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#DisneyKids: How Little Ones Can Make the Most of Star Wars Weekends

posted on May 29th, 2015 by Jamie Langdon, Social Media Manager


Star Wars Weekends at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is an annual event that features activities for all ages, so even the youngest family members can join in on the fun. All three of my little girls are huge fans of the characters from both the original films and the new Star Wars Rebels series on Disney XD, so it is a huge treat for them to meet their favorites in person. Parents of Padawans won’t want to miss these incredibly themed hands-on experiences, taking place weekends May 15 – June 14, 2015.

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  • Jedi Training Academy – Kids from 4 to 12 can sign up to train to be a Jedi and battle an evil Sith from the dark side
  • Lightsaber building – Little ones can build the lightsaber of their imaginations in Tatooine Traders
  • Character Meet & Greets –Get up-close with icons from both Star Wars heroes and villains at meet & greet locations throughout the park. Don’t forget your autograph book!
  • LEGO interactive build station – Little ones can spend endless amounts of time building their own Star Wars creations at this unique hands-on station
  • Star Wars Droid Factory – Kids can build their own astromech droid action figure, just like Luke Skywalker in Star Wars
  • Padawan Mind Challenge – Designed for kids ages 4 to 11, this interactive trivia event will test your little ones’ Star Wars knowledge
  • “Symphony in the Stars” Fireworks – Kids may actually want to take a nap just so they can stay up for this finale celebration that features popular Star Wars characters
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Star Wars Weekends Take You as Close to the Force as You Can Get

posted on May 29th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


We’re nearly halfway through Star Wars Weekends 2015, and the excitement continues to build. This year’s event spreads further across Disney’s Hollywood Studios than ever before, from the celebrity talk shows at Theater of the Stars on Sunset Boulevard to the new Darth’s Mall merchandise complex on Streets of America.

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If you’ve got a passion for the Force and credits to burn, Darth’s Mall is the place for you! You’ll never find a more fetching hive of fun and boutiquery (is that even a word?). In addition to the limited edition and event-exclusive items on offer, it’s also packed to the outer rim with stellar décor, props and photo opportunities. Of course, the chances of successfully navigating Darth’s Mall without amassing a Wookiee-size pile of loot are approximately 3,720 to 1!

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Your odds of seeing a Star Wars celebrity during the weekend, however, are significantly better. Here is who will be joining us May 29 – 31:

  • Event Host James Arnold Taylor: Obi-Wan Kenobi (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)
  • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Daniel Logan: Boba Fett (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: The Clone Wars)
  • Steve Blum: Zeb Orrelios (Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

Whether you’re picking up “necessities” at Darth’s Mall, scoring an autograph from one of the Star Wars stars or just taking in the sights and sounds, Weekend III of Star Wars Weekends will no doubt provide a day (or days) long remembered.

Share your favorite Star Wars Weekends memory in the comments or on social media with hashtag #SWW2015.

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Set a Course for Star Wars Weekends This Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on May 22nd, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Our Star Wars Weekends event for 2015 is well under way and better than ever! And this week, the incomparable Warwick Davis is among the celebrity guests visiting from that galaxy far, far away.

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Warwick portrayed lovable Ewok Wicket from the forest moon of Endor and has brought to vivid life several beloved characters beyond the worlds of Star Wars. In fact, one of my favorite shows during Star Wars Weekends is “An Ewok’s Tale: My Short Story,” Warwick Davis’s hysterical one-man show through which he shares his adventures as only he can. It’s definitely not to be missed!

Of course, Warwick is just one of the stars of the saga joining us May 22 – 24. You can also see and hear from actors whose characters have inhabited the Jedi Temple on Coruscant, the Theed Royal Palace of Naboo and the grasslands of Lothal:

  • Event Host James Arnold Taylor: Obi-Wan Kenobi (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)
  • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket the Ewok (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Silas Carson: Ki-Adi-Mundi, Nute Gunray (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
  • Vanessa Marshall: Hera Syndulla (Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

No matter what part of the galaxy you hail from, you’ll want to make Star Wars Weekends your destination. With all the celebrities, Star Wars characters, special shows, fireworks and more, it is as close to the Force as you can get!

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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on May 17th, 2015 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Star Wars Weekends 2015 began this week at Disney’s Hollywood Studios and we’re celebrating here on the Disney Parks Blog with new artwork, images and stories.

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Through June 14, Disney’s Hollywood Studios will feature some of your favorite Star Wars characters as well as the “Legends of the Force” celebrity motorcade, the all-new “Star Wars: Rebels” show at Theater of the Stars, “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks and much more.

Shawn shared a few more experiences not to be missed this year, including a visit to the Rebel Hangar: A Star Wars Lounge Experience. Check his original story for more details and list of character appearances.

Star Wars Weekends continues Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays through June 14, 2015.

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We also announced the names of several new high-profile tenants coming Disney Springs at the Walt Disney World Resort, including fashion retailers Uniqlo, Zara, Tommy Bahama and Lilly Pulitzer.

When work is completed in 2016, Disney Springs will have expanded to more than 150 shopping, dining and entertainment venues, including four distinct, outdoor neighborhoods with a high-quality, diverse mix of retailers . We have the complete list of the tenants in our original blog story.

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

First Look: Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration Souvenir Vintage Stein – This stunning souvenir vintage stein features whimsical representations of favorite lands and attractions, and is topped with Sleeping Beauty Castle.

Stars Shine Bright at the Disneyland Resort for World Premiere of ‘Tomorrowland’ – Hear from the stars on the red carpet, including the film’s star, George Clooney, about the excitement of being at the Disneyland Resort for the premiere!

Behind the Scenes: Hatbox Ghost Reappears in Haunted Mansion at Disneyland Park – Last weekend, one of the 999 happy haunts in the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland park reappeared after decades in hiding. Take a look!

Complete List of Special Eats for Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration 24-Hour Event, May 22-23 – Get a look at the ultimate foodie guide to specialty food offerings during the 24-Hour event at the Disneyland Resort.

24-Hour Event Merchandise Sparkles at the Disneyland Resort – Get a sneak peek at the artwork for the 24-hour event tees, a limited release pin and a very specially created cupcake!

Kicking Off the ‘Coolest Summer Ever’ with 24-Hours of Entertainment at Magic Kingdom Park – Next week, Magic Kingdom Park is going to stay open from 6 a.m. Friday, May 22, to 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23, to celebrate the beginning of the “Coolest Summer Ever!” Get a look at all the entertainment and plan your visit!

Building the Dream: The Making of Disneyland Park – Sleeping Beauty Castle – Part One – Disney Parks Blog author George Savvas shares some of the inspiration behind Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland park.

Chef Mickey’s Opens for Brunch Starting May 31 at Disney’s Contemporary Resort – Reservations open May 22 for what promises to be a popular new addition to Walt Disney World Resort dining – mid-day brunch daily at Chef Mickey’s at Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

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Star Wars: Force For Change Coming to Star Wars Weekends This Year at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on May 16th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


I’m excited to announce Star Wars: Force For Change is coming to Star Wars Weekends this year at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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Starting May 15, we will offer T-shirts for adults, women and kids featuring a stormtrooper from Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

During the final weekend, June 12-14, we will offer a limited edition stormtrooper pin at Darth’s Mall, located near Streets of America across from Studio Catering Company.

Twenty-five percent of the retail sale price of this product will be donated to U.S. Fund for UNICEF in support of UNICEF Kid Power, an innovative new program that uses the world’s first Wearable-For-Good to get youth physically active to provide lifesaving, nutrition-rich food packets to kids in need around the world.

The shirts will premiere during Star Wars Weekends and can be found in the following locations at Disney’s Hollywood Studios: Darth’s Mall, Tatooine Traders, Prop Shop, Beverly Sunset and Mickey’s of Hollywood.

These items are the first products for Star Wars: The Force Awakens released by Disney Parks. They are also the first character products released for the upcoming film which arrives in theatres on December 18, 2015.

To learn more about Star Wars: Force For Change, please visit www.StarWars.com/ForceForChange.
May the Force Be With You!

The U.S. Fund for UNICEF does not endorse any brand or product. No portion of the purchase price is tax-deductible.

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Star Wars Weekends Starts Today at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on May 15th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


You are as close to the Force as you can get! The opening scroll on Star Wars Weekends 2015 is rolling at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. All weekend long, there will be dozens of Star Wars characters appearing throughout the park, the “Legends of the Force” celebrity motorcade, the all-new “Star Wars: Rebels” show at Theater of the Stars, “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks and so much more!

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And what’s this…? The Emperor is coming here?!

That’s right! Ian McDiarmid, the actor who portrayed Emperor Palpatine (aka the Sith Lord Darth Sidious) in the Star Wars films, has made his first hyperspace jump to our system as a celebrity guest for Weekend I of Star Wars Weekends. You’ll want to double your efforts to be here and see him, along with the other stars of the saga appearing this weekend. Here’s the complete list:

  • Event Host James Arnold Taylor: Obi-Wan Kenobi (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ian McDiarmid: Senator/Emperor Palpatine (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Amy Allen: Aayla Secura (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
  • Tiya Sircar: Sabine Wren (Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

Also new and not to be missed at Star Wars Weekends this year is Rebel Hangar: A Star Wars Lounge Experience and the Darth’s Mall complex on Streets of America, where you will find the droids (and T-shirts and other great merchandise) you’re looking for!

So who’s coming out this weekend? Let us know in the Comments section, and share the excitement on social media using the hashtag #SWW2015. If you can’t make it this weekend, Star Wars Weekends continues every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through June 14.

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Rebel Hangar: A Star Wars Lounge Experience Coming to Star Wars Weekends

posted on May 5th, 2015 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Guests attending Star Wars Weekends will be able to find shelter and sustenance in the Rebel Hangar: A Star Wars Lounge Experience. Reports have been made that this location was once a known hangout of Rebel pilots, aliens and smugglers; with the immersive environment and stellar bites—I understand why!

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Look for a menu full of Star Wars-themed food and beverage offerings that are out of this world:

  • Pilot’s Pomme Frites – these are tossed with parmesan cheese, garlic and parsley with a garlic aioli for dipping
  • Ensalada Naboo – seared chicken breast, bibb lettuce, grape tomatoes, watermelon radish, almond frica, and a parmesan-peppercorn ranch dressing
  • Lightsaber Bites – hand-dipped corn-battered knockwurst sausages with house-made chips and mustard dipping sauce
  • The Dark Fried – Chicken and Darth Vader waffles served with maple syrup and sweet barbecue sauce
  • Trio of Thermal Detonators – spicy pork wings topped with spicy piquillo-pepper sauce and slaw
  • Slider Sampler featuring “The Sith” barbecue-braised brisket with cole slaw and “The Jedi” with barbecued pulled chicken with arugula
  • Fruit and Cheese “Sabers” featuring Tillamook cheddar, Brie, goat cheese, pickled vegetables, crostini, cheddar crackers, blueberries, raspberries, honeydew melon, strawberry, olives and gherkins
  • Chips & Sith – hummus with red pepper coulis, black sesame dust, and corn tortilla chips
  • Yoda Key Lime Cake
  • Trio of Star Wars mini cupcakes, including Mini Darth Vader (chocolate-peanut butter), Mini Yoda (chocolate-hazelnut), and Mini Jabba the Hutt (salted caramel latte) served in the Han Solo Carbonite Souvenir Box

A new drink menu will also be available:

  • Imperial Blue – Maker’s Mark Whisky, Cointreau, Blue Curacao, sweet and sour, topped with Sprite
  • Tatooine Sunset – Stoli vanilla, Parrot Bay Coconut Rum, pineapple juice with grenadine
  • Rebel Red – Grey Goose vodka, Chambord, sour mix and a splash of grenadine
  • Dagobah Swamp Juice – Midori, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, sweet and sour, topped with lemon-lime foam
  • The Dark Side – Stoli vanilla vodka, Bailey’s liqueur, crème de cocoa and brownie garnish
  • Alderaan Ale

The Jabba the Hutt and Yoda cupcakes will also be available at Tusken Fridge Raiders, Trolley Car Café, Starring Rolls Cafe, and Backlot Express. The Darth Vader cupcake will be available at all quick-service locations, including Starring Rolls Cafe, and Trolley Car Cafe and Tusken Fridge Raiders at Darth’s Mall.

For Reservations, visit DisneyWorld.com/dine or call 407-WDW-DINE.

May the food be with you!

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QUIZ: How Well Do You Know Star Tours – The Adventures Continue

posted on May 4th, 2015 by Nate Rasmussen, Archivist, Marketing Resource Center


There’s no doubt that Star Tours – The Adventures Continue is a fan-favorite attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. But just how well do you know this attraction? Test your knowledge below!

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Star Tours – The Adventures Continue at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

What is the name of your transportation vehicle you board for your adventure with Star Tours – The Adventures Continues?
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How many different story combinations can you experience at Star Tours – The Adventures Continue?
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Which of the following is NOT a destination you may visit during your journey?
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Which character will you NOT encounter during your journey?
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Who is your pilot during your journey with Star Tours – The Adventures Continues?
Star Tours Early Departure

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Share Your ‘Star Wars Style’ for a Chance to Win a Trip to Walt Disney World Resort

posted on May 4th, 2015 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Star Wars Weekends will kick off in just a few days and to celebrate we’re encouraging Disney Parks social media followers to share their “Star Wars Style” online for a chance to win a Walt Disney World Resort vacation.

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To enter, simply submit a photo of you showing off your best look inspired by the Star Wars franchise at www.StarWarsStyle.com. Entries will be accepted from May 4-June 1, 2015. The grand prize is a trip for two to the Walt Disney World Resort, plus a Star Wars gift basket, exclusive to the Disney Parks. Eight semifinalists will also receive special Star Wars merchandise gift baskets.

Click here to see the official rules.

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Commemorative ‘May the 4th’ Items Coming to Disney Parks for Star Wars Fans on May 4

posted on May 4th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


Being a long-time fan of Star Wars, I love visiting Disney Parks on May 4. This annual, fan-proclaimed “Star Wars Day” is a great day to ride Star Tours – The Adventures Continue with other fans who grew up in the Star Wars universe like I did. Here is a quick look at some commemorative items we’ve created to celebrate this day-long celebration at Disney Parks on May 4.

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This year, fans will find two T-shirts – one with Jedi Mickey for “May the 4th” and one with Goofy dressed as Darth Vader for “Revenge of the 5th.” The same artwork was used on two limited edition pins. A matching water bottle will be released in Florida only.

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A new 9-inch plush of an Ewok named Teebo will be released in both California and Florida that day.

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Guests in Florida will find two open edition MagicBands at Disney’s Hollywood Studios with stylized images of Luke Skywalker and a Stormtrooper. Each will have a retail of $19.95; they both can be “linked later” making them great gifts.

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I’m also excited to share that we will release the Second Edition Star Wars headphones by SMS Audio, the official headphones of Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. This second series depicts fan favorite themes such as Tie Fighter, Chewbacca, R2-D2 and Darth Vader. These headphones will only be found at Tatooine Traders in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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Finally, we will release an “I Am Your Father’s Day” shirt on the Disney Parks online store from May 4-10 at DisneyStore.com/ParkEvents. Please allow 3-5 weeks for delivery.

At Disneyland Resort, guests should look for the T-shirts, pins and plush at Little Green Men Store Command in Disneyland park and at Disney’s Pin Traders in Downtown Disney District. The T-shirts and plush will also be offered at D-Street.

At Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort, guests should visit the following locations to find select items: Tatooine Traders, Mickey’s of Hollywood, Beverly Sunset and Studio Prop Shop.

May the 4th Be With You!

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