Beyond Neverland – The Discovery of Tri-Circle-D Ranch

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At the end of our hike from Wilderness Lodge to Ft. Wilderness we came across a few barns and saw a couple of horses getting a bath.  We always knew in the back of our minds that Ft. Wilderness had horses and horseback riding, but we never realized how everything was actually set up and how extensive the grounds are. Since this was our non-parks “Beyond Neverland” vacation, it was something we had time to explore at a leisurely pace.

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Wishes from the Speedway

Because we visit Walt Disney World so often, we always enjoy learning and experiencing something new, and we always seem to be successful at doing this.  During our recent trip, I experienced Wishes (the nighttime fireworks show) in a new way. I am not a huge fan of the show and packed crowds, so I am not interested in watching it front and center at the castle. I do enjoy randomly catching the fireworks  at different locations throughout the park.

There’s nothing like whizzing around on the TTA and catching a glimpse of fireworks. I have never ridden Big Thunder during Wishes, but I’ve heard that’s a cool spot too. On a recent trip, I watched Wishes while driving on the Tomorrowland Speedway. I had a fast pass for 9:55, and as I entered the queue and looked up at the time, I realized Wishes would begin at any moment. Right before boarding, the music swelled and fireworks began exploding behind me. The Speedway is closer to the launch area, so the noise was much more intense than when you watch from the front of the castle. As I “sped” around the Speedway, I got a full view of the show. Here is a silly little video I took while driving:

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It’s experiences like this that make being at Walt Disney World exciting for me.  Now, if you prefer a full on view of Wishes, check out this great post by the Disney Tourist Blog which includes a neat color coded map to learn about the best spots to view it.  Where is your favorite spot to view Wishes?  Leave a comment below!

Beyond Neverland – This Way or That Way?

After our boat journey we decided to walk over to Fort Wilderness.  We were told there was an “easy” route and a “hard” route, which a cast member described as somewhere along the lines of more confusing.  Confusing?  We might get lost? Sign us up!  We love all things backstage, so we figured we might be able to stumble upon something interesting (River Country perhaps?) on the hard route.  While we never did come across a backstage entrance to River Country, I was glad we opted to take this route that followed parallel to Bay Lake.  It was very serene walking down the unpaved path, and it was really quiet.  There is something about being around Bay Lake, especially being in the unspoiled areas, that we can sense Walt’s presence.  We felt like we were the only ones around for miles.  I guess that might have been somewhat true, since most people were either at the parks or hotels.

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Here’s a video we took from the trail:

We still had a lot more investigating to do once we reached our destination.  Stay tuned for what we encountered while on the grounds of Fort Wilderness!

Destination: Dole Whip

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My ceramic Dole Whip container

When I mentioned in my last post that we like to keep our plans flexible, I wasn’t kidding.  The only catch with this change in our plan was that we had to cancel the trip and reschedule to another weekend.  Poor Molly caught some sort of sickness from her students during her second week of school, and there was no way she was going to be able to go.  I initially considered going alone, but right before I started packing I called the Dolphin directly and was able to reschedule without any penalty.  I knew at that point the trip was definitely not meant to be.

But all was not lost, as I found a way to get my Disney fix right down the street from my house last night.  A few months ago, a new frozen yogurt shop called Menchies opened near me, but I didn’t really think twice about it since there are so many of these places around.  I also normally don’t get frozen yogurt, because my bowl ends up being super expensive, however, I do splurge on a treat every now and then.

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Getting Excited for Our Next Trip

One of my favorite things about being a Florida Resident Passholder is being able to escape to WDW for quick weekend trips.  I usually try to take advantage of holiday weekends so I can get away without using a vacation day.  Luckily we have one soon and I was able to convince Molly to join me even though she was just there (note: it wasn’t hard).  I live on the East Coast of Florida, about 2 1/2 hours from WDW, and Molly lives on the West Coast less than 2 hours from WDW.  It’s the perfect spot to meet in the middle!

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Saying “Rabbit Rabbit” in the Magic Kingdom

A long time ago, in a far off land (known as Massachusetts), a fairy godmother of ours taught us all about a little trick to bring us good luck.  After the stroke of midnight, before speaking any other words, one must utter the words “rabbit rabbit” to be granted one month of good luck. Here is more information about the tradition.

Exactly one year ago today we were at Walt Disney World.  Imagine our delight when we realized we would be at the most magical place at midnight on September 1st!  That evening, we watched the 11:00pm Main Street Electrical Parade.

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