First of all, I'm sorry for the lateness with which this news article comes. Some of this news has been around for a few days, but Jon and I have been so very busy that I just haven't had time to post. However, if you join our forums our helpful members there nearly always post the latest things they find, so be sure to join our friendly community and never miss any updates! With that said, I've put together a roundup of the latest character news from this week, including brand new news today about Disneyland Paris' Halloween season this year, and a new Frozen event for Tokyo.
Let's start with an event that is just 2 days away, Villains Unleashed at Disney's Hollywood Studios!
Various sites across the internet, including this one, have been posting information regarding all the characters and locations for this hard ticket event. I have used various sources and compiled together the following guide based on everything we know so far. Of course, Disney can change anything at any time, so just bear that in mind. It should also be pointed out that there are no less than THREE brand new characters on this list that have never met guests before! Constantine from the Muppets Most Wanted (as announced here by the Disney Parks Blog), and the Star Lord and Gamora from Guardians of the Galaxy (as announced here by the Disney Parks Blog)!
Characters with set locations (locations with a proper line):
- Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow - Captain Hector Barbossa until 11.30pm
- Animation Courtyard - Maleficent until 11.30pm
- Sunset Boulevard - The Witch
- Near MuppetVision - Constantine the Muppet
- Streets of America - Cruella de Vil, Dr. Facilier, Jafar, Bowler Hat Guy, Shan Yu, The Queen, Captain Gantu, Dr. Hamsterviel
- Near Star Tours - Darth Maul, Boba Fett, Darth Vader, Stormtroopers
- Near the Sci-Fi Drive In - Emperor Palpatine and the Royal Guards
Wandering Characters (characters that may appear randomly and may or may not form a proper line):
- Near Hades Hangout (AKA the Sorcerer's Hat Stage at the centre of the park) - Queen of Hearts, Big Bad Wolf, Captain Hook, Mr. Smee, Governor Ratcliffe
- Near Indiana Jones Stunt Show - Brer Fox and Brer Bear, the Hyenas - Shenzi, Ed and Banzai
- Villains Dominion (the Streets of America) - Stromboli, Gaston, Prince John, the Sheriff of Nottingham, Frollo, Lady Tremaine, Drizella, Anastasia, Gideon, J. Worthington Foulfellow
- "The Dark Side" (near Star Tours) - Jawas, Jango Fett, Stormtroopers, Greedo, Asajj Ventress, Tusken Raiders, Gamorrean Guard, Zam Wesell, Aurra Sing
Shows and Happenings (all information adapted from the Disney Parks Blog):
- “Guardians of the Galaxy” Awesome Mix Tape Dance Party at the Animation Courtyard - Dance party featuring Gamora and the Star Lord. They will not greet guests, but the Disney Parks Blog did say they would "interact".
- Hades Hangout - The party kicks off at 8pm at the Sorcerer's hat stage, where hosts Hades, Megara, Pain and Panic. They’ll be joined throughout the night by other villains such as the Queen of Hearts, the Sheriff of Nottingham, the Big Bad Wolf and Captain Hook. None of them will be greeting guests, as per the norm with Disney dance parties.
- Oogie Boogie’s Freaky Funhouse Show - On Sunset Boulevard, Theater of the Stars presents a production of extreme performances, hosted by Oogie Boogie. It’s an all-new show that’s sure to thrill!
- Fantasmic! - On Sunset Boulevard, a gang of villainous henchmen, known as the Night Crawlers, tempt you to join them for a special pre-show to the evening’s performance of Fantasmic!
- “Villainy in the Sky” Fireworks - Hades summons Maleficent to the main event stage (Sorcerer's Hat) to close things out with a devilishly dazzling display of pyrotechnics!
What's interesting also about this list is that The Witch and The Queen will both be greeting, in separate locations. I think there may be some sorcery involved in this one! (Remember, they are both the alter egos of the evil Queen Grimhilde!)
It's also worth pointing out that Emperor Palpatine and the Royal Guards will be greeting, which is very rare. On top of that, of course as we already knew from a couple of weeks ago, Captain Gantu and Dr Hamsterviel will be landing for some alien terror!
On to some Frozen news now, and Hong Kong Disneyland announced at a special media event, and later via their Facebook page, that Anna and Elsa from the wildly popular movie Frozen would feature as characters at the park during their "Disney's Sparkling Christmas" celebrations, from mid-November this year.
Just a few hours ago the Tokyo Disney Resort Blog also announced some news regarding Frozen at the resort. From January 13th until March 20th a new Frozen section will be added to their poplar nighttime show, Once Upon a Time, and, from what I can make out (the Japanese being difficult to translate, as always), they will also feature in some capacity either in the parade, or at least along the parade route during the day.
Staying with the Asian parks, Hong Kong held special preview event of their brand new nighttime parade, Paint the Night, which debuts in October this year. We have some videos posted on our forum here which you should check out, it looks really awesome!
We come to Paris now, where just today they sent out their press release regarding the upcoming Halloween season. The complete English version is below.
A Maleficent Halloween at Disneyland® Paris
From 1 October to 2 November 2014, Disneyland Paris is the place to be to meet the Halloween gang of Disney Villains. Every day, Maleficent will bring together the Disney Villains in a cheerfully ominous atmosphere, promising Disneyland Paris guests encounters to die (laughing) for. The Sleeping Beauty Castle Courtyard will be transformed to welcome the good Disney Villains who will take mischievous pleasure in taking over Disney's Halloween Festival.
And that's not all! During this delightfully frightening month, ghosts and "Disney’s Funky Pumpkins*" will take possession of Main Street, U.S.A., astonishing pumpkins will take over the flowerbeds in Central Plaza and Frontierland will be transformed into an autumn garden, where sunflowers and pumpkins will take centre stage. Finally, Mickey and friends will offer guests a special Harvest festival-themed cavalcade, not far from Minnie's Halloween Costume Corner or the incredible candy-making machine invented by greedy Goofy, all designed to ensure Disney's Halloween Festival is a laugh a minute!
NEW: The Maleficent Disney Villains Promenade
Every day, the Disney Villains will be happy to have their photos taken with guests to immortalize this fearsomely funny occasion forevermore. Together with Maleficent, the Disney Villains will parade around Central Plaza to welcome guests.
NEW: Maleficent's Court
This year, Maleficent will cast a spell on the Sleeping Beauty Castle and the Disneyland Park and will invite some of the Disney Villains to join her in the Castle Courtyard. Maleficent, surrounded by her friends, the Disney Villains, will take over the place - it has now been invaded by imposing brambles, which guests will be able to pose in front of, next to the Disney Villains.
That is how huge brambles mysteriously appear in the Castle Courtyard. Shaped like the famous horns of Maleficent herself, these brambles form the outline of an imposing dragon. As night falls, the bramble will take on a more disquieting look, immersing guests in a universe of bright, unsettling colours.
Mickey's Halloween Celebration
To celebrate Halloween and to provide guests with a unique party, Mickey and friends will offer guests a cavalcade specially dedicated to the Harvest festival, and have naturally been inspired by the autumn and Harvest theme. Several times a day, Mickey and friends will parade in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle and along Main Street, U.S.A., surrounded by dancers wearing autumn colours.
This year, the lovely Daisy will open the cavalcade. The Three Little Pigs and Horace will join Mickey's Halloween Celebration on their brand new float "Raise the Rafters!". Surrounded by owls, black cats, spiders and bats, the Three Little Pigs, Horace and Clarabelle will dance to country music in front of their farm. A tree and an enchanted mushroom will come to life as if by magic.
As for the Disney Characters, they will be showing off their most stunning seasonal costumes. Donald will explore the wonders of autumn in a world made of straw and pumpkins, together with his inseparable nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie. Meanwhile, Uncle Scrooge will bring up the rear, determined to keep determined to keep careful watch over a strange pumpkin that appears to be worth its weight in gold…
Mickey and Minnie pay homage to the Harvest season from their huge horn of plenty, filled with autumn leaves, fruits and pumpkins. Behind them, Chip and Dale, accompanied by the charming Clarice, have taken advantage of the Harvest to steal and hoard as many hazelnuts as they can lay their hands on!
Ghosts invade Disneyland Park
They thought they could keep a low profile throughout Halloween month, but guests will only be able to unmask them and immortalise them in a photo!
The ghosts of the former residents of Main Street, U.S.A. will use Halloween as the perfect opportunity to make their grand appearance. Delighted to be able to make an appearance during Disney's Halloween Festival, they will take over Main Street, U.S.A., trying to blend into the scenery. The Park's apprentice ghost hunters will be invited to unmask them, armed with their cameras.
Hilarious encounters with Disney Characters
The Disney characters get dressed up to the nines to welcome guests in a vibrant and colourful Halloween atmosphere for those special photo opportunities with guests.
Halloween Costume Corner - Passionate about sewing and fashion, Minnie will invite guests to discover her amazing sewing workshop, specially created for Halloween. An extravagant, colourful world where everyone is encouraged to let their imagination run wild. Minnie, in her fabulous Halloween-inspired dress will no doubt jump at the opportunity to pose with her admirers.
Goofy Bonbons - Halloween would not be the same without bonbons and spells. For that reason, Goofy has designed and created a truly amazing candy-making machine to dazzle those with a sweet tooth, young and old! Fans of bonbons and Goofy will not miss the opportunity to stop in front of this astonishing machine. Goofy might even join them to make sure everything is in good working order. A moment to treasure and a chance for everyone to persuade him to share his confectionery secrets!
Jack and Sally's Cemetery (from Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas© Disney) - The famous couple created by Tim Burton will be at Disneyland Paris during Halloween for a mortally enchanting encounter. The set recreates the universe of the film The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Jack and Sally in person will welcome those who will be courageous enough to meet them. A reproduction inspired by the universe of Tim Burton, Jack and Sally's Cemetery is a unique place.
NEW: Disney PhotoPass+
The perfect opportunity to capture your best moments with the Disney Villains.
Disney PhotoPass+ allows guests to collect all their souvenir photos taken on rides or with Disney Characters by Park photographers at photo locations in high definition in a virtual portfolio. The photos are also available on a dedicated website (www.disneyphotopass.eu) and on a mobile app that enables guests to download them, share them on social networks and even purchase personalised photo products (photo albums, mugs, calendars etc.).
Disney's Halloween Festival will therefore be the ideal time to capture the best poses next to the Disney Villains.
Disney's Halloween Party: the grand finale on 31 October!
Guaranteed screams, even for the bravest guests. The most magical Halloween night will take place at Disneyland Paris!
The now famous Disney's Halloween Party (ticketed event) will be held on 31 October 2014 in Disneyland Park. A unique experience to share with family or friends from 8.30 pm to 1 am.
Disneyland Park will reopen its doors after dark and guests will see it as they have never seen it before - in a more mysterious atmosphere than ever, with unexpected animations, terrifyingly delicious surprises and a "hellish" atmosphere. The moon will bring out the ghosts, Disney Villains and other creatures for the party, who are all ready to play their tricks around the most mysterious of places. After enjoying the many attractions Disneyland Park has to offer, guests will be able to immerse themselves in the magical extravaganza of the Disney Dreams®! night-time show.
Hair-raising, high-speed sensations!
Halloween will be the perfect occasion to test guests' vocal chords on rides that will make them tremble with fear! With The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, Rock ’n’ Roller Coaster with Aerosmith, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Peril, Crush’s Coaster® and Space Mountain: Mission 2, Disneyland Paris will be the place to be to test the limits of the most overwhelming fears.
The Disney Villains have chosen the right occasion for their largest gathering — Disney's Halloween Festival 2014 has become autumn's unmissable event.
In an atmosphere where laughter mingles with spells cast by Maleficent, guests will find themselves immersed in a strange, delightful world that only Disneyland Paris knows how to create. To celebrate Halloween and the Harvest season with Mickey and friends, come to Disneyland Paris from 1 October to 2 November 2014.
Finally, although nothing official has been announced (as far as I'm aware, and I get all the press releases such as the one above for Halloween), Merida will finally be coming to Disneyland Paris for Christmas, and Anna and Elsa will be greeting guests there, too, instead of just being in the parade. Many sites and pages on the internet have been circulating this news this week, and I have reason to believe it holds a good amount of truth. What's interesting is that Anna and Elsa are said to be going into the Princess Pavilion - I wonder where the other princesses will go? Of course, Disneyland Paris only today released the full Halloween information (above), so until they release the full Christmas press release, anything can change! When they do finally release it, I'll be sure to post it here on the blog.
Ok that's everything for today. We were at DLP on two separate occasions over the past few weeks, I have already compiled one photo trip report which includes over 50 photos of the brand new Ratatouille area there, so be sure to check that out! Another report for our second trip will be coming soon!
Also, don't forget to read part one of my Grand Circle Tour of all the world's Magic Kingdoms, here. Part 2 is coming soon, too!
Let's start with Walt Disney World, where this week the Disney Parks Blog confirmed that the immensely popular Frozen Summer events are being extended by a whole month, until 28th September. This is great news for fans who want to experience the winter wonderland that has taken over Disney's Hollywood Studios! You can sing along with Anna, Elsa and Kristoff at a special show at the park, or watch them in the magically frozen parade that happens daily.
The Disney Parks Blog also announced that Baymax and Hiro from Disney's brand new movie, Big Hero 6, will debut as characters at the Disney parks in Anaheim and Orlando this autumn. No other details about where in the parks and for how long they'll greet for has been released yet. Once Disney say more, I'll be sure to update here on the blog.
Bob Iger told investors earlier this week at a meeting that, “We’re also developing ideas and designs for a far greater Star Wars presence in our parks,” and, “We expect to provide details about this sometime next year.” Nobody knows any more than that right now, but it's an exciting prospect nonetheless!
Mickey's Halloween Party tickets for Disneyland in California went on sale, and have dates from Friday 26th September through to Halloween night itself. Prices start from $56 for annual passholders online advance purchase.
The Tokyo Disney Resort Blog released some details about this year's Christmas events at their parks. The Japanese, as always, is quite difficult to translate, but I have managed to pull some details from it. At Tokyo DisneySea we can expect to see the Color of Christmas show on Mediterranean Harbor, featuring Mickey and friends. Over at Lost River Delta you can celebrate the Spanish festival of light, although I don't think any characters are involved - it sounded like just decorations and lights. At American Waterfront there seems to be another show, called Snow Crystal Illumination. I'm inclined to think this one may be a character show since it says it'll be at Waterfront Park, an area they usually use for character shows. However, again, it's hard to translate. There is also mention of character greetings, but no further details provided. Based on past years, it'll most likely be Duffy and ShellieMay in special costumes, but others could appear also. At Tokyo Disneyland, Disney's Santa Village Parade returns. As always with Japan, there will be lots of cool decorations, merchandise and treats available throughout the season, which runs from 7th November through 25th December inclusive.
If you haven't already read it, you should check out part 1 of my Grand Circle Tour of the Magic Kingdoms of the world. Part 2 will be coming soon!
Have a great weekend everyone,
Today Walt Disney World released the dates for their popular Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties and Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Parties at the Magic Kingdom.
Dates are as follows.
September 1, 9, 12, 14, 16, 19, 21, 23, 26 and 28
October 2, 3, 5, 9, 10, 13, 16, 17, 19, 21, 23, 24, 26, 28, 30 and 31
November 7, 10, 13, 14, 16, 20, 21 and 30
December 2, 4, 5, 7, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18 and 19
Today, 5th May, is also the day that Doc McStuffins finally comes to Disney California Adventure, having already been at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Florida for quite some time now.
If you're planning a trip to Disneyland Paris in the coming weeks, remember that they have lots of exciting things going on right now, such as their brand new Swing into Spring season and Meet Spider-Man at the Walt Disney Studios!
|New Year, New Updates!||
Sunday, January 5, 2014 12:34:32 PM
First off, I'd like to wish you all a Happy 2014! Last year was a turbulent, but exciting year for Jon and I, and we hope to have many more amazing adventures in the coming months, which we look forward to sharing with you all. In case you missed it, you can check out my blog post, '2013 - A Year in Review'. Be warned, there are literally hundreds of photos (nearly all character ones!), so it might take a while to load, and a while to look through!
Anyway, it's a new year, which means there is always news from the parks to report. We'll start at Walt Disney World in Florida, and work our way around the world.
Tomorrow, January 6th is the final day for Disney's Animal Kingdom's Camp Minnie-Mickey. The small, forested trails of this cute corner of the park will close permanently to make way for the controversial Avatar Land, currently being developed by Walt Disney Imagineering. This means that Timon and his pals at the long-running Festival of the Lion King will be relocated to a new theatre later in the year, elsewhere in the park. It also means of course that the Greetings Trails will close forever. The characters will be moved to new locations around the park. At the moment, what I've heard is that Baloo and King Louie will greet up on the trail between Africa and Asia (a place they have frequented in the past anyway), Chip and Dale (as well as Gi-Tar Dan) will move to Rafiki's Planet Watch, Pocahontas can be found in the Discovery Island Trails, and Donald Duck will move to Dinoland. Mickey and Minnie already moved early last year from the Greeting Trails to their new home on Discovery Island (at the Adventurer's Outpost).
At Disney's Hollywood Studios' character dining location, Disney Junior Play 'N Dine at Hollywood & Vine, June and Agent Oso are being replaced with Princess Sofia and Doc McStuffins. I have tried to find what date this will happen, but nobody knows for sure, although one friend did tell me perhaps the 26th January. This will mean that June and Agent Oso will no longer appear regularly at any Disney Park around the world. It does also mean that for the first time ever, Doc McStuffins will be available daily, for greetings, for all guests (albeit at a meal). Also for Hollywood Studios, dates for the mega popular Star Wars Weekends were released for 2014. This year they will run every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 16th May until 8th June inclusive.
At the Magic Kingdom, yesterday the epically long running Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade had its final curtain call. Running twice, the parade was given a neat final send-off, with a few old props returning, and fans lining the parade route with signs of support for the cast and characters. Many people have very fond memories of this parade, since its debut back in 2001 as Share a Dream Come True Parade, for Walt's 100th birthday. Although it was loved by many, I for one, and I know many others feel the same too, very much welcome a brand new day parade after 12 long years! The new parade, Festival of Fantasy is currently slated for a spring debut, and will feature a mixture of brand new floats and some that have been imported from Tokyo Disneyland's beautiful, and much missed, Jubilation parade. The new parade is confirmed to have floats representing Peter Pan, The Little Mermaid, Tangled, Brave, and of course Mickey and Friends. Two of the floats brought from Tokyo used to be the Pinocchio float (it's Monstro) and the Princess one, and therefore fuels speculation they'll be used for the same purpose again, but official images of them/concept art are yet to be released.
As a reminder, today and tomorrow are the final days for the full Christmas season offerings at both the Disneyland Resort and Disneyland Paris. If you're in the area, be sure to stop by and catch their parades and shows again before they bid farewell for another 10 months! Brand new offerings this year included the Viva Navidad event and World of Color Winter Dreams at Disney California Adventure and Disney Dreams! of Christmas and the revamped Christmas Cavalcade at Disneyland Paris.
Speaking of Disneyland Paris, we were there for Christmas and New Year, which was amazing as usual! They always put a huge effort into their special entertainment offerings, and this year did not disappoint! The highlight was the "plussed" version of the Disney's Stars 'n' Cars parade at the Walt Disney Studios, which featured awesome characters just for New Year such as Darkwing Duck, Yzma and Kronk, the Cheshire Cat and many more!
It has been strongly rumoured across the internet that Disneyland Paris will also be bringing back a very old festival of theirs from some years back, called the Festival of Flowers. The Festival of Flowers was like a DLP version of EPCOT's Flower and Garden Festival. It is rumoured that the festival will return for a three month long spring event that will also incorporate a special happening (involving characters) as well as meet 'n' greets. There is nothing confirmed yet, but we all hope that this is true!
Finally, we have been aware that many of you have been searching the website for Princess Anna and Queen Elsa from Disney's Frozen. It took a while to get them up, but I have finally done it! (Click their names to go to their pages)
Ok, that's everything for today. Have a good week everyone,
As the Halloween Season draws to a close this week, I can't help but think about Christmas!
This year Jon and I will be at Disneyland Paris just after Christmas itself, for the Christmas Season and New Year's celebrations at the Resort.
We are both really excited to be going back to Disneyland Paris this year for Christmas, as there will be many new things, which only Disneyland Paris offer.
I have been to Disneyland Paris for Christmas Season at least five other years of the past ten, so let's take a look back at some of what has been offered over the year, before we come back to the new offerings this year.
This is a very photo heavy post, so be warned that it may take a while to load all the images below.
For the longest time Disneyland Park had a Christmas addition to its regular day parade, usually just tacked on at the end. This happened during the old Wonderful World of Disney Parade, and the Once Upon a Dream Parade. There was never a Christmas parade, per se. There was a Santa's Sleigh, Toy Soldiers, and more recently Duffy.
Other long running entertainment included the enchanting Mickey's Winter Wonderland show at the Chaparral Theater in Frontierland, and the Tree Lighting Ceremony in Town Square.
Mickey's Winter Wonderland remained unchanged for many, many years, but was a firm fan favourite every holiday season.
The Tree Lighting Ceremony was also incredibly popular, and always starred Mickey and Friends lighting the big Christmas Tree in Town Square. Some aspects of the show changed slightly over the years, but it basically remained the same.
Disneyland Paris also pioneered the beautiful Christmas lights that now adorn the other Disney Castles of the world. Disneyland Park would present a special Castle Lighting show. As with the Tree Lighting, the way in which this was done changed slightly from year to year, but overall the concept remained the same.
Character greetings have included Santa Claus, Elves, and of course Mickey and Friends in seasonal costumes at both parks. Other characters in Christmas costumes have included the Winnie the Pooh friends, and Duffy the Disney Bear. Some years back, Belle also used to meet in a pretty red jacket.
For 21 years, the Christmas Tree in Town Square was the same. Last year they added some 20th Anniversary ornaments to it, but it remained identical otherwise.
Some years ago, the park used to also feature the stunning Lights of Winter (which EPCOT also used to have) along Main Street USA, but these were sadly retired nearly 10 years ago now.
After the lights of winter the Princess Crowns graced the street for a couple of years, but were quite unpopular by all accounts.
Like the other parks, snowfall on Main Street is a regular occurrence, although in Paris, as we have personally experienced, it isn't always just the magical Disney snow that can fall across the park!
In Fantasyland guests used to be able to discover a Christmas market, straight from the world of Beauty and the Beast, 'Belle's Christmas Village'.
Finally, a staple of the holiday season for some years has been the "it's a small world" overlay, becoming "it's a small world" Celebration during Christmas Season.
Now we fast forward from our trip through the past, to 2012. Last year Disneyland Paris took a giant leap away from previous Christmas offerings.
Mickey's Winter Wonderland did not return, the Princess Crowns were ditched, brand new garlands graced Main Street, there was a new live entertainment offering starring Mickey, and a fantastic new Christmas Cavalcade was launched.
Unfortunately we were unable to attend last year (although we were in California for their Christmas Season, so that was a great substitute!).
That means that this year will be our first year seeing the new offerings, and what's more, there is set to be even more this year than last year!
Of course, some old favourites will still be there too.
This year the park has got a brand new Christmas Tree, which is really exciting for me, as I love Christmas Trees! As well as the new Tree, last years there were brand new garlands all along Main Street and giant character snowmen in Central Plaza. This is as well as all the beautiful decorations that find their way throughout the resort, with nearly every restaurant, store being decorated inside and out. The Disneyland Hotel also has a yearly traditional giant gingerbread house.
The Cavalcade is said to be receiving some extra characters, making it better than last year, and the Tree Lighting Ceremony has been changed again, this time being narrated by Jiminy Cricket and Pinocchio.
Santa and his Elves will still be at the Ranch, snow will still fall on Main Street USA, and "it's a small world" Celebration has been reinstalled.
The Jingle Bell Boys are set to return too. That's a live band that also stars Mickey Mouse showing off his dance moves at the Videopolis in Discoveryland.
I have also heard that Jack Skellington is sticking around after Halloween Season ends, but will be putting on his Sandy Claws outfit! Now that would be really awesome!
One of the biggest things that the park is doing this year is a brand new version of Dreams especially for Christmas!
Disney Dreams! is the most spectacular nighttime show ever created by Disney Imagineering, and for the holidays it'll switch to featuring scenes from the new Disney movie Frozen, a Toy Story Nutcracker tale, and much more!
If all that wasn't enough, there are a few more things that are continuing some Disneyland Paris traditions.
For many years, the Disney Hotels have offered special meals during the holidays, some of which are character ones.
On the 29th December we are planning to attend the Christmas Brunch with the Disney Characters at Inventions, in the Disneyland Hotel, and on New Year's Eve there is a special character dinner at the Hotel New York, which we are also attending.
Usually on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve, the Disneyland Hotel puts on special entertainment too. We really hope that this returns this year also, as we've really enjoyed this in the past. And speaking of New Year, both parks and Lake Disney all will continue their annual New Year's Fireworks. Two years ago we saw them in Disneyland Park, this year we plan to see them on Lake Disney due to our meal at the Hotel New York.
Once again I have to apologise for the long gap between updates here on the blog. Unfortunately we have just been incredibly busy with real life.
Anyway, there are some important new news pieces from around the world that I want to discuss this evening. We'll start with Disneyland Paris.
Disneyland Paris has been announcing a lot of new things recently for the upcoming Halloween and Christmas Seasons, which has been well received by the fans.
This Halloween Season there will be a brand new cavalcade (which we already knew), and it has now been officially confirmed that Clarabelle Cow will be part of that. This is the first time Clarabelle has ever been to Disneyland Paris in its 21 years!
Huey, Dewey and Louie along with Scrooge McDuck were previously confirmed, and are still expected to appear in the cavalcade. Also making a welcome return to the park, albeit just for the cavalcade, are the Pumpkin Men! DLP fans will know that the Pumpkin Men (and women too) were a long-time staple of Halloween Season at DLP, often running around Main Street and Frontierland scaring guests half to death! They were a lot of fun!
Minnie Mouse will be greeting at her new dedicated Halloween location at Casey's Corner on Main Street. Various fan sites have already posted pictures of that. Her outfit is yet to be seen, although artwork suggests it will be brand new.
Bon Bon Goofy will return to Town Square, following his debut last year (it was a new outfit and new backdrop for him), as will the Villains in Fantasyland. It was suggested that one of the many Halloween themed bands that usually play throughout the park during the season will accompany the Villains this year, which would be a neat touch, to have Villainous music playing while meeting them!
Duffy the Disney Bear is also to appear on Main Street in a Halloween outfit, for the first time in Paris. It is not yet confirmed what outfit he will greet guests in, but is expected to be similar to the US pumpkin version.
Jack and Sally return to Thunder Mesa (outside Phantom Manor). Their location setup will be much the same, but with some new decorations that detail The Nightmare before Christmas more.
The Halloween Soiree (Halloween Party on the 31st October) is also set to see some more new entertainment offerings. I did hear that Maleficent and Hook would be given their own shows. Maleficent is said to be at the Castle Stage, and Hook on his ship in Adventureland. All other details, including set up etc is not yet confirmed. If and when I can find out more, I will definitely post it here. Last years Soiree saw some awesome new entertainment, which injected some much needed life into the event, after a couple years of wavering. Whether any of last years shows will return is yet to be confirmed.
It was also confirmed - in a round-about way - by a DLP official that ShellieMay would appear at the Soiree! I think his exact words were to the effect of "a good friend of Duffy is also going to make an appearance". Unless he was talking about Mickey Mouse, I think we can safely assume he meant ShellieMay! This will be the first time ever that ShellieMay has greeted regular park guests outside of Tokyo Disney Resort!
Outside of the parks, at Disney Village, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show will see the return of the Halloween version. Dates and times are yet to be confirmed, I believe.
For Christmas Disneyland Paris have confirmed that the popular Christmas Cavalcade from last year will return, and will be expanded upon, including the addition of the Gingerbread Men, from the US parks! Certainly a much welcomed addition!
Other new offerings include an updated Tree Lighting Ceremony in Town Square, narrated by Jiminy Cricket, and a special winter enchantment at Sleeping Beauty Castle using Disney's new movie, Frozen, and the Disney Dreams technology.
Jack and Sally will return to Frontierland, and for the first time in Paris, and an all but one rare appearance some years ago at Disneyland in California, Jack will be in his Sandy Claws outfit! How awesome! I am really excited to see how he looks in that.
I was also pleased to hear that the Jingle Bell Boys will return to the Videopolis in Discoveryland, where they will rock out some Christmas tunes accompanied by Mickey Mouse, who last year dazzled guests with his Big Band Beat style dance moves! (Tokyo fans will know what I mean by Big Band Beat.)
The other big news for the season is that the Parade will debut characters from Disney's Frozen on the former Romance 1 float! Featuring in the daily parade, they will glide through Parc Disneyland on a magical Frozen themed float!
I don't think it has yet been confirmed whether they will remain after Christmas Season, but seeing as this is an addition to the main parade, I would imagine they will, which would be great!
Finally for DLP, today Joe Schott (DLP Chief Operating Officer) said that the Tarzan Encounter would return to the park at some point, although they do not know when yet.
Although I know many fans will think this is "cheap" move, since the show is rather old now, it is undeniably popular, and will be a welcome re-addition to a park that has seen a bit of a lack in entertainment of late. It's definitely better than nothing!
There have been many websites and fan pages posting about the new Christmas and Halloween offerings, so I haven't linked to any one in particular as I normally would do. If you want to find out more, just do a search online or check out some dedicated DLP Facebook pages.
Over in the US, and Halloween Season is well under way. Neither Resort seems to have changed much again this year, with the one exception that both have replaced one of their Halloween Party dance parties with a Monsters Inc themed one. Magic Kingdom's MNSSHP now also have Jack and Sally greeting in Town Square.
Other than that, I don't think much else has altered. If you know any different, the please let me know!
At Disneyland you can meet Jack Sparrow on Tom Sawyer Island, and at the Magic Kingdom Hook, Jake and Pirate Goofy have been out and about.
Over at Disney's Hollywood Studios, rather suddenly, Minnie Mouse was given a brand new greeting location inside the Animation building. While we usually like these things (and indeed the location looks neat), she now wears her regular polkadot outfit (with some "sparkle", I was told). This is actually a step back, since she had been greeting around the Big Hat in her special pink DHS outfit.
Finally, yesterday the Disney Parks Blog revealed
two more concept art images for the brand new Festival of Fantasy Parade coming to the Magic Kingdom in spring 2014. Ariel and Merida's float look pretty cool, and are a world apart from the now ancient Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade, which I know fans will be glad to see the back of!
Ok, I think that is everything for today. Have a great weekend everyone,
This week we start our updates in Disneyland, where the Disney Parks Blog announced that Marvel hero, and God of Thunder, Thor would start making appearances at the park in the winter (no confirmed date as of yet)!
Currently it is unclear as to how long Thor will stay at the park once he starts appearing, but it will mark the first time a Marvel character will greet guests inside a Disney Park.
Captain America, Iron Man and Spider-Man previously appeared at D23 (which was not inside the park), and Captain America is due to appear on the DCL Disney Magic from the autumn.
To mark the end of summer, just across the esplanade from Disneyland, Disney California Adventure is holding an End of Summer Party at the Pier.
All this week, until next Monday inclusive, Paradise Pier will host variety acts and the Disney Characters in beach wear. The LTM website doesn't make it clear whether the characters will be meeting, or part of the acts and other entertainment. Technically it did start yesterday, but I haven't yet seen any photos yet of who is starring - I guess we'll find out soon enough!
Similarly over at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom, Tomorrowland's regular dance party will add Dug and Bolt into the mix for a special Dog Days of Summer party, also running through next Monday.
Other dogs in attendance will be Goofy, Pluto and honorary dog, Stitch. Basically Chip and Dale are being replaced with Dug (who is over at DAK daily anyway), and Bolt. Hosts are also handing out bone shaped character autograph cards (similar to how all previous LTM events have had character autograph cards).
Staying with WDW, and the Parks Blog released an image of the marquee going up at the new Princess Fairytale Hall in Fantasyland. They also confirm that the new princess meet 'n' greet is set to open in the fall.
Looking to next month's LTM offerings, and Friday the 13th at both Disneyland and WDW looks set to be a blast, with special villainous events.
As we already know, at WDW they are holding a dance party at Hollywood Studios. Disneyland will run the same hours (8pm - 1am) for the event, but will instead have what appears to be various activities scattered throughout the park.
Interestingly, both resorts will apparently have 13 villains in attendance. All other details right now are sketchy, and of course anything could change. I'll be very interested to see what Disneyland has up their sleeves for this one!
Finally, moving ahead to Christmas season, and the Parks Blog announced some of the seasonal offerings taking place this year at Tokyo Disney Resort. When I say some, I really mean very little, because as you read below, you'll see a lot of the previous years offerings were missing from the announcement.
Tokyo Disneyland will be host to the Christmas Fantasy celebration, featuring Santa's Village, complete with a toy workshop, and the Santa's Village Parade. The Santa's Village itself I expect will be home to Santa Claus while he is visiting Tokyo. There are no other details, so we shall wait and see!
Last year TDL had a small nighttime projection show at Cinderella Castle titled Twinkling Christmas Castle. It has not been stated whether this will return this year yet.
Also, in the past, up to last year, during the park's electrical parade Dreamlights Mickey and Friends would wear sparkling Christmas outfits. Again, no mention as to whether they will do this again this year.
At Tokyo DisneySea the Christmas Wishes celebration will feature Colors of Christmas, which is a nighttime Christmas Tree lighting show on the Harbor, and stars Mickey and Friends. There will also be Holiday Greeting From Seven Ports, a daytime show on the Harbor waterfront featuring Mickey and Friends.
Last year, the American Waterfront show A Table is Waiting had a Christmas overlay, titled Christmas Cuisine. It has not been mentioned whether this will return this year yet.
In the past Duffy and ShellieMay have greeted guests in special Christmas outfits, Santa Claus has appeared in American Waterfront, and fireworks at both parks usually changes over to the Starbright Christmas version. Again, we'll have to wait and see if any of this returns this year.
Both parks will of course have special merchandise, decorations and menu items.
Apologies if all the Tokyo stuff seemed like a lot of non-news, you can blame the Parks Blog for their lack of information! It was interesting nonetheless to see what is definitely confirmed, and what else we might expect based on previous years, despite not being announced yet.
UPDATE: A Japanese friend of mine posted on our forum after I had written this article, saying that a recent Japanese press release had revealed a few more details about this years happenings. I really wish Disney would release everything in multiple languages as so that we can avoid confusion! Anyway, he tells me that A Table is Waiting, Big Band Beat, Super Duper Jumpin' Time and Dreamlights will all receive their Christmas overlays this year. Also, as well as Duffy and ShellieMay wearing Christmas outfits, Ariel (greeting at her grotto in Mermaid Lagoon), also has a festive costume.
Ok, that's everything for today. We are actually off to Disneyland on Friday for four days, so be sure to follow our Facebook and Twitter pages for live updates from the resort!
There is breaking news today from the Disney Parks Blog. They just announced that Marvel's Captain America will appear starting in October aboard the re-imagined Disney Magic cruise ship!
He will feature at Marvel’s Avengers Academy in Disney’s Oceaneer Club, aboard the ship.
The really annoying thing about this is that the Oceaneer Club is just for kids. Regular guests are not normally allowed to go down there unless it's an open house (at which time things like the Marvel Academy would not normally be running).
The biggest thing we can take out of this is that, besides the expected appearances at D23 this week, this is the first official confirmation from Disney that any Marvel character will appear to regular guests on a Disney owned property.
I wonder how long it is now until we can expect them in the parks? Time will tell.
In other news, yesterday the Disney Parks Blog also announced that Holiday Time at the Disneyland Resort is returning once again from 12th November through 6th January.
This will be a relief for anyone who has been hearing the strong rumours across the internet that Christmas this year would be very different, and would even perhaps have ticketed events for the bulk of the seasonal offerings, like at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom.
I was busy last week, and didn't get chance to post about the latest Long Lost Friends Week for Limited Time Magic.
Disneyland had a vote on the Disney Parks Blog (now closed), which featured pretty much the same characters as before, with a few more thrown into the mix.
From what I recall characters included the Robin Hood gang, Hunchback friends (still no Quasimodo though), the Three Good Fairies, Merlin (he was a new one), Flik and Atta (Atta was also a new option), and Chicken Little (Abby wasn't listed, oddly enough, even though she was for WDW).
There is no official date for this event yet, but it is expected by most to be in the next two weeks.
Disneyland Paris fans have been hearing rumours across the internet for a few weeks now that Jack Sparrow would be setting sail from the parks after a long running stint there, in October this year. Pirate fans need not despair though as rumour has it that Jake from the Neverland Pirates will start appearing, as well as Sofia the First, over at Walt Disney Studios around the same time Jack goes away.
It'll be nice to get some new characters at the park. The last new characters from any new movie or TV show that DLP got were Rapunzel and Flynn.
Staying with DLP, and Timon has decided to sport his new look in DLP as of yesterday. This now brings him in line with the other parks.
Finally, although we (sadly) aren't attending, D23 takes place this week and is expected to star some brand new characters. We'll of course keep you all posted.
Ok, I think that's all for now,
|Merry Christmas in July!||
Thursday, July 25, 2013 12:41:01 PM
|Today is the 25th July, which means it is just 5 months until the big day!
Christmas in July is something which is celebrated unofficially in some parts of the southern hemisphere, because that's when their winter is. Although Christmas for those places is still in December, some people feel that summertime doesn't feel right.
The earliest know mention of Christmas in July was in an 1892 French opera.
In 1933, a girls summer camp in North Carolina held a big Christmas celebration in July, complete with presents and a tree!
The rest, as they say, is history!
|Christmas in July (and December too!)||
Tuesday, July 23, 2013 1:45:15 PM
Today we have a distinctly Christmas theme for you!
The other day the Disney Parks Blog announced details of some very special Christmas happenings aboard the Disney Cruise Line this year.
Character activities announced include meet 'n' greets with Santa Claus, King Triton’s Tree Lighting Ceremony and the Deck the Deck Holiday Party!
It all sounds like a ton of fun! Along with the decorations, seasonal food and other entertainment, plus a decked-out Castaway Cay, this Christmas season is set to be truly amazing aboard Disney Cruise Line!
We've only ever done one Disney Cruise in February 2012. We really enjoyed it, and definitely want to return someday to do a Christmas one!
Although none of this is 'new' news as such, I hadn't yet reported on the Christmas offerings that have been announced for the US Parks this year.
We were away for the entirety of May on the big trip, and so I couldn't report on many of the official releases. I am just now finally getting around to catching up!
Anyway, the Walt Disney World Resort website now lists the return of Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom, which runs on select dates from November to December, Holidays Around the World at EPCOT, the Osbourne Lights at Hollywood Studios and the Jingle Jungle Parade at Animal Kingdom.
What's interesting is that it was strongly rumoured that Jammin' Jungle would end this Autumn at some point, so the fact that Jingle Jungle is back disproves this. Also, the Osbourne Lights are sadly rumoured to be featuring for their final year, although Disney have not said this officially.
Although not character based, the Osbourne LIghts are undoubtedly the most spectacular Christmas enchantment you'll ever experience at WDW. They are simply stunning, and I know that everyone would be deeply saddened if they were to go away.
The Disneyland Resort website has its Christmas page up now, too, and like with WDW, there were rumours of some major changes (for the worse) this year, but so far everything appears as normal. Character greetings, the Christmas parade, Christmas fireworks and more are all listed on the dedicated Christmas page. This makes us very happy as Christmas at the Disneyland Resort last year, for us, was one of the best things we've ever done there. It's a beautiful time of year, with so much on offer. We'd have been so sad of they removed everything they were rumoured to!
Finally, this weeks Limited Time Magic at the US Parks is Christmas in July. No character greetings are being offered sadly, but they do have some special sweet treats, and ear hat ornaments.
Anyway, I think that's everything for now.