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Old 07-06-2012, 12:33 PM   #31
Soarin4Disney
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Joining in!!! Love the TR so far!!!
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Old 07-06-2012, 12:48 PM   #32
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Joining in!!! Love the TR so far!!!
Welcome!

Thank you!
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BELLE & THE 3 BEASTS JUNE 2012 http://www.disboards.com/showthread....1#post45239041
2007 Wilderness Lodge
August 2007 Dining Review http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1556109

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Old 07-08-2012, 10:06 AM   #33
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Your pictures of the WL are great!

I am sorry Doug felt sick after TSM.

I am very excited to try Cape May on my next trip!
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Old 07-08-2012, 10:44 AM   #34
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Your pictures of the WL are great!

I am sorry Doug felt sick after TSM.

I am very excited to try Cape May on my next trip!
Thank you! It's so pretty there.

Yeah, me too! He has no problem on RnRC though

If you like crab legs it is well worth it! Oh and the Oreo Bon Bon was all I heard it would be - YUM!
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2007 Wilderness Lodge
August 2007 Dining Review http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1556109

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Old 07-12-2012, 11:30 AM   #35
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CHAPTER 5 – DAY THREE
KEYS TO THE KINGDOM TOUR
Monday, June 11, 2012
Today was our Keys to the Kingdom Tour. I was really looking forward to it. I had wanted to do this for a long time but you have to be 16 to go on it. The last time we were at Disney, Zach was only 12. Now since he turns 17, we can go. We had an 8:30AM reservation and were told to arrive and check in by 8:15. We were up at 6:00, I showered and we had breakfast in Roaring Forks. After breakfast, we made our way down to the dock. The boat directly to the Magic Kingdom was not running yet so we took the boat to the Contemporary. I love being able to take the boat – it’s such a pretty ride.



After we arrived at the Contemporary, we went upstairs and got the monorail to the Magic Kingdom. We checked in for KTTK tour and were offered bottled water and given our headphones. We went outside to wait for the rest of the guests. We saw this cute little family.
IMG]http://i1165.photobucket.com/albums/q588/POLY1985/084.jpg[/IMG]
Our tour guide was Claire. She was an older woman who truly had a love for Disney. She was absolutely amazing. I would tell anyone thinking of going on this tour to make sure you request Claire. I don’t know if they take requests but I would try – she was that good. And of course, I forgot to get a picture of her – I am SO annoyed with myself!

First Claire took us down a pretty empty Main Street. The only ones there were people arriving for character breakfasts. She gave us a lot of history on the areas, what cast members are supposed to do. It was so interesting and way too much to put down here. Below is the window for Walt and Roy’s father. See if you can find it the next time you go.

She spoke about the sculptor of this statue who is an amazing man and has done so much throughout the parks. He is in his nineties and still did work recently.

Walt was very particular about litter. He said a person would walk a certain distance (can’t remember how far) looking for a garbage can. If they did not see one in the timeframe, they would litter. He had garbage cans placed within this timeframe and when we looked around, we could see from one garbage can to the next. It was pretty amazing. She also pointed out the different styles of lights used for each area and how they changed to represent Adventureland, Liberty Square, etc. She pointed out the many, many, many lightning rods and things that were lightning rods that were disguised.
She took us to the Jungle Cruise where we went in a special entrance and got a boat for just our group. She pointed out lots of fun things along the way; how the heaters for the plants are disguised, how the water in the canals are colored, etc.
After the cruise we entered Frontierland next to Splash Mountain and went through a gate to a behind the scenes area. Here we saw the back end of Splash and where the water goes. We saw “naked” characters (Woody and Jessie). We saw the parade floats and how they test the lights on the Main Street Electrical parade floats. We saw all kinds of ride cars, animatronics, etc. which were waiting for repairs.
After this part, we went to lunch at Columbia Harbor.

This was our first time there. We really liked it. It’s so nice inside and the food was tasty. We were seated in a private area upstairs that was roped off from the other area that people can eat. At each place setting we received this!



After lunch, we had a discussion about Haunted Mansion. She gave us a lot of things to remember to look for on the ride. Then we slipped in a back area and were taken directly to the Stretching room and then waited in line with the rest of the crowd.

After the Haunted Mansion was the moment everyone was waiting for: UTILIDOORS!!!!!!
We went through one of the shops on Main Street. We walked to the back of the shop and all of us had to crowd into this tiny room. Once we were all inside (and it was a tight fit), they shut the door. Then, they opened a door to the outside. This way, no one who was in the store would be able to see the back area. They really stress keeping this from the public. No cameras or cell phones could be out.
It looked different from what I imagined. It was not sterile, but was loaded with memorabilia. They have an area where cast members go to get their pins for the day to trade. We saw break rooms, tunnels veering off here and there. We saw how medics get around the park and so many other things.
Another tidbit of interest. Walt was always concerned about his guests. When you enter MK, you are walking uphill. Walt figured everyone would be excited and would not notice the grade. But, on the way out, when people are tired, they are walking down hill to make it easier. He was really something.
We saw a few more areas, and then the tour was over. We all really enjoyed it and thought it was well worth the money.

After the tour was over, we were all beat. I believe it was around 2:00. We decided to head back to WL. The boys went up to the room and Doug & I head to Trout Pass. I refreshed myself with Caribbean Limeade and a Long Island Ice Tea.
IMG]http://i1165.photobucket.com/albums/q588/POLY1985/096.jpg[/IMG]

Had to take a picture of two of the nicest Cast Members.

Kendra, with the glasses, has served us on all three trips. She said she remembered us .
Afterward, I did a little shopping in the Mercantile and then went up to the room to shower for dinner. How about another picture of my view? Sigh…..



We walked back down to the boat dock and got a boat to the Contemporary. From there we hopped the monorail to the Polynesian for dinner at…’Ohana!
It was a little too early to check in so we wandered around and took some pictures.

I think I have a picture taken in the above seating area from almost every trip. I know I have one from when I was a kid and one that Doug took of me on our honeymoon. There is one of Jesse and I when he was three. I know in one of the pictures, the bench and wall were turquoise colored tiles! I think it looks a lot classier now.

My handsome guys! (Forcing a smile so I would leave)

I went in gift shop while the guys waited and then checked into ‘Ohana. We sat at the Tambu Lounge and I had a Lapu Lapu. Wow was it strong!

I got about halfway through it when we were buzzed to go in.
We were seated in a quiet area in front of the windows.

And then the food just kept coming. We really enjoyed it all. My favorites were the pot stickers and the shrimp. AND the BREAD PUDDING.

We were serenaded. When I took this picture, he was singing the Somewhere Over the Rainbow song. So nice!

When the dessert came out Zach also got a birthday cupcake. Doesn’t he look thrilled? They did not sing to him so he was relieved and enjoyed his cupcake.
IMG]http://i1165.photobucket.com/albums/q588/POLY1985/113.jpg[/IMG]
We had all planned on going to Magic Kingdom but Doug was pretty much done after dinner. He headed back to WL while the boys and I hopped back on the monorail. We headed to Space Mountain but it was over an hour and the fast passes were gone. We rode Buzz which did not have a very long line.


After Buzz, we went on the People Mover. It was nearing time for Magic, the Memories and You and Wishes and Jesse decided to leave. Zach and I stayed to watch. I love the way the castle looks – I just wish my picture would have come out better.

After Wishes was over, we headed out to the boat. While we were waiting, I got a text from Jesse who was stuck at the Contemporary where his boat took him. The boat was waiting for a Pirate boat to unload and then the Water Parade came and they had to wait for it. Our boat came and we actually made it back to the Lodge before him. Good to be back – it was a long day. Tomorrow is Animal Kingdom day.
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Old 07-12-2012, 12:00 PM   #36
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That is SO cool that you got to do the Keys to the Kingdom tour. I have always wanted to do that!

I love the picture of the bird on Walt’s head!

I have always wanted to go into the utilidors. It’s so amazing that they have that.

The food at Ohana just looks delicious. I can’t wait to try it!
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Old 07-12-2012, 12:36 PM   #37
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That is SO cool that you got to do the Keys to the Kingdom tour. I have always wanted to do that!

I love the picture of the bird on Walt’s head!

I have always wanted to go into the utilidors. It’s so amazing that they have that.

The food at Ohana just looks delicious. I can’t wait to try it!
Yes, we enjoyed it so much.

Our guide Claire love the bird on Walt's head too. She said it was good luck!

The Utilidoors were amazing. They have detailed map drawings so the employees don't get lost.

Go to 'Ohana with an empty stomach - they really stuff you!
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Old 07-25-2012, 11:51 AM   #38
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CHAPTER 6 – DAY FOUR
ANIMAL KINGDOM DAY/MORE EVENING RAIN AND CHANGE OF PLANS

Tuesday, June 12
Today was Animal Kingdom day. I got up around 7:00 and showered. The boys went to Roaring Forks and ate and picked up a muffin for Doug. After my shower I grabbed a banana from Roaring Forks and we headed to the bus stop. This was another morning of pokey buses. We were to the bus stop by 8:00 and wanted to hit rope drop. Today the bus also went to the Grand Floridian. We got through the gates around 9:15. Headed straight for:

Everest! We had a 15 min wait, got off and rode it again.

Love this picture – wish I would bought this one. I love our faces!
I decided to run for Fastpasses for Kilimanjaro Safari, the boys rode for a 3rd time while Doug went to get a drink. I saw Devine on the way.

I got back with the FP’s and they were done with EE so we all went on the Maharaja Jungle Trek.




By the time we were done walking through, it was time to use of FP’s. We headed over and were on the ride in about 10 minutes. The line was long, I think a 50 minute wait at that time.
I have to say I love the ride without the lame Little Red story. It was really want the Safari should be – looking at the animals. We really got close to the giraffes.




Our driver got a radio message about animals being in the road so several of the jeeps were backed up right in front of the elephants for about 10 minutes. It was really nice because we got to watch the elephants.



We were on our way.



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Old 07-25-2012, 11:53 AM   #39
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CHAPTER 6 – DAY FOUR - PART 2 (TOO MANY PICS)
ANIMAL KINGDOM DAY/MORE EVENING RAIN AND CHANGE OF PLANS

Tuesday, June 12

By the time we were done with the safari, it was time for our lunch ressies at Rainforest Café. On the way there, a man handed Zach 4 Fast Passes for Everest!!!!!
We haven’t Rainforest since 2000 and Zach kept bugging me to go. I try to avoid chain restaurants when I’m on vacation because I would rather eat at unique places, but since it was his birthday, I made a reservation. Lunch, because I didn’t want to waste a dinner LOL.
On our way in we stopped for a picture in front of the alligator. I have one of the boys from 2000 so I wanted an updated version.

We went in and gave our names and were told to wait by the aquarium. A woman came in with a party of 10 and was a walk up. She was seated before we were – I was a bit annoyed.
Had to take a shot of Dory! Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming!

We were given a great seat right next to the tank.

Doug and Zach got wings and burgers and Jesse and I split an order of nachos – it was huge!
After lunch, I convinced them to go to Festival of the Lion King. Zach and I saw The Lion King on Broadway for his 8th grade class trip and we both loved it. We headed that way with the rest of the crowds and had to wait about 10 minutes before being able to enter the theatre. Everyone was thrilled with the air conditioning. We were seated in the giraffe section. Very cute show!
After the show I did a little shopping and got this cute little t-shirt.

We wandered over to Everest to use our Fast Passes. I wanted to go on Dinosaur so we walked of that way. It had a 50 minute wait and no one felt like waiting that long so we headed back to WL.
We went back to the room and hung out for a while. I may have snoozed a bit. Doug and I go up and went to Trout Pass. I had Sangria.

At that point the skies were getting really dark and we heard thunder. They chased everyone out of the pool. It was pouring.

It stopped after a while. Everything looks so pretty and empty after a storm.



Here’s where my plans began on unravel. This was to be the first of many storms this evening. My original plan was to take a bus to Downtown Disney, do a little shopping and then take the boat to Port Orleans and check out both resorts and possibly have dinner at one of their food courts. This was one night where I did not have a dinner ressie. After eating there, we were possibly going to split up and Doug and I would stay at POFQ for Yeehaw Bob and the boys would go to Hollywood Studios where I would meet them for Fantasmic. Good plan, right! Well, we did none of it.
What did we do? - Stay at Wilderness Lodge. The boys decided to eat at Roaring Forks and go to the Arcade. Doug and I wanted to eat at Territory Lounge.

Here’s where the next part unravels. The Territory Lounge menu has changed from a bar type menu to a more upscale men. Even though DIS Boards and All Ears menus show a fruit and cheese plate (which is what I planned to get), pulled pork flatbreads and wings, they were not on the menus we received. You also used to be able to get menu items from Artist Point and Whispering Canyon which they do not allow. I was really disappointed because Whispering Canyon had a smoked trout appetizer that I wanted to try. The new menu had some not so filling appetizers for higher prices. They did have a wing (not hot, can’t remember the type) which Doug got. I had some and they were not too bad.

I got the meat/cheese plate. I can’t recall anymore what it was called. It was 2 different kinds of sausage (might have been elk and buffalo but don’t quote me), some pate, and some different cheese, a cranberry bread, cranberry chutney. It was good but not really what I wanted.

We hung out here for a while with drinks and then went back to our balcony to watch Wishes. Next day Blizzard Beach and Epcot.
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Old 07-25-2012, 12:37 PM   #40
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Sounds like you had a good start at AK, and it looks like you got a great seat at rain forest cafe. That is disappointing to hear about the changes in territory lounge.
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Old 07-26-2012, 04:32 PM   #41
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Love your trip report so far!
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:29 AM   #42
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Sounds like you had a good start at AK, and it looks like you got a great seat at rain forest cafe. That is disappointing to hear about the changes in territory lounge.
The seat a Rainforest was great - loved watching the fish while we ate.
I think they are trying to make the menu a little more upscale at the Territory Lounge. Don't get me wrong - the food wasn't bad, it just was not what I expected.
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:30 AM   #43
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Love your trip report so far!
Thank you!!!! I'm glad to be getting some readers - I haven't had a lot of comments so far.
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2007 Wilderness Lodge
August 2007 Dining Review http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1556109

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Old 08-09-2012, 03:47 PM   #44
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CHAPTER 7 – DAY FIVE
BLIZZARD BEACH/EPCOT/HOLLYWOOD STUDIOS OH MY!
Wednesday, June 13
Today was our Blizzard Beach day so we slept in a bit. I still woke up and got coffee and drank it on the balcony. I got the guys up they went down to Roaring Forks for breakfast. Today since we weren’t in a hurry, the bus came right away and took us straight there – figures!
Once we got in, we found a covered seating area near the Polar Pub because Doug and I intended to hang out there. Unfortunately, it was right next to the smoking area so we were gagging on fumes. The boys went off exploring while I went to the gift shop for aspirin for Doug’s headache. The boys stopped back around this time and I decided to go on the Lazy River with them. I love lazy rivers and the one at Blizzard Beach has to be one of the best. It’s so long. After that, we went on some of the tube rides and then went on the family tube ride. When we returned we had lunch. I cannot remember what we but I know we all split a funnel cake. That’s the trouble with the water parks – I don’t bring my camera and then I forget things. Around 2:00 we decided we had did everything we wanted to so we went back to the Lodge. Upon entering our room, we found this.

I had to laugh that our Mousekeeper put “Happy Birthday Zachy”. If you look at his birthday pin, they drew a mouse ear design but I guess she thought it was a “y”.
Everyone showered because we were anxious to get over to Epcot. We had a 7:30 ADR at La Hacienda and we wanted go on a few rides before and just spend a little time there.
I took some pictures on the way to the elevators.


I forgot to mention, while we were there construction was going on. They had the elevator near our room (the elevator by Roaring Forks) shut down so we had to zigzag our way to the elevator on the other side.
We arrived at Epcot somewhere between 4 and 5. The line to get in took a while – it seems some people just cannot function at the turnstiles.


We headed straight to Spaceship Earth as the line was not too long – about 10 minutes. We had not seen it since the refurb. They did a good job with it. After SE we headed in this direction past one of my favorite fountains.

Everyone was really thirsty so we went to :

I tried to get the guys to try Beverly but they were reading all the descriptions before drinking anything and they did not like the description.



When we were done with our refreshments, we decided to go visit Ellen. We walked past Test Track and everyone was SO disappointed. I had held off telling the guys for the longest time that Test Track would be closed while we were there. That is one of their favorite rides and they are really not happy that they couldn’t ride it again before it is changed.
After Ellen, we decided on seeing the fishies.

MINE! MINE! MINE! I love these guys!!!

Nemo and Marlin!
I wanted to go to Turtle Talk and Doug hadn’t gone the last time so we all went. We sat near the back so the families with little ones could get a better spot. This is just SO cute! I love watching the interaction with the little kids. We wandered around looking at the dolphins and sharks and my favorites – the manatees.
When we were done, we went to Imagination.

I still miss Dreamfinder. I wish they would bring that back. By this time it was getting closer to our ressie time. I wanted to go on the boatride in Mexico and wander through and check out La Cava which is new since our last visit. The skies were beginning to get darker. As we were walking to Mexico a duck flew over our heads so low that its feet hit the top of Jesse’s hair. Of course, I had to make jokes about ducking for the duck which no one found amusing. Oh well!
We made it to Mexico just as the rain started coming down. I really love the Mexican pavilion. This will be the first time that we have not eaten at San Angel. Everyone was disappointed when I told them but I really wanted to try La Hacienda and we just didn’t have enough time to fit it in plus I didn’t want to eat in Mexico twice. We did the boat ride and went into the glass shop where I saw this from my favorite movie.

So pretty!
By this time it was time to check in at

We waited about 10 minutes and were seated. Love these lights!

We were seated against the wall in a booth but we could still see out the windows.

I wasn’t concerned since we were not staying for Illuminations. I had another destination in mind.
We had a really nice server (sorry I don’t remember his name) who we chatted with about his home town. He brought us out the chips and salsas and we plowed right in. We were all starving. The boys decided on the taco trio appetizer for their meal.

They also got sides. Jesse got the refried beans and Zach got the rice.
Doug and I did the Seafood for two dish.


This was so unbelievably delicious. Shrimp, scallops, Mahi Mahi. The corn was out of this world! I had a nice white wine with it as well.
None of us had any room for dessert.
When we left, we headed over to the International Gateway. We all got on the boat to Hollywood Studios. This is a really relaxing boatride. Doug had planned to go back to the room so he was heading to the buses when we docked. The boys and I wanted to go back on Star Tours. Our goal was to experience all the different scenes. We had just enough time to ride it twice and then head over to Fantasmic for the 2nd show. Jesse headed back to the room and Zach and I went to Fastasmic. We were able to walk right in without waiting and had excellent seats right in the middle. I bought us water and two of these little beauties:

There is nothing like a Mickey bar!!!!

The show was wonderful and after, we hopped a bus back to the resort.
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2014 Old Key West 2013 Animal Kingdom Villas
2012 Wilderness Lodge
BELLE & THE 3 BEASTS JUNE 2012 http://www.disboards.com/showthread....1#post45239041
2007 Wilderness Lodge
August 2007 Dining Review http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1556109

2003 Wilderness Lodge
2000 All Star Movies 1998 Fort Wilderness Cabins
1993 Caribbean Beach 1985 Polynesian - Honeymoon1976/1979 Fort Wilderness campground
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Old 08-09-2012, 10:21 PM   #45
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I really enjoyed reading your journal! We will be at WDW next year around the same time (last week of May, first week of June) and I am not liking all of the rain stories!! Although we know June is the rainiest month in Florida, so I guess we take that chance!
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