by Nick LoCicero

The force is strong with us here in O-Town lately. With the recent announcment that the Star Wars Celebration convention will return to The City Beautiful in 2012 and Star Wars Weekends at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, you can just go ahead call us O-Lando!

O-Lando Tee
from StarWars.com

Yes, they made tee shirts

Star Wars weekends at Disney is a blast, only bested for me by the Food and Wine Fest at EPCOT each fall. This year of course, Star Wars Weekends had the added special treat of being the launch of the refurbed Star Tours ride. The innovation and all out fun of this ride earned it a quick spot near the top of my favorite Walt Disney World attractions list.

Star Tours Grand Opening
Copyright Disney

The big buzz around the first weekend wasn’t Anthony Daniels or the characters walking around the park. It was…

R2D2

A popcorn bucket? Yep, the greatest popcorn bucket ever made! For the bargin price of $15.50, you could eat some delicious Disney Caramel Corn out of a plastic R2-D2.

Of course, Star Wars characters were aboundant.

Star Wars Weekends

Don’t judge that little Jedi by his size, he’s more than ready to take on Zam Wesell.

Star Wars Weekends

Yikes! She’s onto me.

Star Wars Weekends

The Ewok may be her own size, but she want to hug the big cuddle Wookie.

Star Wars Weekends

She used flash photography. Bounty Hunter Janga Fett will have non of that.

Star Wars Weekends

No one tried to sneak into the Fast Pass line this weekend.

Star Wars Weekends

Princess Leia stole my heart in return of the Jedi. So I approached the Princess for a date…

Star Wars Weekends

By her reaction, you’d think I smelled like the inside of a Ton Ton.

Star Wars Weekends

Boba Fett was a fan favorite.

Star Wars Weekends

The Tuskin Raiders caused some mischeif in the crowd.

Star Wars Weekends

Stormtroopers patrolled the park.

Star Wars Weekends

They also stopped for autographs. But not only did Stormtroopers do the signing, they were also signed…

Copyright Disney

by Disney Artist Mike Sullivan. Star Wars weekends marked the return of Star Wars Vinylmation. This series sold out very quick earlier this year then disapeared from stores.

Copyright Disney

Cases returned to the shelves at Hollywood Studios, but sold out by the end of the fourth and final weekend.

The most magical part of the weekend are the Disney characters that show up as Star Wars characters.

Star Wars Weekends

A little bit Star Wars Force, a little bit Disney Magic.

Star Wars Weekends

Jedi Mickey is a big hit with the guests.

Star Wars Weekends

I asked Stormtrooper Donald is Vader is mad he lost his helmet. Donald just pointed to Darth Vader Goofy’s missing pants!

Star Wars Weekends

There was a huge tent set up backstage near the Rockin Roller Coaster called Jabba’s Hut. They had a character meet and greet, loads of Disney Star Wars merchandise and previews of some upcoming collectibles.

Muppets Star Wars

These Muppets Star Wars figures will be released this fall.

Kermit as Luke Skywalker

Sold in packs of two, they will retail for $18.95.

Sam The Eagle as Obi Wan

They also had Series 5 of the Disney Star Wars series.

I can’t wait for these. Sold in single packs for $8.95, they will also be available in the fall.

Stitch as General Grievous and Hologram Emperor

The 5th series looks to be Clone Wars heavy.

And then these wonderfully detailed mini figs were released during Star Wars Weekend.

Copyright Disney

Each figure was designed by Artist Costa Alavezos and limited to a 1977 edition size. They retailed for $99.95 and are about a foot tall.

Copyright Disney

There was Jedi Mickey, Leia Minnie, Darth Vader Goofy, Dath Maul Donald and…

I could not resist picked up my favorite Disney Character as a Stormtrooper!

Look at the detail on this great figure.

They each came packed with a pin.

If you are Disney fan and a Star Wars fan, do yourself a favor and plan a trip to Orlando next spring for Star Wars Weekends…

Star Wars Weekends

He will be on the look out for you.