No alarm but was still up before 7am. We decided to try for Rise of the Resistance virtual boarding group and failed, ran into a system error of some type. Some of the group headed to Chef Mickey’s for breakfast. The rest of us hung out in the room then roamed the Contemporary grounds. We all met up and took a bus over to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Strolled up Hollywood Blvd. and turned on Sunset. Stopped by Lightning McQueen’s Racing Academy. Then made our way out to Toy Story Land. Visited Midway Mania! Then walked through Black Spire Outpost on our way to the Muppet Courtyard. Just missed the show so decided to grab a bite to eat a Rizzo’s (and some ran over to the Backlot Express). Walked out to Hollywood Blvd. by way of Echo Lake. Along the way saw the Pixar Cavalcade. Some shopped and the rest of us hung out on Hollywood Blvd. We saw the Disney Jr. Cavalcade while waiting. At 1:00pm tried for Rise of the Resistance again and succeeded this time. Group 86 and they were in the 70s already. Estimated wait was a little over an hour. We decided to visit Toy Storyland again and go for a spin on Swirling Saucers. Then hung out in Black Spire Outpost until our time which ended up being around 2pm (so less than an hour wait). Took about 20 minutes to reach the briefing and about 40 minutes total time from entering queue until exiting. After our ride met the rest of our group near Muppets and decided to head back to the room. Changed gear and grabbed a bus for Disney Springs. Some ate at City Works the rest Chicken Guy. After eating walked around the Town Center, then West Side, then back to the Marketplace returning to the Town Center to wrap up the loop. Caught a bus back to Bay Lake Tower. Once back in the room closed out the night with the Electrical Water Pageant.
Thoughts & Observations:
- Today we had a park reservation for Disney's Hollywood Studios. We had ridden Rise of the Resistance before so we did not set an alarm to wake up and try for a boarding group. We were all up anyways so we gave it a try for the 7am distribution. We got to the final screen where you confirm your group then the app bombed out. By the time we retried the groups were all gone.
- Some of the group had a breakfast reservation at Chef Mickey's this morning for the kids. The rest of us relaxed and then roamed around the resort. Those that went to the breakfast thought it went well. They said the tables were really spaced out and having the characters away actually worked better with the young kids.
- We made it down to the bus stop around 9am and the line for Disney's Hollywood Studios stretched several buses. A cast member kept walking the line apologizing saying they made a call for buses and were told they are on the way. After about 10 minutes of waiting three buses pulled in and started to load. This took almost the entire line, including us. The load process was a bit slow since they only did one bus at a time though.
- We stepped foot into the park about 9:45am. As we were in line and en route we watched the wait times crept up for all attractions.
- We opted to head for Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy first since the nephews love the film and I thought they would enjoy the attraction. We were right, they had a great time! The social distancing of groups being well spaced out and every other row really helped for the kids to be able to see the screens clearly.
- Toy Story Midway Mania had a 20 minute wait posted so we headed that way next. It was really odd to walk the entire standby queue in under 20 minutes. It was great you kept moving but a lot of extra steps.
- For lunch we decided on Rizzo's and Backlot Express. We did find a couple limitations to mobile ordering here. First you could not use two gift cards and secondly you couldn't substitute or drop the salad. So we asked to use a register. This entailed the cast member at the door radioing for someone. A lead came and met us and rang up the order. The cash register was not working properly though and they could not get the order to go through. After several tries and apologies they gave up and went and got us the food as well as someone to fix the register. They said we had waited long enough and comped the meal.
- Some guests never cease to amaze me. We heard the Pixar Cavalcade coming so we found a spot away from people and parked the strollers where the kids could see. Right as the cavalcade approached a family walked by us. Most kept moving down to find a spot but the father decided to stop directly in front of our strollers so they kids could not see. There was no one on either side of us for 10 feet and his family moved down the walkway a good 20 feet but he stopped a couple feet from our strollers and blocked their view. This was annoying and rude on several levels.
- The Cavalcades went over really well with the nephews. They knew most of the characters in both the Pixar and Disney Jr. ones we saw and being short with no wait really worked well for their attention spans.
- We were done with our checklist for the Studios by about 12:30 but decided to hang around and try for the 1pm boarding group distribution. We lucked out and received a group that was estimated to be called in about an hour. So we did another lap of the park and hung around to experience Rise of the Resistance.
- It seemed after 1pm the crowd started to thin throughout the park and wait times were trending downwards.
- Our Rise of the Resistance experience was good. The wait seemed long since you had to walk so far in the queue but turned out to be only 20 minutes from entering until the briefing room. The colors for the briefing room, shuttle and attraction worked ok. Only thing we noticed is there are too many of the same color when going from the briefing to the shuttle. Seems they need a number or letter on them so you can say green A and green B or something vs just green.
- Our bus progress this afternoon was slow going. It was a wait to get back to the Contemporary and the bus ride seemed long. Then we headed for Disney Springs for dinner and there was some confusion with our group size and we somehow had to wait for the next bus which meant a solid 20+ minutes more at the bus stop.
- Disney Springs felt like a different planet compared to how I have been living at home and even visiting the parks. The restaurants, bars, shopping all seemed crowded and open. At one point I was standing near the AMC and there were two open bars fairly full and an open movie theater. At this point at home in California you still could not get a haircut. A couple of times as we walked around it felt a little too crowded for my taste and we moved out of that area to others to space out a bit.
- For dinner some did the patio at City Works and the rest of us Chicken Guy. Chicken Guy was not crowded at all and it was easy to get a table out of the way to eat. Those at the patio were a couple tables away from the nearest group and away from the walkway.
- Due to the early park closings by the time we had eaten and walked around Disney Springs it was too late to try and go anywhere so we headed back to room to call it a night.
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