” parade at Epcot and “Finding Nemo – The Musical” at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
The “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade” is a celebration of Fantasyland, with each of the floats appearing as though the characters of that enchanted land may have had a hand in crafting them, bringing their individual stories to celebratory life on the streets of Magic Kingdom Park. The Steampunk-inspired style of the Maleficent Dragon takes that “maker” spirit to a spectacular level.
We’ll have much more to share about the Maleficent Dragon and the rest of the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade” in the coming weeks, as we get closer to parade’s debut in spring 2014!
We’re thrilled to start off the New Year with an exciting behind-the-scenes look at Seven Dwarfs Mine Train.
Walt Disney Imagineering just shared this new video with us, in which Walt Disney Imagineers Ben VanBeusekon and Mary Mac Eachin explain the creative process behind designing and producing themed cars for Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. As they explain, in addition to being a part of the attraction’s innovative new ride system that causes cars to swing back and forth while they travel down the track, the train cars are painted and aged in a way that contributes to the storyline of the attraction. Learn more below.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train will debut at Magic Kingdom Park in 2014. Stay tuned to the Disney Parks Blog for more updates.
This year, more than 15 miles of garland, 1,300 Christmas trees and 1,314 wreaths brightened up Walt Disney World Resort for the holidays – with one area, New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park, decorated for the season for the first time.
Check out our behind-the-scenes look with Holiday Services Decorator EJ DeYoung, who shares how new decorations were created just for this area.
Happy one-year anniversary to New Fantasyland! The area, which is the largest expansion in Magic Kingdom Park history, enjoyed its grand opening ceremony exactly a year ago today.
New Fantasyland, which brought about the addition of Storybook Circus and dedicated “Beauty and the Beast” and “The Little Mermaid” areas to the park, was officially dedicated December 6, 2012, in a ceremony that featured “Once Upon a Time” actress Ginnifer Goodwin, pop star Jordin Sparks and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs. Guests could now participate in a retelling of Belle and Beast’s love story at Enchanted Tales With Belle, have a snack at Gaston’s Tavern, dine inside Beast’s Castle at Be Our Guest Restaurant, or explore the caverns below Prince Eric’s castle to take a journey under the sea with Ariel.
Over the course of the past year, work has continued on the remaining two attractions in the New Fantasyland expansion. One of these, Princess Fairytale Hall, opened its doors in September as the go-to place to meet Cinderella and Rapunzel, who each greet guests daily alongside one of their other royal friends. The interior of the hall was inspired by design elements – and even specific props – seen in the films “Cinderella” and “Tangled.” The result was a truly regal look, with high ceilings, rich wood-paneling, handpainted princess portraits, themed wallpaper, glittering stained glass windows and more.
The final attraction in the New Fantasyland expansion is Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, which is set to debut in 2014. The mine train, which is currently under construction, will tell the story of Snow White through the eyes of the Seven Dwarfs. Be sure to watch the Disney Parks Blog in coming months for more on this attraction.
Join the conversation online with the hash tag #NewFantasyland on Twitter.
For more on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, click the links below:
One year ago today, we officially officially opened New Fantasyland at Walt Disney World Resort and to celebrate the first anniversary, we’re offering you a chance to win a “Little Mermaid” Vinylmation.
Here’s how it works: Between 9:00 a.m. (ET), December 6, 2013, and 4:00 p.m. (ET), December 6, 2013, we’ll be sharing a #NewFantasyland RT-to-Win tweet on our @WaltDisneyWorld account. When you see it, simply tweet or retweet the entire message along with “#Sweepsentry,” and you will be entered for a chance to be one of 40 people who will win one “Little Mermaid” Vinylmation. For your entry to be valid, you must follow @WaltDisneyWorld on Twitter.
We just launched our first tweet at @WaltDisneyWorld. We’ll notify potential winners after 4 p.m. on December 6, 2013. Here’s a link to the sweepstakes rules. Please read them before you enter.
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Void outside the U.S. and where prohibited. Open only to persons, who are, as of Entry, legal residents of, and physically located within, the 50 U.S. or D.C. and who have reached the age of majority in their primary state of residence. Sweepstakes starts 9:00 AM (ET) on 12/06/13; ends 4:00 P.M. (ET) on 12/06/13. Click here for Official Rules.
Who’s ready for a Seven Dwarfs Mine Train update?
Our friends at Walt Disney Imagineering recently reached another milestone in the construction of the attraction with the overnight addition of a few scenic elements guests will encounter at the top of the mine train’s first lift. When mine cars pull out of the load area, they’ll travel up the track to the top of the mountain, where a jib crane sits topped by two ominous vultures, the latter of which originally appeared in the park’s original Snow White’s Scary Adventures attraction. This is the last stop before the mine train’s cars plunge into a mine shaft.
Check out the photos of the recent overnight install below.
Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is set to debut in 2014 in New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park. Got questions? Be sure to check out our previous blog posts on the attraction.
To learn more about the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, check out these posts below:
Have you visited New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park yet?
That’s where tonight’s “Disney Parks After Dark” image was taken, specifically at Prince Eric’s castle, which serves as the exterior of the Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid attraction.
Is this one of your favorite nighttime sights in New Fantasyland?
This year, the New Fantasyland area of Magic Kingdom Park is getting dressed up for the holidays for the very first time – and we just received some amazing photos of the area’s first decorations to share with you.
As you can see, each wreath, holiday tree and strand of garland that has been designed for the area keeps with the theming of the attraction, shop or restaurant it highlights. For example, the tree within Be Our Guest Restaurant sports ornaments inspired by the castle’s enchanted staff and exquisite chandeliers.
Can you guess where the wreath in the first photo appears in New Fantasyland? Tell us in the “Comments” section below. We’ll update the post later today with the answer.
Read the rest of this entry »
Beginning today, there’s a new way to explore the magic of New Fantasyland with the “Fantasyland: Break The Curse” iPad app, available now on iTunes.
In it, the story of Fantasyland comes to life in the form of a magical interactive pop-up storybook inspired by the New Fantasyland expansion at Magic Kingdom Park. In it, families can compete in challenging quests at Prince Eric’s seaside castle, Maurice’s workshop, Beast’s lair and Storybook Circus, with the goal of discovering secrets and unlocking enchanted symbols to restore magic to the land.
The app is free to download in the iTunes store. It’s currently available only for the iPad.