Thursday, February 25, 2010

When Dreams Come True

I asked ER what she most wanted to do at Walt Disney World and she had the same answer every time, meet Cinderella. Oh dear I thought, at this last stage there is no way we can get into the Princess Breakfast, and I couldn't find any information on the website about where she'd for sure be. Yes there was the Toontown Hall of Fame, but the descriptions were vague. Any number and variation of royal highnesses might be there. No guarantees.
Luckily for us, making my daughter's trip magical ended up being easy. Not only did we get the met the much beloved Cinderella, we got to see her twice. Brad and my mom took ER there on Thursday and Friday, both days right away in the morning as soon as the attraction opened up at 10AM. At the Magic Kingdom, the princesses and fairies are both in Toontown, a part of the park that opens one hour later than the rest, and there are signs, like the one below indicating which ones you can meet.To our surprise, the wait to meet the Disney Princesses wasn't long at all. In fact, on the second day ER even got a special photo opportunity, getting all three princess together, because there wasn't a line. My mom was impressed by how sweet and gentle all the princesses were. They talked in soft voices, got right down to her level, and were very loving. It was all a parent could want and a little princess in training's dream come true.
The wait for the fairies was longer than to see the princesses, their popularity no doubt helped along by the recent release of a new DVD featuring the residents of Pixie Hallow. ER met Tinkerbell, Fawn, and Terrence but before her big moment with them, everyone had to shrink down to fairy size by walking through a magical hall. That was a neat touch and one she talked about all day, the murals on the walls indicating their shrinking size. The fairies were equally as kind and endearing to ER; deciding that ER must be a water fairy because of her strong preference for blue. Tinkerbell even came to say hi to her early while Fawn finished up with her visitor. Then greeted her with a big, "Hello Again," when it was her turn to see her. They also engaged her in conversation, with Terrence telling her that they'd have a leaf boat race the next time she came. She was a little hesitant around him so his gentle efforts to make her comfortable were sweet. It was cute.
Another good place to see Disney Princesses is at Epcot, a tip I got from Kathie, a member of the 2010 Walt Disney Moms Panel. I was fortunate enough to sit next to her at our first presentation and she was full of good insight. She told me that often the lines for meeting characters are shorter there. You don't have to meet a panel member in person to get personalized help, if you have a question about Walt Disney World don't hesitate to take advantage of this great resource. Ask away!
Several princesses can be found in the World Showcase, unfortunately the first three times we tried to meet one their lines had already closed. ER was a little upset about missing out on Mulan in China, but she did wave to ER and come to give her a hug on her way out. Characters come out about every half hour so if the same thing happens to you, if you just wait a little bit you'll soon get another chance. We did meet both Alice in Wonderland, another favorite movie character at our house, and Mary Poppins, both in The United Kingdom. At the Animal Kingdom we met Pocohantas at the Planet Watch area. We were told by others in line that it's the only place you can meet her.

That concluded our interaction with Disney characters, because ER is still quite terrified of any with a head like Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy and all the rest. Which is a shame because during the course of our trip she could've meet every one muliple times. They came to two of our night time family events. But sometimes you can't push things if your child is not ready and ours definitely wasn't.

Disclaimer: I visited Walt Disney World during the Social Media Moms Conference, tickets to the theme parks were included in my fee at a greatly reduced price. This post relates my families unbiased experiences and I was not required nor asked to post on my trip.

14 Friends Said:

eriochrome said...

Generally people start gathering around the entrance to the toontown area about 9:30-9:45 depending on how crowded the park is. There are generally 2 places people are trying to go: ToonTown Judges Tent to see Mickey or ToonTown Hall of Fame to see fairies and princesses.

The castmembers opening the attraction are helpful in controlling flow and directing people to the proper destination.

On our first visit we went straight into see the princesses. When we finished we noticed that the wait for the fairies only 15 minutes after opening was 45 minutes while the princesses were about 15 minutes. So we opted to skip the fairies at that point.

On our second visit we went to see the fairies first and then the princesses. Again when we were done the fairy wait was much longer than the princesses but our total wait time for both was only like 10-15 minutes since we were right at the front when Toontown opened.

TechyDad said...

Cute photos. Last year, NHL and JSL didn't want to go near the characters. The first one they consented to go up to was Pocahantas in Animal Kingdom (in Camp Mickey Minnie). We progressed from her to "human-like" characters like Lilo (Stitch was tolerated) and Buzz Lightyear. By the end of the trip, NHL at least was running up to Goofy to give him a hug.

This year, NHL had no qualms about characters. JSL was reluctant, but not the screaming/crying mess he was last year. We did see Pocahantas (and Meeko) in Hollywood Studios on the night of the Toy Story Dance party. I was waiting for TheAngelForever at The Magic of Disney Animation. There were tons of characters there (such as the Queen of Hearts, Aladdin & Jasmine, and the Queen from Snow White). I think the damp weather forced them to move the characters indoors and that became the resting spot for all of them.

We saw Mary Poppins too. She was perfectly pleasant and talked to both NHL & JSL during their meet up.

Kathy Campbell said...

I love the Face characters. They are so wonderfully cast. It's fantastic.

I'm so glad you guys got to have such a wonderful experience!

MaryAnne said...

How fun for ER - sounds like a little girl's heaven =)

RoS said...

There was only one that you forgot - the Fairy Godmother - whom I thought was quite beautiful for a "senior" character!!!

Anonymous said...

What an amazing time for everyone. I bet ER was just more than thrilled. I've never been but we are already saving up for our trip here in a few years with the kids. The photos you took are amazing!

Jennifer said...

I have to admit that I got a little choked up looking at these pictures. We're planning a trip to Disneyland this summer and I PRAY that I can give my girls the same experience you gave your little princess.

~ Jennifer

Holly Lefevre said...

Heaven for any little girl (especially). My son would probably like it...he has a very cute photo with the Little Mermaid! What fun! ER looks too cute!

Unknown said...

Wow, my wish for my daughter is to take her to Disney World. She talks about it everyday. I love the pictures of ER you and your hubby did a fabulous thing by making your little girls dreams come true!!

Unknown said...

When we went to disney we only seen 2 characters (other than in the parade)the whole time we were there. We were quite disappointed. You got some great pictures and memories for ER.

You've won an award...

ConnieFoggles said...

Lovely photos! I'm so happy that you were able to make your daughter's dream come true. The "face" characters are very pleasant and do take more time with children and adults too. Your daughter is so cute!

I hope this even happens again next year and that we'll be able to meet and spend some time to chat.

Vickie said...

Awe! So sweet! What a dream! I would have taken of picture with Cinderella myself. She is my favorite since I was a kid, then Ariel:)

What a cool trip!

Personalized Sketches and Sentiments said...

Wow! ER, you took many wonderful photos! And what a cutie you are!

Blessings & Aloha!

Christa said...

We are going to Disney World the first week of May for our twins' third birthday. This has me so excited!
Do you have any advice outside of this? Please email me if you do! I need all the help I can get. We are staying at the Carribean Resort near Epcot, we already booked the Story Book Princess Dinner at Akershus and the Chef Mickey Breakfast.
Email me at

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