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February 2014 Archives

February 4, 2014

Super Bowl XLVIII MVP Malcolm Smith "Goes to Disney World"

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Super Bowl XLVIII MVP Malcolm Smith rides Feb. 3, 2014 with Mickey Mouse in a parade through the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Smith, a linebacker for the Seattle Seahawks, helped lead his team to a 43-8 victory last night over the Denver Broncos in East Rutherford, N.J. After the game, Smith became the NFL's first defensive player to star in the iconic Disney Parks commercial where he proclaimed "I'm Going to Disney World!"

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Feb. 3, 2014) - The victory atmosphere moved south from New Jersey to Walt Disney World Resort Monday where Seattle Seahawks linebacker Malcolm Smith celebrated his team's stunning Super Bowl XLVIII championship win as thousands of fans lined Main Street, U.S.A.

Just hours after his title win against the Denver Broncos, Smith was riding high atop a convertible smiling and waving to guests at Walt Disney World Resort.

Flashing lights, a whirlwind of fluttering confetti, balloons and Mickey Mouse himself accompanied the Super Bowl MVP down the famous street at the Magic Kingdom. It was a remarkable dream come true for Smith, who went from being the last player the Seahawks drafted in 2011 (No. 242 overall) to the hero of the Super Bowl.

In the frenzied moments following his team capturing the National Football League championship Sunday night in New Jersey, Smith stood in front of a TV camera and shouted five words that have become an almost iconic reaction to milestone achievement: "I'm going to Disney World!"

The commercial aired Monday morning and is the 47th of a series that began in 1987 following Super Bowl XXI featuring New York Giants quarterback Phil Simms. The campaign pays tribute to personal achievements of athletes and celebrities and continues to be an iconic celebration as only Disney can do.

Smith set another mark Sunday night. He became the first defensive player to star in the Disney commercial.

This year's commercial marks a "Frozen" first. Idina Menzel, who voiced Elsa in Disney's Academy Award®-nominated animated feature film "Frozen," sings the traditional "When You Wish Upon a Star" to accompany the iconic ad. Menzel, who performs the Academy Award®-nominated hit song "Let It Go" in the film and the all-new hit "Frozen" soundtrack, becomes the first contemporary artist to perform "When You Wish Upon a Star" in the Disney Parks Super Bowl ad. She recorded the vocal track in New York City on Jan. 26, 2014 and it was paired with the orchestral track recorded the previous week at London's famed Abbey Road Studios.

Smith joins an all-star lineup of heroes from sports and beyond who have celebrated milestone accomplishments in "I'm going to Disney World" commercials.
- See more at: http://wdwnews.com/releases/2014/02/03/super-bowl-xlviii-mvp-malcolm-smith-goes-to-disney-world/#sthash.woZNwePR.dpuf

February 6, 2014

Planes: Fire and Rescue - Trailer "Courage"

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Planes: Fire and Rescue "ignites" July 18, 2014


Planes: Fire and Rescue, is a new comedy-adventure featuring a quirky crew of elite fire fighting aircraft devoted to protecting historic Pinston Peak National Park from a raging wild fire.

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When world famous air racer Dusty (Dane Cook) learns that his engine is damaged and he may
never race again, he must shift gears and is launched into the world of wildfire air attack.

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Dusty joins forces with veteran fire and rescue helicopter Blade Ranger and his courageous air attack team, including spirited super scooper Lil' Dipper (Julie Bowen), heavy-lift helicopter Windlifter, ex-military transport Cabbie and a lively bunch of brave all - terrain vehicles known as The Smokejumpers.

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Together, the fearless team battles a massive wildfire, and Dusty learns what it takes to become a true hero.

Muppets Most Wanted - Super Bowl Commercial

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Disney's "Muppets Most Wanted" takes the entire Muppets gang on a global tour, selling out grand theaters in some of Europe's most exciting destinations, including Berlin, Madrid, Dublin and London. But mayhem follows the Muppets overseas, as they find themselves unwittingly entangled in an international crime caper headed by Constantine-the World's Number One Criminal and a dead ringer for Kermit the Frog-and his dastardly sidekick Dominic, aka Number Two, portrayed by Ricky Gervais. The film stars Tina Fey as Nadya, a feisty prison guard, and Ty Burrell as Interpol agent Jean Pierre Napoleon.

Check out the other Muppets Most Wanted Clips

Captain America: The Winter Soldier - Trailers

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After the cataclysmic events in New York with The Avengers, Marvel's "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" finds Steve Rogers, aka Captain America, living quietly in Washington, D.C. and trying to adjust to the modern world. But when a S.H.I.E.L.D. colleague comes under attack, Steve becomes embroiled in a web of intrigue that threatens to put the world at risk. Joining forces with the Black Widow, Captain America struggles to expose the ever-widening conspiracy while fighting off professional assassins sent to silence him at every turn. When the full scope of the villainous plot is revealed, Captain America and the Black Widow enlist the help of a new ally, the Falcon. However, they soon find themselves up against an unexpected and formidable enemy-the Winter Soldier.

Based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series, first published in 1941, Marvel's "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" is produced by Kevin Feige, directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, from a screenplay by Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely, and stars Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Cobie Smulders, Frank Grillo, Emily VanCamp and Hayley Atwell, with Robert Redford as Alexander Pierce and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury.


"Captain America: The Winter Soldier" is presented by Marvel Studios. The executive producers are Louis D'Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Michael Grillo, Alan Fine and Stan Lee.The film releases April 4, 2014, and is distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

February 10, 2014

Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade Pours on the Whimsy at Walt Disney World Resort this March

New Magic Kingdom Parade To Include Characters from "Frozen"

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - A fire-breathing dragon" a pirate ship with smoking cannons" a music box that's a seashell" sassy Bubble Girls with cotton-candy hair" a mega-sized bagpipe.

Classic Disney fantasies soar to new heights with the all-new Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade set to hit the streets of Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort this March. The tribute to Fantasyland will highlight several new classic Disney and Pixar stories on a grand scale with nearly 100 performers and larger-than-life floats.

Disney Festival of Fantasy parade is the first of a new generation of parades for Disney Parks featuring never-before-used technology on eye-popping floats adorned with Disney characters from more than a dozen fairytales. Set to an all-new musical score, the dazzling parade floats will soar up to three stories tall with spirited performers donning dramatic costumes crafted at ten different design houses across the country.

"The parade celebrates and pays homage to what the Magic Kingdom is all about," said Randy Wojcik, senior show director Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Creative Entertainment. "It has the most beautiful floats, enchanting characters, vibrant costumes that come to life; and the choreography is just glorious. Yet, it is also very kinetic, relevant and powerful on a scale never seen before at Walt Disney World."

Seven unique units comprised of nine spectacular floats will march down Main Street, U.S.A to the beat of an original soundtrack inspired by favorite Disney films, composed by Mark Hammond, known for his work on World of Color at Disney California Adventure and the Flights of Fantasy parade at Hong Kong Disneyland. The parade has its own voice with a theme song customized for each float followed by a medley of songs woven throughout the cavalcade.

"It's visually stunning, like mini Broadway shows rolling down the street," said Wojcik.

Here's the float-by-float lineup:

The Princess Garden - This pageantry of princesses celebrates Disney royalty. Cinderella, Tiana and Belle accompanied by their respective princes, ride in a garden of topiaries with woodland creatures, birds and more. Cinderella's dress playfully twirls like a turntable, while Swan Court couples lead the 50-foot-long majestic float, capped off with a special appearance by Anna and Elsa from Disney's hit animated feature, "Frozen."

Tangled - A massive long ship on the high seas showcases Flynn Rider and Rapunzel in search of adventure and another Best. Day. Ever! Rapunzel's iconic tresses weave throughout this 36-foot-long float decked out with swaying pendulums carrying dastardly thugs.

Little Mermaid - Ariel and her friends sit atop a colorfully kinetic seashell music box that boasts an enchanting musical jubilee. There's no shortage of whimsy on this Under the Sea float with conga dancing fish kicking up their fins and bubbles galore. Shimmering fabrics and intricately designed costumes for the Lion Fish, Coral Fish, Seashell and Sea Horse performers are runway-inspired.

Peter Pan - Straight from Never Land come Peter Pan and Wendy soaring high aboard the famous Jolly Roger pirate ship complete with smoke effects and special surprises. A rainbow arch shines over Skull Rock and Tinker Bell nestled among giant flowers, while Captain Hook takes center stage on a swinging anchor. "Newsies-inspired" Lost Boys kick up their heels to high-energy choreography.

Brave - Celtic couples and a vessel shaped like an enormous bagpipe announce the arrival of Merida perched high on her majestic crown. Scottish dancers step to melodies of the Great Highlands in celebration of the popular Disney*Pixar film, "Brave."

Sleeping Beauty - The heroic Prince Phillip battles a Steampunk-inspired Dragon as the wicked Maleficent. This float stretches 53 feet in length and 26 feet tall with a prickly spinning wheel dead center of the float. With fiery eyes and glowing effects the spectacular dragon was built on an articulating chassis allowing the float to bend and flex as it moves along the parade route - a first for Disney parades. This float was designed in a partnership with Tony Award-winner Michael Curry. There's Prince Phillip, thorn-inspired stilt performers, dramatic raven dancers, plus the three good fairies, Flora, Fauna and Merryweather glide along the parade route.

Finale and Mickey's Airship - The parade culminates with a 90-foot-long magical caravan of characters featuring Pinocchio, Dumbo, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the Mad Hatter, Pluto and more in a splashy carnival of color. There's Pegasus horses, dancing hippos and sassy Bubble Girls with cotton-candy-like hair celebrating Storybook Circus in New Fantasyland. Sporting zany new costumes Mickey and Minnie Mouse sit sky high in Mickey's Airship - a giant hot air balloon that rounds out Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade.

Disney Festival of Fantasy Fun Facts

The Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade continues a long tradition of classic parades in the Magic Kingdom dating back to opening day more than 40 years ago. Some fun facts:

Parade features a cast of more than 100

Disney characters from more than a dozen classic stories are represented among nine parade floats

40 additional characters are presented in animated or sculptural form

Performers appear on stilts, swings and pendulums, bringing a kinetic energy to the procession

The Princess Garden lead float stretches more than 50 feet long

The Jolly Roger atop the Peter Pan float flies 28 feet above the parade route

Mickey's Airship finale float is the tallest float topping out at 32 feet

The trio of finale floats span more than 90 feet along the parade route

Elaborate costumes are being crafted by 10 different costume houses, in eight cities, in two countries - including Creative Costuming facilities in both Florida and California.

Some 27 separate custom designed fabrics were designed by Mirena Rada in collaboration with Creative Costuming Graphic Artist Paul Jordan.

Counting interfacings and trims, it takes 28 separate fabrics to make up one Swing Thug #1 Costume (Tangled unit). His vest requires vinyl to be cut into 75 separate diamond shapes and then stitched onto cool max fabric.

Some pieces, including the Seashell Girl (Little Mermaid unit) headpiece, were digitally sculpted and then grown to size with a 3D printer.

It takes 30 yards of fabric to make one Seashell Girl costume which includes 12 different colors of Nitex Mesh.

The coral pieces for the Coral Twins (Little Mermaid unit) were custom designed. They are being hand poured in three separate colors by the artisans of the Creative Costuming Craft Team and baked and finished for 16 hours each in an oven.

The socks worn by the Lost Boys (Peter Pan unit) are custom designs that were knitted to order in Hong Kong.

Minnie Mouse's Dress and Hat (finale unit) uses 95 gold lame dots that are cut out, "blinged out," and then sewn on.

The Bubble Girl (finale unit) headpiece is made from three separate clown wigs that are blended together by the Creative Costuming Millinery Team.

Cha Cha Girl (finale unit) - Her wig was designed with 148 yards of horsehair in four colors, that is then rolled, pressed and curled by hand.

The Steampunk-inspired Maleficent Dragon stretches 53 feet from snout to tail and reaches 26 feet in the air.

Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment team members partnered with Tony Award-winning designer Michael Curry on the development of the Maleficent Dragon.

Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade Puts Contemporary Touches on Timeless Favorites

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Custom Designs Transform Magic Kingdom into a Costume Runway

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLA. - This March, Walt Disney World Resort guests will feast their eyes on some of the most extravagant and elaborate costume designs in Disney Parks history when the cast of Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade dance through the streets of Magic Kingdom.

A new daytime parade, Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade is a celebration of New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom. The parade will bring beloved characters found in this enchanting land to Main Street, U.S.A. with innovative parade floats; a new soundtrack featuring classic favorites from Disney films and an original theme song; and an impressive array of stunning costumes.

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From first sketch to final stitch, the production process took almost a year to complete. The creations transpired in 10 different costume houses across eight cities and two countries, with the Creative Costuming facilities in both Florida and California among the mix.

Costume designer Mirena Rada is no stranger to Disney Parks, as her body of work includes design projects for Disneyland Resort, Tokyo Disney Resort and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort. But when she was brought on to create costumes for Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade, Rada reached a new milestone - designing for a Walt Disney World Resort theme park.

"This was a personal first and it turned out to be a very different experience from other projects," said Rada. "Everything here at Magic Kingdom is done on a considerably bigger scale and the resources are aplenty. I took every opportunity to avail myself of these specialties."

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From the Swing Thugs aboard the "Tangled" unit's massive longship to the troupe of Scottish dancers announcing Merida's arrival in the "Brave" unit, Rada carefully planned and executed the detail of each piece. Visual cues such as color and texture choices were taken from each float and incorporated in the costume designs. Additionally, she closely studied the style guide of each film for whimsical details and fabric patterns to capture the essence of each story.

Putting a modern spin on classic elements is a theme that resonates throughout Rada's designs. From the swan neck collar and iridescent feathers on the Princess Garden unit's Swan Court ball gowns to the sculpted conch shell headpiece and shimmering pastel dress that comprise "The Little Mermaid" unit's Seashell Girl, the old and new are blended seamlessly - a trend that is ever present in today's fashion world.

The production process mirrors current fashion trends, utilizing new technology to design and print custom fabrics in house. Rada partnered with Walt Disney World Resort costumers to select fabrics that would withstand the central Florida climate while also accommodating the needs of each performer.

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After gathering the materials, she and a Creative Costuming graphic artist worked together to create almost 40 custom fabric prints. This includes the spandex swirls on the Finale unit's bright and beautiful Bubble Girl, expansive fins of "The Little Mermaid" unit's regal Lion Fish and furry plaids and tweed stripes worn by the "Newsies inspired" Lost Boys of the "Peter Pan" unit.

An innovative 3D printing technology brought to life even Rada's most intricate concepts, with the hauntingly elegant beaks of the Ravens in the "Sleeping Beauty" unit being a prime example. Using a 3D origami program, a paper beak was created and placed on a performer's head to obtain the initial scale and shape. A digital sculptor then worked on the filigree beak design, which was printed, fitted and refined to produce the final shape. Each piece was base coated, bronzed, lacquered and gilded with fiery Swarovski stones to complete the finished look.

In the true spirit of fashion, each look was not considered complete until complemented by the perfect hair, makeup and accessories. The Finale unit's Cha Cha Girl is the queen of head-to-toe ensemble with her big top inspired fit and flare dress, bolero jacket embellished with sequins, star spangled tights and hair reminiscent of pulled taffy exuding the essence of Storybook Circus in New Fantasyland. However, simple touches that might elude guests, such as the elegant gold tones incorporated into eyelashes on the female Swan Court members, and in the custom socks worn by the Lost Boys were not overlooked - a testament to Disney's attention to detail.

When the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade steps off this spring, Rada will see her creations truly come to life. This perfect collaboration between artists, craftsmen and engineers is what she calls "a designer's dream."

February 13, 2014

Disney Twenty-Three Celebrates Disney's Contributions to 1964-1965 World's Fair

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FEATURING RARELY SEEN CONCEPT ART AND PHOTOGRAPHY FROM THE FAIR, AS WELL AS EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS WITH CHRIS EVANS, TINA FEY, AND THE MUPPETS
Plus, D23.com online exclusives include extended celebrity interviews and additional stories, artwork, and photography from the World's Fair.
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BURBANK, Calif. - FEBRUARY 13, 2014 - The 1964-65 World's Fair in New York celebrated a time of optimism, growth, and progress. D23: The Official Disney Fan Club captures all the excitement of this epic event in the Spring issue of its publication, Disney twenty-three. The Fair, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, marked the creation of landmark Disney technology, music, and attractions including it's a small world, Audio-Animatronics® technology, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln, and the Carousel of Progress-with its memorable theme song "There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow." Disney twenty-three sat down with several Disney Legends responsible for these iconic landmarks including Marty Sklar, Alice Davis, and Bob Gurr. Stunning concept art and rarely seen photography from the Fair complement the stories in this issue, available exclusively to Gold Members of D23.

Disney twenty-three's Spring issue also includes a look ahead at some of the latest entertainment coming from Disney. Ty Burrell, Tina Fey, Kermit the Frog, and Miss Piggy give readers a peek "behind the felt" at Muppets Most Wanted, which opens this March. Chris Evans talks about suiting up once again for April's Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Plus, Jonathan Freeman discusses taking his characterization of the villainous Jafar from screen to stage, as Disney Theatrical Productions prepares to open Aladdin on Broadway this March.

Also included in the Spring issue of Disney twenty-three:

• We celebrate D23's fifth anniversary with a look at some of the club's most memorable events

• "Ask Dave" with Disney Legend and Chief Archivist Emeritus Dave Smith returns to print in the U.S. for the first time in nearly a decade

• Disney trendsetters are all the rage-and on the page-in "The Hippest Place on Earth"

• Regular columns including A Walk with Walt, PHOTOfiles, D Society, and more

All D23 Members are invited to visit www.D23.com for additional members-only content, including extended Q&As with Kermit, Fey, Burrell, and the irrepressible Miss Piggy from Muppets Most Wanted.

Other features coming to D23.com include:

• A closer look at the artwork from it's a small world's Tower of the Four Winds at the New York World's Fair

• Details on which parts of the World's Fair attractions made their way to Disneyland

• A drive though the Ford Magic Skyway, with an extensive photo gallery

Also in the Spring issue, D23 Gold Members will receive a reproduction of the "Souvenir Map and Small World Guide" from the centerfold of the commemorative it's a small world, guide book.

Disney twenty-three, which is delivered directly to fans' doorsteps, is offered exclusively to D23 Gold Members as a benefit of their membership.

About D23
The name "D23" pays homage to the exciting journey that began in 1923 when Walt Disney opened his fledgling studio in Hollywood. D23 is the first official club for fans in Disney's nearly 90-year history. D23 gives its members a greater connection to the entire world of Disney by placing them in the middle of the magic through its quarterly publication Disney twenty-three; a rich website at D23.com with members-only content; member-exclusive discounts and special events for D23 Members throughout the year.

Fans can join D23 at Gold, Silver, and Free Membership levels at D23.com and at www.DisneyStore.com/D23. To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow us @DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube.

February 21, 2014

Soundtrack Preview Festival of Fantasy Parade

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The time is drawing closer for the debut of the Magic Kingdom's brand new parade, Festival of Fantasy.

The new original soundtrack is by Composer Mark Hammond. Here is a "Behind the Scenes" video (released by the Disney Parks Blog) of Mark and Senior Music Producer Dan Stamper offering a glimpse of the new soundtrack.

Epcot Expands "Re-Discovering America: Family Treasures from the Kinsey Collection" Gallery this Spring

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Feb. 20, 2014) - Walt Disney World Resort guests visiting The American Adventure pavilion at Epcot will see exciting updates as part of an expansion of "Re-Discovering America: Family Treasures from the Kinsey Collection" this spring. Additional images, artwork and artifacts related to watershed moments in American history will soon be on display.

Walt Disney Imagineers, along with philanthropists Bernard, Shirley and Khalil Kinsey, have begun to add several new artifacts and display cases to the popular cultural exhibit and will continue to do so in coming months.

"The Kinsey Collection shares the powerful and previously untold stories of those who dared to dream," said Erin Youngs, vice president of Epcot. "Representing more than 400 years of African-American achievement and history, the Kinsey Collection showcases the best of the American spirit with a nod to ingenuity and innovation. We are delighted to expand the exhibit and bring even more of these treasures to Epcot guests."

Themed to hope, belief, courage, imagination and heritage, the exhibit provides empowering stories of American history from voices that are not commonly seen or heard. Art and artifacts pay homage to African Americans who helped build and transform a nation. Their stories of determination and courage, from the nation's early days to the present, are at the heart of the exhibit.

New objects joining the exhibit this spring include:

-- Distribution of Population in New York, 1801 - At the Philadelphia Convention of 1787, states with smaller populations voiced their concern about representation at the federal level. This resulted in the Three-Fifths Compromise stating that only three-fifths of the slave population would be counted in the census. The Distribution of Population in New York, 1801 was one of the first few census calculations done by the state of New York following the compromise.
-- Noon Wash by artist Jonathan Green - Passionate about promoting cross-cultural fine art, Green reflects an inherent sense of history and place as he shares the story of the southern experience. His work with acrylic and oil paints reflect the hope of African Americans throughout history. A number of his works are inspired by his upbringing in the Gullah community of coastal South Carolina.
-- Slave Songs of the United States - Published in 1867, this original collection of African American music was the first of its kind. Northern abolitionists William Francis Allen, Charles Pickard Ware and Lucy McKim Garrison collected 136 songs from the slaves of Southern plantations, phonetically recording them as they heard them, in an effort to preserve the unique and powerful art form.
-- Tintype Photographs - Popularized in the mid-1850s, tintypes were easier to produce than previous methods and made photographs accessible to more people. Though their names have been lost to history, the subjects of the tintype portraits included in the exhibit continue to share their stories of courage .
-- Carte de Visite - Following a similar printing process as tintypes, carte de visite photographs were easier and more economical to produce, with the image printed on a high quality paper. The carte de visite photographs being added to the Courage portion of the exhibit feature African American soldiers from both sides of the Civil War

The Kinsey family's private collection features rare art, documents, books and artifacts and has been displayed throughout the U.S., including the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. Since opening at Epcot on March 8, 2013, approximately 40 pieces have been on display at the interactive exhibit where guests are able to use touch screens to further explore the art, artifacts and history. Guest-activated lanterns also help bring the history to life with narration provided by celebrity narrators including Academy Award winner Whoopi Goldberg ("The View") Diane Sawyer ("ABC World News with Diane Sawyer"), actress Kerry Washington ("Scandal") and more.

Many notable visitors have experienced the exhibit including actor Blair Underwood, NBA Champion John Salley and R&B legends Boyz II Men.

St. Patrick’s Day Celebration Invites Wearin' of the Green at Downtown Disney March 7-17

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Music and merriment abound when the most authentic St. Patrick's Day celebration in Central Florida comes to Downtown Disney March 7-17.

The celebration at Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant and throughout Downtown Disney pays homage to Celtic culture with nearly 10 top Irish bands and pro dancers performing on three stages during select days of the festival. With performances starting nightly March 7-14 from 5 to 1 a.m. March 15-17 on stages indoors and out, guests can don their finest green duds and join in a jig or two.

Highlights of the celebration across Downtown Disney will include:

--Performances by The Willis Clan, world-famous U2 tribute band Elevation, Goitse, Three Dollar Band, We Banjo 3, The Ragland Rebels, The Brazen Heads and Raglan Road house bands Creel and The West Coast Trio
--The Raglan Road Dancers - seven full-time champion dancers, performing daily
--Renowned Irish dancer and choreographer Ronan McCormack of the original Riverdance cast, leading Irish Dance Workshops "From Roots to Riverdance"
--Ceili (kay-lee) traditional music and structured set-dancing event, during which host Ronan McCormack invites guest participation

Additional entertainment inspired by the Emerald Isle will include more than 50 musicians and dancers, face painting, stilt walkers, living statues and giveaways. Guests will find it's easy being green at The Mighty Family Zone on the West Side, a new offering during the Mighty St. Patrick's Festival, where guests can snag a photo with Kermit, learn how to draw everyone's favorite frog, take part in games and DJ dance parties, and more.

Also new this year: the four Disney Food Trucks (Fantasy Fair, Namaste Café, Superstar Catering and World Showcase of Flavors) will serve delicious eats each evening of the festival at Downtown Disney West Side, including a special St. Patrick's Day-themed cupcake. Guests can also purchase Fisherman's Pie, a favorite dish from the Ireland kiosk at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, at the World Showcase of Flavors Food Truck.

Guests can order from the popular Raglan Road lunch, dinner and bar menus throughout the event. Irish celebrity chef Kevin Dundon of Raglan Road will bring traditional Irish flavors to Downtown Disney with dishes such as loin of bacon and cabbage, and guests will find a hearty selection of beers on tap.

The restaurant's Cooke's of Dublin counter-service eatery will offer Irish favorites like fish and chips, battered sausages and deep-fried candy bars, and guests will discover additional food and specialty drinks created just for the festival at select Downtown Disney restaurants.

On Monday, St. Patrick's Day, guests will be seated at Raglan Road on a first-come, first-served basis with a cover charge of $10 for each guest age 18 and older. Reservations can be booked for other festival days by calling 407/938-0300. For more information visit Disneyworld.com/StPatricksDay.

Guardians of the Galaxy Trailer - Marvel

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From Marvel, the studio that brought you the global blockbuster franchises of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Avengers, comes a new team-the Guardians of the Galaxy. An action-packed, epic space adventure, Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy" expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the cosmos, where brash adventurer Peter Quill finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. To evade the ever-persistent Ronan, Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits-Rocket, a gun-toting raccoon, Groot, a tree-like humanoid, the deadly and enigmatic Gamora and the revenge-driven Drax the Destroyer. But when Quill discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must do his best to rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand-with the galaxy's fate in the balance.

February 25, 2014

Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend to Swoop into Disneyland Resort in California this Fall

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Three-day race weekend is runDisney's first Super Hero collaboration; Event to include kids races, 5K and half marathon; Registration opens late March

ANAHEIM, CA (February 25, 2014) - runDisney is expanding its portfolio of race weekends, adding a new Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, CA to debut November 14-16, 2014.

The new three-day race weekend will involve kids races, a 5K and a half marathon, plus several family-friendly events such as a Health & Fitness Expo and a pre-race Pasta in the Park Party. Registration opens March 25 at www.runDisney.com.

With Super Hero-themed entertainment and characters, the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend will be a unique runDisney experience.

"We couldn't be more excited about this Super Hero collaboration to create this new runDisney race weekend for runners everywhere,' said Tom Wolber, senior vice president of Disney Sports Enterprises and Downtown Disney. "Our runDisney events continue to be hugely popular and by joining forces with the Avengers brand, we expect this race will appeal to an even broader range of runners in Southern California whom we hope will see this event as the perfect opportunity to unleash their inner Super Hero in a race to a personal triumph.'

"runDisney races are a natural fit because our comic book Super Heroes embody many of the same brand attributes as runDisney, such as heroism and intensity with a heavy dose of fun,' said Dan Buckley, president of TV, Publishing and Brand Management for Marvel Entertainment. "This race weekend will have a very distinct atmosphere that will appeal to comic book fans and runDisney fans.'

The Avengers event is expected to be in high demand much like other runDisney race weekends, which have sold out in record time in recent years. Overall, runDisney race weekends attracted more than 163,900 runners last year - a 40 percent increase over the previous year, making the runDisney series one of the largest in the nation.

The Avengers Half Marathon Weekend will be the eighth runDisney event and third at Disneyland Resort, joining the Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend (May 7-10, 2015) and the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend (Aug. 28-31, 2014) at Disneyland Resort.

But the Avengers Half Marathon course will be a new 13.1-mile route through the Disneyland Resort and surrounding areas that will differ from the Tinker Bell and Disneyland half marathon courses. Runners who successfully brave the new Avengers Half Marathon course will receive a commemorative Avengers-themed finishers' medal.

Special Family Ticket Offer

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Disney announced today a new Magic Your Way Ticket Deal - designed for families!

Beginning February 25, 2014, parties of six or more who purchase a minimum 4-day Magic Your Way ticket will get a 5th day for FREE. This offer is good now through June 14, 2014.

Eligibility - Valid with party of 6 or more Guests.
Purchase Through - June 14, 2014
Ticket Requirements - Tickets are valid for one theme park per day and must be used within 14 days of first use.
Offer Restrictions - All tickets and options are non-transferable and non-refundable, are only valid during regularly scheduled operating hours and exclude activities/events priced separately.
No additional discounts apply.

AllEars recommends MouseFanTravel.com for your Disney vacation!

Disneyland Resort Rehabs Just Announced

The temporary closure of two attractions at the Disneyland Resort have been announced.

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Disneyland's Alice in Wonderland attraction will be closed from March 10 until summer 2014. As part of the refurbishment, minor changes will be made to the exterior of the attraction.

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Over at Disney California Adventure, the Little Mermaid will be closed for maintenance from March 20 until late spring.

New Imagineering Video Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

As the grand opening of the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train in the Magic Kingdom nears (no we don't have an exact date, only spring), Disney Imagineers have released a new "on-board" video and more photographs of the details of the attraction.

Here are some recently released "detailed" photos (©Disney) of the Mine Train attraction:

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SeaWorld Orlando and Busch Gardens Tampa Ticket Offer

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ORLANDO, Fla. (February 25, 2014) - SeaWorld® Orlando and Busch Gardens® Tampa think weekdays need to be celebrated - especially weekdays during spring break. Both parks are offering a special $50 Weekday Ticket, on sale for only 50 days, good for a single weekday admission to either park, now through May 5, 2014, including spring break.

Now, that's cause for celebration!

At SeaWorld Orlando, guests will find themselves surrounded by SeaWorld's 50th Celebration and a Sea of Surprises. Busch Gardens Tampa is the ultimate family adventure, offering 300 acres of fascinating attractions, like Florida's first triple-launch coaster Cheetah Hunt.

The $50 Weekday Ticket is available online to U.S. residents at SeaWorldOrlando.com or BuschGardensTampa.com or by calling (888) 800-5447. The $50 Weekday Ticket is valid for one weekday's admission to either SeaWorld Orlando or Busch Gardens Tampa and must be used by May 5, 2014.

SeaWorld 50th Celebration, Sea of Surprises and more:

Kicking off March 21, SeaWorld Orlando's pathways come to life with oceans of spontaneous entertainment. "Bubble Blowout" is a fantastical vehicle creating bubbles of all sizes and shapes. Engaging performances with sea-inspired costumes and props will pop up at surprising moments to surprise guests throughout the day, like "Splash Dance." The "SeaWorld® Surprise Squad" will roam the park on a daily basis giving away prizes and special gifts, including exclusive access to rides, behind-the-scenes experiences, Shamu-themed merchandise, reserved show seating, and more.

There's more: A pair of Magellanic penguins, a lemur, or even a parade of flamingos could surprise guests at any moment. And, to showcase SeaWorld's commitment to the environment and passion for protecting the ocean, a series of giant sea life sculptures will be displayed throughout the parks. SeaWorld commissioned environmental art group The Washed Ashore Project for a collection of larger-than-life sea-themed sculptures - many weighing more than half a ton. The materials used to create these pieces came from the billions of pounds of garbage - mostly plastics - that wind up in our oceans. These amazing works of art point to the urgent need to protect marine animals from such dangers and preserve their ocean habitats.

At SeaWorld Orlando's new Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin, families are transported into an icy world like they've never seen before where they can explore the majestic grandeur of the South Pole and see it through the penguins' eyes on a first-of-its-kind family ride. Then, guests step off and explore a massive penguin colony of nearly 250 feathered friends - gentoo, rockhopper, Adélie and king penguins -- in an expanse that envelops them in cool extremes, both above and below the penguins' icy world. It's a must-see, one-of-a-kind experience only at SeaWorld Orlando.

To learn more about the new $50 Weekday Ticket, and to purchase, visit SeaWorldOrlando.com


February 28, 2014

Disney Parks Invites Guests to 'Rock Your Disney Side' With 24-Hour Kickoff to Summer on Both Coasts

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ANAHEIM, Calif. and LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Feb. 28, 2014) - 140 Disney characters gathered at Walt Disney World Resort today creating the Ultimate Tweet to announce the latest Disney Parks bi-coastal, all-night extravaganza; and guests are invited to show their "Disney Side" by dressing as their favorite Disney hero or villain.

Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Pluto and 135 of their friends came together to trumpet the countdown to "Rock Your Disney Side: 24-Hours" this Memorial Day Weekend, the traditional start of the family travel season, when guests of Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California can enjoy select parks for 24 hours nonstop.

The Magic Kingdom Park in Florida and Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park in California will be filled with great Disney heroes and villains from 6 a.m., May 23 to 6 a.m., May 24, 2014, local time** marking the beginning of a summer of fun at Disney Parks. The celebration on both coasts will feature a cavalcade of events showcasing the good-vs.-evil of classic Disney stories including character meet-and-greets throughout the parks, special entertainment, event merchandise, and food and beverage offerings. Along with the entertainment guests have grown to love every day, they'll discover surprise additions and special events throughout the 24 hours.

Mickey and pals announced the 24-hour party in their own inimitable style - with a 140-character-strong "Ultimate Tweet," sending a #DisneySide message to all their fans on social media to come see them on May 23.

"Rock Your Disney Side" All Summer

Fans will be able to "rock" their Disney Side throughout the summer on both coasts. Guests will find new excitement at the Walt Disney World resort including the completion of New Fantasyland - the largest expansion in Magic Kingdom history - with the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train family rollercoaster attraction (Opening date to be announced). Other summer festivities include the New-Fantasyland-inspired Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade and the rollout of MyMagic+, taking the Disney guest experience to the next level. Recent additions to Disneyland Resort include the stage show, "Mickey and the Magical Map," featuring characters, music and fun surprises in the Fantasyland Theatre, and Fantasy Faire, a regal setting for encounters with some favorite Disney princesses.

Show Your Disney Side
Everybody has two sides. There's your normal, everyday side that goes to work, studies for school and doesn't do anything crazy. But you also have another more fun side-your Disney side. That's the side you simply can't wait to share as a family. It's the side of you that laughs more, screams more, says "yes" more and just plain lives life to the fullest. It's the side of you that comes out to play the moment your family steps through the gates of a Disney Theme Park. So why wait? Share the magic right now and come show your Disney side!

Disney Side of Summer Sweepstakes
Guests also can tweet how they plan to "Rock" their Disney Side this summer along with #DisneySideSweepsEntry for a chance to win a coast-to-coast 7-day / 6-night Disney Parks vacation for 4 and attend the Rock Your Disney Side 24-Hour event! One winner and three guests can enjoy a back-to-back stay at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida followed by Disneyland® Resort in California to join us for the "Rock Your Disney Side: 24-Hours."***

For more information on other ways to Show Your Disney Side, check out www.RockYourDisneySide.com

Destination D: Attraction Rewind DATE CHANGE

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Today D23: The Official Disney Fan Club announced the date of Destination D: Attraction Rewind presented by H2O plus at Walt Disney World Resort will shift to November 22 and 23. Check-in and exclusive shopping opportunities will begin on Friday, November 21.

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DESTINATION D: ATTRACTION REWIND
presented by H20 Plus

In addition to this news, D23 is thrilled to announce Disney Legends Marty Sklar, Bob Gurr and other popular Disney Legends who worked on the Walt Disney shows for the New York World's Fair will be taking part in the event this fall.

Additional ticketing information -- including discounted hotel and park ticket rates for guests attending the event -- will be posted later this spring on D23.com.

About Destination D: Attraction Rewind presented by H2O plus:

Walt Disney once said, "Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world." It's in that spirit that guests this fall will have the opportunity to visit -- or revisit --some of the most beloved Disney attractions and entertainment of yesteryear. Destination D: Attraction Rewind, November 22 and 23 at Walt Disney World Resort, will bring Disney archivists, Imagineers, Legends, and luminaries together to celebrate fan favorites such as Adventure Thru Inner Space, If You Had Wings, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea with rarely seen concept art and images; vintage video clips; and revealing stories. In addition, several presentations will be dedicated to the 1964-65 New York World's Fair, which spawned beloved attractions like it's a small world and Carousel of Progress.


All D23 events, dates, and talent are subject to change.

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About February 2014

This page contains all entries posted to Disney and Florida Attractions News Blog in February 2014. They are listed from oldest to newest.

January 2014 is the previous archive.

March 2014 is the next archive.

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