Yesterday marked the anniversary for both Walt Disney World‘s Magic Kingdom (43rd) and Epcot (32nd). I had the great fortune to be able to celebrate these parks’ respective 40th and 30th fireworks celebrations. For the 40th Anniversary of the Magic Kingdom in 2011, a group of friends and I had a spectacular experience renting out the Grand 1 Yacht from the Grand Floridian for a unique perspective of these special fireworks. In 2012, I also had a great view of the fireworks at Epcot thanks to friends from the upper level of the Japan pavilion. To commemorate these two great parks and their anniversaries, I’d like to share some of the fantastic fireworks pictures I was able to capture.
First, a few shots of the Grand 1. If you aren’t familiar with this beautiful yacht, it is docked at the Grand Floridian and guests may reserve it for a fee for a specialty cruise scheduled in the evening for the fireworks, for a private lunch with a butler, or just a cruise around the Seven Seas Lagoon and Bay Lake. The yacht can accommodate up to 18 guests plus the captain and deckhand. If you get a chance to do this at any time, but especially for a special fireworks occasion like Fourth of July or New Year’s Eve, I highly recommend getting a group together to experience this awesome vessel. We had the yacht for a couple hours before the fireworks, so we cruised back and forth around Fort Wilderness, Wilderness Lodge, the Contemporary, Polynesian, and the Grand Floridian before settling in to watch the Electrical Water Pageant just feet in front of us. We then were positioned almost directly in front of the train station for the fireworks with some slight drifting with the current it was a magnificent view!
Epcot’s 30th was a fantastic combination of Illuminations and then paying homage to classic Epcot attractions and music with gorgeous fireworks.
Florida’s Space Coast brings a wave of ‘cool’ this Fall
-Spooky treats, jazzy tunes, crafty arts and “cool” deals this fall on Florida’s Space Coast-
This fall, Florida’s Space Coast brings a wave of “cool” to families and couples. From jazz concerts, to Halloween themed kid experiences to art festivals and even holiday delights, there’s so much to do on the Space Coast. Starting at just $59 guests can stay on Florida’s Space Coast and experience some beloved fall and holiday happenings.
Fall Florida’s Space Coast Favorites For All:
o Jazzoo at the Brevard Zoo– November 8 at 7:00 p.m. – Guests will relish in an unforgettable night featuring five live bands, extraordinary food and cocktails from more than 25 of Brevard County’s best restaurants and caterers for just $75. Starting October 20, tickets are $85. Jazzoo will feature the acclaimed jazz recording artist Jackiem Joyner, plus bands representing country, surf rock, top hits and classics.
o Melbourne Air & Space Show – October 4 and 5 – Families can soar with amazement during this air and space show at the Melbourne International Airport for a one-of-a-kind experience featuring the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and an all-star line-up of some of the nation’s top civilian acts. Advanced adult tickets are $15 and $10 for children ages 6 through 12. Tickets at the door are $20 for adults and $15 for children.
o Art & Algorithms – October 3 through 12 – Art gurus can’t miss this 10-day digital arts festival. Held in a host of venues in downtown Titusville, guests will experience an international short films festival, digital art galleries, celebrity artists, animations and hands-on entertainment. Plus see the awe-striking digital projection on the side of a building transforming it before guests’ eyes. A 10-day pass is $25 and single day tickets are $10. Children 12 and under are free.
o Brevard Zoo’sBoo at the Zoo– Specific Dates in October – Kids can enjoy an evening of spooks and treats at Boo at the Zoo with a variety of fun Halloween activities, including creepy crafts, trick-or-treating, a spooky, but not too scary Boo Choo train, costume parade, a live DJ and a Haunted Trail recommended for children 10 and older. Plus come face-to-face with meerkats, rhinos, and giraffes. Boo at the Zoo runs October 10-12, 17-19 and 24-26from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Prices range from $8 to $14 a ticket depending on the day of admission.
o Bill Cosby – November 21 – Don’t miss America’s dad and three-time Emmy winner, Bill Cosby performing at the Maxwell C. King Center for the Performing Arts on Friday, November 21. Tickets are on sale now ranging from $39.50 to $69.50.
o Space Coast Art Festival – November 28 through 30 – This Thanksgiving weekend, families can gather at The Cove at Port Canaveral for the 51stAnnual Space Coast Art Festival where hundreds of artists will showcase their artwork. Families can enjoy hands-on-activities, art, food, music and a 5k Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning.
Sneak Peek of Florida’s Space Coast Holiday Delights:
o Holidays in Space – The holidays are out of this world at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex during Holidays in Space beginning November 28. The Visitor Complex is adorned with a stunning array of holiday decorations. The International Space Station mural is swathed in holiday candlelight. Wreaths, garlands, lights, ribbons and bows throughout the Visitor Complex add to the holiday festival atmosphere. Holidays in Space is included with admission to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.
o Brevard Zoo’sHoliday Happenings – Families can join the celebration at Brevard Zoo’s Holiday Happenings all December long with fun activities for kids and families. Plus, don’t miss the chance to see some of the Zoo’s favorite furry and feathered friends receive some special holiday treats on December 20 through 23.
o Holiday Nights & Candlelight Shopping – Shoppers will delight during Holiday Nights & Candlelight Shopping in downtown Melbourne. Strolling past carolers, shops decked with window candles and festive décor, shoppers will find all kinds of holiday gifts and goodies every night during the holiday season.
o Christmas Boat Parades – The holidays wouldn’t be the same on Florida’s Space Coast without the famous Christmas Boat Parades where boats glisten over the dazzling water ways of the Space Coast. Christmas Boat Parades are held at Port Canaveral, Cocoa Beach, Melbourne and Merritt Island.
Florida’s Space Coast includes Cocoa Beach, Melbourne, Palm Bay and Titusville and is only 35 miles east of Orlando – making it Orlando’s closest beaches and a perfect destination to celebrate with family this fall and holiday season. To discover more, visit www.VisitSpaceCoast.com.
About Florida’s Space Coast
Located 35 miles (56 km) east of Orlando, Florida’s Space Coast is home to Orlando’s closest beaches. Encompassing Cocoa Beach, Melbourne Beach, Palm Bay and Titusville, this family-friendly destination offers more than 10,000 guest rooms, and is an ideal, value getaway. Guests will discover 72 miles (110 km) of beaches, the longest stretch in the state and more than 250 square miles of wildlife refuge. It is home to one of the nation’s busiest cruise ports; is the nation’s East Coast surfing capital and the location of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, where all 135 shuttle missions launched and unmanned rockets continue to launch. The Space Coast is home to Space Shuttle Atlantis and is one of only four destinations nationwide where visitors can view an orbiter. For more information, contact the Space Coast Office of Tourism at (877) 572-3224 or visit www.visitspacecoast.com. Visit www.spacecoastlaunches.com to learn about upcoming rocket launches. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/visitspacecoast. Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/flaspacecoast.
While you enjoy the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival, stay close by and continue your culinary celebrations to include:
Deluxe room accommodations starting at $189
A $100 food and beverage credit for use at Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress restaurants including:
Hemingway’s gourmet, island-inspired cuisine, or
Cascade American Bistro’s classic fare.
A bottle of Canvas Wine, developed exclusively for the resort by Michael Mondavi;
A complimentary amenity
Complimentary, daily shuttle service to area theme parks
Book a Food and Wine package now through November 21 with offer code WINE for travel between October 1 and November 22, 2014.
“We look forward to offering guests a unique culinary experience during their stay at Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress,” says food and beverage director Eduard Propst. “Our island inspired menus, coupled with the resort’s tropical surroundings, provide the perfect setting for foodies to celebrate their love of gourmet cuisine and exclusive wines this fall.”
Located just one mile from Walt Disney World® and minutes from Universal Orlando® and SeaWorld® Orlando, the 1,500 acre Grand Cypress resort offers guests limitless access to world-class recreation amenities including the recently renovated lagoon pool and new On the Rocks pool bar. Located along the 1,000 feet of white sandy beach of private Lake Windsong, the 800,000 gallon, half- acre, free-flowing lagoon pool boasts 12 waterfalls, heated and non-heated pools, and two whirlpools.
Additionally, the new Water Slide Tower Pavilion, Water Jet Splash Zone, and children’s Rock Climbing Stations complement family favorite activities including beach volleyball, tether ball, watersports and marked jogging, walking, and biking trails. Guests may also enjoy 45 holes of Jack Nicklaus Signature Design golf and the award-winning Tennis and Racquet Club.