Wordless Wednesday – Food, Wine, and Music!

The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival beckons you to enjoy all it has to offer!

The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival beckons you to enjoy all it has to offer!

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s Wordless Wednesday post!  My friend Deb from Focused on the Magic has really struck a great theme with me this week!  Her theme is Food, Wine, and Music, and I’ve got several images to share with you that all feature — to this date, anyway — my only experience at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, back in 2011.  One day my wife and I will get back there, maybe with Sophie, maybe not — she may be there already if the gets into the Disney College Program in a few years!

Since the theme is Food, Wine, and Music, I thought I would share my pictures in that order.  So, first up…

The Food…

From Brazil: Seared Mahi Mahi with Steamed Rice, Hearts of Palm and Coconut Rice

From Brazil: Seared Mahi Mahi with Steamed Rice, Hearts of Palm and Coconut Rice

From Mexico: Shrimp Tacos

From Mexico: Shrimp Tacos

Sophie enjoying a Jumbo Turkey Leg

Sophie enjoying a Jumbo Turkey Leg

From Canada: The World Famous Cheddar Cheese Soup!

From Canada: The World Famous Cheddar Cheese Soup!

From France: Creme Brulee au Chocolat au Lait

From France: Creme Brulee au Chocolat au Lait

From Scandanavia: Swedish Meatballs with Lingon Berries

From Scandanavia: Swedish Meatballs with Lingon Berries

The Wine…

For this section, I’ll admit that we don’t do much drinking, so I don’t really have any good photos…in fact, the only photo I have is this one:

The Dessert and Champagne Kiosk

The Dessert and Champagne Kiosk

The Music…

What I lacked for in The Wine… category, I have definitely made up for in The Music… category, at least I hope you think so!

The JAMMitors rocking over by the Land Pavilion

The JAMMitors rocking over by the Land Pavilion

The Fife and Drum Corp marching into position to perform at the American Adventure Pavilion

The Fife and Drum Corp marching into position to perform at the American Adventure Pavilion

The Voices of Liberty are as outstanding as always!

The Voices of Liberty are as outstanding as always!

I hope you have enjoyed my look at the Food, Wine, and Music of the Food & Wine Festival!  Special thanks, as always, goes out to my friend Deb from Focused on the Magic for hosting this weekly series, and thanks for stopping by to look at what I have to offer you!  Now, please click on the button below so that you can see the rest of the entries to see what they came up with!  Make it a Magical Day everyone!

Focused on the Magic

Happy Birthday Epcot!

Spaceship Earth, the focal point of Epcot!

Spaceship Earth, the focal point of Epcot!

Happy Birthday Epcot! Just like the Magic Kingdom, Epcot opened on October 1st!  Of course, there was 11 years between the Magic Kingdom and Epcot, so last year was the 30th Birthday of Epcot, and that makes this year birthday number 31!  Epcot has so many incredible details that it’s really like going to two theme parks rolled into one!  For starters there is Epcot Future World, which features Spaceship Earth, among other great pavilions.  Then there is Epcot World Showcase, which features 11 pavilions dedicated to different countries around the world.  If you haven’t seen my reviews of them, head over to my “Epcot’s World Showcase” page to read about each of them!

For this special birthday post, I thought I would let my pictures do the talking, and share with you some of the incredible things that await you at Epcot!  Sit back, relax, and enjoy your photographic journey through Epcot — the second park at Walt Disney World!

Epcot has a monorail stop that rides through part of Future World! Look at the Tron Monorail!

Epcot has a monorail stop that rides through part of Future World! Look at the Tron Monorail from 2010!

Epcot is known for it's special events -- and the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival is near the top of the list!

Epcot is known for it’s special events — and the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival is at the top of the list!

The Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is another special event worth seeing!  This is Lightning McQueen from 2010!

The Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is another special event worth seeing! This is Lightning McQueen from 2010!

The Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is another special event worth seeing!  Lightning McQueen wouldn't be complete without Mater!

The Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival is another special event worth seeing! Lightning McQueen wouldn’t be complete without Mater!

Illuminations: Reflections of Earth is another incredible show that is a must see at Epcot!

Illuminations: Reflections of Earth is another incredible show that is a must see at Epcot!

The Voices of Liberty perform inside the American Adventure Pavilion prior to the show!

The Voices of Liberty perform inside the American Adventure Pavilion prior to the show!

Street Performers -- like this one in the United Kingdom Pavilion -- are a lot of fun to watch!

Street Performers — like this one in the United Kingdom Pavilion — are a lot of fun to watch!

Of course, character greetings are part of every Disney park! Here Sophie is joined with her buddy Donald Duck!

Of course, character greetings are part of every Disney park! Here Sophie is joined with her buddy Donald Duck!

I hope you have enjoyed taking a look at some of the things that you can expect to enjoy at Epcot when you visit!  Happy Birthday Epcot!  Are you going to be there to celebrate? If so, tell us what your favorite part of Epcot is, and thanks for stopping by!

Fall at Walt Disney World – a Magical Season

Snow White with Stephanie and Sophie

Snow White with Stephanie and Sophie

With the calendar turning over to September, the fall season opens up at Walt Disney World.  Having been to Disney in September and October just once, my experiences are a little lacking, but in today’s post, I thought I would share with you what I think of when I think of visiting Walt Disney World during this time of year.  Picture this in your mind, if you will:

The weather is absolutely perfect, full of incredibly blue skies, perfect temperatures in the 70s and 80s, and nary a cloud in the sky.  Over at the Magic Kingdom, seemingly overnight it seems, the fall decorations have been put up, bringing a sense of excitement for everyone that is able to witness their appearance.  Here are a couple of photos that I have from that time:

Magic Kingdom Entrance Big Pumpkin

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown — whoops, wrong series…

Main Street, U.S.A. Street Lamp

Main Street, U.S.A. Street Lamp

In addition to the fall decorations, everything just seems more crisp, more clean, perhaps; almost like, with the humidity receding into the recent past, it has taken with it anything that may have made your visit less magical.  When we visited for the 40th Anniversary of Walt Disney World, the thing I was struck by was how it felt like Disney really did have a dome over the sky to prevent any bad weather.  I don’t think I remember a better time to visit than that weekend in 2011, as these photos show.  Just look at how perfect the sky looks that day!

Splash Mountain

Splash Mountain

Over at Epcot the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival is going on during the fall.  Since we were visiting, it wouldn’t be right to not stand in a kiosk line and try some of the great snacks from around the world!  Also, you never know when you are going to see some of the great sites around the World Showcase, such as the appearance by the Spirit of America Fife & Drum Corps!

Waiting in line for a snack at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

Waiting in line for a snack at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

The Spirit of America Fife & Drum Corps marches into position to play for us!

The Spirit of America Fife & Drum Corps marches into position to play for us!

Of course, a lot of people come to Walt Disney World during this time to see Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party over at the Magic Kingdom.  I haven’t seen that yet, but with the help of a friend of mine, Andre from WDW Shutterbug, I am able to share with you a picture that gives you an idea of what it will feel like if you were to attend during this time.  What I find amazing is how incredibly peaceful it is at the Magic Kingdom late night, with all of Main Street, U.S.A. lit up, and Cinderella Castle beaming at you at the end of the street.  It’s an amazing time, and I’m certain you will agree with me that Andre’s shot truly captures the majestic beauty of the Magic Kingdom during this time of the year.

Special thanks to Andre from WDW Shutterbug for sharing his art with us!

Special thanks to Andre from WDW Shutterbug for sharing his art with us!

Until next time, my friends, remember to make it a Disney Day!

Magical Blogorail Red – Favorite Uses for Disney Dining Plan Snack Credits

MBRed Logo 2013 Welcome to those of you joining me from Growing Up Disney and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the Final stop on our Magical Blogorail.

The Disney Dining Plan is, in my opinion, one of the best things you can do when it comes to planning your Disney Vacation! While the option of adding the Dining Plan to your vacation is not cheap (except in those times when Disney offers it for free!) — the benefits far outweigh the cost in my opinion.  For this month’s Magical Blogorail post, we are going to share with you some of our favorite uses for those snack credits you have for your trip!  I hope that you enjoy these tips, and that they give you some great ideas for your next Disney vacation!

During our last trip to Walt Disney World in June, 2012, we had some extra snack credits that we wanted to use on our last day.  Cindy and the rest of the crew decided the best thing to do with them was to use them before they left so that they could use the snacks for the trip home, and that’s just what they did!

However, to me, my favorite use of snack credits would be to use them during the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.  Many of the delicious offerings that you can get at the kiosks are priced such that they qualify as a snack credit purchase on the DDP!  With this option available, it truly makes for a fun time.  Take a look at some of these that we tried when we went in 2011.

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Shrimp Taco from Mexico Kiosk

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Cannoli from Italy Kiosk

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Seared Mahi-Mahi from Brazil

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Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup

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Creme Brulee from France

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What’s left of Swedish Meatballs with Lingon Berries from the Scandinavia Kiosk

Thank you for joining Magical Blogorail Red this month. We will be back Friday, May 17th with an all new theme. Keep checking in with our blogs in between loops to keep up to date with our Disney info, photos and stories. If you are looking for more Disney magic, you can make your way over to The Magical Blogorail website to see all our members and their blogs, as well as all our previous loops.

Red Map Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop ~ Disney Donna Kay
2nd Stop ~ Colorado Mountain Mom
3rd Stop ~ A World View
4th Stop ~ Growing Up Disney
Final Stop ~ My Dreams Of Disney

The American Adventure Show at Epcot!

World Showcase: The American Adventure

In our attraction series today, I’m taking an in depth look at the show and pavilion that is the American Adventure in Epcot’s World Showcase.  In addition to what I’m writing today here, I’m also guest posting over at my friend Jodi’s site, Magical Mouse Schoolhouse, where I’m also writing about the pavilion.  To link on over to the post there, you will find a link at the bottom of this post.

My idea for this post was to focus more on the attraction, but in doing my research, I learned some incredibly cool things that I didn’t realized when I first wrote my post for MMS.  As a result, I’m going to give a little bit of information about the structure that houses almost all of the elements to this great pavilion first.

Did you know…

That the building is made up of 110,000 bricks made from Georgia red clay?  Or that the pavilion itself comprises a stunning 108,555 square feet?!  Lastly, did you know that the “war wagon” — as it is known — is a computer operated device that moves and loads the different scenes in the show automatically, and that there are ten different sets underneath the stage that the “war wagon” controls?

We, The People

The theater that is housed inside the American Adventure pavilion seats 1,024 people, and in the theater, the show We, The People tells more about the greatest resource that our great country has — it’s people.

In the show, which is narrated by Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin, you will learn about some of the great moments in the history of our country, including the following:

  • The landing of the Mayflower
  • The Boston Tea Party
  • Winter at Valley Forge
  • The writing of the Declaration of Independence
  • The Civil War
  • Industrialization
  • The Great Depression

While you are learning more about these moments in American History, you will also meet some of the great people from those time periods, including the following:

  • Susan B. Anthony
  • Alexander Graham Bell
  • Chief Joseph
  • Frederick Douglass
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • John F. Kennedy
  • Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • Will Rogers
  • Teddy Roosevelt

This show, which is one of the best at Epcot, in my opinion, doesn’t get the due credit it deserves.   Too many people think that this show is boring, or that it is only good as a way to get out of the hot Florida sun, or as a place to take a nap.  This is unfortunate, because the American history that this show looks at is a part of what made our country great.

It is my belief that, if we were to look to our past, we could use the lessons that we learned there and restore our country to what it once was — the greatest country in the world.

For a greater look at the entire American Adventure pavilion, stop on over and visit my friend Jodi’s site Magical Mouse Schoolhouse to learn more in a special guest post by yours truly!