It was going to be a long day.
One of the great advantages of living an hour from the Disney World parks is day-trips. Typically we won’t have access to the best attractions, but we’ll have access to many good ones. Plus, seven day-trips over seven weekends is different from a seven-day trip during the week. That’s just basic Alchemy.
Before we moved to Florida, we lived in Ohio and scheduled annual visits. On those trips we had to ‘get our money’s worth’. Tickets might be one-hundred dollars per day per person. Hotel rooms can cost a few hundred dollars too. We bought two ice-cream sandwiches during our last trip and those were twelve dollars.
Flying to Florida and doing Disney costs a lot of money, requires a lot of planning, and introduces some unexpected stress. Keep in mind, this is all a vacation. On our last trip we heard this exchange as a man tried to fold a stroller so he could board a tram.
Him: “This thing is so hard to fold because of all the stuff under here.”
Her: “Welcome to being a dad.”
I felt the frustration like the Florida sun.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom has a few fantastic rides, some nice animal viewing areas, and a few of our favorite shows: A Great Bird Adventure, Finding Nemo, and Festival of the Lion King.
At the big finish of Festival of the Lion King, performers choose children from the audience to take a lap around the stage. One girl got to shake hands with Timon, the singing meerkat. If someone can smile with their entire body she did. It was magical.
Many people believe that Disney’s advantage is their IP—but it’s not their only one. Disney magic is an advantage too. These moments for guests don’t happen because of a character but because of a person.
When I walk around Galaxy’s Edge it’s neat—but when you watch Storm Troopers hassel guests it’s great.
If the stroller couple had a magical moment, they’ll be back. Guaranteed. They’ll look back on the trip, and it won’t have been a long day, but a great one.