By Beth Skarp
recently returned from a trip to the World. Everywhere I turned, I was
inundated with scenes or images from the ever popular movie Frozen.
From the images of Olaf on t-shirts with friends being flakes, to little
girls sporting the looks of Elsa or Anna, Frozen is everywhere. If you
are at Disney, there is literally no way you could not be exposed to
Frozen in one way or another.
Having said this, I wanted to share my less than magical experience at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
arrived at MCO fairly early after leaving Philadelphia. Once I checked
in at my resort, my first stop was Magic Kingdom. I had a later
afternoon dining reservation at Be Our Guest. I was early, so decided
to ride the rides that had a fairly short stand-by line and put my Memory
Maker to work by getting pictures. The first photographer I encountered
had great “magical shots”....of Olaf on Summer vacation. OK, not a big
deal, I would pose anyway and just keep going.
Magic Kingdom, I rode the monorail to Epcot. I meandered my way
through World Showcase, with the intent of getting to the International
Gateway. I stopped for pictures along the way, taking along my trusted
stuffed Jiminy Cricket. When a photo opportunity presented itself, we
stopped and took advantage of it. When we got to Norway, we were once
again inundated with Frozen. But it didn't stop there.
outside the International Gateway entrance, Jiminy and I boarded the
boats that took us to Hollywood Studios. It was a lovely boat ride. We
left Epcot around 6PM, plenty of time to enjoy our trip to Hollywood
Studios and make our 9PM dinner reservations at Mama Melrose. You know
what they say when you make your reservations, to allow ample travel
time to make your reservations. We got this.
we finally arrived at the boat dock for Hollywood Studios, our captain
asked if we were here to enjoy the dance party. Dance party?! I had
not a clue what she was referring to.
we got to the main gates for Hollywood Studios—just before we
entered—we came across a huge sand sculpture. What a great photo
opportunity, the sculptures are well done and so artistic. What
was the sculpture you ask...a larger than life Olaf on summer vacation.
20 minutes Jiminy and I waited in line for this.
paper lithograph cutout of Olaf was shoved into my hands. On the
backside were the signatures of the various characters of Frozen. While
I really wasn't interested in this Olaf, I have to admit that it made
an excellent hand fan on this hot and humid day. I used my Olaf several
times over for just this very purpose.
was getting into the swing of taking photographs, so we paused for a
quick picture of the hours for Hollywood Studios for the day.
we made it through the main gates. 7PM...still plenty of time to make
our dinner reservations at Mama Melrose. Oy Vey! The thousands of
people! What in the World was going on?
you use a walker to get around, walking can be a bit difficult. Add in
several people lining the streets, each vying for the perfect spot to
view what was in front of us. Well, it made getting around challenging
but not impossible. I figured I would put to good use the trick of
walking through the various stores in order to progress down Main
Street. Bad idea. The first shop I went into, I came upon a literal
wall of people. What was going on? Frozen merchandise had just been
restocked on the shelves, so a shopping frenzy was happening. I had to
giggle, as one guest, a man, asked me where I got my “shopping cart”.
Shopping cart? It was my walker for crying out loud.
out of the shop in order not to get run over, I finally made my way
towards the Sorcerer’s hat. My intent was to bear right, heading towards
Rockin' Roller Coaster. I had a FP+ for 7:05 to 8:05 that I wanted to
use. I got to Rockin' around 7:35. Still plenty of time to get to Mama
Melrose and not be late.
is this Jiminy and I see...a 5 minute wait for Tower of Terror? Let
me get this done so Jiminy and I can make dinner in plenty of time and
knock this off our to-ride list. I mean really, how often do you see
this and just literally walk on the rides?
we got off Tower of Terror, it was around 8:25 or so. Again, plenty of
time to get back to Mama Melrose. My mouth is watering for some Seafood
Arrabbitta and a cold Italian Surfer, my favorite food and drink from
As I maneuver my walker down Main Street yet again, I made my way
towards the Sorcerer’s hat with the intent of turning left and heading
towards Mama Melrose. Instead, I found wooden barriers up and several
cast members along with security preventing guests from going any
further towards the back of the park.
I asked about getting through to make my reservations at Mama Melrose, I
was told it was impossible. I asked how I was supposed to get back and
get to my reservation—one I made three weeks ago. I was told
repeatedly "Well, you simply can't. The parade is coming, followed by
the fireworks then a sing-along.”
allowed me to make a reservation three weeks ago and never bothered to
tell me that I would not be able to make my reservation!? OK, calm
down and don't let it get you bothered.
asked what I was supposed to do. Cast members repeatedly told me "Well,
we just assume you will be at the back of the park so you can make the
reservation on time." I mean really, does everyone stay in the area
for their reservations for hours on end?!
I told you earlier, I had a FP+ for Rockin' Roller Coasterthen went on Tower of Terror. I had plenty of time to make my reservation at
Mama Melrose, even taking my time and maneuvering my walker through the
throngs of people. I was just not allowed to get to the back
portion of the park to make this reservation. I was more than annoyed,
to say the least.
OK, so I can't get to Mama Melrose. I still need to eat. Let's do
alternate Plan B. My plan was to eat at ABC Commissary. Well guess
what—this is closed as well. A sandwich board is placed up around 6:30
PM or so to alert park guests that it will close at 8PM prior to the
parade. Lot of good that did me—I wasn't in the Park then and no
mention was made of the back portion of the Park being closed early on
the hours posted at the front of the Park. Also, nothing was mentioned
in the times guide or park map.
Rolls was also closed, which is actually what I expected. Starring
Rolls closes around 3PM or so—when they run out of sandwiches and
goodies, they close. No way did I feel like fighting any more crowds to
get back to Backlot Express, the only other place that was open at this
My temper kicked in at this point, I am sorry to say. With a less than
pleasant attitude I asked "Where in this Park am I supposed to eat?"
The Cast Members never missed a beat, but simply replied, "Well, you
could get a tub of popcorn and join the dance party and sing along."
not my cup of tea. It has been 6 hours since I last ate and I needed a
decent meal, not filler, thank you very much. Don't even get me started
on missing out on my Italian Surfer.
stopping at Guest Relations at the front of Hollywood Studios to let
them know how displeased I was with missing my reservation AND to make
sure that I would not incur a no-show fee for not making this
reservation, I headed back to the bus stations and to our resort. Guest
Relations did give me a $25 gift card for my trouble, but this still
left a rather sour taste in my mouth.
did I finally get for dinner? Chicken nuggets back at the resort
around 9:45 PM. What were my choices for dessert to go with my
dinner? Frozen Cupcakes and Frozen Rice Krispie Treats. You are
freaking kidding me...right?! Grrrrrr.
Saturday, I met up with some good friends at Port Orleans Riverside at
the River Roost Lounge. We were all meeting up to hear Yee Haw Bob.
Guess what one of the songs was that the group sang. Yep...”Let It Go.”
at Animal Kingdom, you can't seem to get away from Frozen, no matter
what you try. From magical shots to offerings for drinks or desserts,
Frozen is everywhere.
know that many enjoy the movie, the song or songs and the various
characters. But really, must Disney incorporate Frozen into EVERY THING
is does? Each theme park, every venue of entertainment, every
restaurant, the merchandise, the photographers, even the television
shows have a bit of Frozen in it someplace.
I for one really and truly believe we need to take a bit of a thaw. It's time to well....LET IT GO!
Excuse me as I run for cover...