We’ll pop into Magic Kingdom on the afternoon of Tuesday November 6th.
Larger: http://i.minus.com/irPEp4OgraskE.jpg. This is 3:34pm so this is as crowded as it’ll get. As you may be aware, this website’s crowd levels and recommendations may at times be at odds with “other” websites offering similar content. One specific disagreement is a few of these days in November where Disney decided to extend the operating hours to 8am – 1am at Magic Kingdom to accommodate additional New Fantasyland Previews.
The extension really was a surprise. When additional New Fantasyland previews were announced, I expected Disney to keep the operating hours the same and simply rope off the rest of Magic Kingdom to funnel Passholders into New Fantasyland. Instead, Disney opted to extend the operating hours to 8am – 1am. If it weren’t for the Previews, the hours (almost certainly) would not have been extended.
I’m not sure why you’d (TouringPlans.com) compare “One More Disney Day,” which saw a national media campaign, with some extended hours to accommodate unexpected Passholder previews of New Fantasyland. But there you go.
Not to mention ratcheting up your overall crowd level to an “8” and 9″ from what I think were 2’s and 3’s before the extension.
The extended hours prompted some amusing reactions. DISboards.com, which is always good for a laugh, spawned this 20-page, 280+ post thread titled “Wow, thanks Disney for messing up people’s plans.“Actually, they really didn’t. When Disney extended the hours, they increased their crowd projections at Magic Kingdom by less than 10% and actual crowds were about 20% lower than projected, which caused some of the lowest crowds of the year. With Mickey’s Parties starting up again next week, you can expect next Tuesday and Wednesday to be busier, but we’re still not talking about crowds comparable to the Monday of Thanksgiving Week.
Larger: https://www.easywdw.com/reports5/YouHadOneJob.jpg. But TouringPlans and I don’t even agree on what the crowds “actually were.” They predicted an 8.7 and apparently think this is what an “8.6” day looks like.
But I’ll let you make your own conclusions.
This is about as short as you’ll ever see Magic Kingdom wait times in the afternoon outside of a few days in early September or late January. It’s 4:24pm. 10 minutes at Space Mountain. 15 at Mansion. 5 at Pirates, Magic Carpets, and Mad Tea Party. 30 at Big Thunder. 45 minutes might be longer than we’d like to wait for Peter Pan’s Flight, but you’re not going to see more than a handful of afternoons in 2k12 (or 13) with shorter waits. You may remember Jungle Cruise’s 60 minute wait, Haunted Mansion’s 50, Pirates of the Caibbean’s 60, Space Mountain’s 100, etc. in June – August. 10 minutes at Tomorrowland Speedway in the middle of the afternoon is nothing and waits and crowds are going to be basically nonexistent from 10pm – 1am.
This is “literally” the shortest wait I’ve ever seen at Dumbo. The minimum wait is almost always 15 minutes to accommodate some time inside the tent.
Timothy Mouse has been removed for an unspecified reason.
This should be here. Expect it to show back up by next week.
I’m not sure if you’ve ever checked out Crystal Palace crowds, but it’s usually packed out here with people waiting to be seated. Today, no one’s waiting.
Anyway, the good news is that the Passholder Previews for New Fantasyland are no big deal and aren’t creating massive crowds. In fact, so few Passholders have been showing up that Be Our Guest Restaurant has been open to t he general public for lunch and dinner all day.
In other news, Magic Kingdom is decked out for the holidays in anticipation for the first Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party on Friday.
You’ll find decorations on Main Street and in Liberty Square, but that’s about it.
Speaking of Liberty Square, scrims have appeared over half of Columbia Harbour House. With the new Rapunzel bathrooms and the walkway back there, it seems like Disney wants this area to look as good as possible for the television cameras.
And there are a few tables back at the old swan boat dock.
Mickey gets his own themed window at The Emporium.
As does Minnie. Put a ring on it already, pal!
Otherwise, it’s one of the prettiest times of year at the Parks.
Though I prefer the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party ambiance.
I think I’ve mentioned it before, but Aurora has replaced Belle inside Town Square Theater on a permanent basis.
Snow White appears here in between City Hall and the Chamber of Commerce, just inside the entrance on the left. I would guess she’ll move back over near Tony’s Restaurant once Santa arrives on November 22nd. Disney actually put out a decently helpful document outlining holiday shows/appearances (Christmas is scheduled on December 25th this year!) here: http://image.passholder.disneyparks.com/lib/fe9a15707365027c73/m/1/WDW+Holiday+Calendar_download_121105.pdf.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Larger: http://i.minus.com/i7LLSQKcWEkl.jpg.
Disney Parade taping is on November 30th and December 1st this year. It’s your one opportunity to snap a Main Street picture without the flag pole.
Over at the Transportation and Ticket Center, Disney is building a hole. Probably to the China Pavilion.
I caught the Buddy Valastro culinary demonstration. They are apparently getting ready to ship their cakes and other goodies domestically. With ice and overnight shipping, you’d think those cookies would be a hard sell.
He prepared a tiramisu, which was very good, if not a bit boring and ordinary.
Since the 6pm mixology was convenient….
One amusing thing about the mixology classes is that the “brand ambassador” spends at least half their time talking up the reasons why their product is better than the competition. And how the competition’s marketing is garbage.
Of course, no one is a marketing powerhouse like LVMH.
Drink pours have been on the sadder side of things at this year’s mixology classes. The presenter mentioned several times that Disney limits what and how much they can serve.
But it’s basically vodka.
Otherwise, for $14 the mixology classes are usually pretty fun. You might learn some new techniques and the drinks are usually pretty good.
Test Track nighttime signage.
The Spanakopita ($4) from the Greece booth was surprisingly good. The portion size is decent compared to what you’ll be served elsewhere. The crust was surprisingly flaky and it was served hot with gooey cheese and spinach. Recommended.
The $5 Merguez Sausage from the Morocco booth.
I didn’t care as much for this one, but it might be my own fault. I’m not a big peppers/onions guy and this is easily 90% of that with a small sausage wedged in the middle.
If you like that sort of thing, you’d likely enjoy this. But I think it’s “literally”the last item I’d order again.
And finally, the $3.25 Spinach and Paneer Cheese Pocket from South Africa. This one impressed as well and it’s among the largest items you’ll get for the money. The crust was crisp and the cheese inside was steaming hot.
It’s similar to the Spanakopita in that it’s full of spinach and cheese.
I popped on to Spaceship Earth, which has had a couple changes to the descent:
The video is uploading at the moment. There isn’t much to see – just some lights on a wall during the beginning of the descent. Otherwise, it seemed like more of the effects were working than usual. I’m not a big “Disney World is falling apart guy (except at Splash Mountain where pieces are literally falling off),” but it’s nice to see the painter’s brush working etc. I noticed that more seemed to be working at Pirates of the Caribbean as well.