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Get to Know Author and Grand Marshal Coordinator: Dean Gaschler

Published July 28, 2017 by Disneyways.com

It’s been said that if you love Disney World – you will love this book!! These words were spoken by none other than Lee Cockerell former Executive Vice President of Operations for the Walt Disney World® Resort – so you know they must be true!!

Originally from Kansas, Dean Gaschler migrated to Florida via Colorado to work for The Walt Disney Company (Walt Disney World / Magic Kingdom Park) in 1991. It all began in The Harmony Barber Shop just off of Main Street USA. Seven years into it all, he was asked to become the Grand Marshal Coordinator for the daily Parade in The Magic Kingdom. The remaining 14 years of his Disney career were spent creating and sharing magic with thousands of Parade Grand Marshal Guests that he selected. Order his books for an inside look, stories and more from Disney’s Grand Marshal Coordinator.

Book One “I Led The Parade!” is available on DeanGaschler.com (get the book personalized for yourself or a loved one – autographed by Dean for FREE by ordering this way!) and Book Two “Main Street Memories” is available on Amazon and at Theme Park Press

Follow Dean on twitter TWITTER

Like him on FACEBOOK


Check out our live interview with Dean to learn more about his NEW book – Main Street Memories!

World Secrets ~ A Taste of Filet Mignon at Disney World for just $11!

Published June 29, 2017 by Disneyways.com

Who knew you could get Filet Mignon at these prices – on DISNEY property?! Worth every penny! If you are aware of this being offered any place else other than Top of The World Lounge, be sure to leave me a comment! Check out the video for a full tour of the lounge, and more.

Splurge and get the cheese board too. It’s lovely!

“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.

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.

 

Top 5 New Characters from Star Wars: The Force Awakens by Guest Author Kate Voss

Published January 13, 2016 by Disneyways.com

chewy&hans

Photo credit StarWars.com

Top 5 New Characters from Star Wars: The Force Awakens by Guest Author Kate Voss

Predictably, Star Wars fans were both excited and nervous when the new trilogy was first announced. While the beloved series was returning, it was doing so under a new director and new writers. Turns out, there was no need to worry. In addition to almost universally positive reviews, the first movie has so far broken all earning records in the United States and is on track to become one of the highest grossing movies in history worldwide. One of the most appealing aspects was the reintroduction of some classic characters, still played by their original actors. However, it’s not just nostalgia driving the movie. A new batch of characters have joined the crew and they are winning hearts as quickly as they are battles. Below are five of the best new characters from The Force Awakens.

Poe Dameron

poedameron

Photo credit StarWars.com

Everyone loves a pilot. When that pilot is young, attractive, and fights for the Resistance, he is definitely guaranteed to win fans. Not only that, but Dameron shows himself to be single mindedly committed to both his cause and his comrades, making him an appealing new hero for the series. His mother’s own heroism in the previous war and his loss of her as a child just makes him easier to love.

Finn

Star Wars: The Force Awakens Finn (John Boyega) Ph: Film Frame © 2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Right Reserved..

Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Finn (John Boyega)
Ph: Film Frame
© 2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Right Reserved..

FN-2187, or Finn, makes our acquaintance first as a stormtrooper. Despite this, he quickly wins hearts by helping to rescue Poe Dameron and turning traitor against the First Order. Though he has trained to be a stormtrooper from when he is a young child, his soft heart and reluctance to kill in cold blood eventually drive him away from the men and women who trained him. Though he isn’t particularly interested in joining the Resistance at first, it is again his commitment to helping his friends which cements his involvement. Well, that and some bad luck.

BB-8

bb8

Photo credit StarWars.com

Personality-filled droids are a Star Wars hallmark, and the updated series wouldn’t be complete without at least one new robot to fall in love with. Despite his cute and not particularly fierce appearance, BB-8 has been entrusted with vital Resistance information that the First Order is desperate to get their hands on. Aside from the strategic importance this lends him, the character is also essential in bringing Finn, Rey, and Dameron together, though the information he carries paints a bullseye on their backs.

Kylo Ren

kyloren

Photo credit StarWars.com

Kylo Ren is one of the most interesting new characters in the Star Wars universe. Much like Darth Vader before him, his actions are extremely dark. In fact, they are objectively unforgivable, as he resorts to torture and murder to accomplish his goals. Despite this, there is a thread of good still alive in him that keeps viewers intrigued. Without giving too much away, it becomes obvious where both the light and the dark in his soul come from, though his motivations for turning away from one for the other are less clear. This character will surely reveal himself further in the next two films, and fans will just as surely be fascinated by each new revelation.

Rey

rey

Photo credit StarWars.com

Rey is still largely a mystery herself. A fierce fighter and extremely capable, her history and parentage are not well known. What is known is that she is Force-sensitive, ensuring that her role in the next two films will likely be significant. Though she starts out as a mere scavenger at the beginning of the film, it is clear that she is much more. She is also a breath of fresh air in the traditionally male-heavy Star Wars universe, which desperately needed a little estrogen.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens..Rey (Daisy Ridley)..Ph: David James..© 2015 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Right Reserved.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens..Rey (Daisy Ridley)..Ph: David James..© 2015 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Right Reserved.

Whether a fan of villains, heroes, futuristic technology or just a good redemption story, there is something for everyone in the newest Star Wars film. Though a quick refresher course with the old films and spin offs via Google Play and Direct TV  is advisable, The Force Awakens manages to stand on its own despite the weight of the previous six films resting on its shoulders. Not only that, but with its casting choices the franchise has thrown open the doors to welcome new fans in. The far far away universe that so many people have come to love continues to grow, and it feels as though the newest saga is just beginning.

rey&finn

Photo credit StarWars.com

About the author: Kate Voss is a writer and blogger based in the Windy City. Fuelled by coffee and chocolate, she’s an MSU alum with a passion for traveling and love of all things Disney. Her favorite Girl Scout Cookies are the Trefoils.

 

 

10 Disney Films That Will Inspire You to Travel ~ By Guest Author Jason Biondo

Published January 7, 2016 by Disneyways.com

10 DISNEY FILMS THAT WILL INSPIRE YOU TO TRAVEL

Disney films are beloved and admired for their colorful story-lines, enchanting and beautiful princesses as well as handsome prince charmings. All movies that Disney creates are loved not only by children, but everyone who are young at heart because they simply showcase beautiful musical scores and shows stunning pictures. Over time, Disney continues to create memorable
memories and inspiration brought about by magic and dreams.

If you’re a big Disney fan and a travel junkie at the same time, then you must know where you can find and experience being on the setting of your favorite Disney movie. Here are some of the all-time favorite Disney movies that were inspired by real-life locations.

1. Lion King

lion king

This classic Disney movie has surely created wonderful memories because of the morallessons it brings, songs that marked in every child’s life and of course, the stunning settings of this film. The scenery of this film was inspired by a gorgeous desert in Africa – Serengeti, which is located across northern Tanzania and southwest of Kenya. This safari desert is life-changing like how it was pictured in the movie as it holds beautiful landscapes and wild animals that will surely spark your wanderlust. This movie will awaken your adventurous side as well as you desire to see more of this wonderful world. Hakuna Matata and enjoy life!

2. Aladdin

As a child, you were surely dreamt of riding the magic carpet and wonder how it feels like to see the world up in the sky. Aladdin is a movie based on Arab folklore that is full of enchantments – a magic lamp, a genie and three wishes. The movie has highlighted several stunning places like pyramids, palaces, deserts, alley ways and even China. But did you know that the Sultan’s Palace in the movie was inspired by the real life famous architecture in India – the Taj Mahal.

3. Mulan

Showcasing the countryside and unique cultures of China, Mulan is a story about a fearless girl who disguised as a man to go to a war. The Emperor’s Home in the movie was actually inspired by the Forbidden City in Beijing, China. If you remember the famous line told by Fa Zhou to Mulan about life and how it should be enjoyed, you will surely be moved to accomplish your dreams and go on different adventures and explore the world.

4. Frozen

Photo credit Disney

Photo credit Disney

Remember the scene where Elsa went away from her kingdom to elude people’s judgment about her hidden capability? The ice palace she created as a place she could live for isolation was based on the concept of Hotel de Glace in Quebec City, Canada. The hotel is surrounded by snow vaults and crystalline ice sculptures that open during winter. This fortress has 44 rooms, abundant ice sculptures, and imposing snow vaults. This film by Disney will surely motivate you to free yourself from fear and give you the
opportunity to do things you want without worrying about other’s verdict. Do you want to build a snowman?

5. Tangled

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Rapunzel, leaving the tower to take control over her own life brings inspiration to go on the road and explore different adventures. If you have watched the movie and look forward to seeing settings like the places featured in this film, then the real life places that were actually used as inspiration for this movie will completely amaze you. The tower was inspired by the Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, France – a fortified islandcommune with a population of 44 people. The art director of the movie chose this location in order to create gallant painting style. Additionally, the scene at the lake fullof floating lanterns was taken insights from the annual festivity in China, Taiwan and Thailand.

6. Up

Who would have forgotten about the exceptional and adventurous journey of Carl and Ellie? Ellie’s desire to fulfill his and his wife’s dream of going to Paradise Falls was fortified after his wife passed away. Voyaged through Carl’s house hovering in the air has amazed children and the paradise Falls has enthused people to see a similar setting. Well, you may want to visit the Angel Falls in Venezuela’s Canaima Natural Park where this famous setting has been based. It is known as the world’s highest uninterrupted waterfall, it is also called as “waterfall of the deepest place”.

7. Lilo & Stitch

As Lilo and her family ventured towards the world, it has left a moral lesson about the importance of family and the bond created by traveling together. The settings of this film were enthused by the landscapes of Kauai town in Hawaii which was perfect for its homey-inspired tale.

8. Brave

Meridahorse

Merida, a fearless girl who’s desperate for freedom from her royal family set foot in the woods alone for the liberty she wanted. Brave features beautiful ruins, majestic landscapes and castles along Merida’s journey and some of it were actually real pictures that you can visit. This movie will surely inspire you to visit Eilean Donan Castle, which is known in the film as DunBroch Castle. Built during the mid-13th century, it is located in the Scottish highlands and is overlooking the sea. If you are fond of historic places and folklore, visiting Eilean Donan Castle is what you might need to satisfy your wanderlust.

9. Finding Nemo

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The film was set in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, located off the coast of Queensland, it is one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Watching this movie may inspire you to book a scuba diving classes, go snorkeling to a marine conservation or even urge you to book a trip to Australia.

10. Enchanted

The movie is about some animated characters coming into the real world and becoming real people. Based in New York settings, this film features various scenes featuring the Central Park will surely make you want to visit the busiest city in the world. This romantic comedy movie will surely bring in the wanderlust in you as the urbaninspiration and soundtracks will motivate you to see the world.

Inspired to travel? Open your travel planner now, and create your own magical and enchanting Disney-like escapades!

About the Author: Jason Biondo is a travel junkie and an amateur bodybuilder who loves to share insightful tips to his fellow travelers and fitness enthusiasts. He is also a User Interface Developer Consultant and the founder of Trekeffect.
jasonpic

Portobello Italian Restaurant Disney Springs Review by guest author Sharon Judy

Published September 10, 2015 by Disneyways.com

Recently I enjoyed my first visit to Portobello at Disney Springs! It was my first time dining at this lovely little place. I was in the company of the Central Florida Lady Bloggers group.

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As we came through the door were  warmly greeted and offered a signature drink… Honey Lemonade. This is made with locally sourced honey from Winter Park Florida. I am here to tell you this was SO good. Usually I am not a fan of lemonade because of its tartness but THIS lemonade was so smooth and sweet that I had 2 glasses!  I asked our wonderful hostess Emily if you are able to get a to-go glass if you were just strolling by and did not have a dinner reservation. She said “absolutely just come on in!”

The smoky smell of this restaurant is wonderful. They make wood fired pizzas that are amazing. I sampled the Margarita Pizza and Mushroom Pizza. Both were very tasty and had that lovely smoky taste.

  
Next our hostess Kristy brought around Goat Cheese and Radicchio Crustinis. This was crunchy and savory and sweet all at the same time. They were so good that I actually I ended up eating 4 of these little Crustinis of goodness!! I probably would have eaten more but figured I really needed to share with the rest of our group.

We had a buffet of meats,cheeses and all the fixings. Can just I say… I didn’t want to stop eating?!

  
  
  
The food was so delicious and the level of customer service we experienced was top notch.

Portobello at Disney Springs – I look forward to visiting again soon!!!!

Disclaimer: In exchange for time and efforts in attending this event and reporting my opinion within this blog, Portobello Italian Restaurant provided me with complimentary food and drinks. This did not influence my opinion and all thoughts are my own.

A Note from Krista:
Sharon Judy is not only a regular contributor to Disneyways – she is also the official hair stylist of Living The Dream Podcast as well as WorldSecrets.TV and Disneyways.com! Sharon is a licensed cosmetologist by the State of Florida. She works in the Grand Floridian, Yacht and Beach Club, and other resorts on Disney property.  She has a magical, pixie-dusted touch that she carries into her own salon as well. Contact her today via her facebook page for a consultation and appointment!

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