While most of Main Street was covered in the Christmas decorations post, we’ll check in on a couple of other happenings.
Perhaps the only update approaching newsworthiness is the reopening of Uptown Jewelers. You can tell it’s newsworthy because WDW News Today is taking a picture of me taking a picture of WDW News Today. You may notice that Disney has moved to much more open floor plans in many of its various stores, perhaps favoring a “less is more” approach that’s a little less overwhelming to guests. But Uptown does have a classy look to it with the Pandora store straight back.
I feel like these socks were made for me except they say “practically.”
These $350 Lego Cinderella Castles come in and out of stock at $350. If you have a discount of some kind, you may be able to save some money versus Target. Or you can help a cast member out and purchase one of theirs on eBay. (The set is available for retail at lego.com.)
At The Confectionery, the treat cases had been closed for refurbishment for a few weeks, but are back now.
Is it too early to get started on Halloween 2k17?
Wait times for Town Square Mickey have only gone up since the talking character debuted a couple of years ago. A look at posted wait times over the last month:
Being a meet and greet with a low capacity, Mickey has also steadily climbed the website’s FastPass+ priority list. Here’s the fall 2016 version:
This is based on how much time using FastPass+ will save and how likely an attraction will be available as a 4th FastPass+ later in the day. Mickey now hits peak waits of 60 minute most days with 80+ minutes each of the last five.
Here’s the 2014 version of the FastPass+ priority list:
In 2014 over the same dates as the chart above, the overall average wait was 29 minutes and the Mickey meet came in at #15 on the priority list. So that’s an increase of 37.93% in two years. That may have something to do with an increase in the number of people aware that Mickey is located in Town Square and it might also have something to do with a decrease in capacity. But crowds are certainly not up 40% in two years. So things do change and the website’s advice reflects those changes.
Tinker Bell’s waits are up to an overall average of 19 minutes over the last 30 days, which is an increase from 16 minutes over the same period last year. That’s an increase of 15.79% or less than half of the Mickey increase. But it’s still under 20 minutes and because of that, Tink used to be 20th out of 29 on FP+ priority but is now 21st out of 26. For whatever reason she is just not as popular as she was in Adventureland.
There are a couple of seasonal overlays that Disney doesn’t really advertise, including a switch to a holiday music finale during Move It, Shake It, What Are They Calling It These Days!
A reminder that Nick and Judy appear on the floats during the Parade, though they do not come down and mingle with guests. I will have a full rundown on the characters available to meet and greet during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party tomorrow, which includes the Zootopia favorites as the #1 priority over Jack Skellington as Sandy Claws and the 7 Dwarfs.
I don’t discuss the Hub much now that the construction has been completed for some time, but it remains a big improvement:
It’s artsy because it’s tilted.
A reminder for those on the Disney Dining Plan that they are bundling Mickey Pretzels and Churros with their respective sauces for a snack credit. They had started doing that at Hollywood Studios more than a year ago, but it’s a recent change at the other Parks. You’ll also notice a lot more pictures of items on the various menus, perhaps as an effort to catch more people’s eyes.
Mickey’s Royal Friendship Faire replaced Dream Along with Mickey back in June and I wrote an introductory review, along with some tips, as part of this post.
One nice thing about the current show is that the final scene changes seasonally, which means red and green for Christmas.
The show is typically scheduled five times per day, currently at 11:30am, 1pm, 2pm, 4pm, and 5:15pm. It actually gets dark towards the end of the last show, which provides a little different perspective. The afternoon rain showers aren’t as common in the winter, luckily, so the afternoon shows aren’t at quite as much risk of being canceled.
As with the other Castle stage shows, my recommendation is to see it from further back where the ground is elevated.
From back there, the view is almost unimpeded with the exception of the shoulder girl whose head is a solid foot higher than the stage.
As far as the quality of the show, it might be a little long at about 22 minutes – I think they get a little bogged down in the middle.
With kids, it’s a nice way for them to see a number of popular characters with relatively little hassle. Arriving ten minutes before showtime should be plenty if you don’t mind seeing it from further back. If you want to be closer, I’d plan on seeing an earlier show rather than the last one because people will already be setting up for the 6:30pm Frozen Holiday Wish. Without kids, it doesn’t necessarily require your attention like The Muppets Present show might. But if you’ve got 30 minutes to spend, it’s certainly not a terrible time even if it’s probably not going to make a list of favorites.
A few more pictures:
We’ll check in on Mickey’s Christmas Party characters next.