ADR help!

Hey, everyone! I need help yet again. I am still debating about my entire schedule and my ADR day is Monday. It will be my husband, me and our 3 and 1 year old boys. We are staying at Pop 7 nights.

This is my plan:
Saturday Chef Mickeys lunch or dinner
Sunday Mk-1900 Park Fare Dinner
Monday Hs- Sci Fi late lunch or dinner
Tuesday ak- Tusker House brunch and that night Pirates and Pals cruise
Wednesday hddr
Thursday Epcot-coral reef dinner
Friday mk- ohana dinner
Saturday Bon Voyage

My main concern is Wednesday because according to this plan we won’t be at any night shows except watching the fireworks from the cruise. We weren’t planning on doing the Christmas party either. I’m afraid my boys won’t make it very late so my current plan is to go early and leave most parks by mid to late afternoon. However, we are planning on paying out of pocket for hddr so now I’m wondering if we should cancel that and add another mk day on Wednesday and do the dessert party. Then that would effect our Epcot day and I know we wouldnt make it to emh and I think the rest day will be needed. If we do mk I’d only go for the afternoon and evening, but I also think if we can do that Wednesday we might as well go to the Christmas Party one night instead. I’m questioning everything. I guess I am asking if I should cancel hddr and pirates and pals and do Christmas party? Should I do an extra mk day for hea? Should I just keep everything like it is?

Also, in what order should I try to get my adrs and are those good choices for a 3 and 1 year old? Any others I should consider?

Thank you in advance for all your help!

I love HDDR, but I I probably wouldn’t do HDDR with those ages and would save it for later. I’m sure people bring little kids to it but it is really more appealing to slightly older kids.
I’d prefer to do Garden Grill at Epcot over Coral Reef for a good character meal where it’s served family style so you don’t have to attempt a buffet with the kiddos.

Coral Reef is the only decision my husband has made about the whole week and he is pretty set on it. I’ve tried to talk him out of it already!

My ADR was last Monday so I can view what’s available up until Dec 2nd and Chef Mickeys Dinner on 12/1 is looking pretty rough. On 12/2 1900 park fare is already booked from 5:44-6:25

I’ve been worried about that. Thank you for the info!

I’ve never been to WDW with kids of my own, so I am probably not the best person to be answering this, but here are a few observations. Pretty much anything you do will be lost on your DS1; there will be lots of sensory stimulation, but it won’t have much meaning. DS3 will probably get more out of things, but I have to say that I have no real solid memories of anything that happened before I was about 4.

HDRR is kind of a pain to get to (boat from CR or MK is probably the easiest), eats up a lot of time, is expensive, and would probably be lost on the kids - but you (adults) might really enjoy it (personally, it’s not my cup of tea).

I know very little about the P&P cruise but I do know that it’s also quite expensive and I would wonder if it, too, would be something better saved for a few years.

I’ve never been to one of the parties. They are primarily about “rare” M&Gs, the parade, the Holiday fireworks, and (sometimes) shorter lines for the attractions. None of this appeals enough to me to pay the now-crazy prices they are charging. But many people really love the parties.

As an adult, I appreciate the beauty of Coral Reef, and if you are lucky enough to get a table right near the glass it would be very intriguing for DS3, but if you end up in the back it would probably be “just another restaurant” to him. And there is no real way to get close to the glass without squeezing in between the tables located there. And although I’ve never had a bad meal there, the food and service both get very mixed reviews. Garden Grill might be the better choice for your family.

Keep in mind that Sci-Fi has an unusual seating arrangement; in each “car” all of rows face forward, so it would probably mean one adult and one child in each row with limited interaction between the rows. 50s Prime Time has more traditional seating, and the interactions with the CMs can be a lot of fun (again, this might be lost on the kids). Hollywood and Vine will probably be doing the “Christmas Party” theme by then, so it would be another chance to meet classic Disney characters dressed in their “winter” best.

Tusker House is the only CM that I will do voluntarily; the character interaction is very good, and the food is definitely one of the better in-park buffets.

I’ve only done CM once when I was there with friends who had kids. Meeting the characters is the only reason to go there. The food was mediocre, it’s crowded, noisy, and because of the size, it can take quite a while for all of the characters to make it to your table.

I haven’t been to the others, so I can’t give any first-hand advice about those. Again, just my personal observations, but things I would consider if I found myself going with a party that had young kids.

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It’s your (i.e. you and your husband) vacation too, and if that’s what your husband wants to do, you should do it. When I went to the NY Worlds Fair when I was 5 and Expo 67 when I was 8, my parents did virtually nothing “for” me; they did what they wanted to do and I was “along for the ride”. Granted, I am the product of an older generation, but the concept that a family vacation needs to be planned entirely around the kids is foreign to me…

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You’ve definitely given me a lot to consider. Thank you!

Considering the age of your kids I wouldn’t do HDDR, the christmas party or the Pirates cruise. Don’t spend extra money to please your 3 year old, as his favorite thing of the week could be the pool or Dumbo. I would consider booking a babysitter one night.


While this is true, there are tables as well.

I agree with everything @bswan26 says about the rest. The younger kids really don’t remember a lot. My DD16 turned 3 in the parks. She remembers stuff from the trip because of the pictures and our stories about it. She enjoyed characters the most. I have to say that Crystal Palace was her favorite.

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The pirate cruise is more geared to 5-8 year olds and does not provide good photos of the fireworks, I would recommend skipping this since it’s not cheap.

Tusker house and Crystal palace both are lots of fun with the Characters and have macaroni and cheese and chicken strips or roast chicken legs, as well as simple desserts for children.

I agree to give yourselves a day off, the children will enjoy the pool more then you think!

Yeah I have decided to give us a complete day off. We also have family in Orlando so that would also give us time to spend with them.

My 3 year old, who will practically be 4 by this time, is probably more of an adventurous eater than I am. However, my 1 year old will probably only eat mac and cheese. Maybe we will do crystal palace instead of chef mickeys.

Thanks for the input!

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