I had mentioned in today’s post covering the Christmas Day Parade that two of Diamond Horseshoe’s Kids Meals were now priced at $6.99. Other than Restaurantosaurus at Animal Kingdom, where meals are served in a plastic pail and come with a plastic shovel, virtually all Kids Picks meals are $5.49. That’s up from the previous price of $4.99 that was in effect as recently as the beginning of August. When Yakitori House opens as Katsura Grill early next month, its Kids Picks meal will also be priced at $6.99. In this instance, the meal is Teriyaki Chicken with rice and vegetables, side of udon noodles, choice of beverage, and a cookie. At the moment, the “Children’s Meal” at the temporary Japan quick service location is $7.50. I’m thinking out loud that we may see additional Kids Picks priced at $6.99 in the near future.
In several instances, the $5.49 Kids Picks meal isn’t a bad value. In the case of Diamond Horseshoe, you would have been able to purchase two Kids Picks for about the same price as an adult entree and beverage. That would give you the opportunity to try both the turkey and the pork and come away with a similar amount of food. If you have kids, you’re probably aware that most of the Kids Picks options are the same across all quick service locations. For example, many quick services offer an Uncrustables Sandwich or Macaroni & Cheese. We can assume that this is partially due to the number of adults who would purchase the Kid size portion if the options were a little more interesting. Should prices on select Kids Picks be raised to $6.99, perhaps we would see more interesting choices for kids.
This website doesn’t ask a lot from you. But this one time, I am going to ask you to do something for me. I promise it won’t happen again. I need you to go outside. Are you there? Good. Now, find a patch of grass. See it? Good. Now stare at it for eight hours. Every once in a while, pull out your mobile device and call someone, asking them only to say the name of a celebrity. Once they say the celebrity’s name, hang up the phone. Pretend that this is a rumored celebrity that is going to show up on your lawn. Get excited.
Now you too have experienced the Magic Kingdom ABC Christmas Day Parade taping. It’s a lot like watching grass grow.
For those unfamiliar, Disney tapes the ABC Christmas Day Parade over the first weekend in December. It’s a mashup of Disney World, Disneyland, and stock footage from years past. While it might sound fun to participate in such an event, I can assure you that it’s not. Unless you really like standing there feigning interest at seeing the same float go by for the twelfth time.
Here we are arriving at the Ticket/Transportation Center. No, this is not the line for the monorail. It’s the line for the ferry boat.
See? Officially and to quote a cast member on duty, “The monorail isn’t broken. It just doesn’t have any power.” I laughed. It’s hard to say whether this is a “planned outage” to help control crowds arriving at the Magic Kingdom or not. Maybe.
Your fearless leader has returned to beautiful(?) Kissimme, Florida after a brief vacation in beautiful(?) Seattle, Washington. After enjoying a pleasant red-eye flight last night (this morning?), I popped into Magic Kingdom on the way home for a waffle sandwich and a walk around the Magic Kingdom to see if Disney tried to take advantage of my absence and try to slip something past us. Not so fast, multi-billion-dollar-media-conglomerate!
I didn’t have my usual camera with me, so these will actually be terrible photos from my camera phone from 2007. I’ll be back on Saturday and Sunday for better pictures.
Had you been following me on whatever Twitter is, you would have already seen these as they were happening! As if it gets any more exciting than low quality pictures of the Swiss Family Robinson entrance!
Disney is preparing for this weekend’s ABC Christmas Day Parade taping. Justin Bieber (my boy) is going to be on hand performing along with whatever other 14 year olds are “hot” these days. Zendaya Coleman and Bella Thorne are also slated to perform should you actually be looking for names. OMGGGG IS SELENA GOMEZ GOING TO BE THERE TOO?!?!?!!? I WOULD DIE!! I WOULD JUST DIE!!!
If you can believe it, this is the scrim and walls around Prince Regal Carousel in Fantasyland. Yes, it’s operating inside there. The entire attraction should be encased in a similar look in the next day or two. I would probably just shut the whole thing down. No one wants to ride a carousel inside of walls and tarps, I don’t think.
Continue reading “Back in the Saddle…A Quick Peek into Magic Kingdom on 12/1/11”
Here’s the preview of the June 2012 crowd calendar. It’s not yet finalized as I’ll be putting together the “daily analysis” over the next few days. The process usually reveals some nuances that change the recommended Parks slightly. Nonetheless, this should give you a good idea about where we’re headed:
The Calendar is also available in an easy to view and print PDF file, Here
Should you have no idea what you’re looking at or what to expect from the final product, check out the December 2011 Crowd Calendar here: https://www.easywdw.com/category/calendar/12-december-2011-crowd-calendar/. Underneath the list of update is an explanation of what each line means. I’m still “experimenting” with the addition of the last line that lists the Main Street Electrical Parade and Wishes start times.
If I have one nice thing to say about June, it’s that it’s not July – both in terms of heat and crowds. Yes, it’s crowded. Yes, it’s hot. But it’s not July hot and July crowded. You’ll find the lowest crowds in the first ten days or so. After that, it’s basically peak crowds and peak heat through the middle of August. We’re not talking Christmas crowds here, but the summer is the longest stretch of “crowded” days you’ll find over the course of the year. At least around Easter in April, Thanksgiving in November, and Christmas in December, you have days and weeks that are significantly less crowded around the busy periods. Once the middle of June hits, every single day is busy for a couple of months.
The good news is that the summer also sees the longest operating hours of the year, particularly because it gets dark so much later. When Disney updates the operating schedule in the middle of May, we should see Hollywood Studios close at 10pm most every night with a second Fantasmic scheduled at 10:30pm. Magic Kingdom will see 12am and 1am closes with a second Main Street Electrical Parade added at 11pm every night. Animal Kingdom will see mostly 8pm closes throughout the month. As usual, Epcot’s operating hours will remain constant at 9am to 9pm with IllumiNations every night at 9pm. During the summer, the ideal day sees you arriving at the Parks prior to Park opening to hit the major attractions and collect FASTPASSes. Once 1pm or 2pm hits, you’ll want to take a break back at your resort. Hit the showers, the pool, and relax in whatever ways you deem fit. Then, return in the evening for dinner, some additional rides, and the nighttime entertainment. This way, you miss the hottest and most crowded part of the day. The late night evening Extra Magic Hours at Magic Kingdom are particularly excellent. You can’t beat the crowds at 2am when Magic Kingdom doesn’t close until 3am. I’m still not wild about evening Extra Magic Hours at Hollywood Studios or Epcot though. They just don’t have the number of attractions open to handle the lingering crowds.
At the moment, the June operating schedule is virtually the same every day with few items of interest. We do have “Gay Days” over the first weekend, which is an unofficial event that attracts a lot of people. They visit each of the Disney theme parks one time. We’re planning to avoid them on Friday June 1st when they visit Hollywood Studios. Coupled with Star Wars Weekends, the Studios will be extremely crowded without their help. On Saturday at Magic Kingdom and Sunday at Epcot, we’re not as concerned. Gay Days participants tend to arrive late and leave early and don’t affect touring much at all. They also tend to displace people who are intent on avoiding the theme park that that Gay Days is planning to visit, which actually makes those theme parks less crowded.
Speaking of Star Wars Weekends, we can expect to see the event held at Hollywood Studios on June 1 – 3 and 8 – 10. Disney most likely won’t announce the dates until the beginning of 2012 and appearances won’t be finalized until April or May. I’ll have a full rundown of the event in the “daily analysis” or you can peruse my overview of last year’s event here.
Overall, June isn’t necessarily a terrible month to visit. You certainly shouldn’t be nervous or scared to visit during the summer. After all, if you’ve made it this far, you’re already smarter than 97% of the people that will be touring the Parks alongside you, no matter which Disney app they happen to have open on their telephones. I would say 100%, but you never know when I’m going to show up with my army.
June 2011 Walkabouts:
For those of you considering a June 2012 vacation to Walt Disney World or for those of you just joining us, here’s a list of my June 2011 Walkabouts. It should give you a better idea about what to expect.
A Couple Days at Magic Kingdom – Casey’s Corner Chili Cheese Dog review; A walk around Tom Sawyer Island in Frontierland; Lobster Roll from Tomorrowland Terrace review; Chicken Parmesan from Pinocchio Village Haus review.
Saying Goodbye to Star Wars Weekends – A look at the last Friday and Sunday of Star Wars Weekends; Pressed Tuscan Deli from Studio Catering Company review; Chicken/Rib Combo at Fairfax Fare review; 100+ minute waits at Toy Story Mania, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, and Star Tours.
The Tale of Two Sandwiches – Magic Kingdom on June 18 and Animal Kingdom on June 19 – Golden Oak Outpost review (menu has since changed to hot dogs); Hot Italian Style Sandwich from Pizzafari review.
Hollywood Studios Walkabout June 26 – Star Tours is just five weeks old; New Cars Meet and greet; Toy Story Pizza Planet review; New Winnie the Pooh Meet and Greet.
Because nothing says “Christmas” like clowns and organized crime, we’re headed to the BoardWalk Inn to check out this year’s Christmas decorations. Last month, we took a pretty good look at the stores and restaurants that make up the BoardWalk, so I won’t rehash that post here. But!!!!!!!!!!! We’ll actually go inside the BoardWalk this time, so not all is lost.
The BoardWalk exterior isn’t particularly decorated. I guess if this was a bolder website, I would say that the exterior of the BoardWalk isn’t decorated for Christmas at all.