Dateline Disney - April 2007

In This Edition:
# Epcot: The Box Tops, Peter & Gordon make Flower Power concert series debuts; HGTV's Paul James featured during Flower & Garden Festival's premiere weekend.
# Magic Kingdom: Lineup announced for milestone 25th annual Night of Joy.
# Resorts: Two projects to expand the scope of Walt Disney World Resort.
# Pin Trading: Fans to get sneak peek at Pin Celebration 2007 artwork.
# Disney Cruise Line: Two additional ships planned for popular Disney vacations at sea.
# Adventures by Disney: Kids can join parents on magical adventures for free.

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival Blossoms With Fun-Filled Weekends Throughout April

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Gardening gurus and themed weekends celebrating art, bugs and special events enhance the 14th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival beginning April 5 at Walt Disney World Resort. More than 30 million buds will be bursting into bloom Easter weekend as the fest opens with topiary magic, gardening activities and new exhibits.

The festival branches out this year to 60 days with horticulture personalities during specially themed weekends. Here's a snapshot of what's in store:
# April 5-8 -- The Great American Gardener series kicks off the Premiere Weekend with master gardener Paul James, host of HGTV's "Gardening by the Yard." "The Gardening Guy" will provide horticulture expertise with his all-natural approach to gardening.
# April 13-15 -- Patricia Lanza, author of Lasagna Gardening, whips up secrets to growing home gardens like the pros by improving growing conditions with Florida soil. Plus, beloved Disney characters will host a series of fanciful garden parties for guests.
# April 20-22 -- Clyde Butcher, award-winning outdoor photographer, offers tips while taking guests on a journey through the wilderness through his artistic black-and-white landscape photography. The weekend continues as legendary African American folk artists -- The Highwaymen Artists -- showcase the beauty of the Florida landscape in their paintings, and Plein Artists capture the scenic outdoors in a series of exhibits.
# April 27-29 -- It's all about bugs during a weekend that features award-winning Purdue University professor of entomology Tom Turpin, who talks about the benefits of insects. Kids can join in the I Dig Bugs Weekend with a "good bug" release and close-up look at the critters that help keep gardens healthy.

More information about the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is available by calling 407/W-DISNEY (934-7639) or by visiting The festival, including all gardening programs and exhibits, is included in regular Epcot admission.

Can't make it to the festival? The renowned horticulture team that brings life to the festival will host a weekly video Web cast on at Garden specialists will show viewers how to use Disney methodology to bring magic to their gardens at home. New episodes will become available each Friday of the festival.

The Box Tops, Peter & Gordon Make Flower Power Debuts as Popular Concert Series Returns to Epcot

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- 1960s hit-makers The Box Tops and Peter & Gordon will make their Flower Power concert series debuts during April when the popular musical showcase returns to Epcot during the 14th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival. They will be part of a lineup that kicks off with Paul Revere and the Raiders on April 5-9.

Concerts, which are included with regular Epcot admission, are at America Gardens Theatre at 5:45, 7 and 8:15 p.m.

Peter & Gordon, who will close out April with concerts April 29-30 (and open May as well), took a rocket ride to the top of the charts with their first tracking single, "A World Without Love" in 1964. They went on to hit the top 40 nine more times in the mid-60s.

Likewise, The Box Tops scored their biggest hit the first time they charted, with "The Letter" soaring to No. 1 and spending four weeks on the perch to become the seventh biggest song of 1967. They'll bring back the memories at Epcot April 22-24.

In fact, all seven Flower Power artists in April will be bringing back memories of No. 1 hits -- topped by Tony Orlando, who as part of the trio Dawn scored three chart-toppers, including the second-biggest hit of 1973, "Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Old Oak Tree."

Here's the complete Flower Power lineup for April:

April 4-9 -- Paul Revere and the Raiders
April 10-14 -- Tony Orlando in Concert
April 15-18 -- The Buckinghams
April 19-21 -- The Turtles featuring Flo and Eddie
April 22-24 -- The Box Tops
April 25-28 -- The Tokens
April 29-May 1 -- Peter & Gordon

More information about the 14th annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is available by calling 407/W-DISNEY (934-7639) or by visiting

Lineup for Disney's 25th Night of Joy: Chris Tomlin, Third Day, newsboys, David Crowder, Steven Curtis Chapman, Salvador -- Plus 12 More Acts

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Walt Disney World Resort has announced the talent lineup for the milestone 25th annual Night of Joy on Sept. 7 and Sept. 8 in Magic Kingdom, with Third Day, Chris Tomlin and David Crowder*Band on the marquee of a nine-act lineup of Christian music artists Sept. 7, followed by newsboys, Steven Curtis Chapman and Salvador spearheading a nine-act lineup Sept. 8.

The talent bill, a combination of celebrated Christian music veterans and heralded newcomers, also will include:
# On Friday, Sept. 7 -- Jaci Velasquez, Brian Littrell, BarlowGirl, Leeland, Jessie Daniels and Sanctus Real; and
# On Saturday, Sept. 8 -- Smokie Norful, Kutless, Red, Mary Mary, Flyleaf and Mark Schultz. The Saturday entertainment lineup also will include a Best of Show winner from the GMA's 33rd annual Music in the Rockies event.

Night of Joy, which requires a special ticket, begins at 7:30 p.m. (after regular theme park closing) and continues to 12:30 a.m. Performances will be at several stage locations throughout Magic Kingdom. In addition, Magic Kingdom attractions -- including the ever-popular Space Mountain, Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad -- will be in operation.

Advance tickets ($41.95 plus tax for one night, $71.95 plus tax for both nights) are available by calling 407/W-DISNEY or by visiting online. Tickets purchased on the date of the event will be $46.95 plus tax if available (Night of Joy is frequently sold out in advance).

Pin Traders to Get First Look at Disney Pin Celebration 2007 Artwork

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Pin trading enthusiasts who attend Mickey's Pin Trading Night at Disney's Contemporary Resort April 27 will get a special sneak peek at artwork for Disney's Pin Celebration 2007, the biggest pin trading event of the year at Walt Disney World Resort. April Pin Trading Night, which is a free event for enthusiasts, is 5-8 p.m. in the Ballroom of the Americas.

"This will be the first time guests will get to see all of the artwork for the big event in September," said Steven Miller, manager for Disney pin trading. "It should be pretty exciting -- and at a perfect time, since registration for Pin Celebration begins May 9."

More information about Disney's Pin Celebration 2007, slated Sept. 7-9, and Disney pin trading in general is available at

Walt Disney World Resort Announces Two Expansion Projects

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Walt Disney World Resort has announced two projects as part of an expansion plan for the resort in Central Florida: a 900-acre luxury resort anchored by the prestigious Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts and a 450-acre retail, dining and lodging district on the western edge of the Disney resort.

Along the northeast border of Walt Disney World Resort, Disney plans to convert its Eagle Pines and Osprey Ridge golf courses into a luxury resort and golf community. The development will include a luxury hotel, 18-hole championship golf course, single- and multi-family vacation homes and fractional ownership vacation homes.

Disney entered into a letter of intent with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts to bring these two complementary and respected brands together to anchor a new world-class family resort destination. Once terms of the project are finalized, site work could begin later this year, with a hotel opening forecasted for 2010.

On the western edge of the resort, Disney is planning a mixed-use tourist commercial district just outside Disney's gateway entrance. The master-planned development is comparable in size to Disney's Animal Kingdom.

The project combines third-party branded lodging, retail and dining in a pedestrian-friendly environment and will be another example of Disney's commitment to unique placemaking. Located outside Disney's gateway around the interchange where Western Way meets the Western Beltway, early development plans include 4,000 to 5,000 low- to mid-rise, value-priced lodging units and 300,000-500,000 square feet of commercial space. Designed around a retail village, the development will become a convenient shopping and service center for cast members, nearby residents and Central Florida visitors.

The project is currently in the design stage. Site work and branding is anticipated to begin later this year. The project will be built in phases over the next 8 to 10 years.

Two New Ships Will More Than Double Disney Cruise Line Capacity

CELEBRATION, Fla. -- Disney Cruise Line plans to add two new ocean liners to its fleet, more than doubling passenger capacity to meet the sustained demand for Disney's family cruise vacations. The new 122,000-ton cruise liners, scheduled to launch in 2011 and 2012, will be two decks taller than the existing 83,000-ton ships, the Disney Magic and the Disney Wonder.

Walt Disney Company has signed a letter of intent with Meyer Werft shipyard, based in Papenburg, Germany, to negotiate a contract to build the new ships, each with 1,250 staterooms. Specific design plans and itineraries for the yet unnamed ships are still in development.

To learn more about Disney Cruise Line or to book a vacation, guests can contact their travel agent, visit or call Disney Cruise Line at 888/DCL-2500. Travel agents can call Disney Cruise Line at 888/325-2500 or visit

Kids Free to Explore the World on Select Adventures by Disney Vacations

BURBANK, Calif. -- Thanks to a special "Kids Free" offer on select Adventures by Disney itineraries, there's never been a better time than now for families to explore some of the world's greatest destinations. Each adult guest booked on Adventures by Disney Fiesta Espaa (Spain), Path to Pura Vida (Costa Rica) or Imperial Cities (Austria and the Czech Republic) itineraries and departing March 19-Sept. 30, 2007, at a Regular or Value Season rate can receive a free Kids Travel Package for a child age 4-14 staying in the same room -- a discount of up to 35% off. This offer must be booked March 19-June 30, 2007.

Highlights of the itineraries offering "Kids Free" packages:

Fiesta Espaa -- Madrid, Granada & Seville (9 days/8 nights): Soak up Spain's food, fashion and culture on a journey from Madrid to the country's southern coast, enjoying a flamenco dancing and dinner show in the cave of Venta el Gallo in the Cuevas del Sacramonte and participating in an authentic Andalucian pottery experience.

Path to Pura Vida -- San Jos, Arenal & Manuel Antonio (7 days/6 nights): Explore the natural world's most precious treasures, including Costa Rica's volcanoes, rainforests, beaches and lush landscapes, encountering more than 4,000 butterflies in the La Paz Butterfly Gardens and surrounding waterfalls, and zip-lining through the rainforests and go white-water rafting along the Class 2-3 rapids of the Sarapiqu River.

Imperial Cities -- Vienna, Salzburg & Prague (8 days/7 nights): Tour Eastern Europe's rich baroque cities, where old meets new in imaginative settings, experiencing the Vienna Zoo during a private after-hours visit and gaining backstage access to a marionette show in Salzburg.

Up to two children may participate per room. The offer is subject to availability, cannot be combined with other offers and applies to land packages only. To book this offer or obtain more information about Adventures by Disney, guests can contact their professional travel agent, visit or call 877/728-7282.

Source: Walt Disney World