Just got back from another trip to WDW, here are some thoughts and observations about the week.
-The Magic Hours delegated to those who stay on Disney property are relatively useless now. Because of the recession Disney decided to close down a number of attractions (and sometimes whole areas, e.g. Toontown) during the magic hour’s period. This made all the popular attractions even more crowded essentially eliminating the purpose of the extended hours.
-While there were def examples that the recession was taking its toll on Disney there were also surprising examples in the other direction. Each day I went to one of the parks they were jammed pack, booking a restaurant reservation was difficult as well as most were booked solid. I’ve read other articles on the site that Disney was surprised at how many families jumped at their package deals and it was evident during the week I was there.
-The keys to the kingdom tour lived up to the hype. It was well done and the group I was in had a great tour guide. We had one elderly gentleman in our group who decided it would be a good idea to take some pictures in the tunnel underneath the park, needles to say that did not go over too well. Another elderly woman asked about a future DVD release of Song of the South which resulted in a curt “That will never be released” response from our tour guide. A number of people asked about Obama and the refurb for HOP. We didn’t get much information from out tour guide but the impression I got was that Disney was def going to capitalize on the moment and the historical significance of the election. Overall I would recommend the tour to anyone who is a fan of Disney history, culture, parks etc..
-The Country Bear Jamboree show is really showing its age. The fault def lies with Disney in this regard as one of the bear’s eyes was closed due to malfunction, it really made the show seem amateurish and cheesy. The upkeep was definitely lacking for this attraction.
- Toy Story Mania lived up to the hype. Was really impressed with the attraction. The addition of this ride almost renders Buzz Light Year’s ride at MK useless as it is cheesy in comparison. With Pixar studios at DS now, it almost makes sense for Disney to move Stitch’s attraction and Monster Inc’s laugh floor there, which would open up more space at Tommorowland. This would also be a great way to end the Pixarfication of Tommorowland while still keeping intact the attractions.
-Disney is going to have a real problem with American Idol. I attended one show and it was so fixed I thought Vince McMahon was running it and I know I was not alone in this sentiment as a number of people were saying the same thing walking out of the attraction. It also doesn’t help that like many of Disney’s ideas (Who Wants to Be a Millionaire) they are bit slow and a tad too late jumping on a trend. Will this attraction be relevant 5 years from now? Again this is indicative of Disney’s problem of thinking short term and not long term.
- I really enjoy the Disney “One Man, One Dream” show and walk-through at the Studios. I know earlier I mentioned that Disney should move some of the Pixar attractions at Tommorowland to Pixar studios at DS. This would definitely mean the removal of One Man, One Dream. I really think this attraction is essential to the parks and think it would be better suited at MK, so maybe we could have a trade between the 2 parks? I’d be for it.
-Ate at Ohana’s for the 1st time. It def lived up to they hype.
-The single rider line at Disney is the best kept secret in the park, if your not traveling with a family (or young children) it’s definitely the way to go. People in my group waited a combined total of 30 minutes for Expition Everestt, Rock and Roller Coaster and Test Track which wait times were each well over an hour. Many times you will be in the same car as members in your group. Too many people we talked to at the parks did not know about this.
..I will have more later but overall had great week at WDW.