Jul 292015
 

In each issue we share tips from our readers. If you have a tip to share send it to us at info@magically-speaking.com.

We’re looking for your best tips to share with us all about touring during the summer and tips for experiencing the Frozen Summer Fun event. In addition we are looking for your best tips for experiencing the Disneyland Diamond Celebration.

Looking for a great place to watch the “Frozen” fireworks display and don’t care if you miss the stage show portion that goes with the show? Consider standing across from Hollywood and Vine. It’s not nearly as crowded as standing on Hollywood Boulevard and you get a unique view.

 

Best of Be Our Guest Podcast

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Each issue we will feature a snippet of what you could learn by listening to the Be Our Guest Podcast. Be sure to check back each issue for more fun.

Episode 889 – Disneymoon on the Platinum Plan at Christmas

 

Today we are joined by Jason from Alabama to discuss his amazing Disneymoon at Disney’s Contemporary Resort on the concierge-level over Christmas 2014!  Hear about all of their experiences on the Platinum Plan including amazing meals at Victoria & Alberts, Cinderella’s Royal Table, California Grill and more!  Also hear about fun tours, fireworks cruises, and more!

Listen to the podcast every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at Be Our Guest Podcast!

Jul 292015
 

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Ms. Lost was previously hungry and she was looking for a snack, so she stopped at the Boulangerie de Pâtisserie. Congratulations to Jodie S.!

This week, Ms. Lost was taking in a classic attraction. Where is she?

If you think that you can help, please email your answer to: lost@themouseforless.com

Send in your guess by August 8. Please be as specific as possible, noting not only the park but the specific ride, attraction, or section where the picture was taken. For instance, instead of saying, “Epcot,” say, “At Epcot at Maelstrom” (which isn’t this week’s answer). One random entry from all correct entries will receive a Disney trading pin. See Lost photos from past issues.

Jul 292015
 

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I knew I was in trouble when I staggered out of Epcot at the end of a long day. People say Epcot stands for “Every Person Comes Out Tired” and that certainly applied to me.

It does not, apparently, apply to active seven-year-old boys. Not only did my grandson Xavier skip happily towards the bus stop, when it was our turn to get on, he took a couple of steps back, ran and JUMPED over the steps onto the bus. The bus driver could only shake his head as I pulled myself up the steps behind him.

“Are you finding it a little tough to keep up with him?” he asked.

“Maybe a little…” I admitted.

I would have been ready to head to bed when we got back to Pop Century. But Xavier pointed out that we had not yet been swimming that day and we NEEDED to get into the pool. I briefly worried that I might fall asleep in the water and drown, but then realized Xavier’s antics would definitely keep me awake.

This was day two of our Grandma-grandson trip to Walt Disney World, and, yes, it was exhausting. But I promise you I fell asleep with a smile on my face.

I am lucky enough to have six grandchildren (and two more on the way). When the oldest, Sebastian, was eight years old I took him on a trip to WDW, just the two of us. His two uncles were working in Le Cellier at the time and I thought he’d enjoy hanging out with them and seeing them at work. The trip was such a hit that a few years later, I took his sister Callista, who thoroughly enjoyed having an all-girls outing and focusing on princesses and fairies for a change (she has three brothers).

This year it was Xavier’s turn. This is also the year I will turn 60. I have a very sedentary job and nobody would describe me as “athletic.” Or even fit. But I can still have a wonderful time at WDW.

Here are some things I’ve learned as a “mature person” visiting my favorite spot.

  • Comfort beats fashion. I know, we all want to look good. But those adorable sandals with the cute little heels are not going to be your friend at the end of a day in Animal Kingdom. Us mature people can get cranky when our feet hurt.
  • Benches are your friend, and fortunately Disney has lots of them. Walt wouldn’t have put so many in his parks if he didn’t want us to use them, now would he? If you don’t see an actual bench, look for concrete walls to sit on. Plenty of those, too.
  • Make FastPass+ reservations and give yourself plenty of time to get to each of them. Let’s face it, you’re not going to win the race at rope drop to be first in line for the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. But here’s the good news – you don’t have to! Book yourself a FastPass time from the comfort of your home weeks in advance, and then just stroll over at your own speed when it’s time.

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  • Consider a sit-down meal in the middle of the day. Like most people our age, you’ve probably developed a real appreciation for good food (as opposed to fast food). And you probably have an even bigger appreciation for air conditioning on a hot day and a chance to rest those tired feet. Make an ADR and you’ll get a relaxing hour or two enjoying lunch – and maybe even a hug from Mickey Mouse.
  • Check out the not-in-the-parks activities. Many are perfect for the older guest. Some examples: Afternoon Tea at the Garden View Tea Room Grand Floridian has all the elegance of a Victorian tea room, and your server will make you feel like a queen; the Segway Tour at Fort Wilderness is a less-tiring way of checking out the trails and you’ll learn some history and nature lore along the way; Disney’s Yuletide Fantasy Tour shows you the behind-the-scenes work that goes into the holiday décor at the resorts and parks.
  • Take lots of photos – or get Disney to take them for you. My memory, I’m not ashamed to admit, isn’t quite what it used to be. Photos help me remember the special moments of my trip when I get home. I try to take a picture of the front of each ride before we get on, as well as any shots of character interactions or fun moments on the ride. This helps me afterwards to recall what we did throughout the day.  I’ve found that if I’m alone or traveling with a grandchild, the CMs are usually more than willing to take photos of us. All I have to do is ask. You can also get PhotoPass photos and either purchase the whole CD or just the ones you want. I usually buy some of those, too.
  • Push yourself a little! Some of us – myself included – can get into a comfortable rut. WDW is a great place to try something new or just a bit more challenging, in a safe environment. I’m a bit nervous about heights, but I decided to try the Wild Africa Trek a couple of years ago, even though it meant walking along a rickety-looking bridge with some open-mouthed crocodiles underneath. With our guides and the other group members cheering me on, I made it across and thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the tour.

Or just go with a seven-year-old boy. I promise that will push you into whole new levels!

I’ve read that Walt’s goal in creating Disneyland was to make a place that parents and children could enjoy together. I’d extend that another generation – it’s great for grandparents too. I’m hoping I’ll get a chance to see what it’s like for great-grandparents. But that’s still quite a few years away…

Jul 152015
 

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A family hug for around Grandma with her two daughters, two granddaughters, and one son-in-law at the Tree of Life. (Submitted by Kelle H.)

In each issue we feature a magical memory submitted by one of our readers. We look forward to sharing your memories in upcoming issues! To submit your memory, email a photo with a short description to info@magically-speaking.com.

Jul 152015
 

Walt Disney World Closures and Refurbishments

Magic Kingdom

  • Pirates of the Caribbean will close for refurbishment through September 25
  • Liberty Tree Tavern is closed for refurbishment from through November 20
  • Dream Along with Mickey will be closed from July 19 through August 22.
  • Liberty Square Riverboat will close for refurbishment from August 4 through August 10
  • Walt Disney World Railroad will close for refurbishment from September 28 through November 5
  • Cinderella Castle moat has been drained. This work is being done as part of a larger project that will create a second ring around the current hub that adds more walkways and dedicated viewing areas for Magic Kingdom fireworks and parades, as well as sculpted gardens. This multi-phase enhancement project will be completed in 2015.

Epcot

  • Living with the Land will close for refurbishment from September 8 through September 17
  • Epcot will undergo expansion in the coming months. When work is complete in 2016, the attraction will include an additional theater. Soarin’ will also get updates to its screens and projection system, bringing a visually enhanced experience. The attraction is expect to remain open during most of this work.
  • Maelstrom and the Spirit of Norway movie have closed. In their place, a new “Frozen” themed attraction will be built that is expect to open in early 2016. The new attraction will take guests to Arendelle and immerse them in many of their favorite moments and music from the film. The pavilion will also include a royal greeting location with Anna and Elsa.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid will close for refurbishment from September 7 through September 10.
  • Toy Story Midway Mania will undergo expansion in the coming months. When work is complete in 2016, the attraction will include more track allowing even more guest to enjoy this attraction. The attraction is expect to remain open during most of this work.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

  • Creature Comforts has reopened as the newest Starbucks location.
  • Maharajah Jungle Trek Bat Exhibit will be offstage for 4-6 weeks. During the refurbishment, the area will be inaccessible as netting is replaced and comfort fans for our animals and Cast are installed. The Wilderness Explorers bat badge will continue to be distributed in the breezeway outside the exhibit.
  • Disney Parks has announced a long-term relationship with James Cameron’s Lightstorm Entertainment and Fox Filmed Entertainment to bring the fantasy world of AVATAR to life at Animal Kingdom Park. The new Avatar-inspired Land will feature multiple attractions, entertainment, merchandise locations, restaurants and other immersive elements. Construction on Avatarland is expected to wrap up around 2017.

Downtown Disney (WDW)

  • Fulton’s Crab House will be closed for refurbishment from January 1, 2016 through April 1, 2016.
  • Planet Hollywood will be closed for refurbishment from January 1, 2016 through June 1, 2016.
  • Parking Lots – Entrance 2 – Lots A-G will be closed through August 1, 2016 in preparation for the construction of Town Center and the East Garage.
  • Roadwork on Buena Vista Drive will take place through March 2016. Due to heavy roadwork, expect delays on Buena Vista Drive. It is recommended that Guests use complimentary Walt Disney World Resort transportation from Parks and Resorts to Downtown Disney and plan to arrive early for reserved dining and entertainment experiences.
  • Downtown Disney will undergo a multi-year transformation into Disney Springs. New and completed areas will open in phases, and the project is expected to be complete in 2016.

 

Disneyland Resort Closures and Rehabs

Disneyland

  • New – Tomorrowland Theater will be closed for refurbishment through December 1
  • Innoventions will be closed through September 30, 2016. New plans are currently in development for this location. More details will be shared as they become available.

Disney’s California Adventure Closures and Refurbishments

  • New – Bug’s Life Theater is temporarily showing a sneak peek of the new film “Ant-Man” starring Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly and Michael Douglas. The 15-minute 3-D preview will show select scenes from the film. The Ant-Man suit will also be on display at the Bug’s Life Theater. Ant-Man opens in theaters on July 17. The sneak peek ends August 2 and “It’s Tough to be a Bug” is expected to return after the previews.
  • Luigi’s Flying Tires will be closed through December 1. A new attraction will debut in its place.
  • Muppet*Vision 3D is closed indefinitely while theater is used for Frozen-themed show.

Outside the Theme Parks

  Continue reading »

Jul 152015
 

In each issue we share tips from our readers. If you have a tip to share send it to us at info@magically-speaking.com.

We’re looking for your best tips to share with us all about touring during the summer and tips for experiencing the Frozen Summer Fun event. In addition we are looking for your best tips for experiencing the Disneyland Diamond Celebration.

Olaf will also make appearances throughout the Frozen Summer Fun during the Olaf’s Summer Cool Down stage show, but the loveable snowman will not be available for character meet and greet opportunities.

 

Best of Be Our Guest Podcast

BOGPLogoEach issue we will feature a snippet of what you could learn by listening to the Be Our Guest Podcast. Be sure to check back each issue for more fun.

Episode 880 – Magical Moments on the Disney Dream

On this episode,  Orlando resident Lauren joins us to talk about her first Disney Cruise on the Dream from back in January, 2015.  Hear her thoughts on the ship, dining, entertainment, and more!  Also, she got an unexpected surprise while meeting Captain Mickey which is pretty awesome too!

Listen to the podcast every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at Be Our Guest Podcast!