Friday, May 17, 2013

Ears the News with Richard

The Magic Kingdom's 'Celebrate the Magic' projection show is set to debut a new edition of the show later this month.  Like the previous castle projection show, 'The Magic, The Memories and You!,' the current show is expected to make seasonal changes to segments of the show throughout the year. The summer edition of the show is rumored to begin on 5/24/2013, which is also the day of the Magic Kingdom's 24-hour Monstrous Summer event.

The Peter Pan meet and greet at the Magic Kingdom will be moving locations from Sunday 5/12/2013. You will be able to meet both Peter Pan and Wendy in the queue area of the Peter Pan's Flight attraction in Fantasyland. Peter Pan has previously been meeting guests in Adventureland.

Photo Courtesy of Disney Parks Blog
In a ceremony at the Magic Kingdom's Cinderella Castle this morning, Merida officially became the eleventh Disney Princess.  During the ceremony, Merida was joined by Gymnastics gold medalist Gabby Douglas, and all of the other Disney Princesses: Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora, Ariel, Belle, Jasmine, Pocahontas, Mulan, Tiana and Rapunzel. Check out the video below for a look at the event.

Video from Disney Parks

Downtown Disney's Cirque du Soleil La Nouba is now closed for refurbishment through to 5/27/2013, with the next performance to be on Tuesday 5/28/2013.

Epcot will once again present the International Food and Wine Festival later this year, and for the first time will feature a Scotland Marketplace. Also confirmed to be returning is Brazil, along with Africa, Hawaii, Terra and Florida Local. All of your festival favorites, such as Eat to the Beat Concert Series, celebrity demonstrations and premium events are back for 2013. The festival runs this year from 9/27/2013 to 11/11/2013.

Here is the full press release from Disney.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Disney guests can sip and savor fresh flavors from six continents during the 18th Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Sept. 27-Nov. 11, 2013 at Walt Disney World Resort.

Disney chefs will debut the authentic tastes of Scotland at the celebrated 46-day festival known for innovative food, wine, beer, cocktails, music and entertainment.  The sizzling aromas of more than 25 ethnic and specialized marketplaces including Africa, Brazil and Florida Local will tempt guests strolling the World Showcase Promenade.  Celebrity chefs like Warren Brown and Jamie Deen will bring culinary cachet to special festival events and demonstrations.

Festival planners will present a delectable menu of premium programming, plus daily wine tastings and mixology seminars.  Nightly Eat to the Beat concerts will keep the party rockin’, and five bands will make their festival debut this year.  In Future World, the iconic Ocean Spray Cranberry Bog will return for a third year to introduce families to the cranberry’s rich agricultural heritage.
Fresh for 2013:
New marketplace debuts; favorites return -Traditional flavors with a twist will pair with beers, meads and Scotch at the new Scotland Marketplace designed by Walt Disney Imagineering.  Scottish officials were so impressed with the hit Disney film, “Brave,” that they contacted festival planners about participating in this year’s festival.  The Brazil Marketplace returns by popular demand with an exciting new menu following a one-year hiatus.  Hawai’i is back with its flavorful Kalua Pork Slider, and Terra, which debuted last year, returns with vegan favorite Trick’n Chicken Curry.

Fan favorites rock the house at Eat to the Beat! Concerts – “We Got the Beat” with the Go-Go’s (Sept. 30-Oct. 1) and four other musical acts are set to make first appearances at Eat to the Beat nightly concerts.  Also new to the festival stage: Edwin McCain (Oct. 10-11), The Manhattan Transfer (Oct. 12-13), Spin Doctors (Oct. 31-Nov. 1), and Christopher Cross (Nov. 2-3) Nineteen bands are slated, with STARSHIP starring Mickey Thomas kicking off the concert series Sept. 27-29.  Returning fan favorites include The Pointer Sisters, Smash Mouth, Boyz II Men, Sister Hazel, Air Supply, Hanson and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.

Celebrity chefs cook and dish - Renowned chefs like Warren Brown, Paula DaSilva, Gale Gand, Jamie Deen, Robert Irvine, Dean Max, Rock Harper, Jeff Henderson, Art Smith, Buddy Valastro, Allen Susser, “Cake Boy” Eric Lanlard, Duskie Estes and John Stewart, Donald Link, Bryan Voltaggio and Emily Ellyn share their talents during culinary demos and premium events.

Festival Welcome Center buzzes with activities – Guests can make the most of complimentary Authentic Taste seminars.  Culinary demonstrations and wine seminars feature new tastes and sips for a nominal fee.

Reserved culinary events draw foodies — Special culinary programs showcase a lineup of renowned winemakers, guest chefs and speakers like Master Sommelier Andrea Robinson as they participate in elegant dinners, luncheons, seminars and wine schools.
Other festival highlights include:
More than 270 chefs including Disney chefs and culinary stars from across the country
A complimentary Marketplace Discovery Passport to be stamped at each international marketplace visited for the perfect scrapbook souvenir.
Party for the Senses grand tasting events Oct. 5, 12, 19, 26, and Nov. 2 featuring tempting bites from eminent chefs, more than 50 wines and beers and live entertainment.
Premium events including “3D” Disney’s Dessert Discovery on select Fridays, Cheese Seminars on Saturdays and Sweet Sundays on Sundays.
What’s Included with Epcot Admission:
Authentic Taste seminars, Ocean Spray Cranberry Bog, special book signings, Eat to the Beat! concerts, cultural adventures, Marketplace Discovery Passport and all attractions and park entertainment are included with regular Epcot admission.
Special Programming by Reservation:
The Party for the Senses grand tasting events and other special wine and culinary programs require reservations and separate event admission.  Guests will be able to call 407/WDW-FEST (939-3378) to make reservations after an August date is announced.  Information and reservations for select events and programs will be at

Disney has also released the lineup for the 2013 Eat to the Beat Concert Series - part of the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. Here are all the confirmed acts that will appear this year.

Sept. 27-29 – Starship starring Mickey Thomas
Sept. 30-Oct. 1 – Go-Go’s
Oct. 2-4 – Air Supply
Oct. 5-6 – Sister Hazel
Oct. 7-9 – Sugar Ray
Oct. 10-11 – Edwin McCain
Oct. 12-13 – Manhattan Transfer
Oct. 14-15 – Wilson Phillips
Oct. 16-17 – The Pointer Sisters
Oct. 18-20 – Night Ranger
Oct. 21-23 – Boyz II Men
Oct. 24-25 – Survivor
Oct. 26-27 – 38 Special
Oct. 28-30 – Smash Mouth
Oct. 31-Nov. 1 – Spin Doctors
Nov. 2-3 – Christopher Cross
Nov. 4-5 – Hanson
Nov. 6-8 – Dennis DeYoung
Nov. 9-11 – Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

Be Our Guest Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom's New Fantasyland now has an updated menu for both lunch and dinner. Both lunch and dinner have seen price increases across some dishes. As an example, the 'Assorted Cured Meats and Sausages' appetizer has increased from $14.99 to $16.49, and the Grilled Strip Steak entree has increased from $29.99 to $32.99.  Tweaks to the menu offerings has seen some dishes replaced. At dinner, the Cornish Hen has been replaced with Chicken Breast dish, and at lunch the steak sandwich has been replaced with a roast beef sandwich.

The scheduling for the first Star Wars Weekend on 2013 has been released.  Here is the rundown of the times for all the Star Wars Weekends events for the opening weekend, 5/17/2013 – 5/19/ 2013.

Park Hours: 8am to 10pm

Visiting Celebrities: James Arnold Taylor, Ashley Eckstein. Ray Park, Jeremy Bulloch, Dee Bradley Baker

Padwan Mind Challenge (Sorcerer Hat Stage) 2:10pm and 4:30pm

Jedi Training Academy (Star  Tours Stage)   8:45am; 9:20am; 10:05am; 10:35am; 12:00pm; 12:30pm; 1:00pm; 1:30pm; 2:00pm; 2:30pm; 3:00pm; 3:30pm; 4:00pm; 4:30pm; 5:00pm; 5:30pm; 6:30pm; 7:00pm; 7:30pm

Rebel Star Wars Character Encounters 8am to 7:30pm

Imperial Star Wars Character Encounters 8am to 7:30pm

Celebrity Motorcade 11:00am

Celebrity Welcome at Sorcerer Hat Stage 11:15am

Behind the Force (Premiere Theater) with host Ashley Eckstein and guests 12pm and 1:45pm

Stars of the Saga  (Premiere Theater) with host James Arnold Taylor and guests 3:30pm

Obi-Wan and Beyond (Premiere Theater) - Starring James Arnold Taylor and a Galaxy of Voices 6:30pm

Visit to the Maul (Premiere Theater) with host James Arnold Taylor - Starring Ray Park 5pm

Hyperspace Hoopla! (Sorcerer Hat Stage) 8pm

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