Sunday, March 26, 2017

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner at Epcot - Episode 119 of The Disney Exchange

Podcast: Play in new window | Download 

The Disney Exchange is Lisa, Dave, and me, Nick

Is the recently announced live action production of Mulan going to be song free? Discuss.

There is apparently a live action Jungle Book 2 in the works. Is it possible Disney will overdo it like they did with straight to video animated sequels in the 90s.

We've been doing the show together so long, Lisa is finishing my sandwiches.

Back on Episode 109 of this very podcast we did Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner at Disney's Animal Kingdom, and this week we cover Epcot.

Me and my Princess with the A Team

Some people's appetites are larger than others. Just saying.

Ikea is coming to Jacksonville, Florida. The princesses will not be there, however. Good to know.

We discuss acceptable attire for Monsieur Paul in Epcot's France Pavilion. This is NOT appropriate, Dave!

Photo courtesy of Dave. He won't tell us if this is in fact a photo of him.

The Wheel of Distiny topic this week: Have you seen the new live action blockbuster, Beauty and the Beast, and what did you think?
We discuss our thoughts, and it is mostly spoiler free.

You can send us an email at info@thedisneyexchange and reach out with show suggestions, submit Wheel of Distiny topics, or request a listener number on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thedisneyexchange, Twitter: https://twitter.com/disneyexchange

If you would be so kind as to leave us a 5 star review on any of the social media sites, such as Facebook or iTunes, we'd really appreciate it. Thank you!

Thank you for listening to
The Disney Exchange!





Thursday, March 23, 2017

Surprise! It's Mary Poppins

by Gaylin

I was wandering about in the Magic Kingdom one afternoon, I was walking down the path behind the Christmas Store in Liberty Square and who did I see? Miss Mary Poppins. She had one cast member with her and no Photopass photographer and best of all NO line-up. Well, one family in front of me but really, that is no line-up.

Because of the lack of line-up, I had a chance to talk with Miss Poppins, we talked about New Year's Resolutions and the fact that I own 8 umbrellas and none of them are as lovely as hers. It was a great meet and greet and a wonderful surprise!

Our visit was practically perfect in every way.


Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Walt Disney World, January 2017, Part 6

By Nick

Thursday January 26th 

On our last full day we were up early and meeting the Walsh family at Disney's Animal Kingdom for rope drop.

As we were watching birds being fed on Discovery Island, who should walk up next to us but Gaylin!

Barbie, Meghan, Todd, Flynn, Gaylin and me

She had taken a DVC tour the day before, so had 3 FastPasses to use, and accompanied us on the Kilimanjaro Safaris.

Afterwards, we took a walk through the Pangani Forest Exploration Trail. Or is it now Gorilla Falls?!

Following this adventure, we stopped at Zuri's Sweets for a snack before making our way over to the Maharaja Jungle Trek.

The Walsh's, Barbie and I had lunch at Yak and Yeti Local Foods. There was nothing on the menu for Gaylin, who is gluten intolerant, beyond a dessert offering, so she headed off to Flame Tree Barbecue.

As we were leaving, I noticed a bird eyeing up a woman's french fries. I mentioned this to the girl, and as she looked up I was amazed to see this was my friend Nina! Her husband Brandon walked over a few minutes later. We'd met Nina and Brandon a few years earlier at La Cava Del Tequila at Epcot's Mexico pavilion. In fact, Nina can be seen sipping a cocktail in this post: http://disneymusings.blogspot.com/2014/05/epcots-la-cava-del-tequila.html


Barbie and Todd decided to hit the single rider line of Expedition Everest while Meghan, Flynn and I enjoyed the waterfront seating area for the (as of then) unopened Rivers of Light show.


We walked over to DinoLand where Barbie and Meghan took a ride on Primeval Whirl while the men took a break on a bench.

The Walsh's decided to head back to their resort, the Animal Kingdom Lodge for a rest and/or a swim, and we were going to go back to the Boardwalk, but as we exited, decided that if we laid down we possibly wouldn't get up and over to Disney's Hollywood Studios for our early dinner ADR at 50's Prime Time. So Barbie and I hopped a bus over to DHS.

We visited something we'd noticed earlier in the week, Red Carpet Dreams, where we queued up to meet Mickey and Minnie.




After our visit we went over to the Tune-In Lounge for a Coke and an adult beverage (guess who had which) while we waited for the rest of our party and ADR time.
Friends Kandi, John, their kids Grayson and Sawyer arrived about the same time as the Walsh's and we were all seated shortly thereafter.

Another great meal, we had a really entertaining server and fun neighbors!


After dinner we went to Star Wars Launch Bay.


We found a good spot for the Walsh family to enjoy the Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular, and Barbie and I said goodnight, as we were pooped, and still needed to pack for departure the next day.

Friday, January 27th

We dropped our carry on luggage at bell services and went over to DHS to take one last spin on Toy Story Midway Mania, selfies with Buzz and Woody, and a drop on Tower of Terror.





We grabbed breakfast at Starring Rolls, splitting a ham sandwich and red velvet cupcake. We had no idea this would be the last time we'd ever get to eat there, one of our standard stops since we started to come to Walt Disney World together in 2006. It closed just a few days later!


After eating we slowly walked back to the Boardwalk to await Tragical Magical Express to the airport.

Thanks for following along, and please enjoy Parts 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - and 5.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Favorite Nighttime Attractions at Walt Disney World - Episode 119 of The Disney Exchange

The Disney Exchange is Lisa, Dave and me, the charming tap dancing fool, Nick.

Podcast: Play in new window | Download

The show starts with a brilliant edit job by Dave, and listeners are treated to the sound of MY voice to start off the festivities.

Miss Adventure Falls has opened at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon and we talk weather.

Pandora -The World of Avatar looks so great it makes me break out into dance.

Lisa has Achilles Tendonitis. Any suggestions to help her deal with this and prep for the Dark Side Half Marathon?

The 3 of us will all be at WDW that weekend, April 22nd and 23rd! We will post where we are so if anyone reading this now wants to say hello... anyone? Hello?

Lisa shares information about The Tiki Trot Race Series.
This past December the Disney Podcast community suffered the loss of one of it's own when Alan Mize of the Enchanted Tiki Talk Podcast passed away, and the race series was established to share the joy of running and friendship in the memory of Alan. 

Dave reads a letter from listener #13, Andy asks how we all met, and we tell that truly epic and fascinating tale.

Speaking of epic and fascinating, this episodes main topic is a humdinger.
What is your favorite attraction after dark at each of Walt Disney World's parks

 Seven Dwarfs Mine Train 

This leads to Lisa and Dave implying I'm weird.Which is true. But I believe dark rides are better at night. You can see better, because your eyes have adjusted to darkness.
Anyone else agree? Hello? 

Space Mountain

The Wheel of Distiny topic:  Is seeing a movie in 3D worth the extra expense? 

You can send us an email at info@thedisneyexchange and reach out with show suggestions, submit Wheel of Distiny topics, or request a listener number on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thedisneyexchange, Twitter: https://twitter.com/disneyexchange

If you would be so kind as to leave us a 5 star review on any of the social media sites, such as Facebook or iTunes, we'd really appreciate it. Thank you!

Thank you for listening to
The Disney Exchange! 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Where in the World?

by Gaylin

This photo is a difficult one to figure out. One clue - it is not at the Animal Kingdom. The answer os below the photo.



uoᴉʇɐʇS ʞɐoS ,N, ɥsɐldS ˙ɹſ ʎǝsɐƆ ǝɥʇ ʇɐ sᴉ ʇI

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Walt Disney World, January 2017, Part 5

By Nick

Wednesday January 25th


Up early and over to Disney's Hollywood Studios to meet our friends Meghan, Todd and their son Flynn, our Godchild.


We met at the entrance and followed a majority of the crowd to Toy Story Midway Mania at opening.



We headed to Tower of Terror next.


Flynn was somewhat reluctant to ride.


He did indeed ride however, and , well...


Flynn recovered quickly, and we managed to catch the First Order March, before heading to Star Tours, where everyone except me took a trip to a galaxy far, far away. Darn motion sickness!


We went to Muppet Vision 3D next, and made sure to get our last photo of the Kermit balloon, which was recently removed, as it would be visible from the upcoming Star Wars themed area.


We had lunch at Backlot Express before watching Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular.



After the show we hopped a bus to the Magic Kingdom, where we went right to Tomorrowland and rode the People Mover before using our FastPasses for Buzz.


Making our way around the park we hit Fantasyland next, where those who can stomach spinning rides rode the Mad Tea Party followed by a trip Under the Sea.



We made one last stop to Haunted Mansion before hopping a boat over to the Wilderness Lodge.

Since we were a little early for dinner at Whispering Canyon, we took a nice rest in the lobby.


We met up with Kandi, John and their kids Sawyer and Grayson for what turned out to be my favorite meal of the trip. The adults all shared the house specialty the All You Care to Enjoy Skillet, which includes family-style Mixed Greens tossed in an Apple Vinaigrette Dressing and Fresh-baked Cornbread. Featuring Slow-smoked Pork Ribs, Barbecued Pulled Pork, Roasted Chicken, Oak-roasted Beef Strip Loin, and Western-style Sausage served with Seasonal Farm Fresh Vegetables, Mashed Yukon Potatoes, Corn on the Cobb, and Cowboy-style Baked Beans and it was excellent, especially the strip loin, which I'd say is on par with any steak I've ever eaten at WDW!



We'd eaten dinner there with Kandi and John several years ago, but were not impressed with the service, and we didn't even enjoy the food that much.

This time, our server was hilarious and entertaining, and, in fact, every server seemed to be on point. If you are not familiar, the Cast Members here are what some might call "surly" and loud, which is part of the theme. Get it, Whispering Canyon. 

After dinner we headed to the dock where we were about 30 seconds late for the boat back to the Magic Kingdom, but a boat for the Contemporary was just boarding, so we decided to take a ride there and walk to the park to try and work off a bit of the bloat.

We used our last FastPass of the evening on Pirates, before taking a walk through the Castle and out for the evening.




Please check out:
Part 1 
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4


Meeting Flik!

by Gaylin

I love character meet and greets, I realize I like the non-verbal characters a bit more as making conversation with a princess or two, is not my forte.

While I was wandering around later in the day at the Animal Kingdom (January 2017), I noticed that there was only one family in line to meet Flik. I immediately got in the line and waited maybe 3 minutes to meet him.

I was greeted with a fist bump, the PhotoPass Cast Member made a joke and had the few people around us laughing - it was a great meet up and I got 2 good photos out of it, on my own camera!

I would definitely recommend paying attention to character meet ups, later in the day, often people are going to ADRs or just too tired to get another photo taken. Glad I stopped!




Sunday, March 12, 2017

Disney World Dining on $100 a Day - Episode 117 of The Disney Exchange Podcast

The Disney Exchange is Lisa Green, Dave Hodges, and me, Nick

Podcast: Play in new window | Download

After shoutouts to our listeners in the UK, new blog followers, and our friend and fellow podcaster Heather from The Disney Duo we have a brief discussion on the newly announced DVC resort, Copper Creek Villas, and the upcoming release of the live action Beauty and the Beast.

Our main topic is dining at Walt Disney World at each of the parks for 2 adults for under $100 a day.

We all took a different approach to this task. Lisa somehow, perhaps through alchemy, worked in table service and alcoholic beverages almost every day, while Dave almost always skipped breakfast to fit in a table service, while I stuck to counter service restaurants.

For my selections I added tax and rounded up.

I'm including all my notes because it took so long to compile this list. It was the most time I have ever spent prepping for a show!

Please excuse abbreviations, misspellings, etc., as it is in "shorthand."

Magic Kingdom
Breakfast - Plaza Ice Cream Parlor. Assorted Fruit $1.99 and a Donut Sundae $5.99 - $8.46 / coffee $3 =$11.50
Snack - popcorn $4.25  + Coke = $8
Lunch - Be Our Guest - Braised Pork (Coq Au Vin Style) $16.99 x 2 + Coke =  $40


Snack - Mickey Ice Cream = $5
Dinner- Cosmic Ray's - Greek Salad with Chicken - $11.79 + Angus Burger- $12.99 + $4= $30
Dessert -Dole Whip $5

Total - $99.50


Epcot
B - Sunshine Seasons - Cinnamon French Toast Bread Pudding - $6.99 x 2 + coffee = $19
Snack- Karamell-Kuche - Caramel Apple + Water = $10
L - Tangierine Cafe - Mediterannian Lamb Wrap - $10.99 + Schawarma Lamb Platter - $12.99 + water = $26


D  - Yorkshire County Fish Shop - Fish and Chips $10.99 x 2 + Coke - $28
Dessert- Le Artissan des Glaces - Croque Glace - $8 x 2 = $16

$99

DHS
B  - Trolley Car Cafe - Double Smoked Bacon, cheddar and egg- $4.95 x 2 = Coffee =$16
Min and Bill's - Seasonal Milkshake - $6
L - Backlot Express-  Angus burger $11.29 + Caprese Sandwich $9.99 + Coke $4 = $26
Carrot Cake Cookie and Coke - $8
D  - Fairfax Fair - Empenadas Platter $12.49 + El Pastor Pulled Pork Sandwich $11.49 + Coke $4= $31
Dessert  Hollywood Scoops - Ice cream Cream Cone $4.49 + Ice Cream Sandwich $5.29 - $11

$98

DAK
B - Kusafiri Coffee Shop - Hot Breakfast Sandwich -$ 6.79 + Creature Comforts - Double Smoked Bacon, cheddar and egg $4.95 + coffee $5= $19
Water - $3
L - Flame Tree BBQ -St. Louis Rib Dinner -$18.99  x 2 + Coke = $45


D-Harambe Market - Grilled chicken skewer and -$9.99 + Grilled Vegetable Stack -$9.49 + Coke - $26
Snack - Mickey Head premium $5

$98

The Wheel of Distiny Topic - What's the worst Disney vacation mistake you've ever made?

You can send us an email at info@thedisneyexchange and reach out with show suggestions, submit Wheel of Distiny topics, or request a listener number on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thedisneyexchange, Twitter: https://twitter.com/disneyexchange

If you would be so kind as to leave us a 5 star review on any of the social media sites, such as Facebook or iTunes, we'd really appreciate it. Thank you!

Thank you for listening to
The Disney Exchange!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Keeping it Clean at Disney

by Gaylin

All the Resorts at Walt Disney World have laundry facilities. At the Value Resorts, the laundries are beside the pools. At the All Star Music Resort, this is the laundry facility by the Piano Pool. The Piano Pool was closed while I was there but the laundry was still open. I only bring carry-on luggage so a load of laundry is necessary for me half way through my vacation.


The laundry building is themed to look like a big transistor radio.


Even the back of the building is themed!


The laundry rooms usually have 8 washers and 14 dryers. You need your Magic Band to open the door so the rooms are secure enough, I usually leave my laundry going and go for a walk around the resort.  As you can see, the room is clean and bright, has laundry carts on wheels to move your clothes from washer to dryer and then from the dryer to the folding table. 


You can no longer use coins for the machines. Everything is done by credit or debit card. Please note, if you are Canadian, you will have to use your credit card - Canadian debit cards won't work. If you don't want to use the machine, you can get a card to use from the front desk, for a cost of $8.00.


The washers and dryers are not cheap but they are big, I suggest filling both to the top!



Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Walt Disney World, January 2017, Part 4

By Nick


Tuesday, January 24th

We had a nice lazy morning at the Boardwalk, just enjoying the beautiful weather.


Barbie and I walked in to Trattoria al Forno, and asked if they could fit us in for breakfast, and we were seated immediately.


Being able to do this will very likely change April 2nd when they start hosting the new character dining experience Bon Voyage Breakfast.

After breakfast we took a dip in the pool and relaxed in the hot tub before heading to the Magic Kingdom.


We didn't have any FastPasses until later that evening, so we just walked around, enjoying the weather,  the relatively low crowds, and the Festival of Fantasy Parade.




We headed over to Tomorrowland and took a ride on the People Mover and visited the Carousel of Progress before heading to Adventureland to meet up with Gaylin for a ride on the Jungle Cruise.


The 3 of us met up with our friends Kandi, John, and their 2 kids Grayson and Sawyer for dinner at Skipper Canteen.



We had a very good meal and, just like every time I've eaten here, we had excellent service! Thanks Robin!

Barbie, Gaylin and I headed over to Big Thunder where we had FPs, and then met up with Kandi, John and the kids at Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. The guys took a ride while the ladies waited with the baby, and then we swapped.

 Front: Kandi and Gaylin Back: single rider guy and Barbie

We said our goodnights and headed out before Wishes was over to beat the crowd.

Before heading in for the evening, we grabbed ice cream at Ample Hills Creamery. Wow, amazing stuff!


We took a walk around the entire Boardwalk/Yacht and Beach Club area as we ate this fantastic treat.

Parts 1 - 2 - and 3