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  • Blog Post: WDW's Galaxy Palace Theater to be replaced with ... Cast Member parking ?!

    "Don't it always seem to go, That you don't know what you've got Till it's gone They paved paradise and put up a parking lot." -- Joni Mitchell , " Big Yellow Taxi " I doubt that anyone -- not the choirs or the cheerleaders or all of the Cast Members that have performed here over the years -- would ever...
  • Blog Post: Is everything on display in DCA's "Blue Sky Cellar" actually going to get built? Maybe. Maybe not

    Anne L. writes in to ask: "This past week, I couldn't help but notice that -- out of all the major Disneyana sites on the Web -- JHM is the only one that hasn't mentioned DCA 's Blue Sky Cellar yet. Why is that?" To be honest, Anne, you kind of answered your own question. Given that everyone else out...
  • Blog Post: Is Disney looking to trade its 5th Avenue store in for a brand-new retail location down on Times Square?

    As you might expect, NYC's World of Disney is currently all tricked out for trick-or-treat time. Photo by Jim Hill And as you wander all three floors of this 5th Avenue store, you'll find all sorts of Halloween-related materials. From 15th anniversary " Nightmare Before Christmas " merch ... Photo by...
  • Blog Post: "Creating Magic" reveals how the modern Magic Kingdom really operates

    If you want to know all about the Walt Disney Company's past , there are lots of great books already on the market. Just in the past year, we've had David Koenig 's " Realityland: True-Life Adventures at Walt Disney World ," Michael Barrier 's " The Animated Man: A Life of Walt Disney " and Neal Gabler...
  • Blog Post: WDW officials knew that '09 was going to be a real challenge

    Wayne C. sent in an interesting follow-up question to yesterday's article : "When exactly did Disney World executives realize that their resort was about to hit a rough patch? Based on some of the things they've done over the past six months (EX: Announcing back in July that they'd be closing Pleasure...
  • Blog Post: Disney World postpones Fantasyland's facelift

    Do you hear that squealing noise coming out of Burbank? That's the sound of Mouse House management stomping on the brakes. Slowing down (and -- in some cases -- shutting down entirely) some of the more ambitious projects that the Walt Disney Company currently has in the works. All because of what's been...
  • Blog Post: "Marching Along, We're Adventurers. Singing the Song of Adventurers ..."

    If I had to name the one thing that I enjoy most out of all the rides, shows, attractions, theme parks, resorts and whatnot that can now be found at Walt Disney World, my favorite would have to be the Adventurers Club. Photo by Jeff Lange Why For? Because this Pleasure Island Club takes everything that...
  • Blog Post: Is free admission to a Disney theme park on your birthday really a good enough reason to schedule a "Celebration Vacation" ?

    Okay. It's time to test your observational skills. Please check out the photo below of a typical NYC street scene and then identify the person and/or items that don't quite belong. Photo by Jim Hill That's right. It's the guy with all of those Mickey Mouse balloons who looks out of place in modern day...
  • Blog Post: Monday Mouse Watch : The Adventurers Club gets ready for its exit while the American Idol Experience delays its entrance

    This past Friday night, visitors to the Adventurers Club got to see a brand-new artifact added to the wall in the Main Salon : A video projection screen. Photo by Max Schilling Given that this piece of Pleasure Island is supposed to be a recreation of a gentlemen's club from the 1930s, one might wonder...
  • Blog Post: Say "Nighty-night" to Night Kingdom and "Jambo" to Disney's Jungle Trek

    Will you be visiting Walt Disney World over the next week-to-10-days? If so, keep a close eye out for any cast members clutching clipboards. Who may want to hear your opinion on WDI's recently revamped plans for Disney's Night Kingdom . That's right. WDW's answer to Discovery Cove has undergone a rethink...
  • Blog Post: Get ready to "Dive, Dine, Discover" at the Seas corporate lounge

    The Walt Disney World Resort has lots of hidden nooks & crannies. Places that are damn near impossible for members of the general public to visit. But among the toughest areas to access are WDW's corporate lounges. Unless you're an employee of one of the corporations that actually sponsors WDW's...
  • Blog Post: The Adventurers Club that we almost got

    It's still hard for all us Adventurers Club fans to fathom that -- just seven weeks from now (give or take a day or two) -- that Pleasure Island will be no more. That on September 28th, WDW will permanently pull the plug on PI . Having spent many pleasant nights at the Club, I just can't imagine a Disney...
  • Blog Post: Well, so much for that conspiracy theory ...

    Let me tell you about a rather breathless phone call I received just yesterday from a reporter who works for a major American daily. This reporter (And -- no -- I'm not going to reveal his name. The poor guy's already embarassed enough as it is) thought that he had stumbled upon this truly huge Disney...
  • Blog Post: Peter David maps out a campaign to save the Adventurers Club

    Peter David isn't exactly sure when he first discovered the Adventurers Club. "It had to be sometime in 1989 or 1990," this award-winning author remembers. "I was exploring the then-newly-opened Pleasure Island . I'd already been to a number of the other clubs on the Island. And I must have wandered...
  • Blog Post: Monday Mouse Watch : Get ready for WDW's monstrous new coaster

    Judging by the long lines at " Toy Story Mania " as well as the brisk business that "Hey Howdy Hey!" & the gift shop across the way have been doing, it would appear that Pixar Place has already proven to be a very popular addition to Disney's Hollywood Studios . The only problem with the studio theme...
  • Blog Post: Just how spectacular was WDW's Bicentennial spectacular?

    Bradley R. writes in to ask: Jim -- I was just down at Disney World and I have to admit that the Magic Kingdom's "Celebrate America! -- A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky" show was pretty spectacular. But as good as those fireworks were, they got me thinking. Has Disney World ever staged a bigger display...
  • Blog Post: Still can't find Nemo? Then try looking inside of your room the next time you stay at Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort

    First they conquered Hollywood. Then the Disney theme parks. But are you ready for Pixar-themed elements to start popping at WDW's resorts? And -- no -- we're not just talking about enormous decorative elements like you find over at Disney's All-Star Movies . Copyright Disney / Pixar. All Rights Reserved...
  • Blog Post: Monday Mouse Watch : The Winter of Disney's Discontent

    It's been 10 days now since WDW officials revealed that they plan on closing the Pleasure Island portion of Downtown Disney . And while PI fans remain up in arms about this decision (To date, over 4800 of them have already signed that online " Save the Adventurers Club " petition) ... I think it's important...
  • Blog Post: Monday Mouse Watch : Why Pleasure Island has to close

    What with the Rock 'n' Roll Beach Club closing back in February as well as the island's signature spotlights being sold off one month later, it's not as if the handwriting hasn't already been on the wall for WDW 's Pleasure Island . Earlier this month, another indication that this nighttime entertainment...
  • Blog Post: Will pirates soon be returning to Treasure ... er ... Discovery Island?

    Christy S. writes in to say: Jim When I was a little girl, my father and I flew down to Walt Disney World . This was just a year or so after the resort opened and I distinctly remember taking a boat ride with my father out to some island. Once we got there, these pirates led us on a treasure hunt which...
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