D23 Announces 2012 Schedule of Special Events

D23 members will have a lot to look forward to in 2012. The official Disney Fan Club, which premiered in 2009, will be celebrating its third year with some spectacular and one-of-a-kind events taking place across the country for D23 members.

“To help D23 celebrate its third ‘fanniversary,’ we developed the most exciting lineup yet of special events to bring our members truly one-of-a-kind Disney experiences,” said Steven Clark, head of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club. “We’re excited to visit our fans all around the country, and to create events we hope will surprise and delight them.”

Returning in 2012 will be some favorite D23 events, including the Sip and Stroll event in Walt Disney World that takes place at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival, which will receive a Halloween twist this year, becoming Sip and Scream (October 2012). The 2012 Holiday season will bring the return of two popular events, Disney and Dickens in Burbank (December 2012) and Walt Disney World’s Magic and Merriment event (tentatively scheduled for December 7-8 and 9-10, 2012).

D23 will also be continuing its popular series of movie screenings at the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank, CA. A new film series, From the Vaults, will bring some classic Disney live-action films back to the big screen, including Newsies (February 25), Sister Act (May 26), and Treasure Island (September 22). The 50 and Fabulous series will also continue, with a screening of In Search of the Castaways set for June 23.

One of D23’s most popular offerings have been their members-only tours of the Walt Disney Studios and Walt Disney Archives in Burbank. In 2012, these tours will be offered on four weekends throughout the year, doubling their capacity. The tours will take place February 11-12, April 28-29, September 8-9, and November 10-11.

Disney animation fans will have a lot to look forward to this summer, as D23 has announced that their next “Destination D” event will celebrate 75 years of Disney animation. Destination D: 75 Years of Disney Animation will take place August 11-12, 2012 at the Disneyland Resort. The two day event will feature a gathering of Disney animation legends, top Disney animators, voice talents, and composers. Guests will be able to enjoy fascinating offerings that include demonstrations, presentations, autograph sessions, and screenings of rare animated footage from the Disney vaults.

Can’t make it out to Florida or Southern California? Don’t worry, D23 may be coming to a city near you! This spring, D23 will be hitting the road with the D23 Fanniversary Celebration. The events, which will be hosted by Disney archivists, celebrate more than 40 Disney milestones that will be celebrating an anniversary in 2012. Taking place in Orlando, New York, Chicago, Boston, San Fransisco, and Los Angeles, the events will revisit beloved Disney theme park attractions, films, TV series, and more. While the events will be open to the public, these Fanniversary Celebrations will offer special admission and surprises for the D23 members in attendance.

The biggest highlights of D23’s 2012 schedule, however, will take members directly to two important sites in the life of Walt Disney himself: Marceline, Missouri, and the Smoke Tree Ranch. These extraordinary new events, D23’s Journey to Marceline and D23 Presents the Smoke Tree Ranch Roundup, will give Disney fans a truly one-of-a-kind look at these important aspects of Disney history.

Marceline, Missouri was Walt Disney’s childhood hometown, and had a powerful impact on him and his work. D23’s daylong tour of the small town, which will be led by Disney archivists, will explore the town in ways that will have special resonance for Disney fans. The event will take place for D23 members in Marceline on March 14.

Located in Palm Springs, the Smoke Tree Ranch served as an important spot for Walt Disney. Finding the Ranch to be a source of unique inspiration in his later life, Disney referred to the spot as “my own laughing place.” D23 will offer a unique, immersive retreat at the ranch from January 23-25, where guests will stay in a Smoke Tree Ranch cottage and enjoy screenings, presentations, activities and delectable meals.

While these events already give us a lot to look forward to from D23 next year, be sure to look for even more D23 events that will be announced throughout the year, including an Epcot 30th anniversary celebration and a third anniversary party for D23 at the Disneyland Resort. For full details on D23’s 2012 special events and to join D23, visit Disney.com/D23.

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