We have an egg-citing Dateline Disney World for you this week. We’ll take a look at something new that the Grand Floridian has cooked up and take you to the Magic Kingdom, where the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is just about to open.

We have an important scheduling note for you about this column. Due to a change in work schedule, Dateline Disney World will be moving from Friday to Wednesday.  Please keep an eye out for us in our new time slot next week! 

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At the Grand Floridian, the lobby now has an exhibit of custom made edible Easter eggs that were done by the resort’s kitchen team. They will be on display for the next few weeks and are pretty amazing.

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View from the second floor.

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Now a quick monorail ride over to the park.

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I think the Emporium may be pushing MagicBands a little bit too much.

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Scrim still up at the Confectionary.

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Current view of the castle from the Crystal Palace.

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Still a completely empty moat while the Hub expansion project continues.

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Castle painting is almost all wrapped up.

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Invites have gone out to select media and mommy bloggers for a press event focused on the Mine Train. The event will be held April 30 – May 2 and will include New Fantasyland, MyMagic+, DVC and everything else Disney wants to promote.

The Disney Parks Blog has released some interesting videos. Beware the spoilers!

The New Dwarf animatronics are impressive with projected faces that give full expression.

 

And here’s a CGI ride-through.

 

Here are this week’s photos of the Mine Train construction.

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This is now on one of the doors on the backside of the hill.

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In Storybook Circus, the FP signage at Dumbo is all covered up.

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Tomorrowland side of the drained moat.

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Castle looking nice!

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These boxes were going almost all the way to the Castle last week.

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Was a beautiful morning along the Rivers of America.

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This path was reopened after being closed for repainting last week.

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MagicBands also for sale in Frontierland.

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Wet paint near Splash.

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Br’er Rabbit has been placed in this new sign.

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You know it’s busy when…

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Walls still up at the Tiki Room.

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Long wait for the Jungle Cruise.

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Scrims still up in Adventureland.

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Busy, busy, busy.

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This week, Disney also celebrated the 50th anniversary of it’s a small world (even though it didn’t officially open until April 22, 1964 at the World Fair). They did a sing along in front of the castle (which I was unable to attend), and they have some merchandise to sell.

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That said, time for me to head out!

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That does it for this week! What do you all think of the eggs at the Grand? How about all the things happening around the park? Let us know in the comments below. And don’t forget to look for us every Wednesday beginning next week, right here on MiceChat.com!

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If you enjoyed the column, especially the photos, and you want to check out more photos and tutorials on Disney photography, please check out my photo site, [URL=”http://www.DisneyPhotographyBlog.com”]Disney Photography Blog[/URL]. And if you like listening more than reading, you can hear us talk about Disney and photography on my podcast, [URL=”http://www.ISO5571.com”]ISO5571[/URL]

  • Kurtoon

    Howdy Cory, Great article…really enjoy the photos.
    The Easter eggs at the Grand Floridian look awesome!
    And they are edible.
    The empty drained castle moat looks so sad…especially when you compare to the photos of Rivers of America. It is amazing how the waterways in the park complete the landscape.
    I don’t think I’m living under a rock…but clearly I have missed something.
    Magic bands for sale $12.95.?
    A FAST PASS IS NOT FREE?
    Does this mean, if I stay off site, I have to purchase a magic band in order to get 3 fast passes per day, per park?
    Can I buy 5 magic bands so I can get 15 fast passes?
    Do they offer a gold or platinum magic band so that I can pay to have a better experience than someone else?
    I hope the magic band fails…
    Sorry I went off there…
    Again…Great article and I look forward to the next…
    Have a magical day.

    • ParkerMonroe

      FastPass+ is connected to your park ticket. The $13 MagicBands are only for those individuals (day visitors) who don’t want to haul out that heavy and cumbersom plastic ticket three times a day. Now they have the option of paying to wear their FastPass.

      …or, you could just put your ticket in an $2 lanyard like we did.

      • Kurtoon

        Ok…now I get it…thank you very much.

  • LoveStallion

    Wow, consider me ignorant, but for as much as I thought MyMagic+ was required at this point, they make you shell out $13 a pop for those bands? So what of those who do not want the bands? Just no Fastpass for them?

    Also, bring back the swan boats.

    That is all.

    • Amy VandenBoogert

      You can still use MyMagic+/FastPass+ with the plastic RFID ticket. The MagicBands are optional.

  • ChrisNJ

    Great photos and update. Perfect weather for photo-taking.

    The Emporium!!!! On my last visit I wandered The Emporium looking for something to buy. Seriously – I wanted a nice souvenir but found nothing interesting. Gone are the days when I’d have too much to choose from. That MagicBand wall is depressing. I won’t go on a long rant – it just makes me sad.

    Like how you featured one of the resort hotels. Even if there aren’t changes or special events – you have a great eye for detail so would be nice to see the resorts from your perspective.

  • SpoonCM

    Talk about over reacting. You do not pay for FP+ and you do not go without FP+ if you don’t have a MagicBand. It’s available to all guests whether they are a resort guest or day visitor. FP+ is tied to your ticket – you can book it either through the MDE or the FP+ kiosks throughout the parks.

    • Kurtoon

      I apologize for over reacting.
      I read Miceage frequently and have followed the articles and posts regarding magic bands and fast pass plus.
      I am skeptical because of security reasons with my credit card info …but that’s my issue. I also don’t want to think about which attraction I want to experience before I even step into the park.
      But…I am going to admit I am missing a vital piece of information.
      If I do not buy a magic band…how do I use the RFID fast pass plus system?
      And …can I buy multiple magic bands to get more fast passes plus?
      Thank you for your patience.

      • bamato

        Personally, I have to agree with you. I’m on here a lot, and must have missed the boat when the discussion was had about Magic Bands costing $$. So that confused me a bit.

      • Truecoat

        Only one magic band per ticket. Buying multiple magic bands will not do anything for you in getting more fast passes.

        Your ticket has the RFID in it also so no need for the magic band.

      • Kurtoon

        Thank you for the info…I honestly did not know there is a code scan square thing on the ticket itself. It makes sense now.
        I am going to blame my over reaction and bad form on the heavy amount of oak pollen in the air and too much coffee at 6 AM this morning.

      • KENfromOC

        I too am confused – We are going to WDW in July and here at Disneyland we only use the standard Fastpass.

        I was under the impression that MagicBands were ONLY available for people staying at a WDW resort hotel. In fact, I was told by a WDW reservation phone rep that two months prior to our trip we will receive a package with the bands for each of the members of our family (in our case, 3).

        I do not recall ever reading an article on Micechat that the bands were up for grabs for anyone with $13.

        Perhaps an easily understood refresher article is in order. I don’t blame the authors of the prior articles as I know this is a confusing and transitional time in WDW – Fastpass+? MagicBands? Why do you need any of them? Is the standard Fastpass (like in Disneyland) still around there? If I tie my credit card info to my MagicBand and lose it, can anyone now make charges with it? Must I provide a password each time I use it?

        Hopefully someone out there can do an easily understood article, and maybe add some web links to the WDW site that has the information as well.

        A big thanks in advance!!!

      • Kurtoon

        OK…I just thought all my questions where answered.
        I politely recant my earlier crankiness and replace it with honest curiosity.
        What happens if my magic band is stolen and I don’t know it?
        I am not talking about my family going back to the room and mixing up the bands in a bowl …ha ha.
        But what if a cleaver evil doer is crafty enough to steal my band and replace it with their band or a decoy.
        What if they can read my RFID without the band ever leaving my wrist?
        They now have my info and credit card info and could probably perform some financial shenanigans at my expense.
        I know someone smarter than me as already solved this potential annoyance.

      • Bartattack

        I think your creditcard info is not on the magicband or your ticket. It just contains a identification number and the actualiteit details are accessed from the server. If you want to pay using the magic band or ticket you still have to enter a pin code as well.

      • rreading

        Your magic band is only as useful as the ticket attached to it.

        If have three tickets to WDW but only go through the turnstiles with one, that is the only one you can use for fast passes that day.

        It’s the same thing and, while apparently the magic band can transmit some information at a distance, the current tickets (the green hard plastic ones) have the same info as the magic band. So you can pay to have it wrapped around your wrist, or you can carry it in your pocket for free. But they have your info on RFID either way.

        Sometimes we just have to make a leap of faith. At least I trust Disney more than I trust Google, and Google has far more information than Disney does on most of us.

  • M69

    Wow! Absolutely gorgeous! Thanks for the report.

  • Beautiful photos Cory. The Mine Train is looking really beautiful. And when those trees fill out it’s going to be amazing.

  • MickeysImagination

    The Mine Train is looking really nice. I especially like the flowery meadow look of the mountain top. WDI used a similar grass overlay on Mermaid. What is the grass material that WDI is using? It needs to stay looking green and lush, not get get washed out in the Florida sun. Hold up to deluge rains. Hopefully not become engulfed in flame from firework fallout; never did see the aftermath of the Mermaid fire a few months back.

    Oh…Cinderella Castle is looking fantastic from your photos. The new paint scheme on the turrets must really pop when seen in person.

    Thanks for the update.

    Justin

  • Skimbob

    Thanks for the update. It will be interesting to see the hub once it is all fixed. I won’t be back until January so It should be sorted out by then. The mine train looks awesome. I will be curious to see what people think once it opens.

  • lionheartkc

    Is anyone else wondering what the deal is with the Alice In Wonderland reference on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train construction wall?

    • Kurtoon

      Good Eye
      Have Bashful and Grumpy taken over “card” duty?

    • Kevbot217

      Yes – there are themed references on the construction walls all around the Mine Train. The dwarfs are painting flowers near the Mad Tea Party, they’re looking for hunny near Winnie the Pooh, etc. A way to show that the Mine Train will benefit all the areas of Fantasyland! Even the construction walls worked in theming!

  • SpoonCM

    Haha, ya being up at 6 is not my forte. I think with the whole FP+ and the MagicBands and MDE and all this stuff that WDW expects everyone to know with a commercial or two and a FAQ, it doesn’t help when they add another part of the program without much explanation. I did experience MyMagic, the bands and FP+ back in October and it’s nothing like the system they have now.

  • themur

    Love reading all the comments! Making my afternoon!

    Cory thanks for all the great photos!