The schedule of narrators for the Candlelight Processional has changed again. Here is the updated schedule:
Nov 23-25: David
Nov 26-28: John O'Hurley
Nov 29-December 1: Neil
Dec 2-4: Dennis Franz
To Be Determined (TBD)
8-10: Steven Curtis Chapman
Dec 11-13: Chita
Dec 14-16: TBD
Dec 17-19 Kirk
Dec 20-22: Edward James Olmos
Dec 23-25: Gary
Dec 26-28: Rita Moreno
Dec 29-30: Marlee
The Wand, Crane and Stars have all been removed from Spaceship Earth. The metal supports for the stars are the last things left to be removed.
On September 10, 2007, Walt Disney World will host ceremonies honoring the crew of the NASA Space Shuttle Endeavour including
teacher Barbara Morgan. Astronaut Morgan will unveil a new
addition to Mission:SPACE in the morning at Epcot and the entire crew
(Commander Scott Kelly, Pilot Charles Hobaugh and mission specialists
Tracy Caldwell, Richard Mastracchio, David Williams, Barbara Morgan and
Alvin Drew Jr.)will be the Honorary Grand Marshals in the Magic Kingdom Parade in the afternoon.
Walt Disney World was honored last week by the American Lung Association
and Florida Surgeon General Ana Viamonte for it's decision to make all
of the resort's 24,000 hotel rooms smoke free, reducing the
effects of second-hand smoke on Walt Disney World employees and guests.
Disneyland Resort's Napa
Rose Restaurant has again been honored with the prestigious DiRoNA
Award of Excellence. In 2006, just 26 restaurants throughout Canada,
Mexico and the U.S. received this honor (the number of
restaurants receiving the award in 2007 has not yet been announced).
Our thanks to AllEars.net and MousePlanet.com from which we get some of our news leads.
Our readers deliver a wealth of information! Here are the winners in this month's tip contest:
"On our last trip to Disney family of four ventured over to Downtown
Disney on a Saturday night in hopes of having a nice dinner at the
Rainforest Cafe. But when we put our names in at the podium we were
told the wait was over two and a half hours. We started to consider our
other options when we noticed that there was a short line behind the
Rainforest Cafe where people were being seated on the back deck. We
walked up and were told the wait was less than 20 minutes! What a great
place to eat. You are seated on a deck above the lake with views of
Downtown Disney, Pleasure Island, and Saratoga Springs. We still got to
eat at the Rainforest Cafe and enjoy their great food without all of
the noise and chaos of the inside."
-- contributed by Kelly R.
WHEELCHAIR TRANSPORTATION TIPS
"To help speed along the process of securing my boyfriend's power
wheelchair in the buses, I put a colored ribbon in the appropriate
places for the tie downs to go. This helps the bus driver not have to
fumble for sturdy places to put the tie downs."
-- contributed by Tracy B.
"When we eat in one of Disney's parks (whether it is an ice cream cone or
a meal) we always grab a bunch of napkins, because as is inevitable
with kids, someone always spills something. When we are done eating, we
put the several unused napkins in our backpack in case we need one
later in the day. On one of trips, when it was time to pack to go home
we had about 20 unused napkins. So I brought them home rather than
throwing them out, thinking it would be a neat way to bring us a little
Disney magic back home. One day when I was preparing the kids' cold
lunch bags for a school field trip, I ran across the leftover Disney
napkins. So I slipped one in each of their bags and off to school they
went. That day as my girls got off the bus they both ran to the house,
beaming with excitement. I thought they were excited about their field
trip, but no, they were excited over the little touch of Disney I put
in the lunch that day! Needless ! to say it was a HUGE hit with them!
It is amazing what a little Pixie Dust will do for your spirit!"
-- contributed by Tracey S.
Notes: Send us your tips ! You may see them in this newsletter and win a copy of PassPorter!
more Disney tips? For Walt Disney World fans, we've collected 500 of
the best tips submitted by readers over the past six years. All have
been edited for accuracy and categorized. For details, visit the PassPorter Disney 500 info page or the PassPorter store. For Disney Cruise Line fans, we have an e-book with 250 cruiser tips, as well as a special cruise line comparison section and seven customized packing lists. For information, visit the Disney Cruise Clues info page.
The Captain makes a study of the delightful details -- sometimes
hidden, sometimes in plain sight but often overlooked -- at Walt Disney
World and aboard the Disney Cruise Line. Using notes from his journals,
he will lead you to this "treasure" at Disney with clues, questions,
photos, or riddles. Your challenge is to discover the answer by
searching your memory, visiting Disney, or even just looking really
hard on the Internet. If you think you've found the answer, e-mail it
-- the first person to correctly submit the FULL answer will receive a
free PassPorter enamel pin or PassPorter name badge pin.
Here is this week's journal entry:
"Those new-fangled 'Living Avatars' at the PassPorter Villa have kept me busy all day. I've tried my hand at designing my own avatar -- it looks quite dashing, if I do say so myself. Looking at what other folks create is quite diverting, too. I found an interesting avatar (see below) lurking in The Backyard. Dig those shades! I wonder if I'll be able to recognize them at MouseFest this year!"
Which PassPorter community member does this 'living avatar' belong to? For extra credit, where did you find it?
Send your full answer to email@example.com -- the winner will be notified by e-mail and announced in the next newsletter, along with the correct answer!
Congratulations to kbwoodbery who was the
of last week's trivia contest! kbwoodbery was the first person to
identify the location of Donald's jacket as the cliff diving scene in
the Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros! attraction in
the Mexico pavilion at Epcot's World Showcase. To view
the original clue, see last week's newsletter.
enjoy treasure hunts, we've got an entire book with over 100 distinct
treasure hunts and over 1500 questions, complete with clues and
contributions from Captain Jack Skatt. Get more details on
"PassPorter's Treasure Hunts at Walt Disney World" book at http://www.passporterstore.com.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Q & A: With Jennifer and Dave
mousestruck asks: "This trip to Walt Disney World has come up pretty suddenly so it has not
given me much time to save properly, and with this trip coming right after Christmas,
we are gonna have to BUDGET. I will have my three kids - my son age 9, and my daughter ages 13 and 18.So, my question is, do you think that $20 per day,
per person, is realistic for food? My thinking is counter service only (besides the one
character breakfast I am planning, this is not included in my budget), we really
are not big eaters and from what I hear most meals are big enough to share.
Also, I'm really thinking we will only be eating two meals a day. I will be
bringing snack-type foods from home to keep in our room for late-night munchies
and such. My son is still in child size meals then he won't
use up his $20, so that'll make up for the extra drinks, etc. in the parks. I
don't know, am I crazy to think this will work?"
Dave and Jennifer answer: "$20/day for younger children can work easily, but
$20/day for older kids and adults will be a little tight. The average price
including tax for a counter service meal at Disney runs just around $12. Counter
service breakfast costs run just a dollar or two less than that. While meal
sizes at the table service restaurants are often enough to share, how do you
split a burger or hot dog and fries between two, no matter what their ages?
Regardless of whether you can get a large entree item at Tusker House, by the
time you add another $2.00 for a drink, perhaps a dessert item, and tax... it's
not a $7.99 meal.
However, $80/day for your particular family of four can be done -- you
just have to average it out between the kids who are small enough to
get by on the kids meals (budget around $7/meal for them) and the older
members of your family (and limit yourself to two Disney meals daily -
bring your own food for light breakfasts in your hotel room). Note that
not every counter-service restaurant offers a proper kids meal, so
there will be times when you're paying the same for everyone."
Have a question? Post questions at http://www.passporterboards.com -- and if you're lucky, you may find that folks have already asked and answered the same question that's on your mind!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Future Newsletters: Want To See Your Name in Print?
News is published weekly, and this means we're always in need of
articles! We're on the lookout for guest columnists who want to
contribute articles to this newsletter. No professional writing
experience is necessary, just a desire to share your experience with
others! Not only is this a great way to give something back to the
PassPorter community, but you get to see your name in "print" and
receive a $25 gift certificate for use at www.passporter.com.
For details and our article submission guidelines, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Articles about Disney and general travel are welcomed!
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Our Sponsors: We Recommend...
only accepts advertising from services of the highest quality -- we
recommend these companies because we use them ourselves. Please support
our sponsors and, in turn, support this newsletter! This week's
sponsors are (in order of appearance):
delighted and excited to announce that the PassPorter Message Board
Community greeted its 20,000th member yesterday! Elyse Lynch had the
honor of being member number 20,000, and she has received a PassPorter
book of her choice and a one-month membership in PassPorter's Club in
recognition of this distinction. The message boards are also just a tetch away from hitting another milestone - the two-millionth post!
So, as a little gift to everyone in our message board community
for reaching both of these milestones, we've added a fun, new feature
to the boards -- Living Avatars.
PassPorter Community members can now build their own, personal "character" that will be
displayed alongside each post they make. Members can select background
images, characters, hair styles, clothing and other accessories and
combine them into a unique expression of their personality. And, since
this is a Disney-focused community, we've begun to add backgrounds and
accessory items that will help folks express their particular Disney
passions (Mickey Bar, anyone?). At least for the moment, Dave, who has
a closet full of Hawaiian shirts, can be seen standing under a plam
tree on a tropical beach, decked out in a (virtual) red Hawaiian shirt
and holding a (non-alcoholic) iced tea. Jennifer, on the other hand, is
standing in front of Spaceship Earth with Alexander, and holding a
Dave's Living Avatar
Jennifer's Living Avatar
The really fun thing about our "living avatars" is that you can tweak them whenever to suit your mood and interests, so the above avatars are likely to change a bit based on when you read this newsletter. Once this newsletter is mailed, Jennifer has plans to add more Disney backgrounds, accessories, and some limited-edition items -- perhaps even some virtual "pins"! Oh, we're going to have fun with this new toy!
Oh, did we mention our living avatars are free? All you need is a PassPorter message board account (free) and at least one post. The more posts you make, the more things you can add to your avatar!
For those of you interested in our upcoming 2008 edition of
PassPorter's Walt Disney World, you can get a downloadable file with 34 pages from the 2008 edition ... FREE!
The file includes a page from each of our chapters, including several maps and worksheets, plus a closer look at
a PassPocket. There's also a discount coupon code included! To download your Sneak Peek file, visit
http://www.passporter.com/wdw/guidebook.asp -- and don't forget
to place your pre-order to ensure you're among the first to get a copy!
PassPorter's Club Update
Almost 900 vacationers are now enjoying access to all our e-books and e-worksheets -- thank you for your continued support!
MouseFest News:Registration is now open for MouseFest!
We've got an all-new registration program this year that offers a host
of new benefits and gives folks a chance to support this great event. Read all about it!Special MouseFest room rates available!
MouseFest has arranged for a special discounted rate at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort for MouseFest!
Stay near the heart of MouseFest action within walking distance of Epcot(r), Disney-MGM Studios, Disney's BoardWalk
entertainment district, Disney's Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf courses, and Saturday's MouseFest's Mega Mouse Meet
at the Walt Disney World Dolphin. To learn more, visit http://www.mousefest.org.
And check out the MouseFest event schedule , also at the MouseFest.org web site.
New meets are being added to the schedule on a regular basis, and the
list of people attending just keeps growing! At least ten of our
PassPorter Guides (moderators) are attending,
as are MANY PassPorter members and readers! Stay tuned for more
MouseFest announcements in the weeks and months to
On the Air: Radio
listeners in the western part of Michigan's Upper Peninsula and nearby
northeast Wisconsin can hear Dave Friday morning, September 14 sometime
between 6:00 am and 10:00am Central Time on "Sam in the Morning" on WJMS
Niagara Falls, Ontario by Michelle Kosloff, PassPorter Guest Contributor
Growing up within a couple
of hours of Niagara
Falls meant we
visited whenever relatives came to visit from the UK. It's a Wonder of the World and what visit to Canada would be complete without it? But as I grew older Niagara Falls grew dingier and it seemed to lose some of its
luster. The falls were still there but the Skylon
sort of emptied out and the tourist area just seemed to be dying off.
After I got married, we
moved away from Ontario but just about 2 years ago we moved back. It was
time for a visit because unlike us, our kids had only seen the falls once or
Niagara Falls has changed
significantly. I am not a big gambling fan, but I have to say, the two Casinos that have opened since I left Ontario have made a significant difference in the overall
feel of the city. It is more vibrant, more alive than it had been the last time
Over the past year, we have
Falls four times
and have barely scratched the surface and we have seen and done different
things each time.
Our first visit was to our
relatives. We stayed at their house and took a quick trip down to the falls one
day. We did the touristy walk by the falls and then took a trip under the
My second visit was with my
mother and sister for a ‘girls' weekend. We stayed at the Skyline Inn
because it probably has the best location for your buck. We weren't there to
lounge in our room so we weren't worried about luxury accommodations. The beds
were comfy though and it was nice inside. It is a very short walk to the American Falls and right across the street from the Casino which
was our destination both evenings we were there. One night we went to the
closer old Casino (which I liked better because it seemed brighter and was on
two floors) and the second night we took a free shuttle over to the newer
During the day, our goal was
shopping. We visited the Outlet
malls in Niagara
Falls, NY and found many bargains. We also visited the Outlet mall on the Canadian side
and bought some things there as well. Before our trip to the Casino in the
evening we also saw the Festival of
Lights which takes place November through January. It was quite
My third visit was with my
husband for our anniversary. Our anniversary is the end of November which in hindsight
is a rather good date. Hotel occupancy is very low so we usually can find
something dirt cheap and Christmas decorations and sales are starting to come
Since this was our
anniversary we decided to go for a bit more luxury. Since we didn't really care
where we stayed, we tried bidding for a room on Priceline. That was fun in itself. We
ended up with the Sheraton on the
Falls for less than a cheap hotel would go for in the summer. When we
arrived we asked about upgrading and for $10 more we got a suite with fireplace
and Jacuzzi tub on the 21st floor with a fabulous view of the American Falls. We could even hear them with our window closed.
Instead of the surf to go to sleep by we heard the faint roar of the falls. That
$10 extra was so well worth it! It was a very romantic weekend.
Our last visit was with our
children for our son's hockey tournament. We spent a lot of time in hockey arenas
but we also did a bit of shopping with the kids, a bit of sight seeing and a
bit of playing around. This time we stayed with the team at Michael's Inn. This hotel must have once
been very nice but seemed a bit bedraggled now. It still had a very nice pool
but the whole feel of the place was that it was a bit run down. The beds were
very uncomfortable and none of us slept well all weekend. The location however
was amazing! Again we were in walking distance of the falls and all the
attractions on Clifton Hill. We
didn't do a lot there more than look. You could spend a ton of time on the
street what with all the wax museums, rides, and attractions. Next time, next
will be back again to Niagara Falls in
the fall when the prices decline dramatically. We have promised the kids a trip
to the Fallsview Water Park
which is a water park built on top of the Casino parking lot with a direct view
of the falls. There is still so much more to see!
About the Author: Michelle previously contributed an article on Prince Edward Island to PassPorter News. She is a Computer Programmer from Woodstock, Ontario, Canada and is married with two children.
- - - - - - - - - - -
Disney Feature: Pirates & Princess Party by Barry Hom, PassPorter Guest Contributor
Disney has a lucrative
business with pirates and princesses. The Pirates of the Caribbean movie
series has made a truckload of money. The ride that inspired the movie is as
popular as ever and recently has undergone changes with the addition of Captain
Jack Sparrow. A Pirate Cruise disembarks from different points at the Walt
Disney World Resort. A Pirates Lair recently took over the old Tom Sawyer's Island location at Disneyland.
For those who want to experience
the princess lifestyle, the Walt Disney World Resort offers the Perfectly
Princess Tea Party, the Princess Storybook Dining at Epcot, Cinderella's Grand
Feast, the Wonderland Tea Party, the Biddidi Bobbidi Boutique, and special
meals at Cinderella's Castle: "Once Upon a Time Breakfast," "A Fairytale Lunch
at Cinderella's Royal Table," and the "Dreams Come True Dinner."
(Sorry, PassPorter friends, I am not having a
makeover at the Biddidi Bobbidi Boutique and writing an article on it. They
can't pay me enough to do it!) You can also experience rides and attractions
based on Disney princess, such as Cinderella's Golden Carrousel and Snow
White's Scary Adventures at the Magic Kingdom, and the shows "Beauty and the
Beast – Live on Stage" and "Voyage of the Little Mermaid" at Disney-MGM
If pirates and princesses
generate this much money and attention for Disney, why not combine these two
cash cows? These two Disney properties come together at the Pirates and
Princess Party at the MagicKingdom. This hard-ticketed event began in January 2007 and
returns on select nights from August 11, 2007 to September 3, 2007. I had visited the event on its last night during
the spring: March 8, 2007. The event hours during my visit were . On the select nights in August and September 2007,
the hours are .
Ticket prices from Walt Disney World's website are as follows:
Pirates & Princess Party Advance Price:
Ages 10 and over: $38.95 + tax
Ages 3-9: $32.95 + tax
Pirates & Princess Party Day of Event Price:
Ages 10 and over: $45.95 + tax
Ages 3-9: $39.95 + tax
The Pirates and Princess
Party follows a similar format to another hard-ticketed event, Mickey's Not So
Scary Halloween Party. The party has a parade and fireworks. Stations scattered
around the MagicKingdom hand out candy. Nearly all the rides and attractions are open, except
for rides such as the Jungle Cruise in Adventureland. Guests are allowed, even
encouraged, to come dressed in princess or pirates costumes. On the night of my
visit, one guest came dressed up as the red head from the Pirates of the Caribbean ride!
With your Pirates and
Princess Party ticket, you can enter the park as early as without regular park admission. If you enter early, you can catch the rides and
attractions not open during the event. Additionally, during spring event times,
you might be able to catch the Wishes fireworks show before the Pirates and
Princess Party (if Wishes is scheduled during your visit). You can see two
fireworks show for the price of one ticket (assuming you've never seen Wishes
before). Sadly, Wishes is not scheduled for any of the fall Pirates and
Princess Party dates.
When you enter the park,
you're given a small bag to collect candy from around 13 "Treasure Spots" scattered
around the MagicKingdom. The bag is made of velvet, has the Pirates and Princess Party
logo emblazoned on the front, and is a little smaller than your hand. The
Pirates Bazaar at Adventureland has similar bags that you can stuff full of "precious"
The MagicKingdom laid out red carpets at the entrance. You really
feel like royalty when you walk on this carpet! Be sure to pick up an event map
to find your way around the park, to see the show times, to locate the
"Treasure Spots," and to see when other activities are scheduled through the
The event has the two things
that Disney does best; parades and fireworks. The "Disney's Enchanted
Adventures Parade" begins at Frontierland and winds its way across Liberty Square and down Main Street U.S.A.
You can see royal knights on horseback, court
dancers, and Disney princesses such as Ariel, Snow White, Belle, and
Cinderella. The pirates' portion of the parade has a 39-foot
pirate ship, a
treasure float with Jack Sparrow, and Peter Pan with his gang
fighting Captain Hook and his cronies. My favorite area for parade
viewing is in
Frontierland in front of the Country Bears building. This area has
to videotape and photograph without excessive problems. You can find
well-lit spots along the parade route in Frontierland.
The fireworks show is called
"Magic, Music, and Mayhem." This show starts out with fireworks celebrating the
Disney princesses. Then the pirates attack and cause trouble for the
princesses. Don't worry, like most Disney attractions, it ends happily with a
little help from a "pixie-dusting" Disney friend. I've seen the fireworks shows
at the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland. They've
all been spectacular and this show is no exception. View this show anywhere
along Main Street, U.S.A., facing Cinderella's Castle.
The "Dream Along With Mickey"
show is performed at the Castle Forecourt Stage in front of Cinderella's Castle. Mickey Mouse
and other Disney character friends invite guests to join in to dream and have
happy, adventurous exploits. On the night of my visit, the show abruptly ended
early due to technical difficulties. This show is also performed during regular
You think that treasure hunting,
watching the parade, and admiring the fireworks show is enough to fill your
evening? The Pirates and Princess Party has even more fun! DJ booths in
Tomorrowland and Fantasyland allow you to dance the night away with such Disney
characters as Stitch and Sebastian. Watch break-dancing pirates and acrobats perform
their incredible moves. Meet Aurora, Belle, and Cinderella at the Princess
Pavilion in Mickey's Toontown Fair. Learn how to be a pirate in Captain
Sparrow's Pirate Tutorial. The MagicKingdom is packed full of these smaller shows during the
The best part of the Pirates
and Princess Party is experiencing the MagicKingdom's rides and attractions with a short wait. FastPass
is not available during the night, but it's not needed. Most waits are 5 to 10
minutes. You will rarely find a long queue. The longest line I saw during my
visit was 15 minutes for Peter Pan's Flight. Still, the wait for this ride is
relatively short compared to its normal wait time during regular operating
hours. Since the waits are low, you can go on rides and attractions that you
may not experience during the day because of long queue times, like
AstroOrbiter or the Magic Carpets of Aladdin. Sorry, the Hall of Presidents is
not open during the Pirates and Princess Party. You will have to find someplace
else to take a nap!
Figure out which princess
you want to be: Cinderella, Snow White, or Princess Leia. Decide on which
pirates you want to dress up as: Captain Jack Sparrow, Peter Pan, or a
Pittsburgh Pirate. Then go to the Pirates and Princess Party and have fun. You
will have a magical and memorable experience. Just remember to collect a bag of
"treasure" for me!
About the Author: Barry
is a roller coaster and theme/amusement park enthusiast. So far, he has
ridden 382 roller coasters and visited over 80 theme and amusement
parks in many U.S. states, France, United Kingdom, Norway, and Sweden.
He is also a columnist and a moderator for the web site IOA Central. He
is looking forward to a group trip with the web site Theme Park Review
to Japan in September and a side trip to SoCal shortly afterwards.