Thursday, February 25, 2010

Grumpy Old Fool's Take on the 15 Years Parade

"15 years - we're having a party..."

I was born before that celebratory theme song, when performers and characters grooved to the synth and horns, played throughout the 15 Years of Magic Parade in the MK. The year was 1987, and months ago, Walt Disney World reveled its 15th anniversary. Sadly, I didn't see that parade; the first Disney trip was in 1991, nearly another 5 years later. Grumpy Old Fool, a fellow blogger on Walt Disney World, describes the parade with his own eyes and experience. (Note to the GOF: I laughed at the "Port-A-John" remark!)

I had not seen that parade, but it was a marvel for those who watched it.

Oh, and if you want to see the full parade, here's the footage found on YouTube.


Monday, February 22, 2010

Taking A Break From Disney Theme Park-Wise...Again!

For the record, I'm taking a break from doing Disney - sure, I'm a Disneyphile who treats Walt Disney World like an addictive drug, but I have been branching out to other Central Florida theme parks as well. I did it last year, and to pass away the summer block-out time period, I went to Busch Gardens Tampa Bay with some distant relatives and Muetti. It was worth the long lines, out of state folks (So what, my relatives are too - mainly from Washington the state!), and turismos (more Argentinean youth herds than Brazilian tour groups, I believe).

This year, I alternate the Walt Disney World quartet with its biggest rival - Universal Orlando. That resort has half the amount of theme parks of its four-park counterpart, and UO's are Universal's Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida proper, in which I will be heading to tomorrow. If you think the Big U is better than the Big D, that's fine, but please keep the hating on the latter to yourselves. I go to UO and al other Central Florida smarm, but I am passionate about WDW.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Even Florida Residents Should Plan, Too

I have been doing Disney for nearly two decades, but there's one Florida resident (a Bay Area dweller like me) who doesn't immerse in the magic too much. She went on staycation to the World to see her niece's chorus perform. The first day started off with one bad day at the Magic Kingdom, where she critizices the rides and underwent malfunctions in entry (namely the turnstile). The only times she saw the actual Characters were on the Celebrate A Dream Come True and Spectromagic parades. She only enjoyed Wishes, the fireworks display. She went to Epcot and enjoyed it much more than the Magic Kingdom, and she stopped at Downtown Disney to see the chorus perform.

Wow - that woman must have been more accustomed to Universal Orlando than the World, but being a reader of the resort and frequenter, I'm here to give that woman some advice on where to find the Characters in the Magic Kingdom. She should have headed down to Mickey's Toontown Fair (which will be closing in the not-too-distant future, to make way for New Fantasyland) and headed to the Toontown Hall of Fame. If she were to meet Ariel, she should have gone to Ariel's Grotto in Fantasyland. Finding the characters at the Magic Kingdom is just as simple as grabbing a Guidemap (with character greetings marked by a pointing Mickey glove) and Times Guide. Oh, and the actual city of the World is Lake Buena Vista - it's all in the planning.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Jackets Were Required

How many of you went to Disney's Hollywood Studios?
(everybody raises hands)
All right, how many of you went when it was named Disney-MGM Studios?
(few hands come down)
OK, how many of you went there before the Sorcerer's Hat was erected?
(few hands come down)
How many of you have seen the Disney Characters in bomber jackets at that time?
(crowd is confused)

That's how it was back in the day - when Disney's Hollywood Studios (ahem - Disney-MGM Studios) was when those Characters were hip, cool, and integrable to the overall atmosphere of the park. The menagerie wore starter jackets - satiny, bright, and totally 90's - and the way they don the hippest frocks there dates back to 1989, the first operating year of the premises. Of course, not all Characters wore the outerwear that defines the identity of Disney-MGM Studios. Only Mickey (in his blue and gold jacket), Minnie (in her gold, pink and blue jacket over her signature polka-dot dress with either her bow or blue and pink baseball cap), Goofy (in a gold and green jacket and a baseball cap), Chip and Dale (both in red and green jackets and baseball caps), Pluto (in a blue and magenta jacket and baseball cap), Donald (in a blue and green jacket and baseball cap), and Roger Rabbit (in a red and purple jacket and baseball cap) practiced the nostalgic custom of the costume. In this video, towards the end, the latter greets Guests in his Studios-friendly raiment (noting it was the summer of 1990, a feel good time)

Having been to Walt Disney World numerous times since 1991, I had my fill of seeing Mickey and his dolled-up-for-the-90's friends, and the last time I've seen them was during spring break 1997. Some of the characters mentioned were out and about greeting Guests at the Animation Courtyard, namely Minnie, Donald, and Pluto. Little did I know that they were wearing those frocks that made me feel good inside. Those memories comprise some pure Disney nostalgia to me. I think that year was the last time they wore them historically (or even 1998 if I'm happy). Take the 1997 picture with Dale, a male, and Goofy, for example.

Well, with Roger Rabbit already phased out of the Disney Character roster years ago (will hopefully be back sometime in the future, when Roger Rabbit 2 comes out), the Sorcerer's Hat present, and the characters now greeting in their daily generic (no, classic) garb, I think of the Hollywood that never was (without the hip in the sporty, loud jackets) and never will be.

Kid Fail

On one of my previous posts, I posted that excerpt from Beauty and the Beast - Live on Stage! when Adam the Beast himself shows the effects of wearing his pants two sizes too large. (Hey, I even wrote an article on that, too!) That video comes from the blog site of errors and unexpected surprises: FailBlog.

Of course, very few home movies taped during the ritual family vacation at Walt Disney World make it to FailBlog, but there's one video in particular in which a kid falls off a model fire truck at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2001. That video in particular is Kid Fail,  and it's really close to a million views.

To me, regarding the date of the vid, that sounds a lot like Disney MGM Studios WIN.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lent at Disney not Much of A PITA

Observing Lent at Disney? No problem - there are a lot of good eateries around the parks that offer seafood or vegetarian offerings! Veggie burgers at Pecos Bill's Cafe, fish at Coral Reef Restaurant, and many more. Oh, and all the character meals have meatless or seafood menu items, so that you too (as a Catholic or really observant Christian) can enjoy dining with your Disney friends without having to worry about meat on the plate. I wrote an article about how to survive your Friday at Disney when Lent rolls around.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Year of the Tig(g)er

Yessiree - today is the Lunar New Year, and guess what Disney Character is represented!

That's right - today marks the start of the Year of the Tiger - or should I say, Tigger. That lovable Hundred Acre Wood feline is getting attention today (except for his kickboxing instructor skills practice on a teen over 3 years ago)! There he is, greeting a family in 1994, possibly in what used to be Mickey's Starland in the MK.

Oh, and today is also Valentine's Day - so let's celebrate a day of love by watching an excerpt of a tale as old as time and pants as big as Connor McCreaddie's!

Happy V-Day, everybody!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Hey, Disneyphiles! Remember the old Main Street Electrical Parade you watched as kiddos at the Magic Kingdom? No? If you haven't, bring the kids this summer only (I know that it's hokey thanks to the Brazilian tour groups, Argentinean youth herds, storms, out-of-towners, and what not, but it's worth it!) to have them share your pre-Spectromagic pastime with you! According the the Mouse's official blog, the parade will have a limited engagement as part of its Summer Nightastic! event going on. (There will also be new lighting for the Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios, but that's another story.)

If you are a MSEP fanatic or someone who have not seen it, check it out - just go to MK just to see the procession and snag a spot an hour before parade time.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Guess Who's Going to Disney World!

Last night's Super Bowl was a big one - the New Orleans Saints clobbered the Indianapolis Colts 31-17! For its MVP, Drew Brees, that can mean one thing -


You heard it - he uttered the iconic phrase just like 41 others since the conception of the "What's Next" campaign rolled out by Disney Parks in 1987. He's in for a real treat - a ticker-tape parade at the Magic Kingdom, with Disney Characters and cheering tourists. To top it all off, the World is just 3 hours from Miami! When someone posts the vid on YouTube, I'll put it up later.

Feeling happy, Princess Tiana?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Seems Like A Slow Season for Turismos

The Disney Hollywood Studios foray I had last week was pretty calm - just an hour wait at Toy Story Midway Mania and almost walk-ons with the rest of the attractions. Muetti went for the car later in my day-trip, so I went alone to have my pics with the Playhouse Disney menagerie. (Call me immature, but although I don't care for the kiddie show block on the Disney Channel, I feel like meeting the Characters.) Contrary to seasonal prediction, I saw just one Argentinean youth herd - no loud, rowdy, obnoxious-to-many Brazilian tour group or such to see. I checked the dates of various turismo sites and found they were doing Disney much later, increasing the likelihood of more turismo activity.

I am fantasizing on another day-trip between now and the 16th of this month, when Carnival is in full swing. Maybe then I'll see (and possibly hear) more turismos!