When Disney announced D23 (the Disney Fan Community, costing $75 per year to join), there were some concerns about what “exclusive” activities would be offered to D23 members that would make the extra cost seem worthwhile.
The exclusive free screening for Pixar’s UP at the El Capitan was a nice start, but Web Watch did say at the time it was announced:
Let’s hope they do the next ones the right way and invite all D23 members, not just those who can afford the airfare to sunny California.
All it took was a little bit of time to set certain wheels in motion. Let’s take a quick look at the latest D23 exclusive offerings:
- May 31, 2009. D23’s Flowers and Fireworks Celebration at Epcot
Enjoy a special Flower Power concert and a VIP viewing of IllumiNations with dessert and coffee! Free for D23 members, advance registration required.
- June 24, 2009. D23’s Supercalifragilistic Night on Broadway.
Enjoy premium seats, a complimentary souvenir program, a “behind the scenes” look after the show, a 20%-off merchandise coupon, and a 2-disc Mary Poppins 45th Anniversary Special DVD. $133.00 per ticket.
- June 27, 2009. D23 Performance of The Lion King at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Enjoy premium seats, a “behind the scenes” look after the show, and access to the House of Blues’ Founder’s Room. $113.50 per ticket.
- June 27 and August 15, 2009. D23 Day at the Walt Disney Studios and Archives
Take a 2-hour tour of The Walt Disney Studios and Walt Disney Archives. Free for D23 members, advance registration required.
- July 17, 2009. D23 presents DISNEYLAND, U.S.A. panel with Tony Baxter, Dave Smith, and Ed Hobelman. Free for D23 members, advance registration required.
- September 2009. Walt Disney Family Museum Preview
D23 Members enjoy a advance look at the extraordinary museum dedicated to the man behind the mouse, hosted by the Museum’s Executive Director, Richard Benefield. Free for D23 members, advance registration required.
While each individual event may not appeal to every D23 member, at least we are seeing the effort being made to provide special opportunities for members across the country to participate in exclusive activities that aren’t available to the general public. To visit the Archives or listen to a panel discussion with Dave Smith and Tony Baxter is the type of “you can’t buy this anywhere” type of experience that we need to see more of.
So good job, D23. Let’s see more of this type of stuff covering the entire country in the future. The only caveat on the free items is that the attendee list may be limited to too few people compared to the demand for those items. Time will tell how those items will need to be tweaked going forward.