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March 2015 Archives

March 3, 2015

Cheers! Happy Hour at the Four Seasons Resort Orlando

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Capa Bar and The Lobby Bar at Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort have introduced new menus for Happy Hour. The bars are each offering their own drink specials with a sampling of complimentary light bites.

The Lobby Bar

As the name implies, conveniently located down the hall from the main entry, The Lobby Bar is open from 3:00 pm to midnight and Happy Hour is offered from 4:00 to 6:00 pm. The Lobby Bar offers drink specials during Happy Hour including $4.00 beers, half priced bottles of wine, and a signature cocktail offered for $10.00. In addition, from 4:00 to 6:00 pm, passed light bites are also offered, including pastrami and mustard bites, chicken liver crostinis, and tomato soup shots with grilled cheese croutons. Live music will be offered on Monday and Tuesday nights. Spacious seating including a sleek marble bar, plus an expansive outdoor terrace with views of the palm trees and gardens, make The Lobby Bar the perfect gathering spot.

Capa Bar

Capa Bar is on the Resort's rooftop level, featuring an expansive outdoor terrace with stunning views of the Walt Disney World Resort area. Guests can enjoy the spacious indoor seating featuring cozy banquettes and oversized chairs, or the sleek outdoor space that channels the look and feel of a swanky Las Vegas club. Capa, a steakhouse with a Spanish influence, is offering select tapas called pintxos complimentary from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. The boqueron (caper berry/piquillo pepper), guindilla pepper (olive/manchego) and asparagus (jamon/quail egg) are offered as a passed appetizer. Drink specials at Capa include two porrone cocktails, large format cocktails that serve two to four people, offered for $2.00. The Southern Lady cocktail includes bourbon, blueberry rooibos tea, honey and club soda. The Scorched Orange cocktail includes Camarena Reposado tequila, orange chili syrup, lime juice and club soda.

Validated valet parking is offered at $5 per car or guests are always welcome to take Four Seasons' bus transportation if coming from a Disney park.

Read more about the Four Seasons Resort Orlando!

Galactic Gathering Star Wars Weekends Kick Off May 14

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Galactic Gathering is a special merchandise event being held Thursday, May 14th from 10am - 3pm. This event is similar to last year's Rebel Rendezvous.

For $250 per person (plus you will need admission to the park separately) you can purchase event specific and limited edition Star Wars themed merchandise.

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Special Guests at the event will be various Disney characters, Disney Design Group Artists and Ashley Eckstein from Her Universe.

Packages for the Galactic Gathering will include the following:

'Rebel' or 'Empire' retail MagicBand (Guests can choose their side when registering online) * (*These items will only be available to Galactic Gathering attendees.)

Commemorative trading pin * (*These items will only be available to Galactic Gathering attendees.)

Darth's Mall Light Speed Pass which gives expedited entry into Darth's Mall for all five weekends.* * (*These items will only be available to Galactic Gathering attendees.)

First opportunity to pre-purchase select merchandise including personalized Aurebesh nametags, D-Tech phone cases, Dooney & Bourke handbags, Galactic Gathering Disney Gift card, retail MagicBands, limited edition pins and Vinylmation.

First opportunity to purchase the new designs of Star Wars-themed Disney Gift Cards.

Han Solo-inspired popcorn bucket with popcorn.

You will be some of the first to purchase the new Star Wars figures for D Tech-Me including a Jedi Knight and TIE-Fighter Pilot

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Registration will begin on March 4 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern on http://www.DisneyParksMerchandise.com.

The number of packages available is limited and available while supplies last on a first come, first serve basis. Event package and content are not subject to discounts. Appearances are subject to space and time availability and are not guaranteed. Tickets are non-refundable. Event information subject to change without notice.


March 6, 2015

Soarin and Toy Story Updates

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In response to overwhelming guest demand for Epcot's Soarin' and Toy Story Mid Way Mania at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World has announced plans for expansion and updates of the popular attractions.

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Another theater is being added to Soarin' as well as new screens and a projection system bringing a visually enhanced experience.

Toy Story Midway Mania will be adding more track to accommodate more riders.

Preparation and construction for both have been underway for a few months. Completion date for both attractions is late 2016.

March 9, 2015

Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron New Trailer

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MARVEL'S AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON opens in theaters May 1, 2015!

When Tony Stark jumpstarts a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth's Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as they battle to save the planet from destruction at the hands of the villainous Ultron.

March 11, 2015

Sand Castle in the Snow 24-Hour Event at WDW

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Sand Castle in the Snow Announces 24-Hour Event To Kick Off 'Coolest Summer Ever' at Walt Disney World Resort
Olaf's 'Frozen' Summer Dream Comes True

BOSTON, Mass. and LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (March 11, 2015) - Walt Disney World Resort will kick off the "Coolest Summer Ever" with 24 hours of nonstop fun during a special event May 22-23 at the Magic Kingdom, hosted by Olaf, the summer-loving snowman from Disney's blockbuster animated hit "Frozen."

To announce the 24-hour event and the cool summer season, Disney today brought to life a warm summer scene inspired by Olaf's dream, creating a 20-foot-wide beach complete with a Cinderella Castle made of sand in the middle of winter-weary Boston.

Surprised pedestrians near historic Faneuil Hall were greeted by Olaf and joined by playful beach-goers in summer attire with beach chairs and beach balls - all reminders of an exciting season of fun ahead at Walt Disney World Resort and a welcome relief from the city's near-record snowfall approaching nine feet.

24-Hour Kickoff to Summer Travel

Memorial Day weekend is the traditional start of family vacation time, and Walt Disney World Resort will launch into the season full force. The Magic Kingdom will be open 24 hours to guests from 6 a.m. to 6 a.m., Friday May 22 to Saturday, May 23*. Guests will be invited to come in costume** to show their Disney Side while a selection of favorite attractions, entertainment, special event merchandise, plus food and beverage are on tap all night long to celebrate the start of the "Coolest Summer Ever" at Walt Disney World Resort.

The around-the-clock celebration features Disney character greetings, dance parties and surprises into the wee hours of the night.

'Coolest Summer Ever' Brings Excitement Throughout Walt Disney World Resort

During the "Coolest Summer Ever," with Olaf as the official host, Walt Disney World guests can get their cool on all summer long at four theme parks and two water parks.

Among the highlights:

Frozen Fun - "Frozen" Summer Fun LIVE will bring together Princess Anna, Queen Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf with citizens of Arendelle, all appearing daily in shows and experiences at Disney's Hollywood Studios, June 17-Sept. 7. Guests will find cool thrills this summer including a royal processional, a sing-along show, Frozen-themed treats and merchandise, plus a Frozen fireworks display above Hollywood Blvd.


Cool Thrill Rides
- Guests will find thrills from mild to wild to out of this world in all four Walt Disney World theme parks. Don't-miss attractions include Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and Splash Mountain at Magic Kingdom; Test Track presented by Chevrolet and Soarin' at Epcot; Expedition Everest at Disney's Animal Kingdom; Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith and Twilight Zone™ Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Star Wars Weekends - Guests at Disney's Hollywood Studios will find stars from another galaxy during Star Wars Weekends May 15-June 14.

New Restaurants and Shopping - Throughout the summer, new waterfront dining and boutique shops flow into the Downtown Disney shopping/dining/entertainment district as its transformation into Disney Springs continues.

Epcot Entertainment - New entertainment acts will appear throughout Epcot World Showcase, which also brings a fresh summery twist on a fan favorite, Voices of Liberty.

A Splash at Water Parks - A cool new deal doubles the fun at Disney's two iconic water parks - Disney's Typhoon Lagoon and Disney's Blizzard Beach. Purchase a one-day water park ticket and park-hop between the two water parks in the same day that both are open.

For more information, visit http://Disneyworld.com/CoolestSummerEver

24 Hours of Fun as Disneyland Resort in California Kicks Off Diamond Celebration of the 60th Anniversary

On the West Coast, Disneyland Resort will kick off the summer with a dynamic 24-hour event of its own, May 22-23, to launch the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration. Marking the 60th anniversary of the resort, the Diamond Celebration includes the premieres of three new nighttime spectaculars: "Disneyland Forever" fireworks, "Paint the Night" parade and "World of Color - Celebrate!"

The all-day/all-night revelry of the 24-hour party will include dancing and special character encounters at locations in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, along with enchanting Diamond décor throughout the resort and the exciting shows and attractions that bring guests back year after year. The Disneyland Resort invites guests of all ages to kick off the summer travel season in Southern California, celebrating 60 years of magic at a resort that remains forever young.

Raglan Road 10th Anniversary Master Chef Cooking Contest

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Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant at Downtown Disney Announces 10TH Anniversary 'Master Chef' Cooking Contest
Finalists Win Ireland Trip to Cook with Celebrity Chef Kevin Dundon

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (March 11, 2015) - Ladies and gentlemen, start your cook stoves! To kick off its 10th anniversary celebration, Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant at Downtown Disney challenges home chefs to get creative and vie for the honorary title of Raglan Road Master Chef.

Now through April 21, amateur cooks are invited to submit a video featuring an original three-course menu of appetizer, entrée and dessert worthy of the restaurant's 10th anniversary celebration in October. Raglan Road Master Chef Kevin Dundon, a 2015 TASTE Awards winner, whose PBS/Create TV series "Kevin Dundon's Modern Irish Food," begins its second season March 13, will judge entries and choose five finalists on April 28.

The finalists will fly to Ireland May 21, all expenses paid, where they'll stay at Dundon's popular resort and cooking school, Dunbrody Country House Hotel in Southwest Ireland, and work with Dundon to perfect their cooking technique. Each of the finalists will cook a dish chosen by Dundon on Oct. 20 at a private 10th anniversary celebratory dinner at Raglan Road, an award-winning restaurant owned and operated by Irish partners that features several dining rooms of aged walnut and mahogany wood furnishings from old Irish bars and churches that were shipped to Orlando to build the restaurant.

Guests who enter the competition must be able to travel from Orlando International Airport on May 21 and have a valid, up-to-date passport for travel to Ireland and return to Orlando on May 26. While in Dunbrody, finalists also will experience the local farms and fishing locations where Dundon sources his food and will enjoy a Dublin excursion. For information about entering the competition, visit http://www.raglanroad.com/raglan-road-master-chef-competition. The site will be live with all contest rules and details on Monday, March 16, 2015.

Raglan Road features inventive cuisine by Irish celebrity chef Kevin Dundon, host of the TASTE Award-winning PBS and Create TV cooking show, "Kevin Dundon's Modern Irish Food." The second season of Dundon's TV series, "Kevin Dundon's Back to Basics," will premiere nationally March 13 on public television's Create TV. The network also will air a Kevin Dundon marathon of select episodes of "Back to Basics" and Dundon's first season episodes of "Modern Irish Food" March 14 and 15 leading into St. Patrick's Day.

During any visit to Raglan Road, guests can belly up to one of the restaurant's 130-year-old imported-from-Ireland bars or grab a table for authentic fare. The restaurant, winner of numerous national and local awards and honors, is known for its beer-battered fish and chips, as well as its Shepherd's pie with a contemporary twist and other popular entrees. Raglan Road offers gluten-free items including scallops, fish and chips, onion rings and pasta dishes.

Owned and operated by Irish partners Paul Nolan, John Cooke and celebrity chef Kevin Dundon - famous for his five-star hotel and cookery school in Ireland and his award-winning PBS and Create TV cooking series - Raglan Road features traditional Irish dishes and new creations with a Celtic twist. The restaurant's warm interior of aged walnut and mahogany woods from old Irish bars and churches was built in Ireland and shipped to Orlando.

Guests can enjoy live Irish bands and performances by The Raglan Road Dancers nightly and during the Rollicking Raglan Weekend Brunch. Live music is also scheduled nightly on the pub patio. Lunch is served 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; Dinner 3-11 p.m.; Bar menu 11 p.m.-late; Weekend Brunch 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant is located at Downtown Disney in the Walt Disney World Resort, 1640 E. Buena Vista Dr., Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Visit www.raglanroad.com or call 407/938-0300.

March 12, 2015

Diamond Celebration Will Light Up the Disneyland Resort Beginning With Dazzling 24-Hour Event, May 22-23

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Guests Will Enjoy Debuts of Three, New Nighttime Spectaculars as 24-Hour Party Kicks Off Summer in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Parks

ANAHEIM, Calif. (March 11, 2015) - A dynamic 24-hour party will kick off the summer and launch the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, May 22-23, as guests enjoy the thrilling premieres of three, new nighttime spectaculars: the glittering "Paint the Night" parade and the groundbreaking "Disneyland Forever" fireworks show at Disneyland Park, plus the new presentation, "World of Color - Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney," at Disney California Adventure Park.

The all-day/all-night celebration will begin at 6 a.m. Friday, May 22, and will conclude 24 hours* later at 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23, 2015, local time. The revelry will include dancing and special character encounters at locations in Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, along with enchanting Diamond décor throughout the resort and the exciting shows and attractions that bring guests back year after year. The Disneyland Resort invites guests of all ages to kick off the summer travel season in Southern California, celebrating 60 years of magic at a resort that remains forever young.

At Disneyland

• Paint the Night Parade - After dark along the Disneyland parade route, 24-hour guests will be among the first to see the Paint the Night parade, showcasing beloved Disney characters in dazzling parade scenes illuminated with more than 1.5 million individually controlled lights -- the first all-LED parade in Disneyland Resort history. The luminescent parade introduces a new era of magical entertainment, as Mickey Mouse uses his imagination to harness the power of Tinker Bell's pixie dust to "Paint the Night" in dazzling Disney dreams. Those dreams include special appearances by Mickey's pals and beloved characters from tales such as Monsters, Inc., Cars, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story and Frozen. The parade features some of the most spectacular floats, unforgettable music and special effects ever presented at the Disneyland Resort, along with energetic performers who add to the brilliance with colorful costumes that light up, too.

• Disneyland Forever Fireworks Show - Disneyland Park itself plays a starring role in the Disneyland Forever fireworks spectacular, also premiering during the 24-hour event. Breathtaking fireworks shows have long been a Disneyland Resort tradition and "Disneyland Forever" soars to new levels, immersing guests from the tips of their toes to the brilliant pyrotechnic bursts above, thanks to special effects that turn the storefronts of Main Street, U.S.A., the Matterhorn mountain, the Fantasmic! water screens and the façade of "it's a small world" into gigantic projections screens filled with color, characters and surprises.

Disneyland Forever transports guests into the worlds of beloved Disney and Disney-Pixar films, including a dance with King Louie from the The Jungle Book and a flight over London with characters from Peter Pan. Two original songs also energize the show: the theme "Live the Magic," and the inspiring closing song "Kiss Goodnight," written by Disney Legend Richard M. Sherman. Disneyland Forever will be visible from Main Street, U.S.A., and several Disneyland locations.

At Disney California Adventure

• "World of Color - Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney" - Award-winning actor Neil Patrick Harris and Mickey Mouse will appear in film sequences and animated imagery of the all-new "World of Color" show, premiering May 22 during the 24-hour party. "World of Color - Celebrate!" illuminates the night in a fun-filled and inspirational journey exploring Walt Disney's decades-long legacy of memorable animated moments and his dream of Disneyland park. It culminates in a madcap musical tour of Disneyland Resort attractions as you've never seen them before. Both epic and intimate in scope, "World of Color - Celebrate!" comes to life with animation, live-action film, fountains, lasers, special effects and a stirring musical score, all on the magical water canvas of "World of Color."

Just the Beginning

The 24-hour party is just the beginning of the summer fun at Disney Parks on both coasts.
At Disneyland, in addition to the spectacular nighttime parade and fireworks, guest will enjoy the daytime "Mickey's Soundsational Parade" and the classic after-dark "Fantasmic!" show on the Rivers of America in Frontierland and New Orleans Square. Glistening diamond-themed décor adds extra sparkle to Sleeping Beauty Castle, while Anna and Elsa from the hit Disney animated feature "Frozen" appear in a playfully comic retelling of their story on the Fantasy Faire stage. Disneyland also features more than 60 rides and attractions, including Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean and "it's a small world," to delight guests of all ages.

At Disney California Adventure, the new "World of Color - Celebrate!" show continues nightly throughout the summer along with the new "Mad T Party Diamond Celebration," plus "Pixar Play Parade," "Disney's Aladdin - A Musical Spectacular" and all the favorite attractions throughout the park, including Radiator Springs Racers in Cars Land, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™ in Hollywood Land and the California Screamin' roller coaster in Paradise Pier. The "Frozen" fun is extended at Anna & Elsa's Royal Welcome, where guests have a chance to meet the sisters, who also make appearances in the "For the First Time in Forever" sing-along.

The "Diamond Celebration" stretches outside the gates of the theme parks, adding sparkle throughout the Downtown Disney District and the Disneyland Resort hotels. Creative Diamond Celebration merchandise and food items will complement the celebration, while surrounding streets in the Anaheim Resort Area will glisten with Diamond Celebration décor and festive banners in shades of Disneyland blue. Additional information about the Diamond Celebration will be shared in coming months at www.Disneyland.com/60 and www.DisneyParksBlog.com.

'Coolest Summer Ever' at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida

Walt Disney World Resort in Florida will have its own 24-hour* event at the Magic Kingdom, May 22-23, as it inaugurates the "Coolest Summer Ever," hosted by Olaf, the summer-loving snowman from "Frozen." Throughout the summer, guests will find cool thrills across Walt Disney World Resort, including cool attractions in all four theme parks, cool characters, cool water parks, plus Frozen Summer Fun at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

News from Disney's Stockholder Meeting

Disney's annual stockholder meeting was held March 12, 2015 in San Francisco.

Several announcements were made including:

There will be a Frozen sequel. "We enjoyed making 'Frozen Fever' so much and being back in that world with those characters," Lasseter said. "Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck have come up with a great idea for a sequel and you will be hearing a lot more about it and we're taking you back to Arendelle. We are so excited about that."

The next 2 Star Wars Films -- Rogue One, a new Star Wars spinoff movie, in theaters December 2016, and Episode VIII, in theaters May 2017.

Name change for Disney's Hollywood Studios - in response to a question by a youngster, CEO Bob Iger confirmed there will be a name change to the Walt Disney World theme park. For those keeping track, this will be the third name for what was originally called Disney's MGM Studios.

Shanghai Disneyland's grand opening will be Spring 2016.

March 15, 2015

Egg-stravaganza Returns to Disney Parks

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Beginning March 27th until April 5th, search for "hidden" eggs in Epcot, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure! The popular character egg hunt returns for the 3rd year!

Purchase a map and stickers for $4.95 at the following park locations. Note: You can simply hunt for the eggs on your own without purchasing the map or stickers.

Epcot - Heritage Manor Gifts (American Adventure Pavilion), Pin Central, Plaza Towers (Port of Entry) and World Traveler (International Gateway).

Disney California Adventure park - Disney Jr. Kiosk, Elias & Co., Oswald's, Radiator Springs Curios and Treasures in Paradise

Disneyland park - Disneyana, Disney Showcase, Fairy Tale Treasures, Little Green Men Store Command, Pieces of Eight, Pioneer Mercantile and Stromboli's.

Return your completed map to Epcot's Port of Entry; Disney California Adventure Elias & Co; or Disneyland's Disney Showcase by April 30th for a surprise!

Purchasing limits will apply, while supplies last. Keep in mind that no discounts apply and separate admission is required to enter Disney Theme Parks. The experience of course, is subject to restrictions and change without notice.

VIDEO of the 2014 Epcot Egg-stravaganza:

VIDEO of the 2014 Disneyland - Disney California Adventure Egg-stravaganza


March 16, 2015

Be Our Guest Breakfast Test Announced

Be Our Guest restaurant in the Magic Kingdom will begin testing breakfast service on March 20 until June 18.

Reservations begin March 17 via My Disney Experience, DisneyWorld.com/dine or 407-WDW-DINE!

The "prix fixe" (set price) service, which will run from 8 to 10 a.m. each day of the test, begins with a pastry basket for the table to share, followed by one entree per person, as well as a selection of self-service beverages.

Choices include:

-- Assorted cured meats and cheese with marmalade, fresh fruit, and a toasted baguette

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-- Eggs Florentine served in a puff pastry shell with country ham and roasted plum tomatoes

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-- Open-faced bacon and poached egg sandwich with brie

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-- Scrambled egg whites with roasted tomatoes, multigrain croissant and fresh fruit

-- Vegetable quiche with mushroom, zucchini, bell pepper, onion and chive, served with seasonal fruit.

-- Croissant Doughnut topped with banana caramel sauce, chocolate ganache and whipped cream

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The kids' menu includes brioche French toast with fresh fruit, scrambled eggs with Applewood bacon and fresh fruit, fruit crepes with yogurt and fresh fruit with a berry foam, cereal and oatmeal.

D23 Expo Japan 2015 Announced

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Meguro-ku, Tokyo, March 16, 2015-The Walt Disney Company Japan announced today that it will stage D23 Expo Japan 2015, a special event for Disney fans created by D23: The Official Disney Fan Club. The Expo will take place over three days from November 6 to November 8, 2015 in Maihama in Tokyo Disney Resort.

D23 Expo is a special event held every two years in the U.S. as part of D23's ongoing engagement with Disney's most passionate fans. In 2013, Disney launched D23 Expo Japan, a uniquely Japanese event that remains true to D23's vision for "the ultimate fan event." The program includes thrilling performances, as well as engaging presentations by Disney executives, and showcases what's on the horizon from across The Walt Disney Company, including theme parks, movies, television, and music. Themed around "the power of story," D23 Expo Japan 2015 will bring together fascinating tales from Disney, Pixar, Star Wars, and Marvel.

Expo-exclusive experiences, merchandise, collectibles unavailable elsewhere, and countless other surprises await fans. Ticket and program information will be posted on the Disney Japan website starting in late-April 2015.

The event will also feature a number of exhibitions to delight Disney guests. D23 and the Walt Disney Archives will present a new exhibition focusing on the enduring enchantment of the Disney Princesses, including costumes, artwork, vintage collectibles, and film props. Another exhibit will feature hands-on experiences that will transport fans into the world of such beloved stories as Star Wars, the latest episode of which will be released in December; Toy Story, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year; and, Tokyo Disney Resort,® which will present a special exhibition. Further details will be posted at http://disney.jp/D23 as they become available.

"We heard from a lot of fans about how delighted they were with the D23 Expo we held in 2013, and this Expo promises to be even more spectacular," said Walt Disney Japan President Paul Candland. "We're very excited about being able to present this great event once again, and we know our guests will have an incredible experience during the three days we have planned for them. "

To celebrate D23 Expo 2015 Japan, a Kingdom Hearts fan event will be held on November 3 at Cinema Ikspiari, Tokyo Disney Resort. Program information for the event, Kingdom Hearts" The Theater (working title), will be posted on the official Disney website starting in late April.

D23 Expo: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event has been held three times in the U.S., bringing Disney fans from around the world to Anaheim, California. The next D23 Expo will take place August 14-16, 2015 at the Anaheim Convention Center and will feature: the 2015 Disney Legends Ceremony; a special exhibit from the Walt Disney Archives; the Expo Emporium, where Disney fans can buy, sell, and trade Disney collectibles, memorabilia, and merchandise; an all-new D23 Expo Design Challenge; and a show floor full of special opportunities to see what's on the horizon for Disney around the world.

March 17, 2015

Downtown Disney Disney Springs Transformation Update

The changes to Downtown Disney/Disney Springs continue to evolve.

Here are some recent announcements from the DisneyParksBlog:

Paradiso 37

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Paradiso 37's expansion capitalizes on its beautiful waterfront setting. "We're nearly doubling the seating, adding more terrace dining, a new outdoor performance stage and expanding to add a greater presence on the new Disney Springs promenade," said Rashid Choufani, chief executive officer of Paradiso 37.

The menu, a "Taste of the Americas," will continue to offer a culinary tour of North, Central and South America, with popular dishes including ceviche, jalapeño burgers, Argentinian skirt steak, whole crispy chicken and Chilean-style salmon. Beverages include wine, beer, and specialty rum and tequila cocktails inspired by the cuisine. (The restaurant takes its name from the 37 countries in the Americas.)

Paradiso 37 will remain open while undergoing renovations.

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Planet Hollywood

Planet Hollywood gets a complete makeover - you may not recognize the place as it's transformed into a four-story stargazing observatory to match the design aesthetic of Disney Springs. While the exterior is turn-of-the-century, the interior will feature spherical, planet-shaped lighting fixtures and stylish finishing to create a welcoming atmosphere for fans to celebrate a new generation of superstar entertainers. And the memorabilia from movies stays, a perfect fit to "Dine Amongst the Stars."

A new outdoor terrace and outdoor bar space called Stargazers will feature live entertainment while music in the main dining room will include a DJ. Favorites remain on the menu, but look for new tastes too, and a trendy beverage menu - everything from milkshakes and smoothies to wines, bottled and draft beers and cocktails.

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New Retail Locations

Several new retail locations have opened in area to be known as The Landing. Once complete, The Landing will be home to memorable dining such as STK, Morimoto Asia and The BOATHOUSE and unique boutique shopping. Here is a brief look at these newest additions.

The Art of Shaving - offers premium grooming essentials for the modern man. The location also has a team of shaving specialists who offer advice to guests on proper grooming techniques. Appointments for a haircut or shave are suggested.

Apex by Sunglass Hut - designed with the athlete, sports and outdoor enthusiast in mind, this shop utilizes innovative technology, such as the Apex Smart Mirror, to help guests find the best choice in sport sunglasses.

Chapel Hats - specializes in fashionable hats and headwear for guests of all ages. The location carries just about any style of hat including fedoras, sun hats, floppy hats, outdoors hats, kid's hats and more.

Sanuk - creatively inspired footwear designed with non-traditional materials like yoga-mats.

Havaianas - offering "Make Your Own Havaianas" and "Embellish Your Own Havaianas," this store features a large assortment of Havaianas sandals for women, men and children, plus kids' rain boots.

Sound Lion - the latest technology in headphones, earbuds, speakers, and other digital sound and music products can be found in this shop. They also provide education in digital music applications that improve the listening lifestyle.

Erin Mckenna's Bakery NYC - this location will offer the same unsurpassed core vegan, gluten-free menu as its flagship bakery in New York City, and its sister bakery in Los Angeles. Look for a full selection of award-winning donuts, cupcakes, cookies, bagels (with vegan butter!), and other savory items daily.

March 21, 2015

Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron Extended TV Spot

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In Theatres May 1, 2015

When Tony Stark jumpstarts a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth's Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as they battle to save the planet from destruction at the hands of the villainous Ultron.

March 22, 2015

Monkey Kingdom - Special Disneynature Video

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U.S. Release Date: April 17, 2015 Narrator: Tina Fey

From Oscar, Sita, Scout, and the countless wild creatures we share this planet with, thank you! Disneynature is making a difference. With every ticket purchased for Disneynature's Monkey Kingdom opening week (4/17 - 4/23), Disney will donate to benefit Conservation International to help benefit monkeys and other endangered species in their natural habitat. Feel free to share the video with your readers!

March 24, 2015

Disney Cruise Line to Sail First British Isles Itinerary in 2016

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New ports in Scotland, England, Ireland and France
join other popular destinations for the summer season

CELEBRATION, Fla. (March 24, 2015) - In 2016, Disney Cruise Line is sailing its first British Isles itinerary, visiting Scotland, England, Ireland and France. Throughout the summer of 2016, Disney Cruise Line also will return to Norway, Iceland and ports of call in more than 15 European countries.

In addition to the tour of Europe with limited engagements in the Baltic, Norwegian Fjords, Iceland, British Isles, Greek Isles and the Mediterranean, Disney Cruise Line will revisit favorite destinations elsewhere around the globe including Alaska, the Caribbean and the Bahamas.

Bookings for the new itineraries open to the public on March 26, 2015. More details can be found below.

New British Isles

On June 5, 2016, Disney Cruise Line will sail from Dover, England on its very first British Isles itinerary. The 12-night cruise on the Disney Magic will sail to Invergordon, Kirkwall and Greenock (Glasgow), Scotland; Newcastle and Liverpool, England; Dublin, Ireland; Le Havre (Paris), France; and Guernsey; one of the Channel Islands. All of these, except Kirkwall, are first-time ports of call for Disney Cruise Line.

On this itinerary, guests can explore the majestic beauty of Scotland, experience Highland culture, sample traditional cuisine and spirits, and discover the country's iconic castles. Elsewhere on the itinerary, guests will experience the merry, cosmopolitan city of Dublin, the culturally rich and romantic Paris, the birthplace of the Beatles and the British Invasion in Liverpool, and the charming countryside of Guernsey.


New Iceland and Norway

Disney Cruise Line guests can explore the natural wonders of Iceland with two new 12-night Disney Magic sailings. Each itinerary includes two days in Reykjavik and a stop in Akureyri, Iceland; Bergen, Norway; and Kirkwall, Scotland. Departing from Dover, England and concluding in Copenhagen, Denmark, the June 17 cruise also visits Stavanger, Norway and Newcastle, England. The July 13 cruise departing from Copenhagen, Denmark and concluding in Dover, England also visits Oslo and Kristiansand, Norway and Invergordon, Scotland.

On this itinerary, three days in Iceland provides time to explore the country's rich natural wonders such as volcanoes, lava fields, glaciers and thermal springs. In Norway, guests are immersed in the splendor and charm of the country with exciting ports steeped in Viking history.

New Norwegian Fjords from Dover

For the first time, Disney Cruise Line will sail from Dover, England on a seven-night cruise to the majestic Norwegian fjords. Departing on May 29, the Disney Magic will visit Stavanger, Alesund, Geiranger and Bergen, Norway.

In Norway, Disney Cruise Line guests will discover breathtaking natural wonders such as magnificent mountain ranges, massive glaciers and majestic fjords. The enchanting Scandinavian culture of the region comes to life through local attractions, stunning architecture, storybook villages and historic city centers.

More Summer 2016 Itineraries

During the summer of 2016, the Disney Magic will return to favorite destinations in northern Europe, the Greek Isles and the Mediterranean with a variety of seven-night and longer sailings.

From May through August 2016, the Disney Wonder will return to Alaska, sailing from Vancouver, Canada to Tracy Arm, Skagway, Juneau and Ketchikan.

In 2016, the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy will sail from Port Canaveral to the Bahamas and Caribbean on a variety of itineraries. All of these cruises include a stop at Disney's private island, Castaway Cay.

To learn more about Disney Cruise Line or to book a vacation, visit disneycruise.com, or contact a travel agent. AllEars recommends MouseFanTravel.com

Choose from an array of dazzling destinations and itineraries in 2016:

British Isles - For the first time ever, cruise to the British Isles with Disney Cruise Line for a magical tour of the sights and scenery of Great Britain, Ireland, Scotland, and France.

Northern Europe - Explore the majesty and culture of the Baltic region with stops in Denmark, Sweden and Russia.

Norwegian Fjords - Snow-capped mountains and glittering waters are yours to explore as Disney Cruise Line sails among the fjords of Norway.

Mediterranean -Discover the history and culture of Spain, France and Italy, from quaint seaside villages to ancient ruins.

Mediterranean & Greek Isles - Discover the picturesque seascapes of the Mediterranean as you meander among the coastal paradises of Spain, France and Italy and the gorgeous islands of Greece.

Alaska -Pristine vistas of the Alaskan wild await your arrival as Disney Cruise Line takes you on a tour of the last frontier.

Southern Caribbean - Back by popular demand, Disney Cruise Line returns to San Juan, Puerto Rico in early 2016 as the Disney Wonder sails four cruises to the Southern Caribbean, including to the French island of Martinique, a new port of call.

Western Caribbean - Explore glorious Western Caribbean stops, plus on 8 select sailings experience Star Wars Day at Sea aboard the Disney Fantasy

Eastern Caribbean - Disney Cruise Line sails to the unsoiled splendor of the Eastern Caribbean including a stop at Tortola in the British Virgin Islands.

Bahamas -
Disney Cruise Line sails to the Bahamas on a variety of sun-soaked itineraries. All of these cruises include a stop at Disney's private island paradise, Castaway Cay.

March 26, 2015

New Menu Coming to Studio Catering Company at Disney's Hollywood Studios

The Studio Catering Company at Disney's Hollywood Studios has announced new menu offerings!

Braised Pulled Brisket Sandwich with Munster Cheese, Arugula, and creamy horseradish

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Deli Sandwich with Ham, Salami, Pepperoni, Provolone cheese, creamy pesto spread, pepper relish and Balsamic glaze.

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Panini with Turkey, Swiss, Provolone and Honey Mustard with Tomato Basil Soup

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Lighter fare includes the new Vegetable Wrap with Garlic Herb Spread

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There are 2 new sides: House-made chips and Tomato Basil Soup.


D23 Announces Orlando Events for Disney Fans

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SPECIAL SCREENINGS, A MEMBER-EXCLUSIVE SHOPPING OPPORTUNITY WITH MICKEY'S OF GLENDALE, AND A NEW SIP AND STROLL ADD TO THE OFFICIAL DISNEY FAN CLUB'S ROSTER OF COAST-TO-COAST EVENTS

BURBANK, Calif. - MARCH 26, 2015 - Today, D23: The Official Disney Fan Club announced additional special member events in the Orlando area, adding even more exclusive experiences for fans in Central Florida. On the heels of a D23 Member-exclusive screening of Walt Disney Studios' live-action Cinderella, the fan club is slated to bring more magic to the Walt Disney World Resort area throughout the rest of the year, including-for the first time-intimate events celebrating classic Disney films similar to what members enjoy at The Walt Disney Studios lot with guest speakers, screenings, and other surprises.

WAKING UP WITH SLEEPING BEAUTY: On the morning of Saturday, April 18, D23 Gold and Silver Members will be able to enjoy this animated classic on the big screen. Special guest, animator and Walt Disney World Creative Designer Lon Smart, will explore the film's numerous landmark achievements including its unique artistic style and groundbreaking visual effects. Plus, all members will receive a special journal designed to look like the ornate storybook at the beginning of the film.

MICKEY'S OF GLENDALE ORLANDO SHOPPING EVENTS: The Walt Disney Imagineering store is opening up a pop-up shop for D23 Gold and Silver Members. On Saturday, June 6, guests will be able to peruse and purchase signature items from the store's unique collection. And on Saturday, November 14, members will be able to pick up some key holiday gift items for the Disney fans in their lives-and for themselves.

LET'S GET TOGETHER WITH THE PARENT TRAP: Celebrate this beloved film-starring Hayley Mills in dual roles-with D23 as we present the 1961 hit on the big screen Saturday, June 6. D23's Steven Vagnini will present a look at the making of the movie with rarely seen photographs and imagery. All attendees will receive a special gift. Plus, guests who attend the screening will receive priority admission on that day to D23's shopping event with Mickey's of Glendale.

SIP AND STROLL: D23 brings a new twist to a fan favorite, as members gather in celebration of the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival on Saturday, October 3. Attendees will enjoy a continental breakfast, guest speakers, and an insider look at this annual event, now in its 20th year, before sipping and strolling around World Showcase-with some delectable surprises.

Calendar (all events and dates are subject to change):

• April 18: Waking Up with Sleeping Beauty-AMC Downtown Disney 24, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

• June 6: Let's Get Together With The Parent Trap-AMC Downtown Disney 24, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

• June 6: Mickey's of Glendale Orlando Shopping Event-Location TBA, Walt Disney World Resort

• October 3: Sip and Stroll-Epcot, Walt Disney World Resort, Fla.

• November 14: Mickey's of Glendale Orlando Shopping Event-Location TBA, Walt Disney World Resort

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 90-plus-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 Membership ($74.99) and General Membership (complimentary) levels at D23.com and at DisneyStore.com/D23. To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube.

March 27, 2015

Exclusive Sneak Peek at Tomorrowland Movie at Disney Parks

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For a limited time, beginning mid-April, guests at Epcot in Walt Disney World and Disneyland at the Disneyland resort can get a sneak peek of "Tomorrowland" starring George Clooney and directed by Brad Bird. This is the story of a jaded scientist and an optimistic teen who embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space.

Tomorrowland" will be presented with special in-theater effects at the Imagination Pavilion theater at Epcot and the Tomorrowland Theater at Disneyland park through May 22nd.

Captain EO in Epcot will close temporarily beginning April 10th.

This sneak peek will play roughly every 15-20 minutes throughout the day. No Fastpass+ being offered for the sneak peek,

More details when they become available.

March 30, 2015

Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron New Featurette

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"Meet Quicksilver & The Scarlet Witch" Featurette

Marvel Studios presents "Avengers: Age of Ultron," the epic follow-up to the biggest Super Hero movie of all time. When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth's Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to The Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for an epic and unique global adventure.

Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron" stars Robert Downey Jr., who returns as Iron Man, along with Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Mark Ruffalo as Hulk and Chris Evans as Captain America. Together with Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, and with the additional support of Don Cheadle as James Rhodes/War Machine, Cobie Smulders as Agent Maria Hill, Stellan Skarsgård as Erik Selvig and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, the team must reassemble to defeat James Spader as Ultron, a terrifying technological villain hell-bent on human extinction. Along the way, they confront two mysterious and powerful newcomers, Pietro Maximoff, played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, and Wanda Maximoff, played by Elizabeth Olsen and meet an old friend in a new form when Paul Bettany becomes Vision.

Written and directed by Joss Whedon and produced by Kevin Feige, p.g.a., Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron" is based on the ever-popular Marvel comic book series "The Avengers," first published in 1963. Get set for an action-packed thrill ride when The Avengers return in Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron" on May 1, 2015.


Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Classic Tickets Now Available

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Tickets now available for sixth-annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - March 30, 2015 - Overnight packages and event-only tickets are now on sale for the sixth-annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic, Friday, October 30, and Saturday, October 31, at www.SwanDolphinFoodandWineClassic.com and 1-888-828-8850.

A Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic causeway ticket offers guests unlimited tastings at more than 40 stations featuring culinary selections from the hotel's award-winning restaurants and wine from more than 30 wineries amidst a festive backdrop of live entertainment on the hotel's scenic causeway. Upgraded ticket options allow guests to enjoy access to a beer garden featuring a wide selection of craft beers and Oktoberfest-inspired cuisine. The event also includes hands-on experiences with the hotel's chefs and certified beverage experts in a variety of food and beverage seminars.

Several overnight and multiple-night package options are available for the sixth-annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic and can be booked by phone at 1-888-828-8850:

Package One, starting at $359, includes overnight accommodations and tickets to the outdoor festival for two

Package Two, starting at $385, includes overnight accommodations, tickets to the outdoor festival and upgraded beer garden access for two

Package Three, starting at $435, includes overnight accommodations, tickets to the outdoor festival, upgraded beer garden access and an interactive seminar experience for two

Individual ticket options are also available for the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic and can be purchased at www.SwanDolphinFoodandWineClassic.com (pricing is inclusive of tax and service fees):

Advance-purchase, event-only tickets to enjoy unlimited tastings on the causeway are $105 per person

Upgraded tickets, including unlimited tastings on the causeway and access to the beer garden, are $125 per person

Beverage seminars are $45 per person, per class with the purchase of a causeway ticket

Pasta making, sushi and sake, and cheese seminars are $60 per person, per class with the purchase of a causeway ticket

March 31, 2015

Trader Sam's Grog Grotto Now Soft Open at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Trader Sam's Grog Grotto is the latest addition to the newly reimagined Disney's Polynesian Village Resort. Located off the Great Ceremonial House, the themed lounge will serve exotic drinks and small plates, while offering scenic views of the marina and Seven Seas Lagoon.

Founded by Adventureland's famous "head" salesman, Trader Sam, the Walt Disney World Resort version will have some similarities to the original Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar at the Disneyland Hotel in Disneyland Resort. But magical theming will reflect its new resort location.

Guests are welcomed to Trader Sam's, a South Seas hideaway, to explore a menu full of "magical tropical drinks and food," and while the Walt Disney World version will share a few exotic cocktails and small plates from the Disneyland location, it will have its own menu, according to Chef Lenny DeGeorge.

The famous Trader Sam cocktails, available in Disney collectible Tiki mugs, are a mix of old and new.

Only at Trader Sam's Grog Grotto:

Polynesian Pearl
Nautilus
Castaway Crush
Tahitian Torch
Dark & Tropical Stormy

Favorites imported from Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar:

Krakatoa Punch
Uh-Oa!
HippopotoMai-Tai
Shrunken Zombie Head

Sam's No-Booze Brews:

Schweitzer Fall
Skipper Sipper

Small bites at Trader Sam's Grotto include chicken lettuce cups with hoisin ginger sauce; Hawaiian poke with Sriracha aioli and wonton chips; kalua pork tacos with shredded cabbage and pickled vegetables; pan-fried dumplings with soy-sesame dipping sauce; roasted chicken and pork pâté bánh mì sliders with pickled vegetables; salmon oshizushi (pressed sushi); corn-battered Portuguese sausages with curry ketchup, and a Headhunter Sushi Roll.

The lounge has 50 seats inside and 82 on the patio. No reservations are required.

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About March 2015

This page contains all entries posted to Disney and Florida Attractions News Blog in March 2015. They are listed from oldest to newest.

February 2015 is the previous archive.

April 2015 is the next archive.

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