I learned in business school recently that Walt Disney’s mission statement was and is “To make people happy”. And our trip to Walt Disney World courtesy Walt Disney Parks & Resorts (Canada) and Playhouse Disney Channel definitely made someone we like to call Bub very happy. At 20-months-old, many would say that Riley was too young to bring to WDW for any number of reasons, but judging from his reactions, it’s pretty safe to say that he really enjoyed himself!
The only real concern I had was his reaction to the characters in costume. You never know how they’ll react when they see them for the first time. To top it off, Bub had not yet been introduced to many of the characters, but that seemed not to matter – he loved them all completely. The only snag we ran into was that he was not thrilled when his turn with Chip and Dale was finished, but other than that he loved meeting everyone! Sadly he slept through the entire Princess lunch at the Norway Castle in Epcot, but his enthusiasm at the Cinderella dinner at 1900 Park Fare more than made up for it!
My husband was a good sport and went for the full pirate makeover, as Bub was a little young for the makeup. The experience was very fun, and Disney has thought of everything when it comes to the full experience. My new pirate husband “Jason” now sported a few extra pairs of eyes! Just a quick word of warning – the makeup is hard to take off.
Some experiences really stand out. Bub loved the shows! The Lion King show at Animal Kingdom was amazing, and Turtle Time With Crush at Epcot seemed to be particular favourites. With Cars being a new favourite, seeing Lightning McQueen and Mater at Hollywood Studios was a definite Bub highlight. (So looking forward to Cars Land opening at Disney California Adventure Park in 2012!) We loved that Bub could come on so many rides with us, and that there was never an issue or worry about there being high chairs in the restaurants or change tables in the washrooms.
Probably the most surprising thing about Riley’s first visit to Walt Disney World, is the fact that he napped so well in his stroller. We fully anticipated having to split up our days and head back to the hotel after lunch for his naps (staying on property, especially on the monorail line, makes this a breeze) but we didn’t have to. Every day, without fail, he would pass out in his stroller and sleep for three hours. Every day. This made our afternoons fun and it was so lovely to stay up and watch the fireworks every night.
Even though he likely won’t remember it, my memories of Bub’s first visit to Walt Disney World are definitely magical.