Episode 64: Visiting Disney Parks and Other Places

Beyond the Berm rolls back around with Episode 64! Do we see our shadows? Oh wait, that only applies to the groundhog.

Anyway, we kick things off this time with Matt’s story of visiting Disneyland and breakfast at the River Belle Terrace restaurant one more time before the menu is changed. And that leads to a discussion about several of the changes coming to the park as a result of the new Star Wars Land. Here is some concept art, in case you haven’t seen what we are talking about:

rivers of america concept art

After that, Steve asks the question, “If you were going to only one of the Walt Disney World parks for only one day, which one would it be?” We think the answer is rather obvious, and you can listen to our reasons why. If you have some other reasons for other parks, we would be glad to hear them!

Matt then talks about his upcoming trip to Japan, including a few days at the Tokyo Disney Resort. As neither of us have been to any of the foreign Disney parks, this is all quite exciting. But then seeing the real Japan is exciting, too. Is visiting “real” places better than visiting “fantasy” Disney places? Hear our thoughts on this subject.

All of this and more in the newest episode of Beyond the Berm!

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Episode 63: Trash or Treasure?

Welcome back to Beyond the Berm for Episode 63!

You have heard the old saying about one man’s trash being another man’s treasure, right? We start off by wondering if some of the Disney things we have kept through the years are actually trash or treasure. We are pretty sure they are treasure to us, but how will others look at them? And when our children have to go through our things, whenever that time may come, what will they think about these nice collections of Disney collectibles that we have amassed? What do you think? Trash or treasure?

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Next, Matt gives a review of his experience in the Star Wars Half Marathon a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Or actually last weekend at Disneyland. He tells about the different Star Wars characters that were out for photos and a look at the course for the race.

matt and boba fett

After that, we take a look at the news that Star Wars Episode 8 has been moved back to December 2017, and we give some thoughts about Star Wars: The Force Awakens, too, since most everyone has seen it by now. However, if you haven’t seen it yet, there may be some minor spoilers in there, although we don’t give it all away. Listen at your own risk!

All that and more in Episode 63 of Beyond the Berm!

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Episode 62: Predictions for Disney for the New Year

Hello, friends, and welcome to our first episode of 2016!

Happy New Year! Listen in as we give some predictions for Disney movies and parks for 2016.

Since the year is all shiny and new, we decided to talk about the weather. Makes sense, right? Yes, California has had some rain, and Tennessee has had a good bit, too. But really, who cares all that much about the weather, so then we moved on to better things.

Matt thought it would be a good idea to make some predictions. And instead of doing things the easy way and making predictions for 2015, we decided to live on the edge and make some predictions for this year of 2016 that is ahead of us. We went through the different movies to be released, giving our thoughts on how each one might perform. Captain America: Civil War, Zootopia, Star Wars: Rogue One, Moana, Finding Dory, The BFG, Dr. Strange, and some others, too.

Also, we took the opportunity to make some predictions about the Disney parks as well. What lies ahead for Disneyland and Walt Disney World? We made some predictions, which would probably be more accurately called wild guesses.

Maybe we should do a recap at the end of the year, looking back through our predictions to see how we did? Hmm, gotta make a note of that for later on.

Listen in to Beyond the Berm Episode 62 to see what we think lies ahead!

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Episode 61: Data Collection, Star Wars, Security, and Newsies

Beyond the Berm is back with Episode 61! Which for the record is about 54 episodes ahead of Star Wars right now. Why are they getting all the attention and not us?

Anyway, to start things off, Matt discusses how we collect personal data with Fitbits, Garmin watches, and such, and then wonders just what Disney does with all of the data they are collecting from Magic Bands at Walt Disney World. While some people are worried about privacy for some reason, we think it is actually pretty cool. Hear our thoughts as we tell why.

magic bands

Next, you may have heard about a new movie opening this weekend. So after you go see the new Alvin and the Chipmunks movie, listen in as we discuss the opening of that new Star Wars thing. And don’t worry, you won’t find any spoilers here, because we haven’t seen the movie yet!

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After that, we discuss the new security measures which just went into effect at the Disney parks as well as other US parks. Scanners, no toy guns, no costumes – how will this affect all of us in the future? We don’t know for certain, but that doesn’t keep us from speculating a little.

This past weekend, Steve and his family went to see the touring production of Newsies, since they had enjoyed the movie way back when it first came out. Did they like the stage musical? Listen in as we discuss this and some other Disney musicals.

All that and probably a few other things in Beyond the Berm episode 61!

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Episode 60: Muppets, Music, Movies, and More!

Beyond the Berm returns with Episode 60! 60 episodes! That’s one episode for every year that Disneyland has been open! Not that we are old enough to have started the same year as Disneyland or anything, of course.

Anyway, to begin with, we talk about the new Muppets television show, which currently airs on Tuesday nights on ABC. It has been getting mixed reactions, but perhaps the strongest reaction so far is the announcement that they will replace the showrunner and go in a different direction for the final episodes of this season. We also talk some about the other Muppet offerings of the past few years and how they haven’t exactly hit the right mark for us. Do you agree or disagree?

The Muppets

Next, Steve brings up some of the live performers of the past and present at the Disney parks and talks about their effect on the parks. Names such as Rod Miller, Off Kilter, the Dapper Dans, Mariachi Cobre, Marimba Mayalandia, Billy Hill and the Hillbillies, the Bibi LaCreme Trio, the Caledonia Bagpipe Band, Voices of Liberty, and more! And yes, we may have listed those in the hopes of bringing more traffic to our site, but some of those names may bring back memories for long time Disneyland and Epcot fans. We discuss some of the positives and negatives of these performers and talk about what they might add to the parks.

WDW Dapper Dans

Up next, Star Wars! If you haven’t heard, there may be a new Star Wars movie coming soon or something. We talk about some of the latest news, although we don’t go into too much detail because we are trying to keep from finding out any spoilers ourselves.

Star Wars The Force Awakens Han Solo

Going along with our Star Wars discussion is some Indiana Jones talk, including our opinions on whether they should recast the role or have some sort of successor to Indy. And we also compare Star Wars to Marvel movies as well, and look at how we aren’t as concerned about not learning plot points of Marvel movies before we see them. Why the difference? We’ll tell you what we think.

All of that, and yes, even more, in the latest episode of Beyond the Berm!

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Episode 59: Disney Tips

Welcome back to Beyond the Berm for Episode 59!

As we begin, Matt asks about some Disney tips, since we have both been to the parks several times, and we have been on a few cruises as well. Which line should you pick? Where should you get a Dole Whip? Which day is good for visiting a water park? Listen in as we share the tips we come up with!

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Next, Steve mentions a book he got that was written and illustrated by his friend Kyle Gentry. The book, Tourist! Year 1, is a series of drawings that Kyle made while visiting the Walt Disney World theme parks every week for a year. It is pretty entertaining, so you might want to check it out! Tell Kyle you heard about it here on Beyond the Berm!

Up next, Matt has tickets for his family to see the new Star Wars movie, and we talk about that a bit. Do you have your tickets yet? Or are you going to take a chance on it not being sold out?

That leads to some discussion about planning things in advance, or perhaps not planning in advance, as Steve is doing more and more these days. Are you a planner, or do you just take things as they come?

Matt then talks about his family’s trip to Disneyland this past weekend, and about all of the fun that they had there, including seeing many of the Halloween-themed offerings that were there. After he talks about seeing some of the characters, we get into a discussion of face characters verses masked characters, and some other aspects of visiting with the characters as well, including the bizarre “head and feet” rehearsals for shows.

All this and even more in the newest episode of Beyond the Berm!

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Episode 58: Brother, Can You Loan a Dime?

Beyond the Berm is back for Episode 58!

To begin with, Matt is looking for some spare change, because the annual pass prices at Disneyland and Walt Disney World have once again increased, after the last increase not too many months ago. Disneyland prices in particular took a big jump. Is it good business, or a way to cut back on the number of passholders?

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Also, Pixar and Marvel reported some updated release dates for some of their movies, including a newly announced sequel to Ant-Man. We talk some about all of this, and particularly about how many of the Pixar movies are sequels. Is it better to play it safe or to try something new?

We then shift slightly from Marvel movies to Marvel television shows to talk about the new season of Agents of SHIELD. After only two episodes of the new season, things are already getting exciting. Hear what we think about it, and what we hope to get out of the new season.

Also, we talk about Halloween, social media, and then get back to the annual passholder situation a little more.

And speaking of social media, if you ever want to follow us individually on Twitter, you can find Steve at @Burnsland and Matt at @StartedByAMouse.

Be sure to hear all the fun on the latest episode of Beyond the Berm!

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Episode 57: Running Away

Welcome back for another episode of Beyond the Berm! Unless of course this is your first episode, and in that case just welcome!

If you have been keeping up with Matt on social media, you know that he ran in the latest Disneyland Half Marathon last weekend. And even if he didn’t finish first, he is still first in our hearts. Sappy. Anyway, to start off our episode, Matt tells about his experiences in the run, along with his family weekend at Disneyland. And a great big “way to go” from all of us at Beyond the Berm to all of you who participated in the different races over the weekend!

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Next up, we discuss how things have changed in the last few years in ways that we never would have expected. For example, who would have guessed that we would be discussing runDisney races and Marvel movies as much as we do around here? We certainly wouldn’t have guessed that. Listen in to see what other changes have taken us by surprise.

We also talk about the recent “Force Friday” promotion where all of the new Star Wars merchandise was given a great big push by Disney at all kinds of retail stores of both the physical and virtual variety. Did you get anything cool? Did we get anything cool? You will just have to listen to find out.

Plus, Steve gives his review of the book Dream It! Do It! by Marty Sklar, the retired head of Walt Disney Imagineering. And even though this is an “official” Disney release, Marty speaks rather candidly about some other Disney folks that he has worked with over the years. Listen in to hear more of what Steve thought of this book!

All this and much more in this latest episode of Beyond the Berm!

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Episode 56: D23 Expo in Review and More

Welcome back for another exciting episode of Beyond the Berm! What could possibly top our last 55 episodes? Well, we aren’t sure, but here we go anyway.

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For starters, we take a look back at last week’s D23 Expo, which neither of us attended, by the way. Specifically, we look back at the announcements about new things coming to Disneyland and Walt Disney World to see how our predictions from our previous episode matched up with what was announced. And we share some thoughts about the new lands and attractions that were announced, too. We also talked about some of the other stuff from the Expo, such as movie announcements, crowds, and other stuff that we heard about. How do you feel about all of the upcoming things? Let us know!

Next, we talk some about different Disney collectibles, as Matt tells about trying to find some of the new Tsum Tsum characters. That leads us to a discussion of mini bean bag plush, pins, Vinylmation, Funko Pop, and whatever else they might come up with to separate us from our money. Do you collect any of these things? Or something else?

We also talk about some of the recent Disney Channel movies and shows, such as Descendants, Teen Beach 2, and Girl Meets World, among others. And don’t get us started on Dog With a Blog. Which ones do we like more than the others? You may or may not be surprised.

And we talk about some other little things here and there in among all of those major things, and end with a bit of silliness, too. So you will just have to listen in for all of that.

Find it all in Beyond the Berm Episode 56!

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Episode 55: Changes Ahead for the Disney Parks?

Welcome back to another episode of Beyond the Berm! It didn’t even take us 3 months to get out another one as it did the last time!

Maybe you have heard rumblings about changes coming to the Disney Parks, both at the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts. Disneyland has committed to expanding the resort in some form in exchange for a tax break from the city of Anaheim. And Walt Disney World keeps closing things at Disney’s Hollywood Studios without announcing something new on the horizon. What does all of this mean? Listen to us as we comment on some of the speculations, and as we do some speculating ourselves.

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In keeping with the Disney Parks theme, Matt tells about his recent visit to Disneyland to see some of the new additions and extravaganzas that were added for the 60th anniversary celebration. Listen in as he talks about parades, fireworks, and crowds!

Also, following up on our conversation about summer movies in Episode 54, we give our reviews of the latest Disney/Marvel movie, Ant-Man. Did it live up to our expectations?

All this and more goodness in Episode 55 of Beyond the Berm!

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