Epcot Blooms with Magical Freshness Every Spring

Flowers, Food and Wine! Oh! My!

Flowers, Food and Wine! Oh! My!

Imagine you, your family and the most magical combination of topiaries, food and the Florida sun. Imagine the experience of enjoying amidst an incredible array of refreshing greens with ample options for fun. Imagine that time of the year when the world’s happiest landscape gets even more fresh and impressive in the eye of Disney fans and theme park vacationers from everywhere.

Spring is one of the most wonderful times of the year, and what better way to celebrate the same at the Epcot Theme Park in Orlando, Florida. The world-famous WDW (Walt Disney World) Park is at its blooming best during the season. Every spring the Park transforms into an ever refreshing sea of blooms and greens. Moreover, the special spring festival here brings to life a never-ending saga of freshness and delights. Packed with an amazing array of exhibits, workshops, marketplaces and live entertainments it tends to inspire guests since inception. In fact the festival is one of the most anticipated events of its kind that WDW has to offer. Thanks to The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival that brings to life the most magical spring celebration ever.

The one of a kind spring event keeps getting bigger and more exciting every year. In fact there is a whole new experience waiting for you every time you visit the event. Whether it’s the ever-increasing and incredible topiaries or those exciting seminars and exhibits on gardening, the mind-blowing concerts and live music shows or the outdoor kitchens and more, the atmosphere at the Fest is just awesome.

The topiaries are among the main highlights of the Event. From top to toe they are the true examples of exquisite sculpting. And I think the act of showcasing nature in such amazing detail is just magical. For the eye of the beholder, they are the most fascinating treats ever. The more you wonder at these extraordinary creations the more you get attracted by them. Each one of them exhibits its own unique appeal. Also it’s exciting to have Anna and Elsa, including Chip and Dale staring the list of Disney topiaries for the first time this year.

When it comes to gardening, the Festival is by far the most suitable occasion to learn and get educated about the various secrets of gardening. Whether it’s about water conservation or information about organic gardening techniques, cues to attract birds and butterflies or more, it’s all available out there at the various workshops and seminars hosted by celebrity experts.

The magical and interactive garden exhibits, including Illuminated GardensButterflies on the Go and Mike & Sulley’s Monstrous Garden make the ultimate setting to celebrate the season at the Festival. Even the food and drink exhibits have taken the center-stage at the Event in recent years. A visit to any of the favorite Outdoor Kitchen here is like treating your senses with fresh seasonal flavors.

Orlando vacations are always expensive. And tickets play a major role in influencing the same. But there are many other options available to help you stay on budget. And I suggest you to visit the authorized agents and brokers for some real savings. If you are looking for discounts on your Disney Tickets and passes to exclusive Orlando attractions and events, including discount Sea World and Universal Studios tickets and other special theme park packages you can also consult WDW recommended Kissimmee based ticket Re-Seller – The Official Ticket Center

Epcot International Food and Wine Festival – An Amazing Experience for Foodies

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

If ever there is a place where one can try all kinds of different foods, and pair finest of wines and beers with sweetest and savory dishes against one of the most magically themed backdrops then it is at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. Truly this one of the most anticipated WDW (Walt Disney World) events turns the entire Epcot Theme Park into a food paradise.

Visiting the Park during the premier occasion is an amazing treat for all the food and wine lovers from across the globe. At every turn and every stop there is something very special and uniquely delicious for you to taste and try. In fact it puts you right in the middle of a culinary adventure unlike any other. Thanks to Epcot International Food & Wine Festival for such an incredible and unique experience.

Celebrated for its inspired culinary attractions, the special fall attraction offers the ultimate setting to explore the best of cuisine the World has to offer. Whether it’s the amazing food and beverage marketplaces or the lively food concerts, celebrity chef demos or the signature dinners and galas, it promises the most amazing culinary extravaganza ever.

From the moment one enters the park it turns into a never ending journey of food and flavors. Imagine a place where you are exposed to an incredible array of ever-inviting food booths with their all new mouth-watering menus and attention to detail ambiences. Or just think of an experience that puts you right in the middle of some incredible and live music-acts while you are enjoying your favorite foods, wine and beer.

I think for a Disney World fan a visit to this one of a kind event is a must. Being part of the epic celebration will not only make your vacation more special, but also exposes you to the wonderful world of tastes and aromas like never before. And regardless of whether you are attending the event for the first time or a repeat visitor for that matter, there will never be a dull moment at the party for sure. Also the addition of more and more new and innovative culinary attractions every year makes the event even more impressive to attend.

The annual event is having its 19th edition of Epcot International Food & Wine Festival this year. And like every year it brings along a host of new surprises for this year too, featuring new marketplace menus (such as the Patagonia Marketplace with flavors of Argentina and Chile) and a host of premium dining experiences and much more. No special ticket is required to attend this unique WDW event. The event is included with the regular Epcot admissions.

For discounts on Disney World tickets and passes to exclusive Orlando attractions and events, including discount SeaWorld Orlando tickets, Universal Studios tickets and other special Orlando packages you can consult authorized ticket Re-Seller – The Official Ticket Center

Information & Tips for Epcot’s International Flower & Garden Festival 2014

Epcot® International Flower & Garden Festival Presented by HGTV

Epcot® International Flower & Garden Festival Presented by HGTV

This year marks the 22nd anniversary of Epcot’s International Flower & Garden Festival in Orlando, Florida. Every spring, this Disney theme park dazzles its visitors with high energy entertainment as well as family fun for all. This year’s event will once again open its doors in March and will be brimming with special experiences for all ages and interests.

Here are a few of this year’s Flower & Garden highlights:

• Outdoor Kitchens
• Topiary Displays
• The Flower Power Concert Series
• Interactive Play Areas for Children

This annual event has so much to see and do that you are sure to return again and again throughout the spring!

Outdoor Kitchens: Similar to Epcot’s International Wine & Food Festival, Epcot has integrated this event into their Flower & Garden Festival. At last check, there were 12 food stations throughout the countries. Most dishes will be spring light and cooked just right! Just think tapas size servings that you can eat on the go. Here are a food stations and their menus including drings that will be paired up with each dish:
Florida Fresh
Experience a taste of several fresh Florida ingredients, each grown and produced locally. It’s a perfect opportunity to treat your senses to some of the most delightful fruit and drink the Sunshine State has to offer! Florida Fresh can be found next to the Germany Pavilion.

To eat:
• Watermelon salad with pickled onions, BW Farm baby arugula, feta cheese and balsamic reduction
• Shrimp and stone ground grits with andouille sausage, sweet corn, tomatoes and cilantro
• Florida kumquat pie (TRYit!)

To drink:
• Watermelon passion fruit slush featuring Simply Lemonade®
• Hurricane Class 5 White Sangria featuring Simply Lemonade, Florida Orange Groves (St. Petersburg, Florida)
• Garda Italian Wine Blend, Quantum Leap Winery (Orlando, Florida)
• Rogue Valley Pinot Noir, Quantum Leap Winery (Orlando, Florida)
• Blonde Ale, Orlando Brewing Company (Orlando, Florida)
• Cotton Mouth Belgian Style Witbier, Swamp Head Brewery (Gainesville, Florida)
• Feast of Flowers Farmhouse Ale, Florida Beer Company (Cape Canaveral, Florida) – Festival Exclusive!
• Florida Avenue Blueberry, Cold Storage Craft Brewery (Tampa, Florida)
• Beer Flight – Blonde Ale, Cotton Mouth Belgian Style Witbier, Feast of Flowers Farmhouse Ale and Florida Avenue Blueberry
• Simply Orange

Hanami
Travel near the Japan Pavilion where the annual ritual of admiring springtime flowers is in full bloom. From delectable bites to refreshing beverages, uncover how Hanami’s flavors reflect the season.

To eat:
• Frushi – Fresh pineapple, strawberries and melon, rolled with coconut rice, topped with raspberry sauce, sprinkled with toasted coconut and served with whipped cream on the side
• Temaki hand roll – Sliced Panko fried chicken, curry sauce, rice and pickled julienne carrots wrapped with Nori
• Hanami sushi – A flavorful combination of salmon, scallop and beef-topped rice balls served atop a shiso violet sauce (TRYit!)
• Japanese puffed rice cakes with green tea whipped cream and azuki

To drink:
• Kirin draft beer
• Pinepple Paradise with Yuzu Slushie – Frozen blend of sweet sake, pineapple juice and crème, flavored with a hint of Yuzu citrus juice
• Orange Mango Slushie – Frozen blend of Nigori sake, mango and orange juice

Jardin de Fiestas
Make your way near the Mexico Pavilion where the tapas are spring light and cooked just right. Don’t miss your chance to take part in this festival of flavors, complete with savory tacos and mouthwatering cocktails.

To eat:
• Tacos al pastor – Corn tortilla filled with achiote-marinated pork, garnished with grilled diced pineapple, onions and cilantro
• Quesadilla de hongos con queso – Flour tortilla filled with mushrooms and cheese
• Flan de chocolate Abuelita – Mexican chocolate custard

To drink:
• Tecate draft beer
• White Mexican sangria
• Franbuesa (raspberry) margarita on the rocks
• Tequila flight – blanco, reposado and añejo
• Dasani® bottled water

Fleur de Lys
Indulge your senses in extravagance at this tasty milieu influenced by the “flower of the lily.” Once a royal emblem used by the French monarchy, the symbol now serves as inspiration for this decadent stop where you can refine your palate with some of the France Pavilion’s most magnificent culinary masterpieces!

To eat:
• Gnocchi Parisien à la Provençal – Parisian-style dumplings with vegetables and mushrooms
• Confit de canard, pommes de terre Sarladaise – Pulled duck confit with garlic and parsley potatoes
• Macaron à la fleur d’ Oranger – Orange blossom macaron with white chocolate ganache (TRYit!)

To drink:
• La Vie en Rose frozen slush – Vodka, Grey Goose Orange, St. Germain Liquor, and white and red cranberry juice
• Kir Imperial – Sparkling wine, Chambord and black raspberry liquor
• Rosé pamplemousse cocktail – Rosé wine mixed with natural grapefruit syrup
• Kronenbourg Blanc 1664 – Fruity white beer with citrus notes

Lotus House
Hit the pavement near the China Pavilion for a garden-fresh take on spring-influenced flavors. Appease your cravings with a wide variety of Chinese cuisine, including popular street foods and bubble tea!

To eat:
• Beijing-style candied strawberries
• Spring pancake with grilled chicken and green apple
• Vegetable spring rolls

To drink:
• Popping bubble tea
• Kung Fu Punch – Vodka and triple sec with mango and orange juice
• South Sea Storm – Guava juice with light and dark rum
• Plum wine
• Tsing-Tao beer
• Lychee aerated water

Pineapple Promenade
Enjoy the Great White North with a tropical twist at the Canada side of World Showcase promenade. Then, get ready to hear your sweet tooth say, “Thank you!” as you bite into all kinds of treats featuring this popular golden fruit.

To eat:
• Pineapple soft serve
• Pineapple soft serve with Myers’s dark rum
• Pineapple soft serve with Parrot Bay coconut rum
• Sweet potato cinnamon waffle with pineapple soft serve (TRYit! selection)

To drink:
• Frozen desert violet lemonade featuring Simply Lemonade (nonalcoholic)
• Tropical Mango Pale Ale, St. John Brewers (U.S. Virgin Islands)
• Once Upon a Vine’s The Lost Slipper Sauvignon Blanc

Primavera Kitchen
Say, “Ciao!” to spring as you set sail for a land of garden-fresh foods near the Italy Pavilion. On your stop, be sure to explore the countryside’s many flavors—caprese, manicotti, torte di ricotta and fine Italian wines.

To eat:
• Caprese – Fior di latte mozzarella, roasted peppers and olio verde
• Three cheese manicotti – Egg pasta stuffed with ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan, tomato sauce and béchamel
• Torta di ricotta – Lemon cheesecake with limoncello-marinated strawberries

To drink:
• Placido Pinot Grigio
• Placido Chianti
• Bosco del Merlo Prosecco
• White peach bellini – Prosecco and white peach puree
• Strawberry rossini – Prosecco and marinated strawberries
• Frozen Italian primavera – Assorted fruit slushy with limoncello and vodka
• Moretti Lager
• Moretti La Rossa

Taste of Marrakesh
Embark on a trek near the Morocco Pavilion and educate your tastes on North African spices. Each unique flavor has been paired with fresh ingredients and can be sampled with Moroccan beer and wine at this garden oasis.

To eat:
• Lamb brewat roll with prunes and sesame
• Harissa chicken kebab with couscous salad
• Baghrir – Moroccan pancake with honey, almonds and argan oil

To drink:
• Mint iced tea
• White sangria
• Guerrouane red
• Casa Beer
• Desert Rose – Sparkling wine with pomegranate liqueur

Urban Farm Eats – NEW!
Honor the earth and all it grows with a refreshing selection from this location’s all-natural menu. Choose from a hearty array of foods and beverages, many of which have been cultivated entirely from the soil!

To eat:
• Pickled beet salad with goat cheese cream, mizuna and pistachios
• Land-grown eggplant “scallop” with romesco sauce and spaghetti squash (TRYit!)
• Ghost pepper-dusted tilapia with crisp winter melon slaw and mint oil featuring The Original Sauce Man’s Kick It Up Rub

To drink:
• Cucumber lemon spa water, finished with a sprig of fresh mint
• The Vegan Vine Chardonnay
• The Vegan Vine Cabernet Sauvignon
• Redbridge Gluten-Free Sorghum Beer, Anheuser-Busch (St. Louis, Missouri)

The Smokehouse: Barbecue and Brews
Celebrate the truly American tradition of slow-cooked flavors near The American Adventure Pavilion. Sink your teeth into savory barbecue meats and then pair each one off with craft brews from across the country.

To eat:
• Pulled pig slider with cole slaw
• Smoked beef brisket with collard greens and jalapeño corn bread
• Smoked turkey “rib” (TRYit!)
• “Piggylicious” bacon cupcake with maple frosting and pretzel crunch featuring Nueske’s® Applewood Smoked Bacon

To drink:
• Magic Hat #9, Magic Hat Brewing (South Burlington, Vermont)
• Maduro, Cigar City Brewing (Tampa, Florida)
• Fat Tire, New Belgium Brewing Company (Ft. Collins, Colorado)
• Billy’s Chilies, Twisted Pine Brewing Company (Boulder, Colorado)
• Beer Flight – Magic Hat #9, Maduro, Fat Tire and Billy’s Chilies
• The Original Rib Shack Red Wine

The Buttercup Cottage
Delight in elegant afternoon-tea offerings and fresh garden flavors near the United Kingdom Pavilion. Drop by this charming locale to sample scrumptious treats, British teas and beverages inspired by lovely English fruits and fragrances.

To eat:
• Freshly baked potato and cheddar cheese biscuit with smoked salmon tartare
• Field greens with Plant City strawberries, toasted almonds and Farmstead stilton (TRYit!)
• Pork and apple sausage roll with house-made piccalilli
• Freshly baked lemon scones with berry preserves and crème fraÎche

To drink:
• Chilled rose blush lemonade featuring Simply Lemonade with Raspberry (nonalcoholic)
• Twinings® Cold Brewed English Classic with lemon grass syrup
• Berry tea cocktail – Twinings Cold Brewed Mixed Berry Tea with Florida Cane vodka and Plant City strawberry, flavored with raspberry and açaí syrup
• Iron Horse Fairy Tale Cuvee
• Deloach Pinot Noir

Intermissions Café
Dig into your day or turn over the evening at this charming stop found right within the Festival Center. Pop inside to find all kinds of fine food and beverages—wine, cheese, wraps, salads and more!

To eat:
• Grapes
• Fruit & cheese plate
• Vegan trio
• Southwest chicken wrap
• Tuna salad with pita
• Side salad
• Asian tuna salad with noodles
• Caprese Push-Pop – Tomato, mozzarella and balsamic (TRYit! selection)

To drink:
• Hurricane Class 5 White Sangria, Florida Orange Groves (St. Petersburg, Florida)
• Garda Italian Wine Blend, Quantum Leap Winery (Orlando, Florida)
• Rogue Valley Pinot Noir, Quantum Leap Winery (Orlando, Florida)
• Martini Prosecco
• Strongbow Cider, Bulmers Cider Company (White Plains, New York)
• SweetWater Blue, SweetWater Brewing Company (Atlanta, Georgia)

Designers’ Stage Presented by HGTV
If you are a “Do it Yourself” kind of person then lookout for HGTV and DIY personalities that can help you turn your home into a springtime masterpiece.

Listed below are the celebrities that will be attending this year’s event:

• Chris Lambton: March 14 to 16, 2014
• Matt Blashaw: March 21 to 23, 2014 – NEW!
• Matt Muenster: March 28 to 30, 2014 – NEW!
• Taniya Nayak: April 4 to 6, 2014
• Amy Matthews: April 11 to 13, 2014 – NEW!
• John Gidding: April 18 to 20, 2014
• David Bromstad: April 25 to 27, 2014
• Chip Wade: May 2 to 4, 2014 – NEW!
• Genevieve Gorder: May 9 to 11, 2014
• Alison Victoria: May 16 to 18, 2014 – NEW!

Epcot’s Flower Power Concert Series
Find a comfortable spot with your favorite food and drink and rock out to some peace and love at this outdoor musical event! This is a very popular daily event, so make sure to get there early! Listed below are bands that will be performing at this year’s event:

• The Guess Who – March 7 to March 9, 2014
Known for their song “American Woman”
• Gary Lewis and The Playboys – NEW! March 14 to March 16, 2014
Known for their song “This Diamond Ring”
• The Orchestra Starring Former Members of ELO – March 21 to March 23, 2014
Known for their song “Evil Woman”
• The Lovin’ Spoonful – March 28 to March 30, 2014
Known for their song “Summer in the City”
• Paul Revere & The Raiders – April 4 to April 6, 2014
Known for their song “Good Thing”
• Village People – April 11 to April 13, 2014
Known for their song “YMCA”
• The Grass Roots – April 18 to April 20, 2014
Known for their song “Midnight Confessions”
• Herman’s Hermits Starring Peter Noone – April 25 to April 27, 2014
Known for their song “I’m Henry the VIII, I Am”
• STARSHIP Starring Mickey Thomas – May 2 to May 4, 2014
Known for their song “We Built This City”
• Chubby Checker & The Wildcats – May 9 to May 11, 2014
Known for their song “The Twist”
• Alan Parsons Live Project – NEW! May 16 to May 18, 2014
Known for their song “Eye in the Sky”

Here are a few basics to insure that there are no surprises during your visit to Epcot’s Flower & Garden Festival:

Admission to Epcot is required. While most Epcot Flower & Garden Festival events are included with your theme park ticket, many experiences require a separate purchase or a separate admission fee. Availability is limited for some experiences. Events may be rescheduled or cancelled at any time. To purchase you tickets to this event, please visit www.officialticketcenter.com or call toll free 1-877-406-4836.

UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT REVEALS MAJOR ATTRACTION NEWS

Orlando, Fla. (May 19, 2011) – Universal Orlando Resort today announced that its newest attraction will be based on Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment’s blockbuster 3-D-CGI feature “Despicable Me,” bringing minions, mayhem and a whole new level of 3-D family fun to its guests. The “Despicable Me” experience will replace the Jimmy Neutron attraction at Universal Studios Florida. Continue reading

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex 10 Year Master Plan

NASA officials announced on 4/12/11 that Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex has been selected to permanently display space shuttle Atlantis upon retirement of the Space Shuttle Program. Atlantis, one of three orbiters in the space shuttle fleet, will fly the last scheduled space shuttle mission before being retired in 2011. 

 

The $100 million exhibit for Atlantis will be the marquee element of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex’s 10-year master plan. Initial design concepts for the 65,000 square-foot home for the space-flown orbiter include viewing the space shuttle “in flight,” showing how the spacecraft worked in space and providing a unique vantage point for guests to look at the complex vehicle up close. Complementing the orbiter display will be interactive features reflecting major accomplishments of the Space Shuttle Program, including the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Space Station.

 

Officials with Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex plan to break ground on Atlantis’ new home in 2012 with a grand opening planned for 2013. The orbiter home will be located in the Shuttle Plaza at the main Visitor Complex; incorporating the Shuttle Launch Experience attraction. To purchase your Kennedy Space Center Tickets, please call our office toll free at 1-877-406-4836 TODAY.

New Years Eve Parties In Orlando 2011 ~ What Will The Orlando Theme Parks Have In Store This Year?

New Years Eve Parties In Orlando 2011

New Years Eve Parties In Orlando 2011

 

As many of the locals know, Orlando is a busy town during New Years Eve. As with any town, the New Years Eve Parties are the most popular place to be when ushering in the 2011 New Year, but in Orlando, it is big business. When New Years Eve hits Orlando, the Orlando theme parks jockey to have the best, most exciting events and the locals and travelers from around the world are the winners of this healthy competition. Continue reading

Walt Disney World Gets Ready For The Holidays 2010

Holiday Season In Style at The Walt Disney World Theme Parks

Holiday Season In Style at The Walt Disney World Theme Parks

 

If you think that your neighborhood goes all out at Christmas time then take a trip to Orlando Florida and spend a few days at the Disney theme parks during the holiday season. Walt Disney World in Orlando sets out every year to bring the holidays of yor to you and your family. Continue reading

Beer + October + Orlando = Festival

Hannah Benhariz pours a beer at Epcot's England pavillion at Disney World

Hannah Benhariz pours a beer at Epcot's England pavillion at Disney World

 

The Official Ticket Center Inc. ~ Everyone can be German in October in Florida with a variety of celebrations that are all about brats and bands, and of course, beer. So dust off your lederhosen and dirndl and get ready to celebrate Oktoberfest. Festivities include these: Continue reading

Sneak a Taste of Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

 

Belgian Waffles with Berry Compote and Whipped Cream

Belgian Waffles with Berry Compote and Whipped Cream

 

The Official Ticket Center Inc. ~ I just found out that there will be three new tasting marketplaces – Belgium, South Korea and Singapore – joining the line-up at the 15th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival kicking off in just weeks. For 45 fabulous days, you can nosh your way around World Showcase Lagoon tasting everything from savory chicken souvlaki to sweet Belgian waffles. Continue reading

Walt Disney World ~ Where’s Scoop Sanderson

 

 

Where's Scoop Sanderson Trading Pins???

Where's Scoop Sanderson Trading Pins???

 

 

The Official Ticket Center Inc. ~ “Where’s Scoop?” It is one of the more popular questions I’ve been asked during my time writing for this blog. For those who are unfamiliar, “Scoop” is Scoop Sanderson, Main Street Gazette Reporter, Town Councilman and Pin-thusiast. Fellow Disney Blogger (and awesome photographer) Gene Duncan first introduced The Official Ticket Center readers to Scoop back in May 2010. Gene also provided the great picture at the top of this article featuring Scoop holding the first Scoop Sanderson pin. Continue reading