Winners from yesterday’s RAoM Monday!

Yesterday’s Random Act of Magic Monday offered a first chance sneak peek to select winners for the chance to purchase tickets for our Extra Magical meal offerings.

To enter this week’s Random Act of Magic Monday, entrants left a comment describing what they’d like to see on the menu, and we randomly chose five winners to receive free early access to the tickets and packages. Entrants also had the chance for a bonus entry by adding a second comment by answering what kind of bird Zazu from the Lion King is.

Answer: a red-billed hornbill. 

Five winners were chosen via Random.Org, and congratulations to the following commenters!


 

Sheryl says:

GF mac n cheese. My 5 year old daughter is the one with Celiac and this is her top pick at restaurants in the rare instances they offer it!

Christopher says:

The Celiac teen would love to see a theme park staple with a twist…gluten-free funnel cakes.

Heather says:

I would like to see an allergy free chocolate dessert.

Sara says:

Dairy-free (well, with a suitable non-dairy fake cheesy goodness) beef lasagna. Other kinds of lasagna are ok, too, in addition.

Susan says:

Soups and desserts. I think those are the things that are hardest to find when dining out.


 

Congrats, winners! We are working busily with our Disney Catered Events teams to finalize the menus. You will be the first to have chance to purchase tickets! Stay tuned to your inboxes and look for alerts by the end of next week!

Random Acts of Magic Monday: Get first dibs on dining!

Ready for this week’s Random Acts of Magic Mondays?

Just a reminder, from 12am EST to 11:59 EST on Mondays, we are sprinkling some magical fun for 24 hours. From freebies to giveaways to discounts or all sizes (and something for everyone) you won’t want to miss it!

Stay tuned to our Monday blog posts, and our Facebook, and Twitter page to find out what we’ll be adding Magic to each week!

What do you want to see on the FACCWDW menus? Let us know for early Zazu access?

Here’s how it works:

We’re about to launch the tickets and packages available for our extra magical Food Allergy & Celiac Dining experiences. We have limited tickets available, and in this week’s Random Act of Magic Monday, we’re giving first dibs at a pre-public sale purchase.

To enter this week’s Random Act of Magic Monday, all you need to do is leave a comment below describing what you’d like to see on the menu. We’re busily finalizing them now, but heck, we might be able to squeeze in another request!

We’ll randomly choose five winners to receive free early access to the tickets and packages.

Want a bonus chance? Who doesn’t?

Add a second comment by answering this question: what kind of bird is Zazu?

Looking for more Random Acts of Magic Monday fun? Stay tuned for next week’s promotion filled with even more pixie dust!

Don’t forget, this closes at 11:59EST tonight!

Planning a Disney Trip with a Special Diet: Celebrating this November

Blogger Street Team member Amy (aka Allergic Foodie) shares with us her excitement of travelling to Disney World this November to celebrate her recovery. Her blog Adventures of an Allergic Foodie provides help to fellow adults and families by sharing strategies, research, helpful products, personal stories, and more with insight in living food allergies, celiac disease and eosinophilic esophagitis. 

Go Back to Spring Break 2004. There I was in the happiest places on earth—Disneyland—feeling miserable. While my husband and two sons ran around the park enjoying a lifetime experience of rides, attractions and food, I crawled back to our hotel room and slinked into bed. The pain was unbearable and I was so exhausted, a kind of exhaustion I’d never felt before.

We’d flown to Anaheim from Colorado Springs to promote my second nonfiction book, The Pregnancy Bed Rest Book. Ah, I see the irony now–the book was for pregnant women, but I was spending my downtown under the covers. It was a trip none of us would forget—but for very different reasons.

When we returned from California, I sought answers for my health issues. Every doctor seemed to have a theory for my pain and GI woes that required a medical procedure followed by a surgery followed by rounds of antibiotics and painkillers. While I should have been getting better, I felt even worse–year after year.

Continue reading

Meet Our Vendors! >> Babycakes NYC

Meet Our Vendors! is an ongoing series where you’ll be able to get a sneak peek of who you’ll see in November! Feel free to leave comments and questions–for us and for the vendor–about products, practices, and anything else that’s on your mind. 

We’re going to bet you’re pretty darn familiar with Babycakes NYC, the staple gluten-free, allergy-free bakery on-site at Walt Disney World. Once a Downtown Disney establishment, and maintaining a home in nearly all of the resorts and restaurants, Babycakes NYC provides Disney go’ers gluten, dairy, egg, and soy-free vegan baked goods. They started out in NYC, since then launched cookbooks, and now are a quick fan favourite. Even better — they’ll be at the Food Allergy and Celiac Convention this fall!

Like every Wednesday, we chatted with one of our vendors and this week was Babycakes. This is what they had to say:

Continue reading

Random Acts of Magic Monday: Need tickets? Get a discount!

Ready for this week’s Random Acts of Magic Mondays? Last week was a fun contest with a ticket giveaway, with a bit of a bonus twist on Tuesday morning!

Just a reminder, from 12am EST to 11:59 EST on Mondays, we are sprinkling some magical fun for 24 hours. From freebies to giveaways to discounts or all sizes (and something for everyone) you won’t want to miss it!

Stay tuned to our Monday blog posts, and our Facebook, and Twitter page to find out what we’ll be adding Magic to each week!

Still need tickets to the event? There’s a discount for that!

Here’s how it works:

Purchase your tickets today and receive 25% off ticket prices!

Use code FACCRAOM2

Eventbrite - Food Allergy & Celiac Awareness Convention

Looking for more Random Acts of Magic Monday fun? Stay tuned for next week’s promotion filled with even more pixie dust!

Don’t forget, this closes at 11:59EST tonight!

Planning a Disney Trip with a Special Diet: 11 Tips for First Timers

Blogger Street Team member Patrick Boyd shares with us his top tips for folks who are visiting Disney World for the first time. A seasoned Disney traveller, Patrick is gluten, dairy, and soy-free, and shares details on everything Disney-related on his blog, Stitch’s Home

You’re heading to Disney World for the first time for a trip of fun and pixie dust.  How about some tips and info to make life easier?

1.       First thing to know The Walt Disney World Resort is huge, comprising of four “theme” parks, two water parks, several golf and miniature golf courses, several resorts, and a shopping area that also contains a multi-story indoor video game “park.”   In short, odds are good you will not see everything there is to see and do in one trip, but that what future trips are for.

walt-disney-world-trip-planning

2.       In the parks themselves, an average guest walks about five or six miles a day, so bring comfortable shoes and clothes for walking.  If you want to get from one side of the park to other, it takes about ten to fifteen minutes walking and that assuming routes aren’t blocked from a show or parade.  This is important to keep in mind when deciding how to use the FastPass returns or if you need to be across the park for a dinner reservation.  While you are trekking back and forth in the parks remember to slow down a bit and take in the scenery.   It also is helpful to take a break and grab a drink to rest and relax a bit.  You can do that in general, or just plot out periods of time to eat, watch parades, shows, etc.  Many people often find it handy to break the long day up by returning to the resort during the middle of the day to nap or hit the pool and return that evening.

Continue reading

Meet Our Vendors! >> EZ Gluten™

Meet Our Vendors! is an ongoing series where you’ll be able to get a sneak peek of who you’ll see in November! Feel free to leave comments and questions–for us and for the vendor–about products, practices, and anything else that’s on your mind. 

Folks who have celiac disease need to be pertinent about their health, and EZ Gluten™ provides a simple ways for them to double check what’s really in their food. If you’re still getting symptoms, worried about safe products, or just need reassurance, it’s a super easy, quick, and cost efficient way to check in on the gluten status of your food. ELISA Technologies, Inc. have filled in the FACCWDW team about what goes into the making behind the product… to keep what goes into your body best for your health!


1. Can you tell us a little more about EZ Gluten™?

EZ Gluten™ is a rapid, fast and sensitive test for the detection of Gluten in food samples. The test detects levels as low as 10 ppm. Our test has a PTM status. This means it as gone through trials and is excepted as a preferred testing method from the AOAC. The FDA accepts our test as an approved method.

2. Traveling can be a challenge. How can EZ Gluten™ help those traveling to places like FACCWDW?

EZ Gluten™ was not created to test every food eaten. That would be much too expensive. If you would like to bring something new into your home or while on vacation, you can use the test to avoid discomfort. The test is small enough to carry in your pocket. When you spend so much on a vacation, the last thing you want to do is stay in your room sick.

3. Can you give us a little behind the scenes info on how ELISA Technologies, Inc. created EZ Gluten™?

We have been in the food testing business since 1980. Our main focus has been meat speciation. We manufacture the kits that the USDA uses. So, basically we can tell you if your beef burger has horse meat mixed in. We had been getting requests from customers for a method to detect Gluten. We created the ALLER-TEK Kit. Manufacturers asked for a more rapid method to test production lines. Once EZ Gluten™ was developed, we put it on line for public use. The demand has been incredible.

4. What’s the most commonly asked question about EZ Gluten™?

Is it fast and easy? The answer is, Yes!

5. We’re sure that those who have used EZ Gluten™ have provided you with feedback on how it has affected their lives. What are some comments that have stood out?

We get great feed back! When you call ELISA Technologies, Inc. you get personal attention. We try to help people on a regular basis. Sometimes we have the answers and when we don’t, we try to find the answers. We have helped numerous individuals as well as manufacturers. Several students have won science fairs using our kit! So, happy and proud of them. Customers have commented about our kit has improved the quality of their life. One woman who was severely affected by Gluten said she was breaking out with a rash and wondered if she was getting a false negative from our test. We worked through the issue and helped her to find out that her dog was eating his food and getting on her bed. when she got into bed, she would have contact where his face had been. His Gluten free dog food tested positive. She was so happy. From what I understand, her dog was happy too. She now cooks him chicken and rice! It’s nice to be able to help.

Visit EZ Gluten™:

Facebook: facebook.com/ezgluten
Twitter: @EZGLUTEN

Random Magical Tuesday Bonus!

Thanks to everyone who entered yesterday’s Random Act of Magic Monday! We know that one of the best things about travelling to Walt Disney World with a special diet is the amazing food options, and folks who vied for free tickets in the comments didn’t disappoint in making our mouths water!

Using a Random.Org generator, the three winners were chosen.

Congrats to:

Kathleen:

I always make sure to head to Raglan Road in Downtown Disney. They have an amazing gluten free batter. I eat the gf fish and chips and my daughter gets the gf shrimp off the kid’s menu! The onion rings are amazing too!

Stacee Walker:

It has been awhile since we have been to disney. Never since we have kids…and we are very excited to try anything peanut/nut allergy friendly. I hear disney is wonderful about allergies and also children with disabilities. My daughters would LOVE to go to disney.

Laura Hass:

O’hana made a nut and soy free alternative meal for my allergic son- appetizer, desserts, multiple entrees. It was awesome!

 

Check for your email address for details on receiving your free ticket.

For everyone else — there’s something a little extra for you, too. Check your inbox (and Spam folder, just in case!) for info!

 

Random Acts of Magic Mondays: Win a free ticket… if you like Disney food!

Ready for this week’s Random Acts of Magic Mondays? Last week was a combined incentive for vendors and attendees — this week is all about folks who’ve been immersed in the Disney magic… or can’t wait to be!

Just a reminder, from 12am EST to 11:59 EST on Mondays, we are sprinkling some magical fun for 24 hours. From freebies to giveaways to discounts or all sizes (and something for everyone) you won’t want to miss it!

Stay tuned to our Monday blog posts, and our Facebook, and Twitter page to find out what we’ll be adding Magic to each week!

Do you have a top Disney menu pick? You could win a free ticket!

Here’s how it works:

One of the best things about travelling to Walt Disney World with a special diet is enjoying all of the safe, amazing food items that are available to you. Whether you’re planning your first trip, or you’re a seasoned Disney go’er, the excitement never gets old–and, after all, you’re at the most magical place on earth!

To enter this week’s Random Act of Magic Monday, all you need to do is leave a comment below describing the best thing you’ve ever ate at Disney World. If you’ve never visited before, explore the menus and tell us your top pick and why!

We’ll randomly choose three winners to receive free tickets to the event!

Limit one win per family.

Looking for more Random Acts of Magic Monday fun? Stay tuned for next week’s promotion filled with even more pixie dust!

Don’t forget, this closes at 11:59EST tonight!

Planning a Disney Trip with a Special Diet: Long time Disney’ers with a new diagnosis

This Friday we welcome Heather, a multi-published author and mom who blogs over at  disneyforfive.wordpress.com. Though she’s visited Disney many times in the past with her family, this was the first year they visited with a new celiac diagnosis (but with a bit of a twist). Check out the bottom of her post for more information about her, her books, and her blog loaded with Disney fun! We’ve inserted a few comments throughout the post in regards to Heather’s notes about managing a special diet!

This was an atypical Disney trip for us. Not because we went in the heat of summer, we’re old hands at that. There were a couple of other factors that made this trip unique. One difference from past trips was that my brother’s family of four met our family of five at Disney World. The All-Star Music Resort even managed to put us in adjoining suites – hooray! Being at the most magical place on earth as part of a big group added an extra layer of excitement to the trip. Also, this was somewhat of a transition trip for us. Our oldest son, age 14, was diagnosed with celiac disease over the summer. He didn’t have to totally cut gluten from his diet until after seeing a dietician, so this was his last glutenous trip to Disney World [but don't worry! He'll find plenty of options next time]. He made sure to get in some of his gluten-filled favorites while he still could. I, on the other hand, kept my eyes open for gluten-free options for future trips. After all, we’ll soon be back for the Food Allergy and Celiac Convention in November! [And he'll have a blast!]

I’d love to talk about every detail of our trip, but that would make for a very long trip report. Instead, I’ll highlight some of the things that were new to us. Let’s start with the Magic Kingdom’s latest additions: both the Festival of Fantasy Parade and the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train were wonderful! I’ve heard some complaints that the new ride is too short. It is, indeed, a quick one, but it’s smooth-riding and very exciting. I highly recommend it!

Seven_Dwarfs_Mine_Train

Another new thing for us was dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table. There’s nothing in the World like eating inside Cinderella’s castle while princesses stroll about, stopping at each table to chat. The food was amazing, hands-down the best meal of our trip. And, I understand, if you have food allergies or sensitivities, the chef will come talk to you to discuss what you’d like to eat. [They sure do! You'll also want to be sure to submit your food allergy needs to the Special Diets department in advance.] We’ll definitely be back to test this out!

We’ve dined at many Disney World restaurants, both quick service and table service, but had never been to Biergarten in Epcot’s Germany pavilion until this trip. It was fantastic! The buffet was delicious, and the Oktoberfest-style show kept us very entertained while we ate. Again, although we weren’t yet totally gluten-free while on this trip, my research shows that there are several gluten-free options on the Biergarten buffet. I’ve heard that a manager will walk you though any buffet at Disney World, pointing out the items that are safe for particular allergies. [Yes! And they can prepare many items safely in the back, too, to avoid cross-contamination] We haven’t done this yet, but I did witness this very thing happening at Tusker House in Animal Kingdom. A manager walked a woman and two young boys around the buffet, pointing out gluten-free items. This is another aspect of the wonderful Disney customer service that I’m looking forward to trying out!

We decided to purchase the Memory Maker photo package before our trip, and were so glad that we did! This package allows you to download all of your PhotoPass pictures, character dining photos, attraction photos, and the new Tower of Terror ride video. Because we had linked my brother’s My Disney Experience account to mine, I was able to access his family’s PhotoPass pictures, too.

Though we had previously experienced FastPass+ while still in the testing stage, this was our first Disney World trip where it was fully functional. It worked well for us. With a large group, it was nice to break into smaller groups so that everyone could do what they wanted, and then all come back together for a FP+ ride. The only slight problem was that the FP+ kiosks can be a bit tricky. Once we had used our three FP+ reservations on any given day, we would visit a FP+ kiosk to see what else was available. There were always quite a few choices (though not the most sought-after attractions, such as the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train). The problem was that the touch-screens were difficult to use. We almost always resorted to asking a Cast Member for assistance.

And then there was Villains Unleashed. We were really excited about this first-ever, hard-ticketed event at Hollywood Studios. Unfortunately, Disney grossly over-sold the tickets, resulting in huge crowds and very long waits to do anything event-specific. I politely expressed my frustration with this event to Disney, and they promptly gave me a refund for my five tickets. As usual, they went above and beyond with their excellent customer service. It’s part of why we love Disney World! [Wait 'til you see what your son can eat! He'll never miss his gluten days once he gets the Disney Chef treatment]

With our big family trip behind us, it’s nice to have the Food Allergy and Celiac Convention to look forward to. We can’t wait to make our FastPass+ reservations for November!

About Heather:

Heather Fraser Brainerd is a multi-published author and a renaissance woman. After earning a degree in Anthropology, she embarked on an incongruous career as a workers’ compensation insurance adjuster. She rapidly climbed the claims-handling ladder before surprising her colleagues by leaving the high-powered world of lumbar strains and carpal tunnel syndrome to run a child care center. Thousands of dirty diapers and gallons of strained peas later, she decided that maybe the insurance industry wasn’t quite as bad as she remembered. Unfortunately, it was. Fortunately, a few years later, she met the most wonderful man in the world. Now a stay-home mom to three amazing boys, she is able, at long last, to focus on her writing. She works in a variety of genres, including paranormal mystery, Young Adult paranormal romance, and Middle Grade fantasy. Heather lives in New York with her family and their crazy pug/terrier.

Blog: disneyforfive.wordpress.com
Like her on Facebook: facebook.com/BrainerdFraser
Follow her on Twitter: @HFBrainerd

Check out her books:
MuseItUp Publishing: museituppublishing.com
Amazon: amazon.com
Barnes & Noble: barnesandnoble.com