Final PhotoMagic 2013 Update + Roll Call

By Adam Hansen on October 16th, 2013   |    Posted in:  News   |    30 Comments

We are just days away from PhotoMagic 2013 starting in Walt Disney World and all the final planning is underway. Ryan is confirming his flight, Alan is double checking his hotel reservation, I’m charging all my camera batteries and Cory is….well…nothing because he lives at Disney!

We wanted to post one final update leading up to the event to make sure everyone is on the same page. We also have a new contest to announce and a few updates to the schedule.

So let’s jump right into it!

Pre-Event Meetup

Due to some last minute changes, we had to announce that the pre-event meetup was canceled the other night. Luckily, one of the members of the forum offered to take over the Trails End reservation and it seems a group will still be meeting for some night shooting at the Magic Kingdom resorts.

If you signed up for the dinner and/or night shooting on the Eventbrite page, we have emailed you updates already. We need to hear back from everyone who registered for the dinner to find out if you will still be going or not, that way we can make a new reservation right away. Once we get a final list, we will email an update to everyone registered with all the details.

Right now, it seems none of us here on the blog will be able to meetup for that event. If that changes though, which we hope it will, then we will definitely find a way to get over for the night shooting part of it! Glad to see that even though we won’t be there, people are still excited enough for the event to setup their own meetup!

Event Schedule

We will be sending an email to everyone who registered for the events on Eventbrite, the schedule will also be available on the event page here on the blog. Based on the most recent schedule we posted a few weeks ago, we have made some slight changes, but nothing major. Be sure to view the schedule and keep an eye on your email for any future updates.

We will also be updating the Twitter feed during the event with any changes that come up (more on that later). The way we put the schedule together, we wanted to have flexibility to make changes if needed and also allow people to come and go as they want.

Click here to view the full PhotoMagic 2013 schedule

Illuminations Dessert Party

We are really looking forward to the Illuminations Dessert Party presented by Kingdom Camera Rentals. If you are attending the event, you can pick up your wristband from Alan throughout the week, but be careful not to lose it because Disney requires you to wear it for entry into the dessert party. If you prefer, we will be handing out all the remaining wristbands just before the dessert party is scheduled to start.

We will be meeting by the stage in Canada where Off Kilter performs at 8pm, just after their final performance ends. We will make our way over to the UK pavilion for the dessert part as a group just before 8:30pm. The party is scheduled from 8:30pm – 9:30pm and should be a blast! We expect everyone to have a railing spot to set up their tripod and have plans to giveaway some great prizes!

Once the party is over, Epcot will be open until 11pm for Extra Magic Hours, so I am sure there will be many who plan on staying for some extra night photography!


Show Your Growth As a Photographer Contest

One of the great things about photography is that the more you shoot, the more you improve. Take a look at some of your photos from a year, month or even a week ago. I bet you’ll see areas you feel you could improve upon either technically or creatively. Not to mention all the new tricks you pick up as you hone your post-processing skills.

With that in mind, and PhotoMagic in just a few short days we thought we’d set up a little challenge.

Go back through your photo libraries and find a shot from a previous trip. The further back the better. Look for a shots that you were proud of at the time, but feel you would be able to ‘do-over’ much better now. Then, do just that. Come to PhotoMagic, re-take your photo and post both images to show just how much you’ve improved over time.

Bombastic Fireworks Fiesta Bonanza Contest

To go along with the “Show Your Growth As a Photographer” contest, today we have another new contest to announce leading up to the event. The Bombastic Fireworks Fiesta Bonanza Contest! brought to you by Touring Plans (we purposely came up with a name that was easy to remember!).

The rules are simple, submit the best fireworks photo that you took during PhotoMagic for a chance to win a prize. There will be two prizes awarded 1) Best Fireworks Photo and 2) Most Creative Fireworks Photo. This should allow everyone a chance to submit a photo, you don’t need to have the tallest tripod, instead find a creative composition that includes the fireworks and submit that shot!

We will be posting the top three photos from each category on the Touring Plans blog (a little extra exposure for you!) with the winner of each category getting a prize (to be decided). Each of the photographers who have their photos posted on the Touring Plans blog will receive a free year subscription to Touring Plans also.

Special thanks to our friend Tom Bricker for the idea and for agreeing to judge the contest.


Many of us have the option of selecting FastPass+, but unfortunately not everyone has that option yet. We had thought about setting up ride schedules throughout the whole week, but it would leave too many people out at this point. We are still encouraging those with FastPass+ to book a couple of attractions for the same time.

  • Sunday 10/20 at Hollywood Studios: Toy Story Midway Mania between 5:15pm – 6:15pm
  • Monday 10/21 at Magic Kingdom: Space Mountain between 10:20pm – 11:20pm

Any other group rides we do, we should be fine with waiting in the standby line as a group.


We have been asked when people should wear their PhotoMagic 2013 T-Shirts in the park. We are suggesting that people wear them to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party (unless they plan on wearing a costume). Our hope is to get a group photo of everyone that night at the Haunted Mansion. Of course, you are welcome to wear them whenever you feel like it, but we suggest not wearing the same shirt every day of the event, it does get hot in Florida! ;-)

Group Photos

We will be taking group photos throughout the event but we have scheduled time for one photo at Epcot in front of Spaceship Earth on Wednesday morning at 10am. We hope everyone can make it to the park then and meet outside the camera shop (next to Spaceship Earth). We will end up taking a photo then before we start the day at Epcot. Chances are we will take photos in the other parks too and we need to get a shot of the entire group taking over Kona Cafe on the last morning!

Staying Updated

There are bound to be slight schedule changes during the week, we hope to keep that to a minimum though. To stay updated and find out where we are in the park, be sure to follow us on Twitter. We will be posting to the @disphotoblog account during the entire event. If you follow that account, you should know where we are in the park and also find out any schedule changes. Feel free to mention us in a tweet if you need to ask us anything during the week too, we will try to stay active on Twitter to keep everyone at the event (and those that can’t be there) updated.

Follow @disphotoblog on Twitter

Roll Call!

Are you attending PhotoMagic 2013? Leave a comment below letting us know the dates you will be there and which Disney hotel you will be staying at (if you are staying at one that is). I think right now that POP Century! is the leader for PhotoMagic guests, but I’m not positive.

Also, let us know if there is anything specific you are hoping gets covered during the week that we may not have mentioned or if you have any other questions!


  1. Crystal & Bryan   |   Oct 16, 2013

    We’ll be attending Photo Magic from the 21-24th (arriving 20th but will probably check in too late for DHS that day) staying at Pop.

  2. Brian & Sandy Eichelberger   |   Oct 16, 2013

    My mother and I will be attending Sunday 10/20 in the afternoon as our flights arrive at 11:40am and we will be saying our goodbyes at breakfast at the Kona Cafe Thursday morning 10/24. We are staying at Coronado Springs and we hope to learn as much as we can and not be to much of a hassle to everyone!

  3. Gary Burke   |   Oct 16, 2013

    I’ll be there from the 2ist to the 25th and staying at Pop Century.

  4. Angela G   |   Oct 16, 2013

    I am arriving Sat the 19th & checking out Sun the 27th and staying at Pop Century. Can’t wait to meet everyone and make some new Disney friends and learn some new photography tricks.

  5. Joanie Eddis-Koch   |   Oct 16, 2013

    Joanie Eddis-Koch will be attending from Sunday afternoon (3-4pm-ish??) until the Bitter end at Kona cafe.

    I’ll be staying at that Cinderblock palace known as Pop Century from Sunday until Thursday. I will be checking out and moving over to Caribbean Beach hotel and meeting up with my family. We depart the World on Monday the 28th at lunchtime. Listen for us as we howl in anguish on the Magical Depress back to the airport.

  6. Daniel and Haley Burt (Phillydan1969)   |   Oct 16, 2013

    Haley and I will attending (with our 10mo son Noah) as many days as possible. We are locals here in Kissimmee and Annual Passholders to WDW. Most of the late night events will be just myself since the little one goes to bed very early!!! I look forward to meeting all of you and picking your brains for valuable photography techniques to at WDW!!!

  7. Lauren (ducky_love)   |   Oct 16, 2013

    I’ll be there Sun – Wed. No hotel since I live here!! :)

  8. Natasha and Steve   |   Oct 16, 2013

    We will be there the 19-22. Staying at POP

  9. Jenny Burke   |   Oct 16, 2013

    My husband, Adam, and I arrive Friday night the 18th and leave on Sun the 27th. We are staying at Pop Century. Looking forward to meeting new people and learning a few things along the way.

  10. Brett Kiger   |   Oct 16, 2013

    My wife, Carrie, and I will be there from the 19th to the 26th and we’re staying at Pop. Can’t believe it’s only a few days to go!

  11. Adam Hansen   |   Oct 16, 2013

    Might as well chime in also. I’ll be arriving on Friday the 18th and staying until Saturday the 26th. Like most on here, I’ll be staying at Pop.

  12. MarkWDW85   |   Oct 16, 2013

    I will be there! I’m arriving the 18th and staying until the 28th. I’ll be staying at a combination of AKL, OKW, and a friend’s house. Looking forward to it!

  13. Tom Bricker   |   Oct 16, 2013

    This is such BS! When I agreed to judge the Bombastic Fireworks Fiesta Bonanza Contest, it was called “Tyler Perry’s Bombastic Fireworks Fiesta Bonanza – A Contest.” It was implied that by judging, I’d get to meet Tyler Perry.


  14. Michael Pagano   |   Oct 17, 2013

    Will be attending from the 20th – the 23rd. I am also going to try to make it to the pre-event Monorail resort meet, but as of right now, already have other plans. Not staying at any resort, since I live in Orlando.
    Looking forward to meeting other Disney photography fans and learning some new techniques; only a few more days left!

  15. Mike Christoferson   |   Oct 17, 2013

    I’ll be attending the festivities! I’m arriving on the 19th and staying until the 25th. I’ll be at Pop Century…

  16. Dan Gifford   |   Oct 17, 2013

    My wife, Gail, and I along with one of our friends will be staying in Pop from the 18th – 23rd! See you all there!

  17. Alan Rappaport   |   Oct 17, 2013

    Me, my wife Evelyne and our 1 year old son Ollie will be arriving on the 19th and staying until… uh… hang on, when are we staying until?

  18. Tonya Holcomb   |   Oct 17, 2013

    My sister-in-law, Donna, and I arrive the afternoon of the 20th and leave the evening of the 25th. Donna is not a photographer but wants to tag along! We are staying at Port Orleans French Quarter.

  19. Jeff Krause   |   Oct 17, 2013

    I live in Orlando. I will show up for most of the evening events. Looking forward to meeting new friends.

  20. Tom Mullaney   |   Oct 17, 2013

    I arrive around noon on Sunday, Oct. 20th at Pop Century and depart Thursday, Oct. 24th around 4PM (I assume) for the airport and my sad, sad return to the real world.

  21. Ben   |   Oct 17, 2013

    I’m a local and will be attending as many events as possible.

  22. Angie   |   Oct 17, 2013

    I am here! Staying at Port Orleans Riverside through Sat., Oct. 26!

  23. James   |   Oct 18, 2013

    My wife and I will be there 10/22-10/25 but I will only be able to attend the fireworks(Wends Night) she is staying at the hotel. I have other plans for the other days/times. We are staying at an offsite hotel.

  24. Gary F   |   Oct 18, 2013

    My wife Monique and I are coming starting Wednesday. We arrive around noon I believe. Then we stay until the 29th! We will be at Coronado Springs

  25. Steven   |   Oct 18, 2013

    I’m planning to attend Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. Unfortunately I won’t be able to make it on Tuesday.

  26. DreGGs   |   Oct 19, 2013

    If anyone is hanging around for an extra week, I’ll be there from the night of the 25th until the 27th. I would love to meet some of you!

    I wanted to attend the events, but alas work made it impossible to sneak away even for the weekend :(

  27. Meagan   |   Oct 20, 2013

    Hi everyone! I was excited to attend the meet up, but my work/class schedule completely clashes with the PhotoMagic schedule (except maybe Monday night, I get out of work in time for fireworks & the electrical parade).
    HOWEVER, I do work in Tomorrowland in the Magic Kingdom, so I’ll be on the look out for you guys! Look for a nametag with Meagan from North Carolina St. Univ at Stitch’s Great Escape, Astro Orbiter or Peoplemover & you’ll probably find me. Also, on your Mickey’s Not So Scary Night, I’ll be handing out candy in one of the four treat stations in Tomorrowland! I’ll be the one in the lovely Halloween party outfit, waving a pumpkin sign or throwing candy at people.

  28. Ann   |   Oct 20, 2013

    I made it! I having been feeling very well so it was iffy! I was supposed to come in on Friday but came in tonight (Sunday). Pretty tired so may not make early morning at AK. I would love to and, if possible will be there. Will be staying at Coronado until Friday morning.



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