October 2009
Walt Disney World Bits and Bites

Feature Article

This article appeared in the September 29, 2009 Issue #523 of ALL EARS® (ISSN: 1533-0753)

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Ever wonder what Walt Disney World was like way back when? We rummage around in our archives for this monthly feature, which takes you back in history for a glimpse of Walt Disney World through the ages. Over the years, the month of October has been a significant one for Walt Disney World. Among the datelines from Octobers past:

-- October 1965: The Orlando Sentinel reported that Walt Disney had been buying acres of land in Orange and Osceola counties.

-- October 1966: The 24-minute Florida Project Preview (which included plans for Epcot) was recorded by Walt Disney .

-- October 1, 1971: The Magic Kingdom first opened its doors, along with Fort Wilderness, the Contemporary and Polynesian resorts, the Palm and Magnolia golf courses, and many famed attractions.

-- October 1981: Disney began a Tencennial Celebration with a new parade and stars such as Bob Hope, Frankie Avalon and Pat and Debby Boone.

-- October 1982: Epcot Center opened, bringing a second theme park to the Walt Disney World resort.

-- October 1983: Horizons opened in Epcot's Future World.

-- October 1985: Nine Dragons opened in Epcot's China pavilion.

-- October 1996: World of Disney opened in the Downtown Disney Marketplace.

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Steve Barrett, author of the Hidden Mickeys books and webmaster of www.HiddenMickeysGuide.com brings you a few more new Hidden Mickeys from Kidani Village at the Animal Kingdom Lodge at Walt Disney World:

1. A white classic Mickey is at the top of a ladybug on the middle level of the closest chandelier to the front lobby entrance. (Thanks to Jay Stonefield and Ray Pilgrim.)


2. Inside Sanaa restaurant, a classic Mickey is above a booth on a white wall to the left as you enter. (Thanks to glaslady and Jay Stonefield.)


3. Inside Sanaa restaurant, classic Mickeys are in the woodwork in the middle of many of the dining tables. (Thanks to Sondra Dewey and Jay Stonefield.)


See archived Hidden Mickey Alerts here: http://allears.net/btp/hiddenm2.htm

Read Steve's Hidden Mickeys blog at AllEars® Blog Central: http://land.allears.net/blogs/stevebarrett/

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What did you wish you had known before your last visit to Walt Disney World?

Fans of the AllEars® Facebook page are having that discussion right now. Here are are some of the things they wished they had realized beforehand, and tips they're sharing as a result of what they learned!

I Wish I Had Known...

... the lines for Toy story would be so long so that I could have gotten a Fastpass first thing.

... it is cheaper to buy your water park passes the day you go if you are only planning on going to one water park. I would not have added the water park and more option.

... more about the shows/parades/fireworks. Now that we have taken the time for them, I realize how much they are worth seeing!

... you can get a pretty good view of the Magic Kingdom fireworks from Toontown -- especially while riding the Barnstormer!

... the better seats for Playhouse Disney Live are in the back, not the front. The kids can't see over the edge of the stage in the front.

... just how HUMID it is in August!

... you can get more for snack credits than chips, drinks or ice cream bars.

... and listened to my dad when he told me you cannot go to Disney at Christmas without dining reservations! While we did have some amazing meals, there were places that my daughters would have loved. (I did not plan this well enough.)

... I could eat at Wolfgang Puck Express on the Disney Dining Plan.

... you could buy candy from each country in Epcot, so that I could take it home and do a menu from that country every couple of weeks and relive the magic.

... I could apply the $429 a night we spent at Beach Club to my DVC purchase if we had done it before we checked out many years ago on our first trip

... that if you freeze juice boxes and pack them in the stroller, by 11:30 a.m. they are perfect.

... no matter HOW long we went for, I would never get to see/do everything and that just gives me an excuse to plan another trip!

To read more, visit: http://allears.net/pl/wishiknew.htm

And remember, you can join us on Facebook, too, at: http://www.facebook.com/AllEars.net

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Magic Kingdom

Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party continues: October 1, 2, 6, 8, 9, 12, 13, 15, 18, 20, 22, 23, 25, 27, 29, 31; and November 1, 2009. The October 31 party is SOLD OUT.

For more information visit:
Review of the 2009 Party: http://tinyurl.com/mfdezl
General information on the Party: http://allears.net/tp/mk/mnssh.htm


Epcot International Food and Wine Festival runs through November 8.

Eat to the Beat! concerts will be held during this year's Epcot Food and Wine Festival. The concerts, which are included with Epcot admission, are held in the park's America Gardens Theatre daily and begin at 5:15, 6:30 and 7:45 p.m. The lineup for October (subject to change):

September 30-October 3: Starship starring Mickey Thomas ("We Built This City")
October 4-6: En Vogue ("Free Your Mind")
October 7-8: Better Than Ezra ("Good")
October 9-11: Sister Hazel ("All for You")
October 12-13: Kool & The Gang ("Celebration")
October 14-16: Spyro Gyra ("Morning Dance")
October 17-18: Jon Secada ("Just Another Day")
October 19-20: Sister Sledge ("We Are Family")
October 21-22: Vanessa Carlton ("A Thousand Miles")
October 23-25: Taylor Dayne ("Tell It to My Heart")
October 26-28: Boyz II Men ("Motownphilly")
October 29-31: John Waite ("Missing You")

For more information visit: http://allears.net/tp/ep/foodwine.htm

Disney's Wide World of Sports

October 11 -- Disney's Race for the Taste 10K & 3K is your opportunity to experience the sights, sounds, and tastes of the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival as you run through the WALT DISNEY WORLD® Resort. There's no better place to find incredible food from around the world than at the finish line of Disney's Race for the Taste 10K & 3K. Bon Appetit!

October 24 -- The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™ 13K & 5K -- What lies beyond the fifth dimension, beyond the deepest, darkest corner of the imagination, can be found at The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™ 13K & 5K. We invite you to run into the next dimension, if you dare, on October 24 at Disney's Hollywood Studios™. A nighttime race like no other you have experienced is awaiting your arrival, but beware, you may not return from your run quite the same...

Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground

Reservations are now being taken 90 days in advance for "haunted" carriage rides through the woods of Fort Wilderness and along the shore of Bay Lake. During the 25-minute ride you will experience the "Legend of Sleepy Hollow" as told by your driver. Rides will be offered October 2 through November 1, and will depart every half hour between 7:30 and 10 p.m. from in front of Crockett's Tavern at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground. Each carriage holds up to four adults or two adults and three small children. Rides cost $60. Call 407-WDW-PLAY (939-7529) to book.


Disney Trading Nights return on Thursday, October 1 with a special 10th anniversary celebration at Disney's Contemporary Resort. This free activity will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Ballroom of the Americas. Another Trading Night will be held at Disney's Contemporary Resort on Friday, October 30, 6 to 9 p.m., also in the Ballroom of the Americas. There will be no pin trading night in November.

Don't forget to check our Events page for current updates: http://allears.net/pl/events.htm



Animal Kingdom

Flights of Wonder will be dark through October 23.

Magic Kingdom

Space Mountain will be closed until November 21, 2009, for refurbishment.


Raytheon Company plans to unveil an interactive, math-based experience at Innoventions at Epcot, set to open fall 2009. "The Sum of All Thrills" will engage children through a fun and educational experience that helps instill a lifelong passion for math, science and technology. The new exhibit will be a core component of Raytheon's MathMovesU program, an initiative designed to engage middle school students in math and science, and help create the next generation of innovators for the U.S.

Living with the Land in Epcot's Land pavilion is closed through November 1, 2009, for refurbishment.


A complete list of rehabs can be found here: http://allears.net/tp/rehabs.htm

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Each month we share reports of guests at Walt Disney World and Disneyland experiencing special Magic, and also special celebrations as part of the "What Will You Celebrate?" program.

Charlene Trycieckyj: On our recent trip to WDW over the 4th of July, we were in Epcot on our first day. We were walking through the World Showcase when we noticed a cast member steadfastly approaching us. We just thought he was going to tell us something. He walked up to my 13-year-old son, who happened to be wearing an Animal t-shirt from the Muppets, and handed him something and kept going. My son looks into his hand and sees an Animal pin! We were so surprised -- he wasn't even wearing his pin lanyard, yet received a new pin without trading for one. It was our Magical Moment that started our vacation!

Joannie Whitsett: We were waiting for Epcot to open and talking about our "game plan" to get on all the rides when a cast member approached us. She wanted to know what our plans were for the rides and we told her we were pretty much just going to wing it. She then said to us, "Well, let me try to make it a little easier for you by making you our "Family of the Day." What a surprise! We were all so excited! We were brought past the ropes, she made an announcement to the crowd, and gave us all "I'm Celebrating" buttons to wear. Then Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy and Pluto came out to great us. The PhotoPass photographer took many pictures. Then they brought out a Test Track car to escort us to Test Track as the first people on the ride (which we rode twice) and we were given a complimentary photo of our ride. Then they whisked us off to Mission: Space where we got to see the VIP lounge and behind the scenes at the "Command Station," where the cast members showed us how they monitor the ride; there is a lot that goes on that we never would have thought of. Wow, could it get any better than this? Yes! We were then given Fastpass vouchers for any ride that accepts them for the day and told that we would have VIP viewing for IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth. What a great first day to our trip. We have such great photos of this experience and even now we all still talk about it. Thanks WDW for making our dreams come true!

Terry Learn: My wife, 12-year-old daughter and I went to Disney World for the first time in July. We had a fantastic time. The biggest thrill for me was when we were in the Magical Kingdom and I saw the Dapper Dans. The Guys were just a hoot. I used to sing in a Barbershop Quartet and direct a chorus in Canada. Well my big thrill was when the Dapper Dans asked me to sing a song with them. It was awesome and I even received a card from them that said I had sang with them. I will never forget it and my wife even said to me that it had to be my biggest thrill of the trip.

Mark & Ryan Burden: I just wanted to give a mention to a "behind the scenes" cast member who really gave my son an unusual magic moment this week. My son Ryan visited Disneyland in California a few months ago and bought a First Edition snow globe pin. When he got home, it was damaged and there was no way he would be able to go back again from here in the UK to replace it. I contacted Valerie from the Walt Disney merchandise office to try to have a new one sent to the Old Key West Resort for us to collect in November when we go there on holiday, but this was not possible. Instead she had a replacement sent to our home in England. It arrived today, boxed, perfect, in a Disney bag, and only two days after posting! He was really happy and said it was a real Magic Moment, bringing back memories of his trip again. Disney really does go the extra mile to keep its customers happy.


AllEars® Readers also have shared their Magical Moments in photographs! This month we feature the many hats our readers have found when Wandering the World:


Send your Magical Moments to: allearsnet@yahoo.com


Editor's Note: This story/information was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all current rates, information and other details before planning your trip.