David Koenig offers a look behind the scenes at the process of writing the best "behind the scenes" Disney parks books! From surprising anecdotes to the massive undertaking of documenting Walt Disney World's history, Koenig discusses his various books and his opinions about successful attractions, cast member secrets, and the art of bringing fantasy to life. Koenig talks about Universal's impact on the Disney parks, dealing with Disney's legal arm, and how pulling back the curtain on Disney park operations can make fans love the parks even more. Also, Mousetalgia goes back to Walt Disney World again as Dave, Becky and Kristen discuss a special fundraiser featuring Tony Baxter discussing Journey Into Imagination, the beloved extinct attraction from EPCOT Center. Tony talks about the original proposed EPCOT architecture, the origins of the attraction, and the unlikely genesis of Figment! Plus, our favorite Disney summer songs - and more!

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_301.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:24 PM
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This week, celebrate Mousetalgia's 300th episode with us as Jeff travels across the country to Orlando and reports on his June trip to Walt Disney World. From the dramatic humidity changes to the wide boulevards and enormous castle, we discuss the diferences between the east and west coast Disney parks and form some conclusions. Topics include highlights of the various parks, food and dining options, Cast Members, the use of space, aging water spectacles, and the billion-dollar Magic Bands. Agree or disagree, you're sure to find something to ponder as we discuss the various parks and opportunities afforded on a trip to the number one vacation destination in the world. Also, Team Mousetalgia reminisces about the past 300 episodes, and we share some memories and highlights. Plus - our biggest sweepstakes ever: your chance to win a 3 day, 3 night trip for 4 to the Disneyland Resort! Listen to win! (Rules and terms of the sweepstakes can be found at http://www.mousetalgia.com/300.htm )

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_300.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:56 PM
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This week, Team Mousetalgia speaks with legendary producer Don Hahn (The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Who Framed Roger Rabbit) at the Pacific Northwest Mouse Meet. Hahn shares some thoughts on producing, creating documentaries and working on Disneynature films, and we also discuss the nature of creativity within Disney productions. Mousetalgia also welcomes Imagineer Glenn Barker to the show, who talks about his start as a drummer for Disneyland parades and his eventual career working at WED as a media designer, producing soundscapes and soundtracks for all of the attractions at the Disney theme parks. By dissecting the sound design for Big Thunder, Barker demonstrates the fascinating process of adding the critical audio component to the most famous theme park attractions in the world - and shares some inside secrets from the creation of some of the Disney parks most beloved soundtracks. Plus, Beci Mahnken, CEO of Mousefan Travel, joins us to reminince about this year's Pacific Northwest Mouse Meet, and we share some highlights from this extraordinary Disney fan event.

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_299.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:21 PM
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Recorded live from the Pacific Northwest Mouse Meet, we present part one of our coverage from this popular Disney fan event. Returning special guest Tony Baxter talks about his mentor, Claude Coats; what he likes (and doesn't like) about the updates to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad; the next wave of great aspirational attractions; understanding the heart of a Disney collector - and undergoes a rapid fire "Mousekeminute." Also, Imagineer Chris Merritt is back on the show to talk about his new book "Pacific Ocean Park: The Rise and Fall of Los Angeles' Space Age Nautical Pleasure Pier" discussing the history of this short-lived but influential theme park, including a description of some of the most intriguing attractions, the incredible musical talent that graced the park's stages, and various elements of interest to Disney fans. Plus - a listener reports from Walt Disney World's Star Wars Days, the Walt Disney Family Museum gets a new Tiki bird - and more!

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_298.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:06 PM
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This week, Jeff reports on a panel talk held recently at the Walt Disney Family Museum called "Disneyland: The Fan Driven Time Machine," which featured special guests Todd Pierce, Jeff Kurtti, Werner Weiss, and Sam Gennawey. The discussion was centered on the idea of the development of Disneyland, and how fans have come to adopt the park as their own - and likewise, how the company has responded to this relatively new cottage industry of "fandom." Next, we discuss the museum itself and tour the various exhibits, offering some of our personal highlights from the experience and describing a typical visit to this atypical museum, which features exhibits including the first known drawing of Mickey Mouse; a bench from Griffith Park upon which Walt may have sat; Oscars, awards and accolades; and dozens of samples of artwork, interviews, products, and more. Plus - working at Disneyland is a dream job for many, and Team Mousetalgia goes around the table divulging our secret Disney wishes - were we to become cast members!

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_297.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:00 PM
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Kristen reports on an "Incredible" visit to Pixar in Emeryville! But first, we talk about the cost of a day at Disneyland - do the recent price hikes change people's philosophies about visiting the parks, and if not, why? Team Mousetalgia discusses value vs. time vs. crowds, and we draw interesting conclusions. Next, a listener reviews the live action film "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride," Jeff announces a haunting new project, and then Kristen visits the Pixar Studios for an amazing day at the annual Cartoon Art Museum benefit. Highlights include a trip to the Pixar employee store, Pixar animator Jeff Pidgeon's drawing seminar, a Monsters U art display, lunch in the Luxo Cafe - and the highlight of the day, a panel discussing the Incredibles in honor of its tenth anniversary in the Steve Jobs Theatre, with a presentation by director Brad Bird and head of story Mark Andrews, among a stable of other Pixar animators that worked on the Academy Award-winning film.

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_296.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:00 PM
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This week, Dave and Becky report on the New Orleans-themed Lasseter Family Winery Spring Release party where they tasted new wine from the barrel, enjoyed food, fun and friends, and had a close encounter with John Lasseter himself. Next, Kristen reports on a six-day "work-ation" at Disneyland Resort, and shares some thoughts about touring the park in early June. Her trip report includes art and book signings, changes to the Tangaroa Terrace's and the Carnation Cafe's menus, Club 33 dining at the Carthay Circle Hollywood Room and Club 33 seating for Fantasmic, and a hotel review of Extended Stay America. Also - a look at Anaheim's new Packing District, with an in-depth review of some of the eateries in the new Packing House a few minutes away from Disneyland. Plus - napping in disneyland - pros, cons, and our favorite places to grab forty winks... and more!

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_295.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:17 PM
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It's time to dig into the Mousetalgia mailbag! Topics include Walt Disney World Fastpass+ tips, Adventures by Disney tours, binging on Mousetalgia, seeing Disneyland through a new lens and trip planning tips, an update on the Carolwood Society's Storybook Land restoration, Disney Cruise Line dining tips, re-creating Disneyland's Fantasia ice cream, and insights from a WDW Guest Relations cast member. In a flashback segment, we look at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, and a 1965 article about the hippest new thing on the block - "Audio-Animatronics" - and how they were utilized at the New York World's Fair. Also - a listener review of D23's Maleficent preview screening. Plus, Cinderella's creepy new teaser, Disney underwear, the park plaque strikes back - and more!

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_294.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:10 PM
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Mousetalgia welcomes Academy Award winning author/historian/filmmaker John Canemaker back to the show to discuss his new book, "The Lost Notebook: Herman Schultheis & the Secrets of Walt Disney’s Movie Magic." Schultheis, who worked for the Disney Studio in the late '30s, hid notebooks detailing the methods that Disney's process lab used for some of their most incredible special effects in Disney's early animated features, and Canemaker explains the man behind the notebook, as well as the mysteries the notebook unlocks. But first, Kristen reviews "Maleficent," and offers her critical opinion of the film's merits and controversies. Jeff also looks back at the development of the Maleficent character for Sleeping Beauty in 1959, and discusses some lesser-known personalities that played a key role in the character design. Plus - announcing a Haunted Mansion event with Bob Gurr, hip new records, and talking about running in a galaxy far, far away.

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_293.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:18 PM
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Enjoy Disneyland like an insider - from fireworks viewing areas to photo ops and more! Learn the places to sit and relax even on busy days. Make the most of the parades. Relive your childhood with Pooh, enjoy little-known experiences and search for hidden Walts. At DCA, we explore nighttime entertainment, find more places to escape the crowds, hone your drawing skills, eat for endurance, and enjoy the details (and the park's best free souvenirs!) In the hotels and Downtown Disney, we recommend shows and diversions that you might otherwise overlook. Becky passes on a travel professional's advice, and we talk more about art, food and drinks. Plus, we discuss what we're hoping to see for Disneyland's 60th birthday - and more!

Direct download: Mousetalgia_-_Episode_292.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:15 PM
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