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+--Forum: Walt Disney World tips, trip reports, comments and questions
+---Topic: Dateline Disney started by RichKoster

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 19, 2003 10:45 am/pm

Dateline Disney

The latest news from WDW, direct from Disney

Epcot International Food and Wine Festival Oct. 18-Nov. 16 Rocks With Good Tastes, Good Times

The world-renowned Epcot International Food and Wine Festival continues through Nov. 16 with a stellar lineup of celebrity chefs taking guests on a tasty tour of the globe. Culinary masters Allen Susser of Chef Allen's in Aventura, Fla. (Nov. 1-2), Rick Bayless of Chicago's Frontera Grill (Nov. 8-9), Todd English of Boston's Olives (Nov. 15-16) and Art Smith, the author and personal chef of Oprah Winfrey (Nov. 15), will tantalize taste buds with cooking demonstrations, signature dinners and other special events.

Guests can sample culinary delights at 20 international food and wine showplaces around World Showcase and enjoy daily culinary demonstrations, wine and beer seminars and a nightly outdoor concert series -- Eat to the Beat! -- featuring Three Dog Night (Oct. 28-Nov. 1), The 5th Dimension (Nov. 2-6), Chic featuring Nile Rodgers (Nov. 7-11) and Chubby Checker & The Wildcats (Nov. 12-16).

Reward your palate with a taste of melt-in-your-mouth honey-glazed salmon. Sip the latest merlot from Australia. Then catch a performance of Sister Sledge or other popular performers during an Eat to the Beat! concert at America Gardens Theatre. The eighth annual Epcot International Food and Wine Festival Oct. 18-Nov. 16 rocks from morning to night with a seemingly endless array of activities for guests of all ages. On the daily menu:
  • Eat to the Beat! concerts featuring top-name bands including Three Dog Night and Chubby Checker, plus scheduled World Showcase acts that include music, dance and acrobatics
  • Wine and beer seminars
  • Culinary demonstrations
  • More than 20 international marketplaces offering sips and samples from $1-$4.50
  • Children's activities including the Junior Chef Program "Making Nestle Toll House Cookies"
  • Ticketed events such as daily food and wine pairings and weekly Party for the Senses grand food and wine tastings

Entrance to the festival is included with regular Epcot admission; guests can call 407/WDW-FEST or visit < >.

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Expands to 10 Family-Friendly Nights of Magic Kingdom Fun

There'll be more family-friendly frights than ever this October as Magic Kingdom plays host to 10 evenings of Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, an after-hours celebration of special spooky entertainment and trick-or-treating for guests of all ages.

In 2003, the popular event has expanded by three dates with parties on Oct. 3, 5, 10, 14, 16, 19, 24, 26, 30 and 31. Each date includes themed trick-or-treat locations throughout the park, unique entertainment including fireworks and a Halloween-themed parade, a complimentary family photo, unlimited use of popular Magic Kingdom attractions, plus much more!

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party takes place from 7 p.m. to midnight and requires a special ticket. Advance tickets are $29.95 for ages 10 and over, $24.95 for ages 3-9. Same-day tickets are $32.95 for ages 10 and over, $27.95 for ages 3-9. Children under 3 are admitted at no additional charge.

For more information, call 407/934-7639 or visit < >.

2003 Funai Classic at Walt Disney World Resort Oct. 20-26

One hundred forty-four PGA TOUR professionals and 144 amateurs will take to the fairways at Disney's Palm and Magnolia golf courses on Oct. 20-26 for the Funai Classic at Walt Disney World Resort. The annual Disney Classic is celebrating its 33rd year with a new sponsor, Japanese electronics company Funai. This year's purse is the event's largest in the event's history at $4 million, with $720,000 going to the winner.

Tiger Woods, an annual participant since turning pro in 1996, is expected to highlight the player field along with notables Ernie Els, Charles Howell III and 2003 PGA Championship winner Shaun Micheel. Bob Burns, who won at Disney in 2002, will return to defend his title.

Ticket prices are: $10 (practice round daily ticket for Monday-Wednesday), $20 (Good Any One Day Ticket, Thursday-Sunday), $50 (Weekly Badge, Monday-Sunday) and $200 (Fairway Club individual package that includes: weeklong admission Thursday-Sunday, access to exclusive hospitality areas and prime location along the 3rd and 15th holes of the Magnolia course). Daily tickets are available by calling Ticketmaster at 877/803-7073 or at the gate on tournament days. Weekly Badges or group tickets can be purchased through the Orlando Regional Chamber of Commerce by calling 407/835-2525.

Note: Kids 17 and under receive free admission to the Classic when accompanied by a paying adult.

Disney Cruise Line Stages Next Chapter of Entertainment As "The Golden Mickeys" Brings Timeless Classics to Life

Disney Cruise Line adds to its lineup of original Disney musicals by premiering "The Golden Mickeys," a lively amalgam of theatrical song and dance, animated film, video and special effects.

This quintessential musical creatively entwines many of Disney's most famous and infamous characters with a touch of pure romance and comedy in a salute to Walt Disney and his legacy of classic animated films. Vibrant animated backdrops whisk guests from high above Notre Dame Cathedral in one scene to inside a young boy's toy-filled bedroom in another. All along, dramatic sets create a three-dimensional illusion as films race across stage-size screens, and lighting and surround sound casually envelop the audience. Special effects also play an important role -- creating a playful jungle for Tarzan and his aerial-acrobatic friends, an under-the-sea setting from which an outstretched Ursula surprises unsuspecting guests, and star-lit skies and a pixie-dusted ballroom gown that are every bit fairytale.

"The Golden Mickeys" opened Labor Day weekend (2003) aboard the Disney Wonder and is scheduled to debut aboard the Disney Magic in December.

Haunting Pin-Trading Event Returns to Magic Kingdom Oct. 27-29

The 999 Happy Haunts Event returns to Magic Kingdom with spooky goings-on and package offers Oct. 27-29. The frightful pin trading event features themed dining experiences, meet-and-greets with artists, seminars, live auction, special entertainment and in-park activities. Attendees also will have an opportunity to purchase limited edition 999 Happy Haunts merchandise.

For more information on the event and resort package offers, contact < >.

Disney's Coronado Springs Resort to Add 86,000-Square-Foot Exhibit Facility

Disney's largest convention resort is about to get even bigger: Walt Disney World Resort will add an 86,000-square-foot exhibit hall to the convention center at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort. The exhibit hall is the centerpiece of an addition that will effectively double the amount of function space at the 1,921-room resort.

When the expansion is completed in spring 2005, the convention center will boast more than 220,000 square feet of meeting, exhibit and function space. Equally important to meeting professionals, the convention center space will be contiguous on one level.

The new exhibition facility will boast the latest wireless technology, giving attendees and exhibitors easy computer access from virtually any location.

For more information, contact 321/939-7221or visit

Walt Disney World Sommelier Wins Award

Brian Koziol, sommelier for Victoria & Albert's at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, was among the top five "Best New Sommeliers in the U.S.," according to a recent poll for Wine & Spirits magazine. The magazine surveyed 450 wine pros to pick the best of the best.

Koziol has been with Disney since 1994 and is an advanced-level sommelier, studying for his master certification.

Indy Racing League Championship Celebration Oct. 25

The stars of the IRL IndyCar™ Series and Infiniti Pro Series travel to Walt Disney World Resort for the annual Indy Racing League Championship Celebration. Themed "Magical Moments of the Indy Racing League," the invitation-only event is set for World ShowPlace at Epcot on Oct. 25.

Drivers, teams and sponsors will attend the made-for-television event, which will air at a later date on ESPN. The show will include the presentation of the IndyCar Series Championship Cup and a $1 million bonus to the IndyCar Series championship-winning team and driver.

IRL drivers are expected to participate in autograph sessions, parades and other special activities across Walt Disney World Resort in the days leading up to the Championship Celebration.

Susan Lucci, Other Stars Shine During ABC Super Soap Weekend at Disney-MGM Studios

Susan Lucci ("All My Children") headlines a star-studded lineup of more than 30 stars from the ABC Daytime dramas Nov. 8-9 at the eighth annual ABC Super Soap Weekend at Disney-MGM Studios.

ABC Daytime once again will partner with Colgate Total toothpaste as its presenting sponsor of the event at Walt Disney World Resort.

Annually, ABC Super Soap Weekend is the largest soap fan event held anywhere in the country.

Throughout the event, fans have the opportunity to meet favorite stars from "All My Children," "One Life to Live" and "General Hospital." Other fan-friendly festivities include celebrity motorcades, autograph sessions, star conversations, talk shows, a special soap opera edition of "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire-Play It!" game show attraction and the chance to purchase one-of-a-kind memorabilia from each of the shows. The elaborate, star-studded event also features live musical performances by several cast members in the Colgate Total Street Jam concert.

ABC Super Soap Weekend is included with theme park admission to Disney-MGM Studios -- where guests of all ages are caught up in the glitz, glamour and excitement of show business.

For updates and more information about ABC Super Soap Weekend, guests may call the Super Soap Hotline at 407/397-6808, or visit the ABC Daytime Web site at

All Our World's Aglow During the Holidays at Walt Disney World Resort

Walt Disney World Resort transforms into a holiday spectacle starting in late November. Guests have a sleighful of special options to "get in the spirit":
  • "Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party," presented Nov. 30 and select nights in December, is a joyous "after-hours" Magic Kingdom event popular with young and old alike and featuring parades, live shows, fireworks, character appearances and more. For information about this special-ticketed event: 407/W-DISNEY.
  • Epcot gets in the spirit with the Candlelight Processional Nov. 28-Dec. 30, featuring celebrity narrators retelling the Christmas story, backed by a massed choir and 50-piece orchestra. For special dinner-show packages, guests can call 407/WDW-DINE.
  • Resorts get in the holiday spirit with dazzling confectionery creations and elaborate edible displays at several locations.
  • At Downtown Disney, more than 50 unique merchandise locations join in a "Festival of the Seasons" with festive holiday decor, carolers, nightly tree lighting and photo opportunities with Santa Claus.

Festival of the Masters an Art lover's Delight Nov. 7-9 at Downtown Disney

The 28th annual Festival of the Masters comes to Downtown Disney Nov. 7-9. Art lovers can enjoy the works of more than 150 award-winning artists who will showcase their work throughout Downtown Disney West Side.

Visitors will enjoy tasty dishes from various restaurants located in this exciting shopping and entertainment district. Cirque du Soleil® performers will dazzle fair-goers with special acts (Diabolos at 2 p.m. Saturday and Trampoline Sunday at 4 p.m.).

For more information, guests can call 407/824-4321 or visit < >.

Lunch or Dinner with a Disney Imagineer Offered to Walt Disney World Guests

Ever wished you could learn firsthand about Disney's world-renowned creativity? How Walt Disney Imagineering, the creative arm of the company, puts magic in all it does? Guests can now have lunch or dinner with a Disney Imagineer at the Hollywood Brown Derby at Disney-MGM Studios.

"We are always pleased when we can increase our offerings to our guests," said Tom Wolber, vice president of Disney-MGM Studios. "No question, an Imagineering dining experience will be welcomed."

The four-course lunch costs $60.99 per person. The dinner, a four-course meal including a wine pairing with each course, costs $99.99 per person. Availability is on select weekdays.

Guests may make reservations as far as 30 days in advance by calling 407/WDW-DINE. Callers to that same number can inquire about "Lunch With a Disney Artist," an offering of Walt Disney Feature Animation.

Taste-Tantalizing Treats Tempt Thanksgiving Diners at Walt Disney World Resort

From traditional turkey with all the trimmings to pumpkin creme brulee, palate-pleasing holiday fare is on the menu for Thanksgiving at more than two dozen Walt Disney World restaurants.

Award-winners including California Grill at Disney's Contemporary Resort, Jiko-The Cooking Place at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge and Cítricos at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa will offer creative fare such as California Grill's Kabocha squash soup with pumpkin seed pesto and garlic croutons, or Jiko's mustard-basted turkey breast served with cranberry-pear chutney.

All-you-care-to-eat spreads in the resorts include 1900 Park Fare at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Cape May Cafe at Disney's Beach Club Resort, Chef Mickey's at Disney's Contemporary Resort, 'Ohana at Disney's Polynesian Resort and Whispering Canyon at Disney's Wilderness Lodge.

Table-service restaurants at Magic Kingdom and Disney-MGM Studios also will offer Thanksgiving fare. For dining arrangements, guests should call 407/WDW-DINE.

More Honors for Walt Disney World Restaurants

Walt Disney World Resort has been honored with coveted awards from Wine Spectator. The Best of the Award of Excellence went to Victoria & Albert's at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Awards of Excellence went to Flying Fish Cafe at Disney's BoardWalk, Jiko-The Cooking Place at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge, Yachtsman Steakhouse at Disney's Yacht Club Resort, Cítricos at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa and California Grill at Disney's Contemporary Resort.

Tickets Now On Sale for Walt Disney World Florida Classic

Tickets are now on sale for the Walt Disney World Florida Football Classic matching Florida A&M and Bethune-Cookman College at the Florida Citrus Sports Stadium in Orlando on Nov. 22.

They can be purchased through Ticketmaster by calling 407/839-3000 or online at Reserved sideline seats in the 100 and 200 levels are $35. Other reserved seating is $30. Student tickets are sold only through the participating schools.

This marks the seventh consecutive year the Walt Disney World Florida Classic has been played in Orlando. Checks will be presented to both schools at halftime.

The big weekend kicks off Nov. 21 with Walt Disney World Florida Classic Steppin' in the Park. Florida A&M's Marching 100 and the Marching Wildcats of Bethune-Cookman strut their stuff down Main Street, U.S.A. in Magic Kingdom prior to the "Share a Dream Come True" parade.

World's Top Teen Golfers Tee It Up for Polo Golf Junior Classic Nov. 25-29

To junior golfers, it's known simply and affectionately as "Polo." For fans of golf's "big boys" who don't follow junior golf, think of it as "the Masters for teenagers."

"It" is the Polo Golf Junior Classic, which culminates a year of junior golf with five days of intense competition involving approximately 160 of the best golfers aged 13-18 in the world Nov. 25-29 at Walt Disney World Resort. Fourteen years ago, Stewart Cink celebrated victory in this event. Twelve years ago, Tiger Woods and Emilee Klein won. In 1996 -- the event's second year at Walt Disney World Resort -- the field included Grace Park, David Gossett and Charles Howell III.

As the event returns to Disney's vacation kingdom for the ninth straight Thanksgiving, expect the field to remain as strong as ever. Conducted by the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA), the Polo Golf Junior Classic is an invitational involving winners and high finishers from high-profile junior golf tournaments plus Polo Golf Junior All-America team and hp Scholastic All-America team members and international invitees.

In 2002, Sweden's Niklas Lemke became the fifth champion in the tournament's 25-year history to hail from outside the United States when he won the boys division. Meanwhile, 16-year-old Paula Creamer of Pleasanton, Calif., defeated four All-Americans along the way to winning the girls division -- including the reigning Polo Golf Junior Player of the Year plus two other first-teamers and 2001's Polo Golf Junior Classic runner-up.

Creamer heads the entry field for 2003 as the reigning Polo Golf Junior Player of the Year.

However, the road to a repeat Polo Golf Junior Classic title is arduous: The event consists of 36 holes of stroke-play on Disney's Palm and Magnolia courses on Nov. 25-26, then a cut to the low 32 scores in each division to begin three days of match play. Earning the title involves winning five matches Nov. 27-29.

Disney Cruise Line Celebrates Magical Holidays

Disney Cruise Line guests can enjoy a festive holiday celebration sprinkled with pixie dust on sailings between Nov. 23 and Jan. 1.

It all starts at Disney's private cruise terminal at Port Canaveral, Fla., where festive holiday décor and Disney characters dressed in their season's best await all who board a Magical Holidays sailing. On board the Disney Magic or Disney Wonder, guests find the ships decked with boughs of holly and filled with holiday-themed entertainment and activities for the entire family.

Magical Holidays highlights include:
  • A tree-lighting ceremony in the atrium lobby, where "snow" magically falls;
  • A Christmas Eve visit from Santa Goofy, with surprises for kids enrolled in children's programming;
    International holiday caroling by crew members from around the globe;
  • Special family time, when families join together to design and decorate their own gingerbread houses;
    Classic holiday story time in the atrium hosted by Mrs. Claus;
  • Traditional holiday feasts in Disney's three themed dining rooms;
  • First-run premieres of the animated film "Brother Bear" and live-action release, "The Haunted Mansion," two of the holiday season's films;
  • Multiple faith and inter-denominational holiday services;
    A ship-wide party to ring in 2004 and a New Year's Day tailgate party.
Rates for Magical Holiday sailings start at $409 (three-night), $509 (four-night) and $829 (seven-night). To learn more about Disney Cruise Line or to book a Disney Cruise Line vacation, guests can contact their travel agent, visit < > or call Disney Cruise Line at 888/DCL-2500. Travel agents can call Disney Cruise Line at 888/325-2500 or visit < >.


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