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Apply Disney Magic to Everyday Events

It’s no surprise that special event professionals are drawn to vacations at the Walt Disney World Resort®. Around every turn at “The Happiest Place on Earth”® is a spark of creative inspiration, and a chance to observe world-class guest relations, Imagineering, and storytelling mastery. Five Days with the Mouse to be a Better Event Planner takes a deep dive into five key aspects of professional event planning through lessons observed at Walt Disney World® which can be applied to virtually any special event. So put on some comfortable shoes and set off into a world of castles and queue lines that can inspire and inform everyday special event planning and industry professionalism.

Example observations: 
  • Day One: Can you duplicate the impact of Cinderella Castle or the “hub-and-spoke” design of the Magic Kingdom® to create immersive guest environments?

  • Day Two: How do concepts like FASTPASS+® and MagicBands® help manage guest expectations while activating and elevating guest engagement?

  • Day Three: What event storytelling lessons can be observed on the Jungle Cruise® and how can your version of Hidden Mickeys reward loyal guests? 

  • Day Four: What best practices in event sustainability can you pick up at your Walt Disney World Resort® hotel room as you design zero-waste events?

  • Day Five: What key accessibility lessons can be learned from Pirates of the Caribbean® and what can the design of EPCOT’s® Spaceship Earth teach about safety?

Reviews from industry experts


Victoria Peterson

Principal and Chief Experience Officer
E3 Events

"I’m a Disney fan and have created events with themes similar to those of the famous rides and experiences in Disneyland. However even with my 20+ years experience producing and designing events, I still found so many nuggets of gold in this book!

"Five days with the Mouse to be a Better Event Planner" is full of interesting details that the average person, and even Disney aficionado, may not know or think about in relation to events. Learning how the Mouse can make the experience even better is a fun read with a serious intent- which if you think about it, is similar to Walt Disney World itself.

This book is for event planners, marketers, and CX professionals as well as those who just love Disney and/or hosting events. It keeps your interest by outlining 5 days in the resort to correspond to specific event and experience topics

The book features b&w photos to illustrate many of the park features and corresponding key points as well as “fun park facts”. It reviews historical aspects of the park in addition to modern day adaptations and changes. Reading the narrative felt like the author and I were walking around the resort together and he’s pointing out all of the details along the way. I feel like I’ve been let in on so many good secrets! This is a book that I will keep in my collection and re-read soon."


"This book is not only for the Disney lover, but also the experienced event professional, and those who are interested in diving deep into the mind of Imagineers and applying their techniques in your work."

- Certified Meeting Planner and Former Disney Cast Member

Gail Palmer, CSEP

Chief Event Organizer (CEO)
Palmer Event Solutions

"Pick any chapter and you'll find it full of event planning treasures - from big (and very exciting) ideas to small (and very important) details.

The author's chapter on planning events with respect for the environment (Day Four: It's a Small World) is a refreshing reminder that we can have big (and very exciting) ideas while still keeping our environmental impact small. This has often been a struggle for me as an event planner. In an industry known for excess, it sometimes break my heart to see the unnecessary waste events can produce. This is why I have always advocated for green choices... and now I have a new arsenal of ideas and information to inform the event solutions we propose to clients.

An easy and exceptional read from a truly inspiring story teller with so much to share! What ever your reason for picking up this book (and I do recommend the paperback copy so you can take notes and keep it in easy reach) be sure to spend some extra time considering how you can make a big impact on our small world."


"When I heard about this book, I purchased it promptly. I have seen the author's talents in real time at events and also his success in higher education. This is a wonderful read and it was hard to put the book down! I rarely write reviews, but I highly recommend this book. It is thoughtful, engaging, practical and entertaining!"


Well-written and impeccably researched, this was a great read. Using the Disney ideology and branding strategies as a road map for creating better events is remarkably effective. Kloss does a wonderful job of weaving the teachable moments into relatable and easily understood examples.

Kevin Molesworth, CSEP

Brass Tacks Events
and Celadore Creative


"Five Days With the Mouse to Be a Better Event Planner by Michael Kloss is a book for planners and managers to enjoy and utilize in their everyday roles. Excellent and very highly recommended!"

-  Randy B. Lichtman for Readers' Favorite  [READ FULL REVIEW]


"5 Must-Read Books for Event Planners"

Event planners, invest in yourself and your career by committing to reading these five practical yet inspirational books this year.

"Kloss explores five elements of Disney’s success, breaking it down into five metaphoric days spent in one of the theme parks. Each day he explores an element of event planning: immersive guest environments, managing guest expectations, storytelling, sustainability and accessibility—including safety. For each element, he analyzes a particular theme park attraction or two, showing how the Disney team nailed it and how event planners can learn from their design."

-  Leigh Harper for Connect Meetings  [FULL LIST]



Best Industry Contribution


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Michael Kloss, CSEP


About the Author

Michael Kloss, CSEP is an award-winning Certified Special Event Professional, author, and event-planning instructor with more than 20 years of experience creating memories for thousands of guests. The 2012 Special Events Magazine Organizational Event Planner-of-the-Year, Michael brings his passion for event technology, storytelling, experiential design, and Disney-inspired guest relations to each event. He serves as the Assistant Vice President for Emory Events and Chief Protocol Officer at Emory University. Previously he served as Chief of Staff to the President, University Chief of Protocol, and Executive Director of University Events. Prior to Emory, Michael served as the Director of University Events for the University of Southern California. Select event awards include the ILEA ESPRIT award for Best Original Entertainment for an original Cirque du Soleil-style gala performance, Georgia Trend Magazine's 40-under-40 award, and the Grand Gold Award from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education for his events with His Holiness the Dalai Lama.  He received the 2021 Best Industry Contribution for this book at the International Live Events Association ESPRIT Awards. He recently presented sessions at The Special Event Conference in Miami and ILEA-X Atlanta on Five Days with the Mouse to be a Better Event Planner.

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