Sunday, April 24, 2011


In honor of TRON: Legacy coming out last year, Disney created a nightly promotional event called ElecTRONica. Taking you from the real world, through the portal, and onto the Grid. They literally transformed Hollywood Pictures Backlot at California Adventure into a whole new land! It was so popular that despite it supposing to end months ago, they have extended its running though Labor Day 2011.

There they have everything from a full functioning Flynn's Arcade, including Flynn Tokens and the most popular arcade games from the 80's, to grabbing a favorite tasty beverage from the End of Line club! Not only that but they have entertainment everywhere. Identity Disk jugglers, to TRON Dancers fill the streets, along with your favorite techno music pumping through the air. My favorite of all the entertainment, is Laser Man. There really isn't a way of describing his act, you just have to see it to get the full effect. Everything can be seen in the video link HERE. YouTube will have none of my video, so I've resorted to Vimeo. Its an overview of ElecTRONica as a whole, then the second half is Laser Man. Enjoy...

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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Entertainment Designer Forum 2011

         Let me just start off by saying I could listen to these creative minds talk for hours. The stories they shared were extremely entertaining. There were two panels of speakers, one at 6:30 and the other at 9. They were connected by an auction of assorted props from HHN, Howl-O-Scream, and some Harry Potter goodies. Both last year and this years event was held at the Mad Cow Theater in Downtown Orlando.

          Literally everything about this event was great, because not only did it give a chance for people like me to meet big names in the theme park industry, but it was also for an amazing cause. Every single bit of profit made there went to the American Cancer Society Relay for Life, and it was in memory of Stephanie Girard, a college and friend of most all the speakers. They said last year they raised roughly $6,000 which is simply amazing, every bit counts. I don't know yet how much was made this year, but I can only hope it topped last year.

          Both sessions were hosted by Universal Show Director Michael Aiello and went as followed; all of the speakers introduced themselves and told a bit of what they do in their respected fields, then opened up the floor for any questions. I love question and answer sessions because they often lead to very interesting topics and discussions.

          If I talked about everything that was brought up throughout the night I'd have a small book, and a better memory then I've got, so I'll talk about a few favorites. It was great talking to T.J. Manarino about his work on Double Dare, and Legends of the Hidden Temple. Being a 90's baby those shows are very close to heart, and seeing as though TV in general is lacking quite a bit these days it was nice to talk about the good ol' days. I also loved watching James Keaton talk about his first experiences playing Jack the Clown. I could see and hear a little bit of Jack in him...or was it the other way around? Listening to the countless hours and detail Eric Baker put into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is very impressive. When asked he mentioned that although there was no official count, there were thousands of props used though out the land.

          It seems that with every passing year this event will get even more popular, and I have nothing but great things to say about it. I cannot wait to attend 2012!

6:30 Session:
From left to right: Michael Aiello, Patrick Braillard, TJ Mannarino, James Keaton, Mary Nesler, Eric Baker, and Rick Spencer.

9:00 Session:
From left to right: Kim Gromoll, Doug Sauls, Robbi Lepre, Ray Kiem, Cindy White, and David Hughes.
 A few of the items auctioned off:

If you or anyone you know would like to donate to Universal's Donation Team for American Cancer Society Relay for Life, head here to do so: ACF Universal Relay Rangers, it is greatly appreciated:)

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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Walt Disney World Value Resorts

          There is no better feeling then finally checking in to your favorite Disney resort after a long day of travel, and even after all that hard work, you're still to excited to sleep knowing that just next day, you will head to the place where dreams come true! Well just recently, I had the opportunity to wonder around some of the value resorts to broaden my outlook on the hotels.
          Many people feel that they are on the lower end, but in my opinion, they are to an extent, but the giant characters around every turn make up for it! Our stop this time was to the All-Star Movies!

This hotel opened periodically throughout 1999, the first time on January 15 with the Mighty Ducks and 101 Dalmatians, then on March 1st opened Fantasia and the Love Bug buildings, then finally completing the hotel on April 15th with the Toy Story buildings! Construction began late 1992, that’s 7 years in the making! It is located in the Animal Kingdom resort area.

I was pleasantly surprised to see how nice the lobby and gift show area was, there were movie set spotlights shining around the shop and the surrounding theme of early Hollywood.

Next up was the World Premiere Food Court, which I loved! There were five different stands you could get various foods from, sort of like the food pods in the Star Light Cafe in the Magic Kingdom. They were named the Majestic, the Lyric, the Grand, Roxy, and the Rialto. All named after different types of famous theaters serving all kinds of different food.(Pasta, BBQ, Deli exc.) The Grand was great for a quick snack, or to grab something prepackaged to take up to the room for later. 

I came across this amazing Tie-Dye Cheese Cake, I'll be honest, I never got a chance to try it, but the fact that it was rainbow food makes it awesome in my book!

This is sort of straying away from the review, but it's not to often to see the forgotten Disney movie Atlantis. I don't want to put it down because I haven't fully seen it, but it must not of done as well as they had hoped.

Now heading out into the courtyard you immediately see why these hotels are so famous, the giant figurers! This section was Fantasia, and you can see the book is opening and letting out all the characters to tell their story.

You can tell this soldier has definitely served his time.

Now we come to the 101 Dalmatians section of the hotel. Every little kid, and the kids at heart, can't help but run around falling over things because their eyes are fix up in the air. Pongo standing at 30 feet and Perdita at 25 tower over you. One night here and you’ll be seeing spots for days!

Next stop is my personal favorite, Toy Story. I love this area because of how it’s laid out. To enter you have to walk into Andy’s room, his “Keep Out” sign didn’t work on me!

To your right you immediately see a 30 foot tall Woody doll slouched over against a bookshelf. I think this is an extremely cool concept, because now you are the one that’s toy sized.

Upon looking at the books closer I noticed titles like “Tin Toy” and “The Adventures of Andre and Wally B.” which are some of the names of Pixar’s very first animated shorts.

In front of Woody are Rex and Bo Peep!

Across the way standing tall at roughly 45 feet tall, is Buzz Lightyear!

I plan on staying here the first chance I get, definitely brought the 90’s nerd out in me, and oh do I miss the 90’s! I can’t speak for the rooms just yet, but once I spend a night I’ll be sure to follow up!

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Orlando Flash Mob at Collaborate 11

          Today, April 12th, at precisely 12pm, the unsuspecting people at Collaborate 11' were entertained by Orlando's newest Flash Mob! Randy Ross and Orange County's former Commissioner Linda Stewart, along with many talented others put together this fun dance!(video below) The crowd loved it with huge applause, most all of the Flashers left right away but I lagged behind to overhear what the onlookers were saying. All I heard was positive feedback. I can't help but think the few people in the back of the center that couldn't leave their booth were left wondering what had just happened. I mean, fun loud music, and people rushing an area in synchronized dance can do that.

For the full video in HD click HERE

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Celebrating 500 Followers!

          I can't thank you all enough for making these past few years a ton of fun, it's been great bringing you on all of my adventures with me! Also networking and finally meeting some of you in person over the past months of being down here in Orlando has been a pleasure, and I hope to meet many more of you in the future! Well, now that I've taken care of the thanks, lets get to the contest!

          In honor of hitting 500 followers on my twitter(@DisneyMagicMan) I'll be hosting a give-away April 10th - Wednesday April 20th! The contest will end midnight on Wednesday, don't worry about the time change, I understand we're all over the map;) The Winner will be chosen at random out of the valid submissions and announced on Thursday April 21st!

What the winner will be bringing home:

In celebrating 500 followers I'll be giving away this currently SOLD OUT Epcot Pin Set that can now only be found on sale at Walt Disney World Resort!

and this Jack Skellington Vinylmation!

How to Enter: Head over to my Facebook page (here), don't forget to like it;) And in a short paragraph tell me one guilty Disney pleasure! It doesn't have to be park related, it can be related to anything Disney! For example mine is grabbing some Casey's Corner Corndog Nuggets or a delicious dolewhip and camping out to watch the Main Street Electrical Parade! Have some fun with it!

For a second chance to win you can tweet this:
( Enter to win "Celebrating 500 Followers" Contest by @DisneyMagicMan - )

Looking forward to reading all your guilty pleasures!

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Friday, April 1, 2011

Disney Channel Revamp

          At the beginning of this year Disney changed "Playhouse Disney" to "Disney Junior" in an effort to make the look more appealing to the younger crowds. With a new logo and the new show "Jake and the Neverland Pirates" the channels ratings have soared up 3 times the ratings it had before.
          With the recent success of they're morning shows, they've decided to revamp the daytime channel starting in early May. I'm incredible excited about this because the "lets see how loud we can yell" attitude all the kid actors have has definitely run it's course. They will be getting rid of all the shows currently on air, with the exception of the more popular, like Phinias and Ferb. In replace we will hopefully we will get fresh new faces, and maybe, just maybe we will see some great new shows that reflect how good the Disney Channel used to be!


Hollywood Tower Hotel

          In light of the huge 17 year success at Disney's Hollywood Studios, formerly MGM Studios, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror has brought new life, so to speak, to the park. Launching sister attractions around the world, opening in California Adventure in 2004, and again in 2006 at Tokyo DisneySea. Not only has it given the opportunity to ride in variation around the Disney Parks, but it has also been tweaked over the years to add a little thrill to it. In the summer of 2010, the event Summer Nightastic took place, and the imagineers mixed things up a bit within the attraction. It was a love/hate relationship among the guests, but it was only for a short while until it returned to it original state.
          Disney Imagineers always like to test out their ideas before making them permanent, and that is exactly what this was. Almost a year ago today, Disney came out with a test interactive queue prop for The Haunted Mansion, and due to the success, they supplied a full scale queue for the guests this past month. What the Imagineers were looking for in the change to ToT was the guests reaction to missing the original concept, and how much they still love it. Well, what they got from it was that we absolutely loved the normal version, and that it would be a shame to change it in any way. Thus making them extremely comfortable in creating the concept of an on property Hollywood Tower Hotel. This would be Disney's 26th owned hotel if your counting the villas, and is due to open the end of 2013, roughly a year after the new Art of Animation Resort.
          It will be located in the Epcot Resort area and will house 764 rooms featuring your typical room, to concierge level suites, but will all be set to the theme of the good old 1930's.  Although it will not be highly themed towards the darker, scarier side, it will still have that empty feel you'd expect when walking through the front door. It is dated to take place in the early 30's, years before the lightning incident ever happened.

All in all I feel this has GREAT potential, and only time will tell how it will turn out. No other concept art has been released but this small rendering just yet, but when Disney has more to display I'm sure we'll see it soon!

I might have been lying about all this though...april fools;)