Disney’s Animal Kingdom Welcomes Gerenuk Calf to Herd

Disney’s Animal Kingdom recently welcomed its 28th gerenuk calf weighing in at eight pounds and approximately 1 ¾ feet tall, after a seven-month gestation.

The female calf, named Squirt, was born November 25 to her five-year-old mother Sushaunna, and nine-year-old father Jingle. This latest birth is part of the Association of Zoos and Aquarium’s Gerenuk Population Management Plan.

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Win a Walt Disney World Dream Vacation Including Cinderella Castle Stay from Disney Online

Disney Online is offering the opportunity for one winner to receive a 5 day / 4 night vacation to the Walt Disney World Resort for four including roundtrip airfare, hotel stay (single, standard room), 5 day Magic Your Way tickets with park hopping, VIP Tour Guide service for six hours on one day, one Disney PhotoPass PhotoCD and PhotoBook, a $250 Disney gift card, complimentary itinerary planning and one night’s stay at the Cinderella Castle Suite.

You may enter once per day through January 31, 2010, either online or via text. Review the full rules and visit the Disney Online Celebrate You Sweepstakes to enter.

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Win a Dream Home and Disneyland Vacation from Taylor Morrison

Taylor Morrison, builder of the Innoventions Dream Home at the Disneyland Resort, is awarding one lucky winner a dream home of their own plus a Disneyland vacation for four.

The contest is open to US residents regardless of home state, but the prize home’s (ARV approximately $200,000) location will be chosen by the winner from a limited number of applicable communities (see sweepstakes rules for full details). The Disneyland vacation includes air transportation, hotel and four 2 day park hopper tickets.

The sweepstakes also offers an instant win component offering various prizes detailed at the link below.

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Photo: The New Face of Tom Staggs, Chairman of Disney Parks and Resorts

Or was that supposed to be The New Face of Disney Parks and Resorts, Chairman Tom Staggs?

Well, anyway, ever since we first learned the news that Tom Staggs (former CFO of the Walt Disney Company) and Jay Rasulo (former Chairman of Disney Parks and Resorts) were going all Freaky Friday on us  (that’s the Jodie Foster kind if you will), the atmosphere quickly became thick with questions and theories about the future of the parks (oddly, not so much for the bottom line) and speculation that Staggs was being groomed by Iger for bigger and better things.

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‘Starstruck’ Disney Channel Original Movie to Premiere February 14

Sterling Knight (of Disney Channel’s hit series “Sonny With A Chance”) and Danielle Campbell (“Prison Break”) star in “StarStruck,” a music and adventure-filled Disney Channel Original Movie about Hollywood pop star Christopher Wilde who, after unexpectedly meeting Jessica Olson, a down-to-earth girl visiting from the Midwest, is faced with either following his heart or doing what’s best for his glitzy career. The movie also stars Brandon Mychal Smith (“Sonny With A Chance”) and Chelsea Staub (of Disney Channel’s “JONAS”). Filmed in Los Angeles at landmark locations including Hollywood Boulevard, Sunset Boulevard, the Hollywood Sign and Grauman’s Chinese Theater, “StarStruck” premieres SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 14 (8:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney Channel.

The story follows Jessica and her family as they visit her grandmother in Los Angeles, and she winds up by chance meeting Hollywood pop star Christopher Wilde.  It seems that Christopher has it all – fame, fortune and a big-budget Hollywood movie awaiting him – but after spending time with Jessica, he realizes he’s been missing out on something very important – being himself. As he shows her the city sites, the pair develop a friendship, but their bond is tested when Christopher publicly denies knowing her. Now Christopher must decide what is more important– being true to himself or becoming a movie star.

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Vinylmations Commemorating Cinderella, Space Mountain to be Released in January

Also courtesy of the official Vinylmation blog comes news of these anticipated releases from Disney Design Group artist Randy Noble.

Available in late January at both the Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts, Vinylmation presents a 3″ figure commemorating the 60th anniversary of Disney’s Cinderella and a 9″ figure commemorating the 35th anniversary of the legendary Space Mountain.

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First Look: Walt Disney World 2010 Marathon Vinylmations to be Released Jan 8

On its official blog, Disney Vinylmation has introduced three new Vinylmation special edition figures that will be released at the Walt Disney World resort on January 8 in honor of upcoming 2010 marathon events, each designed by Disney Design Group artist Maria Clapsis.

Pictured from top to bottom are the 3″ Walt Disney World 2010 Marathon figure, the 3″ Walt Disney World 2010 Half Marathon Figure and the 9″ Walt Disney World Goofy’s Race and a Half Challenge 2010 figure.

Guests do not need to be marathon participants in order to purchase the special edition Vinylmation figures which will be available at Disney’s Wide World of Sports.

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D23 Announces Special Mary Poppins Event in Los Angeles with Special Guest

On January 22, Disney Theatrical Productions invites D23 Members to attend a special performance of Mary Poppins at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles. Members will receive a 20% discount on select seats in various seating locations throughout the theatre as well as a voucher good for 20% off all merchandise at the show.

Members will also get an exclusive post-show experience with the Mary Poppins cast and a top-secret surprise guest. D23 won’t say who it is, but only that he appeared in the original film. Could it be Dick Van Dyke? Maybe, but our money is on the man with a wooden leg named Smith.

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ESPN to Launch First 3D Television Network in June; Debuts With 2010 FIFA World Cup Match

ESPN will launch ESPN 3D –  the industry’s first 3D television network – it was announced today by George Bodenheimer, Co-chairman, Disney Media Networks, and President, ESPN and ABC Sports.  ESPN 3D will showcase a minimum of 85 live sporting events during its first year, beginning with the first  2010 FIFA World Cup match on June 11 featuring South Africa vs. Mexico.  Other events to be produced in 3D include up to 25 2010 FIFA World Cup matches, Summer X Games, college basketball, and college football, which will include the BCS National Championship game in Glendale, Ariz., January 10, 2011.  Additional events will be announced at a later date.

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Walt Disney World Celebrates the U.S. Military in 2010 with Special Ticket and Lodging Offers

As Disney Parks ask “What Will You Celebrate?” and invite guests to turn their personal milestones into magical family vacations in 2010, America’s military personnel will have more reasons to celebrate: Special offers on theme park tickets and accommodations.

With Disney’s Armed Forces Salute, from Jan. 3 to July 31, 2010, active and retired U.S. military personnel (including active and retired members of the United States Coast Guard and active members of the National Guard or Reservists) or their spouses can purchase Disney’s 4-Day Military Promotional Base Tickets for $99, plus tax, for themselves and up to five additional family members or friends for use at Walt Disney World Resort.  The Park Hopper and Water Park Fun & More options can be added for an additional $26, plus tax, per option, per ticket.  No more than six Disney’s 4-Day Military Promotional Tickets (with or without options) may be purchased by any eligible member of the U.S. military (and/or spouse) pursuant to this offer.

All tickets and options are non-transferable and must be used by Sept. 30, 2010.  However, the tickets and options are not valid for use on the following blockout dates: March 27, 2010, to April 9, 2010, for all Walt Disney World theme parks and other gated attractions; and July 3 to July 4, 2010, for the Magic Kingdom park.

Active and retired U.S. military personnel also can save up to 40 percent on rooms at select Disney resorts!  This offer is good for stays most nights Jan. 3-Sept. 30, 2010, except not available 3/28-4/10/10 and 7/1-7/5/10, and can be booked through July 31, 2010.  (The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited.  Minimum length of stay requirements may apply for Friday or Saturday arrivals.  Savings based on non-discounted price for the same room.  Valid Military ID will be required upon check-in.  No group rates or other discounts apply.  Advance reservations required.  Additional per-adult charges apply if more than two adults per room. )

For information regarding Disney’s 4-Day Military Promotional Tickets, or to make room reservations, military personnel may call 407/939-7830 or participating U.S. military base ticket offices.  Information is also available at www.disneyworld.com/military.

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