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  1. #1

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    Never been & sooo many questions

    We are going to surprise our son with a trip to WDW in Oct for his 11th birthday... We have never been to WDW, and the last time I went to DL it was nearly 20 years ago.

    We bought a package and are staying at the Coronado with the DDP for 5 nights/6 days.

    Would character dining be appropriate for his age? If so, which one?


    Thanks.

  2. #2

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Character dining can be enjoyed by everyone. That said, Chef Mickey probably more than Princesses... ( But I'm an unabashed Contemporary fan anyway )

  3. #3

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Depends on if he likes characters or not. I'm 53 and I love seeing Pooh and Tigger at the Crystal Palace. But if he's at the age where he's too cool for characters, then it may not be the best thing.

  4. #4

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    I agree with the others, all depends on what the boy likes. If character embarass him, you've just wasted time & money. If he likes them around a character breakfast is a great place to fill up and enjoy some Disney magic while you are dining.

    I'd ask him but 11 is that "cusp" age where he could love or hate it.

  5. #5

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    I'd make a Character Dining reservation (just to be safe) for sometime towards the end of your stay. That way, you can better gauge how he reacts/interacts with the in park characters.. if he's 'too cool' for them, that way you can call and cancel the reservation.

  6. #6

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    If you're testing for character interest, I recommend visiting The Magic of Disney Animation in Disney's Hollywood Studios. You can walk in through the gift shop to the little lobby area, without having to go through the rest of the attraction. There, they have Sorcerer Mickey out greeting guests, and other characters like the characters from Up and The Incredibles.

    I've done The Crystal Palace and that might not be the best fit for his age, but then again, you know your son best.
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  7. #7

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    I would just book a breakfast at Chef Mickeys. If he decides he doesn't want to go, cancel your reservation. This way you have a reservation just in case. They can be hard to come by if you wait until you are there. I am in my mid 30s and I always book one character dining when we go. I find it fun. The best way to get pictures with the characters. My 8 year old nephew still likes them as well. It all depends on the child.
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  8. #8

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    How fun!
    I have been many many times! I have multiple and detailed trip reports that might help. Go to my blog below, and type in the name of the park you want to find. Enjoy!
    Mark

    Disney parks and art, movies, music, more... Over 1, 500 Posts!
    www.InsightsandSounds.blogspot.com

  9. #9

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Depends on what characters he likes. If he likes Pooh characters, then go for the Crystal Palace at MK. If he likes the "classics" (Mickey, etc.), then go for Chef Mickey's at the Contemporary.

  10. #10

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    I went by myself the first time at 40 and I went to 4 character meals and loved them all. My 2 favorites were Crystal Palace and Ohana. Ohana was great, I went there before MK opened and just hopped on the monorail and was at the park before opening. Ohana has Lilo, Stitch, Mickey and Pluto!

  11. #11

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Chef Mickeys, Garden Grill and Cape May (breakfast) all have the more traditional characters. Chef Mickeys is really loud and, of late, hasn't been up to Disney standards for cleanliness. Cape May has a wonderful buffet and seems so be a quieter than Chef Mickeys and cleaner. Garden Grill is a table service, all you can eat restaurant, definitely the quietest of the bunch and the characters seem to be able to spend more time with you. Ohana's breakfasts are the best, served table service, but all you can eat. This seems to be the most fun, interactive of all the breakfasts.

    My DD is 11 and still loves the character breakfasts even though outside of WDW she would never admit it.

  12. #12

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Awsome!, I hope you have a wonderful time! The Coranado Springs is beautiful. I think you will really enjoy it. Make sure you spend some time at the pool. As for Character meals, I agree with other that this one is all depending on him specifically. He may love it, or think he's "to old" for it. If you do decide to go for it, I like chef mickey's as well.

  13. #13

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    Cool Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    My personal preference is to have at least one "face" character because they can speak.

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  14. #14

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Quote Originally Posted by ralfrick View Post
    My personal preference is to have at least one "face" character because they can speak.

    A bientot.
    I agree with this.

    I know it's a 'girl' thing, but 1900 Park Fare has the Step-Sisters and Lady Tremaine, as well as Cinderella, and Prince Charming. If you think he would talk and get into a fun conversation, I'd recommend this, the Step-Sisters are always a ton of fun.
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  15. #15

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    Re: Never been & sooo many questions

    Be careful with the "surprise" factor as well--sometimes the trip overwhelms the youngster and you and he might both be stressed out over what he can or cannot do. That can make or break a trip. Play your cards close to your vest, as it were, but you might want to let him know slightly beforehand, instead of just taking him to the airport.

    Tell him a day or two earlier and then let him do some googling on what he might like. It will soften the blow a bit.

    However, you can also disregard this. You're the one who knows your kid!

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