Disney Announces “Opening Seasons” for Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios

The galaxy that was far, far away and a long time ago just got a little closer.

On Tuesday, Disney announced that the highly anticipated Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will open in summer of 2019 at Disneyland and in late fall 2019 at Disney World.

Up until this point, all Disney has said about possible opening dates for either location was they would open in 2019.

While the announcement does not indicate a month or a date for the openings, it does indicate a couple of things.  First of all, it somewhat coincides with a lot of the rumors that the Disneyland version would open sometime during the summer next year.  With the statement of “Late Fall 2019” for the Florida version, confirms that construction there is behind Disneyland’s, which is in line with what many of us thought.  There had been rumors that construction at Walt Disney World had been closing the gap.  Either that speculation was wrong or if they have closed the gap that construction was even further behind than we had thought.

No specific date summer date was announced for the Disneyland opening.  There have been rumors that the actual date may be as early as late June or early July.  There also has been speculation, especially with how the return of Fantasmic in 2017 was handled, that Galaxy’s Edge may not open until sometime around the D23 Expo which returns to Anaheim August 23-25, 2019.

At this point, it’s all speculation and no one really knows.  Hopefully we’ll get more detailed information soon, but I personally would expect anything substantial until early spring 2019.

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Incredibles 2 Sneak Peek Now Playing at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Are you looking forward “Incredibles 2” as much as I am?  Well, if you’re going to be at Walt Disney World in the next month or so, Disney’s Hollywood Studios has a special treat for you.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios is now showing a sneak peek of the upcoming Disney•Pixar’s “Incredibles 2” in the Walt Disney Presents theater.

The sneak peek will show the first 10 minutes of the movie.  The movie is scheduled for its debut in theaters on June 15th.

Through June 29th, Annual Passholders can see a passholder-only showing between 9 AM and 10 AM.

Walt Disney World Online Lost and Found System Goes Live

Have you ever lost something at Walt Disney World and had to either call or go to Lost and Found to report the lost item?  Well, you no longer have to do that.

Walt Disney World Lost and Found has now moved online.  The new system is powered by Chargerback.  Chargerback also provides lost and found services for airlines and other tourism and entertainment companies.

Starting today, if a guest has lost an item at any Walt Disney World theme park, Disney Springs, Transportation (including busses, monorails and watercraft), ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex or Disney Water Park they will fill out a lost item report here.

Guest will no longer have to visit or phone the Lost and Found center.

Once guests fill out the online form they will receive an email notification with a Lost Item claim number. Disney will then continue to look for the item and provide you with an email update within 48 hours.  Disney will contact guests if they that they have found the item or need further information.

Nothing has really changed if guests have lost items at any hotel or on Disney’s Magical Express.

If an item was lost at any resort hotel, please contact the specific resort Lobby Concierge for assistance.

For Disney’s Magical Express please contact (866) 599-0951. If the item was lost over 30 minutes ago, please contact Mears Transportation Group at (407) 423-5566.

If guests aren’t where the item was lost, Disney is asking guests to go to the above link and fill out the online form.

According to Disney policy, highly valuable items (such as wallets, purses, credit cards, prescription glasses and cameras) are held for 90 days.

Items of lesser value (such as sunglasses, hats, toys and clothes) are held for 30 days.

 

Donald Duck Annual Passholder Magnet Arriving in WDW Soon

There soon will be a new Annual Passholder magnet for passholders to collect….Donald Duck….and I want it!

According to Disney the complimentary summer-themed Donald Duck magnet is scheduled be released on May 18, and will be available for pick up at Disney’s Hollywood Studios although an exact pick up location has not been mentioned yet.

The magnet will feature an image of Donald Duck on a teal background with a sunburst behind him.

The new magnet will be available through June 29.

 

I certainly hope they still have some available when I’m at Walt Disney World in about a month…because…have I mentioned it…I really want it.

How about the rest of you passholders?  Is this on your want list?

Disney Gives a Peak into What’s in Woody’s Lunch Box

Lou Mongello from WDW Radio has often said that “food is an attraction” at Walt Disney World.  Nothing could be further from the truth with Woody’s Lunch Box, the counter-service restaurant that will begin serving guests when Toy Story Land opens on June 30th.

Woody’s Lunch Box will dish up all sorts of sandwiches and sides that blend classic flavor combinations with a modern twist, plus nostalgic soda floats and specialty beverages.

Lenny DeGeorge, Concept Development Culinary Director for Walt Disney World, spoke about the year-long menu development process, “Everyone has a special food memory, so it can be tricky putting a modern spin on the favorites.  We honored these classic dishes by using the best ingredients to elevate the flavors. How we constructed the sandwiches was important, such as layering the ingredients in a specific order, to maximize textures and flavors. Why have a cold sandwich when you can have a toasted hot, gooey cheese-filled one?”

Here’s a look into what will be offered at Woody’s Lunch Box –

Breakfast –

S’more French Toast Breakfast Sandwich – Oozy goodness in a chocolate ganache- and marshmallow-stuffed French toast topped with graham cracker crumbles. Inspired by the classic American campfire treat.


Smoked Turkey, Eggs, Swiss, Peppers, and Onions on Sourdough – The perfect hand-held stack of breakfast goodness.

Breakfast Bowl – The green army men line up for this hearty bowl of potato barrels, brisket-country gravy, and scrambled eggs.

Banana Split Yogurt Parfait – Layers of banana-vanilla Greek yogurt (with a hint of honey), fresh bananas, strawberries, and pineapple topped with granola and chocolate chips. A delicious and healthful way to start the day!

Lunch/Dinner –

BBQ Brisket Melt – With a nod to cowboy Woody, this Texas-style smoked brisket features cheddar, Monterey Jack, pickles, and BBQ sauce on garlic butter-grilled sourdough.

Monte Cristo with Raspberry Jam – Woody’s version of this classic sandwich has layers of ham, turkey, Swiss, and raspberry jam…and is grilled to a golden brown.

Totchos – Potato barrels, corn chips, chili, and cheese.

Smoked Turkey, Tomato, and Lettuce on Multigrain Bread – This quintessential lunch box sandwich is a light and fresh option. And to give it a kick of flavor, we add a creamy Dijonnaise.

Sides will include tomato basil soup, vegetable macaroni salad, and potato barrels along with Mini Babybel snack cheese.  The snack cheese is also available as an on-the-go snack.

There will also be a souvenir cup available.  The adorable Alien Sipper may be purchased and filled with any fountain drink or the signature Mystic Portal Punch – Powerade Mountain Berry Blast with flavors of lemon-lime and tangerine.

Adults will be able to  enjoy the backyard with a Grown-Up’s Lemonade cocktail (cherry vodka, Odwalla Lemonade, and black cherry purée), beer, or hard cider.

My personal favorites are the Breakfast Bowl for breakfast and the BBQ Brisket for lunch or dinner.  Yeah…I have to admit that brisket looks mighty good.

I’m sure the food options along with the wonderful theming of the area the atmosphere and ambience will be great….yes, making Woody Lunch Box an “attraction” that must be visited.

Here is the full menu that will be available when Woody’s Toy Box opens –

Breakfast –

Entrées:

S’mores French Toast Sandwich  $7.99

Breakfast Bowl  $8.49

Breakfast Sandwich  $7.49
Banana Split Yogurt Parfait  $5.99
Kids Meals –
S’mores French Toast Sandwich
served with choice of small Lowfat Milk or small Dasani® Bottled Water

$5.99
Breakfast Sandwich
Smoked Turkey, Eggs, Swiss, Peppers and Onions on Sourdough served with choice of small Lowfat Milk or small Dasani® Bottled Water

$5.49
Lunch and Dinner –
Entrées:
BBQ Brisket Melt
served with choice of Side

$12.99
Monte Cristo with Raspberry Jam
served with choice of Side

$11.49
Smoked Turkey Sandwich
Smoked Turkey, Tomato and Lettuce on Multigrain Bread served with choice of Side

$9.99
Grilled Three-Cheese Sandwich
served with choice of Side

$8.99
Totchos
Potato Barrels, Corn Chips, Chili and Cheese topped with Sour Cream

$8.99
Kids Meals –
Turkey Sandwich
served with Potato Barrels, Mandarin Orange and choice of small Lowfat Milk or small Dasani® Bottled Water

$6.79
Grilled Cheese
served with Potato Barrels, Mandarin Orange and choice of small Lowfat Milk or small Dasani® Bottled Water

$5.99
Desserts –
Raspberry Lunch Box Tart
$3.29
Chocolate-Hazelnut Lunch Box Tart
$3.29
Beverages –
Assorted Coca-Cola® Offerings $3.29
Assorted Fountain Beverages – Souvenir Alien Sipper
your choice of Fountain Beverage served in a Souvenir Alien Sipper

$14.99
Mystic Portal Punch
POWERade® Mountain Berry Blast with flavors of Lemon-Lime and Tangerine

$4.49
Mystic Portal Punch – Souvenir Alien Sipper
POWERade® Mountain Berry Blast with flavors of Lemon-Lime and Tangerine served in a Souvenir Alien Sipper

$16.19
Ice Cream Float with Barq’s® Root Beer
$4.99
Dasani® Bottled Water – 20 oz
$3.00
Dasani® Bottled Water – 12 oz
$2.00
smartwater
$4.50
Cold Brew Joffrey’s® Coffee
$3.79
Coffee
regular or decaf

$2.79
Lowfat Mickey Milk – 8 oz
$1.99
Alcoholic Beverages –
Grown-Up’s Lemonade
Three Olives Black Cherry Vodka, odwalla® Lemonade and Black Cherry Purée

$9.25
Bud Light Lager
16 oz Draft Beer

$6.75
Blue Moon Belgian White Ale – Golden, CO
16 oz Draft Beer

$7.25
Angry Orchard Crisp Apple Hard Cider – Cincinnati, OH
16 oz Draft Beer

$8.00

Disney’s Hollywood Studios Guide Maps Now Show Toy Story Land

A couple of weeks ago Disney announced that Toy Story Land will be opening on June 30 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  Those of us that have been impatiently anticipating this addition all got very excited.


Sources are now reporting that Toy Story Land is showing up on Disney’s Hollywood Studios guide maps.  The arrival of this addition to the Studios just got more real.  After all…doesn’t putting a new land/attraction on a guide map with “Coming Soon” somehow make it more official?

I for one am getting excited for Toy Story Land.  Unfortunately my travel plans aren’t coinciding with the opening date.  Since my next trip to Walt Disney World is scheduled for early June, I’ve got to hope that I can catch either an Annual Passholder Preview or some soft openings when I’m there.

 

Walt Disney World Announces ‘Incredible Summer’ for All Four Parks

Last week Walt Disney World announced that guests will see new attractions and entertainment experiences as “beloved stories from several Disney films come to life” at Walt Disney World this summer.

Here is what Disney announced…

The Incredibles Take Over Tomorrowland

Guests can party with Mr. Incredible, Elastigirl, and Frozone from Disney•Pixar’s “The Incredibles” and the soon-to-be blockbuster “Incredibles 2.” Edna Mode, the greatest superhero costume designer, will also make her debut appearance. Each evening, guests can enjoy a “SUPER” dance party on the Rocket Tower Stage.

Don’t we already have a dance party and an Incredibles one at that in Tomorrowland already?  Okay Edna Mode is new and it will be themed to Incredibles 2….but this really isn’t anything new.

The Guardians of the Galaxy Take the Stage at Epcot

Star-Lord and Gamora from “Guardians of the Galaxy” will join an alien band, taking guests on a journey through the cosmos. The party will feature hits from Awesome Mixtapes 1 and 2 – fun and favorite tunes from the two movies’ soundtracks – building the anticipation for a new Epcot Guardians of the Galaxy attraction.

This sounds like it could be fun….though it sounds a lot like the ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Dance Off!’ that’s being held in front of Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! at Disney California Adventure, minus the “dance off” part.  Fun….new to Epcot, promotes the upcoming attraction, but not original.

“Explorers Meet UP! A Great Bird Adventure” & A “Dino-Tastic” Celebration for Donald Duck Will Debut At Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Two new can’t-miss offerings will debut at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in time for the park’s 20th anniversary. First, guests can discover new bird species from around the world at the new show “Explorers Meet UP! A Great Bird Adventure,” which will star Senior Wilderness Explorer Russell and his furry friend Dug. The park will also launch a “dino-tastic” celebration, in which Donald Duck takes over Dinoland, U.S.A., in a new character celebration.

“Explorers Meet UP! A Great Bird Adventure” sounds like an UP re-themed “Flights of Wonder” attraction to me.  I’m a big fan of the movie UP but this doesn’t sound really new.

I am curious to see what the “Dino-Tastic Celebration for Donald Duck” will be.  While I was hoping for a new parade for Disney’s Animal Kingdom, this new celebration could be fun and is much needed for Dino-Land which lacks anything significant to keep people there beyond the few attractions that draw people there.

See “The Incredibles 2” at AMC Disney Springs

Everyone’s favorite family of superheroes is back in “Incredibles 2” – but this time Helen is in the spotlight, while Bob navigates the day-to-day heroics of “normal” life at home with Violet, Dash and baby Jack-Jack, whose superpowers are emerging. When a new villain hatches a brilliant and dangerous plot, the family and Frozone must find a way to work together again—which is easier said than done, even when they’re all Incredible. “Incredibles 2” busts into theaters on June 15, 2018.

For me this might appeal to locals or for a rainy day.  I don’t know about you, but with the money I spend for a trip to vacation at Walt Disney World I’m not sure I want to spend two hours watching a movie that I can watch at home.

Now….for the biggie…

Toy Story Land Opens at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

One major highlight of “Incredible Summer” will be the grand opening of Toy Story Land at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This new 11-acre land will shrink guests to the size of a toy and allow them to explore the fun and adventure of Andy’s backyard. There, guests can experience two new attractions: the family coaster Slinky Dog Dash and Alien Swirling Saucers. Toy Story Land also will feature an existing guest-favorite attraction, Toy Story Mania!, which will expand to add a third track into the rotation. The land’s Woody’s Lunch Box will be a new quick-service restaurant that will offer up tasty meals and old-fashioned soda floats to Toy Story Land guests.

This what I’m looking forward to.  I cannot wait until this opens.  I’m really hoping that Toy Story Land is open when I’m at Walt Disney World this summer.

Except for Toy Story Land and the Dino-Tastic Celebration in Dinoland none of the rest excites me much, but considering that all of this is limited to the summer season when the parks are fairly busy and there is a huge need to entertain people when they aren’t able to get on attractions or into other shows these are probably good and fun enough to serve the purpose.

What do you think of Incredible Summer?

Walt Disney World Buries the Lead with First Glimpse of Alien Swirling Saucers

Today Walt Disney World showed us the latest art work for the Alien Swirling Saucers at Toy Story Land.

According to Disney –

Once the aliens have powered up their flying saucers, you’ll get to climb into a toy rocket and hang on as aliens lead the way on an interstellar romp set to an out-of-this-world beat. And if you’re really lucky, you just might get “chosen” by the claw!

The concept art for this attraction and the description by Disney does make it look like it could be a lot of fun.

I like what I’ve I’ve seen and heard about Toy Story Land.  The whole area looks amazing.  I’m really hoping it’ll be open or at least have some soft opening when I visit Walt Disney World this summer.

As much fun as the Aliens Swirling Saucers look, what was the big take away in today’s announcement in the Disney Parks Blog was this “little” announcement…

In response to questions we have been receiving, we also want to let fans know that the Disney’s Hollywood Studios name will remain the same for the foreseeable future since we are immersing our guests in a place where imagined worlds of Hollywood unfold around them from movies and music, to television and theater.

Rumors had been circulating recently that Disney had chosen “Disney Cinemagine Park” as the new name.  A lot of Disney fans raised our eyebrows and uttered the phrase “What the….??” This was a bad name…a really bad name.  This name was one of the series of bad names that were included in a guest survey that was conducted a few months ago.

I for one am happy with this decision, even if it might be a temporary decision.  I still believe that there is a strong possibility that the name of this park will change sometime in the future.  We can all admit that Disney’s Hollywood Studios has been a “studio” in name only.  There hasn’t been any real production going on for quite some time.  With the re-imagineering of the park coming with the addition Toy Story Land this summer and the much anticipated Galaxy’s Edge in 2019 a new name has been thought was coming.  I personally don’t believe that Disney’s Hollywood Studios will remain the name will stay for the “foreseeable future.”

The problem, in my opinion, with the rumored name ‘Disney Cinimagine Park” was it’s lameness.  ‘Cinimagine’ is not a word….and it’s a bad made up word at that.  The name is hard to say and hard to spell….and it means nothing.

I’m glad the name of the park is staying….at least for now.

Star Wars: Galactic Nights is Returning to Disney’s Hollywood Studios

For all you Star Wars fans out there, Disney recently announced that the one-night special event Star Wars: Galactic Nights will be returning to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 27th.

For those that are unfamiliar with the event,  Star Wars: Galactic Nights is an exciting Star Wars-themed event held at Disney’s Hollywood Studios after park hours, 7 PM to Midnight.  The event celebrates all that is Star Wars  with themed entertainment, special photo opportunities, event-exclusive merchandise along with food and beverage, and of course encounters with rarely seen characters that guests can only experience during this special hard ticketed event.

Specific examples of what guests can experience during Star Wars: Galactic Nights include –

  • Star Wars: Galactic Destinations Projections Transform The Hollywood Tower Hotel– Visible on the Sunset Boulevard area of the park the facade of the Hollywood Tower Hotel will transform via stunning projection technology to showcase familiar locations from across the galaxy. Favorite film moments, special effects, lighting, and of course the stellar Star Warscinematic score supports each galactic location moment all night long. Star Wars Galactic Destinations is currently an event exclusive.
  • Existing Star Wars Entertainment Will Debut New Enhancements – The park’s existing Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular fireworks and the Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away stage show will both debut new saga elements for the first time during Star Wars: Galactic Nights.
  • Special Photo Ops – Throughout the park, guests can step into immersive and iconic scenes from their favorite Star Wars films in a series of incredibly detailed photo locations. These special photo ops will only be available at Disney’s Hollywood Studios during Star Wars: Galactic Nights
  • Character Encounters – Expect to encounter Star Wars characters from throughout the galaxy. Guests will also be able to view an Imperial Stormtrooper March with Darth Vader.
  • Exclusive Food & Beverage offerings – Taste your way around the galaxy with specialty food and beverage offerings created for Galactic Nights. Inspired by the stories and iconic characters of Star Wars, these tasting-sized sips and bites bring a delectable addition to this event.
  • Enjoy park attractions – Select attractions will be open to all guests – and some may even offer a special Star Wars twist on May 27 only.

Did anyone else notice that this last point is very close to the release of Solo: A Star Wars Story?  I wonder what guests will get to experience?

This event is something that I’ve always wanted to do, but haven’t had the chance to.  It sounds like a lot of fun.

What I really like about this event is that it seems to have something for any Star Wars fan, from the guest just discovering Star Wars, the casual fan and including the die-hard Star Wars nerd…it has everything.

I consider myself a Star Wars fan, though not an uber-fan.  I love the movies and the attractions and experiences in the parks that are tied to Star Wars.  If I could attend I’d love to experience the character encounters, but the things that excite me the most are the entertainment and the food…which is like an attraction…right?

Are you going to this event?  What excites you the most?

Disney’s Hollywood Studios Debuts New Background Music

Going all the way back to the earliest movies, every great Hollywood story came with a great soundtrack that set the narrative and tone of the movie.  Today Disney’s Hollywood Studios as part of the park’s redevelopment debuts it’s new background music throughout the park.

As guests enter the Main Entrance to the park, guests will hear Big Band arrangements of the Disney Music that we all know and love.

Along Hollywood Boulevard the background music shifts to Big Band instrumental arrangements of songs that were popular of the 1930’s and 1940’s.

Music on Sunset Boulevard will compliment the music heard on Hollywood Boulevard with vocal arrangements similar to the Big Band hits guest heard there.

Guests in the Echo Lake area will continue to hear Big Band music with bright, brassy horns and lush string arrangements.

The music of each area will compliment the theme of the area.  According to reports the Grand Avenue area guests will hear music that includes retro-contemporary west-coast funk with strong basslines, electric guitars, horns and synthesizers.  The music in the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster courtyard will include live versions of classic rock songs, including of course Aerosmith.

I’ve listened to some of the music and I have to say I love it.  I always liked the previous background music of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, but I have to say that the Imagineers have created an even better mood and background theme with the new music.  I think, based on what I’ve heard, that the music of the various areas do a better job of complimenting each other.  I personally cannot wait until I can hear the new music live in the parks when I visit Walt Disney World in June.

If you want to hear a sample of the music, I’ve provided a link below to the music from WDWMagic.

New Background Music