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Trip Reports & Member Reviews Discuss June 16-23 Trip Report in the Vacation Planning forums; We’re all back from where dreams are made from …yes I mean Disney! I will attempt to tell you all what happened in detail according to my daily journal. I ...
  1. #1
    sandmansjupiter is offline A-Ticket holder
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    June 16-23 Trip Report

    We’re all back from where dreams are made from …yes I mean Disney! I will attempt to tell you all what happened in detail according to my daily journal. I will tell you that I started planning this trip about 2 months ago and I made all reservations for dinning before I went on the actual vacation. When I made reservations I mentioned to everyone, hotel and restaurants, about my daughter’s birthday and about the fact I was traveling with my dad n Father’s Day. My dad, my two kids, and I left for Disney on Friday, June 15th at 3:00 pm, since my reservations at All Star Movies wasn’t till the 16th we decided to stay off property for one night. We stayed at a Days Inn; the hotel was clean and the staff was nice but we where near a pool and it was loud at night and the TV did not work.

    June 16, 2007
    It was about 10:30 am when our real magical vacation started as we arrived at All Star Movies. I had never stayed here before and was amazed at how big the lobby was and how busy they all looked. The lobby was decorated with balloons and I watched them hand balloons to kids and smiles to adults. We where greeted at the door and made our way to the check-in line. Even though check-in time is officially at 4:00 pm we where given a room (2854) at the Mighty Ducks building. We where given personalized “keys to the kingdom” cards that was our room key, entrance tickets, dinning plan card, and charge card at the shops. I thought “cool, only one card to worry about!” The room was as I expected, kinda small but quant: very clean and we felt instantly comfortable…that was the important thing. I mentioned to the hotel that it was my daughters’ birthday and to my surprise they left her a Mickey Mouse signed card and some balloons right in the room. We where also given a refrigerator due to medication that my dad takes. He is Diabetic. ßThat’s important later on in my synopsis. On one of the beds there was a Mickey head made up of towels (my kids got a kick out of that). Anyway we unpacked and headed off to Magic Kingdom.
    There are no words to describe the feeling of just getting on a Disney bus and knowing that soon your eyes will see a place of just pure happiness. Last time we where at Disney it was about 4 years ago and my son was just 3 years old and didn’t understand much. This year I watched him gaze down at Main Street and see the castle and he instantly squeezed my hand and I couldn’t help but cry. My daughter eyes light up and I knew we where at the right place for he birthday. She was so happy. I paid for a double stroller and got a good deal by purchasing something called“length of stay” tickets. I paid $ 15.04 per day for 8 days instead of $18.00 per day. I went to City Hall at Main Street and they gave my daughter a Birthday Button so she would be recognized as a birthday girl and they where right every CM and some visitors greeted her with a warm “Happy Birthday”. I bought my daughter the “Pal Mickey” for $ 65.00 + tax. (Not too happy with this but I’ll tell you guys later)

    If you don’t know then here’s the Dinning plan in a nut shell:
    per person/per day
    1 snack (up to $4.00)
    1 counter service: entrée or combo meal
    dessert
    drink
    1 table service: appetizer
    entrée
    dessert
    drink

    We had lunch at Cosmic Rays (counter service). I was curious about how much the food was going to be so decided to keep a running total of how much we where actually spending on food so I will give you totals for our dinning but remember we had the dinning plan so I never paid for anything.

    Side bar: I now for sure that the dinning plan is well worth the money paid…you’ll be amazed at how much it adds up!

    Back to lunch…so we are 2 adults and 2 children...Lunch was ribs, chicken for kids, mashed potatoes, vegetables, soda and chocolate cake….$53.67. No joke…food was good; cake was great, very full, very satisfied. If I had to point out the best thing we saw it would be the show called “Dream Along With Mickey” at the Castle, it was beautiful. We got to see all the characters interact with each other even though they really didn’t belong in the same story line…it was great from Cinderella and Peter Pan to Mickey and Snow White.
    Dinner was at Epcot in Norways’ Akershus Royal Banquet. I was told that this would be a sit down dinner where you order off the menu and you see the princesses. I expected to see two or three princess stroll by and to order off a “special dinning plan menu…I WAS WRONG! We saw Belle, Ariel, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Jazmin. They came by talked to us, posed for several pictures, and they were very nice. Did I mention that I have a new digital camera and I love taking pictures…I took at least 5 pictures per character. They where not at all in a hurry and they all said Happy Birthday to Amanda ßmy daughter. We ordered off the regular menu and the food was to die for. Since my dad is diabetic the reservation desk labeled my dad as an “Allergy” guest and the chef personally came to our table and catered to my dad and his needs. I felt very safe that my dad got exactly what he could have and the chef was very accommodating. I purchased a $25.00, 8 in. Chocolate Cake so we can sing Happy Birthday to my daughter and let me tell you that it was one of the very best cake that I have ever had. We got to take the left over to the hotel in a nice souvenir box and got a Birthday card signed by the princesses. The chef arranged so my dad eat a Sugar Free Chocolate Pudding and that was also very good. I asked for the recipe and my server said she will e-mail it to me. I hope I get it ‘cause it was great. Dinner was $ 113.15 + $25.00 for the cake. Wow…yea I know… We ended the night with Illuminations and went to the hotel via the Disney transportation. The wait wasn’t long and the bus ride was ok…the only comment I could say now that I’m back is that these busses are routed so much to stay off traffic I guess that it takes at least 20 min to get to anyone place hotel or park. I constantly felt we where going the long way…or it just felt like the bus was taking a different road every time. As I laid my head on the pillow that night I felt safe, satisfied, and happy. What else can one ask for in a vacation to where dreams come true?

    Day two will come tomorrow…hope you guys like the details and hope you don’t think it’s too long.

  2. #2
    disneydarling's Avatar
    disneydarling is offline ...and the mome raths outgrabe
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    Sounds like you guys had a blast!! How much did you save total using the dining plan? If you don't mind me asking?

    Can't wait to read about tommorows!
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    butlers's Avatar
    butlers is offline Lost in Tenderness!!!!!!
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    What a great trip report so far....Can't wait to read more!
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    mini-V's Avatar
    mini-V is offline Home at last near Mickey!
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    This thread should come with a warning: Do NOT read if you are hungry! LOL
    Great report. Can't wait for day 2.
    mini-V What will you celebrate?

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  5. #5
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    great trip report, I can't wait to read more



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    great so far, looking forward to the next day
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  7. #7
    Chrissy&Tayen's Avatar
    Chrissy&Tayen is offline counting down to my vacation
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    lookin awesome so far!!!!! cant wait to hear more.. and it makes me really excited about our trip
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    sandmansjupiter is offline A-Ticket holder
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    June 17th Day Two

    June 17, 2007
    If there’s one thing that I would have loved to have at All Star Movies is coffee in the room. As we woke up in the morning and my craving for caffeine was great, so we hurried up and went to Epcot. I got my coffee fix at the Food Court. My original plan was to spend two days at each park…I WAS WRONG AGAIN! When making dinner reservations I never took “where” we would be each day into account and I based my reservations on what and who I wanted to eat with. My mistake was that I ended up eating at Epcot a lot because that’s where the good food was…in my opinion and that’s where a lot of character dinners are. Anyway, I fixed it on the third day when I got tired of being on the bus a lot…I mentioned already the circles that the busses take and the endless rides on the bus, right? I did…but we will get to that…So we arrive at the park and debate what to ride…I decided not to ride Mission Space and get Soaring’ FP. My dad went on with my kids. The funny thing was that after successfully getting the FP I stood inside the building where people exit and I found myself speaking to two people who looked like CM but wore different shirts. They had on light blue shirts and I noticed that had a black bag. I didn’t know that I was standing next to the “Dream Team”!!! I asked if they had seen anyone go out looking like my family and then they seemed to just breeze by me and I watched them enter the exit as people started to come out and hand the Dream FPs to about 30 people. I wanted to die…I should have screamed…I should have just joined the crowd and gotten our passes but didn’t. I spent the next couple of hours looking behind my shoulder looking for them but didn’t see the commotion again. L
    We rode Soarin’ and all I can say is you can’t miss it...it’s just great and I love the smells…if you have ridden it before you know what I mean! I was disappointed that “Living with the Land” was shut down and the CM couldn’t say why or when it would start to run. I waited for about 20 min before I gave up. Since we where there we ate lunch (counter service) at Sunshine Seasons. I had an Asian plate of rice, chicken and beef. My kids had Mac’n Cheese with bananas and my dad had chicken Caesar salad. For dessert my kids had “Worms’n dirt”ßwas very good and creative, my kids loved it and dad and I had guess what??? Chocolate cake of course! Total was $ 47.56.

    Pal Mickey did not say a word all day and after hearing my daughter for the 100th time say “Mickey wake up!” I started to wonder what the big deal with this thing was. I also don’t know the point of the “Kid Spot” spots around Epcot. My kids participated in the one at “The Living Sea with Nemo” and basically a CM sits at a table and hands the kids paper cut dolphins and crayons so the get colored and put on a string thing to wear around the park. I got it that the kids could have something to do but really the kids just ended p giving it to me so I wear it, meanwhile telling me to be careful not to break it, add that to the stroller, Pal Mickey, water bottles, purse, cell phone, and purchase and well I just saw it after a couple of times as more of a burden. I wish maybe they just read a story of the particular place we where looking at…like maybe something about the dresses at Norway, or the buildings of China…I don’t know something else rather than just coloring. I did like that at China the kids got there name written in Chinese.
    I LOVED the Mexican pavilion and the ride wasn’t bad. Got pictures of the kids and my dad in funny hats and enjoyed the store that had all the crystal in it, very expensive though. Saw the China show with the girls made of rubber...ha-ha, also got amazing pictures. We did not have time to finish all pavilions because we had to move to the Magic Kingdom for dinner. A train and bus ride later we arrived at MK.

    For dinner I made reservations at Crystal Palace. I heard Winnie the Pooh would be there and was amazed that Tigger, Eeyor, and Piglet made an appearance. They hoped around the restaurant and the kids got to make a line behind them and dance around showing off. The food was good…not the best or the worst just GOOD. The table was decorated with sparkles and string and my daughter got a special birthday cupcake and card. Dinner was $ 103.00. After dinner I took my daughter to “Tinker Bells Treasure” and followed her ringing to the drawer that she is in. My daughter was very amazed that mommy knew so many secrets. We saw “Wishes” for the first time that day as years before my son was so small we missed it and I again exercised my right to be an emotional reek. I understood the innocence of the words the songs and truly fell in love one more time the movies and Disney in general. I again understood the magic and realized that for years I truly needed a vacation like this. I also saw “Spectromagic”. I got a very good view at the begging of the parade near City Hall and calculated that at the end of the parade I would be one of the first out the park and on to the dreaded bus. The bus ride…what can I say, all day at the park, such nice people, everybody with smiles on their faces, and then the parade ends and the bus is crowed and the men forget to gentlemen. I was carrying my son, several bags, and holding my daughter up and not one person offered me a seat. I guess I just expected someone to be considerate enough to give me a seat. I wasn’t mad that it didn’t happen just sad that the magic ended at the gates to MK.

    Day three coming tomorrow…



  9. #9
    Chrissy&Tayen's Avatar
    Chrissy&Tayen is offline counting down to my vacation
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    i know what you mean.. know of days alot of men dont know who to be men.. now my father in law and my hubby are 2 of the last gebtlemen i know left int he world
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  10. #10
    ChipNDale's Avatar
    ChipNDale is offline Yeah, my Rubber Duck wears a Tiara FCOL!
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    Great trip report so far!!! Thank you so much for sharing!! I can not wait to read more!!
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  11. #11
    GalPal's Avatar
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    Great trip report so far. Looking forward to day 3 already!

    I'm hoping to read that you got your answer to your Pal Mickey dilemma. As a HUGE PM fanatic (nut), I have all three version. The current version has a glitch that the Imagineers are working on fixing. For some reason, there are two spots in Epcot that effectively shuts PM down. The only way to fix it is to remove the batteries then put them back in - kind of like rebooting a computer. It doesn't happen in any of the other parks but until you reseat the batteries, PM is stubbornly silent.

  12. #12
    sandmansjupiter is offline A-Ticket holder
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    June 18th, Day three

    June 18, 2007
    We started off the day in Magic Kingdom.

    I immediately went into the store on Main Street that fixes Pal Mickey issues. I was very upset that in three days PM worked one day. I walked into the store and a CM checked the batteries and determined that the batteries were the issue. The batteries where replaced free of charge and I was sent on my way. PM worked in MK all day.

    Breakfast was an ordeal…I went to the Bakery on Main Street and decided to eat breakfast with my snack credits. Now for all you who read this please have patience with what I will discuss. This dinning plan, I believe is flawless except for the snack credits. The snack credits are to be use with a value of up to $4.00. On the official Disney website it states that you can use it for water, popcorn, ice cream, etc, but everywhere else that I read it states that you can really use it for anything you want, again under $4.00. When I went to the bakery the cashier said that no matter what the cost was each item was one credit. Here’s the issue: My daughter wanted cereal which equals to $1.75 and milk which equaled to $1.50, both totaled $3.25. I was charged 2 credits and when I refuted the charge thinking she should have charged me just 1 credit she got rude and said that she was in charge, the supervisor was unavailable, and if I wanted to eat there then that’s the price. Needless to say I was very upset but swallowed my anger in order to not upset my dad. I can tell you that the day before in Epcot I was able to get a water and popcorn for one credit. I guess the rules of the dinning plan are subject to who you talk to to or who rings you up at the time of purchase.

    We went to Adventure land on the Jungle Cruise. The ride was just as I remembered except the jokes where horrible. I felt like the driver or tour guide was saying things with double significance sometimes leaning into x-rated suggestions, I know my kids didn’t realize it but people around me thought the same I heard people say ”what?” and “Did she really say that?” It didn’t amuse hardly anyone. I feel like a couple of years ago the “cruise” was more for kids and more entertaining. I must confess though that since it was my daughters’ birthday and she had her button the driver did let my daughter “guide” the boat and my daughter was very excited. Next, we rode the new Pirates of the Caribbean boat ride and I did get all three places where Jack Sparrow appears and I found the ride to be very pleasing. We had lunch at Pecos Bill’s. My dad and I the Pulled Pork BBQ sandwich and cheese fries. My kids had Cheese burgers. We had an abundance of French fries to feed at least 4 more people. I didn’t like the peanut butter cake or brownie but my kids liked the cookies. The total for lunch was $47.36. I had made reservations for a tour called “Behind the Seeds” at The Land at Epcot so we cut MK short to get to the tour.

    A bus ride later…we are at Epcot. As I approached the Land pavilion, my curiosity of this tour was at an ultimate high. On the web I had seen watermelons and squash in Mickey form and I was very curious to see if this was just an illusion or if this really was true. I will tell you that this tour was very good. I learned a lot and saw the hydroponics labs close up and really thought it was great. I did see how they got the watermelons and squash in to be in Mickey form. There were about 12 people on the tour and we all got to release ladybugs and asked a lot of questions. The tour guide name was Ed and he was very nice. I absolutely loved the tour and felt it was well worth the money. I paid $46.00 for 2 adults and 2 children.

    I originally made reservations at the Garden Grill but changed my mind when I saw the setting of the restaurant. It felt like I was in an upscale version of a Denny’s.
    Since we where already at Epcot my family and I decide to eat at the World Showcase and stay to see Illuminations. I walked over to Rose and Crown in United Kingdom and was very surprised to get a table for dinner. My dad had Surf n’ Turf with salad, chips and two beers, I had the same minus the beer. My kids had Beef Macaroni meals. For dessert I opted to try the Apple Crumble while my dad had the Truffle. The dinner was $125.43 on the dinning plan and I paid extra $15.98 for the beer, alcohol isn’t part of the dinning plan.

    In reference to Illuminations, I can’t help to express that when seeing the show I recalled that 4 years ago it was more moving then than now. I guess since the war was fresh in everyone’s mind years ago the patriotic part was better and lasting during the show. Today when I saw it, it had less patriotic pictures, less of the American flag portraits, and I even think the music was just poorer. I guess I remember it to be…well…just more.

    Day four coming up soon…

    Thanks to all who have responded to my trip report, I’m happy to tell everyone of my families experiences.

  13. #13
    sandmansjupiter is offline A-Ticket holder
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    June 19th Day Four

    June 19, 2007
    Day four was at Animal Kingdom. I realized after four days of being in one park and having to travel to another park for dinner that I had to change some reservations around to be able to stay at one park per day. When I called the reservation center to change from Biergarten in Germany pavilion at Epcot to something in Animal Kingdom I was surprised to know that the selection was very bleak. I thought I would be able to eat at Rainforest Café but the dinning plan doesn’t work there. I opted to eat at a place called Boma at Animal Kingdom Lodge. The info I got from the reservation desk was that it was a buffet at the hotel and that it was not a character dinner. My initial reaction was that we where going to eat quick food at a boring restaurant. You will soon know that I was wrong…again!

    The image of the Tree of Life when I first gazed at it was amazing. Being as though my kids are small the first place we went to was Dino world. We saw Mickey’s Jamming Jungle Parade. I liked the parade and the floats, I thought it was very different than the other parades at Disney and the music was lively. We also rode the Kilimanjaro Safari. I have awesome pictures of elephants, giraffes, zebras, ostriches, and even the male lion on property. We rode the Wildlife Express Train and I got in trouble for standing up in the train to take a picture and the entire train had to be stopped. The driver apparently got very angry. I took the train to Conservation Station and my kids got to pet sheep and goats. We also meet the big talkative cow named Betty. I herd a cute story about the cow that I thought was funny. A CM said that normally the cow is left for people to touch and see her but that morning the cow had plowed into her caretaker and she was technically in “time out” and that’s why the cow kept on moaning.

    We had lunch at Pizzafari…The kids menu at this restaurant needs a little consideration by management in my opinion. I couldn’t believe that the kids could not get pizza as a meal. The kids choices were PB&J, chicken nuggets, and something else but not pizza. I ended up ordering 2 PB&J meals and buying on my own an additional pizza so my kids could share. My dad and I had the Chicken Parmesan Sandwich with the desserts. Lunch was good but the pizza thing was incredible. Lunch was $35.28 on the dinning plan and an additional $5.96 for the extra pizza.

    We rode the other rides like Kali River Rapids, Everest, and Dinosaur. The time in Animal Kingdom went by pretty quick I don’t know if it was because it had rained or if simply because the park closes fairly early the night seemed to end fast. Dinner was like I said in Boma at Animal Kingdom Lodge. I must say that this hotel is beautiful! We were a little early for dinner so I roamed around the hotel and I was amazed at the grounds. That whole thing of seeing animals in your balcony is true, I saw zebras and giraffes. The view was so beautiful that I already know this is my next hotel at Disney. The restaurant gave us a buzzer and called us when the table was ready. The smells in this hotel coming form the food area is absolutely amazing and the costumes that the CM wear are nice. The food was spectacular; I ate and ate till I was so full I wanted to die…They had awesome desserts and I can’t say enough about Boma and the food. Our server was very nice and also gave my daughter a special birthday cupcake with candle and song. The total bill was $ 95.46. I can’t say enough about the food…take my word for it, it is the best. I am ashamed of one thing…I took some of the fruit tarts back to the hotel in a zip-lock bag…I’m not ashamed I took it I just wish I could have had a cooler to stuff everything I saw in sight! Hahaha…I’m really not kidding. That night I think I slept the best at the hotel…There’s is a saying in my culture that states….”bariga llena, corazon contento”, which means “full stomach, happy heart” and let me tell you I didn’t have space in my tummy for one ounce of water. As a matter of fact…I wish I had some of that food right now!

    Day five coming up soon…

  14. #14
    ChipNDale's Avatar
    ChipNDale is offline Yeah, my Rubber Duck wears a Tiara FCOL!
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    Wow... Great trip report!!! I am learning so much through you! LOL Glad you liked the food at Boma... Maybe we will give it a shot when we go in December!
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  15. #15
    Chrissy&Tayen's Avatar
    Chrissy&Tayen is offline counting down to my vacation
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    so far a very awesome trip!!! and the food story are so nice.. it makes me so hungry
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