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Old 06-14-2009, 07:16 PM   #1
Goofy4
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Grand Gathering June 4-12 @ Cabins & Kidani Village; And now: the 'Kitchen Sink'

Here was the original plan (and pretty much how it played out). The multiple days in parks let us do early and/or late visits with an afternoon break and a couple EMHs:



June 4 (Day 0)



My family (Me, DW, DD 15, DS 13) arrived a day and half before the rest of our group. Via a Yahoo! Group we discussed the plans for about a year. Mostly, I drove the non-Disney-obsessed members of our family crazy with more than they needed to know, but we did figure out that Fantasmic! was not a must see for anyone other than my family.

Somewhat reluctantly we made plans for F! on June 4 as Disney was kind enough to schedule one. We've been rained out 4 of 5 times for F! and my reluctance was mostly due to the weather forecast (quite naturally for us) calling for a good chance of thundershowers. The new 'no-separate-entrance' deal for the dinner plan was also less than appealing.

After getting settled at our FW cabin we headed over to HS, ponchos in hand. Silly us, we headed over to TSM around 4pm to see if fastpasses were still available... Yes, as a 4-year DISer I should know better. Would not have been so bad had it not started raining.

As we made our way to Moma Melrose's for our F! dinner, the rain pretty much went away. We had hopes that if it was going to rain again, dinner time would be convenient. No such luck. After a nice (but not great) dinner, we got rained on real good after Star Tours -- lightening and thunder added to make it more interesting.

We made our way through the Great Movie Ride and after a longer than posted wait at RnR we decided to not chance losing our expensive F! dinner seats and headed over under stormy-looking clouds. The theater did not fill as fast as I've seen in the past, most likely due to the threat of rain. We slid all the way to the left of the dinner section. I realized quickly that we should have stayed more to the center for better viewing of the 'screen'.



To our amazement (making DD's day), the clouds only produced light rain and we were able to actually watch F!. It doesn't happen often for us, so this was a very good beginning. I just hate the "due to the unique nature of this performance, F! may be delayed or cancelled" message; I know it well.

Questions? Concerns? Am I doing this right?
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  • 90's CBR, Royal Plaza , Swan, Hilton
  • 00's ASsp (Nov '01), OKW (Aug '03), BWV (Oct '05), Pop (May '06), ASmu (April '08), Cabins/Kidani(June '09) Trip Report
  • 10's WL (April '10), SSR (Jan '12)

Last edited by Goofy4; 06-25-2009 at 07:53 PM.
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Old 06-14-2009, 08:10 PM   #2
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Your doing really good.
When I saw your spread sheet, i figured you "had" to know what you were doing.
I hope Disney brings back Fantasmic every nite. I don't know what they are thinking because Fantasmic has a packed show every evening.
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Old 06-14-2009, 10:17 PM   #3
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You have my attention!
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Old 06-15-2009, 06:31 PM   #4
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Day 1: Magic Kingdom

This is our first day together, and my . Joining us late afternoon were my mom, sister, brother-in-law, nephew (9) and niece (8). Nice place to meet for birthday party, don't you think?

With a few hours to kill we took it easy around FW and headed over to MK to pick up my birthday fastpasses. A little pixie dust was thrown our way here... With tickets for the whole group in hand, we all got fastpasses!

With a few more hours to kill we wandered Main Street and I worked on getting a slight sun burn (not used to that Florida sun). After an afternoon thundershower that almost caught us on the boat back to FW (to meet the rest of our group), the weather would treat us well from here on out. Not nearly as hot and humid as it is right now at Disney, and very little rain.

Around 4pm we were all at MK and the fun started. With birthday cards in hand (containing 6 fastpasses each), we were off to the races. Cue Aerosmith's 'Walk this way' (wrong park, I know)...
  • Buzz
  • Pooh
  • Peter Pan (stand by)
  • PhilharMagic
  • Jungle Cruise (very good CM guide)
  • Big Thunder
  • Splash (front row, got very wet)
  • Spectro
  • Wishes
Not bad for 6 or 7 hours work with a dinner break, eh? The fastpasses were priceless given that we got a late start on the day. Thank you Disney!



Disney added Spectro to the schedule a couple weeks before our arrival. With it also being a late EMH night, it was crazy. We tried to make it from our Spectro viewing location close to Splash over to other side of the hub, but the bridge close to CP was a log jam. Simply crazy how many people were trying to go in to the park with so many headed out (or to a Wishes viewing location) via that small bridge which was also packed with strollers from CP. So, this little "shortcut" I found on another board doesn't always work so well. We gave up and watched from the railing of the bridge -- not recommended since you can't hear the narration too well.

Throughout the day the CMs did a very nice job with the 'Happy Birthday' wishes. You would think they might tire of it after a while.

On the way back that evening, observing the boat docking procedure at the launch to FW was frustrating and a little comical. With our FW boat already holding next-in-line off shore, the port operations boss put another resort boat on our dock. We knew it was "wrong", the CMs right there knew it was "wrong"... Apparently everyone but the man in charge knew it was wrong. But what are you going to do? I had a little chat with my pal; he straightened things out:


Mickey to our rescue!

Confused? Just a little joke... This is a shot from the Fantasmic! show.
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  • 90's CBR, Royal Plaza , Swan, Hilton
  • 00's ASsp (Nov '01), OKW (Aug '03), BWV (Oct '05), Pop (May '06), ASmu (April '08), Cabins/Kidani(June '09) Trip Report
  • 10's WL (April '10), SSR (Jan '12)

Last edited by Goofy4; 06-23-2009 at 02:53 PM.
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Old 06-16-2009, 07:58 PM   #5
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Day 2: Chef Mickey / Epcot / Hoop-Dee-Doo

Sailing the high seas makes DS hungry. "Are we there yet?"


Just in case the Magic Kingdom wasn't enough to get in to the Disney spirit, I thought we would start things off today with Chef Mickey's. This would be the first of 2 or 3 times the ADR/GG people said we would not likely have a table together, but thankfully they were wrong. We got a nice table beyond the second buffet and up a step or 2 in a nice semi-secluded area. I didn't realize this little area existed. Before we sat down, the characters were there to greet us.

Here are some of my favorite "characters":


After breakfast it was off to Epcot on the monorail. The kids got a ride up front (easier to do in the morning from TTC to Epcot). The timing worked out well to pick up Soarin' and Kim Possible fastpasses and head off to the World Showcase for some leisurely touring.

Kim Possible was not as big of a hit as I though it might be. The adventures may have been a little too long given the heat, our large group, the ages of our kids, and plenty of other things we wanted to see. The missions were superbly done. We wandered in to the "really nice" shop at China thinking there was a clue in there. They were quick to let us know that there "is nothing here to see"



Before we knew it, it was time to head back to Fort Wilderness for Hoop-Dee-Doo. We thought the bus route would be quicker. Wrong! Nothing like watching 3 buses come for another resort while waiting for yours.

It's been 30 some years since my last visit to Hoop-Dee-Doo, and it was a lot of fun to see everyone in our group having a good time:

This is DS's second encounter with a washboard at WDW (Boardwalk banjo entertainer, 2005).

More DIS Hoop-Dee-Doo photos at http://www.wdwinfo.com/Photos/Fort-W...-doo/index.htm

Chef Mickey/Epcot/Hoop-Dee-Doo in one day, and we're just getting started!
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  • 70's Fort Wilderness x ?
  • 80's Off-site x ?, Treehouse Villas
  • 90's CBR, Royal Plaza , Swan, Hilton
  • 00's ASsp (Nov '01), OKW (Aug '03), BWV (Oct '05), Pop (May '06), ASmu (April '08), Cabins/Kidani(June '09) Trip Report
  • 10's WL (April '10), SSR (Jan '12)

Last edited by Goofy4; 06-21-2009 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 06-16-2009, 08:53 PM   #6
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Happy Birthday!! Sounds like your vacation is off to a good start.
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Old 06-16-2009, 10:50 PM   #7
c&m
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An excellent reporting job so far! Your itinerary in spreadsheet form is truly a thing of beauty.

Did you end up doing a water park? And if so, which one?
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