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 Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10

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Docmidnite
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PostSubject: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sun Nov 17, 2013 12:48 pm

Hi all

Figured I would type up a quick report and comment on our trip. You know the High's and Lows

The new Magic Bands.
I was skeptical about these bands. The first day getting into Disney Studios was a little difficult as well as the first meal in the AoA food court. After that though it was pretty quick and the advanced Fast Pass was pretty cool. As some of the restaurants did not have the Magic Band set up we had to still carry cards.

Art Of Animation- This place had its highs and lows for us. As we did not get the free meal plan we opted to save $$$ and did not upgrade to the suite. We ended up staying in the Little Mermaid section. Its basically the same rooms as any of the other Value Resorts just Disneyfied with Little Mermaid décor. There is a smaller pool right outside the courtyard for this section just like the Cars section has its own smaller pool. The main pool is very nice. You need your key cards to get into the main pool. No band access for pool. At least I didn't see it.
The walk from Little Mermaid to the Main hub was brutal. Well maybe not brutal but a real Pain in the rump. I really am hoping for a survey on our stay as I feel AoA should have a second bus stop at the far end of the resort (Mermaid Section). I heard quite a few people every night and morning about the trek. We would walk from the bus to the room, then get the mugs and trek back to the main hub and then trek back to the room. Twice I trekked back out for a second cup of coffee. So it was a bit exhausting. 2nd bus stop like CSR would be a plus.

Food- Well nothing spectacular here as we went cheap and did the 2 counter services per day. The AoA food court was the best I've had so far of the Values. Choices were good. Service was fast. Though I have noticed the prices have risen and the baked goods have gotten smaller. The cinnamon bun which used to feed 3 is now normal size. There were no crumb buns (Darn) and are sporting cupcakes now. The mugs are now chipped and programmed with an end date. An old mug you can still get the iced tea and coffee/hot chocolate, but the soda fountain is rapid fill. Which I don't really understand as if you get a normal cup (not on meal plan) are the paper cups chipped? Because people are getting soda with these cups?

We managed to do lunch at Beast's Castle. 25 minute wait wasn't bad. Order food from the Kiosk station inside and they cart the food out to you with their fake French accents (LOL). All the food here was good. I had the sliced beef on a baguette with horseradish mayo. Delicious. Dessert I had the lemon cream puff with raspberry on top. I am not much on cakes and such but DAMN. Kids had the chocolate cream puff and wife had the cupcake.

We only did 2 days in the parks. Magic Kingdom and Disney Studios. The crowds were not that bad and we hardly waited for rides at all. The only ride we waited for was Toy Story Midway. 90 minutes. And that time was at the end of the night. Due to this we missed festival of Lights (Grrrrr) and had to run to see Fantasmic. The whole lighted mouse ears which interacts with the show is IMO Cheesy as all hell.

DTD and such

Due to Disney botching our reservations, prior to leaving home they ended up sending me 2 coupon packs. We had 4 free Disney Quest coupons and 4 free Mini Golf coupons. We did Disney Quest for about 90 mins. I would not pay 45 dollars for this normally. To me just not worth it. For the 1st time we did Summer Winterland golf. We had a blast. These were the coolest holes and a lot of fun. Only waited about 15 mins to start here and it was a little busy. They kept it moving and they had it timed as no one was crawling up your rear.
We also had 2 coupons for 15 dollars of your bill at Planet Hollywood so we ate twice there during the trip. The last night I treated myself to a few Mojitos (PH makes a mean one).
The Disney rewards card was loaded as we amassed $193.00 in reward dollars to spend. It was like free money. I did not used my normal CC once and really didn't spend too much cash either.

Weather was overcast and a tad cool for my liking. Though I was still comfortable with shorts and a T shirt. Kids had their light sweat jackets when it got cool.

The nice thing was the wife and I did get chances to sit and talk while we were able to send the kids together on certain rides. I also discovered the snack cart in Disney Studios which had Sam Adams on tap....YUM.

Overall Disney never fails us. just has been too much fun watching the kids grow at Disney and watching their likes and dislikes change
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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:16 am

Welcome back Mike!

What did you think of fastpass +? Did you park hop or stay at one park all day?

I hear you on the kid changing. My DD is mid way through her junior year in college now and I can't fathom she may be soon out of the house for good.

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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:07 am

My God she's a Junior already??? Holy Cow. Seems like yesterday you said she was off to college.

I think once they get the Bands all up and running the fast Pass+ will work well. Thing is I had 3 fast passes scheduled on the bands for each park (Did Not park hop) and I was unsure if I could walk up and use the fast pass kiosks for additional fast passes or if I had to wait for the three I had scheduled. But the three I scheduled worked and I did use the band to set up more.

And on a lighter note our little trip for our 20th Anniversary and my 50th B-Day we will be staying at........CSR.   Annnnd we will be going without children.
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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:51 am

Time flies as they say...

When is that trip going to be?

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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Wed Nov 20, 2013 10:39 am

June 5th to 8th........Try for dinner at California Grill Thursday night, Friday for Hollywood studios and Star Wars Weekend (Geek Day for Me) and Saturday a nice leisurely day in EPCOT with my blushing bride of 20 years  
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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Tue Dec 03, 2013 7:40 pm

Great report- glad ya'll had fun! Post some pics if you get a chance. We did DQ and mini golf too. I agree, I would not pay the regular admission for DQ as fun as it is, but was worth doing that twice and golf twice since it only cost $100 for all four of us to add it on. We would pay for the golf though as this was very fun and priced pretty reasonable to other places.
We ate at PH as well, since we were at DTD anyway and with the coupon we only had to use 2 other dining credits. I wasn't impressed this time- and that's saying something since last time we went during the Super Bowl! It seemed really noisy and the service was slow, yet I felt like they were rushed and none of the staff was really friendly. The food was great though.
We checked out AoA on our way out of town (before stopping at Pepper market for lunch:) and we loved the theming- very fun! We were just walking around looking so I didn't pay attention to the walking distance. I did notice it's not very shaded so I could see the walk getting hot.
I'd like to hear your feedback on Star Wars weekend when you get back. DH was talking about doing that for our next trip maybe in 2015. I think it would be a good birthday present for the boys since the have June & July birthdays.
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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sun Dec 08, 2013 12:04 am

I actually did not bring a camera....and I truly enjoyed it. Star Wars weekend however will be a whole nother story!!Smile 





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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sun Dec 08, 2013 4:35 pm
















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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:42 pm

The view from Little Mermaid section







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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:01 am

Loved the pics you did take! Looks like your family likes to be silly like mine- the one of the kids at Winter Summerland is hilarious! And the conga line with the fish- I got all three of my big kids doing that like your daughter. Your kids look like they're growing up fast so it's nice to see you guys be able to enjoy that as a family!
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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sat Dec 14, 2013 8:11 am

We love the California Grill. Hope you get in. Find out what time the firesworks at MK are that night and try for dinner around that time. They let you go out and watch and they pipe in the music

Great pics!

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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sat Dec 14, 2013 11:27 am

Being GOOFY at Disney is a pre-requisite I believe.   Yes Sidney my son is absolutely INSANE sometimes. I have to find the pic of him laying next to the sand buried Santa at Winter Summerland. Being 15 my daughter is all into goofy Selfies.

Thanks for the info Buzz. That is our intention. I am going to book CSR this week and then try CG. Waiting for the Disney Visa bill to come. Daughter requested a laptop for Christmas. Don't need the Laptop and trip on one bill....LOL It amazes my what these kids have to do at the HS level as far as homework and projects. Unbelievable. Hoping High Honor Roll + Softball and Volleyball = a lot of financial assistance.  Very Happy 
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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Fri Jan 03, 2014 7:30 pm

It is hard to believe this was just a few years ago






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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sat Jan 04, 2014 8:51 am

Time does go so fast. Makes my head spin. DD is mid way through her junior season and will be starting her last year. It seems like I just dropped her off for her freshman year. surrender 

Some high schools in CT have begun to give kids either a tablet of laptop for school purposes. Wait till you see the cost of college books. The assistance does help and i hope you daughter has a great career so she can get some. Every little bit helps.

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PostSubject: Re: Doc's Trip report Nov 6 thru 10   Sat Jan 04, 2014 10:20 am

Oh I hear you Buzz. My DD is very interested in film, editing, writing and directing. Seems to be her passion. Wife found a Division 3 college in Rhode Island I believe who offers this as a Major and has a softball and Volleyball team. She is also a High Honor student. I figure the small  529 I have for her will just about cover the books. UGH. Hoping for Major assistance. Who knows maybe she get a job with Disney. Maybe she remakes The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes....LOL
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