A Pirates League For Us: Going Pirate at the Magic Kingdom

by Mary Albright, PassPorter Guest Contributor
Last modified 12/31/2009

Photo illustrating Walt Disney World - Making Magic

Everyone at one time or another has wanted to be a pirate, right? And who wouldn't want to be a part of Captain Jack Sparrow's Pirates League?

Sharkey and Bones Meet Jennifer photo
Sharkey and Bones Meet Jennifer

Sharkey and Bones (also known as Captain Boog and Salty) from Jake and the Neverland Pirates pose for a photo with Jennifer Marx at Disney's Hollywood Studios during the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration

The Pirates League opened in June 2009 and I couldn't be happier. Finally! An experience for my son and my non-princess daughter! And once I read further and saw that adults could join the Pirates League, well, it became a family affair.

The Pirates League is located near the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction in Magic Kingdom. When you arrive, you can select how you want to receive your experience. We opted for the less expensive First Mate and Empress experience. The Empress is the only female option, but girls can choose one of the First Mate choices if they want to and customize it a bit by leaving off the beard and such.

After your name is called you are taken into a sort of anteroom. There, a pirate directs you to spin the wheel, which actually spins a treasure chest containing a pair of dice. These dice, and information in a secret pirate book, help determine what your pirate name will be. For example, my son's pirate name is Edgar Whalebones.

Once we all received our pirate names, we were directed into a room full of action. There were actually several stations where pirate makeup artists were turning new members of the Pirates League into pirates. You might have sworn you were in a warehouse or ship's hold with all the barrels and chests around. We each waited for our pirate makeup artist to call our pirate name to help make us truly members of the Pirates League.

Pirate Erin was tasked with helping turn me into a Pirate Empress. She applied my Empress make-up, lip gloss, and nail polish. I also was sporting a fabulous empress face jewel. And of course, I had to have my first pirate tattoo to be admitted to the Pirates League. Erin also instructed me that all pirates have to name their first tattoo. Fred became fast friends with my right hand that day. Erin finished off my pirate empress look with a pirate bandanna, an eye patch, and a gold hoop earring clipped on for good measure. My extra face jewels, nail polish, and lip gloss went into the booty bag that we each received.

My son opted for the Multi-Eyed Jack and my husband the Smokey-Eyed Jack. My daughter decided to go the Empress route, but with bolder colors than what I had chosen.

Once we were done with our pirate transformation, we had to recite the pirate oath, which is completely secret and completely something Captain Jack would write!

The pirates presented us to the gunner who outfitted us with a sword belt and sword. And only then, when we were properly adorned as members of the Pirates League, were we allowed in the secret treasure room.

All I will say about the secret treasure room is that it completely met my expectations, which were pretty high because I was so excited to be there! We had our pictures taken and collected a bit of booty before leaving by the secret door to return to the entrance of the room.

The pirates checked us out and gave us our certificates showing we were members of the Pirates League and a secret code to decipher using our treasure booty.

This was an immensely fun experience for the whole family. It took about an hour once we checked in, but it was completely worth it. My son's 14th birthday was the day we were there. The pirates all sang a version of "Happy Birthday" with a lot of "Yo Ho" built in there. My son totally enjoyed it!

Both my teenagers enjoyed this experience. This is not just the answer to Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique for little boys; this truly is an experience for everyone in your family.

Our one issue that we had was in makeup removal. I didn't have makeup remover with me as I don't wear makeup on vacation. It took a bit of effort to get all the makeup off of everyone once we were done, but more so for my son's Multi-Eyed Jack design. I do suggest having makeup remover with you if that's not your habit to pack it on vacation.

The First Mate and Empress Packages are priced at $49.95 each plus tax. There is a Captain's Package that includes a costume priced at $125 each plus tax. Be sure to ask if any discounts such as DVC, Annual Passholder, etc. apply to your party.

Advanced Reservations are recommended at 407-WDW-CREW (407-939-2739), but walk-up customers were being taken care of as well.

As we sailed away from the Pirates League, we knew it would not be our last glimpse of that secret island of adventure. We can't wait to join Captain Jack's band in the future.

About the Author:
Mary Albright is a return PassPorter News Guest Contributor. Married with two children, she lives in Minnesota and works as a Virtual Assistant. She has visited Walt Disney World more than 15 times since 2000. She has two trips in the works for June 2010 and December 2010.

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Updated 12/31/2009 - Article #403 

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