Daisy Lauren’s Best Week Ever: April 23, 2015

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1Hi, Everyone! Welcome to the Best Week Ever here at Walt Disney World. This week we’re visiting Magic Kingdom, Epcot, and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Not to mention we’re also stopping by Downtown Disney and Disney’s Polynesian Resort. Phew, that’s a lot! Let’s get moving! 🙂

The best place to start is where I’ve visited the most the past few weeks. Not once, not twice, but five times we’ve visited Disney’s Polynesian Resort trying to get into the newly opened Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto. The wait has never been less than an hour and to be frank, I just don’t want to go to a bar that badly!

However, the time spent at the resort has led to some great photos of the new lobby and the tiki that has been recently added. For anyone not on Twitter, the Disney community has started calling this tiki by the name “Shruggie“. He was mainly given this name because his stance makes it look like he’s shrugging and declaring that the lobby renovation wasn’t his idea! It really finishes the lobby renovation now that he’s in place.

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Want to see more? Be sure to click below!

Our quest for Trader Sam’s has also meant a few meals at Captain Cooks. I will warn everyone, with the new bar next door Captain Cooks has become a strange and loud waiting room of sorts. You might not want to bring your little ones in for a late night snack anymore! However, the food is fabulous, as always! Pictured below left is the Chicken and Waffles at $7.99. Below right is the Pulled Pork Nachos at $8.29. Both of these dishes were really heavy and shared on different nights, but tasty if you’re looking for a not so healthy meal.

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So friends, I’m officially giving up on Trader Sam’s! The below pager is as close as I’ll get until the wait times cool down. We’ve visited the location in California, but always closer to lunch time. Since our location only opens at 4pm, there really isn’t a time to go to avoid the crowds. It would be great if that changes in the future! In the meantime there are plenty of other spots for a drink. What do you think? Will you be waiting over an hour to visit this hot spot?

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Of course, that’s if you can even get a pager. This Saturday we arrived 90 minutes before closing thinking that we’d be able to slip in. At the door we were told they were full for the night and not allowing anyone else to even wait. Rather than feeling dejected, we hopped on the monorail and headed over to the Magic Kingdom for a late night visit. We arrived just a few minutes before the Main Street Electrical Parade. It’s been a very stormy week, but Saturday night was beautiful in the Magic Kingdom.

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We mostly strolled around the park and enjoyed the weather, but we stopped for a few rides. Of course, I couldn’t walk by Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid with just a 10 minute wait!

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We also hopped on Pirates of the Caribbean before closing. Full disclosure, the below photo is one of my old favorites from my collection. I included it so I wouldn’t forget to warn everyone that lately we’ve been getting soaked on this ride! New higher rails have been installed along the drop and they are causing a huge splash. I packed up my camera before riding just in case what I had heard was true, and I was so glad that I did! We were still wet even when we got back to the car that night!

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Over at Epcot the Tomorrowland movie preview opened up and was popular, but not so much that it had a line. Still, it was odd to see a full waiting room in this theater after it housed Captain EO for so long! While the sign out front claimed that this was a passholder event, they were letting everyone in. However, you did have to flash your pass to receive your free Tomorrowland pin.  The preview was very good and received a round of applause when the lights came back up. I’m really excited about this movie now!

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Also back in stock are the Epcot mugs at Starbucks. I know there were negative things associated with monorail purple, but the grey looks so blah. I wish they would have added a blue stripe on the monorail instead. I’m still deciding if I’m going to end up with a full set of these. I noticed they are back at Magic Kingdom too, so they must have gotten a shipment.

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Over at Downtown Disney, we decided to hit up the food truck park for dinner one night. Nothing really looked good to me but I noticed that a pork shank was being served with gruyere macaroni and cheese. Just the side dish sounded like a meal to me, so I asked if it was possible just to order that. The full meal was $14, but for just a little over $4 I was able to get my dinner. Not a bad deal! Of course, my hubby went with the classic corn dog for just a little over $10.

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The soccer store has finally closed up shop. The windows are now decorated with the below decals. Looks like something fun is coming very soon. I’ll be sure to keep and eye out for you guys!

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Of course, since we were at Downtown Disney we had to check out the new Boathouse. Before visiting I had made my mind up that this was an overpriced and pretentious restaurant that I wasn’t going to like. I have to admit, after just a few minutes I was eating my words. I don’t know that this is a place we’ll go for dinner as much as to hang out on their docks and relax. Check out the seating area pictured below left. Below right is a photo from inside the gift shop.

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Below left is the dockside bar, just one of the outdoor seating spots. The entire area has a wonderful, relaxed feeling. As you walk along the docks or take a seat you can feel the floating sections move as a boat buzzes by. It just makes you feel like you’re on vacation! Below right is one of the many, many boats that are on display and close enough to touch. (Though signs everywhere ask you to keep your hands to yourself). I really hope it’s able to stay this way and doesn’t change because folks can’t stay off the boats and out of the water.

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And then the coolest thing happened: one of the amphicars came in to dock! We noticed a few people hanging over the rails so we stopped to see what all the fuss was about just in time. Even though this costs $125 for just a short ride I’m sure we’ll end up trying it at some point. I mean look at that car! 🙂

Also new at Downtown Disney was a lego figure of the Hulk located inside the pin station. That seems a little confused doesn’t? Several things there don’t seem to go together! Regardless, he was very popular. I don’t think I’ve seen little boys more excited to get their picture anywhere at Downtown Disney. There was also a limited edition red hulk and she-hulk vinylmation released this week. These weren’t nearly as popular despite the edition size of only 1.500. There were tons of them on the shelves at D Street.

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The highlight of my week was finding the mini Duffy Tsum Tsum on the shelves at Once Upon A Toy! They still has the medium size available too. Of course, no Shellie May. But a girl can dream, right? Are you collecting Tsum Tsums? Which one is your favorite?

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Our last stop this week is Disney’s Hollywood Studios, where I lost a bet on The Great Movie Ride! I like to think I’m observant, but when my husband pointed out posters in the queue and insisted they were new I wasn’t convinced. I took the poster photo below to humor him, but darn if he was right! There were several of these posters through the queue in different genres and they are all new! What can I say, I pay more attention the the attraction not the waiting area. 😉

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Just a couple more, I really do like this ride. (And not just because it’s almost all that Hollywood Studios has left!)

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And lastly, the new view all the way down to the Chinese Theater. I adore having this view back, but I’m curious what you think. Do you miss the hat or are you happy this view is restored? I think we all know which side I’m on. 🙂 I just hope they don’t build a big stage out front and ruin it!

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That’s everything for this week. Now let’s see what you can expect if you’re visiting next week.

Crowd Calendar: Crowds will be light through May. Enjoy these quiet times!

Weather: It might as well be summer. 🙁 Highs are just getting into the 90’s with almost daily rain.

Remember: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad will be closed for renovations next week. It will reopen on May 1st

Here’s my top tip for this week: Visit The Boathouse!! If nothing else take a stroll around their docks and have a nice, relaxing break. I know you’ll love it!

Do you have any news I missed or any requests for coverage next week? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below, and thanks so much for reading! I’m wishing all of you the Best Week Ever, until next time!

Daisy Lauren

I'm just about the biggest Touring Plans fan ever and still pinching myself that they let me be part of the team! I love sharing all things Disney with you and always appreciate your ideas and feedback at: daisylauren@touringplans.com or @dizdaisylauren on twitter Above everything else THANK YOU for reading and commenting!

15 thoughts on “Daisy Lauren’s Best Week Ever: April 23, 2015

  • April 23, 2015 at 6:19 am
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    I love your TGMR photos, I can never get good pics of the characters like yours! And yes NO HAT is my choice

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    • April 23, 2015 at 8:34 pm
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      Hey Mollie! I’m happy to give you pointers if you have any questions. 🙂 I love talking about nerdy photography stuff if you ever want to email me. And yay – another member of “Team No Hat”!! Thanks for commenting!

      Reply
  • April 23, 2015 at 10:17 am
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    I thought I would miss the hat, but now that I see the photo with the Chinese theatre at the end of the street, not so much.

    Great pictures – the one with Jack Sparrow at the end of Pirates is amazing. Thanks so much for your photo-reports! It always makes my week a little brighter.

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    • April 23, 2015 at 8:36 pm
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      Hey jekylldog! I think I feel the same way, I felt sorry for the hat when it was being torn down but now I’m happy it’s gone. Thanks for the compliment on the Pirates photo. I really like that one! 😀

      Reply
  • April 23, 2015 at 2:10 pm
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    Does Once Upon a Toy have a good selection of items? My husband and I are trying to figure out a plan for souvenirs for our daughter. We’re doing one park a day, with no park hopper, so would Once Upon a Toy be a good place to visit at the end of the week? I’m concerned she’ll point out something she wants on the first or second day, and we’ll have no way of going back into that park to get it later.

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    • April 23, 2015 at 8:38 pm
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      Hi Sarah! Unfortunately (or fortunately in this case) all the merchandise in the parks are mostly all the same. So if it isn’t in Once Upon A Toy you’ll likely be able to find the same stuff somewhere in Downtown Disney. World Of Disney has the best selection. If nothing else I’m sure she’ll find something she likes even better! 🙂

      Reply
  • April 23, 2015 at 2:59 pm
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    Our local Target (in Missouri) has a basic selection of Tsum Tsums now, in small, medium, and large sizes. I guess they’ve got their logistics worked out now.

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    • April 23, 2015 at 8:40 pm
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      Hi Charles! I’ve heard that on twitter. I haven’t checked around here – but I can always get them at Downtown Disney. I bet they’ll be great sellers for Targer. Tsum Tsums are so cute!! 🙂

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  • April 23, 2015 at 6:27 pm
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    I wonder if the seating areas at the Poly Lobby are filled with people? Because that was the reason given for removing the fountain.

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    • April 23, 2015 at 8:41 pm
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      Hi Sam… errr.. not so much. I never see the seats full when I’m there. 🙁 I do like the new lobby but I don’t know that they “needed” the seating area.

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  • April 23, 2015 at 7:53 pm
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    Great post as usual. It didn’t show up in my Facebook feed as it usually does so I had to come find it, lol.
    I love all the pics, especially the HS one. As sad as I was that the hat was being removed, I have to admit, the view looks great! I didn’t realize how cartoony (is that a word?!) the hat made that area look.

    My daughter would kill for one of those tsum tsum Duffy’s!
    We’re thinking of foregoing our every-other-year Disney trip to go on a Disney Cruise and the first thing she asked is if Duffy would be on the cruise, lol.

    The mac and cheese looks delicious! And does that outdoor seating by the Boathouse have cushions? I’m sure they’re water ‘repellant’ but they’re still going to be soaked when it rains. You know, the kind of wet you can’t see but then you get up and your behind is all wet, lol.

    Can’t wait till next weeks post! Honestly, your posts really make me feel like I’m right there, which I love. 🙂

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    • April 23, 2015 at 8:46 pm
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      Hi Dawn! It makes me so happy that I can share a little Disney magic! 😀

      I think cartoony is word – and you’re totally right! I couldn’t put my finger on it but that’s it!

      So Duffy is for sale on the cruise ship but I’m pretty sure you can’t meet him. I actually have a friend cruising this week that is bringing me a captain duffy plush. I’m so excited!

      I don’t think the great outdoor seating at the boathouse will last. It’s too good to be true – but I hope!! There are plush cushions and glass top tables. It’s really lovely!

      Can’t wait for next week either! (Pssst – in 2 weeks I have a surprise for you!)

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      • April 24, 2015 at 7:49 pm
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        Daisy-
        My daughter would be extremely jealous of your Capt. Duffy! I think the fact that he’s there in plush form (on the cruise) and not meet and greet form would be fine with her..she loves her “Duffers” any way she can get him, lol.

        Ooh, glass table tops? That sounds like a mistake right there. It looks great in the picture though.

        Now, I really can’t wait for next week…or the week after!

        Reply
  • April 24, 2015 at 1:28 am
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    Beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

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  • April 24, 2015 at 6:28 am
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    How Bowers found. an original 1972, WDW document. That described about what the Polynesian Village Tiki represented. and name ” MAUI ”. Now people can calling him Tiki ”Shruggie ”, or ”MAUI”, I like both name’s
    Document on Tikiman’s Unofficial Polynesian Resort Pages’s/ Facebook. For the 4/1/2015. p.s .Thanks for all you do, Daisy really enjoy your page.

    Reply

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