“Ghost Writers Unite”
The Spirits have been quite vocal about recognizing some of their favorite Cast Members for all they do to keep the public informed about the exciting happenings throughout Walt Disney World. For the 999 Happy Haunts that reside inside our Mansion, a few of those CM’s stand out as Honorary Haunts, and from time to time we will introduce them to you.
This week, we again visit our friends at the Disney Parks Blog to spotlight a Dear Lady that isn’t afraid to scare up a chilling story or two to share about our beloved Mansion. Jenn Fickley-Baker was hired as a writer by Disney in 2001 and joined the Disney Parks Blog team in 2011. Her passion for writing and her love of Disney comes through in her many Blog posts that spotlight what’s happening inside The Magic Kingdom. She gives readers the ability to feel as if they’re right there in the Park experiencing everything first hand. From stories pertaining to Halloween Happenings or Christmas Celebrations, Jenn has it covered. What we love most about this fabulous Mortal is the way she gets involved in the Disney Parks Blog Meet-Ups she helps arrange and Host. Anyone who has attended one of these special events can attest to the level of detail involved in planning an experience to remember for lucky guests! We also love how Jenn gets into the “Spirit” of things by allowing the wonderful Disney Make-up artists to put her into character! It’s like she’s one of us! For more information on Jenn, catch her blog at disneyparks.disney.go.com and follow her on Twitter @DisneyParksJenn. Until next week…..Happy Haunting!
June 7th, 2017
Get Your Grub on, Mortals!
This week, on The Enchanted Tiki Talk Podcast, I spoke of some rumors that have been swarming the Magic Kingdom like a perch of a thousand Bats. A new restaurant themed after the Haunted Mansion could soon be coming to the delight of Foolish Mortals, young and old. Imagine, entering through a heavy, creaky door, to be welcomed by one of our personal Butlers into a seemingly familiar foyer. There, you wait….enjoying a sudden, lovely thunderstorm outside the windows, while you gaze at the numerous Family Portraits adorning the walls, until your table is ready inside our spacious Dining Room. Once inside the Dining Room, you realize you’ve witnessed the ghosts that materialize for your dining pleasure, before. There’s Pickwick, hanging from a chandelier…..the Gentlemen Duelists….our “Ghostess of Honor” blowing out her birthday cake candles….”Great Caesar’s Ghost”…..and a sinister Organist, playing manically, every half hour to the joy of several ballroom dancers on the adjacent floor. Don’t forget to ask your Serving Maid for a list of devilishly Delightful desserts. As your dining experience comes to an end, you exit through a cemetery, where your’s truly might possibly be located. Don’t forget to take a photo with the Caretaker and his Dog, and heed the warning from Madame Leota to be wary of HitchHiking Ghosts!
As offered on the Podcast, I listed a few suggestions that several of our residents have come up with for menu items, such as….Barbecued Bat Wings, Little Leota’s Lentil Soup, HitchHiking Ghost’s Chicken Thumbs, and Brother Dave’s BearClaws….a wonderful breakfast treat! What would your menu suggestion be? Tweet them to me @DepartedDave and we may feature them on a future Blogpost or Podcast! One of my Mortal Friends, @woodysquarebush and his wife, suggested “Grim Grinning Ghoulash” and “Hatbox Toast.” We love those suggestions! Who doesn’t love toast?! Until next week, Dearies…..Happy Dining! Nom Nom Nom!
May 31st, 2017
“Avast Ye Scurvy Dogs”
Every now and then, we Haunted Mansion Ghosts like to explore throughout the Magic Kingdom and enjoy the Magic that happens at some of the other attractions. With the recent release of the 5th Theatrical version of The Pirates of the Caribbean, “Dead Men Tell No Tales” I thought it might be a perfect time to recognize one of my favorite attractions, other than the one I reside in. There are a few similarities to both attractions, the most obvious being that both are “Dark” rides and provide much relief from the Florida heat. But did you know, that Marc Davis, who created much of the artwork for the Haunted Mansion, also did so for the Pirates attraction? He is responsible for the overall interior design of the project. Who doesn’t love the memorable song, “Yo-Ho, a Pirates Life for Me?” The lyrics for that song and the beloved Haunted Mansion’s “Grim Grinning Ghosts” were written by Francis Xavier Atencio ( X Atencio to those that knew him). X is also the voice of the original Jolly Roger Skull and Crossbones you encounter just before the boat plunges down the first waterfall in Disneyland. Of course, there are also “Ghost” Pirates! All this Pirate talk makes me think that this is a great time to introduce one of my Twitter friends, Kevin. He goes by @TerriblePirate7 and is a self proclaimed “Wanna Be Pirate”. He hails from Ohio, like so many other great people I know, and isn’t shy about reminding everyone that he’s the “Disney Felons League” fantasy football champion. We Ghosts have no use for Fantasy Football, but I thought it an important mention to a Mortal from Ohio. Thank you, Kevin….for being a friend to the Spirits at Walt Disney World! Until next week, my Dear Friends…Happy Haunting!
May 24th, 2017
“Grab A Good Book Mortals”
Here at the Haunted Mansion we have a vast library of priceless first editions….only ghost stories, of course. We boast marble busts of the greatest Ghost Writers the literary world has ever known. They have all retired here, and keep watch over their Mortal life’s works. Why… Fans have even written books about our Humble Abode….but we’ll get into that another time…. for now, I’d like to introduce you to this week’s Fan Spotlight. R.J. Crowther Jr. (@RJCrowtherJr) is a Sci Fi/Horror writer and a bookseller with the Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore located in San Diego, California. You may call him Rob….While I’m sure Rob frequents the home of those Happy Haunts on the left coast a bit more, he’s a true Haunter of both Ghastly Mansions and all things that bump in the night! Rob recently got a “behind the scenes” look at how we roll at the Disneyland Mansion and was so impressed with the welcome he got from the staff and our 999 Happy Haunts, that he gave a #CastCompliment shout out to Ghost Hostess, Danielle! Its the Cast Members that make our Magic work! Check out Rob on Twitter and all the happenings at Mysterious Galaxy Books by following @RJCrowtherJr and @MystGalaxyBooks! And don’t be alarmed if you see him hand in hand with his shadow, it’s one of the many things we Ghosts love about this Wonderful Mortal! Until next time, Dearies…..Happy Haunting!
Kindly watch your step as you board, please, and heed this warning….the Spirits will only appear if you remain quietly seated at all times. One of the most famous voice overs in Disney Park history is that of “The Ghost Host”, voiced by actor Paul Frees. Throughout your tour, the Ghost Host provides a “voice” for the Happy Haunts residing in the Mansion, although, as revealed in the portrait Chamber, he is actually one of us! Remember…..when finding a way out, there’s always my way! Listen closely, the next time you are exiting the Portrait Chamber, for faint voices urging you to stay together and for those stragglers….to get out! The voice over work in the Haunted Mansion certainly is an important part of your experience, as it is in the rest of the Park. Voice overs can be heard in every attraction, every land, and just about every turn you make throughout Walt Disney World One of the voices I’m sure you’ve heard during your visits is that of my good friend, and mortal volunteer, Chris Reid. With announcements from Disney Springs, Club Disney, Atlantic Dance Hall, and Star Wars Weekends. Chris has been heard all over! He even voiced the 2015 and 2017 New Years Eve celebrations! Chris is an avid fan of The Haunted Mansion and even has a “Wallpaper” tattoo on his arm to prove it. I’ve purposely included a picture for evidence! We look forward to having him visit us to pay his respects, he’s such a polite young man! If you are interested in finding out more about Chris, visit his website at chris-reid.com or follow him on Twitter @ChrisReidVoice. Until next week…..Happy Haunting!
May 10th, 2017
I often have fans ask me on my Twitter account, “What’s your favorite thing about living in the Haunted Mansion?” My reply is always the same….it’s my interaction with the guests. There’s nothing better than seeing Mansion Fans quickly making their way to our entrance right after rope drop! The early grave robbers are always the most knowledgeable and pay attention to every detail of the queue. They linger as long as possible in each scene before boarding their Doom Buggy. You can just “feel” their excitement. I have always said that Haunted Mansion fans are the true enthusiasts that breathe life into the rest of the Magic Kingdom….of course, I am a bit biased. However, it’s not just the guests that are fanatical about our Humble Abode…. Cast Members are just as faithful to our 999 Happy Haunts. Allow me to introduce my favorite Cast Member and Haunted Mansion devotee, Steven Miller. Steven is the Merchandise Communications Manager with Disney Theme Park Merchandise. He started his career in the Walt Disney World College Program in the Summer of 1997 at Pleasure Island and served as an official representative of Disney with the 2001-2002 Walt Disney World Ambassador Team. He is also the Host of “Disney Parks Blog Unboxed” where each month you can see the Disney Delivery Guy bring in some new merchandise for Steven to reveal. We Ghosts are so fond of this CM that we call him our “HM Pal”. He has even dressed up as one of us to celebrate occasions close to our, as Constance would describe it…..”Beating Hearts.” He is dashing, dapper, and a huge fan of Twin Peaks….why, he even has a kitty cat named “Kevin Flynn.” So, all 999 of us take our hats off, to this fine gentleman, and thank him for being such a good friend to our Dearly Departed residents! We can’t wait to see what cool HM merch may show up next at Memento Mori and Shop Disney Parks App! But….may I suggest something in the theme of yours truly, hmmmm? Until next week, Dearies……..Happy Haunting!
May 3rd, 2017
Welcome Foolish Mortals……
Please do not scroll down on the blog….I will scroll for you! HaHa! Only kidding, dear ones! A ghost needs to keep his sense of humor sharp, now doesn’t he? It’s not easy coming up with one-liners and witty remarks daily on the Twitter account. The last thing one wants is to over-do the same stale old jokes, right? So, some days I rely on the Haunted Mansion fans to get me in the Haunting mood for a good days scare….and that they do! Allow me to introduce to you four outstanding young ladies…… @PrincesssMeggss, @shhaaddiicckkss, @Ann_MWheless and @_maaggiiee. These happy and energetic Mortals are about the biggest Disney Fans you will ever meet, and they love the Haunted Mansion. On each trip to the Magic Kingdom they “Look me up” and join in making our Swinging Wake one not to forget! A few trips ago, they even brought their “Death Certificates” and we started making their “Final Arrangements” to become…shall we say, Charter Members of our exclusive club? It has truly been my honor to interact with them during their visits…I mean, how can you go wrong with someone who’s motto is, “Disney is Life?” And who’s dream is to be a performer at Disney? Hard to argue with that. Plus they laugh at my jokes….I mean, hey….what can I say? Sometimes I just DIE laughing at myself! Until next week, Dearies…..Stay BOOtiful!
April 26th, 2017
April 26th, 2017
To this weeks edition of The Swinging Wake! Today I’d like to ask one question of our Guests at Walt Disney World’s Haunted Mansion…..what’s your hurry? I observe so many of you…..running up to the door to be the first to enter the Portrait Chamber, or passing by quickly with FastPass in hand! Even when in line, so many are too involved either with cell phones or eagerness to get inside. But, what of the grounds surrounding you? Yours truly resides on those hallowed grounds. Be a friend and stop what you’re doing to pay your respects to the Dearly Departed laid to rest in the Family Plot or in our many Crypts located within our Queue area. Did you know there’s a Murder Mystery to be solved? Stop to interact with the Dread Family Busts for clues to this family’s demise! Our Composer’s crypt offers a musical challenge and The Sea Captain’s Crypt contains Captain Culpepper Clyne pickled in brine. Fond of reading? You may enjoy the Library Crypt where haunted books spell out a cryptic message that only you can decipher! If these activities don’t excite you or you’re just in a hurry, like most mortals are, a wave or simple gesture towards the cemetery side will suffice in keeping these ground dwelling haunts…..Happy. Many of you do take the time to say hello to me during your visits and its so appreciated! Your pictures and interactions on Twitter keep me feeling alive! so to speak. Recently, one of my favorite Mortals, Eric Darmofal @edarm1221, took his family on a trip to Walt Disney World and stopped by to pay his respects. He even brought me a Churro! Now thats what I call a true offering! It’s an honor to have friends like Eric follow me on Twitter….and I follow back! Look me up for some Spooky Fun, I’m @DepartedDave! Until next week, My Dearies……Hurrrry Baaaaack
Greetings, Foolish Mortals!
April 19th, 2017
Allow me to introduce myself…..I’m Brother Dave, Resident Ghost of The Haunted Mansion at Walt Disney World…. I chased a bear into a cave. You may hear me from time to time on Enchanted Tiki Talk in my segment, “Haunted Mansion Minute.” Well….with the reintroduction of The Enchanted Tiki Talk Blog, I have been asked to be a voice from beyond the grave once a week. So every Wednesday, you can expect some Thrills and Chills to come to your inbox! I will also feature a fan interaction from my twitter account that best represents the Haunted Mansion “Spirit” that all 999 Happy Haunts strive to display!
Recently, our resident spooks had the honor of hosting royalty to our humble abode, Princess Anya! Anya has been fighting Leukemia since she was five years old and is still on the bone marrow registry looking for that 10/10 match. Her Dad calls her, “Princess Anya, the Overcomer” and one visit to her Facebook page will convince anyone of that! Anya had a well deserved break meeting new friends and having a blast at Walt Disney World before she returned home to New Jersey. We hope she returns to visit all of her favorite attractions and characters real soon! Until then, we will light our candle of hope that this beautiful young lady reaches full recovery and shines her life like never before to the world! You can follow Princess Anya’s progress on Facebook at her page, Princess Anya The Overcomer and on Twittter @1PrincessAnya. For more information on how to be a life saving donor, go to join.bethematch.org/cure4anya. It is this Happy Haunt’s mission to interact with WDW Guests as they visit a place that brings smiles to their faces and help create that moment of Magic that allows them to feel as special as we know they are. There’s always room for one more, so please….hurrrry baaaaack!