76 Days: Rafiki’s Planet Watch

Sophie with Pocahontas, taken at Rafiki's Planet Watch

Sophie with Pocahontas, taken at Rafiki’s Planet Watch

Hello everyone, and welcome to #Day76 in our #DisneyWorldCountdown!  The days keep ticking away, and it’s hard to believe that we have already done 24 days in our countdown!  For today, we’re taking a look at a Pavilion that is only accessible by way of the Wildlife Express Train — of course I’m talking about Rafiki’s Planet Watch!

This pavilion is, in my opinion, overlooked by many that travel to Animal Kingdom, but to do so you risk missing some of the great things at Animal Kingdom!  For starters, we hadn’t seen Pocahontas at the park since way back in 2005 when she was a big part of the show Pocahontas and her Forest Friends (a show that closed in 2008).  So, when we were at Rafiki’s Planet Watch and came upon Pocahontas, Sophie was extremely excited!  Better yet, there was no line waiting to see her!

In addition to seeing Pocahontas, there are cutouts of animals that you can look at, such as these two — although my photos don’t do justice to the pavilion.  They also have great demonstrations with some of the animals.  For example, we saw a demonstration on how some turtles were tested to see who would adapt quickest and eat the treat first.  It was based on some characteristic of the turtle, such as eye color.  It was really neat and fun, and something that I was glad I got to witness the demonstration.

Sophie with the Tiger

Sophie with the Tiger

Sophie with the Rhino

Sophie with the Rhino

Another great thing about Rafiki’s Planet Watch — most of the exhibits are inside this great air conditioned building — and you all know how hot it can get at the Animal Kingdom Park!

Rafiki’s Planet Watch is a great pavilion to spend some time in.  Do you and your family take time to see it?  What is your favorite part about it?  Please let me know in the comments below, and thanks for stopping by!

Princess Smackdown: Who is the Best of Them All?

Beauty is only skin deep. Although we’ve all heard that saying, we still appreciate and are attracted to a pretty face. And Walt Disney did little to correct that trend. His first three Princesses were heavy on the looks, light on true depth. But 30 years have passed and the final eight official Princesses have worn a different tiara.

So who would be the best Princess of them all if we added more than beauty into the equation? To find out, we will gauge each Princess on the following criteria: Independence; Judgment; Contribution; Personality; and of course, Physical Appearance.

Let’s start by meeting the contestants:

Snow White (1937) – SW

Cinderella (1950) – CIN

Aurora (1959) – SB

Ariel (1989) – LM

Belle (1991) – BEL

Jasmine (1992) – JAS

Pocahontas (1995) – POC

Mulan (1998) – MUL

Tiana (2009) – TIA

Rapunzel (2010) – RAP

Merida (2012) – MER

Independence

SW, CIN, and SB definitely lose this category. They were little more than bystanders in their own lives. LM, BEL, JAS, MUL, RAP, TIA, RAP, and MER all lived in restrictive times but were able to rise above that to find their own path. But most of them did rely on others to help them do it. In the case of MER, I think she went a little too far! So this round goes to Pocahontas.

This Indian Princess was independent from the get go! She had a strong will and a determination to try new things which ultimately led to bridges being built between two very different cultures.

Runner Up: Mulan

Judgment

Again, our first three Princesses didn’t have many decisions to make. Others did it for them, or to them, in the case of CIN. When she decided to venture out, it was under the protection of her Fairy Godmother. But that’s not enough to win this round.

LM also loses this round because she went to an evil Witch to get what she wanted! RAP also loses for trusting a thief, although no one could blame her considering the situation! TIA was ready to put her dreams in the kiss of a frog. Again, MER made such a bad decision that it turned her loved ones into bears. Perhaps asking for something more specific than ‘change’ would have been a good idea!

So that leaves it to the final four Princesses. JAS snuck out from the safety of her palace, but was in no real danger, as she could always identify herself for protection. POC and MUL both risked a lot and put them themselves in great danger, but it was for a good cause.

But I’m giving this round to Belle. She decided to sacrifice herself, her freedom, and her future, to save her ailing Father. A nobler thing I can’t imagine!

Runner Up: Cinderella

Contribution

SW, CIN, and SB were all good housekeepers. They sang well and were kind to animals. For their times, those were good contributions.

LM, JAS, RAP and TIA were more about their personal journeys. They did touch others along the way, but their stories were more about them.

That leaves BEL, POC, MUL, and MER. BEL eventually left the Beast, although she did return. But I’m disqualifying her for that anyway. MER did finally contribute to her Father’s people by learning to be a peacemaker between the tribes without having to marry anyone. I like that! And although POC did make for peace too, I have to give this round to Mulan. Hey, she helped win a war!

Runner Up: Pocahontas

Personality

All of our contestants have good personalities. But let’s see if we can eliminate some in a lightning round. SW: Too sweet. SB: Not enough to go on. LM: Possibly a bit selfish. BEL: A tad condescending to her ‘provincial’ neighbors? JAS: Spoiled. POC: A bit too intense. MUL: Conflicted. MER: A wee bit bratty (but  read on).

I’m having a hard time placing TIA in this category. She was a feisty frog!

But I’m giving this to Cinderella. No matter how horrid everyone was to her, she just kept singing and working and… loving! Even after her Prince came, she didn’t hold a grudge against her wicked stepfamily. Now that’s character!

Runner Up: Rapunzel/Merida

Physical Appearance

This is purely a matter of taste. Some of the Disney Princesses are more overtly sexual than others, even though that’s not something we’re supposed to notice. But come on, a clamshell bra? Who wouldn’t notice? But for me, Jasmine wins this round!

Runner Up: Aurora

And the winner is:

So if we add up the points, who is the ultimate Princess? The best of the best? Rating each Princess on each of the categories with a 1 for the least and 5 for the most relevant, the winner is:

P o c a h o n t a s

Runner Up: Cinderella. And hoping that both break a heel on the way to the podium: Belle

If you disagree, leave a comment and tell me why! And where do you think Elsa and Anna would fit into this contest? Winners, or would they get the cold shoulder?

Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia – Pocahontas

Pocahontas with Sophie at Rafiki's Planet Watch!

Pocahontas with Sophie at Rafiki’s Planet Watch!

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia post! Along with my friends Jenn “The Social Media Icon” from Disney Babies Blog, Heidi “I live at the beach” from Heidi’s Head, and Jodi “The Author, NutriSystem blogger, Disney Contest Queen, and so much more” from Magical Mouse Schoolhouse, I’m Mike “I can’t wait til Disneyland” from My Dreams of Disney, here to share another Disney trivia tidbit!

In today’s post, we are taking a look at the Disney movie Pocahontas.

Did You Know…about Pocahontas

In 1995, over 100,000 people attended a free outdoor premiere of Disney’s Pocahontas on the Great Lawn in New York City’s Central Park. Shown on four 80-foot high screens, it is the largest opening ever for an animated film. A majority of the tickets were given away in advance in a random lottery to those who responded to newspaper advertisements. Pocahontas will be released to select theaters in the U.S. June 16 and generally released June 23.

That is incredible! I never knew that. Special thanks, of course, to the Disney History site This Day in Disney History for that neat piece of Disney trivia!

Now, please take a look at the rest of the Disney trivia for today, and thanks for stopping by!  If you have a blog, and some Disney trivia to share, please write up a post, click on the image below, and add it to the list!

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