Thursday, April 28, 2011

Free Coffee at Disneyland's Market House

Since 1955, Disneyland's Market House (on Main Street) has given free refills on coffee. Purchase a cup of coffee and save your receipt. No need to keep the cup - simply bring back the receipt and enjoy free refills all day!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Tip Top Club

The Tip Top Club "occupies" the top floor of the Hollywood Tower Hotel at Walt Disney World.

But it's just part of the storyline and doesn't physically exist.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Most Exclusive Restaurant at Walt Disney World

Victoria and Albert's (located on the second floor of the Grand Floridian Resort) is the most exclusive restaurant at Walt Disney World

The award-winning Signature Dining restaurant, Victoria & Albert’s in Disney’s Grand Floridian, is known for its special, personalized touches. Thanks to its Chef, Scott Hunnel.

Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa takes top prize for fancy-schmancy. Men, if you want to wear a jacket and treat your date to a formal dining affair, this is the place. A harpist sets the tone for the 6-course prix-fixe menu that changes almost nightly. Plan on at least two hours to dazzle your date with fab tastes from around the globe. $125 per person, wine pairings $60. Call 407-939-3862 for reservations.  

Monday, April 25, 2011

Disney's 3D Glasses Names

At Disney's Muppet*Vision 3-D, the 3-D glasses are actually called ... 3-D glasses. But at It's Tough to be a Bug they are called Bug Eyes, and at Honey, I Shrunk the Audience they are called Safety Goggles.

Park guests also wear 3-D glasses (or Carnival Games Goggles) for Toy Story Midway Mania!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Steven Tyler and the Plans for Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

During planning for Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, Imagineers wanted to select one of the world's greatest bands around which to build the back story for the attraction. They decided Aerosmith would be the perfect fit. But initially Imagineers were unable to reach singer Steven Tyler and guitarist Joe Perry. Why? Because they were vacationing with their families at the Disney-MGM Studios Park!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Disney-MGM Studios Opening Day

The concept for Disney's Hollywood Studios (originally called Disney-MGM Studios) came from an idea to have a movie pavilion at Epcot. Once Imagineers realized that the range of possibilities were larger than just one attraction, the idea for a 3rd theme park was born!

On its debut in 1989 Disney-MGM Studios (today known as Disney's Hollywood Studios) was so crowded that officials had to close its parking lot at only 9:15 a.m. - just about an hour after opening!

In 2008, Disney's Hollywood Studios hosted about 9.61 million guests, ranking it the fourth-most visited amusement park in the United States, and seventh-most visited in the world. That was the first year the park was known as Disney's Hollywood Studios, as prior to 2008 it was called Disney-MGM Studios.

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund

The Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund was established in 1995 (on Earth Day) as a a global awards program for the study and protection of the world's wildlife and ecosystems.

Earth Day is a day that is intended to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth's natural environment. Earth Day was founded by United States Senator Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in first held on April 22, 1970. While this first Earth Day was focused on the United States, an organization launched by Denis Hayes, who was the original national coordinator in 1970, took it international in 1990 and organized events in 141 nations. Earth Day is now coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network, and is celebrated in more than 175 countries every year. Numerous communities celebrate Earth Week, an entire week of activities focused on environmental issues. In 2009, the United Nations designated April 22 International Mother Earth Day.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The STR Symbol at the Partners Statue

The Partners bronze statue of Walt and Mickey appear in Disney theme parks all over the world. The STR symbol on Walt's tie refers to Smoke Tree Ranch, a place in Palm Springs, California, where he had a vaction home.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Walt E. Disney and the Art of Animation

It was while working at the Kansas City Film Ad Company in 1921 that Walt Disney first attempted and became fascinated with the art of animation.

19 years-old Walt Disney at the Kansas City Film Ad Company

In January 1920, Disney and Iwerks formed a short-lived company called, "Iwerks-Disney Commercial Artists". However, following a rough start, Disney left temporarily to earn money at Kansas City Film Ad Company, and was soon joined by Iwerks who was not able to run the business alone. While working for the Kansas City Film Ad Company, where he made commercials based on cutout animation, Disney took up an interest in the field of animation, and decided to become an animator. He was allowed by the owner of the Ad Company, A.V. Cauger, to borrow a camera from work, which he could use to experiment with at home. After reading a book by Edwin G. Lutz, called Animated Cartoons: How They Are Made, Their Origin and Development, he found cel animation to be much more promising than the cutout animation he was doing for Cauger. Walt eventually decided to open his own animation business, and recruited a fellow co-worker at the Kansas City Film Ad Company, Fred Harman, as his first employee. Walt and Harman then secured a deal with local theater owner Frank L. Newman — arguably the most popular "showman" in the Kansas City area at the time — to screen their cartoons — which they titled "Laugh-O-Grams" — at his local theater.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The climate-controlled Rock at Disney's Animal Kingdom

Disney designers crafted a climate-controlled rock for Animal Kingdom - that is heated in winter and cooled in the summer. It is used to entice the lions to sit in an area of their enclosure which is easily viewable by safari guests.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Walt and the Charlie Chaplin look-alike Contest

When Walt Disney was thirteen years-old he entered and WON a Charlie Chaplin look-alike contest!

(Legend has it that Chaplin himself once entered a similar contest in San Francisco and actually lost!)

Charles Chaplin and Walt Disney at the race track, 1939

Click Here to read 'Charlie Chaplin and Walt Disney Take on World War II'

Monday, April 11, 2011

Space Center Houston by the Imagineers

Space Center Houston (the official visitor's center of NASA's Johnson Space Center) was designed by Walt Disney Imagineering. Space Center Houston is located at 1601 NASA Parkway in Houston, Texas.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Magic of Disneyland - Tinker Bell's Airplane

On April 07, 2005, a themed airplane adorned with the image of Tinker Bell on the fuselage and golden Mickey Mouse ears on the tail from Alaska Airlines soars into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The bright blue Boeing 737-400 named the "Magic of Disneyland" celebrates the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney's Anaheim park.

"This is only the second time in more than 25 years that an image other than our trademark Eskimo has appeared on an Alaska Airlines aircraft," said Gregg Saretsky, Alaska's executive vice president of marketing and planning. "I can't think of a better way to congratulate our good friends and partners at Disneyland on their 50th anniversary than to launch this flying invitation to visit ‘The Happiest Place on Earth.'" 

"We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Alaska Airlines by introducing a second Disneyland-themed aircraft just in time for the upcoming May 5 launch of our 50th anniversary," said Claire Bilby, senior vice president of Disneyland sales and distribution marketing. "We look forward to having the ‘Magic of Disneyland' aircraft serve as an iconic vehicle to bring people to Southern California for our ‘Happiest Homecoming On Earth' celebration." 

As to the choice of Tinker Bell — whose words on the side of the aircraft beckon "Follow me to Disneyland" — Bilby noted that the famous pixie is the official hostess of Disneyland. "In the 1950s when Walt Disney shared his new theme park with television audiences across America, Tinker Bell often took the audience on aerial flights to Disneyland. Her pixie dust, filled with the power to make you fly, became the magic ingredient that could transport audiences anywhere."

* On the same day, 22 years before this event (1983), Walt Disney World welcomes its 150-millionth guest - Carrie Stahl!

Click Here to see the Pin 40256: Alaska Airlines - Disneyland's 50th Anniversary Jet (Tinker Bell) and here to buy it on Ebay.

More Pictures Here, Here and Here!

* On the same day, 22 years before this event (1983), Walt Disney World welcomes its 150-millionth guest - Carrie Stahl!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Disney World at Sanford, Florida

At one time, Walt Disney wanted to build Disney World in Sanford, Florida. But his appeal to Sanford's city council was declined. The citizens of Sanford did not want "the crime that was sure to come with tourism."

Saturday, April 2, 2011

New York City's New Amsterdam Theatre

Originally completed in 1903, New York City's New Amsterdam Theatre (now operated by Disney) is one of the oldest surviving legitimate theaters on Broadway.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Port Orleans and Dixie Landings Resorts

Effective this day, 10 Years ago, Walt Disney World combines the Port Orleans and Dixie Landings resorts into a single resort called Port Orleans Riverside. The Dixie portion will be called "The Riverside" and the Port portion will be called "The French Quarter."  The total consolidation will occur over the next nine months.

Port Orleans Riverside
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