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Old 09-05-2011, 12:54 PM   #1
declansdad
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Seaworld, Disney, Celebrities, Friends, and a Hurricane Aug 16 to 26 - Update Dec 1

Hello all,

I have managed to get the first couple of days pictures uploaded so I thought I would start off the report. I'm sure Pooksma will be adding her own commentary as we go. So lets get to it.


First off, introduction (just in case someone new comes along and starts to read )

First we have our DS, Declan. Declan is 10 and this made his sixth trip to WDW. He enjoys most rides but refuses to go Small World. The last time we went on this ride, we forced him and he wasn't happy.

Second is my fantastic dw, Pooksma. Pooksma and I have been happily married for 16 years and this was her eighth trip to WDW. She made one when she was younger with family, six with Declan and I (plus the two of us had a trip in 2008 that Declan still doesn't know about.) In real life Pooksma is a teacher

Here is a picture of the two of them from earlier this summer. Probably the last of Pooksma if she has her way.



Lastly there is me, declansdad. This was my seventh trip (see above ) and in real life I work for our provincial amateur sport federation.




On this trip we drove to Portland, Maine on August 15th and flew to Orlando on the 16th. We had a couple of days at SeaWorld before moving to Disney on the 19th.

Overall it was another great trip with lots of good times, some great memories and one or two little problems (nothing major). We had some great weather and some rain but it didn't dampen our enthusiasm.

First for this trip:

  1. Visiting a park that wasn't WDW - SeaWorld
  2. Staying in an off-site hotel for a couple of days
  3. Renting a car to get around Orlando instead of using a car service
  4. Free dining and some new restaurants.
So stay tuned and I will get the first couple of days started in a little bit. In the meantime, you can look through our pre-trip report by clicking here:

http://www.disboards.com/showthread....4#post41026954
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ASM - March 2004 --- POP - July 2005 --- POP and the Poly - August 2007 --- CBR - Aug 2008 --- POFQ August 2009--- POP Christmas 2010--- POFQ Aug 2011 --- Disney Dream and MK March 2013 --- EPCOT F&G March 2013 --- Pop July 2013 --- AK March 2014

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Last edited by declansdad; 12-01-2011 at 07:30 PM.
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Old 09-05-2011, 12:55 PM   #2
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Trip report links:

Pre-Trip

Day 1 - August 15th - travel to Portland Maine

Day 2 - August 16th - travel to Orlando

Day 3 - August 17th - SeaWorld Part 1


Day 3 - August 17th - SeaWorld Post Lunch

Day 4 - August 18th - SeaWorld Day 2 part 1

Day 4 - August 18th - SeaWorld, the rest of the story

Day 5 - August 19 the move to POFQ and a brush with celebrities

Day 5 - August 19 - Celebrities revealed and an evening at EPCOT

Day 5 - August 20 - MK Morning with a problem

Day 5 - August 20 - The rest of the day and the resolution of the problem

Day 6 - August 21 - A morning at EPCOT

Day 6 - August 21 - 'Ohana and a night at MK


Day 7 - August 22 - AK part 1


Day 7 - August 22 - AK part 2

Day 8 - August 23 - DTD and EPCOT

Day 9 - August 24 - DHS part 1

Day 9 - August 24 - DHS (part 2) and Boma

Day 10 - August 25 - Whispering Canyon and MK

Day 10 - EPCOT

Day 11 - August 26 The Final Day
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ASM - March 2004 --- POP - July 2005 --- POP and the Poly - August 2007 --- CBR - Aug 2008 --- POFQ August 2009--- POP Christmas 2010--- POFQ Aug 2011 --- Disney Dream and MK March 2013 --- EPCOT F&G March 2013 --- Pop July 2013 --- AK March 2014

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Last edited by declansdad; 12-01-2011 at 07:30 PM.
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Old 09-05-2011, 01:15 PM   #3
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I'm in! We are going to Seaworld next May, 2012 while staying at VWL (don't tell Mickey!). Looking forward to your review.
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Old 09-05-2011, 03:20 PM   #4
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I'm in! I look forward to reading about your trip.
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Old 09-05-2011, 04:05 PM   #6
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Looking forward to your report.
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Old 09-05-2011, 04:37 PM   #7
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This should be interesting. Think I'll read along...
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Old 09-05-2011, 07:07 PM   #8
declansdad
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August 15

This is the day I have been waiting for; it is the day we actually get to head out on our trip. We are headed to Portland Maine for the night so we can catch our early flight the next morning. Portland is about 5 hours away but an easy drive in the summer.

We get everyone up early, get ready and pack the Jeep. We have a few appointments to take care of and then we are on the road. A stop at the bank and a stop at Tim Hortons and we are heading out of town just before noon. For those of you who don't know what Tim Horton is, it is an iconic coffee/donut shop in Canada (think Dunkin Donuts) although they have been opening up in the US. This is a must stop for some people (pooksma with us and a certain Winnipegger who will probably chime in later.

We cross the border without any problems, maybe a 10 minute wait. Quick run into the Irving in Houlton for some snacks and hit the I95. Another quick break just outside of Bangor and we are back on the road. When we get to Augusta (Maine's capital) I turn off the 95 and take the 295. I planned on making a quick stop in Freeport because Pooksma and Declan had never been there before. Just as we got there, it started to rain so we just parked at LL Bean and looked through there. We ended up with a new backpack for Declan. The first bit of back to school shopping of the trip.

Jumped back on the 295 and we were quickly in Portland headed for our home for the night, The Hampton Inn. Checked in and in our rooms around 5 pm (6 our time). We had a little rest before Declan's first big wish of the trip - Chucky Cheese.

Head over to CC in the pouring rain, order some food and Declan grabbed some tokens to play some games. It wasn't too crowded, food was so so but I did like the fact the games were all one token. We all managed to entertain ourselves a bit and after an hour and a half, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for our 4 am wake-up call.

More to come shortly.
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Old 09-05-2011, 08:22 PM   #9
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August 16.

Wake up came early - 4 am! We had to catch the 5 am shuttle to the airport. Had time for a quick breakfast and the shuttle was ready. Surprisingly, we were the only people to take the shuttle at 5.

Portland Jetport, as it is called, isn't a big airport but it was busy on this early Tuesday morning. We had did online check-in before leaving home so I just had to get one bag checked. Skipped the long line at the counter and headed for the shorter line at the self-serve kiosk. This is where our first rude person encounter happened. A business woman who was very impatient tried to jump the line and then when that didn't work tried to push people through. Turned out she as on the same flight as us and she was at the back of the plane, a completely full plane. Her rudeness got her no where.

We made it through security and had about 15 minutes before boarding. Can someone tell me why people rush the gate and not follow the zone boarding announcements? This is a pet peeve of mine and it will really get me going on the way back. The flight was a bit late leaving but we made up the time and were in Atlanta on-time. We lucked out in Atlanta with the gate, we left from the same gate that we arrived. The only problem was trying to find a place to sit. We grabbed some food from Chilli's To Go but had to sit a couple of gates away to wait for our flight.

We had a short delay leaving again, people rushed the gate once again, people took up all the overhead bin space, AGAIN!!. But we were only a short flight from Orlando and we arrived by 2 pm

Time for a first for us, picking up a rental at the airport. Picked up our one bag and made our way to Level 1 for the car. Thanks to Mousesavers, I had found a code back in January for a free Emerald Club membership so we could go right out to the garage and pick our car, no waiting at the counter. Also had a code for a couple of discounts that allowed us to get this really cheap.



This was actually taken when we dropped it off but it was our only picture. we had a choice between the convertible Mustang or Sebring (Mustang seemed much cooler.) Made it out of the airport no problem and after a quick stop at Publix we were off to Springhill Suites at SeaWorld. Check-in was quick and painless and we were off to our 6th floor room. This is a very nice hotel and I would recommend it if you are looking for a place off-site. Here are a few pictures of the room:

From the sitting room


Near one of the bathrooms:


The sitting area and desk




Kitchen??? Area


View from our room




Declan I headed down to the pool for a swim. While relaxing you could tell that the thunder and lightning wasn't far away. Shortly after that I saw the scariest bolt of lightning hit not far from the pool and I wasn't long climbing out. Just after that they got everyone out of the pool.

Next up was dinner at TGI Fridays as it was just in front of the hotel. After eating we found out that 8 people were taken from Discovery Cove to the hospital after a lightning strike. Thankfully, they were all ok and had been released from the hospital.

It had been a long day so it was time to call it a night and get some sleep. Tomorrow would bring our first ever trip to SeaWorld. (We could see Manta and Kraken from the window at the end of the hall. They looked awesome!

Later all.
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ASM - March 2004 --- POP - July 2005 --- POP and the Poly - August 2007 --- CBR - Aug 2008 --- POFQ August 2009--- POP Christmas 2010--- POFQ Aug 2011 --- Disney Dream and MK March 2013 --- EPCOT F&G March 2013 --- Pop July 2013 --- AK March 2014

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Old 09-05-2011, 11:51 PM   #10
Jazzabelle508
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I'm in

Tim hortons sounds great I am from the northern part of the U.S but i'm too far south to have a Tim Hortons near me

cute car!

your hotel pics are pretty! where was the hotel?

Scary about the lightening!!!! glad everyone was ok

Love Fridays that was my very first restaraunt i ever ate at

can't wait to hear about discovery cove
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Old 09-06-2011, 06:51 PM   #11
declansdad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzabelle508 View Post
I'm in

Tim hortons sounds great I am from the northern part of the U.S but i'm too far south to have a Tim Hortons near me

cute car!

your hotel pics are pretty! where was the hotel?

Scary about the lightening!!!! glad everyone was ok

Love Fridays that was my very first restaraunt i ever ate at

can't wait to hear about discovery cove
You never know there may be a timmies coming to a town near you. Personally I not a big fan, I think there are better places for coffee but they do in a pinch and up here they are everywhere.

The hotel was called Springhill Suites Orlando at SeaWorld. It is located on International Drive, between SeaWorld and Aquatica.

We didn't go to Discovery Cove, sorry. Just did 2 days at SeaWorld.
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ASM - March 2004 --- POP - July 2005 --- POP and the Poly - August 2007 --- CBR - Aug 2008 --- POFQ August 2009--- POP Christmas 2010--- POFQ Aug 2011 --- Disney Dream and MK March 2013 --- EPCOT F&G March 2013 --- Pop July 2013 --- AK March 2014

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Old 09-07-2011, 11:00 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by declansdad View Post
You never know there may be a timmies coming to a town near you. Personally I not a big fan, I think there are better places for coffee but they do in a pinch and up here they are everywhere.

The hotel was called Springhill Suites Orlando at SeaWorld. It is located on International Drive, between SeaWorld and Aquatica.

We didn't go to Discovery Cove, sorry. Just did 2 days at SeaWorld.
I live in the general chicago area so there isn't alot of room for a timmies near here. I just think it sounds good. I love starbucks and caribou and it sounds like those places. We have a bigby's coffee that is good 2. I just have heard so many good things about timmies that i just want to see what all the fuss is about.

ok, thanks I don't think we will ever stay off disney property but we will look into it if necessary.

i meant sea world but i accidentally typed discovery cove. opps!
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Old 09-06-2011, 04:20 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by declansdad View Post
Here is a picture of the two of them from earlier this summer. Probably the last of Pooksma if she has her way.

Since they're both just 'cute as buttons',
(not sure where that phrase came from - I'll have to research)
and since Declan is soon going to be taller than Ma and they won't look like this much longer,
and since we won't see her in many pictures,
I just had to put this one up again.
This is a great picture of your two favorite people, Dad.





Quote:


Visiting a park that wasn't WDW - SeaWorld
I just had a parent at school ask me about SeaWorld, and I told her I had not been in many years. I'd love to hear your quick answer now so I can share with her. They have five children from 1st grade through about 8th. They are going to Orlando, doing possibly one Disney day, but are thinking about SeaWorld and some other things. What's your opinion of SW for the value for them?



Quote:
Originally Posted by declansdad View Post
After eating we found out that 8 people were taken from Discovery Cove to the hospital after a lightning strike. Thankfully, they were all ok and had been released from the hospital.
That's scary. Florida lightning can be frightening, for sure!
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Old 09-06-2011, 05:19 AM   #14
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a little late, but joining in!
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Old 09-06-2011, 07:22 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by declansdad View Post
First we have our DS, Declan. Declan is 10 and this made his sixth trip to WDW. He enjoys most rides but refuses to go Small World. The last time we went on this ride, we forced him and he wasn't happy.
Smart kid you've got there!

As a rule, I try to follow any TR with a picture of monkey on a guy's head. So far, you're the first!
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