My Pal Mickey


Welcome back to everyone’s favorite time of the week, Dr. Dreiz’s Disney Delights.  Let me start by saying I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.  I’m sure I did (I write this on Wednesdays).  I was thinking about what I would write this week that I was thankful for Disney-wise and the first thing that popped in my head is my Pal Mickey.  For those of you who don’t know, WDW used to sell Pal Mickey’s up until 2008.  They are a Mickey doll the size of a stuffed animal with the technology to interact with you via signals sent through sensors inside the park.  Even though they don’t sell them anymore they still work inside all four parks as recently as October 2011.


My wife started a blog and facebook page called Mouse Tales a few months ago but we are 11 weeks pregnant now and she hasn’t left the house in 4 weeks due to morning sickness so the blog has been stagnant.  However, one of the blogs she did write was all about Pal Mickey.  I’m going to borrow her blog for this post.  This is the tale of how we purchased the last Pal Mickey on sale in the entire world.  Enjoy!



Pal Mickey: Our Personal Disney World Tour Guide!

Some of you may be wondering why a grown woman is carrying around a plush Mickey Mouse at Disney World. While I gave up having a security blanket years ago (Mouse Blanket still sleeps at the foot of my bed FYI, no shame!), I do insist on having my Pal Mickey with me every time I make a visit to Disney World. This is because Pal Mickey is not just your average stuffed toy, he’s a talking, joking, GPS enabled tour guide that is programmed to say over 700 phrases and interacts with more than 400 infrared sensors in the parks, tells you where in the park you are, reminds you of parade times, and lets you know if costumed characters are nearby!

When I first visited Disney World in 2008 for my honeymoon and birthday, I had made my mind up months in advance that I had to have a Pal Mickey. I researched them on the Disney website and looked a few up on eBay but in the end decided that I wanted a brand new one from the park, and so it was agreed that we would pick one up for my birthday. We started our search for Pal Mickey the minute we walked through the gates of Magic Kingdom, it was my absolute first priority, but even after a thorough turning over of the Emporium and the 20,000 square foot World of Disney at DTD, there were no Pal Mickey’s to be found. There were a few displays mentioning it’s existence, but not a single toy could be found in any park or store that we visited.

I was so disappointed.

After a couple of days we were avoiding the parade crowds and making one last trip through the Emporium when I looked way up to the top of one of the shelves that was holding various stuffed Mickey’s dressed in sorcerer outfits, and that’s when I spotted him:

A Sorcerer Mickey sitting comfortably in his dusty bright yellow Pal Mickey box.I immediately flagged down the first Cast Member I could see and begged them to take him down to see if he worked. At first they told me no because he was just a display item, but I explained that we had been looking for them at every store we’d visited and that it was my only true wish for my birthday, so Disney Cast Members being as they are, got him down for me. They told me that there was a good chance he wouldn’t work, but when I squeezed his tummy I got an immediate “Hahaha oh gosh!” and I was elated!

We made sure the rest of his buttons worked and took him to the counter to purchase. It was then that they informed us Pal Mickey had been discontinued and the reason we couldn’t find any was because they had sold out about a month before. They said they hadn’t noticed the one I spotted on the top shelf and if they had seen him he would have been shipped back to the parent company. They said it was likely that I got the very last Pal Mickey in existence!Ever since, Pal Mickey has accompanied us on every Disney trip. As we walk through the gates it’s always exciting to hear “Oh boy! We’re going to have a great day at Magic Kingdom!”  or hear about how he got gold dust in his nose as we walk through the exit for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.Pal Mickey tells us interesting facts about each animal at Animal Kingdom park, gives us interesting facts about each country in Epcot, and tells us just how tall he would have to be to wear the hat in Hollywood Studios (he gets scared when you bring him around the Tower of Terror, and may constantly remind you that he’s not tall enough to ride it!)If you can pick him up on eBay he’s a great find, and our Disney vacations wouldn’t be complete without him. He’s usually the star of my vacation photos and it’s my hope that he will last for years to come!

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  • Hey guys! I literally teared up reading this and i MUST have one now! What a great story! You all inspire me! Have a great weekend!

  • Stacey this is the sweetest story that I have ever read. Thank you so much for sharing it with all of us!

  • What a cute story!

  • Thanks everyone! We love our Pal Mickey. We take photos of the adventures of Pal Mickey around the park. It really is a special thing and I can’t believe they discontinued them but I’m thrilled that they still work in all the parks.

  • Awesome story! Our dog chewed the nose off our Pal Mickey. 🙁 We miss him and everytime my 9 year old sees one she gets teary. Maybe one day they will bring something like it back to the Parks.

  • Awww…Ingrid..those darn dogs, mine does things like that all of the time…lol. Thanks for stopping by!!

  • Great story. We got ours Thanksgiving of 2003 and he has his own doll sized bench in our living room. We took him back in 2007 and everyone loved his Santa Suit. I wanted another one but didn’t know when we would get back to DisneyWorld so I got on Ebay and lucked out and bought 5 for $35. I couldn’t wait for them to get to the house. Only 2 worked but it was still a great buy and all 6 of them look great on the bench. We went back this past Christmast 2011 and all 3 still worked in the parks. I think there is some confustion with the sensor becasue we had some castmembers tell us they didn’t work anymore and others tell us they did and would continue to work int he park but they worked for us in every park. Castmembers were so excited to see them and were amazed that they still worked in the parks. You should have seen Minnie blush and hug him.

    When Pal Mickey came out there were plans to add a Pal Minnie and possibly others but it never happened. I think that parents were buying them and allowing their small children to play roughly with them in the parks and at home then bringing them back for an exchange to Disney may have been too much for the bottom line. Also version 1 didn’t have a great speaker in it so you couldn’t hear it unless it was clipped close to your ear. And I imagine Florida’s rainy season didn’t play well with them either.

    I hope Disney reconsiders making the Pal Mickey. It was a great product and 10 years later they can only improve on his technology. I think if he was more durable, had a backpack on him that could unfold into an attached bag that could cover him to protect him from moisture. Who knows they could even make him into a bluetooth receiver with an app that works with your iPhone or Android to keep the real technology away from the Pal Mickey but leave the jokes and games in him for away from the park play.

  • Wow! Sounds very interesting and I love Mickey mouse personalize Disney world tour guide. It’s awesome indeed. Thanks a lot! 😉

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