Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Why I'm Entering The Disney Parks Moms Panel Search 2018 And You Should Too


Photo courtesy of the Disney Parks Blog @Disney

How I discovered the Disney Parks Moms Panel

Disney is in my blood and it has been from a very early age. I love everything about Disney and strive to learn as much as possible about the Walt Disney Parks and Cruise Line, movies, products etc. I can remember when I was planning our first trip to Walt Disney World as a family. I already knew a lot about the parks because I had traveled there several times as a child and as an adult without children. This however was my first trip with kids and I wanted to know it all so I didn't miss anything! This is when I stumbled upon the Disney Parks Moms Panel and fell in love all over again!

Do you know about the Disney Parks Moms Panel? Well first it's not just moms. It is moms, dads and grandparents who love Disney and are experts in planning Disney vacations. Disney Parks Moms Panel was started in 2008 and ever since the panelist have helped others online, by answering vacation planning questions using their own personal Disney experiences. They basically spread their own version of pixie dust on others vacations.

After a couple of family trips to Walt Disney World and a few cruises on Disney Cruise Line, I saw an advertisement for the Disney Parks Moms Panel Search. Up until this time I had never really thought much about how the panelist became panelists. I just enjoyed all their tips and tricks. But now I had my own tips and tricks and I wanted to be a part of it! But do I know enough?

Jumping in the deep end! My first time entering.

Well I stayed on the sidelines for a couple of more years too scared to put my feet in the water. Last year I finally got up the nerve to give it a try. It was a nerve racking experience. I knew it would be tough, but I never realized how tough! No one knows how many applicants there are because Disney doesn't release the numbers, but it is estimated that this year 20,000 people will apply. That's a lot of people for roughly 30 spots (and some people come back from the previous year so there are probably less). Why go through all of this? Well besides getting the coveted title of Disney Parks Moms Panelist, you get to go to exclusive training at Walt Disney World including access to many backstage areas. And if that isn't enough, you also receive a trip to a Disney Destination for you and up to three family members and/or park tickets for their participation on the Disney Parks Moms Panel.

So how did my first time applying go? Each year can be different. Last year there were 3 rounds. You enter under a specialty: Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort, Disney Cruise Line, Disney Vacation Club and runDisney. I entered for Disney Cruise Line since this had become our Disney vacation of choice and I felt the most well versed on this type of vacation. Round one is questions with a certain word count allowed that you answer online specific to the specialty for which you are applying. I have never spent so much time to answer a few questions. After I wrote, rewrote and rewrote about 25 million more times, I was still no more confident in my answers, but time was running out so I hit submit. 

Then the wait began. It seemed like an eternity. I didn't think I could last. I needed an outlet. But what? I'm the only Disney crazed person among my friends, so no one to commiserate with. My family just thought I was crazy. So I did what any social media loving mom does. I turned to Facebook. There I found a couple of wonderful groups with people from all over the world applying for the Disney Parks Moms Panel. It was amazing. All these people going through the same excruciating wait. And the longer I waited, the surer I became that I wasn't moving on. But at that point it didn't matter. I had met some many fabulous Disney loving people. And if I didn't make it, one or more of them would. We were each others chEARing (couldn't resist) section! 

A little over two weeks after submissions were due the wait was over. The beauty of Facebook is I knew exactly when the pixie dusted emails came out. But then the fear set in. Should I look at my email? I avoided it for the better part of the day but then I couldn't ignore the elephant in the room any longer. I took a deep breath and opened up outlook. There was an email. I made it to the second round! A minute of pure ecstasy followed by shear terror! Now I would have to make a video.

So the process started over again. The sleepless nights. The cold sweats. More questions to write, rewrite and rewrite 25 million times more. And yes the dreaded video. At least I got my husband to get the kids out of the house to film. Everyone says be yourself. The problem is I don't think of myself as all that entertaining and add my nervous self to the mix and well you probably get a hot mess! Below is what I came up with. Feel free to laugh! I go between laughter and tears when I look at it. But I try to remember a quote from Walt Disney himself "The more you like yourself, the less you are like anyone else, which makes you unique."





Then the wait began...again! This time it was still bad but I had my people from the beginning. We talked. We laughed. We sometimes cried when we thought we forgot to add the most important thing or used the wrong nomenclature. But in the end we had each other. 

This time there was no pixie dust filling my inbox after the wait. I didn't make it to the Round 3, the final round. But I was okay with it. I had made it farther than I thought I would and made some amazing friends along the way. I did still anxiously await who made it and celebrated their victories!

Already another year has passed. I have continued my Facebook friendships with my fellow future Disney Moms Parks panelists. It's almost time to start the process again. September 6th is the magical date the applications website opens. There are butterflies in my belly and hopefully soon there will be pixie dust in my inbox!

Have you ever wanted to be on the Disney Parks Moms Panel? Here's what you need to know for the 2018 Search!!

Applications for the Disney Parks Moms Panel Search 2018 open at noon EDT on Wednesday, September 6, 2017 and round one closes at noon EDT on Wednesday, September 13, 2017. Discover more about being a Panelist by clicking here and check out the participation guidelines. Then be yourself, apply and Follow along with #DisneyMP have fun! Yes have fun because that's what Disney is all about and know that I'm wishing everyone that applies faith, love and pixie dust!

Follow me on social media and I'll keep you updated on my progress. Let me know if you're applying. I'd love to chEAR you on!

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44 comments :

  1. I have never heard of this. It's probably because I'm not a big Disney fan. Shame on me, I know but I wish you luck!!

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  2. Never heard of this. Neither I have an idea. Perhaps its because I never visited a Disney park. I am glad you enjoyed the fun. Wishes! :)

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  3. I really want to go to Disney park so badly. I wanna try all the things there :)

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    1. The Disney Parks are truly magical. I hope you get a chance to experience them one day. If you do make sure you stop back by and tell us about it. We love to hear other peoples Disney stories!

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  4. I don't go to Disney enough to be on the panel. I would love to but I am working towards other panels to be a part of though. Goodluck to you on this journey.

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    1. Thanks! And good luck on your journeys as well!

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  5. Thanks for sharing your experience. This is my first year applying and I'm so grateful that others are sharing their previous journey with the DPMP. I feel a little better knowing what to expect. Best of luck this year!

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    1. I'm so excited to hear that you are applying! I know it's a nerve racking but have fun!!! Wishing you pixie dust!

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  6. I have heard of this. I entered a few years back and didn't get selected. I should try again. I do love Disney, that's for sure.

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    1. Yes! Give it another go. Wishing you pixie dust!!

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  7. Bless You! Sounds like this can be very tedious, stressful and so much work that goes into this. I commend you for your drive! I've never heard of this panel but wish you luck!

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  8. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Disney and am trying so hard to get my kids to - they're still a little young. I didn't realise there was such a panel but then I doubt it is open to us across the pond. I would certainly be entering if it was - good luck!

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    1. You should definitely enter! It is most certainly open to parents across the pond! In fact they have a lovely lady named Jane from the UK specializing in Walt Disney World. Check her out. Here's her profile: https://disneyparksmomspanel.disney.go.com/meet-the-moms/panelist/jane-d-318/

      Wishing you pixie dust if you decide to try!

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  9. This sounds like a fun way to share advice and connect with new people. I hope you make it onto the panel this time around, good luck!

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  10. I have never heard of Disney moms, but it sounds like a great way for moms to have fun. Thank you for sharing.

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  11. This is awesome, I never knew of Disney Moms panel. Its a great way to connect, socialize and all the more have disney fun)

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  12. Ohh wow, this is so nice! I never get to learn about this before until I head over this post. Such a great idea. Now, moms can also have their Disney dream by joining the Disney panel. Good Luck!

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  13. I've never heard about Disney Moms panel before reading your informative post. We went twice to Disney Paris and we really enjoyed. We had a lot of fun :-) I wish you luck !

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    1. We really want to go to Disneyland Paris! We haven't been yet but we are hoping to get there in a few years!

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  14. I've got a couple friends who have been lucky on this over the last couple years. I'm not as big of a Disney goer as I used to be but would love the cruise part.

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    1. The cruises are amazing. In fact I think my kids prefer them more than the parks.

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  15. This is also a concept that is TOTALLY new to me! (Who knew?) You sound as if you're mega-qualified to be on the panel, though, so good luck making it through to the end!

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  16. Wow, I never heard of this before, it looks amazing! I'm glad your trip was amazing.

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  17. I wish I could but we don't live close enough and haven't been in 2 years! We are going in February though, lol!

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    1. Have fun!!! You're February trip will qualify you for next year.

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  18. I was not aware of this. I am sureyou had a great time. Loved reading your post.

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  19. I was so excited to see your post because I'm applying too!!! I've been counting down the days till Sept 6th and I dream of getting pixie dust in my email!! :) shell

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    1. Yay!!! So exciting! I have been counting down the days to my family everyday. They are starting to roll their eyes at me. They want me to make it but I think they could do without all my anxiety :) Wishing you pixie dust!!

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  20. Im currently saving for Disney for 2021!!! We are travelling from Australia so its a bit of a hike lol

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    1. Yay! So much fun!! It will be worth it!

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  21. I envy you doing this! I wish I knew more about Disney to do it. We are planning a secret trip for next summer and can't wait to see my 10 year old light up

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    1. Yay! I hope you have so much fun on your trip!! I know it will be magical.

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  22. Best of luck trying out for next round!!! Sounds like you need to be on the panel with all your passion.

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  23. What I really wanna know is, do they have a dad's panel too?

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    1. Yep!! Even though it's called the Disney Moms Panel it's open to dads, moms, grandmas and grandpas. The panel actually has 3 dads on it right now. Check it out!

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