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Labor day weekend

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This was a last minute trip, my wife has recently changed jobs, which meant that we had to rejig our plans for Thanksgiving and Christmas, which has left us with some days to use on our tickets. On a whim, I was looking at options for labor day weekend and nearly booked art of animation for two nights on offer. When I went back into the site to book it I noticed there was availability at the Fort, given this was only two weeks before the trip I was surprised.  Booked the fort for three nights figuring we could use the setup time.

Wasn't sure about a short trip so soon, but we felt like we wanted a do over from the last trip, my wife dubbed this 'Taking Back the Fort'.

We had one park day and three plusses to use, figured we would do food and wine and Blizzard Beach, none of which we'd done before.

Was a little worried about camping for a short trip, given how long set up took last time. Decided not to take the grill and any of the kitchen stuff. Still took the Keurig machine for tea and coffee. Which also meant taking mugs, washing up bowls, and the small case of kitchen tools, so not quite as paired down as I'd like. Also took a couple of plastic bowls for cereal.

Unlike last time, only took one tent. Still took the window A/C but was better prepared to rig it.

The only major change equipment wise from last time was buying a memory foam topper for my air matress.  

The plan was to pick my wife up after work on the Friday, and head straight there getting there in time for the movie. Figured we'd be losing light as we were setting up so made sure to pack my headlamp flash lights. Unfortunately, only one was working, given the plan was for my wife to take the kids to the movie while I set up it shouldn't have been a problem.

Loaded the car up on Thursday night and everything fit which was better than last time. 






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Friday didn't quite go to plan, dropped my wife off at work after dropping off the kids, so that I could pick her up later.  She's hoping next year when she has some paid time off she can take half a day and we can make Not So Scary, not this year though.

Ended up collecting my daughter early because she wasn't feeling well.  Fortunately, she was feeling better after a rest, so the kids and I put the last few bits in the car, and swung into Publix before collecting my wife, needed some snacks as we'd be getting there late, and I was under orders to get  Pepsi. Kids loaded up on the free samples at Publix which was good. Head to my wife's work to wait for her, the last couple of Friday's she'd finished 30 minutes early so I was hopefull, nope she was 15 minutes late. Just as we head off,  my son need's the bathroom again, so we stop in a different Publix.  Had to make one more bathroom stop, I'm sure he only goes this often on the way to Disney.



Around 8, we get a text saying we'd gotten 2037, I was hoping for the 1500 loop, not 2000 before but I actually liked it. Not a huge surprise but we hit serious traffic and ended up getting there after 9 pm, had done online check-in so went through returning guests.  I'd had some packages sent from Amazon straight there since this was all a bit last minute, so I stopped by the outpost. My wife and daughter got the bus up to the Settlement to watch the water pageant and get something to eat. My son insisted on helping me set up, so come and got the packages with me. The nice thing about Amazon is that I had the notification that the packages were delivered, which is nice when the CM says things like "I'll see if they have arrived yet". I did pick up a map movie schedule etc, since I was there. That is the downside of online check-in. My son showed her his toy dog when the CM asked if we had any furry friends.

Packages in hand headed off to 2037, quite a few people setting up still, I had to wait for the popup opposite me to back in, managed the minivan ok although I didn't appreciate just quite how dark those sites or until then.

Headlamp and flash lights out, and started getting the tent up. This is where two headlamps would have been useful, my son took mine and kept putting it down. A more powerful one would have helped as well.  I am glad he stayed and helped though, getting the tent up was a lot easier with some help.  We had the tent up, with the rain fly and most of the bedding down by the time my wife and daughter came back with food.  My daughter was tired and went straight to sleep, my son insisted on helping put everything up first. We got the EZ up, up and called it a night.





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Next morning my son slept late, not surprisingly. I had planned to have breakfast at Rain Forest Cafe on route to Blizzard Beach, but we've been there before, so not a big. Plus it's Landry so I didn't have a reservation made anyway. 

Could actually see the campsite, I will point out that the 7 year old staked the tent up.



A/C better set up this time.


Made coffee with the Keruig.


 One of those packages was 36 pumpkin tea pods, so my wife was happy. 


Had a nice walk around the loop, some interesting campers near us.


And other one


I thought this one was really neat



I figured out the cut through to the 900 loop via the group camping area. Was surprised the group camping area was empty.  Was a little surprised about this on the edge of 900 opposite the Meqdows.


Grabbed some muffins, and instant oatmeal pots at the meadows and headed back.  Lot's of Halloween stuff in the store but my wife was disappointed the hats weren't in adult size.


Managed well enough using the Keurig for hot water, for the oatmeal but next time I'm buying instant oatmeal at BJs beforehand and bringing a small jug and the Keurig cleaning pods.

My son woke up a little after this, so we set up the rest of the decorations and got the various buses to Blizzard Beach.


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On 9/16/2018 at 9:19 AM, Littleolwoman.aka.Kristie said:

Following along. Your beginning brings back lots of memories of our tent camping adventures. We loved tent camping but the trip our friend let us use his pup was the weekend I would never tent camp again. 

I have a feeling if we ever camp in something else I would feel the same way, one of the reasons I decided not to rent a camper on the previous trip.

20 hours ago, Littleolwoman.aka.Kristie said:

I saw some folks wearing the pumpkin hats at Disneyland. Wonder if they have the adult sizes else where at Didneyworld or the people so saw wearing them had tiny heads. 

Maybe, the shop parks app does say youth though.

20 hours ago, CCIntrigue...aka Gwen said:

Thank you for your video of the water pageant!  I could never get tired of seeing it or hearing the music.

I've never actually seen it in person, next time!

5 hours ago, Travisma said:

That Gypsy looking trailer might be a Vardo.


They sell ready made ones, and plans to make your own.

Oh, if only they could comfortably fit four. Same problem as any of the compact nice looking campers.

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Not many photos from Blizzard Beach as I still haven't bought a waterproof camera. Photopass photographers were still there this weekend though, it says something about Disney and/or Florida that my this point the Halloween parties had been running two weeks, it's opening weekend of food and wine, and yet the water parks are still being treated like it's summer.

Got to Blizzard Beach, normal photos on the way in.

Goofy was around but we missed him.



Hit the shop before getting changed, got myself a blizzard beach branded shirt with built-in upf protection, I have a bad habit of running around after the kids that I miss putting suncream on myself.

Rented our free towels, this is one of the things about doing the waterparks when onsite, less hassle than bringing our own. Although they only asked which resort, didn't check bands or anything.

Got a large locker this time, and found some chairs by the wave pool. Much prefer the pool here to Typhoon Lagoon,  the kids liked the floats.  Did get a photo in the pool but it's not showing up on my memory maker. Stayed there until lunch and then headed to Avalunch for hot dogs, next time I will get two to split between us.  This is one time where I like the ability to pay with magic band, wallet safetly in the locker. Reactivated the drink cups here as well, although we lost a lid somewhere. I got myself a beer from Arctic Expeditions.  Took the kids over to Ski Patrol after this, was nice that they had a tween area here.

Kids did everything there other than the T bar from what I can tell. They were given strict instructions not to leave SKi Patrol without me, however after not seeing them for a while I go looking for them and two very shaken children walking down the steps towards me, handing me photopass cards.

Slightly confused by the photopass cards as they had magic bands on, guessing the photographers didn't see the bands and they didn't think to offer them.


They had been on Summit Plummet which is definitely not in Ski Patrol.  Well, they won't do that again that's for sure. They were a bit shaken up, plus they didn't know about the chairlift so they walked up. My son regretted not wearing his rash guard shirt as well. It's actually nice to see that there are some limits to what they enjoy as they love all the coasters (My daughter is quite proud that she is the only one of her friends to do Hulk at universal)

Back to the wave pool to cool down, and then to the lazy river. My wife likes the chair floats so I went ahead with my daughter while she waited for one. We did talk about doing Team Boat Springs but the chairlift was down due to the weather, so we got some snacks. I got a funnel cake and ice cream wasn't quite expecting the amount of ice cream they put on it. Next time I may try the fried ice cream instead. My wife and kids got giant donuts from Joffery's. Oh, and I may have refilled my souvenir beer cup.

After I extracted the kids from the wave pool, we got changed and headed out. My son was acting really overtired at this point so rather than doing mini golf or resort hopping as planned we went straight back to the Fort.


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On ‎9‎/‎20‎/‎2018 at 11:35 AM, Littleolwoman.aka.Kristie said:

Water Park days are so exhausting. Sounds like loads of fun.

Good choice going back to the fort. Looks like some quiet rest time was needed after all that excitement!

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We looked at the movie schedule as we got off the bus (Sept 1st so was only just out), didn't fancy watching Coco. Got back to the site and my son collapsed in one of the chairs by the TV. My daughter wanted to go swimming, apparently, most of the day in a water park wasn't enough.  We walked down to the pool by the cabins, a lot quieter than Blizzard Beach. When we got back, it was time to make a decision on dinner. Had done P&Js the previous night and wasn't sure about doing table service so went over to the campfire to get from the food truck, with our smores supplies in the bag. Thinking we'd eat do smores and leave before the movie. 


Best laid plans and all that, campfire was canceled because of lightning and the food truck, didn't have anything grill or fried. Which meant pretty much anything worth having for dinner.



At this point it was 8pm and we were hungry, I took out my phone and booked a table at Trails End for 8:35. Got the bus straight to the settlement, smores supplies still in the bag.

Seated slightly earlier,  very patiently explained to my son that he wasn't loosing out just because he is still charged at child's rate, as opposed to his 10-year-old sister, and ordered drinks before hitting the buffet. Last time I was at Trail's end I wasn't overly impressed but was really good the second time around.









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I haven't been to the water parks in years and my kids have never been. We always get hung up on going to the parks every day. I think a water park day is in order. What's up with the limited menu from the food truck? That's a bunch of poo.

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6 hours ago, ImDownWithDisney said:

I haven't been to the water parks in years and my kids have never been. We always get hung up on going to the parks every day. I think a water park day is in order. What's up with the limited menu from the food truck? That's a bunch of poo.

I agree!  Do they no longer have burgers and fries??


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On 9/22/2018 at 3:27 PM, DaveInTN said:

I wonder if that menu had anything to do with the movie being canceled that evening? 

That was the impression I got, given it was explicitly nothing fried or grilled.  Didn't go back the next night.

On 9/22/2018 at 7:51 AM, DaveInTN said:

We've done Trails End unexpectedly after a long day too.  Hits the spot.   We also like having Roaring Fork close by for a last minute dinner when we don't feel like cooking our planned meal or going further to Disney Springs or another resort.  

Did consider the Roaring fork as well.

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