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Showing posts from June, 2013

Ears the News with Richard

New details on how MyMagic will work when it launches towards the end of the year! The exact details are changing fairly frequently and there will still likely be changes between now and the full launch. So remember, none of this information is set in stone.
FASTPASS+ You will be able to make FASTPASS+ reservations 60 days out from arrival, plus 10 days, similar to resort reservation dining. The guest will select the park and the three preferred experiences. The system will then return up to 4 groups of availability from which to pick - early, mid day, late, or all day. Grouping of guests allows one My Disney Experience user to copy the details to others traveling in that party with same FASTPASS+ reservations. FASTPASS+ allows one park per day. Return policies will be similar to current FASTPASS - must arrive within time window. You will be able to modify your selected park until you use your first FASTPASS+. Once you use the first FASTPASS+ you can then only modify your remaining FASTPASS+…

Unique Souvenir Ideas: "Pick-a-Pearl"

Lets talk souvenirs.  When you think Disney souvenirs, you probably picture mouse ears, t-shirts, and antenna toppers.  While these are quintessential mementos all guests should have, I also like to find something unique to help remind me of my vacation memories.  One of my favorite things to do is "Pick a Pearl."

At Walt Disney World, there are three locations to experience this- Downtown Disney, Beach Club, and inside the Japan Pavilion at Epcot.  My favorite is the Japan location, which can be found inside the Mitsukoshi store.  You'll know where to go if you follow the banging drum and cheers.

The first thing you do is pay for an oyster - about $17.  You will be given a number that will be called when it is your turn.  I've found that going early in the day when it first opens is easiest- it can get pretty busy later in the day.

While you wait, scour the tanks for the oyster you'd like to pick.  I've been told to find an ugly, hairy oyster, as…

Picture of the Day

FastPasses are a great way to make the most of your park time.  Do you have a ride that you always use a FastPass for?

Picture of the Day

The walkways and Koi pond in the Japan pavilion at World Showcase are a great place to unwind for a bit.  Do you have a favorite place to slow down and relax for a little while in the parks?

Ears the News with Richard

The largest test so far of Disney's NextGen MyMagic+ is in place this week for select pre-invited guests staying at either Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge or Disney's Contemporary Resort.
Beginning on 6/20/2013 and running through until 6/26/2013, the test will for the first time allow guests taking part to use all the capabilities of MyMagic+ including 'Touch-to-enter,' 'Touch-to-pay,' FASTPASS+, and use both the RFID Key to the World Card and the MagicBand. The test is invite only, so you will not be able to take part in this unless you have already been contacted by Disney. As with previous tests, guests will be able to preselect three FASTPASS+ experiences via the My Disney Experience app or website. There will also be kiosks available for those guests who do not own or wish to use their own device to select FASTPASS+. 
The kiosks are located at: Magic Kingdom: City Hall, Buzz Lightyear FASTPASS distribution, Splash Mountain FASTPASS distribution. Disney's…

Did You Know?

There are 799 campsites, 3187 Disney Vacation Club units and nearly 28,000 rooms within the 35 Walt Disney World Resort hotels and DVC properties?

It's All in the Disney Details

We’ve previously taken a look at seemingly ordinary objects such as trash cans and carpets, and today we continue that journey into the ordinary by taking a look at towels: the animal variety, that is.Towel animals are another example of how Disney takes something simple like a towel and gives it that extra Disney touch to make them something magical.
Upon arrival to your room at a Walt Disney World resort, you can expect to see the classic Mickey silhouette in towels on the bed.It’s such a simple shape and yet it brings so much joy.I love seeing that silhouette because it means that my Disney vacation has really begun!I often leave the towels on the bed as long as possible because it just feels wrong to destroy Mickey, even if it is only made of towels!



Disney housekeeping - better known as Mousekeeping - keep the creations coming throughout your stay.After a long day in the parks, it’s an exciting surprise to find the little towel animals in various places around your room.There …

Picture of the Day

Who else loves to stop and listen to Voices of Liberty while at Epcot?

Ears the News with Richard

Next week's Limited Time Magic brings a Monsters U dance party and pep rally to Disney's Hollywood Studios. The fun starts on 6/14/2013 at the Sorcerer Hat Stage from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM.
 Here is the full info from Disney:
"Make way for a Monsters University Homecoming celebration! The MU School of Scaring is hosting a campus bash inspired by Disney•Pixar's Monsters University and it all goes down each evening at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Hit the quad where you can hear your DJ—"Monster of Scaremonies"—spinning the latest beats, and take part in a series of fun activities. Then, get pepped up as the MU cheerleaders pop in to lead the MU Fight Song before those monsters of rock, Scare Supply, take the stage. Enjoy a medley of monstrous mash-ups, and laugh along as they're joined on stage by Mike and Sulley. It's a pep rally of epic proportions, and it is all part of Limited Time Magic!"
The major exterior refurbishment at Downtown Disney'…

Picture of the Day

Who else would rather be on safari right now?

Picture of the Day

What is your favorite scene in The Great Movie Ride?

My 5 Disney Senses

When you retell the experiences on a Disney vacation to someone you know, it’s full of words like “I saw”, “I ate”, “I heard”.....which got me to thinking about how Disney is really experienced with all 5 senses.  So I thought I would put together a little list of some of my most memorable “5 Disney Senses”.  Close your eyes (after you are done reading, of course), and imagine along!

Touch Mickey’s glove in my own hand The lazy river at Typhoon Lagoon The blast of “champagne popping” in Mickey’s Philharmagic The heat from the Inferno during Illuminations The bed in my resort room after the end of a long day!


Smell The Polynesian lobby  The cookies from the Main Street bakery The water in Pirates of the Caribbean The skunk in Imagination (I might not love it, but you can’t deny that it’s memorable!) The orange grove in Soarin’

Sight A Mickey balloon Cinderella Castle at the end of Main Street Tinker Bell’s nighttime flight during Wishes Hidden Mickeys Twinkling trees






Sound The Magic Kingdom train whistle S…

Ears the News with Richard

L'Artisan des Glaces is now open at Epcot's France Pavilion. Serving specialty ice creams and sorbets, the new eatery can be found in the location of the old bakery which recently relocated into a new space in the France Pavilion. You can find 10 flavors of ice cream and 6 sorbets, and for those of you who like your ice cream a bit more adult - you can add a shot of liquor. A small cup or cone is $3.99, a slightly larger cup is $6.10, and the liquor version is $11.50. The ice cream had good flavor and was extremely smooth and creamy, although our taste testers felt the portion size could be larger for the price. The single scoop size is the size of something you may find at a Food and Wine kiosk. The ordering system is a little unusual. You first go to a register and choose the size, but not the flavor. You then pay, and move to a display case where you then choose the flavor and cone or cup, both are the same price. You then move to the pickup side to collect your treat. There …

Did You Know?

The 20th Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival held this year was home to 30 million blooms!

Kingdom Camera Rentals

When going on vacation, especially a Disney one, one of the most important souvenirs to bring back are pictures.  They're timeless, they're fun and they capture the best memories that you'll never want to forget.  On my most recent trip to Walt Disney World last month I decided I wanted to try something new with my DSLR, and that was to shoot with an ultra wide angle lens.  The average going price for the lens I wanted was roughly $760.  Being the cautious person that I am, I decided that before I paid that much for the lens I wanted, I would rent it to be sure that I would get my use from it.

Many people don't know that you can rent a lens and are often surprised to hear of such a thing.  I googled and searched camera and lens rentals.  Many of them ship to you and you ship back to them, which is fine, but I was a bit concerned with the equipment getting lost or damaged while in transit.  Then I came across the company Kingdom Camera Rentals and my quest for rentin…