Posts Tagged by world showcase lagoon

Fireworks at Walt Disney World!

Well it’s a rainy 4th of July up here in the Northeast which means no fireworks tonight…booooo!  So instead, I thought I’d take a look at some of my favorite fireworks shows at Walt Disney World!

I have to admit that I’ve been spoiled by the fireworks in WDW.  I always used to be so impressed with fireworks shows around the 4th of July, but then I started realizing most of them aren’t perfectly themed to music…what?!?  How could this be??  Yes, I know…you can’t compare the two but choreographed fireworks are really cool!  Here are 2 of my favorites:

Illuminations

The torches are lit around World Showcase Lagoon…

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The wonderful pre-show music is playing and one of the best nighttime spectaculars is about to begin. Where else can you see a lake on fire???

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Or a giant LED globe that spins and shoots fireworks??

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This show is so moving and emotional…it just invokes pure happiness!

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See for yourself…

Apologies for my horrible “singing” in the background, but I just get so into it! Oh and the finale…awe inspiring!!

Hallowishes!

SO. MUCH. FUN!  Anything that incorporates all of the Disney villains and some killer perimeter fireworks around the Magic Kingdom is #1 in my book.  And when Oogie Boogie makes an appearance…the best!

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While the show is great to enjoy during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, my favorite place to watch it is high above the Magic Kingdom at California Grill.  A little wine, a little cheese and the best fireworks show around!  Plus, the perimeter fireworks look like they’re right outside the windows!

Well that certainly helped my 4th of July fireworks fix!  Hope you and your family are enjoying the holiday weekend!!

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The Inaugural Glass Slipper Challenge Part I – Disney Enchanted 10K

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When your flight gets indefinitely delayed the afternoon before you are about to take on a back to back race challenge, the panic begins to set in.  Will I make it?  Will I have to forego my registration for the first race?  Most importantly…will my vacation be cut short?!?

I found myself in this exact predicament on the Friday before I was about to take on the Glass Slipper Challenge during Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  A thick fog had rolled into White Plains, NY and no planes were landing or taking off from our tiny little airport.  Our plane was diverted to Syracuse and we were patiently waiting for the fog to clear so it could come pick us up and take us to warmer climates.  Sigh…  After about 5 hours of waiting at the airport and frantic texts to Amanda who was waiting patiently to pick us up in Orlando, B and I finally got on the plane and headed south.

By the time we landed, grabbed a bite to eat, got to our hotel, unpacked and settled in, it was about 11:30 pm…MUCH later than I would’ve liked given that my alarm was set to go off at 3:30 am the next morning for the Enchanted 10K.  Luckily we had thought ahead and I had Amanda pick up my race packet earlier that day…phew!

We wearily rolled out of bed, got dressed in record time and headed over to Epcot for day 1 of the Glass Slipper Challenge.  Because we didn’t have time to stop at the store the night before, I didn’t have any food to fuel up with that morning and I was starving.  Thankfully there were food trucks!  I grabbed a banana and was good to go…I don’t know how that egg and cheese bagel would’ve sat during a 10K!

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We arrived very close to the start time so after inhaling the banana and making a quick pit stop, we headed into our corral.  I have to admit, I wasn’t feeling great about this race.  I had hoped to be better rested, but things don’t always go as planned.  So we decided that we were going to tackle the Inaugural Enchanted 10K with smiles on our faces no matter what!

All of a sudden, our corral was moving, fireworks were going off and the race had begun!

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The first half of the course was boooooooring.  These are always the most difficult miles for me as I get moving and all I kept thinking about was how I couldn’t wait to get into World Showcase.  However we did see Elsa from Frozen soon we left the starting line…

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And the sight of  thousands of runners pouring out of the Epcot toll booths was pretty cool…

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But that was about it until…

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Yay!  World Showcase Lagoon!  Can you see the humidity in the air?  Yowza

From here on, the race was a blast!  There were sights to see and characters everywhere.

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I even snuck in a photo with my favorite character Marie without standing in line!  Amanda has all the tricks 😉

A quick tour around the Boardwalk and Crescent Lake made for very tempting pit stops…

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I said hi to a few friends, including my girl Cindy, in front of the Beach Club before heading back into Epcot and back out into the parking lot for the big finish.

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And like that we were done!  It started sprinkling very soon after we crossed the finish line, so we grabbed our medals and made a bee line for the car.

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This was my first 10K at Walt Disney World and I really do love the distance.  I’m so glad that they have added this to many of the race weekends.  It’s challenging and can be completed fairly quickly, but there really needs to be some sort of entertainment added to Epcot Center Drive…that long stretch was painfully boring.  Plus with the shorter distance, you still have a fair amount of energy left over to get some good park touring in after the race.  I headed over to Animal Kingdom for a few hours to say hi to some animals and get in some fun character time.

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Later that day we headed to the Osceola County Fair to support Amanda’s daughter at the steer auction.  It was actually a really fun experience for this Northeast city girl!  The big bonus was that I got to hold her 2 week old goat!!  I look like a crazy person…

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After the fair we went to Splitsville for dinner where the service was severely lacking, but the food was good.  We also stopped in the new Fit2Run store in Downtown Disney for some KT Tape.  That place is nice…definitely check it out next time you are in the area.

Day 1 of the Glass Slipper Challenge complete!  We headed to bed fairly early to get ready for day 2…my 3rd Princess Half Marathon!

Disclosure: I was invited to attend the entire weekend as media.  My hotel expenses were provided by Disney.  As always, all opinions are 100% my own and I am 100% obsessed with runDisney events.

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New to Me: Epcot’s World Showcase

World Showcase

Well we made it through Future World and now it’s time to move to the back of the park to World Showcase.  But before we do, I have to say that I received a TON of comments, tweets, FB messages and texts about great meals that were recently had at Coral Reef!  I am so excited to hear that and can’t wait to eat there this weekend.  (Yes, I will be in WDW this weekend…let me know if you want to say hi!)

So World Showcase…home of my FAVORITE event, the Epcot Food & Wine Festival!  It is also probably my favorite place to grab a beer and just sit on a bench.  This is a regular occurrence for Amanda and I.  But as with most of WDW, there are still quite a few things I haven’t done here.  They mainly consist of films and restaurants.  Let’s move clockwise around the lagoon…

School Bread

I actually haven’t eaten at any of the Norwegian establishments, but I think the fact that I haven’t tried the beloved School Bread is probably the most significant.  If you’re not familiar with this Disney cult classic, it is available at the Kringla Bakeri og Cafe in the Norway pavilion.  It is a sweet roll filled with vanilla custard and topped with icing and toasted coconut.  This sounds right up my alley, so I’m really not sure why I haven’t tried this yet…it’s a mystery!  But now that I know I have an egg sensitivity, it doesn’t look like I’ll be trying this anytime soon because of the custard.  Fail.

Reflections of China

China

As I’ve said before, I’m not a huge fan of films in WDW and this is particularly true when you have to stand for the film.  I get that the Circle-Vision 360 films aren’t conducive to sitting, but after walking around Epcot the last thing I want to do is stand for a 13-minute film.  I’ve heard this is a breathtaking film and I think I would actually enjoy it since I don’t think I will ever see China in my life (that’s a seriously long flight!).  I think the key to seeing this will be to make it one of the first things I do, so I won’t be so tired from walking around all day.  Yeah…that’s the ticket!

Biergarten Restaurant

Biergarten

I’ve been in this restaurant a few times for runDisney meetups, but I’ve never actually eaten here.  Again surprising since my heritage is half German and knowing that so many people rave about it.  I also love sausage and sauerkraut  so what gives??  Well a few things.

1. I only like buffets for breakfast…strange, but true.  There is something about lunch and dinner buffets that just really don’t appeal to me.  Plus, I never feel like I eat enough to make it worth the price for me.

2. B doesn’t like anything about the menu here.  He hates all things pickled, despises cabbage and beets, and really isn’t a fan of sausage.  Why did I marry him you ask?  Well he is pretty awesome in most other things.  😉  So because he doesn’t like the food, it’s never really on my radar.

3. The entertainment just isn’t for me.  When it comes to music, I turn to my Irish heritage for that.  Yodeling…no thanks.

O Canada!

Canada

Well, the reasons I haven’t seen this are the same as Reflections of China.  Film + Standing = No.  I actually almost went to see this over Wine & Dine Weekend, but we just missed it and I didn’t want to wait 18-minutes for the next one.  I’ve heard Martin Short is actually really funny and again the film is gorgeous.  Plan for this weekend…Canada first, China second…go!

Le Cellier Steakhouse

Gasp!  I know!  The most beloved restaurant by Disneyphiles everywhere and this foodie hasn’t been there!  To be honest, when restaurants are that hyped up, I tend to avoid them.  Don’t get me wrong, the food looks great here, but I just don’t want to be on the phone 180 days out making ADRs.  Now that it’s been bumped up to 2 table service credits on the Dining Plan, I hear that it’s easier to get a reservation so hopefully I’ll be able to give it a try soon.  I recently popped my head in to get a look at the restaurant and was surprised by how small it is, which is what probably attributes to the difficulty of getting in.

What attractions and restaurants are new to YOU in World Showcase at Epcot??  

What are your thoughts on films where you have to stand??