Quantcast Fest 1 of 4 done! A week of food, wine and walking. Days 1 & 2
 
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Ithaca, NY
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    Default Fest 1 of 4 done! A week of food, wine and walking. Days 1 & 2

    Just returned from my first trip of the year on my AP. MY goal is to hit all four EPCOT fests this year and F&W was number one. I had conference work in Orlando scheduled for October 4-7 so I traveled down early and dragged my husband with me to do the parks and Mickey's Not So Scary before it was time to work. I also snuck out of conferencing a couple times, don't tell my boss, lol.

    Day 1 - travel day and MK.
    Originally we were supposed to leave from our home airport and connect in JFK to get to Orlando but because of the intense rain and flooding in NYC that weekend we were canceled and rebooked for the next day. I was not about to lose a day of our already short trip so luckily we connected with a very helpful Delta agent on the phone and was able to leave from a nearby airport instead and still arrive in Orlando on the 30th early enough to enjoy an afternoon in the MK.

    I had to stop by guest relations to activate the AP, which took a while and I was worried we would miss the 1 p.m. TRON virtual queue drop. We JUST made it in, I think Husband scanned in at 12:59:50 because I kept hitting refresh and it worked! It took about 4 hours for our group to get called. I had bought G+ and an ILL for TRON and 7DMT at 7 a.m. while we were in the air (thanks in flight WiFi!) for later in the evening and then stacked more LL's at 11 and 1. So we walked into the park with 5 LL's and a TRON virtual queue. It had been about 8 years since Husband had been at WDW so we had a lot of ground to cover! Crowd level this day was moderate because there was no Halloween Party and G+ definitely allowed us the opportunity to get a lot done. We did standby for Small World, CoP, and Tiki Room and LL's for everything else. During our afternoon/evening we did: Jungle Cruise, Pirates, Tiki Room, BTMRR, Haunted Mansion, Peter Pan, Pooh Bear, Small World, 7DMT, TRON x2, and Buzz. Space Mountain was down all day long so we hoped to do it later in the trip. Spoiler: we didn't. We were beat by 7:30 p.m. so we decided to take care of our bodies and go back to the resort, get some dinner, unpack, and crash!

    We stayed at POP Century. If you've known me since I joined INTERCOT, you may remember I was the POP Queen - for my first 7 or 8 trips I only stayed at POP. But, I branched out a bit and have done some All Stars, moderates, and a deluxe so it had been nearly 8 years since I had been at POP. It was so good to be back! We had a room in the 50's section looking out over the Bowling Pin pool. The refurbished rooms are great! I love that you can decide between a table and a bed, if you're on your own or just need 1 bed the extra surface area was really useful. There is so much more storage than there used to be, especially in the bathroom area. And I don't think there's a better reason to stay at POP now than for the Skyliner. I will be back here for my February trip and really looking forward to it.

    Day 2 - Animal Kingdom morning and MNSSHP
    We slept until about 7ish and then took our time getting to AK. I went back and forth on getting G+ for this day, but ultimately bought it and FoP because both were priced super low for the day and sometimes the wait times at AK can be a head scratcher. Since Husband had never been to AK before and we only had a few hours to experience the highlights I got it as an insurance policy, but I honestly didn't need to get G+ for this time. There was no way of knowing at the time, but a soaking rain shower was going to park itself overhead for HOURS and kept crowd levels super low everywhere this morning.

    Anyway, we got to AK and did Pandora stuff first. I couldn't care less about this IP but Husband really likes these movies and the worldbuilding so I'm glad at least one of us appreciated it. The Shamen of Song was out and I do think she's one of the most beautiful animatronics out there. We did FoP through the LL but the standby wait was 40 minutes at about 9:45 a.m. (park opened at 8:30 for resort guests) so again I probably didn't need to buy the ILL. We were met with a soaking rain at the exit to FoP but we were on a schedule so we put on our ponchos and forged ahead to the safari. Sadly, it was not the best safari. Most of the animals were taking shelter from the pounding rain but we did see some elephants, the cheetahs, and lion and lionesses. After that the rain had lightened up but we wanted to dry off so we saw the Festival of the Lion King. I love that show and never miss it. After that we went over to Asia and rode Everest, my favorite ride in all of WDW! It's more fun in the rain, I think. Lunch was at Flame Tree BBQ, we split the sampler platter and a beer. It was delicious! We ended the morning with Dinosaur and then went back to POP for some rest and to watch the Bills vs. Dolphins game and get ready for Mickey's Not So Scary!

    I had been to this party many, many times but it was Husband's first time. This party was sold out but it rained until about 4 p.m. so the crowd didn't really show up until about 6 so we enjoyed some lighter wait times for shows that don't run during the party. I wanted to make sure to see Country Bears and Philharmagic, and we took another tour through the Haunted Mansion. We wanted to ride the PeopleMover but it was down so we got in line around 6:30 to meet Stitch in his Elvis costume. That took about 45 minutes and we were hungry so we went to Cosmic Ray's for some of the Party specific eats. I had the spicy chicken sandwich and Husband had the meatball sub, both were really tasty. Husband LOVES meeting characters and we had some time to kill before the fireworks so we waited about an hour to meet Pooh and the gang in their cute costumes. I despise waiting that long for a character meet but since I had planned most of the week it was Husband's turn to get to do something he wanted. After that we went to do some magic shots around Fantasyland and rode Little Mermaid. We got a fantastic spot in the Hub for the fireworks with a great view of the Jack Skellington puppet. It was a good show but I miss Hallowishes. We stuck around for the Hocus Pocus Spelltacular show (so good!) and then walked down Main St. to watch the second Boo to You Parade. Got to see the Headless Horseman and Powerline and really enjoyed the parade as usual. We exited the park and got back to POP just after midnight.

    Days 3 and 4 coming soon!
    ~Nikki~
    Last Trip: February 2024
    Next Trips: April 2024

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  4. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Florida
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    A very nice start to your trip!! I'm glad you were able to change your flights so you didn't lose a day!!
    Linda aka: Faline
    INTERCOT Staff: Vacation Planning,Trip Reports and Disney Camping
    [email protected]

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  6. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Edwardsville, IL
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    It sounds like a wonderful start. I stayed at POP this summer and loved it. It exceeded all of my expectations!
    Diane
    ~.*.*.*.*.*.~
    When your heart is in your dream, no request is too extreme.

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  8. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Huntsville, Alabama
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    1,375
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    Sounds like you overcame the adversity and had a good trip. Sometimes a little rain can make the parks easier to manage and it ends up being a great time. I have been in October and it rain steady all day long. It felt like we had Hollywood Studios completely to ourselves one evening.

  9. Thanks BriarRose0708 thanked for this post

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