Walt Disney Imagineer Earns Junior Achievement Top Volunteer Award

Junior Achievement of Central Florida chose Jack Blitch, vice president and general manager of Walt Disney Imagineering-Florida, from 171,000 U.S. volunteers as winner of the organization’s highest award for volunteerism, the Gold Leadership Award.“The local business community has been extremely supportive of JA’s goal of inspiring local students to succeed in the new global economy,” said Craig Polejes, president of Junior Achievement of Central Florida. “Jack Blitch is a remarkable … [Read more...]


Long-term agreement will bring AVATAR themed lands to Disney parks, with the first at Walt Disney World in Orlando Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Worldwide is joining forces with visionary filmmaker James Cameron and Fox Filmed Entertainment to bring the world of AVATAR to life at Disney parks. Through an exclusive agreement announced today by Disney, Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment and Fox, Disney will partner with Cameron and producing partner Jon Landau to create themed lands that will … [Read more...]

View of Fantasyland Construction from the Contemporary

Our friends at wdwmagic have posted some "birds eye view" photos of the Fantasyland construction from the top of the Contemporary Resort.Looks like things are coming along...look at all those rocks! Looks like Belle's portion of the Fantasyland expansion is coming along nicely...but dear Imagineers and architects...PLEASE HURRY UP!What part of Fantasyland expansion are YOU most excited about?!P.S. - Chip posted pictures of the construction as well from his recent trip to Disney … [Read more...]

A Tour Through New Fantasyland Expansion at the Magic Kingdom

One of my favorite moments at the recent D23 Expo was walking through the Carousel of Projects, an area full of displays, models and renderings of new projects coming soon to Disney Parks around the world. Inside, there were Cars Land ride vehicles, a model of Buena Vista Street and Carthay Circle Theater at Disney California Adventure park, and much more. I have to say, it was a lot of fun to watch the reaction of expo attendees to all of the updated projects – especially to the model of New … [Read more...]

D23 Expo talks details of the Fantasy, newest Disney Cruise Line ship

This past weekend’s D23 Expo offered a session on the newest ships for the Disney Cruise Line (DCL).  The Sunday morning presentation was entitled “Imagineering the Dream and the Fantasy.” Led by Imagineers Joe Lanzisero and Bob Zalk, the presentations covered some of the details of the new ship.The highlight of the Disney Cruise Line presentation was the information on a new experience at Animator’s Palate, one of the rotational dining experiences, on the Disney Fantasy. The restaurant will … [Read more...]

Radiator Springs Racers Begins Ride Testing Today

In the normal development process of any ride-based attraction at Disney Parks, Imagineers spend weeks and even months testing the ride vehicles. Many of you may have seen one of the first ride vehicles, which was on display at the D23 Expo in Anaheim this past weekend in the Parks & Resorts Pavilion. While it might be a while before you see this or any of the other ride vehicles racing around Ornament Valley, keep checking back with the Disney Parks Blog for the latest updates.Source … [Read more...]

Walt Disney World Resort Welcomes the PRSA 2011 International Conference to Orlando

As a destination that combines imagination with exceptional storytelling to inspire people of all ages, Walt Disney World Resort, will serve as the premiere sponsor of the Public Relations Society of America's (PRSA) 2011 International Conference, Oct. 15–18, in Orlando, Fla."Walt Disney World Resort is an ideal sponsor for the PRSA International Conference, especially considering this year's theme, 'Imagine. Create. Inspire:  Envisioning the Future of Public Relations,'" said Rosanna Fiske, … [Read more...]

Imagineers Go Behind the Scenes at Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room

What better way to celebrate today’s official reopening of Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room at Magic Kingdom Park than by taking a behind-the-scenes look at the attraction, courtesy of Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI).In the pictures below, Imagineers Eric Jacobson, Dave Hoffman, Eric Swapp and others offer a look at what’s new at this Adventureland attraction and also share their thoughts on what has kept it a guest favorite over the years.The attraction, which originally debuted at … [Read more...]

Madame Leota: Imagineer Leota Toombs Thomas

The late Leota Toombs Thomas, longtime Walter Elias Disney (WED—now Walt Disney Imagineering) employee, model builder, costumer, and Imagineer, is best known as the disembodied spirit of Madame Leota in Disneyland’s and Walt Disney World’s Haunted Mansion attraction. Not long ago, I chatted with her former sister-in-law and my very dear friend, Joann Loughlin, who graciously shared her memories of this special relative.Leota began working for Walt Disney at a very young age, perhaps around … [Read more...]

Disney gives us a Peek behind the Fantasyland Wall

Soon fans of all ages will have the opportunity to take a trip through the world of “Beauty and the Beast” at the Enchanted Tales with Belle storybook adventure, which is currently under construction as part of the Fantasyland expansion at Magic Kingdom Park.Walt Disney Imagineering is currently building Maurice’s workshop, which will serve as scene one of the experience. The workshop, which is modeled after a French cottage, will be surrounded by a wishing well, footbridges and lush … [Read more...]