Photo: Boston Celtics Fill the Magic Kingdom with Hoop Dreams

Boston Celtics players (L-R): J.R. Giddens, Ray Allen, Eddie House and Tony Allen huddle Dec. 24, 2009 with Mickey Mouse at the Magic Kingdom in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.  The NBA players visited the theme park on the eve of their Christmas Day game against the Orlando Magic.  The Celtics and Magic tip-off in a nationally televised game Dec. 25 at 2:30 p.m. ET at Amway Arena in Orlando, Fla. (Gene Duncan, photographer)

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WDW Refurb Update: Movie Set Adventure Joins Backlot Tour Closure in Feb

We recently advised that both the Backlot Tour and the Studio Catering Co Quick Service location will be closing February 15 and re-opening on March 28.

We have now been alerted that the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure is also being affected by this area refurb and will be closed for the same duration.

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Disney, Chase Launch Disney Rewards Visa® Debit Card

NEW YORK — Disney and Chase today announced a new offering in the Chase family of Disney Rewards Visa Cards, the Disney Rewardssm Visa Debit Card. The new card gives Chase checking account customers access to valuable Disney perks and rewards through the control and accountability of a debit card.

“This is an excellent new choice for Chase customers who prefer to make purchases with debit cards because of the immediacy and financial control it provides,” said Charlie Scharf, chief executive officer of Retail Financial Services for Chase. “The Disney Rewards Debit Card introduces a whole new world of Disney benefits to debit cardholders.”

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Dates for Walt Disney World’s 2010 Star Wars Weekends Announced

On its official blog, Disney Parks has announced the dates for the 2010 Star Wars Weekends event to take place at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

The dates are as follows: May 21 – 23, May 28 – 30, June 4 – 6 and June 11 – 13

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Muppets to Lead Disney Parks Afternoon Parades in 2010

Beginning January 8, 2010, Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy and Sweetums will join the Disney’s Honorary VoluntEARS Cavalcade which will act as the pre-parade for the afternoon parades at both the Magic Kingdom and at Disneyland.

The Muppets and parade dancers, wearing outfits that celebrate the work of volunteers, will join special floats and vehicles celebrating volunteerism and presenting Honorary VoluntEARS serving as Grand Marshals of the parades.

On February 11, Walt Disney World’s Epcot will also be hosting the Disney Parks’ Celebration of Volunteerism event which will be a Disney star-studded event, celebrating family volunteering.

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Photo: Justin Bieber at the Magic Kingdom with Aladdin’s Genie

Canadian pop singer Justin Bieber poses Dec. 19, 2009 with the “Genie” from Disney’s animated film “Aladdin” at the Magic Kingdom. Bieber was in central Florida to perform at a Radio Disney concert at the Celebration Town Center in nearby Celebration, Fla. Magic Kingdom is one of four theme parks at Walt Disney World Resort. (Preston Mack, photographer)

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WDW Refurb Update: CSR Pool in Jan; Backlot Tour and Studio Catering Company in Feb

Both the Backlot Tour and Studio Catering Company at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will close on February 15 and re-open on March 28.

Additionally, the Dig Site (Feature Pool) at Coronado Springs Resort will close on Jan 11 for the rest of the month.

Planning a trip to Walt Disney World? Be the first to know when changes that potentially affect your trip occur by signing up with ReSearch!

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Walt Disney World Launches Art For Music Website; Announces Event Date of January 19

Recently on its official blog, Disney Parks gave an inside look at one of five custom-painted basses that will be auctioned off to benefit school music programs in honor of the 25th Anniversary of Disney’s Magic Music Days in which students from schools all over are invited to perform at the resort.

Today, Disney has launched the DisneyArtForMusic.com website which indicates that there will be a special event taking place at Walt Disney World on January 19, 2010 with more details to come.

We will update as we learn more.

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WDW Refurb Update: Sounds Dangerous Re-Opens (Seasonally), Epcot Closures in Jan-Feb

A few updates to the refurbishment schedule at Walt Disney World.

First, Sounds Dangerous with Drew Carey, which has been marked as ‘operating seasonally’ since the beginning of the year will re-open for December 20 through January 2 only and is then scheduled to close for the remainder of 2010 (barring any future changes).

Living with the Land, having just recently re-opened from an emergency refurb, is scheduled to close beginning January 18 and re-open on February 6.

Test Track will also have a closure in January, albeit a smaller one, from January 11 through January 17.

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PhotoMovie from Disney’s PhotoPass Discontinued

For at least the second time in PhotoPass history, PhotoMovie is no longer available for purchase. The last time it was not made available was when PhotoCD and PhotoMovie were the only products and the online presence was going through a major overhaul. With the product removed completely from the products list and the help section listing the product as being discontinued, it doesn’t appear as though the PhotoMovie is destined to return any time soon.

For the most complete guide anywhere to Disney’s PhotoPass, bar-none, see our Definitive Guide.

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