If you follow mom bloggers on social media anywhere at all, you’ve probably seen the #DisneySMMC hashtag blow up in your social feeds at some point. And if you’re like me, the first time you saw it you thought to yourself what the heck is DisneySMMC?
I knew it was a big deal given the enthusiasm, but I had to Google it at first and I was still a little fuzzy..
But now, I can tell you what it is from the perspective as an enthusiastic and somewhat puzzled attendee for the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2017.
Somewhat puzzled because I have no idea how I was chosen. It’s unclear as to the rhyme and reason as to who gets an invite, but I am really grateful for whatever that rhyme and reason is. It’s an experience I’ll always remember and I got to bring my family along. On a work trip. At Disney.
Pixie dust indeeed!
What is DisneySMMC?
The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration is an event put on by Disney every year for digital influencers, writers, bloggers, vloggers and the like. It’s an invite-only conference with limited space and it’s big stuff in the blogging world.
Influencers are invited onto Disney properties and given sneak peeks and VIP offerings as to what’s new and reimagined at Disney. Theme park attractions, resorts, movies, cruise ships you name it. There are no hard and fast rules or even requirements as to what we share about, but we all come away wowed by something. We all get excited about having great content to share, and we do our thing at our own choosing.
It is not free to attend. There is a lump sum cost for the conference that I believe includes discounted rates. In fact, after getting home, I know they were discounted rates, they had to be for everything that we got to be a part of.
Where is DisneySMMC?
This year, the conference was on land at Disney World and the Port Orleans-Riverside resort and at sea on a Disney Cruise Line aboard the Disney Wonder on a 3-day cruise to the Bahamas.
(The resort and cruise ship were reimagined with upgrades this year.) It varies from year to year regarding the exact location at Disney and we visit several different parks and attractions during the conference.
What do you do at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration?
It was a whirlwind of cool activities from the time we arrived until we left. We hear from several speakers and get first looks and private viewings on new and upcoming attractions, movies and exhibits.
We attend conference sessions and get to spend time with our families at conference events, and time with our families on our own. There was something amazing every day.
What did you enjoy the most at DisneySMMC?
I can’t pick just one. I would say the biggest highlights for me were: (click links for video)
1. Rivers of Light show at Animal Kingdom
2. Soarin’ Ride at Epcot
3. Speaker Dave Mullins from PIXAR
He explained the process to put together his brand new short “Lou” (after we saw it!) As a lifetime passionate fan of PIXAR, this was an incredible experience.
You know how you get goosebumps and cover your mouth and tears sting your eyes when you’re really happy? That’s how I felt when he was introduced that morning.
Lou takes you through every emotion you have in ways only PIXAR can. It addresses bullying which is an issue near and dear to my heart. Be sure to catch Lou as it airs to the public for the first time on the big screen with Cars 3 June 2017!
4. Waking up to watch the sunrise at sea on my private balcony on the Disney Wonder
5. Watching my 4 year old experience the ocean for the first time at Castaway Cay in the Bahamas
6. Becoming an “Official Disney Animator” at the Animator’s Palate restaurant
It was a total party! Seriously, click the link to see the video, such a fun interactive restaurant.
8. Watching Frozen: A Musical Spectacular aboard the Disney Wonder
My 9 year old laid his head on my shoulder and hugged my arm. For the first time in forever 🙂
It was stunning to watch Frozen in person, so many beautiful set and costume changes and clever effects. It was powerful, especially during that song, this boymom and her sons and grandma all gave a standing O.
Pictures and video are strictly prohibited in the theater, but you can watch several clips of the show in the video link above courtesy of Disney.
9. Star Wars at Hollywood Studios
Specifically, meeting Kylo Ren and Chewbacca and watching StarWars skits and fireworks with my boys at Hollywood Studios
What is the best thing about DisneySMMC?
I would say all of the new friends you make and getting to know other people is a big one. It’s a wonderful networking opportunity where friendships are made.
And though the experiences were incredible, the memories with my family associated with them really spoke to me. I came away closer to my kids more than ever. We all enjoyed Star Wars together. I got to spend amazing time on a cruise ship and the beach with my mom.
I got to see things I would likely never get to see again on my own on the same kind of scale.
Would you attend DisneySMMC again?
One of the biggest takeaways I got from it all: Parks and resorts that really cater to the guest experience and go above and beyond to make things comfortable and easier for parents and kids really get it.
Disney gets customer service and the family experience, and I was really impressed with that.
Here is a day-by-day video recap of what we experienced on land and at sea. Truly unforgettable! Enjoy!
This is a sponsored post with Disney. I was afforded this experience as a member of the DisneySMMC event, in which I paid for my own travel, accommodations and registration. I choose to write about the events that truly spoke to me and my family that I believe will be of value to my readers. My opinions are 100% my own.