Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Book and Job Office & Book Bindery

Find yourself in the Magic Kingdom and in need of a book bound?

Stop by the Book and Job Office & Book Bindery, if You Want the Best and Cheapest Printing and Binding Call at our office on Frontier Street.

This sign is located next to the entrance to the Country Bear Jamboree. As you head through the breezeway from Frontierland to Adventureland (by the Sunshine Tree Terrace) you will see this advertisement on your right.

Now, let's head down Frontier Street!
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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Serpent's Shadow by Rick Riordan

My oldest son contributed this review of the Serpent's Shadow.

The Serpents Shadow is a fantastic fantasy novel perfect for ages 11-20 and an incredibly funny third book in the Kane chronicles, there is so much humor that it is hard to tell if it is a comedy or a fantasy.

Readers should be ready for a dose of Egyptian mythology and be almost unable to stop reading because this book is just that good. Hours may pass before you’ve even noticed that it is happening.

 So be sure to check this amazing novel out, I literally cannot describe how great this book is, so see for yourself.

A Parent's Perspective on Rick Riordan

This is the third book of the Kane Chronicles; books one and two were just as exciting and fun. Riordan is known for adding a lot of mythological characters to his novels, which I love. He does it in a way that intrigues the reader and makes them want to learn more about the Roman and Egyptian gods and goddesses. Make sure that you start with the first book to keep up with the characters. It is also a fantastic bonding experience to enjoy a book with your child.

We received a review copy of this title from Disney Publishing Worldwide.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Secret World of Arrietty Blu-ray Giveaway

I have three copies of The Secret World of Arrietty on Blu-ray to giveaway!

You can read my review of the film (and two other Studio Ghibli releases) over at Mice Chat.

The persons chosen by Rafflecopter must met all of the guidelines. Must be a US resident for mailing purposes.

The contest starts on May 22, 2012 at 12:01am and will end on May 29, 2012 at 11:59 pm.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Kevin Yee's Top Tips for Visiting Disneyland Paris

For most of us Walt Disney World fans, a trip to Disneyland Paris (DLP) is a pipe dream. Besides the cost, there is the language barrier and the navigation of a foreign culture.

Kevin Yee, one of the most prolific Disney authors, has penned an ebook that will make it easier for anyone who wants to make a trip to Disneyland Paris. Top Tips for Visiting Disneyland Paris is a quick and easy read that will give you the confidence and tips to have a successful, fun and (hopefully) a less stressful trip.

Kevin takes us step-by-step from the De Gaulle airport to Disneyland Paris. He explains the transportation to Disneyland Paris--what to avoid and how to do it easily and in the least expensive way. He also discusses how to book a DLP hotel and what can be expected. Resorts in Europe offer different services and include different packages and you don't want to over pay or not get the right package.

He doesn't offer a lot of tips about visiting the park, but he does give some great advice about the DLP Fastpass system and how to navigate the park in a smarter way. There is some discussion about how to attack the rides and how to make the trip more effective. Kevin is more concerned with making sure you get to DLP without hassle so you can enjoy one of the most beautiful Disney theme parks ever built.

Kevin's book is a good choice if you want to see what a trip to Disneyland Paris would be like--even if you're not planning a trip just yet. It also might be the thing that makes you decide to book a trip to Disneyland Paris.

I did receive a print copy of this book for the purposes of the review.

George is a Mice Chat Travel Consultant powered by Fairy Godmother Travel. Call him at 336-287-8114 or email him at George@FairyGodmotherTravel.com for a free, no-obligation quote for Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, Adventures By Disney or Disneyland Paris!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Five Year-Aversary

Top: Andrew and me in 2007. Bottom: Me and Craig (back), Andrew and Mike (front)  October 2011.
Five years and 1270 posts.

I can remember the day when my brother, Andrew, came back from an incredible vacation and he wanted to do something to celebrate and share the magic of Walt Disney World. A week later, we started a blog and called ourselves the Disney Geeks. We adopted the ImagiNERDing moniker after a long weekend of carousing and a secret Disney trivia dance contest.

So first, a shout out to my little brother (I have to remind him of that all of the time) for pushing me and inspiring me all of these years. (How many trips did we trick our wives into letting us take to WDW?) Also, for being one of the amazing forces behind Communicore Weekly. We would not be half the show we are without you and Steve making the music.

Me in 1994.
At times, I am shocked at the number of friends I have made around the world (and the number of enemies). Some of my best friends have been the bloggers that have been doing this as long as me and continue to put out great content.
  • Foxxfur from Passport2Dreams has been a true source of inspiration since reading her first post. Getting the personalized Foxxfur tours of the Magic Kingdom, Epcot and Animal Kingdom were unforgettable and eye-opening. Is that skylight real?
  • Ryan from the Main St. Gazette started in August 2007 (our little brother?) and has been a blogging machine ever since. We need top spend the day at Fort Wilderness!
  • Daveland started in 2006 and Dave has been a great friend for all of these years. No one has as many vintage photos or the same eye for design. We still need that lunch at Rancho del Zocalo.
  • Michael Crawford from Progress City USA is the proselytizer for EPCOT Center and fellow North Carolinian (but not at the moment). I have spent more time at Walt Disney World with him than in North Carolina.
Thanks guys (and gal) for being an inspiration.

My dad, me, my mom, Andrew and Stacy (2004) during my parent's first trip to WDW.
I have been involved with a lot of projects over the past five years that I am very proud of. I have been the honored guest on the WDW Radio Show, Those Darn Cats, and WEDWay Radio and podcasts.

I was asked to contribute an essay to Four Decades of Magic: Celebrating the First Forty Years of Disney World. It is more than you ever want to know about Discovery Island.

For Valentine's Day, 2012, I wrote a piece about Walt and Lilly for the Walt Disney Family Museum (Thanks, Jeff Kurtti).

My oldest son's first trip on the TTA (and Walt Disney World) in 2001.
2012 has been a banner year and a culmination of everything I have been doing at ImagiNERDing.com.

In addition to my brother, my co-host for the weekly video series, Communicore Weekly, has been a tremendous influence, motivator and partner. Jeff Heimbuch and I became fast friends in the beginning of 2011 and we knew we wanted to work on some projects together. Jeff was tapped by Mice Chat to write for them in late 2011. Shortly after that, he came to me with the idea of working on a weekly video series and everything fell into place. We recruited my brother and his writing partner, Steve Williard, to create an amazing theme song and bumpers for the show. Steve and Andrew even got me to rap.

Each week we cover our favorite Five Legged Goats, Disney books, Fuzzy Photos and more! We have been called the Troy and Abed of the Disney community and I wonder when we going to decide which of us is really is Inspector Spacetime and who is Reggie. I will have to ask Future Jeff when I see him.

Thanks, Jeff. I know that Rolly's book is going to be phenomenal.

My youngest son, on his first trip to WDW, being trained in the ways of Disney dorkiness in 2006.
I've picked up a major writing gig this year.

One of the most amazing opportunities was when I was asked to write a weekly column for Mice Chat. Being given the chance to write for one of the most visited Disney-related sites on the internet was, well, quite an honor and quite a shock. I have posted 11 columns so far and look forward to many more. Getting to work with a Disney Legend was amazing, too.

Did you know that Jeff and I are doing a LIVE Communicore Weekly at Epcot?

Visit http://micechat.com/blogs/imaginerding/ to check out my columns.

Of course, I have to thank my wife. She has been the true silent partner of ImagiNERDing. She has bought countless books and suffered many vacations to Walt Disney World and Disneyland so I could get pictures and document changes. And she lets me go to Walt Disney world several times a year in order to meet people, take more photos and do the ubiquitous research required.

Obviously, though, the entire reason for starting ImagiNERDing was to enjoy a Citrus Swirl at the Sunshine Tree Terrace at the Magic Kingdom with some amazing friends. And then ride the Haunted Mansion.

I know I have forgotten a few people and I apologize. A lot can happen in five years.

Thank you all.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Mice Chat Article and Communicore Weekly

My latest article is up at Mice Chat: The Top of the World Restaurant at the Contemporary Resort.

Head on over and leave me a comment. I love comments!

Communicore Weekly

This week, Jeff and I discuss:
It is our first, almost all Disneyland show!

What do you think about the show?

Love the music?

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Mini-Review: The Avengers

I took my sons to see the Avengers at an early showing Friday. We did sign them out a bit early, but with a film this highly anticipated, we wanted to make it a special occasion. And it was only an hour early, anyway.

Should I Take the Kids?

We love the Marvel superhero films that have been released over the past few years. Even though it is PG-13, I felt comfortable taking my youngest son to see this film based on Captain America and Thor. There is a question of violence in the film, but I felt like it wasn't any worse than the evening fare on Cartoon Network. You have to judge the film for yourself, but also keep in mind that any child eight or above is going to be dying to see this movie. Especially if all of their friends are talking about it. Also, the films can give you some great conversations with your kids about superheros and their humanity.

Fight Scenes

This is a superhero film. And a modern film full of fantastic visual effects that bend and defy the laws of physics. But it is still very well done and never felt like a giant special effects mess. Most of the violence takes place between the superheroes and  the villains. There was not any discernible violence against real people in the sense that you don't see any deaths on screen. Of course, the collateral damage is assumed when a giant skyscraper is toppled.

About the Film--Spoiler Free

The mark of a good film, to me, is how much we talk about it and discuss the scenes on the ride home. We were all questioning the villains and what might happen in the next film. Who is the next villain? Will the Avengers re-assemble? Who is the real leader of the team? Did you see what the Hulk did?

Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog and Firefly) wrote and directed the picture.  Whedon is at the top of his game with this film. He is able to tie all of the converging story lines from all of the Marvel films into a cohesive and tight story. I was reminded of one critics review that stated that even the sections that were dialogue based were still fantastic to watch. And I agree.

The humor is top notch and well done. A friend of mine saw a preview of the film and told me that the Hulk would be a favorite character and he was right. My only issue with the film was that it was put together so tight that there wasn't any breathing room for the jokes. If you laughed too long, you could miss the next line of dialogue.

As with any film about superheroes, the real meat is not in the fantastical effects, but in the humanity of the characters. The Avengers are a disparate group that come together and find themselves along the way. Whedon does an incredible job of interweaving their personal conflicts into the larger story. We also start to see more layers peeled from the character that could prove interesting for future films.

So, go see this film. You will enjoy it.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Disney's John Carter Movie novelization, a Book Review

Disney Publishing sent me a review copy of the novelization of the film, John Carter. It happened to arrive at the same time that my Sci-Fi/Fantasy book club was reading the book that the film is based on, A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs.

The book contains the novelization by Stuart Moore and A Princess of Mars by Burroughs and it weighs in at a hefty 555 pages. The novelization is the first 205 pages and Burroughs' original work clocks in at over 300 pages. As of this writing, I have not seen the film.

I read the novelization first and enjoyed it. After reading both, it was obvious where they made changes to suit a modern movie audience. The story arc remained fairly faithful to the original book with only some minor changes to suit the needs of film. It was interesting to see a modern-day author take on a novel that was released 100 years ago.

The original work was a fantastic piece of early science fiction. Being a public librarian and avid reader, I am always interested in trying out a new genre or author. Even though I love sci-fi, I tend to stick with more modern works. What I truly loved about A Princess of Mars was the obvious command of the language that Burroughs exhibits. I love it when an author makes me reach for a dictionary.

There were some confusing departures in the novelization that seemed to be a setup for future films. When I asked some of my book club members that had read the Barsoom books, previously, they didn't remember  any mention of the mysterious Therns.

Both reads were fairly enjoyable and actually made me more interested in seeing the film. Since so many modern filmmakers point to A Princess of Mars as an influence on their works, it is worthwhile to grab a copy.

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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Books, Mice Chat and Gumball!

I picked up a copy of Roy William's book, The Secret World of Roy Williams. Don't know Roy? He was the Big Mooseketeer and credited with creating the idea for the Mouse Ears that we all love. The book is filled with comics and drawings.

I pulled the image above, I believe, from Mickey Mouse: The Evolution, The Legend, The Phenomenon! The book discusses how Roy Williams did create the iconic felt Mouse ears, but that the Oswald short Karnival Kid featured in the image was his inspiration.

The Commemorative Disneyland Playset

My latest column at Mice Chat looks at The Disneyland Commemorative Playset. This is quite an amazing collectible.

Gumball Rally!

The 2012 Mice Chat Gumball Rally is quickly selling out!

Imagine competing with 499 other people as you race around Disneyland riding every ride and answering questions about the ride. Sounds exhausting and amazing. Plus you get the opportunity to meet Dusty Sage, Al Lutz and Fish Bulb from Mice Chat/Mice Age.

Information about this year’s event:

When: May 19th, 2012
Where: Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California
COST: $29.99 per personHow Do I sign up?: Tickets available HERE.