Walt Disney World held a preview of the arrival of Duffy the Disney Bear at Epcot today for annual passholders. Although we couldn’t be there to report on the event first-hand, Kristin Ford of the Orlando Sentinel’s A Mom and the Mouse tweeted some of the news that was announced at the event.
As expected, it was confirmed that Duffy would begin greeting guests at Epcot on October 14. His meet and greet area will be across from Plaza Towers East (one of the twin shops at the front of the World Showcase Lagoon as you enter the area — East is the one on the left), where most of his merchandise will be available. In addition to merchandise being sold in Epcot, Disney Cruise Line will also carry Duffy merchandise (and as we previously learned, the stuffed Duffy will have a Disney Cruise Line uniform to collect), but no news on whether he will be on the ships to meet and greet guests as of yet. Duffy-branded Disney trading pins will begin appearing in the Parks in March, 2011 with ‘something special in the works’ for Annual Passholders. There will also be a Duffy Vinylmation, however he will be from a bear-shaped mold, not the traditional Mickey-shaped one.
Around the World Showcase, Japan, Germany France and America pavilions will have special photo-ops designed for guests’ stuffed Duffy bears which are expected to be in place by Christmas. The free Kidcot activity locations located at each of the World Showcase pavilions will also be changing the masks from the traditional human face form to that of Duffy as of October 14.
The photo above is of Duffy as he will appear at Disney California Adventure and is expected to appear at Epcot. Courtesy of @BigD923
For more coverage of today’s Duffy event, be sure to check out Kristin’s column on Monday.