Disneyland Hotel to Receive New Pool, Dining Options and Guest Tower Re-theming

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Disneyland Resort today announced substantial upgrades to the pool and courtyard areas of the Disneyland Hotel, continuing the landmark property’s current renovation project. Changes will include building a new pool and water play area, renovating an existing pool, opening a new restaurant and bar, and re-theming of the hotel’s three guest room towers.

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Walt Disney Imagineering to Sponsor ‘Come Out & Play 2010′ Weekend in NYC

Created in 2006, ‘Come Out & Play’ is a free weekend-long street game festival inviting players from all around the world to engage in real world games and activities — often based on video games — that encourage exploration of the home city.

Walt Disney Imagineering is a partner in this year’s festival which takes place in Brooklyn, NY from June 4 – 6. WDI’s contribution to the festival comes in the form of a real world MMO titled Unwritten Storybook in which up to 50 players will compete and collaborate with each other to accomplish various tasks such as building a castle or herding unicorns. You can learn more about this particular event here.

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Disneyland Resort Launches Interactive Website for ‘World of Color’

In one of the more impressive demonstrations of the web so far by Disney Parks, Disneyland has launched a flash-based site to promote its new World of Color spectactular which opens at Disney’s California Adventure on June 11.

Found at DisneyWorldOfColor.com (and a few other variations), the site quite realistically presents what could very well be the show in its entirety on your desktop, complete with music. Another option includes an interactive kaleidoscope mode which lets you play with an animated image of Sorcerer Mickey, allowing you to control size, color and even the intensity of the ripples in the water as you turn the virtual kaleidoscope.

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Commercial: ‘American Idol’ Winner Lee DeWyze is Going to Disney World

Following in the footsteps of former American Idol winners Kris Allen and David Cook, newly crowned Idol Lee DeWyze muttered the famous phrase just moments after the announcement: ‘I’m going to Disney World!’

The commercial is a tradition that dates back to 1987 and has featured mostly athletes from professional sports (as well as the Olympics) but began featuring American Idol winners in 2008 in honor of the opening of the ‘American Idol Experience’ at Walt Disney World’s Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park.

Below is the commercial provided courtesy of Disney Parks:

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Disney/ABC TV Group Announces New 24 Hour Channel: Disney Junior

Disney JuniorDisney/ABC Television Group will launch Disney Junior, a new multiplatform brand and 24-hour basic cable/satellite channel and online site devoted to preschool-age children. Scheduled to debut in the U.S. in 2012, Disney Junior will invite mom and dad to join their child in the Disney experience of magical, musical and heartfelt stories and characters, both classic and new, while incorporating specific learning and development themes designed for kids age 2-7.

The new Disney Junior brand will also provide affiliate partners with a robust Video-On-Demand offering, a High-definition network and a Spanish language SAP feed.

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Report: TV Personality and Disney Legend Art Linkletter Dead at Age 97

Zimbio is reporting the death of Art Linkletter today at age 97.

Named a Disney Legend in 2005, Art Linkletter was a prolific television and radio personality, hosting several network programs. Linkletter is also known to Disney fans as the host of the opening ceremonies of Disneyland in 1955 as well as the host of the Happiest Celebration on Earth kickoff when Disneyland celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2005. Linkletter was named a Disney Legend that same year.

Linkletter’s Disney Legends page.

LA Times obituary

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Disney Employee Arrested for Insider Trading; Claims Iger in Talks to Sell ABC

Bonnie Hoxie, an administrative assistant to Disney’s head of Corporate Communication, Zenia Mucha, was arrested earlier today along with her boyfriend Yonni Sebbag (a.k.a. Jonathan Cyrus) by the FBI on charges of conspiracy and wire fraud in an attempt to sell inside information on the company’s latest quarterly earnings report.

The duo allegedly sent emails via a gmail account to hedge funds and investment companies in New York. Posing as hedge fund investors, the FBI arranged to receive insider trading information from Sebbag in New York which included disclosing earnings per share hours prior to the public disclosure.

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Disney’s ‘Friends for Change: Project Green’ Celebrates Second Year with New Videos

Starting May 30, new on-air messages will begin airing on Disney Channel and Disney XD. They feature nearly forty Disney stars including the Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato, as well as young environmental heroes. The spots will also be featured on Radio Disney and the recently redesigned program website, www.Disney.com/projectgreen.

The aim of this ambitious movement is to empower children to take charge when it comes to the environment, whether it’s their own piece of the planet or a big picture approach.

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First Look: Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade at Magic Kingdom’s Summer Nightastic (Video)

Disney’s “Main Street Electrical Parade” will light up the streets of Magic Kingdom, headlining a season of after-dark excitement coming to Walt Disney World Resort in summer 2010. Beginning June 6 and continuing through Aug. 14, “Summer Nightastic!” will light up the night with shimmering, shining Disney magic in Walt Disney World theme parks.

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Disney Interactive Studios Will Bring the Magic to Nintendo DS with ‘The Sorcerer’s Apprentice’

Sorcerer's Apprentice for Nintendo DS by Disney Interactive StudiosDisney Interactive Studios today announced the company will publish The Sorcerer’s Apprentice video game, inspired by the upcoming feature film “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” from Walt Disney Pictures and Jerry Bruckheimer Films. The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is scheduled to appear in North American retail outlets on July 13, 2010, exclusively for Nintendo DS™.

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is an action-packed 3D arcade video game that casts players in the role of Dave, the powerful sorcerer’s apprentice, as he joins a mystical fight against the ultimate evil in a world filled with fantastical quests and magical combat.

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