Photo: Beast’s Castle in New Fantasyland Expansion at Magic Kingdom

Beast's Castle © Matthew Cooper. All Rights Reserved.Admittedly I don’t make it a habit to check out every over-the-fence type shot of the work being done on the New Fantasyland Expansion at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World, but when I came across this photo as it was posted on Tumblr, I knew it was something worth sharing.

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‘One More Disney Day’ Tied to Leap Day Festivities, New Year’s Eve Surprise Announcement

Disney Parks and Resorts almost had us. Back in August, we revealed that we had learned Disney Parks and Resorts was working on something dubbed ‘One More Disney Day.’ Due to the timing (close to when new campaigns were usually announced) and the Disney D23 Expo looming ahead, we naturally made the assumption that it must be the campaign for the 2012 year.

Well months came and went and we ended up sporting egg on our face as we found out Disney Parks went ahead and created a page dedicated to ‘One More Disney Day.’ The problem? It ended up seeming more like a blase sales pitch then anything else. Hey, stay another day. Why not? Why not indeed.

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Three Kings Day to be Celebrated for First Time at Disneyland Resort in 2012

Three Kings Day celebration entrance concept artThe Disneyland Resort today announced that for the first time, it will observe Three Kings Day as part of its holiday celebration festivities in addition to its traditional offerings including nightly snowfall on Main Street USA and holiday overlays for ‘it’s a small world’ and Haunted Mansion.

Also known as Día de los Reyes Magos, Three Kings Day is celebrated in many Latin American countries as part of the Christmas story. It commemorates the day the three kings (the magi or ‘wise men’) followed the star to Bethlehem and presented their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

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‘Toy Story Mania!’ to Open at Tokyo Disneyland Resort on July 9, 2012

Oriental Land Company, Ltd., owner and operator of the Tokyo Disney Resort, has announced that on July 9, 2012, it will welcome the 3D attraction ‘Toy Story Mania!’ based on the popular Toy Story franchise from Disney/Pixar to the Tokyo DisneySea theme park.

The 3D attraction, a first for the resort, will be located in a new area of the park, Toyville Trolley Park, themed to an old-fashioned amusement park. Guests will enter the attraction through the ‘wide open mouth’ of Woody whose face will measure more than 26 feet in height. Once inside the attraction, the queue will appear full of ‘oversized’ toys and board games, similar to that of the queue at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. At this time there is no mention of the troubled Mr. Potato Head interactive audio  animatronic found at both the Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort (Disney California Adventure) locations.

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Disney’s Flamingo Crossings Gets First Occupant, Files Trademark Applications

Located just a couple of miles outside of the Walt Disney World gates, news on Disney’s planned shopping, dining and hotel district community known as ‘Flamingo Crossings’ has remained sparse and eerily quiet. Much of that changed a couple of months ago, however, when news of an association with Walgreens was discovered. In addition to the agreement between Walgreens and Flamingo Crossings, LLC, we thought it would be worth it to take a few moments to take a look at some of the activity that’s been taken place over the past couple of months.

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Hint: Walt Disney World’s New Year’s Eve Surprise Includes Disneyland (and 24 Hour Parties)

How many months have 29 days? All of them if it happens to be a leap year and that aspect of 2012 seems to be the cornerstone of what Disney Parks and Resorts is billing as a big New Year’s Eve ‘surprise announcement.’ Leave it to Disney Parks to schedule and pre-premote their spontaneous surprises.

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Disney Files Patent Application for True ‘Flight Simulator’ Vehicle

'Cable-Suspended Amusement Park Vehicle' by Disney EnterprisesArguably a theme park will need a lot of available land, or an expansion of sorts, to implement the type of attraction demonstrated in the recently published patent application titled ‘Amusement Park Ride with Cable-Suspended Vehicles’ (patent application US 20110300957).

As demonstrated here by what appears to be some sort of cable-car themed vehicle cruising through the streets of a metropolis, the vehicle, as invented by David W. Crawford and Edward A. Nemeth, uses multiple cables to control various aspects and positions of the vehicle itself.

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WDW Refurb Update: Magic Carpets Grounded, HISTK Playground Closure

The Walt Disney World official website has recently added a couple of entries to its operation calendar for early 2012.

The first of the new closures announced is that of the ‘Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure’ which is slated to join the previously announced Backlot Studios Tour closure beginning on January 13 and re-opening on March 11.

Also re-opening on March 11, but closing on February 26, 2012 is the ‘Magic Carpets of Aladdin’ attraction in Magic Kingdom’s Adventureland.

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Four Seasons Resort at Walt Disney World’s Golden Oak Breaks Ground

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Larry Silverstein, president and CEO of Silverstein Properties, Mickey Mouse, Meg Crofton, president, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Operations, U.S. and France, and Kathleen Taylor, president and CEO of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. (PRNewsFoto/Walt Disney World Resort)Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts kicked off construction of its luxury resort at Walt Disney World Resort today, in a groundbreaking ceremony with joint venture partners Silverstein Properties and Dune Real Estate Partners. The 444-room resort, being built in the enclave of Golden Oak at Walt Disney World Resort, will create about 2,000 construction jobs, and hundreds of resort positions when open.

“Travelers around the world know and trust Four Seasons, and Walt Disney World is the world’s premiere family vacation destination,” said Meg Crofton, president Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Operations US & France. “Together, our two companies offer a brand-new reason to visit and experience Central Florida.”

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WDW Refurb Update: House of Innoventions Closed til Mid-2012; Studio Backlot Tour

House of Innoventions at Epcot’s Innoventions East is now closed, presumably due to the recent announcement that Green Builder Media will be transitioning it into what will be known as the ‘VISION House.’ No specific date has been provided for the re-opening other than an expected time frame of May, 2012.

The Studio Backlot Tour at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is now slated to close on February 13, 2012 and re-open on March 11.

There is also a minor quiet pool refurb scheduled at the Beach Club Villas on December 14 and 15.

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