Orlando Solar Bears Players Report to Training Camp SEPTEMBER 29; Players Take the Ice October 1
Orlando, FL – The Orlando Solar Bears announced today that players will report for Training Camp on Saturday, September 29th. The first day players will practice on the ice is Monday, October 1st.
On September 29th and 30th, the Orlando Solar Bears players will report to camp to complete physicals and go through medical testing. Once complete, the first on-ice session will be held on Monday, October 1st, as players prepare for two preseason contests in Estero, Florida, on October 5th and 6th. Training Camp activities will resume on Monday, October 8th, and will close on Thursday, October 11. Practices that are open to the public will be announced on www.OrlandoSolarBearsHockey.com at a later date.
The Orlando Solar Bears open the season on the road against the Florida Everblades for their first regular season game on Friday, October 12th. The contest marks the first of four-straight games between the two clubs to open the year.
“Training camp provides an excellent way for the players to develop chemistry and learn our systems,” stated Drake Berehowsky, the Head Coach of the Solar Bears. “It also gives the players a chance to get acclimated to their new surroundings here in Orlando.”
The Orlando Solar Bears take the ice at the Amway Center for their Opening Night on Saturday, October 20th. Single game tickets go on sale on Wednesday, September 19th.
The Orlando Solar Bears expect to announce a number of player signings, details regarding the formation of the OSB Alumni Association, two trophies that will be awarded annually to a current Bears player in honor and memory of both Dan Snyder and Rob Kenny, and a number of exciting promotional events over the next 2-4 weeks. The team also plans to unveil its 3rd jersey during the early portion of the season. Follow the Solar Bears at OrlandoSolarBearsHockey.com, Facebook, and Twitter (@OrlandoHockey) for all the latest news and updates.
The Orlando Solar Bears, the ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild and AHL’s Houston Aeros, are coming Out of Hibernation and will play 36 regular season home games at the 2012 Street and Smith’s Sports Business Journal Sports Facility of the Year, the Amway Center, beginning October 20, 2012.
ORLANDO CITY REMAINS CONFIDENT IN HEADING INTO PLAYOFFS
Rivalry heats up in first-ever playoff meeting between the Lions and Hammerheads
ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando City Soccer Club begins their title defense on Friday as they kick off the 2012 USL PRO Playoffs against their fierce rivals, the Wilmington Hammerheads at 7:30 p.m. at the Citrus Bowl.
“Like I say against everyone, we’ll give them the respect they deserve,” said Orlando City Soccer Head Coach Adrian Heath. “But we don’t fear anyone. We’re confident in our own ability to get the job done.”
The bad blood between the two sides has been brewing all season long, starting with the Lions defeating the Hammerheads 4-1 in the 2012 home opener. Orlando City dominated the game, and set the tone for a record-breaking season with the statement win.
Wilmington returned the favor when the City travelled north to Legion Stadium, and defeated the Lions 3-1. It was Orlando City Soccer’s only loss of the USL PRO season. Orlando’s players and coaching staff haven’t forgotten.
“We scored first, early on, but we didn’t play well,” said Heath. “It’s tight up there, and that gave us some trouble. Fortunately, we don’t have that issue at home.”
In the two matches between City and Wilmington, the Lions have outscored the Hammerheads 5-2, but in the most recent meeting, the match was played to a 1-1 draw. Much of that scoreline was the result of the Hammerheads’ defense-minded strategy and willingness to sit and wait for countering opportunities.
“I think it’s difficult for teams to not do that when they come here to play us,” said Heath, referring to Wilmington’s defensive strategy. “Especially when we play well. I thought a lot of our football was very, very good in the last game.”
Statistically, the Lions dominated that final match, outshooting the Hammerheads 36-6. Though Orlando City Soccer scored only once, they also hit the post several times. The Hammerheads managed just one serious scoring chance, the result of a surprising defensive lapse from the league’s best back line, but they made it count. Orlando will be keen to avoid those mistakes on Friday.
“If we have that many efforts at goal again, I’ll be delighted,” said Heath. “That will probably win us the game. But it’s that time of the year now – play well and carry on or go home. Our memories of the final last year are still very vivid, very fresh. That will be out motivation on Friday, because we want to experience that again.
The match will be broadcast locally on AM 740 The Game, and will be simulcast on USLNation.com for those outside Orlando. Tickets for the match are still available, and start at just $15. For more information, call 855-ORL-CITY or visit www.orlandocitysoccer.com today.
Player to Watch – Kevin Molino:
This season, as Dennis Chin goes, so does Orlando City. The 2012 USL PRO Goals Champion and Points Champion has been the Lions’ breakout star this season, and for good reason. He makes things happen. But behind Chin, there has been a far more important player pulling the strings – Kevin Molino.
Though he has registered just seven official assists on Orlando City’s 50 goals this season, there’s hardly a scoring chance the Lions have converted that doesn’t involve Molino in some manner. Like last year’s USL PRO MVP Yordany Alvarez, Molino pulls the strings in the City offense. His distribution skills are unmatched in the league. If Molino plays well, the Lions will move on to the USL PRO Championship for the second straight season.
About Orlando City Soccer Club:Orlando City Soccer Club (OCSC) is one of Orlando’s premier professional sports franchises. Orlando City plays in the USL PRO league, part of the United Soccer Leagues. During the inaugural 2011 season, the Orlando City Lions captured the USL PRO American Division, Regular Season, and Playoff championships, and was named the 2011 USL PRO Organization of the Year. For more information, visit www.orlandocitysoccer.com today.
When I arrived the Magic Kingdom on Tuesday, I was both surprised and excited to see that the Magic Kingdom Fall Decorations were already up .
I love this time of year and always look forward to things like seeing fall colors in the decor, especially the yellow and orange buntings used as accents along the Main Street Train Station, the pumpkins carved to match the stores that they are near.
The Magic Kingdom Fall Decorations most importantly mean that Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, MNSSHP, is just around the corner. This year the first Halloween Party is on Tuesday, September 11, and I seriously can’t wait to go.
Each year this special event takes place in the Magic Kingdom on select nights in September and October, even running until the beginning of November. It is my favorite special event of the entire year, so I cannot wait to go to MNSSHP in the next few weeks. I hope you are able to go sometime to experience this great party! We will be talking a lot more about the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party very soon!
I also love looking at the Halloween Trading Pins and the Halloween Merchandise that can be found all over Walt Disney World! I am a big fan of holiday merchandise, and this year’s selection definitely doesn’t disappoint. I love all of the nods to the Haunted Mansion and that the characters really capture the spookier side of Halloween.
Finding the Magic Kingdom Fall Decorations was a great way to begin my day, and a great start to a really fun time of year at Walt Disney World! I know that there will be additions to the Magic Kingdom Fall Decorations, so make sure that you follow us on twitter for all the latest pictures and news!
LEGOLAND Florida Halloween Fun Will Fill The Park During Its First Brick-Or-Treat Celebration!
Ghouls, ghosts and goblins will invade LEGOLAND Florida during its first kid-friendly Halloween celebration of Brick-or-Treat presented by Wells Fargo. This spooky, kooky event takes place on Saturdays in October from 10am to 9pm and Sundays in October from 10am to 5pm.
During Brick-or-Treat, presented by Wells Fargo, Miniland USA will transform into a fun, haunted scavenger hunt for the whole family with the invasion of LEGO® Monster Fighters and their enemies. With extended hours on Saturdays, Miniland USA gets a bit more spooky when the sun goes down and the fog rolls in on these LEGO® cities.
This thrilling family event also features trick-or-treating along the brick-or-treat trail, a kids’ four category costume contest with brick-tastic prizes and a build your own Halloween themed LEGO® pumpkin model activity station. Only found at LEGOLAND Florida, families can also check out the world’s largest LEGO Jack-O-Lantern made of 26,500 LEGO bricks and capture a great photo memory.
LEGO® Pumpkin Build: Build your own LEGO Pumpkin at the model activity station in the Wells Fargo Fun Town 4D Theatre Plaza
LEGO® Monster Fighters Haunted Scavenger Hunt: Help the LEGO Monster Fighters capture monsters haunting the cities of Miniland USA in this haunted scavenger hunt. The whole family can enjoy searching for these creatures found in the over 30 million LEGO bricks that make up Miniland USA. With extended hours on Saturdays, Miniland USA gets a bit more spooky when the sun goes down and the fog rolls in on these LEGO cities.
Brick-or-Treat Trail: Trick-or-Treat along the Brick-or-Treat trail near the Pirates South Stadium for goodies, tasty treats and other fun surprises
Dance Party: Join us for our spooky Dance Party in the Haunted Miniland USA with a live DJ and dance games (Saturday only)
Kids Costume Contest: Show off your BOO-tiful costumes in the Kids Costume Contest in the Wells Fargo Fun Town 4D Theatre Plaza to win brick-tastic prizes like LEGO product and tickets to LEGOLAND Florida. Children may enter one of 4 specialized categories: Heroes & Villains, LEGO Monster Fighters, LEGO Themed, and most Creative.
This thrilling Halloween celebration is made possible by our generous sponsors: Hurricane Grill & Wings®, LEGO ClubTM, LEGO® Monster Fighters, Old Navy®, PEPSICO®, Sam’s Club®, Sour Jacks, TECO® Energy, Webb’s Candy Shop, Wells Fargo® and Wendy’s®.
Brick-or-Treat as well as more than 50 rides, shows and attractions can be experienced at LEGOLAND Florida and is included with normal park admission – No upcharge for evening events. For the most current information on LEGOLAND Florida special events, operating schedule and to purchase tickets, visit www.LEGOLAND.com.
Orlando City Soccer Club Plays Their First Playoff Game of the Season August 31st!
OK Everyone! Grab your favorite Purple and Red Outfit and head to the Citrus Bowl on Friday, August 31st, night because those AMAZING boys over at Orlando City Soccer Club are playing their first play off game of the season! The Lions will be facing the Wilmington Hammerheads in the play off opener! Kick off is at 7:30pm
From The Desk of the Orlando City Soccer Club Lions:
Orlando City did not play this past weekend because the Lions earned a first-round-bye when they won the 2012 USL PRO Regular Season championship. The Hammerheads qualified for the postseason with a win on the final day of the regular season, and followed that up with a thrilling 3-2 victory over the Richmond Kickers on Saturday.
Historically, the Lions are 2-1-2 against Wilmington, and hold a 1-1-1 record against the Hammerheads in three meetings this season. Wilmington was the only USL PRO team to beat City all season, but that win came in Wilmington. In two Citrus Bowl clashes, Orlando defeated the Hammerheads 4-2 in the 2012 home opener on April 15, and drew 1-1 on July 25.
Ahead of Friday’s match, Orlando City is holding several events to raise awareness of the Lions’ push for a second-consecutive USL PRO championship. The highlight of the week is on Wednesday when City players and staff will be joined by Mayor Dyer in from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. in front of City Hall for a Playoff Pep Rally.
Before Friday’s match, United World Soccer will be hosting a tailgate party at the Citrus Bowl. Free beer for those 21 and up as well as prizes and giveaways are sure to get the crowd fired up for Friday’s match. The tailgate party begins at 4:30 p.m.
I know for a fact that Shelley, Shalon and I will be there in all of our Purple and Red glory in support of the Orlando City Soccer Club, so if you plan on stopping by PLEASE Tweet one of us and let us know! We love cheering for The Lions! You will be able to find us hanging with the Iron Lion Firm in section 121, because they know how to cheer! Be sure to follow On The Go on Twitter while we live tweet from the event and send out some pictures! Good Luck Guys!
Grand Floridian Resort Lobby’s Hosts Some Beautiful Hidden Gems
The other night I was wandering around the lobby at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, and as I was listening to the band play I stumbled upon something that I had never seemed to notice before.
As I was admiring the amazing tiles that can be found in the Grand Floridian’s Lobby, I looked a little closer and noticed something for the first time. Hidden in the marble and stone floors of the resort were some of my most favorite characters. At first I only noticed the silhouettes of Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy and Pluto in the entry of the lobby. But as I was about to head out to my car, a friendly Grand Floridian cast member, who had seen me admiring the floor of the lobby, asked me if I had seen the other characters around the lobby. And when I said that I hadn’t seen any of the other characters, he gave me a detailed tour of the lobby and made sure that I saw all the other hidden characters. Also hidden in the lobby were Tinkerbell, Mrs. Potts, Chip, Peter Pan and Cinderella dancing at the Ball.
One of my favorite details can be found just above where you find Cinderella at the ball. If you go up the staircase, you will find in the carpet that Cinderella’s Carriage is waiting to whisk her home from her night.
I was amazed that even after all the times, and the countless times that I had walked through the lobby of the Grand Floridan, that I had never seen these hidden gems.
It was a great way to explore the Grand Floridian in a way that I hadn’t done before, and now I can’t wait to explore other resorts to see if I can find other hidden characters and gems!
Orlando, FL. — The Solar Bears announced today that they have unveiled two new commemorative logos that will be affixed to the team’s home and road jerseys for the 2012-13 season.
The first logo will be worn as a patch on the Solar Bears jerseys for one night only, during opening night at the Amway Center on October 20, 2012. The second “Out of Hibernation” logo will be worn as a patch on the home and road jerseys for the remainder of the 2012-13 season. Both patches will be worn on the upper left chest of the Solar Bears jerseys.
The Joe Bosack Graphic Design Company, based in Pottsville, PA, designed both of the logos. They are same company that designed the Solar Bears primary logos.
Over the next 2-6 weeks the Solar Bears expect to announce a number of player signings, our new radio broadcast partner, details for our OSB Training Camp dates and Open Invitation Try-Out, Single Game Ticket “On Sale” date, details regarding the formation of the OSB Alumni Association, details about two trophies that will be awarded annually to a current Solar Bears player in honor and memory of both Dan Snyder and Rob Kenny, and a number of exciting promotional events. The team also plans to unveil its 3rd jersey during the early portion of the season. Follow the Solar Bears at OrlandoSolarBearsHockey.com, Facebookand Twitter for all the latest news and updates.
The Orlando Solar Bears, the ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild and AHL’s Houston Aeros, are coming Out of Hibernation and will play 36 regular season home games at the 2012 Street and Smith’s Sports Business Journal Sports Facility of the Year, the Amway Center, beginning October 20, 2012.
Season ticket plans are available now. Everyone is invited to take advantage of the Orlando Solar Bears season ticket pre-sale offer by placing a $50 deposit per ticket now to receive seat selection priority. Full and half season ticket plans range in price from $225-$1480 per season ticket (includes facility fee), reflecting a savings of up to 42% off box office pricing. Call the Solar Bears at 407-951-8200 or visitOrlandoSolarBearsHockey.com.
Group tickets are a great way to entertain employees, co-workers, clients, friends and family. For more information on discounted group tickets and a list of group benefits, call407-951-8200.
It was Disney’s One More Day event on leap year, the park would be open 24 hours, so I decided I would like to get a room close by using my Disney Vacation Club, DVC, points. I originally booked a 1 bedroom at Bay Lake tower, but later changed it to a 2 bedroom not knowing who would want to come after and crash.
That morning we arrived early at Bay Lake Tower, the Disney Vacation Club Resort near the Contemporary, and let the guard house know that we would be having additional guests needing parking passes. They advised us that we should get parking passes since it was there was a special event that day and that parking enforcement could happen, and then we called our friends who were on the room to advise them that they should get parking passes as well.
Todd had done Disney Vacation Club Online Check-In the night before, so we didn’t stop at the front desk which turned out to be a bad idea this time. Around 1pm, I called to check on the room. The front desk said that I had to go to Bay Lake Tower and check in before they could give me my room info. I left the Magic Kingdom and headed out, at check in I was still confused why I had to be at the desk but I got our room keys.
The room was not ready so I went back to the park. The security lines were a little more crowded so I rented a locker. It was a few hours later, I finally got the notice that the room was ready. Thank goodness since by then I needed a nap. After my nap, I walked into the Contempo Cafe for dinner then I went back to the park. Around 1am, I was ready for bed; I walked back to my room. I woke up around 9am. Checkout was at 11am.
We left at 11am and headed back home. It was a quick stay, but having a room close by was really convenient and a great use of my Disney Vacation Club Points!
Note: These photographs are not those of our room.
Thank you to Betsy Bates for the use of her photographs!
We figured since Night of Joy is just around the corner we would give you some extras on the bands that are performing! Click the links to visit the Artist website and learn more about them before you want to see them live!
“Doc McStuffins” is Zoe’s favorite shows on the Disney Channel, and when she watched “Doc McStuffins: Friendship Is The Best Medicine” it was like time stood still!
“Doc McStuffins” is an imaginative animated series about Doc McStuffins, a six-year-old girl who communicates with and heals stuffed animals and broken toys out of her backyard playhouse clinic. Assisting Doc with the day-to-day operations at the clinic are her much-loved friends: Stuffy, an overly proud dragon; Lambie, her cuddly best friend; Hallie, a jolly and caring hippo nurse; Squeakers, an alarmist squeaky toy fish; and Chilly, a snowman who spends a lot of time getting check-ups at the clinic. Whether it’s a case of loose stitching, low batteries or a blow-up toy who’s sprung a leak, Doc and her pals are always there to lend a helping hand, while imparting to young viewers the importance of taking care of oneself and others. Each episode features two 11-minute stories and an original song and showcases the hallmarks of great Disney storytelling – fantasy and wish fulfillment.
“Doc McStuffins” is an animated television series that airs daily on both the Disney Junior programming block on Disney Channel and the new 24-hour Disney Junior channel. It is cable’s #1 series among Kids 2-5, and 2012’s #1 preschool cable TV series in Total Viewers and Women 18-49
“Doc McStuffins: Friendship Is The Best Medicine” includes a DVD featuring five full length episodes, each consisting of two 11-minute stories, a Digital Copy of the episodes, and it also comes packaged with Doc’s special Big Book of Boo-Boos with fun activities plus character and boo-boo bandage stickers. The episodes are just the right length to keep her involved in the stories, but not too long to where she loses interest!
I love “Doc McStuffins”, because it has helped dealing with boo-boos and visits to the Doctor much easier for both of us! Not only does it make a lot of the things that happen at the Doctor’s office less scary, it makes her understand why staying healthy and having good hygiene is important.
The lovable characters in the series are voiced by Kiara Muhammad as Doc; Loretta Devine as Hallie; Lara Jill Miller as Lambie; Robbie Rist as Stuffy; Jess Harnell as Chilly; Jaden Betts as Donny McStuffins; Kim Brooks as Mom McStuffins; and Gary Anthony Williams as Dad McStuffins. The series’ theme song is performed by the star of Disney Channel’s hit series “A.N.T. Farm” and Hollywood Records recording artist, China Anne McClain. Created and executive-produced by Humanitas Prize and Emmy® Award-winning Chris Nee (writer on “Little Bill” and producer of “Deadliest Catch: Crab Fishing in Alaska”) and directed by Emmy® Award-winning Norton Virgien (“Rugrats”), “Doc McStuffins” is a production of Academy Award® nominated Brown Bag Films (Best Animated Short Film “Granny O’Grimm’s Sleeping Beauty” in 2010) in association with Disney Channel. The Hollywood Health & Society division of the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center serves as the series’ health and medical consultants, advising on basic health issues that are relevant to young kids and families.
We all really enjoyed “Doc McStuffins: Friendship Is The Best Medicine”, and having the Digital Copy is such a great bonus!!! I can only hope that you all enjoy it as much as we all did…and have since the disc hasn’t left the DVD player yet!!!
EPISODES FEATURED ON THE DVD:
The DVD contains five full length episodes, each consisting of two 11-minute stories, that highlight some of Doc’s favorite toys.
· ENGINE NINE, FEELIN’ FINE! – Doc and her toys learn a lesson about dehydration after discovering that Donny’s toy fire engine has run out of water.
· THE RIGHT STUFF – Stuffy rips his tail and tries to hide it from Doc and the other toys and learns that anyone can get hurt – even brave dragons.
· CAUGHT BLUE-HANDED – When a mysterious rash of blue spots breaks out among some of the toys in the clinic, Doctraces the “Mystery Pox” back to Donny’s toy monster, Glo-Bo who had been finger-painting earlier in the day and forgot to wash his hands. Glo-Bo is voiced by Jim Belushi.
· TO SQUEAK, OR NOT TO SQUEAK – Doc helps a plastic toy duck get his voice back after his squeaker pops out.
· BEN/ANNA SPLIT! – When Doc’s huggy monkey doll Ben loses the velcro patch that attaches him to his sister Anna,Doc glues it back on and tells him that he will have to stay in the clinic overnight while it dries.
· THAT’S JUST CLAW-FUL – Doc prescribes physical therapy for her crab bath toy Hermie after she reattaches one of his claws that has fallen off.
· THE RIP HEARD ROUND THE WORLD – While dancing with Lambie, Doc accidentally rips a hole in her fur.
· WALKIE-TALKIE TIME – Doc diagnoses a toy walkie-talkie with “Staticosis” and helps find his missing antenna so he can communicate clearly again.
· DARK KNIGHT – During a sleepover with all of her toys, Doc discovers that Sir Kirby is afraid of the dark and prescribes a night light to cure him of the “Dark Willies.”
· HALLIE GETS AN EARFUL – When Hallie is having trouble hearing, Doc gives her a hearing test and realizes that she has extra cotton stuck in her ears.
Street Date: August 21, 2012 (Direct Prebook: 6/26; Distributors Prebook: 7/10)
Suggested Retail Pricing: 1-Disc DVD + Digital Copy Hybrid = $19.99 U.S./$26.99 Canada
When we last left our adventures, I had just completed my first full day at the Disneyland Resort with a day at DCA and finished with a late night dinner at Jolly Holiday Bakery in Disneyland. From here we resume our trip report. On day two I began with a breakfast, leftover dessert from the night before, with a Matterhorn macaroon from the bakery. This was amazing! Thank you again to Lee and Becca for the recommendations on this one. It was the perfect way to start my day with a small bite to eat since I had an early lunch ADR at Blue Bayou at 11am.
I made my way to Disneyland with the goal of trying to ride the Matterhorn (fitting, no?) before lunch, but unfortunately it was down when I got there. I made a game time decision to ride Alice in Wonderland since it was a posted 10 minute wait. I figured this would give me enough time to ride and make it to my reservation in less than an hour without any trouble. I loved this ride! I am know a huge fan of the movie, but I think it is a great classic dark ride and it also has a connection to Walt. This was a great way to start my morning before heading to lunch in New Orleans Square.
Lunch at Blue Bayou was the only reservation that I made for dining and I did so only about a week and a half or so prior to arrival using the email system used by Disneyland. I sent an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, which you can read more about how it works here. In the email I told them that I wanted to eat at Blue Bayou for lunch any time between 8/2 and 8/8 and they responded promptly within an hour with choices. I responded with my selections and concerns with a food allergy and they again got back to me within 15 minutes with a time, confirmation number, and information about my allergy. All in all, it was a pretty simple way to make ADRs. I liked the quick response time as well as the interaction and ability to ask questions. I would highly recommend this system for any future bookings.
Since I was dining at opening at 11am, and I was by myself, I thought my chances were good for a waterside table, but requested it when I checked in at the podium, letting the CM know I was willing to wait for one. For those who are not familiar with the Blue Bayou, it is located in New Orleans Square in Disneyland and the restaurant is situated in the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction, much like San Angel Inn in Mexico at Epcot. The food and service were great and I ordered the gumbo and the monte cristo. Having lived in Louisiana, it was nice to be able to get some nice cajun food, although I should have asked for hot sauce to add a bit more kick to the gumbo. I was barely able to eat half of my meal, so I got the rest to go to save some for dinner later.
After eating, one of my favorite things to do is to take a nice leisurely boat ride while I digest. I opted for either the Columbia or the Mark Twain, which ever one came first, which ended up being the latter. It is a nice ride with narration around the Rivers of America, very similar to the Liberty Belle in the Magic Kingdom at WDW. Once my stomach was settled from lunch, I headed to Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, which I thought was a bit faster and more wild than the Florida version. At the recommendation of Sally, I went to see Billy Hill and the Hillbillies at the Big Thunder Ranch. I totally loved this area of the park that is used for character meet and greets and pin trading. There is also a small petting zoo with goats on the way to the seating area. You can even color with the Country Bears.
I was supposed to meet up with Colin and Rich again, but my phone was dying and I forgot my external battery charger, so I went to Pinocchio Village Haus to sit and charge my phone for an hour before the guys arrived. When they got there we tackled Fantasyland, starting with Casey Jr., then on to Pinocchio’s Daring Journey, King Arthur Carrousel, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, Peter Pan’s Flight, Snow White’s Scary Adventures, Sleeping Beauty Castle Walkthrough and Snow White Grotto. I really liked the dark rides and thought that star effect in Peter Pan was fantastic! It was nice being able to ride Mr. Toad after almost 14 years. The walkthrough was also cool to have a story attached to the character, which gave it a bit more meaning than a restaurant that typically needs to be booked months in advance.
The guys decided they needed to kidnap me and take me on the monorail to Downtown Disney for the short walk from there to the Disneyland Hotel. There we were to go to Trader Sam’s, a tiki bar I have heard many great stories about from near and far. I was more than happy to submit and go along. They have some great nods to the Jungle Cruise, Tiki Room and the sadly defunct Adventurer’s Club from WDW, as well as some amazing details put in by the Imagineers. I would stay there as long as I could if I had my way. We had a couple drinks and they were ready for dinner, but I was headed back to Disneyland to meet up with Ryan, Sally and the rest of the crew.
I walked back with them through Downtown Disney since I hadn’t been there yet. Much like Disneyland compared to the Magic Kingdom, there seems to be a more electric, kinetic feel than the DTD at WDW. A lot of this can be contributed to the live entertainment offerings to be found there I think. After a brief walk, I was back in Disneyland and coordinated with Sally to meet them at Tarzan’s Treehouse in Adventureland. This attraction used to be the Swiss Family Treehouse like at MK, but was switched over to a Tarzan theme shortly after the film was released in 1999.
Once we completed the walkthrough of the treehouse, we were ready for a bite to eat and the Kilpatricks introduced me to the wonderful offerings of Bengal Barbeque. They have great skewers of meat, that are pretty reasonably priced around $4 and have different options like spicy beef, polynesian chicken, bacon wrapped asparagus as well as a few others. It was a nice snack before going in to the Tiki Room. I really enjoyed this show in its full length, in additional to the pre-show with the tikis and the Dole video about Hawaii.
Tomorrowland was our next destination since we had Fast Passes for both Space Mountain and Autopia. In case I forgot to mention it, this was the Kilpatrick family and Gretchen’s last day and they were trying to accomplish 25 attractions in one day. They were well along to 20 when I met up with them, so I knew we could get five more in the hours we had left before DL closed for the night. I am not a huge fan of Space Mountain or the Tomorrowland Indy Speedway at home, but really liked their Disneyland counterparts. Space Mountain seemed much smoother and I liked the side by side seating as well as the speakers in the ride vehicles, like Rock ‘n’ Rollercoaster. Autopia was well themed and seemed longer than in WDW, plus the cars are much cuter. 🙂
A request for the tea cups had been made by the kids, so we made our way from Tomorrowland to Fantasyland to ride the Mad Tea Party, which is absolutely gorgeous at night with Chinese lanterns of all colors hanging over the open air attraction. We had a great time having a contest to see who could spin the fastest. We didn’t win, but we had an awesome time. At this time, it was almost 11pm, and we were ready for a proper meal so we went to the Refreshment Corner so they could get hot dogs and I finished off my leftovers from lunch. I, of course, got another fountain coke with syrup, raspberry this time, since they were the best I’ve had in a long time. Our last attraction for the night was Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln. This was a great way to end the night with friends. It borrows some things from both the Hall of Presidents and the American Adventure at Epcot including two songs which typically make me cry in Two Brothers and Golden Dream. I stayed strong. We said our goodbyes and went to our respective hotels. Another magical day came to a close.
This was to be my only completely solo day of the whole trip, so I was a little bummed starting out my walk to Disneyland in the morning. I thought I’d challenge myself by trying to do the Matterhorn, Star Tours and Indiana Jones Adventures before lunch. If I haven’t mentioned it yet, the entire trip for both parks was 10s across the board on the Touring Plans crowd calendar. I made a bee line for the Matterhorn to start my day there like I had tried to do the previous day. I was very happy to see it was up and running and that the single rider line was practically a walk on! I rode both sides of the attraction by using the single rider line withing 20 minutes of being in the park. Maybe this being by myself thing wouldn’t be so bad.
Next up I was planning to do Star Tours, but since I was by the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage I decided I
should do that attraction since it was still relatively early around 10am and the wait was under 30 minutes (thanks to Matt Parrish of Wedway Radio and Wedway Now for this tip). I was apprehensive going into the sub since I am claustrophobic and don’t like being trapped, but I kept telling myself we never truly go completely submerged, so if we have to get out we can. Also, I did the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea ride at WDW when I was a kid and I was fine, so I knew it wasn’t too bad. I thought the ride was cute, but it is definitely not one I need to do each time I’m there.
Sticking to Tomorrowland’s original plan, I next went to Star Tours, which is pretty much identical to Florida in the attraction itself. I then headed over to Adventureland for one of the rides I was most looking forward to: Indy!!! I am a huge fan of the movies, really like the stunt show at DHS, and was hoping that the story would distract me from the ride vehicles that are the same as Dinosaur at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, of which I am not a fan. Thankfully, the story was so immersive and I didn’t even feel the least bit nauseous like I usually do after Dinosaur, so I really enjoyed this. My last ride before lunch was the Jungle Cruise. I liked that it was familiar, but with some differences and I liked these nuances, however I kind of missed the temple that we have in WDW.
Since I didn’t eat breakfast and it was now almost 1pm, I was very hungry and ready for lunch. I knew where I wanted to eat thanks to Nate Parrish (also of Wedway Radio and Wedway Now, formerly of Betamouse): Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port in Tomorrowland, which has the Count Down Chicken Fusilli. This is a corkscrew kind of pasta, similar to a cavatappi, with an alfredo sauce and nice pieces of grilled chicken. I threw on some roasted red pepper flakes and this was a great meal along with a refillable(!!!) soda for a little over $10.
Not having a boat nearby, I opted to take my post lunch digestive rest on the Disneyland Railroad for the full circle tour before going to catch the tail end of the Jedi Training Academy. It was getting a bit warm out, so I ducked in to Innoventions to explore for a few minutes and ended up at the House of the Future watching demonstrations of the latest and greatest technology. Since Captain EO was nearby and a show was starting in a few minutes, I decided to try to change the world. I walked through the Starcade on the way out and chose not to spend money on games. I kept moving to the front of Tomorrowland and got on to the Astro Orbitor. It was kind of cool being so close to the castle compared to at WDW, but I think I like the added thrill in Florida of being up a few stories above the Peoplemover.
Then there was Buzz. More precisely, Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters was next. This was a humbling experience to say the least. For someone who is used to being a galactic hero at WDW and maxing out the score at 999,999, it is kind of sad to only get 36,000 points on what is supposed to be an easier attraction. Cue sad music here. I timed my exit from Tomorrowland to match up almost perfectly so I was able to quickly find a spot for the Soundsational parade. I absolutely loved this! It may be my favorite Disney parade. Ever. The parade is based around different genres of music from Disney films: calypso from the Little Mermaid, jazz from the Princess and the Frog, African music from the Lion King and Tarzan, etc. I really enjoyed seeing different floats and costumes all well themed around the styles of music.
Like WDW, there are certain attractions at DL that have time constraints, so I missed them and needed to make sure I hit them during their limited operating hours. One of these such attractions is the Davy Crockett’s Explorer Canoes. Yes, I was there and I was going to paddle my little heart out in 95+ degree heat and humidity because I had set this silly goal of doing all the attractions. And paddle I did. One thing I wish I had done differently was think about the fact I have a bad shoulder from a car accident and I should have asked to switched sides. You get a work out with this one kids. There are no backup motors. It is you and good old fashioned elbow grease that get you around the Rivers of America by paddle power along with about 15-20 other fools, I mean guests.
Having worked up an appetite, and a thirst, I found myself drawn to the Mint Julep Bar in New Orleans Square. I heard about the virgin mint juleps and Mickey shaped beignets that could be found there and knew I had to go. This seemed like the perfect time since it was around 5pm and pretty warm. I sat briefly outside the French Market and then walked toward the sounds of jazz music coming from in front of the Rivers of America. One of the many musical acts, this one featuring jazz and dixieland, was performing. I enjoyed the sounds for a bit before moseying over to the Golden Horseshoe, where I caught the tail end of a stage performance.
From here I cut my way to the back of Fantasyland to It’s A Small World. I was very much looking forward to this ride since I had heard their version has characters from Disney films inserted in the Mary Blair style. To me, this was a great addition to the ride, and I also enjoyed the scenes that were different from the WDW version. It was also cool to start and end the ride outside. I knew I’d have to ride this one again to see if I could catch more of the characters.
I poked my head in the Disney Princess Fantasy Faire, which is basically a princess meet and greet, but the line was well over an hour, so I decided to pass and go to Toontown. For anyone who has played the Epic Mickey video game, this will be very familiar to you. When I walked in it had a deja vu feeling since I knew where things were relatively well from the game. I rode Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin, which was a fun twist (ha ha ha) on a dark ride. Then I quickly walked through Goofy’s Playhouse, Donald’s Boat, and got in line for Gadget’s Go Coaster (similar to the Barnstormer). After that ride I toured Chip ‘n’ Dale Treehouse, Mickey and Minnie’s houses and was ready to return to Fantasyland. Since we no longer have Toontown here, it was kind of nice to see a version of Mickey and Minnie’s houses.
It was just before dusk and I wanted to make sure I caught the Storybook Land Canal Boats before it got too dark so I could get some pictures. This was the perfect time at twilight because the sun was still out to see, but the lights were on too, which made this even more beautiful. I loved this ride and wished I would have gone back to ride it again! My last stop in Disneyland for the night was Dumbo, which was also very cool as the lights of Fantasyland, especially the lanterns of Mad Tea Party were now lit.
As I mentioned earlier, the only restaurant that I had made reservations for on this trip was Blue Bayou. However, I had it in my mind that there were a couple others that I wanted to at least try out if I had the time and money. Since I was on budget at this point in the trip, I decided to go to DCA to see if I could get a walk in reservation at Carthay Circle. I had been in the lounge the other day with Lee and knew I wanted to go back again to try at least a cocktail or two and maybe some appetizers. This is how I do dinner a lot of times to save money by not getting an entree and it also allows me to try more things by getting a couple apps.
By the time I got to the restaurant, it was about quarter til nine and they said I could either eat at the bar downstairs, which has a different menu than upstairs, or I could wait til nine to be seated in the restaurant. I opted to grab a drink in the lounge and let them know at the podium that I wanted to eat upstairs. Starting off with the Carthay Circle Manhattan in the bar (watch how they make the ice sphere if you go), and finishing up with the Brown Derby in the restaurant (another bourbon based drink), I was so ready for the dinner that awaited. I was very pleasantly surprised to be seated on the terrace outside that overlooked Buena Vista Street and facing the front of the park towards Disneyland.
I mentioned to my server that I was in a bit of a hurry and was trying to make the second showing of World of Color at 10:15. They were more than happy to accommodate me by putting in my order as soon as I was seated since I had looked at the menu ahead of time. I ordered the biscuits, filled with cheese and jalapenos and came with an apricot dipping sauce that were to die for, and the firecracker duck wings, which were a great pairing to complement the spiciness of the biscuits. My food came quickly and the service was great. I gave my server my credit card as soon as my food came so I could expedite things. While I was finishing my food, I heard music and Magical, the Disneyland fireworks, started. I had a gorgeous view from the terrace and the music was piped in, much like ‘Ohana at the Polynesian does with Wishes. This was such an awesome surprise! I watched the entire show and when I was done, my bill was waiting for me. I opened it and there was a surprise FP for World of Color! I know they have World of Color dinner packages that offer you reserved seating, but I hadn’t ordered what was necessary to qualify for this.
Once I thanked my server for being so efficient and for the extra bit of pixie dust, I was on my way to watch World of Color for the second time during my trip. Yes, I cried … again. It was a beautiful way to end my day and my solo trip fears washed away. It had been a practically perfect day despite the fact I didn’t see any friends on this particular day. This would be the only day I wasn’t with friends for at least part of the day.
Stay tuned for our thrilling conclusion next week. Same bat channel. Same bat time.
If you want to see even more pictures from my trip check them out here on my Facebook page.
The Mavericks of Mayhem, an edgy lifestyle apparel line for men designed by Noah and presented by Disney Consumer Group, has finally arrived at D Street.
The line features Peg Leg Pete, Big Bad Wolf, Donald Duck, Goofy, and Beagle Boy in a way that they haven’t been seen before! They have been designed to be rougher, tougher, and ready to race at the drop of a hat!
Shirts in this line are super thick and high quality, and seem to run more true to size than athletic.
I can’t wait to see the other pieces in this line!!!