Disney World Candlelight Processional Celebrity Narrators Partially Announced for 2012

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Walt Disney World has begun announcing its celebrity narrators for its Candlelight Processional performances which will take place this year during the ‘Holidays Around the World’ celebration at Epcot from November 23 through December 30, 2012.

The shows will take place at the America Gardens Theatre, located across the American Adventure pavilion. Shows are free with seating available on a standby basis, or through priority seating which is offered via special dinner and lunch packages from table service restaurants at Epcot. Park admission is separate and required regardless.

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Periwinkle to Join Pixie Hollow at Disney Parks in October

Tinker Bell and Periwinkle in 'Secret of the Wings' © Disney. All Rights Reserved.

In honor of Secret of the Wings, which debuts on 3D Blu-ray on October 23, Disney Parks has officially confirmed it will be introducing Tinker Bell’s new wintery friend, Periwinkle, as a meet & greet character at the Disneyland and Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom theme parks. No specific date has been given other than her appearances will begin in October.

For Tinker Bell and the other warm season fairies, the Winter Woods remains a mysterious and forbidden place. Secret of the Wings takes audiences on an amazing journey of discovery with Tink, into this forbidden world where she discovers a magical secret that changes her life forever.

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D23 Details Epcot 30th Anniversary Event; Tickets Available June 21

D23 Epcot 30th Anniversary EventHailed as the most groundbreaking theme park of its time, Epcot marks its 30th anniversary on Oct. 1, 2012, and D23: The Official Disney Fan Club is preparing a unique celebration of one of Disney’s crowning achievements.

On Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012, D23’s Epcot 30th Anniversary Celebration will whisk D23 Members back to a time touted as when “the 21st century begins”—those early Epcot years when guests first marveled at “Astuter Computers,” “Smellitzers,” and the novelty of “riding on sunshine,” and were awed by a massive geodesic sphere called Spaceship Earth.

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Sneak Peek: ‘Disney Vacation Account’ Service from Walt Disney World

'Disney Vacation Account' service from Walt Disney WorldNo matter who you are, no matter where you stay, no matter how long you stay, one thing is for certain: it costs money. For most families, planning a Walt Disney World Resort vacation also requires careful planning and budgeting and while future guests are able to pay down their balance as they draw closer to arrival, there’s very little benefit to it other than to insure the money goes to where its intended.

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WDW Refurb Update: Country Bear Jamboree in Hibernation for Fall

The official Walt Disney World Resort website has been updated to advise that Country Bear Jamboree located at the Magic Kingdom will be closed for refurbishment beginning September 1, 2012 and lasting through October 17. It should be noted that when the notice was first posted, it began on October 1, so there is a small chance that the start date may actually precede September.

Additionally, a brief closure for American Idol Experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios was recently announced for June 14 and 15.

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‘Tailor Made’ Ink and Paint Cel Release on June 23 at Walt Disney World

'Tailor Made' Ink and Paint CelOn Saturday, June 23, join Disney Ink and Paint Artists: Erin Magill, Theodora M. DeLaney, David Rippberger, Lynn Rippberger and Sharon K. Vincent as they celebrate the premiere of the Tailor Made entry into the Ink and Paint Cel series. In the cel, Donald Duck directs the cast of Mickey and Minnie at Disney’s Hollywood Studios as they recreate a scene from the 1938 animated short, Walt Disney’s Brave Little Tailor.

'Tailor Made' Ink and Paint Cel PinThe cel is hand-painted with edition size of 1,000 pieces. As an extra bonus, the first 750 framed pieces sold will be accompanied by a matching limited edition pin created for the release.

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Photo: White Rhino Calf Born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

White Rino with Calf at Disney's Animal KingdomMother’s Day may be a little more memorable this year for a Disney “mom” that recently gave birth to a white rhino calf at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

After a 16-month gestation period, Kendi delivered her fourth calf Friday, May 4. The healthy male, which has not yet been named, is the ninth white rhino born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom; his mother, 13-year-old, Kendi, was the first.

“The birth of a white rhino calf is certainly something to celebrate since the population of this species is endangered in the wild,” said Jackie Ogden, Ph.D., vice president of Animals, Science and Environment for Disney Parks. “It’s encouraging that with protection and careful management, the global population of white rhinos continues to grow.”

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Carbonite Experience to be Offered at Star Wars Weekends 2012

Custom Carbonites by Paul PapeWhat do you get the Star Wars fan that has everything? Studios Central is reporting that Star Wars Weekends (weekends May 18 through June 10, 2012 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios) will be offering a ‘Carbon Freeze Me’ opportunity in which guests can be digitally scanned to produce a likeness of themselves frozen in carbonite.

The site reports the experience will be offered inside ‘Sounds Dangerous’ and will cost $99.95. The final product will be delivered via mail within 3 – 4 weeks.

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Photos/Videos: Merida Character Begins Testing at Epcot in Walt Disney World

Princess Merida at Epcot in Walt Disney World. Photo by abelle2 / FlickrPrincess Merida, the heroine of Disney/Pixar’s Brave, made a surprise appearance in Future World at Epcot yesterday. Although she will officially begin meeting guests in a play and greet environment at the Magic Kingdom starting later this month, she is apparently making random appearances as she gets acclimated to the harsh Orlando weather.

A batch of photos have appeared on Flickr from abelle2, although it appears more photos can be seen currently on this tumblr post (via @DisneyProjects).

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‘The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow’ Experience to Open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Fall

The summer 2012 edition of the Mickey Monitor, Walt Disney World’s newsletter for Annual Passholders has announced that ‘The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow’ will be opening at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in summer of this year. It will be placed in Sound Stage 4 which has historically been known for sharing behind-the-scenes props and footage from films such as Haunted Mansion and films from The Chronicles of Narnia series, but ‘The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow,’ while based on The Pirates of the Caribbean films, is not reported to continue that genre.

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