Friday, April 23, 2010

Cheerleaders - ALREADY!?

It's that time of year when people have to deal with hordes of rude teenagers! No, the turismos - legions of traveling teens categorized in Argentinean youth herds and Brazilian tour groups - don't fly to the MCO until June! The teens in question are the contenders of the 2010 International Cheer Union World Championships, which is on this weekend. According to the official blog for Disney Parks, over 2000 cheerleaders representing about 150 teams from about 45 nations compete in the Disney's Wide World of Sports complex.

Of course, not all misbehave and nick Guests' day-trips to, say, the Magic Kingdom, but I have read in various discussion boards that most of them are way too overzealous that those writing of their experiences can't just stand them. Over at one from, most of them have bad run-ins with them. One member who did Disney on days when cheerleaders did so likewise, she hated the way that they screamed at virtually everything - at the pool, in the parks, and on the phone! There's a wealth of "cheerleaders annoy me to death" threads" all over the WDW boards, and the ICU World Championships aren't the only times where we Guests have days (with them) like that. Those groups flock to the resort during National High School Cheerleading Championships, Contests of Champions, and the Pop Warner National Championships. If you are staying on-property, at least in the Value and a few Moderate Resorts, you'll have to use some noise-canceling headphones at night whilst sleeping. Also, the "cheerleading intervals" can cause some trouble to those sensitive to noise - especially some autistics, who has to muster through the excessive auditory sensory overload when some troupes cheer and yell throughout the park.

If I were you, I'd stay in a Deluxe Resort, own a Disney Vacation Club timeshare, or go camping in Fort Wilderness. If money doesn't allow you to stay on-property, try staying in an off-site timeshare or (even better) a vacation home. For the latter, the only occupants you have to cope with are yourself and your family. Either way, you'll less likely have to spend sleepless nights with misbehaving cheer teams. If going to the parks, arrive early, snag Fastpasses, and deal with the overzealous girls, mmkay?

(Not Just Another) Beach Party at Walt Disney World

Note: this is actually my photo from my flickr account of Blizzard Beach's lazy river, Cross Country Creek.

Howdy, all you Disneyphiles! I'm back from my day at Disney's Animal Kingdom, with a newly-published item from Trifter. This item is a review of one of the videos of the Disney's Sing-Along Songs. If you grew up in the 90's like me, some of you grew up watching Mickey's Fun Songs (before being consolidated in the parent sing-along series), the three videos where kids dance and do fun frolics with the (costumed, Fur) Disney Characters in various venues, from Walt Disney World to the arena where they watch the Ringling Bros. and Barnum Bailey Circus.

The vidéo du jour is Beach Party at Walt Disney World, and I have to admit that all of the Mickey's Fun Songs tapes, this is my absolute favorite. It not just because the all-new (to me, until hitting it last fall) Blizzard Beach, all the Character action, and the fact that some kids starred in the old PBS TV series and Together Again home video series Kidsongs entice me - it's because of the one song: "Pearly Shells." Ask me what I think when I hear the song via tape or live performance and I'll tell you that it reminded me of the video. I even remember dancing to it with my cousins on my youngest cousin's christening after-party - in a bikini top and a grass skirt. It was pure fun indeed!

Another great element of the video is the wardrobe! Bright, halcyon colors that screams "90's" in your face makes it worth watching. (Heck, it was filmed in 1995, when Blizzard Beach opened!) What I really like about the Characters is the fact that some of them wear the famous Disney-MGM Studios starter jackets in the beginning and end. (If you have discerning eyes, you may find that a few scenes were actually filmed inside two of the then-three major theme parks: Epcot in the "A Pirate's Life" segment and Disney's Hollywood Studios in the "Celebration" segment.) Oh, and let's not forget that Aladdin and Jasmine front a rock band. How nostalgic is that?

If you have seen the DVD - and I mean in its entirety - please leave a comment!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Perking Up Your Ears Of Experience!

As you may have heard, we're in the middle of Autism Awareness Month, dedicated to those living in the spectrum, like me, the author! Alas, Spring Break is in the air and the toils of a hot Florida summer is around the corner - with the anticipation of high crowds, stormy weather, and turismos who loudly chant in either Spanish or Portuguese.

OK, I get it now - most of you readers, as parents with autistic kids, are imagining those kinds of whatever that make doing Disney akin to going to a torture chamber the size of San Fransisco. Heck, I mentioned in my post on autism and Walt Disney World that the chanting and noise (aside from the colors, bright lights, and Spectromagic) can induce a meltdown! Sensory overload is what makes the (Disney) World go 'round, but a vacation agency is trying to help you and your child(ren) manage a rendezvous with Mickey Mouse.

The agency in question is Ears of Experience, which specializes in magical WDW vacays (as well as Disney Cruise Line and Disneyland) - and if you want a virgin Disney trip (no SeaWorld, BGTB, UO, or other malarkey), this is for you! Included in their package are visual itineraries and a booklet of the resort. But the site also offers tips for you and the autistic(s) on less-stress days. One of my favorites is using an MP3 player, iPod, noise-canceling headphones, or ear plugs to block the noise and racket. (It's useful this coming July, with all the Argentinean youth herds and Brazilian tour groups about to descend on Central Florida turf and carry on chanting like soccer fanatics!) My absolute favorite hint is to show the affected individuals pictures and videos on YouTube, but what they didn't mention is that social stories also aid them in mental planning.

If you haven't checked out Ears Of Experience, take a gander!