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August 2010 Archives

August 3, 2010

Mickey’s Soundsational Parade to Debut in Disneyland Next Year

(from the Official Disney Parks Blog)

A new parade, Mickey's Soundsational Parade, will stomp, clang and drum its way to Disneyland park next year.


Today, we're sharing the first preview of the artwork for Mickey's Soundsational Parade. It gives you a glimpse of the vibrant colors and exciting array of Disney characters that may appear on the streets of Disneyland park in 2011.

Plus, there are a whole lot of exciting elements for the new parade that can't be captured in this artwork:

* The parade is an explosive music festival with thrilling rhythms and bold percussion that will bring to life some of the most beloved melodies from Disney films.

* Live musicians will amplify the fun. Mickey Mouse and some of your favorite Disney characters will play live and will encourage members of the crowd to join a giant jam session.

* Lively dancers will stomp out rhythms as a syncopated drum line, twinkling cymbals, steel drums and more entertain guests with sensational sounds!

The parade promises to be the most foot-stomping, infectious festival of music you've ever seen - or heard! I've heard it's "soundsational!"

August 5, 2010

Teen Pop Star Jessica Jarrell at Disney

Teen pop star Jessica Jarrell poses Aug. 3, 2010 with Minnie Mouse at the Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. For the occasion, Minnie Mouse even traded in her signature polka-dotted dress for one adorned with hearts. Jarrell, currently one of the opening acts on Justin Bieber's "My World" tour, visited the Walt Disney World Resort with friends and family.


August 6, 2010

New Pizzeria Via Napoli Unveiled at Epcot World Showcase at Walt Disney World Resort


Patina Restaurant Group has opened a new casual pizzeria, called Via Napoli, adjacent to Tutto Italia Ristorante, its restaurant in the Italy pavilion in Epcot World Showcase at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. This becomes the first authentic Italian pizzeria to ever open in the park.

(L-R) Mickey Mouse; Dan Cockerell, Vice President of Epcot; Clay Shoemaker, Walt Disney World Ambassador; Nick Valenti, CEO of Patina Restaurant Group; Joachim Splichal, Founder and Chai

Restaurateur and longtime Patina Restaurant Group CEO Nick Valenti created the Via Napoli concept, based upon his travels in Southern Italy and his time developing and overseeing the successful Naples 45 Ristorante e Pizzeria in New York which was awarded the coveted certification of "La Vera Pizza Napoletana." While in Naples, Valenti spent time studying the art of dough, crust, sauce and oven temperatures at the famous pizzerias Da Michele and Trianon. At Da Ettore, he discovered the art of pagnotiello, a folded round of pizza dough filled with mozzarella, ham and mushrooms.

Executive Chef Charlie Restivo poses with Mickey Mouse and a special Mickey-shaped pizza Aug. 5, 2010 during the grand opening

"I have always loved the beauty of a simple Neapolitan pizza," Valenti says. "It's a perfect food, something beloved by both Italians and Americans. At Via Napoli we will make pizza the traditional Neapolitan way: with a textured, soft and charred crust. I look forward to bringing it to Walt Disney World, where it should be a welcome addition to guests visiting Epcot."

Via Napoli features a selection of classical Neapolitan pizzas, ranging from pizza bianca, quattro stagioni, piccante, ortolano and a traditional margherita. Famed Pizzaiolo Charlie Restivo serves as executive chef at Via Napoli, where he crafts the pies using simple and delicious Italian ingredients such as San Marzano tomatoes, Caputo flour, handmade fresh mozzarella, Parma Cotto, crumbled sausage and water calibrated specifically to the pH found in Naples.


"We're excited to be working with the Patina Restaurant Group once again on this significant expansion project," said Dan Cockerell, vice president of Epcot. "Via Napoli will certainly enhance the guest experience and the architectural landscape of World Showcase just in time for our 15th annual Epcot Food & Wine Festival."

A unique feature at Via Napoli is the wood-burning ovens, which are named after the three active volcanoes in Italy - Mount Etna, Mount Vesuvius and Stromboli. Each oven is sculpted with the "face of the volcano" -- reflecting the gods whose mythology surrounds each volcano's history.


The architecture and design of the new pizzeria is based on a mix of traditional Italian styles, with the Florentine architect Stefano Nardini (of Magris & Partners) working in conjunction with Rick Swisher Architect to build it.

August 7, 2010

Quiet Cove Pool Takes Shape on Disney Dream

Check out this construction photo; as you can see the Quiet Cove adult pool is quickly taking shape on the 11th deck of the ship.


Exclusively for guests 18 and older,
the Quiet Cove Pool and Cove Bar will be a retreat for adults to sunbathe, take a dip and indulge in a cool drink.

One of three fresh-water pools on the Disney Dream, Quiet Cove Pool will feature varying depths. Luxuriate in a calming environment in this sparkling-blue pool that is a great place for adults to cool off and mingle with other grownups, while away from the kids. With its unique interlocking circular design, a series of connected circular pools includes a 4-foot-deep plunge pool and a 6-inch-deep sunbathing pool with built-in loungers. Guests also can splash up to Cove Bar, which is part of the pool.

Here's what the area will look like when complete:

Quiet Cove Pool offers varying depths, including a 4-foot deep plunge pool and a 6-inch deep sunbathing pool with built-in loungers and a mister.

Nearby, Guests can soak in a jetted hot tub while overlooking sweeping views of the ocean. The pool area is also an ideal place to sunbathe in the plush lounge chairs that are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Additionally, there are lounge chairs in the ankle-deep section of the pool where you are invited to relax and cool off.

Cove Bar - Nestled within the confines of the pool, the Cove Bar is a convenient and elegant cocktail spot allowing Guests the convenience of ordering and enjoying beverages without ever having to leave the resplendent refuge of the pool.

During the day, music adds to Quiet Cove Pool's soothing atmosphere. In the evening, mood lighting increases its sense of romance. Poolside massages performed by experienced therapists from the ship's Senses Spa & Salon can also be booked.

At various times daily, Crew Members host games and activities in the Quiet Cove Pool area. Check the Personal Navigator once onboard for the most accurate activities schedule.

Exact operating hours of Quiet Cove Pool and Cove Bar are to be determined. However, operating times are likely to vary, so once you're onboard check the Personal Navigator-the Disney Cruise Line daily newsletter detailing all there is to see and do-for the most accurate times.

August 11, 2010

D23 Debuts "Refer A Fan" Program for Members

D23 Members Receive Special Rewards When They
Spread the Word about Disney's Fan Club

BURBANK, Calif. - August 10, 2010 - Membership in D23: The Official Disney Fan Club is already filled with exclusive perks, and now D23 Members who 'Refer a Fan' to the global community of Disney enthusiasts will receive very special gifts for making their friends a part of the magic.

When existing D23 Members refer new members to D23: The Official Disney Fan Club, the referring member will receive the following special rewards:

• Refer one (1) fan who becomes a new D23 Member, receive an exclusive collector pin created especially for the D23 Refer a Fan program

• Refer five (5) fans, receive an exclusive three-pin set featuring favorite Disney characters

• Refer 10 fans, receive a special tour of the Walt Disney Archives

• Refer 15 fans, receive a free, one-year Gold-level D23 Membership

This special 'Refer a Fan' program began on August 9, 2010, and continues through July 31, 2012, and is open to all existing D23 Members. This program applies to the purchase of new memberships (Gold or Silver-level) only and cannot be applied to the renewal of an existing membership.

D23 Members receive a host of special benefits throughout the year, including a one-year subscription to Disney twenty-three, the quarterly publication of D23 (Gold-level memberships only); access to special, member-only events throughout the year; annual membership gift from the Walt Disney Archives Collection; special discounts and offers on a wide range of products and services; and a suitable-for-framing membership certificate plus a personalized D23 membership card.

In addition, D23 Members will receive discounted admission to the 2011 D23 Expo and a number of special benefits during this ultimate Disney fan event.

Gold-level D23 memberships are $74.99, and Silver-level memberships - which provide all benefits with the exception of a Disney twenty-three subscription - are just $34.99 a year. All discounts and special promotions are available to both Gold- and Silver-level D23 Members.

Disney fans can become members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club at www.disney.com/D23 , select shops at the Disneyland® and Walt Disney World Resorts, and at www.DisneyStore.com/D23.

For more details: http://d23.disney.go.com/pages/ReferAFan.html

August 13, 2010

New Star Tours Video

(originally published on Official Disney Parks Blog)

New Star Tours Video Makes Us Ask: Where Will the New Star Tours Attraction Take Us?

Last year, Disney Parks fans learned that "The Adventures Continue" with the return of a new Star Tours attraction in both California and Florida in 2011. Earlier today at the Star Wars Celebration V fan event, Star Wars fans caught a first glimpse of a new video that will appear in the queue area of the reimagined Star Tours attraction in Disneyland park and Disney's Hollywood Studios next year. The video produced by Star Tours is a new "commercial" that shows one of their exciting getaway travel packages.

Today we're also giving our Disney Parks Blog readers a peek at the video before it appears in the queue next year. While Star Tours now offers flights to new destinations, we cannot confirm that you will travel to any of the destinations shown in this video . . .

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Since many Disney Parks fans know the new Star Tours attraction will take place between the two sets of Star Wars Trilogies, and that Star Tours can now take guests to more places in the Star Wars galaxy, what do you think of this video? Is there a destination you hope to visit on the new attraction when it opens next year?

Star Tours fans should also know that there's still a chance to ride the original attraction for one of the last times in Florida. You can purchase your "Last Tour to Endor" tickets at www.StarWarsCelebration.com/Disney and also at the Disney Parks Merchandise booth at Star Wars Celebration V.


Michael Urie, Tracie Thoms and Barrett Foa Join an All-Star Lineup Including Richard Sherman, Ana Ortiz, John Tartaglia and Wilson Cruz

BURBANK, Calif. - August 11, 2010 - D23: The Official Disney Fan Club, is bringing more musical talent to its "E-Ticket: Music from the Disney Parks" concert, part of D23's Destination D: Disneyland '55 event at the Disneyland Resort September 24 and 25. The announcement was first made through D23's Disney Geek, a new show on the D23 Web site featuring the latest news from all around Disney.

Michael Urie (Ugly Betty), Tracie Thoms (Cold Case, Rent), and Barrett Foa (NCIS: Los Angeles) are joining a previously announced, all-star line up of performers, including Disney Legend Richard Sherman, Ana Ortiz (Ugly Betty), Wilson Cruz (My So-Called Life), and John Tartaglia (Johnny and the Sprites).

The concert will be performed the evening of Friday, September 24, in the Grand Ballroom of the Disneyland Hotel.

Destination D: Disneyland '55, an event designed exclusively for members of D23, will illuminate the fascinating history behind Disney's flagship park, taking members on a mesmerizing journey through the design, creation and debut of the world's first Disney theme park.

Destination D will also feature a special homage to the 55th anniversary of the Mickey Mouse Club, with original Mousketeers in attendance, including Sharon Baird, Doreen Tracey, Bobby Burgess, Karen Pendleton, Sherry Van Meter (née Alberoni), Tommy Cole, Cubby O'Brien and Mary Geoff (née Espinosa).

Throughout the two days of Destination D - which will be held September 24 and 25 - guests will also enjoy panels, presentations and guest speakers, including explorations of the development of Audio Animatronics; Disneyland's unique place in pop culture; amazing never-completed Disney attractions; and an appearance by Disneyland President George Kalogridis.

Tickets to Destination D: Disneyland '55 are $125 per person and are currently available to D23 Members at Disney.com/D23. All talent appearances are subject to scheduling and availability.

Gold-level D23 memberships are $74.99, and Silver-level memberships - which provide all benefits with the exception of a Disney twenty-three subscription - are just $34.99 a year. All discounts and special promotions are available to both Gold- and Silver-level D23 Members.

Disney fans can become members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club at www.disney.com/D23 , select shops at the Disneyland® and Walt Disney World Resorts, and at www.DisneyStore.com/D23.

August 17, 2010

Fairy Tales Come True at Newly Designed Franck’s Studio at Walt Disney World Resort


LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Franck's Bridal Studio at Walt Disney World Resort has undergone a major enhancement, bringing high-tech tools to couples tying the knot at the popular wedding destination.

Franck's, named after the wedding planner character Martin Short played in the film "Father of The Bride," was built 15 years ago alongside Disney's magical Wedding Pavilion. The Victorian summerhouse was created as a one-stop shop for couples to meet with a Disney wedding planner to review all the details for the big event. The immersive studio showcases cakes, linens, floral, table settings and other details for a dream-come-true affair.

A highlight of the Franck's makeover involves online tools to assist with remote planning, including a Facebook application (http://apps.facebook.com/Disney-weddings) so couples can easily share details of their wedding with friends and family. The tools also allow guests to accept RSVPs and purchase tickets and room nights. Using Google Earth images and video, the Virtual Venue Tool brings storybook wedding and reception venues at Disney to life with the click of a mouse.

Two new planning rooms, additional computers and televisions, and newly designed furnishings round out the elegant setting.

Legendary filmmaker George Lucas meets "Star Wars"-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios


A SHOW OF 'FORCE': Taking on the stern and determined look of a Jedi Knight, "Star Wars" creator George Lucas poses Aug. 14, 2010 with Jedi Mickey Mouse, Princess Leia Minnie, Darth Goofy -- and the lovable Disney droid, R2-MK -- at Disney's Hollywood Studios theme park. The legendary filmmaker attended "The Last Tour to Endor," a special event at the theme park in honor of the "Star Wars"-themed thrill attraction, Star Tours. (Todd Anderson, photographer)


THE DAILY MAGIC: "The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart poses Aug. 14, 2010 at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. with "Star Wars"-inspired Disney characters Stormtrooper Donald Duck and Princess Leia Minnie Mouse. Stewart was in Orlando as a special host of "Star Wars Celebration V," the official Lucasfilm fan event held at the Orange County Convention Center. At the convention center earlier in the day on Aug. 14, Stewart took the stage with "Star Wars" creator George Lucas and interviewed him live in front of thousands of fans. (Todd Anderson, photographer)

Sea Turtles Continue On The Road To Recovery At Walt Disney World Resort


LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Aug. 16, 2010 - All 32 sea turtles recently taken in by Walt Disney World Resort after being impacted by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico have completed their initial veterinary examinations and are responding well to treatment, say Disney animal care experts.

Among the sea turtles in recovery are Green Turtles, an endangered species, and Kemp's Ridley Turtles, one of the most endangered species of sea turtle in the world. The initial exams performed at the veterinary hospital at Disney's Animal Kingdom included x-rays, blood tests and a complete physical assessment.

"The animals are doing quite well," said Andy Deneault, an assistant curator responsible for the care of sea turtles at Disney's Animal Kingdom. "Once we received these animals, we immediately put them on a regimented diet to build their strength. We also keep the sea turtles in special shallow salt-water pools set up just for this effort."

With the ultimate goal of releasing the turtles back in the wild, Disney animal experts are focused on increasing the turtles' body weight so they have the strength to swim in the open ocean.

As a licensed wildlife rehabilitation center, Disney Animal Programs supports the rescue and rehabilitation of more than 1,000 injured and orphaned wild animals each year. Since 1986, Disney animal care teams have nursed more than 250 endangered sea turtles back to health.

In addition, as part of the coordinated response to the Gulf oil spill, Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF), supported by Disney's Friends for Change: Project Green, has donated $100,000 to help with environmental and animal rescue efforts, including $50,000 to The National Audubon Society for their response in the Gulf. Another $50,000 in grants from the DWCF Rapid Response Fund is being awarded to various grassroots organizations assisting with the cleanup.

August 18, 2010


2011 Tickets Available for a Limited Time at a Discounted Price,
D23 Members Enjoy Additional Savings" and Members-Only Benefits

BURBANK, Calif. - August 18, 2010 - The first-ever D23 EXPO in 2009 left Disney fans asking when there would be another. On Thursday, Aug. 19, D23: The Official Disney Fan Club begins ticket sales for the next adventure - an incredible three-day event that brings the entire world of Disney under one roof at the Anaheim Convention Center next Aug. 19-21.

Tickets for the D23 EXPO 2011 will be available at a discounted price for a limited time. From August 19-December 31, 2010, tickets will be $37 for a one-day adult admission and $27 for children 3-12. Tickets for members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club will be $30 for a one-day adult admission and $22 for children. Multi-day money-saving tickets are also available for both D23 Members and the general public, and D23 Members can save as much as $204 off the price of admission, based on the purchase of four three-day tickets at the D23 Member rate. For more information on tickets and the ticket pricing structure for D23 Members and general admission, visit www.Disney.com/D23.

In addition to these special advance-purchase savings, D23 Members can also buy new D23 EXPO VIP packages that are only available to members. These new packages offer incredible exclusive opportunities and will have very limited availability.

• Three days of admission to the D23 EXPO
• Reserved seating at all events and presentations in the Arena
• Access to a relaxing Premiere Lounge with concierge and complimentary refreshments, as well as a special exhibit from the Walt Disney Archives
• A D23 EXPO autograph book
• A special Premiere Package gift bag

• All benefits in the Premiere Package
• A private tour of and reception in the "Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives" exhibit the night before the Expo opens
• Exclusive hardhat tour of the show floor prior to opening
• Limited edition artwork signed by Disney artist Dave Pacheco
• Reserved seating at all presentations and panels
• A voucher for an appointment with an on-site massage therapist
• Special shopping opportunities at the Disney Dream Store
• A hardbound, collectible D23 EXPO guidebook.

Only 250 Premiere Package tickets will be available at $500 per ticket. Availability of the Sorcerer Package will be strictly limited to 50 D23 Members at $1,000 per ticket. Both packages are only available to D23 Members.

All D23 Members - both Gold level and Silver level - can take advantage of these exclusive admission savings and access to the special packages when tickets go on sale on Thursday, Aug. 19 at www.D23Expo.com.

The D23 EXPO 2011 will also feature the Disney Legends Awards - a tradition that pays tribute to the talented men and women who have made indelible contributions to the Disney legacy; the return of the D23 Live Auction boasting extraordinary rarities and specially designed items for Disney fans; an all-new Fan Art Contest themed to the 50th anniversary of One Hundred and One Dalmatians; Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives with an expanded exhibit of costumes, props and set pieces from Disney's rich history; plus amazing live events, special celebrity appearances, panels and presentations, sneak peeks and unique experiences that celebrate the past, present and future of Disney. The D23 EXPO 2011 is scheduled to take place Aug. 19-21 at the Anaheim Convention Center.

In 2009, the first D23 EXPO brought together all parts of The Walt Disney Company under one roof including The Walt Disney Studios, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Disney Consumer Products, The Walt Disney Archives, ABC, Disney Channel, Radio Disney, and Disney Interactive Media Group to celebrate all things Disney. Stars like Johnny Depp, Nicolas Cage, Courteney Cox, Betty White, Robin Williams, John Travolta and the cast of Wizards of Waverly Place made appearances; Miley Cyrus and Honor Society performed in concert. Imagineering legends took to the stage, and key Disney executives and creative talent including Walt Disney President and CEO Bob Iger and Disney and Pixar Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter.

Gold-level D23 memberships are $74.99, and Silver-level memberships - which provide all benefits with the exception of a Disney twenty-three subscription - are just $34.99 a year. All discounts and special promotions are available to both Gold- and Silver-level D23 Members.

Disney fans can become members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club at www.disney.com/D23, select shops at the Disneyland® and Walt Disney World Resorts and at www.DisneyStore.com/D23.

August 26, 2010

The Walt Disney Family Museum September 2010 Events Calendar

Pay Tribute to the King of the Wild Frontier
During a Weekend Dedicated to Fess Parker

Pair San Francisco-centric Film with Local Food and Wine
When film critic Jan Wahl presents "Reel Local"


FILM OF THE MONTH: Davy Crockett: King of the Wild Frontier (1955)

1:00pm and 4:00pm daily, Theater

(except Tuesdays and September 12, 18, 19 and 25.)

Tickets available online at www.waltdisney.org

Watch Fess Parker fight for freedom at the Alamo in this classic Disney film. Davy Crockett: King of the Wild Frontier is a memorable live action movie about a legendary American folk hero.

September 12 - REEL LOCAL with Jan Wahl

3:00pm, Special Exhibition Hall

Tickets available online at www.waltdisney.org

Join us for an afternoon of Bay Area film and food. San Francisco is the star of this Reel Local film program that features popular cinematic hits and local, mouth-watering treats. From Vertigo to Dirty Harry, experience San Francisco through the eyes of top filmmakers while you snack on unbeatable Bay Area bites, wine, and brews.


September 18 + 19

Tickets available online at www.waltdisney.org

Join us for a one-of-a-kind celebration of the life and career of one of the most popular and renowned of Disney's players, Fess Parker. Jeff Kurtti, one of the leading authorities on The Walt Disney Company and its history, will moderate this special weekend.

September 18 - Davy Crockett Marathon: Davy Crockett Season One

10:15am, Theater

Tickets available online at www.waltdisney.org

"Davy Crockett Indian Fighter" (as originally broadcast December 15, 1954/"Disneyland" Season 1, Episode 8), "Davy Crockett Goes to Congress" (as originally broadcast January 26, 1955/"Disneyland" Season 1, Episode 14), "Davy Crockett at the Alamo" (as originally broadcast February 23, 1955/"Disneyland" Season 1, Episode 18). Introduction by Disney Historian Jeff Kurtti.

September 18 - Davy Crockett Marathon: Davy Crockett Season Two

3:00pm, Theater

Tickets available online at www.waltdisney.org

"Davy Crockett's Keelboat Race" (as originally broadcast November 16, 1955/"Disneyland" Season 2, Episode 10), "Davy Crockett and the River Pirates" (as originally broadcast December 14, 1955/"Disneyland" Season 2, Episode 13). Introduction by Disney Historian Jeff Kurtti.

September 19 - Our Dad, Fess Parker

3:00pm, Theater

Tickets available online at www.waltdisney.org

The family of Fess Parker-Eli Parker, Ashley Parker Snider, and Tim Snider-will be on stage for a special tribute and panel discussion with Disney historian/moderator Jeff Kurtti that will feature rare film footage and photos of Parker's days at Disney.


DISNEY DISCOVERIES: Second Saturday of each month

September 11 - Disney Discoveries! Davy Crockett Satchel

1:00 pm - 3:00 pm, Learning Center Art Studio

Be inspired by Davy Crockett's frontiersman costume as you create your own hand-made satchel of felt and yarn.

Imaginations and creativity will soar with our new Disney Discoveries! The second Saturday of each month, join us for family fun and activities in the Learning Center. The activities planned by our education staff will inspire the hidden artist in young visitors while learning about the life and work of Walt Disney.


September 24, 25 + 26 - Look Closer: Photo of Walt with Fess Parker

11:00 am and 3:00 pm, Gallery 9

Would you like to know more about one of the artifacts in the galleries? Our Look Closer series will give you that opportunity-staff will reveal little known facts, behind the scenes information, or just additional information during the 5 to 8-minute gallery talk.

Where: The Walt Disney Family Museum

104 Montgomery Street, The Presidio of San Francisco

San Francisco, CA 94129

Admissions: Various: check Website for details.

Website: www.waltdisney.org



Main Phone: 415-345-6800

August 28, 2010

Vidia joins Tinker Bell in Pixie Hollow

Vidia at Pixie Hallow

Vidia (pictured, right), one of the stars of the upcoming movie "Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue," is the newest fairy to become a "resident" of Pixie Hollow at the Magic Kingdom park in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Guests can meet Vidia and her pixie pals -- including the world's most beloved fairy, Tinker Bell (pictured, left) -- inside Pixie Hollow at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. Vidia, who is known as the fastest-flying fairy there is, began making meet-and-greet appearances for guests Aug. 26, 2010 at the Magic Kingdom. "Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue" will be released on Blu-ray, DVD and via movie download on Sept. 21, 2010.

August 29, 2010

Big Thunder Suite at the Disneyland Hotel

The Big Thunder Suite is the wildest suite in the wilderness and immerses up to six pioneers in 1,400-square-feet of luxurious rustic accommodations inspired by the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad attraction at Disneyland park.


Howling wolves sound to the push of the suite's doorbell as guests step into a mine shaft foyer inlaid with Fool's Gold and hear the rumble of a passing runaway mine train. A button on the wall can be pushed to trigger sound effects from the attraction. The mine shaft leads into a living and dining area that separates the suite's two bedrooms. In many rooms, repurposed wood from a Midwestern barn is used as flooring and paneling, which is complimented by textured earthen walls.


A stone-hearth fireplace in the living area serves as the suite's centerpiece and houses a mounted flat-panel television. When not in use, the TV is cleverly concealed by one of the many pieces of attraction concept art found throughout the suite. The living area also includes a surround sound-stereo system and displays antique tools once used for mining gold, including an 1850s gold scale and pan.

The centerpiece of the dining area is a knotted table with seating for eight, with a wagon-wheel chandelier. Nearby is a wet bar made of petrified wood and above the bar hangs a "living portrait" of a gold miner who magically changes activities over the course of the day.

Rustic décor belies the luxurious amenities found in the suite's two bedrooms. The master bedroom is appointed with a desk, sitting area, TV and king-sized bed with a commanding headboard made of rich wood, brown leather and exposed brackets.

The master bath is revealed through a sliding barn door, where a free-standing copper tub is surrounded by a dramatic stone wall. The tub's copper finish matches the copper piping in the adjacent steam shower, which is tiled with an earth-tone mosaic. A television is concealed behind the mirror above the bathroom's bucket sinks.

In the coming weeks, details of other signature suites, including the new Fairy Tale Suite, Mickey Mouse Penthouse and Pirates of the Caribbean Suite. All are located on the 11th floor of the hotel's Dreams Tower and boast a distinct design, luxurious amenities and amazing views.

Reported on the Disney Parks Blog

Disney Dream - Buena Vista Theatre

Less than 160 days away from the maiden voyage of the Disney Dream. All of the spaces on the ship are quickly transforming from cavernous steel hollows to beautiful guest areas.

Construction is moving very quickly on the Buena Vista Theatre which will span two decks and have capacity for 399 guests. As you can see, the decorative ceiling is nearly complete, the stadium seating structure is already in place and furnishings will be installed shortly.


For cinephiles, the Buena Vista Theatre will be home to first-run-movies, including releases in stunning digital 3-D. Take a look at this rendering of the finished venue.


August 30, 2010

First Annual Food and Wine Classic - Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort


LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - August 18, 2010 - The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel is offering guests a chance to indulge at the first annual Food & Wine Classic at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Oct. 8 and 9.

Each evening will feature beverage seminars and a culinary festival with live music and tastings from the hotel's award-winning restaurants and lounges.

Guests have the opportunity to choose from six hands-on beverage classes taught by certified wine sommeliers and beer and cocktail specialists from the hotel's team. Attendees will learn about their topic of choice - ranging from a wine-blending seminar to a sake hour - through watching, listening, touching and of course, tasting!

Immediately following the lessons, guests can wander the causeway while being serenaded by live musicians and savoring numerous tasty offerings. The food samplings will include "Steamrollers," a creative take on molecular cuisine, from celebrity chef venue Todd English's bluezoo; "Pick Your Own Filet" from Shula's Steak House; a simple yet flavorful hand-crafted pasta from Il Mulino New York Trattoria and more. Each day of the event will feature a different selection of food.

Beverage stations will offer mini-learning experiences and feature offerings such as wine, sake, beer and cocktails using liquid nitrogen. Finally, guests can delight in a selection of desserts from the only two-time World Pastry Champion, Laurent Branlard, the hotel's executive pastry chef.

With 17 restaurants and lounges, a distinguished culinary and beverage team and unmatched customer service, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel continually receives national recognition for its food and beverage program. The hotel features more than 70 certified wine sommeliers and 1,400 wine selections, including organic and rare vintages, plus tastes from unique regions such as Greece, Turkey and Israel.

Tickets to the Food & Wine Classic at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin are available as part of a hotel package or individually. For more information or to book, please visit www.SwanDolphinFoodandWineClassic.com or call 1-800-227-1500.

4:30pm - 5:30pm - Beverage Classes
5:30pm - 9:30pm - Tasting Stations Open on Causeway

Advance purchase event-only tickets are available for $50 and include one seminar and unlimited food and beverage samples on the causeway.

Food and wine samplings also can be purchased a la carte on the day of event. Tickets are $2 each or 25 tickets for $45; or a bracelet for $50 - which allows unlimited food and beverage samples - can be purchased

For more information or to book, please visit:

or call 1-888-828-8850 and refer to rate code EARFWC.

For seminar reservations only, please call 407-934-1609.

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About August 2010

This page contains all entries posted to Disney and Florida Attractions News Blog in August 2010. They are listed from oldest to newest.

July 2010 is the previous archive.

September 2010 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.