Part One, for those who missed it.
The Laid Back One
Best Ride: Expedition Everest. Wonderfully themed, delightful and entertaining queue. Theme persists throughout ride while delivering an enjoyable roller coaster experience.
Best Show: Tough, because this park has some pretty stellar shows, but I gotta go with UP! A Great Bird Adventure. Because birds are awesome.
Best Snack Spot: Creature Comforts is right up front and is a great place to grab some pastries and Starbucks coffee on your way in or your way out. The Africa section of the park has the widest variety of snack options if your group is like mine and everybody wants something different. Head to that area for pastries, coffee, ice cream, panini, a sweets shop and even fresh fruit.
As we approach the end of the summer, we get ever closer to the time of the year when my friends and I start hitting the Walt Disney World parks. We absolutely LOVE going to the parks, especially in the fall when everything cools down and the summer crowds have dissipated (though summer crowds have apparently been down lately, so if you don’t mind the heat, might be a great time to go). It’s magical being able to roam free in cool fall evening and just enjoy the heck out of every inch of a park. I cannot wait to go back.
I’ve gone to the Disney World Resort an absolute TON over the years, and I’ll often have people ask me which park is my favorite, a question to which I generally don’t have an answer. I find myself going to Epcot considerably more but that’s typically just because we’re taking part in one of its many festivals. I think each park really has its own perks and appeal. They definitely all still feel like a theme park, but between different aesthetics, food offerings, entertainment options and general layout, they honestly each stand apart from one another, satisfying different goals that a group may have.
Below I’m going to lay out my guide to the Fab Four of Disney World: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. I won’t be discussing the water parks, since I have not actually been (just not a fan of water parks, tbh), and I won’t be including Disney Springs, though I absolutely love the Springs and you should totally go.
Halloween is approaching, so how about we get all lit-major on Nightmare Before Christmas?
Why not, right?
So, the other day I literally woke up thinking about the main “antagonist” in that movie, Oogie Boogie. For the longest time it’s bothered me that this character was not more developed. He isn’t even MENTIONED until Act II of the film, and after that point we continue to know very little about him except that he “eats” bugs, he’s been locked away for some reason, and Jack DESPISES him. However, we’re never given an inkling as to why he is so hated by Halloweentown, enough so that the very sight of his “boys” gives the Mayor anxiety. I feel like there was a lot to be done with that character, but in the end it kind of just feels like a cheap attempt to allow Jack (who very well should be the bad guy of this story) to have a moment of redemption by saving Santa from the very predicament his hubris landed Santa in. It’s always just felt like a tacked on character because some Disney Exec was all “hey, there needs to be a villain so we can sell toys.”
So, I mentioned last week during my whole entirely important Jurassic Park rant that I have been to the Jurassic Park area of Islands of Adventure, and it got me thinking about theme parks. Namely, how I feel like I’m constantly surrounded by people who like to hate on them. Me, I absolutely ADORE theme parks, but at times I feel like I’m the only one in certain social circles. Here I am, the lone fan, the guy with annual passes to Disney World and who used to have annual passes to Universal until they decided to add metal detectors onto the roller coasters and staff said detectors with some of the rudest employees they could muster up (ultimately, there were other factors to dropping the Universal passes, but this was a large factor).
I think what bothers me is that the complaints are MOSTLY unfounded or at least not as founded as they could be, especially considering I am usually having these conversations with people that live just about an hour away from these parks. Main complaints are typically:
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