Drove into WDW around 7pm. Signs on the way in indicated that the MK was closed due to capacity. Cars entering the property were being directed to EPCOT's parking lot. This is where I parked. Then on a whim decided to take the monorail to the TTC to watch the pyro from the Poly Beach. Some managers and signs were in place at the entrance of the EPCOT monorail station, discouraging guests from going to the MK because the park was "closed to capacity and probably closed to guests". Well.. I had no problems making it all the way to the MK. Entered the park juts fine. So no, the park was not closed as they had mentioned. This is part of the same tactic, year after year, to lie to guests in hopes they will ddeviate the traffic to other parks.. Management has been doing this for decades.
Now granted, the MK was very crowded. At 7:45pm, thousands of guests were already sitting down all over Town Square, up both sides of Main Street and all over the hub and respective bridges to Adventureland and Tomorrowland. To put it mildly.. it was a MAD HOUSE. There was a small batallion of Cms doing the best they could to manage crowds and for the most part they were doing an ok job, especially on Main Street where they basically became a human barricade dividing pedestrian traffic so people could flow in either direction at the same time. Other areas, CMs were creating the clutter by trying to redirect people to other areas where they did not want to go. That caused a few problems and some tension among some guests and CMs.
By 8:25pm, the hub area was intransitable. CMs in Adventureland and Liberty Square were trying their best to have people go away from that area. Me? I am smarter than that and found loopholes in the crowd control procedures, so I expeditiously made my way to the Crystal Palace, then thru the near empty Emporium and out the park, where quickly, I took the monorail to the TTC and found my way to the Poly Beach, with 10 minutes to spare before the pyro show started.
The crowd at the MK was HUGE, similar to a regular day crowd at Tokyo Disneyland, only difference is.. Tokyo is a much more expansive park with much more staffing for crowd control and can handle the crowds more efficiently, and with plenty of space to pack more of them. At the MK, no such luck. Seems to me the 'small' size of the Mk, aggraviated by the obesity problem americans have and the fact that people from age 1 to 100 are occupying even more space with those overly sized strollers and scooter chairs.. helps create more clutter and traffic movement gridlock. I believe that.. if you take out the scooters and strollers, there would be more room for additional guests!!!
Anyways... the 4th of July show started right at 9pm. Again, those of us who saw the show from the Poly beach got to hear very little of the music that went along with the show.. but seemed to me it was the same music they used at DLR as well.. the one that begins with native american music and chanting? The show itself was ok, but compared to previous years.. I found it a bit skimpy on the perimeter pyro. It just didn't have the same *BOOM* all throughout like in previous editions of the 4th of July Fantasy in the Sky shows. All in all, still a very decent show, and is proof that when it comes to big firework shows, WDW is the best among the 5 Disney Resorts worldwide.
After the show, many of us ran over to the TTC, hopped on the monorail to EPCOT (tonight, I rode the TRON mono) and arrived at EPCOT around 9:30pm.. just in time for a light rain to start falling. Took my space for the 10pm Reflections show (a show that badly needs to go or at least badly needs major upgrades to it's many technical components, like the old fashion static fountains and boring revolving TV show.) From my spot, I could see DHS' 4th of july fireworks, which looked pretty decent, even if the winds out of the south caused a lot of the show to be blocked from view due to the smoke, same problem those who were in the north (Future World) side of the lagoon had to deal with during EPCOT's show.. smoke blackout.
The DHS show ended promptly at 9:55pm and EPCOT's show started at 10pm sharp as a light rain shower came down and continued to come down during the entire show.. After sitting thru the same decade old Reflections show, the special ending came. It was as always.. very explosive, with a nice tribute and pyro segment released from behind the American Adventure. Again, this show is not as big as in previous years when there was perimeter pyro all around the World Showcase lagoon but still, a very loud and explosive finale that got the crowd roaring in excitement. The only problem was.. like at DHS, it was the heavy smoke, a combination of the extra pyro and also the high humidity in the air, which makes smoke think. That created some challenges and somewhat obscured the show for those of us in the north side of the lagoon.
Even with the rain and the heavy smoke, it was an enjoyable evening at WDW, and everyone came home happy
Anyways.. even with all the "technical" problems