Disney blog postings

Disney Postings

Earliest: May 30, 2003Latest: September 25, 2017Total: 105

September 25, 2017

Favorite Things...

Many years ago I found a list of ?My Favorite Things at Walt Disney World.? written by a diehard Disney fan.

Here?s my ten things that I look forward to at every trip at the Magic Kingdom:

  1. Walking down Main Street USA, making the turn by the Emporium and looking down Main Street.
  2. Walking through the doors at the Haunted Mansion. Feeling the cold air and that distinct Haunted Mansion smell
  3. The smell of popcorn on Main Street USA
  4. Feeling the mist in the Pirated of the Caribbean ride
  5. The smell of gasoline at Tomorrowland Speedway
  6. Seeing the park transform at night.
  7. Playing a game of chess with my daughter at Tom Sawyer Island
  8. Enjoying a Dole Whip while watching people ride the Magic Carpets of Aladdin.
  9. Watching the Carousel of Progress show - always see something new.
  10. Enjoying breakfast at the Crystal Palace as the first big meal of the Disney Vacation.

The orginal list:

My Favorite Things at Walt Disney World

This is just a fun list I brainstormed one day when I was "homesick" for WDW. I posted the list in rec.arts.disney.parks and was amazed at the huge response as a lot of other people posted their own personal lists of favorite things. Since I don't have the permission of those folks, I'll stick with my original list here, but you might want to put your own together just for fun.

  • "Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens...da da da da da (couldn't remember the words) and warm woolen mittens...brown paper packages tied up with string"...none of these can compare with my favorite things at WDW:
  • Entering the turnstiles, walking under the train station, and viewing the castle for the first time every trip
  • The turn-of-the-century music in the town square of Main Street
  • The big dill pickles you can buy in the cul-de-sac east of Main Street
  • Smelling the bakery and the candy shop
  • Breakfast at the Crystal Palace (Puffed French Toast)
  • An evening at the marketplace, browsing the stores, especially the kitchen store, the character shop, and the book store
  • Pirates of the Carribean...especially the dirty foot of the one Buccaneer that sits on the bridge toward the end of the town sceens
  • Strolling past the lawns and gardens surrounding Cinderella's castle
  • Browsing in the Yankee Peddler
  • "Helping" my wife mix purfumes in the Old Antique shop
  • Tony's Town Square Cafe
  • Slowly strolling the World Showcase Promenade... when everyone else is walking fast
  • Sitting in the lobby of the Grand Floridian...watching all the people that can afford to stay at this hotel and wondering if someday I'll be one of them
  • Soaking in the atmosphere at Dixie Landings
  • Riding the mountains (Space, Splash, and Big Thunder)
  • Impressions De France
  • The impromptu plays and events in World Showcase (the Chinese Jugglers, skits in the United Kingdom)
  • Listening to the phone "conversations" in the Main Street Market House
  • The organ music as I walk by the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse
  • The jungle cruise at night

What About Your List?

What's on your bucket list? What are your favorite things that you look forward to each Disney World trip?

September 18, 2017

Swiss Family Robinson Tree

The Swiss Family Robinson Tree is a walk-through attraction in Walt Disney Adventure Land.

The attraction allows guests to see how the Swiss Family Robinson lived. The attraction is based off the book series and 1960 movie.

The attraction first opened in Disneyland in 1962. (Two years after the movie release)

This is a fun attraction for those kids that might be scared of dark fast moving rides - such as the nearby Pirates of the Caribbean. Also fun for kids that are just starting to learn to read, as there are information signs which describe each area of the tree.

Swiss Family Tree

Fun Facts

Some fun facts I found from other people from planning previous trips:

  • The tree in which the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse resides is called a Disneyodendron Exiums, or "out of the ordinary Disney tree," so dubbed by the Imagineers who built her. It is classified as a building, so is subject to the same safety and building codes as all of the other structures in Walt Disney World. Also, the tree contains 800,000 fabricated leaves, which each cost $1 to produce!
  • Swiss Family Treehouse has concrete "roots" that stick 42 feet into the ground, and a steel superstructure. That tree is gonna be there a while.
  • Swiss Family Treehouse -- Maybe it's because Swiss Family Robinson was one of my favorite books growing up, but I love this attraction.
  • The treehouse is a different experience in the bright sunlight when you can look out over the surroundings, or at night when you walk through Robinson's home in the flickering candlelight. I always go twice: once in the daylight and once after dark.
  • Sometimes there's a line, but it doesn't last, so if you see a line, come back by later.
  • In Disneyland, the attraction was closed in 1999 and reopened shortly after as Tarzan's Treehouse. The Swiss Family Treehouse is still alive in Magic Kingdom, Disneyland Paris and Tokyo Disneyland.

Hidden Mickey

  • We noticed a hidden Mickey on the Swiss Family Treehouse. This was on the actual bottom part of the tree, where the moss is starting to appear on it. There was several hidden Mickey shaped moss on the tree, we noticed it going up, but double-checked going down.
  • As you walk around the trunk of the tree before you get to the first room on the side of the tree is a side silhouette of Mickey.(not tri-oval) It is white with green moss splotched on it. I confirmed it with the cast member attendant who said he was told it was white and on the tunk. Another way to find it is lookup at the prayer room and you will see an oar sticking out of the bottom, the blade of the oar points to the place on the trunk.
  • There is a silhouette of Mickey positioned about halfway up the back of the tree trunk. Darker moss forms the outside part of the silhouette outline. You pass it in easily viewable spots the first time you are heading up the stairs and the last time you are heading down the stairs.
  • If you look at the candlestick and the two mugs, they look like a Hidden Mickey.
  • I noticed a Hidden Mickey in the carved design on the chair backs in the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse. It was in the room with the shell sink, which I believe is the dining room, and the distinctive three circles are there.

September 11, 2017

Police Phone in ToonTown

In Disneyland Toon Town there are various props to make it a fun place to visit. Just outside the Post Office is a mystery red phone. When you pick up the phone you can hear some pretty funny police conversations.

Toon Town Phone

Here's a bit of the conversation that I captured back in 2000. To capture this audio, I actually brought a removable telephone pickup recorder that I got from Radio Shack. Luckily that the area wasn't too busy and I was able to capture this audio clip.

The entire clip I captured was 5 minutes long. (I waited to make sure that I had the entire recording.) If you want a copy of the entire track let me know.

September 4, 2017

Disney Calendar

Disney Planning

Throughout the year there are special days in the World of Disney. Here are a summary of important days:

Main Character Birthdays

Mickey MouseNovember 18, 1928
Minnie MouseNovember 18, 1928
Donald DuckJune 9, 1934
GoofyMay 25, 1932
Daisy DuckMay 16, 1940

Fourteen Princesses Birthdays

These are based on when the films first were released. Actual birthdays have never been announced.

Snow WhiteFebruary 4, 1938
CinderellaFebruary 15, 1950
AuroraJanuary 29, 1959
ArialNovember 17, 1989
BelleSeptember 29, 1991
AladdinNovember 25, 1992
PocahontasJune 23, 1995
MulanJune 5, 1998
TianaNovember 25, 2009
RapunzelNovember 24, 2010
MeridaJune 22. 2012
AnnaNovember 27, 2013
ElsaNovember 27, 2013
ElenaJuly 22, 2016

Disney Founders

Walt DisneyDecember 5, 1901
Roy DisneyJune 24, 1893

Park Openings

DisneylandJuly 17, 1955
Disney WorldOctober 1, 1971
EpcotOctober 1, 1982
Disney StudiosMay 1, 1989
Animal KingdomApril 22, 1998

August 28, 2017

Walk Around The World Bricks

As you walk into the entrance at the Magic Kingdom you may have noticed some names on the pavements. These brick names were part of "Disney's Walk Around the World" a feature where you can forever be part of the Disney experience.

Sample stone names that you would see as you walk into the park.

Walk Around The World Bricks

Ten things Things I learned about the "Walk Around the World" bricks

  1. The stones reach from the bus station to the monorail, originally they were supposed to go completely around the lagoon.
  2. There are some bricks at the Transportation and Ticket center, and at the Polynesian and Contemporary hotels.
  3. The bricks program started in 1994 and stopped in 2000. A few years later a new "Leave a Legacy" was introduced at Epcot.
  4. On the top of each brick it shows the date of purchase.
  5. Some bricks were refurbished in 2007 at the request of sponsors. The bricks were placed back with the new date.
  6. The bricks cost between $85 and $250 depending on the size and location.
  7. There are 8 Walk around the World bricks dedicated in memory of the children who died in the Oklahoma City bombing. They are located near the Bus stop and the Contemporary Entrance.
  8. You can ask at the Info Desk for locations of any bricks. They have a map of the location of all the bricks.
  9. It's possible the bricks will be removed as Disney may redesign the entrance. They committed to at least having them there for ten years.
  10. There were 20,000 bricks sold.

August 21, 2017

Minnie Moo

Once upon a time at the Magic Kingdom they had live animals. It was part of Mickey Birthdayland from 1988 to 1996. They even had a special cow. What made the cow special was that it had a Disney marking on it.

On one of my visits in the early 1990s I took a picture of the famous cow:

Disney Mickey Cow

In fact there were 2 cows, one in Disneyland (Minnie Moo) and one in Disney World (Mickey Moo).

At the time they had a sign about the cow at Disneyland:

Mickey Moo

A neighbor, walking past a dairy farm in North Whitefield, Maine noticed that the spots on one side of this handsome Holstein bore a striking resemblance to Mickey Mouse. See for yourself. It's right there in black and white.

The Petting Area was closed in 1996 and all the animals were moved to Disney?s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground. The Petting area was transformed into the Barnstormer at Goofy's Wise Acres Farm. If you look at the sign you can see Mickey Moo!

Minnie Moo died at the Disney?s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground in 2001. The Petting Zoo was closed in 2005 and the remaining animals were moved to Animal Kingdom.

There is a plaque for Minnie Moo on the wall in the trophy room at the barn at Disney's For Wilderness Resort & Campground.

August 14, 2017

Largest Hidden Mickey in the Parks

It's fun to walk around the park and look for Hidden Mickeys. Mickey Mouse ears are hidden very well just about every place you look.

In 2016, Disney install a solar farm near the entrance of Epcot just off of the World Drive. You can see part of the Solar farm from the road, but you can't tell it's a hidden Mickey.

Map Quest and Google Maps don't show the Solar Farm. Google Maps Mobile does show the hidden Mickey:

Largest Hidden Mickey

Finding the Solar Farm

The Solar Farm address is 1400 World Drive, Orlando FL. It's located on World Drive between Buena Vista Drive and Epcot Center Drive. It's on the right as you head towards the Transportation and Ticket Center.

The largest Hidden Mickey outside the park is located in Clermont, Florida. Disney has a 60-acre forest. This is located near 1699 Hicks Ditch Road. You can find it on Google Maps simply by typing in 'Hidden Mickey,' or by the address: 1699 Hicks Ditch Road, Eutis, Florida.

Is there a larger Hidden Mickey that you know of? Please share in the comments below.

August 7, 2017

What to Say to Disney Characters

When you encounter a Disney Character, in the Parks, they always stay in Character. Why not ask them questions to find out some information about the character. This is a fun way to "break the ice" when you walk up to the character.

Not all characters talk. In some cases, you may get a visual response to your question.

Mary Poppins

Mickey Mouse

  • Tell Mickey that Donald is 1 to you.
  • Tell Mickey that you are going to propose to Minnie since he has waited so long. Talk to Mickey about your favorite flavor of cheese cake.
  • Ask Mickey how he feels about the destruction of his Toontown home.
  • Sing the ?Hot Dog Song? from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
  • Ask him to wiggle his nose

Minnie Mouse

  • Ask Minnie if Mickey has given her a ring yet.
  • Compliment Minnie on her outfit.
  • Bring a Ring Pop and propose marriage to Minnie

Donald

  • Ask Donald where Mickey is.
  • Ask Donald why he doesn?t have as much stuff in the parks as Mickey. Ask Donald why he doesn?t wear pants.
  • Tell Donald he is #1 or even better #2.
  • Tell Donald he is handsome.
  • Tell Donald you like him better than Mickey.
  • Tell Donald you like his performance in the Aflac commercials.

Goofy

  • Ask Goofy if he?s ever taken Pluto for a walk.
  • Ask Goofy if he does his own stunts.
  • Tell Goofy you would like to learn to become a Musketeer, then he will show his swordplay. Correct yourself and say you would like to become a Mouseketeer.

Mary Poppins

  • Ask Mary how come your room doesn?t clean itself when you snap your fingers.
  • Ask Mary where Bert is.
  • Tell Mary Poppins that you heard only Mary Poppins can say
  • ?Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious? backwards.
  • Ask Mary Poppins to sing the lullaby song with you.

July 31, 2017

Pinocchio Village Haus signs

If you looking for a fun counter dining experience check out Pinocchio Village Haus. There are a select number of tables that have the view of the 'Small World Boats.'

Awesome Seats

These seats are great because you can watch people getting excited about riding it's a Small World.

Cast Members have created signs for you to hold up so the people on the ride can see them.

Pinocchio Signs
Some of the signs that are available for guest to hold.

You basically hold the signs up and then when people are performing the action, you flip it around. The people on the boats usually get a great laugh.

No Signs?

If you are sitting in the Small World seats and don't see the signs, look around, they might be on top of a nearby trash bin. All else fails, simply ask a cast member for them.

Its a fun way to enjoy lunch and dinner. Besides, you're making someone else's day more magical.

July 24, 2017

Five Things to Do in the Magic Kingdom City Hall

At the beginning of Main Street USA, is Magic Kingdom city hall. This is a place where you can find Disney guest services. I often see long lines and wonder what are all the things that people waiting for. So, I decided to do some research and find out all the things that people can do at the Walt Disney World City Hall.

City Hall

Get Disney Buttons

Celebrating your First Visit? Anniversary? Birthday? Get a button at City Hall and let everyone know that you are celebrating. You can find some of the buttons near the door as you approach City Hall. There?s no need to wait in line.

Upgrade your Multi-day pass

Want to say an extra day? Make changes to your Multi-day passes? Convert a regular pass to a park hopper pass? This is the place to get it done.

Cash from ATM

Get Cash from the ATM for tips and snacks. Don?t forget to get some change for the Penny and Quarter machines!

Lost something? Find it Here

Did you lose your wallet? Lens Cap? Sun Glasses? Come over and see if it?s in the lost and found. Make sure to give them a detail description of your item.

Special Ride Assistance

Do you need Guidemaps in German, Japanese, Spanish and Portuguese? How about Translation Devices for attractions? There?s even a transcript of some rides.

Note: Back in the early 1990s, I remember going and getting the Haunted Mansion transcript. You can?t take it home, but it?s pretty cool to have available.