PhotoPass+ Discount Available for Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts

Disney’s PhotoPass has quietly made its all-inclusive PhotoPass+ service available for pre-purchase at $30 off the retail price for both the Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts when purchased at least fourteen days ahead of the scheduled vacation.

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Disney World Candlelight Processional Celebrity Narrators Partially Announced for 2012

Walt Disney World has begun announcing its celebrity narrators for its Candlelight Processional performances which will take place this year during the ‘Holidays Around the World’ celebration at Epcot from November 23 through December 30, 2012.

The shows will take place at the America Gardens Theatre, located across the American Adventure pavilion. Shows are free with seating available on a standby basis, or through priority seating which is offered via special dinner and lunch packages from table service restaurants at Epcot. Park admission is separate and required regardless.

The schedule is currently as follows (subject to change at any time)

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Walt Disney World Moms Panel Boasts 43 Panelists in 2010, Featuring 21 New Members

What do a ballet teacher from Alabama, a paralegal from North Carolina and a NASA rocket scientist from Maryland all have in common? An affinity for all-things Walt Disney World Resort! Announced today, 21 new panelists from the United States and Canada, hailing from different backgrounds, are named official members of the 2010 Walt Disney World® Moms Panel, www.disneyworldmoms.com. Additionally, due to the popularity of the site and an ever-growing number of questions, Disney welcomes back 22 panelists from 2008 and 2009 – totaling 43 members for 2010 to serve as online Disney-savvy vacation gurus, providing helpful tips to guests planning a Walt Disney World vacation.

The Walt Disney World® Moms Panel is an online question-and-answer venue that serves as a free resource for families looking for a touch of pixie dust to add to their Disney vacation. The Panel is led by everyday parents who have mastered the art of planning a vacation for their own families and are excited to share their pearls of wisdom with others. Through a comprehensive application process, the new panelists proved that they have the knowledge and desire to answer any and all questions that come their way.

Whether organizing multigenerational gatherings and large family reunions or navigating the parks with special needs children and adults, the panelists are accessible online with an abundance of their own Disney vacation experiences, memories and tips for making every moment magical. Additionally, the Moms Panel will include panelists who are skilled in Disney Cruise Line® and Adventures by Disney vacations.

(more…)

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Going Home: Manatee Returns to Natural Habitat After WDW Rehab (UPDATE: Video)

Bock, a client of the Manatee Rehabilitation Project, was released back into the wild yesterday (c) Gene Duncan/Disney

Bock, a client of the Manatee Rehabilitation Project, was released back into the wild yesterday (c) Gene Duncan/Disney

As part of the Manatee Rehabilitation Partnership (MRP), Disney’s Animal Programs team helps to take final measurements and readings Feb. 24, 2009 as they prepare to release a manatee into his natural habitat at Blue Springs State Park in Orange City, Fla. The manatee, named “Bock,” was released Tuesday into the warm waters of the St. John’s River. The manatee, rescued as an orphan from the St. John’s River in 2001, arrived at Epcot in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. in 2003 weighing about 500 pounds. At Epcot, marine mammal experts weaned him from a bottle and began feeding him a diet of romaine lettuce, fruits and other vegetables. “Bock” now weighs more than 1,000 pounds and is approximately eight years old. Prior to his release, he was fitted with a satellite tracking belt to follow his movements and allow for behavioral observation. His progress will be monitored by the MRP in which Disney’s Animal Programs has been involved since 2001 when the partnership was established. The MRP is a cooperative group of nonprofit, private, state and federal entities that monitors the health and survival of rehabilitated and released manatees.

Video after the jump (more…)

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Disney U.S. Parks to Consolidate Some Operations

LOS ANGELES, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Walt Disney Co said on Wednesday it will streamline some behind-the-scenes operations, including menu planning and ride design, at its two U.S. theme parks to try to offset the effects of the global economic downturn. (more…)

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American Idol Experience February 12 Media Event Videos

The American Idol Family Reunion for Disneys American Idol Experience Event (c) Copyright Disney

The American Idol Family Reunion for Disney's American Idol Experience Event (c) Copyright Disney

If you missed the simulcast of the blue carpet event here on Stitch Kingdom, please do not fret. (Okay, you can fret just a little bit). Coming soon is most of the raw footage from the event so you can catch all of your favorite American Idol (and Disney) stars as they graced the blue carpet prior to the main event.

Videos after the jump. (more…)

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Largest-Ever Gathering of ‘American Idol’ Winners Joins in Premiere of Attraction at Walt Disney World

American Idol Host Ryan Seacrest Appears with Goofy, Mickey and Minnie

American Idol Host Ryan Seacrest Appears with Goofy, Mickey and Minnie (c) Copyright Disney

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (Feb. 12, 2009) – With the largest-ever gathering of “American Idol” winners joining in the celebration, Walt Disney World Resort Thursday night raised the curtain on “The American Idol Experience,” a new attraction capturing the energy and excitement of the hit TV show.

Thursday’s grand premiere, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, was attended by all seven winners of the series, from season-one winner Kelly Clarkson to season-seven champion David Cook. Joining Cook and Clarkson were Jordin Sparks (season six), Taylor Hicks (five), Carrie Underwood (four), Fantasia Barrino (three) and Ruben Studdard (two). (more…)

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Deacon Follows Suit (and Files Suit) on Tower of Terror

It’s just not a good week for the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The Orlando Sentinel is reporting that UK residents Leanne Deacon and her mother have filed a lawsuit against Walt Disney World following a 2005 incident in which Deacon suffered from eventual cardiac arrest and a brain hemorrhage which required emergency surgery. The suit, which is claiming unspecified damages exceeding $15,000, claims that Walt Disney World was behaving as a ‘common carrier’ and thus was subjected to specific regulations guaranteeing guests’ safety. The suit also cites that Disney failed to present ample warnings and safety restraints. For it’s part, Walt Disney World conducted a full inspection of the attraction that same evening, even inviting oversight from the Florida Department of Agriculture Bureau of Fair Rides Inspection and found the attraction to be operating successfully. In Florida, amusement parks of a certain size (which includes Walt Disney World) are not regulated by the state. (more…)

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Bay Lake Tower to Open August 4 – Reservations Feb 8

Disney Vacation Club has set an Aug. 4 opening date for the Bay Lake Tower, the time-share addition Disney is building next to its Contemporary Resort.

The date is earlier than the “Fall 2009” target Disney had been using until now.

Disney says customers who have purchased shares in Bay Lake will be able to start making reservations Feb. 8. That’s also the same date Disney will begin accepting reservations for in its Treehouse Villas from customers who own stakes in the Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa time share.

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