Photos: Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Fantasy Receives Keel Laying Ceremony

Today, Disney Cruise Line celebrated the keel laying of the Disney Fantasy at the Meyer Werft shipyard. This is the second of two newly-designed ships that take the family cruise experience to all new heights. Sister ship to the Disney Fantasy, Disney Dream, entered service on Jan. 26, 2011.

Minnie Mouse, Karl Holz (Kent Phillips/Disney)

The keel laying ceremony is a significant milestone in the ship building process when the first block, or section of the ship, is lowered into the building dock and a coin is placed under the keel for good fortune. Placing the coin was Karl Holz, President of Disney Cruise Line, assisted by Minnie Mouse.

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GM Invites Drivers to Meet Chevy Volt and Test Drive Over 70 Vehicles This Weekend at Epcot

This weekend, Friday through Sunday, General Motors is allowing licensed drivers over the age of 18 to test drive over 70 vehicles from manufacturers such as Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, Acura, Dodge, Ford, Honda, Lexus, Nissan, Toyota and Hyundai. Attendees will also have the opportunity to meet and preview the anticipated Chevy Volt electric car.

The event, which is dubbed ‘Main Street in Motion,’ will also feature refreshments and family-friendly entertainment and will take place at the Epcot overflow parking area between 8 am and 5 pm each day. Participation is free and walk-ups are welcome, but interested attendees are encouraged to sign up in advance at mainstreetinmotion.com

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HGTV to Sponsor Epcot Flower & Garden Festival; Announces Celebrity Line-up

HGTV kicks up the “curb appeal” of the 18th Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival March 2 through May 15 with a first-time sponsorship featuring weekend appearances by its acclaimed designers and landscaping experts. The star-studded lineup includes Genevieve Gorder, Lisa LaPorta, Kim Myles, Brian Patrick Flynn, Taniya Nayak, Ahmed Hassan, Patti Moreno, Michele Beschen, John Gidding, Frank Fontana, and Vern Yip.

The country’s leading home and lifestyle television brand brings an addictive blend of design, decorating and landscaping inspiration to the enduring, 75-day gardening extravaganza at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

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Photos: Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers Honored at Walt Disney World

Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers at Walt Disney World (Scott Miller/Disney)

Super Bowl XLV Most Valuable Player Aaron Rodgers takes a celebratory ride with Mickey Mouse Feb. 7, 2011 at the Magic Kingdom in the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. following the Green Bay Packers’ 31-25 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers Feb. 6, 2011. Rodgers was 24 for 39 for 304 yards and threw three touchdowns in the Packers’ Super Bowl win. Immediately after Super Bowl XLV was over, Rodgers shouted “I’m Going to Disney World!” and “I’m Going to Disneyland!” for TV cameras as the star of the latest Disney Parks advertisement.

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Disney D23′s ‘Destination D: Walt Disney World’ Tickets On Sale February 24

Walt Disney World Resort is celebrating its 40th anniversary, and D23: The Official Disney Fan Club is marking this milestone May 14 and May 15 with their highly anticipated member event Destination D: Walt Disney World 40th, another unforgettable experience available exclusively to D23 Members. The event will take D23 Members on a journey from the moment when the first parcels of land in Central Florida were purchased in 1964 through the opening of EPCOTCenter in 1982 and beyond.

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Zachary Levi, Mandy Moore, Alan Menken and Randy Newman to Perform at Oscars

Nominees for best original song will be performed this year at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards hosted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Sunday, February 27, 2011. Today, producers Bruce Cohen and Don Mischer announced the artists who will perform the nominated songs on the Kodak Theatre stage on Oscar Night.

Disney will see both of its nominated songs, ‘I See the Light’ from Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Tangled and ‘We Belong Together’ from Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story 3 presented by their original performers.

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Ink & Paint Cel Release for ‘Look What I Got!’ Featuring Snow White and Dwarfs at Disney’s Hollywood Studios March 12

'Look What I Got!' Ink and Paint CelOn Saturday, March 12, join Disney Design Group Artist Costa Alavezos and Disney Ink and Paint Artists: James Bonserio, Erin Magill, Theodora M. DeLaney, David Rippberger, Lynn Rippberger and Sharon K. Vincent as they celebrate the premiere of the Look What I Got! entry into the Ink and Paint Cel series. In the cel, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs enjoy some confectionery creations from Sweet Spells located on Sunset Boulevard in the Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park. Look What I Got! is also the first entry in the Ink & Paint Cel Series to feature Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

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Oscar Nominees Teddy Newton, Lee Unkrich Invited to Appear at Academy Panels Open to Public

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that as part of Oscar week, a series of screenings and discussions will be taking place at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills, California. The events will feature Oscar nominees in various categories and will be available for the public to attend.

Kicking off the series on February 22, 2011, is ‘Shorts!,’ honoring the nominees in the animated and live action categories which includes the Toy Story 3 lead-in, Night & Day, by Pixar Animation Studios’ Teddy Newton. The event will be hosted by legendary Hollywood personality Kenneth Branagh, a former nominee himself for the 1992 live action short, Swan Song. For more information, see here. Note that appearances by talent is not guaranteed, although The Pixar Blog has confirmed Teddy’s appearance.

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Report: Disney Dream Christens AquaDuck with Donald Duck

Donald Duck rides the AquaDuck during its christening onboard the Disney Dream

Just moments ago, the Disney Dream held a formal christening ceremony for its AquaDuck water coaster and we were there beside gal pal Daisy to help bring the event to you. Before he took his own maiden voyage on the AquaDuck, Donald Duck christened the first-of-its-kind attraction by adding in water collected from Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach waterparks located at Walt Disney World.

Then it was go for launch as Daisy cheered on her man — er, duck.

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D23 Members Invited to Preview ‘Cars 2′ at NYC Toy Fair Event with Michael Caine and Emily Mortimer

On Monday, February 14 at 10 am, Disney Consumer Products is inviting a limited number of D23 members to attend a special Disney/Pixar Cars 2 event at Chelsea Piers in New York City in conjunction with the International Toy Fair.

Guests will be one of the first to preview new clips from the movie as well as check out some of the merchandise that will be coming out later this year in support of the movie. In addition, a panel featuring talent from the film including Michael Caine (Finn McMissile) and Emily Mortimer (Holley Shiftwell) will be onhand to commemorate the event.

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