D23 Expo 2017 Announcements

Published June 14, 2017 by Disneyways.com

WHOOPI GOLDBERG, MARK HAMILL, LEONARD MALTIN, JOHN STAMOS, LESLEY ANN WARREN, THE STARS OF HERCULES, AND MANY MORE JOIN D23 EXPO’S ROSTER OF EXCITING ENTERTAINMENT AND PRESENTATIONS

And, for the first time ever at D23 Expo, fans will get to enjoy a daily street party, featuring celebrities, Disney characters, and live music on the show floor.

BURBANK, Calif. (June 13, 2017) – The excitement is ramping up from “zero to hero” for D23 Expo: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event. During the three-day spectacular, which takes place July 14–16 at the Anaheim Convention Center, guests will have the chance to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Hercules with members of the cast and creative team; hear from Disney Legends, including 2017 inductee Mark Hamill, during a panel hosted by Leonard Maltin; and enjoy the music of Walt Disney’s classic live-action musicals in a remarkable stage production featuring Lesley Ann Warren and hosted by Whoopi Goldberg. John Stamos will host a chat with Legends of Walt Disney Imagineering. Plus, theWalt Disney Archives will host three days of presentations on its own stage. And, for the first time, guests will be able to enjoy a daily “Ultimate Fan Street Party” right on the show floor.

Just-announced panels:

Mousequerade

Friday, July 14, 11 a.m., Stage 28

Mousequerade, the fan-favorite costume competition that invitesparticipants to create their own Disney-inspired designs, returns to D23 Expo 2017. Join judges Ashley Eckstein (Star Wars Rebels), Kara Saun (costume designer for Descendants 2), Yvette Nicole Brown (ABC’s The Mayor), and the contest’s host, Disney’s Jim Babcock, to watch dozens of finalistscompete in five excitingcategories for the $2,300 grand prize!

The Golden Girls: A Celebration of Friendship, Laughter, and Cheesecake

Friday, July 14, 2:30 p.m., Stage 28

In the 25 years since the final episode of The Golden Girls aired in 1992, the television series has become an enduring fan favorite that continuesto be watched throughout the world. Celebrate with us as we bring together the show’s creators and other special guests for this unforgettable event.

Disney Legends 30th Anniversary

Friday, July 14, 4:15 p.m., Stage 28

Join film historian Leonard Maltin as he celebrates the 30th anniversary of the Disney Legends program with a remarkable lineup of individuals who have each left an indelible mark on the Disney legacy, including Bill Farmer (the voice of Goofy and Pluto), Imagineering Legend Bob Gurr, Walt Disney Archives founder Dave Smith, and 2017 inductee Mark Hamill.

Melodies in Walt’s Time: The Music of Disney Live-Action Films

Friday, July 14, 6 p.m., D23 Expo Arena

In the 1960s, Walt Disney sought to expand his filmmaking style beyond animation and bring music to a variety of new live-action film projects. D23 Expo will celebrate these magical, musical movies in a live stage extravaganza—hosted by Whoopi Goldberg and featuring Lesley Ann Warren, Karen Dotrice, and other renowned guest stars, joined by live musical performers and a 20-voice chorus—to showcase Summer Magic, Mary Poppins, The Happiest Millionaire, and The One and Only, Genuine, Original Family Band, as well as others.

Zero to Hero: The Making of Hercules

Sunday, July 16, 12:30 p.m., D23 Expo Arena

From the heights of Mount Olympus to the depths of the Underworld, celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Disney classic that put the “glad” in gladiator! Join a group of legendary artists and filmmakers who brought Hercules to life, including directors John Musker and Ron Clements, animators Eric Goldberg (“Phil”) and Ken Duncan (“Megara”), as well as Megara and Hercules themselves—Susan Egan and Tate Donovan—as they recount stories of making one of the most epic animated features of all time.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: 80th Anniversary Screening

Sunday, July 16, 3:15 p.m., D23 Expo Arena

For eight decades, Disney fans have whistled “Heigh Ho” while they worked. Now, in honor of the 80th anniversary of Walt Disney’s first-ever animated feature, D23 Expo is proud to presenta special screening of the film that startedit all: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

Legends of Walt Disney Imagineering

Sunday, July 16, 6 p.m., D23 Expo Arena

Join a fascinating conversation, hosted by John Stamos, with three Imagineering Legends—Marty Sklar, Tony Baxter, and 2017 Disney Legend inductee Wayne Jackson—as they recount true-life anecdotes and share personalstories about the celebrated artists, designers, and technical wizards who established the foundation and guidingprinciples for groundbreaking Disney experiences around the globe.

Also coming to D23 Expo…

Walt Disney Archives Stage

The popular Walt Disney Archives Stage returns, more than doubling its capacity, as it hosts 17 panels and presentations throughout the weekend. Disney notables, such as director Pete Docter, Disney Legend Jim Cora, producer Don Hahn, Bret Iwan (the voice of Mickey Mouse), Imagineers Diana Brost, Jason Grandt, and Chris Merritt, plus many more, will participate in panels throughout the weekend. Fans will enjoy exploring many of Disney’s worlds, from the incredible work of Marc Davis and the original characters of the Disney Parks (such as Figment and the Country Bears) to the women of Disney animation and an incredible virtual walk-through of the Walt Disney Studios on Hyperon Avenue. Visit D23expo.com for the complete schedule.

Center Stage

Located in the center of the D23 Expo show floor, Center Stage will be the heartbeat of the Expo and a hub of activitythroughout the weekend. AimeeCarrero, the voice of Disney’s Elena of Avalor, will perform live for the first time, and will be joined by special guests including Lou DiamondPhillips who voices series’ villain, Victor Delgado. Also performing on Center Stage will be TemeculaRoad, Tomasina, Billy Hill and the Hillbillies, nerd-rock group Kirby Krackle, and Susan Egan, who will sing favorites from Beautyand the Beast. Disney animators, including Eric Goldberg and Mark Henn, will show aspiringartists “how to draw” throughout the weekend. Marvel’s Brian Crosby will show fans how to draw Spider-Man and Groot. And BillRogers, the “voice of Disneyland,” will be on-hand each day to record fans’ outgoing voicemail messages in his signature dulcet tones. The comletelineup will be availablein the coming weeks on the D23 Expo app.

D23 Expo’s Ultimate Fan Street Party

For the first time at D23 Expo, guests can enjoy a one-of-a-kind street party—right on the D23 Expo show floor. Twice each day the cavalcade will travel down Mickey Avenue, with a live band, beloved Disney characters, high-energy dancers, and celebrity grand marshals! Stan Lee and Mark Hamill will grand marshal the first cavalcade on Friday, July 14, and members of the cast of Descendants 2 will lead the second that day. Additional talent and times to be announced in the coming weeks and will be available on the D23 Expo app.

Talent subject to change. Additional details are available at D23expo.com.

Ticketsfor D23 Expo 2017 are available for $81 for one-day adult admission and $59 for children 3–9. Members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club can purchase tickets for $72 for a one-day adult admission and $53 for children 3–9. Multi-day tickets are also available. For more information on tickets and D23 Expo 2017, visit D23expo.com.

About D23 Expo 2017

D23 Expo—The Ultimate Disney Fan Event—brings together all the worlds of Disney under one roof for three packed days of presentations, pavilions, experiences, concerts, sneak peeks, shopping, and more. The event provides fans with unprecedented access to Disney films, television, games, theme parks, and celebrities. For the latest D23 Expo 2017 news, visit D23expo.com. Presentations, talent, and schedule subject to change. To join the D23 Expo conversation, be sure to follow DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube, and use the hashtag #D23Expo.

About D23

The name “D23” pays homage to the exciting journey that began in 1923 when Walt Disney opened his first studio in Hollywood. D23 is the first official club for fans in Disney’s 90-plus-year history. It 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 and General Membership levels at D23.com and at DisneyStore.com/D23. To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow DisneyD23 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.

“Olaf’s Frozen Adventure”

Published June 13, 2017 by Disneyways.com

WALT DISNEY ANIMATION STUDIOS UNWRAPS
“OLAF’S FROZEN ADVENTURE”
New Disney Holiday Featurette to Debut in Front of
Disney•Pixar’s “Coco” on Nov. 22, 2017

Olaf (voice of Josh Gad) teams up with Sven on a merry mission in Walt Disney Animation Studios’ 21-minute featurette “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure.” It’s the first holiday season since the gates reopened and Anna (voice of Kristen Bell) and Elsa (voice of Idina Menzel) host a celebration for all of Arendelle. When the townspeople unexpectedly leave early to enjoy their individual holiday customs, the sisters realize they have no family traditions of their own. So, Olaf sets out to comb the kingdom to bring home the best traditions and save this first Christmas for his friends. Directed by Emmy®-winning filmmakers Kevin Deters and Stevie Wermers-Skelton (“Prep & Landing”), produced by Oscar® winner Roy Conli (“Big Hero 6”), and featuring a screenplay by Jac Schaeffer and four original songs by Elyssa Samsel and Kate Anderson, “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure” opens in front of Disney•Pixar’s original feature “Coco” in U.S. theaters on Nov. 22, 2017.

Walt Disney Animation Studios (WDAS) and Pixar Animation Studios are teaming up this holiday season when WDAS’ new featurette “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure” opens in front of Disney•Pixar’s original feature film “Coco” on Nov. 22, 2017. The new trailer for the featurette will run in front of Disney•Pixar’s “Cars 3,” beginning this Friday, June 16, when Lightning McQueen’s new big-screen adventure opens in theaters nationwide.

“I’m thrilled that Disney Animation’s featurette ‘Olaf’s Frozen Adventure’ will be coming to theaters in November with Pixar’s ‘Coco,’” said John Lasseter, chief creative officer, Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios. “It’s a perfect pairing – they’re both beautiful, heartfelt films about families and how people carry traditions forward. I can’t wait for audiences to get to see both of these terrific projects together on the big screen.”

Featuring four new original songs, the 21-minute featurette welcomes the original cast and characters back to the big screen, including Olaf (voice of Josh Gad), who is on a mission to harness the best holiday traditions for Anna (voice of Kristen Bell), Elsa (voice of Idina Menzel) and Kristoff (voice of Jonathan Groff). Directed by Emmy®-winning filmmakers Kevin Deters and Stevie Wermers-Skelton (“Prep & Landing”), produced by Oscar® winner Roy Conli (“Big Hero 6”), with original songs by Elyssa Samsel and Kate Anderson (“Between the Lines”), “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure” will be in theaters for a limited time beginning Nov. 22.

“Stevie and I were deeply honored to be entrusted by John [Lasseter] to create an all-new story with these characters we love,” said Deters. “We’re thrilled to have our film play on the big screen with ‘Coco’ during the holidays.”

“We loved getting in the recording booth with these incredible actors who know their characters inside and out,” added Wermers-Skelton. “We can’t wait for audiences to see the featurette, enjoy their performances, and hear the incredible new songs written by Elyssa and Kate.”

“Olaf’s Frozen Adventure” celebrates characters who won over audiences worldwide when “Frozen” first hit the big screen in 2013. Earning more than $1.27 billion globally, the film won two Academy Awards® (best animated film and best original song with “Let It Go”) and a Golden Globe® (best animated feature film). Slated for November 2019, Walt Disney Animation Studios’ untitled feature-length follow-up to the hit film reunites filmmakers Jennifer Lee, Chris Buck and Peter Del Vecho with the Grammy®- and Oscar®-winning songwriting duo Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez.

ABOUT DISNEY•PIXAR’S “COCO”
Despite his family’s baffling generations-old ban on music, Miguel (voice of newcomer Anthony Gonzalez) dreams of becoming an accomplished musician like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz (voice of Benjamin Bratt). Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself magically transported to the stunning and colorful Land of the Dead following a mysterious chain of events. Along the way, he meets charming trickster Hector (voice of Gael García Bernal), and together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history. Directed by Lee Unkrich (“Toy Story 3”), co-directed by Adrian Molina (story artist “Monsters University”) and produced by Darla K. Anderson (“Toy Story 3”), Disney•Pixar’s “Coco” opens in U.S. theaters on Nov. 22, 2017.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ~ A Review from Guest Author Peter Alden Grigsby

Published May 8, 2017 by Disneyways.com

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 ~ A Review from Guest Author Peter Alden Grigsby

Before we even get into the meat of this film, I have to say that I continue to be impressed with Marvel Studios, and the cinematic universe of superheroes that they are creating. When you bring so many comic heroes (Icons really) to life on the screen, at such a frantic pace, you certainly set yourself up for a BIG ‘letdown’ or quite frankly a bomb!! (Fan boys may remember a little gem from the eighties called “Howard The Duck” – Yikes!) However, I have to say that Marvel has done a fantastic job of avoiding the normal pitfalls, and has created for itself a nice little niche’ in cinematic history!

Like with any movie that is associated with Marvel Studios, “Guardians of the Galaxy! Vol. 2”, comes with much of the inherited “hype” and “excitement”. Director James Gunn, who is relatively unknown, has really made a name for himself directing both the previous “Guardians of the Galaxy” and a confirmed sequel to this installment. He could have relaxed and just coasted on the popularity of the characters, but instead he chose to take a bunch odd-ball misfits and create some depth.

From the very outset we were provided a little bit more on the history of Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) and exactly how he came about his existence. This opening scene sets that stage with Peter’s mother and his father. In the first film we got snatches of his story, and not really so much about him, but his relationship with his mother. She is the one who instilled in him his ethics, morals and musical tastes, thanks to some great ‘mix’ tapes she made for him with her favorite music. Because she was his only compass, when she was taken from him by Cancer, he immediately put her on a pedestal. He has spent his life not so much ‘searching’ for his father, just more or less wondering who he was. And where his place in the Galaxy was. As the movie advances, and we discover new details about Quills life we, along with him, get to understand what a ‘Father’ really is.

Immediately after that opening scene we flash forward to ‘current time’ and are thrusted straight into a familiar line-up and setting with fellow Guardians: Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper) and Baby Groot (Vin Diesel) joining Quill in tackling an inter-dimensional being, as their duty. However, unlike many action films, this battle is actually a ‘background’ to Baby Groot discovering Quills mix tape of 80’s classics. Accompanied by some soothing and scene setting music the battle takes place, mostly in the background, but the focus is not on the fight but rather refreshing the viewers on the character’s relationships and chemistry.

Throughout the movie we are re-acquainted with Nebula (Karen Gillan), who we learned was actually Gamora’s sister, and Yondu (Michael Rooker), the scavenger, thief we met in the first film, who actually has an interesting connection with Quill.
We are also greeted by cameo appearances from Kurt Russell appears as Quills long lost father, a character called Ego, who may or may not be the answer to his prayers. Sylvester Stallone also appears briefly as someone from Yondu’s past, but we may see more of him in future offerings. Gunn chose to include explaining the complex relationship that transpired between sisters Gamora and Nebula; foreshadowing a larger turn of events in Avengers: Infinity War (2018) perhaps? Time will tell, but nonetheless I appreciated that it was explained in more detail.

When creating a film that is based in such drama, there is a need to give the audience a break with some humor. The main crux of this, and there was a lot of it was included definitely at the right times. Drax and Mantis (played by Marvel newcomer Pom Klementieff) had an interesting connection as their characters were constantly in turmoil, but in a playful, and almost romantic way. Rocket and Quill clashing with one another made for good viewing. Almost like a Han Solo/Luke Skywalker relationship these two can’t seem to get out of each others way, which makes for some very funny moments. We get way more insight into Rocket as well. He’s still a colossal jerk, but we are given a bit more insight as to what may have led him to be that way. And, although he is gruff, there is a sentimentality to Rocket that makes him more much more ‘human’ than anyone could have thought. Baby Groot’s inclusion kind of brought the tension between the characters back and almost simplified what was going on, as from a child’s point of view.

The ‘final’ battle is the only place that was difficult for me. It took way too long, and was a bit too cerebral at times. Some of the things that happened took way to long to transpire, and it almost felt a little forced. After all, we had seen some incredible special effects up to this point. I have to say, that although I thought the end battle scene was too long, and a little contrived, it did provide some interesting comedic moments, including an homage to Mary Poppins!

After the movie reached its conclusion it was mind boggling to see so many people walking out upon the beginning of the credits! Another one of the amazing things that Marvel Studios has done, is that it has gotten most people (at least the fan boys) to stay for the final credits! In fact Marvel has almost become synonymous with an ‘extra’ scene at the end of the film. It amazes me still that I sometimes see people waiting through credits at the end of another movie, wondering if maybe other studios had gotten the idea of a way to keep people in their seats. Marvel, however, appreciates their post-production scenes and there were a massive 5 in this movie! That’s right folks, 5 different scenes including one interesting one that sets the scene for the next installment. All in all I found this film to be immensely entertaining and funny. It also takes some two-dimensional characters and gives you much more insight into why they do what they do! It is definitely a ‘big screen’ film, so see it in a theater soon!

**Please note that I was invited to a complimentary viewing of this movie on Tuesday May 2nd 2017 so that I could bring you this review on behalf of Krista Joy at Disneyways.com. The free admission in no way influenced my review, and all opinions are my own.**

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Peter Alden Grigsby is a Florida native. Pete has appeared in an episode of the Mickey Mouse club, was a Jungle Cruise Skipper, “friend” of the Rocketeer, tram driver on the backlot tour, and opening day cast member at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (formerly MGM). When he’s not writing movie reviews, he is performing as a singer and tribute artist all over the world and currently has a cover album of Disney songs called Kingdom Classics

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic 2017

Published March 29, 2017 by Disneyways.com

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic will return for its eighth year Friday, October 27, and Saturday, October 28, 2017 with exciting new dishes debuting alongside returning festival favorites. Fans can now visit http://www.SwanDolphinFoodandWineClassic.com to view the 2017 food menu as well as book overnight packages and purchase tickets.

Highlights of the 2017 menu include featured items from the hotel’s signature restaurants: Kobe beef mini burgers with truffle aioli, Applewood smoked bacon and roma tomato chutney from The Fountain; seared Yellowfin Tuna salad from Todd English’s bluezoo; ricotta gnocchi with wild mushrooms, baby spinach and fennel sausage from Il Mulino Trattoria and oven-roasted beef ribeye with mashed potatoes and sauce bordelaise from Shula’s Steakhouse. Returning dishes include the popular dragon sushi roll from Kimonos and fish ‘n’ chips with sea salt and vinegar potato chips from Garden Grove.

Also returning this year will be Carnival Corner and Chinatown, offering specialty cuisine in immersive themed areas, as well as the Sunday Bubbles Brunch on Sunday, Oct. 29. Original dessert offerings will once again be served by World Champion Pastry Chef Laurent Branlard. For a full list of current menu offerings, please visit http://www.swandolphinfoodandwineclassic.com/eat/menu/all.html.

The Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic offers guests unlimited tastings at more than 50 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 seminars with the hotel’s chefs and certified beverage experts.

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

· One-night packages start at $424, and include room accommodations and two tickets to the outdoor festival (seminar tickets and beer garden tickets may be added for an additional fee)
· Two-night packages start at $824, and include room accommodations and two tickets to the outdoor festival for both nights (seminar tickets and beer garden tickets may be added for an additional fee)

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

· Advance-purchase, event-only tickets to enjoy unlimited tastings on the causeway are $115 per person
· Upgraded tickets, including unlimited tastings on the causeway and access to the beer garden, are $140 per person

With 17 restaurants and lounges, and a distinguished culinary and beverage team, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel continually earns national recognition for its food and beverage program. The hotel features more than 70 certified wine sommeliers and 1,400 wine selections.

For the latest information about the event, guests can visit http://www.SwanDolphinFoodandWineClassic.com, like http://www.facebook.com/swananddolphin or call 1-800-227-1500.

 

Disney Inspired Magical Musical Meetup and Meal

Published February 2, 2017 by Disneyways.com

TerriPeterLunch

We are calling it a Disney Magic and Music Meetup, combined with a memorable meal! Join us for an incredible luncheon with Legendary Disney Imagineer Terri Hardin and a Disney concert of songs performed for you LIVE by Peter Alden! You heard about this amazing event, first, over at WDW Hints! Terri will speak about working with celebrities, overcoming obstacles in your life, and how to make your dreams into reality! Peter Alden will sing your favorite hits from his Disney album, Kingdom Classics! An Italian buffet (lasagna, pizza and more!!) with chocolate cake for dessert will be included. All this and more – is yours for the amazingly low price of $26 per person! Join us at Retro Station at 4:30pm on Thursday February 16th 2017! Retro Station is located across from Old Town at 5749 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy, Kissimmee, FL 34746 – just minutes from Walt Disney World.

Email Krista@KristaJoyEntertprises.com for tickets – while they last!!

Get amazing inspiration from Terri, Legendary Disney Imagineer, and Jim Henson Muppeteer. More on Terri can be found HERE

TerriHardin

Check out our exclusive interview with Terri over at Living The Dream Podcast HERE.

Peter Alden has been interviewed on several Disney Podcasts regarding his album, Kingdom Classics. His incredible vocal talents have been enjoyed all over the world, most recently, Bucerias Mexico!

There are some optional perks for our guests to consider! Pre-orders of Terri’s latest masterpiece are now being accepted. Guests of our luncheon will be the FIRST to be presented with their Stitch – “I’m Lost” LTD Figurine when you purchase them online from Terri! Just click on the image to buy yours today!

stitchgraphic

(Please note that you will be charged for shipping, however Terri will reimburse you for this charge at the luncheon.)

Stitch – “I’m Lost” LTD Figurine is sized at  2 inches by 1.5 inches by 1.5 inches

Limited to 100, each numbered. Stitch is 2″ tall and hand painted. He is made of cold cast Porcelain (resin) He arrives in a bright blue box. He’s the first in Terri’s new “Impressions” collection. Each figure even comes with a certificate of authenticity.

Please watch our facebook event page HERE for further details about this event as they are revealed.

Everyone who buys a Peter Alden’s Kingdom Classics CD at the luncheon will receive a special FREE bonus gift!

KingdomClassics

Email me NOW at Krista@KristaJoyEnterprises.com to reserve your spot to dine with Terri Hardin and enjoy a bonus concert from Peter Alden! It is sure to be an evening of inspiration and fun. Conversations with Terri are so incredibly special, sometimes life changing. Peter Alden performs to acclaim all around the world with a magical voice that means so much, to so many! Come create some memories with us that will last forever. I look forward to getting an email from you.  Seating is limited!

5 Tips for Celebrating a Special Occasion at Walt Disney World ~ by Guest Author James Hare

Published January 26, 2017 by Disneyways.com

5 Tips for Celebrating a Special Occasion at Walt Disney World by Guest Author James Hare

According to the 2015 Global Attraction Attendance Report published annually by the Themed Entertainment Association, over 173 million people passed through the turnstiles at Disney Parks around the world. A lot of those people visited to celebrate a special occasion. Whether it’s a birthday or an anniversary, or even a family reunion, there is a lot of reasons to celebrate at Walt Disney World.

While there are no set rules about planning your special occasion at Disney World, you’ll want to remember these top 5 tips to get a head start on your celebration.

 

5. Grab some free celebration buttons

Over the years, Disney have given out free buttons for guests to wear while celebrating their special occasion.

Disney celebration buttons are completely free and can be picked up from many stores around Walt Disney World. However, your best bet for getting one is to visit the front desk at your resort hotel or Guest Services at any park.

The special events that you can currently get a celebration button for are:

  • Just Married
  • Happy Anniversary
  • Family Reunion
  • Just Engaged
  • 1st Visit
  • My Magical Triumph
  • Happily Ever After
  • I’m Celebrating [fill in the blank]
  • Happy Birthday.

One of the biggest reasons to wear a celebration button is that Cast Members at the parks will look out for them and wish you a “happy birthday” or congratulate you on your engagement. Although nothing is guaranteed, I have often received a complimentary cookie from certain vendors on my birthday. These buttons are certainly a must for your special occasion at Walt Disney World!

 

Image credit: Pexels

4. Note it on your reservations

Whenever you make a reservation for anything at Walt Disney World, have the Cast Member make a note about your special occasion. If you make a note of it on your resort hotel reservation, you may be surprised by balloons awaiting you when you check into your room. Likewise, if you let your server know that someone is celebrating their birthday, that person is very likely to be given a small complimentary dessert after their meal.

Walt used to call this “plussing” the guest experience. If you were impressed by a certain aspect of his park, he was always looking for ways to make it even better so that you return again and again.

 

3. Send flowers for a romantic occasion

A lot of people do not know this, but Disney actually have their own Floral Service.

If you’re celebrating a romantic occasion, such as a honeymoon or anniversary, you can purchase a beautiful arrangement of flowers for your sweetheart.

You can even set up a specific place on property for them to be delivered so that your significant other will not suspect a thing!

 

2. Host a birthday party with in-room celebrations

For guests celebrating a birthday at one of the many resort hotels, you can surprise your child with an in-room celebration.

The basic birthday package includes personalized Mickey Mouse ears, a chalkboard shaped like Mickey’s ears for them to write on, two Mickey & friends themed Happy Birthday balloons, a specialty cake plus tons of other goodies and treats.

There are more essential tips here that you’ll want to read if you are planning a birthday at Walt Disney World.

 

1. Make use of Disney’s Memory Maker

Memory Maker is a great add-on option for Disney’s PhotoPass.

For an additional fee, guests get a digital download of every single photo taken in the parks and on participating attractions. You will also get on-ride videos from rides such as the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train and Tower of Terror. You are completely free to print the photos from home, or at a local printer, and you can also use the images on third party services (such as Shutterfly).

The thing that I enjoy most about Memory Maker is that it is a set it and forget it system. All you have to do is wear your Magic Band and the PhotoPass Cast Member will add all the photos and video directly to your account.

 

I want to hear from you!

Have you ever celebrated a special event at Walt Disney World? Share your experience, ask me a question, or just say “hey” in a comment below!

Alternatively, you can visit me on my blog at weloveorlandofl.com

James

Author Bio: James Hare is the owner of We Love Orlando – A website dedicated to providing the very best news and tips for visiting the Orlando theme parks and local area attractions.

Disney’s Latest Film Moana Will Make Your Heart Soar ~ By Guest Author Samantha Lucas

Published November 18, 2016 by samanthalucas23

Disney’s Latest Film Moana Will Make Your Heart Soar ~ By Guest Author Samantha Lucas

Despite declaring herself very firmly “Not a princess” during the film, Moana has easily become one of my favorite Disney Princesses.

The Synopsis, as found on Wikipedia, is as follows – On a mystic island in Polynesia, the 16-year-old strong-willed daughter of the chief of the tribe, Moana from Motunui Island, is chosen by the ocean itself to reunite the Heart of Tehiti. She sets sail in search of Maui, a legendary demigod and hopes to save her people.

I was invited to the press screening for Moana and let me say there isn’t anything I don’t love about this movie.This is a film about worth and fulfilling destiny, about believing in yourself and not giving up, despite the odds or the appearance of what you’re facing. It succeeded in all the places Frozen failed for me and I’m completely in love with it.

Moana is beautiful in spirit and brave of heart. She answers a calling on her soul and undertakes the daunting task of saving her people despite the fact it meant going against her parents, and especially her father’s wishes. I loved the way the movie handled the relationship between father and daughter, doing an excellent job of humanizing her parents and helping us understand why he was so determined to keep her from the ocean, while showing us a lineage of leaders and a history of a people who changed over time into something that was never meant for them to become.

Yes, of coursepua-n-hei-hei, it is charming and funny in all the ways we’ve come to expect from Disney. The animal sidekicks are an adorable puppy-like pig named Pua and a dimwitted chicken named Hei-Hei, who I found absolutely loveable despite the poor chicken being as close to an inanimate object as you could think.

As we’re coming to see more and more, of late, there is no “bad guy” per se to fight against, no defining villain. It is a film about overcoming the obstacles we carry within.

One other nice thing, the 3D was used perfectly to add depth and dimension to scenes, rather than to shock us by throwing things at our faces.

This is, of course, yet another film in the new land we’ve come to where there is no prince or love interest, but in this film it very much works. Moana is not a heroine out to prove she doesn’t need a man, she’s simply a girl chosen for a destiny greater than she knew she was capable.

moana-and-maui-e1473954569707The relationship between Moana and Maui is fantastic because they come to respect and need one another as they share this journey, each having their own lessons to learn and obstacles to overcome along the way.

The demi-god Maui is a culture hero in both Polynesian and Hawaiian mythology. Although his origin story is tweaked and made a bit more kid-friendly for this Disney tale, he is an important figure in many of the island cultures.

Moana is entirely entertaining from beginning to end. What pushes this film over-the-top straight to my heart is the theme of someone having a calling on their heart or soul all of their life and the need to answer that call and that is the story of my own life so to see it played out in a Disney Princess was more than I had ever hoped to see.

I recommend this one wholeheartedly! Don’t miss Moana’s journey. Go with an open mind and heart and let yourself be inspired.

If you enjoyed my review and want more of my own Disney writing, which currently has a heavy focus on Disney World, please visit me at www.disneylovin.com

And one more thing, as is the case with all the best films, you do want to sit through the credits for your little treat at the end. 😉

(Side note from Krista: Thanks Samantha for attending the media preview with me! I am so glad you enjoyed the movie as much as I did!! )

 

%d bloggers like this: