July 2008 Walt Disney World Bits and Bites

Feature Article

This article appeared in the June 24, 2008 Issue #457 of ALL EARS® (ISSN: 1533-0753)

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Ever wonder what Walt Disney World was like way back when? Each month we visit times gone by in Walt Disney World history. This month we step back to the summer of 1972. Do you remember what you were doing? The Walt Disney World News offers the following information:

"The Vacation Kingdom swings into summer with extended hours — 8 a.m. to midnight. There is special entertainment and nightly fireworks. New entertainment and special concerts can be found around the park. In Liberty Square, the Country Revue plays in the Diamond Horseshoe. Blueprint does 5 shows nightly at the Tomorrowland Terrace, and the Kids Next Door play at the Tomorrowland Space Stage. There is also the Electric Water Pageant and Fantasy in the Sky fireworks."

"At the Top of the World in the Contemporary, catch the sounds of The King Sisters, Mel Torme, Phyllis McGuire, Billy Eckstine and Sheila MacRae, who highlight the summer schedule."

"You could even have cocktails aboard the Eastern Winds, authentic 65-foot Chinese Junk (imported from Hong Kong), setting sail from the Polynesian Marina. In addition to Sunset and Moonlight cruises, you could enjoy a 'night nature canoe and wilderness excursion.' Take a cocktail cruise at 8 p.m. for $10 (cocktails included). Or try a dinner cruise at $25 per person which also includes cocktails and a steak or shish kebab dinner."

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Steve Barrett, author of the Hidden Mickeys books and webmaster of HiddenMickeysGuide.com, points out a few cool Hidden Mickeys for you to find during your next visit to Walt Disney World:

1. Sharon Dale found this classic Hidden Mickey image in front of Conservation Station, Rafiki's Planet Watch, Disney's Animal Kingdom. It's made of three circles in the large plaque embedded in the cement in front of the entrance doors. The circles are above the second "T" in "Station" and below the elephant tusks.

2. Erin Blackwell alerted me to two cool classic Mickeys at Fort Wilderness. On the overhead sign above the entrance doors to the FW Kennel Club, the swirls situated diagonally below the "C" and the "B" in "Club" form classic Mickeys. http://allears.net/btp/hm216.jpg

3. Richard Bent informed me of a classic Mickey inside Epcot's Innoventions East. In the last section of the Fantastic Plastic Works, a Hidden Mickey is formed of a green gearwheel "head" with smaller red and purple "ears" that move continuously as a unit along a track overhead. http://allears.net/btp/hm217.jpg

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Our series dedicated to Disney Scrapbooking returns this month, written by Disney scrapbook expert Barbara Bennett and her husband Brian (who are also the owners of MouseMemories.com). This month features the topic of Creating a Page Layout:

"You'll notice that we're not going to create a "page." Lots of scrapbookers will create individual pages as they work on their albums. However, if you think about opening your scrapbook to look at it, you will always be looking at a two-page layout — the left page and the right page. We feel very strongly that it will help you develop cohesiveness in your scrapbook if you coordinate your pages into two-page layouts that utilize the same products and color scheme. (The exceptions to that would be the very first page of the album (which would be a right side only) and the last page of the album (which would be a left side only). In general, as we create a two-page spread, we will use the same patterned paper for the background for both sides and then use one or two colors of a coordinating cardstock color for matting pictures and adding other elements…"

Read the rest of this month's article at http://allears.net/btp/scrapbook/part4/part4.htm

For a complete index of all the articles and background on the Scrapbooking Magic! series visit: http://allears.net/btp/scrapbook/intro.html

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4th of July Celebrations at Walt Disney World:

— A Fourth of July "Concert in the Sky" will light up the night at Magic Kingdom in honor of Independence Day. Featuring a magnificent display of aerial fireworks, dazzling pyrotechnic effects and dynamic music, the show, entitled "Disney's Celebrate America! – A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky," is a grand tribute to the United States, its people and traditions. The special show is scheduled for 9 p.m. on July 3 and 4. Magic Kingdom also will feature two performances of the "SpectroMagic" nighttime parade, first at 10:30 p.m. and then again at 12:30 a.m.

— A holiday-inspired finale will be added to the 10 p.m. showing of Epcot's fireworks extravaganza, "Illuminations: Reflections of Earth." The park's American Adventure pavilion also will feature enhanced entertainment throughout the day, with visits from historic characters who will share their stories. The American Adventure pavilion also will feature additional performances of its signature musical group, Voices of Liberty, performing patriotic classics.

— Disney's Hollywood Studios will present a special July 4th fireworks show at 9 p.m., with skyrockets and patriotic music filling the air at the showbiz-themed park. The park's popular "Fantasmic!" show, featuring fireworks, animation, dancing waters and Disney characters, will be presented on July 4 at 10:30 p.m.

— Downtown Disney will present July 4th fireworks at 10:30 p.m. for the revelers, shoppers and diners enjoying the nighttime entertainment district.

Viewing Tips for Fireworks and other July 4th information: http://allears.net/tp/fojuly.htm


Sounds Like Summer concert series: The shows, performed by tribute or "sound-alike" bands, take place daily at America Gardens Theatre at 5:15, 6:30 and 7:45 p.m., and are included with regular Epcot admission.

June 30-July 10: Bjorn Again — ABBA Tribute Band
July 11-July 20: Slippery When Wet — A Tribute to Bon Jovi
July 21 – July 27: 52nd Street — A Tribute to Billy Joel
July 28 – August 3: Captain Fantastic — A Tribute to Elton John

July 10-13, 2008: The Norway pavilion at Epcot will host Sig Hansen — one of the featured stars on the popular The Discovery Channel series, "The Deadliest Catch". Hansen will appear inside The Puffin's Roost, the pavilion's merchandise location, each day. He will be joined by his brothers, Edgar and Norman Hansen, who also appear on the show. A fourth-generation Norwegian fisherman, Sig Hansen is the captain of the Northwestern, one of the crab-catching vessels on "The Deadliest Catch." He, Edgar and Norman own and operate the Northwestern. Based in Seattle, Wash., the Hansens have fished together for nearly 20 years. The Hansens' crab-catching skills on the television show also have inspired "Deadliest Catch: Alaskan Storm," a video game for the Xbox 360 system. In addition to signing autographs and posing for photos, the Hansens will have Northwestern merchandise for sale during their Epcot appearance.

Disney's Wide World of Sports

July 26-August 14: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will come back for their seventh NFL training camp at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex. The team's daily practices are free and open to the public, with the schedule often incorporating two-a-day sessions in the morning and afternoon.

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




Nine Dragons Restaurant in China is closed until November 30, 2008 for rehab. Look for major renovations, including an exhibition kitchen where diners will be able to interact with the chefs.

Morocco's Gallery of Arts and History in Epcot's World Showcase will be closed for refurbishment July 14 to September 24, 2008.

Animal Kingdom Lodge

Phase I contruction is now completed (renovation of existing rooms in the Animal Kingdom Lodge, called the Jambo House). Outside construction of a new animal barn and Disney Vacation Club Building, Kidani Village, continues and is expected to last until Spring 2009.

Caribbean Beach Resort

The themed pool, Old Port Royale, closed for refurbishment January 7, 2008, until September 15, 2008.

Contemporary Resort

The North Garden wing has been demolished. The tennis courts and playground are also gone. Although there has been no OFFICIAL announcement, the Orlando Sentinel continues to report that the new construction at the resort will be a DVC site and has been renamed Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort.

Pop Centuryv

Classic Concoctions, the bar/lounge area in the lobby of Pop Century, officially closed on May 6. It will be converted to the Package Pickup area for guests sending items from the parks and some of the hotels. It is set to open on July 26.

Be sure to check our Rehabs and Closings page for periodic updates: http://allears.net/tp/rehabs.htm

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The Year of a Million Dreams, which began Sunday, October 1, 2006, has been extended through 2008, and as part of that celebration Disney cast members are not just dispensing "dream" prizes, but are also creating an unprecedented number of "Magical Moments." These include guests being tapped to help with the pixie-dusted opening of Magic Kingdom, getting the star treatment at a celebrity-style handprint ceremony at Disney's Hollywood Studios, or being named Official Wildlife Spotters at Disney's Animal Kingdom. We have some reports of guests at Walt Disney World and Disneyland receiving "dreams" from the Dream Squad and some of these Magical Moments:


Jean Cook: On Father's Day 2008, my parents, my brother, his children, and I went to Epcot. We were waiting at the front gates for the park to open when a lovely cast member named Linda approach the 6 and 8 year old niece and nephew. She asked where we were from and whether we had been to the parks before (they had not). Then she asked if we'd like to be Epcot's Family of the Day. We said OF COURSE! She gave us buttons, then took us through the cast areas to ride on Test Track (twice), Mission Space (where we got to go into the control room), Spaceship Earth, and the Nemo Ride. Then she gave us a six person fast pass for any ride in the park (and suggested Soarin'), a complimentary photo from Test Track, and access to priority seating in Italy for Illuminations. Ironically enough, I had read about these dreams on your website that morning and chatted about them in the car on the way to the park. Everyone was flabbergasted to be chosen. It was an absolutely wonderful day! Thanks, Disney!


Chris from Fishguard in the UK: On May 10 my wife Leander was 40. She was given an ice cream "on Mickey"; she thought that was fantastic! She now loves Adventureland. Later in Epcot as we walked into Innoventions to do the recycling game a cast member stopped us and said we were in the right place to receive the lanyards and pins starting kit. My grin was massive. You don't need big prizes to be delighted with dreams being bestowed, you really don't. Well my budget went out of the window as I attacked the pin displays with gusto! I now am a convert to pin wearing and trading.


Heather McInnis: My daughter and I were at Magic Kingdom on May 28, 2008, walking down Main Street, leaving after the fireworks. I stopped in front of the cookie store to check my backpack. A cast member, Rachel from Mobile, Alabama, came up to us and said since we were so interested in the cookies she would give us a free sample. We said great. Then from under her apron appeared a giant cookie the size of a small pizza. My daughter was so excited. We went back to our villa and the family had cookies and milk before bed. Yum!


Mary Mira: I live in Orlando and am a DVC member, as well as a Season Pass holder along with my husband. In January, four of my friends from Massachusetts flew in for our annual "girl" weekend. I used my points to have us stay at Animal Kingdom Lodge, a wonderful place to stay, by the way! On Sunday, we headed to Epcot to spend some time. Our plan was to finish up in Magic Kingdom, as it had Extra Magic Hours. As we were getting off the ride in The Land, I spotted the Dream Squad. As we disembarked our boat they approached my friend Gail. She happened to be in the right seat, at the right time, in the right row, she was the potential winner, along with her friends, to stay in the Cinderella Castle! We all signed the paperwork and our magical adventure began. We were picked up at Animal Kingdom Lodge and whisked away to the Magic Kingdom, where our pictures were taken and we were given Dream Mickey Ears. We had dinner at the Royal Table, and our own Concierge, Julian, to take us to the front of all the lines for the rides at Magic Kingdom. We even had a free underground tour. Breakfast at the Crystal Palace ended our special time at Disney. It was awesome and so exciting! Disney sure knows how to do things right!


EDITOR'S NOTE: If the Dream Squad bestows a "dream" upon you, or if you receive an official "Magical Moment," please let us know! We'd love to hear what you won, how you were chosen, and don't forget to send any photos if you have them! Email us at allearsnet@yahoo.com

For more Magical Moments: http://allears.net/tp/yomdmm.htm

For Dreams: http://allears.net/tp/yomd.htm


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.