Brand New Walt Disney Archives Exhibit, “A Pirate’s Life for Me,” to Open at D23 Expo 2017

The Walt Disney Archives returns to D23 Expo with an all-new exhibit, “Walt Disney Archives Presents––A Pirate’s Life for Me: Disney’s Rascals, Scoundrels and Really Bad Eggs.” Disney’s most memorable marauders, from Peter Pan’s Captain Hook to Pirates of the Caribbean’s Captain Jack Sparrow, will be on display July 14–16 at the Anaheim Convention Center during the biennial event, presented by D23: The Official Disney Fan Club.

The 12,000-square-foot exhibit, located on the Expo show floor, will honor Disney’s treasured pirates from film, television, and the beloved Disney parks attraction that has thrilled guests from Anaheim to Shanghai. Hundreds of iconic and never-before-seen items will be on display.

Objects featured in the exhibit include Audio-Animatronics® figures from the original Disneyland attraction, a ride vehicle from Peter Pan’s Flight, and artwork and imagery from Treasure Island, Peter Pan, as well as an unproduced Donald Duck animated short, featuring the irascible duck searching for swashbuckler gold. The action-packed film franchise is represented with original costumes worn by the star-studded cast, Davy Jones’ pipe organ, a 23-foot-tall set model of the Black Pearl ship, the Dead Men’s chest, and more original props and set pieces, including items from the new film, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.

Also on the show floor, the Archives will present “Fantastical Fashions,” a dazzling selection of dresses worn by beloved heroines and sinister villainesses. Costumes from six of Disney’s live-action fantasy films will be showcased including Enchanted (2007), Maleficent (2014), and Beauty and the Beast (2017).

Tickets for D23 Expo 2017 are available for $81 for one-day adult admission, $59 for children 3–9. Members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club can purchase tickets for $72 for a one-day adult admission, $53 for children 3–9. Multi-day tickets are also available. For more information on tickets and D23 Expo 2017, visit D23Expo.com.

About D23 Expo 2017

D23 Expo—The Ultimate Disney Fan Event—brings together all the worlds of Disney under one roof for three packed days of presentations, pavilions, experiences, concerts, sneak peeks, shopping and more. The event provides fans with unprecedented access to Disney films, television, games, theme parks and celebrities. For the latest D23 Expo 2017 news, visit D23expo.com. Presentations, talent and schedule subject to change. To join the D23 Expo conversation, make sure to follow DisneyD23 on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube, and use the hashtag #D23Expo.

About D23

The name “D23” pays homage to the exciting journey that began in 1923 when Walt Disney opened his first studio in Hollywood. D23 is the first official club for fans in Disney’s 90-plus-year history. It gives its members a greater connection to the entire world of Disney by placing them in the middle of the magic through its quarterly publication, Disney twenty-three; a rich website at D23.com with members-only content; member-exclusive discounts; and special events for D23 Members throughout the year.

Fans can join D23 at Gold and General Membership levels at D23.com and at DisneyStore.com/D23. To keep up with all the latest D23 news and events, follow DisneyD23 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.

SUPER HEROES ARRIVE AT DISNEY CALIFORNIA ADVENTURE PARK DURING SUMMER OF HEROES

All-new epic adventures are headed to Disney California Adventure® Park at Disneyland® Resort when Summer of Heroes kicks off May 27, 2017 including the grand opening of Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! This new adventure blasts guests straight into the “Guardians of the Galaxy” story for the first time ever, alongside characters from the blockbuster films and comics.

Summer of Heroes will launch new, year-round experiences:

  • Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Dance Off! – Guests might run into the Guardians of the Galaxy on their way to the Milano, with Star-Lord firing up his old-school boom box to get the party started. Gamora may prefer to stand back and observe, but everyone else is bound to get in the groove and show off their moves during this awesome rock ‘n’ roll bash!
  • Super Hero Encounters – For the first time, citizens of Earth will come face-to-face with Groot, one of the Guardians of the Galaxy! Guests can also step up to meet the First Avenger, Captain America, along with everyone’s favorite web slinger, your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

And for a limited time, guests can step up to the challenge with these new adventures during Summer of Heroes:

  • Avengers Training Initiative – Black Widow and Hawkeye assemble young recruits for a series of tests to see if they have what it takes to join the ranks of the Avengers.
  • Heroic Encounter: Black Widow – Black Widow will arrive on the scene several times throughout the day in an armored Avengers vehicle for her heroic encounter with park Guests.
  • Grab a Piece (or Bite) of the Action –  Special themed merchandise and food will be available throughout Hollywood Land.

Guests can Hero Up during Summer of Heroes – May 27-Sept. 10, 2017 – and blast into the “Guardians of the Galaxy” story with Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! – opening May 27 – all at Disney California Adventure Park!

VIDEO: IMAGINEERS PARTNER WITH AVATAR FILMMAKERS TO CREATE PANDORA – THE WORLD OF AVATAR

Today we’re happy to share another behind-the-scenes look at Pandora – The World of Avatar, which will open at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park on May 27, 2017.

Our friends at Walt Disney Imagineering recently shared another video on the construction of this new land, which gives a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at how our the project team has partnered with Lightstorm Entertainment and many of the original AVATAR filmmakers – including James Cameron and Jon Landau – to bring the new land to life. In this video, several members of the Pandora “Super Team” share what the experience of bringing Pandora – The World of Avatar to life has been like for them, and some of the amazing moments that have exceeded even their imaginations. Check it out!

Photos – Butterfly Haven Topiaries & Flowers at Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival

Check out some Photos of the Butterfly Haven Topiaries & Flowers at Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival.

More than 45,500 Runners to Participate in Race Weekend Events at 2nd Annual Star Wars Half Marathon

Runners from galaxies far, far away will embrace the power of the Dark Side, as more than 45,500 runners will take part in the 2nd annual Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side at Walt Disney World Resort.

Among them are three runners for whom the Force is particularly strong.

Orlando runner Gelcys Casteneda is participating in the half marathon despite battling severe scoliosis, fibromyalgia and a brain disease that causes chronic migraines. At 15, she had surgery to correct a 53-degree curve to her spine, which was threatening to crush her heart. But by the time she reached adulthood, her spine had regressed, returning to a 34-degree curve, again making it difficult to breathe while she also battled the fibromyalgia, leaving her in constant pain.

Except when she’s running, which somehow alleviates the pain.

In addition to Casteneda, Kurt Blankenship from Little Rock, Ark., will try to be one with the Force when he pushes his racing wheelchair in the half marathon race on Sunday.

Blankenship was paralyzed from the waist down in 1999 after a car accident. For years Kurt struggled to adjust to his new reality, but things changed when he and his wife Carrie started a family, adopting three children who were all born premature and have their own challenges just like their father. Kurt now views his children’s medical challenges as motivation for him to be an inspirational example for them on the power of persistence and fortitude. Hence, Kurt is pushing his racing wheelchair in the half marathon to show his children that it is possible to overcome the obstacles they are facing in their lives. In fact, his son Ryan, born with spina bifida, which doctors said would prevent him from moving, communicating or making eye contact, is now walking, talking and even participating in the runDisney Kids Races with his sisters.

Finally, there’s Lucas Wallenberg, a  sixth grader from St. Louis, Mo., who is running the 5K race on behalf of Noah’s Light Foundation in his ongoing efforts to help other children nationwide who are suffering from pediatric cancer. Lucas, 12, who started running to help his mom build up her strength after she was diagnosed with a blood disorder, now raises money through running to help kids with cancer after one of his friend’s sister died from cancer in 2014. And despite his own medical difficulties, he continues to rasise money and awareness for pediatric cancer, recently growing his hair for 18 months, so he could donate it to make wigs for children battling cancer. In 2016, he and his family ran in 10 5K races, one 8K and two 10Ks, all while fundraising for pediatric cancer.

Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side begins Thursday, culminating in the half marathon race on Sunday. This galactic-themed runDisney race weekend includes runDisney Kids Races, 5K, 10K and half marathon races and the runDisney Health and Fitness Expo. Start time for races are below:

runDisney Health & Fitness Expo Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side
Thursday, 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. Star Wars 5K • EpcotFriday, 6 a.m. start
Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. Star Wars 10K • Start: Magic Kingdom| Finish: EpcotSaturday, 5:30 a.m. start
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side • Start: Magic Kingdom| Finish: EpcotSunday, 5:30 a.m. start

Media interested in covering the weekend events must contact Disney Sports Public Relations a day in advance to arrange for credentials. See table below for coverage opportunities: 

Star Wars 5K Arrive at Epcot by 5:00 a.m. for live coverage of the start and finish line.
Star Wars 10K
*Media must choose between covering the start or finish line
Arrive at Magic Kingdom by 4:30 a.m. for live coverage of the start line.

Arrive at Epcot by 5:00 a.m. for live coverage of the finish line.

Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side Arrive at Magic Kingdom by 4:30 a.m. for live coverage of the start line and charter to Epcot after the first corral of runners.

Arrive at Epcot by 5:00 a.m. for coverage of just the finish line.

 

ENJOY RIVERS OF LIGHT WITH A DINING PACKAGE AT TIFFINS AT DISNEY’S ANIMAL KINGDOM

When it comes to nighttime entertainment, there’s nothing quite like the spectacular Rivers of Light nighttime show at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park, with talented live performers, mesmerizing music and stunning water effects. And, the best way to make sure guests have a reserved seat for the show is with a Rivers of Light Dining Package at Tiffins.

Located on Discovery Island, Tiffins boast a menu that will take you on a culinary expedition of international cuisine. Plus, Tiffins is just steps from the entrance to Pandora – The World of Avatar opening May 27, 2017.

With the Rivers of Light Dining Package, guests can enjoy a fabulous three-course meal including their choice of appetizer, entrée, dessert and a non-alcoholic beverage. Cost for the dining package is $67 for adults, and $26 for ages 3 to 9, or two table-service meal entitlements on the Disney Dining Plan.

Book reservations today by visiting DisneyWorld.com/dining or call 407-WDW-DINE.

Anatomy of a Disney musical: Composer reveals process of creating iconic songs

The acclaimed composer and songwriter is the hidden face behind some of Disney’s most iconic musicals, including Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid and Aladdin.

Full Story

Photos – Annual Passholder Merchandise for Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival

Take a look at some photos of  Annual Passholder Merchandise for Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival.

 

Disney World is rumored to be rolling out its own on-property version of Uber

On the heels of the new Express Shuttle service, which transports guests from park to park with in-park drop-off and pickup stations, Disney World is launching another new up-charge transit option, and this one might sound a bit familiar.

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Awe-Inspiring New Land, Attractions and Breathtaking New Shows Coming this Summer to Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Guests can travel to an otherworldly destination this summer: Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. When it opens May 27, this new land will give guests the chance to explore a mystical world of bioluminescent rainforests, floating mountains and soaring Banshees. In collaboration with filmmaker James Cameron and Lightstorm Entertainment, Disney is bringing to life the fantasy world of Pandora, inspired by Cameron’s epic film AVATAR.

Guests will discover two main adventures. Avatar Flight of Passage sends guests flying above the jungles of Pandora on a Mountain Banshee, and Na’vi River Journey, is a family-friendly boat ride that sails down a sacred river hidden within a glowing rainforest for an unforgettable encounter with a Na’vi Shaman.

Hungry adventurers can recharge at Satu’li Canteen, the main dining location in Pandora, or Pongu Pongu, a drink kiosk with a design as eclectic as its expat owner. Shoppers can stock up on Na’vi cultural items, toys, science kits and more at Windtraders.

And after the sun sets, Disney’s Animal Kingdom guests can discover rich new experiences throughout the park, starting with the new nighttime show, Rivers of Light. This visually stunning after-dark experience celebrates the majesty of nature and the connection between animals and humans. It’s a dramatic visual blend of water, fire, light and imagery all choreographed to an original musical score.