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Old 04-23-2013, 12:01 AM   #1
Join Date: May 2011
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Disneyland with 76 Y/O

Hi everyone! My father has not been to Disneyland in over 20 years. This may be his last trip with us (my DD8 and I). It took me over a year to convince him to accompany us. Are there any pointers and tips on how to make this trip enjoyable for all? What rides do you recommend for this age group; what rides do you advise against? We will be going in early September and staying at Embassy Suites South. He is able to walk pretty well. Had a bypass many many years ago. Thanks for your advice!
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Old 04-23-2013, 01:13 AM   #2
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My parents had a hard time sitting on the hard ground and then having to get back up after sitting on the ground for so long while watching the entertainment. So, if its in your budget I would reccomend the fantasmic dessert seating. For the parade, there are cement benches in fantasyland in the walkway by the matterhorn toward its a small world. Early September will be very hot, so i would try to take breaks in places with air conditioning. He should be able to do most rides, I would obviously avoid the roller coasters because of his heart and they are really hard to get out of. Same with the rocket rods and golden zepher. My mom would tell you to get a dole whip as that was her favourite thing she ate
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Old 04-23-2013, 01:34 AM   #3
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I think the answer depends on how spry your dad is. Does he use a walker or a cane or a wheelchair? How physically fit is he? What rides does HE want to go on? Does he have any concerns about the trip that the two of you can sort out ahead of time?
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Old 04-23-2013, 02:12 AM   #4
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I would arrive early and do most of the rides on your list before lunch. Then take a long break before coming back to enjoy the fireworks. Early morning is the least crowded and chaotic.
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:00 AM   #5
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My stepmother (now 83) took her last trip a few years ago. She loves the Fantasyland dark rides, Small World, Pirates, and the Jungle Cruise. Otherwise, she was happy just watching the shows/parades, shopping, and sitting on a bench enjoying the atmosphere.

If he gets tired, try to get a wheelchair or EVC. My stepmother at the time walked well and was very active, but she still got very tired. Also, try to go when it's cooler, or at least do most the active things during cool times (morning and night) and let him rest during the hot hours. Also, remember that he may not move as fast as you. Take time to enjoy the park at his pace.
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:26 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by mooshka1 View Post
Hi everyone! My father has not been to Disneyland in over 20 years. This may be his last trip with us (my DD8 and I). It took me over a year to convince him to accompany us. Are there any pointers and tips on how to make this trip enjoyable for all? What rides do you recommend for this age group; what rides do you advise against? We will be going in early September and staying at Embassy Suites South. He is able to walk pretty well. Had a bypass many many years ago. Thanks for your advice!
No pointers, just wanted to tell you how special it is of you to want him with you and to care enough to try and make this a special trip for him... So nice to see someone wanting to take an elderly parent along. Whatever you do on the trip will be memories that last a lifetime!!! Have a blast and let us kniw how the trip goes....
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:44 AM   #7
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If he is fit enough to not need a scooter or wheelchair I highly recommend a rollator. It is like a walker, but with four wheels and a seat. It will provide him worth a place to sit anywhere you go, especially nice for shows where standing or sitting on the ground are the norm.
Other than that I agree with touring early and late, avoid the hottest and most crowded part of the day. Maybe check with his Dr to see if there are restrictions due to his heart surgery, but other than that just go on whatever he wants to ride!
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:15 AM   #8
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Hi! I think it's wonderful that you are taking your dad!

My father is 82 years old, and has been going to Disneyland every other year for the last 21 years! Before that, we would go once every 5 years, or so. He and my mom started taking all my siblings, our spouses and our children, and it's become a tradition. In fact, we are scheduled to be there the first week in June, again.

Now, my dad loves Disneyland! So, that affects how he tours the park. He loves the dark rides in Fantasyland, loves IASW, Pirates, and HM. He still enjoys BTMRR and Soarin' and the Carousels. When we reach a ride he's not comfortable on, he watches us, or takes that time to grab a snack or a drink. He really enjoys watching parades (but we have to make sure he has a bench to sit on), but his days of watching the fireworks or Fantasmic! seem to be over. We always stay at the Park Vue Inn, so he can watch the fireworks from the breakfast area, there. That satisfies him.

There's a lot that an older person can do and enjoy! Just 4 years ago, we stumbled upon the Golden Horseshoe Review with Billy Hill and the Hillbilly's, and we marveled that we had never seen it before. It's now a must do for us (don't know about this year, because I've heard they are not there, now). Sometimes, it's just fun to sit and people watch.

One thing my dad and I do, is take one afternoon, just the 2 of us, and we go have a Coke float, and then shop along Main Street! Just having some time for the 2 of us, is very special to me!


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Old 04-23-2013, 11:42 AM   #9
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Mooshka1 - you and I are in the same situation! I am taking my 78 yo mom to DLR in 3 weeks. It will have been at least 35 years since her last visit. She is pretty spry but never did like fast/spinny rides. She is most interested in the atmosphere, shows, and Pirates! Our plan is that our family of 4 goes down on Saturday and tours Sat and Sunday AM without mom. She flies down on Sunday and may visit the parks solo for a couple of hours before we meet up with her. I figure we can get most of the coasters and must-do rides that the kids want before we hook up with Nana, then we will spend the next 2 days going a bit slower pace and letting the kids take some time away from the grownups (they are 10 and 12) here and there so they can get multiple rides on Screamin!

I use a scooter and it is mostly for stamina due to bad feet (long story). I figure if my mom and I go 50-50 on the scooter it will help her increase her in park stamina (she too, has bad feet  hereditary) and I will feel less tied to the scooter. I will make sure to report back as to what was successful and what was not to give you some more tips for touring with your dad. This is going to be so fun, dont you think?!!

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Old 04-23-2013, 12:03 PM   #10
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What a wonderful opportunity for you to enjoy your Dad's company at Disneyland!

PP have already mentioned some of these, but here are some I would definately do:

Listen to the Disneyland Band either at park opening, or in front of the Castle at Noon

Story of Mr. Lincoln at the Opera House

Flag Retreat Ceremony around 4:30 (go about a half hour early for a shaded bench)

Billy Hill and the Hilbillies

Train ride all around the Park (heck, do this several times for a rest)

Enchanted Tiki Room (with a Dole Whip)

Ride on the Mark Twain Riverboat

All dark rides in Fantasyland

It's a Small World

Pirates of the Carribbean

Haunted Mansion

Make sure to schedule in rest/people watching on Main Street AND in New Orleans Square (so you can listen to the jazz)

These are all things I know my parent wouls love! Have fun planning !!
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Old 04-23-2013, 12:10 PM   #11
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My dad's still young (will only be 72 this year) and is pretty active. He had a heart attack and bypass surgery in November and next week will be his first trip post-surgery. Before, he rode everything except teacups and Frrancis' Ladybug Boogie, though SM and TOT weren't his favorites. This trip, he wants to ride RSRs again, but that will probably be his only thrill ride.

As far as stamina goes, that varies so much from person to person. My dad has always kept right up with me; while my mom can't do it without a wheelchair.
(me) (DH) (DD9) (DD7) (DD0)- - - - First trip to Disneyland in 25 yrs trip report: http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2725606
Disneyland Trips -1983, 1986, May 2011 - Desert Inn & Suites, August 2011 - Super 8 on Katella, November 2011 - Desert Inn & Suites, December 2011 - Quality Inn on Manchester, January 2012 - Desert Inn & Suites, March 2012 - Desert Inn & Suites, May 2012 - Del Sol Inn, September 2012 - Del Sol Inn, November 2012 - Del Sol Inn, January 2013 - Ramada Maingate, February 2013 - Quality Inn on Manchester, April 2013 - Del Sol Inn, May 2013 - Hojo, August 2013 - Del Sol Inn, September 2013 - Desert Inn & Suites, November 2013 (one day trip!) - Welk Resort San Diego, September 2014 - Halloween Party! - Welk Resort San Diego
Disney World Trips - July 1988, January 2010 - Sheraton Vistana Resort, November 2010 (work trip - no family along) - Coronado Springs Resort

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