Hello, and welcome to [B]Dateline Disney World![/B] In today’s column, we have another large [B]Magic Kingdom[/B] construction update, I’ll share with you a new iBook all about [B]Tokyo DisneySea[/B] that was just released by a friend of mine, and we’ll also take a look at a [B]short film[/B] I created at the park this week. Lots to look at, so let’s dive right in!!


Welcome to the Magic Kingdom!!


[center][size=5][b]Construction Kingdom[/b][/size]

Starting all the way over at the left side of Fantasyland, work continues on the Tangled meet and greet area.



This is the base of what is apparently going to be Rapunzel’s Tower. They’ve hidden it behind the trees quite well, but I’m sure they will be happy to show it off once completed.


At the Castle Wall that will divide the old and new sections of Fantasyland, we saw a large amount of change this week, with tons of details happening!!



Lots of rock work was put up, and some of it even looks like it might be its final color.






The regal lining is up in many places along the left wall and the turrets as well.






It is really looking spectacular. On the left side, the game of catch up is still happening, but work progresses still every week.



A detail piece waiting to be put up.





Incredible to think that this is really starting to take form, and that not so far from now, we’ll be able to walk through these walls and enjoy new experiences.

Over where Snow White’s Scary Adventures used to be, another construction wall has gone up, probably for some more surface refurbishment.


It creates a very narrow pathway by SWSA, but that’s ok since there isn’t much need to head there anyway. A Cast Member has been placed there to keep traffic moving in case it jams up.


Over by the Beauty and the Beast area, the Beast’s Castle is still looking great, especially with an ominous sky behind it.


Work continues on the roofing near Gaston’s Tavern.



Those arched windows on the top of the building are finally be attended to as well. Here’s the view from over in Storybook Circus thanks to a telephoto lens!


Doesn’t seem like much has gone on near Bonjour! Village Gifts.


Here’s Maurice’s Cottage. It seems much of the work is done here, although it is hard to see with the heavy foliage (which I’m not complaining about!) and the construction walls there.


Heading over to the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, there was a lot of work going on this week, as the structure had lots of people attending to it.



Some welding happening.


They also appear to have put some wrapping on the brown supports for the roller coaster track. My guess is to just keep them from getting damaged due to weather which would warrant them being repainted.



Here’s the area from the Storybook Circus side.



At the Little Mermaid dark ride, not too much has changed with the exception of this rock work we’ve been covering for a few weeks now.


But, the more I look at this building, the more happy and excited I am about it. The level of detail that is coming through is striking.



Seems like WDI knocked it out of the park here.



Prince Eric’s castle is oozing with great structure and detail.




I have been on the version of this ride in California that is already open, and I enjoyed it quite a bit as a solid C or D Ticket attraction. And while I think the exterior won’t put it over the top to E-Ticket classification, I do think it will greatly enhance the experience, and be downright beautiful. Very photogenic as well.

More into Storybook Circus, there hasn’t been much movement on the turquoise and red tents. But, you can imagine how impressive and large the area and these tents will feel once these walls come down and you can get up close and personal with them.


At Dumbo, the 4th of July holiday has come and gone, and the left side is still running.


Many thought that after the holiday, Disney would shut down the ride to fix the scraping problem that made about half of the elephants look quite ugly. It seems though that Disney has simply just repainted them.


This makes me a little bit nervous, as I would like to think they would fix the problem permanently, and not with a temporary paint job. But, we’ll just have to wait and see on that one.

In the back of the Circus, the third tent’s skeleton started to rise.




It should make for a very interesting scene once the area opens with a courtyard right in the middle of the three.



Here’s a shot of all three tents. It was hard to find a view of this scene, but if you want to find it yourself, you can go into the Dumbo area over by the Fastpass return and see it.


Entering Storybook Circus from the Tomorrowland path is certainly becoming more and more nice every week, as it just finally starts to feel complete.


[center][size=5][b]DisneySea in Pictures[/b][/size]

This week, a good friend of mine and member of the Disney Photography Community, James Hilger released an iBook entitled [I]Tokyo DisneySea in Photographs[/I].


James is an established and very talented photographer who also has a wonderful way with words, and recently visited the Tokyo Disney resort. After seeing DisneySea, he instantly fell in love, and wrote this book, which is essentially a love letter to the park.


The iBook contains 7000 words that lay out the theme of the park, how the different areas are laid out, some info about the attractions, shops, restaurants, and even the Hotel Miracosta that resides inside the park. And of course, his words are accompanied by stunning photographs, over 130 in total.


The book is available at the iBooks store, and can be found by clicking HERE.

[center][size=5][b]This and That[/b][/size]

The Crow’s Nest gift shop at the Adventureland and Frontierland border has gone under refurbishment.


The buildings that were under scrims for so long on Main Street still look beautiful.



I found it funny the difference in wait times at the middle of the day at the Town Square Theater.



I don’t know about all of you, but I prefer the Mouse to his Princess friends, and could not believe that he was a short 10 minute wait compared to their 65 minutes!

And lastly, earlier this week, I spent an evening in the Magic Kingdom equipped with my DSLR camera that takes some pretty excellent video, and I shot some of my favorite scenes. My intent was to bring the viewer right into the park with me. So, I’d like you all to enjoy “Evening at the Kingdom: A Grand Circle Tour”! Hope you enjoy it!

Well, that’s going to wrap it up for this week’s Dateline Disney World. Do you guys share the same feelings I do about the Little Mermaid dark ride? Have any thoughts on the controversial decision to keep Dumbo up and running and just doing patch work on the elephants? Let us know in the comments!

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]