On the Go in MCO: Family Volunteer Opportunities

On the Go in MCO Family Volunteer

Don’t forget that you can catch these great events and more on the Obie & Ashley Unfiltered Podcast!

It is easy to get caught up in being On the Go in MCO, but taking a step back as a family and giving back to our community is a fantastic way to spend time together.

While there are many ways that families can come together to make our City MORE Beautiful, I wanted to share three ways that my family has chosen to be involved in our community!

On the Go in MCO: Family Volunteer Opportunities

On the Go in MCO Family Volunteering Share-A-Meal

Share-a-Meal at the Ronald McDonald House

We never want to think about anything happening to our children, but the three Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida homes in our area are always at the ready to provide a home away from home for families with children receiving treatment at hospitals and medical facilities in Orlando.

One easy and impactful way to help these families is to participate in the Share-a-Meal volunteer opportunity!

Here are the current guidelines for our Share-A-Meal Program:

  • Each meal provider must purchase and provide all necessary food ingredients and disposable to-go containers or heavy-duty paper plates.
  • The current meal count is 25 to 30 individuals.
  • All groups are required to be five individuals or fewer.
  • The shift time for the program is from 4 pm-6 pm.
  • All volunteers are required to wear a mask while inside the house at all times and gloves during meal preparation.
  • After the meal is prepared, meal provider groups are asked to assist the house staff by plating or boxing the meals for our families. Due to House guidelines, buffet/family-style meals cannot be offered.

I once hosted a Share-a-Meal “Taco Tuesday,” and it was awesome! I was able to work with staff members to include fun touches and decorations for the pick-up area. 

What may seem like “just a simple meal” can make all the difference in the world for families with seriously ill children. 

On the Go in MCO Family Volunteer Second Harvest Food Bank

Second Harvest Food Bank

In 2021, Second Harvest Food Bank relied on more than 39,000 volunteers whose hours totaled 111,420 through a variety of volunteer opportunities to help our neighbors in need.

There are a variety of ways that families can help beyond the typical donations, which are always appreciated! 

Volunteer for a Shift

Second Harvest Food Bank has three facilities that are always in need of volunteers to help with picking, daily food sorting, assisting feeding partners with the loading of food, and light warehouse tasks (sweeping, organizing, order pulling, and file sorting).

Volunteers have to be at least ten years old with a chaperone who is 18 years or older in order to help out in the facility, 16 years old without a chaperone, but they do also host a “Family Night” or a “Family Day” for families with children ages 5-9 years old.

Become a Virtual Volunteer

Fight hunger without even changing out of your pajamas! Start a Virtual Food Drive and help provide meals to your neighbors in need.

Brand Ambassadors

Second Harvest Food Bank’s Ambassador Program aims to engage energetic and committed community volunteers in the mission and work of the Food Bank by serving as Hunger Champions in our community. 

Are you interested in learning more about Second Harvest Food Bank volunteer opportunities? Sign up here to receive their Volunteer Voice in your inbox each month.

Give Kids the World Village

Rated Four Stars by Charity Navigator, Give Kids The World Village is an 89-acre, whimsical nonprofit resort in Kissimmee, Florida, that provides week-long, cost-free wish vacations to critically ill children and their families from around the world who want to visit Central Florida.

A stay at the Village is much more than a vacation. During one transformative week, wish families to laugh, play, and create priceless memories together away from hospital visits and medical procedures. It’s a magical week of “YES” where wish kids can experience the simple joys of childhood and where families can recapture some of the precious moments that may have been missed due to illness.

Since 1986, Give Kids The World Village has welcomed more than 177,000 families from all 50 states and 76 countries. 

The Village is made possible by the support of generous donors and community partners and thousands of passionate volunteers – who donate their time and talent to making wishes come true.

Volunteering On-Site

Families with children over the age of 10 can apply to complete volunteer shifts at the Give Kids the World Village campus.

During these shifts, families will help with a variety of tasks throughout the Village.

Purchase with a Purpose

Did you know that you can shop for products you love and support Give Kids The World? Could there be an easier way to help support Give Kids the World Village? Nope.

DIS Con 2022

DIS Con 2022 On the Go in MCO

DIS Con 2022 is a one-of-a-kind expo celebrating all facets of the wonderful world of Disney – from Disney, Marvel, and Pixar animation to film, television, theme parks, music, and memorabilia benefitting Give Kids the World Village.

The event will take place on Friday, September 30, and Saturday, October 1, at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort (1000 W. Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830)

While you may be concerned that volunteering at Give Kids the World Village could be difficult, I can PROMISE that you will remain inspired and devoted to helping this wonderful organization.

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Family Sunsets Return to Central Florida Zoo

Family Sunsets Return to Central Florida Zoo
Central Florida Zoo

The Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens’ popular all-ages event, Family Sunset at the Zoo, is back, offering everyone a chance to enjoy the community institution in a whole new light. 

The event takes place every fourth Friday from May to September. The Zoo reopens at 5 p.m. and comes alive with all sorts of fun until the sun goes down. Family Sunset features music at the Wharton-Smith Tropical Splash Ground, inflatable games, and some of your favorite animals along the shaded boardwalks.

Dates for Family Sunset are as follows: 

  • May 27 – 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • June 24 – 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • July 22 – 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • August 26 – 5p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • September 23 – 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

The last admission is at 7:30 p.m. for each event. Tickets are $6 per person when purchased online and $8 per person when purchased on-site. The event is separate from daytime admission and is not included for Annual Passholders.

Guests can also bundle and save with the Family 4-Pack for $40, which includes four tickets, four hot dogs, and four regular fountain drinks to fuel the whole family for fun.

Guests can purchase tickets here.

On the Go in MCO Summer Must Do's

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On the Go in MCO: Mother’s Day

On the Go in MCO Mother's Day 2022

Don’t forget that you can catch these great events and more on the Obie & Ashley Unfiltered Podcast!

Celebrate Mother’s Day 2022 On the Go in MCO with fun outings for the special women in your life!

On the Go in MCO: Mother’s Day 2022

On the Go In MCO Mother's Day
For the Foodie Mom

Celebrate Mother’s Day at Morimoto Asia, as the Disney Springs restaurant hosts its Luau, featuring all the excitement, delicious foods, and festivities of a traditional Hawaiian party.

Guests will find themselves immersed in Asian-Pacific culture, experiencing a Hawaiian-inspired buffet, featuring a poke and sushi bar, a hotline to include Kahuku Food Truck’s Famous Garlic Shrimp, Morimoto Style Peking Duck, and a whole Kalua roasted pig, in addition to an assortment of desserts, such as pineapple upside-down cake and butter mochi.

A variety of specially curated Hawaiian-inspired cocktails will also be available for an upcharge. While guests enjoy their lunch, they will experience a series of captivating performances by a live band, Hula dancers, and a strolling Ukulele player — all prepared to serenade mothers on this special occasion.

Museum of Illusions Orlando ICON Park
Photo: Museum of Illusions Orlando
For the Instagram Mom

If your Mom is like my Mom, one of her most prized possessions are photos of our family…and the ‘fun’ photos are the best!

The Museum of Illusions Orlando at ICON Park immerses you in the fascinating world of illusions with fun photo opportunities and educational exhibits.

This is the perfect way to spend your afternoon!

On the Go In MCO Mother's Day
For the Fun Mom

I’ve talked about Southern Hill Farms before, but they have a bushel of fun events for the entire family this Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day weekend kicks off on Saturday, May 7th, with live music by the one and only Jeff Whitfield from 11 am to 3 pm, event food trucks, and Kids Zone fun.

Then on Sunday, May 8th, Mom can unwind with Yoga on the Farm from 7 – 8 am, tickets are required and can be found at http://ow.ly/thr750IY3A6

There will also be live music from Are Friends Electric from 10 am to 3 pm, seven food trucks, beer, wine, and Kids Zone fun. 

Right now blueberries, peaches, vegetables, Sunflowers, and Zinnias are available to pick on the one hundred twenty acre farm.

Mothers will also receive one pound of complimentary u-pick blueberries on Saturday and Sunday only (5/7 + 5/8). Just make sure to mention the discount at check-out to receive the free pound, a minimum of two u-pick pounds are required to redeem this offer.

For the Theme Park Mom

The 2022 EPCOT Flower & Garden Festival is blooming with fresh cuisine, beautiful gardens, whimsical topiaries of familiar characters, and flourishing entertainment daily through July 4, 2022.

The Garden Rocks Concert Series takes place at the American Gardens Theatre at 5:30 pm, 6:45 pm, and 8:00 pm. This weekend’s performers are:

  • May 6 & 7 – Blood, Sweat & Tears
  • May 8 – The Commodores – NEW to Garden Rocks!

As a reminder, to enjoy the 2022 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival parkgoers must have both valid theme park admission and a park pass reservation

Don’t forget you can keep up with us as we are On the Go in MCO and beyond by following @onthegoinmco on InstagramTwitterFacebook, and YouTube

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DIS Con 2022 Tickets On Sale Now

DIS Con 2022
I am BIG fan of The Dis, and DIS Con 2022 is your chance to see some great Disney talent, do some shopping, and spread magic as the event benefits Give Kids the World!!!

Today is World Wish Day, and it’s the perfect day to talk about DIS Con 2022, a one-of-a-kind expo celebrating all facets of the wonderful world of Disney – from Disney, Marvel and Pixar animation to film, television, theme parks, music, and memorabilia.

The event will take place on Friday, September 30, and Saturday, October 1, at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort (1000 W. Buena Vista Drive, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830)

Give Kids the World Village #DisneySide

Tickets are on sale now, and the event benefits Give Kids The World Village, an 89-acre, whimsical nonprofit resort in Central Florida that provides critically ill children and their families from around the world with magical weeklong, cost-free wish vacations at no cost.

“Children with critical illnesses face countless appointments, treatments and hospital stays, and they are often told “no” due to the limitations of their illness. Give Kids The World offers wish children and their families a week of “yes” where they can forget their worries, experience joy, and spend priceless time together creating unforgettable memories,” says Give Kids The World President and CEO Pamela Landwirth. “We are grateful to our tremendous partners at Walt Disney World® and to the many sponsors, donors and participants who are making DIS Con possible for the benefit of the precious families we serve.”

Proceeds will be generated by ticket sales; sponsorships; a vendor hall; and a charity auction on both days offering guests the chance to bid on hundreds of autographed items, Disney memorabilia, and collectibles – including rare and vintage items and original Disney artwork.

Dis Con 2022 Stage
Photo: Give Kids the World

DIS Con 2022 Highlights

  • Aladdin 30th Anniversary Reunion featuring Linda Larkin and Jonathan Freeman
  • Wheel of Fortune host Pat Sajak
  • Phineas & Ferb Panel with Jeff “Swampy” Marsh, Dan Povenmire, Dee Bradley Baker, Vincent Martella, and Jaret Reddick
  • Walt Disney Imagineer Tony Baxter
  • Screenwriter, producer, and director John August
  • Bear in the Big Blue House Panel with Noel MacNeal, Vicki Eibner, Tyler Bunch, Peter Linz, and James Kroupa
  • Tom Nabbe, the original Tom Sawyer at Disneyland®
  • Show writer Brian Collins
  • American artist Shag
  • Special guest Mark Daniel, host of Inside Disney Parks

Available at an additional cost, the After Hours Party at EPCOT sponsored by Yogibo will take place from 10:30 pm to 12:30 am on October 1 and includes admission to Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure; exclusive entertainment in the France, Morocco, and United Kingdom Pavilions; rare character meet and greets; and enhanced dessert offerings. Yogibo is a worldwide lifestyle retailer of next-generation furniture and gift accessories.

To purchase tickets, inquire about sponsorship or vendor hall opportunities, or make a donation to the charity auction, visit www.gktw.org/discon/.

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Mickey’s Not So Scary Returns this Fall

Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party 2022

I am SOOOOO excited to share that Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is returning to the Magic Kingdom Park!!!!

Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party 2022  

This fall, ghosts, and ghouls of all ages are invited to don their favorite costumes and celebrate all things haunted during Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.

Taking place on 37 select nights starting August 12 through October 31, 2022, this special event haunts Magic Kingdom Park after normal park operating hours from 7 p.m. to midnight.  

As a part of this limited-capacity event, Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party attendees will encounter event-exclusive entertainment, notorious Disney villains, frightfully delicious menu items, and more!

Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party Highlights
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
  • The Headless Horseman will ride his ghostly steed down Main Street, U.S.A. as a prelude to Mickey’s Boo-To-You Halloween Parade,” which features floats filled with Disney Characters dressed in their Halloween bestDisney villains and the Haunted Mansion graveyard diggers.  

  • What’s Halloween without candy? During Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, guests can go trick-or-treating for M&M’S, SKITTLES, SNICKERS, and other Halloween favorites at locations throughout Magic Kingdom Park. And new this year, guests will also receive a reusable trick-or-treat bag featuring a keepsake 50th Anniversary celebration and Halloween design. 
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween 2016 Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular
  • Join the Sanderson Sisters during the “Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular” stage show at Cinderella Castle as they call upon their frightening colleagues to conjure the ultimate “Hocus Pocus” Party Potion.   
Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party Character Collage
Photos: Walt Disney World
  • Celebrate the season alongside favorite Disney characters as they take over the park for their favorite party of the year.  
2019 Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
  • Overlays themed for the occasion will return to several popular Magic Kingdom attractions: Space Mountain, Mad Tea Party, Pirates of the Caribbean and Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor. 
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party 2022
  • The Pumpkin King himself, Jack Skellington, will host “Disney’s Not-So-Spooky Spectacular.” This can’t-miss nighttime extravaganza features projections, special effects and lighting mixed with fireworks, music and Disney characters.  
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween 2016 Pumpkin Cupcake
  • Discover sweet and savory menu items inspired by fall flavors and the Halloween season.   
2019 Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
Ali Nasser, photographer
  • NEW! In honor of the 50th Anniversary celebration, we’re adding even more fun to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party this year in the form of event-exclusive step-in photo opportunities. And in addition to the reusable trick-or-treating tote bag, guests will also receive a Halloween-themed 50thAnniversary celebration commemorative print. 

I’m excited to share more about this year’s specially ticketed, after-hours Halloween celebration!!!

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Halfway to Halloween: Disney Cruise Line

Halfway to Halloween_ Disney Cruise Line

Let’s start our Halfway to Halloween announcements with Disney Cruise Line as they have just announced that Halloween on the High Seas will return with more sailings than ever before and new one-of-a-kind experiences for families in September and October 2022.

Guest-favorite entertainment and activities, including trick-or-treating, spooky parties, elaborate décor, and themed food and beverage items, will await guests on these limited-time voyages as each ship transforms into a ghoulish wonderland.

Halfway to Halloween: Disney Cruise Line Announcements

Halfway to Halloween 2022 Disney Cruise Line Hocus Pocus Meet and Greet
Disney Cruise Line

First-of-its-Kind Character Meet and Greet

Disney Cruise Line guests will be the first to experience an all-new character meet and greet opportunity across the fleet during Halloween on the High Seas sailings. While all of the Disney characters onboard will adorn Halloween costumes as part of the festivities, Minnie Mouse, Daisy Duck, and Clarabelle Cow will debut a never-before-seen look as they dress up as their favorite Halloween sisters, the Sandersons from the movie “Hocus Pocus.”

Halfway to Halloween 2022 Disney Cruise Line Wish Pumpkin Tree
Disney Cruise Line

Disney Wish Debuts All-New Magical Pumpkin Tree

During its inaugural season of Halloween cruises this fall, the Disney Wish, the newest Disney Cruise Line ship, will introduce a unique twist on a Halloween on the High Seas hallmark.

The centerpiece of every ship during Halloween sailings is the signature magical Pumpkin Tree towering over the atrium lobby, each with sprouting Jack-O-Lanterns and flickering lights.

Aboard the Disney Wish, guests will witness the debut of an all-new Pumpkin Tree in the “Cinderella”-inspired Grand Hall. Featuring lighter bark, graceful branches and a mystical face, this enchanted tree that grew perfect gourds with the help of a Wishing Star at night produced the perfect pumpkin that became the coach that carried Cinderella to the Prince’s Ball.

Halfway to Halloween 2022 Disney Cruise Line Character Meet and Greet
Disney Cruise Line

Other Special Experiences on Halloween on the High Seas Sailings

  • Mickey’s Mouse-querade Party: Beloved Disney characters in Halloween attire will join guests for a fun-filled costume party. 
  • Halloween Isn’t Just For Kids: Adult-exclusive venues across the fleet will become a ghoulish setting for costume contests and a Villainous Takeover on the dance floor. 
  • Spooky Movies: To get guests into the spirit of the season, Halloween-themed movies will be shown on Funnel Vision by the family pool and in staterooms. 
  • Ghoulish Delights: Guests will enjoy special themed food and beverage items. 
  • More spooky fun includes mask-making and a ghostly takeover of ship announcements.

Halloween on the High Seas voyages will be offered aboard select sailings in September and October. Departing from ports in Miami and Port Canaveral, Florida, San Diego, and New York City, each cruise will take families to fascinating destinations including the Bahamas, Caribbean, Bermuda, Canada, and Mexico. All sailings from Port Canaveral and Miami will include a stop at Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island paradise outfitted for family fun and relaxation and brimming with special Disney touches.

To learn more about Disney Cruise Line or to book a vacation, guests can visit disneycruise.com, call Disney Cruise Line at 888-325-2500 or contact a travel agent.

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Innaugural Princesses in the Park

Princesses in the park

All of your favorite princess characters are coming to Downtown Orlando’s natural refuge, the Carl T Langford Park, on Saturday, May 14th, 2022 from 11 AM – 12:30 PM.

Give your child a wonderful experience full of playing games, telling stories, fairy makeovers, singing, dancing, and more! Enjoy a beautiful day out with the family, and take as many photos and videos as you want with your child’s favorite characters.

While you are visiting this dog-friendly park, you can indulge in sweet treats provided separately by Repicci’s Italian Ice and explore a maze of paved trails, an observation deck, and a lovely playground set amongst ancient shady oak trees.

Professional princesses are provided by Vaudeville Entertainment LLC, who specializes in live entertainment for private events and is excited to be hosting its first-ever public Princesses in the Park!

“I want to create an opportunity for kids to have an engaging and immersive experience playing games and telling stories with their favorite princesses, without having to stand in hot hour-long lines for just 30 seconds of general cookie-cutter interactions. Plus, on a personal note, nothing feels better than when you are all dressed up and a kid sees you for the first time. They light up like it’s Christmas morning, and you’re instantly best friends,” said Roxanne LeBlanc, a founding performer at Vaudeville Entertainment LLC

Tickets are $25 per child and are available via Eventbrite at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/princesses-in-the-park-tickets-295291082577.

Adult admission is free.

Mayor Carl T. Langford Park is located at 1808 East Central Boulevard Orlando, FL 32803.

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On the Go in MCO: Earth Day

On the Go in MCO Earth Day 2022

Don’t forget that you can catch these great events and more on the Obie & Ashley Unfiltered Podcast!

Earth Day is just around the corner, and if you are looking for fun ways to celebrate our awesome planet On the Go in MCO I’ve got you covered!

On the Go in MCO: Earth Day 2022

On the Go in MCO Earth Day - Central Florida Earth Day
Central Florida Earth Day

April 23, 2022 | 10:00 am – 6:00 pm

Head to Lake Eola Park to enjoy presentations, food preparation demonstrations, environmental education, an Earth Kids Zone, an Artist Corner, animal haven, music, Mind Body Spirit, activities, vegan food, and many Earth-friendly sponsors and vendors.

There are so many fun and interesting things happening on Central Florida Earth Day, that you will want to stay all day!

There is no cost to attend this event.

On the Go in MCO Earth Day - Planet Nona
Planet Nona

April 22, 2022 | 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Celebrate Planet Earth in Lake Nona! Lake Nona Town Center and Boxi park will be filled with vendors, live music, food trucks, pop-up bars, activities, and lots of love for our planet!

There is no cost to attend this event and parking is free.

On the Go in MCO Earth Day - Party for the Planet Central Florida Zoo
Party for the Planet

April 23, 2022 | 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Celebrate Earth Day at the Zoo and spring into action to save our planet! Special activities will celebrate our planet’s amazing and diverse wildlife through interactive environmental education activities, fun activities, games, and crafts. Perfect for the entire family, Party for the Planet gives guests the opportunity to connect to nature and conservation in the community and be inspired to become conservation heroes to help protect our beautiful planet.

This event is included in general Zoo admission.

On the Go in MCO Earth Day - St Cloud
St. Cloud Earth Day 2022

April 23, 2022 | 11:00 am

Head to St. Cloud’s Peghorn Nature Park (2101 Peghorn Way, St Cloud, FL 34769) for an Earth Day 2022 Celebration that will include environmental exhibitors, up-cycling crafts, live music, five-a-ways, clean up project, food trucks, a nature trail, and more. 

There is no cost to attend this event.

Earth Month Disney's Animal Kingdom - Header
Animal Kingdom

All week | Park open to close

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park shines the spotlight on our beautiful, bountiful planet with its annual Earth Week Celebration, set for April 18-24, 2022.

During this popular event, guests are steeped in the wonders of the natural world through family-friendly experiences and special offerings. They become part of the park’s conservation story and connect with many of the animal species the Disney Conservation Fund is working hard to protect.

To celebrate the third planet from the sun, the park is pulling out all the stops! Guests will be treated to unique character sightings, fun learning opportunities, specialty merchandise, themed food and beverages, a limited-time Wilderness Explorer badge, and more.

This event is included with theme park admission.

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Teen Driver Challenge at the Promenade

Teen Driver Challenge Promeade at Sunset Walk

Get your engines ready for the Teen Driver Challenge Car and Truck show at the Promenade at Sunset Walk Orlando on Saturday, May 14!

It will be a Saturday filled with cars, trucks, family fun, and fundraising benefiting the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office Teen Driver Education Program.

From 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., fun and educational activities, friendly for all ages, will be offered, containing information promoting safe driving:   

  • Watch the “Seat Belt Convincer” Demonstration
  • View a “Vehicle Roll Over” Simulator
  • Learn about a Driver Instruction Course
  • Browse the Sheriff’s Office Helicopter & SWAT Vehicles on display
  • Check out the Drug & Street Racing Seized Vehicles presented by Osceola County Sheriff’s Office
  • Enjoy K-9 Demonstrations throughout the event  

Participation in the car show is $20 for VIP Parking, and $10 for Show Car Lot Parking, with all proceeds going to help fund the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office Teen Driver Challenge Education Program.

Spectators can attend this event for FREE. 

Vehicles will be awarded top 10 Car & Truck trophies, and attendees will be able to participate in 50/50 raffles. 

The Teen Driver Challenge is an advanced driving course designed to provide young drivers with the knowledge and hands-on experience needed to reduce the chances of being involved in a crash. The 10-hour program is offered free of charge to all teens between the ages of 15 and 19 who have had at least a learner’s permit for six months.

For additional information regarding the Teen Driver Challenge, please visit the Florida Sheriff’s Association website here.

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2022 DoD Warrior Games at Walt Disney World

The U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command has announced that the 2022 DoD Warrior Games will take place at the Walt Disney World Resort this August!

Warrior Games logo 2022 DoD Warrior Games

Disney shares a deep appreciation for the Armed Forces, their families and veterans. It’s an appreciation that started with Walt and Roy and has continued throughout our nearly 100-year history. We’re honored to continue that proud tradition by welcoming these heroic wounded warriors and their families to the Most Magical Place on Earth for this inspiring competition.

What are the DoD Warrior Games coming to Walt Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex

The Department of Defense Warrior Games is an annual event, first held in 2010, that celebrates the resiliency and dedication of wounded, ill, and injured active duty and veteran U.S. military service members.

Hundreds of elite athletes, including those from international allied nations, compete in adaptive sporting events such as wheelchair basketball, cycling, indoor rowing, and wheelchair rugby, among others.

The DoD Warrior Games serve as a way to enhance the recovery and rehabilitation of wounded warriors by providing them exposure to adaptive sports. Participation in the Warrior Games represents the culmination of a service member’s involvement in an adaptive sports program and demonstrates the incredible potential of wounded warriors through competitive sports.

The games are open to the public, welcoming the community and the world to be a part of the excitement and support of these heroes.

 2022 Veterans Institute Summit logo 2022 DoD Warrior Games

The Walt Disney World has a long history of supporting our country’s military service and will continue this legacy by hosting the 2022 Veterans Institute Summit presented by Disney Institute on August 19-20 also at the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex.

The summit is designed to empower companies to build effective veteran hiring, training, and support of their own.

The two-day forum will include speakers from Disney’s Heroes Work Here initiative, U.S. government officials, veterans, and military spouses, among many others.

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Museum of Illusions Orlando Hosts Puppy Paw-ty

Museum of Illusions Orlando Hosts Puppy Paw-ty

Get the most bark for your buck at Puppy Paw-ty hosted by the Museum of Illusions Orlando at ICON Park on I-Drive. 

On April 23, the Museum of Illusions Orlando will once again open their doors to man’s best friend at its fan-favorite event, Puppy Paw-ty. From 8 to 10 a.m. guests can experience the interactive and immerse museum with their furry friends.  

What could be better???

Museum of Illusions Orlando Hosts Puppy Paw-ty

Admission to the party is $29.99 per owner, per dog. Tickets are limited, and advance reservations are required to book a time slot. All guests will receive a free return ticket to come back and visit without their four-legged friend. 

“Calling all Dogs of Instagram (and their owners) you won’t want to miss this event,” said Marc Gregory Tipton, sales and marketing manager. “We are excited for our 3rd Puppy Paw-ty at the museum. It’s a fun and different experience for dog owners and we love seeing the adorable pups in our illusions!” 

Museum of Illusions Orlando Hosts Puppy Paw-ty

In addition to the Puppy Paw-ty, for the entire month of April, the Museum of Illusions Orlando is offering guests the chance to round up their ticket price to donate to Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando for Animal Cruelty Prevention Month. Donations will go towards the charity’s wish lists.

The Museum of Illusions Orlando isn’t your average museum. You won’t find “do not touch” signs, get shushed by curators, or have to follow around tour guides – Instead, it encourages guests to get a hands-on experience and explore all the wonders of the mind throughout more than 50 engaging exhibits. 

To learn more about the Museum of Illusions Orlando or to book tickets, visit https://moiorlando.com/.


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Easter Bunny Garden Experience at ICON Park

ICON Park Easter Bunny Garden Eperience
Photos and cap tions The Easter Bunny Garden Experience is returning to ICON Park

Gather up your carrots and decorative eggs, then hop on over to ICON Park – The Easter Bunny Garden Experience is returning this year!

The Easter Bunny Garden Experience will be offering its award-winning Easter Bunny and candid spring photo packages at ICON Park until April 16 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

In addition to their beautiful photos, every child that visits the Easter Bunny will receive a special souvenir button they can display for a complimentary ride on The Wheel. Additional tickets can be purchased with a 50 percent discount for all of the Easter Bunny’s guests.

With the whole family dressed up in their Easter best, why not make a whole day of the experience? After the Easter Bunny visit and photo session, experience Orlando’s breathtaking views from 400 feet up on The Wheel. Ride around ICON Park in style in The Pearl Express Train. Let your mind roam as you explore SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium, Madame Tussauds Orlando, Museum of Illusions Orlando, In The Game ICON Park and Build-A-Bear. 

ICON Park Easter Bunny Garden Eperience
The Easter Bunny Garden Experience will run daily until April16 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m

Finally, finish your trip with a delicious meal from one of the entertainment center’s popular eateries like Sloppy Joe’s, Gordon Ramsay Fish & Chips, Blake Shelton’s Ole Red, or The Wheelhouse Market Food Hall.

The Easter Bunny Garden Experience is from the same group that presents The Santa Workshop Experience. Both of these long-standing experiences formerly hosted at a popular Orlando mall have been expanded and moved to ICON Park.

Reservations are now open for The Easter Bunny Garden Experience. Click here to view photo packages and save your spot now.

ICON Park is at the center of the new Orlando Entertainment District. Conveniently located near I-4, Universal Boulevard, and the Beachline, this premier entertainment destination offers easy access and free parking for any Central Florida resident or Orlando tourist.

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Morse Museum Easter Weekend Celebration

Morse Museum Story of the Cross
Louis Comfort Tiffany’s Story of the Cross leaded-glass window, c. 1892, from his famed 1893 chapel interior.

As is traditional each spring, The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art will offer free admission throughout the three-day Easter weekend.

The Morse Museum’s Easter Weekend Celebration begins on Friday, April 15, with free admission from 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. as well as music by classical guitarist Joshua Englert from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Admission is also free Saturday, April 16, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, April 17, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The Morse Museum is home to the world’s most comprehensive collection of works by American artist and designer Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848–1933). Tiffany is renowned for his innovations in glass. In the galleries, visitors may walk among Tiffany creations featuring the flowers of spring: tall white lilies, sunny yellow daffodils, and showy pink tulipsThe Chapel designed by Tiffany for the 1893 world’s fair in Chicago is always a highlight of a visit to the Morse and the Easter holiday.

The free Easter weekend is also a chance to see the Museum’s newest exhibition The Stebbins Collection: A Gift for the Morse Museum. Seventy paintings, works on paper, and sculptures from the once private Stebbins collection are on view for the first time.

Morse Museum Exterior

Jeannette Genius McKean (1909–89), Charles Hosmer Morse’s granddaughter, founded the Museum in 1942. She and her husband, Hugh F. McKean (1908–95), the Museum’s director until his death, built the Morse collection over a period of fifty years. The Easter Weekend Celebration continues a tradition they established more than thirty years ago. 

The Museum is owned and operated by the Charles Hosmer Morse Foundation and receives additional support from the Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation. It receives no public funds.

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Brews Around the Zoo 2022

Brews Around the Zoo

Brews Around the Zoo, the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens fundraiser, will put the FUN in fundraiser on April 9, 2022.

Brews Around the Zoo is one of the Zoo’s biggest benefits, offering attendees the chance to sample more than 30 different craft beers as well as soak up the fun atmosphere. The 2022 event will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. on April 9 at the Zoo in Sanford.

Early Access and VIP ticket holders will get in an hour early at 4 p.m. Brews Around the Zoo is presented by Wayne Densch.

Brews Around the Zoo

“Events like Brews Around the Zoo allow us to do what we do,” said Stephanie Williams, Zoo director. “It’s a win-win. We get to connect with the community through something fun, and we get to raise money to continue our mission of educating people and empowering them to act on behalf of wildlife by sharing these awesome animals.”

In addition to great beer from breweries near and far, Brews Around the Zoo will feature live music, a seltzer station, and wine tastings. Delicious food selections will be available for purchase.

General Admission tickets are $50. For $70, guests can take advantage of exclusive early admission at 4 p.m. Or, for $150, guests can gain VIP status, with access to exclusive cocktails, food offerings, and more.

Brews Around the Zoo

Tickets are available now at www.centralfloridazoo.org/event/brews/.

Only those 21+ are permitted to attend, and guests must show a valid ID upon entry.

The Zoo will be closed all day April 9 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm for event set up. Brews Around the Zoo takes place rain or shine.

For more information about the Central Florida Zoo, visit www.centralfloridazoo.org.

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Halloween Horror Nights 2022: Tickets On Sale

Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando

For a record-breaking 43 nights from September 2 through October 31, Universal Orlando Resort presents Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios Florida. Starting today, guests can purchase select offers and plan an unforgettable fall getaway with friends to scream together as they brave terrifying haunted houses, menacing creatures, and more at the world’s premier Halloween event.

Hailed by fans as “nonstop scary awesomeness,” “absolutely terrifying” and “downright chilling,” Halloween Horror Nights is the pinnacle of immersive Halloween entertainment and has transformed fall travel into a “must do” for people around the globe. Season after season, the terror has no bounds as Universal Orlando pulls out all of the sinister stops to celebrate Halloween with a fearsome slate of festivities that not only come to life at the award-winning event – but also across the entire destination, from dining to hotel experiences and more. 

Halloween Horror Nights 2022 will boast 10 new, movie-quality haunted houses inspired by everything from cinematic greats to unfathomable original abominations, five scare zones filled with hordes of gruesome creatures lunging from the shadows, and two outrageous live shows that will showcase compelling performances.

And when they need a break from the scares, guests can satiate their appetite with sinfully delicious food and beverage inspired by the event’s haunts, shop the latest merchandise at highly themed retail locations that are attractions in and of themselves, and enjoy Universal Studios Florida’s most exciting rides.

Single-night event tickets for Halloween Horror Nights are available now. Guests can also stay, scream and save up to $200 (based on a seven-night stay) with a special vacation package that includes one-night admission to the event and accommodations at a Universal hotel located just minutes from the fun.

This package also includes the popular “Get 2 Days Free with a 3-Day Ticket” offer that gives guests five days of admission to all three Universal Orlando theme parks to explore thrills like Jurassic World VelociCoaster during the day before facing the chills of Halloween Horror Nights at night.

Plus, hotel guests get access to a dedicated Halloween Horror Nights gate for faster entry into the event, and can enjoy other benefits like Early Park Admission and more. Savings vary based on length of stay and this package is available for purchase through May 5 for use from September 2 to October 31.

Halloween Horror Nights upgrades are also available for purchase now, including the guided, nighttime R.I.P. Tour experience where guests receive priority V.I.P. access to the haunted houses; and the Behind the Screams: Unmasking the Horror Tour that offers a glimpse into how the scares are brought to life via a daytime, lights-on journey through select haunted houses.

Additional details about Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood will be revealed soon. For more information about the event and additional Universal Orlando offers guests can book for their fall visit – including incredibly-low hotel rates starting at $91 per night (based on a four-night stay) – visit www.universalorlando.com/halloween.

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