A new year means that a new series of Hidden Mickey pins will soon be released at Disney Parks. Some of you may recall that cast members use these specially designed pins when trading with guests. Each pin measures approximately 1.25 inches and contains a small Mickey Mouse icon in the art (hence the name). This is the first year I haven’t been directly involved with creating them so I spoke with Julie Young, long-time developer of Disney pins, to find out what we could expect.
“My inspiration for this year’s collection came from a variety of sources,” explained Julie. “I looked at previous collections, listened to feedback from pin trading fans and found some really cool artwork. My goal was creating two unique pin collections that guests would enjoy trading for when visiting [Disney Parks].”
Similar to the 2011 collection, there will be two different waves introduced at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. The first wave is due to arrive in late January, while the second wave will arrive later in the summer – keep watching DisneyPins.com for an official release date.
One of my favorite series from the 2012 collection is the Zodiac signs, which will be a shared series on both coasts. Zodiac pins were sold in the early days of trading but I always thought they would make a great Hidden Mickey pin series (high-five to all Virgos!).
Julie also shared some of her favorite pins.
“For Disneyland Resort, I love the colorful sea creatures from The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure attraction,” said Julie. “Walt Disney Imagineer Larry Nikolai provided me with the artwork. For Walt Disney World Resort, I like the paint cans. They were once a design concept from Disney Design Group for retail pins. I thought they would work better as Hidden Mickey Pins. I guess I really like color this year [laughs].”
For this first wave, there will be 30 unique pins for Disneyland Resort and 35 unique pins for Walt Disney World Resort (plus the 12 shared Zodiac pins). Julie also selected a handful of pins from these first waves to be released as silver-colored chasers (I included examples in the images above). The chasers are released randomly to cast members for trading.
These pins are already out and we picked up a few from CM’s. You won’t find them on the shelves…they are distributed to CM’s for trading. We had the best luck finding them in MK…a few with CM’s working in gift shops and others with one who was working outside in Tomorrowland and had his own personal collection that he was willing to trade for pins that he liked. Anyhow, make a point to ask the CM’s if they have them…if they don’t, they might just know of another CM who does.
@Tracy – The middle image contains example of three different collections. There is a crests with characters collection for Disneyland, a compass with characters collection for Walt Disney World and a Disney Princess collection also for Walt Disney World. The bottom row features icons from Fantasyland at Disneyland Park.
@Carol – You are correct – the pins were recently distributed to our Cast Members to use for trading with guests.
oh i love love love these!!! i LOVE the middle group, with tiana, but don’t know what all of the pins represent… any info on that?
How do the new annual passholder pin connect together? Is the Mickey coming out on 1/26 the center?
Why no new Fast Pass WDW pins? Still a lot of rides with fastpass that never got pins (Big Thunder mountain, buss lightyear, living with the land, voyage of little mermaid, tower of terror, kilimanjaro safari)
@Hannah – I spoke with the Disneyland Resort team who said they are still determining details. They invited you to keep watching this blog.
@Bradley – I’m guessing you are referring to the Walt Disney World Passholder pin collection. The Mickey Mouse pin is open edition which means it should be in locations any day. The date of January 26 on DisneyPins.com means that by that date, all locations carrying the pin should have it. With a huge number of locations that carry open edition pins, it is difficult for us to pick just one date. For limited edition pins, there are always firm release dates.
The Mickey Mouse pin will be presented on a card that measures approximately 4″ x 4.75″. The limited edition pins can be attached to this card once released. The first limited edition pin in this collection will be released on January 19 and features Stitch.
You can visit the main pin locations in each of the Disney Parks or Disney’s Pin Traders to find this pin. Make sure to bring your Annual Pass as you will need to show it in order to purchase.
As for additional FastPass pins, I don’t know of any plans for them at this point. It may be something that the pin team revisits in the future.
Would you be able to give us an update on the DLR June Pin Event Gear Up for Adventure? We are starting to plan our DLR trip for the pin event, but the dates haven’t been announced yet. We are hoping that the dates are announced *soon* since we need to take off work and book hotels.
Thanks in advanced! 🙂
Hello Mr. Miller,
Thank you for updating the pins. I have been waiting very eagerly. I was wondering if there is any news on a Chinese New Year pin?
@Karen – I spoke with Julie on the pin team who confirmed there will not be a Chinese New Year pin this year. She said perhaps something next year.
I know there will be a new Vinylmation figure collection featuring the Chinese Zodiac coming to the D-Street locations on January 20 (if you’re interested).
I saw the new Fastpass pins for Disney California Adventure – any chance we’ll be seeing a continuation of the Hidden Mickey Fastpass pins for Walt Disney World?
@Tim – Unfortunately, there are no plans for such a series this year. Sorry.
(Eric) It’s called where’s my water?
It’s called where’s my water
The gator is Lagoona Gator, the mascot for Typhoon Lagoon Water Park. There is also a pin of Ice Gator, the mascot for Blizzard Beach Water Park.
My favorite is the Dumbo Attraction crest. SO CUTE! Julie did a great job! But I still love the “Good” Hidden Mickey pins.
I am hoping that the 2011 Completer pins come out *soon*. I can’t wait to get a “Good” Jiminy pin.
@Stephen – Sorry that you have felt that way. Look for additional update and more coming this year. I’ve not received anything yet from the Disney’s Soda Fountain and Studio Store team. As soon as I do, I will post on DisneyPins.com.
@Hannah – I always loved the “Good” series … it’s my kind of humor I guess 🙂
Thanks for the updates, Steven. I was wondering if us pin collectors were getting left out. It’s been a little too quiet for my liking, but the sneak peek was what I needed. Glad the rest of the collection finally got updated on disneypins.com. Now if the El Capitan would leak out some John Carter, I’d be happy as a mouse.
WOW!!! I LOVE the Little Mermaid ride set of pins. Any chance this set will be released in Walt Disney World with the same ride opening in the New Fantasyland expansion??? I hope so since I don’t get out to DLR as often as I go to WDW.
Also, when can we expect to see the full checklists of 2012 Hidden Mickey pins with the release dates on the DisneyPins website? Thanks.
@Kimberly – Glad you liked it! That sounds like a very unique collection.
@Mike – If I recall correctly, there were two different Zodiac collections released in the early days of Disney Pin Trading at Disney Parks. There was a limited edition set and an open edition set. Gosh, that seems like forever ago! 🙂
@Eric – As Hannah indicated below (thanks, Hannah) that is Lagoona Gator. Julie wanted to incoporate a few characters that haven’t been regularly seen on pins. By the way, “Where’s My Water?” is awesome! My son and I enjoy playing it (and he is better at the game than me).
@Lauren – I don’t believe those Little Mermaid themed pins will be released in Florida since the set was created especially for California. I posted the checklists yesterday on DisneyPins.com. Here is the main page for Hidden Mickey Pins:
The one-sheet checklists are in a .PDF format, so you will need a reader to see them:
Disneyland – Wave A: http://eventservices.disney.go.com/files/DLR_HiddenMickey2012_WaveAChecklist.pdf
Walt Disney World – Wave A:
Who’s the gator, between Pooh and Tiana? He’s not Louis, is he the one from that app-game thing?
(No, seriously, I don’t have an iPhone, so I wouldn’t know.)
Very cute! Glad to some of the pooh characters back as hidden mickey pins. I also like the zodiacs..
The paint cans are my favorite! I also really like the storybook land pin! Great Job! Cant wait to see if I can get any on my next trip!
Thanks for posting this Steven. As a long time and long-term pin collector I haven’t noticed an official zodiac collection since the one I collected back in 2001. Though it doesn’t appear the Hidden Mickey pins are themed by month of the zodiac, it’s a welcome addition.
I know what pins to look for on my next trip now!!
I’m a Scorpio and love collecting anything with a scorpion on it!! I must have that Cheshire Cat Scorpio pin!!