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This Week in Disney Parks Photos: Halloween at Disney Parks

With Halloween less than one week away, celebrations are now in full swing at Disney Parks.

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party Transforms Magic Kingdom After Dark

Here at the Walt Disney World Resort, guests are enjoying Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party fun at Magic Kingdom Park. At the Disneyland Resort, families are having a blast at Mickey's Halloween Party and Haunted Mansion Holiday at Disneyland park, and Mad T Party at Disney California Adventure.

Be sure to click through the gallery above for a look inside all of the fun.

This Week in Disney Parks Photos: Halloween at Disney Parks by Jennifer Fickley-Baker: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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And the 2014 Orbitz Best in Stay Elite Award Goes to ... Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa!

The magic of a vacation to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, is at the top of any must-do list for families looking for a once-in-a-lifetime getaway. With included amenities designed for every age like Aunty's Beach House, Painted Sky and the Aulani Starlit Hui, it's no surprise that Orbitz recently recognized this beautiful Hawaiian resort with the 2014 Orbitz Best in Stay Elite Award!

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The 2014 Best in Stay Awards recognize up to five properties in each category, and Aulani earned the Elite Award for being the highest-rated hotel in the Family category. Each of the winners were selected based on hotel reviews submitted by Orbitz customers and travel experts, spanning 75 of the most popular destinations in the world.

If your bags aren't packed yet, there is still time to book a consecutive four-night stay at this award-winning resort and receive the fourth night free! This offer is available to book through October 30, 2014, for most vacations to Aulani through December 22, 2014. Don't forget -- you can also upgrade to a one- or two-bedroom villa and receive a $100 per night resort credit, in addition to your free night. Learn more about this limited-time offer here!

What does your family love most about a vacation to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa? Tell us in the comments below!

And the 2014 Orbitz Best in Stay Elite Award Goes to ... Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa! by Tyler Slater: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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Minnie Cheers On Her Disney Side With Never-Before-Seen Moves

With some never before seen fancy footwork, unique dance moves and a cheer lift, Minnie Mouse and her spirit team recently stopped by the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort to cheer on her Disney Side.

Minnie Cheers On Her Disney Side at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Minnie Cheers On Her Disney Side at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex Minnie Cheers On Her Disney Side at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

Performing never before seen moves, Minnie is looking to inspire college cheer and dance squads to show their Disney Side and compete in the nationwide Cheer Your Disney Side campaign.

College cheer and dance squads have until November 10 to create and submit a 30-second Disney Parks-inspired routine using remixed Disney Parks attraction music to show off their Disney Side. Video submissions are being accepted at Espn.com/CheerMagic. Four teams will be selected as finalists and announced December 11 on ESPN around the telecast of the Home Depot College Football Awards show at Walt Disney World Resort. The winning squad will be announced January 12 on ESPN before the college football National Championship. The winning team of Cheer On Your Disney Side sponsored by ESPN working in collaboration with Disney Destinations and Varsity Spirit, wins a $100,000 grant for their college spirit program and a group trip to Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.

The excitement is not limited to just cheer and dance squads. Fans can get into the action by voting for their favorite Disney Side cheer and dance routine from the four finalists.

For more information, rules and to submit a video, visit Espn.com/CheerMagic.

This year, Disney Parks is encouraging people to show their Disney Side - their fun-loving adventurous side that laughs more, says "yes" more and just plain lives life to the fullest.

ESPN's Wide World of Sports Complex at the Walt Disney World Resort has been the home of Varsity Spirit's College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championship, the premier athletic competition for these teams, for over 20 years. Varsity Spirit has been a driving force behind cheerleading's dynamic transformation into the high-energy, athletic activity it is today. Focused on safety, entertainment and school leadership, Varsity Spirit conducts educational camps, administrates competitions and provides apparel for more than 350,000 cheerleaders and dancers.

Cheer Your Disney Side Promotion By ESPN.

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Open to legal residents of 50 US States and DC, at least 18+ who are a School Administrator, Teacher, Coach or Administrative Director, representing a public or private, 2 or 4 year college/university located in the 50 US States or DC. Starts 9/3/14 12:00 PM EST. Ends 11/10/14 11:59 PM EST. To enter visit www.espn.com/CheerMagic and follow the directions provided to complete the Online entry form, and upload your Spirit Squad's 30 sec videos. For prize details odds of winning and complete Official Rules go to www.espn.com/CheerMagic. Subject to Official Rules. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: ESPN Internet Ventures, 605 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10158.

Minnie Cheers On Her Disney Side With Never-Before-Seen Moves by Robert Hitchcock: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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Tween-Directed Film 'Rocket Boy' Takes Disney Side To Theaters

As we shared earlier, our Yellow Shoes Creative Group and McGarry Bowen have been working with a few tween filmmakers to bring to life their vision of what their Disney Side would look like on film as a part of the "Direct Your Disney Side" project.

Our friends at Yellow Shoes just shared the first of these short films, which is titled "Rocket Boy," by Elwood Walker. As a part of the "Direct Your Disney Side" project, this short will also appear in theaters nationwide starting today as a part of the NCM First Look pre-show content (which will run before film previews begin).

We'll have two more tween-directed videos to share with you in this series in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

Tween-Directed Film 'Rocket Boy' Takes Disney Side To Theaters by Jennifer Fickley-Baker: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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Disney's 'Big Hero 6' Merchandise Lands at Disney Parks

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I can't wait to see Disney's "Big Hero 6" when it arrives in theaters on November 7. This film is an action-packed comedy-adventure about the special friendship that forms between a high-tech, huggable robot named Baymax and a brilliant robotics prodigy named Hiro Hamada. I've enjoyed the trailers as the film looks like it has everything I love, especially robots! I recently visited a few merchandise locations at Disney Parks to check out new products inspired by this upcoming animated feature. Here is a look at some of my favorite items.

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Similar to previous animated film releases, the Disney Theme Park Merchandise team partnered with the Disney Store to carry a few toys, plush and other items that may be found in locations outside Disney Parks. I love the Baymax plush shown at the top of this story (I want to hug him all day!).

Disney's 'Big Hero 6' Merchandise Lands at Disney Parks Disney's 'Big Hero 6' Merchandise Lands at Disney Parks

There are other items, however, that were developed specifically for Disney Parks. They include some apparel items and a six-pin, open edition pin set.

In select merchandise locations in Disney's Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort, guests will also find a limited release, graphic MagicBand. In order to purchase this retail MagicBand, guests must present one of the following for the MagicBand to be linked to at the time of purchase: valid theme park admission, Memory Maker card or an active MagicBand.

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A D-Tech on Demand case for the iPhone 5/5S will be released at both Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. In the D-Tech on Demand boutique at the Marketplace Co-Op in Downtown Disney Marketplace, guests will soon find six new art designs with characters from the film. The cases shown above are for the iPhone 6, but they are also offered for iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5/5S, iPhone 5C, Samsung Galaxy SIII and Samsung Galaxy S4 at the boutique. We will begin offering cases for iPhone 6+ and Samsung Galaxy S5 later in November at D-Tech on Demand.

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Finally, there will be a limited release Vinylmation mystery series coming to Disney Parks in early November.

Once the film releases in November, I can't wait to meet the stars of the movie, Hiro Hamada and his huggable buddy, Baymax when the film's characters head to Disney Parks to greet their fans!

Disney's 'Big Hero 6' Merchandise Lands at Disney Parks by Steven Miller: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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#DisneyKids: First Playground Visit at Disney Parks

At Disney Parks, even our playgrounds are driven by story. Whether it's a whimsical playscape inside the Dumbo attraction in New Fantasyland or the larger than life Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure at Disney's Hollywood Studios, a first visit to a Disney Parks playground is a memorable experience during a visit to the Walt Disney World Resort.

We're continuing our exclusive #DisneyKids series this week with special peek at some first visits to The Boneyard, an open-air playground modeled to resemble a dinosaur dig site specifically for younger children (10 and under) in Dinoland U.S.A. at Disney's Animal Kingdom.

If you're visiting the Walt Disney World Resort, we're sharing more fun ideas for the little ones as well as some offers designed with your family in mind on our special preschool page.

#DisneyKids: First Playground Visit at Disney Parks by Thomas Smith: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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Disney Cruise Line Recipes: Spooky Halloween Drinks

Looking for a creepy cocktail to serve at your Halloween celebrations this weekend? Try our "Spooky Juice" and "Franken Fusion Colada," two of the to-die-for drinks Disney cruisers are enjoying on our Halloween on the High Seas cruises.

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Spooky Juice

  • 1 1/2 oz Flor De Cana White Rum
  • 1 oz Elderflower St. Germaine
  • 1/2 oz Grenadine
  • 1/2 oz Blue Curacao
  • 1 oz Agave Nectar
  • 3 Lime Wedges
  • 2 Lychees
  • 2 Maraschino Cherries

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Franken Fusion Colada

  • 1 1/2 oz Pina Colada Mix
  • 1 oz Orange Passion Juice
  • 1 1/2 oz Pumpkin Spiced Puree
  • 1/2 oz Chocolate Sauce
  • 1 oz Whipped Cream
  • 1/2 oz Raspberry Puree

Disney Cruise Line Recipes: Spooky Halloween Drinks by Salah Chetbi: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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999 Happy Haunts: Here Comes The Bride

This week our Happy Haunts series is taking a look at the true lady of the house -- The Bride. (This character's storyline varies a bit at Haunted Mansion attractions around the world, so we'll focus mainly on her appearance at Magic Kingdom Park).

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(Art by Morgan Davidson)

Imagineer Ken Anderson developed one of the first storylines for the Bride, who was a young woman named Priscilla set to be wed to a sea captain named Captain Gore. Throughout this version of the attraction -- which at first was being developed as a walk-through experience -- guests would follow Priscilla as she found evidence that her love was actually a wicked pirate. Priscilla then vanished and was never seen again, although her spirit presence in the mansion was said to have driven the Captain mad. In another version of the Bride's storyline, Walt Disney himself was set to narrate the attraction (think of Walt as the "Ghost Host"), and was to reference a bride character who had "lost her head" before the big day.

The Bride's storyline was finally solidified when Imagineers Marc Davis, Claude Coats and X. Atencio were handed the project in the mid-1960s. Set in a creepy, cluttered attic full of shadows and surprises, the Bride waited for guests at the end of the room with a red pulsing heart and a flowing dress. Over the years, her storyline became more prominent, with wedding mementos placed throughout the attic, a louder thumping heartbeat, and the tune of the Wedding March plunked on a harpischord in the background. Later changes indicate that it was the groom that really lost his head inside the mansion: the Bride currently holds an ax, and nearby portraits of the happy couple reveal a headless groom when the lightning flashes.

In the artwork above, artist Morgan Davidson gave the Bride a Halloween twist. What do you think? Tell us in the comments section below!

For more Happy Haunts, check out the posts below:

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Disney Parks After Dark: A Parisian Sunset at Epcot

I love Paris ... at World Showcase. And tonight's Disney Parks After Dark photo only makes me want to visit it again. What a lovely sunset (captured by Photographer Tom Bricker).

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What's your favorite pavilion to visit in World Showcase after the sun goes down? Tell us in the "Comments" section below!

Disney Parks After Dark: A Parisian Sunset at Epcot by Jennifer Fickley-Baker: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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Help Decide the Top Disneyland Resort Memory from the Past (Almost) 60 Years

The time has finally arrived to choose the top Disneyland Resort memory from the past 60 years! For the last few months, you have submitted your memories and voted on the top selections from each of the Disneyland Decades - 1950s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000 to the present -- all to decide who will win the grand prize: a trip to Disneyland Resort to kick off the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration. Well, today is the day to choose, and we're putting the power in your hands!

Here are the finalists -- the top photos from each decade:

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From the 1950s -- @RizzosCookies: 1955 Disneyland opening week. Cousins w/ Mr. Walt Disney @Disneyland fire station

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From the 1960s -- @KrazyKevinWolff: My dad, uncles, & grammy at the ?@Disneyland ?#Matterhorn Bobsleds in the late '60s.

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From the 1970s -- @eilonwey28: 1970′s Disneyland. Me and Pluto on Main St. -- taken by my Dad in Mar. 1977, on my 2nd birthday.

1980s - DLR60th  - Option 3

From the 1980s -- @kerinjmb: Throwback Thursday to Disneyland circa 1988

1990s - 4

From the 1990s -- @mssmith702: This was in 1999 and was Dominic's first visit to Disney. I always thought this pic should be a postcard. I miss these days! This pic makes me #happy

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From the 2000s -- @carlajh: <3 Thank you Walt <3 And to think, it all started because of a mouse! 2014

Vote now!

Voting will remain open until 11:59 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 29. We will announce the grand prize winner soon after, so stay tuned!

For complete rules, click here.

No purchase necessary. 18/age of majority+, 50 US/DC only. Void where prohibited. See Rules for details.

Help Decide the Top Disneyland Resort Memory from the Past (Almost) 60 Years by Erin Glover: Originally posted on the Disney Parks Blog

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