Magic Kingdom Hidden Gems and Disney Parks Podcast News

Published April 16, 2014 by Krista Joy



This episode of the Disney Parks Podcast brings you the Disney news mixed in with some really interesting Magic Kingdom hidden gems!

  • What question should you ask the “maids” at the Haunted Mansion?
  • Where can you find a picture of Walt in the Carousel of Progress?
  • Why can’t you buy gum at the Magic Kingdom?
  • Why is the walkway at the Magic Kingdom red?

Get your answers to these questions and more on this episodeLook for the small grey circle with the sideways white triangle inside. Click on that circle and make sure your speakers are on. The show will begin immediately.

Leave us a message at 407-476-8898 with some of your favorite Magic Kingdom hidden gems. Your voice mail might be played on the show! 

Last night I got some exciting news. During the month of April our number of downloads per show has more than tripled. That means that there are 3 times as many potential listeners than there were just last month. We want to thank everyone who is tuning in. We are working hard to keep bringing you 2 exciting shows every week. We have some amazing interviews that will be published in May. Thank you for telling your friends about us and for leaving all those great reviews in iTunes!

If you haven’t given us a try just yet, you can catch the latest episode by visiting directly from your computer and clicking “Listen Now!” on the Disney Parks Podcast site. From there, just choose your episode.

You can also download the Stitcher Radio App here.

Find us on YouTube here.

Head over to iTunes and subscribeThis will give you access to each episode as soon as it is released. To learn more about how to subscribe to a podcast in iTunes click here.

Have a magical day!

Win a Trip for 4 to the Swan and Dolphin at Walt Disney World

Published April 13, 2014 by Krista Joy


I love the Swan and Dolphin Resort at Walt Disney World. The atmosphere and “feel” of this resort is wonderful. Inside you can enjoy Karoke at Kimonos, delicious ice cream treats at The Fountian, and so much more. Probably the only thing I could imagine that would be better than visiting the Swan and Dolphin, is actually getting to enjoy a stay there. How great would it be to actually win a 4 night visit for FREE? This might be your chance to find out. The Express your Peepsonality Sweepstakes is here! You can pin and win your way to a 4 night stay, plus airfare, Disney park tickets and more! Check out the Peep “deets” at the link below!

In other Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin news, it’s about that time of the year to enjoy a sweet Easter week at the resort that’s filled with fun for the whole family. There is so much to do and see! During 2014 you can celebrate your “Peepsonality” with special Peeps welcome samples at check-in and get Peeps from the Easter Bunny as he greets you around the resort. There are special rates on rooms for a limited time when you ask for promo code PEEP189. There will be glow in the dark Easter egg hunts, Peep s’mores by the campfire, Easter crafts, and games. Chefs at the Swan and Dolphin are creating specialty items featuring Peeps – and there will even be a holiday dinner buffet with visits from Disney characters.

Get full details on the Express Your Peepsonality Sweepstakes HERE.  Also, be sure to get full details on all the Peeptastic fun at the Swan and Dolphin HERE.


 Want to know where to find the power couple while visit the Disney Parks this Easter? Check out this facebook Post!
Have you celebrated Easter at the Swan and Dolphin? Leave me a note in the comments below!

Megabus Trip ~ Written by Tamara Botzum

Published April 10, 2014 by Krista Joy

Let’s face it, a vacation to Walt Disney World can suck your wallet dry. Or does it have to?  I decided to try to find the least expensive way to get to Walt Disney World, spend two nights, and visit one park.  It’s cold in northeast Ohio and I need to see some palm trees. I even found a friend who can take the time to travel with me.
First, the transportation.  Flying is out because that would be around $200 round trip.   Amtrak isn’t an option either because that is more than the flight!  $376 to be exact.  Then I remembered a very affordable bus line called Megabus.  I can go from Cleveland to Atlanta Georgia, then hop another Megabus to Orlando.  The total round trip cost will be $98 per person. Now I’m getting somewhere!
I checked out the Walt Disney World website and found a discount on a room-only reservations. The cost of a Value resort is within my budget.  I booked a room at Pop Century resort and added a ticket for one park, Magic Kingdom.  The cost per person is $275.
So right now, my costs are $336  for the entire trip.  I anticipate the cost of a public bus to be under $10 as we will need to take one to Downtown Disney so we can get a Disney bus to our Value resort.
This isn’t going to be the fastest way to get to my resort. It will take approximately 16 hours on the Megabus to Atlanta. Then, the 6 hour layover until our Orlando bus arrives.  The ride to Orlando will be approximately 9 hours. It will be a long trip.


Long doesn’t begin to describe it. Sitting for endless hours on a bus with sketchy or non working wifi isn’t easy. There was a bus change in Cincinnati, Ohio.  For 45 minutes we transferees huddled together on a dark and dirty street. Fortunately, the next bus arrived on time.

This Megabus took us to Georgia with stops in Kentucky, Tennessee and North Carolina.  We finally arrived in downtown Atlanta at 6am. Now, much isn’t open at this time of day.  Upon the suggestion of a local, we found our way to a nearby hospital and chose to rest there. The time here passed quickly and pleasantly.  We even had breakfast and then a light lunch.

We finally arrived in Orlando at 9:30pm at the Orlando Lynx transportation center where we caught a local bus to Downtown Disney for $2.    From there, we took a Pop Century resort bus to check in.  By midnight, we were fast asleep.

Total travel time ended up being 32 hours of bus travel one way.

The time at Walt Disney World was delightful. But not perfect. My issues of MS, lack of proper sleep on the bus, and a disagreement with my stomach, I began to feel the toll of my long bus ride.  I wish I could say I endured the long tortuous Megabus ride back to Ohio, but I didn’t. I became so ill, I chose to fly home after we checked out.  This added $450 to my inexpensive trip including the cost of a hotel room, taxi ride to the hotel, and my one way flight home.  No cheap trip goes unpunished.

Would I ever take such a bus trip again?  No. I prefer not to.

Tamara Botzum is a graduate of The Disney College of Knowledge and is happily selling Disney travel through Tamara and husband Spencer have visited Walt Disney World over eight times so far. Their first trip together was in 2006.  They have also visited Disneyland twice.  When Tamara is not selling Disney vacations, she enjoys reading, interacting with Disney friends on Facebook, traveling, writing short stories and crafting.


The Muppets Most Wanted – Great Constantine Caper

Published April 9, 2014 by Krista Joy

Have you heard? For a limited time, there’s a new interactive adventure at Epcot! Projected to last only during the The Flower and Garden Festival 2014 – you can help capture Constantine in the new Muppets Most Wanted – Great Constantine Caper! To find the kiosk where you will begin, just enter World Showcase, start walking towards the Mexico Pavilion. You will see it on your left. Cast members will ask you to choose from 2 different adventures, hand you a passport, and send you on your way. Big thanks to our Man-On-The-Scene reporter Ramon Rodriguez of for the photos taken inside Epcot today. He described the Constantine Caper as simple but fun! I can’t wait to check it out for myself – how about you?


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The Disney Parks Podcast Interviews Original Mouseketeer Lonnie Burr

Published April 9, 2014 by Krista Joy

We are super excited to bring you The Disney Parks Podcast interview with Lonnie Burr – one of the original Mouseketeers from the Mickey Mouse Club TV show!


Photo Credit

Lonnie Burr has had an amazing career, and he is not done yet! In addition to Uncle Walt, and Annette Funicello (see Lonnie’s photo with them above) Lonnie has worked with Julia Roberts, Robin Williams (in Hook!), Ginger Rogers, and one my personal favorites – Elvis Presley himself. With years of acting, singing and dancing to Lonnie’s credit – it is very likely you have seen him in many of your favorite TV shows, movies or plays. It has been a tremendous honor for me to get to know Lonnie over email and we are delighted that he has been one of our very special guests on the podcast. Check out Lonnie’s website HERE.

Lonnie’s book “The Accidental Mouseketeer” is now available from Theme Park Press - and you can buy your copy HERE!


Want to win a FREE copy? Listen to Tony’s interview with Lonnie HERE - to hear the answer to this question:

During the podcast Lonnie mentioned a question Walt Disney asked him on one occasion, when they saw each other on the studio lot.

What was the question Walt asked Lonnie?

Hint: it is only 5 words.

Send us your answer to - by April 15th, 2014. We will draw one winner from all the correct answers to win a free printed copy of Lonnie’s new book!  The winner will notified by email and will have 24 hours to respond before we pick another winner.

Video Bonuses!

Check out this awesome video of Lonnie that was created in tribute to him for his 70th birthday!

Here is another fun one from way back in 1975 featuring Lonnie and several other original Mouseketeers!

April 2014: Enter to Win a $200 Disney Gift Card and Prize Pack

Published April 5, 2014 by Krista Joy

That’s right! It’s our biggest giveaway to date!

One person will win it all and it might as well be you!


During April of 2014 you can enter to win a $200 Disney Gift Card PLUS a Disney Themed Prize Pack! Total value is $530 all for one winner! 


Contest ends May 4th 2014 

I Am SO Excited!

Published April 4, 2014 by Krista Joy



Have you ever been so excited about something that you could not wait to tell your friends?! That is what is happening to me today. I am trying not to jump up and down as I type this – thanks for letting me share with you before I bust!!!  Are you ready?

We polled several of our readers and travel agent friends — you asked for it —  and she delivered!

The sensational Sarah Norris of Gluten Free & Dairy Free at Walt Disney World has prepared a brand new (world premier!) webinar that will include your Top 10 Gluten Free Food Finds at Walt Disney World to be held on Thursday, April 17th, 2014 from 7:00 – 7:30 p.m. EST. This presentation is sponsored by Theme Park Concierges! Sarah has spent years researching at the parks, seeking out these items, taste-testing them all – just to bring you this fully comprehensive list!

Space is VERY limited and we want you to come join the party! I will be supporting our attending guests and Sarah by moderating this webinar.


So how do you know if this webinar is for you?

Well, we are looking for some very specific qualities in our attendees:

  • If you are a Walt Disney World fan on a gluten free or any special diet – you won’t want to miss this webinar.
  • If you just like getting free stuff – you won’t want to miss this webinar.
  • If you want a chance to win a 4 hour VIP Concierge Service at Walt Disney World, ($200 value!!) you won’t want to miss this webinar. *Park admission and travel expenses are not included in this prize.*
  • If you love learning about Disney food, and seeing beautiful photos of Disney food, you won’t want to miss this webinar.
  • If someone you love requires a gluten free diet and you will be visiting Disney World with them – you won’t want to miss this webinar.
  •  If you are a travel planner and you really want to make YOUR business stand out with all of your knowledge on this subject – YOU WON’T WANT TO MISS THIS WEBINAR!


Sarah has spent an incredible amount of time and money compiling this list of top 10 gluten free food finds – and you will get to enjoy the fruits of her labor for a (dirt cheap!) $5 registration fee! You might even win your registration for FREE! Details on that are at the bottom of this post.

Class space is filling up fast, and I don’t want any of our friends be turned away – so don’t wait!!


This fantastic 30 minute webinar will include a 15 minute presentation on the top 10 gluten free food finds at Disney World and a 15 minute Q&A session. As if that weren’t already enough – everyone who attends will receive a FREE e-book of the top 10 gluten free food finds at Disney World, a bonus e-book AND a chance to win a 4 hour Personal VIP Concierge Service at the Walt Disney World Resort from Theme Park Concierges

Do you want to be a part of this webinar for FREE? SHARE this post on social media (send me your links or tag me!) and your name will then go in to a drawing to win a full refund of your $5 registration fee! Bonus entries for our blogger friends who post about about the webinar on their blog! “See” you at the webinar! 


AK Sarah

I got to be with Sarah, these executives, and Chef as they posed for my camera for this photo that we originally posted to the Chip & Co. website! Sarah is a total rock star with the Disney chefs!







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