Walt Disney World Park Hours for September 2009 Available Exclusively at.. the Disney Travel Agent site?

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It’s making the rounds now as some have noticed that the Disney Travel Agent website, which regularly makes park hours available separately on its site, has posted hours for September 2009 ahead of the official resort web site.

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Celebrate Father’s Day with a Free Breakfast Event from Disney XD and ESPN Zone

Kids and families are invited to celebrate Father’s Day at special events hosted by Disney XD at ESPN Zone® locations in Anaheim, Chicago, Las Vegas, Denver, Washington DC, Baltimore, Atlanta and New York on SUNDAY, JUNE 21 from 9:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. (doors open at 9:15 a.m.). Reservations are required and guests should RSVP at www.disneyxdfathersday.com, between June 1 and June 15. Kids must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

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Imagineering’s Dr. Ben Schwegler Talks About the Future of Engineering with the ASCE

Vice President and Chief Scientist of Walt Disney Imagineering, Dr. Ben Schwegler, appears on the latest podcast from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) to discuss the future of engineering. Dr. Schwegler talks about using innovation the engineering profession can use to overcome challenges as well as his own experiences. You cancheck it out here.

And don’t forget that Dr. Schwegler will be appearing on a panel as part of the World Science Festival’s panel, Wall-E’s World to explore revolutionizing waste management on Earth.

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D23 Expo Details Revealed, Tickets to Go On Sale June 3

D23 ExpoANAHEIM and BURBANK, Calif., June 3  — Disney fans will be given unprecedented access to never-before-seen movies, TV shows, park experiences, collectibles and more from Sept. 10 to Sept. 13 at the Anaheim Convention Center when Disney and D23: The Official Community for Disney Fans present the first-ever D23 EXPO.

Tickets to the D23 EXPO are available beginning today at http://www.d23expo.com/. Admission includes access to all experiences and entertainment at the D23 EXPO and can be purchased for single days or for the full four days of festivities. Admission is discounted for members of D23.

“We hope this will be the ultimate event for the multitude of fans who have been so instrumental in Disney’s success,” said Disney President and CEO Bob Iger. “The D23 Expo represents the finest in Disney entertainment from across our great company and will offer a one-of-a-kind, unforgettable experience for people of all ages to enjoy.”

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Disneyland Resort Announces Kitson Kids Coming to Downtown Disney Anaheim

Disneyland Resort is excited to announce an agreement with Kitson Kids for a new retail store in Downtown Disney.  Slated to open in July 2009, it will be the first location in Orange County and the first Kitson Kids outside Los Angeles.  Kitson Kids will be located near the entrance to Downtown Disney, adjacent to AMC theaters.

“We are thrilled to welcome Kitson Kids to Downtown Disney,” said Tony Bruno, vice president Disneyland Resort hotels and Downtown Disney.  “Kitson Kids offers a hip blend of merchandise that Orange County shoppers will only find here.  Kitson Kids is a great fit with Downtown Disney’s eclectic blend of shops, restaurants and entertainment.”

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Disneyland Resort Announces First-Ever LittleMissMatched Retail Store at Downtown Disney Anaheim

Disneyland Resort is pleased to announce an agreement for the first-ever permanent retail location of the popular lifestyle brand LittleMissMatched. Due to open late summer 2009, it will be situated in the heart of Downtown Disney. A temporary LittleMissMatched store opened May 18, next to where the permanent store will be located.

“We are excited that Downtown Disney was selected as the first bricks and mortar location of this innovative concept,” said Tony Bruno, vice president Disneyland Resort hotels and Downtown Disney. “LittleMissMatched offers unique merchandise for the young and young at heart, and is a terrific complement to Downtown Disney’s eclectic blend of shops, restaurants and entertainment.”

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Segway Speaks on Walt Disney World Lawsuit: Do Not Doubt Our Safety

In light of some concerns it has over the public perception of an ongoing lawsuit (as most recently reported on by the Orlando Sentinel here).

To summarize, a lawsuit was initially filed against Disney claiming that those who use the Segway for mobility purposes were being discriminated against when not allowed to take their Segway into the parks. Disney’s response is that a guest on a Segway can not be monitored and that it inherently poses a security risk to the safety of not only the guest using the device unsupervised, but the rest of the guests. In addition, the Segway units can travel faster than walking or, in particular, the ECVs that the park usually recommends, which essentially gives Segway riders a speed advantage. Segway’s response almost appears to speak out of both sides of the mouth since they obviously don’t want to offend Disney and hurt/jeopardize the longstanding relationship but they evidently take offense to the suggestion that the devices are in any way unsafe to anyone (when used properly), at least when taken out of context.

The full statement is as follows:

BEDFORD, N.H., June 3 — Segway feels that issues raised in a class action lawsuit against Walt Disney World Co. pending in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida (Mahala Ault et al. v. Walt Disney World Co.) may have caused some confusion about the safety of our Segway(R) Personal Transporter (“Segway PT”) product. The plaintiffs in this action allege that the policy of Walt Disney World Co. (“Disney”) not to permit two-wheeled vehicles violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). While Disney and the plaintiffs have reached a compromise in the lawsuit, some have objected to the settlement based on the premise that they prefer to use a Segway PT at the Walt Disney World Resort instead of the mobility devices permitted by Disney. Segway is not a party to this lawsuit and has not taken a position in this dispute. However, since the issue of safety has arisen in the context of the lawsuit, we are taking this opportunity to comment.

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Photo of 5’3″ LEGO Brick Model of Toy Story’s Buzz Lightyear from Licensing International Expo

5'3" LEGO Brick Model of Buzz Lightyear © DisneyA 5’3″ LEGO model of Buzz Lightyear, constructed from 40,000 LEGO bricks in 250 hours by 3 Master Builders, was unveiled by Disney Consumer Products at the Licensing International Expo to showcase the excitement “building” around the classic Toy Story franchise. Disney will support the franchise with the re-release of the first two movies in 3D for a two week engagement this October, a third new movie in summer 2010 and a spectacular consumer products line.

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Beloved Disney Characters Get Ready for New Roles at Walt Disney Pavilion at Florida Hospital for Children

Prepping Disney characters for the Florida HospitalORLANDO, Fla., June 3, 2009 – Walt Disney Imagineers are putting the finishing touches on a collection of beloved Disney characters that will lend their magic to the three-story lobby of the Walt Disney Pavilion at Florida Hospital for Children.

Known for the support and protection they provided their dearest friends, characters including Timon and Pumba from “The Lion King,” Baloo from “The Jungle Book” and Sebastian and Flounder from “The Little Mermaid will have leading roles in the hospital’s interactive lobby.

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Miley Cyrus and Walmart Announce New Clothing Line, North American Tour – Presales Begin June 8

BENTONVILLE, Ark., June 3  — Walmart today announced the introduction of Miley Cyrus & Max Azria, a new clothing line available only at Walmart. Walmart brings together best-selling artist and entertainer Miley Cyrus and Max Azria of apparel house BCBGMAXAZRIAGROUP, Inc. to offer customers affordable and trend-right apparel. The line will arrive in all Walmart stores and on Walmart.com in early August, and includes tops, pants, graphic tees, shoes and accessories, all priced less than $20.

“Our launch of the Miley Cyrus & Max Azria line continues our strategy of engaging customers across categories,” said John Fleming, executive vice president and chief merchandising officer, Walmart U.S. “This time, we’re bringing together a leading entertainer and a top apparel house to bring exciting product and price leadership to our customers.”

Miley Cyrus’ rock-and-roll roots influenced many of the looks. The line reflects a continuation of her relationship with Walmart, where she is among the retailer’s top-selling recording artists. “I love creating looks that are all about personal expression and individuality,” said Cyrus. “Collaborating with Max Azria has been an amazing experience, and I’m really excited about launching this line with Walmart. There’s even more to come!”

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