Walt Disney World celebrated its 43rd birthday this week. We were there and have some news and photos from the Polynesian Village Resort and Magic Kingdom for you. Get ready, lots for you to see this week.

The new and beautiful entrance sign at the Polynesian Vilage resort.
The new and beautiful entrance sign at the Polynesian Vilage resort.
The construction screens are well themed.




This is what the lobby now looks like. Very cramped.
This is what the lobby looks like during construction. Cramped spaces.


There are some great new signs in the remodeled Captain Cook’s.




No more self-serve Dole Whips :(
Dole Whips
There are little tarps and walls EVERYWHERE.
There are little tarps and walls EVERYWHERE.



It’s just a short Monorail or boat ride from the Poly to the Magic Kingdom. Let’s see what’s new. . .


Tony’s on Main Street in the off hours.
The rain brings this wait time up a bit.
The rain brings this wait time up a bit.


Buy Disneyland merchandise at WDW.
Buy Disneyland merchandise at WDW.





These buildings that shouldn't be seen by guests are now red instead of green.
These buildings that shouldn’t be seen by guests are now red instead of green.


Time for some Hub construction.








Why the sad face? You are looking good robo-man.



The Astro Orbiter has reopened after a lengthy refurbishment.


Very colorful and nice.
colorful and shiny.


The new rockets look great.
The new rockets look great.













The holiday dream lights are installed on Cinderella Castle and will be lit by the Frozen sisters starting November 7th.






This shop is still under refurbishment.
This shop is still under refurbishment.
Be Our Guest was at capacity for lunch at 12:15. Probably due to FP+.
Be Our Guest was at capacity for lunch at 12:15. Probably due to FP+.
No more construction walls on this side of Peter Pan
No more construction walls on this side of Peter Pan



The new Haunted Mansion gift shop is called Memento Mori, and is Madame Leota themed. It soft opened this week, and is due to fully open within the next week or so.

Nice details.
Nice details.






The queue to get into the new Haunted Mansion gift shop was about 30 minutes long, but it died down a little later and we got to take a look inside at much of the new Haunted Mansion merchandise.














Overall, the shop is pretty cool. Not too much I would spend my money on, but a lot of die-hard Haunted Mansion fans will definitely love it.




The view from the Crystal Palace of the Hub construction on the west side.
The view from the Crystal Palace of the Hub construction on the west side.



Walt Disney World Railroad currently not operating.
Walt Disney World Railroad currently not operating.



That’s it for us this week. How do you feel about the changes at the Polynesian? Excited for the new Haunted Mansion gift shop? Let us know in the comments below!!



We have a lot of magical fun have lined up for October. As always, feel free to join us for as much or as little of the following events as interest you! We will be visiting Epcot, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney Hollywood Studios, and of course the Magic Kingdom. We will also be going to the Universal Orlando Resort to experience the wonderful new Wizarding World of Harry Potter Diagon Alley and Escape from Gringotts!

Just look at the crazy itinerary of events we have lined up for this totally awesome trip:

October 23 – Universal Orlando Resort

This year we kick off the fun with a trip to Universal Studios Orlando and Islands of Adventure.  Here we will experience daytime thrills and nighttime chills.


The day will begin with a visit to Diagon Alley inside Universal Studios Orlando and a ride on the new, state-of-the-art attraction, Escape from Gringotts. Then we will journey on the Hogwarts Express into Islands of Adventure to experience Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.  Along with all of the other world class attractions like The Amazing Spiderman and Men In Black, this promises to be a day you will never forget. Contact Fairy Godmother Travel for discount Universal Studios theme park admission.


Then, as the sun sets, the brave souls who remain will join us for the 24th annual Halloween Horror Nights.


This event is truly one of the very best Halloween events in the entire world.  With maniacally clever haunted houses and beautifully designed movie quality sets, it truly is in a class by itself.

For those joining us for the day AND the nighttime activities, we’ll have dinner as Universal transitions from regular operation to Haunt. Be sure to contact [email protected] to reserve your spot for dinner and to find out where we will meet.  If you’d like to join us for Halloween Horror Nights, you’ll need the front of line tickets (HHN Express Pass).  Contact Fairy Godmother Travel for discount tickets

Sign up below to let us know if you plan to join us for the day, HHN or both. We’ll save a spot for you at our meal reservations.  Please note that you will need a park hopper ticket for the day and a Universal Express pass for Halloween Horror Night to keep up with the group.

Sip and Nibble – October 24


Friday will be the always fun, often imitated, but never duplicated, Sip and Nibble at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival. This is where we meet new and old friends, share food & drink, and try to make it through all the food and wine offerings. This year there are 25 separate kiosks featuring food and wine from continents and countries such as Africa, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Greece, Hawai’i, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Patagonia, Poland, Puerto Rico, Scotland, Singapore, South Korea. There are also odd kiosks with really great food (the Cheese kiosk is really GOOD!), the most delicious vegetarian dishes and fantastic drinks (alcoholic and non) for you to enjoy. Lets take bets—will we make it past France this year? (Hint . . . we’ve never failed to finish yet!). It’s an absolutely amazing day of food, drink and friendship!!!


Last year we had an rollicking good time around the Seven Seas Lagoon.  In fact, Disney Legend Bob Gurr joined us for our trip around the world.








You never know what sort of fun you’ll get into after a day of sipping and nibbling.

Our Sip and Nibble event has a small fee to cover the cost of lanyards, pens and shot glasses for attendees. if you can’t afford the fee, please come anyway. The more the merrier.


Magic Kingdom and La Nouba – October 25

We’ll spend the day at the Magic Kingdom with a noon meet at Tomorrowland Terrace. We’ll meet for about 15 minutes or so to allow folks to gather and then head off for lunch together (Lunch will be upstairs at Columbia Harbor House at 12:30). Then we’ll explore some of the wonderful attractions of this great Disney park.

This is also the date of D23’s Fanniversary.  If you are interested in seeing Fanniversary, please click the link:  D23 FANNIVERSARY  (when Fanniversary is over, you can catch back up with us by following us on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/MiceChat to find out where we are)


If you book your MiceChat Orlando Invasion vacation with Fairy Godmother Travel you will get to attend Tuesday’s Cirque du Soleil show for free! This is a $100 savings per person and can only be obtained by booking through Fairy Godmother Travel – Contact Fairy Godmother Travel HERE 

The Walt Disney World Gumball Rally – Sunday October 26 – NOW FREE!!!!!

One great day, two huge parks, a world of maniacal fun, how many attractions can YOU ride?


The MiceChat Walt Disney World Gumball Rally returns October 26th in the  “Walt Disney World Monorail Rally.”  Teams of 2, 3, or 4, will race to see who can ride the most attractions in the Magic Kingdom and Epcot in one day.  Players who have competed in the Disneyland version have raved, “It’s the most fun I have EVER had in the park!”

To win, you’ll need a good strategy, but even the most prepared teams will have to deal with with varied operating hours, closures, ride breakdowns, parades, and weather to visit a set of specific attractions in each of the two parks in this year’s event.

!!! This event is now FREE – sign up today !!! 



Throughout the day, teams will scramble around the WDW resort completing their assigned questions. But only one team can win!

2nd place went to ...Dunder Mifflins - Melissa Howard and Christine Ochoa

1st place for the WDW 08' Gumball Rally went to . . .THE DISNEY DIVAS!!!!! - Teresa Cory and Lisa Schneider

What amazing adventures are in store for the players this year?  Sign up to find out . . . it really is the most fun you’ll have in the parks all year.


Adventure Day – October 27

Anybody who has ever been out of town says, “I need a vacation after that vacation”.  Well, we have planned a day just for that!  If you’d like, you can take it easy and plan a lazy day by the pool. OR head into the parks and have an adventure with us! MiceChat will be having a lunch meet-up at Animal Kingdom on this day at 11:30 am, followed by a trek into the jungles of Disney.


We are having a lunch meet up at 11:30 at the Flame Tree BBQ. Get your food and head down to the first covered hut near the lagoon—if you have trouble finding us, call the MiceChat Hotline at 949-274-8778.

From the Movies to Mickey – October 28th

Join us for a quick bite at 10:30am at “Starring Rolls” in the Disney Studios park. We’ll ride Tower of Terror, see the Indiana Jones Stunt Show, pick up some of the stage shows. Then, as the hours begin to fade to darkness, we’ll join Mickey and pals in the Magic Kingdom for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party!


Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party – Evening of October 28


Halloween isn’t just about scares.  At Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party you can become a kid again and spend the night trick or treating with all of your MiceChat pals!  You’ll be treated with the special Halloween Fireworks at Cinderella’s Castle, the amazing Boo to You Parade, bags filled with candy and endless character interactions.  Not to mention the rides!  When was the last time you got to yell “trick or treat” (and get candy)?!


Meet at on the train platform on Main Street at 6:30pm – Just in case of rain we’ll have cover while we wait for our Mice Pals to assemble. We will shut down the Magic Kingdom in true MiceChat style!

These parties sell out (Oct 31 is already sold out!) so we recommend getting your tickets HERE  ASAP. The party tickets are running $71.36 per adult.

The adventures never end with MiceChat and Fairy Godmother Travel. If you need a hotel room, booking now could save you some green. Deals up to 30% off are available right now.


So what do you think? See any events here you’d like to attend? Book a week with Fairy Godmother Travel and save – Or add your name to the list below and we’ll let you know when and where you can sign up for each of the events. It’s a pretty impressive line up of amazing fun and events.  We will see 6 different theme parks, two halloween parties, meals at outstanding restaurants, and the nicest people you can ever travel with.  Yes, the MiceChat WDW Invasion will be a magical not-to-be-missed week!

Join the MiceChat WDW Invasion and Gumball Rally Info List
for updates and information on the MiceChat WDW Invasion 2014.

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Upcoming MiceChat Events – Don’t Miss Out:

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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]