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Old 02-04-2013, 11:53 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 2

1st timer going in August

Hello All.
I booked my hotel and tickets for the end of August 2013. Staying at the Port Orleans- FQ. I have two boys ages 2 and 6. Looking for recommendations on things to do and dinning reservations. I am also interested in the characters dining. Also when making reservations: should I do it online or should I call. Any suggestions and recommendations are much appreciated.
Thank you.
Excited Mommy of two boys
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Old 02-05-2013, 05:49 AM   #2
We had a wonderful time, but did have our moments!

Pretty much down to my hips on one side, but nice and perky on the other
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 11,402

HI and welcome!

We pretty much only go in August; we're both teachers. (Actually, my husband sometimes gets to chaperone the Senior Trip in May, the rat.)

I love August in Disney. The days are long and steamy, the parks are open forever, it's a total delight.

Hit the Fairy Godmailer list http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2440121 and have someone send your boys a welcoming postcard from their favorite characters. Then sign up to do the same for someone else in August. It's a lot of fun, and the magic begins when that postcard arrives.

Some assorted pointers:
- plan to be at the parks about half an hour before they open-- that opening is known as "rope drop." You'll find you can get more done in that first hour than in an entire afternoon.
- each day at lunchtime, we leave the parks and head back to the resort for a swim. I've never been to POFQ-- my family is too big-- but it looks lovely. Give up the time for that afternoon swim; I can promise it will help avoid the mid afternoon meltdowns. You and the kids will return for the evening happy and refreshed.
- as far as dining goes: your 180 day mark for making reservations (ADRs) is coming up in the next few weeks. Are you on the dining plan? We love it, and it tends to be a better value for families like yours with kids under 10. Here are some you may want to look into:
* Chef Mickey's. (In the Contemporary, easy to reach from the Magic Kingdom.)We always do that the first evening. Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Pluto and Goofy all stop by for photos and autographs. Make sure you have autograph books-- maybe the Easter Bunny will want to look at www.laughingplacestore.com ?
* In Hollywood Studios: take a look at Sci Fi Diner. You sit in a model car, as though you're at the drive-in. Clips of funny sci-fi movies play-- nothing scary. (THink Woody Woodpecker in space, the Blob as people run screaming-- absolutely not scary.) The shakes are great.
* In Animal Kingdom, we like to do a lunch ADR at Yak and Yetti. It's a cool place to refresh at AK-- the hottest place on the planet in August.
* Epcot has so many choices!! One we enjoy is the Coral Reef. One entire wall of the restaurant is a fish tank; you sit and watch the fisth (and an occasional scuba diver) swim by. The food gets mixed reviews, but we've never had a bad meal there.
* Take a look at our new favorite, the Cape May Cafe clam bake. It's at the Beach Club, a 2-3 minute walk from International Gateway in Epcot.

Sorry, most of our character meals tend to be princess oriented.

Another thing you'll want the Easter Bunny to look into: MistyMate personal misters. You can get them at amazon.com. They're the size of an electric toothbrush, and have no batteries. But you can pump a cool mist onto hot sweaty kids, and then refill at any waterfountain or rest room. I wouldn't go in August without them.

Consider having bottled water and park snacks delivered to your resort. Take a look at either www.gardengrocer.com or www.wegoshopping.com Both will deliver to the resorts, and have great reputations. You don't want to pay for water in the parks, or waste your snack credits on a $3 bottle of water.

Learn to use Fastpass, and enter each park with a good idea of what you want to accomplish. You can either have a strict touring plan or a loose idea, but don't plan to stand there asking the boys what they want to do next. We tend to enter the parks, and I get the park tickets and separate from the rest. I go ahead to get our first set of fastpasses and meet them at the first thing we'll be riding. Then we do a ride or two, then use that fastpass. Then I get the next fastpass and we repeat the process. I burn off a few extra calories, and we get to see a whole lot more without waiting on lines. There are lines that will stretch upwards of 2 hours; In our past 2 trips our longest line was 15 minutes due to good planning.

Hit either the dollar store or Walmart and stock up on disposable ponchos. It's not unheard of to get rain every afternoon in August. No big deal; pull out a poncho and keep going.

You know you'll need a stroller for your 2 year old, but I can promise that there will be times when your older son will want a ride as well. It's OK--this is not real life, this is Disney World. He'll be walking something like 8 or 10 miles a day. Don't forget an extra poncho or two-- maybe a bright color-- for the stroller. And consider tying a bright bandanna to the handle, to make it easy to find in the sea of strollers.

OK, gotta get ready for school. ENjoy the planning!
DH: me: DS (16) , DD (14): DD (11):

I've been BOO'ed by pigletgirl!
numerous trips in college and one together in 1990 August 2008 and August 2009: Polynesian. August 2012: Beach Club Yacht Club in 2014!!
(Thanks, Disney Destinations, for your past generosity. And to the Beach Club staff for all their assistance in our 2012 medical crisis.)
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:28 AM   #3
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Old 02-05-2013, 07:57 AM   #4
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Ma
Posts: 212

WELCOME! You will have great time. Here's another vote for Chef Mickey!!! We did our first family trip in October. My kids were 8 and 3 1/2 and we did a lot of character dining so we wouldn't have to wait in the line to meet them at the parks. Chef Mickey's was by far their favorite place. We are going back again this coming October and that's one of the things on the top of their list to do!

Have a great time!
Me DH DS(9.5) DD(5)princess

POR-10/8-10/14 2012
Paradise Palms - 10/11-10/20 2013
Windsor Hills - 11/7-11/15/2015
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:42 PM   #5
we finally had a minute to breathe yesterday and sat down
Soak up the Sun
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Location: The Queen City
Posts: 8,097

It looks like you have some great suggestions already, so I'll just say

Loving all things Disney since 1976.
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:54 PM   #6
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Ma
Posts: 151

You will have a wonderful time! We have been going in August for years and love it but it will be hot! Just curious if you looked into the pirate rooms. Your boys are a great age for it!
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Old 02-06-2013, 12:00 AM   #7
Earning My Ears
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 32

Your family will have a blast! I agree with the idea of an afternoon hotel/swim break. It will help a lot. We always go in August. Plan on a 20 minute rain shower sometime around 3:00-4:00.

I have done reservations online and by phone and didn't prefer one over the other. I usually do online. Make them soon for your choice of times. Chef Mickey's is a great dining experience. You will also like Crystal Palace at MK if your boys like Winnie the Pooh and friends! The food there is better than Chef Mickey's too.

Have a great time planning! It helps us get through the winter!
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Old 02-06-2013, 01:09 AM   #8
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Wet coast
Posts: 12

I did our reservations online (since I get most of my screen time after the kids go to bed ), and usually get a response by the next morning!

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