Sunday, May 5, 2013

Day 125: Disney Devil's Advocate

Really this had more to do with yesterday than it does with today, but's something that I just had to write about. Of course, I'm also writing about this instead of the second day of the Star Wars celebration weekend...but we have the entire month of May to celebrate Star Wars!

Anyways, yesterday was State Solo & Ensemble, and I'm still ignoring the fact that it ever happened...but what's important is what happened on our way home. My mom and brother convinced me to go out for sushi for dinner, a treat for us since, while we have learned how to make sushi for ourselves at home, the only other time we get it is when we go to this one restaurant or Disney (but that's all for another blog post that will come with time).

While eating sushi, we picked up on a rousing game of Disney Devil's Advocate, since I am to have a Disney lesson conversation with my band director sometime this week...and mom decided it would be a good idea to quiz me with various questions. Here are just a few that I remember and my short answers:

1.) What if I don't like thrill rides? 

(Note: This is the easiest question ever).

My answer would begin with a short story...As some of you already know, I have extreme motion sickness problems, but I am still able to enjoy Disney to the fullest (aside from the fact that I use motion sickness medicine to ride some of my favorite thrilling attractions). At the Magic Kingdom, you have some of the best opportunities to meet characters, and there are many dark rides, which are slow moving story-themed rides, such as Peter Pan, Ariel's Undersea Adventure and the Haunted Mansion. At Epcot, you can head into the Living Seas with Nemo and his Friends, or you can take a trip through time on Spaceship Earth, all before exploring everything World Showcase has to offer. At Disney's Hollywood Studios, you can dive right into the world of the movies on the Great Movie Ride, or take a tour of how the movies are made on the Backlot Tour! And finally, Disney's Animal Kingdom offers plenty for the less adventurous type, where you can see animals you love and adore, as well as a spectacular musical version of Finding Nemo!

2.) Disney doesn't have thrill rides! 

(Note: This is still the easiest question...just the opposite answer...and one many teenagers will ask).

While it seems like Disney is, on top, meeting characters like the Princesses, going on slow rides and acting like a kid, there's still plenty to do for the thrill seeker! What most don't know is that Disney is home to some of the most thrilling rides in the world! At both Epcot and The Magic Kingdom, you have triple thrills, with Soarin', Test Track and Mission SPACE at Epcot and the Three mountains, Splash, Space and Big Thunder, at Magic Kingdom. Head to The Studios for a 13 story drop into the twilight zone and go on a rockin' dark coaster with Aerosmith right after, all before blasting into the stars with Star Tours! And at Animal Kingdom, get ready for one of the biggest mountain's around, Everest, with a 90-foot drop and a backwards section that sends you straight into a face-off with a Yeti! But the fun doesn't end there! At each of Disney's Waterparks there are also unique thrills. At Blizzard Beach head down Summit Plummit, one of the tallest, fastest, free-fall waterslides in the world, and at Typhoon Lagoon take a ride on the unique Water coaster, Crushin' Gusher!

3.) What if I don't like rides at all? 

Don't worry, there's still a lot to do!!! At Magic Kingdom, check out Enchanted Tales with Belle, a unique storytime where you can become part of the Beauty and the Beast! In Tomorrowland you will find the Carousel of Progress, the longest running stage show of all time that's filled with Disney history, and if you're feeling up to it, the Tomorrowland People Mover gives you a great view of everything Tomorrowland has to offer! On the other side of the park, the Country Bears and causing a ruckus, and there's plenty of other stages shows and parades to participate in! At Epcot, discover Innoventions and World Showcase. In Innoventions, take a trip through some of the newest technology the world has to offer, head through a "Green House" and see how new inventions can make our daily lives greener, and in World Showcase, discover 11 completely unique countries and cultures, with plenty of food, shows, shops and showcases! The Hollywood Studios offers one of the best stage shows, Indiana Jones, where you can see, live, how action films such as the Epic Indiana Jones series, are made, and if you're into cars, check out Lights! Motors! Action! Extreme Stunt Show! which brings all the thrills of high-action car stunts right before your eyes! Finally, at Disney's Animal Kingdom, explore two unique trails filled with animals, see the live-action show, The Lion King, based on the award winning Broadway Musical, or take a train to Conversation Station to see the behind the scenes of how Animal Kingdom and Disney work to help conservation efforts around the globe!

4.) Are we going to be eating expensive hamburgers the entire time? 

(Note: This was really two questions combined, but oh well).

Here, once again, I'd start with a story, or question, rather...Who has all been to Six Flags? How much does a bottle of water cost? (The answer: $4.50, at least). Well, water at Disney, the EXACT SAME WATER, is only $2.50 at Disney, still pricy, but not even in the same ballpark as that of Six Flags...and the best part, you can bring in your own water bottles and snacks if you want, just as long as you carry them with you and you don't bring them in a hard-case cooler! And don't worry about eating hamburgers all the time either! Disney offers a wide selection of unique food! In the Magic Kingdom, for a counter service, I recommend Cosmic Rays in Tomorrowland. If you want a Hamburger, they have that...if not, there's also sandwiches and salads and chicken of almost every kind, and some meals are big enough to split with a friend! Or if French is more your cusine, go check out "Be Our Guest" for lunch, the newest restaurant addition to Walt Disney World, serving amazing food that you won't find anywhere else! At Epcot, you can literally eat around the world with 11 countries (Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Morocco, Japan, America, Italy, Germany, China, Norway and Mexico!), or eat some fresh grown produce in the land! Disney's Hollywood Studios doesn't offer quite as much as far as unique food goes, but it always offers a great experience to try some Disney favorites such as the Turkey Leg, the Churro, Mickey Ice Cream, and, if you have a friend and a sweet tooth, go to Starring Rolls for the BEST CUPCAKE EVER MADE (The butterfinger cupcake), or grab a Carrot Cake Cookie from Writer's Stop! Animal Kingdom offers something for everyone, from pizza to asian at Yak & Yeti!

5.) What's Downtown Disney, and why do I want to go there? 

Downtown Disney is not just any shopping area, it's THE shopping area, and it's filled with everything you could possibly image. If shopping is your game, there are more than 40 stores, including the World of Disney Store, where you can find the perfect Disney themed gift for any friend or family member, or if you're like me, something to add to your collection! If Disney isn't your thing, there's the Lego store as well, filled with basically every lego you could imagine, and if chocolate is more your thing, there's a Ghiraradelli there too, as well as Wolfgang Puck! If you're not one to spend a ton of money while there, gather some friends and go to the newest addition to Downtown Disney,  Splitsville, a multi-level bowling alley serving everything from pizza and burgers to sushi! And if movies are more your style, go to the AMC theater, which also offers a dine-in option so you can eat with your film! Downtown Disney has something for everyone, and there are unique memories just waiting to be made!

6.) Why Disney? Why not Universal or SeaWorld? 

Coming from a person who does have motion sickness, and who has a brother who is up for just about anything, I can say from experience that Disney is one of the most unique places in the world because of it's options for everyone. My brother and I can always find things to do together, even though he likes thrill rides more than I do! Plus, I've been to Disney 23 times and still haven't seen everything! It's constantly changing, and the themeing is something you're not going to see anywhere else. I've marched in a lot of parades in my day, but nothing compares to marching down Main Street USA surrounded by an international crowd, or seeing the castle for the first time (or for me, Spaceship Earth). There are experiences for everyone just waiting to be found, and everyone can find something that is sure to be a favorite for the rest of their lives. Disney isn't just for kids, it's for everyone, and while there, and you may not even know it, you're learning too, all while having fun! Universal and Sea World are great places, but Disney is something you aren't going to experience anywhere else. Not at Wisconsin Dells, not at Six Flags, and not even at Universal. The experiences you have at Walt Disney World will last for a lifetime, and someday you will remember just how magical the trip was, and think, "I'm glad we went to Walt Disney World."

Here's today's Disney History: 2005: In a historic first, all 10 of the Disney theme parks around the world collectively kick off the festivities for the "Happiest Celebration on Earth" to mark the 50th Anniversary of Disneyland. In Anaheim, the opening ceremony for Disney's 50th Anniversary takes place in front of the Sleeping Beauty Castle. In Florida, Epcot's new Soarin' officially opens, as does the Disney-MGM Studios' Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show.

Have a magical day!