Monomails and Kylo meets Kylo a April 2018 Trip Report- COMPLETED 7/31


Oct 27, 2016
Hi Everyone! this is my first trip report (after many trips to WDW) although I love reading them. I have gotten some great ideas from peoples reports so hopefully this will help others. Both my wife and I went to WDW as kids, but now that we have our own family we love taking them.

So what are the details of our trip?
- When: April 21-28
- Where: Port Orleans Riverside
- Why: Our last Disney vacation before the little guy turns 3 (and thus is no longer free), and Deb is running the Star Wars Half!
- Who: The family

Me- Tim
Trips - many, but 5 to WDW since 2012
Favorite Character- Goofy
Favorite Park- EPCOT
Favorite Ride- BTMRR (Might be FOP, but I've only been on it once).

Trips- more than me but 6 times since 2012
Favorite Character- WALL-E
Favorite Park- EPCOT
Favorite Ride- RRC


Trips- 5
Favorite Character- Kylo Ren
Favorite Park- MK
Favorite Ride- Mine Train

Trips- 3
Favorite Character- Simba
Favorite Park- MK
Favorite Ride- who knows (he's 2)!

Table of Contents
- Day 1: Departure/ Arrival Day
- Day 2: Darkside Half and MK
- Day 3: HS and Flower and Garden
- Day 4: Resort Day and Galactic Night
- Day 5: AK
- Day 6: MK all day
- Day 7: EPCOT
- Day 8: Heading Home

Thanks for reading I hope you enjoy the pictures and our adventures for the week!
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Oct 27, 2016
Day 1: Departure/ Arrival Day
Our story starts here at the early hour of 3am. Our trip actually started the day before on Friday. Deb gathered the family from daycare and school and met me south of Burlington VT (closer to where I work) and we drove to CT and my in-laws from there. Why? Flights out of JFK were remarkably cheaper than out of BTV and were direct as well. Plus we had to drop his knucklehead off at my in-laws for the week.


Sorry buddy you can't come. But anyway, we get there at about 10pm on Friday night get settled for our short stay and we are up at 2:30 and in the car right on time.

Getting to JFK was uneventful and we are there in plenty of time for our like 6am flight. Of course we are a little delayed leaving (something about flight personnel being late from another flight), but no worries we kill sometime with some smoothies and pictures.
IMG_2527 (1).jpg

We board about half hour late. Doesn't matter they are excited!

We are in the air shortly afterward, still scheduled to land by 9, so we will have most of the day in WDW. We land and quickly change then head straight to....IMG_9538.jpg

Everyone's excited and pretty tired considering our lack of sleep. We have to wait a bit for the bus (it's a Saturday), but we make it to our resort at about 10:30. I'll put this picture here but we actually only used the main entrance to POR once, and it wasn't on DME. IMG_2543.jpg

It's way to early for our room to be ready, but we pick up stroller and leave our bags. Grab something to eat from the food court and on to our next adventure for the day!

Continued Here!
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DIS Veteran
Jan 1, 2014
Following, we stayed at POFQ 4/24-4/29/18. We love the POR resorts, we have stayed at both. Early morning flights are the best so you can have more time at Disney!


Oct 27, 2016
Ok so I left off right after we finished eating (no one had anything special just basic burgeres etc..) and are trying to decide what to do for the rest of the day. We need to go to ESPN and the Expo to get Deb's bib for tomorrow and then what to do from there. We have some fastpasses for MK in the later afternoon, but do we have the energy for that. I also have a headache from the early morning and flying. So I'm drinking as much water as I can, but I'm convinced I want a nap after the expo. Either way we'll decide that later. While we wait for the bus we take a quick stop in the gift shop.

The hats will be a theme this trip. Not long after we go in the Run Disney bus arrives and we jump on and head to the expo. Lots of really cool stuff there, and of course we take lots of pictures.

I'm a huge Yankee fan so this was a must take photo!


Not surprisingly D was running around and ran square into the corner of this case right after I took this picture. Oh well, he's stunned but fine. On to keep exploring, Deb meets Jeff Galloway.

and the Millennium Falcon is there in cardboard form!

Then we keep walking around taking pictures!

Our rooms not ready yet, but good news is my headache is manageable so off to MK we go. We jump on the bus for the Grand Floridian. On the way we get the text our room is ready. We then take to "Monomail" as D calls it for the rest of the trip. We get to MK around 1:30. It's predicted as a heavy crowd day which is fairly accurate.


We decide not to do too much, we use our FP for Pirates. We get in line at 2:09 and wait 15 minutes. When we get off it's crowded so we just mobile order some Dole Whips and decide to head back to the resort for a big surprise for the kids!
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Oct 27, 2016
Ok so getting back to the hotel was uneventful. We get in line for the bus at 3:00 and are back at POR at 3:30. Would have been faster but the bus does stop at all four stops around the resort before taking us back to the front. We get off and head for our building in the Magnolia Section. This ended up being the perfect building for us, and you'll see why as we go through our trip. Primarily it's close enough to POFQ that we are able to use many of the amenities there.

The surprise for the Kids (mostly M) is that we booked......


A Royal Room!





The detail in these rooms is awesome. We requested a ground floor room which we got, and it's garden view. Although view doesn't really matter here but a couple times we were able to take advantage of the court yard.

We quickly notice how peaceful and quiet POR is. This is our first family trip staying full time at a moderate (we stayed for one night at CSR in December and were not impressed), and this might be our favorite resort so far. Lots of things worked perfectly for us through this trip that contributed to this opinion.

Anyway, I'm all set for a nap! Deb takes the kids out to explore for about an hour.





Continued in the next post (I'm out of room).


  • tbholc81

    Oct 27, 2016
    When they get back to the room it's time to find some dinner. All we planned on doing was taking advantage of our proximity to DS. Deb has to run the half tomorrow so she doesn't want anything heavy. Deb briefly talks about how we might want to stay at POR cause it's getting late. I talk her into DS. "It'll be quick" I said, "There's a boat!"

    So we head to the dock, this resort really is pretty.

    So we wait FOREVER for a boat, essentially because we are three boats deep. The boat ride also took us longer than I thought, but no big deal. On the way there we decide to try Blaze Pizza. We've never tried it before reviews are good for the most part. It's a chain but given how long this has taken so far we hope its quick. We get there and it was pretty easy. M and I split a bacon pizza (her favorite) and Deb and D get the BBQ Chicken.

    grilled chicken, mozzarella, red onion, banana peppers, gorgonzola, bbq sauce drizzle.

    Even though the line looked long it moves you right through, pizza cooks quick and was rather tasty. I guess we were too tired to remember pictures, but it's a pizza. It looks and tastes like pizza. Once we are done we don't linger too much. We have some DS time planned later in the week. We head back to the boat and to our room. Everyone is tired from the long day and we are in bed about 9.

    Tomorrow- Star Wars Half, MK, and something awesome for the fireworks!
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    Oct 27, 2016
    What a long day. I cant wait to read about the rest of the trip.
    Thanks, hopefully I'll be able to get another post up tonight.

    Your the second report today that showed pictures of the Royal Rooms and I just love them!
    They are really great with all of the details. The ids really loved the fireworks over the beds. They had to watch them several times before bedtime every night.
  • tbholc81

    Oct 27, 2016
    Day 2: Dark Side Half and MK
    Everybody sleeps like rocks which is not a surprise after the day we had yesterday. Deb is up super early for the race so she sneaks out. The kids and I get up at 7:30. I have been getting her race updates on my phone so I figure Deb is going to finish about 9, which gives us plenty of time. I have messed this up before so I'm on it this time. Deb's first half marathon was the Princess about 5 years ago. I attempted to drive to Epcot and got super detoured and didn't see her finish. So this I've got it under control. Kids get up and we snack on a few things we packed for breakfast and out of the room about 7:45.

    IMG_2540 (1).jpg
    The Run Disney bus is there waiting so we get right on and are on our way at 7:55. We get there no problem and pick a place in the stands at the finish line. It was our plan to go into Epcot to see Deb run through the park, but a cast member tells us they are letting people into the park.

    The Run Disney Pictures are way better!

    PhotoPass_Visiting_WDWRUNDISNEY_8223785649 (1).jpg



    So, Deb finished about 8:50 and we mill around to see if we can meet any characters. We spot Captain Phasma and her line is not too long, plus we can't meet her anywhere else so we stop there.


    All of the other lines are out of control, and we have met most of the characters at one time or another so we decide to get going. Now originally we thought we would head into EPCOT to eat and then enjoy some of Flower and Garden before we head to MK, but it's way too early for that and Deb wants a shower. So we head back to POR. We are back there about 10:30, we grab a quick breakfast, Deb showers, and we get ready for our day at MK. Kids are pumped especially M, who picked out her Moana dress.



    There is time for some "Way Finding" on our way to the bus (Man POR is really awesome for pictures)!


    We luck out an meet the bus to MK as it's pulling in. We are on our way to the park at 11:44.
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    Oct 27, 2016
    The bus ride to MK is pretty quick, one of the any things that we loved about POR was the location. It seemed like even though you need to take a bus everywhere, all of the rides are short. Usually we are a rope drop family with a break after lunch and back to the parks in the evening. Today's schedule doesn't give us that option especially since we have a surprise in store for the kids tonight. So, our plan is to stay in the park till about 7. We have FP for Talking Mickey, Space Mountain, and 7DMT. We are also expecting pretty heavy crowds today, but are pretty surprised as we head into the park. It's not like there is nobody here but it looks very manageable. D insists on scanning his band like everybody else although it doesn't do anything.


    Our first stop is Tinkerbell, we walk right in.


    Now on our last trip D, couldn't wait to meet the princesses. He loved hugging them and sitting with them, but this trip we couldn't get him to go near any. He wanted nothing to do with Tink, so just M in the pictures.


    After we are finished it's time for our FP with Talking Mickey. We get in line at 12:23 and move pretty quickly into the room. This Talking Micky was awesome, carrying on all sorts of conversations with people, asks deb about her medal, and talked to M about Moana. Our other experiences with Talking Mickey only involved him saying his normal phrases. D loves Mickey and was not shy like he was with Tink.



    We are done at 12:40, nice and quick, then we shop for a few minutes. We decided to head over to Tomorrowland. We have a FP for Space Mountain, but we decide we would only use it if M is tall enough. We stop at the purple wall for a picture.


    We see that the Laugh Floor is only a 10 minutes wait. We get in line at 12:58 and the 10 minute wait time is about right. Always a funny show, and when we are done it's starting to rain a little. We grab the stroller and walk over to Space Mountain, but M is still too short. Oh well, no big deal. We don't feel like rider swapping and riding by ourselves, and in the short walk D fell asleep. I'm off to find shade with D and Deb and M go to meet Merada.


    Then they jump on the Teacups...


    I found a cozy spot (not really but it's shady) by the bathrooms next to Pinocchio Village Haus. When Deb and M find me M really wants some popcorn and Deb wants a pretzel. Fine, I know exactly where to go, and M tags along. This was a mistake! I decide that there is definitely both things at the cart in the Hub. Nope, they have pretzels but no popcorn. No problem, they tell me there is a cart in Liberty square with popcorn, which is fine I think we'll just walk back that way. Nope again, that cart's machine is broken, yeesh. No problem I KNOW there is one in Frontierland, and I'm right. But we have walked all the way down past Pecos Bills. I got the popcorn and head back to Deb, and by this point we are dodging and weaving around people waiting for the parade to start. Once we finally get back (and it's been awhile since we left) Deb asks why I didn't just walk right into Fantasy Land to get it.... sigh


    D soon wakes up and we head over to Dumbo. Posted wait time is 25 minutes which we figure isn't a big deal because the kids will play in the little playground. When we get in there the cast member tells us that we don't need a buzzer and can just walk right to the ride. Kids decide they want to play anyway.


    After a while we decide to get them to go on the ride, we head out and practically walk on, so not even close to a 25 minute wait. What's next? Our 7DMT FP and coming up, the best evening of the trip!


    Oct 27, 2016
    We left off heading onto Dumbo, much less of a wait than posted. This would be another theme for most of the trip, posted wait times were over estimated.

    Here's some pictures of Dumbo!IMG_2561.jpg


    Always a favorite with the kids!

    It's finally time for a FP so we head over to 7DMT. We have to rider swap; D is a inch or two too short. Still a fun ride M loves it!



    We are done fairly quickly, my notes say about 20 min for both of us to ride, and now what? We are hungry and time for some dinner. I'm missing an hour in my notes here so I'm guessing this is what we did. We've got some good eats coming later so we settle on Pinocchio Village Haus. Deb gets a flatbread for her and D, I get chicken Parm, and M gets chicken breast nuggets. D ends up eating most of my spaghetti and sauce. Everything tastes good, sorry no picture I keep forgetting (but I promise the more interesting foods I take pictures of later). Once we are done we have time to kill before our special treat for the fireworks, so we decide to just start walking around Fanastyland and seeing what we can get on.

    It's 4:45 and Philarmagic is posted 10 minutes, sure lets go! It's walk on, only waiting was for the theater doors to open.



    D does not like the glasses!


    Oh well blurry screen for him. I really love this show, you can always get right on and it's all the movies from when Deb and I were growing up. At the end D notices Donald in the wall, and is super worried about him!

    Next M requests a few minutes to shop, which is fine. We try on some hats!



    Next its onto a Rollercoaster for D, The Barnstormer. Again posted a 30 minute wait, but it doesn't look that long. We are right we only wait about 20 minutes, in line at 5:15 on the ride by 5:35.


    Continued next post!



    Oct 27, 2016
    On the Barnstormer!


    It's short but D is excited he got to go on a rollercoaster. Next time he'll be tall enough to ride a few more things.

    He definitely enjoyed it!



    Next we head over to the Little Mermaid, M decides she doesn't want to meet Ariel but we ride the ride. It's posted a 10 minutes wait which is about right.


    When we get off the kids spot the King Triton statue and run around that for a few minutes.


    Next its over to IASW, another posted 10 minutes wait, but we walk right in down the ramp and are only in line for a couple minutes. My notes say we were in line at about 6:19. Once we get off that it's time to get walking. We are heading to the Contemporary for what will become one of our favorite things from this trip (and one of the best experiences we've had at WDW)!.

    We spot this on the way out!


    We have to be at the Contemporary at 7:30 so we gave ourselves plenty of time! We get to the lobby at 7:08. For what you might ask? Here's a sneak preview!


    Next Post A Pirate Cruise!



    DIS Veteran
    Mar 10, 2015
    Wonderful report so far!
    We quickly notice how peaceful and quiet POR
    I love POR for that exact reason. I've only stayed FQ though, but it probably has the most efficient RunDisney buses of any!

    posted wait times were over estimated
    I would totally take this any day over them being underestimated and it end up affecting the rest of your plans.

    Congrats to Deb on her half-marathon!! I have yet to make it out for SW race weekends, as it currently clashes with work, but it is definitely on the bucket list!


    Oct 27, 2016
    I would totally take this any day over them being underestimated and it end up affecting the rest of your plans.
    Yes I definitely agree, you'll see over the rest of our days it was like that throughout the trip. Overall the crowds were pretty good!


    Oct 27, 2016
    Congrats to Deb on her half-marathon!! I have yet to make it out for SW race weekends, as it currently clashes with work, but it is definitely on the bucket list!
    Deb says thanks! She said the race was really fun! Next year race weekend is earlier due to Easter, maybe you can make it out!


    Oct 27, 2016
    Ok time for our big night on the Pirates and Pals Cruise! We've really been looking forward to this and I had only read great reviews about it. The other reason we wanted to do with was to meet Mr. Smee. He is M's favorite and this is the only place to meet him, so it was a bonus. We were early getting to the Contemporary, my notes have us there at 7:08, but that's ok lots of other people are there too. We check in and M and I decide to do the scavenger hunt to kill time. This was pretty fun, I made her write the answers because she is in Kindergarten and working on that stuff. I think this paid off for us in the end because when we got back to the check in counter with the answers the lady commented on how great M did with writing, and how polite she was. Then she asked us for our name and what boat we were on, then wrote something down. I found that weird at the time.....

    They gave us bandanas which is how they know you are part of the group.

    Our pirate hosts were right on time, of course we had Patch and ummm his other friend Patch.


    They give us the low down on the evening and tell us for the first of about 100 times that there are no bathrooms on the boat.

    There is a ton of food!


    That was one side fo the buffet, the other had cheeses, chips and salsa and some pretzels
    (not as exciting). Plus there were Mickey Ice Cream Sandwiches and Olaf Bars.



    Kids got Olaf bars, which was surprising. Oh yea and cookies and a cupcake......

    The line for Captain Hook and Mr. Smee isn't too bad



    Even though you are in the room fro about 45 minutes it goes by fast. When it's time to line up they call everybody to get in lines for their assigned boats. We are Hook Row 19, which is good (odd number was the side facing MK)


    Then they start saying they need a first mate. Now I'm wondering IF this is why the check in person asked for M's name!?

    And it was they call her up to the front.



    Her job is Pretty simple, follow Patch and Captain Hook and carry the flag. She was pretty pumped!

    Continued Next Post!
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    Oct 27, 2016
    Onward to the boat!




    (Sorry for the blurry photos we were walking and trying to take pictures).

    Once we board (I think finally for the last time) we are reminded there are no bathrooms, and we are off. On the way Patch sings songs and then there was some Disney trivia. Although we are out there for an hour it doesn't seem like that long. They time the start of HEA perfectly and (much to our surprise) the view is awesome!


    IMG_2585 (1).jpg

    The way back seems short, and it begins to rain, so that worked out perfectly! And of course when we get back there is one more surprise guest!




    D was being weird around Peter, but it's also super late. After PP we walk back to the bus Depot at MK, in the rain, no big deal though. The wait for the bus was not long and we head back to POR. Not surprised by this when the bus gets back...


    We are in the room at 10:45, our plans for hitting rope drop tomorrow at HS are looking bleak.