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News and updates from around the world - Star Wars Weekends, Parade changes in Hong Kong, Oswald and more!
DisneyDan  Sunday, February 23, 2014 10:58:43 AM
Hello everyone,

This week the Disney Parks Blog announced that the insanely popular Star Wars Weekend at Walt Disney World's Hollywood Studios would be extended to a fifth weekend, up from its normal four. In addition, there would be brand new nightly fireworks (during the weekends), similar to those seen last year at the May the Fourth event. Other Disney news sites are also reporting that there will be a new "experience" to replace the long running and very popular Hyperspace Hoopla. There is no word yet as to why they are doing this and what exactly Hoopla will be replaced with, but we can only hope it's as energetic and fun as Hoopla has been in the past few years. We'll be sad to see Hoopla go, but look forward to having some new entertainment, hopefully!

Across the Twitterverse and beyond, many people have now been talking about the strong possibility that Oswald the Lucky Rabbit will finally be allowed to step out of Toontown and join the Disney Characters at the Disney Parks, for the first time ever this spring! It has been suggested by many that he will start appearing during Disneyland Paris' and Tokyo Disney Resort's spring events. Of course, it could be a rumour that has just spiralled and grown, or there could be something in it, but I have a feeling, and talking to some people I know, that it could very well be true! I guess we shall see at the end of next month! Let's hope it is true!

Speaking of the new spring season at Disneyland Paris, although I had talked about this before, and other sites have also all been talking about it, I wanted to just mention here what we know so far, to give a roundup of what we can expect.
There will be a brand new cavalcade at Disneyland Park, featuring around thirty characters, some of them I'm told are "uncommon". It's strongly hinted that Thumper and Miss Bunny will come to Disneyland Paris for the first time (as well as Oswald, who I mentioned above). The cavalcade will utilise the former Casey Jr train from years gone by, along with three of the cars from Stars 'n' Cars (Walt Disney Studios Park's parade). The cars being taken out of Stars 'n' Cars are Mary Poppins and Bert, Snow White and Dopey and Sulley. The loss of three cars and five characters means that the parade will no longer be able to operate in its current capacity, and therefore plans are in the works to use the remaining cars for a special meet 'n' greet cavalcade. Details are sketchy right now, so we will have to wait until next month to see how it all works out.
As well as the parade changes for both parks, Disneyland Park is also expected to get some awesome decorations, musicians, street artists and there has even been talk of a small show on Main Street, but, that's still as yet unconfirmed.
As you would expect, there will also be some special meet 'n' greets at Disneyland Park, with our favourite characters in special outfits.
Of course, as I said, much as all this is currently unconfirmed. Admittedly, a lot has come from usually very reliable sources, and the odd thing about DLP is that rumours more often than not tend to turn out true! So let's hope all of this works out that way, too!

Staying with DLP, I want to draw you attention my extensive report I posted the other day that covered the new changes at the Disney Hotels and character greetings around the park. It's a sort of hybrid trip report and news report, but if you're planning a trip to DLP soon, it's well worth reading.

Finally we skip over to Hong Kong Disneyland, where the popular blog Disney and More revealed that the long running Glow in the Park Halloween Parade will sadly not return this year. Jon and I saw it several times in 2012 and really liked it. However, the park will be gaining a brand new nighttime parade, titled 'Disney Paint the Night' which will be a permanent addition. This of course is awesome, but I'm sure the Hong Kong fan community will miss not having a dedicated Halloween parade during the season.

Ok, I think that's everything for today,

News and updates from around the world - DLP Spring Fling, organised queue lines and more!
DisneyDan  Wednesday, January 8, 2014 11:51:37 AM
Hello everyone,

I have a few pieces of news for you today.

The Disneyland Paris Spring event (being dubbed "Spring Fling") that I previously told you about seems to really have taken momentum, and although still not officially confirmed by Disneyland Paris, two pieces of concept art have been leaked (one of Main Street Station, the other of Town Square), and even Vasile Sirli, the Resort's famed resident composer, posted about it on his Facebook page. We now know that as well as the really neat flowers and decorations, that there will be a show at the Videopolis, likely to be a short musical show with a character or two (similar to how the Jingle Bell Boys with Mickey worked at Christmas), as well as a small cavalcade that will feature two cars (thought to be former Stars 'n' Cars vehicles that are being repurposed). I have to say, this all sounds really awesome, and Jon and I will be there at the end of April for Easter, so we definitely cannot wait to see how it all finally comes together on the projected opening date of 3rd April!

Staying with Disneyland Paris, and it is being reported today from various fan groups at the parks that DLP have finally taken the initiative to set up organised lines for randomly appearing characters throughout the parks! This is a double edged sword for me, but one I think I am willing to accept. Anyone who has ever visited Disneyland Paris will know two things; one, that there are some really awesome characters out and about, including some rare ones that cannot be met usually elsewhere, and two, that queuing up has never seemed to been a concept they entirely grasped. The problem is though that it wasn't just that people would not queue, but that they would push and shove, and basically make the entire experience unbearable. I asked Philippe Gas (CEO of EuroDisney, S.A.S) about this personally in April last year at a small meeting in London, and he basically told me that they try to avoid confrontation. My argument has always been, well it's private property, if someone doesn't like to follow the rules, then have them removed! You might wonder why I am going on about this so much, but trust me, this is a huge deal for Disneyland Paris. For them to make this step is quite exceptional. The reason though I think it is a double edged sword, is that sadly I do think this will take away slightly from some of the randomness, and some of the fun interactive experiences you can get by following characters around, playing games with them, chasing them, etc. But, if it means I won't get bruised and in an argument with someone about who was next, then I am more than happy to compromise!

I just have a few other things I wanted to mention this evening.

In my last news post I forgot to mention that Princess Aurora has decided for now to return to the parks wearing her former dress that she has had for many years. Apparently Disney made the decision for her as they were not happy with the new one, launched last year, for one reason or another (many fans weren't either). So, if you got to see Aurora in her former new dress, you got to meet her in what will now be a retired outfit, and if you liked her old-old dress better, you have a chance to meet her in it again!

Finally, over at Walt Disney World's Animal Kingdom, again, as I had said previously, Camp Minnie-Mickey closed this week to make way for the new Avatar Land, but right after I posted that article, I discovered that since there is no Festival of the Lion King show right now, that a dance party will be taking place daily in Dinoland, featuring some random and very rare characters! Earlier this week Gypsy and Slim were seen, and various fan pages have reported seeing numerous other characters that haven't been seen in a while out, too!

You can check out all the other news I posted earlier in the week here.
I made a tribute to the now retired Celebrate a Dream Come True Parade earlier this week, if you missed that you can see it here.
Finally, if you want to see my tribute to Camp Minnie-Mickey, you can find that here.

Have a great day everyone,


Check out what an awesome year Character Central had in 2013, in our massive '2013 - A Character Filled Year in Review!'
Walt Disney World Easter 2013 - A Photo Report
DisneyDan  Monday, April 8, 2013 6:44:36 AM
Hello everyone,

If you had been following our Twitter last week, you will know that we spent 5 days in WDW over the Easter period.
Of course, going to WDW is nothing new for us (!), and so I don't usually post a review or trip report these days, but, there were a lot of new things on this trip that we hadn't experienced before, so I thought I would cover them in a short photo report (as opposed to a full trip report), so that you can all see some of our adventures.
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