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  1. #1

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    I'm getting nervous...

    I actually posted the majority of this post at another site, I hope that's not considered bad form, and apologize if it is, but I'm sort of desperate, and could use all the help I can get!

    I have been getting more and more nervous about the trip my husband and I are taking to the parks this Sunday, October 25th. We picked this day because I work 6 days a week, and this is absolutely the only day we could make it to the parks.

    I know it is going to be super crowded, and my nervousness is coming in waves bordering on terror.

    My goals for this trip were to ride the Halloween rides and see the fireworks, as well as to hopefully park hop over to DCA to ride Midway Madness and California Screamin'.

    I am trying to use a Ridemax Saturday plan, and one thing that scares me silly is that Saturdays are now less crowded than Sundays, so doesn't that mean that you can no longer easily substitute a Saturday for a Sunday when making a plan?

    My plan seems to be saying that if I get a Space Mtn FP at 8:05 I should be able to get another one at 8:54, and then a third at 9:45, and then a HMH FP at 12:26. Does this seem like it might be reasonable, assuming that all rides stay functioning the whole time?

    Does this seem like it's in line with the FP return times that have been seen over the past Sundays? I know last Sunday was CHOC walk and SM closed in the morning because there was a problem, but the previous Sunday might be comparable, so I am just hoping that someone might be able to help me out here with their greater FP knowledge.

    I know my plan of getting three SM FP's in the morning is overkill, but I like to put the rides I really want to get on into the plan a couple of times to make sure that they happen at all.

    I also just read that the Happiest Haunts Tour DOES include slightly blocked fireworks seating, and I'm heartbroken that I missed out on this. The tour is sold out for the day we will be there.

    I didn't see fireworks listed on the Disney.com site, and due to the start time of 4:45 and the length of the tour posted on the Disney.com website being 3 hours, I couldn't see how it included fireworks. But it does, and now I'm bummed, because a reserved bench would have made me so much more able to deal with crowds to see the fireworks! I am so scared that by 9:25 will be so fed up with the crowds I have been reading about that I will just want to go back to the hotel and crash.

    We are planning a break at our hotel (Motel 6) from 2:00 to 3:30, then on going back to DCA to ride Midway Madness and California Screamin, then have a bite to eat and head back to DL at around 6:00 to hopefully use a FP to ride Space again at 7:00.

    If we finish up using our FP's around 8:00pm, (at HMH) would we be able to get to the middle of Main Street to watch the Fireworks?

    My husband is pretty set on trying out the Cove bar, but if we skipped that and had dinner instead at the Plaza Inn getting in line around 8:15 would we be able to see the fireworks from there?

    From the middle of Main Street would we be able to get to Fantasmic afterwards to watch the 10:30 show?

    I know this is a very ambitious plan. I am trying to psyche myself up for the crowds, but they do make me exhausted, and I am in a tizzy trying to figure out the best way to do all that we want to do.

  2. #2

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    I'd be nervous, too, if I were trying to put together such a detailed plan for a day in the park! For what it's worth, I strongly recommend just...relaxing. It's fine to put together a list of things you want to do and even a rough order to do 'em in, but figuring stuff out down to the minute is futile because confounding variables will inevitably screw with your carefully laid plans. I think it's a lot more fun to just go with the flow. Try to hit the rides you want, of course, but realize that there's always something else to do, and not everything is necessarily gonna work out exactly how you think it will. It's very freeing! Just my opinion.


  3. #3

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    I know that the "to the minute" thinking won't pan out in reality, but I would love to know if those FP return times are at all in line with the reality of the parks on a Sunday during Halloween time. The people at Ridemax don't make plans for Sundays, so you are supposed to substitute the Saturday before for a Sunday. In light of the fact that Sundays are now more busy than Saturdays, I am worried that the FP return times might be off by a matter of hours rather than minutes.

    I know that my plan seems super detailed, and it is! But I allow a few hours of "free time" during which we can hang out and do whatever we want. I just like to have a good grasp of how to manage my FP's when I am there, as we only have one day available.

    Once I am in the parks, armed with as much knowledge as I can get beforehand, I can relax and have a wonderful time. I just want to be armed with as much information as I can gather since it it seems like this Sunday might be a bit of a "perfect storm."

    : )

  4. #4

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    Here is what I recommend:

    Get to the Main Entrance of the park by 7:45
    Once you get into Disneyland Head to Space Mountain and get a Fastpass
    Ride Star Tours and then get a 2nd Fastpass for Space Mountain
    Ride Buzz and get a third Fastpass for Space Mountain
    DO NOT RIDE SPACE MOUNTAIN until LATER in the day...SAVE THE FASTPASSES
    Ride MAtterhorn
    Make your way through Fantasyland and ride anything that has a short wait.
    Ride Big Thunder Mountain
    Have early lunch at the Golden Horseshoe (11am) and watch Biilly Hill
    Use the Single Rider Pass and ride Splash Mountain (it should be hot on Sunday)
    Get Fastpass for Haunted Mansion (DO NOT USE BASED ON TIME ON THE TICKET)
    Ride Pirates
    Ride Jungle Cruise
    Get a Dole Whip at the Tiki Room... Watch the show if you like
    Head back to hotel... Honestly I wouldnt do that... I would go to DCA

    Once in DCA
    Get Fastpass for California Screamin
    Ride Toy Story and other Pier Attractions.. even Screamin if it has a short wait. (DO NOT USE SCREAMIN FASTPASS)
    Cover Bar
    Then use Fastpass for SCREAMIN
    Ride other things in DCA... if its SOARIN USE SINGLE RIDER

    I would try getting back to Disneyland by 6pm
    Use 2 of the 3 Fastpasses to ride SPACE MTN (Try front car, back and middle)
    by 8:30pm get a spot for the fireworks... My favorite is between Main Street and Walts Statue. Look for the blue umbrellas and the speaker posts. DO NOT worry if the sitting area is full. Before the show starts they will ask people to stand. This is where you get a good spot. TIP stand near the curb on the right side, so you can see the best parts of the show

    After fireworks head for Fantasmic. If there is a 3rd show...wait for that one by taking the train from Tomorrowland Station to New orleans Square. Going on Haunted Mansion or Indiana Jones. If the 2nd show is the last show get to THE SPOT ASAP DO NOT USE TRAIN.

    THE SPOT = Between the river and the middle light structure. Look for a pot hole and maybe a guy with a hat on, white mustache and sitting in a wheelchair. For some reason this guy and his wife are always there. Put your back near the rope and spread out your legs. Guests will try to squeeze in and you need to make sure that you have your own space.

    After 2nd Show of Fantasmic:
    Use Fastpass to ride Haunted Mansion and the Third Fastpass for Space Mountain.
    This would also be a good time to ride the Submarines if you want too.

    I guide guests all the time and barring any ride down time the plan will work. Hope this makes sense. Let me know how it works for you.

    -Brian

  5. #5

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    I would highly recommend getting to the park at opening and beelining it to Space Mountain. Grab a FP and go on the ride (don't use the Fast Pass, just ride right then without the FP). Then use the FP when it's time comes up for a 2nd ride. Lines have been very long lately. As soon as your SM FP is up, get a HMH FP. Lines for both have been rather long lately and you may only get on them 1 or 2 times. When we were there 2 weeks ago, FP return times were up to 3 and 4pm by 9am. HMH times fluctuate throughout the day and you may catch it relatively short.

    For the fireworks, we got there about 30 - 40 minutes early and found a spot on the ground at the front of the hub off to the left to sit down in. About 15 minutes before they start they make everyone stand up and that is when everyone moves closer together and you end up pretty near the front center.

    That's my two cents worth.

    Our revels now are ended. These our actors, As I foretold you, were all spirits and Are melted into air, into thin air: And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, The cloud-capp'd towers, the gorgeous palaces, The solemn temples, the great globe itself, Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff As dreams are made on, and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. mycroft16 on Twitter

  6. #6

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    Just wing it. Make the fireworks and Haunted Mansion your top 2 Must Sees and let the rest happen as they may. Do you seriously want a stressful day on your day off or just a day to relax, enjoy a Disneyland day as it pans out and leave the park happy and content you had the chance to visit the parks. With this plan I know for sure it won't pan out perfectly and I'm already seeing you leaving the park upset and fighting over the stupidest things and your "list", OMG your list!
    Micoofy Duck
    Disney Theme Park Fan #4,584,376
    http://www.micoofy.com



  7. #7

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    You've got some really good advice above. Just a general tip from me for enjoying busy days. Make sure you speak with your family in advance and let them know that the park will be busy and that you are determined to have a good time anyway. If you go expecting crowds and are prepared to move at a slower pace, you aren't as likely to experience the frustration of not being able to make it from point A to point B in the time you may be use to.

    Also, keep the high capacity rides and shows in mind. Once the park becomes too busy to stand in line for a Nemo or Star Tours, switch to rides like Tiki Room, Tarzan Tree House, Tom Sawyer Island, Castle walk-through, Train, Innoventions, Riverboat, etc. Don't forget to make good use of Fastpass and Single Rider lines and simply stroll at a pace which matches the crowds. Eat at off times (early or late) to avoid the longest lines at the restaurants.

    Find your fireworks spot early and bring some snacks along so you can enjoy them while you are waiting. If you also wanted to see Fantasmic, do them on different nights, it just isn't worth the stress of trying to find good spots for both on the same night!

    The big crowds don't really bother me much any more. I just shift into busy day mode and I'm fine. Go with the flow, avoid long lines, and keep scanning for things that look less crowded. When you detect the slightest sense of frustration in your party, find someplace to relax (the Mark Twain, the deck of the Hungry Bear by the river, Fantasia Gardens, Carnation Gardens, Big Thunder Trail, etc. I suspect you will still have a GREAT time.

    Happy Halloween!

    -Dusty
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  8. #8

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    I'm exhausted just reading the posts but Iam also jealous and would welcome the rush if I could go right now. Have fun and enjoy yourself.

  9. #9

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    I feel your pain, I am also starting my week vacation on The 25th. I didint know that sundays were so busy right now. I hope that the weekday is not really busy, I have yet to spend a whole week in the parks while it is slow. I will be pulling into anahiem on sunday around 10 I hope the mickey and friends parking structure is not full already. If its busy I am going to just hurry up and relax

  10. #10

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    Great advice from everyone, so there's nothing for me to add (so why am I here?!?)

    Repeat the following: relax. relax. relax. :-)

    It's great to know what you want to do and when, but the only thing that works for me if I know I'm facing large crowds is to just plan to relax and take it easy. It's better to adjust or throw out your schedule than it is to rush around like an aggravated maniac and end up with the whole day nothing but a blur of frustration.

    Enjoy, and have a great time...wish I could go with you! I'm really sad that I will miss my favorite time of year at my favorite place.

  11. #11

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    I'm also planning on going on Sunday and will just relax even if the park does have crowds. It might be a better idea to get fastpasses for Soarin' and wait in line or single rider for Screamin'. I have been in Soarin' single rider and it takes a long time.
    "You are watching FOX"

  12. #12

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    Midway Mania is also a really good one to do Single Rider on. The wait was 45 minutes when we were there and my wife and I waited 5 minutes to ride it single rider. Rode it twice. Ride and wait time totaled to about 23 minutes.

    Our revels now are ended. These our actors, As I foretold you, were all spirits and Are melted into air, into thin air: And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, The cloud-capp'd towers, the gorgeous palaces, The solemn temples, the great globe itself, Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff As dreams are made on, and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. mycroft16 on Twitter

  13. #13

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    OK, I just told my husband I'm a little bit in love with all of you.

    Thank you all so much!!!

    Brisal73, I love your plan. I think we're going to follow it as closely as we can. Thank you for the specific Fireworks and Fantasmic watching instructions. I am pretty sure that they will have three shows of Fantasmic, but the train is under refurb, AFAIK. I am not sure we will hold up through the third Fantasmic, but we will try if there are be three of them.

    Dustysage, thank you also for your words. It's just my husband and I and he is well aware of the reports of big crowds. I would generally never try to do the fireworks and Fantasmic in the same night, but this is the only night we will be there until at least June, and I'm dying to see that dragon, so we might try to pull it off. Obviously the fireworks are our first choice as Fantasmic isn't a limited time deal.

    Thank you so much all of you for your input, I am feeling much better about everything. I will post a trip report (hopefully with photos if I figure it all out) once I get back.

    We've never flown in for just one day before, so it will be a new experience. : )

  14. #14

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    if you are feeling adventurous, the Fast Passes at the 2 parks aren't connected, so while you're waiting for your DL passes to become active, you can go to DCA and get more fast passes. Also (at least it was this way 6 months ago) the Roger Rabbit fast pass isn't integrated with the rest of the ones in the park, so you can get one from this ride while you already have 2 others. (perhaps someone can confirm if this still works or not, I haven't been there since April).

    Good luck. I share your anxiety: we'll be there Halloween weekend. I am hoping things calm down after the 31st a little bit.

  15. #15

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    Re: I'm getting nervous...

    Thanks Santadog!

    My original plan was to go to Dl at opening ride a few things and get a few FPS, then go to DCA and get some FP's, then come back to DL for lunch and more FP collecting, , then take a break at the hotel, then go to DCA to use the FP's, then back to Disneyland. Yeah, it was crazy, ha ha.

    I think I will try following Brisal73's plan for the most part, except that after collecting our second Space Mtn FP, I think we would like to try to ride Indy and BTMRR, skipping the Matterhorn, Fantasyland, Billy Hill and Splash this trip. We have lunch reservations at Carnation Cafe at 12:45, so assuming that works out with our FP collecting schedule I would still like to try for that as well. I'm thinking we get our second Space Mtn FP, go to the hub and check out the wait time for Indy. If it is a half hour or less, go ride that, then BTMRR, then fill out our time until it's time to get a HMH FP with the Haloween Roundup, then visit either the Sleeping Beauty walkthrough and the Disney Gallery before our 12:45 lunch reservations, or do those things after lunch if that's how things work out.

    The only thing that scares me is California Screamin' after Cove Bar, but my husband is Australian, so he should be fine after a beer, right? : P And I wasn't going to have a cocktail this time anyway, because there's no way I would survive until midnight after a drink.

    But I'm pretty excited about this plan, and I think it sounds reasonable and doable. I agree that it might actually be more trouble than it's worth to go back to our room for a rest. We usually love to do that in the middle of the day, but we usually stay onsite and have about four days to fool around with. If we need to get away and relax we will find somewhere closer to do it, maybe we'll hang out at the Cove Bar for a longer amount of time, or get a Dole Whip and watch the Tiki room show, or something like that. But I love the idea of trying to get back to DL by six, rather than pushing everything back for a nap.

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