WDW Radio was very fortunate to have been selected by the Disney Company to host a DisneySide @Home Celebration. After completing an application earlier this year, we were chosen and supplied with an amazing array of materials to use in our celebration. Included in our gift package were Disney party supplies, game ideas, and special artwork to use as prizes.
Then came the difficult part: deciding HOW to celebrate. My perspective in my work with WDW Radio has always been to try to involve as many people as possible and to enable those of us who are involved to enjoy the magic of Disney, no matter how far they lived from the parks. While I will detail my journey in defining my DisneySide in a future post, I ultimately came to the conclusion that I wanted to have a celebration where everyone could showcase their unique DisneySide.
I partnered with fabulous members of my hometown community, Patty and Bob Lang, who own a wonderful creativity studio called A Stroke of Creativity. They happily agreed to allow their shop to be the site of our celebration, and worked tirelessly with me to develop opportunities for guests to showcase their DisneySide. (Watch later this week for a blog post about Patty and Bob and the magic of Disney friendships.)
My final quest was to find a way to involve as many people as possible in the festivities. I approached Lou about using “The Box” to bring the party to anyone who wanted to attend. He, of course, said yes, and the wheels were set in motion.
On the guest list to attend the event in person were some of my dearest friends, from both inside and outside the WDW Radio family. Long time Box People Keri, Laura, and Ruby were there, as were local friends Marian, Kelly, Robin, Rochelle, and Patricia. WDW Radio blog writer Richie McNanna was there to interact with the Box. (And for those of you who were watching, make sure you ask Richie was macrame is!)
The actual event began about an hour before the live video feed began. Guests each brought something they had created that represented their DisneySide, and used it to get to know one another. (Watch tomorrow for Laura Dale’s guest post, where she shares how YOU can show your DisneySide using a photoapp she loves!)
We also discussed each of the six craft stations: (Details on each craft will be presented later this week.)
1. DISPLAY Your DisneySide: At this station, Patty and her sons demonstrated a craft they had developed to display their Disney pins. Why keep them in a binder where you can’t see them? Using a foam board cut into the shape of a classic Mickey, guests wrapped the shape in black felt and voila! They had a fun way to enjoy their pin collections.
2. INVENT Your DisneySide: Here, guests were presented with numerous crafting items, as well as Disney park maps, calendars, clip art, and stickers. They were asked to create something to represent their Disney side. Watch later this week for a blog featuring their amazing creations!
3. WEAR Your DisneySide: Using a technique Patty demonstrated, guests used elements of glass to create their own Olaf pins, which were fused together in the kiln after the party.
4. PLAN Your DisneySide: Catering to the planner in all Disney fans, this station asked guests to brainstorm Disney activities they have not yet done (but want to ) and make a Disney “Bucket List.”
5. REMEMBER Your DisneySide: Not wanting to forget a moment of Disney Parks fun, we asked participants to create a Disney memory jar, in which they could use papercrafted cards to place written memories of Disney vacations.
6. HONOR Your DisneySide: Here, we asked our friends to free their pictures from their electronic files and create a picture frame in which to display their treasured Disney memories.
Once everyone started crafting, we went live via www.wdwradiolive.com and shared the fun with SO MANY of our online WDW Radio family members. We played trivia, showed the crafts, and reminisced about our own crafting experiences. In a blink, the ninety minute live show was over, and our friends were packing up their crafts. Everyone received great goodie bags of gifts from Disney and WDW Radio.
I was overwhelmed with the breadth of experiences and perspectives everyone in attendance–both with us in person and virtually–brought with them. We had great conversations where we discussed the meaning of our DisneySide, shared Disney travel stories, and generally enjoyed the warmth of friendship. Many of the people in attendance had never met one another before that day, yet the common thread of Disney easily brought a warmth and comfort to all in attendance.
I will share many more aspects of the party, the crafts, and the wonderful people in attendance over the next several blogs, so please stay tuned. For today, though, we have a great prize–a Mickey and Minnie print that was distributed to hosts of the DisneySide parties. To win, please comment below on how YOU define your DisneySide. One lucky person who comments by Friday March 28 will receive one of these prints.
To learn more about DisneySide, please visit http://www.disneysidecelebrations.com/
Thanks to Disney, DisneySide @Home Celebrations, and Maria Bailey for the support of this event. Please note we were given materials to help promote this event, though all opinions expressed are my own.
Special thanks to Lisa for the amazing photographs she took of the event.