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Ears the News: January 14, 2017 Edition

Welcome to the latest edition of Ears the News

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The Magic Kingdom began its new start-of-day experience earlier this week, aimed at improving the guest arrival process.

Here is everything you need to know ahead of your next trip.

Early Entry onto Main Street U.S.A.

Instead of being held at the main entrance area, the tap-styles now open at least an hour ahead of regular park opening, meaning that typically you can now enter the park at 8:00 AM when the park opens at 9:00 AM. PhotoPass is on hand for photo opportunities with a less crowded background.

Breakfast and Shopping

Entry to Main Street U.S.A. early gives more time for shopping and breakfast before the park officially opens. All of the shops are open, as is the Main Street Bakery Starbucks. Casey's Corner is also open, with a breakfast menu including Muffins, Bagels, Croissant Doughnuts, Corn Dogs, and Hash Brown Dog.

Rope Drop

Although Main Street U.S.A. opens an hour early, none of the attractions are open, and ropes block entry to each land. Guests congregate at each rope as soon as they are allowed onto Main Street, with Fantasyland and Tomorrowland being among the most popular.

Let the Magic Begin Welcome Show

In place of the Welcome Show on the Main Street U.S.A. train station, a new opening moment takes place on the Cinderella Castle forecourt stage. The 5 minute "Let the Magic Begin" show begins at 8:55 AM on most days, culminating in the rope drop at the entrance to each land.

Check out a video of the new welcome show below. 
Problems viewing the video? Click here to watch on YouTube.

Video courtesy of

The 2017 Epcot International Festival of the Arts started on Friday, celebrating the visual, culinary and performing arts for six weekends.

Like the Food and Wine Festival Marketplace kiosks, and Flower and Garden Festival Outdoor Kitchens, the Festival of the Arts will feature special menus at kiosks around World Showcase.

The kiosks will be open from 11am to 9pm, Fridays through Mondays - January 13 to February 20, 2017.

Festival of the Arts 'Food Studio' Menus

E = AT^2
Embark on an edible adventure with delicious dishes that dazzle!

  • BLT with Crispy Pork Belly, Tomato Jam and Soft Poached Egg 
  • Classic Reuben with Shredded Corned Beef, Thousand Island Dressing, Pickled Red Cabbage and a Rye Curl 
  • Cobb Salad with Smoked Duck Breast, Avocado Mousse, Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Bacon and Blue Cheese (GF)) 
  • Figment White Chocolate Art Painting with Chocolate Easel (GF) (V) 
  • White Chocolate Mickey Puzzle with Artist Palette (GF) (V) 
  • Deconstructed Breakfast: Twinings® Spiced Apple Chai Tea Shake with Maple Bourbon Cream, a Waffle Crisp and Candied Bacon 
  • Deconstructed Breakfast: Twinings® Spiced Apple Chai Tea Shake with Maple Syrup, a Waffle Crisp and Candied Bacon (non-alcoholic) 
  • Pop-Artsicle: Red, White and Blue Frozen Slushy (non-alcoholic) 
Cuisine Classique
Prepare to be amazed with these hearty braised bites and traditional Old World delights!

  • Braised Short Rib with Parsnip Purée, Broccolini, Baby Tomatoes and Aged Balsamic 
  • Seared Red Snapper with braised Ratatouille and Lemon-Thyme Beurre Blanc (GF) 
  • Port Wine Poached Pear, Vanilla Panna Cotta and Pistachio Crumbs (GF) 
  • Artist Palette Jumbo Chocolate Chip Cookie 
  • Sierra Nevada Pale Ale 
  • Bell’s Two Hearted American-style India Pale Ale 
  • Duck Rabbit Milk Stout 
  • Beer Braising Flight 
  • Campo Viejo Rioja Reserva Art Series 
The Artist's Table
Satisfy hunger with these savory plates—all prepared using oven and stove-top techniques!

  • Roasted Pork Roulade with Marble Potatoes, Baby Carrots and Red Wine Sauce featuring Melissa’s Produce 
  • Pan-Seared Scallop with Chorizo, Roasted Red Pepper Coulis and a Parmesan Crisp (GF) 
  • Artist Palette Jumbo Chocolate Chip Cookie 
  • Callebaut Belgian Sipping Chocolate Flight: White, Milk, Dark (non-alcoholic) 
  • Callebaut Belgian Sipping Chocolate: Dark Chocolate with Chambord 
  • Perla Santa Coffee-flavored Wine 
The Painter’s Palate
Sample this palatable palette of delicacies that looks as good as it tastes… mangiare!

  • Margherita Flatbread with Basil Pesto and Balsamic Drizzle (V) 
  • Trio of Savory Croissant Doughnuts
  • Whipped Herb Cream Cheese with Sea Salt (V) 
  • Chicken Mousse with Fresh Herbs & Everything Bagel Seasoning 
  • Spicy Tuna with Sriracha Mayonnaise and Sesame Seeds 
  • Mary Blair White Chocolate Art Painting with Chocolate Easel (GF) (V) 
  • Pop’t Art: Abstract Designed Sugar Cookie with Chocolate Hazelnut Filling (V) 
  • White Chocolate Figment Puzzle on an Artist Palette 
  • Pomegranate Mule featuring the Ginger People Ginger Beer and Van Gogh Vodka 
  • Breckenridge Nitro Vanilla Porter 
  • Young’s Double Chocolate Stout 
  • 3 Daughters Queens Court Strawberry Blonde Nitro 
  • Neapolitan Beer Flight 
Pop Eats!
Unearth the tasty treasures and tantalizing textures of modern art-inspired eats!

  • Shrimp Ceviche with Lime Mint Foam (GF) 
  • Sous Vide Venison with Butternut Squash Purée, Pomegranate Reduction, Pickled Turnip and Juniper Berry Powder (GF) 
  • Almond Frangipane Cake layered with Raspberry Jam and Chocolate (V) 
  • Pop’t Art: Modern-design Sugar Cookie with Chocolate Hazelnut Filling (V) 
  • Goofy White Chocolate Puzzle on an Artist Palette 
  • Cloudem Silver Sparkling Wine 
  • Popping Bubbles Cocktail 
Decadent Delights
Indulge in a gallery of divine delectables that transform dessert into a fine art!

  • Crisp Caramel Chocolate Mousse Bar, Flavored Merengue Kisses and Passion Fruit Sauce 
  • Dark Chocolate S’mores: Homemade Graham Cracker, Vanilla Kisses and White Chocolate “Fire” 
  • Deconstructed Purple Sweet Potato Pie, Salted Caramel, Bourbon-soaked Cake and Marshmallow Whipped Cream 
  • Artist Palette Jumbo Chocolate Chip Cookie 
  • Cherry Heering Liqueur 
  • Courvoisier V.S.Cognac 
  • Ferreira 10 Year Old Port 
The Masterpiece Kitchen
Raise your glass and celebrate this fabulous fusion of food and wine—cheers!

  • Charcuterie Palette with Artisan Cured Meats, Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Duck Breast and Cheese 
  • Smoked Salmon Tartare, Caviar, Crisp Lavash and Traditional Accompaniments 
  • Wild Mushroom Risotto, Aged Parmesan, Truffle Shavings and Zinfandel Reduction (V) 
  • Triple Chocolate Mousse, Chocolate Crunch, Dark Chocolate Sauce and Gold Leaf from our Master Pastry Chef 
  • White Chocolate Puzzle on an Artist Palette (GF) (V) 
  • Mickey and Pluto White Chocolate Painting with Chocolate Easel (GF) (V) 
  • Perrier-Jouët Belle Époque Brut Champagne 
  • Classic Sidecar with a Chocolate Twist 
  • The Meeker Vineyard Winemakers’ Handprint Merlot 
At Epcot's Other Restaurants

Block & Hans

  • Festival Cabernet Sauvignon, CA 
  • Festival Chardonnay, CA 
  • Anchor Brewing Meyer Lemon Lager, San Francisco, CA 
  • Coppertail Brewing Free Dive IPA, Tampa, FL 
  • Founders Porter, Grand Rapids, MI 
  • M.I.A. Brewing Mega Mix Pale Ale, Miami, FL 
Joy of Tea

  • Traditional Chinese Golden Fish 
  • Panda Rice Cake 
Fife & Drum

  • Artist Palette Jumbo Chocolate Chip Cookie 
Les Halles Boulangerie-Patisserie

  • Opera Cake 
Funnel Cakes

  • Gingerbread Funnel Cake 
Japan Pavilion

  • Kabuki Café Kiosk: Futomaki Sushi 
  • Tokyo Dining: Chirashi Sushi and Sashimi 
Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company

  • All Festival specialty drinks served hot or cold. 
  • Canada: Night Sky Latte: A delicious shot of Joffrey’s Italian Espresso mixed with Creamy Godiva Chocolate Liqueur, topped with Steamed Milk and Whipped Cream 
  • Disney Traders: Cinnamon Sensation: A shot of Italian Espresso mixed with RumChata and Cinnamon Whiskey, blended with Steamed Milk and Whipped Cream 
  • Future World East: Painted Lady Latte: A shot of Joffrey’s Italian Espresso mixed with rich Baileys Espresso Créme Liqueur, topped with Steamed Milk and Whipped Cream 
  • The American Adventure: Dreamy Bourbon: A shot of Italian Espresso mixed with Bourbon Whiskey Cream Liqueur, blended with Steamed Milk and Whipped Cream 
El Arista Hambriento (The Hungry Artist)

  • Choriqueso Taco served with Chihuahua Cheese, Red and Green Peppers over a Corn Tortilla and garnished with Poblano Peppers and Micro Cilantro 
  • Flank Steak Guarache served with Black Beans, Salsa de Chile de Arbol, Frisee Lettuce, Queso Fresco, Red Cabbage, Shredded Carrots and Chipotle Mayo 
Tangierine Café

  • Homemade Falafel with Pickled Beets and Turnip, Tomato Salad and Tahini Sauce 
Refreshment Cool Post

  • Chilled Shrimp, Quinoa, Layered Vegetables, Spiced Yogurt and Red Pepper Coulis 
Refreshment Port

  • Croissant Doughnut filled with Pastry Cream and topped with Colored Pearls 

Disney's Hollywood Studios is hosting a special Star Wars inspired party in April 2017.

Star Wars Galactic Nights will be held on April 14, 2017, from 7:00 PM until midnight. Tickets are $129 per adult, and $124 for ages 3-9. Discounted price for Annual Passholders and DVC Members is $119 for adults and $114 for ages 3-9. Tickets can be purchased online or contact your Kingdom Konsultant Agent.

Live Shows at the Star Wars Theater

Inside the Saga – Celebrity Chat

After a brief pre-show warm-up featuring the hosts of the Star Wars Show, hear from a Star Wars feature film cast member.

As your host asks question after riveting question, their stories will be yours—including what it was like to perform before an audience of millions!

Inside the Saga – Behind the Magic

Following a pre-show with the hosts of the Star Wars Show, learn what it takes to make some of cinema’s most beloved moments, as experienced by one of the Saga’s behind-the-scenes wizards. Their adventures will be yours as this special crew member explains all that goes into bringing the world—and worlds—of Star Wars to life.

  • Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular fireworks 
  • Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away stage show 

Stormtroopers on Patrol

As you board your shuttle at Star Tours – The Adventures Continue, get ready to come face-to-face with Imperial Stormtroopers patrolling the embarkation ramps in pursuit of a Rebel spy.

Ewok Encounter

While you adventure through the forest of Endor en route to your flight with Star Tours – The Adventures Continue, prepare for a curious encounter with a few furry village inhabitants.

Imperial March

Clear the way for Darth Vader as the feared-and-revered Sith Lord leads a battalion of Stormtroopers down Hollywood Boulevard during a dramatic Imperial March to the event stage.

March of the First Order

Clear the way for Captain Phasma as this ruthless commander leads her squad of Stormtroopers up Hollywood Boulevard in a daunting demonstration of the First Order’s obedience and strength.

Characters at Star Wars Launch Bay

Visit the Cantina at this popular Disney’s Hollywood Studios destination for a chance to interact with the most notorious bounty hunter in the galaxy, Boba Fett—and possibly even Darth Vader himself!

Star Wars: Galactic Nights Event Hub

Make your way to the special event hub—a stunning, interactive projection featuring iconic Star Wars scenery.

After you witness a celebrity motorcade leading to Rebel Base, head to the main stage to find your home for ongoing event information, hosted shows, interactive moments, a DJ dance party and more!

In addition, be sure to check out the following feature presentations:

The Star Wars Show on Location

Join the hosts of the popular show as they interact with Guests like you… and film material for their weekly online program!

Celebrate the Saga

Throughout the evening, take off on an interactive journey that chronologically celebrates the milestones of 40 Force-filled years of Star Wars.

Scavenger Hunt

Put together a puzzle of interactive proportions as you collect Star Wars-themed pieces from each of the 8 live-action films!

During the Seize the Saga Scavenger Hunt, you’ll be enlisted to find 8 takeaway clues located at each of the Star Wars photo backdrops. After gathering the clues, Guests like you will be encouraged to act out your very own mini scene or capture a heartfelt message about your love for Star Wars—and post your moment on social media during the event

  • Star Tours – The Adventures Continue 
  • Star Wars Launch Bay 
  • Star Wars: Path of the Jedi 
  • Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple 
  • Toy Story Mania!
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 
  • The Great Movie Ride 
  • Muppet*Vision 3D 
  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid 
Disney has opened registration for reserved seating at the upcoming Broadway concerts, part of the 2017 Epcot International Festival of the Arts.
Registration emails are being sent to passholders with the sign-up link, which lets the passholder register for one concert during the festival on a first-come, first-served basis. Seating is available at the 5:30 PM and 6:45 PM shows.

Here is the line-up of performers:

  • Jan. 13-16 and 20-23 2017: Ashley Brown and Josh Strickland performing songs from: Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Tarzan, Mary Poppins and The Little Mermaid.
  • Jan. 27-30 and Feb. 3-6 2017: Kerry Butler and Kevin Massey performing songs from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Tarzan, Newsies and Aladdin.
  • Feb. 10-13 and 17-20 2017: Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White performing songs from Disney’s The Lion King, Aida, Aladdin and The Little Mermaid. 
In addition to the Food Studio kiosks around World Showcase, here is a full run-down of everything offered for the opening weekend:

Odyssey Festival Showplace

Art Workshops
In this classroom setting you will have an opportunity to learn a variety of artistic techniques from the experts To book, call 407-WDW-TOUR or visit the Odyssey Festival Showplace Reservations strongly recommended and require an additional fee.

Friday 11am - “Magical” Mixed Media Art Rachelle Eason, BoiLeD BooKS

Saturday 11am - Gesture Drawing Class Todd Bright, Former Disney Animator

Sunday 11am - Floral Arranging Disney Floral & Gifts

Monday 11am - Modern Macramé Sara Stoff, Fiber

These complimentary Seminars will give Guests the opportunity to hear from the pros.

  • Cel Painting - Lynn Rippberger, Disney Animation Ink And Paint Artist 1:30pm 
  • From Animated Films to Theme Parks - Lon Smart, Creative Concept Artist, Disney Entertainment 4:30pm 
  • Artisan Spice Blends Seminar & Tasting - Pam Smith & Nicole Ramsland, P S Flavor 1:30pm
  • Watermelon Carving - Gina Carrilho, Chef Assistant, Disney’s BoardWalk Resort Catering, hosted by National Watermelon Promotion Board 4:30pm 
  • Tea Discovery - Karon Cannon, Tea Craze 1:30pm 
  • Photography 101: Magic with Water - Tom Smutny, Disney Photo Imaging 4:30pm 
  • Napkin Folding - Nicole Sowers, Catering Manager, Disney Event Operations 1:30pm
  • Photography 101: Lighting and Perspective - Tom Smutny, Disney Photo Imaging 4:30pm 
Future World 
  • Living Statues - Fountain Plaza Intermittently 10:55am–5:40pm 
  • Animation Academy - Innoventions Intermittently 9:15am–6:15pm 
  • Live Performance Art - Fountain Stage 3:10pm 
  • Community Showcase Performances - Fountain Stage 10:00am, 11:20am 
World Showcase

Walking Chalk Art Gallery - Throughout the day

Saturday and Sunday only
  • Origami & Anime Class Garden Deck 1:30pm–3:30pm 
  • Kagami Biraki Courtyard 4:30pm 
  • Calligraphy Mitsukoshi Merchandise 4:45pm 
Disney on Broadway Concert Series
A collaboration with Disney Theatrical Productions brings an exciting new showcase of favorite music and Broadway talent.

Ashley Brown & Josh Strickland - America Gardens Theatre 5:30pm, 6:45pm, 8:00pm

Disney on Broadway line-up for the entire Festival.

Visiting Artists

Fountain Plaza
Trevor Carlton, Collectors Editions Performing Artists 11:00am–9:00pm

Showcase Plaza
Pop Gallery 11:00am–9:00pm

  • Nameworks 11:00am–9:00pm 
  • Luis Sottil 11:00am–9:00pm 
  • Brian Blackmore, Disney Parks and Resorts 
    • Friday 7:00pm–9:00pm 
    • Saturday 1:30pm–3:30pm 
    • Sunday 1:00pm–3:00pm 
  • Darren Wilson, Disney Parks and Resorts
    • Friday 5:00pm–7:00pm 
    • Saturday 11:00am–1:00pm 
  • Don “Ducky” Williams, Disney Parks and Resorts 
    • Friday 2:30pm–4:30pm 
    • Saturday, Sunday, Monday 4:00pm–6:00pm 
  • Joe Kaminski, Disney Parks and Resorts
    • Saturday 7:00pm–9:00pm 
  • Larry Dotson 11am-9pm 
  • Tom’s Shoes 11am-9pm 
  • James Coleman Studios 11am-9pm 
  • Boiled Books 11am-9pm 
  • Arribas Brothers 11am-9pm 
The American Adventure
  • Carlos Cuba Fine Art Photography 11am-9pm 
  • Walfrido Garcia, Wyland Galleries 12pm-4pm 
  • Michou Jewelry, Wyland Galleries 12pm-4pm 
Between Japan and Morocco
  • Greg McCullough 11am-9pm 
  • Disney Fine Art by Collectors Editions 11am-9pm 
Between Morocco and France
  • EyeCatchers, ACME Archives, and Fairy House Ladies 11:00am–9:00pm 
  • Disney Cruise Line 11:00am–9:00pm 
  • Noah 11:00am–9:00pm 
  • WonderGround Gallery
  • Kristin Tercek 12:00pm–3:00pm & 4:00pm–6:00pm 
  • Jasmine Becket-Griffith Monday 5:00pm–7:00pm 
Disney has announced that the Kingdom Cabanas at the Magic Kingdom will be discontinued on February 17, 2017. 

The cabanas had already been discounted since their initial launch and may have already been removed.


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