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Disney Princes appear with their Princesses for Valentine’s Day at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World

UPDATE:  I have friends who reported waits in excess of 165 minutes for Flynn Rider and used Fastpass+ to meet them and it took them 90 minutes!

Some of Disney’s most popular Princes made a special appearance today to celebrate Valentine’s Day at the Magic Kingdom.  It was kind of funny, because the Cast Members were either being really coy about the experience in an attempt to keep the somewhat surprise or they had no knowledge who would be available.

Upon reaching the TTC, they had a bunch of pretty red and white Valentine’s Day balloons.  Most of them were totally gone by lunch.

Walt Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Valentines Day Continue reading Disney Princes appear with their Princesses for Valentine’s Day at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World


How I just got three Tier 1 Fastpass+ for Epcot and Hollywood Studios


UPDATE:  This glitch appears to have been patched overnight.   They are getting faster with their patch times 🙂


With the ever-changing world that is Fastpass+ testing, there’s a couple of things that I’ve learned or heard.  I did the following on the web version.  My Droid won’t even let me login today, uggghhh!

First thing I learned today:

You can make 3 FP+ Tier ONE choices for Epcot and Hollywood Studios with just a minor amount of effort today.  Here’s how I did that:

1.  Book your regular 1 Tier ONE FP and 2 Tier TWO FP of your choice.

2.  Change one of your Tier TWO FP and it allows you to change it to a Tier ONE FP.  Repeat process with other Tier TWO changed to Tier ONE FP, based on availability.

I was able to book Maelstrom, Test Track and Soarin’ for today with a minor amount of effort on the web version of My Disney Experience.


Moments later I repeated the process for tomorrow at Hollywood Studios and changed two Tier TWO FP for two Tier ONE FP.HS-3-FPThere’s no guarantee how long this will last.  Disney could change that within seconds of me posting or keep it forever.

Second thing I heard today:

Disney is going to test the ability to do more than 3 FP+.  This is just a strong rumor, but I heard that once you’ve used up the 3 FP+ that your allowed, you’ll be able to book another one based on availability and continue to do so throughout the day.  It would still limit you to the one hour blocks of time that currently exist.  This part hasn’t been confirmed.

In other Fastpass+ news, Disney just released a new iPhone version of My Disney Experience today.  It’s said to be much faster and smoother in operation.  My brother has this version and he likes it much better.  You can download that version in the iTunes store.  If you want full character and entertainment schedules, you should get my app though 🙂

Meet the Princes with their Princesses together as Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom celebrates Valentine’s Day

According to a trusted source, Princes will meet with their Princesses on Valentine’s Day 2014.  That means that you’ll get to see Flynn Rider with Rapunzel and Snow Prince with Snow White, Cinderella’s Prince “Charming” with Cinderella and Prince Phillip with Aurora inside Fairytale Hall in the Magic Kingdom.  In addition to these Princes, you’ll be able to find Naveen with Tiana at the Glade in the morning and Bert will meet with Mary Poppins (presumably in Town Square).  According to the source, their schedule should be 9:00am-5:00pm.  Bert’s schedule appears to end at the same time as Mary Poppins.

We met Anna and Elsa at park opening today at Epcot’s Norway pavilion and a ride on Test Track

My girls haven’t had a chance to meet Anna and Elsa since they began appearing.  My son’s basketball games required a lot of our Saturday mornings lately, but they were well worth it!  So, we decided to see if we could meet Anna and Elsa and ride Test Track before heading off to church.

We arrived at the gates at 8:20 am to find this small group of people waiting for the park to open.  Many were there specifically to meet Anna and Elsa, so it would be a foot race 🙂

Click any pic for super large photo.  Oh speaking of photos.  I’m often asked if someone can use a photo in a memory book.  Go ahead, use them in your memory books if they help!  If you place them on a website, I’d appreciate a mention.  Just don’t sell them and we’re all cool.  But, why would you sell them???

Walt Disney World, Epcot, rope drop Continue reading We met Anna and Elsa at park opening today at Epcot’s Norway pavilion and a ride on Test Track

Viva Gaia Street Party at Discovery Island in Animal Kingdom

Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Viva Gaia Street Band I’ve never been a huge fan of the “dance parties” in Walt Disney World, but my kids have enjoyed some of them throughout the years.  Viva Gaia is a good dance party as far as dance parties go.  They have vibrant visuals, fun music and use whacking, noise-making fun noodles!  Viva Gaia didn’t have any problems getting the guests involved in the festivities.

Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Viva Gaia Street Band Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Viva Gaia Street Band Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Viva Gaia Street Band

The band uses an island groove type music that is easily appealing to many people due to it’s fun beat.  The only thing I found annoying was the constant whistle blowing.  It’s like it’s Walt Disney World’s way of calling attention to a performance like Sergio the Italian Juggler or Serveur Amusant in France.

Walt Disney World, Animal Kingdom, Viva Gaia Street Band

Viva Gaia really doesn’t need the whistle and you could actually see the young leader lady smile more.  The music is the attraction and the band and leader do a great job getting all the guests involved.   I prefer Viva Gaia over DJ Anaan for the fun environment that the street band sets.  Burudika and the Tam Tams of Congo are also great choices.

Here’s a short video of the band’s performance:

If you’re visiting Animal Kingdom, be sure to check http://www.characterlocator.com show schedules to see if they are performing.  They usually only perfom when the park is expected to be quite busy.

Symphony in the Stars Fireworks to be featured during Star Wars Weekends and anniversary celebration

Disney’s Hollywood Studios will begin featuring the very popular “Symphony in the Stars” fireworks during Star Wars Weekends in May and June.  Hollywood Studios will feature Star Wars Weekends May 16-18, May 23-25, May 30-June 1 & June 6-8.  “Symphony in the Stars” Fireworks will be shown behind the Sorcerer’s Hat each night at 9:45 PM.  This is sure to be a big hit among Star Wars Weekends attendees and I advise that you find your favorite viewing location at least 30-60 minutes prior to the fireworks show as views are pretty limited at Hollywood Studios.  I’ll be updating further details on Star Wars Weekends as details are released.

In addition, Hollywood Studios will offer “Special Fireworks” at 9:30 PM on May 1st, which is the celebration of the park’s 20th Anniversary.  Disney even extended the park hours to 9:00 AM – 11:00 PM for that date as well.  Here’s hoping that they will bring out a bunch of their old characters to celebrate!

Anna and Elsa to move to yet another test schedule at Norway in Epcot

UPDATE:  The Frozen girls returned to the lame 11:00am start time on Sunday, February 16, 2014.  I’ll go check this out later in the week, but people are stating that it’s a minimum 4 hour wait.

I recently posted that many guests were having great success in meeting Anna and Elsa later in the afternoon.   Some people tried it out and found the wait to be significantly less.  Recently a few people found that Disney’s website was listing Anna/Elsa meet and greet moving to a 9:00 am to 6:00 pm schedule beginning Sunday, February 9.

I was able to confirm that this is a test schedule that will allow Disney World to see if it improves the guest experience.  They have been beginning at 11:00 am, which meant that the line would easily be 3 to 4 hours long before the ladies even arrived to meet guests.  I recommended a couple of times that they look at doing a rope drop meet and Disney has responded, of course, it could have been the hundreds of complaints at guest relations.

So, beginning Sunday, February 9 I will again recommend that you visit the ladies at rope drop and do not visit on an Extra Magic Hour morning!

Ziti Sisters show at Epcot’s Italy pavilion to come to an end.

The Ziti Sisters are a comedy troupe that performs several times per week at Epcot’s Italy pavilion.  A few years back they were created as an alternative to the hugely popular World Showcase Players act that performed in Italy before their arrival.  The World Showcase Players continued to offer their act in the United Kingdom after the Ziti Sister were created.  I appreciate the talents of the ladies in red, but never really connected with this show.  I’d much prefer to watch Sergio the Juggler.  Well, the Ziti Sisters are coming to an end on February 22, 2014.  No replacement act has been announced.  Hopefully the ladies will continue with gainful employment in Walt Disney World in other comedy acts, but I’m not really going to miss this show.

What do you think?  Did you like their show?  Did you even know it existed?

When should I meet Anna and Elsa at Epcot in the Norway pavilion?

UPDATE:  They have moved to another Test Schedule that is from 9:00am to 6:00pm which means I recommend going at PARK OPENING!


Anna and Elsa have been a HUGE hit at Walt Disney World.  They had lines forming to meet them before they even began meet and greets.  Hey, they even had people searching for them during training meets.  The lines for Anna and Elsa averaged 3 to 5 hours on many days at Epcot and many fans were extremely frustrated.  The Disney Blog had announced that the girls would be leaving in late January, which scared a number of guests as well.

Well, the lovely ladies from Arendelle continue to meet in Epcot and will for quite some time.  Disney is even working toward building them a better meet and greet location somewhere.  They hope to keep them in Norway.

I used to recommend that you go straight there at park opening and wait two hours, because it was the shortest you would wait.  Because Epcot has added more time to their schedule (even though the Epcot Times Guide and MDE App don’t realize) I now recommend that you visit in the late afternoon or early evening.  The ladies are now meeting from 11:00 am to 9:00 pm with short breaks.  (They often take a longer break from 8:00-8:30 pm).

Don’t waste your good touring time for attractions like Test Track and Soarin to head over here.  Go to those attractions and meet the other characters in the park, then come over in the afternoon.  I’ll be writing touring plans that include this information very soon.

Here’s the information on their location.

Do you think my advice is sound or the ramblings of a crazy pirate?

Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall in Norway at Epcot including Belle’s Christmas dress

Well, it only took me a month to finally begin to catch up on some of the photos I took way back in December.  I still have several more Christmas resorts meets to post too.  Hey, it’s still really cold outside and many states including Alabama are receiving snow.  I thought I’d post the photos that I took at Akershus back last month.  Many character fans will enjoy the photos of Belle in her red Christmas dress and Ariel in her sea foam green dress.

Walt Disney World Epcot Akershus Royal Dining Princess Character Meal (1) Continue reading Princess Dining at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall in Norway at Epcot including Belle’s Christmas dress