Oct 16-24 Loooong Trip Report (with fun pictures!)

Good morning Liners! Finally back home after a wonderful 8 day trip and as I was downloading my photopass pics, I thought I’d fire off a trip report. to set the scene it was me, my wife, junior, and we brought grandma along for her first ever Disney trip. Here goes

Wednesday Oct 16 Not much going on for travel day. Caught an afternoon flight out of Kansas City and magical expressed it over to Port Orleans Riverside. It was my first time staying anywhere but Pop Century and my word, this resort is BIG. As soon as we got off the bus I got the notification on my phone our room was ready, so we hiked approximately 4.5 miles from the lobby to our room. (j/k, it was maybe a 5 min walk). we dropped off our carry-on bags and headed back to Boatwrights for our first ADR of the trip.

Boatwrights- gotta be honest, wasn’t a really memorable ADR. I love cajun food, but for the life of me, I can’t remember what I ate. It was just sort of OK. Yhis will be a recurring theme, unfortunately. The pimento cheese fritters appetizer is a strong recommend though, they were great. After dinner, we went back to the room and crashed.

Thursday Oct 17-Hollywood Studios

Fist park day, we had anticipated a late morning entry because we wanted to watch Fantasmic, but everyone was up and excited around 7am, so we hit the Riverside Food Mill for some mickey waffles before heading to the park around 830ish.

So… grandma had mentioned she was a huge Twilight Zone fan in the day, and she really wanted to ride Tower of Terror. She said she had watched youtube videos of the ride and it didn’t look too bad. After confirming she was REALLY sure, we traipsed on over because the line was short.


The whole ride she was yelling “youtube lied to me!” I don’t think I’ve laughed so hard in my life. We were off to a good start, although grandma was extremely skeptical of every ride for the remainder of the trip. Next up, junior has been dying to ride Rock N Roller Coaster since he’s now tall enough, so we hit that for our first fastpass. wifey and grandma bowed out of this one.

Despite the look on his face, he says he loved it and wanted to ride again. So we did before wandering around the shops so wifey and grandma could get some souvenir shopping in. Fast forward to lunch, we had an ADR at Hollywood Brown Derby with the reserved Fantasmic seating. Lunch was good, i had the grouper because when i eat seafood as often as I can when I’m not in Kansas. The bread service is what really stood out though, the butter with the sea salt was amazing.

After lunch, we started wandering towards Galaxy’s Edge, which was my most anticipated part of the trip. Junior and I had an appointment with a scrap metal dealer to keep. All I can say is “WOW”

After much internal debate regarding the cost, it was worth every penny.

After Savi’s, we explored Galaxy’s Edge, tried the green milk (spoiler alert: it was gross), took some pics, wandered to Star tours for our fast pass, had a quick service dinner at ABC commissary. During dinner, I asked junior what he wanted to do since we had a couple hours to kill before Fantasmic.

“Millenium Falcon daddy”

I was so proud.

The line wasn’t bad, it was posted at around 70 minutes, but without fast passes, it was constantly moving. The line theming was incredible as you’d expect from Disney. The garage actually smelled like a shop, which impressed me.

I’d wager we waited an hour before we got our job assignments. Engineer… sad trombone Did I mention the entire hour wait we talked about how much we wanted to be pilots? It’s a strange feeling getting on the ride dejected, but I reminded junior we had another HS day forthcoming.

So engineer… Here’s why I don’t like it. To do your “job”, you have to take your eyes off the screen to push your lit up buttons, so you miss some of what is going on. But all in all, it was fun and as a hard core Star Wars fan, I heartily recommend.

Fast forward the rest of the night, ate some churros, watched Fantasmic, took a Lyft back to Riverside and slept. It was a long day.

Friday Oct 18-Epcot

It was busy, oh man was it busy. Epcot day was a trainwreck, even with a plan.

Our first fast pass was for Frozen, which went off without a hitch. Everyone enjoyed it. Our plan after FEA was to explore Future World until lunch, then World Showcase for Food and Wine. So we headed towards wifey’s favorite ride, Soarin’. The line was posted at 40 minutes, not too bad. Except after 20 minutes or so we heard the dreaded announcement that the ride was going down. Shoot… So junior asked if we could go ride Journey into Imagination. Sure. So we headed over and… ride was down. My fault, I should have checked the app, but who checks wait time for Figment? Junior was getting cranky because lots of walking plus broke rides ain’t fun. So we hurried to Spaceship Earth and Nemo and Friends to placate him before lunch at Yorkshire Fish Shop (I live for fish and chips)

So, as excited as we were for Food and Wine, we actually didn’t try anything. The lines were so LONG. We did a lap exploring the countries and got junior a pretzel the size of his head at Germany before our ADR at Biergarten.

One of my biggest Disney regrets was never getting to see Illuminations, so I was really hoping to see Epcot forever, but it was hot, crowded, and everyone was getting cranky from all the walking. So we decided to call it a night early and head back to the resort. Darn it, I really wanted to hit the donut booth…

Saturday Oct 19

Pool day. Junior and I swam while wifey and grandma hit Disney Springs to shop. First, we walked over to French Quarter for a beignet breakfast though. It was excellent.
Our dinner ADR was Ohana. Oh my word it was incredible, our best ADR of the trip by far. I had been trying for an Ohana ADR for several trips unsuccessfully, and it well worth the wait. After dinner, we hit the resort to watch a little college football and go to bed early because Sunday would be a long day.



OK, where was I?

Sunday Oct 20-Magic Kingdom/Halloween Party

Junior’s 8th birthday, I scheduled a late breakfast ADR at Ohana (again!) for a character breakfast. Once again, a great experience, and I got to add to my autograph collection!

After breakfast, we monorailed over to Magic Kingdom to enjoy some pre-party low crowds

First stop, POTC. 15 min wait? Yes please! It wasn’t even that long, maybe 5. Oh by the way, I love ride pictures.

Good thing I wore deodorant.

Stuck on small world, someone send churros please.

Quick early dinner ADR at Liberty Tree Tavern for a birthday dinner. We enjoyed it, Liberty Tree is a nice, safe ADR as always and junior liked his cake. Myself, I’ll save room for some Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake.

Party time! Crowds were lower than I expected. We rode Big Thunder, Haunted Mansion, People Mover, Astro Orbiter(great at night!), and I soloed Space Mountain(its surprisingly terrifying when its pitch black)

Then we posted up at Casey’s for the parade and fireworks show. In my opinion, it’s a great spot for both. We munched on cheeseburger spring rolls and dole whip floats (mobile order is a life saver for this) while we waited. Both were great. Parade time, we were treated to someone making a business call behind us throught THE WHOLE PARADE. Don’t be that guy fellas. On the annoyance list, it ranks right up there with flash photography. All in all, wonderful day.

Monday Oct 21-Animal Kingdom

Dumbest thing I did all trip was to schedule an ADR for Tusker House character breakfast at 9am the day after the Halloween party. We debated sleeping in and eating the penalty fee, but we powered through. We should’ve taken the penalty…
We were tired, food wasn’t good, coffee was cold, and it just set the tone for the day. It was rainy, so Everest was down most of the day. We had zero interest in Kali River Rapids and Dinosaur. But the bright side was our Flight of Passage fast pass. Still the best ride in all of Disney. 2nd fastpass was for Kilimanjaro Safaris, we actually rode twice because of our ancelled fastpass for Everest.
Dinner was an ADR at Yak N Yeti. I lobbied hard for Tiffins, but was overruled by wifey. I should have pushed harder, Yak N Yeti wasn’t good. I had the pork belly ramen. now, one of my favorite restaurants in KC is a ramen shop, I love ramen. I am alive today because of ramen. This just was bland and disappointing. After dinner, we had decided to call it a night, but I happened to notice Everest had come back online! Junior and I begged wifey and grandma to let us ride it.


(despite his faces, junior swears he loves roller coasters)

Tuesday Oct 22-Hollywood Studios

Remember how I said how disappointing I said engineer on Millenium Falcon was? Junior and I had a plan. We were up at 5am and headed to Galaxy’s Edge while wifey and grandma slept in. Ride attempt #1-Engineer again, darn it. Ride attempt #2


Pilot is far and away the best gig on MF, it was so worth the wait.

Afterwards, we breakfasted on Ronto wraps, got some photo pass pics, then headed to Toy Story Land.

EEMH was good to us, along with MF twice, we rode Toy Story Mania, Alien Swirling Saucers, and Slinky Dog Dash all before the park officially opened. We then caught an Indiana Jones show before a lunch ADR at 50’s Prime Time (PB&J shake, try it!). Then we headed back to the resort to swim.

Dinner ADR-Paddlefish. Come evening, we took the resort boat to Disney Springs for our dinner ADR at Paddlefish. It was Ok. However, for signature dining, it really needs to be better than OK. Grandma loves seafood, so I booked this specifically for her. I remember debating other seafood restaurants like Flying Fish before settling on Paddlefish. The ambiance was nice though. The food just didn’t wow us. maybe our expectations were too high, oh well.

Wednesday Oct 23-Magic Kingdom

Our last park day. Sometime during our trip, I received a notification from Touring Plans with a crowd calendar update for Wednesday bumping it from I think a 5 crowd level to a 9.

Oh no

Too late to do anything about it, but we’ll make the best of it.

We were wearing down from the trip, so we decided to fast pass only, andI’d say we did it effectively. We rode 7DMT, HM, Jungle Cruise, POTC, BTMRR, Monster’s INC Laugh Floor, and Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin. Not too shabby

(act scared, OK)

Dinner ADR at Jungle Skipper. I loved this place last trip, this trip no one ate. It just wasn’t good. Grandma and I had the Thai noodles, and it was very meh. We were pretty disappointed, however I had a surprise for everyone in the form of a HEA dessert party.

The dessert were good enough, but man was the reserved viewing area packed solid. The good news was everyone in our immediate area decided to stay seated for the fireworks show, which was nice. After fireworks, we headed back to our resort to pack and get some needed rest.

Thursday Oct 24

Travel day, back home to KC and 40 degree weather. Booooooo!

Random trip musings

Man, one thing that always stands out to me is how clean Disney is. But I noticed way more trash this trip. It was jarring. On the walkways, in the landscaping, in the water. I don’t know if Disney cut janitors or if there is just so many more people, probably a bit of both.


I spent waaaaay too much money on Lyfts and Minnie Vans this trip. Waiting on buses is awful when you’re tired.

I love churros.

If you’re still with me, thanks for attending my TED talk, see you in 2021


Great post!

I have to confess, it’s after midnight and I am completely exhausted, so I didn’t read it, but I love the pictures! Thank you for sharing!