Saying Goodbye To The Great Movie Ride

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Today – August 13th – marks the end of an era, as it is the last day of operation for The Great Movie Ride at Disney World’s Hollywood Studios. Now, you may be thinking “ok – who cares? Disney closes old and opens new stuff all the time!” and you’re right that Disney is always innovating and changing things up to make a better experience for their guests – but this is truly a sad closing, at least for me. This is a ride we rode every trip without fail when I was a kid – and it was a tradition I continued with my husband as an adult (in fact, we usually rode it multiple times each trip!) – and truth be told I am pretty darn sad that my son won’t ever get to experience all of the sites:

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Some of the best moments for me: getting the crap scared out of me by the “Alien” scene (even as an adult!), “Following the Yellow Brick Road” with Dorothy, and seeing whose handprints mine most closely resembled out front

I don’t think I am alone in my sadness – as Disney is predicting record high attendance today at Hollywood Studios, and is adjusting their hours accordingly. Long waits and huge crowds will be there today to pay tribute to this “Spectacular Journey Into The Movies”. I wish I could be there to bid it farewell – but alas, I can’t – and even I understand that all good things must come to an end…

Replacing the Great Movie Ride will be a ride starring your favorite Mouse couple – “Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway” – which can never replace the Great Movie Ride in my heart, but will nonetheless be a great change and a hugely popular attraction for those of all ages (said only slightly begrudgingly – as I am not happy about the change, but I know many will be – including my son who is a HUGE Mickey fan)

Now if you’ll excuse me – I will just be in the corner crying, mourning the loss of those amazing animatronic characters and scenes that will play their last performances today. Adios, Great Movie Ride

Categories: Disney in Pictures, Disney News, Disney Rides/Attractions, Hollywood Studios, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week – Unique Autograph Ideas For Your Next WDW Trip

Collecting character autographs is just one of those “Must-Do” things at Walt Disney World – there’s nothing better than a book full of the memories of meeting and interacting with your favorite Disney characters (not to mention the bragging rights that accompany it, too!). When I was a kid – “back in the day” if you will – really all we had were autograph books:

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This is like the one I used to have, and I carried it around in my neon pink fanny pack when I went to the Parks. I wish I still had it and could pass it on to my son (the fanny pack though – not so much. That can stay in the early 90’s where it belongs). Autograph books are great, but if you’re looking for a more unique way to collect signatures, check out these ideas:

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Bring along a blank mat for a picture frame for signing, and then display it at home along with your favorite photo from the trip!

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If you have multiple children (or adults!) who are collecting autographs, get each one the first letter of their name (wooden ones like this can be found at most craft stores). Then there’s no confusion on which letter belongs to which kid, too!

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This idea would require special metallic or fabric markers – but in the end would make for a pretty cool keepsake

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This might be my favorite idea of all – bringing along a stack of colored pieces of card stock/scrapbook paper (4×6 size would work perfectly), and having the characters each sign one, to later pair with a picture in a special photo album

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This Disney Character Encyclopedia is what inspired me to look up new and inventive autograph ideas – as I was thinking about getting it for my son, and read some reviews that people used it for autographs – which is a great idea – each character has their own page already in the book, so why not have them sign it?

 

I haven’t decided what we will do for autographs when we bring my son for the first time next year to Walt Disney World – might just opt for a classic autograph book for him – but for me? One of these ideas would be perfect!

TGIF!

Categories: Adult Walt Disney World, Disney Vacation Planning, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week – Is A Star Wars Resort Coming To Walt Disney World?

My son is pretty into Star Wars right now – he isn’t quite 3, so he doesn’t really “get” a lot of it – but he likes all the characters, and asks to watch it often (which makes my Star-Wars-Loving Husband very happy!)

So it’s no surprise that Star Wars has been on my mind lately – and apparently I am not the only one – as Star Wars was a BIG topic of conversation (and gossip!) at last month’s annual D23 Expo (where all Disney things new and exciting are revealed for the upcoming year and beyond!). I recently wrote about the Confirmation Of Star Wars Land coming to both the Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts in 2019, but the buzz around the expo also mentioned the possibility of a star wars themed Resort Hotel to come in the future too! Check it out:

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At this point, this is mostly just rumors, and obviously the pictures above are concept art – so who knows when it will open or what the Resort will actually be like. Disney did basically Officially Announce It on their blog, so it will likely happen – but the details all remain to be revealed. Based on the pictures above and from what the blog says, the Resort will be an “immersive experience” where you actually go on a mission and dress the part as the story unfolds around you. Sounds amazing – but – I have a feeling this might end up being pretty pricy! Could be worth it for those hardcore Star Wars fans, though!

TGIF!

Categories: Adult Walt Disney World, Disney in Pictures, Disney News, Disneyland, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week – The Disney Store I Remember

When I was a kid (not to sound old, but – might as well say “back in MY day”…), the mall was quite the place to go – the 90’s were certainly a height of the “mall” era – and it was always packed full of people shopping for anything and everything – that perfect gift, new shoes, back to school clothes – you name it, the mall had it. And one thing they had that I always, always had to check out was of course the DISNEY STORE. They had it ALL – toys, movies, a TON of stuffed animals, and of course – DISNEY movies playing all day every day!

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The oh-so-90’s look of the old Disney Stores – I LOVED the Mickey “film strip” style border

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There were adorable animated scenes depicted in the store windows

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Even more characters awaited you inside the store

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THE STUFFED ANIMAL MOUNTAIN!!! The best part! It was always a mess but was still always amazing anyway

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OMG that carpet – haha – it was something, wasn’t it?

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Pooh – meeting and greeting fans with hugs outside the Disney Store at MY local mall!

This is the pic that actually inspired this post – I was going through some old photos and found this – they used to have characters come to the Disney Store, and I remember standing in line to meet Mickey, Minnie, and Pooh too (this one was taken when our local Disney Store opened back in the early 90’s)

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The more modern Disney Store design we see in today’s malls

The Disney Store is still a magical place – but it’s WAY different than I remember. The magic is still there though – and kids still LOVE it – the stuffed animals, the movies and music playing, the fun lighting and décor – even though it’s changed, I still wish we had one at our mall (sadly it closed years ago). These days, not only are Disney Stores closing more than they are opening, but malls themselves are kind of going by the wayside – as people buy a TON online now (myself included!). Ordering online from the Disney Store’s website is pretty great – they have TONS of stuff, and are always running deals/specials – but let’s face it, it’s just not the same as going into the store and picking it out yourself.

Ah, well – times change, and while it’s fun to reminisce – I have to admit, online shopping is convenient, and can be fun in it’s own way, too! What about you – Are you lucky enough to still have a Disney Store in your local mall? Or do you prefer to get your Disney fix online (like me!)?

TGIF!

Categories: Disney in Pictures, The World Outside Disney | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week – More Details Released On Much Anticipated “Star Wars Land”

Just last weekend the Anaheim Convention Center hosted the annual D23 Expo – a chance for Disney nerds everywhere to unite and bask in all the glory that is Disney – and to learn about all the new and exciting things that Disney is working on – from movies to characters, merchandise and apparel, and of course the Disney Parks are a huge part of the Expo, too!

I wrote a few months back once news hit that Star Wars Land was officially happening, and now thanks to the D23 Expo – we know TONS more about the new lands being built at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland

 

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The lands at both locations will be officially called “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge” – and they will transport guests to a never-before-seen planet, a remote trading port and one of the last stops before Wild Space, where Star Wars characters and their stories come to life!

They aren’t slated to open until 2019 – which stinks, but at least it gives me a lot of time to plan ahead and save up for a trip to Walt Disney World – where my Star Wars-loving husband and son are sure to have a blast exploring the new land (who are we kidding – I am going to love it too, I’m sure!)

TGIF!

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T.G.I.F. Pic Of The Week – My Three Favorite (Disney World!) Things

There is SO MUCH to love about Walt Disney World – I could go on for days about everything that is great about it (ok – well – I DO go on and on technically that’s what this blog is all about – me expressing my undying love for Disney – but that’s neither here nor there).

When I really sit down and think about it, there are a few things that stand out for me, that really make the Disney World experience that much more magical:

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The CASTLE – that first glimpse of Cinderella’s Castle always always brings a little bit of a tear to my eye – I am just overcome with emotions – happiness, wonder, that feeling of being a kid again, gratitude – knowing how lucky I am to get to see this sight again – just means the world to me

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Mickey Waffles – I talk a LOT about The FOOD at Walt Disney World – and with good reason – there’s a lot to say about it! There are so many options to choose from when it comes to dining at Disney – and I can honestly say I have never had a “bad” meal – everything is always delicious and freshly prepared. The one food I come back to time and time again is the Mickey Waffle – served up at many different locations around the Parks and Resorts, these come in mini and large sizes, and are always served up hot – crispy on the outside, and soft on the inside. They taste amazing, and are shaped like everyone’s favorite Mouse! Oh – and if you like the idea of food shaped like a Mouse but aren’t a waffle fan – check out some other Mickey Shaped Food Options (But I mean really – who doesn’t like waffles?)

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The Haunted Mansion – This is one of my favorite rides in all of WDW – and the reason why it makes the list of “Top 3 favorite Disney things” is that my husband loves it just as much as I do – so sharing this ride with him is one of my all-time favorite Disney memories. From the deadpan cast members, to the cheesy yet creepy effects – it’s just amazing for us horror-movie loving fanatics!

 

It may seem silly, but for me, it wouldn’t be a perfect Disney trip without these 3 things – and I can’t wait to make even more memories of these and all the other things that make Disney great with my little man!

What about you – What are YOUR favorite WDW things?

TGIF!

Categories: Adult Walt Disney World, Disney Food, Disney in Pictures, Disney Rides/Attractions, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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