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  2. My wife has seen a couple of posts on different places saying that they are going to raise the rates to park at the resorts.
  3. Today
  4. I've said it before but I just dont get it. Why are they so surprised that people aren't running down to an incomplete land? You've already been closing parks early and charging for special parties, milking everyone for everything, blowing up ticket prices, exponentially increasing APs, charging for parking. At some point things will level off....and they've found that point. I can't wait to see it. I wont make a special trip.
  5. I like the sign with the new barn pic. I'm sure it will be a nice addition to the Fort.
  6. That's wonderful if they just put swings in all will be right in the world again (at least in my daughters eyes)
  7. Yesterday
  8. Thank you. I agree Disney is great for making family memories, I have a lot of them and I love looking at the photos and videos from past trips.
  9. Thanks for posting the Vlog - it was so much fun to watch. No question this is what Disney is all about! Times to cherish and remember.
  10. AWESOME! When I was there recently it was like stabbing us in the heart watching them put up that chain link fence and close down the playground. Perhaps things will turn out not so bad after all. Let's hope for the best. Enjoy your visit!
  11. Big update! Construction began today on a new playground between Crockett's Tavern and the Trading Post. Beside the golf cart parking lot. I put a few pics on my FB page. We hadn't heard any rumors or seen any announcements about this.
  12. They're going to hand out iPads to all the kids, so they just sit quietly and not disturb anyone with their laughter and yelling!
  13. Geez that looks bad. It's pretty crappy on Disney's part to just shut down a playground and tell guests to go use others that are not convenient to the Settlement area. That playground was always busy in the evenings while guests were waiting to be seated at the HDDMR or Trails End. Did they at least buy some new hula hoops for the kids to throw on the roof or up in the trees? TCD
  14. https://www.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2019/10/21/disney-worlds-groundbreaking-new-star-wars-ride-opens-in-just-weeks-will-it-be-enough-to-save-galaxys-edge?utm_source=feature&utm_medium=home&utm_campaign=hpfeatures&utm_content=HomeTopFeature There is a leaked image of the new ride in the above link. I didn't want to include it in this post. Disney World's groundbreaking new Star Wars ride opens in just weeks. Will it be enough to save Galaxy's Edge? As the holidays approach, one of the most anticipated new attractions of the year is readying to open at Walt Disney World, and we already know what to expect. Disney has been heavy-handed with cracking down on leaks regarding Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. At Disneyland, the company is rumored to have let go of nearly 10% of the 1,500-plus cast members assigned to the new land after photos from employee previews were posted online. Despite efforts to plug leaks, nearly every detail of the upcoming Rise of the Resistance ride is already known. The experience will follow a standard theme park trope of guests being recruited for a secret mission, which then goes horribly wrong – but in the end, everyone escapes unharmed. The difference is, Rise of the Resistance will use groundbreaking technology and impressive, larger-than-life sets to become one of the most technologically advanced attractions ever built. It’s pitched as the next step in an evolution of theme park rides, which for the last twenty years has mostly been focused on the impressive line-up of indoor rides at Universal Orlando. There are some noticeable similarities between Universal attractions and the new Resistance attraction. Disney recruited Scott Trowbridge away from Universal, placing him over research and development, then had him oversee the Star Wars land project. Trowbridge is credited with leading the creative teams at Universal that developed Spiderman, Mummy, and the first phase of Harry Potter. Trowbridge moved to Disney in 2007, before Diagon Alley was finished, though it is believed that he was instrumental in the early planning of some of the concepts that eventually were realized in Diagon Alley. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is the first significant guest-forward project for Trowbridge at Disney. While many of Trowbridge's proposals, like the rumored interactive lightsabers and free-roaming droids, were cut from the project, there’s no denying his fingerprint is all over the Rise of the Resistance attraction. Trowbridge is known for his build-up to the actual ride with highly themed queues and multiple pre-shows. The Spiderman attraction, while somewhat dated by today’s standards, was revolutionary when it opened two decades ago. Since then, Trowbridge has refined his vision of the queue being the first scene with Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey queue being so popular that it is viewed as an attraction in its own right. Rise of the Resistance is expected to usher in the next chapter in the story of how queues and pre-shows are integrated into a ride. Guests will enter through a Resistance base camp with much of the queue in "laser cut" caves. After a brief pre-show featuring a holographic Rey and a BB8 animatronic, guests will board shuttle transports in groups of around 30 to 50 at a time. This "scene two" pre-show has been compared to the Haunted Mansion, though a better comparison may be Epcot’s former Hydrolators or the elevators found on Escape from Gringotts at Universal Orlando due to the rumbling movements experienced during this standing room pre-show experience. Using a trick straight out of Willy Wonka, the transport shuttle room will be on a turntable allowing guests to exit through the same door they entered, but they will exit from the transport ship onto a Star Destroyer. A high-def screen larger than an average IMAX screen will simulate space. In front of the screen, dozens of Stormtroopers will stand guard. This room is designed to wow, and from everyone who has seen it in person, it does that like no scene in a Disney ride has ever done before. From here guests will stand in a second short queue before loading onto a trackless ride vehicle, each with its own droid pilot much in the same vein as the E.T. animatronics found on the front of the ride vehicles on that classic Universal Studios Florida attraction. The 8-person ride vehicles look similar to the ones used on Universal’s Spiderman and Transformers attractions but are packed with much more tech. Most of the Rise of the Resistance ride will be experienced with two ride vehicles in tandem, similar to how SeaWorld’s Antarctica ride operates. Roughly halfway through the trip, just after going through a room of life-size AT-ATs, the ride vehicles separate and will individually enter an elevator, moving to the second floor of the attraction where they will reunite. While still uncommon, lifts on attractions are not unheard of. Universal Studios’ Transformers attraction also uses an on-ride elevator. After a few more show scenes on the upper level, the four-and-a-half-minute ride will climax with an impressive drop sequence. Though the actual drop will only be less than 20 feet, special effects should convince most guests it’s much larger. The drop sequence is viewed as the modern version of a similar scene on Universal’s Spiderman ride, though in that scene, there is no actual drop of any type. Guests will then disembark and exit through a crash scene back into Galaxy’s Edge. The full experience from the beginning of the first pre-show to the exit will take between 15 and 20 minutes, slightly longer than the pre-show to ride exit at Gringotts. Contrary to what multiple fan sites are reporting, all indications point to Rise of the Resistance being on schedule and readying to be handed off to operations within the coming weeks, a critical step required before a ride opens to the public. Scheduled to open at Hollywood Studios on December 5 and at Disneyland on January 17, the attraction may see soft openings around Thanksgiving with cast member previews beginning by mid-November. Dozens of animatronics, projection mapping, and an impressive lightsaber scene – along with the trackless ride vehicles and multiple pre-shows – will combine to make Rise of the Resistance one of the most impressive attractions ever realized. Beyond Orlando and Anaheim, Disney already has plans to replicate it overseas. At Disney Studios Paris a mini-Star Wars land is already confirmed, it will likely include Rise of the Resistance but not the Millenium Falcon attraction. Rumors also point to at least one of the Asian parks receiving the Rise ride in the coming years. So far, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge has been talked about as unsuccessful, thanks in part to cuts from Trowbridge’s original vision. Disney has a lot hinging on the upcoming opening of Stars Wars: Rise of the Resistance ride at the two now open Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge lands. The Disneyland version of the land opened to incredibly low crowds. In recent weeks, Disney has worked to turn the tide on the negative Galaxy’s Edge press with a slew of cross-promotions on various ABC shows and a two-hour-long celebrity-filled special about the land on Disney’s Freeform channel. That special is now being heavily promoted on Hulu, which Disney owns a controlling share of. Opening Rise of the Resistance is the last significant piece yet to open. Mainstream criticism of the success or failure of the land has been mostly held off awaiting the opening of Rise, though the low crowds this summer at Disney parks was covered by multiple national media outlets. With the Hollywood Studios version scheduled to open ahead of the end of the year crowds, the busiest time of the year for the resort, any technical issues with the ride could result in more negative press for Disney. For Disney, Rise of the Resistance is more than just a new ride. It’s what will define this era of Disney attractions and leadership. With disappointing sales at the most recent Star Wars movie and with lower than expected crowds so far. Rise of the Resistance along with Episode IX: The Rise of the Skywalker are both set to open in December, meaning we should know by January if the billions of dollars Disney has spent on Star Wars will pay off. In the meantime, Disney parks chief Bob Chapek, whose job may be on the line if the land is deemed a failure, continues to push the narrative of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge as being "a runaway success." In the meantime, there are already hints of in-fighting at Disney, as nearly everyone involved with Galaxy's Edge seems to involved with a leadership shake-up that could be understood as a CYA move by most of them. That is except for Chapek, who for now remains on top of the Parks division. If Chapek does lose his job over the "runaway success," there will at least be a future for him as the White House spokesperson. D
  15. Having visited it twice last week, I have a few thoughts also. I'll preface it by saying we did NOT do the smuggler's run ride so this is more about the cantina and some general observations. First time (Wednesday) it wasn't super crowded, and we had reservations at Oga's. It's really tough to get your bearings unless you've been there a few times, and even then it's confusing. CM's were handing out maps at the entrance by Baseline Taphouse. You check in and then wait in line for your name to be called. We stood at the bar and had a great time. The staff and bartenders were great and really seem to enjoy the interaction with customers. Our friends had been to GE in California and said it was completely different - the staff there seemed to just be going through the motions, moving people through the place and were less than friendly. The drinks were great (they say it's a two drink/45 minute limit but we had three rounds and were there at least an hour +, no pressure from staff) and the themeing was awesome. It's a really fun vibe. I definitely recommend downloading the Disney Parks Play app and taking time to check out the land using the app. Lots of stuff to scan and hack, as well as jobs you can do to earn credits. I would spend quite a bit of time just going around and using that as a way to learn the layout of the place. Really cool. Second time (Friday) we found the land to be totally overcrowded and overwhelming. It was super packed and there were incredible lines everywhere - for SR, all the shops and other areas. We had another reservation at Oga's and were seated in one of the alcoves with other guests. Different experience. It was cool to be seated with others and discuss the land and its themeing, but it wasn't as much fun as standing at the bar. Again, they say it's a two drink/45 minute limit but we hung out for a bit longer and never felt rushed. I will say that it's a bar - the staff was great with kids, but it's still a bar. There's no food there like at Trader Sam's (an overpriced bar mix and a REALLY lame cheese plate - save your $$) but there are nonalcoholic drinks. It would probably behoove them to institute adult only hours like at TS once more stuff opens up. We saw lots of bored little kids. The drinks were excellent, but everything is premixed in bulk and dispensed from taps. Like TS, you can order drinks with or without purchasing the accompanying mugs EXCEPT for the beer flight. Not sure why that is, but we saw people buying the $80 overpriced flights several times... There were lots of interactive street characters on both days, including Kylo Ren, Chewbacca, imperial officers and lots of stormtroopers. That was very cool. Also, there is a ton of shade in the land. Themeing was A++. I think the difference between this land and Pandora is that more people are familiar with SW and probably have certain expectations about what characters and references they want to see in the land versus Pandora. Pandora works because you can just enjoy it for what it is. GE/SW has so much backstory that it's hard to hit everything, and this is just a place and moment in time in the SW universe. Overall we enjoyed it, but it's definitely claustrophobic when it gets crowded. Anyway, just my $0.02.
  16. Ate at the California Grill last week. Service was good, but the dinner was just OK. The menu has definitely changed and seems kind of disjointed - they've got the cedar plank salmon and bison steak now from Artist Point on the menu, and the rest of it seems like a collection of hits from other places. The bison steak was excellent, but my wife had a lobster and scallops dish that was way overseasoned and the flavors didn't seem to mesh well. No specials, either. Our friends had some sushi, which was excellent, but overall it seems to have dropped a notch. We haven't eaten there since Brian Piasecki left, and I don't know who's running it now, but it just seemed off. They seem to be much more lenient on the dress code, too...
  17. Some more pictures from yesterday. These are from the area of the playground and beach near Trails End.
  18. This was a fun vlog to watch! Charming family! Thanks for sharing!
  19. Last week
  20. Thanks and no prob with 'late' reply as I am just now seeing it
  21. Looks like a lot of fun and a great trip! Thanks for sharing!
  22. History repeats itself 11 years later and now my daughter will miss the swings😟
  23. Yes. It's always amazing how parents will stand around talking (or staring at their phones) and then act surprised when a boat, monorail or bus arrives and they realize that they need to empty out their huge house of a stroller, to fold it up.... holding up an entire line of people. Sigh. Yep. But would they (Disney) ever really enforce it?
  24. They need to have a holding area for them. Like a waiting pen where they have to comply and get their act together and crap folded etc and then let them in line.
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