Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland Park

Soccer is the Game, Developing Leaders is the Game Plan – Celebrating at Disney Cup International

posted on July 23rd, 2014 by Robert Hitchcock, PR Manager/Content Producer, runDisney


“At the end of the day they don’t remember the scores….. I want them to remember the experience, I want them to remember the feeling.” With that belief at the center of his coaching, Steven Horwood of the Ajax Football Club from Ontario, Canada, has led his team to victory both on and off the pitch. The majority of his team has played together since they were 8-years-old, and now playing in their final season together, Horwood thought the Disney Cup International, Presented by AS Roma was the right thing to do for all they have accomplished.

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Ajax Football Club was one of 239 teams, more than 3,500 players, representing 18 countries, to play in the tournament. Teams from Canada, South America, Aruba and as far away as Australia came to ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort to test their skill against international competition.

But before stepping on the plane to come to Disney, before the kick-off whistle blew for their first game, Ajax FC was already a winner when it came to international sportsmanship.

For more than seven years these young women have volunteered more than 3,000 hours in their community helping others. The most notable program has them literally giving away the jerseys off their backs. Through the SOS Children’s Village program the team donates jerseys and soccer equipment to kids in Ghana, Africa. To date they have donated more than 300 uniforms, and expect to send another 200 after the tournament at Disney, as well as some other Disney keepsakes.

“Soccer is the sport but we really wanted to make them community leaders,” said coach Horwood. Helping fellow teammates in Africa is rewarding and raises their awareness of the world around them. Recently the girls received photographs of kids in Africa wearing their jerseys and playing with their equipment. “Growing up soccer has been kind of a lifestyle for me, something I really enjoy, giving the chance to give other kids in Africa the chance to play is fulfilling,” said Ajax FC defensive back Lauren Pugh.

On behalf of everyone at Disney Soccer and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, I want to congratulate Ajax FC for their hard work on and off the pitch. Win or lose, we celebrate the fact you have all scored one of the most important goals of your lives.

For more information on Disney Cup International and other Disney Soccer events, visit espnwwos.com.

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Disneyland Resort Viewing Tips: Top 5 Locations to Watch ‘Magical’ Fireworks Spectacular

posted on July 23rd, 2014 by Tyler Slater, Social Media Content Coordinator


Last summer, my friend and fellow Disney Parks Blog author, Erin Glover, shared some of the best places to enjoy “Magical” fireworks spectacular at Disneyland park. Today, we continue the “Disneyland Resort Viewing Tips” series with a video of the top 5 locations to catch the show this summer.

Where is your favorite place to enjoy “Magical”? I prefer the center of Main Street, U.S.A., between Refreshment Corner and Main Street Photo Supply Co. Leave your answer in the comments below!


For more from the “Disneyland Resort Viewing Tips” series, check out the posts below:

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‘Scandal’ Actor Joe Morton Visits Walt Disney World Resort

posted on July 21st, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Are you a fan of ABC’s “Scandal”?

Actor Joe Morton, who plays the mysterious “Papa Pope” on the show, recently stopped by the Walt Disney World Resort to narrate a performance of “The Lion King: Concert in the Wild” during Harambe Nights at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

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During his visit, Joe, who is nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama for his role on the show, shared with us what he and his family love about Disney Parks. Be sure to check out the video below.

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Filed: Celebrity Visits, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on July 20th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, we announced that the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration will begin in spring 2015, celebrating 60 magical years of the Disneyland Resort. As part of the celebration, you’re invited to enter a new contest.

Share Your Favorite Disneyland Resort Memories from the Past (Almost) 60 Years

You’re invited to share your favorite memories with photos taken throughout the Disneyland Decades – 1950s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000 to the present – for a chance to win a special Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration prize or the grand prize: a trip to Disneyland Resort to kick off the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration.

Check out Erin’s original story to learn how it works.

No purchase necessary. Entries must be received by 8/27/14. 18/age of majority+, 50 US/DC only. Void where prohibited. See Rules for details.

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And this week, we also shared a special D-Tech on Demand video showing how rapid printing technology has been combined with great artwork to create personalized electronic accessories for guests at Disney Parks. Steven talked with merchandiser Kevin-Michael Lezotte to learn how D-Tech on Demand works.

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

A Look Back at July 20, 1969: Apollo 11 Moon Landing Watched Live at Disneyland Park – See some images of the the moon landing being watched live, and two members of the remarkable Apollo 11 crew being welcomed to Disneyland park.

Splash Mountain Celebrates 25 Years of Splashdowns at Disneyland Park – Take a look back at the opening day of Splash Mountain with this special video.

First Look at the New Disney Cruise Line Halloween Pumpkin Trees – See some of the decorations on deck for inaugural Halloween on the High Seas cruises aboard the Disney Dream!

Show Your DIY Disney Side: Disney Parks Guide Map Photo Mat – Learn how to make quick and easy photo mats using Disneyland Resort tickets and guide maps.

A Peek Inside ‘Frozen Fireworks’ at Disney’s Hollywood Studios – See what guests – and even some of the creators of the show – think of this new nighttime spectacular!

Summer Nights to Savor: Epcot Presents a Nighttime Transformation – Read about some of the evening activities available at Epcot this summer.

VIDEO: Celebrating 59 Years of Magic at the Disneyland Resort – Watch as Fifty-nine Disney characters wished Disneyland a happy birthday at Main Street Train Station.

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Splash Mountain Celebrates 25 Years of Splashdowns at Disneyland Park

posted on July 18th, 2014 by Valarie Sukovaty, Disneyland Public Relations


On July 17, 1989, a new attraction opened to guests in Critter Country at Disneyland park — one that made a big splash. That attraction was Splash Mountain, a log ride that remains a guest favorite today. It stands 87 feet tall and drops guests five stories at a 45-degree angle. The attraction is a journey through scenes, featuring the story of Brer Rabbit, Brer Fox and Brer Bear, and ends with a thrilling splashdown. That’s the best part! No worries if you shut your eyes. A photo snaps a shot of guests reacting the moment they drop. If you don’t have a photo from splashdown with your face frozen in sheer elation, then it’s time to visit the Disneyland Resort. Trust me, it’s an experience you’ll always remember. Here’s a look back at opening day. Enjoy!

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Filed: Disney History, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

Showing My Disney Side Using Rapid Printing Technology at D-Tech on Demand in Marketplace Co-Op

posted on July 18th, 2014 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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For the past few months, I’ve been sharing many details about my favorite new shopping destination at Walt Disney World Resort – the Marketplace Co-Op in Downtown Disney Marketplace. Containing six different boutiques, this location serves as our testing space for new products, retail concepts and guest experiences. I think my favorite boutique inside the shop is D-Tech on Demand as it combines rapid printing technology with great artwork to create personalized electronic accessories for guests. I recently spoke with merchandiser Kevin-Michael Lezotte to get the inside scoop on how D-Tech on Demand works.

Currently, we offer cases for the following phones – iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5/5S, iPhone 5C, Samsung Galaxy SIII and Samsung Galaxy S4.

I loved watching how quickly cases are printed as the team can print several cases at one time. The printer uses UV ink which dries immediately and requires no cooling time. As soon as my case was finished, I covered my mobile phone.

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Kevin-Michael shared that it’s easy to add additional designs to the D-Tech on Demand system. We recently introduced 12 new designs featuring characters from Disney’s “Frozen.” Four of those designs are only found at the Marketplace Co-Op as seen in the image above.

Fans of Disney Villains, Donald Duck, Pluto, Figment, or Chip and Dale should look for additional artwork being added to the location later this summer.

I would love to see which case you select. Use #DisneySide if you share an image of your phone case on a social network like Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Top Stories, Walt Disney World Resort

VIDEO: Celebrating 59 Years of Magic at the Disneyland Resort

posted on July 17th, 2014 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


This morning, we celebrated the 59th anniversary of the Disneyland Resort, with a special peek at next year’s Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration beginning spring 2015. Fifty-nine Disney characters joined us at the Main Street Train Station to wish Disneyland a happy birthday. Take a look at today’s festivities:

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Sneak Peek: Voices of Liberty at Epcot Add ‘Let It Go’ To Their Repertoire

posted on July 16th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


Have you heard? Voices of Liberty, the longtime acapella group at Epcot, recently added some new songs to their repertoire. New songs guests may hear during their daily shows include “You Raise Me Up,” “True Colors,” and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”

Here’s a sneak peek at one of those new tunes, “Let It Go” from “Frozen.

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A Peek Inside ‘Frozen Fireworks’ at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on July 14th, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


One of my favorite new offerings that just launched as a part of Frozen Summer Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios have to be the “Frozen Fireworks,” which light up the sky at 9:45 p.m., nightly.

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What I enjoy about this fireworks show is that it combines elements of a stage show, complete with moments of narration with Anna, Kristoff and Elsa, with fireworks and songs from the soundtrack to “Frozen.”

Disney Parks Blog author Bob Hitchcock recently headed out to the park to take a look and find out what guests – and even some of the creators of the show – think of the new nighttime spectacular. Check it out below.

“Frozen Fireworks” will run nightly through September 1, as a part of the park’s Frozen Summer Fun celebration and viewing is available throughout the park.

See the posts below for more ‘Frozen’ Summer Fun:

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Disney Parks Blog Weekly Recap

posted on July 13th, 2014 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


This week, La Place de Rémy, our first themed area based on the Academy Award-winning film “Ratatouille,” opened to guests at Disneyland Paris.

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Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, authored a story on opening day and showed the area’s anchor, L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, an attraction that shrinks you down to the size of a rat and whisks you away on an adventure over the rooftops of Paris and through Gusteau’s.

Check Tom’s original story for more details about La Place de Rémy.

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And did you see our larger-than-life Olaf made out of sand? The first week of “Frozen Summer Fun LIVE! at Disney’s Hollywood Studios” featured expert sand sculptors building the summer-loving snowman in front of the theme park. Here’s how they did it.

If you’d like more “Frozen” fun this weekend, also check out our video of how to draw Anna at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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

Disneyland and Walt Disney World Fans Show Their Disney Sidewalks on Instagram – Check out just a few of the amazing pieces of sidewalk art posted to Instagram as part of the Show Your Disney Sidewalk campaign.

Disney’s ‘Planes: Fire & Rescue’ Lands at Disney Parks – Take a look at some of this new merchandise soaring into Disney Parks and don’t forget to see Disney’s “Planes: Fire & Rescue” on July 18!

Enjoy a Fourth Night Free at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, with Special New Offer – Book a relaxing Hawaiian getaway for your `ohana today with this exciting offer, at the award-winning Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa.

‘Legends of Frontierland: Gold Rush!’ Begins Today at Disneyland Park – Choose your side in the fight for Frontierland! Click through for more details on this new experience coming to Disneyland park.

Vintage Walt Disney World: Early Days of Disney Water Parks – If you love Disney Water Parks, you’ll love this look back at the construction of Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach.

Downtown Disney Entertainers Record a Special Rendition of ‘Let It Go’ – Have a listen to this unique take on “Let It Go” from Disney’s “Frozen”, performed by some talented Downtown Disney Entertainers.

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