Food trucks are a nationwide sensation so it makes sense Disney World is jumping on the bandwagon.   Downtown Disney is set to open four food trucks later this fall.  Each truck is themed to portray the spirit of a different Disney theme park. 

Featured food trucks include:
  • “Enchanted Fare” will serve favorites from Disney Parks around the world; think Croque Monsieur from Magic Kingdom Park, Glass Noodle Salad from Hong Kong Disneyland and (my favorite!) Hand-Dipped Corn Dogs from Disneyland park.
  • “The World Showcase of Flavors” is expected to feature items from the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival such as Grass-Fed Beef Sliders, Pierogies with Kielbasa and Lobster Rolls. Yum!
  • “Superstar Catering” will shine the spotlight on a wide array of meatball options fit for a Hollywood set; the Lamb Meatball Flatbread with Tzatziki sounds especially credit-worthy.
  • “Namaste Café” plans to feature a nice mix of spices with dishes including Butter Chicken, Slow-Cooked Beef Short Ribs and Tandori Spiced Shrimp.
Stay tuned for more Food truck news. As details roll in we’ll be sure to update you.

The Epcot International Food and Wine Festival is currently underway at Walt Disney World Orlando.  The event, which officially began yesterday, celebrates the food, beverages and flavors of the world.  With the purchase of Disney tickets, you gain access to a culinary adventure available through November 11, 2013.

At this year’s festival has a new Scotland Marketplace, with a total of almost 30 international marketplaces for visitors to explore.  During the festival more than 300 international and national wines will be available, along with more than 76 kinds of international foods.  You can learn about wine and beer at over 300 seminars, and indulge in one of the more than 100,000 desserts served.  Culinary programs and demonstrations with celebrity chefs like Cat Cora are also planned.  End each night with a performance at the Eat to the Beat Concert Series along with a viewing of “Illuminations: Reflections of Earth.”
The Eat to the Beat Concert Series line-up includes:
  • Sept. 27-29: Starship starring Mickey Thomas
  • Sept. 30-Oct. 1: The Go-Go’s
  • Oct. 2-4: Air Supply
  • Oct. 5-6: Sister Hazel
  • Oct. 7-9: Sugar Ray
  • Oct. 10-11: Edwin McCain
  • Oct. 12-13: The Manhattan Transfer
  • Oct. 14-15: Wilson Phillips
  • Oct. 16-17: The Pointer Sisters
  • Oct. 18-20: Night Ranger
  • Oct. 21-23: Boyz II Men
  • Oct. 24-25: Survivor
  • Oct. 26-27: 38 Special
  • Oct. 28-30: Smash Mouth
  • Oct. 31-Nov. 1: Spin Doctors
  • Nov. 2-3: Christopher Cross
  • Nov. 4-5: Hanson
  • Nov. 6-8: Dennis DeYoung, original member of the group Styx
  • Nov. 9-11: Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
Performances are at 5:45, 7:00 and 8:15 at the America Gardens Theater. Pick up an Epcot Festival Passport from one of the Marketplaces.  You can get it stamped at every stop on your savory adventure creating a unique souvenir.

Disney World Orlando guests will be treated to whole new show starting October 15, 2013.  The Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios are both debuting versions of their nighttime spectaculars with new interactive Glow with the Show Mickey Ear Hats.  Lighting up the night, the new glow ear hats magically change colors in sync with fireworks, shows and each other creating an incredible visual experience. 

Fantasmic is getting the glow ear show treat at Hollywood Studios.  The addition of Glow with the Show ear hats to Fantasmic coincides with its 15th anniversary.  Over at the Magic Kingdom the Wishes fireworks extravaganza is the getting the glow treatment.  During the holiday season guests can wear their hats and glow the shoe Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Hollywood Studios and at Holiday Wishes: Celebrate the Spirit of the Season fireworks display as well as Celebrate the Magic, the nighttime projection show at Cinderella’s Castle inside the Magic Kingdom. 

Each set of glow ears are $25 and can be purchased at select shops inside the Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  They glow in a variety of colors and are designed to complement the imagery and beat of Disney’s fireworks and shows.  The Glow with the Show Mickey Ear hats made their debut at Disney’s California Adventure in 2012 at the World of Color.

Be a part of the performance and purchase yours the next time you’re at Disney World.
Jack Skellington

If you’re attending Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Partyyou’re in for a real treat.  The Walt Disney World event is currently underway, offering families a unique place to enjoy Halloween.  This year new entertainment and characters are a part of the festivities.

Jack Skellington and Sally from “The Nightmare Before Christmas” will be on hand to meet guests in the Magic Kingdom for the first time during the Halloween parties.  Visitors will want to head to the Town Square on Main Street USA to see these spooky characters in action. Jack, who is the patron spirit of Halloween, is sure to evoke a hauntingly good time from the festivities.
Other new entertainment for 2013 is an updated Creepa Crew parade warm-up show, which has been overtaken by Phineas and Ferb.  Over at Tomorrowland, the Monstrous Scream-O-Ween Ball dance party, hosted by Mike and Sully from Monsters University, gets people dancing in the streets.  Two new trick-or-treat trails have also been created – both of which have a few surprises.  In addition, party goers are treated to the Boo To You Parade and end-of-the-night Happy Hallowishes Fireworks.
There’s still time to attend Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party.  Remaining dates for the event are September 27, 29; October 3, 4, 6, 10, 11, 14, 17, 18, 20, 22, 24, 25, 27, 29, 31; and November 1.  The party starts at 7pm and ends at midnights.  A parade is planned at 8:15pm and 10:30pm, with fireworks at 9:30pm.  The event does require a separate admission ticket and is not included with the purchase of regular Disney tickets.
Want to stay at a Disney Resort during your Halloween visit?  Choose from our full selection of Disney Resorts to find a place to stay that fits your vacation needs. 

When you’re on vacation you still want to be connected.  At Orlando Florida hotels with free internet service you can easily access your email, check your flight status or confirm any last minute tickets you might want to purchase through Reserve Orlando.  A large majority of Orlando hotels offer free internet service so it’s a breeze finding one that fits your vacation needs. 

A few of the Orlando hotels with free internet service we recommend include:
  • Blue Heron Beach Resort
  • Blue Tree Resort
  • Clarion Lake Buena Vista
  • Floridays Resort
  • Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham
  • Ramada Plaza Resort
  • WorldQuest Orlando
Stay connected while on vacation and receive the guaranteed lowest rate available by reserving your stay today.

Hear ye! Hear ye!  The Disney Princesses have arrived!

Princess dreams are about to become a reality at Disney World Orlando as the all-new Princess Fairytale Hall debuts at the Magic Kingdom.  Opening to guests on September 18, the enchanting new attraction invites visitors to live out their dream of meeting a real Disney princess.  Cinderella and Rapunzel call Princess Fairytale Hall home, and other princesses are always visiting for even more magical meet and greet moments.  

Set amidst a lavishly decorated, castle-themed environment the new attraction is fit for royalty.  Rich purple and gold trimmings, stone walls and ornate chandeliers decorate the hall.  At the entrance of the castle-themed façade intricate stained glass windows with images from the Disney classic Cinderella are featured.  From there, a large entryway opens to the Royal Gallery where detailed portraits of Disney princesses adorn the walls.  Stone columns, wooden beams and peaked arches created a luxurious setting in which visitors queue to meet the princess of their dreams.  The princess portraits also serve as a guide to the bevy of Disney Princesses who might be visiting on any given day.  Mulan, Snow White, Jasmine, Tiana and Aurora are some of the royal visitor’s guests can anticipate meeting. 

As loyal subjects to the Disney princess, visitors have a choice of two queues.  There is one for Cinderella and a visiting princess or one for Rapunzel and a visiting princess.  Each princess is located in her own elegant chamber featuring an ideal fairytale atmosphere perfect for coming face-to-face with these timeless Disney characters.  Every detail has been expertly designed, from the large painting of a fairytale landscape to the table with a set of storybooks that bear the titles of fairytales in the language of the original tale.  Rose vases, walls adorned with crowns and other royal imagery and elegant furnishings complete the scene.   


Visitors are encouraged to bring cameras and an autograph book to the attraction.  For professional photos Disney PhotoPass photographers are also on hand to capture those magical Disney princess moments.  Further, Princess Fairytale Hall welcomes the use of FastPass and FastPass+. 

Princess Fairytale Hall is part of the elaborate Fantasyland expansion at Disney World’s Magic Kingdom theme park.  If you’d like to learn more about all there is to do at Fantasyland, a detailed look inside the magical realm is available with just a click of your mouse.

Orlando Theme Parks won a variety of honors during Amusement Today’s Golden Ticket Awards.  Disney World, Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld were all recognized.   The Golden Ticket Awards are considered a prestigious annual presentation by industry insiders and theme park aficionados, with awardees defining the “best of the best” in amusement parks.

  • Best Marine Life Park: SeaWorld Orlando
  • Best Halloween Event: Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando Resort
  • Best Outdoor Night Show Production: IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth at Epcot
  • Best Water Ride: Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls at Islands of Adventure
  • Best Dark Ride: Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey at Islands of Adventure
  • Best Indoor Roller Coaster: Revenge of the Mummy at Universal Studios Orlando

 

Calculated from an international poll conducted by Amusement Today, the Golden Ticket Awards are the results of a detailed survey is sent to a database of experienced and well-traveled amusement park fans around the world – in balanced geographical regions – asking them to rate the “bests” in 25 categories.  They are the equivalent of the Academy Awards for the amusement industry.  Awards are presented to the “Best of the Best” in the amusement industry in such categories as “amusement parks,” “roller coasters,” “water rides,” “shows” and “food.”

Want to capture all those memories you’re making at Disney World Orlando?  Of course you do!  Luckily, there are Disney photographers located throughout the Disney Theme Parks capturing all those magical moments. 

Here’s how it works. When you have your photo taken by a park  photographer they’ll give you a Disney PhotoPass which is imprinted with a 16 digit code and web address.  Once you’ve had your photo taken once you simply show the card to the friendly and professional photographers throughout the park.  They’ll scan the card, and digitally add their newest snapshot of you and your family.  Once you’re back home you visit the Disney PhotoPass website, enter your card’s code and you’ll have all your park photos are your fingertips.  From there, you can order individual photos or cart all the photos taken during your trip.  You can also customize photos with PhotoPass products such as coffee mugs, calendars, stationary, photo books and other creations.

During your vacation at Disney World you’ll find Disney PhotoPass photographers at the following locations:

Magic Kingdom
  • Main Entrance/Train Station
  • Town Square
  • Main Street
  • Castle Hub
  • Adventureland
  • Frontierland
  • Fantasyland
  • Tomorrowland

Epcot

  • Main Entrance/Spaceship Earth
  • Character Spot
  • World Showcase Locations
  • MISSION:Space
  • Test Track
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios:
  • Hollywood Boulevard
  • Sunset Boulevard Attractions
  • Sorcerer Mickey’s Hat
  • Al’s Toy Barn
  • Avenue of the Americas
  • Animation Courtyard
Disney’s Animal Kingdom
  • Main Entrance
  • Tree of Life and Expedition Everest Locations
  • Camp Minnie-Mickey
  • Character Boat Landing
  • Africa

Photographers are also located at both water parks – Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach – as well as Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutiques at Downtown Disney and Magic Kingdom.

We recommend getting your PhotoPass from a Disney photographer early in your visit – it’s a fun, easy and foolproof way to be sure our Photographers capture all your fun in the Disney Parks.   If your party decides to split up, never fear.  Each person can have their own card as it’s easy to combine multiple cards into one account online.   Don’t be shy either!  You can ask for multiple photos per pose ensuring you get the right shot. 

Disney Photographers are located near the park entrances, main icons and at most character meet and greets.  You can also find PhotoPass photographers are special character dining locations.  So keep an eye out, and you’ll get great photo opportunities everywhere you could possibly want them.

October 1-26: Howl-O-Scream at Busch Gardens
Explore haunted houses and see thrilling shows during Howl-O-Scream all month long.

October 1-31: Universal Orlando Halloween Horror Nights
Don’t miss the premier Halloween event in Orlando. This year features all-new haunted houses, live shows, and scare zones.

October 1-31: Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party
During select nights in October, Magic Kingdom will have special Halloween-themed events planned. All ages are encouraged to dress up in costumes and go trick-or-treating around the park.

October 1-31: Epcot International Food & Wine Festival
Disney guests can taste their way around Epcot during the 18th annual International Food & Wine Festival.

October 5-27: LEGOLAND Florida Brick-or-Treat
Every Saturday and Sunday in October enjoy Halloween activities like a LEGO pumpkin build, LEGO Monster Fighters Scavenger Hunt, Brick-or-Treat trail, and costume contest.

October 5-27: SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular
From 12-8pm every weekend during October kids can trick-or-treat, see spooky shows, and create sea-themed arts and crafts during Halloween Spooktacular.

October 12-13: Winter Park Autumn Art Festival
This annual art show features Florida artists exclusively along with live entertainment, children’s activities and more. The art festival is held in Central Park in downtown Winter Park from 9am-5pm both days. Admission is free.

October 19-20, 26-27: ZOO Boo Bash
Trick-or-treat in the wildest neighborhood in town during ZOO Boo Bash. It’s safe, fun, and not-too-scary event for young and old alike. Kids are invited to bring goodie bags and wear costumes for trick or treat stations. If you forget your costume, face painting will be available for an additional charge. Walk on Water Balls will also be available for an additional charge. Take a haunted hayride or learn about the myths and realities of some misunderstood animals. Held from 9am-3pm.

October 25-26: Oktoberfest at Celebration
Celebration Town Center transforms before your very eyes as the falling leaves of the season drop on Market Street in the Fall Festival known as Oktoberfest. Listen for the rustling of leaves, relax by the lakeside and rock your troubles away, and enjoy the live music with family and friends in this one-of-a-kind themed extravaganza.

Visiting Orlando theme parks just got much more affordable!  You can now take advantage of $50 weekday tickets for both Busch Gardens Tampa and SeaWorld Orlando through December 20, 2013.  This value-priced ticket saves you an incredible $39 on Busch Gardens tickets and $42 on SeaWorld tickets.  It’s an incredible discount for families and makes your vacation in Orlando much more budget-friendly. 

Both of these Orlando theme parks offer unique things for visitors to do.   At Busch Gardens Tampa you can go on an African safari themed adventure with up-close animal encounters, cultural attractions and rides geared towards wild thrills.  Over 3,000 animals call Busch Gardens Tampa home, creating one of the nation’s premier zoos.  Traverse iconic lands of Africa like the Congo, Stanleyville, Morocco and Timbuktu as you explore all Busch Gardens has to offer.

You can dive into life under the sea at SeaWorld Orlando.  Famous for their interactive sea life shows and aquatic attractions, SeaWorld has been on the forefront of marine-life based amusements since their first park opened in 1964.  Today, guests are transported to an immersive environment where animal exhibits, one-of-a-kind aquatic thrills and shows starring talented sea life take center stage.  Over the years, SeaWorld has strove to create educational yet entertaining areas of the park dedicated to teaching park-goers about conversation, safety and the importance of our ocean’s resources.  SeaWorld attractions like Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin, TurtleTrek and the Shamu show One Ocean are few examples of the park’s ever-evolving efforts. 

Take advantage of these discount Orlando theme park ticketsbefore the offer is over!