New England Disney Meetup – July 26, 2014

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Hi New England Disney friends and acquaintances! As long-discussed on Twitter, we’re having our first extremely casual and informal meetup on Saturday afternoon, July 26, at The Skellig in Waltham, MA.

Why “casual” and “informal”? Because I don’t really have much time to plan, am not actually booking a room nor telling The Skellig that we’ll be there. It’s pretty empty at 4pm on Saturdays, so let’s just show up and grab some beers together and talk Disney.

I’m not promising games or prizes (though there could be some), and I’m not promising giveaways (although I do have a HUGE stash of MouseChow coasters looking for new homes). But I can promise you this – I’ll be there drinking some beer, and am always psyched to talk Disney.

I’m totally open to ideas and suggestions, so let’s use the comments section of this post to discuss and plan. And please RSVP in the comments if you plan to attend. If we get enough people maybe we’ll actually book a room or make a reservation.

Details:

When: Saturday July 26, 4pm – Whenever

Where: The Skellig, 240 Moody Street, Waltham, MA

Who: Disney fans, friends and family.

RSVP below in the comments. Hope to see you there!

The Disney Hipster WDW Exam – How did I do?

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My friends Adam and Andrew at the Disney Hipster Blog have just published their version of standardized testing. You can take the test here. 

And here are my answers (guesses). I don’t anticipate doing very well. I like to write about eating at Disney, but when it comes to knowledge of Disney history and trivia, I’m not nearly as knowledgable as the typical Disney Lifestyler. So I’ll post my answers now, then listen to the Disney Hipster Podcast for the answers.

 

Here goes:

1.       What year did the MK open?
1971
2.       How many Adventureland tiki drums are there?
Five
3.       What is the regular and DVC Disney Resort hotel check-in and check-out times?
3pm, 11am
4.       Who is the most recent president to be sitting down in Hall of Presidents?
FDR
5.       What day and year did Walt die?
Some time in December 1965
6.       What brand of ketchup does Disney world use?
Heinz
7.       What terminal AND level do you catch the Magical Express at Orlando International?
Terminal A, Level 2
8.       What brand of water does Disney World sell?
Dasani (a CocaCola product)
9.       How many square miles is WDW?
48
10.   What was the last world showcase pavilion added?
Morocco
11.   What flavors of soft serve does Aloha Isle carry?
Vanilla, Pineapple, Orange
12.   What are the eight available colors when choosing your magic band?
Green, Blue, Gray, Orange, Yellow, Red, Purple, Pink
13.   What is the phone # to make ADRs?
407-WDW-DINE
14.   How many drops are there on Splash Mountain?
2
15.   How many stops does the electrical water pageant make if the MK is open until 11pm? Extra Credit if you can name the locations and order in which it stops.
I have no idea. I saw the water pageant for the first time yesterday.
16.   If you were to alphabetize all the current attractions (not counting meet and greets) at the Magic Kingdom, what would be first?
7 Dwarfs Mine Train (hehehe)
17.   What are the denominations of Disney Dollars?
They still have Disney Dollars?
18.   Which is NOT an actual frozen treat location:
a.       Kabuki Cafe
b.      Peevy’s Polar Pipeline
c.       Maurice’s Frozen Treat Machine
d.      Hey Howdy Hey Takeaway
C – I think Maurice’s has popcorn, right?
19.   How many rows are on a current MK Pirates boat?
5
20.   Name 2 films advertised inside The Tree of Life.
Beauty and the Bees, A Crickets Line
21.   What moderate hotel was the first?
Caribbean Beach
22.   What is the price of parking at WDW?
$17
23.   What are the 2 background colors used on the majority of the WDW road signs?
Blue, Purple
24.   At the entrance to WDW property you pass under the entrance sign that features Mickey and Minnie – which one is on the left?
Minnie
25.   Name the two water parks on property?
Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon
26.   What is the price of a round of mini golf?
$42.50
27.   What types of nuts can you get cinnamon glazed throughout the parks?
Almonds, Peanuts
28.   What are the full titles of all four Pirates of The Caribbean films (in order)?
Curse of the Black Pearl, On Stranger Tides, Drink a Fifth of Rum, Voodoo Queens are Hot
29.   How much does a school bread currently cost?
$2.49
30.   Put these attractions in order of length…shortest to longest.
a.       Enchanted Tiki Room
b.      Spaceship Earth
c.       Impressions De France
d.      Country Bear Jamboree
c, d, a, b
31.   What 2 countries do not light up during illuminations?
Morocco, UK
32.   What is the name of the roadie that the Aerosmith guy asks to hand him his Les Paul?
Guano Joe
33.   What two places can you find Magic Cookie Bars?
My mouth, My Stomach
34.   How many spitting camels are there in Adventureland?
2
35.   How much does it currently cost to park a car at a WDW park?
Didn’t I just say $17?
36.   Spell
What the hell?
37.   What’s Walt full name?
Walter Elias Disney
38.   What is the name of the “main store” (Emporium, Mouse Gear etc…) on Discovery Island at Animal Kingdom?
OMG I just bought a shirt there yesterday. Damn – Outpost something?
39.   Name 7 Non Disney Films that are practically showcased (not the final film) in The Great Movie ride?
Wizard of Oz, Singin’ in the Rain, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ziegfeld Follies, Some Gangster Film, Casablanca, The Maltese Falcon
40.   What are the names of the mother, father, son and daughter in Carousel of Progress?
Betty, Don, Sally
41.   How many people fit in 1 row on WDW Soarin?
15
42.   Between Space Mountain and Spaceship Earth:
a.       Space Mountain has a higher capacity per hour.
b.      Spaceship Earth has a higher capacity per hour.
c.       Both are roughly the same.
a
43.   Name 1 of the 9 food or drink locations at Blizzard Beach.
Dairy Queen
44.   What are the animals on the benches of AK?
It’s not nice to call park guests animals.
45.   What is the name of the body of water in front of MK?
Seven Seas Lagoon
46.   Who is the current sponsor of Living With The Land?
Monsanto
47.   What are the 5 types of creatures on the Animal Kingdom entry sign.
Birds, Elephant, Dinosaur, Lion, Unicorn
48.   Where are the restrooms in Liberty Square located?
No idea.
49.   What is the name of the Cirque du Soleil in WDW?
La Nouba
50.   Who is the current sponsor of the various “photo spots”?
Nikon! So weird to see the new signs.
51.   What is the scent of the Shampoo currently used at Disney Resorts?
White Tea Aloe
52.   Who sponsors Spaceship Earth?
Siemens
53.   How many color monorails are there?
9
54.   What is the current price of a ‘Length of Stay’ Rapidfill Mug?
$42.40
55.   Complete this attraction quote (5 words): “The approaching storm may seem violent and destructive to us, but to nature it’s a new beginning _ _ _ _ _.”
designed to kill all humans.
56.   What are three of the six Jeopardy categories on EEA?
1. Attractions you sleep on
2. Longest Attractions Ever
3. Most humorless use of really funny comedians in an Attraction
57.   Name all 3 dinner shows on WDW property.
Spirit of Aloha, Hoop de Doo Review, Mickey’s Backyard BBQ
58.   How many ferrys currently run between the TTC and the Magic Kingdom? Bonus points if you can name both.
2, since you said “both”. Duh.
59.   What is the Final Jeopardy Answer in Ellen’s Energy Adventure?
Olaf
60.   What is Phylicia Rashad’s character name on Countdown to Extinction?
Dr. Claire Huxtable
How did I do??

Dinner in Magellan’s Secret Room at Tokyo DisneySea

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Things have been quiet around the MouseChow blog, mostly because I’ve been busy at work. But ALSO because I was on vacation, in JAPAN! This was easily the most incredible trip I’ve ever taken with my family, and I’m happy to be able to share a few snippets of it with you.

I thought I’d start with a very cool experience that we had at Magellan’s at Tokyo DisneySea. We spent a day and a half in the Japanese Disney parks, and could have stayed a few more. First thing you should know about eating at Tokyo Disney – every table service meal seems to be a huge fixed price, expensive, multi-course affair. Unless you’re an obsessed Disney food blogger, only plan to do one table service if you visit.

A great choice for that one meal is Magellan’s, right next to Mount Prometheus at Tokyo DisneySea. It’s classic European cuisine in a building that looks sort of like a chateau at the base of the mountain.

So let me set the scene for you. We had been walking around cold and drizzly Tokyo for three days and were completely exhausted. We had an 8:15pm reservation at Magellan’s, and if we hadn’t been completely starved would not have left our room at the MiraCosta. But we rallied (read: I forced my family to move) and we ventured out of our hotel into the park just as Fantasmic was beginning. It was getting dark and raining, and about 50 degrees and we were exhausted. We climbed the wide stairs that led up the mountain, and turned to watch the Maleficent dragon breathe fire over the lagoon, then made our way to the restaurant.

After a few seconds of language barrier confusion about our reservation, we were ushered inside, down the elevator, past the main dining room, to a bookcase in the wall. Our hostess instructed our daughter to find the hidden button (it’s not hard to find), and the bookcase swung open to reveal a hidden room designed as a wine cellar in the mountain.

There could not be a cozier spot for three bedraggled, exhausted, cold and wet people to settle into a fantastic meal.

Magellan's Secret Room

In the “secret” wine cellar at Magellan’s

We chose one of the set menus and I ordered a Glenmorangie to warm up. We were so tired, and it was so dark and warm, it’s a miracle we stayed awake for the entire meal. There was much discussion about a new invention, the “table bed”.  Sorry for the dark photos. I didn’t have the energy to pull out the real camera, so we’ve got iPhone photos in the dark. And I neglected to take a pic of the best course – a silky and umami-laden cream of cauliflower soup. Even my child who never ever eats cauliflower loved it.

Barrels at Magellan's

Casks on the wall

 

scallops at Magellan's

Scallop dish. I seem to remember it was good. Oh yeah, with a tomato jam.

 

foie mousse at Magellan's

The glass contains a foie gras mousse that was delish. Also prosciutto on a stick, salmon, cress.

 

Beef short rib Magellan's

Melt in your mouth tender beef short rib with lots of tasty accompaniments

 

Creme brulee at Magellan's

Perfectly executed creme brulee

 

tangerine sorbet Magellan's

Fresh and tart tangerine sorbet

Fully satisfied, we stumbled out of our cozy cocoon of a restaurant into the twinkling lights of Tokyo DisneySea at night. It had stopped raining, and everything was glossy and beautiful. We slept pretty well.

Tokyo DisneySea at night

Tokyo DisneySea is gorgeous at night

 

Magellan’s at Tokyo DisneySea: 5 Mice

 

Kill Refurb Marry Blog Hop: The Muppets

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Kill Refurb MarryI’ve been a fan of Estelle’s (http://thishappyplaceblog.com/) and Melissa’s (http://www.mouseonthemind.com/)  blogs for a while, especially their most excellent Kill Refurb Marry series. Tonight the topic is The Muppets so I figured I’d jump in with my picks.

Kill: Miss Piggy

Miss PiggyNo Muppet annoys me more than this obnoxious blonde diva. She doesn’t even come close to deserving Kermit. Sorry Piggy, you’re dead.

Refurb: Rowlf

RowlfRowlf is looking a bit matted at the Muppets Most Wanted premier. Someone needs to fluff his fur a bit.

Marry: Gonzo

GonzoAh Gonzo, the original Hipster Muppet. I still remember how I listened to Gonzo sing “I’m going to go back there someday” on 8 track over and over again when I moved all the way across the country halfway through seventh grade. Sweet, creative, downtrodden yet ever the optimist, Gonzo is the …vulture? for me. What the hell IS Gonzo?

 

Sunday Reflection: Disney Decorations of Christmas Past

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La Befana Epcot Italy Holiday

La Befana, the Christmas witch

Animal Kingdom Lodge Christmas Tree

Animal Kingdom Lodge Christmas Tree

Holidays in Mearn in German Pavilion Epcot

Sledding in Mearn

Twinings holiday display

Shopping at Twinings

 

Mary Blair Gingerbread at Contemporary Resort

Mary Blair Gingerbread at Contemporary Resort

Neil Patrick Harris at Candlelight Processional

Neil Patrick Harris at Candlelight Processional

Julenissen at Norway in Epcot

Julenissen at Norway in Epcot

Gingerbread House at Grand Floridian

Gingerbread House at Grand Floridian

Holidays at Epcot Japan - Duruma Doll

Holidays at Epcot Japan – Duruma Doll

Wilderness Lodge Christmas Tree

Wilderness Lodge Christmas Tree

Father Christmas, UK Epcot

Father Christmas, UK Epcot

Grand Floridian Christmas Tree

Grand Floridian Christmas Tree