Posts Tagged ‘merchandise’

Universal Merchandise Review – Transformers: The Ride 3D’s Evac Figure Review

by on August 5, 2013

MMM_LogoWelcome to a special edition of The Magic, the Memories, and Merch! Today we’re going to examine an exclusive action figure that is only sold at the Universal Studios theme parks and is based around the attraction Transformers: The Ride-3D.

Transformers: The Ride-3D was originally built at Universal Studios Singapore in 2011, followed by a Universal Studios Hollywood version in 2012, and the most recent one opened in Orlando on June 20th, 2013. In this 3D dark ride, guests board the Autobot Evac, a character created exclusively for the attraction. Throughout the attraction, Evac interacts with many of the most well-known Transformer characters including Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Megatron, and Starscream. In many ways the Transformers attraction is the journey of Evac, who starts off as rookie and is given a trial-by-fire which eventually ends with Evac being a primary reason the Autobots save the day and defeat the Decepticons.

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The Magic, The Memories, and Merch! July photo report for the Disney Outlet Store

by on July 31, 2013

TP_MagicMemoriesMerch_LogoWe all have our favorite stores in the Walt Disney World Parks and Resorts to get our fill of merchandise. Whether it’s the World of Disney store in Downtown Disney, the Emporium on Main Street at the Magic Kingdom, or Everything POP! at the Pop Century Resort, it’s not that hard to find a gift shop filled to the brim with the latest Disney Vinylmation, t-shirts, and plushes. But did you know that there is a place where all the merchandise Disney has a hard time selling ends up? A magical store filled with discount prices and Disney-related items that even Guy Selga wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the Disney outlet stores.

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August Art Events Coming to Disneyland’s WonderGround Art Gallery

by on July 29, 2013

Art by Matt Spangler

Attention all deep-pocketed devotees of collectible Disney artwork: several exclusive new merchandise events are coming next months to the Disneyland Resort’s WonderGround Gallery at Downtown Disney.

All of the above appearances are from 1pm to 4pm. In addition, the monthly Pop Fusion event (August 24, 11am to 1pm) will feature Sean D’Anconia, John Coulter, Sam Carter and Noah. The WonderGround Gallery is always free and open to the public.

inside the park, artist Katie Kelly debuts her new “Movie Time with Mickey” series on August 17&18 from 10am to 4pm at Disneyland’s new Disneyana shop (formerly the Disney Gallery). Park admission is required.

 

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Celebrate the Tiki Room’s 50th Anniversary This Week at Disneyland

by on June 23, 2013

Happy birthday Jose, Fritz, Pierre, and Michael! Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, known as the first Audio-Animatronic theme park attraction, opened its doors 50 years ago this week in 1963. This spectacle of singing flowers, wisecracking birds, and chanting idols has gone through a few changes over the decades, but the playful Polynesian spirt Walt intended is still fully intact, at least in the Anaheim installation.

If you are visiting Disneyland this week, grab a Dole Whip and stop in for an air-conditioned show or two, not forgetting to arrive early enough for the outdoor preshow. Better yet, it you have the spare bucks, swing by the Disneyland Hotel on 6/28-29 for the Enchanted Tiki Room 50th Anniversary Merchandise Event. The weekend features the opportunity to buy exclusive Vinylmation figures, posters, and other artwork, along with encounters with Disney Legends Rolly Crump and Bob Gurr, and artist SHAG.

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Free Stuff at Disney World: Part Two – MORE Free Disney

by on April 24, 2013

A while ago, we published some tips about FREE things you can get at Walt Disney World. Well, we’re back now with more. In addition to our previous list of freebies, here is a whole new batch of suggestions for free things you can get or do to enhance your Disney vacation experience. Thanks to the many readers who gave us ideas for additional items to include.

FOOD

Free cookies and cider at the Wilderness Lodge at Christmas.

Free cookies and cider at the Wilderness Lodge at Christmas.

  • Tasting portions. You’re not sure that Junior is actually going to eat that kids’ meal sweet n’ sour chicken they’re serving at the quick service restaurant in Epcot’s China? Well, ask them for a taste. Many restaurants on property will be happy to provide you with a tasting-size portion of an item to help you decide what to order. Just let them know what you need.
  • S’mores. The moderate and deluxe resorts often list a campfire on their recreation schedule. These feature cast members armed with sticks, marshmallows, chocolate bars and graham crackers, ready to share with passing guests. There’s no requirement that you be staying at the resort to participate. Campfires usually start around dusk, but schedules are variable. Unlike the campfire at Fort Wilderness, which charges for marshmallows and s’mores kits, the hotel campfires are typically sparsely attended, so they’re great if you want to just pop in for a moment or grab a second s’more without seeming greedy.

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How Much Do Disney World Souvenirs Cost?

by on April 17, 2013

I often hear guests planning Disney World trips ask, “How much should I budget for souvenirs?” I find this tricky to answer because there is a near unlimited supply of things to buy at Walt Disney World, with prices ranging from free to tens of thousands of dollars. Depending on your personal preferences, you can spend anything from nothing to a full year’s paycheck on Disney souvenirs during a single trip.

To give you an idea of what you might find during your Disney visit, here’s a sample of merchandise available for purchase in the WDW parks and resorts. These photos and prices were gathered during two Disney trips in early 2013. The exact items may or may not be available during your trip later in the year, but the general pricing should remain in the same ballpark. For example, the exact same t-shirt may be out of stock in the fall, but you will find plenty of tees at a similar price point.

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Moving Merchandise at Walt Disney World: Getting Goods to Your Hotel and Shipping Stuff Home

by on April 10, 2013

In addition to park touring and dining, shopping ranks right at the top of popular activities at Walt Disney World (at least with me anyway). If you ever find yourself ending your vacation with more stuff than you started, there are lots of ways to get your stuff back home. Here are the answers to frequently asked questions about this topic:

Wait! Before you get started with all the info about shipping, I drove to Walt Disney World and don’t have to worry about shipping (there’s loads of room in the car!), but I do have a quick question about carrying around purchases I’ve made in the parks. Basically, I don’t want to do it. What are my options?

No worries. Nearly all of the in-park merchandise shops have two ways of helping you deal with purchases in the short term. You can either have your merchandise sent directly to your hotel, or you can have it sent to a “Package Pickup” office at the front of the park.

There are plenty of signs in the WDW shops to remind you that you have many options for getting your merchandise purchases home.

What does “Package Pickup” mean?

Package Pickup is an in-park delivery/holding service. You buy something and instead of having to carry it around all day, it’s sent to an office at the front of the theme park (or possibly back if you’re at Epcot) so you can pick it up later.

How does this work?

Let’s say you’re at Mouse Gear at Epcot and you want to buy a couple of sweatshirts for the folks back home. You don’t want to schlep them all over the World Showcase while you spend the afternoon drinking around the world. So, WHILE YOU’RE AT THE REGISTER, tell the sales clerk that you’d like to use the Package Pickup service. They will give you a very simple form to fill out (name and address basics). You get a receipt and you’re on your way. Later in the day, return to the Package Pick Office, hand them the receipt, and your sweatshirts will once again be yours.

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Enchanted Tiki Room 50th Anniversary Event Tickets Now On Sale

by on April 8, 2013

Are you a devoted fan of Disneyland’s original Audio-Animatronics attraction, home to dozens of frolicking feathered friends (and the delectable Dole Whip)? Then you’re going to want to dig deep any pony up for passes to the Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room 50th Anniversary Event, scheduled for June 28-29 at the Disneyland Hotel exhibit hall.

Event admission starts at $85 per person for the “Jose package,” which includes admission to the event store, silent auctions and trading opportunities, and a presentation featuring Disney Legends Rolly Crump and Bob Gurr. For an additional $185, you can meet popular retro artist SHAG at an evening cocktail reception.

The real reason people pay big bucks to attend these merchandise events is the opportunity to spend even more on exclusive and limited-edition souvenirs. A “random selection process” is used to distribute purchase opportunities among registrants for rare items, while other “open edition” artwork may be available online and in resort stores after the event.

Tickets are limited and can be purchased now online. If similar past events for the Haunted Mansion are any indication, you’ll want to order your tickets now if you plan on attending. Here is the complete event itinerary:

June 28, 2013 (5pm – 9pm)

  • Early Registration (including pick-up of Random Selection Process Merchandise)
  • Event Store
  • Trading Area

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Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Princess Dresses at Disney World

by on October 17, 2012

If you’ve ever seen a TV commercial or promotional video for Walt Disney World, then you’ve certainly seen images of young girls wearing Disney princess dresses in the theme parks. This iconography is so prevalent that it’s easy to get the impression that ball gown attire is mandatory for every elementary-school-age child entering the Magic Kingdom.

Cinderella dress sold at WDW, fall 2012. Click to enlarge.

While many girls do choose to wear princess dresses for some of their time at Walt Disney World, this is certainly not a requirement for any activity at the parks. Your daughter might love to dress up, or she might be completely uncomfortable in princess attire. Both opinions are perfectly OK. You should follow your child’s lead on whether to consider princess dresses as part of your vacation plan.

Here’s the complete scoop on how to navigate the princess dress situation in a way that makes sense for your family.

Do most girls wear princess dresses at Walt Disney World?

When you’re just walking around the park, you’ll see just a small percentage of girls ages about 3 to 8 wearing princess costumes, maybe 5%. However, there are some places at the parks where the percentage of girls in princess attire will be much higher.

My non-scientific, personal observation is that something along the lines of 50-60% of the preschool and elementary age girls at the princess-themed character meals will be wearing princess dresses. Note that this also means that 40-50% of the girls there will NOT be wearing gowns. Very few girls older than age 8 or 9 will be wearing princess dresses at meals, or anywhere else.

Ariel dress sold at WDW, fall 2012. Click to enlarge.

Something on the order of 80% of the girls getting makeovers at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique (BBB) will be sporting some form of princess attire. Similarly, something on the order of 80-90% of the children attending Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party will be wearing costumes. These might be princess gowns, but could just as easily be something else entirely.

My own three daughters did lots of princess dress-up at home, but never chose to wear gowns while at Walt Disney World, not even at the princess meals or the BBB. That was their choice. They never felt uncomfortable that other girls were wearing dresses at character meals while they were not. You should use your judgment about your own child’s personality about whether you think she would feel left out or sad if other girls are dressed in gowns while she is not.

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Last Week at Disneyland Resort (6/17/2012 – 6/23/2012)

by on June 25, 2012

Welcome once again to our mostly-weekly wrap-up of what’s been happening at Disney’s Anaheim resort. Deepest apologies to anyone left bereft by the absence of this column, but the Touring Plans team was obviously occupied by a teensy-tiny little Grand Reopening that you may have heard about. Fret not: we’re back to bring you the news of everything that’s happened in the week since Cars Land and Buena Vista Street were unveiled to public.

Crowd Calendar

The new attractions at Disney California Adventure have rewritten attendance rules at the resort, and redefined what “busy” means.

Quietest Day: Thanks to Annual Pass blackouts, Saturday 6/23 was only a 3.8 at Disneyland and 5.4 at Disney California Adventure.

Busiest Day: Tuesday 6/19 was unofficially reported by Al Lutz as the highest-attended day in the history of Disneyland Resort, until the record was broken again on Wednesday with a 4.4 in Disneyland and 9.9 at DCA.

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