Just some more info (take it or leave it), but this 'extension' has been in the planning stage for months. An 'insider' even suggested it may have been the plan all the time ... and despite the spin placed in the O-Sentinel yesterday, PR hack Rick Sylvain's quotes are vomit-inducing, it has in NO way been a success at all in Anaheim and it hasn't been a driver behind the recent 4% increase in attendance in the last quarter at WDW.
The bottom line is Jay Rasulo and Michael Mendenhall have nothing. Zero. Zip. Nada. Nothing.
2008 was quickly approaching and there was no major marketing celebration on the horizon, since they chose to ignore EPCOT's 25th ... which any smart markting honcho would have folded into the larger Year of a Million Dreams, and they couldn't come up with anything ...
There was some talk of doing DAK's 10th Anniversary as the tentpole of marketing for next year for WDW, but it didn't have enough pull ... and the nighttime additions (including Rivers of Light and needed infrastructure) have been delayed and won't debut next year from what I've been told ... likely due to financial reasons more than anything.
So instead of just marketing the parks and resorts on their own merits, well ... the marketing folks don't ever believe in doing that ... so they quickly decided that due to 'overwhelming demand' and 'huge popularity' by guests to extend the celebration almost before it even began.
Oh so typical.