Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Halloween Time at Disneyland

For those of us who can't be at Disneyland during Halloween (and miss the re-themeing of the Haunted Mansion for the umpteenth time), the Disney Parks has released a condensed version of the Halloween celebration at Disneyland via this video.

One of these days, I'll get there during Halloween.


Monday, September 29, 2008

Grand Prize Winner of My Favorite Disney Parks Memory Contest

Looks like they have found the winner of "My Favorite Disney Parks Memory" contest, and it is a cute one (I always knew that a video containing a child will win it).


Some Time, One Can Truly Believe In Fairies

Looks like the Theme Park Ranger finally believed in fairies. A few lucky passholders got invited to attend a preview of the upcoming direct-to-DVD movie "Tinker Bell". From this report, it appears to be quite a successful event.

And it appears that not only was it a fun event, but the movie might have been good enough for theatrical release.

I'll leave the reviews to others better versed in that kind of thing (Paging Mr. Roger Moore ...), but to someone who has watched practically all of Disney's and Pixar's animated features from the past 10 years with his kids, I really was puzzled that Disney was not treating this film as a theatrical release. After all, the animation was beautiful to watch, the story line was fairly interesting (yet geared for younger audiences to understand and appreciate), and there were quite a few sight and dialogue gags to make the parents chuckle and the kids laugh out loud. It may not have been on the same entertainment level as this year's Wall-E, yet it was a very decent film that entertained both of my kids enough that they were asking when we can see it again.

Humm... I didn't plan on buying this DVD, but after this, I may have to.

Disney can some time mess things up, but more often than not, they do get things right. And when they do it well, boy can they really do it. It appears that this is the one time they really did it very well.


Who Owns the Rights to Photo at Disney?

I take TONS and tons of pictures when I'm at WDW (and DL). I've lost count how many thousands of pictures that I have. However, as much as I think I can profit out of that, it has never crossed my mind to see if any of it would be "marketable". Even my Disney videos that I've edited throughout the years, I tend to give those away without expecting any financial gain of any kind (recognition would be nice, though).

This Q&A on who owns the rights to pictures taken at Disney certainly is something that is relevant to me, not because I intend to sell pictures of what I took, but rather to clarify some legal positions. It basically says that you own the rights to your pictures, BUT, if the picture involves something that is a trademark symbol or something that has been copyrighted, then there are legal restrictions to what can be done with such images.

Basically it reinforced what I think I already know. So it hasn't changed anything.


Saturday, September 27, 2008

Paul Newman Dies

There are very, very few actors that I truly admire, and Paul Newman is one of them. This legendary actor passed away Friday. He was 83.

With "Cars 2" in production, and with us not knowing the story line, I wonder if he was scheduled to reprise his voice for Hudson Hornet.


Muslim Scholars Come to Mickey Mouse's Rescue

Remember that "stand up comedian" impersonating a former Saudi diplomat that said that Mickey Mouse is a soldier of Satan and should be killed? He's now backtracking himself after several Muslim scholars smack him back to reveal how silly is remarks were.

Meanwhile, an Egyptian woman cleric, also a well-known TV figure, Suad Saleh, defended Mickey Mouse, saying that Sheikh Munjid's fatwah makes Islam look "ridiculous."

She argues that "real mice should be killed, according to the precepts of Islam, but that [Mickey] is a cartoon character ... so, killing him makes no sense."

On Al Arabiya TV, another Islamic scholar, Sheikh Mohammed Duheim, condemned Sheikh Munjid's ruling, insisting that he has "no right to speak for Islam."

"We must come out clearly on this issue," he says, "we are a diverse group of people, from many different cultures, and not everyone who claims to speak in the name of Islam speaks for all Muslims."

Hum... I didn't know that they had "woman cleric" in Islam.

Still, another example where one opened one's mouth, and stupid things fell out. It was hilarious while it lasted.


Friday, September 26, 2008

Disney Stocks During This Turbulent Times

As a Disney stock holder, I am of course keeping an eye on the value of Disney Stocks. Mind you, unlike people who play the stock market game, I am not one of those who invests in Disney stocks to make a quick buck. I'm in it for the long haul, mainly because I think the company is in a good shape and heading generally in the right direction. Besides, I spend way too much money on it, so I might as well try to get a piece of the action.

In any case, with such turmoil going on in the financial market and the stocks on Wall Street going nuts one way and the other, I find it fascinating that Disney stocks hasn't had the same rollercoaster ride. It seems to be holding steady just above the $30-$32 mark. I don't know how long this will continue, or if the next financial report might change that, but it is amazing that while a lot of other companies are just having a financial meltdown, that Disney could maintain the value of the company with little to no change. I know that whenever the stock dips below $30, we tend to buy even more. So in some sense, there are good and bad points about its stock staying above $30, but it is certainly good for the company and the rest of the current stock holders.


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Random WDW Picture

So I entered this picture in a weekly Disney photo contest in one of the Disney fans forum, and the damn thing won first place! :) The theme was Downtown Disney, and while I thought the picture is rather unique, I didn't think it would be noticed by many people, especially since it is often that pictures depicting night scenes usually win. Still, I thought that this unusual picture might get a place like 2nd or 3rd. But obviously, it is interesting enough to gain enough votes to win. Yay! :)

I called this "The day the earth stood still". So when was the last time you saw Downtown Disney in front of World of Disney like this?


My Disney Office - Does It Show That I'm A Liberal Or A Conservative?

I got a chuckle out of reading this news item. It seems that one can tell if the person is a "liberal" or a "conservative" by the way they decorate their offices and living quarters.

Liberals' offices were judged as significantly more distinctive, comfortable, stylish, modern, and colorful and as less conventional and ordinary, in comparison with conservatives' offices, Jost said.

Not only that, but ....

"Conservative rooms tended to be cleaner, more brightly lit, better organized, less cluttered, and also more conventional and ordinary in terms of decoration," Jost said during a panel discussion on "The Neuroscience of Elections and Human Decision-Making" at NYU, adding: "Conservatives' rooms were rated by independent raters as better organized and tidier in general."

Specifically, individuals who reported a more conservative ideology also had bedrooms that contained more organizational and cleaning supplies, including calendars, postage stamps, ironing boards and laundry baskets.

Liberals' rooms on the other hand were marked by more clutter, including more CDs, a greater variety of CDs, a greater variety of books and more color in the room in general.

So now, the question is, if these people doing the study were to walk into my Disney office at work, would they draw up the conclusion that I'm a liberal, conservative, or just plain nuts? :)


Depp In Deep With Disney

Whoa! Looks like Disney had many more surprises as far as the movies are concerned.

At the preview of Disney movie projects, Dick cook revealed officially not only Johnny Depp's involvement at the Mad Hatter in "Alice in Wonderland", but also that Depp will be staring as Tonto in "The Lone Ranger". He also had other goodies:

Pushing the pedal to the metal, Disney and Pixar have moved up the animated sequel "Cars 2" from summer 2012 to summer 2011. Another sequel, "National Treasure 3," has been put into development, as has a fourth "Pirates."


I heard the rumor on this, but is this known already? The nonchalant way this was mentioned in the article made it appear to not be a big news. Fourth Pirates, for heaven's sake! Am I missing something?!


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Johnny Depp Is Officially Confrmed as The Mad Hatter

Comingsoon.net has announced that Johnny Depp is the Mad Hatter in the upcoming Tim Burton's version of "Alice in Wonderland". Why did this took so long?

With the news that this is going to be in 3D, I would say that other than Tr2n and The Princess and the Frog, this would be the movie that I am highly anticipating. I can't wait to see how Depp will be doing the Mad Hatter.


Cars Racing Ahead

Instead of 2012 as originally planned, "Cars 2" will be rushed into the theater in 2011, a year ahead of schedule as reported by the Hollywood Reporter.

I'm curious on how the reception is going to be. Since the first movie, there has been this non-stop merchandise craze and it has become one of Disney's more successful franchise, even when the movie didn't become as big at the box office as most expected (it was still a monster hit in most people's books). This could potentially be huge.


Disney's Name Coming OFF Something

For a change, the Disney's name is actually coming off something they own. The Disney's Wide World of Sports is being renamed as the ESPN Wide World of Sports.

When was the last time you're there? Other than doing a pin hunt a couple of times several years ago (when Disney still had a pin pursuit that one can do) and a cast pin party one time, I don't normally even plan on going there. Watching a sporting event while vacationing at WDW doesn't actually enters into the picture.


The End of Pleasure Island

Orlando Sentinel has an article that reminisce over Pleasure Island as it nears its end.

I still refuse to believe that Disney won't resurrect a few of these clubs, especially the Adventurer's Club, somewhere somehow. Business establishments would give their right arms to have a cult following like that. And the publicity that such club has gotten during the past 2 months have only heightened interests in them. It would be puzzling that these clubs do not come back in some form.


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Can The "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" Cause The "101 Dalmatians" Phenomenon?

Animal advocate people are concerned that with the Oct. release of Disney's "Beverly Hills Chihuahua", people might go out and adopt this breed before realizing that they won't want them later on, causing these pets to be abandoned.

The Oct. 3 release of the Disney movie "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" has animal advocates worried that people will buy the breed -- and then dump dogs at shelters.

Call it the "101 Dalmatians" phenomenon.

Of course, if the movie tank, this whole problem might be moot. Still, are there people who are THAT irrational?

Why, YES!


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Extended "Bolt" Video

Disney has released an extended clip for their upcoming animation movie "Bolt".

I still haven't decided yet if I'll make an effort to see this. Unlike "Wall-E", I don't have that much of an enthusiasm for this movie yet. So maybe I'll wait for the early reviews and then decide after wards.

BTW, isn't it ironic (or good fortune) that the title shares the same name as a famous Olympic sprinter? :)


Disappointing Visit To A Disney Store

Went to visit a Disney Store at the Woodfield Mall here outside of Chicago last night (it's the same mall that has the Disney's Doorway to Dreams store). The store has been redecorated ever since Disney took over. Nothing to complain about here.

Now I don't know if they are still in transition, and if the merchandise is still in flux, but there seems to be extremely little (and I mean almost non-existent) apparel for adults, and much less, for adult men! I can at least find men's t-shirts and shirts for men at the old Disney Stores, but last night, I swear, I could not find one single apparel for adult men! There were some Nightmare Before Christmas outfit for women, but zilch for men! If they were some around the store that I missed, they certainly managed to make it so inconspicuous that they were easily missed. And I did walked through the entire store looking at the merchandise.

I think the Disney Stores basically have given up on apparel for adults, and especially men. They were never plenty of those to start with, but with the "new management", it seems that it is getting to be even less or non-existent. As an ardent Disney shopper, it gives me even less of an incentive to go to a Disney Store.


Friday, September 19, 2008

Pin Trading University Video

I've finally edited the video that we took during the Pin Trading University trip. I think I chose a rather difficult music to edit it to, so it took a while.



Sneak Preview of Season 2 of ABC's "Pushing Daisies"

I got this in my e-mail. I have no way of verifying the authenticity of it, but it doesn't appear suspicious. So here it is.

I’m working with ABC to spread the word about season 2 of Pushing Daisies. I recently read your blog, My Disney Mania, and thought that the show and its content was something you and your readers might be interested in. We’ve uploaded two new “sneak peak” video for the upcoming season! I’m hoping that you and your readers will enjoy this content. You can download it here in the “pushingdaisies” folder:


Username: abc

Password: abc123

Please let me know if you have any issues with the FTP or any questions. Keep checking back, as we’ll be adding even more very soon! If you do use any of this content, please do send me a link to the post so we can help promote it! And, if for any reason you would not like us to provide you further content, please do hesitate to let me know. Have a great day.

So if you're into this TV series, this might whet your appetite for their upcoming season.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

Celebration - What Will You Celebrate?

That's it! That's the promotional theme for the US Disney theme parks for 2009 when Year of a Million Dreams ends at the end of 2008. Disney wants you to celebrate your special occasions with them. And if you register, you might even get into the theme park on your birthday for free!

Frankly, I think I share the Disney Blog's view. I'm a bit underwhelmed by this so far. It doesn't appear that there's much to go on with this one. I will reserve further judgment till I see and hear more about this.


Disney Turning Tomorrowland Into a Feature Film?

File this under "delicious rumor".

FirstShowing.net is reporting the possibility that an upcoming Disney movie will essentially be a movie based on the Tomorrowland theme.

Dwayne Johnson is being setup as the lead in the film and writers Jon Lucas and Scott Moore (of Rebound, Full of It, and Four Christmases) have been hired to write an "epic-sized action adventure set in space." To add more fuel to the fire, the currently untitled film is being produced by the same guys who brought us Dwayne Johnson's The Game Plan.

I have to admit that so far, that does not sound that promising. I definitely hope that, if this is true, it does not turn into a mindless adventure flick. What made Pirates so good (especially the first one), was the acting by Johnny Depp. So you do need quality actors as well, not just a good story and a lot of special effects. I'm not sure if "The Rock" has ever been labeled as being a "good actor".


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

More on the New DVC Villas Announcement

One small addition to the recently announced new DVC villas of Bay Lake Tower and Treehouse Villas. The Travel Channel will actually will actually cover the newly unveiled villas in its special "Seasons of Disney : Disney's Best Kept Secrets" on this Sept. 18, 2008, at 8 PM EST.

So, those of you who have access to the channel may want to keep an eye out for it.

Disney has also released a YouTube video on this, presented by Miss Deevy See. She was a hoot at the last DVC Members Welcome Wednesday at the Atlantic Dance Hall.


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

WDW Random Picture

This is towards the end of HalloWishes during Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party.


New DVC Villas Announced

Not really unexpected news, but we now have it official.

Disney finally announced the Bay Lake Tower (formerly Kingdom Tower) at The Contemporary resort, and the Tree House Villas at Saratoga Springs (our "home").

Disney this morning will formally reveal plans for its Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort, confirming earlier reports that the 15-story tower rising just beyond the Magic Kingdom will be used for time shares. The company also will unveil plans to sell time shares at the Treehouse Villas at Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, a secluded community of 60 units that is being rebuilt in a forested pocket of Walt Disney World.

The twin announcements ensure that Celebration-based Disney Vacation Club, which has grown to nine resorts and more than 350,000 members, will have more time shares for sale in 2009 than it has ever had before.

I suppose I may eventually try to book a room at the Bay Lake Tower, after all the initial rush. My first choice will still be the Animal Kingdom Lodge. I can't wait to get to stay at the new Kidani Village when it finally opens.


Mickey Mouse 'Agent of Satan'?

When I was in college back at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, there was a station that showed, on late nights over the weekends, really bad movies. Their moto was that these movies are SO bad, they're GOOD! And they were, because they were so bad, they were hysterically funny.

I try not to post nonsense on here, or give delusional people any more publicity than they already got. But I simply could not pass up the opportunity to show how stupid and delusional some people are. They make the most stupid statements that they actually become absolutely hilarious!

This so-called "cleric", who happened to also be a former Saudi ambassador to the US, has declared that Mickey Mouse "... should be killed in all cases..." and that all mice, whether real or fictional, are "... repulsive, corrupting creature..."!

Now c'mon, don't tell me you don't find those absurdly hysterical! Why, this guy can work for The Onion any day!

The sad thing is that this guy probably actually believed everything he said, and that there are others equally dim-witted who also either listen to everything he said as the gospel, or actually believe in the same thing.

I'm waiting for Disney to be declared as the next "Axis of Evil".


Saturday, September 13, 2008

Random WDW Picture

This is the view of World Showcase and Spaceship Earth from the Italian Pavilion, right before the start of Illuminations. You can see the torches surrounding the lagoon lighted up.


Fairytale Wedding In Tatters

It is just crushing to read a story like this.

A couple in the UK had already booked and planned what appears to be a fairytale wedding at WDW. Now the travel company they booked with has gone under and they have no idea if they'll even get their money back, much less being able to go ahead with the wedding.

Gavin Leach and his fiancee Shian Llwyarch had booked an all-inclusive package with 25 guests to Disney World, Florida with XL Leisure Group for their wedding on October 1.

Disaster struck for the couple, who have been together for 13 years, when the firm - the UK's third biggest tour operator - went into administration and grounded all flights.

XL called them yesterday to tell them that two years of planning could be ruined.

That's just devastating.

I wish them well, and certainly hope at some point, they'll get their fairytale wedding.


Friday, September 12, 2008

Guest Broke A Leg At Blizzard Beach

I have no idea how authentic this is. But I will give the story the benefit of the doubt and assume that it happened. It appears that a guest had an accident and later on was diagnosed with a broken leg while on a ride at Disney's Blizzard Beach. You can read all about the incident from the guest's letter to Disney in the link.

Here's my take on this because I've seen and heard similar incidents on this a few times at other places. This accident is really just that - an accident. It isn't due to any negligence on Disney's part. If the attraction is deemed safe and runs the way it is supposed to, there's nothing that can be done here.

What is more unsatisfactory is what happens when such an accident occurs. If what the guest has described is true, then Disney's response to such incident was really appalling. It is as if they are unequipped or unprepared to handle such incidents. What do I expect? I expect them to provide ample assistance to the guest such as providing transportation to a medical center. I don't care if this is not something they are obliged to do, or is not legally allowed. It is the RIGHT thing to do. A guest is hurt - you want to take care of that guest as much as you can. The way the incident has been described seems to reveal the lack of compassion! That's sad!

I'm probably jumping the gun here since we have only heard from one side of the story, and there's always a strong possibility that this isn't what really happened. But this isn't the first time that I've heard where a guest getting hurt was "treated" not to the satisfaction on what is typically expected, and certainly with Disney, the expectation is definitely higher.

Having said that, to Disney defense, there have also been many instances where guests getting hurt had been treated way beyond what was expected. So obviously, they CAN do such a thing, and capable of handling the situation in a spectacular manner. Why can't this be the standard operating procedure?


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Disney Magic Undergoes A Makeover

... or maybe an Extreme Makeover, but it was already beautiful in the first place.

Just in time for the hurricanes, Disney Magic is safe in a dry dock to undergo a major makeover.

Among the changes Disney plans for the 10-year-old ship is a big revamping of the adults-only Quiet Cove retreat area. The Cove Café coffee lounge will get a new seating area with plush chairs, and the Cove's adults-only pool will be redone with a cascading waterfall.

New teak deck and lounge chairs with plush cushions will round out the improvements around the pool area.


We are still planning and talking about doing a Disney cruise next year, so hopefully, we'll get Disney Magic. But I'm still looking forward to the 2 bigger ships to be delivered in a few years.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Disney Resilient in Economic Downturn

.. at least, that's what Bob Iger is stressing. He's arguing that while the US outlooked may not be as good, the market outside the US gives them a bit of a buffer against the stressed economy.

Iger added that the company's ongoing expansion into markets outside the hard-hit U.S. had helped cushion the impact so far.

"I think the U.S. consumer is definitely hurting ... but we have been helped immeasurably by our access to markets beyond the United States," he said.

I sure hope he's right. The crowds I saw last week at WDW were rather thin, even for this time of the year.


Are Disney-like Characters Being Used Again on Palestinian TV?

This report from an Israeli website indicates that characters resembling Disney characters are being used again in a Palestinian children TV show that may have a disturbing message.

In a recent episode of a special children's show airing during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, a young host addressed Palestinian children from a set adorned with the likenesses of Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and Piglet.

During the episode, the young host educated her audience about a "beloved bride, daughter of Jaffa, jasmine flower" by the name of Dalal Mughrabi.

In 1978, Mughrabi led a team of Palestinian terrorists from Lebanon in infiltrating the Israeli coast near Tel Aviv and attacking a passenger bus they encountered along the coastal highway. In the course of the attack, Mughrabi and her fellow terrorists murdered 37 Israelis, including 12 children.

I don't want to get into the conflict that has been going on for generations and don't seem to go away anytime soon. But isn't there any kind of international copyright violations here that can be imposed, regardless of the type of message? Even using such look-a-like (which we can only go by based on this report) for benign purposes would get anyone here in trouble with Disney. Are foreign govt. usage of such things exempted from copyright violations? Hum.....


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Visiting Europe With Adventures By Disney

If Disney doesn't get extra positive publicity from this CNN article, then nothing will. This is a tremendous piece of good publicity for Adventures by Disney based on the experience by several people who use this service to visit various places in Europe. When you get reports such as this:

"I liked that they did all the research and we could just go with the flow," said Raj Matharu from Bloomington, Indiana, traveling with his wife and three daughters. "The guides took care of every detail and they made everyone feel special." That included his daughter Simran who turned 10 on the trip and got a locally made gift from the guides.

Kemper and Enderby check us in and out of hotels, deliver luggage to our rooms, mark maps if we want to venture out on our own, make dinner reservations (there is plenty of free time), hand out snacks and water and even have sanitizing wipes available for the kids after their visit to the petting zoo.

When 88-year-old Velma Williams, traveling with her son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter, worried she wouldn't be able to last on the Prague walking tour, they arranged for a car to bring her back to the hotel. When my two 17 year olds wanted to find a club they could visit in Vienna, they made several suggestions of places suitable for teens. When we cruised down the Danube River, they entertained the kids so the parents could relax on the top deck and enjoy the postcard-pretty views of the villages and fortresses.

... Disney can't ask for a better publicity of this program, even if it is on the more expensive side of traveling. But considering that they take care of a lot of the details and leg work, it may be worth the price.


Monday, September 08, 2008

Try To Have A Bad Cruise On A Disney Cruise Ship

This trip report on a Disney cruise started out horrifyingly hilarious.

We tried to have a bad time on our latest Disney Magic cruise. Really, we did.

Normally low-risk, uber-planning vacationers, we stacked the deck against ourselves with a series of missteps from the second we left the house. That all-important suitcase with the paperwork, cameras and bathing suits? Yep, left it at home, I realized halfway to the airport. The mad dash back to get it, during rush hour, with a crying 6-year-old in the back seat, made us late enough to miss our plane — except it was delayed. (For once, a very good thing.)

Still, the experience provides a very good description of traveling on a Disney cruise and what's available. If these people can still have a wonderful time on a Disney cruise after all those missteps, then anyone can as well! :)


Pin Trading University Trip Ends

We got back home last night from our short but sweet trip. The weather wasn't a factor at all, and certainly infinitely better than what I was expecting. Hanna only created some rain during the day on Friday, and didn't affect MNSSHP that evening at all. Still, the weather in Orlando was excruciatingly hot, as hot as it normally is in June/July.

I am still disappointed with the shortened HalloWishes, Boo To You, and the non-working audio at the end of Philharmagic. I know they have to cut back on the entertainment costs, but this isn't going to help, especially among those who are regulars and familiar with the various aspects of the theme park experience. The only thing I can hope for is that this is a temporary period where quality control isn't as good as it should be. I definitely WISH that they will bring back everything to full speed when they recover.

I have lots more pictures and reports to post, but those will have to wait till I recover a bit, and catch up with work.


Sunday, September 07, 2008


Big disappointment. The audio at the end when donald shoots out and got stuck in the wall wasn't working. So it ended strangely.


Riding the monorail to MK and sitting up front.

Last day

Last day of the 2008 pin celebration. Many pin traders have left and the event is winding down. It was a lot of fun.
The event opens to the public at 11 am. So if you are at Epcot today come to world showcase.

The Disney Cutbacks

Recent reports on Disney's decision to cut back on the offerings of Spectromagic and Fantasmic certainly did not sit well with the fans. When we saw HalloWishes and Boo To You parade at the first Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween party, the cutbacks are rather obvious. HalloWishes is noticeably shorter, as well as Boo To You.

Supposedly, WDW Entertainment budget for this year got overstretched. This is primarily due to the Idol show being developed at DHS that sucked up from all the other entertainment budget. So the obvious cutbacks to save costs are shows that require the performance of cast members.

From the people that I've talked to, there seems to be a sentiment that the Idol show is going to be a failure, or at least not the success that Disney is hoping for. This is rather strange because usually a lot of people are quite enthusiastic on most of the new attractions about to open at WDW, or at least, certainly giving Disney the benefit of the doubt. But this one seems to already have negative feelings towards it. I certainly haven't heard anyone eagerly waiting for it to open, let's put it that way. I think the fact that it is not a show that's even on a Disney-owned network (Fox) rather makes it harder to have any kind of attachment to it. I certainly have never, ever, seen Idol, despite the fact that I've heard and read about all the hoopla surrounding it. So I certainly have very little desire to want to see it.

But then again, we could all be wrong, considering how popular the show is on TV. Disney has shown that they could make a go with a TV concept and adapt it to an attraction at their theme parks. Who Want To Be A Millionaire is a good example. Maybe they'll turn Idol into a crowd favorite, especially if they have contestants from both extreme - the unbelievably talented amateur singer, or a utterly tone-deaf.

We shall see, but if it is a disaster, it is sad that other entertainment shows had to suffer for it.


Saturday, September 06, 2008


We got our event gifts today. They are great. One is a 4-pin set and the other is a jumbo pin. Much better than last year.

Breakfast at the Boardwalk

We are having a leisurely breakfast on the boardwalk before heading to the pin event. It looks like a gorgeous day.

Friday, September 05, 2008


In the middle of the first MNSSHP for the season. While it has been fun, they shortened HalloWishes! No Captain Hook, no third witch. Disappointing!

We are waiting for the last Boo To You parade.

Winding Down

I'm pooped. Been doing lots and lots of great pin trading and now I'm tired. We still have dinner at Kona Cafe (for 25) and then MNSSHP tonight. Hope I can stay awake!

Pin celebration filling up

It is getting busier. Lots of games and pin trading going on.

Pin Madness has begun

And we're off! The official pin celebration is off and running.

Stormy Weather

We have rain and wind this morning. Hanna, or at least the fringe effect, is here. No boats on Cresent Lake today.

Desperately Seeking Pins

Pin traders are a bunch of creative people. They have to be when they're trying to find that one pin that they need either to complete a set, or simply something they have been looking for for years. Many at one of these pin events bring lists, pictures, etc. of the pins that they have been looking for. But this guy gets the award for one of the most creative ways of letting people know what he is seeking. He made a vest covered with pictures of the pins that he would like to trade for. Very creative and effective. People not only smile as he walks by, but also stop him to look at his "list".

Now why didn't I think of that? :)

Today, the actual Pin Celebration event starts. I can't wait to see the themeing and decorations for this years event to fit into the "Pin Trading University" theme.


Thursday, September 04, 2008

Double Kitchen Sink

Yes, we did it. We went to Beaches and Creme today and had not one, but TWO (count 'em) Kitchen Sinks! Even the waitress did a double take when we ordered it. Here's the picture as proof.

.. and here's the picture AFTER we got through with it.



Having Lunch

... At the Boardwalk before heading to the early registration for the pin event at the Yacht/Beach club convention center.

Toy Story Mania

I finally did Toy Story Mania. It was fantastic!


Went to see stormstruck at Innoventions. Not a bad little show, and you learn something on what to put on your house to minimize storm damage.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

DVC Welcome Wednesday

At DVC welcome wednesday.

The Boardwalk

Having a relaxing afternoon at the bakery on the Boardwalk. But man, is it HOT!

We Are At The BoardWalk Resort!

Made it to our DVC villa. Nice place, but we didn't go for the Boardwalk view room, so the view outside of our room isn't too thrilling.

We are now just chilling out before heading out to the Atlantic Dance Hall for the DVC Members Welcome Wednesday. That should be fun.

Anyway, when we got here, we realized a small, minor "disaster". I left my digital camera at home!! Oy vey. So I am cameraless for this trip, other than the still pictures that I can take with my Blackberry and my camcorder. There won't be many pictures taken on this trip.

We will be exploring the Boardwalk area this afternoon, and then after the DVC Welcome Wednesday, we will head out to Epcot for dinner later this evening. And then we will probably turn in after Illuminations since tomorrow is going to be a busy day.

And oh, we renewed our Annual Passes. So we are good to go for another year! :)


We are at WDW

We made it to the most magical place on earth! The weather is fine.

We're Off To The Most Magical Place On Earth!

We are all packed and ready to go! And yes, of course I couldn't sleep very well last night! Wish us luck that the weather won't make this a total washout, especially our MNSSHP on Friday evening!

The next transmission will be from the Most Magical Place on Earth!


Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Hurricane, Hurricane, Go Away!

Spending the day at work to tie up a few things before I fly out to Orlando early tomorrow morning. This is certainly the trip where most of my attention has been on the weather. Hanna is certainly the one that could ruin the trip, or at the very least, makes it a very wet one. But Ike behind her has the potential to delay our trip back home, depending on where he goes end of the week.

Still, since most of what we will be doing is to attend the pin event indoors, the weather should be that much of a factor during the event. It is what we plan on doing beyond the pin event that could be in jeopardy. The Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party on Sept. 5 could turn into a Mickey's Very Wet Halloween Party. We also would like to go to other parks, especially DHS, to do the attractions. Wet, stormy weather isn't that conducive to doing that. But then again, that has never stopped us before, so if the parks are open, we will be there.

As before, I'll try to give up-to-the-minute trip report on here, and will try to take a few pictures, especially at the pin event.


Monday, September 01, 2008

Hanna Is Now A Hurricane

Oy vey!

Hanna is now a hurricane.

Basically, I've resigned to the fact that our upcoming trip to WDW will be a WET one. Still, if Hanna moves fast enough, we might still be able to salvage our Mickey Not So Scary Halloween Party on Sept. 5th. If not, it will be a very wet party and I'm abandoning my costume for my poncho.


25 Essential Disney Tips

As if we don't have enough, here's more tips for anyone visiting WDW, and certainly for those going there for the first time. This, actually, is quite a handy list to have since it is short and concise.

While there are certainly various versions and various opinions on each one of them, this list makes a good start.