This recent boat ride - from the Magic Kingdom to the Grand Floridian - was on aboard a new-to-us vessel: the Calm Seas. We love a good Disney boat ride and have done a bunch of them: from resort to parks. From resort to Disney Springs. From Resort to Resort. Friendship boats. Motor Launch boats. Ferries. Pontoon boats. But, the boat you see below in photos, was new-to-us: Calm Seas. It was running on the Seven Seas Lagoon, so that had me wondering...what was the story with the boat? Turns out, it is repurposed boat from Animal Kingdom. Via Wikipedia, we discover (get it??) that the once-used Discovery River Boats ride was in service for about 18 months and closed in 1999 . Two of the four boats have stayed at Animal Kingdom. But, Wikipedia tells us about the Calm Seas and how it was relocated . With another boat: Two of the boats were later moved to the Magic Kingdom resort area on Bay Lake and the Seven Seas Lagoon, where they were repurposed for a pirate-themed fire
Showing posts with the label walt disney world
We recently rode the Jungle Cruise in Adventureland in the Magic Kingdom and being all-in on Staghorn Ferns lately, it was a lovely surprise when I spotted a couple of them attached to tree trunks near the beginning of the ride. I've looked at a bunch of POV videos on YouTube , but can't seem to find a clear look at the ferns and I wasn't able to whip my phone out fast enough to capture them. But, trust me...they're there. Once you leave the dock, look to the right side on a few of the bare palm tree trunks - about six-or-so-feet high from the waterline, you'll see a couple of Staghorn Ferns. Although there isn't a similar site for Walt Disney World, the folks at Plants of Disneyland have documented four different Staghorn Ferns in Disneyland. You can see the listing page here - screenshot below. Source via Plants of Disneyland I'll be sure to have my phone out the NEXT TIME that we board the cruise.
We've been going to Disney's Boardwalk since for ten years now ( here's a post showing our first visit, I think...back in March of 2012) and have come to really love and appreciate this resort area of Walt Disney World. Sure, the Magic Kingdom resorts have the monorail, the electric water pageant and Magic Kingdom Fireworks. But the Epcot resorts have walking-to two parks, the Skyliner and the Boardwalk area. On a recent walk around the Boardwalk, I came across this sign that is situated right on the border between the Yacht Club and the Swan and Dolphin bridge that evokes one of those old-time-y vacation postcards. It has a cute Walt Disney World Resort postmark on the top, even. But, the part that jumped out to me was the copy in the red bar across the bottom: "Come to the Showplace of the Shore". That's a new-to-me tagline for the resort area. See the signage below: A quick spin around the Google machine shows me, however, that is his NOT a new tag
Back in November, I posted a photo of what I called a pair of "underutilized" Disney MagicBands . I wrote about how they weren't able to "live their best life" because our trip was cut short. In a post a week earlier where I posted a photo of Pooh Bear as a 50th Anniversary statue , I talked about how we didn't see too many of those statues due to "unforeseen circumstances". But, in those posts, I didn't really talk about what we *did* do on our trip. Besides going to a couple of parks and having some good drinks at my favorite restaurant on Disney property (more on that in a different post, I think), Nat and I were down there for the Run Disney Wine & Dine Race Weekend. Both Nat and I were set to run the 5K, but she was also running another, much longer race. I was happy to just do the 5K. Here, below is my bib. Our race started in the rain and thankfully we had ponchos. We stood out there for a couple of hours, waiting in the c
These two Disney MagicBands (Orange Bird on the left for him and Epcot Construction Walls on the right for her) barely had a chance. They got all gussied up and didn't get to live their best life. Sure, they rode the Magic Express and rode the boat from the Wilderness Lodge to the Magic Kingdom. But, they had so much more planned for their journey. These MagicBand stickers are different than the ones we've used in the past, but they seemed to work just fine. Here's hoping they'll get to live their best life one day. I've posted photos of some of our MagicBands over the years here on the blog including some of the original version (without the circle bump-out in the middle) here with Mary Poppins and Bert in 2016 and with Monorail Orange in 2016 , too. And the full boxed versions in 2015 and 2014 .
I've posted a few times about our experience(s) at Disney's Wilderness Lodge at Walt Disney World over the years . It was the first place we stayed on our own as a family, the first place we experienced the Electrical Water Pageant and has the best resort-to-park transportation experience on property (imho) with the boat ride from the dock at Wilderness Lodge to the front of Magic Kingdom. One of the best spots to just sit and relax on property is in the train room in the DVC studios building on the first floor where they have a bunch of Walt Disney's Carolwood Pacific backyard trains displayed . On our recent trip at the Lodge, we found ourselves in an area that we've never really been before: a little hidden area on the 2nd floor of the resort that feels tucked away and very private. There's a big desk to do work and a little couch area, too. I'll post about that part in a different post. But, by the desk area....there's a really striking painting
I thought we'd see a lot of these Walt Disney World 50th Anniversary "Fab 50" statues . But, due to some unforeseen circumstances, I only took a single photo of *just* one of the golden (EARidescent is what they're calling them, I think) character statues that is inside of the Magic Kingdom. Luckily, it is a guy who's big in our house - Pooh Bear. And, it is a double feature that has the big guy (Winnie the Pooh) giving a nice cuddle to his pal Piglet. Guess we'll have to go back before the 50th Anniversary Celebration is over. I know this is a minor thing, but it bothers me that there aren't REALLY 50 statues like this one for the 50th Anniversary of Walt Disney World - the Vacation Kingdom. There are *ONLY* 36 statues . A bunch of them are two-fers like this Pooh Bear/Piglet one above. I know that costs are important, but feels like a little bit of the bean counters winning out.
Earlier this month, the fine folks at Disney Imagineering shared even more details of the newly refreshed entrance to Epcot that includes the original fountain, some cool ribbon lighting and a series of flagpoles that are flying flags featuring the original symbols of Epcot . Seems like it is a lot of "back to the beginnings" for Epcot in terms of the entrance and I'm here for it. In our pin trading, we've collected a series of the Epcot pavilion symbol pins, but there's one that we just came across that was new to us. It is what you see below: Now, we can certainly have a conversation about *if* this is scrapper (and it might be), but that's not what I'm here to post about. It is about the fact that, based on THIS pin, I just learned that the World Showcase had/has a symbol that was in harmony with all the other ones that I was familiar with over the years. What is interesting is that this story on D23 (the official fan club for Disney) doesn'
Over the weekend, I posted a vintage photo of my family 1 at Walt Disney World back in the early 1980's and talked about how I wasn't sure EXACTLY where the photo was taken nor was I sure why my sister and I were wearing these white tags on our clothes. Here, again, is the photo in question below showing three of us wearing Mickey Ears and my mom looking very chic in the Florida heat. See those tags on me and my Sister next to me that seem to be pinned or tied to our shirts? Earlier this week, I posted about the details and solved *that* part of the mystery: those are "Lost Parent" Tags with Mickey and Minnie Mouse on them . But, I still didn't know the location. Of course, we're in a hat shop. And, the cast member is wearing some sort of lederhosen-like outfit. But, was it in Epcot @ the Germany pavillion? Was it at The Chapeau in Magic Kingdom? I wasn't sure. But, I knew that someone WOULD know the location. And, the first place I turned
Here's another Disney Parks pin that was in the recently uncovered stash of pins in my closet. This one, however, isn't new. It is NOT on a card, so I'm thinking we traded for it off of a cast member's board or lanyard. PinPics says that it is from 2011 (or at least the companion DLR one with Sleeping Beauty's Castle is from 2011 ). This one features Tinker bell and Cinderella's Castle. It is billed as "It's Magic" . The pin "starts" as a black and white line drawing of the castle. But, when you lift up on the tab that has the Walt Disney World logo and pull, you get a little color magic show with a full-color castle with fireworks. It is kinda neat. This is a pretty THICK pin and like I said, has a easel on the back: The easel makes it seem like this pin is best set up on a shelf somewhere, but you guys know that we have a board and not a shelf. Seems like I'll give it a go to see if it sticks in the board and will hang th
Here's a matched set of Disney Parks pins that were in that little stash that we came across last weekend - but these are a matched set of a matched set. Of holiday character themed-mittens. With the whole Bernie Sanders inauguration mittens meme, I'm so *on* trend right with this post now, amiright? The first one below is from 2015 Christmas at the Polynesian Resort (note: not yet the Polynesian Village Resort) featuring Stitch. And the other one on the left is from the same 2015 Christmas/holiday celebration at Disney's Contemporary Resort featuring...for some reason...Tinkerbell in a Santa hat and outfit. Both of these are on cute cards that carry the whole mittens-theme forward and are both marked "Limited Edition". This is the most recent of the discovered 'stash' pins from Disney Parks on the blog. ALL of my posts about various Disney Parks trading pins can be found here . I also have created this running log of everything I've posted
Back in November of 2020, McDonalds had a Happy Meal promotion with Walt Disney World that featured ride vehicle toys from the parks included in each Happy Meal. The promotion started (I think) right before Thanksgiving , but by the end of the month they stopped selling the toys due to an error of some sort with the QR code that came in the package . Of course, when they released these, we ran out to get a Happy Meal for the kids. They gave us two of the same toy (Goofy) and one Mission Space toy (Mickey). The ones we have are marked "Walt Disney World" and the Goofy one is from the newly opened (at least...new to us, since we haven't been to the Parks since the pandemic hit) Runaway Railway ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios. The Mission Space one is from the ride in Epcot below. You can see all ten of them here from WDWNT . Wonder if they'll ever bring the toys back? They kind of remind me of these Disney Matchbox cars that I have from when I was a kid
On Monday, I posted an update on our Lego build - the Walt Disney World Cinderella Castle - that has been going on for more than a year and a half. I mentioned that we were on step #626, but I thought it would be good to post a reference photo - and I failed to do that in Monday's post. So, here's where we are as of today. Two steps forward (#628) and the build is focused on the tan portion on the left of the photo below. The grey portion on the right is the lower section and is complete. After we continue to build this part on the left (tan part), we snap-it into the part on the right. Doing two posts in one week on this build certainly ups the ante on getting this done before Christmas, doesn't it?
When we first went to the Magic Kingdom when the Babe was very young, I remember being struck by these twinkling lights that they had in the park. At one point, they had a bunch of trees in the 'hub' - that have all been removed so people can view the castle/projection show. On *those* trees were these twinkling lights that they turned on at dusk. I can't find a video of *those* lights, but I do have this one of what I think are the same lights up at Downtown Disney. Those lights give off a little bit of a firefly vibe and are what I remember. And, it isn't just *me* who remembers the lights, as if you put in the phrase [twinkle lights disney trees], you'll see dozens of forum posts all about buying or replicating those lights. I've spent the past few months wading through them and I think I've come up with an approach that I'm going to attempt to DIY here at home. First, the bulbs and the fixtures. Again...based on wading through the
A few days ago, I posted a photo of a vintage University of Illinois Fighting Illini football 1984 Rose Bowl felt pennant and remarked that it was from my childhood. It was (somehow??) saved by my mother who packed it away with a bunch of other things from my life. When my folks moved out of their house in Frankfort - and we moved into our home in Downers Grove - they gave me a bunch of boxes and tubs loaded with personal effects. Along with a collection of greeting cards from my First Communion and sports trophies, these pennants were stuck into the boxes. There are a whole bunch of them that I'll get to, but today's post is about this epic, vintage Walt Disney World Epcot Center spacesuit felt pennant. It features Mickey, Donald and Goofy all in their 'Rainbow Brite' costumes and this one, too, I remember from my childhood. I'll have to ask my mom if she has any memories of when we got this, but it seems that this *has* to be from the 1980's, ri
Last Summer, I posted about how we were kicking off a new LEGO build of the Walt Disney World Cinderella's Castle with the kids. In that post - dated July 9, 2018 - I mentioned that we had started the project seven days prior (July 2, 2018) and talked through how we had encountered some trouble with the early steps in the build due to lost parts. One of the kids received this as a birthday present a year or so ago and I made the mistake of putting the big LEGO box in the room with the rest of the LEGOs at our house. With young, curious kids around, they couldn't help themselves and opened the box to look at the parts. That lead to opened bags and, ummm, missing parts. From that July 2018 post : Also, Step 3 is where we already ran into trouble. Why? Because why wouldn't a seven year old who has this Castle set in her bedroom for seven months open up bag one and tinker around. The only problem? When we sat down to do it together, we had to scavenge together
We picked up this copy of Life Magazine that features the opening day of Walt Disney World in Florida on the cover. Being Disney people and vintage/Antique Mall people, this seemed like a good fit for us. There's a lot of little things to note on the cover including the front row of characters (See Pooh Bear's costume?) The inside headline is all about the east coast move: "Disney Moves East" with Mickey the Mouse leading the marching band down MainStreet USA. The biggest spread of photos is below and is from this pretty unique angle starting with the Rivers of America and Frontierland in the foreground and you can see the Seven Seas Lagoon in the background. A few things to note - Frontierland really just had a cul-de-sac and didn't go over to where Splash Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain are today. And the show buildings where Peter Pan and Philharmagic are located ARE HUGE. Likely due to the perspective, but still. Filing this under both [ V
The two resorts at the Tokyo Disney Resort are connected with a Monorail that circles the property. It makes a stop at a train station in between the two parks and to be honest, I've only been on this monorail twice and both times I did the same route: DisneySea Station --> Disneyland Station. So, I'm not totally sure where else it runs to and how long the route is, but I thought I'd share my experience. The trip between the two parks is a really nice experience and one that is totally on-theme. You exit DisneySea and head out to the station. Buying your one-way ticket at a machine, then you get through the turnstiles and head upstairs to the platform. A few minutes later...the monorail arrives. And it is full of Mickey Heads. The outside windows are Mickeys. And so are the handles you use when you are stuck standing as the train moves. Pretty simple, but adds so much to the experience. There was this one last touch in the car I was in: a "
I came across this little display and sign inside of the City Hall in the townsquare at the end of Main Street USA at Disneyland Park on our trip. It is titled "Yesterday" and speaks to the idea of nostalgia. Written/said by Imagineer Bruce Gordon. I had never heard of him, but he was an Imagineer who died pretty young - at the age of 56 - back in 2007 . His work includes the creation of Splash Mountain, the 1998 renovation of Tomorrowland, the Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage and Tarzan's Treehouse. Some Disney purists might look at his resume and think he's, ah...associated with some terrible projects. The 1998 Tomorrowland renovation was panned . The Tarzan Treehouse conversion from Swiss Family Robinson certainly has detractors. Same with the Nemo submarine voyage. Changes to "classic rides". But, this Mercury News piece - which ranks the best and worst Disney ride/attraction makeovers lists Nemo as a w
Having now recently posted about seeing *in real life* the Disneyland Roses in Anaheim and one of the espalier'd trees/shrubs in Fantasyland, I've now think it is worth creating a curated post about all the trees/plants that I've cared enough about in Disney Parks to post about here on the blog. Consider this my "Growing in Disney Parks" roundup. Before I get to the posts I've created, in searching about some of the trees, I came across this site: Plants of Disneyland . Pretty incredible stuff - including a nice look at the Belgian Fence espalier that I posted about last week. Here's the archives related to plants inside of and around Disney Parks on the blog: 1. Disneyland Roses . In a bed near the Disneyland Resort Gateway along Harbor Blvd in Anaheim. 2. A Belgian Fence Espalier at Disneyland . Turns out it is made out of Firethorn. 3. A beautiful Life Oak tree at Epcot in the World Showcase . 4. There's an inc