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+--Forum: Disney Tech
+---Topic: Pal Mickey: Now $60, not $50 / Spanish available started by RichKoster


Posted by: RichKoster on Mar. 23, 2003 4:03 am/pm


UPDATE: As of Monday 9/22/03, Pal Mickey's price has gone up from $50 (including tax) to $60 (including tax). It is now also $60 for the rental deposit. You can get Pal Mickey to speak Spanish to you! That version won't be available at the resorts (at least to start) but you'll be able to buy him or rent him at the 4 WDW theme parks as well as at Downtown Disney Marketplace's Once Upon A Toy for purchase only.

Pal Mickey - My Review

We were very lucky to be able to spend some time with Pal Mickey on our trip, choosing to share the Magic Kingdom with him. Here’s what we found out about him and our impressions after we spent about an hour with him. I'll post more after I buy one for myself during my WDW trip in June.

Pal Mickey is perfect for first-timers to Walt Disney World because he’ll tell you all about where you are, acting as your own personal tour guide. But he’s also great for Guests who visit WDW frequently because he’s filled with little-known facts and trivia as well as letting you know current information about theme park parades, shows, and attractions. He’ll even tell you how long the wait times are at attractions, help you meet up with the Characters, and help you search for Hidden Mickeys!

You can clip Pal Mickey to your belt (or the strap of your fanny pack/camera bag) or just hold him as you would any other plush. He’s only 10 1/2 inches tall and very light. You can interact with him in two ways: game mode and interactive guide mode.

First of all, make sure he’s on . . . he has an on/off button on his back. To put him in game mode, press both of his hands at the same time and he’ll tell you jokes and offer you a choice of three different games that he’ll play with you. You can choose from
  • Mickey Says – Pal Mickey’s version of Simon Says in which you have to squeeze him where he tells you if he says “Mickey says…”
  • Trivia – related to what attractions are found in the Disney theme parks (this one is about the specific park you’re in if you’re actually in one)
  • Disney Villains – Mickey will give you names of Disney Characters and you’re scored on how well you know which of them are Disney villains.
When in game mode he won’t be triggered about his surroundings, so be sure to turn off game mode by pressing both of his hands simultaneously again for him to be your tour guide.

When in tour guide mode, Pal Mickey will giggle and shake when he wants to tell you something related to where you are. That’s your clue to unclip him from your belt (if that’s where he is) and bring him up to your ear and then press his stomach or either of his hands and he’ll talk to you with park information or a joke. If you couldn’t hear him or want another person to hear what he just said, just press his stomach within 15 seconds and he’ll repeat it. You can have him repeat up to five times for each remark. This is a great feature for those traveling with more than one child: you might be able to buy or rent just one Pal Mickey and share him rather than getting one for each child. In a normal room environment like your resort room you’ll hear him just fine but when you’re in the parks you’ll need to bring Pal Mickey’s mouth close to your ear in order to hear him. This looks quite cute when you see an adult cuddling Pal Mickey near their face!
:D

Folks, please don’t get distracted and be very careful when you’re using Pal Mickey. Just like people who drive with one hand while talking on their cell phone with the other, I dread to think what could happen if a Guest is holding Pal Mickey close to their ear and concentrating on what the little guy’s saying rather than watching out about being careful in exiting a ride or bumping into someone else. It could be a whole new thread on the Disney discussion forums to rival ones about strollers hitting other people’s ankles. And parents, the off button is your friend: please make sure your young’un isn’t playing games with Pal Mickey inside where he’d be distracting others - - although personally I’d love to hear Mickey mouth off about certain ex-presidents in the Hall of Presidents!
;)
Thankfully, though, the Disney Imagineers thought ahead and put a feature in him that they can silence Pal Mickey in certain places of the parks and they have enabled this feature in the attractions (the MK's teacups being one exception, and there might be others). When they have him silenced, you can't even play games with him, so he won't be distracting others.

Every time you enter one of the four WDW theme parks, Pal Mickey receives a wireless signal via infrared (picked up through his black nose) to let him know where y’all are so he’ll respond with appropriate information - - his jokes are even about the places you’re at! For example, in Tomorrowland he loved to tell us many space jokes including ones about Buzz Lightyear and Zurg. There are infra-red transmitters scattered just about everywhere in the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney-MGM Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. I even heard him talk in the DAK parking lot!

We saw and heard Pal Mickey in people's hands on Tuesday, April 22nd at Disney's Animal Kingdom. He had just become available that day for WDW Resort guests at Old Key West Resort and Wilderness Lodge. Now he’s available at all the WDW Resorts and as of mid-May he became available in all four WDW theme parks.

You can choose to buy him for $50 ($46.94 plus $3.06 sales tax) or rent him. A $50 refundable deposit using a credit card is required each day you rent him and when Pal Mickey is returned before noon of the following day you’re charged $8 plus tax. You can also sign up to rent him for several consecutive days: $16 plus tax for two days, $24 plus tax for three days, $32 plus tax for four/five/or six days). If you don’t return your rented Pal Mickey, your $50 deposit fee will be converted into a $50 purchase price on your credit card bill and he’s yours to keep.

Pal Mickey is not only aware of where you are in the park, but he knows what direction you’re going and if you’ve been there before. Make sure you have him facing towards the front of you when carrying him or when he’s clipped to your belt. If you put him under your poncho when it rains or carry him in your backpack he won’t be triggered unless you stick his nose out. The first time you enter Main Street USA from Town Square he’ll be triggered to tell you something about it. But when you’re at that same spot later heading the other way he’ll say something different instead of the same thing over again.

Pal Mickey was very talkative in Tomorrowland. Take him for a ride on the Tomorrowland Transit Authority and he’ll wiggle and signal you quite often that he has something to say: space jokes (as mentioned above), all about the attractions there and a lot about Buzz Lightyear and Zurg in Space Ranger Spin. He told us about Space Mountain and how tall you need to be to ride it - - and he sounded relieved that he wasn’t tall enough for it. But then he suggested a ride on the Astro Orbiter because everyone can ride that. I found this quite helpful because he gives out the height requirements in a fun way, plus offers alternatives for those who aren’t tall enough. I bet Disney consulted with child psychologists when they were planning what responses Pal Mickey would say.

He’s dressed in his classic yellow shoes, white gloves, and red shorts - - with white white ovals for the “buttons.” The outline of the buttons glow in the dark when the TTA took us inside Space Mountain and in the tunnel behind Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin and Mickey’s Star Traders. I haven’t heard of Pal Mickey being refused entry at any “no shirt/no shoes/no service” eateries at WDW, but you might want to personalize his wardrobe with a plush-sized t-shirt (which would be a perfect place to include a label with your name and address on it). Hmmmm, Pal Mickey-sized t-shirts… there’s another marketing opportunity!

Disney EchoEar Beth / Liv2CdWorld was wondering if you purchase Pal Mickey, will he be as valuable for your next trip - or will you need to bring him somewhere for an upgrade? Pal Mickey was 5 years in development and includes 700 responses. Some of them are not used now but will be triggered for new, upcoming attractions in the future. So if you buy Pal Mickey this trip he should be just as much fun and informative on your next trip.

His plush is fully washable but don’t get him wet when his electronics module is still inside him! In fact, Pal Mickey will remind you to keep him dry when he’s near a splashy attraction. But if he gets dirty just open the zipper on his back, remove the electronics (they must not get wet) and the plush can be washed with mild soap and water. He runs on three AA-size batteries which can be replaced after you unzip his back and then use a small Phillips head screwdriver to open battery compartment. The batteries should last 5 - 7 days of normal use. If you’re going to buy Pal Mickey and will be spending almost a week or more at WDW, you might want to bring your own extra batteries from home rather than paying Disney prices for them, because with constant use you might wear the batteries down - - but he doesn't work well with rechargeable batteries or generic brands because they don't put out as much voltage as the premium, non-rechargable batteries do.

If you rent Pal Mickey and don’t buy him then you won’t need to worry about changing batteries or cleaning him - - the Disney folks will make sure his batteries are fresh, launder him after each time he’s rented and they won’t rent him again after he starts to look worn.

Right now Pal Mickey only tells you things about Walt Disney World’s four parks and even Downtown Disney (note: not anywhere in the Disneyland Resort yet) but you can play games with him and hear his jokes anywhere. You have to come in person to WDW to buy (or rent) him because he cannot be bought using the WDW Merchandise phone number.

He kept us quite entertained when we were on line for the Mad Tea Party. Some of what he told us about the ride is a suggestion that you don’t have to spin the teacup by using the wheel-shaped handle if you don’t want to - - you can not turn it at all and you’ll just glide. All three of us found that the line for the teacups seem to go much faster because he told us a lot of jokes there. Here’s an example of Mickey’s humor: What happened when Goofy was struck by lightning? It really hurt! A little while later Mickey asked us what happened when Goofy was struck by lightning again? It really, really hurt! How about that - - a running gag from a plush! The topper was when he got our attention soon after that when he asked “What happened when Goofy was struck by lightning a third time? He took the lightning rod off his head! Ha-ha!” Another favorite of ours was when Mickey told us that Cinderella is lousy at basketball - - because she had a pumpkin for a coach! In Fantasyland he'll spring this one on you: Why is Captain Hook's boat still sailing through the sky? Because it's going to Never Land!
:laugh:

The teacups would be our last ride with Pal Mickey before we needed to return him to our friends who let us experience touring with him. I was very touched and a bit surprised at the coincidence in the timing when just after we settled down into our teacup together he told us, “Aw, gee. Thanks for playing with me today.” When we gave him back it was like parting with an old friend. When we return to WDW in June we'll be sure to buy Pal Mickey so this time we can have him to keep.
:nod: :mickey:



Picture Copyright 2003, THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY

Posted by: RichKoster on Mar. 23, 2003 4:04 am/pm

Pal Mickey: new interactive toy available for WDW Guests

Personal pal in the WDW parks starting in April 2003
UPDATE: New Start Date: Pal Mickey is available now at select WDW Resort Hotels and Mid-May 2003 is the current estimate for when Pal Mickey will be available to all Walt Disney World Guests

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- He’s the ultimate insider at Walt Disney World Resort, a cheerful friend who helps enhance a theme park visit with timesaving tips and fun facts. Who is he? Pal Mickey!

Pal Mickey is a talking, huggable Mickey Mouse toy that shares timesaving tips, fun facts and jokes while guests visit the four Walt Disney World theme parks in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

"It's almost time for the parade!" Pal Mickey says. "We better hurry if we wanna see it!"

Available for rental or purchase at WDW beginning in April, Pal Mickey enhances a theme park visit by:  
  • recommending theme park attractions
  • offering reminders about parades and show times
  • sharing stories
  • playing games
  • helping locate Disney characters in the parks


The interactive toy will be available to all guests as a daily rental for $8 per day plus tax and a refundable deposit, or as a $46.94 purchase plus tax at merchandise locations in each of the Walt Disney World resort hotels starting in April.
UPDATE: New Start Date: Pal Mickey is available now at select WDW Resort Hotels and Mid-May 2003 is the current estimate for when Pal Mickey will be available to all Walt Disney World Guests

Pal Mickey will be offered at select locations in Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney-MGM Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom beginning in May.

Copyright 2003. THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY.




My family is certainly going to be getting one of these Pal Mickeys! Sounds like great fun.  :laugh:

Posted by: Rufus on Mar. 24, 2003 1:52 am/pm

I agree, Pal Mickey looks like he'll be great fun. :mickey: Two small changes since that article was written:

Pal Mickey can be rented for $8/day or purchased for $50 (both plus tax). Since rental requires a credit card deposit, renters can change their mind and just mousenap the little fella, and the charge will be placed against your card -- no problem.

Pal Mickey will be available some time in April to guests staying at Disney hotels only. Starting some time in May, he'll also be available at the theme parks.


Note: Pal Rufus may also be rented for a somewhat lower fee. Same information, but you don't have to sqeeze his hand to make him talk.

Posted by: RichKoster on Mar. 28, 2003 12:33 am/pm

Yoo Hoo!

Pal Mickey was written about in the "Vacation Magic" DVC newsletter. According to the article:

"Pal Mickey will recommend attractions, even pointing out the shorter lines! He'll help you locate Disney characters in the Theme Parks, tell stories and jokes and play interactive games. And if you've ever lost track of time, Pal Mickey offers reminders about parade and show start times, so you won't miss a minute of the entertainment. With Pal Mickey you'll experience the Parks like never before."

Posted by: DonK on Mar. 30, 2003 1:30 am/pm

Rich, Aren't you going to WDW soon ?  Can you give us a Pal Mickey report when you get back ???  Worth the buck ?  How kid friendly, how user friendly ?  Work in all the parks....

Thanks ! :pirate:

Posted by: RichKoster on Mar. 30, 2003 9:41 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Don!

Yup! I'm going soon. I'll be sure to give a trip report when I get back, including how the 3 of us liked it and where it worked. That's assuming it will be available when I'm there. Official word is this: Mid-May 2003 is the current estimate for when Pal Mickey will be available to all Walt Disney World Guests.

UPDATE: My review is in the beginning of this thread.

Posted by: Tigger58 on April 06, 2003 12:28 am/pm

Yes  please  let us  know  about it  because I am  going to  WDW   late July!  Sounds like  fun!   :D
Posted by: Liv2CdWorld on April 06, 2003 3:54 am/pm

I'd be interested in knowing if you purchase Pal Mickey, will he be as valuable for your next trip - or will you need to bring him somewhere for an upgrade? :)
Posted by: RichKoster on April 06, 2003 4:35 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Beth!

I'll ask them about that from the Cast Member I buy Pal Mickey from, if it is available when I'm there. The latest I've now heard is that it will be mid-May when Pal Mickey will be available for all Walt Disney World Guests. But you asked a good question! I expect the interactive experience will be kept around for a long time. And I hope that if they add new features that these early Pal Mickeys will somehow either automatically be able to take advantage of them or that they'd somehow allow for upgrades.

An operation to Pal Mickey? Ooooo, the horror!
:o  :wow:

I would think that Pal Mickey would be designed in a way to easily put in fresh batteries when needed (assuming he runs on batteries), so hopefully any upgrades that would be needed in the future could be taken care of without leaving scars.
:unhappy:

Posted by: jelliott on April 07, 2003 12:32 am/pm

I am very interested in Pal Mickey.  Has anyone actually used one yet?  

One thing I thought of is that you could purchase him and use him while in the park then sell him on Ebay when you get home and possibly make some of your $ back.  As long as he's in good shape.  Might be a way for people who don't want to spend $50 on a Pal Mickey to justify the cost of the plush doll.

Jen

Posted by: RichKoster on April 07, 2003 1:20 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Jennifer!

Well, I suppose one could sell Pal Mickey on ebay when they return home... But I wouldn't want to be the one to take him away from the child to do it!
:tear: :cry:

And face it, a lot of us adults wouldn't want to part with him, either.
;)

Just think of Pal Mickey as incentive to come back to WDW again, real soon! :D



---------------------QUOTE-------------------
Has anyone actually used one yet?
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



There was a testing period, which is still going on - - and perhaps some of the regular Guests were lucky enough to be picked to test this new program out, but there hasn't been any posts that I've seen to any of the Disney message boards or rec.arts.disney.parks from anyone who has done that, so perhaps it was tested by Disney itself.

Update on Thursday night, April 10th: A very nice WDW Cast Member just told me that Pal Mickey is still being tested, so there is no official start date given yet.

Other than that, no: Pal Mickey isn't available until ( NOTE: Updated information: ) mid-May for all Walt Disney World Guests. So the short answer is that nobody has used Pal Mickey yet (other than when it was in a testing period, of course).

I'll be asking all around about Pal Mickey to see if he's available when I'm at WDW on vacation, and if so - - and they don't sell out of them - - I'll be getting one!
:TiggerWooHoo:

Posted by: RichKoster on April 11, 2003 1:46 am/pm

Source: Eyes & Ears

Picture a young girl walking with her family near the Tree of Life Garden at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Suddenly, the Mickey Mouse plush toy she’s holding vibrates and giggles, indicating that he has something to say.

When the girl presses Mickey’s hand or stomach, he says, “Now somewhere around here is a secret trail with lots of swell animals. That’s where the capybara lives! Supposedly, he’s related to the mouse. Hmm... I wonder if he’s related to Minnie Mouse or Mickey Mouse... Ha ha! Aw, gosh, let’s see if we can find him. Wanna?”

Clutching her toy tighter, the girl spots the trail and leads her family toward a new adventure.

This experience will come to life in unique ways at all four Walt Disney World theme parks when Pal Mickey, a new type of theme park entertainment, becomes available in resorts in April and in the theme parks in early May.

“Pal Mickey brings a whole new level of personalization to our theme park experience in that he will give guests — kids in particular — a greater interaction with our characters,” said (the) vice president of Operations Strategy and Technology. “Usually, you see Disney characters in shows and parades or waiting for autographs. Now you can have Mickey himself talking to you as you travel through our parks.”

The 10-and-a-half-inch-tall Pal Mickey delivers hundreds of messages, from show details to Disney trivia to attraction height requirements, in all four theme parks, focusing on the unique aspects of each park.

Pal Mickey will relive stories at the Magic Kingdom Park, share travel tips and fun facts during a world tour at Epcot, be a star-struck Hollywood insider at the Disney-MGM Studios and play up the feeling of adventure while sharing safari secrets at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

“Pal Mickey extends the individual stories of the things you’ll see,” said (a) senior show producer and executive director for Walt Disney Imagineering. “He has a much broader emotional range — happiness, anger, fear, excitement, nervousness — and real attitude like the way he appeared in the old cartoons. For instance, when you’re near Kali River Rapids at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and you can hear the background sounds of logging chainsaws, Mickey gets angry about the destruction of the natural environment.”

Pal Mickey also tells jokes and plays games when guests press his hand or stomach, whether they’re in the theme parks or at home.

“Our goal was to make Pal Mickey feel like a member of the guest’s family,” said (a) lead interactive designer for WDI.

Guests will have the opportunity to rent Pal Mickey for $8 a day (including tax) with a $50 credit card deposit. If the guests decide later to take Pal Mickey home, the $50 deposit will be deducted from their credit card. Guests who know in advance that they’ll want to take Pal Mickey home may buy one for $50 (including tax) instead of renting one and paying a deposit.

(The) Product Development Vice President said Pal Mickey will build memorable Cast and guest experiences. “This little guy ... will create great conversations between our Cast and guests,” (she) said. “These interactions will turn into great experiences that guests can remember by taking him home.”

- - - End of quote - - -

Repeating the update from Thursday night, April 10th: A very nice WDW Cast Member just told me that Pal Mickey is still being tested, so there is no official start date given yet. She said it is expected to be availalbe for Walt Disney World Resort hotel guests sometime this month and available for all WDW guests in mid-May.

Posted by: RichKoster on April 15, 2003 1:18 am/pm

Update: While Pal Mickey is still scheduled to be available to all WDW Guests starting in mid-May, the start date for guests staying at WDW Resort hotels has now been given.

When I called the Polynesian Resort to verify my reservation, the CM named Jeff checked with his manager for me to see if Pal Mickey would be available during my stay. He found out that I wouldn't be able to have a Pal Mickey because it won't be available while I'm there.

But according to the information that Jack received, Pal Mickey will be available to guests staying at the Disney resort hotels starting on April 26th. As always, this date may change, but this is the first that a specific date has been given.

Update: Pal Mickey is now available at select locations for WDW Resort Hotel Guests! Mid-may is the current estimate when Pal Mickey will be available for all WDW Guests.

Posted by: Wisconsinmousermom on April 15, 2003 1:44 am/pm

:)  Rich thanks so much for the heads up.  I'm going to definitely email Tara at the Poly and see if it's possible to reserve one during our stay!!

I'll let you know her response.

:minnie:

Posted by: DonK on April 15, 2003 1:56 am/pm

Okay, Let me know if you can get one and if you can reserve one !  I'm going to be at the AKL from May 3rd to May 13th !  and would love to have one for ........ ME !

:alien:

Looking forward to this... Would you belive only:
18 Days 8 Hrs. 58 Min and 25 sec. till Mouse House !

Don

Posted by: Wisconsinmousermom on April 17, 2003 2:58 am/pm

Well as promised I did email Tara at the Polynesian and her reply was basically yes they have been told that My Pal Mickey will be available at the resorts for rent or purchase before mid-May, but the official date has not yet been set as far as she knew.

Sorry I don't have a more definitive answer.

:suspect:

Posted by: kwb999 on April 21, 2003 9:45 am/pm

:laugh: I have to have one!  I cannot wait to hear how well it works!  Do they have separate toys for rental and for purchase?  I wouldn't want one that has been used.  :9
Posted by: RichKoster on April 26, 2003 10:01 am/pm

Pal Mickey is now available at select locations for WDW Resort Hotel Guests!

More and more WDW resorts are getting Pal Mickey each day. The first two to offer Pal Mickey were Wilderness Lodge and Old Key West resort on April 22nd.
:)

Posted by: Tigger58 on April 26, 2003 10:54 am/pm

COOL!  Thanks Rich!! :mickey:
Posted by: RichKoster on May 05, 2003 12:28 am/pm

Interactive Mickey Mouse Toy Keeps Walt Disney World Guests Entertained and Informed in the Theme Parks


Personal pal in the park
Pal Mickey is a talking, huggable Mickey Mouse toy that shares timesaving tips, fun facts and jokes while guests visit the four Walt Disney World theme parks in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. "It's almost time for the parade!" Pal Mickey says. "We better hurry if we wanna see it!" Available for rental or purchase across Walt Disney World Resort, Pal Mickey enhances a theme park visit by recommending theme park attractions, offering reminders about parades and show times, sharing stories, playing games and helping locate Disney characters in the parks.
Copyright 2003. THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY.


LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- He's the ultimate Walt Disney World insider, a cheerful friend who enhances a theme park visit with timesaving tips and fun facts.

Who is he? Pal Mickey!

Available for daily rental or purchase, Pal Mickey is a talking Mickey Mouse toy that entertains and assists guests in each of the four theme parks at Walt Disney World Resort -- Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney-MGM Studios and Disney's Animal Kingdom.

Pal Mickey helps guests get the most out of a Walt Disney World vacation by bringing each theme park to life as a helpful tour guide. The huggable plush toy offers reminders about parades and show times, shares stories and trivia, recommends attractions, plays games and tells guests where to locate Disney characters. Each 10 1/2-inch Pal Mickey responds in all of the Walt Disney World theme parks.

Developed by Walt Disney Imagineering using advances in wireless communication, Pal Mickey is the latest Walt Disney World innovation to improve and enhance guest service with leading-edge technology.

"See the names written on those second-story windows?" Pal Mickey might say as guests stroll along Main Street, U.S.A. "Those folks helped Walt Disney build this Magic Kingdom!" In fact, the windows bear the names of key Disney cast members instrumental in the development of Walt Disney World Resort.

"Say, 'Fantasmic!' will be starting in about an hour," Pal Mickey might remind Disney-MGM Studios guests about the park's popular nighttime spectacular. "If ya wanna see it, now's a good time to go grab a seat!"

Pal Mickey keeps the whole family entertained with Disney jokes and fun interactive games guests can initiate, whether waiting in line at the theme parks or relaxing in a hotel room -- even back at home.

Pal Mickey is available to all guests as a daily rental ($8 plus tax per day and a refundable $50 deposit) or as a purchase ($46.94 plus tax). Guests who wish to keep a rented Pal Mickey can simply take him home; the deposit will be used as the total purchase price with tax ($50).

Beginning in mid-May, Pal Mickey will be offered at select sites in Disney's four Florida theme parks and at merchandise locations in each of the Walt Disney World resort hotels.

Posted by: RichKoster on May 05, 2003 12:31 am/pm

Pal Mickey - My Review

We were very lucky to be able to spend some time with Pal Mickey on our trip, choosing to share the Magic Kingdom with him. Here’s what we found out about him and our impressions after we spent about an hour with him. I'll post more after I buy one for myself during my WDW trip in June.

Pal Mickey is perfect for first-timers to Walt Disney World because he’ll tell you all about where you are, acting as your own personal tour guide. But he’s also great for Guests who visit WDW frequently because he’s filled with little-known facts and trivia as well as letting you know current information about theme park parades, shows, and attractions. He’ll even tell you how long the wait times are at attractions, help you meet up with the Characters, and help you search for Hidden Mickeys!

You can clip Pal Mickey to your belt (or the strap of your fanny pack/camera bag) or just hold him as you would any other plush. He’s only 10 1/2 inches tall and very light. You can interact with him in two ways: game mode and interactive guide mode.

First of all, make sure he’s on . . . he has an on/off button on his back. To put him in game mode, press both of his hands at the same time and he’ll tell you jokes and offer you a choice of three different games that he’ll play with you. You can choose from
  • Mickey Says – Pal Mickey’s version of Simon Says in which you have to squeeze him where he tells you if he says “Mickey says…”
  • Trivia – related to what attractions are found in the Disney theme parks (this one is about the specific park you’re in if you’re actually in one)
  • Disney Villains – Mickey will give you names of Disney Characters and you’re scored on how well you know which of them are Disney villains.
When in game mode he won’t be triggered about his surroundings, so be sure to turn off game mode by pressing both of his hands simultaneously again for him to be your tour guide.

When in tour guide mode, Pal Mickey will giggle and shake when he wants to tell you something related to where you are. That’s your clue to unclip him from your belt (if that’s where he is) and bring him up to your ear and then press his stomach or either of his hands and he’ll talk to you with park information or a joke. If you couldn’t hear him or want another person to hear what he just said, just press his stomach within 15 seconds and he’ll repeat it. You can have him repeat up to five times for each remark. This is a great feature for those traveling with more than one child: you might be able to buy or rent just one Pal Mickey and share him rather than getting one for each child. In a normal room environment like your resort room you’ll hear him just fine but when you’re in the parks you’ll need to bring Pal Mickey’s mouth close to your ear in order to hear him. This looks quite cute when you see an adult cuddling Pal Mickey near their face!
:D

Folks, please don’t get distracted and be very careful when you’re using Pal Mickey. Just like people who drive with one hand while talking on their cell phone with the other, I dread to think what could happen if a Guest is holding Pal Mickey close to their ear and concentrating on what the little guy’s saying rather than watching out about being careful in exiting a ride or bumping into someone else. It could be a whole new thread on the Disney discussion forums to rival ones about strollers hitting other people’s ankles. And parents, the off button is your friend: please make sure your young’un isn’t playing games with Pal Mickey inside where he’d be distracting others - - although personally I’d love to hear Mickey mouth off about certain ex-presidents in the Hall of Presidents!
;)
Thankfully, though, the Disney Imagineers thought ahead and put a feature in him that they can silence Pal Mickey in certain places of the parks and they have enabled this feature in the attractions (the MK's teacups being one exception, and there might be others). When they have him silenced, you can't even play games with him, so he won't be distracting others.

Every time you enter one of the four WDW theme parks, Pal Mickey receives a wireless signal via infrared (picked up through his black nose) to let him know where y’all are so he’ll respond with appropriate information - - his jokes are even about the places you’re at! For example, in Tomorrowland he loved to tell us many space jokes including ones about Buzz Lightyear and Zurg. There are infra-red transmitters scattered just about everywhere in the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney-MGM Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom. I even heard him talk in the DAK parking lot!

We saw and heard Pal Mickey in people's hands on Tuesday, April 22nd at Disney's Animal Kingdom. He had just become available that day for WDW Resort guests at Old Key West Resort and Wilderness Lodge. Now he’s available at all the WDW Resorts and as of mid-May he became available in all four WDW theme parks.

You can choose to buy him for $50 ($46.94 plus $3.06 sales tax) or rent him. A $50 refundable deposit using a credit card is required each day you rent him and when Pal Mickey is returned before noon of the following day you’re charged $8 plus tax. You can also sign up to rent him for several consecutive days: $16 plus tax for two days, $24 plus tax for three days, $32 plus tax for four/five/or six days). If you don’t return your rented Pal Mickey, your $50 deposit fee will be converted into a $50 purchase price on your credit card bill and he’s yours to keep.

Pal Mickey is not only aware of where you are in the park, but he knows what direction you’re going and if you’ve been there before. Make sure you have him facing towards the front of you when carrying him or when he’s clipped to your belt. If you put him under your poncho when it rains or carry him in your backpack he won’t be triggered unless you stick his nose out. The first time you enter Main Street USA from Town Square he’ll be triggered to tell you something about it. But when you’re at that same spot later heading the other way he’ll say something different instead of the same thing over again.

Pal Mickey was very talkative in Tomorrowland. Take him for a ride on the Tomorrowland Transit Authority and he’ll wiggle and signal you quite often that he has something to say: space jokes (as mentioned above), all about the attractions there and a lot about Buzz Lightyear and Zurg in Space Ranger Spin. He told us about Space Mountain and how tall you need to be to ride it - - and he sounded relieved that he wasn’t tall enough for it. But then he suggested a ride on the Astro Orbiter because everyone can ride that. I found this quite helpful because he gives out the height requirements in a fun way, plus offers alternatives for those who aren’t tall enough. I bet Disney consulted with child psychologists when they were planning what responses Pal Mickey would say.

He’s dressed in his classic yellow shoes, white gloves, and red shorts - - with white white ovals for the “buttons.” The outline of the buttons glow in the dark when the TTA took us inside Space Mountain and in the tunnel behind Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin and Mickey’s Star Traders. I haven’t heard of Pal Mickey being refused entry at any “no shirt/no shoes/no service” eateries at WDW, but you might want to personalize his wardrobe with a plush-sized t-shirt (which would be a perfect place to include a label with your name and address on it). Hmmmm, Pal Mickey-sized t-shirts… there’s another marketing opportunity!

Disney EchoEar Beth / Liv2CdWorld was wondering if you purchase Pal Mickey, will he be as valuable for your next trip - or will you need to bring him somewhere for an upgrade? Pal Mickey was 5 years in development and includes 700 responses. Some of them are not used now but will be triggered for new, upcoming attractions in the future. So if you buy Pal Mickey this trip he should be just as much fun and informative on your next trip.

His plush is fully washable but don’t get him wet when his electronics module is still inside him! In fact, Pal Mickey will remind you to keep him dry when he’s near a splashy attraction. But if he gets dirty just open the zipper on his back, remove the electronics (they must not get wet) and the plush can be washed with mild soap and water. He runs on three AA-size batteries which can be replaced after you unzip his back and then use a small Phillips head screwdriver to open battery compartment. The batteries should last 5 - 7 days of normal use. If you’re going to buy Pal Mickey and will be spending almost a week or more at WDW, you might want to bring your own extra batteries from home rather than paying Disney prices for them, because with constant use you might wear the batteries down - - but he doesn't work well with rechargeable batteries or generic brands because they don't put out as much voltage as the premium, non-rechargable batteries do.

If you rent Pal Mickey and don’t buy him then you won’t need to worry about changing batteries or cleaning him - - the Disney folks will make sure his batteries are fresh, launder him after each time he’s rented and they won’t rent him again after he starts to look worn.

Right now Pal Mickey only tells you things about Walt Disney World’s four parks and even Downtown Disney (note: not anywhere in the Disneyland Resort yet) but you can play games with him and hear his jokes anywhere. You have to come in person to WDW to buy (or rent) him because he cannot be bought using the WDW Merchandise phone number.

He kept us quite entertained when we were on line for the Mad Tea Party. Some of what he told us about the ride is a suggestion that you don’t have to spin the teacup by using the wheel-shaped handle if you don’t want to - - you can not turn it at all and you’ll just glide. All three of us found that the line for the teacups seem to go much faster because he told us a lot of jokes there. Here’s an example of Mickey’s humor: What happened when Goofy was struck by lightning? It really hurt! A little while later Mickey asked us what happened when Goofy was struck by lightning again? It really, really hurt! How about that - - a running gag from a plush! The topper was when he got our attention soon after that when he asked “What happened when Goofy was struck by lightning a third time? He took the lightning rod off his head! Ha-ha!” Another favorite of ours was when Mickey told us that Cinderella is lousy at basketball - - because she had a pumpkin for a coach! In Fantasyland he'll spring this one on you: Why is Captain Hook's boat still sailing through the sky? Because it's going to Never Land!
:laugh:

The teacups would be our last ride with Pal Mickey before we needed to return him to our friends who let us experience touring with him. I was very touched and a bit surprised at the coincidence in the timing when just after we settled down into our teacup together he told us, “Aw, gee. Thanks for playing with me today.” When we gave him back it was like parting with an old friend. When we return to WDW in June we'll be sure to buy Pal Mickey so this time we can have him to keep.
:nod: :mickey:

Posted by: RichKoster on May 05, 2003 3:39 am/pm

I hear there is also a Pal Mickey pin with a limited edition of 2000 that is being released at the same time as the toy.

Here's an official Disney photo of Pal Mickey:

Copyright 2003. THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY.

Posted by: RichKoster on May 05, 2003 3:47 am/pm

So you can squeeze Mickey's hands and press his tummy to have him respond when he's in his tour guide mode...

I'd like them to add the feature where you press his crotch and he'll direct you to the closest park bathroom!
:laugh:

Posted by: sorcererkev on May 05, 2003 11:49 am/pm

Thanks for the review Rich!!! I have been soooo anxious to get Pal Mickey ever since hearing about him! (I'm trying to resist the temptation to buy one on eBay........)  

I can't wait till our WDW trip in September so I can buy the little fella!  

--sorcerer kev

Posted by: RichKoster on May 06, 2003 3:45 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

Here's a tongue-in-cheek look at Pal Mickey, from < www.irregular.com >:

PAL MICKEY MEETS IRREGULAR.COM!

Have you ever been bossed around by a plush rodent? Not too many people can say they have so that's why Disney's rolling out Pal Mickey. He's cute. He's astute. He comes with a belt clip. While he'll play a few simple kid games and rattle off corny jokes on command, Pal Mickey was made to follow you through that $51.88 click of the turnstile that catapults you into the world of Disney's four Florida theme parks.

It's there where Mickey really struts his stuff, alerting you to character greetings, short wait times at marquee attractions and show hours. He's also packed with more than 700 phrases including geo-specific trivia as you pass certain signature rides.

The staff of Irregular.com got a hold of one of the earliest models this past week and everyone seems to agree that the best feature -- hands down -- is the off switch. Unzip his back and it's there above his battery-powered buttocks and behind his little rat brain.

We tired quickly of his lame jokes that made Marmaduke seem like vintage comedy so we decided to take him on a World tour. Here is what our new Pal had to say.


Magic Kingdom

We walked down the Main Street Mall and figured we would do the park counter-clockwise to see if we could throw Mickey off. No way! In a creepy way he knew just where we were going. He started to giggle and vibrate so we squeezed his hand to indulge his urges.

"It's a great big beautiful Tomorrowland," he sang out.

We passed a shuttered building on our right that set him off again.

"Oh, cow pie! Timekeeper is closed again," he said. "Come back over the summer when the park is full. We never open this attraction if everyone is comfortable."

A few steps later he had even more to say.

"That's Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin to the right," he said. "It's a real cool ride. Don't you dare go ride Men in Black at Universal Studios Florida now, you hear? After that you may no longer appreciate our neon plywood cutout targets, the lame weaponry and the vehicle's limited motion."

We passed an escalator on the way to Space Mountain.

"Hey, Tomorrowland Transit Authority may not seem like much but it sure beats an abandoned Rocket Rods ride, don't you think?"

He shook something fierce when we passed a two story structure by the Space Mountain entrance.

"Did you notice the stairs," he asked rhetorically. "Of course you didn't. There didn't used to be a ride here. No way, Jose. We wouldn't raise ticket prices every year and remove a quality transportation ride that gave you an aerial view of the park and those unthemed Fantasyland roofs. We wouldn't. Honest."

We moved over to Fantasyland where the Winnie the Pooh ride was down for two months of rehab.

"Oh Pooh," he said. "But check out the lagoon to your right. We used to have a unique submarine adventure here that promised to take you 20,000 leagues under the sea. Well, as long as you didn't notice that the water surface was just a few feet over your porthole. But we closed the ride for a much better idea. Character greeting stations!"

We strolled past Liberty Square and into Frontierland where Mickey had more to say.

"You see that body of water? That's the Rivers of America. We used to have canoes here where folks could get some exercise as they paddled about. We got rid of them for something healthier. The churro cart. We'll fry anything here in Disney World. The more plump the guest the more likely he or she will be to buy up loads of Winnie the Pooh merchandise. It's true. We call this caloric marketing."

We wrapped things up at Adventureland where Mickey stopped us short of a flying carpet ride.

"Here's a joke for you. What does a flying carpet, an elephant and a triceratops have in common here? Everything."

Leaving proved troublesome as Pal Mickey wanted to stop at every store on the way out to let us know how they once used to be lavish attractions that showcased penny arcade games, short films and even a tribute to Walt Disney's story.

We zipped down. He zipped up.


Animal Kingdom

The next day we arrived at Disney's latest theme park addition to its Florida arsenal, Animal Kingdom. Pal Mickey didn't wait long to get going. We arrived just as the park was opening and joined the beeline to the back of the park.

"Hey, where you all going, huh," Mickey questioned. "The Kilimanjaro Safari? Why don't we go hit something else, like taking the train to Rafiki's petting farm or the carnival rides at Dinoland? No lines. No waiting. Don't join the herd to our only E-ticket attraction. That doesn't make you any better than the animals here now does it?"

We insisted. Mickey persisted.

"Oh, I get it now," he continued. "Ignore your Pal Mickey. You think I'm happy trying to talk you out of following the lemmings? I told Michael and Joe that this was a big mistake. You open up a safari attraction where the animals aren't going to be as active later in the day and decide to wait 8 years before opening up another marquee ride and this is exactly what's going to happen. 500 acres and we've got an ant trail of park guests going to Africa."

We crossed the bridge to Africa and followed the crowd into the safari entrance.

"Don't make me do this," Mickey said. "Okay. I'm sorry. I have to. Big Red is dead, okay? Poached like your egg breakfast she was. We actually had her bloodied carcass on display when the ride first opened. Doh! That lasted for about a week or two before folks went bananas. How dare we make a point with an animal slain for its ivory tusks. Some mom in Duluth that doesn't think twice about showing Bambi to her kids is going to tell us this is too extreme? Puh-leeze. Anyway, Big Red got scraped -- err, I mean scrapped. Little Red is fake too, you know? And one more thing --"

Unzip. Flick. Pal Mickey remained in the off position until we completed our safari.

"Gee whiz, is that a train whistle I hear," Mickey said. "Let's all go to Rafiki Planet Watch at Conservation Station. You're not going to like the layout. It's a train ride low on scenery leading to a needlessly long footpath that winds up at an outdoor petting area. But, hey, there's also an air-conditioned building where we can brow beat you on the merits of conservation despite the fact that we didn't conserve your time with the pointless long journey to get there."

Unsold, we moved on. We took a leisurely stroll towards Asia. We came across a raft ride where ponchos were the dress code apparently.

"Ahhh, Kali River Rapids," he said. "This one here was called Tiger Rapids Run until we realized that we wouldn't have any live tigers to look at. Why? Because we're Nahtazu!"

We kept walking towards Dinoland.

"Dinosaur is a wild dark ride," he started. "And I do mean dark. It opened as Countdown to Extinction. Then we released our computer-animated full-length feature Dinosaur. So we decided to rename the attraction. We changed, well, absolutely nothing beyond the sign in front of the ride. We'd love to light up the ride some more, but, gosh, where's GE as a sponsor when you need it?"

We got off the ride and started looking for the iguanadon we brought back through time with us. He didn't turn up so we walked past the game booths wedged between a pair of fair rides known as Triceratops Spin and Primeval Whirl.

"Well, at least our carnies bathe," Mickey said as we headed out towards The Tree of Life. Beautiful etched sculptures of animal life lined the faux bark of the park's signature centerpiece.

"Pretty, isn't it," Mickey gawked. "But with the tens of millions that we spent on this work of art structure don't you think we could have afforded to color the leaves in a hue that matched its green surroundings? That's just Goofy."

It wasn't even noon and we were already sweltering under the Florida heat. We made a dash for the exit.

"Where do you think you're going," Mickey asked. "If you head out now your Irregular.com readers are going to think that this is a park that can be done in a quarter of day. It's not. This is a half-day park! Half-day park!"

We spun Mickey around, singing "Circle of Life" as we gleefully threatened to turn him off.


EPCOT

One of Walter Elias Disney's last living visions was for an Environmental Prototype Community of Tomorrow. He either envisioned an urban cutting edge metropolis where folks would live, work and interact with one another or a place where pyramid eyesores lined the entrance with etched images of egomaniac suckers in a park divided into tiers of opening and closing times because two park halves could never equal a complete whole.

Mickey wasted no time to let us know that Spaceship Earth once featured Walter Cronkite as a narrator, replaced by The Lion King's Jeremy Irons. Yes, Scar, but it didn't take us long to see the scars with our own eyes.

World Showcase wouldn't open for a couple of hours so we veered right to find an attraction with waves crashing up against the rocks.

"The Living Seas used to feature a ride through a giant aquarium," Mickey said. "But the ride is gone now. Sure, you can stand in a belittling queue only to be left standing in an open room for no reason other than self-humility and to be eventually led through a fake "hydrolator" which is just a pair of sliding doors separating you from the aquarium area. Or you can go to those sliding doors marked "Exit Only" and show a little pride and self-worth by ignoring the sign and just walking in when the first of those doors opens to get into the tank viewing area."

Finally. Mickey was starting to earn his keep. He gave other helpful hints about free cookies later in the day in The Land and trivia tidbits of a ride he called Figment version 3.0 but we noticed that everyone was actually going over to the other side of Future World so we followed.

Mission: Space looked awfully cool but it was also awfully closed. Test Track was there but it had run out of FastPasses.

"Silly me," Mickey chuckled. "I should have told you that there is only one attraction in this park where a FastPass is recommended. That's why they run out so quickly. Come back later this year when Mission: Space changes all that, okay?"

Maybe. Figuring that the Wonders of Life pavilion was just Disneyfied porn and that Ellen DeGeneres and dinosaurs had way too much in common we went back to the middle of Future World. Waiting for the country exhibits to open we went into the Ice Station Cool igloo, only to find a hidden gem on our own -- free soda samples.

"Don't you dare try the Beverly," Mickey said. "You're going to friggin' hate it. See, you made me say friggin'. I'm a bad, bad, toy, but I'm still better than that stinking bitter Beverly crap."

We passed on the Beverly. The World Showcase opened so we toured the countries, realizing that it's pretty, with what seemed like amazing restaurants but not a whole lot in terms of rides. We didn't find a currency exchange kiosk to convert some dollars into Euros so we avoided spending any money there. Free SARS masks were being handed out in the China pavilion. That was a nice touch.

We were done. Mickey took a nap.


Disney-MGM

We tackled the last park of our Pal Mickey test drive under a stormy afternoon. We knew that he couldn't get soaked so we fashioned a popcorn box into a poncho for our newfound friend. We hit the thrill rides first, like everybody else it seems.

Tower of Terror and its new programming was fierce and amazing but Pal Mickey was left unimpressed.

"Where is the Twilight Zone zinger," he questioned. "Where is the It's a Cookbook or Room For One More, Honey or Burgess Meredith smashing his reading glasses? Golly gee, I get the part about the five people vanishing in the elevator in the 1930s. I'm hip to the fact that we are going into the boiler room to ride the service elevator. I'm thrown for a loop when we're asked to sit down -- I mean, who sits down in an elevator -- but I'll suspend belief for the sake of ride safety. But if all we do is go into the shaft, swing up and down, and wind up in the lobby's gift shop where's the cool plot twist? Rod Serling would turn in his grave if he ever saw this."

Maybe we were starting to wear on Pal Mickey but he was becoming as jaded and sarcastic as we were.

"Bring me the head of the imagineer who couldn't give this ride a worthy story ending," he said.

Our next stop was the Rock 'n Roller Coaster.

"Aerosmith? In a Disney park," Mickey started. "I know they came clean but these Boston boys were major druggies in the 1970s. Steve Tyler even pulled a Polanski when he took a 15-year-old on the road with him one year. And don't get me started on Pee Wee Herman. We took down his video from the animation tour when he was caught with his pants down at the Wonders of Life pavilion but he's still the voice of your pilot in Star Tours. What's up with that? Pervs should be heard and not seen?"

Maybe some of the passing rain was making its way to Mickey's voice chip. We decided to try to cool him off by taking him on the backlot tour. No such luck.

"Empty Nest? Golden Girls? Ernest movies? Hello! Anything new ever happen around here? Wasn't this supposed to be a working studio? And you wonder why ABC is now in fourth place! Oh, bother. Wait, isn't that ABC's think tank over there? Catastrophe Canyon? Now it's all starting to make sense."

We apologized to everyone around us on the tram tour. We exited the tour and walked over to the New York City area.

"This place gives me Goosebumps," he said as we passed the park.

We passed by the stage where the Hunchback of Notre Dame show takes place on certain days. This wasn't one of those days.

"It's a no-go for Quasimodo," Mickey said.

The next Who Wants to Be a Millionaire was about to start so we ducked a gray cloud and grabbed a seat. Mickey was quiet through most of the show, then went off when the guest in the hot seat picked "B" for his $32,000 question.

"M-I-C," he started. "M-I-C. Get it? The answer is C! I know this is Who Wants to B a Millionaire but if you can't C the answer move over and let a real trivia rat take over. How about getting a lifeline? Better yet, how about getting a life!"

The answer turned out to be D.

We then wrapped up our day at the park by checking out Sounds Dangerous, which at times had about as much lighting as the Dinosaur attraction that we had experienced over at Animal Kingdom.

It was next to an empty theater building, which Mickey explained once housed a Doug live show. Before that it was an interactive Super Star Television show where guests acted out on blue screen stages.

"Why don't you stick around to see Fantasmic," Mickey offered, coming back to his pimping senses as we were ready to leave. "I'm the star of the show. Well, the boring water screens take up most of the stage time but I do have a heroic cameo."

Plush had come to shove. It was time to head on out and get Mickey back into his game-playing joke-spouting mode.

Posted by: RichKoster on May 17, 2003 10:22 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

DVC members can save $8.00 on renting or buying Pal Mickey. When you check in you should get a Complimentary One Day Rental voucher for Pal Mickey with a value of $8.00.You can also use this to lower the $50 purchase price by eight dollars.

Posted by: Disney Campers on May 18, 2003 9:24 am/pm

Lets hear your comments on Pal Mickey
Posted by: RichKoster on May 18, 2003 9:30 am/pm

I give it two white-gloved thumbs way up! Just needed to be "rebooted" (by turning him off then back on again) one time.

UPDATE: My review is in the beginning of this thread.

Posted by: Tink on May 19, 2003 4:38 am/pm

Thanks for the review. Up until this point I had only seen bad reviews.
Posted by: RichKoster on May 19, 2003 5:01 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

It was my pleasure -- truly! -- to try Pal Mickey and write about him. I'll certainly be getting one for me to keep forever when I return to WDW on Friday the 13th next month. Gosh! I wonder if Pal Mickey will have anything special to say if I bring him to the Tower of Terror on Friday the 13th!
:Oo:  :laugh:

sorcererkev wrote:


---------------------QUOTE-------------------
(I'm trying to resist the temptation to buy one on eBay........)
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



Must... resist... paying... high... prices!
:wow:



---------------------QUOTE-------------------
I can't wait till our WDW trip in September so I can buy the little fella!
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



Just remember: He only likes to eat premium-quality batteries! None of that generic stuff and not even the rechargeable kind.
:eyebrow:

Tink wrote:


---------------------QUOTE-------------------
Thanks for the review. Up until this point I had only seen bad reviews.
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



The only thing that went wrong when I had him was one time he wouldn't play games with us when we pressed both of his hands at the same time. Lil' fella musta got tuckered out!
:sleepy:
We had been using him quite a lot. We were on the Tomorrowland Transit Authority ride around Space Mountain at the time, and Carol passed him back to our friends in the other TTA vehicle (with me shouting, "Don't drop him! Disney doesn't need another PeopleMover tragedy!!!") and they turned off his switch then turned him back on - - and he worked fine after that.
:mickey:

Posted by: RichKoster on May 21, 2003 12:48 am/pm

Pal Mickey can now be found at
  • Magic Kingdom - Newsstand (before you enter the MK's left tunnel under the Main Street train station) and the Main Street Cinema
  • Epcot - Camera Center
  • Disney-MGM Studios - The Darkroom
  • Animal Kingdom - Disney Outfitters

:mickey:

Posted by: Goofyteer on May 22, 2003 5:30 am/pm

I read on yahoo.com there's more Pal characters planned. Anyone know about this?
Posted by: RichKoster on May 22, 2003 5:34 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
I read on yahoo.com there's more Pal characters planned. Anyone know about this?
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


Nothing can be verified as of yet. But I betcha!
:wink2:

Posted by: Tinas Travel on May 22, 2003 9:19 am/pm

I want a Pal Eeyore.  I can hear him now, "The line for Space Mountain is only 10 minutes, but I bet that by the time we get there it will be much longer." 8)
Posted by: RichKoster on May 22, 2003 9:24 am/pm

I don't want a Pal Pooh. He might soil my pants.
:o

Posted by: Rufus on May 23, 2003 11:47 am/pm

I'm looking forward to meeting Pal Figaro. Instead of giggling when he has something to say, he purrs and kisses the nearest goldfish!

:tounge:

Posted by: RichKoster on May 24, 2003 4:47 am/pm

I don't want to get a Pal Zazu... his off switch doesn't work and you can't ever shut him up.
:tounge:

Posted by: Rufus on May 25, 2003 5:58 am/pm

Beats visiting the park with Pal Donald. You can't shut him up either, plus you can't understand what he says!

:tounge:

Posted by: RichKoster on May 27, 2003 12:23 am/pm

Hey, Rufus! Didja get your Pal Mickey yet?

It's Friday already where you are, and that means I'm going to buy mine in 17 days!

:crazy: :mickey:   <-That'll be me with my Pal Mickey!

Posted by: Rufus on May 28, 2003 4:53 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE-------------------
Hey, Rufus! Didja get your Pal Mickey yet?
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



Yup, spent a nice day at the Disney-MGM Studios with him last week. Next Tuesday I get to bring him to work and check all the messages on Main Street!



---------------------QUOTE-------------------
 :crazy:  :mickey:    <-That'll be me with my Pal Mickey!
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



Move the ribbon to the other head and it'll look like you and Minnie!

:tounge:

Posted by: RichKoster on May 28, 2003 11:49 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE-------------------
Next Tuesday I get to bring him to work and check all the messages on Main Street!
---------------------QUOTE-------------------



:o
You mean you're going to get paid to play around with Pal Mickey that day?

How do you get a job like yours again?

:eyebrow:

Posted by: RichKoster on June 11, 2003 4:10 am/pm

Pal Mickey will remind you when you are near splash-likely water attractions like the Kali River Rapids in Disney's Animal Kingdom in this way: "Sure looks like fun, but if you wanna play, you better put me away. Heh! These clothes aren't waterproof and if they'd shrink, well uh, I-I-I don't know what I'd do!"

You can put him in your backpack, rent a locker (nearby at Kali River Rapids), or carry a large zip-lock bag with you for this purpose -- or just use a Disney plastic shopping bag from one of the stores.

Posted by: WebTink on June 11, 2003 12:41 am/pm

I'm so glad I came across this thread today!  I had never heard of this delightful addition to the Disney experience!  I think this will be just the thing to hook the four year old!  Will probably have to buy it, but that's okay, sounds worth it!  Can't wait to spend the days with Pal Mickey!  And thanks for the water-feature tips!  I am taking gallon sized ziploc bags and that should be just the thing to keep him dry.  Gawrsh!  I just get more excited every day! 53 days to go!
Posted by: RichKoster on June 26, 2003 4:35 am/pm

Disney's patent for Pal Mickey and any system for guest assistance in a very broad sense.

< Take a look at it here. >

Posted by: RichKoster on June 28, 2003 10:49 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
Pal Mickey can now be found at
  • Magic Kingdom - Newsstand (before you enter the MK's left tunnel under the Main Street train station) and the Main Street Cinema
  • Epcot - Camera Center
  • Disney-MGM Studios - The Darkroom
  • Animal Kingdom - Disney Outfitters

:mickey:
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


Pal Mickey is now also available over the phone if you're going to be staying at the Polynesian with concierge service, according to Disney EchoEar lindamorse.

Has anyone tried to order him through WDW mail-order merchandise lately (at (407) 363-6200)?

Posted by: LilMarcieMouse on June 28, 2003 3:30 am/pm

Thank you so much for the report. I want A Pal Mickey!!!! :love:  Can you get him at the Resorts yet or just in the parks? Sis wants me to rent him first but I  want to buy him. Wish he worked on the Crusie. :mickey:
Posted by: RichKoster on June 28, 2003 4:04 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Marcie!

Yes, the WDW resorts were the first places that Pal Mickey was available to rent or purchase, and that started in April at the resort gift shops. Since May he's been available in the 4 WDW theme parks as well. You can choose to buy him outright or try him for a day or two, renting him - - and if you decide to keep him then it won't cost you any more than if you simply bought him at first.
:mickey:

Posted by: WebTink on June 28, 2003 4:59 am/pm

Hey Marcie!  I'm staying at the Polynesian in August, and I asked the Island Planners (we're staying concierge level), if they would get a Pal Mickey for me (bought outright, of course) and put it in the room for us before we get there.  And they were delighted to do this for me!  I can't wait to see my four-year-old play with him, but mostly I wanted Mickey for ME!  :blush:
Posted by: RichKoster on July 05, 2003 6:44 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

Rose (Disney Echo's < tinkerose >) Folan's < Adults At WDW > website has a < great review of Pal Mickey by  Michelle Richer-Mengerink >.

Check it out!
:nod:

Posted by: Goofyteer on July 06, 2003 12:44 am/pm

I still recall that one article I read somewhere online saying WDW plans on adding other Pal characters, so I just wrote a letter to them asking when they plan on doing it.

Hopefully I'll get an answer soon and I'll let you guys know what it says.

I just got an answer back. They say they aren't currently working on any other characters yet.
 :(

I wonder why that one thing I read on the internet said they had plans for more. At least I recall something like that. Maybe I'll look it up later and put the link up here.

Posted by: RichKoster on Aug. 03, 2003 9:19 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

Contrary to prior reports, Pal Mickey is only available through Disney when you go to Walt Disney World. Here is a letter from Guest Services:

Dear Guest,

 The Pal Mickey is not available through mail order sales.  Please check with Guest Relations at the time of your visit for availability information. We have no further information on this item at this time.

Thank You,
Tina
Walt Disney World
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Posted by: RichKoster on Aug. 06, 2003 2:14 am/pm

From the August 2003 Mickey Monitor, a publication for Walt Disney World Annual Passholders:

Passholder Family Gets Park advice from Pal Mickey

Passholder Cindy DeWitt had never seen a Rhinoceros Iguana in her life. In fact, she had never even heard of a Rhinoceros Iguana until she and her family were introduced to one by none other than Mickey Mouse.

It all happened when the DeWitt family had a chance to experience the ultimate tour guide -- Pal Mickey. He's a talking Mickey toy that shares helpful tips and fun facts with Guests in all four Theme Parks -- and plays fun games at home, too. Pal Mickey accompanied the DeWitts on a visit to Disney's Animal Kingdom® Theme Park.

"He made us notice things that we might have just walked past," Cindy told us. The DeWitts have been to the Park several times, but their trip with Pal Mickey revealed lots of new finds. "While we were walking under the Tree of Life, Mickey told us about the Rhinoceros Iguana. And there he was. We'd never seen him before."

Pal Mickey does even more. Cindy's 11-year old son, Cameron, credited Pal Mickey for prompting the family to take in a fun performance of Tarzan™ Rocks! "We were waling by and he told us the show was about to start, so we went in."

Nine-year-old Andrea was impressed with Pal Mickey, too. "He tells you more about everything!"

If you'd like to know more about Pal Mickey, try him out for yourself. He's available to rent or purchase at select merchandise locations in all four Theme Parks and each Disney Resort.




Copyright 2003. THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY.

Posted by: RichKoster on Aug. 06, 2003 4:02 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

Deb Wills reports "Sunday, August 3, marked the beginning of a four-week trial for a new "Length of Stay" Stroller Rental program that allows guests to rent a stroller or wheelchair for the duration of their visit. The Length of Stay rental applies only to rentals of two or more days, at all four Disney theme parks.

From now until August 9, guests who purchase a Length of Stay Rental will also receive a certificate for a free one-day Pal Mickey rental, which must be used by September 30, 2003. (Guests who keep their rental Pal Mickey or exchange it for a retail toy must still pay the full purchase price of $46.94 plus tax.)"

Reply about the "Length of Stay" Stroller Rental program by clicking here.

Reply to the Pal Mickey discussion by clicking the "add reply" button.

Posted by: RichKoster on Aug. 13, 2003 7:26 am/pm

An opinion by JEANYLASER written into the wrong topic on Aug. 12, 2003 about Pal Mickey was this:

:sorcerer: Pal Mickey is the greatest idea ever in Disney theme park in Orlando, Florida.

Posted by: WebTink on Aug. 13, 2003 7:58 am/pm

We absolutely loved  :hearts: Pal Mickey!  He kept our 4-yr-old entertained all throughout our days at WDW!  And now, he's even got some of the jokes memorized.  That is so cute, to hear a four year old tell a joke right!

I had heard you needed to keep Pal Mickey facing out so he could pick up the signals, but from my experience, he worked just fine, even when he was in my backpack!  I'd hear the little guy vibrate and chortle every time we passed a hot spot.  I didn't always get him out to listen, though.

We didn't take him to Epcot, but I figured that would be a great place to play with him.  He was very busy in Animal Kingdom, and when we were in Toon Town, he directed us to see Minnie because, as he put it, "she's usually around here this time of day."

Pal Mickey got a lot of attention, especially from Minnie!  I think she's in love :hearts:

I give Pal Mickey my solid endorsement, for what it's worth!

Posted by: JEANYLASER on Aug. 25, 2003 2:40 am/pm

:sorcerer: my mom will buy me a pal mickey in epcot.
Posted by: RichKoster on Aug. 25, 2003 2:58 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
:sorcerer: my mom will buy me a pal mickey in epcot.
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


I hope you enjoy yours as much as I do mine.
:nod:

Posted by: JEANYLASER on Aug. 27, 2003 4:24 am/pm

:bowdown: pal mickey will be the best toy in the disney world history. our mom will rent me and my niece a pal mickey in epcot.
Posted by: irishone1979 on Sep. 03, 2003 10:26 am/pm

Can you get Pal Mickey at any of the WDW resorts??  We are going to be staying at the All Star Movies and I want to get one ASAP (my DH agreed that we need one...hee, hee... :)  )

Any info would be appreciated.

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 03, 2003 4:26 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
Can you get Pal Mickey at any of the WDW resorts??  We are going to be staying at the All Star Movies and I want to get one ASAP (my DH agreed that we need one...hee, hee... :)  )

Any info would be appreciated.

---------------------QUOTE-------------------


Hooray for the wisdom of you and your hubby, Heather!
:clap:

By now all of the Disney Resorts should have Pal Mickey in at least one of their souvenEAR shops, and that includes the All Star Resorts. At first they were gradually introduced, but by now they should be in every single resort -- plus you also can get them in selected stores at each of the four main WDW theme parks. For example, at the Magic Kingdom (which is probably going to be the park you first go to, because you have kids that are the perfect age for that one), you can buy (or rent) Pal Mickey right after you pass through the turnstyles: head to your left and before you enter the left-most tunnel under the train tracks, stop in the Newsstand store and you'll find Pal Mickey waiting right there for you.
:mickey:

I keep mine right next to my side of our bed, but I'm not lending him out to anyone!
:no:  :wwww:

Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 04, 2003 12:18 am/pm

NOTE: If you are of the faint at heart, you might want to scroll past this message without looking at the pictures!

Pal Mickey Dissected: What makes him "tick"...


I'm posting with permission some pictures from a Yahoo Pal Mickey group from someone who is researching how Pal Mickey works. In doing that, he dissected one of his Pal Mickeys to take a look inside...

The picture of the circuit board with the 3 black blobs on it (one larger black blob with two smaller ones above it on its left and right) if they were connected would be a Hidden Mickey inside Pal Mickey!

I inquired about what these "blobs" are and got an answer (just a guess) that one covers the Microcontroller, one covers the speech chip, and one covers the memory chip.








Posted by: RichKoster on Sep. 23, 2003 7:09 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

As of Monday 9/22/03, Pal Mickey's price has gone up from $50 (including tax) to $60 (including tax). It is now also $60 for the rental deposit. Beginning in October 2003, you'll be able to get a Pal Mickey that speaks Spanish to you! That version won't be available at the resorts (at least to start) but you'll be able to buy him or rent him at the 4 WDW theme parks as well as at Downtown Disney Marketplace's Once Upon A Toy for purchase only.

He's still worth the price and even though I don't speak much Spanish I'll have my "ears" on trying to hear him speaking another language when I'm back at WDW.
:coolgrin:

And with the new price of Pal Mickey jumping up to $60, I guess that's proof enough that Disney has a hit on its hands. I'm glad I got mine when the price was still $50!
:clapping:

Posted by: irishone1979 on Sep. 24, 2003 8:16 am/pm

Well, I haven't bought mine yet and I wish they wouldn't have raise the price to $60, but I am still going to get one :)  We are going in November and I can't wait to get a Pal Mickey :)
Thanks for the update on the price increase...

There goes my  :dollar:  :dollar:  :dollar:  :dollar:   :laugh:

Posted by: CarolKoster on Sep. 24, 2003 9:23 am/pm

At $60 vs. $50 =  ::choke:: IMHO, YMMV.
Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 09, 2003 12:14 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

Here's a new picture from Disney showing Pal Mickey at the Magic Kingdom:



Personal Pal in the Park

Pal Mickey is a talking, huggable Mickey Mouse toy that shares timesaving tips, fun facts and jokes while guests visit the four Walt Disney World theme parks in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. "It's almost time for the parade!" Pal Mickey says. "We better hurry if we wanna see it!" Available for rental or purchase across Walt Disney World Resort, Pal Mickey enhances a theme park visit by recommending theme park attractions, offering reminders about parades and show times, sharing stories, playing games and helping locate Disney characters in the parks.

Copyright 2003, THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY.

Posted by: Peggo on Oct. 18, 2003 11:26 am/pm

I guess I'll put in my two cents. Before my recient trip I looked at the Pal Mickey :space: and thought, awww how cute and it looks like fun, but since I wasn't traveling with any children I couldn't really justify the $57 purchase.
Well, lucky me, when I got there and saw the live taping of The Wayne Brady Show they gave out Pal Mickey's to the entire audience.
Mickey started vibrating and giggling right away. We had a great time listening to Mickey's tips and the jokes...well... groan... but it was fun.
So...if three adults could enjoy him I'm sure kids would go ga ga. Now I have to figure out how to get him to play those other games. What fun!

So three gloved thumbs up for Pal Mickey from us.

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 18, 2003 3:04 am/pm

That's great, Peggo! I'm happy for you that you won one as being part of the audience!!

Now, how about a trip report? I think it is safe to say that you're the only Disney EchoEar who has attended a taping of The Wayne Brady Show at WDW -- and gotten a free Pal Mickey!
:clapping:

Posted by: Peggo on Oct. 19, 2003 8:52 am/pm

Oh wow. I didn't notice the p[ictures of Mickey's "guts" before. Cool. I love seeing how things work.
And I'll see what I can do about that trip report.

We all enjoyed our Pal Mickey. Imagine 3 adults snuggling the fuzzy little guy to their ear every time he giggled. He was very helpful. I plan to bring him on the next trip. Oh, he even has a nice belt clip to attach him to your belt, belly bag or backpack.

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 19, 2003 4:46 am/pm

To read more about Peggo's trip, read her "Trip Report Oct 8-14 2003 - 3 Adults and a Mouse" article which she posted in the Adults at WDW forum here on the Disney Echo.
:)

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 20, 2003 4:29 am/pm

The Spanish-speaking version of Pal Mickey is available for rent or purchase in the following locations:
  • Main Street Cinema - Magic Kingdom
  • Darkroom - MGM Studios
  • Camera Center - Epcot
  • Disney Outfitters - Disney's Animal Kingdom
  • Once Upon A Toy - Downtown Disney Marketplace (purchase only at this location)


Posted by: Goofyteer on Oct. 21, 2003 1:05 am/pm



---------------------QUOTE BEGIN-------------------
At $60 vs. $50 =  ::choke:: IMHO, YMMV.
---------------------QUOTE-------------------


They already raised the price?! Man...

Oh and Carol, what does "YMMV" stand for?

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 21, 2003 2:42 am/pm

YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary (meaning, that's what I think but you might have a different opinion).

And for those who don't know, IMHO is In My Humble Opinion.
:smart:

Posted by: RichKoster on Oct. 26, 2003 10:25 am/pm

Yoo Hoo, Disney EchoEars!

:mickey: A little mousie told me that Pal Mickey is now transmitting more and more time and location-based information.

For instance, in the Magic Kingdom he'll tell you about the
show that's about to happen at the castle when you're nearby (like around the caroussel), when Pooh and Buzz have pretty short lines, and when Genie is doing Character greetings by the Aladdin flying carpets ride.

At Epcot, Pal Mickey can also be heard commenting on Mission: SPACE now.

He's still silent about Mickey's PhilharMagic, though. I guess he's too shy to toot his own horn.
:wwww:

Posted by: RichKoster on Nov. 02, 2003 11:03 am/pm

A water bottle strap hooked around Pal Mickey's neck might be a little more reliable than the clip that Pal Mickey comes with. Your mileage may vary though...
:mickey:

end


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