home > Walt Disney World > Trip Report

WDW Logo
Walt Disney World Day 8 Report

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Trip Log:

Started off the morning at a leisurely pace.  Walked out to check out some of the Art of Animation Progress then hopped on a bus to the Studios and transferred to the Animal Kingdom Lodge bus there.  Spent some time roaming around Jambo house then headed for a bus out to Kidani.  Walked around the lobby area and then out to visit the Allears.net gang.  They had an event as part of their December to Remember festivities that included a tour/meet at a Grand Villa.  I took some pictures and visited then headed out to the Animal Kingdom.   Hiked out to get a Fastpass for the Safari then rejoined my group at Pizzafari.  After lunch walked out to use our Fastpasses.  Once back walked through Pangani then roamed around the Tree of Life for a while before heading out of the park.  Our Destination was the Hollywood Studios but it was a three to four bus wait so we headed to Pop Century and transferred there.   We arrived on Hollywood Blvd just as the Pixar Parade was making its way down the street.  Watched the parade roll by then made our way out to Lights, Motors, Action by way of the Animation Courtyard.  After the show decided to grab a Fastpass for Star Tours then a bite at the Backlot Express.  Ended up walked down Sunset Blvd to catch the Beauty and the Beast show then others in the group grabbed a bite to eat out there.  We then walked through Pixar Place and out the Streets of America to see the Osborne lights.    Then went and used my Fastpass for Star Tours even though it was not needed at all due to there being no line at all.  Next up decided to watch Fantasmic then on the way out saw Mulch, Sweat and Shears before heading to the bus to call it an early evening.

Thoughts & Observations:

  • This morning I headed over to Kidani Village at the Animal Kingdom Lodge to meet up with the gang from Allears.net.  They were having an open house in one of the Grand Villas as part of their December to Remember celebrating 15 years of the site.     Disney Vacation Club properties follow similar room layouts from resort to resort and the Grand Villa is their largest room type.  They are two stories with three bedrooms, a kitchen, dining, and living room.   This was my first time being in a completed grand villa (I had the opportunity to tour one at the Grand Californian but it was still under construction, it did not even have walls yet!).    The room was large and the Animal Kingdom details could be found in every room.  The most impressive feature though was the two story window that looked out to the savanna.  Hard to beat that view!!  There were balconies on both floors to go out and observe the animals.

  • After hanging out with the All Ears Gang I headed to the Animal Kingdom to meet the rest of my traveling group for lunch.  I was surprised by how mild the crowd was given it was Saturday, but I did not complain too loudly… always enjoy the gift a mild crowd and do not question it too much!

  • Next up we headed to the Studios because I wanted to catch the Lights, Motors, Action! Show to see the Cars additions.   There was a longer than usual wait to get through security and then I choose unwisely and had a long wait to get into the park too.

  • This past summer as part of the Cars 2 promotion Lightening replaced Herbie at Lights, Motors, Action.   I thought it was a fun little skit. It seemed really awkward and kind of shoe  horned in, but I enjoyed it.

  • Ended up heading over to see Beauty and the Beast.  Curious how many more years they will keep this show.. seems like it is time to update it.   It is a great show and at night with the lights it is even better but it has been a long run.  I still miss the preshow group, Four For a Dollar.  I used to always try to make a couple of their performances.

  • I had a Fastpass for Star Tours and went to use it before heading to the Osborne lights.  I was surprised to find that the standby line was actually moving faster.  Both were walk ons but since they had to collect fastpasses it was slightly longer in the Fastpass line. 

  • Next up the Osborne Lights.   I spend some time roaming the Streets of America in search of the infamous cat.   For those that do not know the story.. when the lights were originally trucked down to Orlando from Arkansas  one piece of the Osborne’s Halloween display, a purple cat, found its way into the trucks.   This cat is “hid” in a different spot each year now. 

  • I am not sure why I did, but I ended up deciding to stay at the Studios for the evening and go see Fantasmic.  I walked up about 10 minutes before show time expecting to be in a standing/standby area but instead found the theater was not even half full.  So was able to choose where I wanted to sit.  I kind of guessed on the wind and found a spot on the right side when you enter.     The original Fantasmic at Disneyland is one of my favorite Disney productions.  The WDW grinds on my nerves though.  I think they rely too much on the water screens and the scenes they do have just do not engage me as much as the Disneyland version.  It is really hard to top the Columbia rounding the corner with a large canon blast or the Mark Twain.  The small Steamboat Willie inspired boat at the Studios just does not work for me.

  • As I was heading out I listened to a bit of Mulch, Sweat, and Shears who were performing on the main stage.  I was extremely disappointed with them this year.  The new vocalists were not as good as years past and the music select this time was terrible.  Last year the Christmas show was great!

Pedometer Information for the day:

Steps 22,965

Miles 8.6

Moderate 16,236

Walking Time 146

WDW Pictures
Part I:
Disney Art of Animation Resort Progress & a look around the Animal Kingdom Lodge including a Grand Villa at Kidani Village
WDW Pictures
Part II:
A look around the Animal Kingdom and Disney Hollywood Studios