Spaceship Earth

Your #DisneyMemory of Spaceship Earth

Spaceship Earth

Over at Epcot, today we are taking a look at what I believe is one of the most recognizable structures in the entire world — the giant “golf ball” known as Spaceship Earth.  This structure, which has stood front and center over Epcot since the park opened in 1982, is an incredible engineering feat, and includes an attraction by the same name.

Spaceship Earth is a slow-moving dark ride that takes us back in time to look at the incredible advances that have been made in communications.  The ride is one of my favorite things to do in all of Epcot, and for today, we are going to take a look at my favorite #DisneyMemory from this great attraction, as well as share some of our pictures we’ve taken over the years of the ride.

Spaceship Earth

At the very front of the entrance to the building is this picture, giving you a tease about some of the things you might encounter on the ride.

Spaceship Earth

Communication has been adapting for eons, as you can see in these two photos.

Spaceship Earth

I think my favorite #DisneyMemory of Spaceship Earth has to do with my daughter Sophie, and the joy that she finds in this ride.  It’s a fun time for us, especially with the new changes that they made a few years back in being able to help plot out our future using the interactive screens on the ride vehicles.  We love Spaceship Earth, and it’s a must ride several times throughout our trip!

Do you like Spaceship Earth, and do you have a favorite #DisneyMemory from this ride?  If so, let us know in the comments, and thanks for stopping by today!

My Top 5 Epcot Attractions

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Hello everyone, and welcome to the second in my series of favorite attractions!  Last week, we took a look at my top 5 Magic Kingdom Attractions; today we are looking at my top 5 Epcot attractions!  Does my list match up with yours?  Read through, and then let me know your list in the comments below!  Thanks for stopping by!

#5: Maelstrom

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Maelstrom, located over in the Norway pavilion, is a boat ride that takes you through Norway’s past, present, and future as you see all of the ways that the seas impact the lives of Norwegians!  It is fun, with trolls, polar bears, and oil rigs — as well as a drop near the end!  It used to have a movie that would be shown at the end, but that isn’t shown very often anymore.

#4: The American Adventure

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When it comes to history, especially the history of our great country, at Epcot, there is nothing that comes close to The American Adventure, a great show that features many of the great moments of our country’s history, but highlights on it’s most important aspect — the people!

#3: Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros!

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The Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros is a boat ride in the Mexican Pavilion that takes you on a journey through Mexico to try and find Donald Duck!  Jose Carioca and Panchito are your navigators as you look — and ultimately find — Donald Duck!

#2: Soarin’

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Soarin’ used to be one of my least favorite attractions — but I’ve had a change of heart!  This incredible ride takes you through the California countryside as you see the sights from a unique perspective — a hang glider!  Sit back, relax, and enjoy the wonderful beauty, knowing that it’ll be okay, you won’t fall…

#1: Spaceship Earth

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At number one, though, is my favorite attraction at Epcot — Spaceship Earth.  This unique attraction, which takes you deep within the geodesic dome, shows you how far we have come in our communication methods — and leaves us wondering how far we can journey…at the end of the ride is a simulator to give you an idea of what your future might have in store for it, and don’t forget all the great things you can do in Project Tomorrow!

Honorable Mentions

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Illuminations: Reflections of Earth — while not an “attraction” in the sense that I’m thinking, is still a great draw, and something I look forward to seeing every time we visit!

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O Canada is one of my favorite shows, with it’s CircleVision 360 view of everything, and narration by Martin Short!  Stop by and see it in the Canada Pavilion!

I hope you have enjoyed my top 5 attractions at Epcot!  What are your top 5?  Let me know in the comments, and thanks for stopping by!

Innoventions East

80 Days: Innoventions East

Innoventions East

Image ©Disney Parks

Hello everyone, and welcome to today’s #DisneyWorldCountdown post!  We’re at #Day80 in our countdown, and for today, that means a look at Innoventions East!  This pavilion, located in Epcot in the Future World section of the park, is actually the Innoventions pavilion but split into two sections — east and west.  These pavilions are geared for the scientific explorer in all of us.  In the East pavilion, you will find some really creative attractions that give you a hands on approach to learning.  Here are just a handful of them:

  • StormStruck® – This interactive attraction helps you understand what can happen when a storm hits your area, but more importantly, it will help you learn what to do to stay safe if such an event should happen in real life.  This attraction is presented by the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH®)
  • The Sum of All Thrills — this incredible attraction is perhaps one of the most popular in all of Innoventions.  In this attraction, you use your math, science, and engineering know how to create your own thrill ride!  Then, after you create it, you get to ride in it in a 4D simulator!
  • VISION House® — This truly unique house is designed to show you just how green your house can be, from an environmental standpoint, not a paint color standpoint!  We saw the VISION House® in Disneyland, and were really impressed by how cool it all looked, so I’m curious to see if it’s the same here or different in any ways.

These are just a sample of the attractions and things you can do in Innoventions East.  If you haven’t explored this, you’ll want to take a little time and do just that.  Thanks for stopping by, now go out and make it a great Disney Day!

Heidi takes us to the Imagination Pavilion

{Editor’s Note:  Today we are joined by one of my best friends in the blogging world, Heidi from Heidi’s Head!  She has graciously agreed to write a post about the Imagination Pavilion in Epcot’s Future World!  Thanks Heidi!}

My family and I spent 10 days before Christmas at our favorite place on earth – Walt Disney World! I tried to use that time to break away from social media a bit (wonderful! I highly recommend it every once in awhile!); but I just so happened to sign on to Facebook one evening to see a question posed by Mike — “Does anyone have experience with the Imagination Pavilion at Epcot?” Considering that my family had just been there the day before, I answered in the affirmative. Next thing you know, I have a “job” writing for My Dreams of Disney!

See, as it turns out, Mike has a dirty little secret . . . he hasn’t actually visited the pavilion since the early 80’s! The shame! (Actually, in all honesty, if my family hadn’t fallen in love with Figment back in 1988, I’d probably avoid this pavilion too! But, I feel a sense of loyalty to that silly purple dragon!) So, here we go . . .

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A Look Back

I wish I had a copy of that original Birnbaum’s Guide – the one my parents handed to me back in 1987 and told me to read it and plan our family’s upcoming (and first ever) trip to Walt Disney World (in January of 1988). I’d love to read the description of the Imagination Pavilion from that first book because there was obviously something about it that appealed to me. I still remember bits and pieces of that first trip through the ride. I remember laying eyes of Figment. My mom seemed to take an instant liking to him! (Ever since, we are always attracted to Figment souvenirs and often bring them home for her!)

Times sure have changed! If you can’t quite remember the original attraction with Figment and Dreamfinder, or if you never had opportunity to experience the original attraction, I’d recommend doing some research. Here are a bunch of great images to refresh your memory. Or, if you’re more into words, check out Wikipedia’s description of the 1983-1998 version of the ride. I also had fun searching for videos on YouTube – here’s a great place to start, then click on other video links from there.

During those early years, the pavilion also housed some other attractions, such as Captain EO (a tribute, of sorts, to Michael Jackson), which has recently been resurrected. Not being a fan of Jackson, I have never experienced this attraction, so I can’t speak for it. I’ve definitely read mixed reviews. Another very popular attraction in the pavilion was Honey, I Shrunk the Audience, based on the “Honey, I Shrunk. . .” movies starring Rick Moranis. In it’s defense, I’ve never been a huge fan of 3-D shows; but that one, in particular, with the giant snake that jumped right out at your face . . . well, needless to say, it wasn’t a favorite on my list!

Today

Let’s take a look at what the Imagination Pavilion looks like today.

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The sign above is situated at the entrance to the pavilion and introduced you to what you will find inside. Let’s take a peek at each attraction.

Journey Into Imagination with Figment

Sure, it’s a shadow of its former version, but at least Figment is still there! This ride will take you through the Imagination Institute, where Figment keeps barging in on Dr. Nigel Channing’s work and sharing his own! Yes, Dreamfinder is no longer; but at least Figment is still there! Fans of the original attraction will be glad to know that the original theme song – “One Little Spark” – is back. (I can’t help but sing along!)

Imageworks – the “What If” Labs

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Journey Into Imagination exits into the labs. However, if you want to skip the ride, you can enter the labs by walking around to the left-hand side of the building and going in through the gift shop. While my husband and younger two kids decided to take another “journey into imagination”, my oldest daughter and I used the time to explore the labs.

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This is one of those areas that a curious kid could spend hours exploring! It’s bright, colorful, and educational. As you can see from the pictures above, there were stations set up where you could “create your own Figment character” among many other things. One of my favorite things to do is have your picture taken on your choice of background (of course, there’s an extra cost to this, if you choose to buy).

Captain EO

As previously stated, I have no experience with this attraction, but Birnbaum’s Guide says it’s only there for a limited time. (Fine by me!)

More Fun!

Even if you choose to bypass this pavilion (like Mike), I would highly recommend that you take the time to enjoy the fountains outside. Not only are the beautiful (especially at night), but they are extremely entertaining!

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The water in the fountain appears to be flowing UP, not down. Now, that takes some imagination, doesn’t it?! And, even more fun, are the jumping fountains. Trust me, they are worth stopping by. You might find yourself visiting for awhile!

I hope I have adequately shared the Imagination Pavilion with you. Mike, I appreciate your allowing me to post here at My Dreams of Disney! Maybe someday you’ll share with my readers at Heidi’s Head.

Have YOU enjoyed the Imagination Pavilion? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Middle of Winter? Let’s think about the Flower and Garden Festival!

Lightning McQueen at the Flower and Garden Festival!

Lightning McQueen at the Flower and Garden Festival!

Although it’s the middle of winter, and not very warm out, we thought we would talk a bit about the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival!  This yearly spring event brings Epcot World Showcase to life as thousands and thousands of flowers are brought to life for everyone to enjoy!  While I haven’t been fortunate to attend it — yet — I have seen some of the big display pieces, as they tend to leave them up for several weeks after the event is over.  In the case of the picture of Lightning McQueen above, that picture was taken on June 20, 2011 — well over a month after the festival ended on May 15th that year.  Since the grounds around Epcot always look so much better than my words, I thought I would share with you some of my favorite pictures from Epcot that include the use of landscaping to enhance the view for the Guests.  Enjoy!

Tow Mater shows us how to drive backwards!

Tow Mater shows us how to drive backwards!

This picture of the Tron Monorail is one of my favorites!  I love the purple flowers and the way the monorail looks!

This picture of the Tron Monorail is one of my favorites! I love the purple flowers and the way the monorail looks!

The gardens at the Canada Pavilion are always incredible!  This is meant to remind us of the world famous Victoria Gardens!

The gardens at the Canada Pavilion are always incredible! This is meant to remind us of the world famous Victoria Gardens!

This scene is actually from the Living with the Land boat ride.  I like the look of it even if it's not from the Festival!

This scene is actually from the Living with the Land boat ride. I like the look of it even if it’s not from the Festival!

While my post doesn’t do justice to the incredible special event that the Flower and Garden Festival is, I hope that it has brought you out of the post-Christmas, middle of winter blahs that January often has.  Just think, only a couple of months and we’ll be staring at Spring and dreaming of a trip to the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival!  Now, please click on the image below and go check out the rest of the entries for this week’s Riding the Rails segment — courtesy of your Magical Blogorail!  Have a Disney Day, everyone, and remember, here at My Dreams of Disney, we’re working to help turn My Dreams of Disney into Your Dreams of Disney!