Tinker Bell’s Winter Wonderland Comes to Downtown Disney
By Al Kessel - Tales From The Mouse House Disneyland Podcast
On October 23, 2012, DisneyToon Studios released the fourth installment of their popular straight to DVD animated film series based on the Disney Fairies franchise, starring the mischievous, and lovable, Tinker Bell. This time, Tink ventures into the forbidden world and discovers a Frost Fairy named Periwinkle, who shares some remarkably familiar traits with our Tinker-Talented Fairy. Disney’s Secret Of The Wings introduces fans of this beloved series to their newest Fairy - Periwinkle (voiced by Lucy Hale), who has a talent for creating frost and winter wonderlands whenever and wherever she desires.
To celebrate the release of this newest film, Downtown Disney has created a brand new guest experience - Ice Skating in Tinker Bells Winter Woods, the Winter Wonderland that Tinker Bell experiences in her new film.
The ceremony opened with Tinker Bell and Periwinkle performing a brief dance on the small stage set up in the middle of the Ice Rink. As they exited the Rink, Disneyland Resort Ambassador Rene Torrico welcomed guests to Downtown Disney and revealed the premise of Tinker Bells’ latest adventure. Torrico then introduced Vice President of Resorts Daniel Delcourt and Downtown Disney’s General Manager Janet Knox to dedicate the new Ice Rink. Delcourt welcomed guests and thanked Downtown Disney Cast Members for all their hard work in bringing this wonderful new opportunity to Disney Resort guests, followed by Knox’s dedication of the Ice Rink for family and friends to enjoy a piece of Tinker Bells’ Winter Wonderland. Secret Of The Wings director Peggy Holmes, and producer Michael Wigert then described the new film and how Tink learns to ice skate, and with the opening of the new Ice Rink, Resort guests can now experience that same feeling.
Finally, Rene Torrico returned to the stage to thank guests for joining them for the event and as he spreads a little Fairy Dust, like magic Tinker Bell and her Pixie Sister Periwinkle return to the stage for a dramatic Fairy dance to officially unveil this newest Resort experience.
A first for Southern California’s Downtown Disney District, the Ice Rink is made from real ice, not synthetic ice, which, according to Janet Knox, Downtown Disney’s General Manager, was an important detail to offer guests. Knox stated that there are many who visit Downtown Disney who may never have had the experience of skating on “real ice”. This attention to detail brings an air of nostalgia to those guests who may have grown up with experiences such as this, allowing them to share with their children the family fun and adventure they had growing up.
The Rink took about two weeks to assemble and is kept at a chilling six degrees by a massive “Chiller Machine” discreetly hidden behind the rental shacks. Knox also stated that Disney has wanted to offer a family activity to guests such as the Ice Rink for years, but never really had the perfect story to share. However, with the introduction of the new Tinker Bell story, they now had the perfect story to tell. Knox hinted that it may very well be the vision of VP of Resorts Delcourt to eventually expand the Ice Rink to a more elaborate Holiday Village should the Ice Rink prove successful.
The Ice Rink will operate through the beginning of January, 2013, and for the Holidays, Downtown Disney will open several shopping and food chalets for Resort guests to linger through while enjoying the atmosphere of the Ice Rink.
Each skating session lasts 60 minutes and will cost $15.00 for adults and $12.00 for children ages 2 to 12. The Ice Rink will also offer rental skates for $3.00 and for the younger skaters, Disney offers double-bladed skates. Hours of operation are Sunday through Thursday 11:00 AM to 9:30 PM, Friday and Saturday 11:00 AM to 11:00 PM. The Ice Rink does require all skaters to wear an approved helmet for safety reasons. Every 30 minutes the Ice Rink will offer their “WOW” moment, in the form of a whimsically choreographed light display set to the Secret Of The Wings song The Great Divide, by the McClain Sisters.
After the event, Director Peggy Holmes and Producer Michael Wigert stated that being part of the Disney Fairies franchise is both an honor and terrific opportunity allow fans to learn more about Tinker Bell and her Fairy friends. Wigert also hinted that we have not seen the last of the world of Pixie Hollow.
To view a short video we produced on the event, just click play below!