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Latina Mom Bloggers

Snapshots from a truly inspired Disney Social Media Moms Celebration

By Angela Sustaita-Ruiz
Latina Mom Bloggers
When it comes to blogger-style retreats, no one does it like Disney, the platinum standard of corporate blogger conferences.
This past week, just a few weeks removed from our own Hispanicize 2012 event that Disney also sponsored, my Latina Mom Bloggers partner Piera Jolly (the Jolly Mom) and I had the honor to attend the annual Disney Social Media Moms Celebration (#DisneySMmoms) in Orlando.  Now in its 3rd year, the annual conference is hosted to showcase the best of Disney Parks and Disney Destinations to some 200 leading mom (and some dad) bloggers as well as social media influencers.
In typical Disney fashion, nothing about this conference is “typical”.    What makes this conference so unique and fun, is that it features a lineup of inspiring and amazing speakers, awesome networking opportunities and you can take your family with you to Disney!  (My husband PapiBlogger Manny Ruiz didn’t attend the conference because he took some rare time off to take our three kids to the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios).
Here’s some highlights and snapshots of what we experienced:
Amazing Speakers

Every day featured top notch presenters with motivational talks and practical tips on how bloggers can achieve their personal and professional goals despite hurdles and haters. Here are some of the speakers featured this year along with a few quotable tweets we captured from each one.
  • Chris Brogan, Author, Strategist, Consultant – Human Business Works.  Tweetable Quote: “Don’t do social media. Do big things using social media as the tools.”  
  • Lisa Druxman, CEO & Chief Founding Mom – Stroller Strides –  Tweetable Quote: ”A burned out brain will not charge. Take 10 minutes to do whatever recharges you.” “The number one thing that keeps you from achieving your goals is your BRAIN. Change your thoughts! Achieve your goals!”
  • Amy Jo Martin, Social Media Strategist – Digital Royalty – Tweetable Quote: “Humans connect with humans, not logos.”
  • Ramon DeLeon, Marketing Mind – Domino’s Pizza Chicago – Tweetable Quote: “Be prepared to capture and share life.”
  • Peter Shankman, Marketing & Customer Service Strategist –  Tweetable Quote: “The Geek Factory Nothing exciting ever happens in your comfort zone!” Don’t we know it!
Hands-on Breakout Sessions

In addition to great speakers, attendees could choose from a variety of hands-on and interactive breakout sessions that also included special previews of things too come and behind the scenes looks at the world of Disney.
Some of the cooler previews that bloggers had the chance to experience included the Fantasyland Sneak Peek, a major “re-imagining” of Fantasyland that begin in 2012 and continue in phases through 2013.  Another cool blogger excursion was a Wild Africa Trek, which is a rare opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes view of Disney’s Animal Kingdom with the chance to get up close and personal with Nile crocodiles and hippos.  Disney Innovation for Good: Making a Difference Through Disney Parks gave many of us a better understanding about how Disney is striving to make our world a better place for all through good corporate citizenship via programs like Inspiring Kids and Families, Environment and Conservation, Community Engagement and more (
Cool Family Fun Events
Every evening offered bloggers a chance to reconnect with their families for fun-themed dinners.
Day 1Swashbuckler Soirée & Dinner at Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club.  Playing off the theme of “Pirates of the Caribbean we enjoyed a pirate-themed evening along the beach with live music, a treasure hunt and family fun for everyone.
Day 2Dino Mite Nite! Dinner at Disney’s Animal Kingdom – On this night conference attendees had Disney’s Animal Kingdom COMPLETELY to themselves, which made for some of our family’s most memorable fun – unlimited rides, character meet & greets and great friends.  The Expedition Everest roller coaster was particularly busy!

The Disney's Animal Kingdom dinner was especially cool for the kids.

Day 3Nemo’s Somewhere Under the Sea Dinner at the brand new (not yet opened) Disney’s Art of Animation Resort served as our farewell dinner.  We were the first to see Disney’s newest resort – Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – where we dined poolside at the Nemo Pool, the largest hotel pool at the Walt Disney World Resort.

The Art of Animation's pool is the largest of any Disney resort. The resort is especially suited for larger families.

The Art of Animation Resort opens next month – just in time for summer –  and features a wide range of room sizes, including spacious family suites for six guests that are perfect for big Latino families like ours (my soon-to-come summer baby will make us 6 strong!).

With Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, guests are immersed in the artistry and enchantment of Walt Disney and Disney-Pixar classics through imaginative design and themed rooms, including:

  • Finding Nemo Family Suites—Opening May 31, 2012
  • Cars Family Suites—Opening June 18, 2012
  • The Lion King Family Suites—Opening August 10, 2012
  • The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms—Opening September 15, 2012
Making Memories
After three full days of hanging with bloggers and great social media influencers, we took to the parks as fast as we could for one full day of park hopping with the kids.  Piera’s own family had never been to Disney so stayed for one more week of fun.  We look forward to possibly attending Disney Social Media Moms again next year, and seeing even more of the great new blogger friends we made this year like Dania from La Familia Cool (al fin!), Adam from DadaRocks, CajunMama and Trey from Daddymojo, among many others!

DadaRocks and his family briefly hung out with us at the Magic Kingdom.

Disney Social Media Moms Conference attendees paid a conference fee which included hotel accommodations, park tickets, meals, admission to private parties, and more. We were not required or asked to write about the conference.

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