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  • Blog Post: D23 members enjoy an exclusive Epcot experience at Sunday's Flowers & Fireworks Celebration

    This past Sunday night, D23 – The Official Community for Disney Fans – had its first real event of size at The Walt Disney World Resort . With charter members invited to come on out to Epcot so they could enjoy an evening of music, munchies and munitions. So what was the verdict on the Flowers &...
  • Blog Post: “American Idol” fans scream as Kris Allen visits Disney’s Hollywood Studios

    Say what you will about the newest “ American Idol .” But Kris Allen is a man of his word. Just 8 days after he stood on stage at LA’s Nokia Theater and said “ I’m Going to Disney World! ” … Photo by Paul Hiffmeyer … Here Kris was. Surrounded by cheering fans as his motorcade rolled through Disney’s...
  • Blog Post: When it comes to the Haunted Mansion, theming is a matter of grave importance

    Though it's supposedly the "Happiest Place on Earth," Disneyland has more than its share of ghoulish spots. Take -- for example -- the graveyard out behind Fort Wilderness on Tom Sawyer Island ... Photo by Jeff Lange ... or -- for that matter -- the Boot Hill section of the Frontierland Shootin' Exposition...
  • Blog Post: "Pirates" ahoy, while "Goofy's Candy Company" finale just annoys

    Let's face it. The Disney theme parks have always been used as promotional vehicles by the Walt Disney Company. I mean, think back to 1954. When Walt Disney first revealed that his Anaheim theme park would feature a Sleeping Beauty Castle. Photo courtesy of Google Images "Why a Sleeping Beauty Castle...
  • Blog Post: Beware of real-live hitchhiking ghosts

    It's that time of year again. When -- on special nights -- WDW 's Magic Kingdom undergoes this extraordinary transformation and becomes the place where " Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party " is held. Photo by Jeff Lange It really is a special kind of night. A night where creatures that you never thought...
  • Blog Post: Recycled Rabbit: How Disneyland's "Party Gras" parade eventually began surprising guests at WDW's 20th anniversary celebration

    Regarding last week's " Hare Today, Gone Today " series, Robert C. wrote in to ask: Jeff, I really enjoyed today's "Roger Rabbit" article. It was great to see all of those old pictures of Roger in the park. One thing intrigued me, though. That picture that you posted of the Roger Rabbit float in Disneyland...
  • Blog Post: Hare today, Gone Tomorrow: The Curious Case of the Rapidly Receding Rabbit (Part II)

    Picking up where we left off yesterday ... How big was Roger Rabbit back in the early 1990s? So big that Walt Disney World 's marketing department decided that this Gary Wolf character would be the perfect frontman for that resort's 20th anniversary celebration. Which is why -- in the Fall of 1991 -...
  • Blog Post: Baby Moe, Larry & Curly?! Baby Hulk & Wolverine?! Get ready for the new toon baby boom

    The way I understand it, it's the late Jim Henson that we really should blame for this toon baby thing. By that I mean: Henson's the guy who basically invented this genre back in 1984, when he introduced the Muppet Babies in " The Muppets Take Manhattan " (FYI: Don't confuse the Muppet Babies [left]...
  • Blog Post: Disneyana fans enjoy after-hours fun at NYC's World of Disney "Pirates in the Big Apple" event

    At first glance, it appears that it's just business as usual at NYC's World of Disney . Minnie, Pluto & Mickey occupy their usual spot on the store's marquee. But wait a minute ... Who's that in the second story window? Is that ... Capt. Jack Sparrow? Photo by Jeff Lange And what's the deal with...
  • Blog Post: Lost "Horizons" : Another look back at a Future World favorite

    I got a call from Brian Ramsey of Mouse Surplus the other day. Who insisted that -- the very next time that I was down at Walt Disney World -- that I had to come by his new 1500 Tradeport Drive location and check out MS's new super-sized set-up. Photo by Jeff Lange And that was the plan, anyway. That...
  • Blog Post: Melts in your mouth, not in your ... hook?

    Late last week, I told the boss that I was going out of town for the weekend to attend the Crown Royal 400 at the Richmond International Raceway . What was Jim's response? “Be sure and bring your camera along. I bet that there’ll be lots of ‘ Cars ’ promotional stuff going on at this race. So get plenty...
  • Blog Post: How Suite will this be? A closer look at the uncompleted portion of WDW's Pop Century resort

    Picking up where we left off on Tuesday ... I won't lie to you, folks. It felt somewhat surreal to drive through that open gate and finally get to see the unfinished portion of Pop Century's "Legendary Years" section. Where all the lawns were choked with weeds ... Photo by Jeff Lange ... where the temporary...
  • Blog Post: Looking across the lake at Pop Century's unfinished "Legendary Years"

    Did you catch Mark Goldhaber 's latest WDW Update column over on MousePlanet yesterday? You know, the one where Mark talks about the Walt Disney World Resort is reportedly finally getting ready to restart construction of the "Legendary Years" side of the Pop Century Resort ? If not ... Well, then go...
  • Blog Post: Could old show concepts help bring about a brand-new Tomorrowland for WDW's Magic Kingdom?

    This past weekend, time finally ran out for " The Timekeeper ." Photo by Jeff Lange This Magic Kingdom attraction (Which -- admittedly -- had only been operating on a seasonal basis for the past few years) officially closed for good on Sunday night. Sometime next month, workers are expected to enter...
  • Blog Post: New "Disney at Daytona" merchandise line reaches out to race fans

    You know, after you spend 10 solid days at Walt Disney World, it's kind of easy to get Moused out. You know what I'm talking about, right? That feeling you get after you've stood in one too many lines and/or been joustled by one too many tourists. That little voice inside you that says: "If I see one...
  • Blog Post: Evidently that Yeti wasn't ready for his close-up

    When it comes to storytelling, the Walt Disney Company usually likes to stick with the lighter material. You know? " ... And they lived happily ever after" and all that jazz. Which is why I was startled to see - as I recently made my way through " Expedition Everest " 's queue area - that the Imagineers...
  • Blog Post: DAK bulletin board cleverly sets the stage for "Expedition Everest"

    Okay. I know that there's already been a lot written about Expedition Everest . About how the Imagineers have really outdone themselves with Forbidden Mountain. Not only by giving Disney's Animal Kingdom this exciting new thrill ride but by also providing the entire Walt Disney World resort with a memorable...
  • Blog Post: "Journey to Narnia" exhibit brings C. S. Lewis' fantasy world to life

    Last week, the Walt Disney Company and Walden Media officially announced that they had begun pre-production on "Prince Caspian ," the highly anticipated follow-up to the hugely popular motion picture, " The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe ." Which wasn't really a surprise....
  • Blog Post: A fond look back at "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride"

    Does anyone else out there miss WDW's version of " Mr. Toad's Wild Ride ?" Photo by Jeff Lange Oh. I know. It was just a dark ride that (Let's be honest here, folks) was based on one of Walt Disney Studio's lesser animated features, " The Adventures of Ichabod & Mr. Toad ." And the Disney World version...
  • Blog Post: What actually became of 20K's submarines: Part I

    How many of you remember WDW's " 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea " attraction? Photo by Jeff Lange That classic Magic Kingdom attraction that allowed you to board a scaled-down version of the Nautilus ... Photo by Jeff Lange ... and journey with Capt. Nemo to see the wondrous sights that were hidden away...
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