News Items

Storybrooke Dining on One Disney Cruise Ship

This news item originally appeared on Episode 16 of the Disney news SATIRE podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network with Parker Byrd and Erin Dole.

Disney Cruise Line Fleet

Disney Cruise Line Fleet ©Disney

ERIN: Disney Cruise Line currently consists of four amazing ships, the Disney Wonder and Disney Magic which are sister ships, and the Disney Fantasy and the Disney Dream which are also sister ships.

Disney recently announced two new sister ships were going to be built. We hear that both are going to be big…and I mean big!! Recently ENN got special access to one of the designers of these amazing ships. This designer told us that there is going to be a special surprise for all of the Once Upon A Time fans out there.

PARKER: I love Once Upon A Time! I am so excited! It’s like my “Maine” show!

ERIN: Parker please! Just stop!

Anyway, the designer told us that they are going to feature Granny’s Diner from Once Upon A Time as one of the three restaurants that you rotate through for dinner on the ship. They are calling this restaurant Granny’s Once Upon A Line Diner. That sounds like something you would come up with Parker.

PARKER: Why do you say that?

ERIN: Because it is a bad joke about the diner being on the cruise line. Anyway some of the light entrees will include:

  • Emma’s Savior-y Chicken
  • Charming Shepherd’s Pie
  • Regina’s Split-Me Soup
  • and Wicked Western Spicy Green Pepper Salad

Darker entrees include:

  • Rumpel Roast
  • Queen’s Artichoke Hearts
  • And Hades’ Flaming Bar-b-que

Best of all, you will be able to finish your meals with either a slice of Snow White Chocolate Cake or a scoop of Really Icy Rocky Road.

This restaurant was originally supposed to be included in the Disney Wonder’s renovation but due to numerous difficulties in the design of the restaurant they opted to go with Tiana’s Place instead.

PARKER: So you could say that for the Disney Wonder the Once Upon a Line restaurant was cursed from the start.

ERIN: True. But clearly Emma stepped in.

Magic Kingdom Guests Getting Bagged Even Earlier

Cinderella's Castle

Cinderella’s Castle. ©Disney

This article originally appeared on Episode 16 of the Disney news SATIRE podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

PARKER: Last month new security changes were put into place at the Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.  Previously, guests went through metal detectors and bag checks directly in front of the entrance to the Magic Kingdom.  Those have now been relocated.  Guests who drive to the Magic Kingdom will be screened at the the Ticket and Transportation Center prior to boarding the ferry or Monorail.  Guest staying at resorts on the Monorail Resort Loop will be screened at their respective monorail stations before boarding.  Guest arriving on resort boats will be screened as they exit the docks. A new screening area has been added between the resort bus unloading area and the front of the park for guests arriving that way, and even one added to the top of Cinderella’s castle for arriving pixies.  What do you “Tink” of that one Erin?

ERIN: Really Parker? Anyway, why do you think they made the changes.

PARKER: Well Erin, first and foremost it keeps the entrance of the park from getting so overcrowded.

ERIN: Makes sense.

PARKER: Second, let’s face it. Bag check can be stressful and it’s really annoying to be putting everything back in your bag and zipping up all the pockets while you are entering “The Most Magical Place on Earth”.

ERIN: I can definitely see that.

PARKER:  And third, and most importantly, it frees up the area in front of the entrance to put in something really cool.

ERIN: Really? What?

PARKER: Personally I am hoping it’s the location of yet another Florida Wawa. Because nothing says Main Street like some good coffee and a Philly soft pretzel!

ERIN:  Or maybe they could put in another Starbucks!  Then the one on other end of Main Street could be used for a second cup.

PARKER: Really Erin? You do remember what happened on Episode 2?

ERIN: Good point.


Galactic Grill “Secret Menu”

Jedi-Order-Chicken-Sandwich at Galactic Grill. ©Disney

Jedi-Order-Chicken-Sandwich at Galactic Grill. ©Disney

Over in Disneyland, the Tomorrowland Terrace restaurant has been been converted to the Galactic Grill during the Season of the Force events.

The Galactic Grill serves a bunch of items with Star Wars inspired names. For example during breakfast you can get items like:

  • Padawan Breakfast
  • Darth Tamale
  • Bantha Blue Milk Bread
  • Lars Family Breakfast
  • Moisture Farm Fresh Fruit Platter

For lunch and dinner, some of the entrees include:

  • First Order Specialty Burger
  • Jedi Order Chicken Sandwich
  • Cheese-3PO Burger
  • Wickets wicked Veggie Sandwich
  • Jawa Turkey Sandwich
  • Han Burger
  • AT-ST Chicken Walker Nuggets

Desserts include:

  • Darth by Chocolate
  • The Pastry Menace
  • The BB-8 Droid Crisped Rice Treat.

But ENN has discovered, that like any great restaurant these days, the Galactic Grill has a “secret menu”. These are dishes fans will just have to know the name of if they want to order them. This menu includes entrees like:

  • The Amidala Padamelt
  • Ky Lo Mein
  • Chicken Boba Fetts

It also includes some specialty drinks like:

  • The Darth Malt
  • Asoka Cola
  • A shot of Qui Gon Gin (non-alcoholic of course)

The Galactic Grill is scheduled to be there throughout the Season of the Force event. But who knows. The force might be strong in this one.

This article originally appeared on Episode 15 of the Disney news SATIRE podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

Ellen’s Demands May Delay “Dory” Debut



Back in November Disney Pixar released one of what is sure to be several trailers promoting the upcoming film, Finding Dory, which is set to be released on June 17th, 2016.

In the trailer, Dory seems to flirt with getting pieces of her memory back. It appears that she remembers having a family and Nemo and Marlin join her in trying to find them.

Now unconfirmed rumors say the opening could be delayed as Pixar is desperately trying to enhance their audience interaction technology. It seems the movie’s star, Ellen Degeneres insists the movie must open with Dory out among the audience……dancing.

This article originally appeared on Episode 15 of the Disney news SATIRE podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

“Orange is the new Green” for Mission Space

Mission Space in EPCOT. ©Disney

Mission Space in EPCOT. ©Disney

Late last year Disney increased the capacity of the Orange Team ride on Mission Space in EPCOT. Mission space has two types of rides, green and orange. Both take you through the same presentation and general motions, but the Orange ride has the added intensity of cars spinning to simulate the G-forces one would encounter on a trip to Mars.
There are four ride bays in Mission Space. Prior to the change two sides were utilized for Green rides and two for Orange. But now Orange rides will take up three of the bays leaving just one for the green rides.

While this modification puts Disney in a better position to handle demand, it has unwittingly sparked a critical industry-wide shortage of air sickness bags.

This article originally appeared on Episode 15 of the Disney news satire podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

Three Caballeros in 3D

The Three Caballeros animatronics in EPCOT's  "Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros" ©Disney

The Three Caballeros animatronics in EPCOT’s “Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros” ©Disney

On December 4th, a set of animatronic figures returned to Walt Disney World after being gone for 35 years! The figures, representing the Three Caballeros, Panchito Pistoles, José Carioca, and Donald Duck, originally debuted at Walt Disney World on its opening day, October 1st, 1971, as part of the Mickey Mouse Review. They left there in September of 1980 when the show was moved to the new Tokyo Disneyland for its opening day and remained there until 2009.

The traveling trio actually came back to Florida a few years ago appearing at D23’s Destination D: Walt Disney World 40th event in 2011. But now the three caballeros animatronics are appearing in public once again as they have become part of the finale of the “Grand Fiesta Tour” attraction in the Mexico Pavilion in EPCOT’s World Showcase.

Now we asked each of the Caballeros how they felt about the return of the animatronics to Walt Disney World. Panchito, whose full name is Panchito Romero Miguel Junipero Francisco Quintero González…the third.. said that being Mexican he is overjoyed at being such an integral part of an attraction that features his home country. Brazilian Jose parroted Panchito’s excitement, though he did want to remind people that the three of them have actually been an integral part to the attraction since 2007. But he noted that the addition of their animatronics made the attraction feel complete.

Donald, however, said that he is just excited that the Frozen ride is opening soon. He thinks having Elsa for a neighbor will be…really cool.

This article originally appeared on Episode 15 of the Disney news satire podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

Disney Springs Parking Lot Sours

Rendering of Disney Springs Parking Area. ©Disney

Rendering of Disney Springs Parking Area. ©Disney

Back in November, Disney began renaming the parking lots that surround the newly renovated and renamed Disney Springs. As an homage to Florida’s Fruit industry the parking lots all bear the names of Florida grown fruits. Starting with the parking lot on the far side of Disney Springs’ West Side section, the names are, in order: strawberry, watermelon, grapefruit, mango, orange, lime and lemon.

While the names are certainly easier to remember, in at least one case, the change has created quite a headache. Prior to the change, the lot outside of the Marketplace section of Disney Springs was quite full. But following the change the lot soon became empty and abandoned. This is likely due to the fact that guests believe it is bad luck to park their cars in a Lemon Parking Lot.

This article originally appeared on Episode 15 of the Disney news satire podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

New “Scarless” Hyenas Added to Kilimanjaro Safari

New hyenas at Kilimanjaro Safari in Disney's Animal Kingdom.

New hyenas at Kilimanjaro Safari in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. ©Disney

Earlier this month, the Disney Parks Blog reported that a pair of spotted hyenas were added to the Kilimanjaro Safari at Disney’s Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando.  The pair is similar to the hyenas which were the bullies and villains in the animated movie “The Lion King”.

But as the blog post points out their villainy is just bad press. In reality hyenas are a very powerful species with a unique social structure that ranks all the females in their “clan” as a higher status than all of the males in the clan…….as it should be.

Now the new pair will only be available for brief periods of the day as they are still adjusting to the Savannah. While sightings have been limited so far neither one of them appears to have a “scar”.

But one thing is for sure, the pair of hyenas is a great addition to Kilimanjaro safari and that is no laughing matter.  

This article originally appeared on Episode 14 of the Disney news satire podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

Honda to Sponsor Autopia

The website MousePlanet reported last month that the Autopia attraction at Disneyland is getting a new sponsor.  Honda, which was recently forced out of Innoventions due to the pending takeover of that area  by the forthcoming Star Wars Land, has agreed to sponsor the attraction which allows guests to drive cars through a winding course.

The partnership will bring about cosmetic changes to the attraction including new paint schemes and signage as well as a change to attraction related merchandise.  Starting January 1st all Autopia themed items will be available for no money down! (for qualified buyers based on 0.9% APR for 36 months ).

This article originally appeared on Episode 14 of the Disney news satire podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.

Disney Treats Selected Cast Members to Thanksgiving Feast

Merchandise with Mickey and Minnie decked out for Thanksgiving.

Merchandise with Mickey and Minnie decked out for Thanksgiving. ©Disney

Phil Graham, an EPCOT cast member from Plymouth, Massachusetts, and one of the original American Adventure cast members, sent us an email about a really cool event that took place on Thanksgiving.  

Phil writes that early in the evening on Thanksgiving, Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and Donald each went to one of the parks and randomly selected cast members who were invited to a special Thanksgiving feast, which took place after the parks closed. Phil was selected by Minnie who personally escorted him to the event.

According to Phil, the room was festively decorated and more than ample amounts of the traditional Thanksgiving fare could be had.

Toward the end of the meal, Mickey stood up and asked that they go around the table and say what each of them were thankful for.

Mickey lead it off by saying he was thankful for all the boys and girls of all ages who came to visit the parks.  Minnie said she was thankful for all the wonderful cast members who made that visit so magical for all the guests.  Goofy, for his part, said that he was thankful for all the family and friends that make each of our lives so special.

 The rest of guests at the table in turn vocalized what they were thankful for.  Phil writes that it was an interesting study to see the wide variety of what people found gratitude in….particularly Donald.

What was Donald thankful for?  That they were all eating turkey……..and not roasted Duck!

This article originally appeared on Episode 14 of the Disney news satire podcast, “Guest Room” on the Ears News Network.