Win Four Tickets to Disney on Ice Celebrates 100 Years of Magic at Amway Arena

Published July 27, 2015 by Disneyways.com

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There is nothing like the excitement of a Disney on Ice show! It is so much fun to see all the grown ups and kids all dressed up like their favorite characters – ready to see all of their Disney favorites in a whole new way.  Get ready for the ultimate Disney experience at Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic Presented by Stonyfield YoKids Organic Yogurt! Be charmed by a cast of over 50, with Mouse-ter of Ceremonies Mickey Mouse, sweetheart Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and Disney Princesses including Cinderella, Rapunzel, Ariel, Snow White and Tiana. Relive the magic of Disney’s Frozen with Anna, Elsa and the hilarious Olaf as they discover that true love is the greatest magic of all. It’s going to be tough for me not to sing-along to the over 30 unforgettable songs – including “Let It Go,” “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” and “Hakuna Matata.” Exciting moments from Disney•Pixar’s Toy Story, Finding Nemo, Disney’s The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and more will leave the whole family with memories to last a lifetime. Show off your moves at the Disney Magic of Healthy Living dance-along pre-show inspired by the Disney Healthy Living commitment as the celebration of the century skates into Orlando! This will be a show to remember!

Photo Credit Feld Entertainment

Photo Credit Feld Entertainment

CLICK HERE TO BE TAKEN TO THE RAFFLECOPTER AND ENTER TO WIN!!

If the above link doesn’t work for you please click here…. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tickets are for Disney on Ice show at Amway Arena/Orlando only. You must email me by August 25th 2015 at Disneyways@Disneyways.com to specify if you are able to attend Opening night, Friday Sept 4th at 7:30pm or Saturday Sept 5th at 11am! Sorry, no changes can be made after this date. Winner can each pick up (4) tickets at the Amway Center Box Office starting Thursday, September 3rd 2015 during regular Box Office hours (Monday through Friday | 9am to 6pm and three (3) hours prior to any event). We recommend picking up your tickets no later than 30 minutes prior to show time. Paid parking is available in the nearby GEICO garage. Tickets provided by Disney on Ice – Disneyways is not responsible for delivery.
I am a Feld Entertainment Blogger Ambassador, and in exchange for my time and efforts in attending shows and reporting my opinion within this blog, as well as keeping you advised of the latest discount offers, Feld Entertainment has provided me with complimentary tickets to Feld shows and other exclusive opportunities.

Not local to Orlando? That’s OK!! There is probably a show coming near you! As a Disneyways reader – you can even save $5 off per ticket with code MOM5. Not valid on VIP or Rink Side seating. Hurry for the best available seats! Code expires September 3, 2015.

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Why I Love the Cranberry and The Epcot Cranberry Bog – and Why You Should Too

Published July 10, 2015 by Disneyways.com

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The Epcot International Food and Wine Festival is one of my favorite times of the year to visit Epcot. Sure the food, merchandise, cooking demonstrations and drinks are fun…but for me…it’s also got a lot to do with the Ocean Spray Cranberry bog. When I saw photos of various members of the media donning waders and being served food and drinks INSIDE that bog, I thought to myself, that is how I will KNOW I have truly arrived! Sadly, despite my best efforts, my Epcot cranberry bog days are yet to come. But that’s OK – everyone has to have a Disney dream, right? Mine just happens to involve wearing waders!

Here are those elusive waders! All lined up and ready to wear!

Here are those elusive waders! All lined up and ready for the media to wear!

That beautiful bog, and cranberries in general are still just as fascinating to me. The Epcot cranberry bog is over 1300 square feet and home of 500 pounds of cranberries! It is a site to see in the middle of a theme park! Cranberry growers as well as cast members standing in and around it, are happy to engage guests with facts and information on how the fruit is not only harvested but also used. Here is some fun information that I have learned so far:

Wet Harvesting

A lot of people think that cranberries grow under water. Makes sense, since we usually see the berries floating on top of the water. Cranberries do not grow in water however. They grow on long running vines in marshes or “bogs” made up of acid, peat soil and sand near wetland systems. The floating cranberries we’re seeing is actually the result of wet harvesting. The bog is flooded with up to 18 inches of water the night before the berries are to be harvested. Once the area is flooded, the berries (which have air pockets) float to the top. For those stubborn cranberries still left hanging, a tractor-like machine called a “ruby slipper” comes through and “slips” the ruby berries right off their vines. From there, they’re corralled together, loaded into trucks, and shipped off to be processed into all their different forms. A few of those lucky berries will end up at Epcot for the bog display.

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Dry Harvesting

Fresh cranberries, the ones you buy in the produce aisle every fall, are harvested using the dry method. Not quite as glamorous if you ask me…but it’s the best way to get the absolute freshest of berries. For this, cranberry growers use a mechanical picker that looks like a large lawnmower. It has metal teeth that comb the berries off the vine and deposit them in a burlap sack at the back of the machine. I would imagine this is much easier then picking them all by hand like they did in the old days!

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It’s not just about sauce and jelly. Every part of the cranberry plant has a purpose for which it is used. Greens are reused in compost, juice is pressed, and the skins become Craisins. (By the way, be sure to pick up a free sample pouch of craisins at the booth near the Epcot cranberry bog! Who says nothing at Disney is free?)

Beginning with the Native Americans, who used cranberries in medicines and clothing dyes…modern people are still finding creative uses for cranberries. Cranberries can be added to countless dishes, from quick breads, yeast breads, salads, relishes, salsas and chutneys, to soups, grain-based entrees and of course, desserts. It’s always a good idea to add a half-cup of chopped cranberries to your favorite banana bread or apple muffin recipe.

Drop some into your leafy green/spinach salad (especially good with dried cranberries), or toss a handful into a pilaf or stuffing. Impress your dinner guests with a cranberry glaze, or slow-cook some berries with your favorite chicken or pork. Before baking apples, fill the cored centers with cranberries, then sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon.

Have you ever heard of cranberry mustard? It is said to get the pork and salmon on your plate singing! (Just heat some whole-berry cranberry sauce with a touch of sherry and honey, mix with an equal amount of your favorite brown or Dijon-style mustard, and if you like, throw in a dash of ground ginger. Voilà! Homemade cranberry mustard…mmmm…)

Some very successful musicians even decided to name their band “The Cranberries”. Do you suppose they are fans of the fruit as well?

Photo credit The Cranberries

Photo credit The Cranberries

So, there you have it. Who knew cranberries could be so useful – and inspirational enough to name your rock band after them? Just remember the next time you are at the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival, be sure to slow down a bit to appreciate the cranberries, and that beautiful Ocean Spray cranberry bog. It’s the stuff Disney dreams are made of (OK..well…maybe just mine!)

**This article was originally posted in the September 2013 Gluten Free & Dairy Free at WDW Newsletter 

Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free at WDW  is an amazing website customized just for guests of Walt Disney World who have special dietary needs. I would like to thank Sarah Norris – editor and founder of GFDF at WDW for her friendship and partnership through the years! Be sure to check out the amazing resource that she has created!

 

 

 

 

Walt Life ~ Addiction Subscription Review! By Guest Author Terri Miller

Published June 27, 2015 by wdwhints

Introducing: Walt Life Addiction Subscription!

Everybody loves surprises! Especially surprises that come in boxes and you know some Disney magic is inside! From the Creators of Walt Life, I’d like to introduce you to the Walt Life Addiction Subscription!

How does it work? Well, you choose a subscription plan ($34.95/month), Walt Life goes shopping, and you receive a box full of Disney surprises!
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Addiction Subscription Review

We received the Summer Fun! box earlier this month. Included was a Mickey Mouse Popsicle Mold, an Ariel Travel Mug, and a Disney Trivia “Games on the Go” CD! All of it packed with party confetti to boot!

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The trivia CD is so much fun to listen to and try to be the first to shout out answers! It’s great for moms to ‘play’ with their kids while running errands. It would also be a great way to pass the time if you’re on a road trip!

The popsicle mold is fantastic. Just pour in your favorite juice, freeze, and you’ve got home-made popsicles! Kids love them… and grown-ups do too! (I found it’s easiest to pull the popsicles out of the mold if you let it sit outside of the freezer for about 5 minutes.)

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I found the Walt Life Addiction Subscription to be full of surprises that the whole family can enjoy! Except for the Ariel Mug… I claimed that all for myself. Shhhhh! It’s okay for adults to have their own fun, right?

It’s Even More Fun to GIVE than to Receive!!

What’s the best part about Walt Life’s Addiction Subscription? You can choose to purchase a Box to be sent to our Soldiers overseas! It’s a great way to let our American Heroes know that we’re thinking of them and wonderful way to thank them for their service to our Country!

Learn more about the Walt Life Addiction Subscription here! Join the Addiction Subscription Community on Facebook here.

Terri

Terri Miller is the founder of WDW Hints – where she and her team love to research the lesser known things about Walt Disney World and then share those finding with their readers! Feel free to visit the WDW Hints Facebook page and say Hello!

“The Complete Walt Disney World 2015″ by Julie and Mike Neal – A Book Review by Samantha Jolicoeur

Published June 24, 2015 by jpmdo

 

The Complete WDW Book

This is not the first time I have read the Neal’s books, and much like their previous years’ books, this one did not disappoint. With extensive details and photos that immerse the reader into the magic, you will find yourself turning page after page!

As a mother of 3, two of which being 1 year old twins, I do not find much time for myself these days and, to my dismay, I am not too hip on the latest news going on with the World, Walt Disney World, that is. I used to pride myself in “being in the loop” and staying on top of news, but it just isn’t feasible these days. I knew, with my upcoming trip, I wanted to get some additional information from more than the Internet. I wanted something reputable, and I knew this book would be a fantastic place to start.

I put the children to bed, finished up the daily chores, and got comfy with the book. Needless to say, I read it all in one sitting, long into the early hours of the next morning. I could not get enough of the detailed information and color photos. ALL of the photographs in their books are in full color and taken by the authors – how amazing is that?

I found only one Tinkerbell-sized error in the book and that was mentioning that 8+ guests will be charged an automatic 18% gratuity on their table service bills (page 360). The correct information regarding this policy is actually 6 or more guests, infants included.

Onto the pleasantries, and this book is chock full of them! Julie and Mike include so many details of each and every aspect of the Walt Disney World Resort. I love how they incorporate their own preferences and opinions. I am always looking for true reviews, in lieu of basic, every day knowledge. It made me feel like I was speaking with the authors, not just reading a book about Disney.

The book is laid-out in a way where you can find any topic very easily: organized by Parks, Accommodations, new information, MyMagic+, Characters, and so much more! They go through the very best of each Park, and then a more in-depth review is done later within the chapter. Above and beyond the detailed explanations of each attraction, you will find Hidden Mickey tips and other special secrets. Personally, I am a fan of the Tips and Facts – you can never soak in enough Disney trivia! There is also other useful information, such as approximate wait times based on time of day, and an example of the best course of action to conquer your Park day. With their vast Park knowledge and experience, I would bet that their plans are top notch!

There truly is not one piece of information you will NOT find in this wonderful book. From where to find ATMs to where to eat the best steak. It is easy to find the information you are looking for, as well, if you are not keen on reading the entire book (although, I do not recommend that). Each section is color-coded, there is an A-Z section that approaches almost every relevant Disney subject, and, finally, an index at the end of the book to direct you to the exact page discussing the topic you are looking for.

I would recommend this book to each and every person, Disney-newbie or veteran, young or old. I have read many different Disney travel guides, books, trivia and, so much more, but this is the very best of the best. They have kept up with the very latest information, and you seriously cannot beat their tips and advice. Children will love to read this book along with you and learn all about the attractions before experiencing them. You will be able to help them get an idea of what to expect before the trip, plus there is information regarding scare factors.

Not that you’ll need help doing so, but this book will increase your excitement about your upcoming trip! You won’t have to worry about whether the information is up-to-date, because these books have been coming along yearly for quite some time now, and I do hope they continue! You can purchase their books online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

“There is more treasure in books, than in all the pirates’ loot on Treasure Island” – Walt Disney

My Magical Red Carpet Evening: Walt Before Mickey Movie Premiere

Published June 22, 2015 by Disneyways.com

One of my dreams came true this month. Since I wasn’t able to take you all with me, I have been wondering how in the world I could put it in to words in an attempt to convey what it was like. I’m just a regular person – not really special in any way (the Skyway Film Festival was open to the public!) but, I felt very privileged and honored to “walk on the red carpet” in June of 2015 for the World Premiere of the film, Walt Before Mickey.

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Not only was I able to check this once in a lifetime experience off the bucket list – but it also involved Disney. Somebody pinch me!

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I want to thank my good friend Adria, President of the World Chapter of the Disneyana Fan Club, for sending over these questions regarding the recent movie premier that several of our club members attended Walt Before Mickey. Her email inspired me with a format to put all of this together in words and pictures for you today.

As a reminder, this film is based on the book “Walt Before Mickey” and covers the early years of Walt Disney’s career. Shot in Florida, Walt Before Mickey, which stars Thomas Ian Nicholas, Jon Heder, David Henrie and Jodie Sweetin, chronicles the life of Walter Disney from his childhood in Missouri to his start as an animator. Directed by Khoa Lee as his first feature length film,  this amazing movie is based on the book by author Timothy S. Susanin- and forwarded by Diane Disney Miller (Walt’s daughter).

1.) What was your first impression when you arrived at the premiere? The Manatee Performing Arts Center is spectacular, newly remodeled, and comfortable. A very nice lady on staff explained to me that this chandelier is an original – used in the film Gone With the Wind! This beautiful, important fixture looked right at home in this space.

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2.) Was there a lot of pomp and circumstance? Yes, I thought so. The door was held open for us by gentleman in elaborate costumes, looking much like the one Ponce de León may have worn when he discovered Florida. What a nice touch!

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3.) Where there a lot of people? How many would you estimate? Yes! I have read that there were 500 people there.

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4.) Did you get to meet the producer, director or any of the actors or actresses? Yes. I have known Arthur L. Bernstein and Armando Gutierrez (Executive Producers) for quite some time. We have communicated by phone, facebook, and I have interviewed them in the past. Meeting them in person and getting to hug them (finally) was like seeing old, familiar friends.

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Arthur

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5.) What did you think of the movie? I LOVED this movie.

6.) What did you like? The actors did an amazing job and there was SO much attention to detail. The authenticity was incredible. Much of the clothing really was from the early 20th century and great care was taken to care for these costumes. We were all amazed to learn that it was filmed so close to home.

What didn’t you like about it? I know there is a lot of red tape involved, but I would love to see this movie be released nation wide. Every Disney fan should see it.

7.) Any other thoughts you’d like to share? I am just so thankful for this beautiful evening, all the new friends I have met, and how kind everyone was.

8.) If an opportunity like this present again in the future would you like to attend? In a heartbeat!

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Match The Species – Poop Treats at Disney’s Animal Kingdom by Guest Authors Amber and Jacquie Montes de Oca

Published June 19, 2015 by jpmdo

**UPDATE: Disney discontinued these treats and they are no longer available.**

What do Disney, sweet treats and poop have in common? Our favorite topics of conversation!

When we heard there were new treats at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and they look like animal poop, of course we had to find out more about them and better yet… taste them!

So we started our journey by arriving at Disney’s Animal Kingdom then made our way to Africa.

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We then found the location… Zuri’s Sweets Shop right across from the new Harambe Market.

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And there, among the other sweets… Match the Species Treats (animal poop)!

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Of course we had to try all four. And this is what we thought:

Elephant Poop: Chocolate peanut butter fudge with sweet rolled oats and yellow coconut flakes.

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J: I could tell right away it tasted like peanut butter, then the oats and coconut made their appearance. It’s dense and cakey. Yummy

A: To me it tastes like peanut butter and coconut. It’s a bit hard to bite into.

Hippo Poop: Chocolate fudge caramel brownie with peanut butter and rolled oats.

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J: Very similar taste as the Elephant Poop, except for the coconut. Also dense and cakey. Feels a bit heavy when you pick it up.

A: Same thought, very similar to the Elephant Poop.

Cotton Top Tamarin Poop: Pretzel pearls coated in chocolate peanut butter fudge with sweet rolled oat flakes.

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J: Again, similar taste to both the Elephant and Hippo Poop, however this one is harder to bite into.

A: Also similar taste as the two above, however this one has that extra pretzel taste. Watch your teeth… hard to bite into.

Giraffe Poop: Rolled chocolate fudgy brownie and freshly made caramel.

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J: This one was my favorite. Soft brownie texture and more of a chocolate taste.

A: I liked this one the best as well. Soft and rich.

In conclusion, although it’s a bit disappointing that three of the four tasted almost the same, this is definitely a fun thing to get if anything for the topic of conversation and it definitely will be fun for both kids and adults!

About the authors:

Jacquie is an annual passholder and Disney fan who visits the parks often with her oldest daughter Amber. She is a freelance social media strategist, consultant, advisor, and content creator for Living the Dream Podcast.

 Amber Montes de Oca is a huge Disney fan. She’s an annual pass holder and loves to visit the Disney parks often. Her hobbies are singing, acting, and drawing. She has a BA from the University of Central Florida.

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