Last month I had an amazing opportunity to attend the Disney Social Media Moms “On-The-Road” event in Philadelphia. After the amazing time I had at Disneyland this year, I couldn’t wait to keep the magic alive – this time closer to home.
I knew if I was early there would be plenty of other awesome Disney loving bloggers in attendance that I could chat with. After all there is only so much time during the event itself to network and I wanted to meet as many new faces as I could. While waiting in line to check in, I saw so many familiar faces that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting online and in person because of Disney Social Media Moms. It was nice to catch up with them while we waited to check in.
Once we were inside, we were treated to the magic that is Disney. Everywhere I looked there were decorations, photo booths, wonderful giveaways and so much more. I had been following the Chicago event online prior to Philly so I knew there was a chance a “special” guest would be making an appearance. I had just found out the day before the gender of our baby to be. This was a pretty big deal since I was adamant I find out if it was a boy or girl but the baby had other plans. At my two other appointments, the baby decided it didn’t want to cooperate and we weren’t able to find out. My doctor informed me that I wouldn’t get any more ultrasounds at this point so I would have to be “surprised”. Talk about disappointing. I really wanted to know and thankfully the tech squeezed me in the day before On-The-Road Philly for a quick peek! And guess what?! We were able to see. Everyone knows my love for Disney and I wanted to use this opportunity as a way to announce to our family what we were having. I made a cute little sign and had my fingers crossed the “special” guest would make a surprise visit for us too!
As the event started, we were greeted by Jamie Langdon, Public Relations Manager of the Walt Disney World Resort. I’ve had the pleasure of speaking with Jamie in the past but this was the first time that I actually was able to meet her and she is such a sweetheart! She started us off with one of my favorite things to do at Disney – Pin Trading!
This is one of my son’s favorite things to do at Disney and he always has his trader lanyard ready before each trip and loves interactive with the cast members and other guests to trade. We each were handed a pin and had a few minutes to work the room, meet some new friends and trade pins. What a fun way to kick off the event!
Next up, we heard from the always entertaining Gary Buchanan, Social Media Managing Editor and PR Manager of the Walt Disney World Resort. I’ve met Gary a few times in person and he is always a blast! Gary radiates so much energy and fun and it’s no surprise he has a greeting line longer than most characters in the park at these events. Gary talked to us about the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train ride that just opening in May at Walt Disney World and he shared with us details on the contests that Disney Parks are running like the BeThe8thMinerContest.
We also learned about the new Festival of Fantasy Parade (which looks amazing by the way) and learned about Magic Bands. We actually had a chance to use the Magic Bands on our trip last November and let me just say how much I LOVED them! No more pulling out our tickets to get into the park and to fast pass rides. Nope, you now can use the Magic Band to do all that. Such a time saver. I can’t say enough good things about them.
We also heard from Jenn Fickely-Baker, Social Media Manager of the Walt Disney World Resort. If you read the Disney Parks Blog, you are sure to recognize her name. She shared some great tips that Disney uses to manage their blog that us smaller bloggers could really put to use.
She also shared the Rock Your Disney Side Campaign going on at Disney Parks. We love to “rock” our Disney Side at the parks and at home. We were even treated to a little behind the scenes with the hashtag of the year otherwise known as the Ultimate Tweet. You may remember that incredible picture of 140 Disney characters all assembled in the shape of a hashtag. It was pretty awesome! Check it out:
We heard from Maria Bailey who is such an inspiration to moms and women everywhere. I’ve worked with Maria on several different occasions and finally was able to meet her in person and couldn’t have been more thrilled.
That’s right! It’s a girl!! I couldn’t think of a better way to announce it than with Mickey Mouse!! I had another amazing time at Disney Social Media Moms, met some new friends, saw some old friends and most of all learned some amazing and valuable blogging and everyday lessons that I will keep with me forever. Best of all I was able to experience a little bit of the Disney Magic right here at home!
Now it’s your turn! Do you have a favorite Disney character?
Disclosure: I was invited to this event by Disney. I received no compensation for this post and was not required to write about my experience at the event. As always, all opinions are my own.