Saturday, September 30, 2006

Water Falling UP

A nighttime shot of the water "fall" next to the Imagination and Honey I Shrunk The Audience pavilions at Epcot.


Friday, September 29, 2006

International Food and Wine Festival

Disney's International Food and Wine Festival starts today.

As expected, a slew of pins are also released for this event, although it appears that it isn't as many as in previous years.


One of my most favorite pictures

I took this picture of the Sorcerer Hat in January 2006. It remains one of my most favorite pictures of all time.


Monday, September 25, 2006

My Disney Office

My office at work has been called by a co-worker as a "Disney Museum". Someone even told me that I should charge admission to go in.

My reply to all of this is that since I spend most of my waking hours here at work, I might as well make it as comfortable for me as I can. So I have plenty of Disney memorabilia on the shelves, desks, and pictures on the wall.

Anyway, for the first time in a long while, I cleaned up the blackboard in my office. It was full of sketches and equations that were written whenever we have a discussion in my office. I decided that none of them are relevant anymore, so I cleaned it this morning. Unfortunately, after doing that, the board looks rather barren. I was staring at it for awhile until something clicked. I decided to test myself and see if I remember how to draw Mickey! Since I took two different brief lessons on how to draw Mickey while I was at the Animation Studios at Disney/MGM Studios, I wanted to know how much I've learned and stuck to my head.

So I drew one big Mickey on my board in my office. It turned out not too bad, I thought, but you be the judge for yourself.


Friday, September 22, 2006

You're late

During out last trip this past September, we had breakfast at Cape May at the Disney's Beach Club resort. It was breakfast with the characters. Minnie was there and sat at our table for a few minutes. When she heard that two member of our party were late, she decided to "admonish" them by writing to them that they're late.... very late. We have pictures AND videos of this.

You're late!


Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Enrico Fermi and Pooh

I read this recently and it made my day. I have since put up the article outside my office door at work.

If you think physics and Disney/children's stories do not mix, well then just open the current edition of Physics Today (Sept. 2006) and turn to page 49. It turns out that Enrico Fermi was fond of Winnie the Pooh (as do I!). This was thought to be just an urban legend, but we now have evidence!

In Fermi's own handwriting, there's a record of some sort of a calendar that labeled his graphite pile. He called them "Pos" and "Roos", which are charcters from Winnie the Pooh series. But even clearer are the names given to his various equipments in the inventory list. He had things like "Piglet's amplifier", "Piglet lead counter shield and counter", "Heffalump amplier", "Roo power supply", "Roo U stds", etc.

I cracked up! I love this!

Next time someone makes fun of me with my Disney stuff, I'm going to show them this article!



Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Donald Rubber Ducky

All of our stuff that we had shipped from WDW have arrived (hooray!). So more than a week after we got back, we are STILL sorting through all the crap .... er ... I mean memorabilia that we got from this trip. This is not counting the pins yet, since we have yet to catalog and put them in the pin albums. That will probably take several weekends to complete.

One of the things we ended up hunting for at The Magic Kingdom was, strangely enough, Donald rubber duckies! Yup, you heard it correctly. We originally found one at the "Firehouse" right out front by Town Square. The cast member then told us that there are a few more of different types of Donalds all over MK. Since one of us collects Donalds, we started hunting for them. It took approximately 2 days worth of hunting to find a total of 6. I don't even know if these are all there is. So if any of you happen to notice Donald rubber duckies that are not in this collection, I would definitely appreciate you telling me what it is, and where you found it.

These are the 6 Donald rubber duckies that we found:

From left to right Socerrer Donald (at Philharmagic store), Fireman Donald (at Firestation store in Town Square), Splash Mountain Donald (at the Brer Rabbit store in front of Splash Mountain), Pirate Donald (at the pirates merchandise in the Emporium - don't ask them at the Pirates of the Caribbean gift store, they don't even know this exist), Uncle Sam Donald (at a store in Liberty Square), and finally, Donald in a Doom Buggy (at Madame Leota's cart out side of Haunted Mansion).

So we were almost doing a scavenger hunt, but without any clues, hunting for these Donalds. I believe they are only found at MK, and nowhere else. But again, if anyone found anything additional than what we have here, please let me know.


Monday, September 18, 2006

The one thing that I have noticed this past year is that Disney appears to be changing their "strategy" with regards to the Disney pins at Walt Disney World. I have noticed that they have eliminated (i) the surprise pins (ii) new cast lanyard pins (iii) pin events other than the Pin Celebration at Epcot.

The surprise pins have now been replaced by an "announced" surprise pins that even have the word "surprise" on them. Cast lanyard pins from a few years ago are now being released with the "mickey heads" on them where there were none before with the older pins. Needless to say, hardcore pin collectors are not amused with all this. That might explain why this last pin celebration event at Epcot was not a sell-out like that one before.

On the other hand, I've noticed a larger variety and more thoughtful design of limited edition pins and open edition rack pins. I guess if they are trying to get more of the casual pin collectors to buy pins rather than the smaller number of hardcore pin collectors and traders, this strategy would make more sense.

This pin is an example of what I just said. It's an open edition pin, and it is GLORIOUS! I'm always a sucker for pins that have the Fab 5 in them, and this one fits the bill. Besides, it is a lot of fun and simply adorable! It is being relased tomorrow, but it will be months (252 days to be exact) before I get there and could get a handful of this.


Sunday, September 17, 2006

Illuminations is 3 seconds longer!

OK, Disney just pulled a fast one on me!

Still in the middle of editing the video for this trip, and I was editing our footage of Illuminations. If you've looked at my video of Wishes and an earlier version of Illuminations, you'd know that we like to replace the live sound with the actual music for those shows.

We videotaped Illuminations again on this trip, because our earlier version was taped last year in Sept. when the inferno barge was out of commission. As usual, I replaced the live sound with the actual music. Getting them to synchronize is usually the most tedious part of the whole thing, especially for Illuminations since it uses two different tunes.

Things were going very well during video editing until the very end! The part where the song goes "We go on........." and the sky turns bright with a flood of fireworks.... whoa! They added about 3 seconds to it! The horns section that gets repeated 4 times in the original soundtrack is repeated FIVE times in the version we taped! So the fireworks went on 3 seconds too long. So my video is in synched with the actual music all through Illuminations up to the last 20 seconds of the show and then BAM. It goes out of synch!

I'm disappointed! While I do have tools to edit the original music to try to add an additional repeatition of the horns, this may not turn out as well and will take a lot of time to do. Drat!

I wonder how many people actually realize that Illuminations as it is now is 3 seconds longer than it was before? :) Not that it is a bad thing, mind you. It only causes problems for people like me.


Saturday, September 16, 2006

Friday, September 15, 2006

My Previous Trip Reports

Here are 2 trip reports that I did on From now on, I will also post pictures and reports of all my trips on here.

My Mini Grand Tour
This was a trip where I started out at Disneyland, and then flew directly to Orlando to finish off the vacation at Walt Disney World. It took place at the end of May/early June of 2006

My "Pin Event" Trip
This trip occured in early Sept. 2006. It coincide with the Walt Disney World Pin Celebration at Epcot.


The Disney Blog

This is a terrific Disney blog, run by John Frost. I highly recommend it.


My Disney Videos

Since I've "advertized" my Disney videos in bits and pieces in various forums, I decided to post them all in one single location. At least now, I can remove them from my signature!

Shooting Star - This is the first WDW vacation video that I ever made. It was from our 2003 trip, and was one of my first attempt at video editing and putting things to music.

Crush - Same as above.

Four Seasons - Same as above. All these three videos came in this order on the DVD that I made that I distributed to all the friends that came with us on that 2003 WDW trip. We still get together to view the videos whenever we can and relive that wonderful memories.

Disney Stars and Motor Cars on Parade - The afternoon parade at Disney/MGM Studios. I guess it is official that this parade is going away soon and be replaced with another one. So I'm glad that we were able to get the full video of the parade. BTW, that screaming child you hear in the video is not part of our party, so we had no control in trying to get her to be quiet. :rofl:

SpectroMagic - My first attempt at videotaping an evening parade. It came out OK. This was from 2004. However, try viewing the newer one below.

SpectroMagic 2006 - Videotaped in June 2006. This one was recorded in widescreen. It is viewing the parade from the opposite side to the one earlier, so you get to see the Donald side of the parade this time.

IllumiNations - This is my most favorite night-time show in all of WDW. We have videotaped this at least 4 times, but each one of them had some shortcoming here and there. I decided to release this one because it was the best of the whole lot. Unfortunately (or fortunately), this was filmed in 2005 after the inferno barge caught fire. So this is the version that has more additional fireworks that they inserted to compensate for the missing inferno barge. We intend to try and video tape this again on our next trip, hopefully with a better angle and with the inferno barge. The live sound has been replaced with the actual music of the fireworks.

Illuminations - Reflection of Earth 2006 - Illuminations videotaped in Sept. 2006. This one does have the inferno barge. It also has a better video quality than the earlier version. Both have the original music replacing the live sound.

Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights - This was videotaped during the first week of January 2006. We had so much footage of this event that I decided to compile everything into one video. So here it is. The music was taken from the Holiday Wishes CD.

Disney's Electrical Parade - Videotaped during our Mini Grand Tour of May/June 2006. This was taped at Disney's California Adventure. Note that what appears to be "noise" in the tape is not really inherent to the recording device - we were sitting next to a waterfall!

Country Bears Jamboree - I decided to upload this video during the recent amusing "controversy" on a Disney fan forum which claimed that the Country Bears show was "inappropriate". This was filmed in 2004.

Country Bears Jamboree 2005. A newer version of Country Bears. This one was taped in 2005, has a better video, and is in widescreen.

Thunder Mountain Railroad at Disneyland - Another video from our Mini Grand Tour. I love this ride, and the themeing is a lot more extensive than the one we get at The Magic Kingdom. The video includes shots of the queue line in addition to the full ride.

Thunder Mountain Railroad at The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World - Videotaped in Sept. 2006, this will make a good comparision between the two Thunder Mountains.

Disneyland's 50th Anniversary Re-Dedication Ceremony - One of the main reason for us to visit Disneyland this year as part of our Mini Grand Tour was to not miss the golden anniversary celebration. We felt privilaged to have been able to witness this ceremony and was glad to have captured it on video. This also was taped in May/June 2006.

Wishes - My second most favorite night time show in WDW, but an event that has a lot of significant and fond memories. As with IllumiNations, we had videotaped this many times, but never found one that I was satisfied with until this one. I think we were far back enough to capture the full fireworks show. I'm actually quite pleased with what we end up with, and this is turning into my most favorite video that I've captured so far. Also as with IllumiNations, I've stripped the live sound and replaced it with the actual music.

Expedition Everest - Now we can't have a video compilation of any kind without at least one video of this ride, can we? So here's mine. It's not the best that you can find on the 'net, but it conveys the feeling. We also think we got a good shot at the Yeti at the end.

The Welcome Medley - - This is the "Trolley Song" that is regularly performed on Main Street, USA at The Magic Kingdom. Videotaped in Sept. 2006

The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh - The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World. Full ride video of the Winnie The Pooh ride. Videotaped in Sept. 2006.

The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh, Version 2 - Even though this was videotaped earlier than the first version, I think the picture quality is better. We were also sitting in the front row, so you don't see the heads of the people in front of us.

Jungle Cruise - The full ride video of a popular attraction at The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World. It is a much more enjoyable attraction if you have a terrific cruise captain, which was what we had.

Jungle Cruise at Disneyland - The original attraction at Disneyland that was Walt's most favorite ride. Now you can compare the two rides.

Disney Dreams Come True Parade - The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World. This is the 3 o'clock parade. Videotaped in Sept. 2006.

The Dumbo Ride at Disneyland
- The delightful ride at Disneyland. Videotaped in June 2006 during their Golden Anniversary celebration, thus the presence of the golden Dumbo.

The Dumbo Ride at Walt Disney World - The same delightful ride, this time at The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World. This allows you to compare the two Dumbo Rides at the two different parks.

It's a Small World at Disneyland - Videotaped in June, 2006, this is the original version when compared to the one at Walt Disney World. It includes the opening of the front facade at the end of the video.

It's A Small World at Walt Disney World - Videotaped in September, 2006. This of course is the Magic Kingdom version of this famous attraction.

Primeval Whirl - The fun ride at Disney's Animal Kingdom. Many Disney purists do not like this attraction due to the seemingly-out-of-place theming. Still, it is a fun attraction, especially for the younger guests.

Monorail - A collage of video of the Walt Disney World Monorail. I don't think I've seen something similar to this online. Play it LOUD if you can.

Mickey's Jammin' Jungle Parade - The afternoon (and only) parade at Disney's Animal Kingdom. Videotaped in June 2007.

HalloWishes - This is the spectacular fireworks show during Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party at The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World. Videotaped on Oct. 4th, 2007. As with my video of Wishes and Illuminations, I've replaced the live soundtrack with the actual music.

Boo To You Parade - The night parade during Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. Videotaped on Oct. 4th, 2007.

Epcot 25th Anniversary Celebration - Videotaped on Sept. 30th and Oct. 1st 2007 in participation with Celebration 25 fan group.

The Chinese Acrobats - Videotaped on Oct. 1st, 2007. These are the terrific group of Chinese acrobats performing at the China Pavilion, Epcot's World Showcase.

Music, Magic, and Mayhem - Videotaped on March 1st, 2008. This is the spectacular fireworks show during the Pirate and Princess Party at the Magic Kingdom. The live sound on this version has been replaced by the actual recorded music accompanying the fireworks show.

Music, Magic, and Mayhem (live audio) - Same as above, but with the live sound.

Enchanted Adventures Parade - Videotaped on March 1st, 2008. This is the parade during the Pirate and Princess Party at the Magic Kingdom.

Darby's Birthday - A music video that I made as a memento of our wonderful trip to celebrate our friend's 60th birthday at WDW. This was videotaped Feb. 29-March 2, 2008.

Welcome and Good Morning - the welcome ceremony every morning at The Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World. This was videotaped on May 5, 2008.

Expedition Pins - Video from the Expedition Pins pin trading event at Coronado Springs and Animal Kingdom. Videotaped on May, 2008.

Pin Trading University - Video from the 2008 Pin Celebration event at the World Showplace at Epcot. Videotaped on Sept. 2008.

Mickey's Jingle Jungle Parade - The holiday parade at Disney's Animal Kingdom. Videotaped in December, 2008.

Holiday Wishes - The fireworks show during Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom. Videotaped in December, 2008.

There may be more to come in the near future as I edit more videos, and as I videotape more on my next trip. In the meantime, Enjoy!