Disney Channel Debuts New Celebrity-Packed Season of ‘Handy Manny’ November 7

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Disney Channel will debut the third season of its Emmy-nominated multicultural series for preschoolers, “Handy Manny,” starring Wilmer Valderrama, on SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7 (8:30 a.m., ET/PT). The third season will include a new primetime special, a new short-form series and the introduction of 10 new tool characters.

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Walt Disney World to Debut Monorail Teal, Comprised of Parts from Former Trains

Monorail Teal will soon be making its debut at Walt Disney World after being constructed from undamaged parts of Monorail Pink and Monorail Purple which collided this past summer, resulting in the death of Monorail pilot Austin Wuennenberg.

This will bring the fleet up to 11 trains, joining Red, White, Coral, Lime, Green, Black, Silver, Blue, Gold and Orange. Out of respect to Wuennenberg and his family, Pink and Purple will officially be retired.

The NTSB is still conducting its investigation into the incident but has publically acknowledged Disney’s proper conduct following the tragedy.

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Disney’s PhotoPass Formally Offers Photo Extensions for a Fee

The official storage policy for Disney’s PhotoPass photos is that they will be available online for editing and ordering for at least 30 days after being added to one’s account. Afterwards, deletions were sure to occur (although the occasional rogue photos may have managed to escape their fate a la Logan’s Run). From the very beginning, many users had struggled to complete all of the editing within the 30 day timeframe and with additional enhancements to both the website and the actual PhotoPass system itself over the years, the 30 day period has proven to become increasingly difficult for many customers.

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Fantasmic! Ink & Paint Cel Event at Disney’s Hollywood Studios December 12

The Studios Animation Gallery at the Walt Disney World® Resort is pleased to present the newest edition in the Disney Theme Park Exclusive Ink & Paint Cel Collection, Fantasmic! Featuring the heroic Mickey Mouse and the “Mistress of Evil,” Maleficent, the sinister villain from Walt Disney’s Animated Classic, Sleeping Beauty.

Fantasmic! is a limited edition, hand-painted cel with an edition size of only 1500 pieces.

Fantasmic! Ink & Paint Cel

The launch event will take place December 12, 2009 at the Animation Gallery at Disney’s Hollywood Studios from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm and will feature Disney Design Group artist Costa Alavezos and Ink and Paint Artists James Bonserio, Erin Magill, Theodora M. DeLaney, David Rippberger, Lynn Rippberger and Sharon K.Vincent.

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Liberty Tree Tavern to Offer Breakfast, Character Dining During Crystal Palace Refurbishment

As we reported earlier, Crystal Palace will be closed for refurbishments from January 3 through January 13, 2010. During this time, characters will once again return to Liberty Tree Tavern in Frontierland and the table service location will serve breakfast in addition to lunch and dinner. Once Crystal Palace returns, Liberty Tree will resume with lunch and dinner service only and no character experience.

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Walt Disney World Adds New Half Marathon to Endurance Series in 2010: Disney Wine & Dine

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Oct. 15, 2009) – Disney’s Endurance series is adding a mouth-watering half marathon to its list of already popular race weekends.  The inaugural Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend is set to take place Oct. 1-2, 2010, culminating with a 13.1-mile nighttime race and after-hours party inside the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.

Combining characteristics of some of the most popular races, the half marathon is sure to please runners of all types.  Participants will brave the night on a never-before-trekked course through multiple Disney theme parks, with the finish line inside the Epcot Food & Wine Festival for an exclusive after-hours party.  Spectators can purchase tickets to the party and help kick off the 15th annual Epcot Food & Wine Festival.

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Fairy Tale Themed Episodes of ‘Mickey Mouse Clubhouse’ and ‘Imagination Movers’ to Premiere November 14

Disney Channel will premiere new fairy tale-themed episodes of the hit Playhouse Disney series “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” and “Imagination Movers” on SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 14 (beginning at 9:00 a.m. ET/PT). Disney Channel stars Nicole Anderson (“JONAS”) and Jason Dolley (“Good Luck Charlie,” “Hatching Pete”) guest star in the new “Imagination Movers” episode.

In the “Mickey Mouse Clubhouse” episode entitled “Mickey and the Enchanted Egg,” Mickey finds an egg which soon hatches a baby dragon. Determined to protect the baby dragon and bring it back to its home, Mickey and pals must convince Wizard Pete that they did not steal his egg. The episode was written by Ashley Mendoza and directed by Sherrie Pollack and Broni Likomanov.

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ABC Debuts Free ‘Dancing with the Stars’ App for iPhone and iPod Touch

ABC today announced the availability of its free “Dancing with the Stars” (DWTS) App from the App Store. The app is a one-stop-shop for fans who can now use their iPhone or iPod touch for deeper access to the hit show, complete with the latest elimination updates, video clips and other fun, interactive features.

In addition to offering users another way to vote for favorites each week, the app features:

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ABC Family and Build-A-Bear Workshop Buddy up for New Family Holiday TV Classic, Events

BURBANK, Calif. (Oct. 15, 2009) – ABC Family and Build-A-Bear Workshop® are coming together to create a little holiday “hoofla” this season as the network debuts an animated special that marks the first time in the retailer’s 12-year history that its plush animals are brought to life on television. “Holly and Hal Moose: Our Uplifting Christmas Adventure,” a one-hour feature movie, makes its nationwide premiere on ABC Family on Tuesday, Nov. 24 at 7:00 PM ET/PT (with an encore presentation on Saturday, Nov. 28 at 10 AM ET/PT). The television special is based on a book and series of webisodes that introduced Holly and Hal Moose last year and captured their holiday antics, powerful imaginations and love of adventure.

“Holly and Hal” features Meaghan Martin (“10 Things I Hate About You,” “Camp Rock”) and Jonathan Morgan Heit (“Bedtime Stories”) as the voices of Easton and Weston (respectively), two high-strung elves who monitor the North Pole Weather Center. In addition, an exclusive theme song, “When You Dream,” was created for the movie by Tena Clark, award-winning music producer, song writer and CEO/chief creative officer of DMI Music & Media Solutions.

“Holly and Hal were our first characters to inspire a storybook, and now they’re the first to become movie stars,” said Maxine Clark, founder and chief executive bear of Build-A-Bear Workshop. “The tale of this antlered-sibling duo is meant to inspire people to follow their dreams – no matter how big they seem. It’s a classic holiday adventure that offers families the opportunity to start a new tradition of watching it together each season.”

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Videos of Raytheon’s Sum of All Thrills at Innoventions East

Friend of Stitch Kingdom @jeff318 has been tweeting live from Walt Disney World’s Innoventions East where he’s checking out the newest attraction there, the Sum of All Thrills virtual thrill ride presented by Raytheon.

Video of the Sum of All Thrills pre-show:

Video of the RoboSim by KUKA in (mild) action:

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