Cinderella Castle Moat Drained for Pathway Widening Project at the Magic Kingdom

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To the disappointment of many, many Magic Kingdom guests, the moat around the Cinderella Castle was drained in late March so construction could begin on widening the pathway on the west side that connects Fantasyland to Liberty Square.

The pathway was fairly narrow and was prone to bottlenecking in the afternoon.

This was also a great spot to stop and take a few photos of the side view of the Cinderella Castle and a few “Magic Kingdom” selfies.

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April 25, 2019:  Not sure why the newly poured concrete isn’t level with the current pathway.

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The new walkway will be 2x as wide.

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May 6, 2019: Construction continues on the walkway.

Construction is scheduled to wrap up next month with the new walkway open and the moat refilled.

cinderella castle

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Disney Parks uses this time to pick up all the objects that have fallen into the moat: sunglasses, cell phones, headbands, rings….

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Drained moat by Tomorrowland. The restaurant views aren’t currently very good.

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mk flooding rain

May 14, 2019: Now, if only Disney would do something about the flooding throughout the park that happens after every afternoon thunderstorm!!!

castle cupcake

Try the new Cinderella Castle Cupcake, $5.99


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February 2019, Cinderella Castle with a filled moat. It won’t look like this again until late May 2019.


The Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland is also undergoing refurbishment has has been tarped for a month now.

That project isn’t scheduled to wrap up (pun alert) until just before Star Wars:  Galaxy Quest opens May 31st.

Sleeping Beauty Castle

May 15, 2019: Half the Castle tarps were taken down last night. The turrets look bright blue and sparkly!

Disneyland Guests:  Be aware that the Sleeping Beauty Castle is currently undergoing a $300,000 renovation.  The tarps won’t be removed and the walk-thru re-opened until May 28, 2019.

Check here for reopening updates:   Sleeping Beauty Castle Re-opening Date

sleeping Beauty castle

April 17, 2019: Still covered. 😦


March 24, 2019: Tarps are going up to cover renovating the Sleeping Beauty Castle turrets.


We’ve written two books about our time working and playing at Disney World.

Both are available on Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover

Adventures in the Animal Kingdom

book Two Girls

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link:

Have a magical day!


Castle two disney sisters

Two Disney Sisters


My Disney Friend Lisbeth Lost Everything in Hurricane Maria – Please Help!


Lisbeth (left) and her family

The Go Fund Me Link:

I worked with Lisbeth for a year at Downtown Disney (now Disney Springs).

We were both cast members in the Disney College Program.

She returned to her lovely home in Puerto Rico after her program was over.

Lisbeth and her family lost EVERYTHING in Hurricane Maria.  Their house is gone.

She spends her days waiting on long lines looking for clean water and food.  But, there is no food or water!  The grocery stores are all still closed and there is no gasoline left!  She has been without electricity now for over 2 weeks.

It is unbelievable that this is happening to American citizens.

Right now, Walmart isn’t delivering to Puerto Rico.

But, once they can deliver supplies, Lisbeth needs EVERYTHING.

We’re starting a Go Fund Me page to help her family recover from both the hurricane and the US government’s lack of coordinated response.

No amount is too little to donate.  We are asking all our friends to please donate $5.00 today.

Thank you.

You can read about Lisbeth’s day-to-day updates and struggles here:


October 2, 2017:  A message from Lisbeth about current conditions in Puerto Rico:

We need gas and food. I walk 40 minutes every day to my job where I can use a company vehicle to work. We need help with food. If you want to help me and my family directly with food that does not need to be cooked and not refrigerated, I’ll thank you for that.

We also need candles to light up in the evenings especially while we bathe with a bucket of water. All this is very sad and depressing. We have received donations but Trump’s government holds it at the docks while we are still hungry every day. We have not had light for a week and it is predicted that it will take 6 months to a year for all Puerto Rico to have electricity.

Right now the mail is closed. But it hurts me that they are sending donations and the donations sit in the port. We are hungry and the Trump government does not care. I have four brothers, my mom and my stepfather. I have an 11 year old brother and 13 year old brother who is autistic. My sister is 29 and my other brother is 26. We, along with my stepfather, are the ones that go out looking for everything for my mom and my little brothers.  We need food and water and gasoline.

This is a small island not a big country that has 48 states together. I do not have 48 options to go out and get food. I write this to you with tears in my eyes. It is shameful to ask for food and more to be mailed to us as if we could receive it here. Trump wants to let us starve. People have died in hospitals because some hospitals have been left without diesel.  Diesel that is in the ports and that the damn president does not let dispatch. We know we are second-class citizens but we do not deserve to be treated like this.

Thank you for your help.

Lisbeth Pacheco

October 3rd Update:

There was a rumor that the nearby Walmart was going to open today and would have food to buy or that FEMA would be handing out food from there.

Lisbeth walked over there (her car is out of gas and there’s no gas at the stations) and stood in line for 3 hours.

But, the Walmart wasn’t open and nothing was happening.  It was just a rumor.


10am on line at Walmart

Update from Lisbeth

I tried to buy more food and ice at Walmart. But I was in line for three hours and it did not move. I could not stand the pain in my feet and I left.

I walk so much because my car has no gasoline left, that my feet are already swollen and sunburned.


Lisbeth walks everywhere.

Then comes Trump to throw the provisions [paper towels] as if we were dogs.


Trump throws rolls of paper towels into crowd of residents affected by Hurricane Maria as he visits Calgary Chapel in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Oct. 3, 2017.

DCP Homecoming Weekend – Saturday Meet & Greet

Saturday was a super busy today!  Elly and I both paid for the special meet and greet Saturday morning at Epcot.  Because I was with Elly, we had to choose the later  time slot lol

Our time slot was 10am-11am.  I wanted to get there a little earlier because we had our park tickets in will call and I was worried they might close off the lines early.

Of course, that didn’t go as planned!  We got home so late the night before, plus with the 2 hour time difference, it was slow moving the next day. Mi am a morning person so I had no problem getting up early. My after showering and getting Elly up, I walked over to the Old Key West quick service to get some kids’ egg breakfast plate.

Still, we didn’t get out until after 9:30. Min was really stressing out about it because I was going to be pissed if we showed up too late and missed the event!

As I waited for the bus, I checked the Alumni Facebook group and immediately saw Marcie’s post about there being issues with the event and how she was going to refund the $10 fee for it!

I was SO worried because it sounded like the whole event had been canceled!

And then when I saw which characters were there, I was REALLY stressing!

But Elly and I agreed to just show up and hope for the best.

We got to Epcot, picked up our park tickets, and then tried to figure out where the Odyssey was. Lol

Of course, we didn’t bother to stop to ask any cast members – no way they’d give us correct directions! Haha. But it turns out we knew the building, if not the name.  It’s the giant empty building next to Test Track and Mexico.  We love going there because the bathrooms are always clean and empty!

When we got there, we didn’t have our Alumni Event lanyard and weren’t wearing our bands to indicate that we paid for this event.  Luckily we brought all the wrist bands and quickly showed the lady.

She informed us that there were two character lines – Jack, Sally, and Oogie Boogie from Nightmare Before Christmas and also Dug, Russel, and Carl from Up! Yes!!!

Elly and I got to meet Mr. Fredrickson when we extended our program in 2014.  I was totally surprised when I got home and saw on Facebook, that I literally met them on the same day, just two years later!  So cool!

We walked into the room and it looked pretty crowded. We immediately located and warmed the free food. Entire buffet tables filled with Mickey rice crispy treats and then all the ice creams : Mickey premium bars, Mickey ice cream bars, the fruit bars.  Yay!  And there were really nice party drink containers filled with yummy juice, iced tea, and water.

Right away, I ran into my friend Steven.  We actually did our program together at Dak, I was at Discovery Island and he was at Strollers.  We never met or ran into each other, but we had a lot of mutual friends since a lot of Strollers people were deployed to the Island.  Once I got accepted for the Summer Alumni program in Strollers, I friended him to ask him tons of questions about Strollers!  He was always so nice so I was glad we ran into each other to finally meet in person.

As I was perusing the food, I heard my name and saw my Strollers friend Kelsey in line for the Up characters!  Elly and I got in line with her and started catching up.

Apparently there was a huge snafu with the Homecoming Transportation.  As in it never showed up for the 9am people. Who still hadn’t arrived by the time we got there after 10am.  No only that, but the food had run out and people were really pissed out it.  A lot of people posted in the group that they had gotten through the line for the NBC characters and then tried to get in line for the other set, and the event staff kicked them out of the event!  I guess I can understand the thinking behind it because there were still people coming home hadn’t met any characters and the characters were only there for two hours.

As we were waiting in line, a couple really nice girls in front of us and behind us recognized us and talked to us about how much they like and appreciate our blog!  It always surprises me and makes me feel so great when people are so nice!  We talked with them the entire way through the line and even became friends on Instagram!


We finally got to the front of the Up line and I was so impressed with the setting!  It was framed with giant multicolored balloons and it even had Kevin, peeking out from behind some trees.

I hugged Dug and Russel and shook Mr. fredrickson’s hand.  So funny.

After we got out of that line, I got up some courage to talk to Marcie!  I saw her a bunch yesterday, but I didn’t realize it was THE Marcie running the Alumni Facebook group!


I went up to say hello and to tell her how much I appreciated everything she’s done for the Alumni and how great the event has been!

In the middle of talking to her, I hear my name screamed really loud!  I look around and saw my friend Kelsey had gotten into the NBC line!  I figured, it was so late, the lines were closed.  But the attendants totally let us go!  There were like two people in front of us so we met them really fast!



Jack was so great, he said my ears were so sparkly, they should put me on top of a Christmas tree!  He also appreciated my orange wristband because it looked like a jack o lantern!

I also hugged Oogie and it was so fun.

I never saw NBC before.  I have been to several Halloween parties and my favorite part of Hallowishes is when Oogie is talking.  It gives me chills!  So it was pretty cool meeting them!

I couldn’t believe how perfect the event was!  From our point of view, there were no issues!  Despite my griping to Elly, it was actually really great that we were so late.  The event was secretly extended to accommodate the later arrivals, but I think a lot of people just didn’t show up when they read the posts on Facebook.  We left at around 10:45.


If you didn’t have a park ticket, you were escorted out of the park by event staff.  But we were free to explore!  The first thing we did was go to the former Captain EO venue to watch the Shorts.  It shows 3 shorts in 3D and it was really cool!  We didn’t realize that the entire seating area moves too.  So like when something heavy falls in the screen, we all thumped too.  It was so hard to tell which short was our favorite – they were all amazing!


We didn’t even have time for the World Showcase, and before we knew it, it was the afternoon!  We had planned to go home to change before the big event at DAK.  So we split off from Ricky and Kelsey and promised to meet up later that night.


Walt Disney & Smoking Ban

Walt Disney & Smoking

As we learned in our Disney Traditions class, it’s very hard to find photographs of Walt Disney smoking, although he was a chain smoker all of his adult life, typically smoking at least three packs a day before succumbing to lung cancer in 1966!

Disney’s cigarette has been airbrushed out of this photo.

Walt Disney’s cigarette has been airbrushed out of this photo.

No cigarette in this photo either!

No cigarette in his right hand in this photo either!

Most of the photographs of Disney holding a cigarette have been airbrushed by the company and the cigarette removed, giving rise to the famous Disney two finger point that all Cast Members are taught.

The two finger point.

Tom Hanks doing the Disney Two Finger Point.

From behind the scenes of “Saving Mr. Banks”:
The company’s blanket ban on lit cigarettes in its films came into effect in 2007, when Bob Iger, Disney’s chairman and CEO, stated: “We expect that depictions of cigarette smoking in future Disney-branded films will be non-existent.”

Saving Mr. Banks does feature an unlit cigarette: in one scene, Disney, played by Tom Hanks, is seen stubbing it out as Travers, played by Emma Thompson, enters his office. The cigarette itself is not visible, however, and nor is its smoke. Disney is also seen swearing and sipping Scotch Mist, his cocktail of choice.

WWI photo in France

WWI photo of Walt Disney in France

Born in 1901, Disney took up smoking in 1918 as an ambulance driver in France during the First World War. He took great care never to smoke around children, but was said to suffer from an incessant, hacking cough.

During the construction of Disneyland.  The cigarette has been airbrushed out.

Walt walking around during construction of Disneyland. The cigarette has been airbrushed out of his right hand.

His favorite brand of cigarettes was Lucky Strike, and he also smoked a pipe. In 1955, he opened a tobacconist shop on Disneyland’s Main Street, which closed in 1991, though it’s traditional “Cigar Store Indian” still stands on the pavement outside the location.  Sadly, Disney died from complications of lung cancer in December 1966 at the age of 65.

Great article about Walt and his life-long smoking habit: Walt and His Infamous Cough.
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Lions and Tigers and Strollers, Oh My!

This is not Caroline’s first time in the Disney College Program. Along with her sister, she was previously accepted into the program a few years earlier.  Back in Colorado, Caroline was wishing for a little more pixie dust to brighten up her life.  On a whim, she decides to apply to the exclusive Disney Alumni Summer Program.

Now that she’s back, things get wild.

Wild, as in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, where Caroline is assigned to work in Stroller Rental.  While not the most glamorous position in the park, it’s often ground zero for humanity at its best and at its worst.

While Caroline makes many “Magical Moments” for deserving guests whose pixie dust has gone temporarily sideways, she also receives magical moments of her own through the friendships she makes, going to Disney cast member exclusive events, and all the spectacular dining opportunities at Disney World.

Caroline tells all – from the ins and outs of Disney’s secret training class called Traditions; to learning how to be a happy cast member during on-the-job training; to what it’s like to interact with fellow cast members and the guests who are ready to explore the most magical place on earth.

Join Caroline as she takes you on a wild ride through her adventures in Disney’s Animal Kingdom. But be careful, it’s a jungle out there!

Available now at in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on  Adventures in the Animal Kingdom


DAK costume

Adventure is out there!


Our Book “Two Girls and a Mouse Tale” – Coming Soon!

We are SO excited because our book is officially listed under “Coming Soon” for Theme Park Press!  How cool is that?!

We are hoping the book will be available for purchase by mid August!
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Here is the hilarious tag for our book when you drag your mouse over our book cover image.  So funny! 🙂

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 7.31.48 PMStay tuned because we will be posting the link (as soon as we get it) to purchase the book!

If you’d like to read more about our book deal, click here.

Katy Perry at Cinderella Castle Suite

Signing in.

Signing in.

Katy Perry and her girlfriend got to stay in the Cinderella Suite at Disney World last month and posted some photos of their adventure.  Looks like they had fun!!! 🙂

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Welcome chocolates

Welcome chocolates

The stained glass windows in the suite.

The stained glass windows in the suite. (Seen from the outside.)


Stained glass of Cinderella’s château. (Seen from the inside.)

The view from above

The view from above of Fantasyland…Hello guests!

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Fresh fruit tray, with crown to welcome Katy.

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Royal crest

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Royal bath

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Royal bathtub

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Royal shower

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Royal Throne room.

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So pretty!  Cinderella slipper.

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The royal bedroom.

It's all in the details.

It’s all in the details.  Cinderella’s mice friends.  🙂

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Cinderella’s Royal Crown and septure.

The Glass Slipper!!!

Katy holding Cinderella’s Glass Slipper!!!

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It doesn’t fit! 😦

Katy Perry staying in the Cinderella Suite on 4th of July.

Katy Perry ordering pizza delivery at the Cinderella Castle Suite, 4th of July.

Bedtime chocolates

Bedtime chocolates

The next morning at DAK

The next morning at DAK’s Pizzafari

Wonder what other guests have stayed in the Cinderella Suite recently?  Guests of Disney World’s Cinderella Castle Suite


working together at DAK

Working together at DAK.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program (Fall 2013/Spring 2014) and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on


Throwback Thursday: The Genie in Aladdin

Meeting the Genie in Adventureland.

Meeting the Genie in Adventureland.

Robin Williams passed away this week and we thought we would do our Throwback Thursday featuring The Genie from Aladdin.


Genie in the afternoon parade.

The Genie is considered a “rare” Disney character because, while he sometimes appears in parades, he almost never is available at a Meet & Greet, except during special occasions.

We were lucky to see The Genie during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party in October 2013.

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The following statement is from Robert A. Iger, chairman and chief executive officer, The Walt Disney Company: 

We’re deeply saddened by the loss of Robin Williams, a wonderfully gifted man who touched our hearts and never failed to make us laugh. An incredible actor and a comedic genius, Robin will always be remembered for bringing some of the world’s favorite characters to life, from his zany alien on ABC’s Mork & Mindy to the irascible genie in Disney’s Aladdin. He was a true Disney Legend, a beloved member of our family, and he will be sorely missed. We join Robin’s friends and fans everywhere in mourning, and offer our thoughts and condolences to his family during this difficult time.

Very touching!

Very touching!


Two GirlsTwo Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program (Fall 2013/Spring 2014) and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.

Available now at in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.


Do’s and Don’ts: Tips for Writing a Blog

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November 11, 2015: Our 1,000,000th blog view…our blog has been read in 184 countries now!

Several people have asked us for tips on starting a blog and blogging.

We don’t know if word blogs are better than video blogs (vlogs).  It seems like they each have their own audiences.

We have a very successful blog that gets a lot of traffic even though it’s less than a year old.  We started blogging about the DCP program before we even arrived in Florida.  We knew that it was such a once-in-a-lifetime experience being shared by thousands of people just like us.  But, our most loyal followers have been our family and friends. 🙂

Here are our blogging tips:

Blogging Do’s

  1. Find a blog hosting site that you love and is easy to use (preferably free!). We like WordPress.
  2. Blog about what interests you and your personal experiences. We love Disney, so that’s what we blog about.
  3. Use images, preferably your own. A photo blog is 100x more interesting than just text.
Magic Kingdom in the fall, Main Street USA.

See – isn’t this blog better with a photo?  (Magic Kingdom in the fall, Main Street USA.)

  1. Keep it short. No one has time to read a 10,000 word blog or watch a 10 minute vlog.
  1. Write regularly. Commit to writing frequently, at least once a week.
  1. Write well. Use spellcheck, edit the length of sentences AND paragraphs.
  1. Tag your posts so search engines can find it.


    Best time to post a blog to facebook is between 1pm – 4pm.

  2. Post your blog at the best time of the day.

Blogging Don’ts

  1. Don’t spam ever, especially other people’s blogs.
  2. Don’t be afraid to re-edit your published blogs.
  3. Don’t use the real names of friends, coworkers, or managers in your blog posts!
  4. Don’t worry if it takes time to build an audience.  It will happen.

Happy blogging! 🙂

About our blog: About Us!


#1 Tip:  Blog about what interests you!


October 2017 Update:  Our blog is now approaching 3 MILLION views!


working together at DAK

Working together at DAK.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.

Available now at in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale


Two Girls and a Mouse Tale


Game Night

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Game night playing The Game of Life – Haunted Mansion version with the boyfriends.

Pushing our Doom Buggies around the board.

Pushing our Doom Buggies around the board.

We have a winner!!!

We have a winner!!!

The Haunted Mansion is celebrating its 45th anniversary this year!

And, Caroline got to go on a backstage stage of HM this spring:


Caroline on the Haunted Mansion tour with DAK cast members.

Caroline on the Haunted Mansion tour with DAK cast members.


New HM pins coming out soon:




‘Frozen’ Friday Night Out Event at Barnes & Noble

Frozen Friday

Frozen Friday

Unfortunately, we were both working on Friday night (August 1st) and missed the ‘Frozen Friday’ Night Out event at our local B&N here in Thornton, CO.

The internet is buzzing with how BAD the Frozen costumes were; they were so bad that they were actually good!

We’ll let you be the judge.



Not sure...Anna???

Not sure…Anna???



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(from Buzzfeed:

We’ve written a book about our year working at Disney: Two Girls and a Mouse Tale.
Available now on in paperback and Kindle. Published by Theme Park Press.