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American Idol Scotty McCreery; Price Ticket Increase; Star Trek at the Kennedy!

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by , 06-12-2011 at 11:00 PM






New This Week:

  • Feature of the Week: Dinosaur
  • Dining In a Minute: Earl of Sandwich (DTD)
  • American Idol: Scotty McCreery
  • Stars of the Saga (Star Wars Weekends)
  • Halloween Horror Nights Construction
  • WDW Ticket Prices Increase
  • Kennedy Space Center : Star Trek Exhibit



Ticket Price Increase!!
The price to get into the parks has gone up, now at $85 for a one day, one park pass, an AP for a non-Florida resident is now $519.00

MAGIC KINGDOM:

FONTIERLAND:

Frontierland Shootin Arcade will be closed for refurbishment June 9th - September 30th.

DISNEY'S HOLLWOOD STUDIOS

AMERICAN IDOL: SCOTTY MCCREERY
Newly crowned American Idol winner Scotty McCreery made a visit to DHS to greet the fans.








Signing autographs for fans.



























STARS OF THE SAGA
Hosted by James Arnold Taylor
Guests: Jeremy Bulloch & Ray Park
by Lisa Mills

James Arnold Taylor talks with Jeremy Bulloch who portrayed Boba Fett in Star Wars Episodes V & VI and Ray Park who was Darth Maul in the Phantom Menace.




James Arnold Taylor acknowledged it was "Tea Time" for Englishman Jeremy Bullock and had a Storm Trooper bring out tea for Jeremy.


Being "proper" with placing a napkin in Jeremy Bulloch's lap.


Jeremy enjoying his "Tea Time".


Ray Park discussing getting into the character of Darth Maul.


Ray Park putting on his "Ear Hat" getting ready to sing The Mickey Mouse March.

BEHIND THE FORCE
Hosted by Ashley Eckstein
Guest: Matt Lanter
By Lisa Mills


Ashley Eckstein talks with Matt Lanter who is the voice of Anakin Skywalker from the Clone Wars.




Matt Lanter, James Arnold Taylor, and Ashley Eckstein showing us how they put their voices to film.


Matt Lanter answering questions from the audience.


Matt Lanter voicing Anakin Skywalker as Chewbacca!

VISIT TO THE MAUL
Starring: Ray Park
by Lisa Mills


Ray Park starts off with some Double Lightsaber Wielding while Darth Maul watches in awe.


James Arnold Taylor is a little nervous when Ray Park starts to move in his direction.


Ray makes animal movements at James.


Being a Monkey on James's back!


Getting ready to show us some of his moves.


Ray Park showing us Wushu Martial Arts.




Ray and James showing what can be done with some Imagination and a Broom Stick.






Have some Lightsaber Fun with Younglings.


Ending the show with an Awesome Star Wars Stance.

DISNEY'S ANIMAL KINGDOM:

FEATURE OF THE WEEK:

Dinosaur

Dinosaur has a somewhat awkward existence. While Dinosaur is one of the main attractions at Disney's Animal Kingdom, it has the tendency to be compared unfavorably to its West Coast counterpart, Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye, for which it shares the same ride layout. Clearly, Indiana Jones has the elaborate theming, props, queue, and the property that everyone loves and admires. However, while a lot of Dinosaur takes place in the dark with few effects or things to look at, the animatronics, something that seems to be lacking lately in Disney's repertoire, are impressive, and the "old wing" science institute queue is fun to look at while waiting to enter the preshow. Unfortunately, this is one case of synergy that should be expunged. Unfortunately we have an attraction where a ride's name has been changed to create buzz about a movie release, Dinosaur, that largely didn't develop much at the box office and is all but forgotten. While Aladar and company still are the center of the attraction (at least Iguanadons and Carnotaurs are), let's be reasonable and revert the to old, better, still classic name: Countdown to Extinction. Name preferences aside, here are some shots of this oft forgotten gem in Dinoland.

Entrance/Queue:








































Attraction:





Exit:






DOWNTOWN DISNEY:

DINING IN A MINUTE:
Earl of Sandwich
By Disnyfan89


Earl of Sandwich store front, photo by Jason Filby

Nothing beats the excitement of walking in to The Earl of Sandwich located at the Downtown Disney Marketplace. Immediately upon entering one’s senses are overloaded by the shear hustle and bustle of the place. You hear the excitement of patrons discussing what sandwich they should order. You smell the fresh baked artisan bread being toasted to perfection as it passes through the toasters. You see a large team of cast members working in unison in what looks to be controlled chaos as they prepare sandwiches, salads, and more for the hungry masses.



Earl of Sandwich, named after the fourth Earl of Sandwich (the inventor of placing meat between two slices of bread) John Montague, boasts that it is “The Worlds Greatest Hot Sandwich” and well, it’s hard to argue against that.



The Earl of Sandwich opened in the Downtown Disney Marketplace in March of 2004 and it quickly became a hit among visitors. It is rare ever to find a time when this bustling Sandwich Shop isn’t full of patrons. This is perhaps the only down side to eating at Earl of Sandwich. With its booming popularity and the lack of other quick service options in the Marketplace, this very small sandwich shop is always packed. There's always two things you can count on when visiting: There will be a line and the chances of finding a seat inside are slim to none. This is perhaps our only complaint when visiting this otherwise wonderful dining location.



Today we decided in honor Disney’s newest DVC resort Aulani to sample the Hawaiian BBQ sandwich. This most non traditional sandwich consists of Grilled Chicken, Roasted Ham, Hawaiian BBQ sauce, Aged Swiss Cheese and Fresh Pineapple.



This sandwich is a delight with its many flavors and textures. The grilled Chicken is cooked perfectly and is never to dry or chewy while the Hawaiian BBQ packs a punch of sweet but spicy flavor and melds perfectly with the large, juicy, freshly cut pineapple slices.



Along with the sandwich, we had a side of Tomato Soup with fresh Croutons and we have to say, this quite possibly is the best tomato soup we’ve ever had. It’s perfectly creamy and the fresh croutons make us feel like we are eating a grilled cheese sandwich dipped in Tomato Soup.

With its fourteen different Hot Sandwiches, six wraps or salads, and a large selection of sides and desserts there is something for everyone at Earl of Sandwich.

To learn more about Earl of Sandwich you can visit their website at EARL OF SANDWICH®

WALT DISNEY WORLD RESORTS:



Art of Animation Resort Pricing
Disney's Art of Animation Resort, the newest Value resort on property known for being largely family suites, has now begun accepting reservations beginning June 1, 2012. Pricing seems to be approximately $345 per night for the family suite and $139 a night for a standard hotel room in the value season. Of course, weekends and different seasons and holidays will affect pricing.



HALLOWEEN HORROR NIGHTS CONSTRUCTION
By Disnyfan89

Despite October being four months away Universal Studios has already started working on their annual Halloween Event: Halloween Horror Nights. This year marks the 21st anniversary for this annual event which has been voted the "Best Halloween Event" the past three years in a row by Amusement Today's "Golden Ticket Award."

At the beginning of the month construction kicked into high gear for this event's signature Haunted House and today we wanted to bring you some photos of the action.

Over at Jaws, part of the main queue and the overflow queue has been cleared of all ropes and stations and the windows covered to allow construction of one of this year's eight (8) Haunted Houses.


Here in this photo you can see the main doors to the Jaws queue have been closed and the queue line rerouted around the building. These doors usually mark the exit of the Haunted House during the event.

Around the corner large black drapes have been hung in the openings of the extended Queue.

These drapes not only help hide the backstage areas of the Haunted House but also help darken the environment for better control over lighting.

Further down Jaw's outdoor queue one can get a glimpse of the construction. Down here one can hear the cutting of plywood and the sounds of hammers as the walls or frame of the Haunted House is built.


This photo shows the work that is on going at what is usually the entrance to the Haunted House.


Down the street at Disaster the main queue has been cleared and all the major props has been pushed to the side as this site waits for construction to start.

Across the way at Simpsons, while exiting the attraction one can get a glimpse of the two backstage "Tents" that each hold one of the eight Haunted Houses. Progress on these houses is far more advanced as Team Members have reportedly seen props already being moved into the tents. This comes as no surprise since these tents are only used for HHN and many of the previous house walls remain intact with only slight modification to the layout year to year. The Houses are stripped of all previous theming at the conclusion of the event and receive all new theming the next year. This helps cutdown on costs and provides for faster construction of the Haunted Houses.


What's really exciting is that the frame work for the elaborate Facades at the entrance of these Tent Houses can already be seen.



Unfortunately we will have to wait till around September before we will get to see any more major construction as that is when set pieces for the Scare Zones in the park will start to materialize. However fear not as we still have much to look forward too because soon Universal will be launching the teaser site for this years event and more details about this year's theme will be revealed. And you can bet we here at Orlando Park Hopper will keep you up to date on all the latest news and developments surrounding this terrifically terrifying event.

*Disclaimer: All Construction photos where taken on stage in open guest areas. At no time should you ever enter a backstage area or construction site without permission and proper safety equipment.*



Summer Night's
Now through August 14th
Although nothing has been updated on the BGT website, annual passholders received a newsletter in the mail stating that the Summer Night Concert Series will run from June 10th - August 14th. We will post more details once they become available.

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Island Nights - Adventure Island
June 9th through August 13th - 5PM to 9PM
This summer at Adventure Island, (BGT's water park) when the sun goes down, the fun heats up during Island Nights. From June 9th to August 13th, it's a vacation from the everyday as Busch Garden's water park transforms into a celebration of island life with live music, authentic entertainment and inspiring cuisine.

CHEETAH HUNT / CHEETAH RUN
Photos and video of the newest attraction.
by Aimster






Peek!














The new baby kangaroo at Walkabout Way







Gatorland - Screamin Gator
Opening Summer 2011
Clip in and “zip” off on an exciting outdoor adventure with the all-new Screamin’ Gator Zip Line at Gatorland. Your journey will take you along 1,200 feet of high flying, heart pounding adventure from some of the finest zip line towers in the world. Standing over seven stories tall, these amazing towers feature multilevel launch pads and breathtaking views from high above the treetops.

Kennedy Space Center - Star Trek Exhibit
Now through September 5th
Appearing for the first time in Florida, STAR TREK: THE EXHIBITION, presented by EMS Exhibits, Inc., is an interactive exhibit of authentic Star Trek artifacts from the past 45 years, featuring one-of-a-kind costumes, props and filming models from Star Trek television series and feature films. Together these elements offer, Star Trek fans and novices alike, an opportunity to experience first-hand the imagination, artistry, technology and meticulous craftsmanship that have made Star Trek the most enduring science fiction franchise in history.

Orlando Science Center - Guitar: The Instrument that Rocked the World
Now through September 11th
The National GUITAR Museum announced that its touring exhibition, GUITAR: The Instrument That Rocked The World will launch worldwide at the Orlando Science Center. The 5,000 square foot will explore the history and evolution of the guitar-from lutes and lyres to modern high-tech instruments-and show how the instrument became the cultural symbol it is today.

Don't forget to check out the other areas of MiceChat that offer news, updates and photos about the other Disney Parks around the World!

  • Dateline Disneyland which is packed with great news and photos from the Disneyland Resort.
  • Weekend Update Offers a world of Disney theme parks as well as other sights and landmarks!
  • In The Parks offers news, updates and tips from Disneyland and other Southern California offerings.
  • SAMLAND - Your weekly look at some interesting tales from Disney history.
  • And you'll always find something of interest on the forums or MiceAge!




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Updated 06-14-2011 at 05:27 AM by SummerInFL

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Comments

  1. toonaspie's Avatar
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    Good gravy! $345 a night and they're calling this a Value suite?! You can get a standard deluxe room for less than that!
  2. KingEric's Avatar
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    awesome update everyone!
  3. Disneykin Kid's Avatar
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    Too bad Dinosaur was tied to such a stinker of a movie. Jurassic Park I think still reigns as the definitive dinosaur movie, and it really isn't about dinosaurs, it's really more about a theme park gone wrong.
  4. RSoxNo1's Avatar
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    I would be all for the Countdown to Extinction name returning. I've long said that a refurbishment to this attraction (with a Haunted Mansion level plussing) should be enough to allow the Expedition Everest downtime required to fix the Yeti.

    In other news, if anyone has an old Countdown to Extinction Fastpass I'd love to buy it.
  5. Maverick's Avatar
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    Fabulous report as always, I laughed, I cried, two thumbs up
  6. Awe_inspired's Avatar
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    Great update!
  7. michael darling's Avatar
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    Oh, for heaven's sake. Enough with the overdramatic grammar corrections on these posts. No one needs to be "terribly ashamed" over anything. They just need to proofread. If you want to be so correct, analyze the incorrect sentence : "Shows how cutting a budget can destroy the magic". This should begin with "It", or "This". English professors aren't writing these enjoyable articles, and I for one, am glad.
  8. Wesley815's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidgra
    Someone should be TERRIBLY ashamed of their lack of knowledge of the English language. "It's" means "it is," which is something everyone should have learned in elementary school.

    And Dinosaur is one of the most awful attractions ever built at WDW. To take an incredible ride like the Indiana Jones ride from Disneyland and make it SO bad is quite a feat. Shows how cutting a budget can destroy the magic.
    nothin else better to worry about in life for ya?

    Relax, everything will be ok... I'm sure the OP feels terrible for his actions and will never speak again in public or to his family. :P

    btw- Disneyland/World have attractions, not rides.
  9. Marko50's Avatar
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    Cool! I get to post after the grammarticians. (I was looking for a smiley with rolling eyes, but it wasn't there.)

    Anyway, my small suggestion for this blog is to replace the sub-headline "Outside the Mouse". Unless you truly believe USO, Canaveral, BGT, etc are truly "Within the Mouse".
  10. SummerInFL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidgra
    "This is perhaps the only down side to eating at Earl of Sandwich. With it's booming popularity and the lack of other quick service options in the Marketplace, this very small sandwich shop is always packed."

    Someone should be TERRIBLY ashamed of their lack of knowledge of the English language. "It's" means "it is," which is something everyone should have learned in elementary school.

    And Dinosaur is one of the most awful attractions ever built at WDW. To take an incredible ride like the Indiana Jones ride from Disneyland and make it SO bad is quite a feat. Shows how cutting a budget can destroy the magic.
    Thank you, it has been corrected. The beauty of putting together this article every week is the ability to work with some of the most talented people I've ever met both artistically and grammatically. Given all of the backgrounds and people involved, some grammatical errors will slip through here and there. However, when that happens we appreciate when someone notices something we missed and brings it to our attention.

    I truly hope you have a magical day and this error no longer brings any concern for you.

    Your humble editor.


    Summer
  11. wdwprince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toonaspie
    Good gravy! $345 a night and they're calling this a Value suite?! You can get a standard deluxe room for less than that!
    You can get a standard deluxe for that, not less than that.
  12. DMagic's Avatar
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    I have to agree with Westley815... Writing a post is all about feedback and participation... not beating everyone else over the head with your creative writing skills. Gezus.

    I for one enjoy "What" is being said, or reported on... and all of us should have the freedom to post... or communicate... anyway that we are capable of.

    And... I seriously doubt if the original person posting is offended in anyway by a less than polished 'comment'. It's the comments... regardless of their condition, that tell the original author that someone out there cares enough to 'read the post and comment on it' in the first place.
  13. Timekeeper's Avatar
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    Great update as always! Remodel the Dinosaur with its original title, "Countdown To Extinction", update some of the effects; build a new thrill ride that is on par with Expedition: Everest, then close EE for one whole year for Refurbishment.


    Timekeeper
  14. jaxbistro's Avatar
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    I have to disagree with Davidgra with Dinosaur. It wasn't a great movie, but good, my son watched it many many times. As for the ride, IT'S one of my favorites at WDW.

    The Earl of Sandwich is just fantastic. With very few take-out places at any WDW resort, IT'S a great option, plus the food is pretty doggone good!
  15. Disnyfan89's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidgra
    "This is perhaps the only down side to eating at Earl of Sandwich. With it's booming popularity and the lack of other quick service options in the Marketplace, this very small sandwich shop is always packed."

    Someone should be TERRIBLY ashamed of their lack of knowledge of the English language. "It's" means "it is," which is something everyone should have learned in elementary school.
    Maybe you would like to sign up as a contributor to the the OPH and be the official grammar checker?