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INTERCOT > Interactive > INTERCOT Insider Archive > January 2009 Edition


January 2009 Edition

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<< We're Back ...  >>

After an unavoidable hiatus due to real world commitments of our site administrator, the INTERCOT Insider is glad to be back in your mail box. In this special edition we take a look back at the some annual events of 2008 to help those who may be contemplating attending them in 2009.  We also recap some major news items that occurred during our hiatus and will affect those vacationing in 2009. Hang on to them hats and glasses, cause this here's the most informative ride on the Internet! 

<< New Sponsor >>

With the new year comes a brand new sponsor to welcome to the cast of INTERCOT Supporters - who we in turn ask that you support - The Clarion Resort & Waterpark. 
Conveniently located in Kissimmee, yet nearby to many Orlando attractions, the Clarion Resort & Water Park is a full-service Orlando area hotel and conference center with four restaurants, a spa, a teen activity area, a children's playroom and a state-of-the-art water park that's perfect for kids of all ages.

>> Book your room at http://www.clarionwaterpark.com


<<A Taste of the Festival with Ron>> 


Autumn has come and gone, and with it my favorite Disney World dining experience. There is no better time to stroll around Epcot's World Showcase than during the annual Food and Wine Festival, stopping along the way to try some of the many appetizer-size portions of foods, desserts, beers and wines.

The 2008 festival had a new look this year in keeping with its theme - Cities in Wonderland. Instead of countries, the festival featured great food cities like Melbourne, Buenos Aires and San Francisco. Therefore, the food kiosks scattered around the World Showcase were more likely to feature regional cuisine than national dishes. I enjoyed mouthwatering bites of beef goulash with a bacon dumpling from Vienna, samosa with tamarind sauce from New Delhi, spaetzle with creamy mushroom ragout from Munich, and Louisiana seafood Gumbo from New Orleans. Each of the 27 food kiosks also offered dessert and a wine pairing or mixed drink. Prices start at about $2.50 per sample, but most are in the $3.50 to $4.00 range.

Special festival experiences this year included exhibits from Melbourne and Louisiana, a Greek Island wine bar, a New York State Wine Adventure, and an Australian Wine Walk-about . Beer lovers were not left out, with a Samuel Adams sponsored History of Beer in America exhibit, a Hops and Barley booth, and plenty of Guinness Draught in Great Britain.

There is great entertainment to be found throughout the festival, including the fabulous Eat to the Beat evening concert series. The 2009 Food and Wine Festival dates are expected to be announced this Spring.


>> Epcot's Annual International Food & Wine Festival


<<Spectacle of Stats with JPL>> 


As the 2008 Holiday season fades off into a New Year the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights will be a lasting memory for many who visited at the Disney Hollywood Studios.  For those who may be on the provable fence as to just how spectacular this annual spectacle is, here's some stats and facts from the 2008 display: 

~30,000 Lights were used to create a Red Canopy that spanned the length of San Francisco Street
~The display used 800,000 watts of electricity 
~The display featured 80,000 lights on a 70 foot Christmas tree with 3 layers of color
~The display used over 1500 dimmable relay circuits to produce "dancing lights"
~110 Angels were scattered about the display
~33 Snow Machines using 100 gallons of snow fluid made the display sparkle with snow showers each evening 
~30 miles of extension cord connected all of the lights of the display
~The display used 10 miles of rope light
~It took 20,000 man hours to install the entire display
~The display used 2 million tie wraps
~Over 40 hidden Mickeys were hidden in the display
~All of the figurines and Christmas trees were from the original display


The 14th annual display of the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights will be held during the Holiday Season 2009.  Although exact dates won't be announced till this Summer, it is expected the lights will glow nightly from Late November through the first days of January 2010.


>> Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights


<<Soaps on your Street?>> 


Although the 2008 Super Soap Weekend in November was the final offering of this annual event at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Soap Fans still have a silver lining for 2009.  Disney has announced that in lieu of Guests traveling to see their favorite Soap Stars, a whole new touring event will bring the Stars to them!  ABC’s Daytime Division will kick-off the 2009 Soap Nation Tour, a collection of nationwide events designed to interact with fans on a year-round basis offering greater access to stars in more cities, more often.


<< Inside info Central>>


Park Calendar Released for April 2009


The Walt Disney World Resort has released it's Extra Magic Hours, Operating, and Event schedules for April 2009. For guests visiting during this time, you will want to visit the Park Hours and Events pages to aid in planning your trip. Remember, all times and schedules are subject to change, so check back often. Due to recent changes in Reservation booking polices, Extra Magic Hours, Operating, and Event schedules are now expected to be released only 90 days in advance.


>> Extra Magic Hours Schedule and Info


>> Current Park Hours


>> Fireworks, Parades, & Event Schedules

What's Updated?

INTERCOT info Central has recently updated the following sections to keep you up-to-date as you plan your Disney World Vacation. 

>> Closing & Refurbishment Schedule


>> Historic Temp Averages by Day  


>> Epcot's Annual International Flower & Garden Festival


>> Annual Events


What's New?

INTERCOT info Central has recently added the following sections to better help you plan your Disney World Vacation.   

>> Celebration Vacation


<< 2 New Resorts in 2009>>

Two highly anticipated resort developments announced in September will expand the Walt Disney World experience and continue the rapid growth of Disney Vacation Club, Disney’s innovative vacation-ownership program. The 15-story Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort is scheduled to join the Disney Vacation Club family of properties in Fall 2009, while the Treehouse Villas at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, scheduled to open in Summer 2009, will become the next room category offered at that resort. Bay Lake Tower sales are scheduled to begin on September 21 for Disney Vacation Club Members, while sales to the general public and sales for the newest phase of Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa will begin at a later date. 


<<A More Magical Kingdom>> 


To celebrate the animated film “Tinker Bell,” Disney’s most famous fairy and four of her best friends took meet-and-greet experience in Mickey’s Toontown Fair at Magic Kingdom this past October. To meet Tinker Bell and her fairy friends, guests enter a magical forest called “Pixie Hollow,” a special place deep in the heart of Never Land.  Tinker Bell is joined by: Iridessa, a light fairy; Rosetta, a garden fairy; Silvermist, a water fairy; and Fawn, an animal fairy.


<<So Long, Pal>> 


Pal Mickey, the interactive plush, was discontinued in October. The plush toy was introduced in 2003 and has been offered in three different versions each adding to and updating the toy's ability to interacte with the most current park environment. Although Pal Mickey will no longer be available for purchase, the interactive plush will continue to operate in the four theme parks as they do today.

<<90 in 2009>> 


At the end of 2008, Disney adjusted the booking window for dining, recreation and tour experiences to a 90-day period.  Disney Resort Hotel Guests may book 90 days prior to their scheduled check-in date for the first 10 days of their stay. Day Guests may book 90 days prior to the date they wish to dine.  Due to the unique components and special nuances of Grand Gathering experiences and La Nouba performances, reservations for these offerings can be made up to 180 days in advance.  All reservations booked prior to December 23, 2008 will be honored as booked.

<<A Year to Celebrate>> 


This past September, Disney Parks announced that  everyone who visits a Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort theme park in 2009 gets in free on their birthday! Disney Parks have embraced a new travel trend called “celebration vacations.” New entertainment and special services such as character greetings can be booked to help guests transform personal milestones such as birthdays and anniversaries into magical Disney experiences. To book your vacation call INTERCOT's Official Travel Agency, Magical Journeys at 1-570-785-3283, or visit their website and fill out a quote form.

>> Magical Journeys 


<< Conclusion >>

Although this edition has come to a close, the New Year is just underway.  With this New Year will be a new INTERCOT Insider offering new monthly columns in the tradition of years past, as well as; some new styles of articles that aim to share and highlight the great wealth of knowledge that is exchanged every day on the INTERCOT Discussion Boards.    See ya real soon!

<< Thank You To Our Sponsors! >>

The INTERCOT Insider and INTERCOT.com are supported by the following sponsors who in turn, help us bring the Magic to you!

All Star Vacation Homes
Website: Vacation Home Details Here
Choose from the finest selection of vacation homes and condos in the closest locations to Walt Disney World.

Clarion Resort & Waterpark
Website: http://www.clarionwaterpark.com
The perfect hotel for your family's next vacation. Conveniently located in Kissimmee, yet convenient to many Orlando attractions, the Clarion Resort & Water Park is a full-service Orlando area hotel and conference center with four restaurants, a spa, a teen activity area, a children's playroom and a state-of-the-art water park that's perfect for kids of all ages.

The Official Ticket Center
Website: Buy & Price Tickets Now!
The Official Ticket Center is Walt Disney World’s, Universal Studios and Sea World’s #1 guest service provider for the last 3 years. The Official Ticket Center sells tickets only, at a discount price.

Magical Journeys
Website: http://www.yourmagicaljourneys.com
INTERCOT's Official Travel Agency.  An unconventional Travel Agency for the unconventional client, Magical Journeys is dedicated to finding the best pricing for your next magical journey. We work hard to save you money, and still give you the quality service you deserve.

Mandara Spa - WDW Swan & Dolphin
Website: http://www.mandaraspa.com
The spectacular Mandara Spa creates an unforgettable guest experience within a magical setting surrounded by the paradise that is the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin.

Quicksilver Tours & Transportation
Website: http://www.quicksilver-tours.com
Our drivers are the first personal contact you have when you arrive in Orlando.  No other transportation company goes to the lengths we do to ensure that your trip is exactly how you imagined it. At Quicksilver, we truly believe there's no such thing as going "above and beyond" for our clients. Instead, it's all part of doing our jobs correctly.

Radisson Resort Orlando - Celebration
Resort Details Here
Conveniently located just 1.5 miles from Walt Disney World with free shuttle service. roomy guest accommodations and a Starbucks and Pizza Hut right on property!

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort
Website: http://www.swandolphin.com
In the heart of the Walt Disney World® Resort, the award-winning Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort is your gateway to Central Florida’s greatest theme parks and attractions. Come discover our 17 world-class restaurants and lounges, sophisticated guest rooms with Westin Heavenly Beds®, the luxurious Mandara Spa, and many special Disney benefits.

The Timeshare Store
Website: http://www.dvc-resales.com
This Disney Vacation Club resale site offers the largest selection of DVC Resale's anywhere!  They are the number one Disney Vacation Club Reseller in the world. See how easy and affordable it is to purchase your very own piece of the "MAGIC".

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