Walt Disney World is not just for kids

Walt built Disneyland for the entire family. Disney Parks are not just for kids. The Mature Mouse™ has discussed this many times. Walt Disney World has developed into a destination, as large as the city of San Francisco. Imagineers are constantly adding more more lodging, activities, and entertainment that appeal the adult traveler. This article, from Disney Rewards, takes a look at the grown up, mature, adult oriented side of Walt Disney World.
THEME PARKS & TRAVEL

The Adult’s Guide to Walt Disney World® Resort

August 13, 2018

Adult's Guide to Walt Disney World Resort

When people say Walt Disney World® Resort has something for everyone, they don’t just mean kids of all ages—they mean adults too! From world-class cuisine and cocktails to R&R that will recharge the mind and body for serious fun, here are just a few fun ways to plan your getaway out of the world of “adulting” and into vacation mode.

Go Wild on a Private Safari Adventure

Disney Animal Kingdom animalReady to take a walk on the wild side… literally? The only thing more thrilling than an animal encounter on Kilimanjaro Safaris at Disney’s Animal Kingdom® is the VIP access and adventure Guests can find “off-road” on Wild Africa Trek, an exclusive hike through an environment modeled after untamed African terrain. Walk along the grassland, cross a rope bridge and ride in a rugged safari vehicle over an open savanna – viewing African animals like giraffes and hippos.

Train Like a Chef at Epcot®

Mango SaladDo your taste buds savor the new and exciting? During this year’s Epcot® International Food & Wine Festival, you can roll up your sleeves for a hands-on culinary lesson with chefs and beverage experts. Attendees of Mix It, Make It, Celebrate It will learn to whip up sweet treats, savory sensations, and pair with cocktails, spirits and wines.

Relive Your Favorite Attractions

Rock n Rollercoaster AerosmithStep onboard the iconic attractions you know and love, whether it’s the chills of Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean, the twists and turns of Space Mountain or Rock ‘n’ Rollercoaster Starring Aerosmith, or the ultimate drop with The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Want to combine nostalgia with the all-new? Become the size of a toy alongside Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Jessie and the rest of the gang at Toy Story Land—all in the so-much-larger-than-life setting of Andy’s backyard.

Brave the Newest Thrills

Expedition Everest attractionBeing an adult means never having to read the “You Must Be This Tall” signs again, but it still takes a bit of courage to reach the heights of Walt Disney World Resort’s newest, most innovative attractions. Climb to the “peak” of excitement on Expedition Everest, take a breathtaking 3D voyage on Avatar Flight of Passage, and experience intergalactic awe and new destinations on Star Tours – The Adventures Continue.

Experience a Different Kind of Tiki Room

Friends at Trader Sams Grog GrottoGet in the “aloha” spirit at Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto, the popular watering hole that’s adults-only after 8 PM. Sit out in the open air or inside the lounge, sip flavorful cocktails straight out of an island paradise (including spiked Dole Whips, an adult twist on a classic treat) and keep your eyes peeled for eye-popping surprises whenever certain drinks are served.

Plus, it’s adjacent to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, placing it a short stroll away for Guests who feel like staying in a tropical state of mind!

Ride the ‘Rail, Then Raise a Glass

Cocktails and food from restaurantIf culinary delights and crafty cocktails are always on your mind, we have an idea that will really throw you for a loop: the Highway in the Sky Dine Around, a dining experience along the world-famous Monorail. Providing five courses across three different Resort destinations, this classy “commute” brings you delectable views and a one-of-a-kind ride to go with savory and sweet dishes and world-class cocktails.

Get Pampered by the Pros

Senses Spa experienceHey, we get it: being an adult can get a little tense. Take the time to unwind, breathe deep, and give your senses the royal treatment at Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort. From fitness facilities to massage therapists, body wraps to facials, you can leave revitalized and ready for more fun to come. Cardmembers can relax even more knowing that using their Disney Visa Card saves them 15% on their spa experience.1

“Spring” Into All the Possibilities

Shopping at Disney SpringsLooking to dance after dinner, indulge in some “shopping therapy,” or wine and dine with options inspired by award-winning chefs and a Master Sommelier? Take a stroll through Disney Springs® and you’ll find all this and more in store. International apparel, accessories and cosmetics, snacks and sweets, and entertainment like bowling, movies, and live music are just a few of the possibilities to choose from. After dark, you can kick the night into high gear with themed bars and nightlife from all over the world, including The Edison, and spots exclusive to the Springs, including Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar.

With all these possibilities and more, it’s a good time to remember one of the great things about being an adult: you get to make the decisions!

New Scene Debuts in Pirates of the Caribbean at Walt Disney World

This article, by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins, is a look at the recent revisions to Pirates of the Caribbean at Walt Disney World. The Mature Mouse™️ is looking forward to seeing these updates during my upcoming trip.

New “Politically Correct” Redhead Scene Debuts in Pirates of the Caribbean at Disney World

https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/2018/03/19/new-politically-correct-redhead-scene-debuts-in-pirates-of-the-caribbean-at-disney-world/
— Read on collinsrace1.wordpress.com/2018/03/19/new-politically-correct-redhead-scene-debuts-in-pirates-of-the-caribbean-at-disney-world/

Tour of Star Wars Land

D23 Expo is this weekend, and we Disney fans are eagerly awaiting information about all things Disney.

“D23 Expo presents three full days of “inside-the-magic” experiences you won’t find anywhere else, including exclusive sneak peeks at upcoming films from The Walt Disney Studios, dazzling celebrity appearances, unforgettable presentations given by Disney luminaries, a look at what’s coming from Disney Parks and Resorts and Walt Disney Imagineering, the Disney Legends ceremony, and the Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives exhibition, which spotlights crown jewels from Disney’s timeless legacy (d23.com).”

A very detailed model of Star Wars Land has one of the first things revealed during the media previews. Below is a guided tour through the model of Star Wars Land by  Imagineer Scott Trowbridge at D23 Expo 2017. The Mature Mouse™ believes that, based on this model, Star Wars Land will advance the evolution of theming in Disney Parks.

Thanks to Inside the Magic for this video. 

Why Disney?

The Mature Mouse™ has begun planning for my next solo trip to Walt Disney World. And, just as they did before my last three trips, family and friends still ask me the same questions.

  • “Why do you always choose to vacation at Walt Disney World?”
  • “You have already been there several times, haven’t you seen and done everything?”
  • “You can go on rides at other cheaper amusement parks. So, why spend all that money going to Walt Disney World?”

Disney Parks are NOT amusement parks. Regardless of their location, Disney Parks are theme parks, and there is a clear difference. An amusement park is filled with rides and entertainment experiences unrelated by theme. Amusement parks do not immerse guests into a story or narrative. Whereas, a theme park relies on the art of storytelling, and no one does it better than Disney. Walt was the master of storytelling, which is reflected in his animations and Disneyland, the original Disney theme park.

Amusement parks are designed for guests to run from ride to ride. It is unfortunate that many Disney guests tend to do that. Disney creates a unique world, featuring attractions the allow guests to become part of a story.

Susan Veness, the author of The Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World, discusses the magic of storytelling created by Disney Imagineers.Unknown

“Enter a Walt Disney World theme park and you have the Imagineers’ promise that you will experience unforgettable stories. Each land and attraction is like a multilayered, immersive tale that transports visitors into the realm of fantasy, adventure, discovery, and magic. The Key to Disney’s success lies in the small details that flesh out the stories, making them utterly compelling and completely believable. [However], many of the details are obscure, and guests walk by them all day long without fully appreciating what they are and why they are there.”

IMG_3327With that information in mind, here is my response to those questions The Mature MouseTM is always asked. As one might reread a favorite novel, or rewatch a favorite movie, a fan of Disney Parks returns to experience the magic of Disney storytelling. A true fan enjoys the immersion in the worlds Disney Imagineers have created, and are constantly updating. And, I have mentioned this before, Walt Disney World is twice the size of Manhattan, about the same size as San Francisco. How many visits to these cities would it take to see everything?

My blog, Details of Disney Magic, posted August 30, 2015, focuses on the details Imagineers include in order to immerse Disney guests into the story that surrounds them.

IMG_2098Please use this link to visit The Mature Mouse™ store for logo merchandise. Many of the items would make great gifts for the Disney fan in your life.

 Make sure you consult Jennie Nowers about your next Disney vacation. She will assist you with all your vacation planning. Tell her that The Mature Mouse™ sent you and you will receive a special gift from Jennie with your next booking.

Historical Magic in Liberty Square

Liberty Square in the Magic Kingdom transports guests back in time to colonial-era America. The buildings reflect various types of architecture from the 1700s. The Imagineers have also included many details, large and small, that add to the colonial-period theming.screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-11-13-14-am

As you travel from Fantasyland into Liberty Square, notice the transition in architecture. Peter Pan’s Flight and the Tangled rest area are designed in a European style, including part of the Columbia Harbour House, half of which sits in Fantasyland. Once through the portal into Liberty Square, you will notice that the restaurant is designed to reflect a colonial New England Inn. This quick-service restaurant is a favorite of The Mature Mouse™. The food and service are excellent. Here is a little tip many guests are not aware: there is a large dining room on the second floor offering great views of both lands that this structure spans.

Upon entering Liberty Square from Fantasyland, you will see Memento Mori, which is defined as an object serving as a warning or reminder of death. This gift shop specializes in Haunted Mansion souvenirs. The store also acts as a warning to guests that death awaits at the Haunted Mansion.

img_2582It should come as no surprise to followers of this blog that the favorite attraction of The Mature Mouse™ is the Haunted Mansion. Home to 999 happy ghosts, this Dutch Colonial style mansion sits high on a hill at the edge of Liberty Square and the Rivers of America. Its architecture reflects palatial homes in the Hudson Valley during the mid 1700’s. The Imagineers chose this style so that the attraction would seamless fit into this section of the Magic Kingdom.

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Liberty Square is also the home of The Hall of Presidents. I realize there are guests who avoid this attraction, seeing it as a waste of time, while others regard it as a great place to nap in air conditioning. I thoroughly enjoyed this attraction during my April trip. The Hall of Presidents fills you with a patriotism and respect for the office and the people who have served.

img_9204You board the authentic steamboat, Liberty Bell, here in Liberty Square to take a 17-minute tour on the Rivers of America. This trip offers you a fantastic view of Frontierland, and then returns to the loading dock, passing by the Haunted Mansion.

Guests should take the time to examine and appreciate all the details Imagineers included in Liberty Square. There is a replica of the Liberty Bell mounted in the center of the square, and behind it sits the Liberty Tree. There are 13 lanterns hanging in the tree, each representing the original 13 colonies.

The road through Liberty Square is intended to mimic the dirt road of a colonial town. There are hoof prints imprinted in the cement because that would be the mode of transportation in colonial America. Imagineers added a brown patch through the pavement. This represents a river of waste common in the streets of colonial towns.

screen-shot-2016-09-28-at-2-11-00-pmThe Muppets will be arriving in Liberty Square in October 2016. Sam Eagle will lead the cast of characters, which include Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, Gonzo, and James Jefferson, a new town crier. The Muppets will offer their unique interpretation of the historical tales we have been brought up with, like the midnight ride of Paul Revere. Even though this show has not yet premiered, there is concern that the Muppets will bring add a sense of chaos and irreverence to American history. As a Muppet fan The Mature Mouse™ is looking forward to this show. It will definitely add something kid-friendly to this historical section of the park. Wacka – Wacka!

IMG_2098-0Please use this link to visit The Mature Mouse™ store for logo merchandise. Many of the items would make great gifts for the Disney fan in your life.

Make sure you consult Jennie Nowers about your next Disney vacation. She will assist you with all your vacation planning. Tell her that The Mature Mouse™ sent you and you will receive a special gift from Jennie with your next booking.

 

 

 

A Stroll Down Disney’s Main Street, U.S.A.

First-time visitors to the Magic Kingdom are looking forward to experiencing the sights and sounds in the five lands that comprise the park. In reality, there are 6 lands that comprise Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. They are Tomorrowland, Fantasyland, Liberty Square, Frontierland, Adventureland, and Main Street, U.S.A. Yes; Main Street is considered its own land.

IMG_9159The Mature MouseTM likes to think of Main Street, U.S.A. as Yesterday-land. Like it’s counterpart in Disneyland, Main Street, U.S.A. in Magic Kingdom depicts Walt Disney’s vision of the quintessential American town, circa 1890-1920. However, Magic Kingdom’s Main Street, U.S.A. does differ in architecture from Disneyland’s.

Most guests do not stroll down Main Street, U.S.A. examining the number of Victorian-styled buildings, reminiscent of a developing east-coast town. The Imagineers applied forced perspective to create a sense of scale to the buildings. Reducing the scale of the second and third levels creates an optical illusion, so the buildings appear to be larger, grander. Imagineers apply this optical illusion throughout the Disney Parks, not just on Main Street, U.S.A.

The next time you are in Magic Kingdom, stand in Town Square, directly in front of the Walt Disney World Railroad and look down Main Street at Cinderella’s Castle. The use of forced perspective creates the illusion that the street is longer and the buildings are taller than they are in actuality.

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IMG_8880Just the opposite happens when you look down Main Street from the Hub in front of the castle. The Walt Disney World Railroad was not built using forced perspective. This sets up the illusion that Main Street is shorter during your exit from the park. Why did the Imagineers design the architecture of Main Street in this way? Well, think about it. You enter the park excited to be there and full of enthusiasm. However, even after the best of days in Magic Kingdom, most of us are tired and eager to exit the park.

During your next visit to Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom remember that Main Street is a land unto itself. Take some time to appreciate all the nuances created by the Imagineers, while taking a trip back to an American town of yesterday.

For more information about Main Street in Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, The Mature MouseTM recommends listening to Lou Mongello’s recent podcast 10 Secrets You Never Knew About Main Street, U.S.A. If you have not previously had the opportunity to hear the WDW Radio podcasts, Lou never sticks to just 10.

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Sample Logo Merchandise
Please use this link to visit The Mature Mouse™ store for logo merchandise. Many of the items would make great gifts for the Disney fan in your life.

Make sure you consult Jennie Nowers about your next Disney vacation. She will assist you in all your vacation planning. Tell her that The Mature Mouse™ sent you and receive a special gift from Jennie with your next booking.

Country Bear Jamboree: A Walt Disney Classic

I have been AWOL from this blog for some time. My apologies! Life will, at times, throw you a curve ball or two. Thank you very much for sticking with me through the gaps in posts.

The Mature MouseTM enjoys those experiences in Walt Disney World that are connected, in some way, to Walt himself. There are not many types of those attractions in the Florida resort. Walt was involved in the design and development of Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room, which was the first audio-animatronic show. It debuted inIMG_9166 1963 at Disneyland Park. Carousel of Progress and It’s a Small World were created, under Walt’s guidance, for the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair. Country Bear Jamboree is another classic attraction Walt was involved in before his passing.
According to Disney.com, “Country Bear Jamboree is one of the very last attractions that Walt Disney personally helped develop before his passing. Originally slated for a never-built Disney ski resort in Mineral King, California, the show with the singing bears happily moved out to Florida in 1971. The bears have been performing daily at Magic Kingdom park ever since.”

IMG_9174Country Bear Jamboree is marketed as “The Wildest Show in the Wilderness.” I experienced this timeless attraction for the first time during my previous solo trip in April, and I thoroughly enjoyed my experience. The attraction is housed in a rustic cabin, called “Grizzly Hall,” off the main street through Frontierland. The waiting area is air conditioner, always a plus at Walt Disney World. The theatre area is comprised of five stages, each framed by well-themed carvings.

IMG_9169The hillbilly cast of bears performs a funny musical revue that relies heavily on the “country-western” theme of that area of Magic Kingdom. This is a family-friendly show with a sense of humor geared toward children and adults.

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Sample Merchandise

Please use this link to visit The Mature Mouse™ store for logo merchandise. Many of the items would make great gifts for the Disney fan in your life.

Make sure you consult Jennie Nowers about your next Disney vacation. She will assist you in all your vacation planning. Tell her that The Mature Mouse™ sent you and receive a special gift from Jennie with your next booking.

 

 

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