It's time for the Frog Family's weekly roundup of Disney and Orlando theme park tidbits from the interwebs.
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This week’s highlights:
- Downtown Disney will be rocking over Labor Day weekend with its Great Irish Hooley Festival at the Raglan Road Irish Pub & Restaurant. Never heard of a hooley? It’s Irish slang for a celebration. Don’t worry, I hadn’t heard of it either. The festival will feature rock and traditional Irish bands, including Full Set -- who will be kicking off its U.S. tour -- and U2 tribute band Elevation. No Irish festival would be complete, at least in Mommy Frog’s book, without the music of U2, her all-time favorite band. There will also be food, drinks and dance workshops for the whole family.
- In more music news, Disney has announced the lineup for this year’s Night of Joy, which includes Red, Lecrae, Third Day and many, many others.
- Perhaps some of you were lucky enough to snag reservations to Be Our Guest, which were made available this week, starting November 19 for the Beauty and the Beast-themed restaurant inside the new Fantasyland. If you did not, you are in good company. Even after more than an hour of dialing before dawn on Monday, Mommy Frog wasn’t able to get through either.
- Tad gave us a good breakdown of the water activities at the Walt Disney World Resorts (and brought me public humiliation by recounting my incident on the stand up paddle board).
- We’re getting closer and closer to Halloween, Tad’s favorite holiday of the year. Stay tuned for an upcoming blog about all of the different holiday events planned at the Orlando theme parks. In the meantime, more news has been trick-l-ing out, starting with a whole bunch of Halloweeny Haunted Mansion merchandise arriving this month at Walt Disney World.
- Over at the Dad’s Guide to WDW, Dad weighs in on how busy the Nov. 2 Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party will be. While the party may be crowded, according to our crowd calendar, the overall park levels look very good.
- Universal has released pricing for all of its Halloween Horror Nights tours, including behind-the-scenes tours. By the way, you can get tickets to Halloween Horror Nights from us.
- SeaWorld is getting into the fun with the family-friendly “Fantasea” at its Halloween Spooktacular every weekend in October.
- Speaking of SeaWorld, the Orlando Sentinel has glorious photos and video of the very rare Weedy Sea Dragons hatchlings.
- Epcot has launched a new segway tour and breakfast debuting Sept. 17. The Keep Moving Forward tour will explore Walt Disney’s vision for a better tomorrow.
- A new nighttime castle projection show, ''Celebrate the Magic," is headed to the Magic Kingdom sometime in November. If you're planning a park trip during this fall, note that the current show, "The Magic, The Memories and You!," will have its final showing Sept. 3.
- For all of you anxiously awaiting the return of the retooled Test Track in Epcot, the Disney Parks Blog is hosting a live chat August 27 to answer all of your burning questions. Remember, you can keep up with Disney and Universal refurbishments here.
That’s all for this week. Until next week, happy planning!