Oct 7-11, 2019 "I Thought It Has Been Slow"


Earning My Ears
May 14, 2018
"I thought the parks have been slow"

Our kids both asked my wife and I that during the second park day (Tuesday October 8). The parks were packed for the first time since Spring Break, and after hearing about the low crowds all summer long, we should have known this was coming.

So yes we were at the parks for the the first time since 2016 during "THAT week" (we squeezed in a WDW trip in 2017 and usually hit DL once a year, but after WDW we needed a break). Now granted, we were with a group that does not get around very quickly so our expectations of getting on hundreds of rides over 5 days were already curbed. We are usually park-commando's but this time we had to be more patient with our aggressive touring. We were able to finally see SWGE and Mission BREAKOUT, and for our fist time attend a Halloween Party. Here is our impressions of the week:

Monday October 7: Rope dropped Fantasyland and did PP, Dumbo, Alice, & Mad Tea Party before heading to Toontown. We made it back to Toontown at 9:05 (Toontown opened at 9am that day) and went to see Minnie & Mickey. Minnie was MIA (although we did have a great photo op with Pluto right by her house) so we went to Mickey's house. Mickey must have been catching up on laundry because while there was only one group in front of us in his house, we ended up waiting about 30 minutes to meet Mickey. Talk about a inauspicious start. After meeting the main Mouse, we tried to pay Minnie another visit. CM's said she would be "out in a minute" only to swing by 10 minutes later to say "it would be another 30 minutes." So much for that :-). So we went ahead and rode Gadget's and Roger Rabbit and with still no sign of Minnie, we went on our way. We went back to Fantasyland to finish all the other rides there as well as lunch at Red Rose Tavern (with Belle walking through a few times to our surprise). That afternoon included Mickey & the Magical Map and a trip on IASW. Lots of shopping, too. That afternoon, we made it back to SWGE. The walk into the land is underwhelming, but when you get that first look at the Millennium Falcon it does take your breath away. MFSR is a fun ride (nothing earth shattering) and we ended up doing it a few other times with about an hour wait each time. As we walked from the Falcon down toward Critter Country, we couldn't help but notice all the dead space. It felt like a barren desert. I know RotR is opening soon (I, of course, asked CM's at the entrance if they needed a test dummy for the ride quality assurance) but the land did lack personality. After being to Pandora in WDW I was less than impressed with SWGE. Great first day outside of trying to meet Mr. & Mrs. Mouse.

Tuesday October 8: Rope dropped DCA and headed to RSR, followed by Soarin. On our way to Paradise Pier we noticed no line for GRR, so we rode it twice. We didn't get very wet the first time but we pressed our luck with the second go and paid for it. We were soaked. After that we started to see what would be our theme for the week: High crowds and rides down! Little Mermaid (a favorite of our group) was down all morning. Many other rides around the Pier were also closed for high winds. A portion of our group went of Mission BREAKOUT and we LOVED it. It quickly became our favorite attraction. The Frozen show was wonderful as always. Later that afternoon we headed back to our hotel to get ready for the Oogie Boogie Halloween Bash. Got back to the park around 3pm for the party and it was a MADHOUSE. Between the regular crowds still there and the party crowds coming in, it was super busy. Granted, the regular park guests were still there so I figured the park would clear out once the party began in full. Wrong. For an "exclusive" (and expensive) party the crowds were almost that of a normal park day. We did the treat trails and the parade. We weren't too interested in the characters for pictures (except Dopey). The lines for RSR were about 60 minutes the entire party, which was disappointing. We were able to walk on Monsters After Dark and that did not disappoint. A few spins with Mater and then we caught the late showing of Villinous, which was.....weirdly good.

Wednesday October 9: Part of our group decided to sleep in so we got to rope drop and did a commando morning. Space Mountain, Buzz, Indiana Jones, Haunted Mansion, & Splash Mountain done in 60 minutes. Met up with our group to get Fastpass' for Big Thunder Mountain and hung around the area before riding it. I always love Big Thunder. Back into SWGE again for a spin and then back to Adventureland. At this point we find out that Maxpass and Mobile-Ordering are down in the parks, which was immediately felt by the crush of humanity around the parks. Everywhere you went was packed. It felt like a 4th of July or New Years Eve, not a random Wednesday in October. We made the best of it and took in ambiance and shows in between a few more rides (Autotopia, Buzz, Star Tours, etc.).

Thursday October 10: We took advantage of our Magic Morning in DL to quickly ride Space Mountain and Buzz again before heading next door to DCA. We tried to rope drop Mission BREAKOUT, but once we got in line we were informed that just ONE elevator shaft was working, so what appeared to be a 5 minute wait would be more like 30. So I grabbed Fastpass' for 40 minutes later and we went to Pixar Pier. Incredicoaster: closed. Toy Story Mania: closed. Emotional Whirlwind: closed. We knew the Incredicoaster was closed on the way across the park, but the other two closed as we were rounding the Pier. Super frustrating, especially since we had lunch planned back at DL. So we went back over to Mission BREAKOUT and used our Fastpass, which was great since only one shaft was up and the line was 120 minutes per the app. Once we hopped over to DL we were back in Tomorrowland to ride the Monorail and Astro Orbitor. During this time I reviewed the app and Splash, Haunted Mansion, & Big Thunder were all down for at least 30 minutes during a 2 hour span. Crazy! While some of the little ones were going on the Orbitor, my son and I decided to get in line for Buzz since it was "only" 20 minutes. After about a minute in line, we noticed the wait time for Star Tours went from 45 minutes to 20 minutes, so we went across the way and got in line for Star Tours instead. The wait ended up only being 10 minutes. We rode it again (the lines was about 15 minutes the second time, and back to 45 minutes once we exited ride two) before the little ones were even loaded onto the Orbitor. The crowds were high and the rides being down elsewhere was really crushing the ones that were active. We really would slow down in the evenings to enjoy the parks and just relax, but we really didn't have much choice with the crowds being so crazy.

Friday October 11: Really just a lot of going back and doing things a second or third time. The highlight was our River Belle Fantasmic! Dinner. I was skeptical, but it was a great atmosphere and we had a wonderful time.

All and all we are the type of family that has a great time at DL no matter what. I knew it would be crowded, but I was surprised by exactly how crowded it was. We always wanted to try a Halloween party and now we can say we have, but in honesty I would never do it again. We want to go back again during the Holiday season since it's been about a decade since we've seen Walt's place decorated for Christmas. Until next time DL, TTFN!


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