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INTERCOT > Interactive > INTERCOT Insider Archive > October 2007

December 2007 - Holiday Edition 

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<< Introduction >>

Sleigh bells ring, are you listening...in the lane snow, is glistening...A beautiful sight, we're happy tonight ... reading the INTERCOT Insider! With the Winter Holiday season upon us, the Insider is getting into the festive sprit and is brining you this special edition filled to the brim with Holiday cheer.  In this edition we take a look at the hot topics around the boards, round-up the New Year’s Eve festivities across Walt Disney World, countdown the favorite colossal Christmas confectionaries on display at Walt Disney World, welcome another new Sponsor, check out the buzz in info Central, and check out some more timeshare tips.   It's Insider Time!

<< INTERCOT Hot Topics >>

With the Holiday Season well underway, the boards are a-buzz with last minute trip planning prior to a Christmas or New Year’s trip to ‘the world’.  Let’s look at the Hot Topics for November & December 2007.

-New Years Eve at Disney World?-

Deesdisney wanted to know what the crowds and festivities are like on New Year’s Eve around the Walt Disney World resort.  Here’s some of the opinions INTERCOTee’s shared:

"We've been there a few times for New Years and we go to Epcot. We make a few Advanced Dining Reservations and just have fun. You do need to plan to be there early and stay for the day. They closed the park {due to crowds} the last time we were there for about 3 hours."--wifey5794

"We were at Walt Disney World for New Year's 2001-2002 and it was very crowded on New Year's Eve. We spent the day at the Magic Kingdom and it was closed early in the day because they had reached capacity. ... They gave out hats and noise makers later in the evening. There were extra shows, parades, lights and other festivities as well. The Countdown on MainStreet was awesome and the fireworks were incredible!!"-- LittleRoosMommy 

"Walt Disney World on New Years Eve is Awesome. But if you hate crowds don't bother. We've gone 10 out of the last 15 years...Epcot and Disney-MGM Studios tend to be more adult, probably because of the alcohol sales. They hand out hats and noise makers at all of the parks."-- pennsy22

"The parks are Very crowded and the parks do stop entry when they are filled to capacity. However you can have a wonderful experience staying at a hotel. You can have dinner at someplace fabulous and watch the fireworks from one of the hotels. Last year we were at Disney for New Years Eve and stayed at Saratoga Springs Resort. The view of Downtown Disney's fireworks was fantastic from there. We ate at Downtown Disney then watched the fireworks from Saratoga Springs Resort. You have several options if you don't want to be in a park."—MinnieMommie

-Which Lodge?-

Ms.Disney asked for input on deciding between Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge for a future stay.  Here’s some of the input INTERCOTee’s gave:

"Wilderness Lodge is my favorite of all of the resorts. I love how when you arrive you feel almost like you aren't even in Florida anymore. Instead you are taken to the beauty of a U.S. National park. The resort's beauty will take you away from the moment you enter the front doors. There are a lot of things to do at this resort. It has two great restaurants. You can rent a variety of boats and also bikes. There are activities for the children and a tour of the resort that the whole family can take part in. Or if you don't want to do anything at all you sit out by the pool or out on your balcony enjoying the sounds of the "wilderness"."--Mollywobbles

"Animal Kingdom Lodge is my favorite Disney Resort. It is a nice relaxing place that really makes you feel like you away from everything. The views of the animals are amazing and make it a wonderful experience. I really enjoy waking up and sitting out on the balcony and watching the animals before I start my day at the parks. The 2 restaurants are both excellent and I really like the counter service location since it offers some great flavors of Africa along with the standard fair. They also offer African storytelling at night around the fire as well as nightvision goggles to view the animals at night. "-- JPL

"Wilderness Lodge! ... My husband and I stayed in Animal Kingdom Lodge a couple years ago.  We liked Animal Kingdom Lodge ok, but you can't walk around the resort, and it's pretty far away from Magic Kingdom (our favorite park).  The next year we stayed in Wilderness Lodge, and fell in love with the resort! It's quite romantic, every cafe/restaurant has yummy food, you can take a ferry to Magic Kingdom, and you can rent bikes"-- Tigger&Stitch

"I’d choose Animal Kingdom Lodge since it is such a unique resort. We've enjoyed the proximity to the Animals, particularly since Dear Daughter (Age 6) is an Animal Lover! I also prefer the Food Court at Animal Kingdom Lodge to that at Wilderness Lodge simply because it is larger, offers those fantastic zebra domes in to-go packs, and has this African Stew in a bread bowl that I love."-- Kendall0303

-Toddler’s First Character Meal?-

WDWfeelslikehome inquired as to which character meal would be most enjoyed by a toddler that had never been to Walt Disney World before.  Here’s some of the suggestions INTERCOTee’s offered:

"Garden Grill at Epcot. It is our 3yr olds favorite at WDW (actually it's all 5 of our favorites). We get more one on one time with the characters (especially Mickey and Pluto), the food is great, the revolving floor is unique and you have a great view of Living with the Land boatride."-- Tigerinvestigator

"My Dear Son, who was 3, and I went to Crystal Palace by ourselves and had a great time.  Another suggestion, my kids loved Liberty Tree Tavern. We went for dinner and had great character interaction. The kids had a really good time. "-- Roger Rabbit 89

"My family, including my almost 3 year old Dear Daughter, really enjoyed the Ohana’s breakfast at the Polynesian Resort. It's Mickey, Lilo, Stitch, Pluto in Tropical garb.  We also enjoyed the Winnie the Pooh characters at Crystal Palace in Magic Kingdom. "-- jenfriend

"Garden Grill. The characters are wonderful there and it's relatively small and quiet (compared to Chef Mickey's, for example). Also, Mickey is a well known character, unlike some of the characters at the other meals."-- ElenitaB

Thanks to our topic starters for asking such great questions, and thanks to all of those who responded for sharing their insight and experiences.

<< A Cool Deal for Passholders>>

~with the Gaylord Palms Resort~

INTERCOT's newest sponsor, Gaylord Palms Resort, is happy to announce a special offer to view ICE for Annual Passholders at select Florida theme parks. Now through January 3rd, annual passholders for all Walt Disney World theme parks, all Universal Orlando theme parks, SeaWorld Adventure Park, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, and Cypress Gardens can receive a free child's admission to ICE! for every adult admission purchased. This offer is only valid for admission before 2pm, and is available by showing a valid season pass at the ICE! Box Office.

>> More info on ICE

<< Ringing in 2008 at Walt Disney World >>

Walt Disney World Resort ushers in 2008 with a dazzling display of entertainment, parades, fireworks, thrills and extended hours throughout the Vacation Kingdom.  In the spirit of the "dropping ball" in Times Square, Guests can experience a special New Year's count-downs across the resort.  Many locations also feature earlier entertainment so that Guests with children can join in the revelry before they retire.

Magic Kingdom

Donning hats and noisemakers, revelers can party on until 1 a.m. at Magic Kingdom with double the parades and fireworks. Guests can count down to the magical hour with the "SpectroMagic" parade at 7 and 10:30 p.m., plus "Holiday Wishes" fireworks at 8:30 p.m. and "Fantasy in the Sky-New Year’s Eve Edition" fireworks at 11:50 p.m.


A special version of "IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth" laser-light spectacular will be presented at 7:30 and 11:40 p.m. at Epcot. Latin crossover band Papo's Groove and the energetic DJ Indio Davila will entertain partiers at America Gardens Theatre, while the big band swing music of the Tom Butler Orchestra will fill World Showplace. Rockers can boogie down at Scooter's dance party at the Fountain Stage, plus techno rock at the China pavilion and classic rock 'n' roll at the Italy pavilion in World Showcase. Guest can ring in the New Year with international flair till 1 a.m.

Disney-MGM Studios

Aglow with the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights, presented by SYLVANIA, millions of sparkling lights adorn the Streets of America backlot. Special entertainment includes a trio of "Fantasmic!" fireworks shows -- at 6:30, 8:30 and 10 p.m. -- plus "Lights, Camera, Happy New Year!" fireworks at midnight.  Revelers can continue to party on until 1 a.m.

Downtown Disney Pleasure Island

Downtown Disney Pleasure Island ushers in the New Year with pizzazz and hosts its annual, island-wide street party. The special ticket event features live bands and DJs mixing it up all night long. The party is for revelers 21 and older and takes place from 8 p.m.-2 a.m. Admission to the night-long celebration is $99 plus tax, and includes entry to all Pleasure Island nightclubs. For more information or to order tickets, guests may call 407/W-DISNEY.

Downtown Disney West Side

Cirque du Soleil fans can celebrate the New Year La Nouba style with two presentations of the theatrical production, at 6 and 9 p.m. A champagne toast celebration, souvenir program, glow sticks and gift are included in the special ticket price. Tickets are from $67 to $139, plus tax, depending on category.

Disney’s Boardwalk

Pop the cork on a memorable New Year’s Eve at the Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney’s BoardWalk Resort. The champagne is chilled, the snacks are delicious and the dancing is divine. With a rockin’ band like the Big Ide playing your favorite tunes from the ‘80s, ‘90s and now – and the grand champagne toast at midnight – counting down the New Year in the casual elegance of Atlantic Dance Hall is sure to be the highlight of this or any year.  Please note that all Guests must be 21 years of age or older to enter Atlantic Dance Hall on New Year’s Eve (proper ID is required). Tickets for this event will go on sale at noon on December 31, 2007 at the Atlantic Dance Hall box office.

 << Inside info Central>>

Park Calendar Released for June 2008


The Walt Disney World Resort has released it's Extra Magic Hours, Operating, and Event schedules for June 2008. For guests visiting during this time, you will want to visit the Park Hours and Events pages to aid in planning your trip. Remember, all times and schedules are subject to change, so check back often.


>> Extra Magic Hours Schedule and Info


>> Current Park Hours


>> Fireworks, Parades, & Event Schedules

What's Updated?

INTERCOT info Central has recently updated the following sections to keep you up-to-date as you plan your Disney World Vacation. 

>> Closing & Refurbishment Schedule


>> Historic Temp Averages by Day  


>> Walt Disney World Kennels


<< Timeshare Tips>>

~by the Timeshare Store~

Once you have done your research and made a decision on how many points to buy for your Disney Vacation Club membership, your next step is to decide which resort you would like to make your home resort. A good rule of thumb is to purchase at the resort you would enjoy staying at the most since your home resort give you an advantage in making reservations. 

Let’s say you purchased your DVC points at Disney’s Boardwalk Villas. You can make reservations at Boardwalk (your home resort) 11 months before your vacation check out date. Next year you want to use your Boardwalk points at the Wilderness Lodge. Since it is not your home resort, you would have to wait until 7 months before your vacation check out date to make the reservations, giving those who own at Wilderness Lodge the home resort advantage in making their reservations. This is important if you vacation during the very busy seasons at Walt Disney World. The smaller resorts tend to book up quickly, so choose your home resort based on where you want to stay the most.

Of course, you may use your points at any of the 8 DVC resorts (with new DVC resorts announced for Disneyland California and on the island of Oahu in Hawaii) and at over 500 locations worldwide.

Check our website to see all of our current DVC listings for sale. Contact us at The Timeshare Store and any of our associates would be happy to answer your questions and find the right Disney Vacation Club membership for you and your family.

>> The Timeshare Store

<< INTERCOTee Top 5 … Christmas Creations >>

While you may be whipping up some Christmas cookies, seasonal pies and other festive pastries in your kitchen at this time of year, the Walt Disney World resort has been using its magic to make some Christmas confectionaries of colossal proportions.  These sweet structures are so spectacular that many Guests plan a day just to see them all.  To help you plan to get a peak at these tremendous treats, the Insider has reviewed recent discussions and has put together the INTERCOTee Top 5 Favorite Confectionary Christmas Creations.

Coming in at number 5 … Pinocchio's Toy Shop

Disney’s Contemporary Resort features a holiday toy shop made of sugar and chocolate, featuring Pinocchio himself.   This sweet spot can be found on the first floor of the tower building.

Coming in at number 4 … Sugar Mountain

The lobby of Disney's Yacht Club Resort becomes home to a delectable scene in motion: A miniature New England-style train races through a sugary rock mountain surrounded by a candy-coated model village in this don't-miss edible display.

Coming in at number 3 … Candy Carousel

A fully detailed, life-sized carousel in the Beach Club Resort's lobby is created from a recipe that uses gingerbread, chocolate, sugar paste and tons of enthusiasm, energy and talent. Guests who wish to take home a treat of their own can buy small gingerbread houses from the Beach Club Marketplace. Pastry chefs give demonstrations on select days to provide guests with tips on creating a gingerbread invention at home.

Coming in at number 2 … Santa's Gingerbread Bake Shop

Santa's Gingerbread Bake Shop at Liberty Inn (at the American Adventure pavilion in Epcot) enchants guests of all ages. Guests peer inside the life-sized gingerbread house at goodies galore. The giant structure, made entirely of gingerbread, cookies and icing, features more than 800 pounds of sugar and more than 1,000 eggs. Inside the bake shop, Christmas cookies and hot and cold beverages, as well as souvenir gingerbread recipe cards, may be purchased.

And coming in at number 1 … The Grand Gingerbread House

Awestriking Guests annually is a gingerbread house so large that it doubles as a real bake shop. Located in the Grand Floridian Resort’s lobby, the house features gingerbread using a classic Austrian recipe. The bake shop offers freshly baked items such as cookies and gingerbread ornaments. Other homemade items for sale include Stollen Bread, chocolate peppermint bark, lollipops and special Grand Floridian logo boxes filled with truffles. Demonstrations of how to decorate a gingerbread house take place in front of the Gingerbread House six days a week.

That’s it for the countdown, hope it’s helped you make a plan to check out these sweet structures if you visit Walt Disney World during Christmastime!


<<From All of Us to All of You!>>


The staff of INTERCOT and the INTERCOT Insider would like to take a moment to wish the best to you and yours this Christmas and Holiday Season. May your New Year be a happy and healthy one filled with Disney Dreams! From the bottom of our hearts, we thank each and every one of you for making INTERCOT among the most visited Disney Vacation Planning Sites on the Internet.

<< Conclusion >>

That wraps up this issue. Hope its given you some great tips to make a Christmas or New Years trip to Walt Disney World extra special.  Our monthly columns will be taking a Christmas break, but we'll be back in the New Year with a look back at the end of 2007 and a look forward at what great things are to come in 2008. See ya real soon!

<< Thank You To Our Sponsors! >>

The INTERCOT Insider and INTERCOT.com are supported by the following sponsors who in turn, help us bring the Magic to you!

<< Thank You To Our Sponsors! >>

The INTERCOT Insider and INTERCOT.com are supported by the following sponsors who in turn, help us bring the Magic to you!

All Star Vacation Homes
When you need a home away from home, look no further. From comfort to luxury, All Star Vacation Homes has it all in four series of homes to fit any taste and any budget just moments from the magic of Walt Disney World!
Website: http://www.allstarvacationhomes.com?ovchn=OTHER&ovcpn=Listing+Sites&ovcrn=intercot&ovtac=AD

Magical Journeys
Magical Journeys is your Disney Vacation specialist. Start planning your Vacation Discount Dreams today!
Website: http://www.yourmagicaljourneys.com/

Mandara Spa at the Walt Disney World Dolphin
The Mandara Spa at the Walt Disney World Dolphin blends the lovely resort architecture with its signature Balinese style to provide a fresh and original setting where you may indulge in world class pampering and beauty services.
Website: http://www.swandolphin.com/activities/spa.html

Official Ticket Center
Walt Disney World’s, Universal Studios and Sea World’s #1 guest service provider for the last 3 years. The Official Ticket Center has been servicing vacationers for more than 7 years now and sells tickets only, at a discount price.
Website: http://www.officialticketcenter.com/default.aspx?affid=TC21LBC

Radisson Resort Parkway
Right in the heart of action! Only 1.5 miles from Walt Disney World is an oasis of ponds, beautiful landscaping, serene waterfalls and relaxing options hiding in every corner.
Website: http://orlando.guestselectresorts.com?pid=INTERCOTN

Stan Kelley Photography
Ever wish you could be in the picture? Stan Kelley Photography takes quality family portraits of your Orlando dream vacation that you'll treasure forever.
Website: http://www.flmemories.com/

The Timeshare Store
The #1 Disney Vacation Club Reseller in the World.  See how easy and affordable it is to purchase your very own piece of the MAGIC!
Website: http://www.dvc-resales.com/

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