View Full Version : OKW had no magic, but trip was great! (with pics)

10-08-2004, 09:39 PM
Saturday, 10/2/04 - Tuesday, 10/5/04
Hubby and I ALONE trip…
Trip of firsts - First time leaving my youngest, first time at OKW, first MNSSHP, first Food and Wine and first (somewhat) visit to the Adventurers Club!

Yes, I left my youngest for the first time ever and we all survived just fine! (Many of you know I was a nervous wreck!) My girls (six and three) split their time with both sets of our parents and hubby and I enjoyed three nights away at WDW! They had a great time and stayed busy, but I was glad when my little one held onto me for almost an hour after I got home with the best hug ever! (Course, my oldest was asking when I’d go away again…)

OKW (I’ll start with the disappointing and move onto the good…) -
Hubby had stayed here once before with his Dad last Braves spring training, but this was my first time there. No magic for us! We got a late start on Saturday as hubby had to go into work. We left Atlanta around six and were making great time until we went through a downpour and shortly after traffic for a truck that had hit a bridge and split in two dispersing cargo everywhere. We noticed mainly a lot of tree and sign damage from the hurricanes, 192 looked rough. Got to OKW shortly after midnight.

It appeared they had already checked us in when we got there as our info was sitting up on the counter already along with about five other reservations. I confirmed with her that we had a nonsmoking studio and knew that this late at night our request for near Turtle Pond pool was useless. I asked her if we had a non handicapped studio. She left us at the desk for about five minutes, came back and said that we did have a tub. Great, we’re tired and left for our room…

Immediately we realized we might have the worst room at OKW?!? It was 5010 at the end of South Point Road complete opposite from the bus stop, sitting very close to a busy road - Buena Vista Drive, I think? And it was handicap! I called and told them they told us it wasn’t less than five minutes ago. Got put on hold for about ten minutes for them to come back and tell us they couldn’t move us anywhere. Room smelled AWFUL! Yuck, what was that smell? It was like a bad smell covered up by a bad scent. No shelf space, no cabinet space… THEN, I closed the curtains to discover a lizard on it! So hubby and I spent the next thirty minutes chasing it around the room. I called the front desk and they told me to just leave our door open?!? OK, it was about 1:30 in the morning at this point. I finally got it trapped and we went to sleep with the sounds of traffic noise… It felt like I was at a Holiday Inn off the Interstate.

Next morning I call down THREE times trying to get a standard size ironing board, finally gave up and left. I also asked for extra bath mats as the shower poured water onto the floor and was a mess. Never got the mats, but later came back and found the ironing board. Water pressure was about good enough to bathe maybe a mouse? (And I’m not talking Mickey size here…) Room was in fairly good condition minus the smell, still debris on the patio and chairs piled up from the hurricane the weekend before.

Slide report - Construction workers were busy each day we were there. It was boarded up around the Hospitality House, but you could see some work from across the river. All I could really see was a very large mound of dirt and workers standing around it each day. Parking space at Hospitality House and surroundings villas were taken up by many trucks, etc. Hopefully the slide will be completed on time cause they were definitely working on it.

OK, now on to the GOOD stuff…
SUNDAY (Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party) -
Started off the day going to MGM and riding all the rides my oldest is too scared to ride. Hit everything we wanted to in just a few hours and at a very relaxing pace.

Went back to OKW to take a small nap and change into our costumes for MNSSHP. As many of you know hubby was very excited about dressing up as the Mad Hatter and myself as Alice, but I was really dreading it! I felt odd walking out of our room and to the bus stop, but as soon as we got on the bus everyone was telling us we looked great. I must admit we didn’t see many adults dressed up, or even that many kids for that matter, but we LOVED it. It just felt normal to be dressed up inside the MK. Weird, but true! It was funny how everyone that walked by us would have to announce us - Mad Hatter and Alice. Mad Hatter and Alice. Mad Hatter and Alice… You get the idea! Poor hubby was so hot in his costume. It was very humid. I’m so glad I brought along bobby socks to wear instead of the tights I had bought.

We ate at the LTT for dinner and then were PUSHED over to Tomorrowland to wait for the party despite it being close to seven. Rides were walk ons, but yet the park seemed happily crowed. I think the longest we waited was about ten minutes for both Peter Pan and Buzz. We were able to ride everything we wanted to plus watch the fireworks and parade. We even had our palms and tarot cards read. Wow, was she off the mark on me! She told me I don’t like to plan the details! Obviously, she hasn’t seen me plan a WDW trip! She did tell me I had two kids and might have a third, where I stopped her! No third please!

AngieBelle spotted me on Main Street and came up and told me I didn’t look like a dork. I got a big laugh out of that! (I had an earlier thread about feeling like a dork in my costume.) Then scoutsmom99 came up behind me at Peter Pan and told me I didn’t look Amish. Once again, another reference to my thread! Then another DISer spotted me and about that time I think hubby was starting to get freaked out that people were recognizing me! We also hooked up with vettechick99 and her fiancé. She lives near me, but we’ve never met. They were very nice and cute!

MNSSHP was a blast and worth every extra penny. We left with bags full of candy and both agreed once the kids get a tad older and could stay up that late we would bring them even if they have to miss a couple days of school. Best costumes we saw were a group dressed up from Willy Wonka. Fab costumes!

MONDAY (Food and Wine Festival, Adventurers Club) -
After sleeping in a tad, we went to Epcot for the Food and Wine Festival for lunch. We spent a small fortune drinking and eating our way around the world. YIKES! This was the most money we spent the entire trip. (The Ice Wine in Canada was quite yummy.) We also confirmed our suspicion hubby is now allergic to honey. He drank a beer and immediately broke out! Just one more food to add to our families list of allergies. UGH!

Another DISer spotted my DIS lime green button on my backpack and then a nice couple who saw us the night before at MNSSHP came up and commented on our costumes. They also ate at the LTT for MNSSHP and sat across from us during dinner. They were SSR owners.

Went back to OKW and changed for our night out. We took the boat from the Hospitality House (got in a few games of ping pong at Community Hall while waiting) to DTD (very nice ride) and used our AP discount and Disney Visa Rewards at the World of Disney to buy for everyone. Then we ate at Portobello’s with our DVC discount. It was nice, but hubby fussed cause he would have preferred Fulton’s. (This was our only disagreement the whole trip!)

After dinner we headed for the Adventures Club. We got there early and immediately began drinking and joined the club. Kungaloosh! We had only been here once years ago before we had kids and didn’t stick around long enough to get it. I must say we LOVED it! We had wanted to go over to the Comedy Warehouse at one point, but never made it! We stayed here all night long and it was a BLAST. We even ran into vettechick99 and her fiancé again. This was definitely worth using one of our extra plus options we had stashed away for future trips.

We took the bus back to OKW and had the most friendly bus driver. It seems we get at least one of these drivers each trip - He told facts, etc. and was very nice to listen to even at such a late hour.

Waking up with a small hangover from the Adventurers Club we packed up and headed over to AK. Rode a few rides, then ate lunch at the Rainforest Café using our DVC discount. Stuffed, we headed for home and only had to stop a couple times and made it back home in about six and a half hours (including Atlanta traffic!). Along the way we saw hundreds and hundreds of power trucks from various states leaving Florida. It was nice to see them (Even if half of them stopped at Hooters on I75!).

Despite the lack of magic we felt at OKW, the trip was so much fun. I am now really looking forward to our ten year wedding anniversary trip at VWL next February. It should be a little easier leaving the girls next time now that I have done it once. I really let it go this trip. You should have seen our room! At one point hubby started cleaning up, something he never does! I’m so used to taking care of everyone I just really chilled out this trip! And every time I saw a crying three year old I just smiled knowingly with plenty of sympathy. We even had one woman apologize for their child and I told her I understood all too well!

Only catch is we have OKW booked for spring break next April with the girls and now I’m a little worried. I had thought my oldest would like the new slide, but I’m worried we’ll end up in another handicap studio. It turned out to be fine for us, but with two little ones we would really need the shelf and cabinet space along with a tub. Plus, to be honest I think that toilet seat was pretty high and I doubt either of them could hop up there on their own. OKW definitely has a different feel to it, I think I like the hotel feel better. I just felt really removed here. But, I already have spring break booked and we’ll be able to stay a full week with the lower points. Pluses and minues I guess!

Observations – Getting trading pins is like winning the lottery. I wanted to start collecting special event pins for any we attend. MNSSHP was sold out (ended up getting a different night pin, so it was OK) then Food and Wine pin was sold out. Geez… So I’m stuck looking on ebay for that one. I had also wanted an OKW Christmas ornament but it was out at OKW and at DTD. I was out of luck, at least I bought myself a cute Alice purse. Got girls another charm for their bracelet. I love this idea of a new charm each trip!

Here’s some links to pics of us (I promised on my dork costume thread so I must deliver!) -

A "normal" picture of hubby and I (http://home.comcast.net/~shanthompson/uswithmic.jpg)

Hubby and I dressed as the Mad Hatter and Alice (http://home.comcast.net/~shanthompson/hatterandalice.jpg)

Me with Alice and gang (http://home.comcast.net/~shanthompson/aliceandall.jpg)

Hubby with Alice (http://home.comcast.net/~shanthompson/lenandalice.JPG)

10-08-2004, 09:54 PM
Thanks for a wonderful trip report! Loved every minute!


10-08-2004, 10:12 PM
Thanks for the report!!! I hope the room at OKW was just a fluke???? YIKES!!! Very unmagical.

The pics are precious!!! I love the costumes, and you did not look like an Amish Cracker Barrel waitress---you looked adorable :)

10-08-2004, 10:15 PM
Great report and I'm so glad you had a good time without the children! Disney for adults is awesome.

I just noticed that you are from Atlanta...we're northeast of the city in Gwinnett County...and I am so curious to know how you made it back in 6 1/2 hours! We made it in 7 1/2 after Labor Day and that was staying about 5-10 mph over the speed limit. Just curious if your route is different or you live more south of the city.

10-08-2004, 10:17 PM
Funny, I forgot about hubby telling me I looked like I worked at Cracker Barrel! :rotfl:

Course, this was before it was hemmed about a foot and the frilly lace was taken off the collar! :eek:

10-08-2004, 10:22 PM
kenziesmamaw, we live in Marietta. We went to Highway 192 to Route 27 to Florida Turnpike to I75. Oh, and we were driving fast.
:p Only stopped twice - once for gas, second at a rest stop. If the kids would have been with us I'm sure it would have been another two hours.

10-08-2004, 10:51 PM
Yep, looks like not arriving late is a good plan, unless you're only staying there on night. Ouch, tough break on the room!

Thanks for the very detailed report. Loved the pix! Having never been to a Cracker Barrel, I thought only of Alice upon seeing your costume.

I keep thinking that DW would make a great Mary Poppins, if Mary Poppins were a tax lawyer;). Maybe another year (yeah right!)

10-08-2004, 11:21 PM
Great report and great costumes!!! I think the costume was really cute!!

10-08-2004, 11:32 PM
I'm so glad you had a great trip!! It is SOO rare to hear bad stuff about OKW...here's hoping it was a fluke!!

You look soooo cute..I never imagined you as a blonde...it's weird have we have pictures of people in our mind!!!



10-08-2004, 11:41 PM
I can't believe you were worried about the costume..really you both look wonderful..had read your post and so glad you posted the pix..You could work for Disney thats how great you looked..also glad you both had a good time..have fun on your next trip..Marianne :wave:

10-08-2004, 11:41 PM

Did you have to request the lizard when you made the reservation, or could you do it a check-in?

And the costumes are great; you're right about feeling at home "in costume" at the MK. At last year's MNSSHP, DW was a cat and I was (duh) a doctor; with our 'Guest of Honor' name-tags, people kept mistaking us for Cast Members!

Glad you had fun - next time, try SSR! ;)

living la vida mickey
10-08-2004, 11:53 PM
Great costumes!!! We LOVE the Adventurers' Club too. We go each trip. Quick question. Did you call ahead to OKW to let them know that you were going to be late for check in? Whenever we've had a late check in because of delay or just taking a late flight, I've called the day before and the day of to confirm the late arrival and to check about our room requests. They've always been accomodating and have always had the type of room that we requested ready for us when we got there. When delayed, I keep them updated as to arrival time if it's later than originally anticipated. Just a suggestion. It's worked for us even with a 1:30 am arrival.

10-09-2004, 03:25 AM
Thanks for the great report Shan!

You and your DH look great in your costumes and very relaxed :teeth:

10-09-2004, 04:38 AM
How cute are you two??? The costumes are GREAT ! So sorry you didn't enjoy OKW. Give it another try in April and hopefully the experience will be different.

10-09-2004, 07:30 AM
Your costumes look fabulous! I'm pretty sure we saw you there, but I didn't know it was you. Our pictures from the party came yesterday, it took less than a week. We had tees on, I was a pumpkin face and DH had a superman tee. He got lots of positive comments and had a good time, our sons gave him that tee years ago, and he just needed an "event" to wear it to.

I loved the "walk on" aspects of the rides that night.

I do wish you have a better OKW experience the next time. We had a great time there, DH wondered if we needed OKW points.


10-09-2004, 08:07 AM
Thanks for sharing your trip report and great pictures with us. You guys look great. Good for you that you don't worry if anyone else is dressed up or not.

10-09-2004, 08:09 AM
Sweet! I'd pick you over the "real" Alice any day! :lovestruc

Thanks for the report!

10-09-2004, 08:50 AM
Sorry your OKW stay was less than magical. Just my opinion, but I would rather spend the extra points to stay at another resort for a studio - I have not had good luck with OKW studios and don't like that most of them are now overgrown with shrubbery. However, our stays in 2brs have been find.

The room aside, I would be most disappointed with them not knowing it was hcp and not responding well to your maintenance requests. I hope that you write in to them to report it.

And I'm with you on liking the hotel feel better. It really is just a personal preference, and nothing reflecting on a resort.

Costumes are very cute and SO impressed to see the Walrus character! How unusual!

Glad you had a nice trip.

10-09-2004, 09:15 AM
Thanks for posting such a great trip report, notwithstanding your unhappy feeling about OKW. I am so excited about my first MNNSHP and FWF:jester:

Loved your costumes :sunny: Hope you get a great OKW room next time::yes::


10-09-2004, 09:17 AM
Thanks everyone for the replies!

pumpkinboy, I really think our room was due to the late arrival. I guess if anyone had to have the bad room it might as well be us. We were alone without the kids and had nobody we wanted to impress with us. All worked out well in the end, turned out to be just a place to sleep.

Marianne, I would love to work at WDW as a character! Course, I'm now 33... I keep thinking when hubby retires we could move there and I could be a mouse or something. I'm short - 4'11". When we walked into the MK a CM came over to us and asked us to please not pose for pictures or sign any autographs. We did have one couple ask to take our picture and I didn't even think about it until later... Then another CM came up to me and told me I fit the requirements for Alice perfectly. I really got a kick out of that! :hyper: An old Alice?!?

DrTomorrow, yep that lizard gave us a workout that night! Man, that was a fast thing! We were down on the floor trying to catch it. We both agreed we wouldn't be able to sleep knowing it was moving all around the walls. After we caught it, we were both WIRED. I think I probably fell asleep around 2:30 maybe?
Besides the things I mentioned, the room was actually very clean except for that smell! Only thing I noticed was some kid had drawn all over the table with a pen. I really hate that. I always put up the pens as soon as we get into any hotel room cause I do have an "artist".

vida mickey, I had mentioned to hubby about calling to let them know we'd be so late. I will do this next time! When you said you had called the day before did you call MS or OKW front desk?

Bobbi, I knew you were going to both OKW and MNSSHP. I wish you would have said hello! I would have loved to meet you! Glad you had a nice time!

erik, :love2:

kathleena, I am now debating on changing our spring break ressie to another resort. I can't believe I gave up our BCV ressie! I wonder if I can even switch to another one now? Guess I would have to waitlist. I really think the woman at the desk told a fib to get us out of there. How could she have been gone for five minutes (We were the only ones in there.) and come back and tell us the room wasn't handicap accessible.
I wish we had more points. For now we prefer to book studios while the kids are small so we can get more trips out of it.
I was excited to see the Walrus. I don't think I've ever seen him before. And other CMs were coming up to him and saying he looked great. Maybe he is a new costume? I actually had about eight Alice characters around me for that pose, but hubby couldn't fit them all in where we were standing!

10-09-2004, 09:30 AM
There was another recent thread where the Front Desk moved a member out of a H/A room because they had small children.
Something about it being a safety issue because of the controls for the stove being within reach. Don't know if a studio would also have issues.

Thanks for the report. Glad you trip was fun.

10-09-2004, 10:03 AM
Thanks for the report Shan!

So sorry about OKW not being up to par ~ knock wood, we've always had excellent service at OKW. I really hope it was just a fluke. That room sounds awful:(

On an up note though, we checked out of BCV's after a week long stay on Sun. 10/3. We were there at the same time even though it was only for a day or so. We went to the MNSSHP for the first time on Friday night 10/1 and I totally agree with you! It was so much fun! I can hardly wait for next year. We dressed up the kids in costumes (dd 1yr that day went as a strawberry and ds 4yrs went as Thomas the tank engine:) ) . We may just join them and dress up ourselves next time. Your costumes were fabulous!! Happy you survived being at WDW without the kids ;) It must have been quite a different experience.

Anyway, hope you'll try OKW for that spring break vacation and that the CM's didn't ruin your magic completely. Hopefully, it was just an off thing and next time will make up for it. FWIW we've stayed in studios at OKW lots of times with many great visits over the years ~ again, I really hope it was just an off time and won't happen again. I've had just average stays at BCV's on the 2 stays I had in studios previous to this last BCV's visit and this last one was awesome. You never know, different visit, different CM checking you in ~ next stay could be terrific.:wave:

10-09-2004, 10:05 AM
I took everything in stride, but if we get another handicap accessible studio with no tub next trip the kids are with us I will DEMAND to be moved. I would not stay a whole week with no tub for them and the toilet is way too high for them, too. I guess I could request a step stool?
I know there are no guarantees, but when you join DVC they fail to mention this being a possibility of happening. Most hotels will guarantee a room with a tub and nonsmoking. I don't see why DVC can't. If you try to book too late and those rooms are taken then you take what it is left. JMHO

10-09-2004, 10:08 AM
Scoootch, you posted as I was posting. Glad you had a good time. Did you get your MNSSHP pics back yet? Mine came a couple days ago. Very fast!

10-09-2004, 10:18 AM
Yes ~ got ours just the other day! That was fast;)

10-09-2004, 03:39 PM
Thank you for posting your trip report. The MNSSHP sounds like it was great. Wonderful pics. You guys looked great! I can see why Disney thought people would come up to you for autographs.
We feel the same way about the hotel DVC resorts--they are more our type of resort for vacation.
Maybe to keep all your options open, get on a waitlist to see if you can switch back to BCV for your Spring trip. You already have rooms at OKW, so you have nothing to lose by getting on a waitlist. I was surprised to read you switched from BCV to OKW--it is usually the other way around.
Good luck & have a wonderful vacation!

10-09-2004, 04:03 PM
Im with you on the HA rooms. DVC should go so far as to build a HA model in the sales center to let buyers know what they could receive.

Cute Pictures and MNSSHP sounds like it was alot of fun.

I want a lizard in my room too! The boys would get a kick out of that! LOL

10-09-2004, 05:43 PM
While I could never see any of the DVC resorts being compared to a Holiday Inn, I do respect that everyone has their own opinion. OKW has never left me with even a remotely close experience as yours Shan but I am sorry to hear you had such an unpleasent experience. I do believe that every DVC resort has undesirable rooms/locations. I had one at BWV last year where I got to watch the valet parking lot and service area driveway while I sat out on my balcony. Not real magical seeing the delivery vehicles coming and going. But looking at the whole picture, I realize this is not the norm for BWV, as neither your experience is the norm for OKW. Hope you give OKW another chance. I usually request non-smoking, water view, no HA. Last time I got bldg 43 and it was terrific. I also agree most of the views from the studios (particularily ground floors) have a nothing-to-write-home about view.
As for MNSSHP----glad u had a great time. Real cute costumes. We went in '99 and '01 ---both on Halloween night. Sorry you missed out on the pins---looks like I'm up for a challenge trying to find them next month. I also like the idea of getting a new charm for the bracelet every month. Thanks for the report.

10-09-2004, 06:17 PM
Loved the report! And the costumes too! I have only recently heard of the Adventurers Club, as on all our trips we haven't been to Pleasure Island or the West Side (?) of DD. It sounds pretty neat, and I'm thinking of going there on our next trip in Feb. I have to finally find out what Kungaloosh is afterall...

10-09-2004, 07:34 PM
Sorry to hear about your room.... (((hugs))) Most rooms at OKW are over the top wonderful.... sorry yours wasnt.

And YAYAYAY for wearing your costume!! Looks great and I am so glad you guys had a blast at MNNSHP!

10-09-2004, 07:49 PM
OKW is my favorite resort -- with the exception of the studios. They feel too much like hotel rooms to me. I prefer almost every other studio to that one. We like having a sofa in the room.

BUT --- throw that studio on a one bedroom, and it's magnificent. SO MUCH ROOM! And lots of them have really beautiful views. ALso, the one-bedrooms themselves feel positively luxurious. That would give you a true picture of an OKW stay.

When we do studios, we stay in BCV, BWV or VWL. For 1 bedrooms on up, we feel OKW can't be beat. (When we did a one bedroom at BCV in May, my husband told me several times how cramped he felt....)

You have lots of years to try OKW again, so maybe it will be the right fit again someday in your plans. But stay away from those studios. I think you'll always be disappointed there.

10-10-2004, 06:44 PM
Thanks again everyone. :)

Tooneric, the Kungaloosh drink was yummy, but I drank two and never felt "relaxed'. ;) Then I had a glass of wine and well, I did mention I had a hangover the next day, right?
:teeth: I drink maybe a few times a year so a couple glasses of wine usually do me in.

Try to get there early and stay for a bit. When we went years ago we just walked in and then walked out. You have to stay a bit to get the jest of what is going on I think. We absolutely loved it.

I talked to hubby today. I guess our plan will be to try OKW again for spring break with the girls. I had talked up the new castle slide to my six year old so I kinda got myself into a fix.
I'm gonna call MS and ask them to please put on my requests that I need a tub for my children.

I already had on there nonsmoking and close to HH. (I had wanted to be close to the new slide.) Anyone think I should request a few specific buildings to better my chances instead of just close to HH?

I asked hubby about staying at a value the night before we check in, but he is really over doing that. He doesn't like to move, although I don't mind too much. He said we'll leave in the middle of the night if we have to and the girls can stay in their PJs...

10-10-2004, 07:03 PM
what great costumes, you both looked great!!

10-11-2004, 09:51 AM
Great trip report. I rememember seeing you at LTT that Sunday night. You and your husband looked so real in those costumes.

10-11-2004, 12:36 PM
You look MAV-ELOUS Dah-ling! We have our 6 "Qwack Pot " bowling shirts in and love them...can't wait. I am curious if they are now moving everyone to Tomorrowland after LTT instead of letting you stay in Frontierland. Has anyone else had the same experience on another day?

10-12-2004, 12:54 PM
I really enjoyed your trip report! Thanks for posting.

LOVE the costumes. You and DH look great! ::yes::

10-12-2004, 01:11 PM
Glad you had a great trip dispite the not so great OKW accomadations. DH an dI really enjoyed a trip we were able to do sans children a few years ago--might be time for another!;)

10-12-2004, 04:50 PM
Do it patsal!

It was really fun and I think did me good to be able to be responsibility free for a few days! Like I said in my report - I did nothing! I even let hubby wash the coffee mugs, etc.!

10-12-2004, 04:54 PM
Were we sitting with you at the last show in the Adventurer's Club? I was the - ah "entertainment" at Samantha's Caberet.

10-12-2004, 05:06 PM
ronw, were you the hubby that had to get up and dance? The couple that meet was it in high school band or church?

(Please forgive me, by that time I was a little tipsy. We had been there all night and I don't drink too often!)

I hope your wife got a pic of you? That place was a hoot.


10-22-2004, 06:32 PM
I just have to bump this up to say how glad I am that someone else mentioned the Willy Wonka group. Those were my favorite costumes of the night. I think # or four of them were oompa loopas. My cousin stopped them to get a picture.
There was also this cute little boy there wearing a costume that looked like he was riding a chicken. I had never seen something like that before, it was adorable.
I think that I might have seen you there that night but I cant be too sure of it. I know I saw some people with dis lime green mickeys but since Im sort of a lurker I didnt want to just go up and introduce myself as the person that read about everyone's vacations but never speaks. hehe.
Hope you had fun, it was my first time there too and was definitly more than I expected out of it.

10-22-2004, 06:42 PM
Hi nappmandoa!

Yes, I agree it was really fun at MNSSHP! The Willy Wonka group was great!

I also really enjoyed meeting a few DISers. I'll wear my DIS pin on each trip now. :)

10-22-2004, 07:45 PM
Costumes are great!!!

We are in Gwinnett County too, Dacula also and we have made it in 6 1/2 hours with kids. Leaving at O-dark-thirty on THIS FRIDAY!!!!!
Staying with my mom who lives an hour away. Our girls don't have a clue that they will be in WDW for Halloween.

We love OKW but agree we did not like staying in the studio. The 1 or 2 bed's can't be beat for size and convience when having your own car. Staying for a few days we always take a cooler and hate have bell services take it up to the room. We just unload real close to the room.

Doing a studio at VWL this weekend cause it is more confortable with the couch.

Thanks for the great report.


10-22-2004, 11:04 PM
Great to see your report, Shan!

I'm really glad it all went well....I can't wait to do the same and leave the kids home. I've got a few years though...the little one is only 7mo.

I wouldn't worry too much about those OKW reservations. We were definitely underwhelmed by our first visit there....but after several more visits to OKW we love it just as much as the other resorts. It just sort of has its own feel. Sorry you didn't get the Turtle Pond area...that's our favorite. For being close to the HH, we liked building 13 (I think?)....its directly across from the bus stop.

Sorry about the handicapped room....but for future reference, my dd managed the toilet in a handicapped room just fine at a few months shy of 3yo...she thought it was really cool to sit on an extra tall toilet. But in a studio you do need the bathtub...we once had a handicapped 2br so we had the big tub to bathe the kids.

I'm really envious of your trip....I showed my dh your pics and we both commented on how happy you both looked!

nicholas 25
10-23-2004, 03:15 AM
As regulars to OKW we have had to get used to the bad rooms. Wife is a teacher and we always start our trips after she finishes work for that day that starts her vacations. We always get to disney around 8-9pm and no matter the requests we have made at time of booking, we get a room that is always at the end of a building next to a bus stop. We are big fans of OKW for many reasons but would love to find out a way to avoid getting the leftovers of the day by ariving late.

John VN
10-23-2004, 05:35 AM
We most often check in shortly after 7:00AM and have very few problems with getting our room requests. If we are going to be too late, we simply pay for a night off site (real cheap) or start with a value room and then check in the folowing morning at 7:00AM. Don't mind the slight OKW stay delay.

nicholas 25

Use to anchor out up there a long time ago. Nice way to spend the weekend or just a Sunday. Many wonderful memories.


10-23-2004, 09:16 AM
Hello fellow Atlantan! What a great surprise for your kids! I hope ya'll have a blast! Are ya'll going to MNSSHP then?

Hi! :wave: It is funny how this thread got bumped up. It has been a few weeks now and I must say I can still say it was a great trip! The problems with OKW are started to fade and the fun we had is sticking out more in my memories already! The trip was just what I needed. I think it was good for my youngest and it definitely was good for me! Being a stay at home mom my whole world is kinda sheltered. I have recently started subbing at her preschool and even that is just an extension of what I do at home all day.

Actually, I have started planning our ten year wedding anniversary trip for February just a few days ago. My PS window opens up in two weeks! I was feeling guilty about going off again, but now I'm really excited.

I'm planning alot of stuff that I've never done before that we can't with the kids - Keys Tour, California Grill, Grand Floridian Tea... I can't wait! We'll be taking the girls for seven nights in April so I think we'll skip most of the park stuff this time.

nicholas25 and John,
We used to stay offsite or at a value the night before, but hubby doesn't like doing it. He wants to get to our destination and get settled. I personally don't mind the moving, but I think as often as we go now those days are over. I do think it is a great idea, though.

10-25-2004, 01:24 PM

Living in Florida for 32 years, there are some things you learn along the way.

Women: Use a small Tupperware container, such as a rectangular sandwhich box, and quickly and without warning, pop it down on the lizard, being careful not to separate the lizard's tail from his body. Then, take a slim magazine (preferably Allure) and then simply slide the magazine under and towards the lizard, encoraging the lizard to "lift up" so his feet are not also accidently removed. Once the lizard is on top of the magazine, simply carry the entire contraption out the front door (or towards a sleeping bag of someone who has been bothering you on the trip).

Men: No, don't stompt on it! Just use a magazine and a newspaper and coaxe the lizard with the magazine to hop on the newspaper and then slowly and smoothly head for the door. Some lizards prefer to jump early several times, but just repeat the process until you are out the door.

When I lived in Atlanta, only cows lived in Cobb and Gwinnett!

10-25-2004, 01:47 PM
I thoroughly enjoyed reading your trip report. SOunds like you had a great time and the pictures are wonderful - you guys looked so cute!

Sorry about your disppointment with OKW - we have stayed there twice and had a great time. I hope your experience in the spring is a positive one.

Thanks for sharing!

10-25-2004, 02:25 PM
nickglover, I finally got the lizard trapped in the ice bucket.

There is no way it would have hopped onto a newspaper to be carried out. That thing was fast!

Actually, I can really laugh about it now, but at one in the morning it wasn't too funny!

mikesmom88, thanks! :)

10-27-2004, 10:21 PM
Great trip report - love the pics Shan - you and Len make a great couple!


10-28-2004, 03:41 PM
you and Len make a great couple

Sometimes. ;)

10-28-2004, 04:24 PM
I think you should give OKW another try. We love it there but have been in a handicap studio before too. That definitely has the wrong feel. If you are getting a one-bedroom next time it might feel better too. We love the ducks, bunnies etc that we get to see from our porch- no matter which view we've had. It does feel different from a hotel though and sometimes I am in the mood for that. That's what makes DVC so great.

11-12-2004, 04:44 PM
Great trip report, Shan! I enjoyed reading every last word! I especially loved the part about the lizard. I would have been SCREAMING! LOL

I'll be curious to see what you think of OKW after your Spring trip. I hope you like it more. At least the girls will enjoy the pool.

Also, I think your costumes look fantastic. Hubby and I would definitely dress up for MNSSHP if we ever go. It seems that dressing up probably added to quite a bit of the fun that night! You both looked great! :teeth:

Thanks for the report and pictures!

colleen costello
01-21-2005, 06:16 PM
Shan, I am so sorry that after finally checking up on your big venture to OKW, you had a BAD time! Yikes!

We were assigned once to #49, and while it certainly wasn't my favorite spot (close to road) we didn't hear much noise. We have also NEVER had a bad room, with any smell or any problems at all, really. That said, HC rooms SUCK. I know they are there for a reason, but a HC studio is a real bummer. With a whole family in a small room, you need the storage and the tub. We got assigned once to a HC in Wilderness Lodge, and I was one of those "naughty" DVC'ers and demanded to be moved. No way I could spend a week in there with my kids and all my crap and nowhere to put it! Perhaps sensing a psycho, they did move us.

If you can't change your plans for your next trip, I do hope you'll be pleasantly surprised by OKW 2nd time around. Meanwhile, you and your Mad Hatter sure did look cute that night!


01-21-2005, 06:23 PM
Hey colleen! :wave:

Yep, we're giving it another shot in April. My oldest is excited about the new slide.

How ya been doing?

01-21-2005, 06:41 PM
Shan, Great trip report! You and hubby sound like you had a great time and your costumes were very cool! I look forward to the day me and hubby get a chance to do the same - my kids are teenagers, but we are in NY and don't want to go so far away from them (sometimes I think leaving teenagers is more stressful than leaving little ones!) Glad you had a great time!

01-21-2005, 06:51 PM
You two are as cute as can be :wizard:
Great report~

01-21-2005, 08:11 PM
Thanks guys.

Funny this got bumped up by colleen cause our anniversary trip is now only 16 days away!

I'll have to go back and reread my trip report cause I'm getting cold feet again about leaving my girls!

Deb & Bill
01-22-2005, 10:32 AM
Sorry you didn't have such a magical visit at OKW. We just returned from 9 nights at OKW in a two bedroom with other family and had the best time ever. They loved OKW and we loved showing them OKW. Didn't have any lizards in the room - just four kids who may have made it less than magical for the people below us. Sorry if they bothered you. :blush: They were just so excited to be there.

01-22-2005, 12:03 PM
I'm hoping our girls will love OKW spring break. Glad you had a good time Deb & Bill!

(Hey, I would prefer the faint noise of kids having fun over worrying about a lizard crawling on my face at night while sleeping!)

colleen costello
01-22-2005, 02:55 PM
When will you be there? Our break is the week of St. Patty's day but this time we are at the Wilderness Lodge. I hope all goes better for you this time around... Your girls should like the nifty-new slide, and I hope you'll try again to be assigned to Turtle Pond area... It is a great area with easy bus access and the nice pool. Not sure what to think about the lizard... My kids love them, and would probably be HAPPY if one was in our room. The critters are normally so skittish... Your little visitor probbaly didn't know WHAT to do! I read a post here ages ago about a family who found a large black snake in their 2-bedroom kitchen at OKW! Don't leave the patio doors open! :)

colleen costello
01-22-2005, 03:00 PM
OOps-- I re-read your posts and see that your break is soon. We will all expect a great trip report (hopefully minus lizards). You'll have to tell the kids about the slide for their next trip! Even though we are not staying at OKW this time, we'll definitely go over to have lunch at Olivia's and scope out the slide. I love the place and will miss it if we don't at least VISIT!

01-22-2005, 06:36 PM
colleen, now a snake would have put me over the edge!

Our anniversary trip at VWL is soon - 2/6 thru 2/9, but our spring break trip at OKW is not until 4/3 thru 4/10.

I'm actually not even gonna worry about the location at OKW. My biggest worry now is getting a non-smoking studio for my oldest and a non-handicap so the kids can take baths. Once again we'll be arriving late and I'm totally stressed about it.

Have fun on your trip! :cheer2:

01-22-2005, 08:53 PM
The pics were a HOOT!!!! You guys should be CMs!

01-22-2005, 09:59 PM
The pics were a HOOT!!!! You guys should be CMs!


I wish. Maybe if Alice was a tad older... ;)

01-23-2005, 05:12 PM
If we were assigned a HC room I would be fairly adamant about a switch. We have 5 kids and always stay at least 6 nights. That's too long to be stuck in a HC room.

I would have trouble with a bad, smell, too.

The poor location I would chalk up to fate.

If we arrive late we spend the night at a motel. Why waste points for a night when we can't enjoy it? Then I get there early the next morning -- sometimes before my wife is out of bed -- and check in.