Experience Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark All Day on October 31

Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! has transformed into Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark during Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort. The Guardians have successfully escaped The Collector’s Fortress, but they have accidentally left Groot behind! Rocket enlists guests to distract the creatures that have been accidentally released inside The Collector’s Fortress so he can find and rescue his little buddy.

Many guests have been heeding the call to #SaveGroot at Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark, so Disney is giving guests the chance to experience this limited-time transformation … all day long! On Halloween, Oct. 31, Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark will take over The Collector’s Fortress throughout the Disney California Adventure operating day.

Help #SaveGroot at Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark, all day on Halloween, Oct. 31, at Disney California Adventure!

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Walt Disney World Making Changes to Private Dining Hours at Resorts

Walt Disney World has announced that some of it’s deluxe resorts will be revising the hours for their private in-room dining services.  The new hours will go into effect on October 29th.

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, Disney’s Contemporary Resort, and Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts will be losing their 24 hour private dining.

New Resort Private Dining Hours –

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

  • Breakfast – 6am to noon
  • All Day Dining – Noon to midnight

Disney’s BoardWalk Resort

  • Breakfast – 6am to noon
  • All Day Dining – Noon to midnight

Disney’s Contemporary Resort

  • Breakfast – 6am to noon
  • All day dining – Noon to 11pm
  • Late Night – 11pm to 2am

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort

  • Breakfast – 6am to noon
  • All day dining – Noon to 11pm
  • Late Night – 11pm to 2am

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

  • Breakfast – 6am to noon
  • All Day Dining – Noon to midnight

Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resort

  • Breakfast – 6am to noon
  • All day dining – Noon to 11pm
  • Late Night – 11pm to 2am

Disney Shows off Concept Art for ‘The NBA Experience’ and Announces Opening

As the 2017-18 NBA season tips off, we want to give you a first look at the new NBA Experience at Walt Disney World Resort coming to Disney Springs.

Inspired by the modern architecture of new NBA arenas around the country, the building design exudes the same spirit and energizing impact, while creating an unmistakable and entertaining connection to the NBA in a way that only Disney can.

It’s one of several ways Disney Springs is still growing and adding new experiences to delight and entertain our Guests.

“We are inspired by the design of the new building and the energy that it will bring to the West Side of Disney Springs,” said Senior Vice President of Disney Springs and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Maribeth Bisienere.

The state-of-the-art space will include interactive games and competitions, immersive experiences, a retail store and an adjacent restaurant.

NBA President, Global Partnerships Sal LaRocca, recently commented on the project, sharing, “This one-of-a-kind experience is sure to be enjoyed by basketball and Disney fans of all ages who visit Disney Springs from around the world.”

And, with the start of the NBA season, we also want to wish our hometown NBA team, the Orlando Magic, good luck. As part of Disney’s jersey sponsorship agreement, Guests who renew or purchase qualified Walt Disney World annual passes at the Amway Center this year will receive a new Orlando Magic jersey complete with the Disney logo, while promotional supplies last. Visit orlandomagic.com/annualpass for more information.

New Adventure from Star Wars: The Last Jedi Coming to Star Tours This Fall

Earlier this year Disney told us about a thrilling new adventure coming to Star Tours – The Adventures Continue at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios that will place guests in the middle of an epic battle. The action takes place on the planet of Crait, which we got our first glimpse of in the teaser trailer of Star Wars: The Last Jedi earlier this year.

Today Disney has announced that this exciting new sequence, inspired by the latest film in the Star Wars saga, will debut at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios on November 17, at Disneyland Paris November 22, and, as previously announced, at Tokyo Disneyland December 15!

Disneyland Cancels runDisney Races Beginning in 2018; Unclear When They Will Come Back

runDisney announced today that it is canceling its half marathon and other race events at Disneyland Resort beginning in 2018.

Races at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Paris will remain in place.

A Disneyland spokesman said construction of the 14-acre Star Wars Land: Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland, along with future development projects lined up around the resort area such as The Disneyland Eastern Gateway and a new four-diamond Disney hotel in the northern part of Downtown Disney, would affect future races since runners traverse a course in and around the Disneyland Resort.

“While construction for the next several years will impact our ability to deliver the runDisney experience our guests love, we are excited about our future as the Disneyland Resort continues one of its largest multi-year expansions,” said George Savvas, a Disneyland spokesman. “For fans who love to be part of runDisney events, we will continue to offer races at our other properties around the world in 2018.”

The races bring in an estimated 25,000 people paying upwards of $195 to participate in a half marathon run. The races, usually held during off-peak seasons, are a boon to the local economy, generating $20 million to $30 million in revenue to Orange County, according to Disney.

Savvas did not know when runDisney would come back to hold races at the Anaheim parks again. He said runners who pre-registered for race events in 2018 will receive a refund.

The cancellation comes as no surprise for eager runners who were looking forward to participating in one of the four race weekends held annually at Disneyland.

Chatter and rumors on social media, Disney fan blogs, and other websites about the future of runDisney races at Disneyland grew rampant when about seven months ago Disney postponed registration for its popular Light Side Star Wars themed running event slated for January at the Anaheim theme parks.

An Anaheim spokesman said typically Disney gives the city three to four months advance notice before a race weekend. Disney needs permission from the city to arrange the closing of some freeway off ramps, streets and provide additional police. City staff said Disney had not filed for any permits.

RunDisney is part of the Walt Disney Co.’s sports division and has grown to become one of the nation’s largest race organizers. RunDisney holds eight series of races such as marathons, half marathons, 10k, 5k and a kid’s race at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort.

The unique course location – Disneyland and Disney California Adventure – and themes such as Star Wars, Avengers, and Tinkerbell give seasoned runners and non-runners an opportunity to enjoy a one-of-a-kind running experience through the two theme parks and surrounding areas in Anaheim. Disney also holds several other events that weekend such as a Health and Fitness Expo, a kids’ race, and pasta at the park.

As part of the experience, many runners dress in a Disney costume. Local high school bands play. Darth Vader, Thor, Mickey, Minnie and other Disney characters greet and high-four guests.

Peter Henry, 40, from San Diego, said he’s disappointed that runDisney is canceling its Disneyland races. As someone who has participated in runDisney events since 2015, he looked forward to the runs every year. Training for the races helped him lose 15 pounds.

“I wanted to create my own tradition,” said Henry, who has participated in the last three Star Wars races. “So many people look forward to these races but we were kept in the dark since March. There’s a lot of preparation – from training, to rooms, to flights – that go on to be part of this. I understand what Disney has to do but I just wish they had better communication.”

Savvas said the Disney team had considered and weighed various possibilities to keep the runDisney events but ultimately, could not come up with a plan.

Disneyland will host its last runDisney event for the year on Nov. 9 -12, the Super Heroes Half Marathon weekend.

From the Orange County Register

Walt Disney World Announces an Ultimate Christmas Package

Can you put a price on Christmas happiness at the theme parks? Disney can, and it’s packaged up as a hotel and park ticket deal called Ultimate Disney Christmas.

The new deal is for stays at select Disney hotels from Dec. 21-26 that include four days of theme park tickets and access to special events.

The price for all of this can run a family of four as low as $139 per person per night or a total of $2,775, according to Disney’s website. That’s specifically if a room at Coronado Springs Resort was booked and the price is for two adults, one child ages 10-17 and one child ages 3-9.

Other price points quoted include $3,721 for that same family to stay at Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa or $3,777 for stays at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.

While exactly which rooms at which resorts beyond these three aren’t listed, it does include select moderate, deluxe or deluxe villa resort options. It excludes three-bedroom villas, the Cabins at Copper Creek Villas, Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Bungalows at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows.

Each person gets a four-day theme park ticket with Park Hopper option. It also includes tickets to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom on Dec. 21, exclusive night access to Disney’s new Pandora — The World of Avatar at Animal Kingdom on Dec. 22, a character experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios on Dec. 23, Christmas Eve dinner at Epcot and a holiday gift in your room on Christmas Day.

While the deal does include the tickets, which are designed to work with the crammed holiday itinerary, they technically don’t need to be used until Dec. 31, 2018, and all four days need to be used within 14 days of the first use. Check in is Thursday, and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is that night. Check out is Tuesday, the day after Christmas.

Details can be found at https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/special-offers/ultimate-christmas/details/ but booking has to be done before Dec. 10 and either through a travel agent or by calling Disney vacation help at 407-939-7886.

Walt Disney World to Welcome Dogs at Select Hotels

Soon Fido will be able to meet Mickey and the gang.

Beginning Oct. 15, guests will be allowed to bring dogs if they stay at select hotels at Walt Disney World. Travelers will be limited to two dogs per room, and dogs will be required to be leashed in public areas and have the proper vaccinations.

Guests who choose to bring their furry companions will pay a $50 fee per night at three of the hotels (Art of Animation Resort, Port Orleans Riverside Resort and the cabins at Ft. Wilderness Resort) and $75 nightly fee at the Yacht Club Resort. The fee will go towards extra cleaning for the rooms.

To make dogs’ stay more comfortable, Disney provide amenities for their four-legged guests, including a mat, bowls for food and water, an ID tag and puppy pads. Guests will also receive plastic disposable bags and maps of green spaces for dogs to walk around. The rooms will also come with a specific “Do Not Disturb” sign to alert hotel staff if a dog is in the room.

The move was likely driven by Disney’s competition with other Orlando-area resorts, said Melissa Halliburton, president and founder of pet-travel website BringFido.com. In particular, three on-site hotels at nearby Universal Studios which is pet-friendly. Halliburton said Orlando is in the top five most-searched destinations on her site.

“For years, families have struggled with the decision whether to bring their four-legged companions along on vacation to the Most Magical Place on Earth,” Halliburton said. Previously, visitors who wanted to stay on Walt Disney World property could bring dogs to the campgrounds at its Ft. Wilderness Resort. Service dogs are also allowed in the parks, and there are pet rest stations throughout.

The news was met with mixed reactions. Dog-lovers celebrated the change, while those with allergies and aversions to dogs were concerned about the implications.

Though Disney did not specify its plans, Halliburton said it’s likely the company will take precautions to ensure other guests are comfortable. “Most hotels set up a particular floor for pets, so people with allergies are never assigned a room on that floor and don’t deal with any residual dander,” she said.

Pet-friendly accommodations are a growing trend in the travel industry. Some 53% of travelers vacation with their pets, according to travel news site Skift, citing a TripAdvisor survey.

Millennials are driving this trend, Halliburton said. “They are choosing to have children later in life — but their dogs have taken that spot in their hearts, and they want to travel with them,” she said. For those looking to travel to Walt Disney World with their animals, Halliburton recommended they plan ahead to ensure they get a pet-friendly room and bring a copy of their vet’s records and a photo of their animal in case it gets sick or goes missing.

Walt Disney World Completes Candlelight Processional Narrator Line-Up

Walt Disney World has completed its line-up for the celebrity narrators for this year’s Candlelight Processional at Epcot.

Disney Legend Kurt Russell, who has starred in Disney films from the 1960s to 2017’s “Guardians of the Galaxy 2” will read the Christmas story this year – as well as gold- and silver-medal-winning gymnast Laurie Hernandez. Two veterans of the event – actress/comedienne Ana Gasteyer and Jodi Benson, voice of Ariel in Disney’s “The Little Mermaid,” – complete this year’s list.

As previously announced, new narrators for this year’s lineup include Matt Bomer (“White Collar,” “The Last Tycoon,”); Star Wars fan favorite Warwick Davis, who played Wicket the Ewok in “Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi;” Daytime Television Legend Pat Sajak and TV star CCH Pounder, who was recently at Disney’s Animal Kingdom for the grand opening of Pandora – The World of Avatar.

And returning this year are everyone’s favorite hard-driving Dr. Bailey from “Grey’s Anatomy,” Chandra Wilson – and newly-named Disney Legend Whoopi Goldberg, co-host of ABC’s “The View.”

Below is the full list of narrators:

  • Nov. 24 – 26 – Laurie Hernandez
  • Nov. 27 – 28 – Matt Bomer
  • Nov. 29 – 30 – Ana Gasteyer
  • Dec. 1-3 – Whoopi Goldberg
  • Dec. 4-5 – Pat Sajak
  • Dec. 6-8 – Jodi Benson
  • Dec. 9-11 – Kurt Russell
  • Dec. 12-14 – Warwick Davis
  • Dec. 15-17 – Trace Adkins
  • Dec. 18-21 – Neil Patrick Harris
  • Dec. 22-24 – CCH Pounder
  • Dec. 25-27 – Jaci Velasquez
  • Dec. 28-30 – Chandra Wilson

The Candlelight Processional is performed three times every night (5:00, 6:45 and 8:15 PM) during the holiday season at the America Gardens Theatre. Dinner packages are available which include meal and a guaranteed seat for one of the Candlelight Processional performances.

In addition to the lunch and dinner packages, breakfast options are again available at some restaurants in and near Epcot such as Akershus Royal Banquet Hall and The Garden Grill. Breakfast, lunch and dinner options are also available this year at Captain’s Grille at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, with breakfast and dinner options being offered at Trattoria Al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk.

Candlelight Dining Packages for breakfast start at $35 plus tax per person for adults and $21 plus tax per person for children, ages 3-9. Candlelight Dining Packages for lunch and dinner start at $44 plus tax per person for adults and $15.50 plus tax per person for children, ages 3-9.

The Epcot International Festival of the Holidays which includes the Candlelight Processional, takes place in 2017 from November 24 – December 30 at Epcot.

Kevin Feige Wants a Marvel Convention Separate from Comic-Con

If you enjoy attending cons like NYCC and SDCC to get a first glimpse of the latest Marvel news, you might want to start planning different travel arrangements. MCU head honcho Kevin Feige recently said he’s keen to see a Marvel-specific convention, similar to Disney’s Star Wars Celebration event. Good news for Marvel fans, not such good news for regular Comic-Con attendees. The Marvel convention news awaits you below.

Well, this was probably inevitable. Disney, in their never-ending quest for entertainment world domination, currently owns both Marvel and Star Wars. That’s a hefty chunk of pop culture entertainment, and with that comes the inevitable convention gatherings where exciting new projects are announced. For most of recent history, events like SDCC were the site of the biggest announcements. But the times they are a changing.

In recent years, Star Wars Celebration, first started in 1999, has eclipsed Comic-Con as the location for big Star Wars news. With the Star Wars Celebration only growing bigger and better, it was only a matter of time before Marvel made the jump to their own con as well. Then there’s the biennial D23 Expo, which recently featured Marvel announcements alongside events for Star Wars. Marvel President Kevin Feige is out making the rounds to help promote promote Thor: Ragnarok right now, and dropping hints left and right of things to come. In a new interview with Fandango, Feige talks about how there have been many discussions regarding a Marvel-only con, and how much he’d like to make it happen:

“Over the years there have been discussions about that […] I think what we try to do occasionally in San Diego we’re very proud of and think is a fun tradition. That being said, I think [Star Wars] Celebration is pretty amazing. I’ve been to a few Celebrations and the idea of doing something like that … I think we have enough content, and enough fans, and enough ideas that we could easily do something like that, I’m just not sure where or when.”

When and if this finally happens (and let’s be honest, it probably will), the question that arises is: what becomes of Comic-Con? With no Marvel and Star Wars, does Comic-Con wither away and die? Or will it soldier on with other big events surrounding companies like DC? Marvel and Star Wars may be big, but are they big enough that their absence at an event would sink the event completely? Time will tell. At the very least, the big movie studios pulling out would let Comic-Con be about comics again.

From SlashFilm

Tickets Available Now for Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire Hyper-Reality Experience by ILMxLAB and The VOID

Tickets are now available for a new hyper-reality experience, Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire by ILMxLAB and The VOID, an offering that will debut at Disney Springs at the Walt Disney World Resort December 16, and at Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort, January 5, 2018.

Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire will transport guests deep into the Star Wars universe, walking freely and untethered throughout the multisensory experience with friends and family. In groups of four, teams will go undercover as stormtroopers to capture Imperial intelligence vital to the budding rebellion’s survival.

Check out the video for a first look inside the Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire experience.

Find ticket information and more for Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire now at www.thevoid.com.