Singer and U.K. radio presenter Emma Bunton, known as “Baby Spice” as a member of the all-girl pop group The Spice Girls, poses September 25, 2012 with Goofy at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
The Spice Girls recently reunited to perform at the 2012 Summer Olympics closing ceremony in London.
Photo by Gene Duncan, courtesy Walt Disney World Resort
Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer poses with Disney character Goofy February 25, 2011 at Walt Disney World’s Disney’s Hollywood Studios in front of the “Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith,” the Walt Disney World roller coaster that is named after the band. The high-speed, indoor roller coaster features Aerosmith music combined with a high-speed launch and multiple inversions.
Photo by Diana Zalucky, courtesy of Walt Disney World Resort
Comedian Howie Mandel, host of NBC’s game show “Deal or No Deal” and a judge on the NBC series “America’s Got Talent,” “fist-bumps” Goofy Jan. 1, 2011 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Disney’s Hollywood Studios is one of four theme parks at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.
Photo by Gene Duncan, courtesy of Walt Disney World Resort.
OLC, the parent company of the Tokyo Disneyland Resort, has announced that a new meet and greet experience will be coming to Tokyo DisneySea as part of its ‘Be Magical!’ 10th anniversary. Located next to the Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull in the Lost River Delta, Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Goofy will be greeting guests and taking commemorative photos.
The Disney characters, who are researching and studying the ruins of an ancient civilization as well as the jungle plants and insects, will each be waiting in one of three differently themed structures to greet the guests. At the entrance, guests choose which Disney character they want to meet and follow the trail that leads to the character. Along the way, they can rotate the sections of stone column to jumble or match the character’s head, body and feet. Or they can look at insect specimens through a magnifying glass. These and other activities will be available to help make guests feel like explorers themselves.
The new ‘Mickey & Friends’ Greet Trails’ experience is expected to open on April 23, 2011.
Earlier this year, the Tokyo DisneySea introduced its second character meet and greet experience, the ¡Saludos Amigos! Greeting Dock. OLC has said that once the new trails in the Lost River Delta have opened, Mickey Mouse will be replaced by Donald Duck at the ¡Saludos Amigos! Greeting Dock.
The Tokyo Disneyland Resort also recently reported its second highest attendance level ever in the first-half of the fiscal year. Between April 1 and September 30, 2010, the resort received 12,954,000 guests, a 5.3% increase over last first-half 2009.
Although most character meet & greets at the Walt Disney World Resort are fairly standard from day to day, there are a couple of times per year when there are significant changes. These changes usually occur in April/May and September/October. In 2010, these changes are further complicated by the closure of Toontown and the Fantasyland expansion in the Magic Kingdom. Since we’re already getting into April, it’s time to take a look at some of the expected upcoming changes.
April 11 will be the last day for Ariel’s Grotto. It is expected that Ariel will be appearing in human form near the Adventureland Veranda (where Lilo and Stitch currently appear) beginning around May 9 which is when a lot of the changes are set to occur, but the exact date appears to be uncertain at this time. When Ariel does begin appearing in Adventureland, she’s expected to bring Prince Eric with her. Previously an exclusive for the ill-fated but well-received Pirate and Princess Party, this will mark Eric’s full-time meet & greet debut, which we’re told is essentially a test for a possible permanent meet & greet with him in the Fantasy Forest expansion (we’re still holding our breaths for Gaston too). As Ariel and Eric are moving in, Lilo will be leaving the Magic Kingdom (but still appearing with Stitch at Disney’s Animal Kingdom) and Stitch will return to Tomorrowland. No word on whether Ariel will bring her dinglehopper with her at the new locale.
Also on April 11, Goofy will be leaving Frontierland and move to Adventureland where he’ll be dressed as a pirate and hang out near the quartermaster’s desk at the Pirates League. Winnie the Pooh and Tigger will relocate to the Toontown Fair train station. Finally on this date, Clarabelle Cow and Horace Horsecollar will join the Frontierland Hoedown, replacing Liverlips and Shaker of the Country Bears.
The majority of the changes are set to take place on May 9. In addition to the assumed date of Ariel’s re-appearance in the Magic Kingdom, the following character changes are expected across the parks:
- Mary Poppins and the formerly-rare Bert will be appearing in Fantasyland near the carrousel.
- Wendy will be joining Peter Pan once more in the new meet & greet location in Fantasyland
- Pooh and Tigger will leave the Toontown Train Station in Fantasyland and move to Town Square
- Chip and Dale are moving from Town Square to Tomorrowland
- Snow White is moving from Town Square to Cinderella’s Wishing Well
- Lotso from Toy Story 3 will be debuting at the Animation Building at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, replacing Carl, Russell and Dug from UP (they are expected to leave in April and may appear at the Animal Kingdom’s Oasis)
- Jojo and Goliath will no longer meet near Playhouse Disney Live. Jojo will remain at the Play’n'Dine meal where she’ll be joined by Handy Manny
- Piglet(!), Pooh and Stitch will join Donald, Daisy and Minnie at the Sorcerer’s Hat at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in the mornings. This will be the only current opportunity to meet Piglet outside of dining at Crystal Palace.
This information comes from a very reliable source in the way of WDW Character Hunt which also reports some upcoming buzz for the October changes:
- Rapunzel and Flynn Rider from Disney’s Tangled will begin making appearances
- Belle’s Storytime will close (the show will return in some form in the Fantasy Forest expansion)
The site also reports that it’s basically a given that Phineas and Ferb will not be appearing in the parks until at least 2011.
We will report more news as it becomes available.
Singer Jon Bon Jovi poses with Goofy Nov. 16, 2009 on the New York Street backlot set at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park at Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Bon Jovi and his band, who have sold more than 120 million records in a career that spans 26 years, released their newest album, “The Circle.” The group will begin a world concert tour in early 2010.
Photo by Gene Duncan. Courtesy of Disney.