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Update for April 23 – 29, 2007

Go directly to: News & Views | Coming Soon | Trivia of the Week | Refurbishment/Attraction Closures | Park Events | Discounts/Promotions | Park Hours | Events/Entertainment Schedule

News and Views

Registration opens for Tower of Terror 13K

Registration has now opened for Disney-MGM Studio's inaugural Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 13K and 6.5K races on Saturday, October 27. It is expected that this race will sell out quickly, so you might want to register as soon as possible if you plan to run. Extra tickets for the after-party are also available now.

Italy pavilion to host Naples Ristorante e Pizzeria?

Last Thursday, Disney announced that the Patina Restaurant Group had been selected as the operating participant for the restaurant at Epcot's Italy pavilion. Aside from operating several high profile restaurants in New York City and Southern California, Patina is probably best-known to Disney aficionados as the operator of Naples Ristorante e Pizzeria, Napolini, Catal, the Uva Bar and Tortilla Jo's Dining Room, Cantina and Taqueria at Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort. With that decision, it appears that the decision has been made to go with a domestic operator with a history of working with Disney instead of an actual Italian eatery as with Alfredo's.

"We are proud of our long-term relationship with The Walt Disney Company and are gratified to see it grow," said Nick Valenti, president and CEO, Patina Restaurant Group. "Disney is a name synonymous with quality and creativity – two characteristics that we strive to emulate," added Joachim Splichal, Chef and Founder of the Patina Group. "We look forward to developing a truly outstanding restaurant for the visitors to Epcot."

At this point, it is unknown whether the new eatery will be a retread of Naples or if it will be an authentic Italian experience. The name and menu for the location has not been determined yet. Regardless of which way it turns out, the new Patina Group restaurant will open on September 1.


A screen capture from the Disney Vacation Club members-only site shows the Samawati Springs pool area at the Kidani Village annex for the Animal Kingdom Villas. Image © Disney.

Animal Kingdom Villas information begins to emerge

While we're hearing of guests unhappy with construction sounds near their rooms, work on the conversion of the first phase of the Animal Kingdom Villas continues apace. Meanwhile, more information is becoming available about the new features to be added as part of the new Animal Kingdom Villas, the DVC conversion and expansion of the Animal Kingdom Lodge. The existing Lodge building will be called Jambo House, while the new annex will be called Kidani Village.

New dining at Kidani Village includes Sanaa (meaning "work of art"), which will serve breakfast and dinner in a large dining room. A 24-seat adjacent lounge will give you a place to sit and wait for your table. The Maji (meaning "water") pool bar will give you a place to grab a cool beverage near the Samawati Springs pool.

The Samawati Springs feature pool will feature zero-entry access, as well as a 128-foot-long water slide. Two whirlpool spas will round out the wet entertainment. Nearby, the Survival of the Fittest Fitness Center provides a chance to work out while you're on vacation.

The Uwanja (meaning "play area") Camp provides just that – a three-zone play area with elevated rope bridges, geyser jets, a waterfal lagoon and camp cabanan. The three zones include the base camp, the departure zone and the observation station, each themed to its own character and has activities for age-specific groups.

Other Kidani Village features include the Safari So Good Arcade, the Johari Treasures gift shop, DVC Community Hall, tennis, basketball and shuffleboard courts, and a barbeque pavilion. Kidani Village is currently scheduled to open in early 2009.


Topiary flowers decorate the America Gardens Theater, site of the Flower Power concert series. Photo by Cathy Sowa.

Disney Channel Games arrive at Wide World of Sports this week; spectators needed

The Disney Channel Games are being filmed at Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex this week, from Tuesday through Thursday, and it appears that Disney desperately needs audience members to fill out the crowd. Annual Passholders are being encourage on the Passholders site to sign up for one of two 4.5-hours shifts (10 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.) each day to watch Disney stars such as Corbin Bleu, Miley Cyrus, Cole and Dylan Sprouse, and Adrienne Bailon. Events will include Double Obstacle Course, Dunk Booth, Extreme Rock-Paper-Scissors, Hamster Ball Bowling, Simon Says, Extreme Egg Toss and Super-Sized Soccer. The Games will be broadcast on the Disney Channel all summer, with the opening ceremonies premiering on June 15 and the closing ceremonies running on August 25.

The Games will benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation, Starlight Starbright Children's Foundation, UNICEF and Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Those who sign up will receive tickets to a special concert featuring some of the aforementioned folks, as well as the Jonas Brothers and the Cheetah Girls. The closing concert is scheduled on Thursday from 3-11 p.m.

To sign up for a shift, send your name, address, phone number and the number of people in your party to dcgames2007@yahoo.com. Since these stars are the darlings of the tween set special attention should be paid to the note that children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult.

Get your MousePlanet swag!

The MousePlanet.com store is now open for business (link)! You can get shirts, mugs, hats and even a Teddy Bear! Check it out and show your MousePlanet pride! Now you can show everybody in the parks what site you read!

A personal appeal, for the second year – the final week

I'm spending my birthday on Sunday participating in the March of Dimes WalkAmerica to prevent birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality. Last year, through your generosity we raised $2,525 in just four weeks. This year, we've already beaten that. We're shooting to raise $4,000. This is the last week before the event, so I've moved this plea out of its blue box and into the main Update for one last time. We're less than a week away, and we've still got a ways to go. If you were looking to find the perfect birthday gift for me, this would be it! Please visit my fundraising page for more information on why I'm walking and how to donate.

Personnel shifts see Montgomery take global position, two others promoted

Jerry Montgomery, a Disney Cast Member for 28 years, has been selected to fill the newly created position of Senior Vice President of Conservation & Environmental Sustainability for Walt Disney Parks & Resorts. In that position, he will be responsible for developing of global strategies for parks and resorts in the areas of environmental stewardship and wildlife conservation. The announcement was made just before Earth Day.

In his previous role as Walt Disney World's Senior Vice President for Public Affairs, Montgomery was responsible for eight departments including Media Relations, Government Relations, Community Relations, Internal Communications, Minority Business Development, Conservation Initiatives and the Walt Disney World Ambassador program. He had recently assumed responsibilities for Disney Cruise Line Public Affairs and Disney Vacation Club Public Affairs.

"I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead this very important work for our segment," said Montgomery. "I look forward to working full time inspiring our businesses, Cast Members and Guests to be champions of the wise use of resources and to protect wildlife and wild places."

Montgomery will continue to report to Leslie Goodman, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs for Disney Parks & Resorts, as well as to Kerry Chandler, Senior Vice President of Corporate Responsibility for The Walt Disney Company. He will remain based in Florida.

While a search is conducted to replace Montgomery, Walt Disney World Vice President of Public Affairs Shannon McAleavey will handle his duties.

Last Tuesday, before leaving his previous position, Montgomery announced two promotions in the Public Affairs group. Eugene Campbell was named director of Community Relations. 33-year Disney Cast Member Nancy Gidusko, previously head of the internal communications team, was named to replace Campbell as director of Minority Business Development.


Lion King topiaries decorate the Outpost area this year during the Flower & Garden Festival. Photo by Cathy Sowa.

Sounds Like Summer, again

The Sounds Like Summer concert series is returning to Epcot's America Gardens Theater this year, with cover bands playing the music of popular acts from mid-June through mid-August. According to Steve Soares' Walt Disney World Live Entertainment web site, here is the current lineup:

  • June 11–17 – Kevin White (Garth Brooks)
  • June 18–24 – Stayin' Alive (Bee Gees)
  • June 25–July 1 – Slippery When Wet (Bon Jovi)
  • July 2–8 – Charlene Bedassie (Aretha Franklin)
  • July 9–17 – Bjorn Again (ABBA)
  • July 18–24 – Hotel California (The Eagles)
  • July 25–29 – 52nd Street (Billy Joel)
  • July 30–Aug. 5 – Captain Fantastic (Elton John)
  • Aug. 5–12 – Transit Authority (Chicago)

Disney's Price Slice golf rates are back

Disney's popular summer golf discount program, Disney's Price Slice, will return from May 14 through September 27. During that time, a round of golf at any of the Walt Disney World courses will be less expensive after 10 a.m. daily, due to the heat of the summer season. The Magnolia, Palm, Eagle Pines and Osprey Ridge courses will carry a fee of $55, while the Lake Buena Vista course will cost $45. Rates include the use of an electric cart, and are $34-$44 cheaper than regular rates.

The rates include the use of an electric cart and are discounted from the before-10 a.m. prices of $99 for resort guests/$109 for day visitors (Magnolia and Osprey Ridge), $89 for resort guests/$99 for day visitors (Palm and Eagle Pines) and $79 for resort guests/$89 for day visitors (Lake Buena Vista). To reserve a tee time, call 407-WDW-GOLF (407-939-4653) or go to the Disney Golf Web site (link). Note that the site's front page still appears to have difficulty with browsers other than Internet Explorer. Once you get past the front page, you should be all right.

Menus wanted!

Want to help MousePlanet upgrade our park guides? We're looking to add menu information for all restaurants to our Walt Disney World Park Guide (link). Send photos or scans of menus (no fair copying from other web sites) to menus@mouseplanet.com (link). Please note that there is a 5MB limit on total attachments in a single email.

Progress continues in union contract negotiations

Negotiations between Walt Disney World and the Service Trades Council Union (STCU), an umbrella organization for six unions which together represent almost half of all employees at the resort, are continuing to move forward as the clock ticks toward expiration of the current contract on Saturday night. Agreements have been reached in many areas, including work hours, leave, eligibility for full-time status, job classifications, scheduling, grievance procedures, pensions and vacations, among others. Discussions are underway on pay increases. It's unlikely that there will be any job actions as long as negotiations progress, so don't expect any effects on your vacation even if an agreement isn't reached by the deadline. Contract negotiations have gone past deadline before, and it's likely that they will do so again.


A lovely parterre quilt covers the shore of the water between Future World East and World Showcase. Photo by Cathy Sowa.

Airport/I-Drive Express shuttle on the way

Orlando's Lynx public transportation agency will soon begin an express bus service between the Orlando International Airport and the trade show and tourism center of International Drive. A 90-day trial may begin within the next couple of weeks, and is expected to offer an inexpensive public transit option to trade-show attendees, as well as a faster commuting choice for hospitality employees who work at both ends of the route. The route will be funded by property owners along International Drive.

Lynx is also adding new commuter routes to Walt Disney World, with service beginning next Monday. The funding for these routes will be underwritten by Disney and a federal grant.

Airport to start work on transportation hub

Meanwhile, the airport has decided to start construction of an intermodal transportation hub to the south of the airport's existing terminal, along the South Access Road. The $200 million facility will provide a new location to access buses, taxis and any potential light-rail service. The hub could also include a midpriced 120- to 145-room hotel, 5,000 covered parking spaces, and an conference center. A passenger processing center and remote baggage check-in center are also included in the design. Transportation between the transportation center and the terminal would be via a similar light-rail system to that currently used between the terminal's landside and airside areas.

The new facility may provide additional time before a second terminal would need to be constructed. A design for the proposed 24-gate, 2.2 million-square-foot terminal, which could cost as much as $1 billion, was revealed on Wednesday.


The parterre helps to frame Minnie's Magnificent Butterfly Garden. Photo by Cathy Sowa.

Quick takes …

…On May 5, AirTran Airways will become the eighth official participating airline for Disney's Magical Express Resort Airline Check-In Service.

Disney's Animal Kingdom celebrated Earth Day (and the park's ninth birthday) yesterday with conservation-themed stations, activities and gifts.

…The Mitsukoshi restaurants at Epcot's Japan pavilion will reopen a few days earlier than originally scheduled. Reservations are now being taken for as early as August 20, rather than the August 25 day originally projected.

…Those traveling through Orlando International Airport on Southwest Airlines, jetBlue and AirTran now have new dining options, as Au Bon Pain and Kaf Kalik restaurants have opened on airside two.

…The latest "hip" concoction to be added by Walt Disney World's food & beverage service is tea-infused cocktails. The offerings include the Zen-tini with Skyy citrus vodka and green tea liqueur; the Lemon Verbena Martini with Ketel One Citroen and lemon verbena tea; and the Iced Chai Tea Latte with Malibu coconut rum, chai tea and half & half.

…From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Epcot's Italy pavilion will celebrate Liberation Day – celebrating the anniversary of Italy's liberation from Germany by Allied troops in World War II.

…Those attending Mickey's Pin Trading Night will be overrun by pirates, as the event (to run from 6?9 p.m.) will be the final activity for the Pirates of the Caribbean: Adventures on the Seven Seas Lagoon merchandise event taking place that week.


Don't keep it to yourself! Send us your news tips, rumors, and comments. Email Mark here.
Talk about these stories and more on our Walt Disney World discussion forum here.

 

Coming soon

  • Apr. 5 – June 3. Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival [park guide page].
    • Flower Power Concert Series
      • April 22?24: The Box Tops
      • April 25?28: The Tokens
      • April 29?May 1: Peter & Gordon
      • May 2?3: Jose Feliciano
      • May 4?5: Petula Clark
      • May 6?10: Nelson
      • May 11?15: Davy Jones
      • May 16?19: B.J. Thomas
      • May 20?22: Grass Roots featuring Rob Grill
      • May 23?25: The Guess Who
      • May 26: The SOS Band
      • May 27?30: Gary Puckett
      • May 31?June 3: Herman's Hermits starring Peter Noone
    • Themed Weekends
      • April 27?29: I Dig Bugs Weekend
      • May 4?6: Cinco de Mayo Weekend
      • May 11?13: Mother's Day Weekend
      • May 18?20: Characters in Bloom Weekend
      • May 25?28: Memorial Day Weekend
      • June 1?3: Festival Farewell Weekend
  • Apr. 27. Mickey's Pin Trading Night at Contemporary Resort.
  • Apr. 27, 28. Disney Grad Nite.
  • May 5. Disney's Minnie Marathon Weekend 5K and 1 Mile.
  • May 6. Women Run the World 15 K.
  • May 12. Muddy Buddy.
  • May 12-13. Danskin Women's Triathlon.
  • May 15-17. Texas Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Devil Rays.
  • May 18-20. Teddy Bear and Doll Weekend.
  • May 20. Walt Disney World 70.3 Ironman Triathlon.
  • May 21-24. Pirates of the Caribbean Adventures on the Seven Seas Lagoon.
  • May 31-June 3. Gay Days 2007.
    • May 31 - Disney's Animal Kingdom
    • June 1 - Disney-MGM Studios
    • June 2 - Magic Kingdom
    • June 3 - Epcot
  • May 25-28, Jun. 30-Jul. 7, Aug. 31-Sept. 3 and Nov. 19-25, 2007; and Dec. 16, 2007-Jan. 2, 2008. DVC members may not pool-hop on these dates.

Walt Disney World trivia question of the week

This week's question: In honor of yesterday being Earth Day, what is Disney's environmental conservation program called, and who is its mascot? Stay tuned to next week's park update for the answer.

The answer to last week's question: "What is Gramma's final score in the virtual reality game in Carousel of Progress?", which was submitted by MousePlanet reader Jeff Miller, is:

1,125 points. It's displayed for a few seconds after she kills the last space ship and then the "Congratulations, you saved the world" message comes up.

Do you have a trivia question that you'd like to share? If we choose to use your question, we'll give you credit in the Update. Email us here.


Refurbishments and Attraction Closures

Magic Kingdom

Epcot

  • Maelstrom – closed for refurbishment from April 30 through May 24.
  • Mitsukoshi Teppanyaki – closed for refurbishment through August 20.
  • Le Cellier Restaurant – closed for refurbishment May 14–18.
  • The Wonders of Life pavilion – has again closed, perhaps forever and perhaps just until next Thanksgiving weekend.

Disney-MGM Studios

  • No known refurbishments at this time.

Animal Kingdom

  • No known refurbishments at this time.

Resorts

  • All-Star Music Resort – Conversion of Calypso buildings to Family Suites continues. All work had been expected to be completed by October 13, but that date has not been met. All buildings not containing Family Suites will be renovated between January and June.
  • All-Star Sports Resort – All buildings will be renovated between June and November.
  • Caribbean Beach Resort – The feature pool will be closed for renovation January – June, 2008. Exact dates have yet to be announced.
  • Grand Floridian Resort & Spa – Building 6 (Concierge) will be closed in September for a full refurbishment.
  • Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa – Phase I's four buildings and Phase II's eight units are complete, Construction on the six buildings of Phase III is underway, with all six units expected to be completed in late 2007. The new buildings will comprise two additional sections, to be called The Carousel and The Grandstand. The two buildings in The Carousel have been completed, and the four in The Grandstand are well underway.

Water Parks

  • No known refurbishments at this time.

Elsewhere

  • Cirque du Soleil – La Nouba – performs Tuesdays – Saturdays. No performances May 20?June 4, July 29–31, September 23–October 1, November 25–27.

Park Events

April 2007

  • Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival (link). Apr. 5 – June 3. Epcot comes alive with topiaries, other floral displays, gardening demonstrations and the ?Flower Power? concert series at the 14th annual event.
  • Disney Grad Nite (link). Apr. 27, 28. Graduating high school seniors have a huge party in the Magic Kingdom.
  • Mickey's Pin Trading Night at Contemporary Resort (link). Apr. 27. The popular 3-hour event returns to Fantasia Ballroom G.

May 2007

  • Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival (link). Apr. 5 – June 3. Epcot comes alive with topiaries, other floral displays, gardening demonstrations and the ?Flower Power? concert series at the 14th annual event.
  • Disney's Minnie Marathon Weekend 5K and 1 Mile (link). May 5. The short runs of the ladies-only running weekend take place at and near Downtown Disney. Registration is now open (link).
  • Women Run the World 15 K (link). May 6. The course starts at Animal Kingdom, goes through the Studios and ends at Epcot. Registration is now open (link).
  • Muddy Buddy (link). May 12. Athletes get down and dirty in this competition. Registration is now open (link).
  • Danskin Women's Triathlon (link). May 12-13. Athletes compete in a 400 yard swim, a 9 mile bike ride and a 2 mile run. Registration is now open (link).
  • Texas Rangers vs. Tampa Bay Devil Rays (link). May 15-17. Regular-season Major League Baseball comes to The Ballpark at Disney's Wide World of Sports for the first time.
  • Teddy Bear and Doll Weekend (link). May 18-20. The annual event features over 30 artists displaying their wares.
  • Walt Disney World 70.3 Ironman Triathlon (link). May 20. Athletes compete in a 1.2 mile swim, a 56 mile bike ride, and a 13.1 mile run. Registration opens soon (link).
  • Pirates of the Caribbean Adventures on the Seven Seas Lagoon (link). May 21-24. Disneyland may get the movie premiere, but Walt Disney World gets a three-day, multi-tiered event on open water.
  • Gay Days 2007. May 31 - June 3. The 17th annual gathering of the GLBT community at Walt Disney World (link1 | link 2).

June 2007

  • Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival (link). Apr. 5 – June 3. Epcot comes alive with topiaries, other floral displays, gardening demonstrations and the ?Flower Power? concert series at the 14th annual event.
  • Gay Days 2007. May 31 - June 3. The 17th annual gathering of the GLBT community at Walt Disney World (link1 | link 2).
  • Star Wars Weekends (link). June 1–24. The popular event returns to the Studios in 2007 to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the original Star Wars film.

July 2007

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers training camp (link). Late July – Mid-Aug. The Bucs return to Disney for another year's training camp.

August 2007

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers training camp (link). Late July – Mid-Aug. The Bucs return to Disney for another year's training camp.
  • Disney's Pirate & Princess Party (link). Aug. 11, 15, 18, 21, 24, 28, 31 and Sept. 3. A rerun of this past winter's new hard-ticketed event celebrates the pirates and princesses in all of us.
  • Tom Joyner Family Reunion (link). Aug. 31 ? Sept. 3. The radio host's annual gathering returns for another year.

September 2007

  • Disney's Pirate & Princess Party (link). Aug. 11, 15, 18, 21, 24, 28, 31 and Sept. 3. A rerun of this past winter's new hard-ticketed event celebrates the pirates and princesses in all of us.
  • Tom Joyner Family Reunion (link). Aug. 31 ? Sept. 3. The radio host's annual gathering returns for another year.
  • Night of Joy (link). Sept. 7?8. Disney's annual Christian music festival.
  • Disney's Pin Celebration (link). Sept. 7?9. This year, the event's theme is "Where Dreams HapPin". Registration opens May 9.
  • Walt Disney World Triathlon (link). Sept. 23. Athletes compete in a 1.5K swim, a 40K bike ride, and a 10K run. Registration opens soon (link).
  • Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party (link). Sep. 14, 21, 28, Oct. 4, 5, 8, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, 21, 23, 25, 26, 28, 30, 31 (dates tentative). Get your costumes ready. The Disney characters will certainly be wearing theirs..
  • Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (link). Sep.28 ?Nov. 11. The 12th annual celebration of things gustatory, plus the Eat to the Beat concert series.

October 2007

  • Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party (link). Sep. 14, 21, 28, Oct. 4, 5, 8, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, 21, 23, 25, 26, 28, 30, 31 (dates tentative). Get your costumes ready. The Disney characters will certainly be wearing theirs..
  • Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (link). Sep.28 ?Nov. 11. The 12th annual celebration of things gustatory, plus the Eat to the Beat concert series.
  • Race for the Taste 10K (link). Oct. 7. The annual October classic steers runners through the Disney-MGM Studios and Epcot. Registration is now open (link).
  • Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 13K and 6.5K (link). Oct. 27. Disney's first night-time endurance event is Halloween-themed, and concludes witha big after-party. Registration is now open (link).

November 2007

  • Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (link). Sep.28 ?Nov. 11. The 12th annual celebration of things gustatory, plus the Eat to the Beat concert series.
  • Disney Golf Classic (link). Nov. 1–4. Joe Durant returns to defend his 2006 title.
  • Festival of the Masters (link). Nov. 9–11. Disney's annual arts festival at Downtown Disney's West Side.
  • ABC Super Soap Weekend (link). Nov. 10?11. Your favorite ABC soap opera stars converge on the Disney-MGM Studios.
  • Pirates of Castaway Cay pin cruise (link). Nov. 11-15. Pirates, pins and a Disney cruise, all rolled into one.
  • Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights (link). Nov. 12 ? Jan. 6, 2008. Jennings Osborne's amazing display returns to the Studios.
  • Old Spice Classic (link). Nov. 22, 23, 25. ESPN Regional presents the second annual 8-team, 12-game tournament, featuring George Mason, Kansas State, North Carolina State, Penn State, Rider, South Carolina and Villanova.
  • Mickey's Jingle Jungle Parade (link). Dates TBA. The Animal Kingdom Parade trades its Jammin' for Jingle in this holiday makeover.
  • Holidays Around the World (link). Nov. 23 ? Dec. 30. Epcot's World Showcase gets storytellers, special entertainment and crafts for kids, the Lights of Winter and a spectacular Christmas tree.
  • Festival of the Seasons (link). Dates TBA. Downtown Disney gets a holiday makeover.
  • Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party (link). Nov. 13, 15, 16, 26, 27, 29, 30, Dec. 3, 4, 6, 7, 10, 11, 13, 14, 17, 18, 20, 21 (dates tentative). Snow on Main Street, free hot cocoa and cookies. What's not to like?.

December 2007

  • Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights (link). Nov. 12 ? Jan. 6, 2008. Jennings Osborne's amazing display returns to the Studios.
  • Holidays Around the World (link). Nov. 23 ? Dec. 30. Epcot's World Showcase gets storytellers, special entertainment and crafts for kids, the Lights of Winter and a spectacular Christmas tree.
  • Festival of the Seasons (link). Dates TBA. Downtown Disney gets a holiday makeover.
  • Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party (link). Nov. 13, 15, 16, 26, 27, 29, 30, Dec. 3, 4, 6, 7, 10, 11, 13, 14, 17, 18, 20, 21 (dates tentative). Snow on Main Street, free hot cocoa and cookies. What's not to like?.
  • Pop Warner Super Bowl (link). Dates TBA, expected to be Dec. 2?8. Football players and cheerleaders invade the resort for the pigskin championships.
  • MouseFest 2007 (link). Dec. 2?10. The annual gathering of the Disney Internet community takes place at sea from Dec. 2?6 and on land from Dec. 6?10.
  • Pleasure Island New Year's Eve (link). Dec. 31. Pleasure Island celebrates the actual New Year.
  • New Year's Eve at Cirque du Soleil. Dec. 31. Cirque puts on special New Year's performances.
  • Atlantic Dance Hall New Year's Eve (link). Dec. 31. Ring in the New Year at the BoardWalk's own dance club.

January 2008

  • Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights (link). Nov. 12 ? Jan. 6, 2008. Jennings Osborne's amazing display returns to the Studios.
  • Walt Disney World Half-Marathon (link). Jan. 12. Registration opens January 8, 2007.
  • Walt Disney World Marathon (link). Jan. 13. Registration opens January 8, 2007. [Read our WDW Marathon Guide.]

June 2008

  • Gay Days 2008. June 6 - 9. The 18th annual gathering of the GLBT community at Walt Disney World (link1 | link 2).

Current Discounts & Promotions

Free dining plan is back for late August–September

Disney is offering a new free dining package for trips beginning August 26 through September 22. Minimum stay will be three nights and a minimum one-day theme park ticket per person is required to get the free dining package for the length of your stay. Just remember that this is during peak hurricane season, which is why Disney needs to offer this promotion to get people to visit the parks and stay on property. While the odds of a hurricane interrupting or cancelling your vacation are low, you may want to take advantage of the trip insurance offered by Disney, just in case. Packages must be booked by June 24.

Passholder and Florida resident rates

Annual passholders and Florida residents have discount codes for room-only and package stays for mid-April through late May, available for booking through the end of the promotional period, subject to availability. Passholder and resident discount dates are for most nights through May 24. Passholder rates start as low as $74 per night for value resorts, while Florida resident rates are as low as $79 per night for values. Full hook-up campsites for RVs start at $55 per night for passholders, $60 per night for Florida residents.

Hotel Royal Plaza offers discounts to MousePlanet readers

We'd like to welcome the Hotel Royal Plaza as a new MousePlanet sponsor. As part of our new relationship, the Royal Plaza has created a special offer just for MousePlanet readers! From now through the end of the year, anyone booking their stay through the MousePlanet web site will receive discounted rates up to 20 percent off on all room types.

The completely-remodeled 394-room resort is located on Hotel Plaza Boulevard, just a few minutes' walk from Downtown Disney. Bus service to all Walt Disney World theme parks is included with your stay. Their Giraffe Caf restaurant, Giraffe Tavern sports bar, Marketessen deli-style caf and Sips Pool Bar are ready to serve you. And children 10 and under eat breakfast for free!

And so we'd like to thank the Hotel Royal Plaza for joining the MousePlanet family, and invite you to try their hospitality.

Magic Your Way ticket price guide

Walt Disney World's entire ticket price structure changed as of January 2, 2005, to the new “Magic Your Way” passes, and prices increased on January 1, 2006, and again on August 6, 2006. Advance purchase discounts are only available on tickets above the base ticket of at least 4 days, with higher discounts on those tickets with both options. Prices do not include 6.5% Florida sales tax.

Adult/Child Total Cost 1-day 2-day 3-day 4-day 5-day 6-day 7-day 8-day 9-day 10-day
Base Ticket $67 / $56 $132 / $110 $192 / $160 $202 / $168 $206 / $169 $208 / $171 $210 / $173 $212 / $175 $214 / $176 $216 / $177
w/ Park Hopper option $112 / $101 $177 / $155 $237 / $205 $247 / $213 $251 / $214 $253 / $216 $255 / $218 $257 / $220 $259 / $221 $261 / $222
w/ Water Park Fun & More option $117 / $106 $182 / $160 $242 / $210 $252 / $218 $256 / $219 $258 / $221 $260 / $223 $262 / $225 $264 / $226 $266 / $227
  (plus 3) (plus 3) (plus 3) (plus 4) (plus 4) (plus 5) (plus 6) (plus 6) (plus 6) (plus 6)
w/ both options $162 / $151 $227 / $205 $287 / $255 $297 / $263 $301 / $264 $303 / $266 $305 / $268 $307 / $270 $309 / $271 $311 / $272
w/ both options, no Expiration N/A $237 / $215 $302 / $270 $337 / $303 $356 / $319 $363 / $326 $395 / $363 $432 / $395 $459 / $421 $466 / $427
Advance Purchase Discount - 1 option N/A N/A N/A $2/$2 $5/$2 $6/$2 $7/$2 $7/$3 $7/$3 $7/$3
Advance Purchase Discount - 2 options N/A N/A N/A $12/$10 $15/$10 $16/$10 $17/$10 $17/$11 $17/$11 $17/$11

Park Hours

Hours and entertainment schedules are currently available through September 2007.

Sun
Mon
Tues
Wed
Thurs
Fri
Sat
 
4/23
4/24
4/25
4/26
4/27
4/28

MK 9a-10p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-10p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-9p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-7p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-9p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-11p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p

MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-7p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p

MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-7p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

4/29
4/30
5/1
5/2
5/3
5/4
5/5

MK 9a-10p
EF 9a-7pa
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-7p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-10p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-10p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-8:30p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-8:30p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-10p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p

MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-9p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p

MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

MK 9a-10p
EF 9a-7p
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

5/6
 

MK 9a-9p
EF 9a-7pa
EW 11a-9p
MGM 9a-8:30p
AK 9a-6p
BB 10a-6p
TL 10a-6p

  • MK = Magic Kingdom
  • EF = Epcot, Future World
  • EW = Epcot, World Showcase
  • MGM = Disney-MGM Studios
  • AK = Animal Kingdom
  • BB = Blizzard Beach Water Park
  • TL = Typhoon Lagoon Water Park
  • Italics = Morning Extra Magic Hours
  • Bold = Evening Extra Magic Hours

Entertainment Schedule

Hours and entertainment schedules are currently available through September 2007.

Theme Park Events

Magic Kingdom
Epcot World Showcase
Disney-MGM Studios
Animal Kingdom
Monday 4/23

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

SpectroMagic Parade 9p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower Power Concert Series: The Box Tops 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 8:30p, 10p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Tuesday 4/24

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower Power Concert Series: The Box Tops 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Wednesday 4/25

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower Power Concert Series: The Tokens 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 8:30p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Thursday 4/26

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

SpectroMagic Parade 9p, 11p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower Power Concert Series: The Tokens 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 8:30p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Friday 4/27

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Grad Nite 10p-4a

Flower and Garden Festival I Dig Bugs Weekend

Great American Gardener Series: Tom Turpin 12:30p, 3:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: The Tokens 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 8:30p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Saturday 4/28

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Grad Nite 10p-4a

Flower and Garden Festival I Dig Bugs Weekend

Great American Gardener Series: Tom Turpin 12:30p, 3:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: The Tokens 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 8:30p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Sunday 4/29

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

SpectroMagic Parade 9p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower and Garden Festival I Dig Bugs Weekend

Great American Gardener Series: Tom Turpin 12:30p, 3:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: Peter & Gordon 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Monday 4/30

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

SpectroMagic Parade 9p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower Power Concert Series: Peter & Gordon 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p, 10:30p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Tuesday 5/1

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Wishes Fireworks 8:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: Peter & Gordon 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Wednesday 5/2

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Wishes Fireworks 8:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: Jose Feliciano 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Thursday 5/3

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

SpectroMagic Parade 9p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower Power Concert Series: Jose Feliciano 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Friday 5/4

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Wishes Fireworks 9p

Flower and Garden Festival Cinco de Mayo Weekend

Great American Gardener Series: Tom MacCubbin 12:30p, 3:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: Petula Clark 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Saturday 5/5

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

SpectroMagic Parade 9p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower and Garden Festival Cinco de Mayo Weekend

Great American Gardener Series: Tom MacCubbin 12:30p, 3:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: Petula Clark 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Sunday 5/6

Disney Dreams Come True Parade 3p

Wishes Fireworks 10p

Flower and Garden Festival Cinco de Mayo Weekend

Great American Gardener Series: Tom MacCubbin 12:30p, 3:30p

Flower Power Concert Series: Nelson 5:45p, 7p, 8:15p

Illuminations 9p

Stars and Motor Cars Parade 3p

Fantasmic 9p

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade 4p

Fort Wilderness movie schedule for April 2007

Movies begin at 8:40 and will be preceded by a campfire at 7:30 and a singalong at 8:00.

Sun
Mon
Tues
Wed
Thurs
Fri
Sat

 

23
The Country Bears

24
Inspector Gadget

25
The Fox and the Hound
26
Pete's Dragon
27
Tarzan
28
Lilo and Stitch

29
Dumbo

30
The Rookie

 

       

Downtown Disney Entertainment

(Separate admission required)

Rock & Roll Beach Club
House of Blues
Monday 4/23

Untouchables

 

Tuesday 4/24

Madchester

Little Feat with special guests The Heavy Pets (main room), $18 in advance, $20 day of show; 8 p.m.

Wednesday 4/25

Madchester

 

Thursday 4/26

Madchester

High Octane (Blues Kitchen), free; 10:30 p.m.

Friday 4/27

Charlie Hotel (w/ Soul Drive on Water Front Stage)

Kenny Wayne Shepherd (main room), $25 in advance, $27.50 day of show; 8 p.m.

Bird Dog Bobby (Blues Kitchen), free; 10:30 p.m

Saturday 4/28

Charlie Hotel (w/ Hip Kitty on Water Front Stage)

Bowling For Soup with special guests Quietdrive and Ronnie Day (main room), $14 in advance, $17.50 day of show; 8 p.m.

Boneshakers (Blues Kitchen), free; 10:30 p.m

Sunday 4/29

King's County

Apostle JL Cash and Praise (gospel brunch), $32.50 adult, $16.25 child (3-9); 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m.

House of Blues & Foundation present Fishbone (main room), $12.50 in advance, $14 day of show; 7 p.m.

Monday 4/30

King's County

Five For Fighting with Chantal Kreviazuk (main room), $18.50 in advance, $21.50 day of show; 8 p.m.

Tuesday 5/1

King's County

 

Wednesday 5/2

Leonard Brothers

 

Thursday 5/3

Leonard Brothers

Damon Fowler (Blues Kitchen), free; 10:30 p.m.

Friday 5/4

Leonard Brothers

Robin Thicke (main room), $29.50 in advance, $32.50 day of show; 8:30 p.m.

Sandy Atkinson (Blues Kitchen), free; 10:30 p.m

Saturday 5/5

Leonard Brothers

The Wailers and Steel Pulse (main room), $22 in advance, $25 day of show; 9 p.m.

Zac Harmon Band (Blues Kitchen), free; 10:30 p.m

Sunday 5/6

TBA

TBA (gospel brunch), $32.50 adult, $16.25 child (3-9); 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m.

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(Send an email to Mark Goldhaber)

Mark (@MPMark) is a veteran of dozens of trips to Walt Disney World starting in 1972, with a few Disneyland trips thrown in for good measure. As a Disney stockholder and a Disney Vacation Club member, Mark is always in touch with what's going on with The Mouse. Mark serves as MousePlanet's Walt Disney World content coordinator. Mark is a senior information technology manager working for the State of New York. He lives in the suburbs outside Albany, New York, with his wife and son.