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Ears the News with Richard

Photo Courtesy of Disney Parks Blog
'The Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge' opens on 10/30/2013 at Disney's Hollywood Studios offering a new twist on Brown Derby dining. Taking space on the existing Brown Derby patio, the lounge will serve guests on a first come, first served basis, and will offer small bites and beverages. Menu items include Artisinal Cheeses, Brown Derby Sliders, Duck Confit Tacos, Prince Edward Island Mussels, Charcuterie Board for two, and Brown Derby Shrimp Cocktail. Beverages include beers, wines, and speciality cocktails. You can also order from the full Brown Derby menu on request.

Reservations are not required, and Tables in Wonderland discount is available. The Disney Dining Plan will NOT be accepted.

The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train Coaster is now running test circuits under its own power. WDWMagic  forum member CTXRover spotted the train running a circuit under its own power rather than being pulled through. This is obviously a very good sign for the Magic Kingdom ride opening in early 2014.


Video from ctxrover20

Cirque du Soleil La Nouba will be closed from 11/3/2013 to 11/6/2013.  

Photo Courtesy of Disney Parks Blog
Rumors of Club Cool death appear to be highly exaggerated. Epcot's Club Cool will actually be debuting a new range of Coca Cola samples 10/30/2013. 

The old favorite Beverly remains, but most are all new flavors, and Club Cool will be one of only three locations in the USA where you can find them - the others being in Coca Cola exhibits in Atlanta and Vegas. 

Here is a rundown of all the new flavors:

Fanta Pineapple
With more than 90 distinct flavors available in more than 180 countries, Fanta made its European debut in the 1940s and was introduced to the USA in 1960. Fanta Pineapple is caffeine-free and features a sweet pineapple taste.
VegitaBeta
Originally launched in Japan in 1992, VegitaBeta is a non-carbonated beverage with apricot and passion fruit flavors and is rich in beta-carotene that contributes to its unique yellowish-orange color. 
Melon Frosty
Fanta (Melon Frosty) is the number one soft drink of Thailand. With a fun melon flavor, this carbonated beverage is beloved in Thailand's sunny, tropical climate. 
Bibo
Originally created in 1998, Bibo is a fruit flavored line of juice drinks popular in South Africa. The brand features fun characters such as Johnny Orange, Taka Strawberry and Paolo Peach.
Sparberry
A raspberry flavored cream soda, Sparberry launched in Africa in 1955. It is exclusively available in several countries in southeast Africa.
Guarana Kuat
Guarana Kuat is a guarana berry flavored soft drink first launched in Brazil in 1997. The word guarana comes from the Guaraní word guara-ná, which translates to "fruit like the eyes of the people."
Inca Kola
Known as "The Taste of Peru," Inca Kola has an unusually sweet fruity flavor that many compare to the taste of liquid bubblegum. The name refers to the Quechua words for king and queen.
Beverly
Beverly, with its bitter flavor, is a popular non-alcoholic apéritif that is a traditional part of Italian refreshment culture.

The new dining reservation cancellation policy that was due to go into effect on 10/31/2013 has been temporarily delayed.  There is no word yet on when the change will now be implemented, but the plans are still expected to introduce a $10 per person fee for any cancellation not received the day before.  Cancellation fees for signature restaurants that were previously introduced remain active and are not affected by the delay.

Crews at Downtown Disney West Side are wasting no time converting the now closed Wetzel's Pretzels into the new Starbucks West Side location. The pretzel and ice cream store closed just a few days ago and already walls are up and crews are beginning demolition. 

The new Starbucks West Side will be opening in Spring 2014 with a very modern and sleek look. 
Fans of Wetzel's Pretzels and Haagen Dazs Ice Cream will be able to continue to purchase their product from a new kiosk opening near to DisneyQuest also on the West Side later this year.

In recent years Disney set out to dramatically reduce energy consumption across the entire Walt Disney World Resort. Between 2009 and 2013, the resort reduced consumption by 10% through new energy practices, including new lighting and cooling technology, adjusting climate control temperatures to more efficient levels, and changing cast member behavior. 

In recognition of this, Disney has been awarded the 'Sustainable Florida’s 2013' large business best practice award. Sustainable Florida is a nonprofit organization committed to conserving Florida's vast natural and economic resources. The award is given each year to companies and organizations for their efforts to protect and preserve the state’s environment.


"We are especially proud to receive the best practice award from Sustainable Florida because it is recognition of our company's long-standing commitment to the environment, conservation and the natural world," said, Jackie Ogden, Ph.D., vice president of animal, science and environment at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. "We’re always looking for new ways to conserve resources, including electricity, and to continue building on our success in the years to come."

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