Wednesday, December 6, 2006

Day 7 - Parades and Party Day

I'm late posting my Day 7 report because we were out late for Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party at the Magic Kingdom and I was just too tired to write. Now I've had a good night's sleep and we're lingering over coffee before setting out for the day. All of yesterday's photos are here.

Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party takes place on selected nights and requires a separate ticket. The park was open until midnight and closed to other visitors after 7 PM - but that doesn't mean there weren't a lot of people there. The crowds were thick on Main Street at the start of the party and at first we thought it might be too crowded to be worth it, but once things got underway people spread out. As the evening progressed, the number of small children and strollers dimished and it was easier to walk around. We did see some some burned out kids and parents who had just stayed too long, though.

We had made dinner reservations at Tony's Town Square, an Italian restaurant themed after the one in Lady and the Tramp, for just before the start of the party . We've never been able to get into this popular place on previous trips. The food was excellent. mr. lo, in keeping with the Lady and the Tramp theme, had spaghetti and meatballs; I had an unusual, but delicious grilled salmon with asparagus, black and green olives, grape tomatoes, spinach, bacon, pecans and basil pesto. We were given bread and a tomato pesto dipping sauce to start. This is a noisy restaurant, and tonight it was extremely busy - not a place to go for a quiet, romantic meal, but the food and service were great and we enjoyed it nevertheless.

There was a Christmas version of the fabulous Wishes fireworks as well as two showings of the same Christmas Day parade that was being taped last weekend.

Free hot chocolate and cookies were available in several locations, there were some special holiday musical performances - and it was snowing on Main Street! We stayed in the park until almost 11 and rode the Astro Orbiters for the first time as well as some of our favorite rides. We were able to walk right on everything.

We had some photos taken by park photographers. Disney has a great innovation called the PhotoPass that we have been using since we got here. They have photographers stationed at various scenic spots in each park who take your photo and scan a code onto a card so that you can retrieve your photos online for up to a month after your trip. There is no charge for this unless you purchase prints. We've had a lot of nice photos taken.
We had started our day at Disney MGM Studios where we saw the new Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show and the Stars and Motor Cars Parade done up for Christmas.

We had lunch at the Backlot Express, rode the the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror and the Great Movie Ride - must-dos for us - and saw Journey Into Narnia: Creating the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, which was a let-down after having seen the movie.
mr. lo rode the Rockin' Rollercoaster by himself. I just don't enjoy being flipped upside down at 60 miles per hour. While mr. lo was riding, I had a nice conversation with a couple from North Carolina who are Disney Vacation Club members also staying at Old Key West. We've now seen everything we want to at The Studios, so this was probably our last time going there for this trip.

Yesterday was much cooler and we needed jackets, but it was sunny and very pleasant, with low humidity. Today temperatures will be back up to the mid-70s. We plan to go to lunch at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and then visit the Animal Kingdom briefly to walk the trails and ride the Safari. We may go back to the Magic Kingdom tonight to see the SpectroMagic parade, or maybe just visit some other resorts to see their decorations and have dinner.

Our time is winding down - we're leaving on Friday - but we have far from run out of things to see and do!

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