Disney’s Hollywood Studios Archives ESPN THE WEEKEND

JULY 22, 2011:

Walt Disney World announced today that it would no longer host ESPN The Weekend, an annual event staged in Disney's Hollywood Studios, usually around the first weekend of March. The event was first created in 2004 in support of ESPN's 25th anniversary. Disney cited its evolving relationship with ESPN via the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, which it says offers "new opportunities for millions of athletes, coaches and fans, and hundreds of hours of ESPN programming, making our guests part of the show. In addition, the sports complex has become home to the ESPN Innovation Lab, which is the official development hub for ESPN’s 3D network."

MARCH 3-6, 2011

2011 Photo Gallery

Sunday Times Guide Page 1 (very large image)
Sunday Times Guide Page 2 (very large image)



ESPN Personalities

Jose Bautista
Bert Blyleven
Anquan Boldin
Joba Chamberlain
Tony Dorsett
Donald Driver
Chris Duhon
Julius Erving
Larry Fitzgerald
Curtis Granderson
Darrell Green
Mia Hamm
Brandon Jacobs
Greg Jennings
Jair Jurrjens
Carlos Lee
Cliff Lee
Karl Malone
Kevin McHale
Rashard Mendenhall
Urban Meyer
Alonzo Mourning
Jameer Nelson
Chad Ochocinco
Gary Payton

Hunter Pence
Martin Prado
Darrelle Revis
Jason Richardson
Cal Ripken Jr.
Mariano Rivera
Wandy Rodriguez
Bart Scott
Mike Singletary
Tim Tebow
Frank Thomas
LaDainian Tomlinson
Justin Verlander
Roddy White
Bernie Williams
DeAngelo Williams
Jason Witten

Phillie Phanatic
Albert E. Gator
Penn State Nittany Lion
Oregon Duck
Homer the Brave
Captain Fear the Buccaneer
Sebastian the Ibis

Skip Bayless
Derrick Brooks
Tedy Bruschi
Linda Cohn
Colin Cowherd
Jay Crawford
Jose del Valle
Herm Edwards
Nomar Garciaparra
Mike Golic
Mike Greenberg
Carolina Guillen
Merrill Hoge

Dana Jacobson
Ron Jaworski
Brian Kenny
John Kruk
Candy Maldonado
Hernan Pereyra
Jorge Ramos
Karl Ravech
Mark Schlereth
Howie Schwab
Sage Steele
Bobby Valentine
Dick Vitale
Trey Wingo
Quinque Wolff

Former Gators Coach Meyer, NFL Stars Ochocinco and Tomlinson and Popular ESPN Personalities Headline ESPN The Weekend at Disney

Eighth annual event at Disney's Hollywood Studios to feature
35 superstar athletes as well as two dozen ESPN on-air personalities

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Marquee stars from the NFL, MLB, NBA and NCAA, plus well-known ESPN on-air personalities, are headed back to Walt Disney World Resort for the eighth annual Dick's Sporting Goods presents ESPN The Weekend – a sports-themed weekend March 4-6 where fans have a one-of-a-kind opportunity see and hear many of their favorite athletes and ESPN personalities.

This year's lineup at Disney's Hollywood Studios features more than 35 athletes and ESPN stars, including former University of Florida football coach and current ESPN college football analyst Urban Meyer, Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chad Ochocinco, N.Y. Jets running back LaDainian Tomlinson, Arizona Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald, NBA Hall of Famer Julius "Dr. J" Erving and MLB Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, Jr., plus former NFL star Derrick Brooks, ex-NBA great Alonzo Mourning and current Orlando Magic players.

Mike Golic and Mike Greenberg, hosts of the popular "Mike & Mike in the Morning" show, return as co-hosts of the event, and will broadcast live March 3-4 from ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Disney. They will be joined by several fellow ESPN personalities such as "The Herd" host Colin Cowherd, "Monday Night Football's" Ron Jaworski and MLB analyst Nomar Garciaparra.

Additional ESPN personalities include, Tedy Bruschi, Linda Cohn, Herm Edwards, Merril Hoge, John Kruk, Karl Ravech, Mark Schlereth, Bobby Valentine, Dick Vitale and Trey Wingo. Other athletes expected to participate are Donald Driver and Greg Jennings (Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers), Anquan Boldin (Baltimore Ravens), Brandon Jacobs (NY Giants), Rashard Mendenhall (Pittsburgh Steelers), Darrelle Revis (NY Jets), Bart Scott (NY Jets), Roddy White (Atlanta Falcons), DeAngelo Williams (Carolina Panthers) and Jason Witten (Dallas Cowboys); Mariano Rivera and Joba Chamberlain (NY Yankees); Frank Thomas and Bernie Williams (MLB legends); Mia Hamm (U.S. Women's soccer legend); Karl Malone and Gary Payton (NBA legends); and Tony Dorsett and Mike Singletary (NFL Hall of Famers).

For the first time in the event's history, several popular sports team mascots will participate in the event, including the Phillie Phanatic (Philadelphia Phillies), Albert E. Gator (University of Florida), the Penn State Nittany Lion, the Oregon Duck, Homer The Brave (Atlanta Braves), Captain Fear the Buccaneer (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) and Sebastian the Ibis (University of Miami).

In addition to athlete appearances, ESPN The Weekend will feature on-site telecasts of popular ESPN programs (beginning Thursday, March 3) at Disney's Hollywood Studios and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Disney, including "Baseball Tonight," "First Take," "Mike & Mike in the Morning," "NFL Live" and "Friday Night Fights;" motorcades and Q&A sessions with athletes and ESPN personalities; Inside ESPN sports shows with commentators and athletes; and the ESPN Sports Zone interactive area where fans can interact with their favorite sports stars. There will also be Atlanta Braves spring training games taking place at ESPN Wide World of Sports, including a March 3 game against the Tigers that airs on ESPN with new "Sunday Night Baseball'' crew Dan Shulman, Orel Hershiser and Valentine.

To find the latest updates on Twitter for ESPN The Weekend, go to @DisneySports and search #ESPNWKND.

ESPN will present live telecasts – including "Baseball Tonight," "First Take" and "NFL Live" from a set in front of Mickey's Sorcerer's Hat on Hollywood Boulevard at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Park guests will have a chance to appear on-air via crowd shots while watching the programming on video screens. Popular ESPN Radio shows "Mike & Mike in the Morning" and "The Herd" with Colin Cowherd will be broadcast live from the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex March 3-4.

As Major League Baseball Spring Training games get underway in Florida, ESPN's on-site program lineup will feature a special two-hour " Baseball Tonight" with host Ravech and analysts Garciaparra, Kruk and Valentine from the theme park March 6 at 4 p.m. ET as ESPN's popular baseball news, information and highlights show kicks off its 21st season.

ESPN Deportes' "Beisbol Esta Noche" with Carolina Guillen and Candy Maldonado will broadcast from Disney's Hollywood Studios, while "Jorge Ramos y Su Banda," with Jorge Ramos, Hernan Pereyra and Jose del Valle, will go live from ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.

Radio Disney's on-air personality Ernie D will be broadcasting live from ESPN The Weekend on Saturday, March 5 and Sunday, March 6 at 2 p.m. ET, featuring interviews with athletes.

Additionally, live stage shows will bring fans and guests behind-the-scenes of some of the network's most popular programs, including "Baseball Tonight," "First Take," "NFL Live" and "Stump the Schwab." The shows will provide an inside look at favorite athletes, teams and ESPN programs. Fans can get into the action themselves by asking questions directly to ESPN personalities and athletes.

The ESPN Sports Zone will give guests of all ages the opportunity to test their skills at a wide variety of sports. MLB-, NBA-, NFL- and BASS-themed interactive areas within the Zone will have fans swinging for the fences, shooting baskets and throwing passes, as well as Dick's Sporting Goods' Sports Caravan, a multi-sport interactive area.

ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike in the Morning"will broadcast live from ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Thursday and Friday, March 3-4 (6-10 a.m. ET). Co-hosts Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic will also host the "Ultimate Guy's Weekend" during ESPN The Weekend, including activities such a round of golf, Friday Night Fights, a clambake and much more. ESPN Radio's popular morning-drive show launched in January 2000 and today is heard (and seen on ESPN2) by more than 12 million listeners each week on more than 350 stations nationwide.

Four-time MLB world champion turned classical guitarist Bernie Williams, who closed out last year's event with a live performance on "Baseball Tonight," returns and will perform all three nights at the Sorcerer Hat Stage to close out the day's activities. The former New York Yankee outfielder, who plays and composes his own music, has released two albums, The Journey Within and Moving Forward.

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex will host its first-ever "Friday Night Fights" on March 4, with six professional bouts planned for the Jostens Center. The marquee event features two undefeated fighters, NABF Light Heavyweight Champion Ismayl Sillakh (14-0-0) and challenger Yordanis Despaigne (8-0-0), headlining a series of bouts scheduled to air on ESPN2 at 9 p.m. ET.

The Champion 5K at Dick's Sporting Goods Presents ESPN The Weekend returns for its third year at Disney's Hollywood Studios on Saturday, March 5, at 7 a.m., challenging runners along the course with ESPN and sports trivia and will feature athletes and ESPN personalities, including Jay Crawford, Dana Jacobson and Trey Wingo. The 5K will benefit The V Foundation for Cancer Research, and all participants will receive a T-shirt and finisher's medal.

Event activities are included in regular admission to Disney's Hollywood Studios. The Walt Disney World innovative ticket pricing system, Magic Your Way, provides guests with the opportunity to customize their vacations and Florida residents can save on tickets all year long. Separate tickets must be purchased for events at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.