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Showing posts from April, 2013

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One can never have too many Fastpasses!

Picture of the Day

  Did you hear about all the great changes coming to the Disney Magic?  This is the Magic back in 2005.  She won't look like this for much longer!

Ears the News with Richard

Epcot's Fountain View Ice Cream closed on 4/6/2013 to begin the remodel into Walt Disney World’s second Starbucks location. Construction walls now surround the building, with the new Starbucks expected to reopen on 8/2/2013. The new kiosk that was built near to the Electric Umbrella has not yet opened. It was originally thought this would open with the closure of Fountain View, although it may operate seasonally during busier times. Another element of the NextGen MyMagic+ initiative is now live and in use across all of the Walt Disney World Resort hotels.  Called 'Mobile Lobby Experience,' the system equips Cast Members with iPads and allows guests to be checked-in from locations other than the front desk. It is being used to quickly check-in guests from curbside or in the lobby area of the hotel. 'Mobile Lobby Experience' has the big advantage of being able to check-in guests very quickly on arrival at the hotel, without the need to join a queue or ev

Picture of the Day

    Adorable and exquisite details like these little critters can be found throughout New Fantasyland.  What is your favorite part of the Magic Kingdom's newest expansion?

The Happiest Campground on Earth: Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort!

I recently had the opportunity to spend a week at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort   This is a resort that I love.  I have stayed many times in the past, although it had been 6 years since my last visit.  Seeing The Fort through fresh eyes made me remember and appreciate just how beautiful and peaceful it is, and I can guarantee I will not let another 6 years pass before staying here again!  Here you can feel like you are away from it all, but still hear the faint whistle of the train at the Magic Kingdom in the distance.  Fort Wilderness is located in the Magic Kingdom area, along Bay Lake. There is an efficient internal bus service that will transport you between the Settlement Depot, near the Marina, and the Outpost Depot, near the entrance.  From these depots you can catch transportation to your desired destination.  Transportation to the Magic Kingdom is by boat, while all other parks, water parks, and Downtown Disney are by bus (from the Outpost Depot).  A second boat loop

Picture of the Day

Have you tried Characters in Flight at Downtown Disney?

Happy 15th Anniversary to Disney's Animal Kingdom!

Ears the News with Richard

The Magic Kingdom bus stop expansion is well underway as construction walls and equipment are now moving onto the site. The new bus stop loop will add additional capacity to the Magic Kingdom bus stop, and will support the new double length "bendy buses" that are part of Walt Disney World's transportation plans.  Car Masters Weekend is returning for its third year at Downtown Disney. From 6/14 – 16/2013, you can celebrate all things 'Cars,' as Downtown Disney brings in over 150 classic cars and gives guests the opportunity to meet Cars 2 characters, along with special appearances by designers and Disney-Pixar filmmakers. The full details and line-up should be released closer to the time. 'L’Artisan des Glaces' is the name of the new artisan ice cream and sorbet shop opening this summer in Epcot's France Pavilion. The new ice cream shop will be opening in the space vacated by the Boulangerie P√Ętisserie bakery, which moved into a new larger are

Picture of the Day

    Aladdin and Jasmine take a stroll hand in hand through the Morocco Pavilion at World Showcase.  Which character do you love to see on a Disney vacation?

Magic Kingdom Must-Do Experiences for a First Time Visitor!

The Magic Kingdom park is undoubtedly the heart of Walt Disney World.  The iconic Cinderella Castle stands tall at the end of Main Street, U.S.A and welcomes guests to a world of fantasy, future and everything in between.  The Magic Kingdom is the place where I like to kick off and close out every Walt Disney World vacation.  Time after time, it's still like coming home for me.  Today I'm going to share a few Magic Kingdom must-do's for any first time guest! Stop and Stare The first moment of stepping out on to Main Street and seeing Cinderella Castle is a defining moment for every first timer.  You've seen it in pictures and you've seen it on television, but there is nothing quite like that first moment when you come face to face with it.  Some people gaze in awe, others laugh and jump for joy and often times those who have waited for so long for this very moment will shed a tear or two.  It's hard to explain that feeling of your first castle sighting, but

Picture of the Day

American Idol at Hollywood Studios. Yay or Nay?

Picture of the Day

Have you tried Flik's Flyers in California Adventure?

Ears the News with Richard

Disney has announced another Star Wars celebrity who will be attending this year's Star Wars Weekends at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Actor Billy Dee Williams is known for his portrayal of Lando Calrissian in the Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. He will attend Weekend 4 on 6/7-9/2013.  As of today, this is the current celebrity appearance schedule. Ray Park (plays Darth Maul) - will attend Weekends 1 and 2. Warwick Davis (plays Wicket W. Warrick) - will attend Weekends 2 and 3. Billy Dee Williams (plays Lando Calrissian) - will attend Weekend 4. James Arnold Taylor and Ashley Eckstein will be your celebrity hosts for all 4 weekends MO'ROCKIN has relocated to a new temporary stage due to the construction now taking place on the new 'Spice Road Table' restaurant at the Morocco Pavilion. The new stage is located on the side of the pavilion closest to France. The Aladdin meet and greet has also been relocated to the market area at the rear of

Picture of the Day

    One of the highlights of any ride on Kilimanjaro Safari is of course seeing the giraffes! Which animal do you look most forward to seeing while on safari?

Maximizing Your Park Time at Walt Disney World

When guests travel to Walt Disney World, many times their main focus is to spend time in the four theme parks.  While it is nearly impossible to do every attraction on one vacation, I have some tips for making the most of your park time for your next Disney vacation! 1. The Park Hopper When people ask me if I recommend the Park Hopper option,I don't even hesitate to tell them I do.  For my husband and myself, having the Park Hopper option on our Magic Your Way tickets is a necessity.  While every guest has their own park touring style, we tend to go to a park in the morning, take a mid-day break and have dinner and then hop on over to another park that evening.  Having this option on your ticket will allow you the freedom to do as much or as little as you want each day.  So you can start your day on a safari through Africa at Disney's Animal Kingdom and end the evening with a stroll around the world at Epcot!  It also allows you to go back to one of the parks to catch up on

Picture of the Day

    Celebrate the Magic is a nighly show at the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World.  Scenes from beloved Disney classics are projected on to Cinderella Castle and are set to a beautiful musical score.  Have you seen Celebrate the Magic? What is your favorite scene?

It's All in the Disney Details

Whenever someone asks me what sets Walt Disney World apart from other theme parks, besides the great customer service and that indescribable Disney magic, I have to mention the details.  Disney does a remarkable job of transporting you from the real world to the “world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy.”  From the attractions and the queues, to the resorts and the shops, the attention to detail is nothing less than amazing. Disney's BoardWalk Resort Trash Can One of the best things about a Walt Disney World vacation is that no matter how many times I visit, I find some new detail that I never noticed before.  It keeps the trips exciting year after year to explore the parks and resorts at a slower pace to really take in all the wonderful details.  On a recent trip I was on the lookout for an inspiration for a new photo series and found a very exciting new muse…trash cans.  Yes.  You read that right… I took pictures of trash cans. It was on my first solo trip that I really

Ears the News with Richard

Pete's Silly Sideshow in Storybook Circus will be changing its hours of operation starting 4/7/2013. The meet and greet location will open 45 minutes after the park opens, except on Extra Magic Hour mornings and during busy periods. Closing time is one hour prior to park close. The Courtyard Pool at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort has reopened following an extensive refurbishment that has seen a near complete rebuild of the pool.  A new zero-entry side has been added during the refurbishment, which has changed the mood of the pool from a quiet pool to more of a family pool, as young children are now enjoying the very shallow zero-entry side of the pool.  Photo Courtesy of Disney Parks Blog Disney has confirmed the speculation from late last year that a new restaurant will be added to Epcot's Morocco Pavilion.  Details are limited, but the restaurant will be called 'Spice Road Table', and will serve various small plates and refreshments inspired

Picture of the Day

    Over 300 animal carvings can be found on the Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom.  Which one is your favorite?

Beating the Heat on a Walt Disney World Vacation

Recently Heather compiled a great list of suggestions for us to keep warm on a cool day at Walt Disney World.  But Winter is over now (I think) and lets face it, we're talking central Florida here, so we are more often faced with beating the sun and heat. Here are my 7 suggestions for keeping cool in the Sunshine state. 1- I will start with the obvious, get back to your resort and go for a swim.  All Walt Disney World Resort hotels have great pools!  Some offer more entertainment than others, but they all get the job done and offer hours of cooling on a hot afternoon.  Or evening.  Or morning. 2- Try a spray fan!  Many have seen those big ice tubs with water filled fans appear just when the sun is shining its hardest.  And they really work!  But like the ponchos that protect you from the rain, you don't HAVE to buy one at the parks.  Many stores sell them through the summer months.  My local Walmart even had them in January!  They come in a variety of size

Picture of the Day

The China pavilion is beautiful at night!  What's your favorite pavilion in the World Showcase?

Picture of the Day

Typhoon Lagoon!  Which water park is your favorite?