Mega Disney Convention: D23 Expo in Anaheim

Movie stars, sneak peeks, toys galore, and everything Disney: It's all happening at the Anaheim Convention Center.

Dressing up as a beloved character, complete with gossamer gown, wizard hat, shiny cape, and various magical accoutrements?

It's something thousands of fans do in July, with creative relish very much on display. 

But this parade of inventive costume tributes isn't just something you'd come across at Comic-Con International in San Diego, if that was your first thought, understandably.

Cue mystical music: Every two years, when the clock strikes midnight and the bluebirds trill and the mice hum and the wishing well begins to glitter, another major fan-focused convention shimmers into existence, in the middle of July, in Southern California. 

Magic words, some wand waving, and poof! It's D23 Expo.

Its name tells the whole, sorcerer-sweet story: "D" is for Disney, you betcha, and the "23" part? That's the year that Walt Disney first arrived in the Golden State with a sketchbook full of world-building dreams.

Making this biennial Anaheim gathering the must-do for Mickey mavens and Pluto people and Donald devotees everywhere, and we're not even Goofing, either: Attendees come from Southern California and beyond, and many plan their fantastical, princess-cool, Avengers-heroic looks well ahead of the mid-July event.

The Scene

Want to find new things to do in Los Angeles? The Scene's lifestyle stories have you covered. Here's your go-to source on where the fun is across SoCal and for the weekend.

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Even if you only have a pair of oversized Mickey gloves in the back of the closet somewhere, maybe, fret not: The Friday, July 14 through Sunday, July 16 convention is for you, too, whether you arrive dressed as one of the 101 Dalmatians or not. (If you do: Awesome costume.)

It's for you if you want to see sneak peeks of big, still-to-come films, and cameos from movie stars who've been in recent and/or upcoming releases, and a host of Disney legends, from the people behind the theme parks to the animators who've created a host of instantly iconic characters.

What should you expect in 2017? You can eye props and costumes from the not-yet-released "Black Panther" and "Thor: Ragnorak" at the Marvel Studios Pavilion, see several stars from "Descendants 2" in person, shop anniversary merchandise at the Disney Dream Store (think Space Mountain's 40th and the big 50th for Pirates of the Caribbean), and go deep within the ever-charming, emotion-plumbing universe of Pixar.

And here's a point to ponder: D23 Expo goes worldwide in spotlighting what Disney is doing, and company-wide, too, covering everything from "Star Wars" to the new "Tangled" series.

In short? It may be just a hop/skip to Disneyland Resort from the Anaheim Convention Center, but the attendees will view presentations related to our own Southern California park as well as properties well beyond our lovely SoCal shores.

If it is on the screen, or it can be visited, or it can be worn, or it can be read, or it can be enjoyed in a host of whimsical ways, and it is Disney, there's a real chance you'll come across it over the three-day convention.

If that's too tall an order, know that whatever you happen to experience, you'll be fully awash in Disney merch, movies, and magic, as fully immersed as a Ariel in the ocean, Tony Stark in his iron suit, and a tasty churro enrobed in cinnamon sugar.

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