PHOTO: ‘Bachelor’ Juan Pablo Galavis Kickin’ It with Mickey at Epcot

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Juan Pablo Galavis (Matt Stroshane/Disney)Juan Pablo Galavis, star of the upcoming edition of ABC’s ‘The Bachelor,’ poses yesterday, December 29, 2013 with a soccer-clad Mickey Mouse at the Epcot theme park located in the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

Galavis, a former professional soccer player, will star on the 18th season of the reality series when it debuts on January 5, 2014.

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Disney’s ‘Flamingo Crossings’ Names New Mystery Occupant

With the big to-do that is the Downtown Disney-to-Disney Springs makeover, it’s probably easy to forget DTD’s sparser little sibling, Flamingo Crossings. Announced in 2007, with a small website erected in 2009 to hopefully garner interest from businesses, the promised ‘fun-filled, value-oriented, themed tourist district being developed directly outside the western gateway to Walt Disney World Resort’ has done little since to fulfill those promises. The last big news came in October of 2011, when Disney laid down some of the legal groundwork for tenancy as well as announced its agreement with Walgreens.

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Tokyo Disney to Acquire Additional Land for Possible Expansion

With the intent of its use to be determined at a later date, the Oriental Land Company (OLC)  announced its plans to acquire approximately 5.8 acres of neighboring land from the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company at an approximate cost of $89 million US. The land is the former site of the Tokyo Bay NK Hall and contains ‘ancillary facilities’ according to the notice. Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company is a major shareholder of OLC and corporate sponsor of the Tokyo Disney Resort.

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‘Stitch Encounter’ to Replace ‘Captain EO’ at Tokyo Disney Resort

'Sttitch Encounter' at Hong Kong DisneylandWith the actual attraction name yet to be announced/confirmed, the Oriental Land Company (OLC) today announced that it will be closing ‘Captain EO’ on June 30, 2014 to make way for a new attraction to debut at Tokyo Disneyland. The new attraction will be akin to ‘Stitch Encounter’ at Hong Kong Disneyland and ‘Stitch Live!’ at Walt Disney Studios Paris in that it will allow up to 160 guests to ‘communicate with Stitch, who is in outer space, in real time over the theater’s large screen. The entire family will enjoy the fun-filled conversations with the mischievous Stitch.’

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WestJet Debuts ‘Magic Plane’ Featuring Sorcerer Mickey

WestJet 'Magic Plane'WestJet, WestJet Vacations and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts (Canada) today pulled back the curtain on their most exciting adventure yet — a custom-painted Boeing Next-Generation 737-800 series aircraft featuring Mickey Mouse in his most famous role, Sorcerer Mickey.

WestJet, WestJet Vacations and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts (Canada) first forged a relationship in 2004 based on a shared vision of creating memorable experiences for their guests. Known in the social media world as the #MagicPlane, the aircraft will perform its inaugural flight on December 3, 2013, from Calgary to Orlando, Florida, home of Walt Disney World Resort. Following the flight, the Magic Plane will fly throughout WestJet’s domestic, trans-border and international network.

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Disney ‘Show Your Ears’ Sweepstakes to Award Disney Parks Vacation

Kermit the Frog's Disney SideAs park of the Disney Parks ‘Disney Side’ campaign, The Walt Disney Company is awarding a five-day/4-night vacation for four to one lucky entrant including theme park tickets, roundtrip airfare, hotel stay, $500 Disney gift card and a Disney PhotoPass CD with a sweepstakes it has dubbed ‘Show Your Ears.’ Five first place winners will receive a $100 Disney gift card.

To enter the sweepstakes, which runs from November 21 through December 20, 2013, entrants are encouraged to upload a photo displaying them wearing a set of mouse ears that reflects their Disney Side (an alternate method of entering is also available). Entries can be uploaded daily.

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Nikon Named Official Camera of Disney Parks North America

Nikon Inc. and Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts today announced a multi-year strategic alliance naming Nikon the official camera of Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. and Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Ca. Bringing together a global leader in imaging and the world’s leading family vacation destinations, this relationship continues the longstanding commitment to help guests capture every moment of their vacation.

“The alliance between Nikon and Disney allows us to connect with millions of passionate Disney guests who want to tell their stories through the capture of amazing imagery,” said Nobuyoshi Gokyu, president, Nikon Inc. “Through this agreement, Nikon will play an integral role in helping Disney guests to preserve and share every unforgettable moment.”

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Alaska Airlines Debuts Fifth Disneyland-Themed Plane, ‘Adventure of Disneyland Resort’

Alaskan Airlines 'Adventure of Disneyland Resort'The newest themed airplane in Alaska Airlines’ fleet flew into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport today, featuring one of America’s most beloved and rusty tow trucks.

Adorned with the familiar images of Disney-Pixar’s animated Cars characters Mater, Lightning McQueen, Guido and Luigi, the colorful Boeing 737-800 named ‘Adventure of Disneyland Resort’ celebrates Alaska’s partnership with Walt Disney’s original theme park.

At a special airport event, Mater himself made a satellite appearance from Cars Land at Disney California Adventure Park, providing travelers with updates on the arrival of the plane as it neared Seattle. After the ceremony, the aircraft officially joined the Alaska fleet on a flight to Orange County, Calif., and will then fly throughout the carrier’s 65-city network.

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Muppets to Take Center Stage at 2014 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

Kermit the Frog will find it is easy being green when his artfully-crafted character topiary debuts during the 21st Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival presented by HGTV March 5 to May 18, 2014 at Walt Disney World Resort. With flamboyance to spare, a floral Miss Piggy will join Kermit and his blooming banjo in the World Showcase topiary display.

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