We are all once again gathered in the Contemporary’s Fantasia Ballroom for Destination D. Make sure you check out the Disneybrit and Destination D Facebook pages for a ton of event photos. We will also talk in detail about the event on this week’s shows. As i sit here waiting for things to start, I wanted to share with you the souvenir they gave us yesterday. This is a reproduction of the booklet people got when visiting the Preview Center in 1970 and 1971.

The building still stands by the way over by Downtown Disney. This booklet gave guests a glimpse of what to expect at the new “Vacation Kingdom of the World.” Beautiful photos and art inside and out. We will post more page scans soon. Guests really didn’t know what to expect. It was all new. And the presenters this week, in classic Disney fashion, did a great job of telling a story, setting the scene and transporting us back to the mindset and feelings of October 1971. Its almost showtime… see you at lunch!

UPDATE
Um, wow. I cant wait to talk in more detail with you guys about todays session. I will say the first was a trio of the most funny Imagineers. They told us how things are done in a very entertaining way. They got very geeky and this crowd loved it.

Ariel Rooms and the Art of Animation Resort

The next group of imagineers took us behind the scenes of Star Tours, the Art of Animation Resort and the Fantasyland expansion. Lots of HQ pics comming later today. Oh ya, and they announced the return of The Enchanted Tiki Room to MK!

Imagineers talk about Star Tours
Fantasyland Expansion well on the way

Speaking of MK, going there for lunch now. Later!

UPDATE
Star Tours.
Lots of concept art to come. Takes 6 hrs continuous riding to see all the adventures. Awesome window in cue that is a video screen and u will see star wars characters walk by.

Fantasyland.
They are VERY excited about storytime with Belle. Says its a fascinating new way to meet characters. 40 min experience. All guests will play a role. They stress it is for whole family, not just girls.

7 Dwarfs Mine Coaster.
7 dwarfs min ride will have 2 inclines and drops. Basically if your child can handle Barnstormer, they can do this one. State of the art ride vehicles. They move individually and this will both give an immersive ride experience and take away some of the g-force of the ride motion. It will start outside, stop, go inside for a dark ride, then climb a hill and speed back out. Snow White will make a cameo

Art of Animation.
Looks incredible. Immersed on the inside into the characters world. It is scaled so you are the size of Nemo or Simba. The environment is built up on the buildings around you. And it wouldn’t be art of animation, without the drawings. The backs of the building will be set up like sketch pads, show how all your favorite characters are drawn.

The rooms have amazing themeing detail. Cars is set up like the cozy motel. 50s style master bedroom design with traffic cones for lamp shades. The kids bed has a tool box looking dresser. All the rooms have these details. A big selling point is they have rooms for families of 6. Also, one design point is a bed that folds into the wall and becomes a table. When the bed is down, a character is at the headboard to sleep next to the guest.

UPDATE
Not much to say after those last two two sessions I was just in. I’m not saying that not much happened, i just don’t know how to relay the words of 9 guys who built WDW back to you. I honestly get chills to think about what they saw, experienced and felt.

A couple things I can say is they all talked about the enormity of the process of building WDW. They also all agreed about one thing. Never say no to Walt. You just had to find a way, or he would find someone who would. They shared some personal Walt stories, funny happenings and the sense of accomplishment they feel to this day. Hearing these men who built the place I enjoy so much telling me their stories is a cherished memory I will never forget.

Its diner time. We are journeying over to Fort Wilderness to eat all we care to eat at Trail’s End. Can’t wait for the Disney music concert tonight to wrap things up!

UPDATE
We are waiting in line for the concert that will wrap up the Destination D event. Here are a couple random thoughts. First, a food review. I ate lunch today at Tonys in MK. The meatball slidder sandwiches were good. Tasty bread, but the meatballs were not too flavorful. And a bit pricey, but that place is for the food you get. For diner, we just returned from Trail’s End at Fort Wilderness. Its an all you can eat buffet. Good food, but there are better buffets. But the price is right. The benifits are the atmosphere in the building and at the campground. A beautiful lakeside view. Also, tables are fairly easy to find. bbq ribs are great. beef is ok. fried and grilled chicken, salmon, mashed potoes all there as well.

I havent mentioned the crowd here too much. Its fun to be around so many WDW fans. We meet people that had been here back in 1971. Great to see pictures and hear stories. And during the presinations, the audience cheers when their favorite attractions are mentioned. The biggest cheers and buzz by far is Horizons. A lot of love for that former EPCOT favorite around here.

The Disney Legends Panel
The Richard Sherman Magic Journeys Concert
Dreamfinder and Figmnt join Richard Sherman
Richard Sherman, Dreamfinder and Figment

One more end of day update to come and don’t miss the pictures over at the Disney Brit and Destination Disney Facebook pages. Lots more including the archive going up by Monday afternoon. You can find all of the photos from the Archives exhibit here