Happy 50th Birthday, Walt Disney World. And a big shout out to Roy Disney for seeing Walt's dream to the end to create this park.
Friday, October 01, 2021
Wednesday, September 29, 2021
I watched the premier of #Harmonious tonight over live streaming from the Disney Parks YouTube channel. It is the nighttime show at World Showcase lagoon at Epcot.
The title of this post tells it all. I was willing to give them the benefit of doubt when I saw the monstrous equipment they put in the middle of the lagoon and ruined the amazing view across World Showcase. Maybe the show they are going to put out will be wonderful, I thought.
It is more of a promotion of a collection of Disney movies. It is a pastiche of various music and theme, rather than one coherent, consistent music or theme. There was nothing "harmonious" from what I saw and heard. And those arms that keep swinging back and forth.. am I the only one who find them distracting and annoying? It is also most disappointing when the original music is bland and not memorable, while other parts rely on music from various Disney movies. There were times that I thought this would be better suited at Animal Kingdom rather than Epcot.
And that is the most disappointing part, that the spirit of World Showcase is just not there. Having a collection of songs sang in languages other than English does not turn it into a multi-national, multi-cultural theme, especially when they are clearly tied to Disney movies. Like I said, the spirit of World Showcase felt missing from all this.
I had goosebumps when I first saw Illuminations. The music was the first thing that stuck to me, and I immediately had to get the CD. I still listen to it even today (along with Tapestry of Nations). That glorious feeling and emotional tug are just not there with Harmonious. I am so disappointed and sad about this, since Epcot is my most favorite park, and Illuminations used to be my most favorite nighttime show in all of WDW. Now, there's not much to look forward to.
Saturday, September 04, 2021
There were a lot of Nightmare Before Christmas stuff at Lowe's for this Halloween Season. found these two on the shelf that I managed to record.
This is the Nightmare Before Christmas calendar.
And this is the Nightmare Before Christmas "snowglobe".
Thursday, December 17, 2020
It has been announced that Jim MacPhee will retired from Disney after 42 years.
He was warm, gracious, and generous with his time when I encountered him during Epcot's 25th Anniversary as part of Celebration25 group. We were having our walking tour of various attractions at Epcot when he stopped by to visit with us and chatted.This was the day before the official Epcot's 25th anniversary.
He also revealed the park map that would be distributed the day of the celebration, so we all knew that we would have to get one (or more) when we showed up the next day.
The day of the celebration was centered over the fountain of nations (now gone).
At the end of the ceremony, he and the Disney Ambassadors at that time took a photo with our entire Celebration25 group.
We had a special area to watch Illuminations that evening. Even though it rained, we had a great time. The Disney parks people sent us ponchos and ice cream. And as a final surprise, Jim MacPhee actually came over to check up on us before the evening ended.
His presence and acknowledgement of us made the day even more special. Not many (if any) Disney executives would go out of their way to greet die-hard fans like that.
I did a short video on the that fun time:
Have a wonderful retirement, Mr. MacPhee. Thanks for giving us such wonderful memories!
Friday, December 11, 2020
Disney had officially taken over the running of the Moroccan pavilion at Epcot's World Showcase after the previous company running it went into default. Yesterday was the last day that restaurants such as Spice Road Table was opened, and the area around the pavilion is now closed for renovations, including the bazaar area.
This was my most favorite pavilion at the World Showcase. For many of us, this was the most unfamiliar culture among the various nationalities represented there. While the food quality at both sit-down restaurants have gone down over the years (in my opinion), they were still not the familiar run-of-the-mill fare that most people know. Moroccan food and restaurants are not very common in many parts of the US, even though there is one amazing Moroccan restaurant in Orlando itself called "Moroccan Breeze" which we have been to twice during our last two visits.
This takeover and renovation can go well, or can go very wrong (what other possibilities are there?). I don't know what to make of it. The ONLY thing I wish for is authenticity both in the decor and in the food. Disney is a master at the former, but often skimp on the latter. We shall see.
In the meantime, here's one final tribute to the bazaar at the Morocco pavilion.
Thursday, October 22, 2020
Saturday, August 22, 2020
I was walking around Woodfield Mall here in Schaumburg, IL yesterday, and as I was window shopping, I saw a display of Nightmare Before Christmas clothings at a store. It wasn't the Disney store, which was on the same floor. It was at a store called "Box Lunch". I have never heard of this store before, and had never been in one.
When we went in, they had quite a few more Disney-related items, and many of them I haven't seen anywhere else. But I zoomed in on the Nightmare stuff. They were having "Buy one, get one at half off", and I immediately stumbled upon two items that I wanted and eventually bought. I'll so them to you here.
First is a Nightmare summer shirt. It is 100% cotton, and a lovely color. Full price is $44.90.
Here are close-up shots of the prints on the shirt:
But wait, there's more! I found a matching bucket hat!
The prints on the hat are identical to the shirt.
With the discount, both came out to $59.35. I could have spent more so easily.
But here's the best part. Turns out that they have a lot more stuff online at www.boxlunch.com. We saw in the store quite a few Mandolorian stuff, including shirts with Baby Yoda on it. Not only that, for every $10 you spend, they donate a meal to Feeding America.
I signed up to be on their list, and got a $15 BoxLunch money if I spend more than $30 in mid Sept. So I'm saving that for my next trip there because I have a few other stuff that I want to get.
That store is dangerous to my credit cards!