day 73
leaving orlando (quickly)

"Well, Disney World was pretty much like I expected,
except for all the New Jersey people." -a.
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All Good Things...
Kev's Fav: MGM Studios
Aim's Fav: Animal Kingdom
Carl's Fav: Magic Kingdom
Cindy's Fav: Magic Kingdom

Best Rides: MGM Studios
Most Rides: Magic Kingdom
Best Shows: MGM Studios
Most Shows: Epcot Center
Wettest: Blizzard Beach
Dryest: Epcot Center
Best Day: Friday
Funniest Day: Tuesday

Overall Cynicism Factor: 5

Fashion Faux Pas of the Week
Where do you go when the fireworks are over? Pleasure Island, of course! Located in the heart of Downtown Disney, the nightlife contingent of the Disney Empire, it's a great collection of bars and clubs and fantastic entertainment.

Once you're through the gates, it's like one huge block where anything goes (except naughty words). You can walk around from bar to bar, drink in hand, dance in the street, and when they play a song you don't like, you just find yourself a different bar. Sweet!

But there's more depth than that. Some bars are just your standard dance club/meet market. Others, like the Adventure Club, is all about the atmosphere. It's designed, to true Disney form, like a stereotypical Old Boys Club, complete with a cast of adventurers wandering around who will regale you with stories of their heyday. Four thumbs up from us!
Pleasure Island:
 Adventurers Club
 Comedy Warehouse
 8Trax: a 70s Club

 Beach Club
 Frankie & The West End Boys

Disney Detox
Nov 7 - What a week! We blew through Disney like a sneeze through one-ply. And you know, I think we did a pretty darn good job of it.

But there's always room to improve, right? I mean, we still have a day left on our 5-day Parkhopper, so we didn't guage that exactly right. Oh well, we'll be back in the area in about a week and a half anyway.

However, some of you don't have that luxury. You'd hate to fly down, buy a pass, and then fly back with the equivalent of a $50 piece of paper with Mickey on it, wouldn't you? That's no souvenier! For $50, you could have picked up something really nice at a Disney Gift Shop, like a tea towel, or a Pirates of the Caribbean musket, or a photo of you screaming on Splash Mountain. You know, something useful.

So, without further ado, here are seven easy tips to get the most out of Mickey:

1. You could do Disney in three days.
That's only if you want to. We say 'could' because it's possible. Here's why: Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and MGM are open until 6:00. Epcot is open until 9:30. You would do Magic Kingdom the first day, stay for the fireworks there, then zip off to Epcot in the evening. Animal Kingdom on day two, Epcot at night. MGM day three, Epcot at night (if you're still interested in Epcot). It can be done.

2. Do Epcot first.
We know you'll want to go to Epcot, despite our warnings. If you've never been to a Dinsey theme park, you won't know what to expect, right? So, maybe Epcot will be pretty cool to the Disney novice. (This was actually suggested to us by a family we met. They went to Epcot on the first day so it wouldn't be a letdown for the kids later. If that tells you anything.)

3. Forget about "beating the rush".
Guess what. If you're one of the upper percentiles who suggests, "hey, let's leave a half hour earlier to beat the rush," chances are a good 30% of the other people there have thought of it too. In fact, the people who try to beat the rush usually get caught up in a sea of rush-beaters. Enjoy the fireworks, linger in the shops, take your time... there will always be a crowd.

4. Find out when shows are, then miss them.
For some reason, the shows are the most sought-after attractions at Disney World. They're not bad, don't get me wrong, but Thunder Mountain Railroad is better. The stadium seating usually holds a couple thousand people, and that's a couple thousand people who won't be in line for Space Mountain from 11:15 until 12:15. That's when you can laugh all the way to the front of the line.

5. Fastpass works, but use it wisely.
Fastpass, Disney's newest technological breakthrough, allows you to skip the long lines. If the line is a 45 minute wait, you swipe your Fastpass and get a receipt that tells you to come back in an hour. An hour later, hand the smiling man your receipt, and zoom! Express trip to the front of the line. What does this do for you? You've spent the last hour doing something elsewhere, not following a maze of velvet ropes.

6. Ride until they shut it down.
Those beaters of rushes we were telling you about? They just love to stand in line. The park closes at 6:00, so at 5:30, people start making their way back to Main Street for the fireworks. The lines are empty! The dude at Splash Mountain just let us slide right on through because there was no one in line. Big Thunder, a 60 minute wait at 2pm, was a 5 minute wait at 5:55. And we still made it in time for the fireworks. Milk that mouse until he boots you out!

7. Head for the pavilions.
Okay, I know we've been trashing Epcot, but it kind of redeemed itself when we went back later in the evening. Spent all of about 2 hours at land of the future and go straight through the big white gates to the World of Nations. It's actually pretty impressive, and the food is great.

Here's one more: Go now. Early November is the time for Disney. Why? It's after Labour Day and before Thanksgiving, so nobody's ready for a vacation break yet. On Friday, we were able to ride Space Mountain, then get off and ride it again within 10 minutes. You won't see that happen in January. Trust us.

And now? What do we do? What could possibly top Disney World? After all, we still have 22 states to go! Eep!

things you can skip...

Snowglobe Parade
Magic Kingdom

Rafiki's Planet Watch
Animal Kingdom

Star Tours
MGM Studios

Epcot Center
more photos in the archive...

Current Destination:
Sarasota, FL

Tomorrow: Taking a Rest!

see the full map...

Today's Weather:

Daily Stats
Gas: $17.01
Gators: 0
Cartoon Mice: 0
Raccoons: 1

Sleeping Quarters
Oscar Scherer State Park

Site 13.
Kevin: It's cool! There's lots of huge spiders and gators and stuff!
Aimee: It's scary! There's lots of huge spiders and gators and stuff!

Cost: $20.30

Krispy Kreme
Kissimee, Route 192
K's Order:Raspberry Donut
A's Order:Raspberry Donut, Coffee
K's Order:Mesquite Chicken Sub, Jalapeno Chips, Ice Tea
A's Order:Honey Mustard Chicken Sub
South of Sarasota
Aimee:Other half of her sub

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© 2001. Kevin Beimers and Aimee Lingman. Second star to the right, straight on 'til morning.