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With Summer Events Schedule, D23 Delivers On Its Promise

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by , 05-17-2009 at 07:17 AM
Wow, Disney really got it.

This week, to the delight of mousegeeks everywhere (well, in selected markets anyway), Disney's pay-for-play fan community D23 announced its first summer lineup of events, and it's a knockout.

From Disney's press release:
[INDENT][B]May 28 - D23 “Up All Night” at Hollywood’s El Capitan Theatre (FREE)[/B]
(Los Angeles, CA) -- Theatergoers across the country will soon meet the unlikely duo of 78-year-old Carl Fredricksen and 8-year-old Wilderness Explorer Russell in Disney•Pixar’s latest adventure, Up. D23 Members will be among the first to see the film at this free event at the historic El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles on May 28, 2009. The fun begins with a special pin trading event, followed by an all new Disney stage show and a screening of the new Disney-Pixar short Partly Cloudy and the highly anticipated and critically acclaimed Up! And it wouldn’t be a D23 event without a few other special surprises and guests!

[B]May 31 - D23’s Flowers & Fireworks Celebration at Epcot (FREE with park admission)[/B]
(Orlando, FL) – Join D23 at Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort to celebrate its members in all 50 states and more than 25 countries worldwide! Start the evening at the American Gardens Theatre with reserved seating for the Flower Power Concert Series Finale, starring the legendary Tony Orlando, to close the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. Next, head to a VIP location to mix and mingle with your fellow D23 members over desserts and coffee, and then enjoy the spectacular nighttime extravaganza IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth from a private viewing area.

[B]June 24 - D23’s Supercalifragilistic Night on Broadway[/B]
(New York, NY) -- Disney’s award-winning musical Mary Poppins recently celebrated its 1,000th performance on Broadway and on June 24, 2009, D23 Members are being offered the opportunity to meet one another and share in the magic with premium seats, merchandise discounts and an opportunity to stay after the show for a special “behind-the-scenes” experience at the historic New Amsterdam Theatre in New York City. D23 Members also will receive the recently released 2-Disc Mary Poppins 45th Anniversary Special Edition DVD, courtesy of our friends at Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment.

[B]June 24 - D23 and Poppins Breeze into The Windy City[/B]
(Chicago, IL) -- Mary Poppins blew into the Windy City on March 25, 2009 and original Broadway stars Ashley Brown and Gavin Lee have been delighting audiences at the Cadillac Palace Theatre ever since. On June 24, 2009, D23 Members will have the chance to experience the “practically perfect” Mary Poppins like never before, with premium seats, merchandise discounts, complimentary souvenir program and a once-in-a-lifetime “behind-the-scenes” experience. D23 Members also will receive the recently released 2-Disc Mary Poppins 45th Anniversary Special Edition DVD, courtesy of our friends at Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment.

[B]June 27 - D23 and The Lion King Roar in Vegas[/B]
(Las Vegas, NV) -- After entertaining more than 45 million guests in theatres around the world, Simba and Nala have roared their way onto the world famous Las Vegas Strip. On June 27, 2009, D23 will host a special night at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, with premium seating for The Lion King, a “behind-the-scenes” experience and more, available exclusively to D23 Members.

[B]June 27 & Aug. 15 - D23 Day at The Walt Disney Studios and Archives (FREE)[/B]
(Burbank, CA) -- A rare opportunity for D23 Members to enjoy a 2-hour tour of The Walt Disney Studios and Walt Disney Archives, hosted by D23 and Disney Archives staff. Only two dates are available for the Summer 2009 Calendar and space is limited.

[B]July 17 - D23 presents Disneyland, U.S.A. (FREE)[/B]
(Anaheim, CA) -- Celebrate Disneyland’s 54th Anniversary with a special screening of Walt Disney’s recently restored 1956 “People and Places” featurette Disneyland, U.S.A., as well as a panel discussion including Imagineer Tony Baxter, Disney Legend and Chief Archivist Dave Smith, and Disney Studios Film Archivist Ed Hobelman. The event will take place at Disneyland’s Team Disney Anaheim Theater and will be followed by a D23 Member reception.

[B]Sept TBD - The Walt Disney Family Museum Preview (FREE)[/B]
(San Francisco, CA) – Prior to its October 2009 Grand Opening, D23 members will have the opportunity to experience The Walt Disney Family Museum, celebrating the life and achievements of the man who raised animation to an art, transformed the film industry, tirelessly pursued innovation, and created a global and distinctly American legacy. This special preview will be hosted by the Museum’s Executive Director Richard Benefield. Dates and details will be available soon.[/INDENT]

What impresses me the most is that of the eight events listed, five of them are free to D23 members. So, to the naysayers who didn't see the value of membership when D23 launched in March, guess what? Looks like you can get more than a magazine after all. There's a diversity and exclusivity to the event schedule that appeals to both present day pop enthusiasts and armchair Disney historians--it's like Disney knows us, go figure. I can't wait to see what's coming next.

Oh, and I've already marked my calendar for the Lion King and Walt Disney Family Museum events. Maybe I'll see you there.

For more on D23, visit [url=http://www.disney.com/d23]D23 | Disney.com[/url]

[url=http://www.disneynewsarchive.com]Tim's Disney News Archive: An Unofficial History of Disney News and Disney Magazine[/url]

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