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ADP - Live From Disney World

#21 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 09:27 PM

We had lunch at Backlot Express as well and you're right Aaron...Backlot Express is the best counter service option at the Studios.
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#22 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 09:50 PM

Thanks for the info on the Backlot Express. I haven't been there, but will make a point of trying it on my next trip. So you've been to the Studio's twice now, but no word on the Citizens of Hollywood. You've got to see them on your next day at the Studio's. Please.
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
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May 21-28, 2013
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#23 User is offline   ADP 

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 10:01 PM

queenofthehouse said:

Thanks for the info on the Backlot Express. I haven't been there, but will make a point of trying it on my next trip. So you've been to the Studio's twice now, but no word on the Citizens of Hollywood. You've got to see them on your next day at the Studio's. Please.


Hi Maureen

I will make it a point to check them out on Tuesday. Hopefully they will be out when I'm around Hollywood Blvd. I did see some streetmosphere characters today, but it was more one on one interaction with individual guests just after 9:15.
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#24 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 06 April 2008 - 10:39 PM

ADP said:

queenofthehouse said:

Thanks for the info on the Backlot Express. I haven't been there, but will make a point of trying it on my next trip. So you've been to the Studio's twice now, but no word on the Citizens of Hollywood. You've got to see them on your next day at the Studio's. Please.


Hi Maureen

I will make it a point to check them out on Tuesday. Hopefully they will be out when I'm around Hollywood Blvd. I did see some streetmosphere characters today, but it was more one on one interaction with individual guests just after 9:15.

okay Tuesday COH CM's that are off: Madaline Moore, Bucky Greenhorn, Dorma, Otto and Babs. But, of course schedules can change.
The "In the Can" group (Alberto Dante, Paige Turner and Francis Floot) I think should be around in the morning. Jack Diamond should be around and he's always great to watch (great, I mean unbelievable). Fellini should also be around and don't forget to catch the Hollywood Public Works guys - they are crazy fun. Tell them Maureen and Lowell say Hi (Lowell the kid with the plunger). Oh, I miss them.
Happy that you are having a great time.
And I love your daughters' face make up and her hair. What a great birthday, she's having.

Funny: When Madaline Moore told me she's out on Tuesday, she said she is filming on location "Ma, Ma, can you hear me". That cracked me up.
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
Mad, Mad, Mad about Disney!

May 21-28, 2013
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#25 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 07 April 2008 - 11:14 AM

The Streetmosphere characters tend to come out more in the afternoon.
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#26 User is offline   ADP 

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Posted 07 April 2008 - 11:30 PM

Monday, April 7th Morning

Hi Everyone,

We are back from our Ohana character breakfast. We were going to go the Magic Kingdom, but when we saw the crowds leaving the monorail and at the gates of the Magic Kingdom we decided to come back to the resort and go to the pool. We will also be going to the Saratoga Springs pool later and then to Downtown Disney.

We took the bus from Old Key West to the Magic Kingdom and then jumped on the resort monrail around to the Polynesian.

Our breakfast was very good this morning. The food and service were top notch. Ohana's character breakfast is served family style. They bring the food out to you on a skillet and serve some of it individually. Our waitress brought separate plates of fruit out to our table and a bucket of mickey waffles as well.

The scrambled eggs were soft, warm, and fluffy. The pineapple was very tasty. The character interaction was very good. This is the second time we've expereinced this character breakfast and both times have been very favorable. I would highly suggest trying this breakfast. The characters were Lilo, Stitch, Mickey and Pluto.

Before you are seated you take a picture with your group for potential purchase later during your meal. I'm glad they don't force you to buy it like at Norway (Akershus) and the castle meals.

Here are some photos from this morning.

The crowd going into the Magic Kingdom. Very large today. Probably since tonight is Evening EMH, last night's Pirate & Princess party closed the park early, and the rainy weather yesterday. The pics may not do the crowds justice, but trust me, it was busy.

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Polynesian landscape in and near the lobby
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Ohana Signage
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Our table of 10. Everyone receives a leigh when they check in.
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Hula Mickey and the children from our table. I guess I'm just a kid at heart because I jumped in as well.
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The children get to parade around the restaurant with the characters during certain times of the meal.
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The firepit at Ohana is used to cook meats for dinner. It is one of the largest firepits in the world.
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Here's a picture from the window of Ohana looking towards Cinderella castle and the Magic Kingdom with the Polynesian volcano pool on the side.
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The new Kingdom Towers (Contemporary DVC) from afar. It sure is coming along quickly.
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And finally a shot of our building number 38 in Turtle Pond
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All in all it was a great morning with family, friends, and even characters!

I'll be back later with some photos of our room, the pool, Downtown Disney and Saratoga Springs.
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#27 User is offline   ADP 

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Posted 08 April 2008 - 12:49 AM

Monday, April 7th Evening

Hi again everyone. We are finally back from a long afternoon and evening. We spent our afternoon at the Turtle Pond pool (Old Key West), Saratoga Springs, Downtown Disney and the Magic Kingdom. It was such a busy afternoon I didn't get a chance to take any pictures of the room, but I will get some pictures of the room up to share with you eventually. Hopefully, before we make a reck of the place.

After the last report we took off to the Turtle Pond pool. This is the quiet pool for the Turtle Pond section of Old Key West. I must say I was impressed with the pool area. There is a playground, shuffleboard court, a snack bar/lounge, a hot tub, and plenty of chairs around the pool.

Here are a few pictures of the pool area.
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After we spent our time at the pool we decided to make a stop at Saratoga Springs. The resort is beautiful and peaceful. We took the DVC boat launch from Old Key West to Saratoga Springs. It truly is a beautiful ride going up the Sassagoula River.
Here are a few photos going up the Sassagoula river on our way to Saratoga Springs.
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When we got to Saratoga Springs I wanted to try and catch our DVC guide, but unfortunately he had already left for the day. I decided to go to the preview center and check out the Animal Kingdom Villa models. They are really going to be beautiful rooms. The models are open daily from 5:00PM to 7:00PM for DVC members to view.
Here are a couple shots of Saratoga Springs
The main pool (High Rock Springs) was rather lively today.
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The main courtyard at SSR.
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After we left Saratoga Springs we took the walking trail from the resort to Downtown Disney. The walk is very nice. It takes you to the Marketplace where the path ends.
Here's a photo of Downtown Disney from the walking path at Saratoga Springs.
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Our first stop was at Goofy's Candy Co. I'm a sucker for peanut butter so I had a peanut butter dream, Kim had a piece of peanut butter fudge, and Anna had a grape frozen slush.
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Anna's grape slush in a Minnie cup
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After we left Goofy's Candy Co we went to the World of Disney store. On our way we bumped into some friends from our home town. Quite the coincidence.
At the World of Disney Easter Bunny Stitch was still spitting water on the kids at the entrance.
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The crowd at Downtown Disney Marketplace.
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I didn't get a chance to make it over to the construction site of the new T-Rex restaurant. Looking at it from afar I can tell you its going to be a big..BIG restaurant. It is scheduled to open this fall.

We decided since the Magic Kingdom was having Extra Magic Hours tonight we would visit the park. We caught the Grand Floridian bus from Downtown Disney's Marketplace. Once we got to the Grand Floridian we hopped the monorail to the Magic Kingdom. When we got there the first Spectromagic parade had just finished.

I was still a bit hungry and the first place that came to mind was Casey's Corner. Let me just say I've always loved the food at Casey's. Their hot dogs are very good; however, they've changed their buns. Maybe the powers that be at Disney didn't think guests would notice, but I noticed. The buns are not a good quality in my opinion. When you pick them up with your hands they tend to crumble.
Here's a photo of the entree.
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The attractions we experienced at the Magic Kingdom included Pirates of the Carribean, Alladin's Magic Carpets, the Haunted Mansion, Mickey's Philharmagic, Tormorrowland Transit Authority (TTA), and Carousel of Progress.

Here's a photo from outside of the Haunted Mansion. Sorry its a bit dark.
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We left the Magic Kingdom at 11:45. We were fortunate enough to get to the Magic Kingdom bus depot and the Old Key West bus was waiting for us. It seemed like the quickest bus trip we had all week. The driver was very quick and efficient.

Next up
Magic Kingdom or EPCOT (A coin flip may determine which one)
Hollywood Studios to watch Block Party Bash and COH
Dinner at a mystery location
Photos of our villa

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#28 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 08 April 2008 - 11:10 AM

Nice photos Aaron, I've never stayed at Old Key West (havent been there either) so it was nice seeing the resort, thanks to your photos. Let me get this straight, you went to the Polynesian and you were NOT wearing a Hawaiian shirt?! :shock: Everytime I've met you, you've had on a Hawaiian shirt...what gives?! :D
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#29 User is offline   DebWDW 

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Posted 08 April 2008 - 04:06 PM

Re your Ohana character breakfast ... you gotta love a restaurant that brings you BUCKETS of Mickey waffles!
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#30 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 08 April 2008 - 09:42 PM

Ohana is one of my favorite places for a character breakfast. We usually plan on a late reservation, this way the place is nearly emptied out and the characters spend a lot of time with you. You end up getting a number of characters all at once. And we never feel rushed there. We usually plan on it for our day off.

Thanks for the photos of Old Key West. I've never seen it before. The buildings look a little like the Caribbean Beach.
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
Mad, Mad, Mad about Disney!

May 21-28, 2013
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#31 User is offline   ADP 

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Posted 08 April 2008 - 10:01 PM

QuickGold said:

Nice photos Aaron, I've never stayed at Old Key West (havent been there either) so it was nice seeing the resort, thanks to your photos. Let me get this straight, you went to the Polynesian and you were NOT wearing a Hawaiian shirt?! :shock: Everytime I've met you, you've had on a Hawaiian shirt...what gives?! :D


:lol:
That shirt I had on was actually a Tommy Bahama knock-off. :lol:
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#32 User is offline   ADP 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 12:34 AM

Tuesday, April 8th

Hi again everybody,

We are back from another fun-filled day at the parks. We started our day at Winter Summerland miniature golf, then onto Hollywood Studios for Block Party Bash, and then finished our day at EPCOT. I have a lot of photos to post so let's get to it!

I was fortunate enough to get a last minute reservation at Tutto Italia tonight so we dined there for dinner. Lunch was at the ABC Commisary at Hollywood Studios. We also got some ice cream treats on Hollywood Blvd.

As promised from the last few days here are some photos of our room at Old Key West. The one, two and three bedroom villas at Old Key West are huge. As I mentioned before I could perminantly live here without a problem.

Here are the shots of our villa.
Living area
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Kitchen Area
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Dining Area
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Our first stop of the day was a round of miniature golf at Winter-Summerland. We took the Blizzard Beach bus from Old Key West. Winter Sumerland is right next door to Blizzard Beach. This is one of two minature golf courses on Disney World property. It's themed after Christmas. There is a winter course and a summer course. We chose to play the summer course because the winter course had a long wait. Both are about the same level of difficulty. The courses are in great shape.

Here are some photos of our round and the course.
Course signage
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Check-in area
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One of the holes.
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As I mentioned the course if beautiful right down to the landscape and flowers.
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Our next stop was to go to Hollywood Studios. We caught the Hollywood Studios bus from Blizzard Beach. We arrived at Hollywood Studios at around 12:30. Hollywood Blvd did not seem very busy when we entered the park. We were fortunate enough to get to interact with several streetmosphere characters when we arrived. We had a nice conversation with Leroy Small who planned out our itinerary while we were at the Studios and proclaimed Anna citizen of the day at Hollywood Studios. He presented her with a medal.

These are for you Maureen :D

Leroy Small. Small name, but big on talent.
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Leroy Small putting together our itinerary for the Studios
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Leroy Small presenting Anna her medal.
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Francis Floot and gang were out on Sunset Blvd.
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More Streetmosphere at the Studios
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We also were able to catch Block Party Bash, the new parade at Hollywood Studios. We really enjoyed the high energy performers and excitement. We were stationed in front of a group of trampoline trick artists who did a wonderful job.

Here are some photos from the parade.
Looking down Hollywood Blvd.
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Mr. Potato Head.
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Monster's Inc float.
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Also, I'm not sure of this, but I think I saw some additional construction walls near and around the ABC theater. I'm not 100 percent if the walls were there on Sunday, but I don't seem to recall them. Unfortunately I did not snap a photo.

Here are the photos from our time at Hollywood Studios today.
Sunset Blvd not terribly busy today.
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Hollywood Blvd.
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We also dined at the ABC Commisary for lunch. I had the Asian salad and a strawberry parfay for dessert. The salad was pretty good, but I wish it had some chicken in it. Otherwise, it was fresh and delicious.

Here's a photo of the salad and dessert.
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Mickey ice cream sandwich.
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We left Hollywood Studios and rode the boat over to the Beach Club and then walked to EPCOT via the International Gateway (EPCOT's back entrance).

We walked around World Showcase. I stopped in France and Kim and I purchased a Grey Goose lemonade slush. They were very good and refreshing. Next we stopped in the Italy pavillion. We caught some entertainment during our visit.
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Attractions we experienced at EPCOT tonight were Spaceship Earth and Living with the Land, Test Track had a 110 minute wait time and Soarin had a 90 minute wait time. The fastpasses were gone for the day.
Spaceship Earth
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The post show now has your Spaceship Earth photo placed on a large globe and shows what part of the country you are from. Anna is looking silly, Kim is on the bottom and I'm on the top.
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After we left Future World we headed back to Italy for our Tutto Italia reservation. This restaurant has a formal atmosphere to it. The chandaliers and wall paintings give it a more upscale feel. As I was looking through the menu I was shocked at the cost of the entrees. There was bread and a small dish of raw vegatables served to us prior to ordering our meal. Most of them were in the mid $20 range while others were in the mid $30 range. I chose to eat the spaghetti with meatballs. This entree was priced at $25...:scared1:. Now I understand the price of wheat has gone up recently, but a plate of spaghetti with meatballs should not cost $25. Kim had the bruchitina linguini. It looked life a baked fettucini alfredo. I will say the food was very good. Our dishes were well prepared For dessert Kim had the chocolate cake and I had the Chiraposseles; which was 3 puff pasteries filled with vanilla ice cream covered in chocolate syrup.

The total cost of our bill was $108 without the tip, but it cost us 1 table service credit each from the dining plan. If I had to pay out of pocket for this meal I would have left the restaurant in tears :laughing:. This is a great dining plan restaurant, but I would not pay cash for it. Bottom line; its overpriced itialian food.

Here are some photos of our the restaurant and our dishes.
Bread and raw veggies before the meal
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My spaghetti and meatballs. $25 :scared1:
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My dessert. Very tasty, but not worth the $10 price tag.
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Restaurant signage
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Restaurant interior
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Today was a very enjoyable day. The weather was somewhat overcast with peaks of sunshine here and there. The temperature was moderate with a nice breeze.

Up next
The Magic Kingdom
Dinner at Kona Cafe (Polynesian Resort)
Animal Kingdom evening EMH

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#33 User is offline   COH#1fan 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 04:47 AM

Thank you for the report, ADP. Now I know to avoid Tutto Italia next time I'm down there (stupid overpriced food :D ).
"In an age of fads, copycats, and rapidly changing trends, you have chosen to stand out from the rest and be an individual. We applaud your courage and self-expression. Thanks for being a part of our show today. Don't ever change. The world needs more people with your spirit." - The Citizens of Hollywood
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#34 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 06:04 AM

Running off to work, will need to read report later. Just looked at the photos. WOW, LeRoy Small is getter smaller and smaller, everytime I see him. Thanks for the photos. I really needed a COH fix. And I see that Bucky was there, so I guess his schedule has changed.
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
Mad, Mad, Mad about Disney!

May 21-28, 2013
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#35 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 11:07 AM

I agree Aaron about Tutto Italia. I ate there with the podcast guys in October and I was very glad I was not picking up the bill. The prices are absurd.
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#36 User is offline   Jeanine 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 04:10 PM

This is why I figured I would go on the DP, because I would never pay those prices normally.
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#37 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 10:50 PM

First I have to say "WOW, you do a lot in one day." You really get the most out of your trip, but you must need a vacation after your vacation.

RESORT: I really like the photos of Old Key West; yesterdays photos of the outside and todays photos of the inside. It looks very spacious. Is this a One bedroom? two bedroom? ... The kitchen area is bigger then the one at my house. Anyway, I hadn't really considered this resort before, but now I will. Thanks.

EPCOT: Sergio is really fun to watch, in front of Italy. He always seems to pick me and then makes fun of me (in his silent way) because I can't throw. In that same spot, you can also see the Showcase Players. Did you get to see them? They're always fun too, and very silly.

STUDIOS: I'm glad to see that they reversed the direction of the parade. I usually watched the Motor Cars Parade over by Mickeys of Hollywood but the sun was always to bright to see clearly. So I like that they are moving up the street.

COH: You are the best. I made sure I logged on this morning, before work, just to see your photos. See the COH CM's really helped my day start right. I know I can always look at the tons of photos that I have, but knowing that you are there really makes this way more fun. Did Buckey sing Happy Birthday to your daughter? You forgot something in LeRoy's line: "Small in Name Big in Talent POW"
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Thanks for thinking of me and getting photos of the COH; I really appreciate it. Did you tell them that we said HI (or to Francis that would be "Hay")

I know you planned on going to Animal Kingdom today (Wednesday), so I hope you went to Finding Nemo. This is a great show.

Can't wait to hear all about today's fun.
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
Mad, Mad, Mad about Disney!

May 21-28, 2013
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#38 User is offline   ADP 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 10:54 PM

Wednesday, April 9th

Hi everyone,

We just returned from our day at the Magic Kingdom. We spent time at the Magic Kingdom getting as many fastpasses and attractions in as possible. We also ate lunch at Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn. Dinner was at Kona Cafe over at the Polynesian resort. I had planned on heading over to the Animal Kingdom tonight for evening extra magic hours, but we never made it. We are planning on going tomorrow before we leave for the airport. So on with todays report.

We arrived at the Magic Kingdom around 9:30 this morning. Our first stop was at the Main St. Bakery for a light breakfast.
Treats from the Main St. Bakery
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While we were enjoying our breakfast in the bakery the Main St. performers pulled up on their trolly and began their act. These performers really help get your day started at the Magic Kingdom.
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The park was not very crowded this morning, but did pick up later in the early afternoon.
Here's a shot of the "sea of humanity'' near of the Haunted Mansion and Columbia Harbor House.
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Attractions we experienced today were Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Mickey's Philharmagic, Buzz Lightyear, Monsters Inc Laugh Floor, Peter Pan's Flight, the Tormorrowland Transit Authority, and the Jungle Cruise. Anna was selected to drive the boat during the cruise. She drove the whole way and really enjoyed it. Our Jungle Crusie skipper was very animated.
Anna driving the Jungle Cruise boat.
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A neat thing happened today. We saw the castle suite being awarded to a family from Georgia. We rode Pirates of the Caribbean at around 11:15 this morning. As we were approaching the unload area I saw 3 dream squad members and another cast member in a plaid vest. I watched them pull the family from the back row of the boat in front of us. When we got off I sort of stopped and watched what they were being awarded. Unfortunately, I couldn't tell for sure, but I suspected they won the castle suite overnight stay. I saw the same family in the Castle Suite winners car before the parade which confirmed my guess. To be honest, I never thought I would have been so close to winning that prize. It was quite sureel watching it unfold in front of our eyes. to think this prize could be awarded at any attraction in all of the Disney World parks and we were so close. But, only one family can win each day and this family of 4 looked very deserving.

At 1:30 we had lunch at Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn in Frontierland. This is a very good counter service restaurant. The food is above average, but what really makes it better is the fixings bar. It has sauteed mushrooms, sauteed onions, pickles and everything you would want to make a great sandwich or hamburger. One word of caution though this restaurant can get very loud; especially during prime lunch time.
Here's a photo of my entree. A bacon double cheeseburger and fries with a strawberry yogurt.
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As we were walking around the Magic Kingdom today we noticed a new DVC booth inside Fantasyland.
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At around 5:30PM we left the Magic Kingdom and took the resort boat launch to the Polynesian for our 6:05PM reservation at Kona Cafe. Taking the resort boat launch provides a nice, relaxing and scenic ride to the Magic Kingdom resorts.
Here's a photo of the Grand Floridian from the boat.
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We checked in at the Kona Cafe right at 6:00PM and were seated in less than 5 minutes. Let me start off by saying this was the best meal of our trip. For those who have not dined at the Kona Cafe before it is a casual and relaxed atmosphere. It is Polynesian themed as you would expect. Our waitress was quick and efficient; however, she seemed rushed. She didn't rush our meal, but she always seemed in a hurry to address our table and move on. She took our drink orders and came back later with a round loaf of warm bread and an almond honey butter that I must say was very good.

There were about 9 different entrees to choose from on the menu. I ordered the 10oz filet mignon, with mashed potatos and asparagus. Kim oredered the almond crusted chicken with a Kona salad on the side. As I've already said this meal was the best of the trip. The food was fantastic. My filet mignon was cooked to perfection. It also seemed the quality of the filet was a cut above the other meats I've had during this trip. Kim's almond crusted chicken was also very good. The almond crusted coating on the chicken was light and tasty. I must admit I'm a salad person so I ate most of Kim's salad. It was very much like the salad you get at Ohana (restaurant next door).

For dessert Kim had the chocolate cheesecake and I had the Kona cone. This restaurant says it prides itself in its desserts. I would agree with them since our desserts were very good.

The total cost of our meal was $75.00 before the tip. I would say this restaurant would be a good choice with or without the dining plan. I don't think you would be sorry paying out of pocket.
Here are some photos from our meal at Kona Cafe.
Bread with almond honey butter.
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My 10oz Filet Mignon entree. Excellent!!
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Dessert...The Kona Cone. I couldn't finish it!
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Restaurant decor. A solid chocolate Lilo and Stitch.
http://i205.photobuc...icture191-1.jpg

After dinner Kim went back to the room to start getting some things together for our departure tomorrow. Anna and I took the monorail around to the Contemporary to spend some time in the arcade. We stayed there for a little over an hour. Once we finished we decided to head back to our room. We took the bus back to Old Key West. We only waited about 5 minutes for our bus to show up.

Tomorrow is another day, and unfortunately its the worst day of any Disney World trip, departure day. :|

Up next
Check out of Old Key West
Animal Kingdom
Trying to use our remaining dining plan credits :D
Magical Expess to the airport

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#39 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 11:11 PM

I've never seen the Main Street performers; I'll have to make a point of looking for them. Lucky Anna for getting to skipper the Jungle Cruise. I would say that she has had a memorable trip.

Seeing that food from Kona Cafe has made me very hungry. Looks great. I've been there for breakfast and I agree, that it's worth the trip.

I'm sad to hear that you are leaving tomorrow. That's the problem with vacations, they always have to end. I've enjoyed your trip; thanks for taking us along.
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
Mad, Mad, Mad about Disney!

May 21-28, 2013
Wilderness Lodge
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#40 User is offline   queenofthehouse 

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Posted 09 April 2008 - 11:20 PM

Just in case you didn't know his name, it's Vladimir Pooey.
Posted Image
Maureen
(Lowell's Mom)
Mad, Mad, Mad about Disney!

May 21-28, 2013
Wilderness Lodge
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