Posts Tagged ‘merchandise’

Classic Disney Souvenir: The Cut Paper Silhouette

by on October 27, 2013

One of favorite Disney souvenirs has absolutely nothing to do with Mickey, Minnie, or any other Disney character. It’s all about my kids and their beautiful faces (just one mom’s opinion :-)) captured in a moment of stillness. Of course I’m talking about the Cut Paper Silhouette. These miniature works of art are created on the spot, right at Walt Disney World. They’re a unique instant heirloom, and as an added bonus they’re sold at a very reasonable price point. Here’s what you need to know:

Having a silhouette portrait cut on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom.

Having a silhouette portrait cut on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom.

What exactly is a Cut Paper Silhouette?

Pretty much what it sounds like. You pose for an artist who cuts a portrait of your profile from plain black paper, resulting in a shadow-like image.

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Universal Orlando Merchandise Video Review: Interactive Marauder’s Map from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

by on October 19, 2013

All those who have seen or read the Harry Potter stories have probably wished they had a magical Marauder’s Map to surreptitiously surveil their kids or co-workers. Since opening in 2010 with The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando‘s Islands of Adventure, Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods (located at the exit of the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride) has stocked souvenir Marauder’s Maps that, while handsomely detailed, are decidedly inert.

As of a couple weeks ago, Filch’s has begun selling a new electronic interactive version of the Marauder’s Map that is exclusive to Universal Parks and the Harry Potter Studio Tour in London. The new maps, which retail for $59.95, feature light-up footsteps and sound effects that are triggered by a “magic” wand.

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SATURDAY SIX: Top Six Reasons We Loved the 2013 Epcot Food & Wine Festival

by on October 5, 2013

The Saturday Six is a weekly look at the most interesting, most fun, and sometimes even the most outrageous things within the theme park world that we all love so much. Whether it’s checking out the World’s Largest Hard Rock Cafe in CityWalk, a look at Marvel Superhero Island in Islands of Adventure, or even going to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, the Saturday Six is your personal guide to experiencing the very best Orlando has to offer.


Photo courtesy of Morgan Crutchfield

This week’s Saturday Six looks at the Top Six Reasons We Loved the 2013 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. An annual event that originally started in 1995, Food & wine has grown each year and has become one of Orlando’s signature events of the fall. Over 25 marketplaces are placed around World Showcase and each bring their own unique food and drink offerings that offer guests the amazing opportunity to challenge their culinary palate and experience dining opportunities that just don’t exist in the theme park world during the rest of the year. But that’s not all, Food & Wine has a whole bunch of other stuff going on at the same time including seminars, concerts, and even the chance to meet celebrities from the world of food and wine. We loved this year’s festival but what are our favorite parts? For that we need to start the list~!

(Remember, you can click on any picture to see the full size version)


The Cranberry Bog (presented by Ocean Spray)

#6 – The Cranberry Bog

I don’t know what it is about it, but I am completely mesmerized by the cranberry bog. At night, it actually looks like it could fit in well over at Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights. During the day Ocean Spray has representatives who will guide guests through the process or harvesting cranberries. Here you’ll find out that cranberries grow on lung running vines and Ocean Spray (along with other cranberry farmers) use rake-like tools to brush them into water. Because the cranberries have air pockets in them, they float, so the berries are then collected en masse. I love watching people wade through the cranberry bog and continue to try to wrap my mind around the fact that something like this exists in the real world. It also will allow me to drop some knowledge bombs during my next Thanksgiving dinner when I explain where the cranberry sauce comes from and – as a bonus – there are free packs of Craisins nearby the bog at the Ocean Spray booth.

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The Magic, The Memories, and Merch! September 2013 Photo Report of the Disney Outlet Store

by on September 30, 2013

MMM_LogoWe all have our favorite stores in the Walt Disney World parks and resorts to get our fill of merchandise. Whether it’s World of Disney in Downtown Disney Marketplace, Villains in Vogue at DHS, or Everything Pop! at the Pop Century Resort , it’s not that hard finding 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 truly magical store filled with discount prices and bewildering items straight form the House of Mouse? Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you The Disney Outlet Store.

There are actually two Disney outlet stores in Orlando. Both are in Orlando Premium Outlet shopping complexes, and they are called Disney’s Character Warehouse, presumably because The Land Of Misfit Toys was already trademarked. There is one Character Warehouse located on International Drive close to Universal Studios (4951 International Dr, Orlando, FL 3281), and the other is on Vineland Avenue, right across I-4 near the exits to Disney World (8200 Vineland Ave, Orlando, FL 3282). Today we are going to look at the location near Disney.


Where wishes are granted, dreams are fulfilled, and prices are slashed.

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Universal Merchandise Review – A Look At Universal’s Uni-Minis

by on September 22, 2013

MMM_LogoWelcome to The Magic, The Memories, and Merch! This month we’re going to look at Universal’s Uni-Minis.

Similar in size to Disney’s popular Vinylmation, Uni-Minis differ in a couple ways. While the vast majority of Vinylmations are repainted versions of the classic Mickey mold, almost all of the Uni-Minis are more in line with Disney’s Park Starz series, which eschews the traditional Mickey form and instead lets the artists create whatever they want. The Uni-Minis do have their version of the Mickey mold, and it is in the form of a generic looking bear. These figures are usually limited editions and produced for specific events like Grad Bash or Mardi Gras.


Haunted Mansion Bride from Disney’s Park Starz next to Minion from Universal’s Uni-Minis

The heft of a Uni-Mini is also slightly less than a Vinylmation. At $12.95 per figure  (same as a standard Vinylmation), the Uni-Minis feel flimsier than their Disney counterpart, although the style of each figure is closer to the $18.95 Park Starz series. There is articulation in both the head and arms of almost all the Uni-Minis.

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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.


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.


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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