Jan 122011

When you get in trouble and you don’t know right from wrong
Give a little whistle! Give a little whistle! — Jiminy Cricket

Q. During our upcoming vacation in February, we are doing the Quick Service dining plan. Do you have favorite snacks? How can we get the best value from this plan? Thanks! (Submitted by Rosa I.)

A. Well, Rosa, narrowing down just a couple of favorite snacks might be difficult! Since the dining plan began, the snack options have changed and expanded quite a bit. In fact, if you look for the snack symbol on the menu, you’ll find it in most counter-service meal locations along with various kiosks and carts.

We still love the tried-and-true Mickey Premium ice cream bar option as a snack. It’s delicious, and something you can’t get at home. Some of the most tempting options, in fact, are dessert choices. If you’re trying to stick with healthier options, one piece of whole fruit is a great choice.

Something we have also tried is to use a couple of snack credits for a light breakfast. You can usually find something like a bagel, for example, at your resort’s counter-service location. Fill your mug (which is part of the meal plan) with some coffee, and you’re set for a while. You can do the same thing with a danish, muffin, or parfait. These items can be found in the parks (we like the Main Street Bakery or Starring Rolls at Disney’s Hollywood Studios) if you aren’t sticking around the resort long enough to eat.

One thing to remember is to make sure you use all of your credits before leaving. Sometimes guests “forget” how useful these snack credits are. If you find yourself with a few left over, grab a bottle of water for the road, or a Mickey rice cereal treat to snack on once you get home. The credits expire at midnight of the day you check-out, and can’t be used on a future trip, so make sure you plan to use them up. Happy snacking!

Q.My husband, soon-to-be nine year old daughter and I, are going to Disney World for the second time, the last week in January 2011. I must say, we are deeply concerned about the new Fantasyland expansion construction project going on at the Magic Kingdom. Because we have heard that the Fantasyland “side” of the castle will be closed and/or under construction, will we even be able to go back there? We have also heard that Toontown will be closed. Is that ALL of Toontown? Will the Barnstormer still be open etc.? I guess we are looking for some solid answers as to what WILL and WILL NOT be open/accessible during our upcoming trip. ANY help would be GREATLY APPRECIATED! Thanks for your time. (Submitted by Rhonda M.)

A. Hi, Rhonda! We know that the Fantasyland update will be amazing, but might cause a few concerns on the way. First, know that Disney will do all it can to maintain the magic on your trip. Whenever possible, they will hide the construction as much as they can.

The work on the castle side just began, but it should not really cause trouble with your enjoyment of the park. The biggest problem might be seeing out of the windows when dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table. You will still be able to enjoy Fantasyland, and we’ve seen no indication that the restaurant or Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boutique will be affected by the work right now.

You will probably be in luck as far as Toontown goes. It’s slated to close February 11, which seems like it will be after your trip. Rest assured, though, that the character meet-and-greets found in Toontown will be relocated. Most will be throughout the Magic Kingdom until a location in the Town Square Exposition Hall is ready for them. Tinker Bell will be moving to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The Walt Disney Railroad will still be operating, but the train station in Toontown will be closed. Barnstormer will be re themed during this time, so while it’s likely up for your trip, others may not be able to enjoy it for a while.

The best news for guests is that the expansion is being done in waves. While the Toontown closures are certainly the biggest, the rest are likely to only impact certain attractions, at least for now.

Rest assured, there will still be plenty of magic in the park for your visit. Have a great trip!

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