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Old 09-12-2012, 02:15 PM   #61
khertz
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I really liked this one. A traditional Dark Ride style ride, that told the story of the movie, it was done in a very effective manner! The one thing I didn’t get, they’re were TVs on the side of the vehicle that as its starting off show you a small part of the story (a child loose in Monstropolis) but then they are never used again the rest of the ride. Felt like something was missing here, like these TVS were originally designed to be used throughout the ride, but then passengers found them too distracting or something...anyone know?
Maybe the ride was not operating correctly? I remember them being used a couple of times throughout the ride when we went. Apparently elements sometimes do not work because the first trip in May, Roz didn't talk, so I didn't even realize she was supposed to and was happily surprised by her commentary on this last trip.

We loved Bugs Land, but then again we had an 18 month old! I can see how it would not be exciting when you are with an older child who you would think would like the attractions aimed at an older audience. The themeing was fantastic in that area, although yeah, the attractions themselves are nothing spectacular.

Glad DD ended up enjoying RSR!
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Old 09-13-2012, 09:01 AM   #62
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Maybe the ride was not operating correctly? I remember them being used a couple of times throughout the ride when we went. Apparently elements sometimes do not work because the first trip in May, Roz didn't talk, so I didn't even realize she was supposed to and was happily surprised by her commentary on this last trip.

We loved Bugs Land, but then again we had an 18 month old! I can see how it would not be exciting when you are with an older child who you would think would like the attractions aimed at an older audience. The themeing was fantastic in that area, although yeah, the attractions themselves are nothing spectacular.

Glad DD ended up enjoying RSR!
I posted a question on the DL boards regarding this. There was actually a ride there before this called "Superstar Limo", and apparently the ride was completely loathed by all and was closed within 1 year of DCA opening. From the yesterland article http://www.yesterland.com/superstarlimo.html

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Disney management closed the ride after less than one year. Reportedly, the typical guest reaction to the ride had been so negative that the park was actually stronger when the only dark ride in the park was closed.
It was reopened 4 years later to the monsters inc ride, except the cars were kept the same, only converted from "Limo" purple to "Taxi" yellow. The screen was used throughout the ride in original concept, which explains their lack of use now.
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Old 09-13-2012, 09:37 AM   #63
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I LOVE your report so far!!!

Daughters... ugh... thankfully i have the boys to balance me.. the attitude is getting out of hand...

Keep it coming!!!!!!
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Old 09-13-2012, 10:00 AM   #64
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I LOVE your report so far!!!

Keep it coming!!!!!!
Your wish is my command!
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Old 09-13-2012, 10:06 AM   #65
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Day 3 - Lunch at Carthay Circle!

By now, it was almost time for our 12:30 lunch reservation at Carthay Circle Theatre. I was excited at the chance to eat here – brand-new, high end culinary experience in a Disney Park that also got me Fastpasses for the World of Color show? Sign me up!

It’s funny that the Carthay Circle theatre is almost the exact same height as Sleeping Beauty Castle, but I am not sure it’s as noticeable as a “Centerpiece” to the park.

There were many different shows going on at Buena Vista Street – not sure of the name of this one, but it was very lively!



We went inside the restaurant. Very gorgeous and elegant. They take you upstairs to the dining area. The first thing you notice is the “Snow White” ceiling. We spent a long time debating if it was wallpaper or hand-painted. (I argued for hand-painted.) The manager CM we asked couldn’t answer the question.


I called this DW “Birthday lunch”, as it’s the only “fine dining” we had on the trip. Before I go any further, I highly recommend this restaurant, and would also say that I would also recommend going for lunch for those on a budget. We got away with just over $100 for the three of us, but that included appetizer (shared) and desert (shared).

One thing that really fascinated me was the wine turneen in the middle of the restaurant. Used for both whites (on ice) and reds (around the outside), this is where your glass of wine would be poured from:

We ordered for an appetizer the “Carthay House Biscuits - Stuffed with White Cheddar, Bacon, and Jalapeno, Served with Apricot Honey Butter. $8”

The meal also came with a regular bread service, but these biscuits were FANTASTIC. The Jalapeno was just enough to add a tiny bit of flavor but not real spicy. DD even enjoyed these!
For the main course, I had the “Pappardelle Pasta with House-made Chicken Meatballs - Tear Drop Tomatoes, fresh Basil, and Yellow Tomato Essence. $18”

Delicious best describes it! Not a huge portion considering the price, but actually it was plenty to satisfy. The pasta tasted fresh and the sauce was excellent as were the meatballs.
DW had the “Bacon-wrapped Shrimp - on Summer Roasted Corn, Grilled Zucchini, and Basil Salsa. $26”

If anything, this was even better than mine! Perfectly grilled shrimp with the bacon just right. DD had the “Orecchiette Pasta(meaning “little ears”) tossed with your choice of Sauce: Tomato Sauce, Cheese Sauce, or Simply Buttered. $8” This was….pasta. But a good portion of it.

We also got one dessert to split. The dessert was probably the least impressive part of the meal, though it was still very good. “Toasted Lemon Pound Cake - fresh Marinated Blueberries, Lemon Curd Cream, and Tahitian Vanilla Chantilly. $12”

The pound cake wasn’t that great, but when combined with the blueberries and lemon crème it made for a very flavorful dish. Not NEARLY worth $12 though. In fact, I though DD’s “Chocolate Ice Cream Sandwich with Chocolate Cookies and Chocolate Dipping Sauce. $4” was a way better selection!

The real point of having a dessert though – was these babies! World of Color FP, which we will be talking more about later.

A few last shots on the way out…there was a lot of early Disney memorabilia on display…this shot of Walt with Roy and the little girl that starred in the “Alice” comedies.

And a lighting fixture in the hallway:

Again, an amazing, amazing meal. This was probably the best meal of the whole trip. Not just Disney, the WHOLE TRIP. Though it should be noted we avoided fine dining in Australia as the prices we so expensive. Now, full of food, we were ready for another cool-down period before we came back to see Aladdin. So, back to the hotel for a swim. (No nap today, though!) You can see not quite the morning from yesterday. There was a sum total of 8 rides this morning, plus the drawing attraction giving us 9.

We'll pick up again after lunch.
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December 12-20, 2009 - 40th Birthday trip! Trip Report April 20-25, 2010 - Short surprise trip for DD! Trip Report
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November 11-20, 2011 - Free dining at CBR! PTR! and Trip Report
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The Disney Trifecta - a PTR for 2013. LINK Trip Reports - ABD: "A Fistful of Fastpasses" WDW: "For A Few Fastpasses More" DCL: "Once Upon a Time in the Carribean"

October 2014 Pre Trip Report- "Let us plan our Escape !" LINK
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Old 09-16-2012, 05:30 PM   #66
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Looks delicious and reasonable prices-on an Aus comparison!! and with WoC definitely one to put on the bucket list! I love the decor here.
OT-Have you seen the arguments re alcohol in DL at the new restaurant. Given its French theme I can't get upset about it -especially with the emphasis on wines - and especially since its only being served with a meal. In France young children drink well-watered wine and my DD grew up with having a glass, watered when younger, with a "nice" meal at home on special occasions. Guess who never got caught up in all the binge drinking hype-it was no big deal to her when she turned 18 that now she could drink if she wished.
Sorry back on topic-loving the report so far and also looking forward to hearing your impressions, good and bad, of your travels in Aus.
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Old 09-16-2012, 05:32 PM   #67
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Loving your trip report, thank you for writing it!

I thought I'd read that the biscuits at Carthay Circle didn't count as an appetizer? Maybe they changed this since you ate there
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Old 09-16-2012, 07:59 PM   #68
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Love the food porn.


I think I'm going to have to add CC on my must-eat list next time I'm in SoCal.

Thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:14 AM   #69
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Looks delicious and reasonable prices-on an Aus comparison!! and with WoC definitely one to put on the bucket list! I love the decor here.
The prices were reasonable compared to Australia, that's for sure! I can imagine when you folks come over here, you are agog at how inexpensive our food is. I still find myself going out to lunch or dinner at home saying "man that was cheap!"

And make sure to stick around for talk of the WoC location! It's prime!

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OT-Have you seen the arguments re alcohol in DL at the new restaurant. Given its French theme I can't get upset about it -especially with the emphasis on wines - and especially since its only being served with a meal. In France young children drink well-watered wine and my DD grew up with having a glass, watered when younger, with a "nice" meal at home on special occasions. Guess who never got caught up in all the binge drinking hype-it was no big deal to her when she turned 18 that now she could drink if she wished.
Sorry back on topic-loving the report so far and also looking forward to hearing your impressions, good and bad, of your travels in Aus.
I like that DL and MK are "dry" parks, but also have no problem with them serving alcohol in the restaurant. The "dry" thing has been pretty marginal for years. At WDW, only MK is dry, I can go to Epcot and get sloshed. I can even ride the monorail to the resorts and return to MK as drunk as I want. If there was a true follow through of "Walt's Vision" then they would keep all of WDW dry. (Though "Walt's vision" included Club 33, which was NOT dry.) I think as long as they serve responsibly, I don't have an issue with a high-end restaurant serving wine in MK.

The drinking age in the US does little in my view to reduce drinking, but I think every country has there share of drunks. While I don't serve wine to my 9-year old, I believe in teaching "responsible drinking" as opposed to abstinence. I hope I do this by leading by example, and not being a fall-down drunk in front of my kid. (Though I'm not a fall down drunk anyways!)

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Loving your trip report, thank you for writing it!

I thought I'd read that the biscuits at Carthay Circle didn't count as an appetizer? Maybe they changed this since you ate there
I can't tell you whether they've changed it since then, but on July 23rd they counted as an appetizer. For the WoC package, each person (including the child) needs to order an appetizer or dessert. Truthfully, the appetizers in general looked better than the desserts.

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Love the food porn.


I think I'm going to have to add CC on my must-eat list next time I'm in SoCal.

Thanks for sharing.
Mmmmm....I definitely would try it out, as stated above, you Aussies will find the price very reasonable, even having to add tax a tip.
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December 12-20, 2009 - 40th Birthday trip! Trip Report April 20-25, 2010 - Short surprise trip for DD! Trip Report
October 15-25, 2010 @ AKL Trip Report!
November 11-20, 2011 - Free dining at CBR! PTR! and Trip Report
July/August 2012 Disneyland / Australia TripPTR "I choose to Be Amused" TR
The Disney Trifecta - a PTR for 2013. LINK Trip Reports - ABD: "A Fistful of Fastpasses" WDW: "For A Few Fastpasses More" DCL: "Once Upon a Time in the Carribean"

October 2014 Pre Trip Report- "Let us plan our Escape !" LINK
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Old 09-17-2012, 01:28 PM   #70
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What an awesome looking lunch, especially your pasta dish! And the biscuits sound good too. Plus, what a nice bonus getting WoC FPs. Although I did notice this trip, those were not the hot ticket items in the morning anymore now that RSR is around. We were able to walk up and get WoC FPs much later in the day and still get a good viewing section. I'm interested in seeing what your WoC vantage point was and what you thought of the show!
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Old 09-19-2012, 11:31 AM   #71
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Day 3 - Paradise Pier

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. I'm interested in seeing what your WoC vantage point was and what you thought of the show!
Coming right up!

We did have a target to get back to the park in time to see the Aladdin show at 4:45 PM. We headed back to the parks yet again. DD was excited to see the show, so minimal amount of fighting to get her to go. We got there just as they opened up the gates. By, “open up the gates” I mean let people that were standing out in the street go to standing in the queue in the beating sun. This lasted another 15 minutes, and it was about 4:30 when they finally let us into the theatre.



I did not take any pictures of the production because we weren’t that close. It was a very nice production of the Aladdin story, and while I wouldn’t quite call it “Broadway caliber” it was a step above the cruise ship level spectacle of DHS’ “Beauty and the Beast” show. Lots of sets, talented cast, and the genie making lots of very modern quips (even if at easy target like Justin Beiber and the Kardashians). It was a tad long at a full 45 minutes, but really probably the 2nd best stage production at US Disney parks – I still give #1 to Festival of the Lion King. One major complaint – I guess about a year back they had a problem with the Magic Carpet “A Whole New World” scene where it would fly out over the audience where the cast almost fell into the crowd. Well, I understand them shutting down the flying carpet part, but you would think the solution would be “wheel the carpet out on stage instead”. Nope, their actual solution, have the Aladdin and Jasmine sing the song from off-stage while the performers on stage still stage various scenes around the world….it just felt…weirdly off.
Post this show we wanted to start heading over to Paradise Pier, even though we had quite a while until world of color. We stopped at Clarabelle’s because I wanted a hand-dipped ice cream bar – why oh why didn’t I take a picture! Pretty darn good.
Here’s our walk over:
Us: “Do you want to ride Soarin?”
DD: “NO!”
Us: “Do you want to ride Grizzly River with our Fastpasses?”
DD: “NO!”
So, we got over there pretty quick. Now, I must say clearly 1/3 to ½ the rides in the park must be in the Paradise Pier area. Another sort of Cheap-o themed area. (LOOK – it’s an AMUSEMENT PARK THEME!) it was actually very pretty over there. The first thing we did was ride “The Little Mermaid”.

At one point I had campaigned that we DON’T ride this ride, since we’ll be getting our own in MK soon. However, I was outvoted, and we rode. We actually had gotten bonus FPs with our RSR FPs, but didn’t need them, as there was ZERO line. (A super-fast loader with the Omnimove cars.)

This was another very cute dark ride – not quite the cutting edge animatronics of RSR, but really a fun sum-up of a classic Disney movie. Really enjoyed the “going under the sea” segments, though as others have pointed out, there were occasional dead-spots when you were looking at nothing more than a blank wall, which was sort of odd.



It was riding this ride that it suddenly dawned on me how much this park was “Disney’s Pixar Adventure”. Outside of Aladdin and Ariel, almost everything in this park that is themed to Disney movies is themed to Pixar. There are 4 main movies (Toy Story w/ Midway Mania, Bug’s Life, Monster’s Inc, and Cars) are all featured heavily, with Up also showing up in the Wilderness Explorer area and the main daytime parade. And outside of the two previous mentioned for Aladdin and Ariel, almost no “Disney” product per se. Interesting!
We started heading around Paradise Pier, with DD saying “NO!” to every ride there was and us just being so sick of fighting it we gave up. (We were starting to think more along the lines of “We’ll just ride it next June!” for many of the rides.) We stopped and had some dinner. DW and I ate Mediterranean Skewers at the Paradise Grill while DD had a Pizza from Boardwalk Pizza and Pasta. I must’ve been getting tired, because I didn’t take any pictures. We ate while a South American/Caribbean band played music. Then we moved around the rest of the pier, DD refusing all rides! She just wanted to sit and wait for the show. Well, DW wanted to do a little shopping, and I wanted to ride this sucker:

California Screaming is what I would consider Disney’s only true “Thrill” coaster, though RnRC and EE in WDW come close, but don’t really touch CS. This ride has the serious “0-60” launch, as well as multiple steep hills and even an inversion or two.

A long ride, it was a lot of fun, and I only waited about 10 minutes thanks to the single rider line. (I never did get on ToT because there WAS no single rider line, and I didn’t realize it until it was too late.)

I probably could have and should have rode again, but I met back up with the family, we finally found a ride we could get DD on!








She liked it so much, that when she saw I got a pink dolphin, she wanted to go again.



It was still almost an hour until the start of World of Color, but we decided we might as well go as we apparently weren’t going to ride anything else, not even Mickey’s Fun Wheel!


We were only the second group to enter the reserved area for the Carthay Circle guests, and it just so happens there were TWO benches in the section, and we were able to snag one of them. So, we sat and relaxed, let DD have her DS while we waited, and I actually gave my mom a call. (They are in Carson City, NV at the moment, so the same time zone.)

Up Next, Night falls on DCA
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December 12-20, 2009 - 40th Birthday trip! Trip Report April 20-25, 2010 - Short surprise trip for DD! Trip Report
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November 11-20, 2011 - Free dining at CBR! PTR! and Trip Report
July/August 2012 Disneyland / Australia TripPTR "I choose to Be Amused" TR
The Disney Trifecta - a PTR for 2013. LINK Trip Reports - ABD: "A Fistful of Fastpasses" WDW: "For A Few Fastpasses More" DCL: "Once Upon a Time in the Carribean"

October 2014 Pre Trip Report- "Let us plan our Escape !" LINK
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Old 09-19-2012, 11:35 AM   #72
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Day 3 - World of Color and more Carsland

So a few people asked me about the Carthay Circle WoC location, and it was PRIME! It was center of the “seating” area. On the third tier. What was really great about it was that it really filled up very late. Whereas the other sections were filling up an hour before the show, there were still spots against the railing up to 30 minutes before the show started, and it didn’t really get crowded until the last 10 minutes – which must’ve been when they opened up the available space to the GP. I would say getting to your spot with the WoC FPs 35-40 minutes ahead would be plenty for good seats.
Took a few pictures as the sun set.


Finally at 9 PM the show started…and WOW!

Words and pictures and video do not do World of Color justice. It is an absolute amazing show because the scale of the show is absolutely MASSIVE. Using most of the surface of the lake, and then also using lights on the structures behind it, as well as fire and lasers, it was an incredible production. I think of all the things we saw at DL/DCA, including Cars Land, this was the BEST.

To any and all WDW fans debating about a trip out to California, I would say that this alone makes it worth the trip!

I would probably want to see it again before making this official, but right now WoC is my favorite nighttime Disney show, just creeping past Wishes. The one bad thing about World of Color, the crowd leaving the show as HUGE, not unlike leaving Fantasmic and it was a real pain moving out of there. DD didn’t want to do it, but we made our way out by passing by Carsland and seeing the “town” all lit up in it’s neon glory.


Fillmore’s:


Sarge’s, though I was unable to catch it with the blinking military rank:

But I did get the little sleeping car on the Cozy Cone sign!

Flo’s V-8 Café:


I often wonder if at any point during the making of the movie that Lassiter or the rest of the Pixar crew ever thought “Wow, Imagine if they someday build this in a Disney Park”

But I can’t imagine they would’ve ever pictured it being this “real”!


One thing I am looking forward to on the Backstage Magic Tour is to see if they incorporate Carsland into that tour, and if so, how.

It was pretty late by this point, and we were all pretty pooped out. As Disney, there is little rest for the weary, so we headed back to our hotel and got a few hours of shut-eye before our 3rd and final day in the parks.
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October 14-20,2006 - First on-site (POFQ), first w/ DD3 and DMIL. September 22-29, 2007 with freinds @ POFQ! August 23-31, 2008. Just us 3...dining for free!
December 12-20, 2009 - 40th Birthday trip! Trip Report April 20-25, 2010 - Short surprise trip for DD! Trip Report
October 15-25, 2010 @ AKL Trip Report!
November 11-20, 2011 - Free dining at CBR! PTR! and Trip Report
July/August 2012 Disneyland / Australia TripPTR "I choose to Be Amused" TR
The Disney Trifecta - a PTR for 2013. LINK Trip Reports - ABD: "A Fistful of Fastpasses" WDW: "For A Few Fastpasses More" DCL: "Once Upon a Time in the Carribean"

October 2014 Pre Trip Report- "Let us plan our Escape !" LINK
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Old 09-19-2012, 04:18 PM   #73
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Oh (w)Ow! I didn't realise that DD had been the little nay-sayer for the rides at DCA. I'm so glad that you and DW have the trip back next year to enjoy it by yourselves.

Thanks for sharing. I love the night shots of WoC and CL. Lots of colour.
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Old 09-20-2012, 12:25 AM   #74
Aussie Wendy
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We never made it to WoC last year when we were there as only had one evening (I can't quite remember why didn't decide to do a meal deal) but looking forward to it more each time I read someone's rave review like yours.

Pity you had a bit of a grumps/no ride girl along this day-it can spoil the magic somewhat but sounds like you went along with it good humouredly. It happens sometimes.

I never knew they had cancelled the Aladdin carpet flight over the audience-that was one of the best bits. We must have been lucky as it was only last July that we saw the show. Of shows seen, I agree FOTLK is our favourite too. One day hope to see the different version of it in I think its Hong Kong DL. Lots of people like One Man's Dream in Tokyo DL. We saw it and enjoyed it but it didn't stand out as superlative for us-maybe because like B & B its performed in a semi outdoor theatre-the acoustics aren't as good and costuming as spectacular than in a darkened indoor venue.
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Old 09-20-2012, 07:24 AM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessInOz View Post
Oh (w)Ow! I didn't realise that DD had been the little nay-sayer for the rides at DCA. I'm so glad that you and DW have the trip back next year to enjoy it by yourselves.

Thanks for sharing. I love the night shots of WoC and CL. Lots of colour.
Oh, she was brutal the whole trip. All she wanted to do was sit in the room and play her DS. You only got a little taste of it at your house, as she was being a little better behaved (thank goodness) being a guest. She had both of us yelling at her at times. Not the problem today, really, as she just didn't want to ride anything. I really think it was the Indiana Jones experience that really scarred (scared?) her.

Thanks for the thumbs up on the pictures, some I couldn't get in focus - I really have to figure out how to do night shots with my camera - but others came out really sharp. (The WoC ones were with my camera phone, which seems to handle night shooting better than the point-and-shoot.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussie Wendy View Post
We never made it to WoC last year when we were there as only had one evening (I can't quite remember why didn't decide to do a meal deal) but looking forward to it more each time I read someone's rave review like yours.

Pity you had a bit of a grumps/no ride girl along this day-it can spoil the magic somewhat but sounds like you went along with it good humouredly. It happens sometimes.

I never knew they had cancelled the Aladdin carpet flight over the audience-that was one of the best bits. We must have been lucky as it was only last July that we saw the show. Of shows seen, I agree FOTLK is our favourite too. One day hope to see the different version of it in I think its Hong Kong DL. Lots of people like One Man's Dream in Tokyo DL. We saw it and enjoyed it but it didn't stand out as superlative for us-maybe because like B & B its performed in a semi outdoor theatre-the acoustics aren't as good and costuming as spectacular than in a darkened indoor venue.
You definitely should go out of your way to catch World of Color. It is well worth the time needed to get a spot. Actually, if we didn't have DD, the second showing might have been a good option too, though all the people for that show are corralled up the street in a big holding pen, so I don't know how that went exactly.
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