Hello Dear Readers! Are you starting to get ready for the 4th of July? It’s coming up fast, the month of June has just flown by. But before you get too busy decking the halls with that red, white, and blue, let’s check out a few things of interest. Here are the subjects for today’s Pressing Matters:

Whip It Good • The Worst Director Ever • D23 — Pooh Bear and The Expo • Cars Not-At-The-Beach • Moon Pilot Lands In San Fran

Now that it’s officially summer it’s time to get out the summery clothes and kick back a bit. And to the Disney fan, what’s more summery than tikis and Dole Whip, I ask you? The answer my dear readers is a Tiki Pineapple Whip Tee. It’s just the thing to wear whilst slurping a Dole Whip float or enjoying a few leisurely moments at the Disneyland Resort’s newest hot spot, Trader Sams. Graphic designer, Richard Terpstra has designed a terrific tee for just such occasions.

Would that the Disneyland merch folks could come up with something as clever as this:

The design is not based on a show or attraction, but on a rite of passage when it comes to the Disney Theme Parks. Within Adventureland at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World, there's a "must eat" on every visitor's list: the Dole Pineapple Whip! If it's not on your bucket list, it should be.

There’s a catch though. Richard will only be producing shirts that have been ordered, and he is only taking orders through this Friday, June 24th. So you must act fast if this tee is for you.

Available in men’s and woman’s styles, the shirt is reasonably priced at $20 (plus shipping). To place an order (through June 24th), visit: http://www.rjterpstra.com/tiki/ to see more of Richard’s Disney-based design work visit his blog at: http://disneydesignerland.blogspot.com/

He loved women’s clothes, especially angora. He hung out with Bela Lugosi. He was the title character of a Tim Burton film. He was one of cinematic history’s worst directors, and he was the director of my absolute favorite bad film, Plan 9 From Outer Space.

He was Ed Wood and there is an effort being made by the aptly named Ed Wood Project to honor Ed’s achievements as a man, a dreamer, an artist, and a WWII veteran, with a monument at Hollywood Forever Cemetery.

The cemetery has donated land, now all that’s needed is funding for the monument itself. This weekend, the Sci-Fi Center in Las Vegas will be hosting a showing of Ed’s films and donating proceeds to The Ed Wood Project so that monument dream can become a reality:

Friends of Ed! The Sci-Fi Center in Las Vegas has generously offered to have a showing of Ed's films, donating proceeds to The Ed Wood Project. We will be naming all the films to be screened in coming days, so stay tuned, but so far films include: Plan 9 from Outer Space, Night Of the Ghouls and Bride of the Monster. The proceeds from this event will go to raise funds to purchase a headstone (cenotaph) for director Edward D. Wood, Jr., at Hollywood Forever Cemetery, in Hollywood, CA.

The screening takes place on Saturday, June 25th from 12:00 PM to 6:00 PM at The Sci Fi Center — 900 Karen Avenue Suite D202 (upstairs inside the Commercial Center Orleans Square) in Las Vegas, NV. For more information on the screening and The Ed Wood Project, visit their Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/edwoodproject

Being a person who keeps vampire hours, this one’s waaaay too early in the day for me, but D23 members who are early risers and those of you with kiddies, take note if you’d like to attend the Winnie the Pooh screening at the El Capitan Theatre. Today’s the first day to get those tix:

It will be a magical morning in the Hundred Acre Wood. D23 Members and their families are invited to stay in their pajamas and join us for a very special advance screening of the new Winnie the Pooh movie before the animated feature opens in theaters.

I’m not sure how all the kiddies will be able to sit that long, but for the rest of you there’s a reward — following the screening the audience will be treated to a panel discussion and Q&A moderated by Walt Disney Archives director Becky Cline and featuring several of the film's supervising animators including Eric Goldberg, Randy Haycock, Mark Henn, and Bruce Smith. The screening begins at 7:30 AM and takes place Saturday, July 9th at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood — 6838 Hollywood Blvd. Tickets are available to D23 members starting June 23, at 10 a.m. PST and cost $10 per person.

For more information visit: http://d23.disney.go.com/expo/070911_EE_PoohScreening.html

Ever so slowly, the D23 folks are releasing details about the upcoming Expo. If you haven’t decided to buy tickets yet, maybe some of this will help you make up your mind whether or not you should attend.

This year’s Disney Legends ceremony will take place at the Expo and attendees get the chance to see it all happen:

The Disney Legends Awards program is a 24-year tradition of The Walt Disney Company, and the three-day D23 EXPO provides a rare opportunity for the public to be a part of the memorable presentation.  The awards ceremony will kick off the first day of the D23 EXPO, hosted by noted television personality Tom Bergeron and will take place at 11 a.m. on Friday, August 19, in the Anaheim Convention Center Arena. Honorees include: Regis Philbin, Jim Henson, Disney Princesses Jodi Benson, Paige O’Hara, Lea Salonga, Anika Noni Rose, Barton “Bo” Boyd, Linda Larkin, Jack and Bonita Wrather, Ray Watson, and Guy Williams.

And what’s a Disney event without Merchandise:

— D23 Expo Logo Merchandise includes apparel, headwear, pins, and Vinylmation.
— Disney Theme Park Merchandise debuts some of its newest releases, including the Disneyland Vintage Collection, which pays tribute to attractions from yesteryear.
— Disney Dream Collection and D23-Exclusive Jewelry will include new pieces of fine jewelry featuring classic Disney icons and characters, such as the Sleeping Beauty Castle, Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and Tinker Bell.
— Dream Store Autograph Sessions will give D23 fans the opportunity to meet and greet some of their favorite authors, artists, Disney Legends.
— Dream Store Showcase and Trading Area invites fans to find out more about what is “in store” from the world of Disney Theme Park Merchandise.
— D23 Expo 2011 Live and Silent Auction offers Disney enthusiasts the rare opportunity to bid on unique experiences, tours, artwork, props.

The D23 Expo 2011 Live and Silent Auction takes place Saturday, August 20, 2011 — note that separate admission is required. Tickets for the Live and Silent Auction go on sale June 20, 2011, at 8:00 AM via www.ArtofDisneyParks.com. For more information or to purchase tickets to the D23 EXPO, visit: http://www.D23Expo.com

Cars 2 opens Friday and from what I’m hearing, it may be the first Pixar film that’s a critical flop. While I’ve no doubt Cars 2 will be a financial success, way back when original director Brad Lewis was removed from the film and John Lasseter was brought in, well ... that didn’t bode well, artistically. It was a signal that were problems and if the Little Golden Book version of Cars 2 is any indication, the story is a mess. Oh well, one can only hope that much like Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and its lack of a decent story, Cars 2 will still be entertaining even if the storyline stinks. (I have a feeling though, that what Cars 2 is all about is money, more Ka-Ching! than Ka-Chow! Have you been to a WalMart or Target lately and seen all those Cars 2 toys?)

The subject of cars brings us to our next Pressing Matter. Good reviews or bad, I know like me, you’re going to see Cars 2. If you live near the Bay area, take that Cars 2 ticket stub and head on over to Playland-Not-At-The-Beach this weekend for some cars fun. MiceAge reader Gullywhumper tells me Playland is a fantastic place:

It doesn't matter if you are 5, 55, or 105, Matchbox or 57 Chevy, Nascar or soapbox derby, Greased Lighting or Lightning McQueen. Cars are a part of all of our lives. Motor fans young and old, come relive the great tradition of America's automotive past at Playland. Take a spin at the wheel of our Road Racer antique arcade game or navigate your convertible through a quake zone on the Earth Shaker pinball machine. Check out the classic cars in our parking lot and all the other activities inside that are sure to please car enthusiasts of any age. Bring in your Cars 2 movie ticket stub to Playland and save $2.00 off your regular Playland admission price this weekend, Saturday June 25th and Sunday June 26th.

Playland-Not-At-The-Beach is located at 10979 San Pablo Avenue in El Cerrito, CA. For more information call: 510-592-3002 or visit: http://www.playland-not-at-the-beach.org/calendar_01.html

And while you’re in the San Francisco area visiting Playland, you’re going to want to visit the Walt Disney Family Museum. Here’s what’s in store for July:

• July’s Film Of The Month is – Moon Pilot: Launch your summer with this high-flying comedy. Richmond Talbot takes you to the moon for an afternoon of laughs as you watch and enjoy this out-of-the-world romance. The film is screened daily at 1:00 & 4:00 PM, except Tuesdays, and July 16th, 17th, and 23rd.

• Songs and Stories from Disneyland with Rod Miller: Disneyland’s favorite Ragtime pianist, Rod Miller, will play tunes and tell stories about playing on Main Street at the Coca-Cola Refreshment Corner to working at Disneyland. Rod will be at the museum on Saturday, July 16th and Sunday, July 17th from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM in the Lobby

• Laugh-O-Grams Screening: The Walt Disney Family Museum, San Francisco Silent Film Festival, and MoMA Castro Theater are presenting five original Laugh-O-Gram shorts produced by Walt when he lived in Kansas City, Missouri. Come experience these wonderful silent films with musical accompaniment in the beautiful Castro Theater. Historian JB Kaufman will also be on hand to discuss the significance of these early Disney films! The Laugh-O-Grams screening takes place Saturday July 16th, tickets are available online at www.silentfilm.org

When I visited the museum one of my favorite things was the Disneyland model. At 3:00 PM on Sunday, July 17th, Disneyland’s birthday, if you can’t be at Disneyland, the next best place to be is the Walt Disney Family Museum where you can explore the wonderful Disneyland model:

• Disneyland Model: Creating the Disneyland of Walt’s Imagination — Hear from creative director, Brian Gernand, about the making of our Disneyland Model. Brian will describe how Tony Baxter and his team partnered with Diane Disney Miller to create the outstanding piece that represents “The Disneyland of Walt’s Imagination.” Join us as we explore the intricacies of the model, learn about their creative process, and what it ultimately represents.

• Walt’s Fascination with Outer Space: At 3:00 PM on July 23rd, Learn about Walt's fascination with outer space and how he helped build support for the U.S. Space Program. Disney historian and author, Jim Korkis, will discuss Walt’s scientific and cultural contributions, the idea of Science Factual vs. Science Fiction, and Walt as a visionary and futurist. Excerpts from the Disneyland television series, including "Man and The Moon," and "Mars and Beyond" will also be included in the presentation.

• And finally, July’s Look Closer explores Disneyland TV, Space Travel Series Publicity Stills: Friday July 29, Saturday July 30, Sunday July 31 at 1:00 & 3:00 PM in Gallery 9.

The Walt Disney Family Museum is located at 104 Montgomery Street, in The Presidio of San Francisco. For more information about prices, tickets, and a list of all activities visit the museum’s website: www.waltdisney.org or call: 415-345-6800

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I’ll leave you and say goodbye until next week when we meet again to discuss more...

If you'd like to submit something to be considered for the column, please send it to both Sue and Al at the following email addresses: [email protected] and [email protected] with the words "Pressing Matters" in the subject line. Due to our already extensive email loads we won't be able to acknowledge each submission, but those under consideration may get a note from us asking for more details. Representatives from the items chosen are invited to answer questions from readers at the forum linked at the end of each column.

FTC-Mandated Disclosure: As of December 2009, bloggers are required by the Federal Trade Commission to disclose payments and freebies. Sue Kruse and Al Lutz did not receive any payments, free items, or free services from any of the parties discussed in this article. They pay for their own admission to theme parks and their associated events, unless otherwise explicitly noted.

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2011 Sue Kruse