Saturday, August 2, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - Mickey Mouse's House in Toontown Fair

Today the Disney Snapshot of the Day remembers a Walt Disney World attraction that is no more. Before the New Fantasyland expansion, an entire section of Magic Kingdom was devoted to Mickey's Toontown Fair. Within this section of the park were the Donald's Boat water attraction, a family-friendly coaster known as The Barnstormer at Goofy's Wiseacre Farms, character meet and greet locations, shopping, and the most unique part of the land...Mickey and Minnie's houses. These walk-through attractions were full scale recreations of Mickey and Minnie's fictional homes, both of which were crammed full of intricate whimsical details. Of course Mickey and Minnie were never "home," yet strangely they left their doors wide open for guests to visit...that is, until Imagineers leveled the houses to make room for New Fantasyland attractions. It is hard to imagine a billionaire mouse and his girlfriend, both homeless in Orlando. Someone should organize a telethon. 

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The Stockings Were Hung by the Chimney With Care at Mickey's House


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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - Rock N' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith

Happy Birthday the Rock N' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith, which opened fifteen years ago today on July 30, 1999! The Rock N' Roller Coaster is an indoor dark coaster which rips across its track to the thunderous rhythms of one of the most successful American rock bands in history............ Aerosmith. One of the most notable features of the coaster is the high speed no-lift launch that takes you from 0 to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds. I am by no means a roller-coaster enthusiast and refuse to ride any coaster with inversions. Well this one has two and I ride it nearly every time I visit Walt Disney World. How's that for a Disney attraction testimonial?

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Happy 15th Birthday to the Rock N' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith at Disney Hollywood Studios


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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - The Explosive Finale of the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show

With rumors swirling that the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show may be on its out of Walt Disney World to make room for Star Wars Land and/or Cars Land, today's Disney Snapshot of the Day brings you the finale of the show captured in all its explosive glory. The show was brought to the Orlando Disney park as part of Disney's Happiest Celebration on Earth, which marked the fiftieth anniversary of Disneyland. 

The "celebration" honoring the opening of Disney's first park involved bringing one attraction from each Disney park around the world to one of its sister parks as a "gift." Walt Disney World's gift was the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show from Disneyland Paris. Bringing the show to Disney World meant decimating the park's Studio Backlot Tour, which was once the crown jewel of the then-named Disney MGM Studios. But with both the Backlot Tour and the Stunt Show waning in popularity, rumors continue to abound that both attractions could soon be just memories with new attractions themed to the Star Wars and/or Cars properties built on their respective footprints.

The Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show is a 40 minute exhibition of car, motorcycle, and jet ski stunts, peppered with chases, jumps, pyrotechnics, and a look behind the scenes of making action scenes for film. Throw in some humor, audience participation, and appearances by Mater and Lightning McQueen, and you have a very entertaining show that allows you to wind down for almost an hour of your Studios park touring day. Although I am entirely in favor of brining Cars Land to Orlando and am salivating for a Star Wars Land, I would hate to see the Stunt Show go. Catch it while you can...


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The Explosive Finale of the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show


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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy With Their Eyes Closed

Today's Disney Snapshot of the Day today captures something that a few years ago would have been impossible to see, anywhere in the world...Disney characters with their eyes closed. The Cinderella Castle Forecourt stage show rolls out top of the line Disney characters for its daily performances. One of the unique aspects of these characters is that they have eyelids that actually close. As these characters perform throughout the show, you can hear their voices as part of the soundtrack and in an attempt to make them more true to life, they occasionally (or maybe more than occasionally) blink. That may sound great, but when when you are trying to snap photos during the show, it is nearly impossible to catch them all with their eyes open. True to form with my usual rotten luck, I snapped a shot of "the Big Four" with not one, or two, or three, but all four of their eyes closed. I probably couldn't do that again if I tried...so I just may have to on my next trip to Disney.

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"Maybe if we close our eyes, all these people watching us will go away!"


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Saturday, July 5, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - A Spirit Materializes by the Haunted Hearse Outside Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom

Our Disney Snapshot of the Day today forces you to make a choice. Is the photo below a camera mishap or a once in a lifetime photo that captures the supernatural as it makes itself know to the world of the living? Has one of the "Happy Haunts" of the mansion been caught on camera as it whisks away from the hearse parked outside the building after a jaunt through the world of the living? Has one of the "grim grinning ghosts" actually "materialized?" darthmaz314 lets you make the choice.

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Haunted Hearse Outside Walt Disney World's Haunted Mansion


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Thursday, June 19, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - DiVine the Stiltwalking Embodiment of Mother Nature

Our Disney Snapshot of the Day today features one of the more unique and lesser-known characters of Walt Disney World...DiVine, the stiltwalking embodiment of Mother Nature herself. This character, covered from head to toe in foliage and flora can be seen camouflaged in areas of greenery around Animal Kingdom, silently waiting for a crowd to gather. Once a group of guests has collected around her, usually wondering if she is an animatronic or a lifeless statue, she will slowly come to life and emerge from the foliage to walk among the guests, towering above them on her wooded stilts. Be warned, though. DiVine is indeed a rare character at Animal Kingdom. I had been going to the park for over a decade before I had ever heard of or seen the mysterious DiVine.


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DiVine the Stiltwalking Embodiment of Mother Nature
 at Disney's Animal Kingdom


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Thursday, June 5, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day: Mickey & Minnie Topiary from the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

Our Disney Snapshot of the Day today features one of the many exquisite topiaries that are displayed during the annual Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, one of Disney World's popular special events. Each year from March through May, the park is sprinkled with amazing Disney characters, literally brought to life through the beauty of flora, painstakingly sculpted by Disney's master horticulturalists. The festival also features kiosks serving specialty food from across the globe, demonstrations hosted by HGTV personalities, and a concert series that showcases popular acts from the past. 


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Mickey and Minnie Topiary from Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival


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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - Sonny Eclipse at Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe

Today's Disney Snapshot of the Day brings you a Magic Kingdom entertainment legend...Sonny Eclipse, artist in residence at Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe. Of all of the audio-animatronics in the Magic Kingdom, this space-aged alien reptile is perhaps one of the most well-rounded. He sings, plays his cosmic keyboard, tells jokes, and plays host to thousands of burger munching, ketchup slurping guests each day. You don't drift pass him for a few seconds as your ride vehicle turns a corner. He is not shrouded in darkness or back-lit with blue lights. He is well-lit, front and center on his stage at Cosmic Rays Starlight Cafe. He lays on the shtick pretty thickly, even by Disney standards, as he delivers a stream of bad puns and corny jokes in between his sci-fi themed songs. And if you take long enough to order your food and eat, you will be able to enjoy his act over and over, as his track loops every half-hour or so. So here's to Sonny Eclipse, at Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe. He may not be housed in a legendary attraction, but he is a classic nonetheless. 


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Sonny Eclipse at Cosmic Ray's Starlight Cafe



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Thursday, May 29, 2014

Disney Lego Store Snapshot of the Day - The Giant Lego Water Serpent

Today's Disney Lego Store Snapshot of the Day highlights another enormous masterpiece from the Downtown Disney Lego Store...the Giant Lego Water Serpent. Coiling not so menacingly in and out of the still water of Lake Buena Vista, this towering creation of innumerable Legos is truly impressive to behold. Yet what may be more impressive than its size is the craftsmanship (and infinite patience) that was required to assemble this massive Lego sculpture. With the ongoing and future re-imagineering of the Downtown Disney area into "Disney Springs," could the Lego Water Serpent disappear forever and become the stuff of legend, like the Loch Ness Monster...or Mr. Toad's Wild Ride? Enjoy him while you can folks!


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The Giant Lego Water Serpent that Patrols the Waters of Lake Buena Vista at Downtown Disney



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Walt Disney World Trivia: Volume V

darthmaz314.com brings you the fifth installment of Walt Disney World trivia. 

1. In the film Monsters Inc., Mike and Sully’s workday takes place on the scare floor, where they enter doors that lead to children’s bedrooms hoping to scare them silly and collect their screams to power Monstropolis. The Monsters Inc. attraction at Magic Kingdom is a variation on this plot point and a take-off on the term “scare floor.” Name the attraction.


A. The Scare Door

B. The Laugh Floor

C. The Scream Extractor

D. The Great Scare Dare



2. Throughout Walt Disney World parks (and even resorts) are Mickey Mouse head-shaped designs that have been inserted into the surroundings by Imagineers for guests to seek out and find. What are these disguised Mickey designs called?


A. Mickey’s Head Games

B. Mouse Hunt

C. Hidden Mickeys

D. Mickey Clues


3. The Haunted Mansion is an original Walt Disney World attraction, which was operating on opening day in 1971?

A. True

B. False



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4. The attraction “It’s a Small World” was originally conceived and first created to appear at which event?


A. The grand opening of Walt Disney World

B. The 1964-65 World’s Fair in New York

C. The grand opening of Disneyland

D. The Year of a Million Dreams Celebration


5.  What is the name of the statue picture below?


A. “A Man and His Mouse”

B. “It All Started With A Mouse”

C. “Partners”

D. “Friends”



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6. Which of the following was an original Walt Disney World hotel, operating on the resort’s opening day in 1971?


A. Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

B. Disney’s Contemporary Resort

C. Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

D. Disney’s Boardwalk Inn


7. What are the ride vehicles called in The Haunted Mansion?


A. Ghost Hosts

B. Spirit Cars

C. Doom Buggies

D. Haunted Carriages



8. What was the name of the baby elephant that was part of the since eliminated poaching back story in Kilimanjaro Safaris?


A. Dumbo

B. Heffalump

C. Little Red

D. Perla


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Dumbo?


9. What color is the “Hero Car” in the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show at Disney’s Hollywood Studios?


A. Black

B. Red

C. White

D. Gold


10. What is the name of the runaway mine train attraction in Magic Kingdom?


A. The Matterhorn Runaway Train

B. Expedition Everest

C. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

D. The Barnstormer


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Disney Snapshot of the Day - The Giant Fly from the Honey I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure

There are those that say that everything in Walt Disney World is over sized and overdone. Well, in this case, they would be correct. Today's Disney Snapshot of the Day features the giant fly from the Honey I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure. This walk-through attraction includes stalks of grass that are dozens of feet tall, gargantuan mushrooms, a slide the exits out of a tremendous roll of film (kids probably don't even know what that is), a spiderweb that a human can actually sit on, a yes, a frighteningly large fly. Considering the fact that the attraction is pretty dated (when is the last time you used a roll of film?) and sections of Hollywood Studios may be the recipient of a re-imagineering (can anyone say CarsLand?), the Honey I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure and its enormous resident pest, may be on their way out in the near future. 


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Giant Fly from Honey I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure


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