Thursday, February 20, 2014

Remembering Pleasure Island

Dear old Pleasure Island,

As we look forward all the amazing Downtown Disney area refurbishment I can't help to look back and be somewhat disappointed that I didn't truly get to experience your former glory.

Photo Credit: BZalewski via Compfight cc

I have many memories of Pleasure Island. When we were really small, we visited Superstar Studios and filmed a lip sync video to Paula Abdul. (Maybe if I get brave one day, we'll share that, but for now just picture it!) We also visited the Comedy Warehouse improv comedy show at least once a trip. We celebrated New Years Eve EVERY NIGHT! We used to go visit with my parents when it was a part of our ticket package.

For those of you new to Disney - yes, you used to have to have a ticket to get into Pleasure Island. You also needed to be 21 to get into any of the clubs, which is why I feel like I missed out.

On the Walt Disney World College Program, almost every cast member traveled to "PI" each Thursday for free cast member night. Disney was always strict about alcohol to minors and I was 19 on my College Program. Some clubs were 21 and over and I couldn't step foot inside. Other clubs were open but I was truly afraid of getting "terminated" (what normal companies call "fired") from my College Program.

One night I truly enjoyed was my dear friend Brandy's 21st birthday. We went to Pleasure Island that night and I bought Brandy her first legal drink: a Pleasure Island booze bucket.

In order to buy her this drink, we went into the ladies room and I handed her the money under the stall. In retrospect, maybe we were a little TOO careful. However, I knew of fellow underage College Program cast members getting terminated for simply holding a friend's drink. I wasn't going to be one of those people.

We had a lot of fun dancing the night away in 8TRAX, a 70s and 80s dance club. There were a lot of laughs that night.

That was 2004. By 2008 when I did my Disney Professional Internship, PI was all but finished. 

I still can't help but feel that I missed out on something great. I'm bummed that I missed out on this piece of Disney history.

Pleasure Island - may you Rest in Peace. 

Love, Rosanne

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

VoluntEARing at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

When the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex was first built, I couldn't imagine what exactly it would be used for. It seemed like an awfully large amount of space and I couldn't imagine taking time away from my Disney vacation to spend time at a sports complex...even as a sports fan!

On cue, runDisney took off and the Atlanta Braves named the complex their spring training home. During my second Disney internship when I had the privilege of working in the Disney public relations office, I got the opportunity to spend some truly meaningful time at the complex. 

No, it was not to spend time stalking my beloved Yankees. (Unfortunately they played the Braves at home in Tampa that particular year)

Rather it was for an amazing and truly beautiful event: the Special Olympics.
What is Disney VoluntEARS? Disney VoluntEARS is a wonderful public affairs initiative by the Walt Disney Company. It, among many purposes, allows Disney cast members from the various arms of business to come together and volunteer at service locations that are of particular interest to you. It is truly a special part of the Disney cast member experience and I'm so grateful for all that the Walt Disney Company does to make the world a better place.

When I saw that the Special Olympics needed Disney VoluntEARS, my colleagues and I jumped on the opportunity. Special Olympics at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex was one of the most touching events I've been a part of. Early in the morning we welcomed families and pointed the participants in the right direction.

Later in the day we were responsible for bringing the athletes from station to station. I was truly amazed at the level of competition on one of the hottest days of the year. Most importantly, I was so impressed with the heart and drive of everyone who participated. Love was truly radiating from the stands.

It was truly a rewarding experience for all that were involved.

Thanks for reading!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Magical Blogorail + American Tourister Olympics: And the Winner is...

Over the past two weeks the Magical Blogorail members have been sharing their favorite Disney couples in anticipation of Valentine's Day and as part of our Famous Disney Couples Luggage Giveaway with American Tourister. Voting closed last night at 11:59.

I know, right? I can't believe it either! I'm thinking you guys are sentimental for a couple that devoted their lives to each other on Valentine's Day. I think the comment that sums it up is one that was posted to the original post about Carl and Ellie: "I want to be like them."

As I bask in the glory of this win and the power of my fellow Disney Pointers, I also want to remind you that you still have time to win these beauties:

That's right. You have until 11:59p.m. to get your entries in. Make sure you head to the Magical Blogorail page and click on each individual post. You will be able to enter there. Best of luck to all of you. I wish I cold win this amazing D23 Disney-inspired American Tourister luggage, but I will gladly settle for the gold medal in the Famous Disney Couples American Tourister & Magical Blogorail Olympics!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

FROZEN in New York!

There are some days I cannot escape my need to be at Walt Disney World Resort.

While I love New York, this winter has absolutely destroyed my will to live here. The first snow storm was fun. The second was slightly less thrilling. After the polar vortex and now that we are in double digit snow storms, I'm ready to move to Orlando full time.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Disney Couple Olympics + American Tourister Giveaway

Thanks to you, my couple Ellie and Carl Fredricksen from Disney/Pixar's UP are still in the running in the Magical Blogorail Famous Disney Couple Olympics!

We're on to round two and now more than ever I need your help by voting! As you may know over the past two weeks the Magical Blogorail members have been sharing their favorite Disney Couples in anticipation of Valentines Day and as part of our Famous Disney Couples Luggage Giveaway.

Our Disney Olympic competition has made it through Round 1 and the field has been reduced to the Top 8 Famous Disney Couples.  In Round 2 we need to reduce the field from 8 Famous Disney Couples to just 4 couples.  Using the voting buttons below - choose your top 2 Famous Disney Couples. Of course, I'd love for you to vote for Carl & Ellie Fredricksen and then another famous Disney couple! 

Voting will be today only! But there is still time to enter by visiting each of the blogs below and answering a question from their blog posts in the PromoSimple form below. The Giveaway ends Friday February 14.  Each answer gets you another entry into the giveaway.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Touring the Magic Kingdom with Cinderella

Welcome to those of you joining me from Disney Donna Kay and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the third stop on our Magical Blogorail.

You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one! I think of almost impossible situations and so do the other amazing bloggers on this Magical Blogorail loop. 

If you could be escorted by a Disney Character all day at Magic Kingdom Park, who would you choose to escort you?

To be honest, I only had to think about it for a second.  Cinderella, of course!

Think about it - who has better accommodations in the Magic Kingdom? She has an entire castle in the center of the park!

If I were touring with Cinderella, I would truly be in the center of attention. We would wear fabulous ball gowns. She would wear amazing glass slippers and I'd pretend to (because I don't think my feet could handle it). We'd be treated like royalty!

In the evening we could dine at her restaurant, Cinderella's Royal Table. Then we would watch the Main Street Electrical Parade from the gates of her castle and then hang around for Wishes.

Last, but certainly not least, we could retire to the castle for the evening where I would enjoy my evening in the Cinderella Castle Suite, where it's always 11:59 pm.

We'd have the ultimate slumber party in these royal beds!

And I'd have a wonderful bath in this comfortable tub! 

Who would you pick as your celebrity character tour guide?

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is Ashley Aspires.

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop ~ Magical Mouse Schoolhouse
2nd Stop ~ Disney Donna Kay
3rd Stop ~ The Disney Point (You are here!)
Final Stop ~ Ashley Aspires

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

UP: A Carl and Ellie Fredricksen Love Story

This blog post is one in a series by the Magical Blogorail about famous Disney couples.

Do you have a heart of steel? I think you must in order to get through Disney/Pixar's UP without shedding quite a few tears. It's truly a beautiful love story and within the first few minutes of the movie, it's incredibly apparent that Carl and Ellie Fredricksen make the perfect pair.

Carl and Ellie met as children and shared their love for adventure and dreams of a place called Paradise Falls. They fell in love, got married and purchased their dream home together. They were partners in every sense of the word. I think the reason why I love Carl and Ellie so much is that they didn't have your typical "picture perfect" love story. They had their share of heartache and they picked each other up. They had dreams of one day visiting Paradise Falls, but those dreams got put on the back burner as life got in the way.

Not everything is a fairytale in life, but when you devote your life to the ones you love you can live a complete life, like Mr. Fredricksen.

After Ellie's passing, Mr. Fredricksen seemed like a lost soul.  But even without Ellie, he was determined to make her dreams of Paradise Falls come true. His goal of continuing her legacy truly touched me throughout UP.

At the point where it looked like Mr. Fredricksen had to give up, Ellie inspired him one more time. She gave him the will to stop his quest by placing a note for him at the right place at the right time. In her Adventure Book, she left him a note encouraging him to find a new adventure after she was gone - a truly selfless, loving action.

I hope you agree that Carl and Ellie are the perfect pair - and that their love story inspires you for years to come!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Super Bowl Monday Announcement

I'm not quite sure how everything in the universe aligned for this special announcement.

First, the Magical Blogorail announced that this would be Disney's California Adventure Week. 

Second, it's Super Bowl Monday- only a day after the most well-known Disney Parks commercial aired. 

So without further ado, I will kick off Disney's California Adventure week by announcing that I'M GOING TO DISNEYLAND! 

Source: Disneyland Official Facebook Page

That's right folks! In mid-March I'll be returning to the motherland and the place where it all started. The last and only time I was in Disneyland was 1998 while traveling with my parents. I was 12 and while I loved Disney, I wasn't quite the Disney history buff then that I am today. 

For me, the most exciting part of this trip will be Disney's California Adventure. DCA did not exist my last trip! It was simply a twinkle in an imagineer's eye. 

There's so much I'm excited to see! 

A Bug's Land 
Disney's Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular
Monster's Inc.: Mike and Sully to the Rescue
Cars Land (especially Radiator Springs Racers!)
Grizzly River Run
California Screaming
The World of Color

I could go on and on and on! 

As a Disney fan, I can't wait to check this off of my to-do list. Be sure to check in as I plan my trip, dining reservations and activities.

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