/ Thursday, June 19th, 2014

Aulani OhanaHi.  My name is Joshua Shusterman, and I am the newest member of the WDW Radio Blog team.  I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce myself, and also tell you about what brought me to WDW Radio.  I’ll be providing interesting stories about my experiences as a member of the Armed Forces visiting Disney Parks and Resorts, reporting on offers that The Walt Disney Company and some nonprofits extend to the military in order to help military families experience the magic, and putting my own little spin on all things Disney.  I’ll also be open to answering reader questions, so if you or someone you know are serving or have served in the Armed Forces, drop me a line.  Even if you have no affiliation with the military at all, but are just curious about these offers, let me know.  I’ll do my best to answer your question.  If I don’t know the answer, I’ll put you in touch with someone who does.

So, who am I?  Well, as you’ve probably figured out by now, I am in the military.  I serve on active duty in the United States Marine Corps, and have since March 2007.  I married my wife in June 2007, and together we have three wonderful children.  I grew up in southeastern Pennsylvania, about an hour west of Philadelphia.  Because of that, I am a huge Philadelphia sports fan, but even if you are a Cowboys fan, a Penguins fan, a Nationals fan, or a Celtics fan, I won’t hold that against you.  We are all part of this WDW Radio Blog family together, and family comes first.

Speaking of family, after high school, I moved to upstate New York, where I met my wife in college.  After joining the military, we moved to North Carolina, and then to our current duty station in Hawaii.  We will be moving back to North Carolina later this year, and we are very excited to be back in driving distance of Walt Disney World®.  No more 14 hour flights and 6 hour time differences!  We are all huge Disney fans, and we are always planning our next trip, even if we don’t have the exact dates locked on yet.Shades Mickey

My passion for Walt Disney World® began during my first trip, back in 2006.  After I had joined the military, I was delighted to find out that Walt Disney World® is very military friendly, and that they frequently offer special deals to members of the Armed Forces.  As my career and family grew, I continued to research and plan, and I was finally able to return to Walt Disney World® as well as visit Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa.  I have been listening to podcasts, reading newsletters and blogs, as well as communicating on message boards and Facebook groups for years, and have really learned a lot.  I wanted to give something back, and now I have that opportunity.  I am really excited to be able to share what I have learned and continue to learn with all of you, and I can’t wait to expand my Disney family.

I truly believe that Disney is a state of mind, as well as a lifestyle.  Disney is so much more than the Parks, movies, TV shows, or video games.  It is the community of fans that make it magical, the numerous charities that exist solely to provide deserving families with different circumstances the ability to visit the Parks.  It is the thousands of people who have never met, yet consider each other family because of the common love of Disney.  That’s what brings me to the WDW Radio Blog team.  How about you?  What draws you to the WDW Radio Blog?  Let me know in the comments, on Twitter, or shoot me an email!

I encourage anyone and everyone to send me questions through Twitter at @JLShusterman or email at JLShusterman@Gmail.com.  I love connecting with people who share my passion, as well as helping other military families make sense of everything Disney offers those who serve.  I look forward to hearing from you.

 

See ya real soon,

Joshua

(Images from the author’s personal collection.)

Joshua Shusterman is United States Marine and has been stationed in both North Carolina and Hawaii.  He is an avid Disney fan, and has taken several trips to Walt Disney World® as well as Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa.  He has extensively researched military discount programs and offers from The Walt Disney Company, and loves to spread the word to his fellow service members.  He can be reached on Twitter @JLShusterman or email at JLShusterman@Gmail.com.

10 Responses to "Military Mouse – The Newest WDW Radio Blog Recruit"

  1. Caitlin Corsello (giantnfl) says:

    Great first post, welcome to the family Joshua!

  2. Richie McNanna says:

    Joshua,
    This is a great post. I think this is a unique theme, and I really look forward to your perspective on Disney as a man with a profession which allows for very little rest; you must really make the most of your trips to Disney.
    Thank you for your service, and here’s to a great column!
    -Richie

  3. Diane says:

    I like your “Disney philosophy” about Disney being a state of mind, and your(our) love for it being much more than going to the parks or watching the Disney movies. I grew up watching Walt Disney introduce his program each Sunday evening, then watching the movies with our kids, enjoying all the parks have to offer with our two boys who are now in their 20’s, and now returning again and again to Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and hopefully the other Disney Parks in the future.
    Thank you for your service to our country. I look forward to reading more of your posts.

  4. Joshua Shusterman says:

    Thanks for the warm welcome.

  5. Kristin says:

    Welcome on board Joshua! I know exactly where that second photo was taken….I come from a Navy family and have stayed at Shades of Green my entire life! Love having this military perspective on the blog.

  6. Linda A Raymond says:

    Hi Joshua, I sent you an email, but also wanted to say WELCOME on here . We are also a military family, and look forward to your blog. We enjoy the WDW Family , because of the friendly people. Wendsday night IN THE BOX,is always a happy time. And when we get together for meets, a good time is always had. To me it’s other people understanding the DISNEY MAGIC, and who think the same way,,,,the ones that understand never say,,,,you going to Disney World again? Glad you are here,,,,you will love it,

  7. Joshua Shusterman says:

    Kristin: Shades is wonderful. I would highly recommend it to anyone eligible to stay there.

    Linda: Thank you for the email. It is great to find a group of likeminded people who just understand what this is all about.

  8. Chandler ?=^) says:

    Thank you, Solider, for serving our country. I am truly grateful. Peace be with you.

    Warmly,
    Chandler ?=^)
    Louisville KY

  9. Jenna says:

    I am so excited to see that there will be a military blogger! We are a military family, currently stationed overseas and I always look for offers, events, etc that Disney does for military members. My hope is that after we leave Italy that we can visit Shades of Green! *Dreaming of Disney*
    Joshua, thank you for your service to our country and please thank your family for their sacrifice. I know first hand it isn’t always easy!

  10. Joshua Shusterman says:

    @Chandler: Thank you for the support.

    @Jenna: Shades is great. Let me know if you have any questions about offers from Disney or staying at Shades.

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