All posts by Michelle Beck

Soarin’ Over California Returns to Disney California Adventure Park for a Limited Time

From June 1 to 30, Soarin’ Over California will return to Disney’s California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort.

Take flight and enjoy a bird’s-eye view over California. This virtual tour celebrates the beauty and wonder of the Golden State—from San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate Bridge to the crashing waves in Malibu. You will be raised high into the air, and surrounded by an immersive, 80-foot projection dome to simulate the graceful motion of flight, while your senses will be teased with iconic scents found throughout California.

Originally opened in 2001, Soarin’ Over California became a fan-favorite attraction. In 2016, the attraction became Soarin’ Around the World, taking you over the many wonders of the world—from the majestic Swiss Alps to the Great Wall of China.

Source: Disney Parks Blog

‘Highwire Live in Times Square with Nik Wallenda,’ Live Event Airs June 23 on ABC

ABC announced today that King of the Highwire Nik Wallenda and his sister, Lijana, seventh-generation members of the Wallenda family circus troupe, will return to the highwire for a never-before-attempted walk of approximately 1,300 feet long and 25 stories above street level, across New York City’s iconic Times Square, live on SUNDAY, JUNE 23 (8:00-10:00 p.m. EDT). “Highwire Live in Times Square with Nik Wallenda” will air as a live two-hour televised event. The walk marks Lijana Wallenda’s first highwire walk since the 2017 accident where she, along with four others, tragically fell 30 feet off a tightrope during a rehearsal. 

The 1,300-foot-long walk will take place 25 stories high between the famed 1 Times Square and 2 Times Square. Nik and Lijana will start from opposite ends of the wire, meet and cross in the middle of Times Square, then continue to finish opposite of where they started. The must-see live event will also feature video footage of the Wallendas’ history, preparation and exclusive interviews.

“It’s hard enough crossing Times Square on the ground, try it 25 stories up,” said Karey Burke, president, ABC Entertainment. “ABC is the destination for big live events that become cultural moments and Nik and Lijana will surely create one as they complete this never-before-attempted walk.”

“In 1928, my family performed at Madison Square Garden in the City of Dreams for the first time in the USA,” said Nik Wallenda. “And on June 23, I have the great opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream of my own by paying homage to that performance as we return for my most exhilarating feat yet. I am beyond excited to be able to walk with my sister, Lijana, as she overcomes near-death injuries and continues the Wallenda tradition of never giving up!”

Nik Wallenda is the seventh-generation of the Great Wallendas who trace their roots back over 200 years to the Austro-Hungarian empire. For Nik, every walk is an expression of honor to his great grandfather, the legendary Karl Wallenda who brought the Wallendas to America from Germany to perform in The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Nik’s previous live televised events include two hugely successful television events: walking across Niagara Falls in June 2012 and the Grand Canyon in June 2013. He holds 10 Guinness World Records.

Lijana Wallenda was one of five performers who fell off a highwire tightrope while attempting an eight-person pyramid stunt during a Circus Sarasota rehearsal in 2017. Lijana was severely injured and has been recovering ever since. The Times Square walk will be the first time she’s gotten back on the tightrope for a performance since her accident.

“Highwire Live in Times Square with Nik Wallenda” is produced by dick clark productions. Gretchen Eisele, Mark Bracco, Linda Gierahn, David Simone, Winston Simone, Shelley Ross and Nik Wallenda are executive producers.

Disney Channel Orders Season Two of Daughter/Father Comedy ‘Sydney to the Max’

Disney Channel has picked up a second season of the popular live-action daughter/father comedy “Sydney to the Max,” starring 13-year-old actress/musical artist Ruth Righi in the title role of Sydney. Geared for kids ages 6-14 and families, the series is set in the present day with flashbacks to the 1990s and follows outgoing middle schooler Sydney Reynolds, who lives with her single dad Max (Ian Reed Kesler, “Suits”), in the house he grew up in, along with her progressive grandmother Judy (Caroline Rhea, “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” Disney’s “Phineas and Ferb”). As Sydney’s preteen pursuits begin to expand, Max’s flashbacks of his childhood help him gain a better perspective of his daughter’s experiences. Created and executive produced by Mark Reisman (“Frasier,” “Wings,” “The Exes”), production on season two will commence later this summer.

New episodes from season one will return on Tuesday, June 18 (8:00-8:30 p.m. EDT) on Disney Channel and in the DisneyNOW app.

“Mark Reisman and his team of talented writers, along with the top-notch cast, delivered a show that has quickly become an audience favorite for Disney Channel,” said Nancy Kanter, executive vice president, Content and Creative, Disney Channels Worldwide. “With its playful nod to growing up in the 90s, the series strikes a chord with anyone who’s ever experienced their own ‘growing pains.’ We look forward to having our viewers see what’s in store for the Reynolds family next season.”

Also starring are Jackson Dollinger as young Max, Ava Kolker as Sydney’s best friend Olive, and Christian J. Simon as young Max’s best friend Leo.

“Sydney to the Max” is a production of It’s A Laugh Productions, Inc. It carries a TV-G parental guideline.

Treasures From the Disney Vault Returns to TCM on June 25, 2019 With Sleuth Theme

Treasures from the Disney Vault returns to the Turner Classic Movies Channel on June 25, 2019 with a sleuth theme.  The special evening will once again be hosted by film critic Leonard Maltin and will showcase a wide array of Disney classics including animated shorts, feature films, live-action movies, documentaries, nature films, and made-for-television movies.

© Disney

Here’s the complete programming schedule for Tuesday, June 25, 2019 beginning at 8pm ET:

  • 8:00pm – The Moon-Spinners (1964) – Set against the sun-bleached beauty of the Isle of Crete, the story pits a young English tourist (Hayley Mills) against a wily Greek jewel thief (Eli Wallach). Mistaken identities and perilous escapes — including a nail-biting battle with a windmill — lead the junior-miss detective to a final confrontation aboard the yacht of an eccentric millionairess (Pola Negri) with a passion for priceless gems and pet cheetahs!
  • 10:15pm – Bone Bandit (1948) – animated short
  • 10:25pm – The Littlest Horse Thieves (1977) – An endearing tale set in the early days of the 20th century, this inspirational story centers on a coal mine in Yorkshire, England and the “pit ponies” employed to pull the coal bins out of the deep, dark pits. When the owner decides to destroy the ponies and replace them with steam engines, three children hatch an ingenious plan to rescue the animals. After they’re caught “horsenapping,” all looks lost when the mine explodes, trapping the miners below, and only the ponies can save them.
  • 1:15am – The Robber Kitten (1935) – animated short
  • 1:30am – The North Avenue Irregulars (1979) – There’s magic in the memories as great Disney moments are captured right here for you and your family to enjoy. The new preacher in town joins forces with the most unlikely group of organized crime fighters anyone has ever dreamed up — six lady church members who are dedicated, eager, ready, willing … everything but organized! The result is an action-packed comic caper that’s as funny as any Disney comedy ever filmed!|The movie is based on the book by Reverend Albert Fay Hill, chronicling his real-life efforts to organize a suburb against the mafia.
  • 3:15am – Emil and the Detectives (1964) – When a boy’s money is stolen, the search is on for the crook.
  • 5:00am – Never a Dull Moment (1968) – When a struggling actor is mistaken for a gangster, his earnest attempts to set the record straight only escalate his involvement in a daring museum robbery.

More information on Treasures from the Disney Vault can be found at TCM.com.

Disney After Hour Events Extended Through September at Walt Disney World

Walt Disney World has extended Disney After Hours dates into September at Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Here are the new dates for each park at Walt Disney World Resort:

  • Magic Kingdom Park: August 22 and 29; and September 5, 12, 19, and 26.
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom: July 2, 8, 15, 22 and 29; August 5, 12, 19, and 26; and September 3, 9, 16 and 23.
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios: July 5, 12, 19 and 26.

In case you aren’t familiar, Disney After Hours allows guests to purchase a special ticket to experience the parks from as early as 7:00pm to 11:30pm with a limited number of guests.

In the midst of the laughs and thrills, be sure to chill out with ice cream novelties and select beverages—included in the cost of admission—available at carts stationed throughout Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park. In addition, you can also purchase menu items at select locations throughout the park.

To purchase your tickets and view a full list of attractions and experiences, visit Disneyworld.com/DisneyAfterHours. All Disney After Hours event tickets cost $125 + tax for advance purchase and $129 + tax for day-of purchases. Disney Vacation Club members and Annual Passholders can take advantage of a discounted price at $95 + tax.

Source: Disney Parks Blog