How many people can say they’ve got name tags from both coasts?
Agent P! For some inexplicable reason, Perry the Platypus’ secret agent alter ego isn’t available to meet at the parks. Obviously he shouldn’t meet in the same area as Phineas and Ferb (since canonically they don’t know about his existence) but he should be available somewhere (maybe even Epcot if Kim Possible gets an Agent P overlay). What drives me crazy is that an Agent P costume does exist, because he appeared for one day at Disney’s Hollywood Studios to celebrate the premiere of Phineas and Ferb The Movie: Across the Second Dimension. How much longer will Agent P be relegated to only appearing as a cardboard cutout? The public demands more Perry! And maybe they could throw some Dr. Doofenshmirtz in there, too.
These pictures were taken by a Disney photographer and found on http://www.insidethemagic.net/
50s Prime Time Cafe! I love everything about this restaurant. Perfectly themed to mid-century kitsch, it’s like being dropped in an episode of The Donna Reed Show (which of course plays on the in-restaurant television sets). Even before you get to your table, you can enjoy the atmosphere and a few drinks at Tune-In Lounge, Prime Time’s waiting area. The decor relies heavily on vintage knick knacks and the aforementioned TV programming (other shows include The Dick Van Dyke Show and The Mickey Mouse Club). Like much of Walt Disney World, the cast members really make this experience something special. You have to be willing to play along when Mom scolds you for putting your elbows on the table. We once had a “cousin” who wouldn’t take our order until my father took off his baseball cap and didn’t serve my sister’s dessert until she’d finished her green beans (confession time: I actually ate them off her plate). The food is excellent here; huge portions of traditional American fare like meatloaf and chicken pot pie. And you’ve gotta get a sundae to top it off!
This picture is from the Disney parks website.
New Year’s Eve at Magic Kingdom! Part of this is because NYE reminds me of my first trip to Walt Disney World. It’s also because Magic Kingdom has the best fireworks show I’ve ever seen. Seriously, they countdown in 360 degrees IN THE SKY. Who cares if Magic Kingdom is packed; that’s all part of the experience. The entire park feels like one huge party all night long. There’s a DJ spinning top 40 hits, and it’s being broadcast throughout the park. Everyone on Main Street is dancing, blowing their horns, wishing each other a Happy New Year. And if you make it past the midnight fireworks, it completely empties out and even the E-tickets are walk-ons. It’s the best night of the year!
This picture was taken by Tom Bricker of http://www.disneytouristblog.com/
Dream-Along With Mickey! It’s been a long time since I actually watched this show, but I feel like it is omnipresent in Main Street’s soundscape. It always seems to be playing as we walk through the hub, and I love looking back to catch a glimpse. This used to be one of our must-do attractions, when my cousin was in love with Peter Pan. He makes a featured appearance in the show, along with Captain Hook, my uncle’s favorite Disney character. Also featured are Disney Princesses Aurora, Cinderella, and Snow White (with princes!). The whole show is a little hokey and totally corny, but it makes me smile to hear everyone chanting “Dreams come true!”
This picture is from the Disney parks website.
Drunk pirate with pigs! I don’t have a picture of this myself but luckily I found one on flickr. This is my favorite figure on Pirates of the Caribbean. He looks so absolutely content. The city is burning to the ground around him, and he is just enjoying the company of friends. How could you not be happy surrounded by those pigs? They look like they’re laughing with those big dopey grins. I think this scene is often overlooked by the average guest, who is usually looking up at the hairy-legged pirate dangling over the bridge.
This picture was taken by flickr user Swantho.
Post-Ultimate Tour! This isn’t a very good picture but it represents a very proud moment for me. I took this just outside the gates at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, exiting the park after my first Ultimate Tour. On August 3, 2011, I completed 30 attractions (every ride/show in the park except Sounds Dangerous, which was closed for “refurbishment”, plus three character greetings) in 11 and a half hours, placing third in the Hall of Fame. I visit Walt Disney World so often that I’m always looking for new ways to experience the resort. I’ve been trying new restaurants, visiting hotels, and enjoying every little detail. Ultimate Tours challenge my usual way of touring, turning the day into a competition. It was a little stressful, but lots of fun, and it was such a good feeling to go home that night knowing I’d accomplished something!
More pictures from my Ultimate Tour on my Facebook page.
Pirates of the Caribbean! A day at Magic Kingdom isn’t complete without a ride with the pirates. Maybe multiple rides. I have distinct memories of the attraction from my childhood visits. I was scared of the drop so I didn’t ride for years. I still get butterflies in my stomach as the boat nears the ramp, “dead men tell no tales” echoing in the empty caverns. And suddenly you are rushed right into the middle of the action. I think it was Imagineer Marc Davis who said Pirates of the Caribbean wasn’t about actual pirates, even though they existed in history and Disney considered basing the rides on real individuals. The ride was about the idea of pirates, focused on telling a story. Not a narrative story, but a fully immersive experience from beginning to end.
This concept art for Pirates of the Caribbean was created by Imagineer Marc Davis.
Mickey Mouse! It all started with a mouse, and for good reason. Mickey is the quintessential Disney characters, an icon recognized around the world. He doesn’t need to speak to be understood in every language. And he remains as loved today as he was in 1928. I’m always excited to meet Mickey, whether it’s at a character meal or his new Town Square digs. I like to suspend my disbelief because OMG it’s Mickey Mouse and he’s totally signing MY autograph book and taking a picture with ME and I can’t believe such a huge celebrity is just so humble and nice to his fans!!! It’s a little bit of a freakout every time.
A Photopass Photographer took this photo for me at Magic Kingdom’s Town Square Theater on August 28, 2011.