Wednesday, June 30, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things'- Tapestry of Nations

Unfortunately this parade was only around during the Millenium celebration, but it definitely sticks out in my mind!
It ran from 1999-2001 and was located around the World Showcase Lagoon. The theme of the parade was unity and world peace. The 'puppets' that are used were created by Mark Curry, the man who created the puppets for the Lion King on Broadway.
A slight variant of this parade was performed during the 2000 Super Bowl!

There are many videos of this parade on youtube and here's one of them:

'A Few of My Favorite Things' Dive Quest

Certified scuba divers have the chance to dive in the 5.7 million gallon saltwater tank that is located at the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion in Epcot. Divers will have the chance to be amongst over 60 species of fish, dolphins, rays, sharks, and sea turtles.
All participants must be certified and at least 10 years old. Participants under the age of 14 must have a Scuba certified adult accompanying them.
This experience lasts about 3 hours, with approximately 40 minutes of that time actually in the water, exploring the Caribbean Coral Reef aquarium, the second largest aquarium in the world. This aquarium features no current, water temperatures in the mid 70s, unlimited visibility, bright coral structures, and incredible marine life, making it a perfect diving experience for even the most expert diver.
Although all diving equipment is provided, guests are required to supply their own swim suit and are allowed to bring their own dive mask. This is encouraged if the diver has a prescription mask. As of January 2009, this is offered daily at 4:30 and 5:30pm and costs $175 per person, no theme park admission required (price includes a limited edition t-shirt, refreshments, dive certificate, and a dive log stamp).

*Guests without scuba certification can participate in the Seas Aqua Tour (snorkel experience, age 8 and older) or the Dolphins in Depth tour (age 13 and up, no swimming, snorkeling, or scuba) at the Seas with Nemo & Friends Pavilion.

'A Few of My Favorite Things' IllumiNations

This 13 minute fireworks display presents the entire history of our planet from the World Showcase Lagoon. It blends lasers, fireworks, fountains, and music. Taking place nightly at closing, this show can be viewed from nearly everywhere on the World Showcase Promenade. Additional viewing areas have recently been added between Germany and China.

In comparison with Wishes (I've never seen Fastasmic), this is my favorite Disney fireworks show :-)

As with everything else, someone was bold enough to post it on youtube, so here it is:

World Showcase

No conversation about Epcot is complete without the World Showcase. Disney's plan was not to completely represent each country, but to capture its essence, make it a representation of how guests would remember it if they've previously visited the featured country. Many cast members employed in the shops and restaurants and even street performers are natives of the countries they represent, adding to the authenticity of the park.

QSFB Locations

Cool Post
This refreshment port is located between Germany and China and features soft drinks, beer, hotdogs, and ice cream with waffle cones.

This country does not have any QSFB locations


Cantina De San Angel
This window is located just outside the entrance to Mexico's pyramid, this restaurant serves nachos, margaritas, soft drinks, burritos, and tacos. Seating is strictly outdoors.


Kringla Bakari Og Kafe
This Norwegian restaurant serves kringlas (sweet pretzels), smorbrods (sandwiches such as smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, roast beef, and chicken salad), heart shaped waffles topped with powdered sugar and jam, Norwegian school bread, rice pudding, apple danish, strawberry cheesecake, and a soup of the day. Seating is outdoors under a grass thatched roof.


Lotus Blossum Cafe
Located near the Yong Feng Shangdian shopping gallery, this restaurant features food cooked on a flat grill as opposed to stir fried. Food includes beef noodle soup, egg rolls, sesame chicken sald, and orange chicken with steamed rice.


This restaurant is located at the back of the pavilion and serves cheesecake, German wines, soft pretzels, frankfurters with sauerkraut, and bratwurst sandwiches.

United States

Fefe & Drum Tavern
Located in front of the Liberty Inn, this American restaurant serves turkey legs, pretzels, popcorn, frozen lemonade, and hot dogs.

Liberty Inn
This American restaurant features all the stereotypical American dishes (hamburgers, french fries, and chicken strips) along with veggie wraps, chicken sandwiches, and apple cobbler. This location also features a kosher option.


Yakitori House
This restaurant is located in a replica of the 16th century Katsura Imperial Summer Palace in Kyoto and is located near a garden that guests can also enjoy. The menu consists of teriyaki chicken, sushi, tempura shrimp, and Japanese beef curry.


Tangierine Cafe
This restaurant is named after the Moroccan city of Tangier and serves rotisserie beef, lamb, and chicken presented as sandwiches, baklava, hummus, lentil salad, and meatball platters.


Boulangerie Patisserie
This is a french bakery and pastry shop that serves baguettes, croissants, eclairs, fruit tarts, quiches, chocolate mousse and more. The chefs from Chefs de France manage this restaurant as well. This location gets tons of traffic so to avoid the lines guests are advised to stop by as soon as the park opens or during IllumiNations.

United Kingdom

Yorkshire County Fish Shop
This is a walk up window that is located next to the Rose & Crown Pub. It serves fish & chips and beverages.


This is the perfect place to grab a snack and refreshment. This restaurant sells fries, chicken nuggets, and shakes.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

OMG :-)

I just got a very unexpected Disney phone Medical forms got approved!!! I'm definitely going to be placed in a 'climate controlled environment' (air conditioned).
This is perfect because I had been meaning to call them about it but kept forgetting. I submitted the forms in the beginning of April so note to anyone planning on doing the CP: if you have a medical issue that will prevent you from working in certain locations, get it in EARLY, it takes MONTHS to be processed!

Check out my vlog!


Epcot stands for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow and is dedicated to international culture and technological innovation. Opened in 1982, Walt Disney planned for this to become a utopian city of the future. He planned for about 20,000 residents to occupy the city and for it to be a guinea pig for city planning and organization. Automobiles were to be driven underground and monorails were to be used for transportation, leaving the main street for pedestrians. This vision was never achieved because after Walt's death the company decided that it didn't want to be in charge of running a city.

2 sections make up this park: Future World and World Showcase.

Future World is made up of 8 pavilions

QSFB Locations

Fountainview Cafe
Located in Future World next to Fountain of Nations, this restaurant is an indoor/outdoor ice cream shop. It serves various flavors of Edy's ice cream, hand made waffle cones, and ice cream sandwiches. Coca-Cola drinks, tea, and coffee is also served.

Electric Umbrella
This restaurant opens at 11am and is featured on the Disney Dining Plan. Burgers, chicken nuggets, and fruit cups are served.

Sunshine Seasons
This is basically a big food court with many different options for a family full of picky eaters.
Sandwich Shop features a roasted vegetable Cuban sandwich, Black Forest ham and salami grinders, and more.
Soup and Salad Shop features a variety of creative salads including roasted beet and goat cheese. Three different soups are freshly made each day.
The Grill Shop features rotisserie beef, rotisserie chicken, and grilled salmon.
Wok Shop serves noodle bowls and Mongolian beef with jasmine rice.
Bakery features fresh made desserts such as brownies, ice cream bars, and its signature Soarin Creme Brulee. There is also a grab and go section that features items such as cheese plates, salads, sushi, and fruit.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Everything Happens For a Reason :-)

A little over a month ago I found out I'll need surgery this summer. I've been freaking out ever since because I've never had surgery before. I had called Disney and they told me depending on the date of my surgery I'd probably have to either switch to a September check-in or try for the next CP term. I wont be in college next year so that won't work.
I somehow got an appointment with a different surgeon that was friday (yesterday) and found out that he just got a cancellation for a surgery for this coming thursday! I'm still freaking out at the thought of being cut open but now I know I will definitely be checking in to Disney August 11th :-)

Check out my vlog!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things' The Magic of Disney Animation

This attraction features a 20 minute show that allows guests an inside look at the process of creating animated characters.
Mushu from Mulan helps the guide explain the length process involved. Once the video is done, guests get a chance to briefly speak with their guide and then get a chance to join in a workshop and help bring some Disney animation to life!

Animation Academy-- At this Mickey themed animator table, guests can create their own Disney character while under the guidance of a Disney artist. (This takes about 15-20 minutes)

The Sound Stage -- In this hands-on activity, young animators can play with various sound effects and create their own soundtrack for an animated scene.

Digital Ink and Paint -- As these workstations you can add color to an animated scene, and create your own atmosphere.

Animation Gallery - On display are copies of the Academy Awards won by Disney animators, along with drawing from famous films. Animation cels, books, and other collectibles are also for sale here.

You're a Character -- In this booth, you can visit with Lumiere (of Beauty and the Beast fame), who will ask you a series of questions and tell you which Disney character you are most like.

'A Few of My Favorite Things' Fantasmic

This 25 minute fireworks and water show is performed at Disney Hollywood Studios and brings together Disney princesses, villains, and heroes. This show joins the Sorcerer's Apprentice with many Disney classics such as Peter Pan, The Lion King, Tarzan, Pocahontas, The Little Mermaid, Pinocchio, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, and Aladdin, just to name a few.
This show is not performed every night and is outdoors, so it is very possible for it to be cancelled due to weather. Seating begins about 90 minutes before the start of the show and guests sitting in the first few rows may get wet!
Hollywood Brown Derby, Mama Melrose's Ristorante Italiano, and Hollywood & Vine all offer special seating for Fantasmic at no extra cost.

Check out my vlog!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things' 'The American Idol Experience

This attraction was inspired by the television show of the same name. This gives guests a chance to show off their singing skills to judges and maybe even a studio audience.

When guests (age 14 and older) arrive to the park they request a limited pass to audition for the attraction's judges. They are then either turned away or allowed through. If they make it all the way through they are allowed to perform with two other performers at a preliminary show (lasts about 25 minutes) where 3 judges decide which one makes it to the final show of the day (lasts about 45 minutes). The winner at this show then receives the ultimate Fastpass; they're guaranteed a chance to sing in front of the judges of the television show!

For more info visit

Here's a more thorough explanation of the audition process:

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things' Tower of Terror

This attraction was based on the television show The Twilight Zone. Creators watched every episode of The Twilight Zone twice to make sure the ride did the series justice.
Guests are told that lightning struck the Hollywood Tower Hotel and that an entire wing of the hotel disappeared after the lightning caused an elevator full of passengers to be transported to the Twilight Zone. Guests are invited to discover the secret of the hotel by boarding the last working elevator in the basement's boiler room.
Each trip gives riders a different experience since Imagineers have recently added 4 random sequences of drops and rises to the ride. Each sequence include one fake drop, meant to scare riders, along with full drops.
Full drops might seem like they last forever but they literally only last 2 seconds. Note: riders do fly out of their seats, but are held down by seat belts.

*RANDOM FACT: Because of FAA regulations that require that a fixed red light beacon be added to the top of any structure 200+ feet tall, the Tower of Terror is only 199 feet tall

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Disney's Hollywood Studios (but it will always be MGM in my heart)

Disney's Hollywood Studios recently underwent a name change. In 2008 this park made the switch from being called Disney's MGM Studios. The name change took place to symbolize that the park has grown from simply representing the 'golden age' of movies to a celebration of music, television, movies, and theater entertainment.
Opened in 1989, the theme of this park is show business, particularly Hollywood of the 1930s and 1940s. Taking up 135 acres, this park is represented by the Sorcerer's hat from the film Fantasia.

This park consists of 6 themed areas:
  • Hollywood Boulevard
  • Echo Lake
  • Streets of America
  • Animation Courtyard
  • Pixar Place
  • Sunset Boulevard

QSFB Restaurants

ABC Commissary
This restaurant is included in the Disney dining plan and opens at 11am. Located near the Chinese Theater, it serves burgers, wraps, asian salad, cuban sandwiches, and assorted desserts. Posters honoring the entertainment industry decorate this restaurant and never-ending ads of ABC shows are broadcasted on television sets.

Backlot Express
This restaurant is designed to model old craft shops on studio backlots; a paint shop, stunt hall, sculpture shop, and model shop. Burgers, hotdogs, and a wide variety of drinks are available here. This is featured on the Disney dining plan and typically opens at 11:30am.

Hollywood Scoops
This small ice cream shop is located on Sunset Boulevard and is not featured on the Disney dining plan. Opening at noon, this location serves an assortment of ice cream flavors as well as a brownie sundae, apple pie ala mode, and an ice cream cookie sandwich.

Fairfax Fare
Located on Sunset Boulevard, this restaurant opens at 9am and is on the Disney dining plan. Half chickens, ribs, beef brisket, and cake is served here.

Dinosaur Gertie's Ice-cream
This small location is exactly what is sounds like, an ice-cream shop. Shaped like a Brontosaurus, this location is not on the Disney dining plan.

Min and Bill's Dockside Diner
This restaurant opens at 10:30am and is not included in the Disney dining plan. Shakes, stuffed pretzels, chips, and an assortment of drinks makes up the menu.

Starring Rolls Cafe
Located on Sunset Boulevard, this restaurant is included on the Disney dining plan and is open from 9am-4pm. Food that is served includes sandwiches, salads, and an assortment of drinks (including wine).

Studio Catering Co.
This restaurant is open from 11:30 am to 5:30 pm and is included in the Disney dining plan. The menu consists of gyros, beans and rice, lamb, greek salad, cake, and pb&j sandwiches. There is also a full bar attached.

Sunset Ranch Market
Located on Sunset Boulevard, this 'market' is made up of multiple food stands, all with outdoor seating. Stands include Catalina Eddie's, Anaheim Produce, Fairfax Fries, Hollywood Scoops, Toluca Legs Turkey Co., and Rosie's All-American Cafe. The menu is full of fruit cups, fruit and vegetables, burgers, turkey legs, assorted drinks, and pretzels with cheese.

Pizza Planet
This restaurant was modeled after the infamous location from Toy Story. This indoor and outdoor restaurant also houses an arcade, just like in the movie. It is important for guests to note that because of the arcade, it tends to get rather loud inside. Counter service is available for those who choose to eat indoors and is included on the Disney dining plan. Hours of operation tend to be 11am-8:30pm and food served includes pizza, salad, cookies, juice, and soft drinks.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things' -Disney's California Adventure's "World of Color"

Earlier this week, Disney premiered its new "World of Color" at their California Adventure park. This show combines thousands of fountains, lasers, and projections to bring to life some of Disney's classic movies.
Here's the list of songs featured during the show:
  1. Wonderful World Of Color television intro
  2. World of Color theme song
  3. Part of Your World/Under The Sea
  4. East Australian Current (from Finding Nemo)
  5. Pines of Rome
  6. Define Dancing (from WALL-E)
  7. Toy Story sequence
  8. A Whole New World/Friend Like Me
  9. Spring Sprite/Pocahontas Medley
  10. Little April Showers
  11. He's a Pirate (from Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl)
  12. Firebird/Night On Bald Mountain/Hellfire
  13. The Stampede
  14. So Close/Beauty and the Beast
  15. World of Color Finale
Guests wishing to view this performance can obtain a FASTPASS from the Grizzly River Run FASTPASS machines near the entrance of the park

As with everything else, someone was bold enough to record it and post it on youtube, so here it is:


Friday, June 11, 2010

Disney's Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show

This show is a luau style show that is attached to the all you can eat restaurant at the Polynesian Resort.
It features entertainment from many Polynesian islands including Fiji, Hawaii, and Samoa. Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy also get in on the fun.
There is sword dancing, fire breathing, and hula dancing. Food includes Polynesian native fruit, Polynesian style rice, barbequed pork ribs, roasted chicken, and seasonal vegetables. There is also a small children's menu for picky eaters. The featured dessert is a chocolate mouse volcano. This all takes place in an open-air covered dining theater.
The show tells the story of a young girl returning home and returning to her native traditions. It includes native dances from many of the Polynesian islands.

Here is the Ote'a from Tahiti

You can call 407-WDW-DINE for Reservations

Disney's Polynesian Resort

Although I have not yet had the pleasure of visiting any Disney resorts I can already tell this is my favorite!
This is a deluxe resort with rooms starting at $365 a night and has been open since October 1, 1971. This resort is a stop on the monorail and is just a short ride from the Magic Kingdom. You can call 407-824-2000 to make reservations.

A Grand Ceremonial House is in the center of this resort, with buildings named after the different Polynesian islands surrounding it. This ceremonial house was modeled after a Tahitian royal assembly lodge! Most of the resort's merchandise and dining locations are housed in this ceremonial house. A luscious 3-story garden of 75+ different species of tropical and sub-tropical plants occupies most of the lobby.

Every night there is a special torch-lighting ceremony complete with a native juggling a fire torch!

847 rooms fill this resort. Rooms typically contain two queen sized beds, a daybed, a lounge chair and table, desk, two closets, a combination dresser, and an entertainment center with a flat screen tv. These rooms can easily sleep 5 guests. Here's a video tour of a room (I LOVE the fact that there are turtles on the beds).

Nanea Volcano Pool features a 40 ft high volcano with a waterfall and tube slide. There is also an east pool that is known to be quieter, features greater depths, and is perfect for swimming laps.

QSFB Locations

Captain Cook's
This location is open 24 hours a day and is located on the first floor of the Great Ceremonial House. It is a good place to pick up packaged salads and sandwiches, as well as sushi and fresh fruit. There is also a made-to-order section that features a high-tech ordering system. The menu has recently been expanded to include Tonga Toast and Dole Whips.

Kona Island
This is essentially a sushi bar. It is open from 5pm- 10pm and it serves coffee and sushi. It is also located right next to the Kona Cafe and the door that leads to the monorail loading platform.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Contemporary & Bay Lake Tower

This is one of Disney's deluxe resorts with rooms starting at $285 a night. The lobby features a 90 foot high tile mural with scenes from the Southwest. This resort has 655 rooms and features an observation deck on the 15th story that has a great view of the Magic Kingdom. This resort is also just a 10-15 minute walk away from the Magic Kingdom.
To make reservations call 407-824-1000.

Most rooms sleep 5 guests wit a daybed and 2 queen sized beds or a daybed ans a king size bed. A flat screen tv is also included in all the rooms with connections set up for your personal dvd player.

Bay Lake Tower is right next door. It is considered a Deluxe Villa and has rooms that start at $385 a night. It features 15 stories of studios, one bedrooms villas, and two bedroom villas. The studios sleep up to four, the one bedroom villas sleep up to five, and the two bedroom villas sleep up to 9. There are also two-story grand villas that can sleep up to 12. All of these also include a flat screen tv.

QSFB Restaurant

Contempo Cafe
This snack bar is included on the Disney dining plan and is usually open from 6am-midnight. It features a grab and go section as well as counter service. Guests order from touch screen kiosks and can order everything from waffles, flatbreads, pasta, sandwiches, pizza, and brownies. It is located on the fourth floor right next to Chef Mickey's.

Contemporary Grounds
This is essentially a lobby coffee bar that serves cappucino, espresso, latte, pastries, and snacks.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Hoop De Doo Musical Review

Hoop De Doo is a dinner show at Fort Wilderness. It is an all you can eat buffet style dinner in an old dance hall that features a silly comedy/dance show. Food that is served includes fried chicken, baked beans, strawberry shortcake, and much more.
I have never been to Fort Wilderness so I have never experienced this show myself but a few CPs (including John Henselmeier and Brenna) recommend we try it before our program ends

Once again, someone was bold enough to videotape some of the performance so here's a preview:

Fort Wilderness Campground and Resort

750 acres, fully equipped campsites with quiet trails, wandering deer, ducks, and rabbits. This too is a part of Walt Disney World. This happens to be Fort Wilderness, a resort for those who prefer to immerse themselves in the great outdoors. Opening in 1971, this was one of original accommodations at Disney World.
Fort Wilderness is split into two parts: lodges and a campsite.

The Fort Wilderness Campsite is set up for those interested in using an RV and/or tent. This part of the resort features 4 different types of campsites, each with differing amenities, but each includes cable and electrical hookups, sewer hook up, picnic table and charcoal grill, and high speed internet for an additional charge. Each campsite sleeps a maximum 10 guests. Pets are welcome at certain campsites for a nightly fee of $5.
Comfort Stations are located throughout the campsite and feature private toilets and showers, laundry facilities, telephones, and ice machines. These facilities are also air-conditioned.

Cabins are also available for those that choose not to get up close and personal with mother nature. Each cabin is approximately 500 square feet and features recent updates such as new paint and new carpet. They all consist of one bedroom, one bathroom, a living area, private patio, charcoal grill, picnic table, a fully equipped grill, and sleep up to 6 guests. There is no need to make your bed or even wash your dishes, just like the other resorts there is housekeeping and they take care of all that! Each cabin has convenient curbside parking, but no additional trailers are allowed so all guests must sleep inside the cabin. This is considered a moderate resort and to make reservation call 407-824-2900

At night guests can participate in Chip 'n' Dale Sing a long. This takes place in the Meadow Recreation Area's outdoor theater and features a marshmallow roast and a screening of a classic Disney movie.

Typically this is the space I would use to discuss the quick service restaurant that is featured at this resort...but there is none :-(

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Another Speedbump?

Just when things seemed to be going smoothly when it comes to Disney (I reserved my hotel room for August 10th and my mom requested time off to drive me down) I get some bad news.
I found out earlier this week that I need my gallbladder removed. I've never had surgery so I've been freaking out. I always thought the pain I was feeling was from my lungs because my rib cage would hurt and the pain would always start right before I had an asthma attack. Turns out the asthma was caused by me freaking out because I was in so much pain.
Anyway, I called Disney to let them know about the surgery and to see if it will stand in the way of my coming down and they said that since I won't meet with the surgeon until July, I'll either have to try for a later arrival date or I might have to wait until next spring to do my program :-( But since I graduate in August I wont be eligible for the program...
I don't NEED it removed right away, I'm not in pain 24/7, but the problems I'm having could cause it to be infected...
I dunno, everything happens for a reason right? At least I have some time to figure things out

Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

This Victorian style resort is situated between the Magic Kingdom and the Polynesian Resort. Reservations can be made by calling 407-824-3000

A piano player can typically found in the lobby area.

867 rooms fill this resort, most consisting of two queen sized beds and a daybed. 5 people can comfortably sleep here. There are also 15 deluxe king rooms that are located on the second, third, fourth, and fifth floors.

This resort sits on the Seven Seas Lagoon and each night there is a 'campy' sing-a-long that all guests are invited to. Marshmallows and smores kits can be purchased for use around the fire.

This resort was built to resemble the Hotel De Coronado in California. Scenes from Some Like It Hot were shot there.

QSFB Restaurants

Gasparilla Grill & Games
This restaurant is featured on the Disney Dining Plan and features counter service with outdoor-cafe seating. It is typically open from 6am-11:30pm. Waffles, pancakes, donuts, muffins, salad, burgers, chicken fingers, and pizza is served. There is also a very limited children's menu

Wilderness Lodge and Villas

This is considered a deluxe resort with rates starting at $240 a night. This resort celebrates the unspoiled wilderness and was inspired by the Great American Northwest National Park lodges from the turn of the century. Reservations can be made by calling 407-824-3200

This resort is located between the Contemporary and Fort Wilderness and unfortunately is not accessible from the monorail.

The 727 guest rooms within this resort feature themes of wildlife, nature, and Native American designs. The rooms either come with 2 queen sized beds or one queen sized bed and bunkbeds.

136 deluxe villas are available to guests when they're not being occupied by Disney Vacation Club members. These rooms sleep 4-8 guests.

QSFB Restaurants

Roaring Fork
This restaurant serves muffins, cereal, pancakes, sandwiches, flatbread, and pizza. This location is on the Disney Dining Plan.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things' Pirates of the Caribbean

Pirates of the Caribbean is the last ride Walt Disney had a hand in creating. It opened only 3 months after his death. Now it is featured not only at Disney World and Disneyland, but also Disneyland Paris and Tokyo Disneyland.
This ride was originally planned to simply be a wax-museum of famous pirates. Luckily it turned into the boat ride past animatronic pirates that we know it to be today.
This ride has gone through a number of changes, some to make the ride more family oriented, and others were inspired by the Pirates of the Caribbean movie. Changes include additional audio-animatronic figures of Captain Jack Sparrow and Captain Barbossa, and an appearance by Davy Jones. All of these listed additions are voiced by the characters from the movie. The chest with the cursed pirate's gold from the movie was also added into the first treasure room.

As with all other Disney rides/movies, Captain Jack Sparrow is frequently seen and is now available for pictures/autographs.

Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirate Tutorial
This is an opportunity for Captain Jack Sparrow to accumulate crew for his next (imaginary) expedition! Guests can purchase one of two packages
  • First Mate Package: Includes bandana; choice of facial effects; scars; tattoos; fake teeth; earring and eye patch; sword and sheath; pirate coin necklace; and personalized pirate oath -- $29.95 plus tax. (pictures and costumes not included)
  • Empress Package: Includes bandana; shimmering makeup; face gem; tattoos; nail polish; earring and eye patch; sword and sheath; pirate coin necklace; and personalized pirate oath -- $29.95 plus tax (pictures and costumes not included)
Captain Jack and his first mate Mack then proceed to teach the new recruits the ins and outs of being a pirate, they receive a new pirate name, and recite the pirate oath, making it official!
The new recruits are then invited to come back to participate in the 'Pirates Parade' that takes place daily in Adventureland.
Reservations can be made by calling 407-WDW-CREW

If you're anything like me, the three Pirates movies just weren't enough. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is set to open July 2011 and I can't wait!
Here's a trailer (it's fan made)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

'A Few of My Favorite Things' Richard Petty Driving Experience

For as long as I can remember Need For Speed has been my favorite video game, I'm excited Disney gives people the chance to jump in a car and race around the track themselves!

Located next to the Magic Kingdom parking lot toll plaza and open since 1995, The Richard Petty Driving Experience gives guests the opportunity to drive 8, 18, or 30 laps themselves or to jump in the passenger seat as a professional driver does 3 laps at speeds of up to 165 MPH on the mile long tri-oval race track.
Drivers must be able to operate manual (standard) transmission and guests under the age of 18 must get a parent's permission to participate.

Different Experiences have different costs
  • Ride-Along
This program costs $99 and opens one hour after the day's first driving class. Not only is this available on days the other driving experiences are offered, Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursdays from 9am-4pm is set aside exclusively for ride-alongs.

Reservations are not allowed except for during special events and Race Weekend Ride-Alongs, guests can simply walk up to the track on the day they wish to participate. Ride-Along gift cards can be purchased by calling
1.800.237.3889 and do not expire nor are they refundable. Guests must be at least 14 years old to participate in this experience.

  • Rookie Experience
This allows you to drive 8 laps and costs $449. Prior to this you must go through 2 elements of safety/instruction training, in-car and on-track instruction. Afterwards you will receive a graduation packet that includes a time sheet with a breakdown of each lap time and a highlight of your top speed. This program lasts about 3 hours. Here's a general itinerary
  • Kings Experience
This package allows you to drive the 8 laps along with an additional 10 laps of increased speed and excitement. You must also go through the 2 elements of safety/instruction training; in-car and on-track instruction. Between driving sessions you will receive one-on-one feedback from the Pit Road Instructor and on-track driving instructors. Once you're done you will receive a graduation packet that includes a time sheet with a breakdown of each lap. This program lasts about 3 hours. Here's a general itinerary and the cost is $849
  • Experience of A Lifetime
Participants get to enjoy 3 driving segments of 10 laps each. This allows them to improve their skills, increase their speed, and encourages the fact that this could become a career. This experience takes about half a day and costs $1,299. As with the previous experiences, drivers must go through 2 elements of safety and instructions training, in-car and on-track instruction before being allowed to drive. Between each of the 3 driving sessions, drivers will receive one-on-one feedback from the Pit-Road Instructor and additional instruction from the on-track driving instructors. Once they're done, they receive a graduation packet with a time sheet and a break down of each lap.
  • Speedway Challenge
This program allows guests 5 sessions of 10 laps each, a Ride-Along, a shop tour with tech talk, and lunch with an instructor and Crew Chief. This program is exclusive to the Walt Disney World Speedway and costs $2,099. This is only available during certain times/dates and reservations must be made at least 7 days in advance. Check-in for this is at 9:30am with the program starting at 10am.

Call 800-BE-PETTY or go to the website for more information or to make reservations