Disney Springs

Tickets Available Now for Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire Experience

by on October 11, 2017

Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire

©Star Wars

Recently I told you about a brand new experience that Guests would be able to take part in called Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire. This is a new collaboration between Lucasfilm, ILMxLAB, and THE VOID that will take Guests into the Star Wars world via a hyper-reality experience at two new new VOID Experience Centers. These centers will be found at locations at both Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort and at Disney Springs at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Guests will be able to walk freely and untethered throughout the multisensory experience in groups of four. During the mission, under the orders of the budding rebellion, the teams will go undercover as stormtroopers to capture Imperial intelligence that is vital to the budding rebellion’s survival. The experience will take your team to the molten planet of Mustafar. Alongside K-2S0, your team must navigate through an enemy facility where you will walk into danger at every turn. Guests will grab their blaster, solve puzzles, and fight giant lava monsters in an effort to fulfill your team’s orders.

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Walt Disney World Ice Cream Crawl

by on August 28, 2017

ice cream crawl passport cover

Leave it to artist Donna Yan’s adorable Dole Whip couple to make us simultaneously want Dole Whip and a Mickey Bar!

I don’t know about you, but one of my absolute must-have indulgences at Walt Disney World is ice cream. Add into that my love of coming up with themes or challenges for our Disney trips, and you get a recipe for success. (Specifically, you get a Walt Disney World Ice Cream Crawl!) My husband and I are apt to try a variety of challenges on our trips. We might focus on only getting snacks from places we’ve never been to before. Or we might make all of our table service reservations for restaurants we’ve never visited. Or we’ll do a trip dedicated to resort dining. (I’m just now noticing the theme of food in a lot of our planning…) For our upcoming trek, we decided to crank it up a bit and focus on ice cream.

I knew from the very beginning that not only did I want to do an ice cream crawl, but I wanted it to have its very own passport. I was inspired by the Epcot festival passports that detail out what food items you can find where. Seriously, what better way to keep track of all the amazing ice cream options than to have a dedicated ice cream passport?! (You can download your very own passport later in the article.) Let’s back things up a bit and discuss how the ice cream crawl was formed.

Simply put, the ice cream crawl was born out of an intense desire for ice cream. (Okay, it was actually as a result of the Whole30 we were in the middle of, but don’t tell anyone else that. It’s not like we were dying for sugar or anything…) First, I needed to decide what locations would be fair game for inclusion in the passport. All four theme parks were obvious, but what about resorts? Water parks? Disney Springs? At the end of the day, I went with locations that we would be reasonably likely to frequent. This included all four theme parks, Disney Springs, and the area around Crescent Lake. It’s so easy to pop out of Epcot and over to the Crescent Lake resorts that including those seemed appropriate. (And we really needed Ample Hills Creamery in there!)

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Raglan Road’s Great Irish Hooley Returns This Labor Day Weekend

by on August 17, 2017

Great Irish HooleyLooking for something fun to do at Walt Disney World this upcoming Labor Day Weekend? Consider visiting Raglan Road for their Great Irish Hooley! The Hooley is a unique Irish festival that is packed with some of the best Irish music you’ll hear, as well as other entertainment opportunities.

Guests who attend The Great Irish Hooley will be able to also enjoy contemporary Irish cuisine, Irish craft beers, hand-crafted cocktails. The Great Irish Hooley promises a fantastic music festival for all who drop by or reserve a table. This year’s Hooley entertainment include:

  • Elevation: Appearing at Raglan Road for the first time in four years, Elevation is a U2 tribute act who will play two special nighttime shows on September 2 and 3. The band will be paying homage to the U2 world tour celebrating 30 years of the ground-breaking Joshua Tree album.
  • Lisa Canny Band: Combining traditional Irish, R&B and Hip Hop, the Lisa Canney Band will appear at Raglan Road for three weeks beginning August 30 and will perform nightly during the Hooley.
  • Gary O’Meara Band: A traditional Irish banjo player with a prolific career as a solo artist and as a member of multiple legendary Irish music acts.
  • The Raglan Roots Coalition: This authentic Irish house band will be performing Roots style. Think soul-rocking Celtic bluegrass with some funky roots beats.
  • Jake Richardson: A singer-songwriter-musician from Dublin whose passion for music inspires audiences as he entertains with unique vocals and catchy songs.
  • Over the Bar: A vibrant four-piece, predominantly Irish traditional group that includes folk, blues and soul.
  • Rollickin’ Rua: This fresh traditional Irish music ensemble from Ireland and Scotland create a cacophonous crescendo of music and song with their clash of Celtic cultures.
  • Aaron O’Sullivan: A singer-songwriter and guitarist from County Cork who mixes traditional Irish ballads and modern Irish songs.

In addition, The Great Irish Hooley will include The Raglan Road Irish Dancers. And champion Irish dancer Ciaran Keating, Raglan Road’s show choreographer, will host an entertaining event that traces the origins of Irish dance from earliest jigs and reels through contemporary times.

The event will also include Celtic face painting.

The Great Irish Hooley kicks off beginning at 3:00 p.m. on Friday, September 1, and continues each day and night through late Monday evening.

To book a table for the event, click here. Reservations are strongly encouraged.

Brand New Immersive Star Wars Experience Coming to Disney Springs and Downtown Disney

by on August 3, 2017

Today, it was announced that a brand new collaboration between Lucasfilm, ILMxLAB, and THE VOID will take Guests literally into the Star Wars world via a hyper-reality experience. Called Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, Guests will be able to be thrust into the Star Wars universe at two new new VOID Experience Centers. These centers will be found at unannounced locations at both Downtown Disney at the Disneyland Resort and at Disney Springs at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire will allow fans to move freely in an untethered, social, and multi-sensory experience. Guests will be able to interact with friends, fans, and even some characters.

Star Wars

©Star Wars

“At THE VOID, we combine the magic of illusions, advanced technology and virtual reality to create fully immersive social experiences that take guests to new worlds,” said Curtis Hickman, co-founder and chief creative officer at THE VOID. “A truly transformative experience is so much more than what you see with your eyes; it’s what you hear, feel, touch, and even smell. Through the power of THE VOID, guests who step into Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire won’t just see this world, they’ll know that they are part of this amazing story.”

The fun begins sometime during this holiday season. Stay tuned to the blog as I find out more information about this ground-breaking experience.

American Idol Auditions to Begin at Disney Springs

by on August 3, 2017

©Rikki Niblett

Have you always wanted to hear the words “This is American Idol” in person? Well, you may very well be in luck.

For those who don’t know, ABC is bringing back the singing competition and auditions for this new season are kicking off at Disney Springs on August 17. So, if you think you can be the next “American Idol“, you’ll want to audition in front of of the American Idol producers as they cruise into town with their bus tour. (Sorry, Katy Perry – one of the new celebrity judges – won’t be there.)

Guests are encouraged to arrive early, as parking will be available beginning at 4:00 a.m.  There will be no overnight camping, so don’t arrive before 4:00 a.m.! Parking will be available at the surface parking lot on the West Side of Disney Springs, near House of Blues and Cirque du Soleil.

Registration will begin at 6:00 a.m. and auditions will start at 8:00 a.m. Do keep in mind that registration will close at 12:00 p.m or sooner, depending on capacity. Do keep in mind that auditions will take place outdoors. 

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Daisy’s Best Week Ever, July 27, 2017: Olivia’s and Christmas in July!

by on July 27, 2017

Hello, friends! Thanks for joining us for another Best Week Ever. This week is not one to read if you’re feeling hungry, because we’re visiting Olivia’s Cafe for a scrumptious breakfast. After that we’re checking out Christmas in July at Disney Springs and maybe even showing off some new Dooney & Bourke patterns. Let’s get going!

When we were hunting restaurants to feature I realized that I hadn’t visited Olivia’s at Disney’s Old Key West Resort in several years. I had very fond memories of this dining spot, so I had high expectations. I was surprised how crowded the resort was at 9am. We would have had a very tough time finding a parking spot an hour later. We were scrambling a bit to make our reservation, but arrived just in time.

At the podium we were seated quickly and found the dining room to be quiet. However, there were several people waiting. It seems like this is a spot you can get into without a reservation, but it’s much faster if you book online. There are several dining rooms and we were seated in a smaller one pictured below. All those frames contain guest photos, mostly from the 90s. I immediately felt at home and settled in for our meal.

Don’t you want to see our fancy breakfast? Click below to read more from our adventure this week! 🙂

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Terralina Crafted Italian Coming to Disney Springs

by on July 11, 2017

Terralina Crafted ItalianDisney Springs is still continually adding new restaurants, and now we have learned what will be replacing Portobello Country Italian Trattoria. Terralina Crafted Italian is being brought to life courtesy of James Beard Award-winning Chef Tony Mantuano this fall in The Landing.

The new restaurant will be reminiscent of an Italian home, with an open kitchen, dining rooms with a unique décor and a new veranda bar outside the main entrance and sweeping views of Lake Buena Vista. The restaurant will transport guests to the Lake District of Italy with its authentic flavors.

Terralina will be open for lunch and dinner. Dishes will include artisanal pizzas and fresh vegetable items fired up in a wood-burning oven. Two new signatures items will be added, mussels and a grilled pork chop, along with favorites from Portobello such as the antipasti platter and signature pastas.

Stay tuned to the blog for further info about this new addition soon!

Shopping Card Promotion for Disney Springs

by on July 5, 2017

Disney Springs

©Rikki Niblett

Beginning July 10, Guests who purchase a limited-edition $100 Shopping Card for Disney owned and operated merchandise locations at Disney Springs will receive an additional $25 bonus Shopping Card to be used on future visits. This bonus shopping card is redeemable beginning the following day of purchase.

Both shopping cards are redeemable at Disney owned and operated merchandise locations at Disney Springs, Earport and Magic of Disney at Orlando International Airport, and the Shop Disney Parks app. The special shopping cards may not be used at any Disney Springs Operating Participant locations or other merchandise locations found at the Walt Disney World Resort.

For those looking to take advantage of this special promotion, it is only available for purchase via World of Disney. The $100 shopping card has no expiration date, but the $25 Bonus Shopping Card expires on October 29, 2017.

Guests may use the Shopping Cards at the following locations:

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Where to Find Disney Dooney and Bourke Bags

by on July 3, 2017

DVC 25th Anniversary Disney Dooney and Bourke

I’m always looking for ways to incorporate the Disney magic in my everyday life, and what better way than through my personal style? Disney Dooney and Bourke bags have been incredibly popular since their parks debut years ago and have maintained popularity due to their vast variety of collections, designs, and sizes. However, Disney Dooney and Bourke bags can’t be found at every shop or kiosk. This is why, my fellow shoppers, I’m revealing where to find Disney Dooney and Bourke bags.

The Basics

Dooney and Bourke at Disney ranges from wallets and wristlets to large duffles. As its popularity has increased, Disney has been releasing patterns for all kinds of events, like RunDisney races, DVC, and Flower and Garden. Prices range from $100 for smaller items up to $400 for the largest pieces. If you have a Disney Visa or certain Annual Passes, you may qualify for a merchandise discount if you’re buying in Walt Disney World, so be sure to ask!

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Julia’s Best Week Ever, June 8, 2017: Birthday Girl Weekend Requests

by on June 8, 2017

Our little girl is growing up so fast. Unfortunately, the week before her seventh birthday, she ended up breaking her glasses and catching a cold, so we pushed her actual birthday celebrating back a couple weeks. She had a couple unusual requests: another round of mini-golf at Winter Summerland (but this time on the Summer course), and a meal at Rainforest Café (a restaurant where we’ve never dined). Ah, the wants of a seven-year-old, eh?

Winter Summerland, the mini golf course next to Blizzard Beach, had a decent crowd when we arrived shortly after opening. Still, it was less than a 20 minute wait before our “tee time” came up.

 

Many of the holes have themes that are similar to its winter counterpart, but looking at the fun themes, poems, and décor for each hole still makes for an amusing time out.

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