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Old 01-01-2011, 01:46 PM   #91
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THURSDAY - 02DEC2010

Today will be mostly taken up by the Backstage Magical Tour. It is a 7-8 hour tour of WDW and the inner workings and backstage happenings of all 4 theme parks. We are to meet at Guest Relations at EPCOT at 8:45. Because we are staying at BWV, it is a short walk to the International Gateway at EPCOT. I mentioned the front that moved through this area and as a result, it is a brisk 38 degrees this morning and the wind blowing across the lake makes it quite chilly. We make it in plenty of time and there are three CM's waiting for us. Bryan, Maggie and Jessica. It turns out Jessica is from Marrero, LA (New Orleans suburb) so we had a lot to talk about. She didn't stay with the tour after we were all squared away but Bryan & Maggie were old hands at this and very good guides. They do not allow picture taking on this tour so no pics in this report.

We boarded a Means Transportation bus for the tour. I was surprised we weren't on a Disney bus but go figure. This is a limited tour and there were only 34 people in our group. You are given an ear piece with a receiver in order to be able to hear the tour guide and safety glasses which I'm sure is for liability purposes. Our first stop is the American pavilion at EPCOT. We actually left EPCOT and circled around to a service road. Before we could enter back on the grounds, we stopped at a security gate and had a security officer board the bus and check our baggage just like they do when you enter the park. We entered EPCOT behind the Test Track. You don't realize it but the Test Track and Mexico butt up to each other in the back. It would take about a 10 minute walk inside of EPCOT to walk from one to the other.

We were led out to the front of the American pavilion and told various facts and history about the construction of the building. There are over 110,000 Georgia clay bricks in the building. The building is a mixture of various types of American architecture so that people from different parts of the country would recognize or see something familiar at their local courthouse, mansions or other significant buildings. In 1985, Ronald Reagan held his inaugural parade here at EPCOT with over 60,000 attending.

We then proceed to the backstage area of the American Adventure show hosted by audio-animatronic figures of Benjamin Franklin and Mark Twain. If you have seen this show, it appears that there is a stage. There is not. The audio-animatronic figures actually rise up from below for each part of the show. The backdrop is a huge canvas that has the show projected on it from behind. Everything is computer controlled and on a 24 hour cycle. Even though the park was not yet open, the show was playing. The only time they ever stop the show is for maintenance. Since the opening of EPCOT in 1982, this show has been down for a total of less than 2 weeks! That is a record that any industry in the world would love to emulate!!
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 02:43 PM   #92
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Back to the bus to head to the warehouse area. Along the way, we are told that MK takes up 40 square miles of land. Previously it comprised 43 square miles but over the years the difference has been sold to developers. The entire Disneyland area would fit in one of the MK parking lots. There are 60 miles of canals at WDW. The power usage is 60-62 megawatts per day. Originally Disney supplied its own power but now that unit is used only for emergency purposes and the balance is supplied by other utilities.

We pass by the warehouse that holds all the Christmas decorations. Except for spare parts, it is virtually empty expect for the Main Street Christmas tree that will be erected once the filming for the parade is complete. We arrive at Central Shops. It is a 300,000 square foot warehouse where they build and paint most everything at WDW. As we enter the facility, they announce over the intercom that a tour is beginning. We are told this is so the CM's can cover up or hide any sensitive or proprietary projects that are in progress. In years past, what had been done entirely by hand is now done mostly by computers. If a part of a ride needs to be replaced, a computer program laser cuts styrofoam to make a mold for the part - small and large. We saw a log from Splash Mountain that had been manufactured and was being painted. In another area, bearings from another ride were being packed with grease by hand. Every moving part in WDW is serviced at set intervals and other parts are replaced even if there have not been any problems. Everywhere you walked there were reminders of Safety First.

As we are leaving, we pass by a CM break room. In it are several pool tables and a bank of computer terminals for their use while on break or lunch. I wonder if I could get a pool table at my company?

It is back to MK and another security check. Backstage is very congested due to the filming. We enter Main Street between Exposition Hall and Tony's. All the film crew and celebrity trailers are behind Tony's. As we walk in, our CM tour guide Maggie points out cast members from the Disney Channel's show "Suite Life". Maggie said she recognized one of them - Debby Ryan who plays Bailey Pickett on the show. Don't ask me, I have never seen the show.
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 03:13 PM   #93
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Most people don't know that Main Street at MK is actually the second story of the park. Since this area of Florida is mostly swamp, Disney could not build anything underground. Therefore they built the utility corridors or utilidoors on the ground level and used dirt from building the many lakes and lagoons to cover it up. If you approach MK from the dock, you'll notice a slight incline to get to the entrance. That is because you are walking up to the area over the 1.5 miles of utilidoors at MK. Although Main Street appears to be ground level, you are actually on the second floor!

We have to go down steps from behind Tony's to get into the utilidoors. The corridors are about 9' tall and vary in width. Some you could drive two golf carts through and others are big enough to drive two Hummer's through. One thing you do not see at WDW and especially MK, are garbage trucks. What do they do with the tons of food scraps and waste each day? In the utilidoors is a garbage disposal system. It is a 24" tube the is connected to all areas of the park. The garbage is loaded into the AVAC (Automated vacuum system) and then "shot" through the tubes at 60mph to a collection area. There it is separated between material that can be recycled and biodegradeable items. WDW is one of the largest recyclers in the world. The food scraps are composted and used all over the four theme parks. It is so much compost that WDW uses only about 20% of the material. The balance is donated to municipalities and the many citrus farms in the area.

The CM's use the utilidoors to travel from one part of MK to another. You NEVER see a CM from one land walking in costume through another land. It takes away from the uniqueness of Disney. The utilidoors also house classrooms for the CM's. EVERY CM goes through an orientation. They are told the "Disney way" and must adhere to it. There are rules for haircuts, shoes and even the earrings that women can wear. They are trying to create an image and culture and you are required to immerse yourself as a CM in it all. The rules are strictly enforced. It is their way or the highway. This may seem harsh to many but it obviously works. Very rarely do you meet a CM that cannot help you or at least know how to find someone that can. CM's are a dedicated bunch of people that most companies would love to have as their employees.
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 03:35 PM   #94
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We head back to the bus to go to lunch at the Wilderness Lodge. I had read on the DISboards on another report about this tour that they ate at MK. I don't know if they change it up from time to time or we went elsewhere because MK was so crowded with the filming of the parade. This was fine with DW and I because we had never been to WL. We ate at the Whispering Canyon Cafe and it was VERY good. It was a simple fare of ribs, chicken, sausage, corn on the cob, slaw, mashed potatoes and baked beans. You sit at a big table and they bring out platters for all to share. Dessert was blueberry or peach cobbler with ice cream. After the rich, gourmet, culinary delights we have been experiencing, this hit the spot! Here is the Christmas tree in the lobby at WL....



Next on the tour is Disney Hollywood Studios. Another security check and we are going to the area known as Creative Costuming. DHS is the only place at WDW where the CM's walk through the park in costume in order to mimic a real Hollywood studio lot. Inside Creative Costuming, there are rows and rows of seamstresses. Most costume places only do broad strokes since the audience/visitors can't see the costume up close. Not Disney. There is a LOT of attention to detail even down to the stitching and embroidery. All costumes are custom fit to the CM. The cutting board, if you want to call it that, is computer generated and about 8' wide by 20' long.

While at DHS, we go behind the scenes at the Tower of Terror. When they decided to build this ride, Disney went to Otis Elevator for design and engineering assistance. Since Elisha Otis invented the elevator in 1852 and the Otis Company is the world's largest manufacturer of vertical transportation systems, that was not a bad idea. We entered on the ground level where the banks of computers control the different ride sequences. We could hear the screams from the riders as ToT runs about 2,000 guests per hour!
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic

Last edited by saintstickets; 01-01-2011 at 08:20 PM.
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Old 01-01-2011, 08:19 PM   #95
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To the bus and to Animal Kingdom and another security check point. We passed by several of the areas where the animals are housed and cared for but did not stop. There is a separate tour that one can go on for that. We stopped at a staging area for the Animal Kingdom parade. We went through the warehouse where all the floats and other items are stored that are used in this parade.

Next in line was a visit to the tree farm and one of the horticultural areas. We saw topiaries in various stages of completion. There were rows and rows of warehouses with plants and hanging baskets. The flowering plants each had a label that not only told what the plant was but an expected date for the peak maturity and optimum blooming time. They have everything down to a science!

We finished the tour up with a trip back to Animal Kingdom to a special roped off area to view the parade. Here we could take pics. DW and I have never seen this parade and it is unlike any other in WDW. Not only are the "floats" different but visitors to AK are selected to ride in the parade. Here are a few pics....





__________________
Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 08:27 PM   #96
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More pics from this parade....





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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 08:31 PM   #97
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Last but not least. Notice some of the AK visitors riding in the parade....



Then this guy tells us goodbye....



If you'd rather see a couple of videos....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pPmEw3cnS8 (1.02 minutes)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vDRIPLpSZFg (11.14 minutes)
__________________
Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 08:47 PM   #98
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Overall, we enjoyed this tour. It is a bit pricey and does take up most of your day but we saw all kinds of interesting things. There is a mountain of information we were told but my "old-timers" keeps me from remembering everything. It's a small group and you are split up between the two CM's when visiting a facility so there is a lot of one-on-one interaction. They will allow you to ask any questions and if they are not able to answer, they will call someone and get the answer pronto. They told us to ask anything and if the question was something they could not answer for security or privacy reasons, they would comment with, "That's an EXCELLENT question" and then proceed to something else! That only happened once when someone asked about attendance figures. One question asked that I thought was interesting was if there were plans for a 5th theme park. The answer was a resounding no. CM Maggie told us that their studies and surveys showed that most vacations did not last past a week. It was already hard enough to see most everything in that time frame and if a 5th park were added, it would end up taking away revenue from the other parks. The amount of additional visitors would not justify the additional costs for the 5th park. I thought it might make people want to return more often but they do seem to know what they are doing at WDW!

The tour ended right on schedule at about 4:30. We were each given a special pin when we arrived back at EPCOT. It was a very nice tour taken at a steady but not hurried pace. It definately makes DW and I want to take some of the other tours.
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:09 PM   #99
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Before we took the Backstage Magic Tour, we thought we might be too tired to do much after the tour. As mentioned in a previous post, the pace was not too hurried so we take a bus to DHS. We get a fastpass for the Tower of Terror and then walk around a bit. It is fun watching the street performers....





__________________
Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic

Last edited by saintstickets; 01-02-2011 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:16 PM   #100
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While waiting for our ToT fastpass, we step next door to see Beauty and the Beast. We have not seen this musical since our trip in 1997 and it was as fantastic as we remembered. The crowds were still very manageable so the wait time was less than 15 minutes. We were sitting dead center about 10 rows from the front. Of course we managed to get a few pics....

First there is Belle


Then the egotistical Gaston


Most of the cast
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:19 PM   #101
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This guy needs no introduction


His better side with Belle


And the happy couple
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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:28 PM   #102
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After Beauty and the Beast, we scooted over to see the Osborne Family Lights. This is another thing we have never seen. The story behind this display is that an Arkansas resident, Jennings Osborne and his family were very big on the Holidays. In 1986, Jennings asked his youngest daughter Breezy what her Christmas wish was. She replied that she would like to see their whole house covered in lights. They had a large house but Jennings was determined to make his daughter's Christmas dream come true. That first year the Osborne family covered their home with a modest 1,000 red lights. With each passing year, the family wanted to do more. The Osbornes eventually purchased property adjacent to their own in order to expand on their newfound hobby. The display grew to millions of lights. There were flashing lights, multi-colored lights, custom-made light sculptures and a 75-foot Christmas tree adorned by lights. This drew onlookers from all over Arkansas. The local residents asked that the Osborne family stop the annual display because of the traffic jams. Legal intervention was sought, and it appeared that the Osborne's tradition was about to come to an end. When Mickey Mouse got word of this, he offered a venue where the Osborne lights could be shared with visitors from around the globe. In 1995, Disney's Hollywood Studios became the home of this dazzling light show. Approximately 80% of the lights that are on display come from the original Osborne collection. Here are a couple of pics of this display....



__________________
Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:32 PM   #103
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This is something that still pics cannot do justice so here is a video link....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPZ7Q_LkRIE

We have reservations at the Flying Fish at 8:35 back on the Boardwalk so we decide to skip Tower of Terror tonight and give our fastpasses away. We took the boat back to the Boardwalk. It was a nice pleasant ride that takes about 25-30 minutes.
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DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:37 PM   #104
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The Flying Fish restaurant is on the Boardwalk right next to the BWV. We originally had ressies at Kouzzina by Cat Cora but were notified about a month before we left that this restaurant would be under renovation during our stay. We were pretty lucky to get ADR's so late to the Flying Fish. Here is their menu....

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Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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Old 01-01-2011, 09:57 PM   #105
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For an appetizer we shared the Chef's Degustation of Cheeses. It is five different cheeses from around the world accompanied by various items such as honey, figs or raisins. It was very good and went well with the suggested Merlot wine.

For our entree, DW had the Red Snapper and I had the Surf & Surf (flounder and shrimp scampi). DW's snapper was great and my flounder was pretty good but the shrimp scampi needed more sauce. I guess we are more accustomed to the creole style of shrimp scampi. It wasn't bad but I prefer it a bit spicier.

Dessert was creme brulee for DW and cheesecake for me. Both were excellent. I decided to splurge and try an after dinner cognac of Remy Martin VSOP. The price range varied from $8 - $195 for a 2 ounce drink. No way I am spending $195 for a 2 ounce shot! I didn't get the $8 drink but mine was definately on the lower end of that scale. Maybe you get what you pay for but I think they got something mixed up because this drink smelled and tasted like paint thinner! I could not finish it but one thing for sure, if you had a couple of these, you had better have a designated driver to take you home! WHEW!!
__________________
Bill B

DL - 1967 | WDW - 1973 (Orlando) | WDW - 1980 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1985 (Kissimmee) | WDW - 1997 (Contemporary) | WDW - 2007 (Old Key West)
DVC - May2010 - OKW | Nov-Dec2010 - AKV/BWV | May2012 - BLT/VWL | Sep2012 - Aulani (30th anniversary) | Dec2012 - Aulani (DD honeymoon) | Oct2013 - BCV | Jun2014 - BWV | Oct2014 - DCL/BCV | Aug2015 - DCL Alaska | Dec2015 - BWV

The "Don't mess with the CMs/take less photos TR" Jun14 @ BWV
Oct13-BCV - MNSSHP, F&W, Wild Africa Trek
Sep12-Aulani - Sharks, horses, a submarine scooter, luau & Mickey
May12-BLT/VWL - Don't tell Mickey! It's NOT a bug's life! That's a dolphin's WHAT? Where's the ER? Is that a body? Seaworld, Discovery Cove, IoA, Space Center
Nov/Dec10-AKV/BWV - Backstage Magic Tour; V&A; Lots of pics and video
May10-OKW - DDP cost analysis; Wishes Dessert Party; Fantasmic
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