Flower & Garden/Festival of Fantasy Parade Weekend trip

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Flower & Garden/Festival of Fantasy Parade Weekend trip

I've never done a trip report before because our trips are almost exclusively weekend only, one night/ two day trips, and I didn't think that was enough of a "trip" to do a trip report. But because I love reading other peoples trip reports and because it was our first time seeing the new FOF Parade at MK(and I can't wait to talk about it!) I thought I'd do my first trip report. In the words of Peter Pan "here...we....go."

We live about 2 1/2 hours from WDW so we planned on leaving Friday 3/14, as soon as my husband got off work. He works as an HVAC technician and there is no way to know when he's going to be done. But of course since it was a Disney day, I sat around like waiting until about 2pm. At 5pm when I still didn't hear from him I was closer to gaah Finally he got home and we were able to leave around 8:00pm, which meant we couldn't go to the parks tonight eek We stayed at the Rosen Shingle Creek hotel and we finally got checked in and to bed around midnight.

3/15-Day 1: Epcot Flower & Garden and HS
We are NOT morning people. Every time we go to Disney we go with the intention of getting up really early and getting to a park at rope drop. It has never happened. We've spent about 175 days at WDW and we've never made a rope drop. And today was no different. After a breakfast of cheese Danish and espresso in our hotel room, we started the day at Epcot around 10:30am. We were ending the day at HS and we had all our FP+ scheduled for HS so we decided just to stroll around and see the topiaries and wait for the world showcase to open. Before we got too far into the park, we stopped at the Cool Club to sample the free beverages. We've never done this before and I really just wanted to see my husband try Beverly. We both tried all the drinks, including the infamous Beverly and both of our reactions were a great big "YUCK" to all of them. But Beverly was definitely the biggest "YUCK" of the bunch.

It was time for the world showcase to open and my hubby decided we should start on the Mexico side. He denies it, but I know it was for the sole purpose of him getting a frozen Fiesta Margarita. He must have one now every time we go to Epcot. We took our time slowly walking around the world showcase and looking at the topiaries. They had a few new topiaries this year but for the most part, they were the same(albeit still amazing) as year's past, except put in different locations from previous years. Our favorite new topiary this year was Kermit and Ms. Piggy because we both love the Muppets.

By this time we were both hungry and talking about getting food. We don't do ADR's, we prefer to eat food we can walk around with and eat. My husband's first food choice was a Frankfurter with saurerkraut from Sommerfest. I chose a traditional German pretzel from the cart outside. Our next choice for a delicious treat was to split a school bread from Kringla Bakeri in Norway. It was delicious as always. Norway was especially busy today because everyone who is anyone wants to meet Elsa and Anna, from Frozen, in the Norway Pavillion. However, we passed on meeting them today and headed for Maelstrom instead. It was a 20 minute standby but only took 15minutes.

Now it's time for more food! We went to Les Halles Boulangerie & Patisserie in France, which is one of our favorite QS options in all of WDW. I got a Croissant Jambon Fromage and my DH got a Croque Monsieur and a Creme Brulee. We got a Duo au Chocoalt tart to split. Every bite was delicious.

After lunch, it was time for us to get to HS. Our first FP+ was for 4:05-5:05 ToT, which is my favorite ride so I was not going to miss it! We got to HS right before 4pm and got right on ToT. I love that ride so much I could ride it over and over again. Our record it 5 times in one day. Unfortunately, it was a long standby line and we had FP+ for the last showing of "Beauty and the Beast" at 5:30. We love all the shows at WDW and Beauty was enjoyable as always. Our last FP+ of the day was at 8pm for "Voyage of the Little Mermaid" so we had some time to kill in between. We went to see "Muppets 3D" and then to the "Great Movie ride." We didn't wait at all for Muppets and the GMR was a 10 minute standby.

We both LOVE the cream cheese stuffed pretzels they sell at the cart outside the GMR so we each grabbed one when we got off the GMR. DH gets the sweet cream cheese pretzel and I get the jalapeno cheese pretzel. YUMMY and big enough to tide us over until a late dinner after the park. After our pretzels, it was time for our VoTLM FP+. We like this show, but we normally wouldn't have used a FP+ for it. We just got access to the FP+ system on Thursday before our trip, so the selections were pretty limited for the weekend. After the show we checked the wait times for ToT and it was down to 20 minutes. We rode ToT one more time and decided to call it a night.

We had a gourmet meal of KFC back in our hotel room and went to bed early, determined to do rope drop at MK the next day. We both really wanted to do rope drop. We were determined. We were in bed early. We were motivated and excited. It WAS going to happen tomorrow. We WOULD be at rope drop at MK tomorrow morning. We just knew tomorrow was the day. Ah, the best laid plans....

Here is where I need to call it a night. I will update day 2 tomorrow, which is MK all day, and the FOF parade(which was AMAZING!)

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Great day 1. The weather looks perfect.

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Nice report Annie! Keep it coming.

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Looks like a great day! Can't wait to hear about the parade!

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I really hope you got great pictures of my favorite FOF float! Great report!

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Great TR and pictures, but no F&GF food booths?! eek eek eek The topiaries look AWESOME this year! Kind of wishing we would have planned our trip for April or May!

I've heard a couple of people say that FP+ reservations are almost becoming a requirement to even get into a lot of the shows (otherwise they fill up). Did you think this to be the case? Were VotLM and B&tB packed?

Can't wait to hear if you made to rope drop and what you thought of FoF!

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Day 2- 3/16: MK all day. Today was THE day. We were finally going to get up no matter what and make it to MK in time for the Opening Ceremony show and rope drop. We got up around 7am but I knew immediately today wasn't going to be the day. The reason is because I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, diagnosed 11 years ago and the good days and bad days are about equal now. Unfortunately, today was a bad RA day. My head and heart wanted to get to rope drop, but my body had other ideas. Even though it's very frustrating we are both used to this part of life by now so we just slept in a little more and had a breakfast of blueberry streusel muffins and espresso in our hotel room. Once my pain meds kicked in and I could move we could finally go to MK. yay

We arrived at Main Street in MK right around 11am. No matter how many times I am lucky enough to go to MK, my first glimpse of the Castle takes my breath away. I stopped at the very beginning of Main Street and just took in the view, I'm sure with a great big grin on my face. All stress from my RA ruined morning melted away. We were at MK and we were going to enjoy every minute! DH has to be up for work at 5am on Mondays so we had to leave MK by 6pm in order for him to be able to function the next day. That gave us 7 full hours in the park. After enjoying my moment of awe looking at the Castle, we walked through the Emporium on Main Street, checking for new souveniers. Since we go to WDW so often, we only buy something little, every once in awhile. I got a new keychain and hubby got an Animal(from the Muppets) antenna topper. After a little more window shopping, it was time to go...Go...GO!

We headed to Frontier land via Liberty Square. Our FP+ selections for the day were BTMR: 12-1pm, Pirates: 1-2pm and Peter Pan: 4:10-5:10pm, so we had a little time to kill. Using the handy MDE app we saw that the Haunted Mansion only had a 30 minute standby. I only use my DAS card when I'm having a very hard time walking and standing. Today was definitely one of those days so we got the HM written on my card and circled back to Sleepy Hollow to get a bite to eat while we waited. We got a Ham, Prosciutto and Swiss waffle sandwich and split it. They make the BEST waffles at any of the parks. They are huge and made fresh after you order. I like the ham sandwich but I love the waffle plain even more, so I ended up giving all the meat and cheese to my DH and just eating the waffle. We were both happy with that arrangement laugh

After our snack at Sleepy Hollow, it was time for HM. I just love those Happy Haunts Ghost After HM, DH and I(and possibly a hitchhiking ghost) walked to Frontier land to use our FP+ for BTMR. We love all the coasters and thrill rides at WDW, and BTMR was fun as usual. It was now almost 1pm and we strolled over to Adventure land because we had a FP+ date with some pirates. Before getting to PoTC, we got the Jungle Cruise written on my DAS card for after pirates. We got to pirates a little after 1pm and after only a few minutes we were in a boat. After pirates we took our "jungle boat ride."

At this point, I needed a little rest before the parade. We had already decided to watch the parade from either Liberty square or Frontier land. When we were scoping out places to sit down in LS, a very kind CM saw that I was having trouble walking and asked if I would like to sit down in the spot reserved for people in wheelchairs. I told her I didn't want to take a spot from someone in a wheelchair and she assured me it was for anyone who had a DAS card. I decided to take her up on her kind offer since I would soon need one of those wheelchairs if I didn't rest for awhile. The spot was right across from the Hall of Presidents and it turned out to be an awesome place to watch the parade.

It was about 2:30 and the parade would be starting at 3pm. I like the daytimes parades but once I have seen them once, I usually don't care to see them again. I like daytime parades mainly because it gives DH and I an hour or more in the parks to walk on to just about any ride we want to because most people are watching the parade. But we were both very excited for this new parade. I didn't look at many pictures before our visit, but I read several articles and it sounded amazing.

Before we knew it, it was parade time. It started and we couldn't believe our eyes. The floats and the costumes were unbelievably detailed. The floats were huge, bright, and amazing. The first float had Belle and Beast, Cinderella and Charming, Anna and Elsa and Tiana and Naveen. One float after the other was just as amazing as the first. Each float was awesome. I had really been looking forward to the Maleficent Dragon. It was almost the end of the parade, when from behind me in Frontier land I heard what sounded like a gigantic animal roaring. It was the dragon and it had just roared! When it got closer we truly couldn't believe how big it was. It was spectacular. When it was right in front of us, it raised its head to full height and roared again. Pictures just cannot do the floats justice. This is one parade I will be watching again and again!

After the parade we headed to Fantasy land. Our Peter Pan FP+ was coming up and we wanted a snack before we got on the ride. We opted to split a Mickey pretzel. DH had the great idea to try a cupcake cup from the Cheshire Cafe. When we got there, we were informed that they had just changed the flavors of cupcake cups to White chocolate rabbit and Strawberry "I don't remember the rest" cake cup. Honestly I don't remember the names because once I saw them my brain was just yelling "ICING!!!!" I got the White Rabbit and DH got the Strawberry. I will say that these were very good, But... I LOVE icing. So much so that I believe it should be an official food group. DH loves icing almost as much as I do. That being said, neither one of us could finish our cupcake cup. It was SO rich we could only get through half. We would get one again, but we would split it.

After our very sweet treat it was time for our Peter Pan FP+. We have never been on Peter Pan. We always thought it was a little kiddie ride. After reading this forum I told him we had to try it. I am so glad we did. I loved it! I actually said out loud "we're flying." It is now on our must list for each visit. After Peter Pan we walked to Under the sea and got it put on my DAS card. We haven't ridden the train for at least a year, so while we were waiting for our turn on Under the sea, we got on the train at Storybook Circus and rode it the whole way around MK and back. It was fun and relaxing and I think we need to do it more often. It was time for Under the Sea, which was very enjoyable. At this point, we decided it was time to VERY GRUDGINGLY leave. We slowly walked back to Main Street and caught the end of Dream along with Mickey. When we got to the beginning of Main Street, the same spot where I started the day, I turned around to gaze at the Castle for one more minute. I do this every single time we leave MK. In that one minute of looking at the Castle before I leave, I am assuring myself that I WILL be back and it WILL be magical. muchlove

We took the resort monorail to the parking lot and before we knew it we were starting the 2 1/2 hour drive home sad Now it's time to start planning our April visit clapping

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AnnielovesDisney's picture
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Allie wrote:
Great TR and pictures, but no F&GF food booths?! eek eek eek The topiaries look AWESOME this year! Kind of wishing we would have planned our trip for April or May!

I've heard a couple of people say that FP+ reservations are almost becoming a requirement to even get into a lot of the shows (otherwise they fill up). Did you think this to be the case? Were VotLM and B&tB packed?

Can't wait to hear if you made to rope drop and what you thought of FoF!

Allie, no F&GF booths for us, we are not adventurous eaters at all. We like simple and delicious. I showed DH the F&GF menus and he didn't want anything at any of the booths!

When we went to WDW in Feb. this year, we couldn't get into B&tB or VoTLM. The shows were all full! We didn't have access to the new FP+ yet in Feb. though. Since we couldn't get into the shows in Feb we decided to use our FP+ this trip for the shows. We only got access to FP+ the day before we left, so our choices were limited. We probably wouldn't have used it for VoTLM but we have noticed a huge increase in people at the B&tB shows now that it is offered as a FP+ option.

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Annie that really stinks that you were having a painful day, but I'm glad to see you didn't let it get you down and you had a fun filled time! The parade looks so amazing!!!

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GREAT TR! The parade looks wonderful! You should definitely do more mini TRs, even if their only for a couple of days! Super fun read! awesome

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Allie wrote:
GREAT TR! The parade looks wonderful! You should definitely do more mini TRs, even if their only for a couple of days! Super fun read! awesome

Thanks Allie awesome I'm glad you enjoyed it. It was more fun to write it than I was expecting so I might just write more TR's after all!

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WOW!!! I am so excited to see this parade now! It looks absolutely incredible. I agree with Allie that you should definitely do more mini TR's biggrin

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Yes, more mini TR's please! Your pictures of the parade are amazing - can't wait to see it in person.

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great trip report. can't wait to see the new parade.

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yay yay yay great report!!

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I love Your trip report..great pictures awesome mickey

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TOTALLY feel you on the "non-morning people" front. Rope drop at MK is so great!...But there's that pesky thing of having to get out of bed before 8...not my thing.

Also.....YOU GOT THE CAKE CUPS!!! One of the new things I am MOST looking forward to! Thanks for the pics!

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MeganLeigh wrote:
TOTALLY feel you on the "non-morning people" front. Rope drop at MK is so great!...But there's that pesky thing of having to get out of bed before 8...not my thing.

Also.....YOU GOT THE CAKE CUPS!!! One of the new things I am MOST looking forward to! Thanks for the pics!

I try so hard to get up early on Disney days, but I don't function well if I get up before 8am either!!! Some day I WILL do Rope Drop though biggrin

Cake cups were very good but like I said in my TR, they are VERY rich. The picture doesn't show just how much icing there really is on, and all through it. The strawberry was especially sweet. I would eat desserts of any kind over any food, any day. And they were a little too rich even for me eek

If the worst thing that happens on your vacation is you have too much icing on a cupcake, well poor you right?! laugh

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What time is rope drop at MK??? We will be staying at Pop Century, what time should we leave there?

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JMed wrote:
What time is rope drop at MK??? We will be staying at Pop Century, what time should we leave there?

You definitely wanna get to the gates about a half hour before opening...so usually 8:30. It will take maybe 15 minutes to get to MK from Pop, so factoring in waiting for a bus, I'd get to the bus stop around 8.