1 Day Plan with all 12 Holiday speakers at Epcot, plus Joyful, marketplace booths, and some other stuff


#1

So, 2 adults in 30s, been to park before a few years ago. Have one day only and want to see new stuff, catch a few shows we missed last time, and take advantage of seasonal offerings, but not interested in investing time to Candlelight Processional. We're used to doing long park days and can walk quickly when needed. This plan includes all the stuff we'd like to do and also a little bit of down time for strolling through pavillions, shops, etc. I don't really want to add anything unless it's really worth it; beyond this stuff we'd generally rather have the down time. We haven't bought tickets yet, so I'm trying to plan without FP+. Anything we can get from that would just be a bonus. Also, we like to save time by buying food before a show so we can eat while we watch.

Does this look like it'll work? The optimizer and even the "evaluate" button are completely useless for this type of plan, because they don't allow you to see shows that are immediately next to each other and scheduled to allow consecutive viewings. For example, I feel like we should be able to see the Kwanzaa speaker at noon and the immediately adjacent Hanukkah speaker at 12:15, and even Voices of Liberty at 11:45. They don't go for the full 15 minutes, and they'll intentionally avoid overlapping each other, right? Also, I'm ok if I miss the first minute or so, but the planning software doesn't allow any of that. Agent P presents a whole extra can of worms. So I'd like the thoughts of some people who have more actual foot-on-ground experience in the park, especially during the holiday season. There are also a few questions scattered throughout. I should also mention that this will be on a Wednesday, 9-9:30 open time, no EMH, crowd rating = 4 at EP.

Thanks all!

Future World (9am)
Rope drop Soarin' (we'll be among the first at the gate)
Test Track with post-show
Colortopia
extra time? stroll through gardens in Canada, UK, France
France (11am)
food at marketplace booth (Do event booths usually open with the rest of the park or later?)
11:20 Pere Noel
US (11:30am)
food at marketplace booth
11:45 Voices of Liberty
12:00 Kwanzaa
12:15 Hanukkah
pick up Agent P for Japan (Will we be able to pick our country, given that we'd be ok waiting a few extra minutes to get the country we want?)
Japan (12:30pm)
Agent P Japan
12:55 Daruma
if necessary, finish Agent P (Is it ok to "pause" it for ~10-15 minutes to watch a show?)
Italy (1:15pm)
1:20 Sergio
1:40 La Befana
Morocco (2pm)
2:05 Morocco holiday person
2:20 Musique Aramenco
~ 30-45 minutes to stroll back through Italy, US, Japan, Morocco, and France as we want
"The South" (3:15pm)
Southern Delights marketplace booth
3:25 Joyful!
Mexico (3:55pm)
grab food at marketplace booth (Probably the tightest portion of the plan.)
4:00 Mariachi Cobre with seasonal dancers
Canada (4:25pm)
4:25 Holiday Voyageurs (Also a little tight.)
grab a Fin du Monde on tap either before or after show
China (5pm)
5:00 Lion Dancers
5:10 Jeweled Dragon Acrobats
UK (5:45pm)
Agent P UK (pickup therein)
6:30 Father Christmas
~30 minutes to stroll through UK, Canada, Mexico, China on way to Germany, or go the other way and see trains on the way
Germany (7pm)
food at marketplace booth
7:15 Helga
~20 minutes to get to Norway and either see trains or stroll through Germany, China, Norway
Norway (7:45pm)
7:45 Sigrid and Julenissen
Frozen Ever After standby
remaining time to go back wherever we want and find a spot for IllumiNations
IllumiNations (9:30pm)

Anyone see any glaring problems I'm not catching?


#2

Other than some very quick walks, no glaring problems. Just a question... I have not seen a 2016 official schedule for when the Storytellers will be performing, but if it's been as in past years, they perform every 20 to 30 min. Your plan has you criss-crossing WS a number of times; why not just start at one end, see the storyteller, and then move on to the next country and catch the next show there, and so on? Morocco to Mexico to Canada to China to UK just seems like self-inflicted punishment. I regularly do 14 hour days when I go to WDW (solo), but I would never "plan" that many times around WS - unless it was the only way I could make ADRs and live shows with few event times scheduled line up.


#3

I agree with @bswan26 why are you criss crossing the park?


#4

Hey, great! Thanks for replying!!

It's primarily because the Storytellers don't run the entire day. For example, the ones in the US start at 11 and are done by 5pm, whereas others don't start till almost 2 and go till as late as 8:30. And they don't just go every 20-30 minutes; they're less frequent and they take extended breaks. (For example, France last year: 11:20, 11:55, 12:30, 1:20, 2:10, 3:40, 4:25, 5:40.) You're right that the times aren't posted yet, but it looks like they've stayed pretty steady for the past few years based on research I've done, so I stuck with what I was able to find online and what TP has listed. The way they're scheduled, it's not possible to just do one big circle and catch them all. The best I could do was "group" them: start by knocking out everything from International Gateway through Italy since they're all fairly close together, then try to take out the portions closer to Showcase Plaza, and finish off in that far corner to try to make the long silk road walk from Italy to China as few times as possible. Truthfully, it'd work out pretty well if it weren't for China. I'd have a break after Morocco and be able to go Fountain --> Mexico --> Canada --> UK before another break to resume with Germany, China, and Norway. However, the Lion Dancers' last show is at 5, and I can't get to all that stuff on the west side in time to get back over there by then. If I start on the east side first instead, I'd lose out out on the Canadian show, which finishes at 6, or Joyful! at the fountain, which finishes at 4:25.

I found this spreadsheet image online. The schedule is outdated, but it's still representative of how the schedule seems to work. They tried to just go around but end up missing two Storytellers. Had they started earlier, they'd miss UK or need to backtrack to it. Plus that type of schedule wouldn't necessarily fit in the other shows we want to see, including the one at the fountain.

I did find another solution by squeezing my UK stuff between Morocco and "the South", with a 2:55 Father Christmas, then moving Canada to where I had UK, with a 6:00 Holiday Voyageurs, and swapping Mexico and China. So Morocco --> UK --> Fountain --> China --> Mexico --> Canada --> Germany. It eats up that nice break I had and pushes my two Agent Ps together (I'd rather separate them a little), but it allows me to do Mexico and China back to back with a little more down time over there, and more time between the later countries when I'll have more walking to do. I'd still need to go back across to pick up Canada, but if I'm already in Mexico it's not that bad, and then I'd have at least 40 minutes to stroll from Canada to Germany to finish the evening back there.


#5

As you're 2 fit adults the back tracking probably won't be an issue, and you can always change your mind on the fly. I don't know anything about Agent P, is it not something you can fit in when you have a free 10 mins. Or do you only want to do it in 2 pavilions? I did try looking at the show times months ago, but I gave up, so it will be pot luck which ones we manage to catch.


#6

It definitely takes more than 10 minutes. More like 20-30 or 30-45 depending on whom you ask. We did one on our last trip and had a lot of fun with it, so we thought we'd try two more, and try to pick countries that we either didn't spend time in last trip or didn't have much other reason to be in on this trip. There are also only a few locations where you can pick up the "assignment". So while you can just toss it in if you have a spare 30+ minutes, it seems helpful to plan it in if you're trying to do lots of other stuff (like us) or want a specific pavilion (like we do).

I'm sure it's no accident that they make it difficult to see all these Storytellers in one day. Repeat visits to see everything means more Money for Mickey! I do hope somebody posts this year's schedule soon, and kinda have my fingers crossed that it won't change much from previous years.