Saturday, July 25, 2015

'Frozen Summer Fun': Ice Palace Boutique Opens Tomorrow!

Disney's Hollywood Studios has gotten quite a makeover with all the new Frozen additions for "Frozen Summer Fun." (And, which this particular Disney fan quite enjoyed.)

Most notably is the closing of the American Idol Experience which has been changed into the Hyperion Theater to host the Frozen Sing-along.

And now, the Ice Palace Boutique is opening up in the former American Idol Experience audition area, just across from ABC Commissary!

Images via Disney Parks Blog.

Starting tomorrow, July 26, Guests ages 3-12 can receive a Frozen-inspired makeover, styled after either Princess Anna or Queen Elsa.


According to WDWMagic.com:



[T]he 'Ice Palace Boutique' will offer four packages to fit various budgets.
  • Frozen Summer Fun Boutique Package – This package includes Anna or Elsa-inspired shimmering makeup palette, face gems, nail polish, a braided hair piece with sparkling snowflake accessory and an exclusive photo opportunity. Package retail: $75, includes tax.
  • Ice Palace Boutique Package – This package includes the items offered in the Frozen Summer Fun Boutique Package. It also includes access to the Ice Palace Café and reserved seating at one of the “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration” shows. Package retail: $175, includes tax.
  • Ice Palace Boutique Deluxe Package – This package includes an Anna or Elsa costume plus the items offered in the Ice Palace Boutique Package. Package retail: $240, includes tax.
  • Olaf-inspired package that includes a glitter hairstyle and Olaf tee-shirt. Reservations are not required for this package and will only be available on-site at the location. Package retail: $19.95, plus tax.
Also part of the higher priced packages is reserved seating for a showing of the Frozen sing-along at the Hyperion Theater. The Ice Palace Boutique Package and the Ice Palace Boutique Deluxe Package is for up to 6 guests, including the child getting the magical transformation.
Those higher end packages also include access to the Ice Palace Cafe, where additional party members can enjoy the exclusive Ice Palace Café, an immersive “Frozen”-themed café with included snacks while they wait for their Anna or Elsa.

The boutique is only open until September, when the "Frozen Summer Fun" festivities conclude. Purchase an Ice Palace Boutique through Destinations in Florida by clicking HERE!

ttfn!

Kristen Bell, as Anna, Leaves Voicemail for Little Girl with Brain Tumor

When voice actors do touching things in character, that's when you love them more.

Recently, Kristen Bell, who voices Princess Anna in Frozen, called a little girl named Avery and left a voicemail. Bell, in her Anna character voice, told Avery that Elsa had decided to name her an honorary princess of Arendelle!

Just look at her happiness!
Image via vh1.com.


What makes this extra special?

Avery has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor, and she's only six years old! So, of course, to get a voicemail from her favorite Frozen character with such wonderful news made Avery the happiest girl alive, despite such tragedy.

Luckily, we can share in Avery's joy via her father's recording of his daughter listening to the voicemail for the first time. Enjoy, and get those tissues ready:



Be sure to visit Avery's CaringBridge page to view recent updates.

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Experience a Single Moment in Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur' Trailer!

Pixar dropped the first trailer for its upcoming movie The Good Dinosaur, in theaters on Thanksgiving. The theme behind the trailer is "a single moment," and how such a moment can change history and even, everything.

Gorgeous imagery.
Images via Oh My Disney.

Watch the trailer below:



One thing many fans (including myself) are a little unnerved by is the idea of pairing hyper-realistic backgrounds with cartoony characters, such as Arlo. I even noticed some of the dinosaurs, and especially that colorful lizard, are quite realistic when compared to Arlo.

Such a pretty little guy.

I can understand if it's a marketing thing -- a more cartoony Arlo will translate better to toys and won't scare children -- but at least make the rest of the film cartoonish in some sense.

Also, anyone else getting a The Land Before Time vibe? I'm excited to see how Pixar surprises us!

What are your thoughts on the trailer and The Good Dinosaur?

See ya real soon.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy Fourth of July!

It's my favorite holiday today -- the day we celebrate our wonderful country!

Happy Fourth of July to all my fans, friends and family!

This makes me really, really miss Riley...
Image via Walt Disney Animation Studios' Facebook page.

Disney created this short and sweet video to celebrate Independence Day, with Mickey Mouse posing alongside numerous light-painted patriotic images. Most of the designs were freehanded in mid-air!



From all of us here at the Disney Freak's Blog to you, have a very patriotic Independence Day!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Happy Anniversary, Grand Floridian!

According to this poster in the elevator, the Grand Floridian is celebrating 27 years today!

Gotta love fingers in the frame, right?

In honor of that, I thought I would share this quick video which gives you a 360 view of my work location: Gasparilla Island Grill. The video after is more recent, covering all the dining options available at the Grand Floridian, and I even saw a few of my fellow Cast Members around the 1:25 mark!





For a look into the resort overall, here's a lovely video supplied by Disney. Gaspy's isn't shown in it -- perhaps it's too casual for the formal theme?



Overall, a simply loverly resort I am excited to be celebrating the anniversary of while also working at the same resort!

ttfn!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

BREAKING: Selfie Sticks Entirely Banned at Walt Disney World; Hong Kong and Paris to Follow

Previously, Disney banned selfie sticks on rides, to the surprise of some Guests. However, it makes total sense: there's a reason that before each ride, you're warned about keeping your hands, arms, feet and legs inside the vehicle.

It's just plain dangerous.



Many of us hoped that Disney should take it a step further and completely ban the sticks from the Parks entirely. (Here's 5 reasons why.)

Finally, they've done it.

Even the Big Cheese and his girlfriend can't do this!
Image via a Google search.

Effective June 30, all selfie sticks will not be permitted inside Walt Disney World, for any reason. Hong Kong Disneyland and Disneyland Paris are to follow suit soon, WDWNT reports. According to the same report, though not officially confirmed by Disney:

By July 2015, guests will not be permitted to even bring these items into any of the Walt Disney World theme parks due to safety concerns imposed by the items being brought onto rides (and the rather careless ways some guests use them when not on attractions). Guest relations cast members will be assigned to the security screening areas in front of all of the parks to assist the security cast in dealing with guests trying to bring their “selfie sticks” in. If found, guests can opt to take the stick with them and leave, or they can check it with the guest relations cast member who will have the item stored, give the guest a ticket, and request that they retrieve the item upon leaving the park later that day.

Personally, I am quite glad they finally banned them...as tempted as I was to buy a selfie stick for use as a monopod... What are your thoughts?

ttfn!

***UPDATE***

After all, usually one's not in Walt Disney World alone...why not just have a friend take a picture? Or if you want a friend in the photo, ask someone to take your photo for you!

A Better Kind of Selfie Stick: "Friend"
A Better Kind of Selfie Stick: "Friend" - Finally, take selfies so good they're just called "pictures".
Posted by CollegeHumor on Wednesday, June 24, 2015 

***UPDATE***

Apparently, the reason this policy is going into effect is as a response to the California Screamin' roller coaster incident on Wednesday. The Disneyland ride was stopped after a guest pulled out a selfie stick on the coaster.

What's the lesson learned? Obey the rules. They're there for a reason. Because at Disney, safety is the most important of the Four Keys.

Friday, June 19, 2015

DCP: A Guide to Traditions!

Everyone in the Disney College Program has to go through Traditions, which is the orientation overview to the Walt Disney Company, specifically Walt Disney World. You'll have orientation pertaining to your role later, and then orientation at your location, followed by actual role training.

But the first step is Traditions. And the best part?

After Traditions, you become an official Cast Member, with free entrance into the theme parks, finally!

Your day begins on the bus ride to Disney University, where your Traditions "class" takes place.

Regular classes offered during the DCP are usually here too, though
mine is at Chatham.

I was in group A, and we pretty much deducted that it was organized alphabetically by last name. So if your roommate's last name starts with the same letter as yours, you'll probably end up together! Sadly, Dana and I were separated the entire day.

My name on our classroom screen!

You're ushered into a room, and the leaders start off with some trivia to earn special pins. These pins can only be received at Traditions, so don't expect me to be trading mine any time...ever!

The more you know, the more pins you can earn! Fellow vlogger Sam
earned two pins for knowing two answers.

Eventually, your leaders begin the session. I had Jen, who works in Entertainment, and Tasha, who works in stocking. They were really great, bringing a whole level of fun to the slow day!

What do I mean by 'slow'? Well, the entire morning is spent going over what working for the Walt Disney World really means. For example: what's the goal here at Disney? It's all very important to know, but without a bit of lightheartedness, it can become painfully slow and dull.

Luckily, with good leaders, it won't be!

At each table sat a red box. We were told quite explicitly not to open them, and about halfway through the day, we were allowed to. Inside were our very own pair of Mickey ears, as a gift from Disney to us.

I can't wait to get mine personalized!

So, briefly, what all is discussed during Traditions?

Be prepared to learn some of Disney's business success secrets, their special "language," the Four Keys, creating magical moments and interacting with Guests, and a look back at Walt's life. (Tip: it gets emotional at that point!)

We watched many videos of Guests explaining how Cast Members made their vacation extra magical, and how the Cast Members responded to the Guests' letters. There were videos of children being told they were going to Walt Disney World and their reactions to the news. Ladies, you're going to want to bring a wad of tissues!

Let's step back for a moment. What are the Four Keys? These are Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency. These are integral to success at any branch of the Walt Disney Company. And you will never stop hearing about them while on your Disney journey -- they are that important!

The best part of Traditions comes around lunch time: a special visit to the Magic Kingdom to see these Four Keys in action!

Since we can't get into the theme parks until receiving our Disney IDs at Traditions, this was my first visit to Magic Kingdom since arriving for the DCP!

Yes, I'm aware there's a pole coming out of my head.
Was it intentional. Maybe. (No. Always no.)

We were able to go into the "utilidors"--or, the underground tunnels that make up the real first floor of Magic Kingdom. This was my favorite part of the day, as I'd been dying to explore these tunnels for year! I can't tell you anything (Disney secrecy at its finest, folks) but they are pretty incredible! And very efficient.

When you get back to the classroom, the leaders quiz you over what you saw, and then say something like this: "Well, we had some Cast Members, experts in the Four Keys, show you how to utilize them in action. Now we need an expert in magic to help us finish up your time here!"

Cue Mickey Mouse.

Proud to say I wasn't a bit scared!

Jen announced that Mickey Mouse had brought us something a little special. Inside a gold gift-wrapped box were our official Disney nametags, sprinkled with a little extra pixie dust by the Big Cheese himself!

Mickey left to create more magic right after this, but it was nice
to see our new boss on our first day!

And with that, your time at Traditions is completed, making you an official Disney Cast Member. Welcome to the team!

The loot of an official Cast Member!
Earned Donald and Goofy for volunteering in class. Make sure
to raise your hand and speak up!

Watch my video below of my first Cast Member trip to Magic Kingdom, as well as Sam's vlog featuring me in a cameo role!





See you all real soon!