When we got married in 1998, we made a plan to visit Disney every 5 years to celebrate our anniversary. Our 5 year, we did the cruise & park package, staying at the Beach Club right near the gazebo where we got married. Our 10 year, we stayed off Disney property and I wasn’t really feeling the Disney magic and we spent a lot more time away from the parks than in them. For our 15, we happened to be right down the street in Tampa so it was an easy trip and one I am glad we made.
We decided to just do one day in the park & chose Magic Kingdom. Of course, I totally forgot that the first weekend in December is when they film the Christmas Day parade so it was a complete zoo. On the plus side, we got up super early & we were able to accomplish a lot of the rides before the crowds really swelled. With main street being closed for filming, we were shuttled ‘backstage’ and entered the park in Tomorrowland.
Keith and I are a little competitive with each other, especially when it comes to games. Last visit, Keith kicked my butt in Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger and I was determined to kick his butt this time around. The first ride, I started getting giggly & excited that I was ahead & lost focus…Keith ended up winning. That being completely unacceptable, we rode again and I ended up beating him by 200,000+ points. Mission accomplished!
Since I haven’t completely recovered from my back strain, the roller coasters were out, but we managed to ride quite a bit of what we wanted. Before the little kid crowd happened in Fantasyland, we snagged a few rides including the teacups. It was still fun, but as an adult I looked like I was recovering from a few drinks as I was exiting the ride! I just don’t recover from spinning like I used too.
We’ve learned from past visits that we really enjoy taking a time out midday and eating at a sit down lunch. The only available reservation was at Tony’s and overall, it wasn’t bad. Overpriced theme park food for sure, but still edible and a nice break. The benefit of Tony’s location was being right near where the announcer was filming and that announcer just so happened to be one of my favorite actors – Neil Patrick Harris. He was all suited up & we watched the filming for a bit. It really is amazing what goes into productions of all kind, and especially a Disney one.
Done with the crowds, we headed over to the Boardwalk Hotel to visit the scene of the crime – the gazebo. We had a beer at Big River Grille & Brewing Works and while the beer was tasty, the decor was straight out of the 80′s and just a little frightening for a brewpub. We did finally get to see a Google Glass in person however, as one of the patrons was sporting them which was kinda cool.
We had a few hours to kill before dinner, so we headed over to the Animal Kingdom lodge for some wine. I forgot they had a small area where you could also view the animals so it was neat to see giraffes and zebras before heading to the lounge.
To end our Disney day, we had dinner at Artist Point where we had our reception dinner 15 years back. Funny what changes in 15 years, as the Pacific Northwest is no longer foreign to me & in fact feels like home. In our travels, we also got to visit the original inspiration for the Wilderness Lodge and it was neat to do a comparison.
It was a great way to look back at where we’ve come since we said ‘I do’ and exciting to look forward to what the next 5 years might bring. I’m thinking this next trip will have to be Euro or Tokyo Disney however, which means we better start saving now!