DLR UPdate 12




  • Mark Twain Riverboat <attraction/Frontierland> closed Dec 11th to 14th.
  • Splash Mountain <attraction/Critter Country> closes Jan 2nd, 2018 reopening date TBA.
  • Haunted Mansion <attraction/New Orleans Square> closed Jan 8th to 18th, 2018 to remove the holiday overlay.
  • Dumbo the Flying Elephant <attraction/Fantasyland> closes Jan 8th, 2018. Reopening TBA.
  • Main Street Vehicles <attraction/Main Street U.S.A.> closes Jan 8th, 2018. Reopening Jan 22nd.

    Disney California Adventure

  • Goofy's Sky School – closed through December 20 for refurbishment.


  • Redwood Creek Challenge Trail recreation area/Golden State> closes Jan 2nd, 2018. Reopening TBA.
  • A Bug's Life Theater – closes Jan 8th, 2018 It's Tough to be a Bug! reopens on Jan 9th, 2018.
  • Grizzly River Run <attraction/Golden State>– closes Jan 8th, 2018. Reopening TBA.
  • Cove Bar <eatery/Paradise Pier> closes Jan 8th, 2018 as part of the Pixar Pier retheme, though the location will temporarily reopen during Spring Break.

The following attractions, stores, and eateries close Jan 8th, 2018 as part of the Pixar Pier retheme. Reopening TBA:

  • California Screamin'
  • Mickey's Fun Wheel
  • Ariel's Grotto and Cove Bar
  • Games of the Boardwalk
  • Sideshow Shirts
  • Boardwalk Bazaar
  • Treasures in Paradise
  • Point Magu Tattoo
  • Don Tomas Turkey Legs
  • Hot Dog Hut
  • Paradise Pier Ice Cream Company

Downtown Disney

  • Ridemakerz – Reduced operating hours.
  • Chapel Hats – closed. The space was converted to a temporary retail home for Vault 28's The Disney Dress Shop line through the holiday season..

Crowd Impacting Events


  • Holidays at the Disneyland Resort – through Jan 7th, 2018.
  • Candy Cane release dates:
    • Disneyland Candy Palace – Dec 11th, 13th, 15th, 18th, 20th, 24th
    • Disney's California Adventure Trolley Treats – Dec 2nd, 14th, 16th, 21st, 25th


  • Lunar New Year Festival at Disney California Adventure – Jan 26th through Feb 18th.
  • Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival – Mar 2nd through Apr 12th.
  • Pixar Fest begins – Apr 13th, 2018. Debut of the new "Together Forever – A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular" fireworks show.
  • Dapper Day Spring Soiree  – Apr 22nd. 
  • 2018 Grad Nites: May 4th, 5th, 11th, 12th, 15th, 16th, 18th, 19th, 22nd, 23rd, 29th and 30th; Jun 1st, 2nd, 5th, 6th, 8th and 9th.

Happiest​ NEWS on Earth!

Play Date at Disneyland

The Pixar Play Parade will debut at Disneyland on April 13th, with three new units. Disney Parks Blog states, the new lead float is Luxo, Jr. chasing the iconic Pixar ball. A second float features the characters from Up, while the final includes the stars of Inside 

DCA: Year of Festivals

The Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival is scheduled for six weeks in spring of 2018, from March 2nd through April 12th. Here is a peek at the current information.

Lunar New Year Festival at Disney California Adventure – January 26 through February 18

Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival – March 2 through April 12.

Pixar Fest begins – April 13

Block-outs Begin

All but a very small group of Passholders are blocked out for the last two weeks of 2017. Starting next Monday, December 18th, all annual passports except the Signature Plus Passport and the Premier Annual Passport are blocked out for the rest of the year.

This mean this coming week will be extra busy with Passholders hoping to get their one last look at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure for the year. There are no blockouts at all this Monday through Wednesday, and these are the final three days for holders of the two Southern California passes to visit before January 7, 2018.

Hot Dream!

Multiple reports on social media showed flames visible from behind the construction walls surrounding the new Splitsville sushi/bowling alley, under construction on the site of the former House of Blues location. The fire was limited to a dumpster and there was no building damage or injuries.

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WDW UPdate 11

The Holidays at Disney World Parks

Here is Disney Elite's weekly UPdate to ensure your trip to Walt Disney World is that Magical vacation you've been dreaming of! We have provided the most up-to-date information for events at all the Parks, as well as any closures or refurbishments to be aware of during your visit.  

​Epcot has some great dining options for you this holiday season during the International Festival of the Holidays. Delight in some French cuisine at Alsace Holiday Kitchen in the French Pavilion. They're serving Napoléon de Saumon Fumé, Brioche á l'aneth--a smoked salmon Napoleon in a dill Brioche. They offer wine and speciality cocktails, such as a Holiday Kir--made with sparkling wine and Monin® Cranberry Syrup. And, there's nothing like grandma's home cooking! Find your way to the American Adventure Pavilion to enjoy seared pork tenderloin with green bean casserole and roasted sweet potatoes. Grandpa's spiked Firenog matches perfectly to chocolate pecan tart--made with TG Lee® Eggnog and Fireball® Cinnamon Whisky. 

If you're looking for some warmer weather, head to the Caribbean to celebrate El Dia De Los Reyes Magos--Three Kings Day. Dine on some shredded beef tamales with avocado crema and cilantro rice, complete with Three Kings Bread. And, you definitely have to try Coquito with a Bacardi® rum floater--a coconut based Caribbean egg nog (also served without rum). Want to spice things up? Head to the Mexican Pavilion for Tamal de Chilorio--a slow-roasted pork shoulder, marinated in ancho paste and stuffed in a corn masa; served with salsa tres chile and garnished with crema Mexicana and queso fresco. Wash that down with a Horchata Margarita! Get ready to travel around the world and savor all of these special holiday treats and many more. They are available until December 30th.

If you want additional help planning your vacation, visit the My Disney Experience website to create your dream vacation with a day-to-day planning guide. Don't forget to download the free mobile app to use on the go while at the parks. Use this Magical app to check the wait-times for all the attractions, make dining reservations, get your Fast Passes, and more! There is an interactive map to help guide you through the Parks. Please remember to visit Walt Disney World's website for the latest updates as your vacation approaches. Share your vacation plans with us or ask questions you may have on our discussion boards here at Disney Elite!

Featured Events

Magic Kingdom
Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party: 12, 14, 15, 17, 19, 21, and 22
Disney After Hours: Jan 19, 26, 30; Feb 8, 15; Mar 1, 8, 2018

Candlelight Processional: Nov. 24 - Dec. 30

Laurie Hernandez: Nov 24-26
Matt Bomer: Nov 27-28
Ana Gastayer: Nov 29-30
Whoopi Goldberg: Dec 1-3
Pat Sajak: Dec 4-5
Jodi Benson: Dec 6-8
Kurt Russell: Dec 9-11
Warwick Davis: Dec 12-14
Trace Adkins: Dec 15-17
Neil Patrick Harris: Dec 18-21
CCH Pounder: Dec 22-24
Jaci Velasquez: Dec 25-27
Chandra Wilson: Dec 28-30

Disney Princess Half-Marathon Weekend: Feb 23-25, 2018
International Flower & Garden Festival: Feb 28 - May 28, 2018
International Festival of the Holidays: Nov 19 - Dec 30, 2017
International Festival of the Arts-The Visual Arts: Jan 19 - Feb 19, 2018
Disney on Broadway Concert Series Dining Package: Jan 12 - Feb 19, 2018 (Reservations available now.)

Akershus Royal Banquet Hall - Norway
Biergarten Restaurant - Germany
Coral Reef Restaurant - The Living Seas Pavilion
The Garden Grill Restaurant - The Land Pavilion
Rose & Crown Pub & Dining Room - United Kingdom

Star Wars Half Marathon - The Dark Side: April 19 - 22, 2018 (Star Wars Dark Side 10k Sold Out)

Hollywood Studios
Flurry of Fun - Nov 9 - Dec 31, 2017
Sunset Seasons Greetings: Nov 9 - Dec 31, 2017
Star Wars: Galactic Nights: Dec 16, 2017

Disney Springs
Cirque du Soleil - La Nouba - Final show on December 31, 2017
Holidays at Disney Springs - Nov-Dec 2017
Mother's Day Weekend - Late-April 2018 to Mid-May 2018
Father's Day Weekend - June 2018

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

Spring Training 2018 for the Atlanta Braves! The dates to watch the Braves will be announced soon, so check back for more information regarding their schedule. 

Closures and Refurbishments

Animal Kingdom
Kali River Rapids - Jan 7 - Feb 4, 2018
Finding Nemo: The Musical - Feb 8 - 18, 2018

Disney's Blizzard Beach
Entire park - Oct 22, 2017 - Jan 7, 2018

Disney Springs
DisneyQuest – Now Permanently Closed

Magic Kingdom
Hall of Presidents - through late 2017
Liberty Square Riverboat - Jan 8 - Jun 28, 2018
Splash Mountain - January - February, 2018
Stitch's Great Escape - Closed until Dec 22, 2017
Cinderella's Royal Table - Feb 28 - Mar 3, 2018

Typhoon Lagoon
Entire park - Jan 7 - Mar 18, 2018

Resort Hotels
Art of Animation – Ongoing day-time construction of Disney Skyliner
Caribbean Beach – Old Port Royale Redesign through Fall 2018; Disney Skyliner day-time construction
Coronado Springs – Room Refurbishments through early 2018
Grand Floridian - Beach Pool and Beaches Pool Bar closed for refurbishment Nov 20, 2017 to February 2, 2018
Old Key West – Resort-wide Refreshment through 2019; Room refurbishments through Summer 2018
Pop Century – Room Refurbishments through Summer 2018; Disney Skyliner day-time construction.
Swan & Dolphin – Multi-Phase Overhaul through late 2017
Wilderness Lodge - Cub's Den Children's Activity Center permanently closed.
Yacht Club – Room Refurbishments & Captain's Grille Overhaul through late 2017

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Win Tickets for Two to the Fifth Annual Field to Feast Dinner!

Win Tickets for Two to the Fifth Annual Field to Feast Dinner!

Edible Orlando and Walt Disney World Resorts are hosting the Fifth Annual Field to Feast Dinner taking place on February 17, 2018, and you’re invited! Disney World’s top chefs will be there demonstrating their culinary skills, using locally grown ingredients to create exquisite cuisine samplings that will be paired with wine, beer, and specialty cocktails. Master Sommelier George Miliotes, who is set to open Wine Bar George in Disney Springs in the Spring of 2018, will be arranging the pairings. This casual dinning event takes place outdoors at Long & Scott Farms in Mt. Dora, Florida, just north of the Disney Parks. There will be live music, farm tours, and much more!

Field to Feast benefits the Second Harvest Kids Cafe, an after-school meal service program that provides food to needy children in Orange, Seminole, and Osceola counties. Second Harvest has provided 287,266 meals to kids at 27 sites in Central Florida this past year.

Tickets are $175 each and space is limited, however Edible Orlando is giving away two free tickets! To win, share a photo of some aspect of your holiday feast—from the kitchen or the table—on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram from now until December 15th using #EdibleDisney AND #F2F18. Edible Orlando will narrow down the top three entries to be chosen by their Facebook followers on December 16, 2017. The winner will be announced on December 31, 2017.

Click here to see rules and conditions.

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Our Latest Giveaway an AT-AT Popcorn Bucket

Star Wars fans come one, come all!!! Join Disney Elite and earn chances to win a giant AT-AT Popcorn Bucket. Just enter below for your chance to win, no purchase necessary! a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Arribas Brothers - The Glass Artisans of Disney

IMG_8756Arribas Brothers Glass Ornaments
Art is defined as the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination. It produces works that are to be appreciated for their beauty or sometimes their emotional power. Walt Disney was not only a great artist, but he was a huge advocate for celebrating all types of art—as well as the artist. Once Walt founded his own studio, he made it a point to have the artists within his company enroll in art school to further enhance their skills. When that proved to be unsatisfactory due to the curriculum, he created an art school of his own which eventually became the California Institute of the Arts.

"If I can help provide a place to develop the talent of the future, I think I will have accomplished something."

Walt Disney
Beauty and the Beast Glass Rose
The Disney Parks hire a variety of talents—those behind the scenes creating the magical world that we see surrounding us; and those who dance, sing, sketch, and who decorate the delicious treats we see on display. One talent in particular is the art of glass blowing and cutting done by the Arribas Brothers shop. It was at the 1964 World's Fair that Tomas and Alfonso Arribas, who were representing Spain, met Walt Disney. Walt was immensely impressed with their handcrafted works of art. Three years later, in 1967, the Arribas Brothers created magic in their own small shop inside Sleeping Beauty's Castle in Disneyland. Now their art can be found in 19 Disney park locations around the world.
As with most Disney's Cast Members, the Arribas Brothers bring in artisans from around the world to create glass works of art for you to take home or as gifts. To witness this craft first hand is absolutely amazing. You can watch Cast Members shape glass figures, exquisite jewelry, delicate ornaments, and unique decor. Another great feature is personalizing your glass with custom engraving or etching. If you have an item in mind you'd like to create, Arribas Brothers will work with you designing pieces to your specifications.
I had the opportunity to witness one of the Cast Members making glass ornaments in their shop while visiting the Magic Kingdom. I was mesmerized watching each step of the process. The artisan moved with ease as he opened one of the oven doors (which appeared to house the heat of the sun) to pull out what looked like a small round flame. It easily attached to a long metal tube where it stayed until the ornament was complete. He rolled it in some tiny, sparkling gold beads before returning it to the oven, keeping it on the pole as he rotated the glass to heat it up again. This step was used to create the various colors of the ornaments. He repeated the process a couple of times with other colors before he sat down, attaching a blowing tube to the opposite end of the pole. He then began blowing into the mouth piece, turning the glass slowly. I watched with utter fascination as the ornament began to take shape. Afterwards, he attached another small piece of flaming glass to create a hook for the top and used a pair of shears to cut the ornament from pole. From start to finish, the Cast Member created the ornament in about ten minutes. I highly recommend adding this demonstration to your park schedule. The store has a schedule of when the artists demonstrate their techniques for glass design. You can walk around and watch many of the artisans as they create these extraordinary works of art.

If you want to know more about the Arribas Brothers and their art, click here. You may also purchase items on their website by clicking their SHOP link. 

Glass Octopus
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