Tuesday, June 24, 2014


DisneySMMoms On-the-Road Conference ~ Chicago ~ June 18, 2014

The word Disney is synonymous with Magic.  Whether you are talking about the fireworks show at Magic Kingdom, meeting Cinderella on a Disney Cruise, watching the Cars movie for the 120th time or opening the Disney store in your hometown, any experience with Disney is magical.  Including a visit with the bossman in Chicago.

Last week, I had the privilege of attending the Disney Social Media Moms On-the-Road Conference in Chicago.  Filled with magical moments, like meeting with Mickey Mouse, it was a day of networking, motivation, and bit of magical dreaming….

Let’s start with the dreaming, shall we?

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
Magic Kingdom’s newest ride, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train officially opened to the public at the end of May and no surprise, it already has long line waits and fastpasses that are gone by noon each day.  I able to ride this amazing roller-coaster last month at a preview event and it is worth the wait.  It boasts the “smoothest roller-coaster ride” and is being called the “crown jewel of Fantasyland.”

The ride is hosting an online competition and you have the chance to be the 8th miner and win a 7 night stay at Walt Disney World & ride this amazing ride.  Each week there is a new challenge - this week they are asking for your "miner fashion look"! Visit bethe8thminer.com to learn more about this video contest.

Disney's Gary Buchanan presenting on how he Rocks his DisneySide
Disney Parks Blog
The best place to hear up-to-date Disney news is through the Disney ParksBlog.  Featuring over 100 authors, this blog publishes daily articles ranging from park news to fashion to food.  Realizing that fans would really enjoy behind-the-scenes tours and details, when the new Fantasyland was developed at Magic Kingdom, the blog featured over 43 blog posts that included photos and videos with the imaginers.  All in the Details” was the most popular blog series and you can bet there will be more. 

Toby’s Magic Kingdom Adventure
In a roomful of moms (and a few dads), heartwarming stories go over well, which is why I have to tell you about Toby.  Toby is a special bear that has an amazing story.  Toby’s owners received him from their father when we served in the military.  His paws tells them their Daddy loves them.  Sadly, their father passed away, and Toby holds a very special place in their heart.  When they accidently left Toby behind on a recent trip to Walt Disney World, Disney employees found him and took him on a very special tour of the Magic Kingdom before sending him home. Toby arrived home with a photo album full of his fun. Magic, right?

Huggies MomInspired Grant Program
Have you come up with an amazing product that helps you be a better mom? Huggies wants to know about it!  We heard a few stories from Moms about products they created that helped in their day-to-day life and Huggies, through the MomInspired program, awarded them a $15,000 grant that enabled them to take their product to market.

For example, Lily Winnail found the baby car seat carrier to be uncomfortable when carrying it on her arm (can you relate?).  So, she created a pad that goes over the arm of the carrier to help cushion it when you carry it on your arm. Brilliant!  She has been able to grow Padalily online and into specialty stores with the MomInspired grant from Huggies.

Huggies just opened up the application process last week and is accepting submissions through September.  If you have an idea that worked, apply for the grant.  You never know where your inspiration can take you. Full details on the Huggies MomInspired Grant are here.

HP Printing from your Phone?
Yes! Did you know you could?  I didn’t either.  But seeing the need for wireless printing from our iPhone & Android phones, Hewlett-Packard came up with the technology to do it. Now, why on earth am I talking about printers in an article about Disney?  A room full of moms was the perfect audience for HP to show how their products help make life a little bit easier.  Focusing on daily challenges we may experience, we were shown solutions made easy.  For example, have you found out that it was your child’s teacher’s birthday the night before??  If I had an HP printer, I can easily print out a card of gift certificate without having to create anything. Check out what they have to offer here.

I still get butterflies every time I meet Mickey!
I was so very excited to see that the conference was filled with motivating stories as well as social media/blogging tips.  Yes, we had our share of fairy dust but there was a great deal of practical advice as well.  We finished the day with Ramon De Leon, a motivational speaker who challenged us to “create content with the passion of a child…don’t be afraid to fail.”

As a travel blogger, it was incredibly refreshing to spend a day hearing things I love about Disney but also being motivated and fed to become an even better blogger.  But more importantly, I was honored to be invited to the conference.  I have always loved Disney and feel privileged when I get to tell my friends and y'all all about what's new at Disney.

I never expected to get so much out of it to help with my blogging experience.  I took away many tips throughout the day and motivation, that I came home refreshed and ready to write! So it was a great conference and even though I was just a WDW in May, I am more ready than ever to head back!

Disclosure: I was invited to attend the Disney Social Media Moms On-the-Road Conference.  I was not asked to blog about the conference or any of the products we heard about.  I was not paid to write this.  All opinions are my own. 


Mikita said...

I'm so thrilled you enjoyed the DisneySMMoms OTR Chicago! I know the team had a great time planning the agenda and presenting to everyone.

Dani said...

I'm so glad you had fun! I'm going to the Phoenix conference tomorrow and I am SO excited! Thank you for sharing what it was like!