When Disney announced the new Fantasyland expansion project and that Toontown was soon to be a memory, everyone wondered where Mickey and Minnie would go? Rumors were rampant, but now the wait is over. With the scrimshaw over the old Exposition Hall, now re-named the Town Square Theater finally gone, Mickey (Magician Mickey!), Minnie, and the Storybook Princesses have a new home for their meet and greets.
There are separate lines for Magician Mickey and the Storybook Princesses. For all who remember the old Exposition Hall and the little theater and camera display, you will be amazed by just how much room is back there. The queue area is large, bright, and cheery with pictures of Mickey on the wall, many which are animated. In the Princess queue, the pictures offer up a little quiz on the Princesses. What’s really neat about the new meet and greet is that Fastpass is now offered. Right around the corner from Tony’s Town Square next to the Chapeau hats you will find the Fastpass kiosks. Even the kiosks are beautifully detailed, and signs above ensure you are getting Fastpass for the right line. Upon entering, Magician Mickey’s line forms to the right and the Princess’ line is to the left. The whole queue is roped into lanes: both stand-by and Fastpass. Cast Members are on hand to guide you in the right direction.
The “backstory” to Magician Mickey, according to several Cast Members is that you are waiting for Mickey as a guest at his back stage meet and greet before his regular show. As you can see by the pictures, Disney did a wonderful job in the decor: soft neutral colors, soft lighting, and elegant chandeliers. The carpet is a rich red with a yellow pattern, although it looks busy, the rug has a nice calming effect! But the detail–as always!–is what stands out. Check on the walls. You’ll see Mickey has his own mailbox, and the signs over the entrance queue lines are beautifully done as are the poster art.
The Imagineers outdid themselves on Mickey’s actual meet and greet area. The small room looks exactly like a Magician’s backstage dressing room! I was totally impressed with it. Keep a sharp eye out, for there are many visual treats to be seen. As you enter, look up atop the large box and see a black hat with rabbit ears sticking out. When you round the corner, a visual feast for the eyes awaits you. I will not tell much more as not to be a spoiler, but I’ll bet my annual pass that it will take several trips through that room before most guests can take it all in!
The Princess’ area is just as impressive. Although you will not see many props, you will see some of the most breathtaking scenery back-drops for the princesses. (A la Peter Ellenshaw!) There are three areas for each princess, each with its own unique background. Again, not to play the spoiler, suffice to say, you will be impressed when you see it live. Pictures don’t do it justice.
After your meet and greet, you exit into Mickey’s “Curtain Call” Gift Shop. This store, again beautifully detailed, is offering Mickey and Princess Treasures.
I was informed that this is just a temporary home for the princesses until the Fantasyland expansion is complete. I asked an area manager what was in store for the future space, and she did not know. Disney always plays close to the vest when it comes to future surprises for its guests. I cannot wait to see what is planned for this space next…I know Disney will not disappoint! Please enjoy the uploaded pictures of the new meet and greet…
Contributed by: Bill I. (NDH #35). Bill is our resident historian.