We arrived around 3:00 PM at POFQ. Did the online check-in and bypassed a good sized line being taken to the Concierge and check-in took less than a minute. Checked at bell services and were met at our car by a CM. From walking in the front door of check-in to everything in our room. Less than fifteen minutes. I was very impressed! We unpacked a bit and headed to by boat to Downtown Disney.
Upon the boat docking we went on a pin trading frenzy. Hitting every CM that had a lanyard. Then to Ghirardelli for some ice cream. Finally off to tour some of the resorts. This is our usual way to do things. First stop is always Downtown Disney and then tour a few resorts then hit parks from the second day on.
We took the bus to Wilderness Lodge. (Love the architecture there.) DS calls it Bass Pro Shop Hotel. From there we took the boat to Contemporary. We had ADR’s at 'Ohana to celebrate DW’s birthday. What she did not know was that one of her good friends, who is now living in Florida a few hours from WDW, was going to join us. I arranged it so that she would be on the Monorail and then waited for the proper one. DW kept wondering what we were waiting for. I just told her I thought they all were too full. The right one finally pulled in and I could see DW’s friend. DW is still oblivious as we board and then spots her, screaming her name loud enough that I am sure people in Bay Lake were wondering what was happening. Needless to say she was overjoyed. We then headed to ’ Ohana for the birthday celebration.
Upon arrival at the desk at about 8:20 I told them we were willing to wait as long as necessary for a window seat for fireworks. The CM said he would make sure we got a good seat but we may have to wait till 9:30. No problem. Fifteen minutes later we were seated. The gentleman at the seat behind us convinced both of our kids to participate in the coconut race. (Surprising as DD is very reserved.) Despite being told that it was not a race, DS claims he won. They are in the front of this pic DS in the hat and DD in the black shirt.
DW was taken to the center of the room as well as a few others and serenaded with a birthday song. Dinner was excellent and included wings! This has moved to the top of my list of favorites at WDW. Dessert was served just as the fireworks started and was great as was the show.
We decided to take the monorail around to the TTC and then take the boat across to our bus to give us a preview of the MK which was on our agenda for the next day.