D23

The Ultimate Disney Fan Event: D23 Expo 2024

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For Disney fans around the world, the D23 Expo has become a highly anticipated biennial event, offering a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in the magic of Disney like never before. In 2024, the event is rebranding as “D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event” and promises to be bigger and better than ever, spanning an entire week of Disney-themed festivities in Anaheim, California.

From August 4th to August 11th, 2024, the city of Anaheim will transform into a Disney fan’s paradise, with events taking place at the Anaheim Convention Center, Disneyland Resort, Honda Center, and even Angel Stadium. This comprehensive guide will provide you with all the essential details you need to know about this ultimate fan experience, including dates, ticket information, special events, and insider tips to make the most of your time.

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A Brief History of D23

Before diving into the details of the 2024 event, let’s take a quick look at the history of D23. Established in 2009, D23 (named after the year 1923, when Walt Disney arrived in California and founded what would become The Walt Disney Company) is the official fan club for Disney enthusiasts worldwide. The inaugural D23 Expo was held in September 2009 at the Anaheim Convention Center, and it quickly became a massive success, attracting thousands of fans eager to celebrate all things Disney.

Since then, the D23 Expo has been held biennially, alternating between Anaheim and Walt Disney World in Florida. Over the years, the D23 Expo has grown in size and scope, offering attendees a chance to explore the latest from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and more. From exclusive merchandise and panels to celebrity appearances and sneak peeks at upcoming projects, the D23 Expo has become a must-attend event for Disney fans of all ages.

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Dates and Venues

The 2024 D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event will take place from August 9th to August 11th, with additional events scheduled throughout the week leading up to the main event. Here’s a breakdown of the venues and dates:

  • August 4th: D23 Day at Angel Stadium (Los Angeles Angels vs. New York Mets game)
  • August 8th: D23 Day at Disneyland Resort
  • August 9th – 11th: D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event at the Anaheim Convention Center and Honda Center

For the first time, the D23 event will extend beyond the Anaheim Convention Center, with marquee showcases and presentations taking place at the nearby Honda Center in the evenings. This expansion allows for a larger audience and promises to deliver even more Disney magic.

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Ticket Information and Pricing

Tickets for D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event will go on sale in stages, with D23 Gold Members getting early access to a limited number of tickets. Here’s a breakdown of the ticket options and pricing:

D23 Ultimate Fan Pass

  • 1-Day Pass: Starting at $99 per ticket
    • Includes a reserved seat for the evening show at the Honda Center and same-day access to all experiences at the Anaheim Convention Center.
  • 3-Day Pass: Starting at $297 per ticket
    • Includes a 3-day assigned seat for evening shows at the Honda Center and 3-day access to all experiences at the Anaheim Convention Center.

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D23 Preferred Ultimate Fan Pass (Exclusive to D23 Gold Members)

  • 3-Day Pass: Starting at $999 per ticket
    • Includes a 3-day floor seat for evening shows at the Honda Center and 3-day access to all experiences at the Anaheim Convention Center.

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D23 Fan Pass (Anaheim Convention Center Access Only)

  • 1-Day Pass:
    • D23 Gold Members: $79 per ticket
    • D23 General Members: $89 per ticket
  • 3-Day Pass:
    • D23 Gold Members: $209 per ticket
    • D23 General Members: $259 per ticket

Ticket sales will follow a staggered schedule:

  • March 26th, 2024 (12 PM PT): D23 Gold Member pre-sale for a limited number of 1-day and 3-day tickets.
  • March 27th, 2024 (12 PM PT): Pre-sale for D23 Gold and General Members who are also Visa cardholders (must pay with a Visa card).
  • March 28th, 2024 (12 PM PT): General sale for all D23 Gold and General Members (while supplies last).

It’s important to note that you must be a D23 Member to purchase tickets. You can join D23 as a General Member for free or upgrade to a Gold Membership ($99.99 for an individual plan or $129.99 for a duo plan) at JoinD23.com.

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Special Events and Offerings

In addition to the main event at the Anaheim Convention Center and Honda Center, D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event will feature a variety of special events and offerings throughout the week:

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D23 Day at Disneyland Resort (August 8th)

Kick off the festivities with a special D23 Day at Disneyland Resort. Both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park will welcome ticketed D23 fans from rope drop to late night, featuring unique offerings such as a custom cavalcade, an energetic dance party, special photo opportunities, and more. Disney Junior will also host a music-filled celebration at Disney California Adventure Park.

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D23 Day at Angel Stadium (August 4th)

Before the main event, D23 fans are invited to attend the Los Angeles Angels vs. New York Mets game at Angel Stadium. The first 23,000 fans in attendance will receive a one-of-a-kind D23 Mickey Mouse bobblehead.

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D23 Night at the Anaheim Packing District (August 6th)

On August 6th, D23 will host a special night at the Anaheim Packing District, a vibrant outdoor dining and shopping destination. Details of this event have yet to be announced, but it promises to be a magical evening for Disney fans.

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The Incredibles: 20th Anniversary Outdoor Screening (August 7th)

Celebrate the 20th anniversary of the beloved Pixar film “The Incredibles” with an outdoor screening at Pearson Park Amphitheater in Downtown Anaheim. Food trucks and other festivities will be part of this special event.

D23 FAN-tastic Prizes Sweepstakes

Throughout the event, D23 will be hosting the “D23 FAN-tastic Prizes Sweepstakes,” described as the biggest sweepstakes in Disney history. Fans will have the chance to win some of the most exclusive prizes and engaging experiences from across the worlds of Disney.

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StagePass: Securing Your Spot at the Coveted Panels

One of the most sought-after experiences at D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event is the opportunity to attend the highly anticipated panels and presentations. To ensure fairness and provide attendees with the best possible chance of securing a seat, D23 has introduced the StagePass system.The StagePass is a reservation system that allows attendees to enter a random selection process for various panels and presentations across multiple stages. Here’s a breakdown of how it works:

StagePass Categories

There are two main categories of StagePass:

  1. StagePass – Hall D23: This category provides reservations for the confirmed sessions at the iconic Hall D23, where some of the most highly anticipated presentations take place, such as the Disney Parks and Resorts panel.
  2. StagePass: This category covers reservations for sessions at the Premiere Stage, Backlot Stage, Walt Disney Archives Stage, and Hyperion Stage.

Reservation Process

Approximately one month before the event, D23 will open the Reservation Random Selection Process (RSP) entry period. During this time, attendees can log in to their D23 accounts and make their StagePass selections, ranking their preferences from 1 to 4 for each category.It’s important to note that making more selections increases your chances of securing at least one reservation. However, you can only make one reservation per time slot, so choose wisely.Once the entry period closes, reservations will be randomly distributed based on preferences and availability. Attendees will receive email confirmations for any successful reservations they’ve secured.

Standby Queues

For those who don’t receive reservations for their preferred panels or presentations, standby queues will be available at all stage venues. While not guaranteed, these queues offer a chance to fill any remaining seats after reserved guests have been seated.

Arrival Times

If you’ve secured a StagePass reservation, be sure to check the confirmation email for the specified arrival time. Arriving late may result in your spot being given away to standby guests, so it’s crucial to plan accordingly.

Tips for Maximizing Your Chances

To increase your chances of securing the StagePass reservations you want, consider the following tips:

  1. Make multiple selections: As mentioned earlier, the more selections you make, the better your odds of receiving at least one reservation.
  2. Include lesser-known options: While popular panels like the Disney Parks and Resorts presentation will be in high demand, consider including some lesser-known options in your selections. These may have lower demand, increasing your chances of securing a reservation.
  3. Plan your schedule carefully: Review the event schedule thoroughly and prioritize the panels and presentations that are most important to you. This will help you make informed selections during the RSP entry period.
  4. Arrive early for standby queues: If you don’t secure reservations for your top choices, plan to arrive early and join the standby queues. Popular panels tend to fill up quickly, so getting there ahead of time is crucial.

By following these tips and taking advantage of the StagePass system, you’ll have a better chance of securing your spot at the panels and presentations that interest you most, ensuring an unforgettable experience at D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event.

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Joining D23

To attend D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, you must be a D23 Member. Here’s a quick overview of the membership options:

  • D23 General Membership: Free to join, providing access to general events, sweepstakes, and the FanFare newsletter.
  • D23 Gold Membership:
    • Individual Plan: $99.99 per year
    • Duo Plan: $129.99 per year (two Gold Memberships sharing some benefits)

Gold Membership benefits include an annual collector set, exclusive discounts and offers, access to special events, the quarterly Disney twenty-three publication, and more. You can join or upgrade your membership at JoinD23.com.

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What to Expect at the Event

D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event promises to be a truly immersive experience for Disney fans of all ages. Here’s a glimpse of what you can expect:

Show Floor and Pavilions

The Anaheim Convention Center will feature an expansive show floor filled with interactive experiences, exhibits, and activities showcasing the latest from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and more. Expect to see pavilions dedicated to each of these beloved brands, offering a behind-the-scenes look at upcoming projects, merchandise, and more. One highlight will be the “A Great Big Beautiful Car Show” exhibit from the Walt Disney Archives, which promises to be a first-of-its-kind display celebrating Disney’s love for automobiles.

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Panels and Presentations

Throughout the three days at the Anaheim Convention Center, attendees can enjoy a wide range of panels and presentations covering various aspects of the Disney universe. From sneak peeks at upcoming films and TV shows to discussions with animators, directors, and actors, there will be something for every Disney fan.

Marquee Showcases at the Honda Center

The true highlight of D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event will be the marquee showcases taking place at the Honda Center each evening. These massive presentations will cover the latest from Disney’s film studios, television and streaming services, live stage shows on Broadway, and, most importantly, the Disney theme parks.

  • Disney Entertainment Showcase (August 9th, 7 PM): A star-studded event offering an exclusive look at the movies, series, and shows fans love, as well as a glimpse into what’s to come from Disney’s film studios, television, streaming services, and live stage shows.
  • Disney Experiences Showcase (August 10th, 7 PM): Hosted by Disney Experiences Chairman Josh D’Amaro, this showcase will feature the latest updates, surprises, and performances related to Disney’s theme parks, resorts, and other experiences.
  • Disney Legends Ceremony (August 11th, 5 PM): Hosted by Ryan Seacrest, this prestigious ceremony will honor the 2024 class of Disney Legends, luminaries who have made significant contributions to The Walt Disney Company.

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Shopping and Merchandise

The D23 Expo has always been a prime destination for Disney fans to get their hands on exclusive and limited-edition merchandise. Here are some details on the shopping and merchandise experience at past D23 Expos and what to expect at the upcoming 2024 event:

Past Popular D23 Expo Merchandise

The merchandise offerings at D23 Expos have been vast and varied, catering to fans of all Disney brands and franchises. Some of the most popular items from previous years include:

2019 D23 Expo

  • Dapper Dans Collection: This line featured adult t-shirts, a spirit jersey, pins, plush toys, Funko POP! figures, and more inspired by the iconic Dapper Dans barbershop quartet from Main Street, U.S.A. 
  • Mickey’s of Glendale: The Dream Store set up shop with exclusive merchandise designed by Disney Imagineers, including hats, t-shirts, polo shirts, hoodies, and other apparel. 
  • Retro-inspired Collectibles: Vintage-style items like the Goofy “Dippy Dawg” Plush and other merchandise with a nostalgic flair were big hits. 

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2022 D23 Expo

  • Exclusive Mugs: Unique drinkware like the Mad Hatter Tea Party Mug and the Dumbo Mug were released as expo exclusives and quickly made their way to the parks. 
  • Logo Merchandise: Apparel, accessories, and collectibles featuring the D23 Expo 2022 logo were popular souvenirs. 

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Shopping Experience at D23 2024

For the 2024 D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, Disney has promised an “expanded shopping experience” with even more exclusive merchandise. 

 A few highlights:

  • Exclusive merchandise will be available for purchase during the ticket checkout process, with a limited quantity per item. This is the only opportunity to buy these items. 
  • The D23 Emporium shopping pavilion will return with a vast selection of event-exclusive items. 
  • Expect to see merchandise inspired by Disney’s upcoming films, shows, and park experiences, as well as nostalgic collectibles and apparel.
  • Limited-edition pins, Funko POP! figures, plush toys, spirit jerseys, and other fan-favorite items will likely make a comeback.

With the expanded format of D23 2024, the shopping opportunities are set to be bigger and better than ever before. Fans should prepare for long lines and quick sellouts of the most coveted merchandise, as these exclusive items tend to go fast among the passionate Disney fan community.

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Fan Cosplay and Community Connection

One of the most exciting aspects of D23 is the opportunity to connect with fellow Disney fans from around the world. The event shines a spotlight on the creativity and passion of the Disney fan community, with cosplayers bringing their favorite characters to life in vibrant and imaginative ways. Whether you’re a seasoned cosplayer or simply enjoy admiring the incredible craftsmanship, the D23 event is a celebration of the shared love for Disney that unites fans of all ages and backgrounds.

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Where to Stay: Top Hotel Options for D23 2024

With thousands of Disney fans descending upon Anaheim for D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, securing the right accommodations is crucial. Here are some of the best hotel options to consider, along with details on pricing, location, amenities, and transportation to the event venues.

Disneyland Resort Hotels

Staying at one of the three on-site Disneyland Resort hotels is the ultimate convenience for D23 attendees. Not only are these hotels just steps away from the Disneyland parks, but they also offer easy access to the Anaheim Convention Center and other D23 event venues.

  1. Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
    • Pricing: Rates start at $800+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: Adjacent to Disney California Adventure Park and a short walk to the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Luxurious accommodations, themed pools, character dining, and direct park entry
    • Transportation: Complimentary shuttle service to the Anaheim Convention Center
  2. Disneyland Hotel
    • Pricing: Rates start at $700+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: Adjacent to Downtown Disney District and a short walk to the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Themed pools, character dining, and monorail access to Downtown Disney
    • Transportation: Complimentary shuttle service to the Anaheim Convention Center
  3. Disney’s Pixar Place Hotel
    • Pricing: Rates start at $600+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: Across from Disney California Adventure Park and a short walk to the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Themed pools, character dining, and easy access to Downtown Disney
    • Transportation: Complimentary shuttle service to the Anaheim Convention Center

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Hotels Near the Anaheim Convention Center

For those seeking more affordable options, several hotels are located within walking distance or a short drive from the Anaheim Convention Center.

  1. Anaheim Marriott
    • Pricing: Rates start at $350+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: Directly across from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Outdoor pool, fitness center, and on-site dining options
    • Transportation: Walking distance to the Anaheim Convention Center
  2. Hilton Anaheim
    • Pricing: Rates start at $300+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: 0.5 miles from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Outdoor pool, fitness center, and multiple dining options
    • Transportation: Complimentary shuttle service to the Anaheim Convention Center
  3. Anaheim Majestic Garden Hotel
    • Pricing: Rates start at $250+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: 0.7 miles from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Outdoor pool, fitness center, and on-site restaurant
    • Transportation: Walking distance or short drive to the Anaheim Convention Center

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Budget-Friendly Options

For those looking to save on accommodations, there are several budget-friendly hotels within a short drive or shuttle ride from the D23 event venues.

  1. Best Western Plus Anaheim Inn
    • Pricing: Rates start at $150+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: 2.5 miles from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Outdoor pool, fitness center, and complimentary breakfast
    • Transportation: Shuttle service to the Anaheim Convention Center (additional fee)
  2. Anaheim Plaza Hotel & Suites
    • Pricing: Rates start at $130+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: 3 miles from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Outdoor pool, fitness center, and on-site restaurant
    • Transportation: Shuttle service to the Anaheim Convention Center (additional fee)
  3. Anaheim Fairfield Inn by Marriott
    • Pricing: Rates start at $120+ per night during D23 week
    • Location: 4 miles from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Amenities: Outdoor pool, fitness center, and complimentary breakfast
    • Transportation: Short drive or ride-share service to the Anaheim Convention Center

It’s important to note that hotel rates and availability can fluctuate, so it’s recommended to book your accommodations as early as possible to secure the best rates and options. Additionally, consider factors such as proximity to event venues, transportation options, and desired amenities when choosing your hotel.

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Getting Around: Transportation Options for D23

With multiple venues spread across Anaheim, transportation will be a crucial consideration for attendees of D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event. Here are some of the best options to help you navigate the various event locations with ease:

Driving and Parking

For those planning to drive to the event, several parking options are available near the Anaheim Convention Center and other venues. However, it’s important to note that parking can be expensive and limited, especially during peak event times.

  1. Anaheim Convention Center Parking
    • Pricing: $20 per day for self-parking, $30 per day for preferred parking
    • Location: Adjacent to the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Availability: Limited spaces, so it’s recommended to arrive early or consider alternative transportation options
  2. Honda Center Parking
    • Pricing: $20 per day for self-parking
    • Location: Adjacent to the Honda Center, where evening showcases will be held
    • Availability: Limited spaces, so it’s recommended to arrive early or consider alternative transportation options
  3. Off-Site Parking Lots
      1. Angel Stadium Parking
      • $10 per day
      • Includes complimentary shuttle to D23 Expo
      1. Garden Walk
      • Located a few blocks northeast of the Anaheim Convention Center
      1. Disney’s Toy Story Parking Lot
      • Across the street from Convention Way
      • Opens at 7 AM
    • Pricing: Varies, but generally more affordable than on-site parking
    • Location: Several private lots and garages are located within walking distance of the event venues
    • Availability: Spaces may be limited during peak event times

Shuttle Services

To alleviate the stress of driving and parking, D23 will offer complimentary shuttle services between select hotels and event venues. These shuttles are a convenient option for attendees staying at participating hotels.

  1. Disneyland Resort Hotel Shuttles
  2. Partner Hotel Shuttles
    • Service: Complimentary shuttle service for guests staying at select partner hotels
    • Route: Shuttles will run between participating hotels and the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Participating Hotels: A list of participating hotels and shuttle schedules will be provided closer to the event

It’s important to note that shuttle schedules and availability may be limited, so it’s recommended to plan your transportation accordingly and allow for extra travel time.

Ride-Share Services

For those who prefer the convenience of ride-share services, popular options like Uber and Lyft will be readily available throughout the event. These services can be a great option for getting to and from event venues, as well as exploring other attractions in the Anaheim area.

  1. Uber and Lyft
    • Pricing: Varies based on distance, time of day, and demand
    • Availability: Ride-share services are widely available in the Anaheim area
    • Convenience: No need to worry about parking or navigating unfamiliar areas
  2. Designated Ride-Share Pick-Up/Drop-Off Zones
    • Location: Designated ride-share zones will be established at the Anaheim Convention Center and other event venues
    • Signage: Look for clear signage and follow instructions from event staff to locate the designated zones

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Public Transportation

For those looking for a more budget-friendly option, Anaheim’s public transportation system, operated by the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA), offers bus and rail services that can get you to and from the event venues.

  1. OCTA Bus Service
    • Routes: Several bus routes serve the Anaheim Convention Center and surrounding areas
    • Pricing: Single-ride fares start at $2, with discounted day passes available
    • Convenience: Buses run frequently, but travel times may be longer than other transportation options
  2. ARTIC (Anaheim Regional Transportation Intermodal Center)
    • Service: ARTIC is a transportation hub that connects Anaheim to various rail and bus services
    • Location: Approximately 1.5 miles from the Anaheim Convention Center
    • Options: Metrolink commuter rail, Amtrak, and OCTA bus services are available at ARTIC

Regardless of your transportation choice, it’s essential to plan ahead and allow for extra travel time, especially during peak event hours. Additionally, be sure to follow all event guidelines and instructions regarding designated pick-up/drop-off zones and parking areas.

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Tips for Attending D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event

With so much to see and do at D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, it’s essential to plan ahead and make the most of your time. Here are some tips to help you navigate the event like a pro:

Plan Your Schedule

As soon as the event schedule is released, take the time to carefully review it and prioritize the panels, presentations, and experiences that are most important to you. Inevitably, there will be scheduling conflicts, so having a plan in place will help you make the most of your time.

Download the D23 App

The official D23 app will be your best friend during the event. It will provide up-to-date schedules, maps, and information about all the offerings, allowing you to easily navigate the various venues and plan your day. Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

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Arrive Early

Whether you’re attending a panel, presentation, or just exploring the show floor, it’s always a good idea to arrive early. Popular events and exhibits tend to fill up quickly, so getting there ahead of time will ensure you have a good spot and don’t miss out on anything.

Wear Comfortable Shoes

You’ll be doing a lot of walking during D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, so make sure to wear comfortable shoes. The last thing you want is to be slowed down by sore feet or blisters.

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Stay Hydrated and Nourished

With so much excitement and activity, it’s easy to forget to take care of yourself. Be sure to stay hydrated and nourished throughout the day by packing snacks and water or taking breaks to grab a meal.

Embrace the Community

One of the most magical aspects of D23 is the sense of community and shared passion for Disney. Don’t be afraid to strike up conversations with fellow attendees, admire their cosplay creations, and make new friends who share your love for all things Disney.

Book Your Hotel Early

With thousands of Disney fans descending on Anaheim for the event, hotels in the area are likely to fill up quickly. Book your accommodations as early as possible to ensure availability and the best rates.

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Additional Event Details

  • Standby queues will be available for panels, presentations, and show floor experiences.
  • Overnight queuing is not allowed around the Anaheim Convention Center perimeter.
  • Registration for the Mousequerade costume contest is now open.
  • The Spotlight Stage on the main show floor will host conversations with stars and storytellers.

Disney Legends Award Details

  • Disney Legend honorees receive a two-foot-tall bronze Disney Legends sculpture.
  • They will participate in a handprint ceremony, with their bronzed prints displayed at Disney’s Burbank headquarters.
  • A total of 318 Disney Legends have been named so far.

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Conclusion

D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event promises to be a truly unforgettable experience for Disney fans of all ages. From the expansive show floor and exclusive merchandise to the marquee showcases and special events, this week-long celebration of Disney magic is not to be missed. Whether you’re a lifelong Disney enthusiast or a newcomer to the world of Disney fandom, D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event promises to be an unforgettable experience that will leave you feeling inspired, entertained, and even more connected to the magic that Disney has brought to generations of fans worldwide.

As the event draws closer, be sure to stay tuned for updates, announcements, and additional details on the official D23 website and social media channels. With the incredible lineup of panels, presentations, exhibits, and special events, this is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to immerse yourself in the Disney universe like never before. So mark your calendars, join or renew your D23 membership, and get ready to embark on a journey filled with wonder, imagination, and the timeless storytelling that has made Disney a beloved part of our lives.

Whether you’re a die-hard fan or simply looking to create cherished memories with your loved ones, D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event is an experience you won’t want to miss. As Walt Disney himself once said, “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.” This August in Anaheim, Disney fans from around the globe will come together to celebrate their shared dreams and passion, creating lasting memories and forging new connections that will undoubtedly inspire future generations of Disney magic. So pack your bags, dust off your Mickey ears, and get ready to be a part of something truly special. The ultimate Disney fan experience awaits!