At-A-Glance | Hotel | What's New? | Registration | Friday | Saturday | Sunday | Our Cast
Fred was born and raised in New Jersey. He works in Telecommunications
and is also a part time technology consultant. His wife Renee and
daughters Julia and Hailey visit Walt Disney World
several times a year and are very active in the Disney community.
When asked why he coordinates the event each year he says, "We
our computers and 'talk' to each other via online communities, chat
rooms, and blogs almost daily, but this is the time and place where
people can really get to know each other. It's all quite magical,
"This event is designed to sprinkle pixie dust
on Disney fans in every way," Block says, "enough to hold them over
until their next trip to
Walt Disney World." MagicMeets
has become a very popular billing for Disney Fans in the Northeast and has sold out to 550+ people for 4 years in a row.
John M. Leary
John has been a die-hard Disney fan since first visiting Walt Disney World when he was 8. Fascinated by the magic of Disney music, animation, and entertainment, John persued a career in graphic design and is currently a Senior Art Director at a large advertising agency on Long Island. He and his wife, Suzanne, enjoy getting away to 'The World' as often as possible.
"To me, creativity begins with curiosity and enthusiasm. It's being able to pull from as many influences as possible to produce something unique. And you find out that you can create extraordinary things."
In addition to his visual talents, John is also an accomplished pianist, gardener, neatnik, vegetarian and enjoys collecting View-Masters.
Colleen is a Disney-loving wife, and mother of two. She's been coming to the meets since the beginning in 2004. Her first year was strictly as an attendee. In her second year, Fred had expanded the size and location of the meet and was obviously in severe need of assistance - so she jumped right in. Photography is her fortee, and organization is her skill.
Tacey is a Disney-phite through and through. Tacey plans all her time off to revolve around all things Disney related. She has been making trips to WDW since 1991. She travels there from Ontario, Canada at least once a year, sometimes twice. All the décor in Tacey’s home is either Disney or Build a Bear. She loves it when the two passions meet and she can buy Disney themed Build a Bear clothes for her travelling companion, a white stuffed tiger named TigTag.
She belongs to many Disney based forums and websites. Tacey writes in her spare time and is currently working on both a children’s book and a Disney travel guide about travelling affordably solo. She is also training for her first marathon this fall at WDW.
Tacey has attended Magic Meets since 2007 and considers it the highlight of her summer. “The friends I have made through this event have become family to me and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
Laura Eckert Thompson
Laura Eckert Thompson – “DoomBuggyBabe” in various Disney fan communities – is a writer, editor and dyed-in-the wool Disney Geek. Born and raised in Berks County, Pa., she made her first trip to WDW for her eighth birthday on Halloween 1978. (Though at that point she was too chicken to ride the Haunted Mansion, which is now obviously her favorite ride!)
She visited WDW again in 1986, but then it took until 1999 for her to get back to the House of Mouse. The upshot was that on that first trip as a grown-up, she got absolutely clobbered with Pixie Dust – and now can’t visit WDW anywhere near enough. She currently resides in Mount Joy, Pa., a Lancaster suburb, with her husband Brian, a fellow MagicMeets volunteer who actively encourages her Disney fixation.
"Hands down, the best thing (about MagicMeets) is the interaction with other Disney fans,” she says. “Over the last few years we’ve met an astonishing number of fun people there. The spirit of good will and camaraderie permeates everything."
Dee has worked as the Director of Events for a small market research firm for almost 10 years. She has put together over a dozen of industry events, in the telecommunications and financial services arena, dealing with all levels of the industry from managers to high level executives.
Dee has also been on the MagicMeets team since 2007, working with registration many other facets of the event.
Mary Lee Madden
Mary has been attending Magic Meets since 2005 and jumped in as a volunteer in 2007. Now she gets to visit Walt Disney World 2 to 3 times a year, over and above her annual DVC trip. Her interests outside Disney include reading mysteries and science fiction, crocheting blankets for the local hospital, and her two lovely kitty cats. She is currently employed part-time at the Warren County Library in New Jersey.
"This started as a way to get my annual fix outside of 'The World' and has turned into an opportunity to re-connect with the many friends I’ve met here at MagicMeets."
Cindy lives in New Cumberland, PA, just minutes from the MagicMeets site. She is a full time child grief specialist for a children's bereavement program and the wife of a self-proclaimed Disney Geek (who is also a MagicMeets volunteer) and the mother of a 4 year old daughter who is being brought up to love all things Disney.
Cindy took her first trip to Disney World at age 16 and has been there every year since. She and her family now travel to Disney World several times a year and have been there 30+ times. Cindy is a DVC members and an annual passholder to both Disney World, and locally at Hersheypark. Cindy plans and coordinates the MagicMeets Hersheypark meet.
Mike was born in Washington D.C. and was raised in central Maryland, the youngest of three kids. He has been going to Disney for almost 30 years, though (at least) every year since he married his lovely wife in 1996. They have two wonderful kids AND a bevy of four legged animals running around their home. He also is a DVC Member claiming Saratoga Springs as his home away from home.
Mike has been in advertising, marketing and graphic design for almost 20 years. He has held creative positions from Graphic Designer to Art Director to Creative Director, but these days he is most relied on as an Internet Consultant guiding his clients through the rough waters of the internet. His specialties include design, user experience, usability and social networking. He also has a real fondness for mint chip ice cream (white please, not the gross green kind).
Disney has become more than just a vacation destination for him and his family, it has become a life style and a case study. Walt has really touched their lives, and they like it.
Colin has been hooked on Disney since walking through the gates of the Magic Kingdom at age 5. He was born and raised in Nova Scotia, Canada and didn't get the chance to come back much until moving to Hershey, PA in 2000. He has since made regular trips to Walt Disney World, both solo and with his wife and three children. His next trip will involve participating in the Walt Disney World Half Marathon in January 2010.
Colin became involved in the Disney internet community about four years ago, participating in many online communities and forums and listening to many Disney podcasts. That is where he found out about MagicMeets. He came as a volunteer in 2007 and was immediately hooked.
"I couldn't believe there were so many people who shared the passion for Disney that I did. I have met a number of great people through the Disney community and made some lifelong friends. MagicMeets in the highlight of my summer every year. "
Joseph was born and raised in City Island (that’s a little island within the borough of the Bronx), New York. He works in the mutual fund field, providing compliance services for mutual funds and variable annuities. His first visit to Walt Disney World was with his parents in 1974. His second visit was 31 years later, with his daughter Chelsea…..and he’s been a Disney geek in the truest sense of the term ever since! He and his daughter are DVC members that make at least two trips to WDW a year.
In addition to his keen interest in Disney, Joseph is a marathon runner (he ran the 2009 Goofy Challenge, immediately placing his sanity into question), an aspiring author, and dabbles in stand-up comedy.
2009 will be Joseph’s first time at MagicMeets, where he hopes to make tons of new friends that share the same interest….all things Disney!