Category: character meet and greets


She always seems to be the new kid in town.. and here she is again, making her debut at Hollywood and Vine for the breakfast buffet.

Even though we could technically be at the Hauntley B& B, the buffet is less than ghoulish, it is one of my favorites. There’s an omelette station, Greek Yogurt station, and the usual breakfast fare.

Here are a few things to know about Vampirina before you go:

  • Vampirina’s full name is Vampirina “Vee” Hauntley.
  • She may look young, and fits in with 6 year olds, but she is actually 200 years old.
  • Be careful while whispering at your table, she has super hearing
  • She loves to dance – see if shell dance with you! she can also be found at the Disney Junior Dance Party.

Who else will you see there? While character experiences can always change, plan to see Princess Sofia and Doc McStuffins – someone else usually stops by as well.



There’s a new dance party in town and I am so glad there is. The old show definitely needed some changing up. Here are a few things to know about the experience.

This is your MC. Her outfit, complete with tablet in hand says it all. Be prepared to be thrust into the world of Generation Z.
Thinking that, in an auditorium it won’t matter when you show up? You’re partly wrong. If you can, try to be the first family in the fast pass line. You will then be either welcomed by all the Disney Junior friends or be assured a front row seat (with much audience participation that really makes the day).
Think about learning the dances before hand: For instance, the Spinechiller:

One thing you can’t do: get on stage. Don’t try it.

Parents, keep in mind that everyone sits on the floor. Kids get up and dance. If you or a member of your party do not want to sit on the floor there is limited seating on benches in the back. See all the crowds? Try and keep you and your family to their dancing zone.

Doc will be faced with someone who needs emergency treatment. Who else will you meet? Vampirina, Timon & Mickey
This is one of the few places you will see Mickey. He is not in the Disney Junior Courtyard anymore.

The dance party is approximately 25 minutes once it starts. Definitely a must see, we went a few times because those dance moves are catchy!



Don’t ask why Alice painted a picture of the White Rabit – it will head you down a virtual rabbit hole of a story – The White Rabbit is the first Wonderland Character Alice ever met, and she is constantly chasing him up until this very day!

Don’t tell Alice that you see the Chesire Cat up in a tree.. because she can’t see him and it will really confuse her. She is still thinking about the fact that she has never seen a cat without a grin. Not all who wander are lost and the Chesire Cat happens to be invisible for much of his time at this Alice’s wonderland.
Don’t ask Alice to go down the rabbit hole with her – because she may actually take you and you do not know if you will be able to come back the same size that you were when you left. 

Don’t ask her where you should go next- because it will take her a great deal of time trying to help you figure out where exactly you want to get to.
Don't meet Alice with nothing to say... Ask her if she has any red roses in her garden. Ask her if it is time for tea. Ask her if she had any jam today. Ask her how she likes the Queen. Ask her if she has seen the Queen. Ask her if it is her birthday or unbirthday.
Don’t meet Alice with nothing to say… Ask her if she has any red roses in her garden. Ask her if it is time for tea. Ask her if she had any jam today. Ask her how she likes the Queen. Ask her if she has seen the Queen. Ask her if it is her birthday or unbirthday. Ask her if she read anything with her sister today

Wondering where to find Alice? She is regularly stationed in Epcot, in the English tea garden. She can also sometimes be found near the spinning tea cup ride, along with the Mad Hatter and friends.

One more piece of advice: Don’t bring her any food. She does not like to worry about what will happen if she eats it.



There is wind in the east, there’s a mist coming in, something is brewing, and about to begin on December 19th! This something never brings her resume or references because she meets all qualifications. Here are five reasons to watch the new May Poppins Returns while still giving deference to the first film. 


  • Emily Blunt – She won’t be wearing Prada but is sure to by practically perfectly stylish in her attire as Mary Poppins.  An outspoken advocate for young women, Blunt is also on the board of the American Institute for Stuttering. She has been heard telling people that she is afraid of being in a brutal world and not being able to protect the children. What better role to take on than Mary Poppins, the iconic English magical nanny. 

We can’t wait to see Emily Blunt play iconic English nanny Mary Poppins (photo credit: Getty images)

  • Dick Van Dyke  – Did you realize that Dick Van Dyke took on a dual role in the first “Mary Poppins”, playing the old banker Mr. Dawes Sr.? Well, he did. It took him two hours in makeup to look old for the part.  Well, now Van Dyke is actually old, 92 years old to be exact. And he willingly takes on the role of  Mr. Dawes Jr in the new film. It’s just Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! (We do miss him as Bert, though).


Van Dyke
photo credit: daily express co, UK

  • New Songs:  There is a NEW soundtrack of original songs written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman that should appeal to new and old fans of the original 1964 “Mary Poppins” movie, according to media outlets that visited the “Mary Poppins Returns” film set in England. songs in the movie will be “The Place Where Lost Things Go,” “Can You Imagine That,” “The Royal Doulton Music Hall,” “Turning Turtle,” “A Cover Is Not the Book,” Trip a Little Light Fantastic” and “Nowhere to Go But Up.”     


  • Meryl Streep: Have you beard of “Topsy”, Mary Poppins’ cousin? Streeps brings us this character in all her glory. She lives in a topsy-turvy world and performs an original topsy turvy song, wearing a very very interesting wig!!


  • Hoping for a Julie Andrews Cameo? That would be a miracle. And even though miracles take a little time,  you would need infinite time: Julie Andrews refused the cameo, saying it would detract from Blunt’s moment in the limelight. Would you like more of an explanation from her? Well she never explains anything.

The question now becomes will the Mary Poppins character at Disney change its tune when it comes to an official photopass photographer being available royalty-free????  My gut instinct is yes. Click here for more.



This is Disney, so you can be a princess anywhere, right? – well yes. But there are certain things that you may NOT want to do while dressed as a Disney Princess. Here are a few rules: 

  1. Do not jump in the adult or kiddie pool area while dressed as a Disney Princess.  Not only do most of the Resort Pools have rules as far as what you can wear while in the pool, but a pool will certainly damage your princess dress.  Disney Resort pools, especially in the kid areas, tend to have a lot of chlorine in the pool. Chlorine ruins clothing. Especially princess clothing. As a general rule: wear a bathing suit, goggles, and plenty of sunscreen.  Definitely DON’t skip a frolic in the pool just because you want to keep your princess dress on. 

    Goggles not heels


    Bathing suits do best in the water

    Make sure you have a towel
  2. Do Not go on Safari while dressed as a Disney Princess. Most of the safaris on Disney Property are sandy, dusty, and sometime muddy.  You do not need your princess gown getting damaged in any way, shape or form.  Unfortunately, Disney Cast Members will not hold up your princess train or long skirt for you, so plan accordingly.  What should you bring on safari? Long socks, comfy shoes, sunscreen, plenty of water, and a camera. 

    It gets hot and dusty on safari
  3. Do not go on Splash Mountain, Kali River Rapids, or any other water ride while dressed as a Disney Princess (see #1 for advice on chlorinated water and princess attire).   While you are always not Guaranteed to get covered in water on some of these rides, you must assume that you will be and prepare accordingly. Which also means that you must secure your phone, wallet, and anything else that you may not want getting wet. (Most of these rides have lockers to lock your personal items away. But, if you take off your princess dress and put it in a locker, please be sure that you have on a bathing suit underneath). 

    You run the risk of getting wet at many Disney rides and play areas.
  4. Are you an adult? If so, then you MUST NOT wear any princess dress on Disney Park Property. Disney has official rules on this. They do not want people confusing you with actual cast members. You may do something called Disney Bounding. That will be explained another day.

    Do not pick up the phone and cancel your trip yet!
  5. Are you frustrated yet? Are you wondering why you should go to Disney at all if there are so many reasons NOT to wear your princess dress in certain places? Do not call your friends to cancel your trip! Here are some great ways to have fun in your princess attire while on Disney Property: 
  6. Cinderella came to Akershus

  •  Go to Akershus Castle, Cinderella’s Castle, and Be Our Guest Restaurant and dine with other royalty. At Be Our Guest Restaurant, you may not meet other princesses but you will surely have the chance to tame a wild beast.
  • All of the character meet and greets welcome guests dressed as princesses. You will surely be treated the way a princess deserves to be treated.  But be careful: If you choose to dress as a Disney Princess and meet another Disney Prince or Princess, they will surely ask questions about your character. 
  • Want to go to a regular restaurant dressed as a princess? Feel free! Also feel free go shopping. Everyone knows that princesses love to shop. 
  • No-one will stop you from sleeping in your princess dress instead of your pajamas but lay down carefully so as not to wrinkle anything. 
  • Do you want to go to the arcade dressed as a Disney Princess? Feel free. But bring a purse for $$ for the game room.  Most of the arcades have a machine that requires Disney guests to put $$ on a game card. 


If you are lucky enough, you will catch Jasmine and Aladdin together one day, after they get off of their own Magic Carpet Ride (in the Magic Kingdom) or Epcot’ World Showcase in Morocco (and please do try the food when you go there). 

When you finally meet them, and hopefully there won’t be a long line to do it, here are some things you probably shouldn’t say. 

  1.  DON”T ask Aladdin what it feels like to be a street rat. He might get insulted and have flashbacks to being called “a worthless street rat, with only fleas to mourn him”.  Granted, being a “street rat” may not necessarily be a bad thing. “Street Rats” are usually comfortable on their own in any given city.  A rat is also usually intelligent, agile, and knows how to survive on other people’s scraps.  Does that sound like a bit like Aladdin to you?  gray mice in the middle of walls
  2. Photo by David Bartus on
  3.  DON’T ask Jasmine what it would take to win her. She will tell you she is not a PRIZE to be won – and she probably will stop talking to you.woman wearing green shirt
  4. Photo by Brett Sayles on

3.  DON’T ask if you can take a look at their magic lamp. You might rub it by mistake after all, and let Jafar out!

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4.  DON’T ASK Jasmine what it is like to have a pet tiger and if you can meet her tiger. That is, unless you really, truly want to meet a tiger. Just look at those teeth!

nature summer yellow animal
Photo by Pixabay on

5. DON’T ask Aladdin if you can have one of his wishes. First, I believe he used them all up. But if he didn’t, do you really want to take on that headache? “Excuse me. Are you looking at me? Did you rub my lamp? Did you wake me up? Did you bring me here? & all of a sudden you’re gonna walk out on me? I don’t think so. Not right now! You’re getting your wishes, so SIT DOWN!”

6.  DO Ask if you can go for a ride on their magic carpet, “CARPET”. It will be an experience of a lifetime.  – And for those who want to try the Magic Carpet Ride, which is right next to Aladdin and Jasmine’s storefront meet and greet, go for it! it is amazing! and kid friendly!



  1. DON’T Forget Eeyore’s birthday. One of Eeyore’s true passions is being remembered on his birthday. He likes to blow out the candles on the cake while his friends join him in the celebrating.  Want to mark your calendars for this year? Circle May 10th! Be sure to buy a red balloon! “Thanks for noticing me”
  2. DON’T Ask Eeyore if his house looks like it is falling down. If you ask him, he will FLIP OUT. He is constantly worried that his house is going to fall down. He is always rebuilding his house because Pooh and Piglet built his original house with the wrong kind of sticks – also the woozles are constantly bouncing it down.
  3. If you happen to see that Eeyore’s tail has fallen off, don’t ask Eeyore if you can fix it.  That is a job that falls exclusively to Christopher Robin. Are you looking for the tail? Try Owl’s house. Sometimes Owl likes to use Eeyore’s tail as a bell pull. “It’s just a tail”. 
  4. Don’t ask if you can ride him – or bounce him. He DOESN’T LIKE TO BE BOUNCED
  5. Don’t ask him to do your Spelling homework. He can’t spell.
  6. DO Ask Eeyore if he would like to eat some Thistles. He will say “Yes”. Also feel free to ask him for help with your garden.

Places to find Eeyore in Disney World: At Walt Disney World, Eeyore can be sometimes be met in the Magic Kingdom next to the Pooh attraction, but not all the time. Eeyore features everyday, all day, at theCrystal Palace Buffet on Main Street. In Disneyland Paris, Eeyore is sometimes near “it’s a small world”, or outside Plaza Inn on Central Plaza.  In California, Eeyore can usually be found in Critter Country near the Pooh attraction. In Tokyo Disneyland Eeyore can occasionally be found near the main entrance in World Bazaar, and always at the character dining at the Crystal Palace.



Somewhere in the middle of a swamp, on May 9th, a small tadpole was born. No, not the tadpole mentioned above, exactly. Because this tadpole could eventually talk, sing, dance, and even report the news. When he first rose out of the swamp, I have it on good authority that he yelled “Hi, Ho!!!” And he named himself “Kermit”.

Arguably Jim Henson’s most famous creation, Kermit grew up with thousands of siblings and has talked occasionally about other members of  his brood His childhood adventures were chronicled in the 2002 direct-to-video film Kermit’s swamp years.  

Henson began working as a puppeteer in college. In 1969, he worked as a producer on Sesame Street, and eventually created The Muppet Show, with Kermit the MC, in 1976. 

In 2004, the Henson Company sold the rights to The Muppets and The Bear in The Big Blue House to The Walt Disney Company, who controls the rights to the subsidiary The Muppet Studio. The price of the sale is undisclosed – but is said to be under 200 million.

The most famous Kermit song, Rainbow connection

The song most recently debuted on American Idol, in a performance by Maddie Pop, on the finale: 

Rainbow Connection
Why are there so many songs about rainbows
And what’s on the other side
Rainbows are visions
But only illusions
And rainbows have nothing to hide
So we’ve been told
And some choose to believe it
I know they’re wrong, wait and see
Some day we’ll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me
Who said that every wish
Would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that
And someone believed it
And look what it’s done so far
What’s so amazing
That keeps us stargazing
And what do we think we might see
Someday we’ll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me
All of us under its spell, we know that it’s probably magic
Have you been half asleep?
And have you heard voices?
I’ve heard them calling my name
Is this the sweet sound
That called the young sailors?
The voice might be one in the same
I’ve heard it too many times to ignore it
It’s something that I’m supposed to be
Someday we’ll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers and me
La da da di da da dum da duh da da dum di da ohhh
Songwriters: Paul Williams
Rainbow Connection lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Walt Disney Music Company
Look for Kermit the Frog and Friends in Hollywood Studios, busy in the middle of production in their own MUPPETVISION Studio. 
You can also find him in The Magic Kingdom, in Liberty Square, discussing American History. 


There’s a tugboat down by the river, under the boat,some evil eels are circling, on  a mission for a woman that goes by an alias named “Vanessa”. Vanessa’s hair is white. Her eyes are steel blue. 

There’s a cement bag… drooping down.. to Ursula’s Lair. 


Did you know that Ursula, aka “Vanessa” is a real mermaid? Because she is a mermaid, she is amphibious, breathing air as well as water. 

Why is she so angry? Possibly because a unique mutation gave her octopus tentacles instead of fins. Because of this mutation, she is not very friendly with her brother King Triton and her niece Ariel. She once actually lived in her brother King Triton’s palace and organized all of the celebrations. After she tried to make the kingdom “hers”, she was exiled. 

Inspired by Harris Milstead’s drag personality, she preys on the weak, keeping their bones in a graveyard under her lair. 

Looking for her at a Disney Park near you? Be careful. While she may have told   you that she has “mended her ways”, she keeps her “sharp teeth” out of sight. She likes to pretend that she uses her magic to help the lonely and depressed, and will help you too. But be careful. A deal signed in magic by the most powerful witch in the sea is BINDING.  Not everybody has a powerful king for a father.

Forget her fancy promises, her fancy promises. There’s a jack knife behind those sinister promises.




Nachos, Deviled Eggs, or a spoonful of sugar? 

While some are celebrating the Mexican Army’s difficult victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza, others are preparing for the 144th Annual Kentucky Derby – still others are  obsessed with a very different kind of race: 

Would you rather watch the Derby? Or Mary Poppins magically bringing carousel horses to life for the race of a lifetime. 

For those that choose Mary Poppins, here are a few fun facts to think about while you watch the wooden horses make a break for it:

  • Some carousel advertisements in early nineteenth century America stated that the ride was highly recommended by physicians as an aid in circulating the blood.
  • Reputedly, one of the C.W. Parker Company’s most notable former employees was Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander of D-Day in World War II and later U.S. President, who, as a young lad, was said to have sanded carousel horses at the Parker factory located near his home in Abilene, Kansas.
  • The St. Bernard is one of the carousel’s most rare menagerie figures (animals other than horses).
  • Between 2,000 and 3,000 carousels were produced in the U.S. during its golden age of wooden carousels (early 1880’s to early 1930’s); today, there are less than 150 still left operating.
  • The earliest known use of the term merry-go-round is found in a poem written by Englishman George Alexander Stevens in 1729.
  • Contrary to popular belief, golden age carousel figures were not carved out of a single piece of wood; instead, several body panels were connected using wooden blocks, the whole of which was then worked over to create a basic (hollow) body; the head, legs, and tail were then attached, having been crafted by the manufacturer’s most talented carvers since the detail of these elements was essential in defining the figure’s personality.
  • To relax before taking off on what became the first successful solo nonstop trans-Atlantic flight in 1927, American aviator Charles Lindbergh ventured down to Coney Island to ride the carousel.
  • Carvers from the golden age would sometimes craft the mane of a horse figure so as to create a pocket where the hand could grasp it to help swing the rider into the saddle.
  • The oldest operating platform carousel in the United States, named the Flying Horses, dates from 1876 and is located on Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.
  • Carousels have been featured in such popular Broadway musicals as Carousel and such famous movies as Mary Poppins and The Sting.
  • The town of Mansfield, Ohio, may be the only one in America to have initiated its downtown revitalization efforts with a brand new wooden carousel, completed and unveiled in 1991.
  • All carousels manufactured by Peter Petz Productions of Germany are pre-dated by 100 years (thus 1998 becomes 1898) to give his period pieces an even greater nineteenth century feel.
  • Figures on America’s golden age carousels were typically arranged by size according to their concentric row, with the largest situated on the outer edge progressing to the smallest in by the center pole.
  • There are less than ten carousels with operating brass ring machines left in the U.S.
  • At its annual conventions in the late 1920’s, IAAPA held carving contests entered by a number of America’s premier carousel manufacturers.
  • Measuring 80 feet wide, weighing 35 tons, and containing 269 hand-crafted animals, the carousel at The House on the Rock in Spring Green, Wisconsin, USA, is the world’s largest.
  • In the early 1940’s, Prime Minister Winston Churchill ordered that Britain’s carousels be reopened, despite widespread material shortages, in an effort to boost morale during World War II.
  • The original entrance sign to the shop of one of America’s earliest carousel pioneers, Gustav Dentzel, is on display at the Merry-Go-Round Museum in Sandusky, Ohio, USA, and dates from around 1867.
  • Patriotic trappings such as flags and eagles were often incorporated into figures crafted by the many immigrant carvers who helped create America’s golden age of wooden carousels.
  • Many amusement parks and attractions around the world employ a carousel theme in one section of their facility with names like Carousel Kingdom or Square or Cove or Circle.
  • The U.S. Postal Service has twice issued commemerative stamps honoring the carousel, in 1988 and in 1995.
  • Located in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Horsin’ Around is one of America’s few carousel figure carving schools.
  • Golden age carvers in the United States occasionally inscribed their initials in a figure and, even more rarely, their full name.
  • Along with roller coasters, carousels are the oldest amusement ride still in use.
  • The only operating steam-powered carousel left in the U.S. is hard at work every Labor Day weekend at the annual Western Minnesota Steam Threshers Reunion in Rollag, Minnesota.
  • Germany’s Peter Petz Productions makes both hand-cranked and solar-powered carousels.
  • Menagerie figures are enjoying a current resurgence in popularity, a trend no doubt benefiting from the labors of The Carousel Works in Mansfield, Ohio, USA, which makes a carousel whose figures consist entirely of endangered species.
  • America’s earliest known carousel seems to have appeared in 1799 in Salem, Massachusetts, and was advertised as a wooden horse circus ride.
  • Carousel chariots from the golden age typically had two seats to accommodate ladies and small children, as the customs of that era precluded women from sitting astride the machine’s horses; chariots allowed them the thrill of a carousel ride without sacrificing their dignity.
  • The smooth galloping motion so familiar to today’s riders actually had quite a few competitors in its early days: some figures rocked, either forwards and back or from side to side, while others used a grasshopper mechanism (attached to the platform at the rear of each figure) to spring forward.
  • In the early 1900’s, Euclid Beach Park in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, possessed quite a unique carousel: it tilted at a 10-degree angle. The aim, one would assume, was to create a more thrilling ride, yet no other versions of this machine are known to have been built.
  • Some golden age carvers like John Zalar and Daniel C. Muller received formal instruction in fine arts and sculpture either before or during their carousel careers.
  • Spurred by a surge of patriotism following the Boer War (1899-1902), centaurs appeared on several British-made carousels; these double-seater horses replaced their usual heads with lifelike, waist-up carvings of domestic political or military heroes.
  • Some horses produced during the golden age were originally outfitted with a mane and/or tail made of real horsehair.


For those who pick today’s Kentucky Derby: 

I’m going with one of the following two (stats are taken from THE COURIER): 

Why he can win:
The third start of his 2-year-old campaign was the Breeders’ CupJuvenile, which Good Magic won and parlayed into the Eclipse Award for top juvenile male. The Derby will be his third start as a 3-year-old, and he looks to be on a similarpath.
Why he won’t:
His Beyer Speed Figure numbers this year are a cut below the best in the field. The Blue Grass victory was nice, but how strong was that field?
Morning-line odds:
Last time out:
Won the Grade 2 Blue Grass by 1 ½ lengths over Flameaway on April 7 atKeeneland.
Running style:
Has some early speed but generally a middle-of-the pack runner.
 e Five Racing Thoroughbreds (Bob, Kristine, Cassidy, Riley and DelaneyEdwards) and Stonestreet Stables (Barbara Banke).
 Chad Brown.
Jose Ortiz
Why he can win:
 There’s little question he’s one of the most talented 3-year-olds in the country, and he already has two Grade 1 victories and a Grade 2 win. He’s a battle-test colt who has been through the wars.
Why he won’t:
 What does he have left after a pair of grueling battles at Santa Anita duringthe prep season? He was placed first after McKinzie was disqualified in the San Felipe,which may have been the most exciting prep race of the year. And as hard as he tried, he couldn’t catch Justify in the Santa Anita.
Morning-line odds:
Last time out:
Second place — 3 lengths behind Justify — in Santa Anita Derby on April 7.
Running style:
Likes to be near the front early, though not on the lead. A stalker.
Mick Ruis.
 Mick Ruis.
 Victor Espinoza


Check out the race yourself, today at 6:46pm ET. Or else let me know if I picked correctly!

As far as food selections, we may try all three – it is supposed to be a triple kind of day, isn’t it?