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Walt Disney World Day 2 Report

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Trip Log:

Slept in a bit trying to catch up after the red-eye yesterday.  We headed down for breakfast around 8am to the Concourse Steakhouse.  After breakfast walked down and hopped a bus over to the Studios.  Strolled down Hollywood Blvd.  Swung by the Toy Story work and then to the Animation Building.  After touring walked by the Great Movie Ride and down into the Backlot.  Took a ride on the Backlot tour and then walked around the Big City Streets.  Half the group headed back to the Contemporary for some fishing.  I noticed it was close to time for Playhouse Disney so hiked over there and just barely made it in.  After the show headed back to the backlot to finish looking around, grabbed lunch at Pizza Planet.  After lunch wandered the backlot area and then walked around Echo Lake before heading toward the exit.  We took the Friendship Boat over to EPCOT.  Walked by the UK, stopped at Canada and listened to Off Kilter then continued on to Future World.  Grabbed some ice cream at the Fountain View Café and then headed over to the Garden Center at the Wonders of Life.  Rejoined the rest of our group at the Electric Umbrella and then walked around the World Showcase from Mexico out to the American Adventure.  Stopped and watched the Starship set and then finished the loop.  Walked through the Rose Walk and into Future World.  Stopped at Innoventions and tried out the new Waste Management game.   Then headed to the front of the park for some pictures before taking a bus over to the Animal Kingdom.  Stopped to grab a bite in Dinoland and then circled by Everest, the Flame Tree seating area, the Tree of Life and the rest of Discovery Island before heading back to the Contemporary to call it an evening.

Thoughts & Observations:

  • We spent the morning taking it easy and went for a nice breakfast at the Concourse Steakhouse. It had been a while since eating there and I was disappointed to see they have changed/eliminated the Mickey Stickies (they had some other type of cinnamon buns. I was also surprised not to hear the Chef Mickey's music every 15 minutes like last time we ate there, not sure if it was playing less frequently or just softer, but it was nice.

  • The Bus stop at the Contemporary was temporarily relocated due to work going on so it was a little disjointed to get on a bus, but not too bad. The Contemporary shares busses with the Polynesian for the Animal Kingdom, Downtown Disney, and Studio routes. Our bus stop had maybe a dozen people waiting and only our group got on the Studios bus. We pulled into the Polynesian and the area was over crowded with people. I thought that was odd, that so many more were waiting there. Almost every time we stopped there over the week the number of people waiting was substantially more than the Contemporary. Guess the loss of the wing and then more convention guests means less people heading to the parks?

  • The Disney Hollywood Studios name change appears to be nearly complete with almost all signs now changed or removed. I only saw a couple minor signs with the old name.

  • We went on the backlot tour since I wanted to try and get a shot of the water tower and again it disappointed and frustrated me how much they have gutted this attraction. I would be curious what a first time guest thinks of it (anyone want to share)?

  • I spent some time circling the Toy Story Mania area talking with cast members. Most did not know anything and those that acted as if they did said things were delayed, but they did not even seem to know about the CM previews and AP previews after that so not the best sources of information. Each time we were at the park the area seemed to have a few extra things out, but still no access.

  • Half our group left the studios and headed back to the Contemporary for a fishing excursion on Bay Lake and the Seven Seas Lagoon. They had a blast and caught several fish. I did not go along this trip.

  • It was kind of depressing to be inside the Wonders of Life Pavilion again and not be able to see Cranium Command, which is one of my favorite WDW shows... the Pavilion is now used for special events only, this time of year it is the headquarters for the Flower and Garden Festival.

  • In the old Making of Me theater they have a great film loop of the making of the Flower and Garden Festival. I found this extremely interesting and entertaining. Everyone else in my group found it on the long side and abandon me.

  • There was no line for the new Waste Managment game at Innoventions so we gave it a try and I have to say it was well done. There was a good mix of education, entertainment, and interactivity. The only complaint I could see with this is its a low capacity attraction with three teams playing every 5 minutes or so (maybe they could go a little faster if there was a line but not much). The experience consists of three games, an intro, and a final score tally.

  • Caught a set from Starship and we lasted only about half the set before deciding to move on..

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