Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Meeting Mickey at the Town Square Theater

On one of my recent trips to Walt Disney World, I was able to experience the new meet and greet for Mickey and Minnie at the Magic Kingdom's Town Square Theater. I went close to midnight, so the majority of the kids were already gone and that meant no wait time for me. I literally walked right through! It was great!

Overall, I thought the room where you meet and take your picture with Mickey and Minnie is much better than the one in Mickey's Toontown Fair. It has so many intricate details that really bring the whole experience to life. What is lacking is the experience you used to get while waiting in line at Mickey's Toontown Fair. There, your entire surroundings brought the experience to life with giant pumpkins and old Disney cartoons! At the Town Square Theater it is basically just white walls with red carpet and ropes - it makes me glad that I didn't have to wait in line.

Below are pictures of what the experience inside the room with Mickey & Minnie looks like. I think you'll enjoy them.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Magical Blogorail - My Favorite Activity Outside of a Disney Theme Park

Welcome to those of you joining me from Magical Days with the Mouse and those of you who have just hopped aboard.  I am the final stop on our Magical Blogorail.

My favorite activity outside of going to the Disney theme parks is hanging out in Downtown Disney. 

I feel that Downtown Disney has so much to offer guests of all ages. For me, making a stop at Downtown Disney is a must on any Disney trip.

I love all the restaurants, shops and various activities that Downtown Disney has, and the best part about it for non-Disney Passholders is that you're getting the magic of Disney without having to pay the price! 

My absolute favorite activity at Downtown Disney is DisneyQuest which is basically a Disney virtual theme park. We have so much fun when we're there. You would think we were 10 years old again! I love the Pirates of the Caribbean, Buzz Lightyear's Astroblasters and Virtual Jungle Cruise attractions. I can never get enough of them. And of course being able to relive my childhood by playing all the old video games I used to play as a child in the classic video games area. 

Besides DisneyQuest, I love shopping and dining at Downtown Disney. Two of my favorite stores that I always visit are the World of  Disney and Disney's Days of Christmas. I always find something I want to buy to take back home with me. For dining your options are endless, although I tend to always eat at the same four places: Wolfgang Puck, Rainforest Cafe, T-REX and of course Earl of Sandwich.

In front of the World of Disney Store with Princess Aurora
I usually tend to follow a schedule as to when I visit Downtown Disney - if we are arriving at night, we'll make sure to stop there for dinner and of course no Disney trip can come to an end without me stopping there before heading back home.

Do you love visiting Downtown Disney as much as I do? What is your favorite thing to do there?

Thank you for joining us this month.  We will be back June 24th with an all new theme, though feel free to keep checking in with our blogs in between loops to keep up to date with our Disney info, photos and stories
.  If you are looking for more Disney magic, you can find all the blogorail members and their blogs, as well as all our previous loops at The Magical Blogorail.

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Loop should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Car Masters Weekend at Downtown Disney

Last weekend was an extremely busy weekend at Walt Disney World - from D23's Scavenger hunt and Pixar's 25th Anniversary Weekend at Epcot, to the soft opening of Star Tours - there was something going on at every park. Even Downtown Disney had an event with Car Masters Weekend to celebrate the upcoming release of "Cars 2."

There were fun activities throughout Downtown Disney to celebrate the upcoming movie. Kids even got a chance to meet the stars of "Cars 2" - Lightning, Mater and Finn McMissile! One of my favorite parts of the event was getting a chance to see all of the classic cars that were being showcased.

Classic Cars
Classic Cars
Finn McMissile
Lightning McQueen
Lightning McQueen

Friday, May 20, 2011

Star Wars Weekends 2011

The annual Star Wars Weekends kicks off today at Disney's Hollywood Studios. This year it brings something extra special to Star Wars fans with the grand opening of the new adventures of Star Tours.

Fans have been waiting quite some time for the revamping of the ride which is now in 3D. I've been hearing great things about the ride for about a week now as Disney has been testing it with a soft opening. Fans love it so much that I've been reading that some people are going back and riding it 4 or 5 times (some even 9)!

I'm really looking forward to going back in a couple of weeks to experience Star Wars Weekends. I go every year with my boyfriend and it is something we both enjoy. This year I'm especially looking forward to experiencing the new Star Tours! 

For those of you that want to make it to Star Wars Weekends this year, they are happening every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 20th through June 12th. 

Some celebrities expected to attend this year's event weekends include Peter Mayhew (Chewbaca), Ray Park (Darth Maul) and Tom Kane (Clone Wars voice of Yoda). 

For a full listing of Star Wars Weekends' celebrity lineup and event guide, be sure to visit the official event page here.  Disney has even added a techy way of keeping everyone updated on the latest Star Wars Weekends news. Guests can text STAR1 to DPARK in order to receive the latest information and real-time updates while they are there. 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Look Back at the 2011 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival

I love visiting Epcot each year during their annual Flower & Garden Festival. I look forward to seeing the new topiaries displayed throughout the park (and the classic ones too that return year after year) as well as all the flowers. 

It brings a little extra something to the park. I especially enjoy the different kiosks selling various plant species and items for the garden. It makes me forget that I don't have a green thumb and that everything I plant usually ends up dying. It actually inspires me to want to have a beautiful garden one day (I'm trying and I'm still working on getting the Plumeria I bought last year to bloom)!

This year's festival I think by far had the most beautiful topiaries, but I tend to say that every year! 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A Look at the Newly Renovated Lego Store in Downtown Disney

The newly renovated Lego Imagination Center at Downtown Disney opened up a couple of weeks ago. On a recent trip I took I stopped by (as I always do), to see the new store and Lego sculptures for myself. 

All I can say is that it's even better than before! I especially love the new Disney Lego Sculptures that were placed all around the front of the store. 

Below is a look at some of the sculptures. My favorite is Snow White with Dopey. What's your favorite? 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Gowalla Adds a Disney Summer Challenge

Since Gowalla teamed up with Disney as the official location-based social network for the Parks, new challenges and fun pins and badges are popping up all the time!

The latest Disney Challenge  on Gowalla is for summer and comes with a special Summer 2011 pin upon completion. In order to earn the Summer 2011 pin Gowalla users must check in at each of the following spots on the mobile app: 
  • Pirates of the Caribbean at Magic Kingdom
  • Star Tours at Disney's Hollywood Studios
  • Conservation Station at Disney's Animal Kingdom
  • America Gardens Theatre at Epcot during the Sounds Like Summer Concert Series
This isn't the only Disney challenge on Gowalla - there are so many different challenges to complete and badges to earn! 

A couple of months ago I earned my World Traveler badge by checking in to each pavilion at Epcot's World Showcase!

Do you use Gowalla or another location-based social network app when at the Parks? If you don't what ar

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Changes to the AMC Theatre in Downtown Disney

Dine-In | Cinema Suites 
The AMC Theatre in Downtown Disney recently announced that it was getting quite the makeover and the changes are coming just in time for summer!

Some changes include the addition of new digital technology with the ETX Theatre. They are also adding The Marketplace to the theatre which will be a modern take on your typical concession stand. New to the AMC Theatre will also be Coke Freestyle machines that will have more than 100 flavors of coke for anyone that is interested in experimenting and trying something new. 
My  favorite change and one that I am a very big fan of is the announcement of the addition of the AMC Dine-in Theatres to Downtown Disney. 
The AMC Dine-in Theatre will feature a movie theatre-restaurant experience for guests over the age of 18 (those under 18 must be accompanied by an adult). It will have over-sized,  Love-seat style seating and with personal tray tables so guests may enjoy food off an extensive menu that will feature appetizers, entrĂ©es, desserts and even a full bar. Staff will take guests' orders prior to the start of the movie and serve it before the film begins, giving guests the opportunity to fully experience the concept of "dinner and a movie."
Where I'm from we have Cobb's version of the dine-in theatre with their Cobb Cinebistro and I must say that once you've watched a movie at one of these theatres, you will never want to step foot in a regular movie theatre again. 
I for one have never been to the movie theatre in Downtown Disney. My reasoning behind it is that there is so much to do, why waste time in the movie theatre? But with this upgrade that the AMC Theatre has recently received, I'm just going to have to add it to my bucket list of things to do at Disney World!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Tickets for Mickey's Parties On Sale Now

Tickets are on sale for two of my favorite special ticketed events that take place at the Magic Kingdom each year: Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party!

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party will run on select nights September 13-November 1, 2011. I went for the first time in 2010 and absolutely loved it. Where else can a 20-something year old go trick or treating without getting strange looks?

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas party will run on select nights November 8-December 18, 2011. This event is one of my absolute favorites.  To me there is nothing that can get me in the Christmas spirit more than a trip to Disney during the holiday season. The lights and the Disney magic truly bring out the magic of the holidays! I look forward to this event every December. My boyfriend and I have made it a tradition to go every year together!

Both events are really amazing and if you have the opportunity to make it to both this year, I highly recommend it! However, if you can I only make it to one, then I would say go with Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party, but I'm being extremely biased since Disney and Christmas are two of my favorite things!

Tickets for both special events are on sale now. Make sure to check out Disney World’s Special Events page for pricing information. If you’re an annual passholder, there are select nights where discounted tickets are offered.