Disney Information Station Logo

Go Back   The DIS Discussion Forums - DISboards.com > Disney Trip Planning Forums > Disney Restaurants
Find Hotel Specials & DIScounts
 
facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS UpdatesDIS email updates
Register Chat FAQ Tickers Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read





Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 09-28-2010, 02:36 PM   #1
heather13
DIS Veteran
 
heather13's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 569

would you skip character meals w/2 kids?

With two little kids and a short visit, I'm considering skipping all character meals except for CRT. This will be their first time at WDW, but we're there for two full days and two half days (early flight arrival day one, late departure day 4). That gives us 3 TS meals on the DDP. I was initially thinking of Chef Mickey's, Crystal Palace, Supercalifrag Breakfast and paying OOP for CRT. But that seemed like too much so I narrowed it to Crystal Palace and CRT. Since DD2 is still pretty nervous around characters (we've been practicing with some local mascots), I think we may be better off just seeing characters at meet & greet areas. Do you think this would work, or would they miss out on something by not dining with Mickey or Pooh?

FWIW, we're sticking to the MK and AK this time since they're so young and I know we'll be back in at least two years. So I'm also thinking we can do a character meal then.
__________________
mom to two little princesses
heather13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 03:24 PM   #2
VeganCupcake
Almost an Expert
 
VeganCupcake's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Palm Springs, Fl - about 2.5 hours away from The Most Magical Place On Earth!
Posts: 617

Well I know this isn't exactly what you asked but you could get and early ADR for CP or CRT then get into the park before it opens, you won't lose out on park time that way. You could always do Tusker house too for your AK day.
__________________
MEDHDS:yay
VeganCupcake is offline   Reply With Quote
|
The DIS
Register to remove

Join Date: 1997
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,000,000
Old 09-28-2010, 03:40 PM   #3
DisneyTravelers2008
Sally & Clay (Disney Travelers 2008)
 
DisneyTravelers2008's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Raleigh NC
Posts: 1,052

Maybe they would not be afraid of Mickey and Pooh...do they watch the cartoons? Show them the Disney planning video and let them see the characters. Or, if you dont have it, see if you can find a video on the Disney website or you tube....familiarizing them w/ the characters might be the key to keep them from being afraid.

Or, you could do CRT and do the Princess on in Askurs in Norway (if you plan to go to Epcot)...Since those are REAL people it might not scare them.


Also 1900 Park Fare at Grand Floridina Resort has "real" characters ( not suits)
...that might work...they have brkfst w. Mary Poppins and Alice in Wonderland for Tea or lunch and Cinderella and step sisters for dinner
__________________
(me) (DH) (DS16) (DD10)



Spring Break 1988/ Spring Break 1993/Ft Wilderness Cabins 2008 /SSR, 1st DVC Member Trip/2009
OKW, Spring Break 2009/SSR June 2009/AKL January 2010/AKL & BLT Halloween 2010 /Spring Break 2011 - Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort/June 2011 - & BLT & BW /AKL, Spring Break 2012 / Disney Dream Jan. 2014
DisneyTravelers2008 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 05:21 PM   #4
pixarmom
DIS Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 5,227

I'll add a few thoughts based on our experience with our three boys, but kids are all so different and I know it's so hard to predict their reactions.

Our two older boys have always enjoyed characters. But at age 2, our youngest son was absolutely terrified of any kind of local mascot or character - including Santa. He would burst into tears if he even saw one in the distance. We thought WDW was going to be the same, so we didn't initially plan to take him to character greetings, and we didn't schedule any character meals except for Garden Grill.

We chose Garden Grill for many reasons: this is our older boys' favorite restaurant and our arrival night tradition, so we didn't want for them to have to miss it. But it was also perfect for our then-2-year-old because of the way the restaurant is set up. The lower level has high booths, and it slowly rotates through scenes in the Land ride. So our youngest would have things in front of him to see, but could not see the characters until each arrived at our table. If he didn't react well, we could ask our server to have the characters pass us by and he would barely even see them past the high booth! This is different from other character meals, where he would have been able to see (and perhaps be upset by) the characters all around the restaurant, even when they are at other tables. Also, because the meal is served family style, he wouldn't have to get up from the table and walk past any characters on the way to a buffet. But if he liked the characters, they could stop by our table and we would all enjoy a character meal!

Anyway, when we arrived, we were amazed. While our youngest didn't like any other characters at home, he LOVED the Disney characters. We ended up spending lots of time at character greetings. I completely agree with the previous poster's suggestion of showing you tube videos, photos, etc. Our youngest saw lots of you tube videos and photos of his brothers with Disney characters before the trip. Anyway, Garden Grill was perfect for us in that situation, and might work well for OP.

P.S. I know some complain about the Garden Grill food, but we love it. We used to rate it just "good" as recently as March of this year. But during our most recent trip in July, we thought it was great - very fresh, all served family style (so no going up to the buffet and juggling plates with the kids) and quite yummy.

Last edited by pixarmom; 09-28-2010 at 05:27 PM.
pixarmom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 05:50 PM   #5
mupt02
Mouseketeer
 
mupt02's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 261

If you are worried about how your LO might react around characters, I think trying a character meal is the way to go. You can always ask the character to pass you by or let one LO get a pic while the other one stays away. DD2 might get frustrated if you keep standing in line for characters that she is scared to meet. Trying to meet them at meals gives you an opportunity to see if she will like them while also accomplishing something else (a meal). Good luck with whatever you choose.
mupt02 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 06:13 PM   #6
ktlm
DIS Veteran
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 6,118

I think you are fine doing just CRT, especially if your little one doesn't care for characters right now. If it were me, I would do CRT and Crystal Palace, or if you are doing AK, then maybe Tusker House breakfast instead of CP. DD has been at age 2 and twice at age 3, and her favorite eating places are CRT, Biergarten and Akershus, in that order. She also loves Crystal Palace. She likes lunch or dinner at those. (I like Tusker house, but DD is not a morning or breakfast person and she prefers just having her Dad go down to quick service and get her a pancake to eat in the room before we set out in the mornings). Just a warning, I don't know what your girls are into, but my DD loves the princesses and she has never liked AK although she loves the zoo at home. I really think it is because there isn't a Princess presence at AK. Her favorites by far are MK and Epcot. We usually spend 2 days MK, 2 days Epcot (our 1st trip we learned that 1 day wasn't enough time there for her), 1 day DHS, and 1/2 day AK (she likes Safari, Lion King show and meeting characters, and then she humors me for a couple of minutes because I like AK and then begs to leave and go back to MK or Epcot).
ktlm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 06:19 PM   #7
latexscooter
Be nice even if it takes some effort.
 
latexscooter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 1,077

My DD always loved the characters so my advice is based on the NEED to see them because of her willingness. For us, we know that we're going to stand in line to see the characters (if we don't see them at a meal) and we know we are going to eat. Doing character meals combines the two and ultimately saves us time. Now that our DD is older (7 last trip) we have narrowed that down to a couple character meals with only her most favorites. With such a short trip you might want to keep a couple of the character meals to help you manage time.
__________________
latexscooter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 06:30 PM   #8
chabs
DIS Veteran
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,043

I would do the CRT breakfast and CP dinner. Even if your 2 year old doesn't appreciate the characters, your 4 year old probably would. I would skip Chef Mickeys (food is subpar at best) because you can see Mickey at the parks. If you did more than 2, it might be too much and take up too much time.
__________________
chabs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 06:43 PM   #9
MickeyMinnie1971
Mouseketeer
 
MickeyMinnie1971's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Windermere, FL
Posts: 455

I would definitely do some character meals. I prefer them over waiting in line at the meet and greets. The characters will usually back off if they think a child is frightened.
MickeyMinnie1971 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 06:46 PM   #10
heather13
DIS Veteran
 
heather13's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 569

That definitely helps. I've been trying with no luck for different times with ADRs to have CP either first thing in the AM or for dinner, but that's also part of the issue. If DD2 doesn't have a good nap she's extremely clingy in the evening which can translate quickly into tears. She was TERRIFIED of Santa, and even when I've shown her videos or pictures of kids hugging Mickey & others she says she will cry and be scared. Of course what she says and what she does could be totally different. Maybe I'll keep working on CP for later in the trip to get her warmed up for the characters, and if it doesn't pan out just stick with a non-character for our last TS. Based on her reaction to Miss Indiana and other pageant ladies at our recent parade & festival, I know we won't have to worry about princesses.
__________________
mom to two little princesses
heather13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 06:47 PM   #11
Beckypooh1972
Mouseketeer
 
Beckypooh1972's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: DeBary, FL (45 mins from WDW)
Posts: 392

Quote:
Originally Posted by pixarmom View Post
I'll add a few thoughts based on our experience with our three boys, but kids are all so different and I know it's so hard to predict their reactions.

Our two older boys have always enjoyed characters. But at age 2, our youngest son was absolutely terrified of any kind of local mascot or character - including Santa. He would burst into tears if he even saw one in the distance. We thought WDW was going to be the same, so we didn't initially plan to take him to character greetings, and we didn't schedule any character meals except for Garden Grill.

We chose Garden Grill for many reasons: this is our older boys' favorite restaurant and our arrival night tradition, so we didn't want for them to have to miss it. But it was also perfect for our then-2-year-old because of the way the restaurant is set up. The lower level has high booths, and it slowly rotates through scenes in the Land ride. So our youngest would have things in front of him to see, but could not see the characters until each arrived at our table. If he didn't react well, we could ask our server to have the characters pass us by and he would barely even see them past the high booth! This is different from other character meals, where he would have been able to see (and perhaps be upset by) the characters all around the restaurant, even when they are at other tables. Also, because the meal is served family style, he wouldn't have to get up from the table and walk past any characters on the way to a buffet. But if he liked the characters, they could stop by our table and we would all enjoy a character meal!

Anyway, when we arrived, we were amazed. While our youngest didn't like any other characters at home, he LOVED the Disney characters. We ended up spending lots of time at character greetings. I completely agree with the previous poster's suggestion of showing you tube videos, photos, etc. Our youngest saw lots of you tube videos and photos of his brothers with Disney characters before the trip. Anyway, Garden Grill was perfect for us in that situation, and might work well for OP.

P.S. I know some complain about the Garden Grill food, but we love it. We used to rate it just "good" as recently as March of this year. But during our most recent trip in July, we thought it was great - very fresh, all served family style (so no going up to the buffet and juggling plates with the kids) and quite yummy.
I agree with the PP that the character meals can be wonderful; we have twin boys, 3 1/2 years old and went the first time when they were 17 mos. old. Our boys loved the character meals. In fact one of them can get very nervous when meeting characters after standing in line at the character greets, but loves the character dining experiences. We've been to CP, CM, and 1900 PF and Chef Mickey's is our favorite.
__________________
Becky
_________________________________
Our "destination Disney" trips4/99 off property (our honeymoon and my first trip to visit WDW) 9/99 off property
9/2000 CBR 9/2001,1/2002, 9/2002 off property 9/2003, 5/2005, 9/2005, 6/2006 off property with family and/or friends
9/2008 Pop - our first trip with our kids 5/2009 POR - anniversary celebration
12/2009 Pop - our first Christmas time trip
Beckypooh1972 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 07:35 PM   #12
MyTwoPrincesses
DIS Veteran
 
MyTwoPrincesses's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: DC Area
Posts: 1,203

Last year, we only did 1 character meal - Akershus. I went with a 3 year old nad a 4 year old. My kids LOVED characters, but we saw them in the parks. That said, if you're short on time, it might make sense to do Chef Mickey's and see the big 5 or Chrystal Palace if your kids really love Pooh. I would do it on the second full day, after your DC has had a chance to get used to characters with masks. If she still doesn't like them, then you could cancel and go someplace else.
MyTwoPrincesses is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2010, 08:08 PM   #13
Mommy2Jameson
Mouseketeer
 
Mommy2Jameson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Illinois
Posts: 453

Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyMinnie1971 View Post
I would definitely do some character meals. I prefer them over waiting in line at the meet and greets. The characters will usually back off if they think a child is frightened.
I totally agree! We are doing 6 character meals our next trip in Oct with my 4 y/0 son. I would much rather be able to sit down in an air conditioned place and eat while meeting the characters! I am not one to want to stand in line for 30 mins plus with a 3 or 4 y/0 just for 30 secs of time with a character! haha!

And I agree, if your child is scared at the meals, the characters will just keep walking by your table.
__________________
Mommy2Jameson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2010, 01:17 AM   #14
honeydiane1953
DIS Veteran
 
honeydiane1953's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: central ga
Posts: 2,906

I would do ONE. They r so LOUD and busy. That along with characters r fun but food mostly at those places r mediocre. Take TYLENOL and or IBUPROFEN.
honeydiane1953 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2010, 01:46 AM   #15
septbaby
DIS Veteran
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Hartford, CT
Posts: 4,206

No matter the length of the trip with children as young as yours I'd skip CRT. Especially since you are returning when they are 4/6 or 4/7 they'll be better able to appreciate the meal and character experience when they're older. The 2 year old isn't likely to recall that one at all and that's a pretty special experience, I'd want her to remember it.

If they like Pooh or you want a meal inside of MK, go with CP.

I am a big fan of Boma, so perhaps book dinner there on your AK day or even breakfast that day. The Animal Kingdom Lodge is a wonderful place to explore and they have some no cost activities too.

Chef Mickey's or 1900PF would be nice meals on your departure day.
septbaby is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS Updates
GET OUR DIS UPDATES DELIVERED BY EMAIL



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:40 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Copyright © 1997-2014, Werner Technologies, LLC. All Rights Reserved.