Townsends 2010 Trip Report: Irreverent, exhausting, but fun


#1

Okay, okay, we are back home!!! 10 days, 9 nights later, and FINALLY we are home…

Summary: 1 night at Pop Century, then 8 nights at Wilderness Lodge, Deluxe Dining, Park Hopper Passes, Me (Corey), my wife (Jamie), and our daughter (Ella), and for the first 4 days, my mother (Judy).

Day One, the trip down: We live west of Atlanta and once again we drove down. We had to wait for my daughter to finish her morning tennis camp and off we went. The 4 of us piled into my wife’s little Honda CR-V and left out for Disney at noon. 476 miles and about 8 hours later we arrived in Orlando. One gas stop and our prerequisite Burger King stop and we were there dude! Somehow every year our GPS leads us into the back employee areas of Disney instead of the front gates off of I-4. It is shorter with the GPS but we miss the “magic” of the front entrance. This time was different. We go the majesty of driving in the front gate and I got to hear shouts of glee from my 7 year old daughter and 62 year old mother (she turned 63 on our trip, which I will get to) from the back seat. My mother hadn’t been since I was 12 due to my father being sick for years before he passed away and it was my total pleasure to bring her back this time. Pulling through the gates I had the biggest smile on my face too just knowing we were going to have a great week.

We had made reservations at Pop Century for the first night so we would make the most out of our first few days at Disney. $65 was cheaper than any other hotel around, and hey, it would give us an opportunity to see the Value resorts. We were NOT disappointed, the grounds at Pop Century were amazing. That is the coolest little motel and my daughter absolutely fell in love. We were in building 10, right around the corner from being right in front of the big Mickey phone and seeing that really made our day.

We were all starving, despite the 1400 calories of Burger King Whoppers and decided to head to Downtown Disney to get dinner and show my Mom around. 10 minutes later and we realized I forgot my razor. So, off property we pulled right outside of Downtown Disney and promptly we turned back onto property to only realize that DD was ABSOLUTELY packed. The first three entrances were absolutely full and the 4th car entrance had a long line of cars backed up. By the time we got to the last one, beside La Nouba, we decided to just head on past and see if we could get dinner elsewhere. 5 minutes later on my phone and I found out at 9:20 there was availability at Kona Cafe (my favorite restaurant at my favorite resort) and off we went.

Pulling into the Poly it felt like I was home again. I showed my Mom around and she was absolutely amazed. After I checked us in to wait for a table, I led my Mom down to the beach to show her the castle (she was tickled to see it glowing pink in the dark). I led my Mom around the resort for a bit to show her the sights and listen to the fake crickets and she loved it all. 5 minutes later we were back in the GCH lobby and making our first round through the shops (my Mom is a certifiable over-shopper, more later). It was there we got our first Vinylmations! My Mom bought one, and my little girl got one. Of course you can’t pick exactly what you get but you can trade if you don’t like the one you got. My daughter frowned at her first figure and traded immediately. LOL.

Dinner at the Kona was great, I have some pix and will put them up soon. It was like being home again. By the time dinner was over, we were exhausted and headed back to Pop Century. Going to sleep in that cold room and knowing we were getting up at 7 to head over to the WL, I didn’t know if I could sleep. Boy was I wrong, LOL, I was exhausted.

I will continue with Day 2 soon. It was a great trip, glad to be home guys!


#2

welcome home glad to here you had a good trip. cant wait to read all about it.


#3

Sounds like a great beginning to a TR. I can’t wait to read the rest.


#4

You’re a good son. :wub: Sounds like a wonderful start.

Did you all share one room?


#5

Can’t wait to hear more.


#6

It’s looking good so far! Can’t wait to hear about the rest of the trip!


#7

Sounds like a great trip so far!


#8

Sounds great! Keep it coming!


#9

You are an awesome son. I cannot wait to hear the rest of this trip report and see some pictures.


#10

I’m glad to hear you had great trip. I can’t wait to read more.


#11

How awesome is that feeling of entering “THE WORLD” …
Great that your Mother got excited to be there !
Need more Whopper reports…:laugh:


#12

Loving the TR!!


#13

Welcome back, sounds like you had a great time-looking forward to hearing more.


#14

Seriously!! I have stayed at every level of resort and POP is STILL my favorite and all of my families favorite. While we still love the other resorts, POP just seems special to us. It’s so filled with Disney magic! From top to bottom! I loveloveloveeee it! :happy:

I’m so glad your trip was so wondeful!


#15

Okay guys, here are pix from our first day. I will continue with day 2 shortly.

My wife took 1021 pix with her Nikon. LOL> I am weeding through them today.


#16

More pix from day one.


#17

i love the purple vinylmation!!! very cute!


#18

Townsend Adventure: DAY 2, checking in the Wilderness Lodge and Magic Kingdom (the whirlwind tour).

We set our alarms early to make sure that my Mom got the most out of her 4 day trip to Disney and left our room at the Pop at 7:30. We were at WL by 8 and the bellhops were quickly unloading the car and had us on our way. I have to say, the WL is AMAZING!!! The grounds: beautiful. The building: beautiful. The lobby: beautiful. The staff? That was the best of all, they were the nicest I had ever met at Disney.

I had done early checkin but never requested any specific room. The young lady (wonderful lady, I wish I could remember her name to pass the compliment) quickly handed me our packet and told us our room was already ready! 6107. We quickly took our stuff and headed upstairs to check out the room. Wow, great room, a bit smaller than other Deluxe resorts (we have done Poly and GF) but it was adequate for the 4 of us. We looked around and were impressed, until we went out on the balcony. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a bad view, it was just a corner room right by the “bear faced” rooms and our balcony was partially blocked by the corner of the balcony. Plus, all we could see was straight down on the courtyard. No direct view of the lake and no direct view of the pool which my daughter really wanted. So, I just went back downstairs to the checkin desk and as I was waiting in line, the nicest manager walked up and asked if there was any help he could provide. I told him my concern, not a single smirk appeared on his face but instead he led us to the nice young lady that checked us in. She immediately pulled out a map of the rooms and asked me to pick out an area. I told her the general area, mid floor, pool view, 5th or 6th floor and she said I would get a text when the room was ready. Better service than I ever expected, but that is Disney right? I have to say, when we got back that night and found out we had the BEST room, room 5165, I was ecstatic. We were the last room on the corner, with a great view of the pool, the lake, the geyser, and the fireworks. If it weren’t for the long walk, it would be the perfect room!!!

Next, on to my Mom. When I checked in, I told the young lady that my Mom had decided at the last minute to come down at my insistence to stay with us a few days. She quickly printed out my Mom a key card to our room. Then, I led my Mom over to the concierge desk to buy my Mom a 3 day park hopper. He asked for her room key and quickly put her passes on the room key. Then, surprisingly, he asked would my Mom possibly be using any of my meal credits. I said, um, sure! So, he put my Mom on our meal plan (no additional credits, she just had the DLX indicator on the card) and gave her charging ability to our card. WONDERFUL! Apparently, this is new policy as restaurants had let us pay for others with our credits before (at their suggestion actually) but this was the first time they asked if we would like to add it to someone in our room’s card for their use of our credits. WONDERUFL!

Well, after dropping off the rest of our bags, off to the MK we went. If you haven’t stayed at the WL, it is a longer walk than you would imagine down to the dock and since it was EMH for MK, the boat was already running. We jumped on board the boat, took a million pix on the way to MK, and gladly offloaded the boat to our surprise to an EMPTY park. Seriously, maybe a crowd level 3 until 1pm. Immediately we went to Haunted Mansion (our tradition) and rode that with zero wait. Then, thinking the park would back up later, we went to get fast passes to Splash Mountain. Seeing that Big Thunder was empty, we got on it immediately. Getting off, still no line, and got on it again. We were able to basically do 90% of the park within 3 hours. Everything but Splash Mountain (which I mistakenly never got fast passes for, LOL) and by Noon we were famished and ready to eat.

My Mom had never had Disney food so we immediately walked over to ask if there was availability at Tony’s Town Square. I had dinner reservations at Crystal Palace but never made lunch reservations. I was told it would be an hour or so for Tony’s so we went back up to Smucker’s on Main Street and had a couple of muffins to tide us over til lunch. It was during this time we did our first shopping for my mother (she is a shopaholic). When it was finally time, we ducked out of the heat and sat down at Tony’s. How was it? Pleasant is a good word for it. The food was decent. My pasta was decent, my wife and Mom had sandwiches they liked, not loved, and my 7 year old had the standard limited selection for the little ones. She was okay with it, but she rarely gets much of a choice so it didn’t matter.

After lunch we decided to go and ride Space Mountain. My Mom had never been on it and was objecting heavily. Despite her objections I made her get on. BAD mistake. LOL. Halfway through the ride, I was nauseous, and when the ride was over, she wasn’t talking to me at all. I walked over and looked up at the ride photo and she actually had her hand over her mouth and her cheeks were puffed out. I am not kidding. LOL. While she didn’t throw up, she was NOT happy. It was only 10 minutes later that she finally blurted out “I almost threw up on my grand daughter”. To cool off and feel better we got on TTA (Wedway) and that was a bad idea too. Whereas you normally get to cool off on TTA, apparently they had the AC’s off in the buildings. So, seeing my Mom was still REALLY nauseous, we headed over to Carousel of Progress. After that was over, she finally calmed down and we basically just did the rest of the whirlwind tour over the afternoon. Riding every single thing and seeing every single show except for Splash Mountain on day 1.

After the day was done, we went and ate at Crystal Palace which was PHENOMENAL as always. My only complaint was that the waiter couldn’t keep our glasses filled fast enough. It was so hot that we were a little over thirsty and needed far more than he could keep up with.

Well, after dinner we watched the Main Street Electrical parade. It was great to see it for the first time since I was a kid. We took lots of photos and I will put them up later. After, we camped out at the train station to watch the fireworks. Great views, nice people and the new Summer show is GREAT!!! At one point, it actually does look like the castle is on fire from the “pirate attack”. They literally shoot fireworks from the castle and it was covered in smoke. First time we had seen that and it was great. They also shoot the fireworks from several locations left to right and it is a sight to behold. Wonderful fireworks!

After the day was over, we finally went back to the hotel and were EXHAUSTED. But was our daughter? NO. LOL. So, my wife and I went down and let her swim in the pool for 30 minutes before we hit the bed. Great pool too by the way!

Okay, I will write more of the next day soon. We did Epcot the next day, but it wasn’t so empty. LOL.


#19

Great TR!!! I love all the details! Sorry your mom got ill on Space Mountain. I hope that doesn’t keep her from enjoying other “thrill” rides. I’m looking forward to more pictures :slight_smile:


#20

Pix from MK Day