Disneyland Resort Raises Ticket Prices & Suspends Sale of New SoCal Passes

DLR Annual Pass

Disneyland Resort raised its ticket prices today.  With the price increase, its one-day, one-park ticket for guests 10 and older is now $96.

The $4.00 increase at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure is about the same as previous hikes, which usually happen about once a year. Single-day ticket prices have more than doubled since 2003.

The cost for annual passes also increased.

“Like any business, we periodically evaluate our pricing and make adjustments based on a variety of factors,” said Suzi Brown, a Disneyland Resort spokeswoman, in a statement.

“A ticket to our theme parks represents a great value, particularly when you look at the breadth and quality of attractions and entertainment we offer and the special moments guests experience with our cast.”

The increase comes as the Disneyland Resort is experiencing strong growth. Since Cars Land opened as part of the Disney California Adventure makeover in June 2012, Disney has often reported record attendance during its quarterly reports.

Disneyland also suspended new sales of its popular Southern California annual passport due to the crowds. Guests who already have them can renew them. And those who let Southern California passes expire in the last 90 days will be able to renew them as well.

The parks have been particularly crowded on Sundays – the only weekend day usually available for those with the Southern California passes, which now cost $379 on renewal. A cheaper pass – the Southern California Select at $289 – is blocked out on weekends and is available for new purchases.

Other annual passes like the Deluxe, which has some Saturday and peak-holiday-period blackouts, selling for $519, and the no-blackout Premium, which sells for $699 have not been suspended but could be in the future.

“Due to the popularity of our annual pass program – and to preserve the guest experience for our annual passholders and all guests – future sales of all annual passes will be subject to availability,” Brown said in the statement. “We continue to offer a variety of other annual passes so that our guests can choose a pass that’s right for them.”

The Southern California passes could be sold again when “renewal rates return to an appropriate level that preserves the guest experience,” Brown said.

Disney rarely suspends annual pass sales, last doing so temporarily in 2001 when Disney California Adventure opened.

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‘Rock Your Disney Side’ as Disney Parks Kicks Off Summer Vacation Season With 24 Hours of Magic on Both Coasts, May 23-24

Rock Your Disney Side

Disney Parks will kick off the summer travel season with a 24-hour, coast-to-coast celebration that invites guests to “Rock Your Disney Side” at three Disney theme parks ­­– Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park at the Disneyland Resort in California, and Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.

From 6 a.m. Friday, May 23, to 6 a.m. Saturday, May 24, 2014*, on each coast, guests will spend 24 hours laughing, screaming, dancing and embracing their own Disney Side – that fun, playful side that emerges as they enter a Disney park.

Disney pirates, princesses, villains and a few rarely seen characters will stay in the parks all day and all night, inviting guests to dress up for the occasion, too. Guests may join the party dressed in costume, perhaps as their favorite Disney Hero or Villain. Costumes should be child-friendly and adhere to any guidelines determined by Disney.

The 24-hour celebration of summer also features special entertainment in all three parks.

At Walt Disney World Resort, near Orlando, Florida
In Florida, a cast of Disney Villains will have a special place in the Magic Kingdom 24-hour celebration, including Maleficent,Cruella De Vil and such rarely spotted miscreants as the Big Bad Wolf, Stromboli from “Pinocchio,” and Bowler Hat Guy from “Meet the Robinsons.”  They will appear in locations throughout the park and also join in the “It’s Good to Be Bad” cavalcade preceding Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade.

Guests at the Magic Kingdom will enjoy nighttime dancing around Cinderella Castle and in Frontierland. The “#IncrediblesSuperDanceParty,” a nightly feature throughout the summer, will be followed during the All-Nighter by special screenings of “The Incredibles” at the Rockettower Plaza Stage in Tomorrowland.

At the Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, California
In California, the 24-hour fun begins in the Esplanade outside the entrances to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks, where guests will discover Olaf, the lovable snowman from Disney’s blockbuster animated film “Frozen, represented by a larger-than-life sand sculpture.  Fireworks and live entertainment will entertain guests as the parks open at 6 a.m. Pacific Time.

At Disneyland, exciting entertainment will include the “Avengers Super Hero Movie Marathon” throughout the day and overnight in the Magic Eye Theater in Tomorrowland. Nighttime highlights will feature an after-midnight performance of “Mickey’s Soundsational Parade” and dance-till-dawn parties at the Tomorrowland Terrace Dance Club and the Sleeping Beauty Castle Forecourt Dance Club. In addition to 24 hours of atmosphere entertainment and appearances by Disney characters, the Disney Villains are planning an overnight “takeover” of the Royal Hall in Fantasy Faire.

Disney California Adventure invites guests to kick off summer with an all-night “Mad T Party,” dancing in Pacific Wharf and Paradise Garden, and a special 3 a.m. performance of “World of Color,” the water spectacular with nearly 1,200 dancing fountains.

Just the Beginning
The All-Nighter is just the beginning of the summer fun at Disney Parks on both coasts.

At Walt Disney World, the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train attraction, opening May 28, takes guests on a rollicking musical ride into the mine “where a million diamonds shine” and becomes the crowning jewel of New Fantasyland, the largest expansion in Magic Kingdom history. Also at Magic Kingdom, the Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade brings the magical stories of New Fantasyland to Main Street, U.S.A., through fantastic and innovative parade floats, vibrant costumes and an original soundtrack that features beloved songs from favorite Disney films along with a new parade theme song.

At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, the popular and highly interactive musical show “Festival of the Lion King” returns this summer in the new Harambe Theatre. The park will offer Harambe Nights on Saturday evenings, June 7 through August 9, featuring a dazzling theatrical experience and energetic street party to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Disney’s acclaimed “The Lion King.”

Vacationers can stay in the middle of the magic this summer with special savings at select Walt Disney World Resort hotels. For reservations, contact 407-934-7639, or visit Disneyworld.com.

At the Disneyland Resort, guests will enjoy the thrills of the newly reopened and enhanced Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, along with dazzling summer entertainment that, beginning in mid-June, will include “Frozen” characters in a special pre-parade float for “Mickey’s Soundsational Parade.” The pre-parade unit features Princess Anna and snowman Olaf frolicking in the snow whileQueen Elsa is depicted in her icy domain.

Other summer entertainment in Disneyland includes daily performances of the enchanting “Mickey and the Magical Map” stage show, nightly performances of both “Fantasmic!” and “Magical” fireworks, featuring aerial flights by both Tinker Bell and Dumbo, and a variety of new entertainment daily in Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree. At Disney California Adventure, guests continue to enjoy the thrills and fun of Cars Land and the after-dark excitement of “World of Color” and “Mad T Party.”

Vacationing families may take advantage of special Disneyland Resort room and ticket packages at the resort and at nearby Good Neighbor hotels, with a selection to match every budget. For details, call 714-520-5060 or look for vacation packages at Disneyland.

Guests who choose to stay at a Disneyland Resort Hotel – Disneyland Hotel, Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel or Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel and Spa – have the added benefits of Extra Magic Hour early admission to the parks (selected locations), easy access to Disney Character Dining in hotel restaurants, an exclusive entrance into Disney California Adventure park through Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel and Spa, and special wake-up calls from Disney characters. Visit the Disneyland Resort Hotels page for details.

For more information, visit Disneyworld.com and Disneyland.com.

* Hours of operation: 6 a.m. on 5/23/14 to 6 a.m. on 5/24/14; subject to capacity restrictions. Only select attractions, entertainment and services will be available. Valid theme park admission required. Subject to restrictions and change without notice.

Disneyland Resort Releases Entertainment Schedule for Rock Your Disney Side All Night Long

Rock Your Disney Side

We’re just about a week away from our next big 24-hour celebration, where you can Rock Your Disney Side all day and all night! Magic Kingdom Park, Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park will each be open from 6 a.m. May 23 through 6 a.m. May 24, and they’re all going to be bursting with so much fun, you’ll never stop rockin’!

At Disneyland Resort, it all starts with a big kick-off in the Esplanade between the two parks. Then, throughout the day, you’ll be able to enjoy most of your favorite characters and shows, with some special surprises just for this event!

At Disneyland Park:

    • Mickey’s Soundsational Parade is scheduled at 6:30 p.m. and 12:30 a.m.
    • The Magic Eye Theater in Tomorrowland will host the Avengers Super Hero Movie Marathon throughout the day and night, presenting “Iron Man,” “Iron Man 2,” “Thor” and “Captain America: The First Avenger”!
    • You can catch “Fantasmic!” at 9 p.m. or 10:30 p.m. and the “Magical” fireworks spectacular at 9:25 p.m.
    • After the fireworks, come celebrate in front of Sleeping Beauty Castle, where a DJ will be spinning tunes for everyone until 5 a.m.
    • Royal Swing Ball presents a live band in the Royal Theatre at Fantasy Faire from 10 p.m. – 2 a.m.
  • Stop by the Tomorrowland Terrace for a live band in the evening and a late night Rock Your Disney Side Dance Party that lasts until 5 a.m.

There’s even more fun to be had over at Disney California Adventure Park:

    • You can enjoy live music throughout the day and night at the Paradise Garden Bandstand, with performances scheduled from 11:55 a.m. to 2:30 a.m.
    • Extra performances are planned for “Disney Junior – Live on Stage!” at 9:30 a.m. and “Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular” at 7:55 p.m.
    • Muppets Theater plays host to sing-along screenings of the Academy Award-winning film, “Frozen,” starting at 11:30 a.m. And don’t forget to check out the sneak peek of “Maleficent” in the Bug’s Life Theater.
    • “World of Color” will be presented on Paradise Bay at 9:45 p.m. and again at 3 a.m.
    • Head on down to Pacific Wharf from 10:30 p.m. – 5 a.m. for The Wharf Dance Party.
  • Mad T Party adds some spice to the night. You can rock ‘n’ roll your Disney Side with the Mad T Party Band and White Rabbit DJ, from 9 p.m. – 5 a.m.

So whether you choose Disneyland park or Disney California Adventure park—or both!—to express your Disney Side, you’re in for a rockin’ good time at Disneyland Resort!

 

Walt Disney Records Announces The Legacy Collection

The Legacy Collection

Walt Disney Records’ newly created line of collectible CDs, Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection, will celebrate the anniversaries of Disney’s most cherished and classic properties that have been enchanting audiences for generations. Through 2015, Walt Disney Records will celebrate 12 anniversaries including Pinocchio (75th), Fantasia (75th), Cinderella (65th), Lady and the Tramp(60th), Sleeping Beauty (55th), Mary Poppins (50th), The Lion King (20th), and Toy Story (20th), among others.

Members of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club will get a chance to hear some of the music before it’s released during the D23 Disney Fanniversary Celebration roadshow, which will tour the country later this year, and D23 Members have the opportunity to purchase the complete collection with a special set of exclusive prints at a special price.

To honor these musical landmarks, Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection will feature the beloved original soundtracks, plus valuable documentary content that tells the story behind the music. Each album will feature newly created artwork from Lorelay Bove, a visual development artist at Walt Disney Animation Studios (TangledWinnie the PoohWreck-It Ralph). The illustrations, inspired by the original properties, will celebrate Disney’s rich heritage and create a unified look for the entire collection.

The 2014 release schedule for Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection follows:
• The Lion King, June 24, 2014
• Mary Poppins, August 26, 2014
• Sleeping Beauty, October 7, 2014
• The Little Mermaid, November 17, 2014

The 2015 release schedule for Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection follows:
• Fantasia, January 3, 2015
• Pinocchio, February 3, 2015
• Toy Story, March 17, 2015
• Disneyland, April 7, 2015 
• Lady and the Tramp, May 12, 2015
• Pocahontas, June 23, 2015 
• The Aristocats, August 14, 2015
• Cinderella, August 14, 2015

The first release in the series is The Lion King, a two-disc set featuring the original motion picture soundtrack, 30 minutes of previously unreleased score, plus liner notes by Don Hahn (producer) and Oscar-winning composer Hans Zimmer. Track list follows:

Disc One
1. “Circle of Life/Nants’ Ingonyama” Performed by Carmen Twillie, African Vocals Performed by Lebo
2. “Didn’t Your Mother Tell You Not to Play With Your Food” Score
3. “We Are All Connected” Score
4. “Hyenas in the Pride Land” Score
5. “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” Performed by Jason Weaver with Rowan Atkinson and Laura Williams
6. “Elephant Graveyard” Score
7. “I Was Just Trying to Be Brave” Score
8. “Be Prepared” Performed by Jeremy Irons with Whoopi Goldberg, Cheech Marin and Jim Cummings
9. “Simba, It’s to Die For” Score
10. “Stampede” Score
11. “Mufasa Dies” Score
12. “If You Ever Come Back We’ll Kill You” Score
13. “Bowling for Buzzards” Score
14. “Hakuna Matata” Performed by Nathan Lane, Ernie Sabella with Jason Weaver and Joseph Williams
15. “We Gotta Bone to Pick With You” Score
16. “Kings of the Past” Score
17. “Nala, Is It Really You?” Score
18. “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” Performed by Joseph Williams and Sally Dworsky with Nathan Lane, Ernie Sabella and Kristle Edwards
19. “Remember Who You Are” Score
20. “This Is My Home” Score
21. “The Rightful King” Score

Disc Two
1. “The Morning Report” Performed by James Earl Jones, Jeff Bennett and Evan Saucedo
2. “Warthog Rhapsody” Performed by Nathan Lane and Ernie Sabella
3. “We Are All Connected” Score Demo
4. “I Was Just Trying to Be Brave” Score Demo
5. “Stampede” Score Demo
6. “Mufasa Dies” Score Demo
7. “This Is My Home” Score Demo
8. “The Rightful King” Score Demo
9. “Circle of Life” Instrumental Demo
10. “Circle of Life” Performed by Elton John
11. “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King” Performed by Elton John
12. “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” (End Title) Performed by Elton John

Adventures by Disney Announces Disneyland Trip for runDisney’s Avengers Weekend

ABD - Avengers Half

Disney and Marvel fans Assemble! Adventures by Disney just announced an exclusive, special departure that will propel you on a power-packed vacation of a lifetime. From November 10 – 16 of this year, the Adventures by Disney Southern California: Disney Backstage itinerary is packing extra might by providing you access to the inaugural runDisney Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon Weekend.

Not only will this trip include a rare, behind-the-magic private tour of The Walt Disney Studios, but you and your family can receive access to the Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon and 5K (currently sold out!), including two group pre-race runs and access to the nighttime ‘Pasta in the Park’ party. The trip will also take you on a tour of Walt Disney Imagineering and The Jim Henson Company, which are not regularly open to the public.

Let your Disney Side show with a two-day, VIP experience at the Disneyland Resort, with special FASTPASS service to multiple rides at Disneyland park and Disney California Adventure park. You will also get a private tour ofWalt Disney’s Disneyland apartment and the Disneyland Dream Suite.

This mighty seven-day, six-night itinerary will unleash your inner super hero for a magical family vacation of a lifetime. For more information on the other iconic and glamorous activities included in this trip, please click here, or call 1-800-543-0865 for dates, availability and to make reservations.

Disneyland Announces May Merchandise Events

Fireman Mickey

See what’s happening this May in the world of merchandise events at the Disneyland Resort!

May 3: Are you curious about the next Beautifully Disney collection? Wonder no more. Check out the new line inspired by “Alice in Wonderland” and meet the artist behind the Beautifully Disney collection. Jeff Granito will be on hand from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District. Learn more.

May 3 – 4: Meet artist Bill Robinson from 1 – 4 p.m., each day at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District. Not able to make it? No problem! Bill will return later in the month, look for him again May 31 and June 1.

May 4: Celebrate “May the Fourth Be With You” and stop by D Street in Downtown Disney where artist Mike Kungl will be on hand for an appearance and signing from 2 – 6 p.m. as we debut some of the new ACME Archives Limited “Star Wars” pieces.

May 17: Meet artist Noah from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District.

May 17: Jerrod Maruyama will appear at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District from 2 – 4 p.m. as we debut his latest piece from the Happiest Hipster on Earth Collection inspired by “Alice in Wonderland.”

May 17 – 18: Meet artist Bob Elias from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Disneyana in Disneyland park and see some of his latest works inspired by some of Disney’s most beloved characters.

May 23: Have you been waiting for just the right hand-painted Ink & Paint Cel to add to your collection? I think I found the one for you! Mickey Mouse is dressed in his fireman best as he stands proudly in front of the Disneyland Fire Dept. on Main Street, U.S.A. at Disneyland park. Stop by Disneyana throughout the day and meet the artists behind this new piece. Not able to make it? Look for a special opportunity to purchase this piece online.

May 24: Artists Joey Chou, Liana Hee and Jeremiah Ketner will take part in an artist signing from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m at WonderGround Gallery in Downtown Disney, as we celebrate the release of some of their latest works.

Artist in Residence: Appearing at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District throughout the month of May is artist Gregg Visintainer. Look for special artist showcases on the following dates: May 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24, 30 and 31 from 6 – 10 p.m.

Don’t forget! It’s not too late to get your tickets to attend the Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas” in Disneyland Trading Event.

Disneyland Resort Restaurants Win Big at Southern California Writers Awards

Carthay Circle

Sometimes we all want a little advice when we’re making a dinner reservation, and often it’s food writers and critics that send us to the best restaurants. That’s why we enjoy seeing the annual awards from the Southern California Restaurant Writers Inc., a group formed nearly 40 years ago to keep a finger on the pulse of the region’s dining. This year the group awarded Disneyland Resort a dozen awards to eight restaurants – two in Disneyland park, two in Disney California Adventure park and three in Disneyland Resort hotels.

Here are the awards:

Golden Bacchus Wine Award (the highest wine award):
Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge (Disney California Adventure park)
Napa Rose (Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa)
Steakhouse 55 (Disneyland Hotel)

5 Stars (the highest award):
Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge
Napa Rose
Steakhouse 55

4 Stars:
Ariel’s Grotto (Disney California Adventure park)
Blue Bayou Restaurant (Disneyland park)
Café Orleans (Disneyland park)
Storytellers Cafe (Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa)

3 Stars:
Goofy’s Kitchen (Disneyland Hotel)

Manager of the Year:
Jose Barragan – Barragan has been with Walt Disney Parks and Resorts for 17 years and manages Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge at Disney California Adventure park.

To make reservations at any of the Disneyland Resort restaurants, visit www.disneyland.com/dine or call 714-781-DINE (3463).

Meg Crofton Honored for Orlando Economic Development Achievements

Meg-Crofton

Meg Crofton, president of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Operations, United States and France, accepted the Orlando Economic Development Commission (EDC) James B. Greene Award for hercontributions to Central Florida’s economic prosperity.

Crofton received the honor at the organization’s annual awards dinner last evening at Amway Center. First presented in 1990, the award recognizes a leader whose work has had a significant impact on the region’s business community and quality of life.

“With her enduring enthusiasm and hard work in support of our area’s economic vitality, Meg is truly deserving of this highest honor bestowed by the EDC,” said Scott Faris, CEO of MicroVapor Devices and current chair of the EDC Board of Directors. “Through initiatives such as the EDC Leadership Charter, she built a legacy of collaboration and engagement that propelled the organization to new heights in economic development for the region.”

As EDC board chair from 2009-2010, Crofton helped guide the organization through the recession, developing innovative ways to engage the group’s board members. During those challenging economic times, she championed a variety of regional initiatives, such as the development of SunRail, Amway Center and Orlando’s Medical City.

During her time as president of Walt Disney World Resort, Crofton took on a variety of community leadership roles. She was appointed to the University of Central Florida’s Board of Trustees and served on the Florida Council of 100, a group that promotes statewide economic growth. She also served on the Rollins College Board of Trustees, the boards of the Central Florida Commission on Homelessness and Orlando Health, and the Executive Committee of the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts.

“I’m honored and humbled to be recognized by the EDC with this prestigious award,” said Crofton. “Central Florida will always be special to me and I’m so proud of all the EDC has accomplished on behalf of this outstanding community.”

Crofton, who grew up in Central Florida and lived in the region until 2013, is responsible for operations at many of Disney’s theme parks and resorts, including Walt Disney World Resort – Central Florida’s largest employer – Disneyland Resort in California and Disneyland Paris.

Springtime Roundup Being Held at Disneyland

DLR Springtime Roundup

Hop to It! – Spring has sprung at Disneyland Park with the new Springtime Roundup, presented March 28-April 20 at Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree in Frontierland. Guests of all ages may celebrate the season with live entertainment, dancing, springtime décor, crafts and yummy treats. Several times each day, a lively country band takes center stage, inviting guests and dancing cowboys and cowgirls to come together for a hoedown and “bunny hop.” Mickey and Minnie, dolled up in their Easter best, meet guests, along with famous Disney rabbits that hop in for the occasion. Guests may watch demonstrations on egg art and decorate their own bunny-shaped sugar cookies throughout the day. Special snacks include apple pie burritos and cotton candy swirled in lovely springtime pastels.

Disney Parks Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of ‘It’s a Small World’ Invites the World to Join a Global Sing-Along

DISNEY PARKS SMALL WORLD

In a historic, global event, guests and cast members at Disney Parks around the world will unite in song to celebrate the 50thanniversary of “it’s a small world,” the classic Disney Parks attraction that opened as a tribute to peace and hope at the 1964 New York World’s Fair. Fans from around the world can join the festivities in a first-of-its-kind, online global sing-along atSmallWorld50.com.

On Thursday, April 10, 2014, hundreds of voices from Disneyland Resort in California, Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, Tokyo Disney Resort in Japan, Disneyland Paris in France and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort will sing the unforgettable theme song of the “happiest cruise that ever sailed the seven seas.”

Fans around the world also are invited to join the global sing-along virtually. SmallWorld50.com launches today as a “global hub” of music and harmony where guests may record videos of themselves singing the classic song and create virtual “it’s a small world” dolls to benefit UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund). UNICEF provides health care and immunizations, clean water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more to children around the world.

” ‘it’s a small world’ has inspired hundreds of millions of people through its timeless theme,” said Tom Staggs, chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “Every moment of every day there are Disney guests enjoying ‘it’s a small world’ somewhere around the globe.  The 50th anniversary of this attraction represents a celebration of the shared optimism, hope, and humanity of people throughout the world.”

New Video Features People Around the World Singing “It’s a Small World”

To help announce the celebration, Disney Parks released a video featuring people around the world singing, dancing to and playing “It’s a Small World.” Filmed across six continents in more than 25 countries, the video features international “performers” – including bagpipers in Scotland, Bollywood movie actors in India, a firefighter in New York City, and members of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir – to create one worldwide video.

That video and others will be part of the launch of SmallWorld50.com, the global website for the attraction’s anniversary. Fans around the world are encouraged to participate online by recording on the Small World 50 website videos of themselves singing “It’s a Small World” and by creating virtual “it’s a small world” dolls to share with their friends through social media.

The Walt Disney Company will donate $150,000 to benefit UNICEF in honor of the 50th anniversary of “it’s a small world,” plus $1for every sing-along video recorded on SmallWorld50.com and another $1 for every virtual doll created on the website, up to$100,000. Disney began its relationship with UNICEF in 1964 with the debut of “it’s a small world” at the New York World’s Fair. More recently, Disney and UNICEF have worked together to create a brighter tomorrow for thousands of children through programming that helps foster imagination and creativity.

Throughout the day, Disney Parks also will sponsor Google Hangouts that invite people from around the world to participate in the anniversary events. Fans are encouraged to visit SmallWorld50.com for details.

Disney Store adds to the Golden Anniversary celebration with the “it’s a small world” doll collection, inspired by the original Fantasyland attraction, and stores nationwide will offer fans a chance to celebrate at “it’s a small world” events. From Thursday, April 10, to Sunday, April 13, children are invited to visit a participating Disney Store to take a journey on an imaginary boat ride around the globe, learning how to say “hello” in various languages and singing “It’s a Small World” along the way. Guests are encouraged to call their local Disney Store or visit DisneyStore.com to confirm participation and details.

The Creation of a Classic 

One of the most beloved attractions in the history of Disney Parks, “it’s a small world” is featured at all five Disney Resorts around the world. The original attraction premiered at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York City, created by Walt Disney himself and WED Enterprises, which eventually became Walt Disney Imagineering (the creative masters behind Disney theme parks and attractions).

The attraction features a gentle boat ride through a Lilliputian land populated by colorfully dressed Audio-Animatronics dolls representing children from many regions of the world singing a simple song about universal harmony. A team of WED artistic geniuses, including Disney Legends designer Mary Blair and costumer Alice Davis, created its now iconic style.

In 1963, Walt Disney was asked to create an exhibit for the 1964 World’s Fair to salute UNICEF and children around the world. With Walt’s blessing, Marc Davis, one of the original Disney animators, designed the boat ride attraction through the regions and countries of the world. The first version of “it’s a small world” entertained and thrilled more than 10 million visitors in New York from 1964-65. In 1966, after some major enhancements, including an enlargement of approximately 33 percent, the attraction found a permanent home at Disneyland in California.

In the attraction, hundreds of dolls “sing” the familiar song, “It’s a Small World,” in five languages (English, Italian, Japanese, Spanish and Swedish). Academy Award® winning composers Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman, who won two Oscars® for their work on Disney’s feature film “Mary Poppins,” were asked by Walt Disney to create a simple, yet catchy piece that could be sung in many different languages while guests traveled by boat through the attraction. The resulting song, “It’s a Small World (After All),” became one of the most well known and happiest of all Disney tunes.