January 2015 Archive (primarily covers 2013 through mid-2014)
Note: I will occasionally use catalog numbers from www.presscoins.com
for Disney coins; that website provides the most complete information about current and former designs at WDW.
JULY 2014 UPDATE
The L.A. Cinema Storage machine is now at Prop Shop while Cinema Storage is being converted to a Starbuck’s café.
STAR WARS PENNIES
RETURN TO DARTH’S MALL
The three Star Wars pennies introduced to the Star Wars Weekends celebration at Disney’s Hollywood Studios were available again this year at the “Darth’s Mall” shopping area. The machine was accessible only during the weekend events, which ran starting Friday May 16 and ended on Sunday June 15. As the above photo shows, the machine was rolling short some of the days.
JUNE 2014 UPDATES
Downtown Disney’s Marketplace Co-Op replaced the Team Mickey store in May or June. The Team Mickey machine is retired; there is no machine at Marketplace Co-Op, which is a collection of small boutique stores.
L.A. Cinema Storage closed on June 16, and is
being converted to a Starbuck’s coffee shop.
This happened after my June visit, so I do not know the status of the
I suspect it is off
UPDATE: the machine has been added to the Prop Shop.
For some reason, the Heritage House machine has a lot of trouble with misfeeds and off-center rolling. Bring plenty of extra coins when hitting this machine.
The Dawa Bar machine disappeared when half that bar/restaurant area was shuttered to make way for a new walkway to the Lion King stage show. That area has reopened, but the machine remains missing.
www.presscoins.com is starting to add off-location machines. I have confirmed for James and his crew that the two machines (3 pennies, 1 quarter) at the Vero Beach resort are still active. We are seeking confirmation of the Hilton Head machine.
Rumored permanent closures include the Indiana Jones stunt show at Hollywood Studios – get your coins while you can!
THE FUTURE(S) OF PENNY PRESSES?
I have seen the future of penny presses, and it is interesting!
In Canada, the government stopped pressing pennies due to the cost. This has led some penny press operators to substitute coins or tokens supplied by the machine – they use either U.S. pennies or blanks. (There was always an additional concern in Canada: it is illegal to deface the Queen’s image, so crushing her face was technically a no-no).
Concern over the potential stoppage of American penny products has resulted in three machines being installed at Disneyland to press arcade tokens onto penny designs. The machines have Space Mountain, Wreck-It Ralph, and Tron themes, with 3 designs in each machine. December update: these machines have stopped pressing tokens, but accept tokens as payment.
Space Mountain and Wreck-It Ralph pressed tokens, with backstamps
Of course, they could just convert to nickel machines, which already make seasonal appearances in Anaheim. But I suspect they make good money selling tokens.
New technology at the Field Museum
An interesting new machine type had its start at Epcot, but I have seen it used to maximum potential elsewhere. That machine is a fully electronic press. The Field Museum in Chicago has two of these machines. They each feature eight designs, and they have touch-screen displays that take the user through step-by-step instructions in either English or Spanish. All coins are inserted into the same slot, and the design is selected by touching the picture on the screen.
This type of machine got a start at Epcot France, where electronics enabled the press to have a “secret” design (Agent P) that could be activated by telephone signal from the interactive scavenger hunt game.
Epcot France – the phone that unlocks the “secret” third die, and the machine
Another interesting feature at the Field Museum: the change machines give 4 quarters and 2 pennies for the dollar you insert. If the penny is ever discontinued, this would be a convenient way for stores and attractions to provide old pennies or blanks for the presses.
Changes could be coming in the coinage as well as the next generation of machines.
Heritage House coins
MARCH 2014 UPDATE
The Team Mickey store at Downtown Disney has closed permanently, and its machine (4 dies) is retired. The store will be replaced by a business called Marketplace Co-Op. UPDATE: Marketplace Co-Op does not have machines.
The Heritage House penny machine was finally placed in service recently, but its location confuses many. It can be found across from the Hall of Presidents attraction exit in a pathway that connects the seating area of the Sleepy Hollow snack bar to the Hall of Presidents. DECEMBER UPDATE: the machine is off-stage.
remains closed for refurbishment until March 22. Its two machines are off-stage during this
time. REOPENED. The refurbishment of Dawa Bar at Animal Kingdom also continues, and its machine is also
off-stage during this time. LOCATION OPEN;
MACHINE GONE. DECEMBER
UPDATE:THE MACHINE HAS RETURNED.
▲ The quarter machine at Tomorrowland Power & Light has been moved from a door area to a more central location next to an instant photo booth (where the store meets the arcade).
The Lights Motors Action stunt show machine has been moved into the Prop Shop. This may signal the impending end of the popular attraction, which has been rumored for a few months to be ending soon due to its high operating cost.
Another rumored closing that is getting louder: a total refurbishment of the entire Imagination pavilion, which will take the Image Works machine off-stage – and possibly into retirement. After all, that machine still has a design for an attraction that has been gone for years – the Honey I Shrunk the Audience 3-D movie.
▲ The machine from the Country Bears porch/Tom Sawyer Exit has been moved across the walkway, near the river (across from the Frontier Trading Post).
Despite some listings showing a Yacht and Beach quarter machine, that machine has been away for quite some time. I would characterize it as “retired.”
No surprise here, but the Star Wars machine has remained off stage since Star Wars Weekends 2013 ended. The new weekend series of special events will commence May 16, so hopefully that set of coins will return. CONFIRMED: THEY’LL BE BACK, WEEKENDS ONLY FROM MAY 16 THROUGH JUNE 15, 2014.
The Haunted Mansion machine has been moved next to the turkey leg cart.
January (left) and February (right) locations for 2014 penny at Grand Floridian
Grand Floridian switch-a-roo: In January the Gus & Jaq penny was removed from the 1900 Park Fare restaurant’s penny machine to make way for the 2014 dated penny. In February, though, the 2014 coin was removed and located in the second-floor machine, where it replaced one of two Wall-E designs. Both Wall-E designs were retired; the other coin was replaced by a penny with Mickey’s face. Back on the first floor, Gus & Jaq returned to their machine.
An oddity at the Frontierland arcade – the machine has a third die, but the sign is partially blank! (March 2014)
February 2014 changes
Changes during the first week of February:
Heritage House machine
The Heritage House machine, added in January but unavailable during renovations, is on stage now.
Several single-die quarter machines have been switched to 3-die machines as part of an ongoing conversion process. The Main Street Railroad Station in the Magic Kingdom has added a 2014 dated quarter and the Pinocchio quarter formerly found at Heritage House. All Star Music has added a 2014 dated quarter and the Mike & Sulley “Friends” series quarter that was previously found at The Land at Epcot (it was removed in January from The Land to make way for one of the new 2014 dated quarters). All Star Sports also added a 2014 dated quarter, and the Winnie the Pooh quarter that was available at the Contemporary Resort for a short time before it, too, gave way to a 2014 quarter.
The Wall-E series
is being retired. Two dies at Cap’n Jack’s were retired in 2013 when that location closed
for renovation of the Downtown Disney area.
Two were retired from the Grand Floridian in February 2014, and two more
were retired in February from Mouse Gear at Epcot.
I believe there is still a Wall-E penny at
Port Orleans, though. March 2014
update: Port Orleans coin also retired.
▲ Mouse Gear at Epcot replaced the two Wall-E designs with a 2014 dated penny and the return of the road crossing penny formerly found at Test Track.
Former Fantasia Gardens machine now at Prop Shop
Finally, another machine has made the rotation at Hollywood Studios’ Prop Shop. This one brings back the dies formerly available at Fantasia Gardens mini-golf. Retired in June 2012, those designs are Sorcerer’s Apprentice Mickey; Aladdin (Princes series #3 of 7); and Prince Eric (Princes #2 of 7). The quarter that once was found at Fantasia has made the rounds recently – Mike & Sulley (Friends #1 of 8) was at Epcot/The Land but is now at All Star Music. September update: The machine at Prop Shop has disappeared. Two of its designs (Mickey and Aladdin) are now found at Oscar’s Super Service in a machine that switched from one die to three.
THE LAND GARDEN GRILL CHANGES
The Soarin’ quarter machine at Epcot’s Garden Grill switched to a 3-die machine with Merida and 3 cubs and Mike & Sulley (Friends series #1 of 8) in 2013. In 2014 the Mike & Sulley (Friends #1 of 8) coin switched to the 2014 dated design. Mike & Sulley were retired for about a month, but then popped up at All Star Music in February.
OFF STAGE IN FRONTIERLAND, AFRICA
In January 2014, three FroLand machines were off stage: the two at Splash Mountain (the attraction is being refurbished through March), and the former Tom Sawyer Exit machine – which had been placed at the Country Bear Jamboree porch. One cast member told me the machine was jamming too much and “just disappeared one day.”
Dawa Bar at Animal Kingdom is also undergoing renovations, and its machine is off-stage (January 2014).
INNOVENTIONS MACHINE RELOCATED
The Innoventions East machine now appears in Innoventions West. Both machines are near the back of the attraction by the doors leading to The Land.
2013 ENTRIES ▼
HAUNTED MANSION MACHINE ARRIVES AFTER MORE THAN 2-YEAR WAIT
The Haunted Mansion at the Magic Kingdom has been expecting a new machine for more than two years; it finally was installed in late October 2013, just in time for Halloween. It is found outdoors near the carriage house (at the beginning of the ride queue) in a custom cabinet.
The 4 designs on the hand-crank machine are the 3 individual hitchhiking ghosts (did you know their names are Phineas, Gus, and Ezra?), plus a group shot of Mickey, Goofy & Donald as the hitchhiking ghosts.
NEW DESIGN SCHEME FOR PENNY PRESSES
As you may have noticed, the faceplates for the machines have undergone a change as each machine receives some type of modification.
OTHER LATE 2013 MODIFICATIONS
The Contemporary Resort received two updates in the second half of 2013: the addition of a Winnie the Pooh quarter in July 2013 – which was replaced in 2014 with a dated quarter design, and a Chef Mickey’s cent in December. I do not have a picture of the Pooh quarter, given its short tenure there. February 2014 update: The Pooh quarter now appears at All Star Sports.
Chef Mickey’s – new in 2013 at Contemporary
Mickey’s of Hollywood also got a new quarter in July 2013, replacing the Ratatouille quarter. The Ratatouille series is now entirely retired.
Mickey’s of Hollywood new quarter in 2013
ROLLING TIP FOR QUARTERS
Most quarter machines use the left-hand slot for the quarter that is returned to you. On the hand-crank machines at the Sorcerer’s Hat store and Rainforest Café, though, the right slot is the magic slot.
YODELING COWGIRL JESSIE FINALLY GETS HER RESPECT
This one escaped my notice when it first happened – when the Buzz Cart machine at the Magic Kingdom was updated with the Toy Story 3 designs, the coin with Jessie misspelled her name as “Jesse.” That design was quietly replaced some time in 2012 or 2013 to correctly denote “Jessie.” The design appears the same in all other respects. I will be adding the single corrected coin to my sales list soon.
Left is wrong; right is right
FIRST ELONGATED COIN MACHINE ADDED TO
A machine was finally added to the expanded Fantasyland in the Magic Kingdom in August. A new 4-die machine is now found in the large circus tent (Big Top Souvenirs). Its designs are all new: Donald Duck as a strongman; Minnie Mouse as a trapeze performer; Goofy as the Great Goofini; and Mickey Mouse as a ringmaster.
Big Top machine is first at Fantasyland expansion
2 new Space Mountain quarters
QUARTERS PICK UP PACE TO 3-DIE MACHINES
August was an active month, especially for quarter collectors. The single-die quarter machine at Tomorrowland Power & Light (Space Mountain) added two designs: Mickey, Pluto and Goofy at Space Mountain, and Pluto in space.
Star Traders switches to 3 dies; 2 new quarters shown
Star Traders at Magic Kingdom added two dies to the Evil Emperor Zurg machine. The two new quarters are Mickey and Pluto in a spaceship and a Tomorrowland logo coin.
The Ratatouille series of quarters was replaced entirely. See the below article for more details.
There is a plan to replace all single-die quarter machines with three-die arrangements.
CAP’N JACK’S CLOSED; FIREHOUSE GETS MACHINE BACK
As part of the renovation of Downtown Disney, Cap’n Jack’s was closed in mid-August and its two penny machines retired. In addition, the Firehouse penny machine has moved from Prop Shop at Hollywood Studios back to the Magic Kingdom’s fire station. It keeps the 3 Dalmatian-themed designs it had at the Studios. These are different from the designs the machine had when it first served the MK.
As we mentioned last month, the Ratatouille series of quarters was rapidly disappearing. Now all 5 designs are retired.
#1 of 5 at Heritage House was replaced in August by Friends #3 of 8 (Pinocchio & Jiminy Cricket, formerly at Boardwalk).
The following changes were made in July:
#2 of 5 at Mickey’s of Hollywood (Hollywood Studios) was replaced by a new Mickey Mouse design with the DHS logo.
#3 of 5 was replaced at The Land (Epcot) by a new design featuring Merida & the 3 cubs from “Brave.” She also graces a new penny design at Prop Shop (Hollywood Studios), where 4 new designs have replaced the Tron coins.
#4 of 5 was removed from a 3-die quarter machine at the Contemporary Resort, and replaced with a Winnie the Pooh coin (Winnie looking into honey jar)
#5 of 5 was replaced at All Star Movies by Mickey Mouse holding a video camera. This machine had been switched to 3 dies in June.
Mickey, Merida, Agent P & Buzz replace Tron; notice the new change machine at Prop Shop as well
TRON MACHINE REPLACED
July also brought changes to the Prop Shop, where the Tron machine was replaced by a different hand-crank machine with 4 new penny designs: Merida from “Brave”; Mickey with a movie camera; Agent P from Phineas & Ferb; and Buzz Lightyear.
BOARDWALK: QUARTER MACHINE SWITCHED TO 3 PENNIES
The quarter machine at the Boardwalk resort has been switched to 3 new penny designs: Chip (from Chip & Dale); Winnie the Pooh with umbrella; and Donald Duck with elephant squirting water. The quarter from that machine will be relocated elsewhere in the future. Keep in mind that quarter machines are being switched to triple dies, allowing many opportunities for these designs to return.
A couple changes occurred in June 2013. Machines at Legends of Hollywood (Disney’s Hollywood Studios) and Goombay Games Arcade (Caribbean Beach resort) were switched. In addition, the single-die quarter machine at All Star Movies has been switched to a 3-die machine.
Now at Legends of Hollywood: Cheshire Cat from the Alice in Wonderland series (#2 of 6); the stepmother and stepsisters from the Cinderella series (#5 of 5); White Rabbit from Alice (#3 of 6). These had been numbers RES0165, RES0173, and RES0166 respectively (using the numbering systems from www.presscoins.com), but now have been assigned numbers DHS0087 through DHS0089.
At Caribbean Beach, the arcade now features three designs from the numbered “Pixar Cars” series: Mack, Sally, and Lightning McQueen (#9, 3 & 1 of the series). Formerly numbered DHS0004 through DHS0006, these are now RES0280 through RES0282 respectively.
July 2013 replacement at All Star Movies – notice it is marked for Hollywood Studios
Over at the All Star Movie resort, the Ratatouille quarter (RES0235) is now joined by Lilo & Stitch (Friends series #4 of 8) (RES0250) and Bambi, Thumper & Flower (Friends series #2 of 8) (RES0283, formerly AK0118). The Bambi quarter had been at the Out of the Wild shop at AK; Lilo & Stitch was at The Mara food court at the Animal Kingdom Lodge – July update: the Ratatouille design was replaced by Mickey Mouse holding a video camera.
STAR WARS COINS ISSUED
Three new designs have been added at Disney’s Hollywood Studios to celebrate Star Wars Weekends. The special event weekends ran on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from May 17 through June 9.
It is expected the machine will be sent to Tatooine Traders near the Star Tours ride, but so far the machine is off-stage (as of late June).
The designs are Mickey as a Jedi; Minnie as Princess Leia; and Goofy as Darth Vader.
DISNEY CRUISE LINE TERMINAL ADDS TWO MACHINES
Two penny machines were added April 24, 2013, to the Disney Cruise Line terminal in Port Canaveral, Florida. Each machine has 3 dies, and they share a double-wide cabinet.
The designs are: Castaway Cay (Disney’s private island); Disney Cruise Line; Disney Magic; Disney Wonder; Disney Fantasy; and Disney Dream. The last four represent the four cruise ships in the company’s fleet. All coins have a Cruise Line backstamp.
The machines are located beyond security and are accessible only to passengers with tickets.
Two quarter designs formerly at Rafiki’s Planet Watch have been added to the quarter machine at Grand Floridian, so that machine has been converted from a single die to 3 dies.
The penny machine at Kona in the Polynesian Resort has been moved across the lobby to join the quarter machine in front of Samoa Snacks.
The Tron monorail gave way to the Avengers monorail, which – on March 23, 2012 – was converted to an Iron Man monorail. Tron had its own set of pennies – so why haven’t these popular hero movies? Simple answer: when Disney acquired Marvel, it had to honor Marvel’s preexisting contract granting Universal Studios exclusive rights to use the Marvel images inside theme parks – so no elongated coins to celebrate the Marvel Universe in the Disney parks. That’s also why the Avengers and Iron Man monorails do not operate on the Epcot line: that route would take them into the Epcot park and violate the exclusive-use provision. As a result, they are used only on the TTC to MK gate routes (Iron Man is on the resorts route). Tron – being a Disney property – was not similarly affected, and its monorail fearlessly traveled the Epcot line.
Monsters University was presented as a monorail theme in 2013, but this will be the last of themed monorails for a while. As of January 2013, the MU theme is gone, and the trains are being slated for an entire new paint job and possible redesign. To protect the new paint, the graphic wraps will not be applied in the near future.
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