Alfred Angelo Real Women/Real Brides Campaign

Alfred Angelo

Alfred Angelo Real Women/Real Brides Campaign

DISCLAIMER: We were invited guests of Alfred Angelo, and received a promotional item in exchange for this post. All opinions are those of Kelly!

We are excited to have this guest post by Kelly Green about some absolutely beautiful Alfred Angelo dresses!

I think it’s safe to say I’ve tried on easily 50 or more wedding gowns in my life. No, I’m not a Zsa Zsa Gabor-wannabe (with nine husbands), but I did model them briefly when I was young, then of course to get married, and then most recently for the Alfred Angelo Real Women/Real Brides campaign with my friend and fellow blogger Lee Allport.

Alfred AngeloWhen I was a little girl I imagined I’d get married in Cinderella’s magical ball gown. It would have those cute little puffed sleeves, beautiful draping over the hips (that accentuated the perfectly tiny waist I just knew I’d have), and my hair would be tied up in a satin ribbon, all blinged up, so my hair copied hers exactly. I tried to work on variations using Fashion Plates (how many hours did I spend “designing” clothes with that thing?!). Alas, I always came back to that Cinderella perfection. Who knew that one day someone would make an entire line of wedding gowns inspired by the Disney princesses I adored?

At my first Real Women/Real Brides event, I fell in love with Alfred Angelo Dress 1148.

For a moment I thought a ball gown might still work for me, but my shape, and the personality I have now dictated a different silhouette. The ruching and vintage vibe in this style struck me as timeless and (let’s face it) more forgiving. If a bride should feel anything on her big day, it’s confidence that she A) has found the right guy who complements her and, B) looks amazing and feels great! (Note: This gown is part of the “EasyRUSH Delivery Program,” and can be shipped from local warehouses in 10 or 12 weeks!)

Alfred Angelo
Tracie, Lee, Jennifer, and Suzannah posting to Alfred Angelo on TwitterInstagram, and Pinterest.

At the Real Brides/Real Women blogger event (on guest assignment for Shelley with friends including Nicole, Tracey, Jennifer, Suzannah, Mina, Brittany) we worked with Lee from MySentimentExactLee.com to curate a collection that fit our personality and style. Since I’d just recently been to Disney on Ice: Frozen, the Elsa-inspired gown (Style 251) by Jason Gillen was on my list! I love how the silvery pattern seems to fall like snowflakes down the sheath silhouette. The Watteau train (see photo) reminded me of a veil, so with that gown a girl could easily skip the veil and go for a tiara. (I’m always open to wearing a tiara!)

Alfred Angelo

Next, I thought about something from the modern vintage collection. I liked Style 8536. From the net cage overlay, to the halter strap, it made me feel as if I’d stepped out of a Renaissance fair wedding. It’s not costume-like, but has that romantic feel. I just needed a circlet of flowers or beads in my hair….

I tried the flared gown Style 2527, next. I adore the crystal beading and dramatic ruffled skirt. It’s definitely for the woman who can handle her drama!

Alfred Angelo
From l to r: Kelly in 2526, Mina in 2454, and Brittany in discontinued style 879.

We had planned only trying on three, but Style 2526 called my name. Actually, it called to Jocelyn who was helping us at the Altamonte Springs store. She felt that the lace-up corseted feature would accentuate the “positives” (if you know what I mean!) and was spot on. That’s one of the best things about trying on gowns at an Alfred Angelo salon. It’s not all about body type, but personality and venue, and so many other things mixed in. She asked me questions and got to know me a bit, not just what I “thought” I wanted.

Alfred Angelo

I know in all the bridal shows it seems like brides come in and in 30-minutes or less have their dream gown. For me, I always had to try on a few, to find just the right one for the photo, for the fashion show, or for my big day. Having a consultant who will take the time to listen to your desires, but who isn’t afraid to cajole you out of your comfort zone is exactly what the bride-to-be should look for. If you don’t live near Orlando, find an Alfred Angelo store in your area. They’ll help you find the gown that’ll make you feel like a princess, or better yet… a queen!

 Alfred Angelo

Alfred Angelo

Kelly Green is a theme park, restaurant, travel, education and charity support blogger in addition to being a freelance social media director. When not writing or hosting events, Kelly can be found either in a vintage store, or at a homeschool field trip with her soon-to-be-8-year-old son. This photo is from her wedding ten years ago at Fantasy of Flight air museum that was featured in Central Florida Bride magazine. Her dress was from the 1940s, revamped with Ginger Rogers sleeves. And yes. She crocheted her snood.

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A Celebration of Harry Potter Begins Tomorrow At Universal Orlando

A Celebration of Harry Potter Universal Orlando Resort

The Second Annual “A Celebration of Harry Potter” Begins tomorrow at Universal Orlando Resort

Beginning tomorrow, fans from around the world will come together to celebrate Harry Potter’s adventures at the second annual “A Celebration of Harry Potter.”

Hosted by Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros., this three-day event will allow fans to enjoy incredible experiences from Q&A sessions with some of their favorite Harry Potter film talent to exploring The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and more.

A Celebration of Harry Potter Universal Orlando Resort

A Celebration of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort will include unforgettable experiences, such as:

·  Q&A sessions with film talent and other special guests, including Robbie Coltrane (Rubeus Hagrid), Michael Gambon (AlbusDumbledore), James Phelps (Fred Weasley), Oliver Phelps (George Weasley) and Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood)

· A special opening event on Friday evening starring the Harry Potter film talent, MinaLima, and award-winning artist KazuKibuishi and more.

· A live duelling demonstration and wand combat masterclass hosted by Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, featuring the world’s only Wand Combat choreographer, Paul Harris

· A live demonstration with award-winning illustrator Kazu Kibuishi, who will be drawing some of the Harry Potter characters on stage in this interactive panel hosted by Scholastic.

· A look behind the scenes of the graphic props of the Harry Potter films with graphic designers, MinaLima

· A Celebration of Harry Potter” Expo with unique and interactive exhibits from Warner Bros., Pottermore, Scholastic, MinaLima, Harry Potter: The Exhibition and Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, including the opportunity to try on the Sorting Hat

· Special kids’ discussions and interactive experiences such as an exciting duelling demonstration and wand combat masterclasswith Paul Harris, an interactive ‘Dance Like a Beauxbatons and Battle Like a Durmstrang’ experience, as well as Harry Potter film trivia

· Park guests can enjoy The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and TheWizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida plus the iconic Hogwarts Express that transports guests between the two lands if they have a park-to-park ticket

· And more!

Access to select events within “A Celebration of Harry Potter” is included in regular admission to Universal Studios. Admission to panel events will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information about the event and tickets, visit www.UniversalOrlando.com/Celebration. To join the conversation, use #HPCelebration.

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Going runDisney Dopey With Carrie Burrows

We are super excited to have Carrie Burrows sharing her runDisney Dopey Challenge experience with us today! You should check out Carrie’s site for some awesome fitness tips and motivation and you can also find Carrie on TwitterInstagram, and Pinterest.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows

Running 48.6 miles is no joke. Running it in four days divided into a 5k (3.1 miles) a 10k (6.2 miles) a half marathon (13.1 miles) and a marathon (26 miles) is just plain gruelling.

I was pretty excited about Disney Marathon Weekend and the runDisney Dopey challenge until the day before it all started. That’s when the doubt started to kick in. I didn’t train enough, I have a couple of injuries that I’ve ignored and worst of all… I still have to my work AND get up at 3am!!!

Am I going to finish? Can I get through 48.6 miles without making my injuries worse? Will I sleep through the 5 alarms I have set?

Well, I’m very to report, I finished. I had a great time and while the injuries are still there, they didn’t get any worse and I’m ready to sign up for Dopey 2016.

Here’s a quick run down of the four days as I took on the runDisney Dopey Challenge.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Day 1 – Walt Disney World 5k

Pluto’s 5k was the c-o-l-d-e-s-t run I have done in a long time! Mother Nature wanted to test the runners and see how they did with 20 mph winds and temps in the 30’s /40’s.

I’m Canadian. I “should” be able to handle this type of weather – nope. I was shaking and shivering like a Chihuahua! I wore 4 layers….4.  From all of the shivering and shaking, I was exhausted later that day. I mean, exhausted. The 5k route is by far my favourite. Running through World Showcase is just fantastic. I love it!! There were some great characters along the route. We said that we weren’t going to do any character pictures but then we saw Chip n Dale in Japan. Picture time!! Because they were wearing kimonos!!!!!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Chip and Dale 5K Pluto

Chip and Dale in Japan wearing kimonos!!

Post race, we had the Runners World race retreat and it was awesome. I highly recommend getting the race retreat for marathon weekend/Dopey challenge. We finished and went right to the warm tent for hot coffee and hot food. We were able to sit, relax and get a few character pics!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Runners Retreat

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Bart Yasso Selfie

Selfie with Bart Yasso -Runner’s World Chief Running Officer

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Goofy and Max

Max and Goofy!!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Day 2 – Walt Disney World 10k

Oh hello 3am –what an unpleasant time you are, even if you’re going to Disney.

Another crazy cold morning. I had a cute outfit planned and it was tossed aside for warmth! I wore 3 layers, so it was better…but still, I was wearing 3 layers! Burr(ows).  There were no crazy cold winds, so stopping to characters was doable! I didn’t push myself to get a PR because I wanted to save my legs/feet for the half and the full. Now mind you, it was cold so I did pick up my pace to get through the course so I could get to that awesome race retreat to warm up.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows

Bathroom selfie!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows

10k in the books!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Day 3 – Walt Disney World Half Marathon 13.1 miles

Dear 3am, I hate you. You would think I’d get the hang of this by now, but no such luck. Another cold morning, another cute outfit planned and scrapped. Yes…running is about the cute outfits. Don’t judge. I did manage to only need 2 layers…progress!! Seeing all of the costumes people wear is always fun. I love that runners put effort in to make this a total experience.

Another reason I love runDisney events is because that running community is a lot of fun and supportive. I love seeing familiar faces or people I interact with online.

I had a plan for this run. No stopping for pics in the dark, those pictures never turn out. Going off track for a sec, so stay with me…I use to do these runDisney events and blast through them always chasing a new PR. I never had a character picture or any pics from the course just the memories in my head. This last year I have realized it is important to stop and ‘smell the roses’. Take pics with friends, characters, the Castle, everything! This is an experience run…enjoy it!!! If you are chasing a PR do local runs at home. Some of the best pics I have are from runs and some of the best conversations and laughs I have had are during runs. Get the full experience not just the post run medal pic.

Ok, back on track. I love this course. Running down Main Street USA and having people chEAR you on, running towards the castle is just a-m-a-z-i-n-g!! If you don’t have a bucket list, then put one together and add a runDisney run to that list!!!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Golfer Mickey Mouse

No matter what…you ALWAYS stop for Mickey!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Mickey Mouse Golf Cart

Fun with friends – DON’T TOUCH THE CART!! @dave_mari @bamagirlruns

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Half Marathon

Running 13.1 miles was worth getting your medal Donald!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Cinderella and Prince Charming

Cinderella & Prince Charming selfie…check!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Phineas and Ferb

Ferb, I know what we are going to do today…” oh hey, where’s Perry??!!

I felt good for this run. It was cold but it was manageable. Seeing familiar faces along the course route gives you that added boost to keep going! Stopping for character pics with friends is just fun! I felt like I was on autopilot with this run. I knew not to push hard because I needed all that I had for the marathon. The sun was out and it had warmed up but it wasn’t crazy hot so I was thankful for that! I finished and felt good and again. Back over to race retreat to unwind, fuel up.Have I mentioned race retreat is a really great thing to do?

runDisney Dopey Challenge Day 4 – Walt Disney World Full Marathon 26.2 miles

I was fortunate to stay at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando located on property at Walt Disney World. I still had to get up early 2:45am. We were going to take the bus but at the last minute decided to drive and knew we had to leave early because of the roads being busy and some of them shut down for the race. The Waldorf and Hilton Bonnet Creek do special runDisney race weekend packages and part of the package is a pre race send off party.

Now this is how you do 3am. I wasn’t hating it as much.

They had ever kind of drink (hot/cold) bars, bagels, fruit. The staff was energetic and gave their all to pump up these tired runners! It was quite the send off and I highly recommend it if you are doing a run. I did write more about it here.

We arrived early…ugh. Race retreat is open before the half marathon and marathon. We did our bag check, sat down and got ourselves put together.

I don’t mean to go on about the race retreat BUT another big feature is they have their own sets of porta-potties. That means you don’t have to wait in a line of 50 people to use the potty. They have people their keeping them clean-so that means there is always toilet paper, hand sanitizer.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows

Runners World Race Retreat Potties – no lines!

We stayed in there until they kicked us out. (Race retreat, not the porta-potties.)  It was another cold morning, but I did manage to wear a cute outfit (but I had a jacket on). I had planned to give it to a friendly face along the race route to hold for me when I got warm. The plan was simple – slow and steady. No stopping for characters in the dark! Miles 1-13 seemed effortless-autopilot kicked in.

Mile 14 is when you need your mind to kick in and stay strong for the remaining 13 miles. I saw friends just outside of Animal Kingdom! Hello Kelly Christine!

hristine

My fellow Disney Parks Mom’s Panelist, Laura gave me a diet coke – love her for having food and drinks on hand.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Laura mp

My family was just up ahead and when I saw them it was the best thing!! I needed those hugs. We snapped a few selfies and I grabbed some snacks from them and we were on our way.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Family

The run along Osceloa Parkway into ESPN Wide World Of Sports is looooonng and boring. This is when you need great music or great conversations with your running partner. Thankfully,runDisney and Cigna provide the music and Bama provides the conversation.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Baymax

Coming out of Wide World of Sports is mile 20. The Dreaded Wall…and oddly I felt fine. Mentally I knew it was almost over. My feet were beyond sore, I mean stabby sore but I pushed on. The run up the ramp towards Hollywood Studios back entrance is another long, boring stretch. That’s when I needed to buck up and keep telling myself I was in single digits and its almost over! Got to see some familiar faces at Hollywood Studios so that was fun.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows emt jeff

Glad to see @Jeff_EMT 

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Disney's Hollywood Studios hat

The Hat” was still there!!!

Then it started raining…come on Mother Nature. My family was on the boardwalk in front of the Yacht and Beach Club so I knew seeing them again would give me the last blast I needed. Hugs and kisses and them telling me they were proud was all I needed to finish up. The rain kept coming and got harder while we were in World Showcase. I got a soggy pic with Duffy. He was brave standing in the rain, he did smell like wet fur and sweaty runner though…lol.

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Duffy

The gospel choir was there again at mile 26 –praise the Lord and Hallelujah, I made it!!

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Gospel Choir

It was a fun 4 days and Im ready to sign up for 2016 #perfectDopey

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Medals

Now I lay me down to sleep…

runDisney Dopey Challenge Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend Carrie Burrows Congratulations Banner

See ya real soon – 2016 Dopey Challenge #PerfectDopey

 

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Discovery Cove Offers Unique Valentine’s Day Experiences

Discovery Cove Orlando Valentine's Day Dolphin Experience

An extraordinary adventure awaits at Discovery Cove this Valentine’s Day 

Day resort offers VIP treatment, Florida resident discount and marriage proposal options

 Love is in the air, and the tropical paradise of Discovery Cove® awaits guests hoping to surprise their loved ones this Valentine’s Day. From intimate animal encounters and all-inclusive amenities, to VIP packages with private cabanas and marriage proposal options, there’s something for everyone looking to pull out the stops this holiday.

Discovery Cove Orlando Valentine's Day Dolphin Experience

Recently named the No. 1 amusement park in the world in the 2014 TripAdvisor® Travelers’ Choice™ Awards for the second consecutive year, Discovery Covemakes the ideal place to be awe-inspired with a loved one.  Discovery Cove is an all-inclusive day resort experience where couples can enjoy a one-of-a-kind opportunity to swim with dolphins, rays and tropical fish and hand-feed exotic birds.  Discovery Cove is a paradise of rocky lagoons surrounded by lush landscaping, tropical reefs, winding rivers, a resort-style pool complete with waterfalls, and pristine white-sand beaches.

DCO-Couple_at_dolphin_swim

Nothing warms the heart like an up-close encounter with an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin. Animal lovers will be wowed when welcomed by a kiss from their favorite flippered friend.

Florida residents can now gift a day of discovery starting at $219+ tax for the dolphin swim experience, and starting at $149+ tax for the day resort package.

Discovery Cove Orlando Valentine's Day Dolphin Experience Grand Reef

Planning to pop the question this Valentine’s Day? Discovery Cove is a one-of-a-kind marriage proposal venue, and offers two unforgettable experiences. Playful bottlenose dolphins can be part of a creative marriage proposal, and deliver a personalized “Will you marry me?” buoy. Another option is SeaVenture®, which immerses the couple underwater to explore the sea floor of The Grand Reef®, where guests can propose among thousands of tropical fish and rays.

Discovery Cove Orlando Valentine's Day Dolphin Experience Private Cabana

Visitors seeking to impress their sweetie with VIP treatment can reserve a Valentine’s Day package, which includes a private cabana with a personal host, planned itinerary, champagne, roses, snack, beverage and towel service, an additional animal encounter and much more. The Valentine’s Day VIP package is $799+ tax and is only available Valentine’s Day weekend, Feb. 14 and 15. Additional special occasion packages start at $159+ tax. All packages require a dolphin swim reservation. For more information, visit Discovery Cove special occasion packages.

SeaWorld Orlando Discovery Cove Orlando Valentine's Day Dolphin Experience

Couples looking for weekend getaway can enjoy Discovery Cove’s sister parks. Admission to Discovery Cove includes unlimited admission for 14 consecutive days to SeaWorld and Aquatica, SeaWorld’s Waterpark before, during or after Discovery Cove visit. At SeaWorld® Orlando, discover the thrills and chills of Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin and find out what it’s like to fly like a ray on Manta while also enjoying world-class shows and up-close animal experiences. At Aquatica, adventurers can brave Ihu’s Breakaway Falls™, a watery free-fall on Orlando’s tallest, steepest and only multi-drop tower slide of its kind.

Discovery Cove Orlando Valentine's Day Dolphin Experience Renaissance Orlando Interior

After a watery-filled day at Discovery Cove, couples can savor the luxurious amenities of partner hotels like the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld®, where Valentine’s Day packages are also available, including dinner reservations and spa treatments. Visit RenaissanceSeaWorld.com for more details.

For more information, or to make a reservation, visit DiscoveryCove.com or call 1-877-434-7268.

 Discovery Cove

About SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment:

SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment inspires people to celebrate, connect, and care for the natural world through the power of entertainment. The company now owns 11 parks across the United States, playing host to more than 24 million guests a year and provide lasting memories through up-close animal encounters, world-class shows and rides, and high-quality themed attractions.  Locations include SeaWorld parks in Orlando, San Diego and San Antonio; the Busch Gardens parks in Tampa, Fla. and Williamsburg, Va.; Discovery Cove and Aquatica in Orlando; Aquatica San Diego in Chula Vista, Calif.; Sesame Place near Philadelphia, Pa.; and water parks Adventure Island in Tampa and Water Country USA in Williamsburg. 

 

A global leader in animal care and conservation, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment cares for more than 67,000 animals including 200 endangered or threatened species. This commitment extends to animals around the world.  The company operates one of the world’s most respected animal rescue and rehabilitation programs. SeaWorld has assisted more than 24,000 orphaned, injured or ill animals over the last 50 years.

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New Kids On The Block The Main Event Tour Coming To The Amway Center

New Kids on the Block The Main Event Tour Poster Amway Center

New Kids On The Block bring The Main Event Tour to the Amway Center with TLC and Nelly June 5, 2015

New Kids On The Block are stepping into the ring for 2015. The pop phenoms stopped by “Good Morning America” this morning to announce The Main Event, a summer headlining tour featuring very special guests, Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum-selling artists TLC and Nelly

NKOTB surprised viewers with a special reveal of TLC and a personal message from Nelly (currently overseas with the armed forces). The groups hinted at possible collaborations and other exciting possibilities while on the road this summer, sending fans into a frenzy across social media.

The tour, promoted by Live Nation, kicks off on May 1 and plays over 30 cities across North America. NKOTB stops in Orlando at the Amway Center on Friday, June 5. Tickets go on sale to the general public on Saturday, January 31 at 10 a.m.

After announcing the tour on “Good Morning America,” NKOTB took over the “LIVE! with Kelly and Michael” set to step in and play a mix of super hits and new fan favorites throughout the entire hour. The morning TV whirlwind was followed up with an NKOTB/TLC media blitz. The groups shut down Chase Plaza at Madison Square Garden for a press conference filled with media and ecstatic fans, talking with outlets like “Access Hollywood,” “E!,” “Entertainment Tonight,” “EXTRA,” Associated Press and BuzzFeed. Social media has been abuzz ever since the official reveal with no signs of slowing down.

We always have something special up our sleeves,” said NKOTB member Donnie Wahlberg. “Our fans keep asking us to come back out on the road, and we want to keep giving them what they want.  We wanted to make sure it was something new and fresh and fun and totally worthwhile for all of our supporters year after year.  This year, we are making it The Main Event.  And we promise, it will be the ticket of the summer.”

With all-new and top-notch production elements, this tour will be the ultimate summer concert ticket. The highlights will include a 360-degree stage in the round. The stage set up will offer optimal viewing with no obstructions. The bands have worked hard on the show and staging concept to make sure that everyone in the house has a part of the action, up close and center.

We are thrilled to be able to join pop icons NKTOB and Nelly on tour. We are equally excited to be back on the road connecting with our fans in such huge arenas,” said TLC.

Please visit www.NKOTB.comwww.livenation.com or www.ticketmaster.com for up-to-date information or join the discussion at #themainevent.

 

TICKETS$28, $49.50, $69.50 & $89.50. Buy tickets at amwaycenter.com, Chase Box Office at Amway Center, Ticketmaster retail locations, charge-by-phone at 800.745.3000 or at Ticketmaster.com.  All dates, act(s) and ticket prices are subject to change without notice.  All tickets are subject to applicable taxes, service, handling and facility fee charges.  For Amway Center box office and ticket information, visit amwaycenter.com (phone purchases are not available through the Amway Center box office).  The Amway Center is located at 400 West Church Street and the box office is located on the north side of the Amway Center, near the intersection of Church Street and Hughey Avenue. 


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Walt Disney World Swan And Dolphin Announce 2015 Food & Wine Classic Dates

Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic

Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Announces Dates for Sixth Annual Food & Wine Classic

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic is returning for its sixth year on Friday Oct. 30, and Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015, at the Epcot Resort Area hotel.

The two-night, outdoor festival will feature more than 40 stations with culinary selections from the hotel’s award-winning restaurants and wine from more than 30 wineries. Guests will also enjoy live music, a beer garden featuring local and seasonal brews from around the world and food and beverage seminars led by the hotel’s chefs and certified beverage experts.

Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic

With 17 restaurants and lounges, and a distinguished culinary and beverage team, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel continually earns national recognition for its food and beverage program. The hotel features more than 70 certified wine sommeliers and 1,400 wine selections.

More details about the event, including specific ticket packages, will be announced later. For the latest information, guests can visit www.SwanDolphinFoodandWineClassic.com, like www.facebook.com/swananddolphin or call 1-800-227-1500.

Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic Swan and Dolphin Food and Wine Classic

About the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel

In the heart of the Walt Disney World Resort, the award-winning Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel is the gateway to Central Florida’s greatest theme parks and attractions. The hotel is located between Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and nearby Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park and Magic Kingdom Park. Guests can discover 17 world-class restaurants and lounges, sophisticated guest rooms with Westin Heavenly Beds and the luxurious Mandara Spa. The hotel features five pools, two health clubs, tennis, nearby golf, complimentary transportation throughout the Walt Disney World Resort and the Extra Magic Hours benefit, where each day, one of the four Walt Disney World Theme Parks offers additional time for guests to enjoy select attractions. (Valid Theme Park admission and Resort ID required). The hotel can be reached at 800-227-1500, www.swandolphin.com or through Facebook at www.facebook.com/swananddolphin.

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Last Chance to Ride Gwazi at Busch Gardens Tampa Announced

 

Busch Gardens Tampa Gwazi Logo

Last Chance to Ride Gwazi at Busch Gardens Tampa Will Be February 1, 2015

February 1 is the last day for thrill seekers to ride Gwazi® at Busch Gardens® Tampa as the park prepares to permanently close the wooden rollercoaster.

httpv://youtu.be/Pkj3rudRDmU

Gwazi opened in 1999 as Florida’s first dueling wooden rollercoaster, providing guests with thrilling and memorable experiences for more than 15 years.

“No decisions have been made about what lies ahead for Gwazi or for the future plans of that area of Busch Gardens,” said Park President Jim Dean. “But, we are always looking for ways to enhance guests’ experiences, so stay tuned for more news.”

Plus, be the first to know about future announcements by following the park’s blog at BuschGardensTampaBlog.com, or “Like” the Busch Gardens Facebook page and follow @buschgardens on Twitter and Instagram.

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ALEX AND ANI Disney Vacation Club Charm Bangle Sales Return In February

 DVC News Alex and Ani Bracelet

ALEX AND ANI Disney Vacation Club Charm Bangle to Return to Online Member Marketplace February 23, 2015!

Start your new year with the perfect combination of positive energy and pixie dust! 

The ALEX AND ANI Disney Vacation Club Charm Bangle will be available for a limited time beginning February 23, 2015. You can purchase this bangle, specially designed for Disney Vacation Club Members, in both Rafaelian Silver and Rafaelian Gold finishes!

Highlighting the Disney Vacation Club logo, this unique keepsake is hand-crafted using recycled materials and features an expandable design for the perfect fit.

The bangle will be available for purchase beginning February 23, 2015 at 11:30 a.m. EST in the online Disney Store Member Marketplace. Learn more by visiting the Special Offers section of DVCMember.com.There is a limited quantity and purchases are limited to two bangles per Member, so don’t miss out on this opportunity to make an exclusive ALEX AND ANI Disney Vacation Club Charm Bangle part of your collection!

 

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A Morning At Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus Xtreme

Circus Xtreme Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Amway Center Reading with Ringling

David Caran joins us to share his experience at Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Present Circus Xtreme at the Amway Center.

Once again it was time for the Greatest Show on Earth to come back to the Amway Center.  I remember see Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus when I was a kid, and I always love reconnecting with that part of my childhood.  Although many elements remind me of the circuses I used to go to, this is was not the same. 

Circus Xtreme Curtain

Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey definitely brought it to a new level with their Circus Xtreme.  With updated technology and special effects they have taken many classic circus acts and reinvented them for the next generations.

Circus Xtreme High Wire

It was hard to narrow down my favorite part, but it has to be the high flying acts.  The skill and precision needed to perform on a high wire or trapeze amazes me today every bit as much as they did when I was eight. 

Circus Xtreme High Wire Jumping Rope

It’s hard not to get excited going to the circus with the exotic animals, the crazy clowns, the amazing acrobats, and who doesn’t love someone getting shot out of a cannon.

Circus Xtreme Opening

The Circus Xtreme show runs about 2 hours with a 15 minute intermission, and the flow of the show is very good.  They do a great job of adding spectacle, great production value, and fun in-between acts which helps hold the interest of the younger viewers. 

Circus Xtreme Cannon

And if all that fails, you can always get a snow cone or a variety of souvenirs that are sold outside.  I know that always takes care of my little one.

Circus Xtreme Snowcone

One piece of advice that I can give to parents is that there are often protestors outside the circus who are very vocal about their feeling of the circus.  They are generally peaceful, but carry signs depicting the abuse of animals and are very vocal about their protest of the circus.  It is something that you should be aware of in case you need to explain things to your children as you make your way to the venue.

Circus Xtreme Performers

Overall there is not a much more perfect family experience than going to the circus.  It’s exciting, it’s fun, and it’s always full of surprises.  Definitely check out the new Circus Xtreme from Ringling Brothers the next time the come through your town.  It will definitely be a great experience for young and old alike.

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Orlando Museum Of Art To Host Antiques Vintage & Garden Show

Orlando Museum Of Art  2015 Antiques Vintage & Garden Show

The Antiques Vintage & Garden Show Opens February 20 at the Orlando Museum of Art 

Renowned author and garden designer Jon Carloftis named as show’s guest speaker
The 2015 Antiques Vintage & Garden Show “The Art of Living” begins Friday, Feb. 20
Jon Carloftis
through Sunday, Feb. 22 at the Orlando Museum of Art. This three-day show presented by the Council of 101, is a favorite among new and seasoned collectors and features premier dealers from across the United States. This is your chance to gain access to a wide array of vintage and unique collectibles art, jewelry, oriental rugs, silver, porcelains, fine antiquities, garden and decorative table-top accessories.
Don’t miss this chance to discover unique, one of a kind items that
will distinguish your style from the average and unoriginal. This year you can truly experience The Art of Living with interactive lectures that capture your imagination and enhance your lifestyle. Learn the art of urban gardening, eclectic décor, vintage fashion and entertaining from experts in their field.

 

This year’s event includes several exciting highlights:

 

Opening Night Preview Party

Thursday, February 19 – An exclusive preview of show merchandise accompanied by cocktails, delectable cuisine and entertainment.

Guest Speaker & Book Signing by Jon Carloftis, Beautiful Gardens of Kentucky

Friday, February 20 – Kentucky native, Jon Carloftis, is an award-winning garden designer, garden writer, television guest and author.  Get a chance to meet one of America’s pioneers in rooftop and small space gardening and add a signed edition of his book to your personal style library.

What’s it Worth? Appraisal Days 

Friday, February 20 through Sunday, February 22 – Do you have a family heirloom or interesting yard sale “find”? Antiques expert and show manager, Charlie Miller, will give you a professional verbal appraisal of your treasure. $10 per item/limit two items per person.

 

Antiques Vintage and Garden Show 2013

 

The Art of Living (NEW Event) 

Saturday, February 21 – Living a stylish life does not happen by accident. Good taste is cultivated and great style is curated. Get a crash course in how to elevate the finer things in your life with interactive lectures that will inspire you to take your personal style, home décor and entertaining to the next level.

 

 

Mystery Home Tour

Sunday, February 22 – This popular tour allows guests to get inspired by one of Orlando’s most stylish homes. Feast your senses on a home filled with flawless design and exceptional taste at every turn. The location of this special home will remain a mystery until your arrival, but rest assured that it is a tour you will never forget.

 

 

For information or to purchase tickets, please contact the Council of 101 at 407-896-4231, Ext. 254 or visit omart.org/programs/antiques-vintage-garden-show.

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Downtown Food & Wine Fest At Lake Eola Returns In February

Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015

Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015

Produced by MIX 105.1, 1059 SUNNY FM, and 101.9 AMP Radio in partnership with the
Central Florida Chapter of the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association
 
The Seventh Annual Downtown Food & Wine Fest is set for Saturday, February 21 and Sunday, February 22, 2015 for more than 30,000 foodies and wine lovers to experience unique local cuisine paired with wines from around the globe.
Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015 Downntown Food and Wine Fest
Date / Time: Saturday, February 21 (noon to 9 p.m.) and Sunday, February 22, 2015 (noon to 7 p.m.)
Location: Located in the heart of downtown Orlando at Lake Eola along Robinson Street
Tickets: Admission is $15 per person, per day with advance online purchase.    Admission at the door is $20 per person, per day. Admission for children under age 12 is free.
For all-weekend Fest fans, a two-day ticket is available for $20 per person with advance online purchase.
Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015
Food and beverage tickets are available at the Fest for $2 each; food and beverage offerings range from one to four tickets.
The Fest is presented and produced by CBS RADIO Orlando, led by Orlando favorites MIX 105.1, 1059 SUNNY FM, and 101.9 AMP Radio in partnership with the Central Florida Chapter of the FRLA.  Located in the heart of downtown Orlando at Lake Eola on Robinson Street, the two-day Fest features mouth-watering dishes from 30 of Orlando’s premier restaurants, domestic and international wines, and live entertainment.  A portion of the proceeds benefit the FRLA Educational Foundation.
Wine Tasters Club
A limited number of Wine Tasters Club passes will be available for purchase for $15 per person at the Fest.  Club members will enjoy up to five 2 oz. pours of their choice throughout the Fest and a souvenir lanyard.
 Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015
“The Downtown Food & Wine Fest is one of our Downtown’s signature cultural events, showcasing the best of Orlando’s culinary scene. Events like this continue to expand Downtown’s offerings and bring more and more people to our urban core to celebrate the beauty, diversity, and vibrancy of our community,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.
Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015
Dave Robbins, senior vice president and market manager, CBS RADIO Orlando commented, “Through the power of radio and the strength of our FRLA restaurants, foodies and fans come together to celebrate an event that truly brings our community together to indulge in the sights, sounds, and tastes of Orlando.”
Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015
“Now in its seventh year, the Fest is the perfect combination of divine food, unique wines, and entertainment,” said Leigh Doyle, president-elect, Central Florida Chapter of the FRLA.  “Orlando has emerged onto the national culinary stage with award-winning restaurants and memorable events to showcase the spirit of the City Beautiful.”
Thirty  top restaurants are scheduled to present culinary tastings including the return of the 2014 Foodie Award winners as honored by a panel of Orlando elected officials, food writers and reporters, and celebrity chefs.
Downtown Food & Wine Fest at Lake Eola Set for February 21 and 22, 2015
2014 Foodie Award (based on one food item for taste, unique flavor and culinary excellence)
Smiling Bison – Pretzel Bread Pudding
 
2014 Best Overall Menu (based on overall menu creativity, depth of offerings, and quality)
Kasa Tapas & Raw Bar
 
2014 Best of Show (based on fun factor, overall energy, and crowd vibe)
Siro at Orlando World Center Marriott – winner in 2013 and 2014
 
Stay Connected
For more information on the Downtown Food & Wine Fest:

 

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Busch Gardens Tampa Food & Wine Festival News

Busch Gardens Tampa Food and WIne Festival Logo

Busch Gardens Tampa is introducing some flavor to its entertainment lineup in spring 2015 with the Food & Wine Festival, offering a variety of food, wine, and entertainment. Saturdays and Sundays, March 7 through April 26.

As part of the entertainment during the festival, Busch Gardens Tampa will keep the hits coming with concerts for every taste. In addition to music superstars Pentatonix, Gavin DeGraw and Fifth Harmony, the live concerts include the following artists:

Saturday, March 7

Gavin DeGraw

Sunday, March 8

Fifth Harmony

NEW! Saturday, March 14

Kool & The Gang

NEW! Sunday, March 15

Boys Like Girls

NEW! Saturday, March 21

Kenny Rogers

Sunday, March 22

Pentatonix

NEW! Saturday, March 28

Steven Curtis Chapman

NEW! Sunday, March 29

El Gran Combo

The Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival is included with any Pass, Fun Card or daily admission.

Food and beverage is not included with park admission and is available for an extra fee. Guests must be 21 years of age or older to consume alcoholic beverages. For more information, visit buschgardens.com.

Busch Gardens Tampa logo PhotoKey

Be the first to know about new events, special deals and future announcements by following the park’s blog at BuschGardensTampaBlog.com, or “Like” the Busch Gardens Facebook page, and follow @buschgardens on Twitter and Instagram.

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A Visit To Disney’s Polynesian Villas Model Room

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Rendering A Vist To Disney’s Polynesian Villas  Model Room

The Disney Vacation Club has begun their initial sales for its newest resort, Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows, and Current Disney Vacation Club Members have the opportunity to tour a model of the Deluxe Studios that will be available.

Existing Disney Vacation Club members are currently able to purchase real estate interests, and general sales will begin February 9. The first phase of Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows opening is scheduled for April 1, 2015. The resort will introduce unique Disney accommodations, including 20 Bora Bora Bungalows and 360 connecting Deluxe Studios.

I was so excited to get a preview of the new studios at the Saratoga Preview Center recently.

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Door Number

The new studios are so spacious, with thought of families it includes 2 showers,  1 tub and 1 walk-in shower.

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Room Model

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Deluxe Studio Seating Area

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Deluxe Studio Bathroom

The Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Deluxe Studios have also included the new pull down beds, these feature Lilo and Stitch.

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Pull down bed
It’s a little blurry, but we wanted to give you an idea of what the artwork inside the bed was without spoiling the surprise!!!

There are some great nods to the history of the resort.

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Artwork

The colors are inspired from Mary Blair, the Tiki lamp also brings in a Polynesian Flair and of course the carpet has a few hidden mickeys.

Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Carpet with Hidden Mickeys
Can you spot the Hidden Mickey in the carpet?

The new DVC rooms at the Disney’s Polynesian Resort and Village make a great addition to Disney Vacation Club and to the Magic Kingdom resort area.

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