Disney’s California Food & Wine Festival Celebrates the ‘Art of Flavor’ at Disneyland Resort April 16 – May 31

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Disney’s California Food & Wine Festival will create a kaleidoscope of culinary experiences for guests of every palate April 16-May 31 at Disney’s California Adventure park and select locations across the Disneyland Resort.

Chefs, winemakers and brewmasters will celebrate The Art of Flavor at this year’s tantalizing festival, which features entertaining culinary demonstrations, outstanding wine and spirits seminars, and delicious food, wine and beer. General sales for Festival events began Feb. 16.

Look for chefs Guy Fieri and Cat Cora of Food Network, along with Disney culinary masters and special guests as they present their gastronomic talents in a full menu of complimentary demonstrations and signature paid events. The signature events include winemaker dinners, Sweet Sundays, Napa Rose Cooking School and Taste Food-Wine-Life, a night that celebrates the essence of the festival with a mosaic of food, wine and live entertainment.

Opening weekend features celebrity chef Guy Fieri, the popular television personality and “food dude” who appears on shows such as “Guy’s Big Bite” on the Food Network. Fieri will conduct complimentary food demonstrations on the Festival’s main stage.

“Disney’s California Food & Wine Festival is a great time,” Fieri said. “Of course the kids love Disneyland, but now this is something extra for the adults. It’s incredible chefs, great wines from around the world and Disney. You’re gonna dig it. See you there!”

Some events, including culinary demonstrations, are included with admission to Disney’s California Adventure park. Signature events are separately ticketed and require reservations. For details, visit www.disneyland.com/foodandwine.

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Disney Interactive Announces ‘Toy Story 3: The Video Game’ with Innovative Toy Box Mode

Disney Interactive Studios today officially announced development of Toy Story 3: The Video Game, supporting all major platforms and featuring a fun, new way to enjoy the Toy Story universe. Unveiled at the American International Toy Fair in New York City by Mary Beech, general manager and vice president of franchise development and marketing for Disney Consumer Products, Toy Story 3: The Video Game will feature film adventures along with Disney’s first open-world gameplay for kids. Inspired by the upcoming Disney•Pixar animated film, Toy Story 3: The Video Game is due on retail shelves June 15, 2010.

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‘Dancing with the Stars’ Winner Donny Osmond Helps Launch ‘Dance Star Mickey’ from Fisher-Price

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Legendary entertainer and reigning ‘Dancing with the Stars’ champ Donny Osmond joined Fisher-Price at the International Toy Fair in New York yesterday to help launch their newest product, Dance Star Mickey.

Introduced by Mattel Brands President Neil Friedman, Donny burst onto the stage with Mirror Ball Trophy in hand and immediately set the room on fire, regaling those in attendance with details of his lengthy relationship with The Walt Disney Company beginning with the Osmond Brothers being discovered by Walt himself.

Before long, Donny was joined by special guest Mickey Mouse himself who fearlessly accepted a dance-off challenge issued by Osmond. After a little tap dancing and a bit of disco, it was the Mouse’s split that sealed the win.

At last it was time for the curtain to rise, revealing the real star of the presentation, Dance Star Mickey, Fisher-Price’s most technologically advanced toy to date. Using a new, innovative mechanism, Dance Star Mickey is able to move and gesture in a very fluid and life-like way.

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First Look: Disney Online’s World of Cars, Plus News for Other Disney MMOs

Earlier today I had the opportunity to visit Disney Online at the International Toy Fair in New York City and got a preview at Disney’s newest massively multiplayer online (MMO) game, The World of Cars in addition to some of the new and not-yet-released enhancements to Disney Online’s other worlds.

Sharing a lot in common with the Club Penguin model, the World of Cars is completely Adobe Flash-based. This means there are no downloads required aside from the common plug-in that most folks should already have. Although I probably should know better than to be impressed to how the game has been implemented inside the Flash engine, I still am. The game looks very appealing with a great heads-up display (HUD) loaded with information and controls while still leaving plenty of room for the actual gameplay.

As you might imagine, you will assume the role of a car in Radiator Springs. The action in the game takes place after the first movie — Lightning returns to the sleepy town after winning the Piston Cup and has set up shop in the middle of Downtown Radiator Springs. Throughout the game, you’ll encounter all of your favorite characters from the film with all new original dialogue as recorded by the original actors with exception to Owen Wilson (Lightning), Paul Newman (Doc Hudson) and George Carlin (Fillmore), the latter two having passed away prior to the studio work. For those three, Disney has brought in soundalikes who do a really good job at filling in some rather large tires.

Meeting the characters, who are non-player characters (NPCs), meaning they’re automatic and interaction is quite limited, you’ll often find a yellow exclamation point over their heads. This means they want to talk to you and might even have a job for you. Performing jobs for the characters will yield you rewards, often being money and additional jobs.

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Epcot 2010 International Flower and Garden Festival Guide Now Available

Walt Disney World has released the Guide for the 2010 International Flower and Garden Festival which kicks off March 3.

Despite the lengthy 2 1/2 month festival, only a few special weekends are noted in the guide: Art in the Garden Celebration (March 26-28) in which guests can get a unique look at nature through the eyes of “Plein Air” artists and see one-of-a-kind works of art; Fresh From Florida (April 23-25) which features Florida’s native agriculture in the Florida’s Farmer Market in Garden Town; and the annual favorite I Dig Bugs (May 1-2) in which experts from Disney’s Animal Kingdom come share some of their favorite friends with Epcot guests.

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Toy Story 3 Video Game for All Gaming Platforms Now Available for Pre-Order

In the Toy Story 3: The Video Game, help Buzz, Woody and the rest of the toys ensure no toy gets left behind. Dive into all new heroic adventures in Story Mode or let your imagination run wild in the exiting new open world of Toy Box Mode! Available to own June 15, 2010.

Pre-order from DisneyStore.com today and save $5! To pre-order, click on the link below and search for the product number for the gaming platform you’re interested in: Nintendo Wii (712725016418P), Microsoft Xbox 360 (712725016456P), Sony PlayStation 3 (712725016432P), Windows (044702010288P), Nintendo DS (712725016371P) or Sony PSP (712725016470P)

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Photo: John Lasseter Inducted into Toy Industry Hall of Fame

Earlier this evening, at the tenth annual Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards, Walt Disney’s Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter was inducted into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame. Established in 1984, the Hall of Fame honors individuals who have made a significant mark on the American toy industry.

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New Stitch Mini-Figures from MINDstyle Give Chase to Vinylmation

MINDstyle has announced Series #1 of Stitch Mini-Figure vinyl collectibles. Sharing a lot in common with the Mickey Mouse-shaped Vinylmations from the Disney Design Group, the creator of the Experiment 626 project has transformed the mini vinyl Stitch figures into some of the most beloved Disney characters of all time.

At 3″, each series will consist of 10 figures sold for $9.95 each in a blind pack plus a chaser and a super-chaser. Like Vinylmation, trays of 24 will be available for sale which includes two complete sets of 10 plus the chaser and super-chaser.

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It’s Official: Disney to Re-dub ‘Rapunzel’ as ‘Tangled’

As Stitch Kingdom first reported on February 3, Walt Disney Animation Studios has made it official on its Facebook page that the new title for Rapunzel (formerly Rapunzel Unbraided) is Tangled.

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Woman Alleges Sexual Battery in Lawsuit Against Walt Disney World, et al

Marjory Marchand of New York filed a lawsuit in United States District Court earlier this weeking seeking damages in excess of $75,000 from Walt Disney World, Niki Bryan Spas and GF Spa Ltd. Through the complaint, Marchand stated that in July of 2008, as part of a Walt Disney World vacation, she participated in a private massage taking place at the Grand Floridian resort. It was during the massage that Marchand alleges she was violated sexually by a male masseur, resulting in ‘lack of trust, anger, irritability, anxiety, nightmares, panic attacks, feelings of abandonment shame, feelings of being unclean, fear of being alone, poor mood, feeling distracted, confused, and in self-doubt.’

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