I know. I know. It’s been a while since my last post.
But look, stuff has been HAPPENING at the Goodreau house. Big, huge, gigantic stuff.
This time of year always brings about some extra amped-up-ness with summer coming to an end and the start of school on the horizon. But this year has brought with it a whole new bit of too much.
While we are for sure going through the normal-yet-somewhat-stressful process of getting Owen ready for his Sophomore year of high school, we have also been getting Myles ready to begin his first year at Seton Hall University.
We dropped him off last week and yeah, it’s been A LOT. I don’t know, man. I mean, I obviously knew we would be feeling all the feelings we are feeling. I knew we’d be excited for what lay ahead for Myles. And I knew we’d be sad to think he wouldn’t be a daily presence in our life anymore. I knew we would be anxious and worried. I knew we would be proud of what Myles has accomplished.
I just didn’t know how intense all those feelings would be. The joy and the sadness and the pride and the worry. All of it, amplified to an extent that makes it nearly impossible to keep it all in.
But I know this is such an important and wonderful time in Myles’s life. I know he has a lot in store for this world and I can’t wait to see the mark he makes. It’s gonna be big.
OK ok….sorry, just had to get that out.
Onto the Disney.
Oof, I am gonna miss that kid.
Day 4 – Maybe the longest day ever at Disney’s Hollywood Studios?
So hey guys. Guess what?
It was early.
Like real early today. I, myself, was up before 6AM today. And this was because today was a Disney’s Hollywood Studios day!
And, like, the park was scheduled to open to the public at 8:30AM. Which meant resort guests could enter the park at 8AM due to Early Theme Park Entry. And this of course actually meant we should try and get there closer to 7AM since the doors could actually open to us at any point between 7-8AM.
I know, iCarly star Miranda Cosgrove. Disney be all kinds of “huh?” these days.
But we had to abide by the madness.
So up we were.
The kids, surprisingly, were up in time for us to be out of the room before 7AM. But I mean, first….Animal Kingdom Lodge savannah view balcony shot my dudes.
In actuality, we weren’t just out of the room by 7:00. The kids were up with enough time to get ready and get to the bus stop by 7AM.
This was no easy feat you guys. Especially given I couldn’t even yell at them since my Big Thunder-induced voice loss had taken its biggest toll this morning, leaving me with no voice whatsoever. Like, literally…today I was reduced to mainly communicating via my iPhone’s notepad and making that heart shape with my hands to show that I liked or enjoyed someone or something.
Things were gonna be rough today you guys.
But I made it through. Because I’m a survivor.
I’m not gon’ give up.
I’m not gon’ stop.
I’m gon’ work harder.
I’m a survivor.
Hey, speaking of confusing things, 7AM was also an important time for the whole “planning the park” situation because today was another day we were using Genie+ and Lightning Lanes and what not. And 7AM was when we could officially make our first Lightning Lane reservation. And today? I was making Lightning Lane reservations for the five of us (me, Nickie, Myles, Owen, and Hannah) plus Kayce, Bella, and Lani plus Liam and Ayla (who as you might recall stayed over in our room the night before) PLUS Liam and Ayla’s parents – Arty and Suzanne – who were also meeting us at the park today.
So right. 12 people you guys.
And everyone decided they wanted me to make a Slinky Dog Dash Lightning Lane. And when I went on there at 7AM? The next available Slinky Dog Lightning Lane available was at 4PM. Which was fine, I guess. Because I could book our next Lightning Lane starting at 10:30, which was 2 hours after official park opening.
Wow, this morning.
Also, we were booking Individual Lightning Lanes today for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. Which meant we were all paying an additional $15 a piece to book a specific time to ride this attraction. Yeah…15 dollars. Times twelve people. Disney was making money off us today my friends.
I booked one for that night at 8PMish. There were earlier times available for sure but a night ride on Rise fit well into our nighttime Hollywood Studios plans sort of in a way.
So right yeah…7AM because we had to get on an early bus to get in for the time-before-the-time-when-they-were-actually-supposedly-letting-us-in for Early Entry but also so that I could set up our Genie+ Slinky Dog Dash Lightning Lane for 4PM but also free us up to book another Lightning Lane two hours after the park officially opened at 8:30 AM and also so that we could purchase Individual Rise of the Resistance Lightning Lanes for 8PM that night.
Yeah, I don’t know why people say going to Walt Disney World is so confusing these days?
So yeah. The bus arrived within minutes of us getting to the bus stop and we were at Hollywood Studios by 7:15. Where like…giant Baymax.
Because that makes sense in this world.
The gates opened at 7:30 and we were through them a few minutes later.
Like I said, we had another two hours until we could book our next Lightning Lane attraction on Genie+ so our plan was to rope drop a Sunset Blvd attraction. So down Sunset we walked.
No. No, not yet.
What did I just say?
That’s the stuff. Rock N’ Roller Coaster.
But at this point, we were still waiting for the attraction to open so we had to get in line.
For Rock N’ Roller Coaster. We got in line for Rock N’ Roller Coaster.
Well, most of us did. Nickie doesn’t do the whole roller coaster situation so she headed to The Trolley Car Café to get some breakfast. And while she was there, she ran into Kayce, Bella, and Lani so she charged the girls with a special breakfast delivery for me.
Behold. The Carrot Cake Cookie.
One of THE BEST snacks in all of Walt Disney World. I mean, it used to be more “cookie” and less “cake” but that cream cheese frosting inside would honestly taste good in the middle of two pieces of construction paper.
I will say, though, it’s not the best line snack. Thing is messy. The cake is very (trigger word alert) moist and gets all over your hands. Which then requires you either (A) lick your hands in the midst of a pandemic or (B) rub your hands together until the crumbs fall to the ground.
But you know what they say. That’s the way the carrot cake cookie crumbles.
I obvs squad shared it with everyone because I am an incredible person with a giant heart and this was the result.
The Disney ducks were gonna be living it up on Sunset today.
Not only were there crumbs on the ground, but there were also apparently crumbs on Liam’s shirt as well.
Oh hey, how’s that shirt, Liam? Does it taste good? I mean, right? Am I right?
With the shirt eating.
While we were waiting in line, the excitement was obviously palpable.
And me? I was obviously balding.
That picture was taken at approximately 7:50AM and by 8:00 we were next up about to board our cars.
So yeah. We boarded our cars and had a super fun ride on this awesome coaster.
Is what I would say if the ride didn’t break down at the exact time we were supposed to hop on.
The ride broke down basically right after it opened.
So we were led outside via a super secret exit.
And we were given anytime Lightning Lanes to use for most attractions. Slinky Dog Dash and Rise of the Resistance were off the table. Because Disney wants to help, but they also want you to know who is in control.
Which, sure, was nice. But we had a plan, Disney.
But you gotta roll with the punches, right? So we got in touch with Nickie and Kayce and made the plan to meet them over at Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway. And on the way to meet them…
Joe from Soul. That’s 24 characters!
We made it over to Mickey and Minnie’s at 8:20AM.
And this attraction never disappoints. I mean, yeah. I get the whole “I miss The Great Movie Ride” thing but witch, please.
Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway is such a superior attraction.
I rode with Nickie and Kayce.
While the kids were on the car in front of us, that sometimes was also in back of us.
As I said, sometimes the kids were in front of us. But sometimes they were in back of us. Like in this shot. Where we were doing ballet with Daisy.
And I defy you to not have “Nothing Can Stop Us Now” stuck in your head the ENTIRE DAY after riding this one.
OK so yeah, I know we had a Carrot Cake Cookie delivered to us in line earlier in the day but we all split that and also? Eating is one of my favorite pastimes. So we all decided it was time to get some breakfast.
And breakfast today was an item that’s been around for a while but we have never tried. But, like, we have always wanted to try it because it gets such good reviews. It just was always hard to fit into a Hollywood Studios day.
These are real issues, guys.
This specific breakfast item brought us over to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
That guy knows what I’m talking about.
But yeah, breakfast today was at Ronto Roasters. Which is a place. Where the roast rontos.
And rontos, according to Wookiepedia, were four-legged herbivores native to the desert world of Tatooine. Which, wow. Microsoft Word doesn’t identify Tatooine as a problem word. No autocorrect. No red line underneath. Tatooine is a real word that exists, according to Word.
And I think that means we’ve done it, you guys. We have reached the zenith of our existence.
So obviously they don’t actually roast rontos here, even though when you walk in it does look like this droid is getting his ronto roast ON.
But no actual rontos were harmed in the making of this breakfast.
Fake news, I guess.
As I mentioned before, I had legit no voice so I had to rely on Myles to place my order for me. It was like he was the dad and I was the son.
Except I was still paying.
And I, along with a bunch of other people, got the Ronto Morning Wrap (Eggs, Grilled Pork Sausage, Shredded Cheddar, and Peppercorn Sauce in Pita Bread.)
So frakkin good. That sausage was yummo and, oof, that peppercorn sauce. I wanna take a bath in that stuff.
To go along with my wrap, I also took a walk over to Kat Saka’s Kettle for the non-spiked Cold Brew Black Caf (Joffrey’s Cold Brew Coffee topped with Sweet Cream Cheese and Cocoa Puffs).
Oh, sorry. Disney calls them “Chocolate Puffs.”
This was very good. The puffs on top were a nice addition but I loved how instead of a foam on top, it was sweet cream cheese. It was a very good drink, I thought. You can also get it spiked. But by “spiked” they mean it comes with chocolate liqueur.
Which, like, is pretty much the same as not being spiked.
Also, I should mention this was the first time I had to order something on my own without a voice so I wrote on my iphone notepad “Can I please have a Cold Brew Black Caf?” and showed it to the guy behind the register.
Today was gonna be an interesting situation.
By this point, Liam’s parents (Arty and Suzanne) had made their way into the park so we made a plan to meet them over at Star Tours.
Which is where it’s at.
The wait time was about 10 minutes, which was pretty much just how long it took to walk through the queue.
And check this dude out.
That guy there is RX-24, also known as Rex, and he used to pilot the Star Tours ship. He doesn’t do that anymore, but I am sure he’s moved on to bigger, better things and a more rewarding caree…
Oh. He’s a DJ?
Here’s Liam and Arty though. Ready to do Star Wars.
Star Tours still hits for sure.
It was still not quite time for us to book our next Lightning Lane (we were an hour and a half from park opening at this time and we needed to hit our two hour window) so we hit up an old favorite that, for some reason, rarely has a wait.
It was time to start the music.
It was time to light the lights.
It was time for MuppetVision 3D, is what I’m saying to you now.
And I mean, if you’re gonna see MuppetVision 3D, I recommend getting there early because there is A LOT to see. Like, for instance, this punny poster advertising the movie Prawn.
Which looks good but I think I’d rather see a twisty-turny movie about Pepe’s wife being killed and him being a prime suspect.
Oh, or a movie about Pepe, C Thomas Howell, and a bunch of teenagers fighting off Soviets with Harry Dean Stanton.
Or maybe a movie where Pepe undergoes a medical experiment and improves on his low IQ to become a genius and he falls in love with his teacher.
Charly, based on the book Flowers for Algerprawn.
I could literally do this all day.
I could go Prawn and On.
Anyways though. These guys were obvs squad excited. As exhibited by their thumbs being in the up position.
Which may or may not be a controversial hand gesture?
We totally landed a front row seat…
…for the back of the people’s heads in the first two rows
Not as nice as these guys’ seats tho.
I don’t know why they’re always complaining. They have a balcony all to themselves.
I get it, man. This show is dated but I honestly feel like…look, it’s the Muppets. The more dated it is, the better. It only adds to the whole, as Tex Richman would put it, “goody-goody, hippy-dippy, Julie Andrews and Dom Deluise-hostin’, singin’-and-dancin” feel of it all.
It is so best.
In fact, later in the trip, Liam named it in like his top 3 attractions of like all-time.
As we were walking out of MuppetVision, we hit our window for booking our next Lightning Lane so I went into my MyDisneyExperience app and saw that I could grab a LL (that’s what the kids are calling Lightning Lanes these days) for Toy Story Mania!
And yes, I finished that sentence with an exclamation point. But that wasn’t due to excitement. That is how Disney actually writes the name of the attraction. I mean, I was excited but not THAT excited. I always feel like I have to say it like “Toy Story MANIAAAA!!!!!”
We had a little bit of time until our Lightning Lane hit, so some of us ducked into a show we haven’t visited in a lonnnnnnnng long time – the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular.
Which, yeah, I mean…it’s fine and all. Lots of fun stunts and whatever.
But we all know the real reason everyone should want to see this show. It’s so that at this particular scene…
So you can yell, “Steve! No!”
Or at the very least, say it under your breath so you don’t embarrass yourself.
We actually didn’t end up staying for the whole of the show because people were getting a bit antsy to get some 3D carnival games in this bizz.
Off to Toy Story Land!
That exclamation point was all mine.
Once we checked in at Toy Story Mania! I made a Tower of Terror Lightning Lane for later in the day since some people were leaving the park in a little bit and what not.
Also, while in the queue, we were stopped a little bit before the loading area. Which gave us the great idea to try and recreate a shot from our trip last summer. This shot, specifically.
So yeah, here’s our re-creation.
Terrible. Terrible job.
Like I said, that shot was taken pretty close to the loading area. So soon after, we were boarding our vehicles.
This time around, I rode with Kayce and we got a Hamm car.
Which, unfortunately, was NOT a car made out of salty pork.
Though I did…ok…
…Myles did the best in our group. This is probably why he got into such a nice college.
On our way out, I asked all the kids to pose for a picture in front of the popsicle stick wall.
Because I am a basic B.
It was at this point the group decided to start splitting off from one another. Nickie and I had a lunch for just the two of us planned, some people were staying in the park, some people were heading back to their resort for a mid-day break. Yeah, total Scooby-Doo situation.
Oh also, on our way out of Toy Story Land, I snapped this picture apparently.
Which was brought on by either my love of (A) Chip and Dale, (B) the new film Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers (which is awesome by the way), or (C) billboards in general.
Whatever the reason, you all obviously benefitted from it. So you’re welcome.
So right, Nickie and I had a lunch to get to. And today’s lunch was at The Hollywood Brown Derby.
Which is a signature restaurant located in-park at Disney’s Hollywood Studios based off a famous chain of LA restaurants that were popular during the “golden age of Hollywood.”
We were seated at around noon.
I should remind you all that at this point, to try and give my throat as much rest as I could, I was voice-less and still communicating with my phone’s notepad. Like, even with Nickie. Which put a bit of a damper on the whole “romantic lunch for two” situation. But, Nickie was also able to enjoy a full lunch without hearing me prattle on.
So I mean, pros and cons I suppose.
Of course we started off with some drinks.
Mine was the Hollywood Manhattan (Michter’s Single Barrel Rye Whiskey and Antica Carpano Sweet Vermouth garnished with Luxardo Cherries) and Nickie went for her usual standby – a Cosmopolitan.
We were also started off with some warm rolls and salted butter.
To start, we ordered the Heirloom Tomato and Burrata Salad (with Shaved Onions, Thai Basil, Gremolata, and Citrus Vinaigrette) to share.
Which was very good. That burrata was nice and if you do order this, I highly recommend holding onto some of your bread from the bread service or ordering more because, well, obviously bread makes everything better. But bread+burrata=heaven. It’s simple math.
Nickie and I weren’t super-duper hungry so we decided to also split an entrée today – the Braised Short Rib with Parsnip Purée, Spring Vegetable Succotash and Truffle Aïoli.
Rull good, you guys. I mean, the short rib obvs fell apart as a short rib should but that truffle aioli added some very nice added flavor.
I also ordered a hot green tea to end the meal.
Which, you know. Was green tea.
But yeah, the Brown Derby continues to be a favorite spot. Which is surprising since there was a time we didn’t really love the Brown Derby back in the day. But yeah, it’s a solid spot always.
I will say – one bit of disappointment is they have stopped serving what I once regarded as one of the best burgers on property – the Brown Derby Signature Burger. Still not sure why they would remove such a beloved item but I blame Bob Chapek.
After lunch, as we were walking to our next destination, we passed by yet another of the 50th anniversary statues – Flounder and Sebastian!
Two more characters, bringing the total past the halfway point to 26.
Also, while we were out there, we came across a PhotoPass photographer that had no one in line for pictures. And like, we love ourselves so we asked if we could get some pics.
Unforch, we ran into some issues with the photo sharing thing we were doing so you guys are gonna have to put up with the PhotoPass logo. Because it’s kind of hard to justify spending the $200 now.
Or ever, really.
Oh whatEVER you guys. We are paying for one kid in college and another in private school. You all can put up with a couple watermarks.
But no worries. No PhotoPass logo can diminish all of whatever was going on here.
Nickie and next decided to visit Star Wars Launch Bay.
Because recently? Disney brought back some awesomeness to Launch Bay.
Anakin honestly say I missed this guy.
Yeah, man. Darth Vader was back. Which was exciting and not at all terrifying.
Eh ok. Maybe a little terrifying.
Dude was pretty nice.
For a sith.
After this, Nickie and I discussed things and figured it would make sense if I stayed at the park while she headed back to Animal Kingdom Lodge. On account of by the time I got to the hotel, I’d have to head back to hit our Lightning Lane time. But Nickie wasn’t planning on riding our two earlier-later-afternoon Lightning Lane attractions so she figured it would make sense to head back. Day was hot and what not so yeah, that made sense.
For me, it was basically a death wish.
I stuck around Launch Bay after she left to meet Chewbacca. Which is awesome obviously. But, well. Nickie was gone. And so was my voice. So I had to resort to communicating again via notepad with strangers. So, as I was getting close to meeting Chewbacca, I like didn’t want it to be all weird that I wasn’t talking. So I got the following message ready to show to the cast member:
I’m sorry. I can’t speak. But could you use my phone to take a picture?
So as I neared the end of the line, I showed my phone to the cast member and, erm, well. They started treating me like I needed some special assistance.
Which felt wrong, but also kind of comforting.
Chewbacca legit gave me the BIGGEST hug.
Dude is leh-git fluffy.
In an effort to not completely expose myself to the death that is the Florida sun, I spent a little bit of time exploring Launch Bay.
Yeah. I found all the Star Wars.
Finally, though, I worked up the courage to venture out into the fiery furnace that is Florida on an early July afternoon.
I know. I’m a true American.
And it was a good thing I went on out there. Because there were more statues to be seen. Check it out!
R2D2 and BB-8!
That’s 30 statues you guys. I am starting to wonder if maybe we actually do this whole “see all the 50th statues” thing.
But eh, that heat. It was hot, you guys. So I made my way over to another heat-beater, Walt Disney Presents. Which is basically like a Walt Disney museum sort of situation. With like all kinds of Disney-xhibits.
Like this model of Main Street USA.
Also, hey, this guy.
Yeah, I mean most of this experience was just me excited there were places that existed that didn’t feel like the surface of the sun.
But there were a couple cool Disneyland models up in this piece.
And check this place out.
I think maybe someday I’d like to visit that place. It looks super expensive.
I mean, cool. It looks super cool.
There was also a whole exhibit focused on Disney’s newest cruise ship, the Disney Wish.
Which is kind of exciting because we have a cruise booked on the Wish next summer.
I know, right? Spoiler alert.
I should also mention that while I was off on a journey of self-reflection in Hollywood Studios, the kids were taking some fun pics.
I’m not 100% on why they want everyone to scream in Grogu’s face but hey, they’re the professionals, right?
I still had some Hollywood Studios alone time ahead of me, so I also decided to head back over to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge to check out the haps on Batuu.
As I was walking around, check it out – Hey!
And whoa, hey, Chewbacca! Remember me? I’m the guy who can’t speak!
While I was hanging out in Batuu, I decided to try my hand at the single rider line for Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run. And wow, it was like a whole new world was opened up to me.
I got in line at like 3:01 and was through it by 3:03.
Yeah, that’s like…
<Counts on fingers>
2 minutes to get through this line. What?? Man, I love being married and everything but being single obviously has its perks. Amirite?
Being a single rider, I was paired up with a family of three and one other single rider. I ended up being a gunner along with the family’s son, who had obviously never ridden Smuggler’s Run so he was all, “Dad, what do I do as a gunner?” And his dad didn’t really know the answer either. So with what little voice I could muster (thanks to resting it for so long), I told him to shoot as many things as he could.
I was this kid’s hero. Dude was psyched.
We were “in air” by 3:10.
We ended up stealing something or other and then making someone or other happy or something.
I earned the rank of Hot Shot.
Sorry. I earned the rank of Hot Shot.
Ugh. I said, “I EARNED THE RANK OF HOT SHOT.”
Wow, how about THAT for a payoff. Oof, I am a terrible blogger.
By the time I got off Smuggler’s Run, the first of our stacked Lightning Lanes was coming up. In fact, this was actually the first Lightning Lane I made for our group way back at 7AM this morning.
Slinky Dog Dash, y’all!
There are legit so many things to take pictures of as you’re walking through the queue here.
Like this Wheezy toy package.
And of course Andy’s drawing of his plans for the coaster.
And even more of course, Myles and Hannah in front of Andy’s drawing of his plans for the coaster.
I love this picture because, like, most everyone behind me and Kayce aren’t even paying attention but if you look way back you can see little Liam with a big ol’ smile on his face.
The cast member also scolded me when I took this picture because I was sitting up on the side of the car. So I hope you all appreciate what I put myself through for you guys.
And man, I love Slinky Dog Dash. It’s such a simple coaster but it’s so smooth and all fun and what not.
Now, leading up to today, Owen was telling everyone he could that he was going to get a Jack-Jack’s Num Num Cookie at the Market.
Like, literally, he was telling EVERYONE. Even Liam. Who had no idea what a Jack-Jack’s Num Num Cookie even was.
So obvs squad we had to get one. I legit have no idea what would have happened had we not.
Also, looking at the timestamp, it appears we got this cookie at 4:20. Which I assume is a popular time for such a cookie.
At this point, we decided to make use of the Lightning Lane we received when Rock N’ Roller Coaster broke down on us to ride, well, Rock N’ Roller Coaster.
And check it out, man. While we were in line I saw a poster announcing a show tonight featuring someone I have been hearing a lot of buzz about. I don’t know how talented he is, but man is he adequate-looking.
And I have to admit, I was pretty shocked Hannah never told us she was an R&B sensation.
I mean. I knew she dabbled in R&B, but a sensation? What else haven’t you told us, Hannah?
Rock N’ Roller Coaster was obviously a lot of fun. I mean, it was Rock N’ Roller Coaster. And it’s super timeless.
The kids are ALL ABOUT Aerosmith these days.
After we hopped off Rock N’ Roller Coaster, it was time to hit up our next Lightning Lane at the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.
Given we had a Lightning Lane, we walked pretty much right through the queue into the pre-show.
Which is based on that twilight-y show about that zone.
And after the show ended, we made our way down to the elevator entrances. And our cast member was real good.
Tower of Terror still remains one of the best. I mean, attractions have come along that have replaced it as my top spot attraction but there is still so much to love about the Tower. It’s so much more than I think a lot of people think it is. It’s not just a drop tower. There is so much deep story going on here and it all starts once you enter the queue and continues through the pre-show and the actual attraction.
And we had a stellar on-ride photo plan to all look like we were doing something else other than paying attention to the ride. Again, though. PhotoPass logo alert.
Yeah. We’re a lot of fun.
After we got off Tower of Terror, we still had a little time until dinner, which worked out since one of THE BEST SHOWS IN ALL OF WALT DISNEY WORLD was about to start – For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration.
So we booked it over to Echo Lake.
And “booking it” in this heat? Not the easiest. But no matter, right? We would soon be sitting in a nice, air-conditioned theater.
Or so we thought.
I had heard reports that said it felt like Disney was not using their air conditioning as much as they used to. And, like, I maybe had noticed places being a little warmer than I remembered here and there. But it was real noticeable here.
Probably didn’t help this was friggin FROZEN.
Hard to really feel immersed in all that snow and what not when you have to sit forward so as to avoid a chair-shaped sweat spot on the back of your Fox and the Hound tank top.
Still though – really do love this show.
And while it was probably not the best idea, the fact that I had rested my voice most of the day left me with some semblance of one at this point. So of course I squandered it on singing along.
A hoarse throat never bothered me anyways.
Also, all the money Disney was saving on air conditioning was obviously put back into their snow budget because I had never seen THIS MUCH SNOW at this sing-along before.
We were all legit covered. It was a winter wonderland. A hot, sweaty winter wonderland.
At this point, it was time to head over for our dinner reservations. On the way, this happened.
Kids love Steve Harvey. It’s a thing.
So yeah, dinner. Which is exciting in and of itself. But, dinner time also meant Nickie was finally meeting us.
So, like, it was dinner and a snack.
Dinner tonight was at Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant.
And at Sci-Fi, seating is a little unique so it was pretty much a given they wouldn’t be able to seat all 11 of us together. But the woman up front said they could set up two different “tables” – one with the 5 adults and one with the 6 kids. But the tables weren’t quite ready so we grabbed a couple seats inside out of the sun to wait.
For those that don’t know, Sci-Fi has that whole “outside on the inside” feel, set up like a drive-in with a screen in front showing old trailers, cartoons, and random clips. And while there are traditional-looking tables set up, there are mostly these cars to sit in while you enjoy your meal.
The kids were set up at a table. But it did have a windshield.
So it had that going for it.
Which was nice.
We got a car with three rows. Arty and Suzanne sat in front.
Nickie and I sat in the row behind them and Kayce was in the back. I swear I had pictures of all of us but they mysteriously disappeared.
Like something out of a science-fiction movie.
And apologies in advance. Taking pictures of your food at Sci-Fi is an exercise in futility.
But I’ll do my best to lighten up what I can in editing.
To start, I ordered a beer. I think it was a Sam Adams Summer Ale.
To start, we ordered some Onion Rings and Fried Pickles to share.
Sci-Fi is pretty well known for its onion rings. They’re the crispy type with a sweet-ish batter. And they were definitely good. But the fried pickles were next level. So good. Nice and crispy on the outside, nice dill flavor on the inside.
For my entrée (I only got a picture of my entrée), I went with a burger as one does at Sci-Fi. I went with the Feature Film Burger, which is like a burger of the month. The burger of the month this month was the Surf and Turf Burger, which was a burger topped with a crab cake.
Which was good. I mean, the burger was a pretty standard burger but the crab cake added some good flavor.
Dinner ended at around 8PM, which was a fine time for dinner to end. Because as you might recall from like 20 pages ago, we had purchased an Individual Lightning Lane for Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance and our time had come. So we all made our way over to Galaxy’s Edge and walked right on through and came face-to-face with this little dude.
After our briefing and thanks from holographic
Tupac Rey, we headed outside to board our transport.
And we grabbed a hella-nice spot right up front.
Which put us face-to-face with Admiral Ackbar.
But, unfortunately, we of course got caught in a tractor beam.
Ha. Oh you.
But no, a Star Destroyer tractor beam. Silly goose.
And I mean, I can never NOT take all kinds of pictures inside this place.
First Order Troopers were legit all over this micky-ficky.
The cast members on Rise of the Resistance continue to be some of the best cast members in all of Walt Disney World.
I tried to get a good picture of Kylo Ren and General Hux.
I mean, I thought it turned out pretty grate.
And you know the story, we got rescued by some members of the Resistance and boarded our trackless vehicle.
And then we were thrust into this battle between the First Order and the Resistance. Which are like the Rebels and the Empire. Except not quite as cool.
So great, still. I know everyone is all Guardians of the Galaxy that and Cosmic Rewind this and Chris Pratt those, but Rise remains my favorite attraction in all of Walt Disney World. It’s a legit game-changer.
Also, while I was on Rise of the Resistance, I was able to make us a Lightning Lane for Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run.
Which was cool, since doing the single-rider earlier meant I wasn’t able to see the pre-show.
I got to ride with Bella, Lani, Myles, Hannah, and Liam.
Smuggler’s Run? More like Smuggler’s Fun.
Owen, Ayla, Arty, and Suzanne rode together as well. Nickie and Kayce decided to sit this one out.
We all made the decision to just stick with whatever roles we were given so Bella and I were pilots. Lani and Myles were gunners. And Liam and Hannah were engineers.
I don’t recall all the details but let’s just say I’m a better gunner than a pilot.
Once we checked in at Smuggler’s Run, I made another Lightning Lane to try and sneak one more ride in on Toy Story Mania! before the park closed.
We ended up exiting the Falcon at around 8:55 and the park closed at 9:00. I let Nickie and Kayce know we were on our way but they should maybe not wait for us just in case. And they gave up quite the fight on this since they thought it wouldn’t even be fun without us and also that’s completely not true because here they are riding it without us.
But joke’s on them because we made it, you guys.
8:58PM. 2 minutes before closing.
It just doesn’t get more exciting than that.
This time around, I got to ride with Owen. And we got Slinky!!
That was a legit jam-packed day of fun, you guys. But alas, the park was closed. So we had to head back to our rooms and call it a….
Pfft, going back to your room is for poopfaces.
But lest you think we are all just a bunch of scofflaws and ne’er-do-wells, we actually had permission to stay in the park. On account of we had some late night reservations at Oga’s Cantina.
Yeah man. We booked 10:00 reservations at Oga’s Cantina in Hollywood Studios. Which is a bar. Themed after Star Wars. In Hollywood Studios.
And we had 10:00 reservations. But the park closed at 9.
Friggin bosses we were.
Because being in the park. After dark. Is smark.
I don’t know. I ran out of rhyming words.
But it was cool because not only did this mean we could have drinks. It also meant nighttime low crowd park pictures.
And I mean, Galaxy’s Edge is a pretty awesome place to take nighttime low crowd park pictures.
We checked in at Oga’s at around 9:30ish and set up camp across the way while we waited for a table.
At around 9:45, we were summoned and let inside.
I love me some Oga’s.
We of course went over to say what’s up to Rex, who I alluded to earlier during the Star Tours portion of this post. At least I think I did. Honestly, I wrote that part like a week ago. But see though – he is a DJ.
Yup, pilot to DJ.
Talk about a fall from
Oh well, at least he’s still voiced by Pee-Wee Herman.
They set us up at one of the tables off to the side. And surprisingly, we all fit.
Pro tip: steal all the coasters you can.
Now came the hard part. Deciding what to order.
Liam was obviously legit agonizing over his decision.
The kids ordered a couple Oga’s Obsessions, which is described as Minute Maid® Premium Lemonade, Cotton Candy Flavor, Blueberry Popping Pearls with a Bursting Dried Fruit Mixture.
It’s like a jell-o situation with boba balls and Pop Rocks. It’s actually better than it sounds. But like, to be honest…does it sound all that good?
So, look – A LOT of drinks were ordered. There were beers. And Blue Banthas. And Hyperdrive (Punch It!)’s. And Carbon Freezes.
Just a lot of stuff going on. So I won’t go into detail on what everyone drank.
Or had drinkened.
But I will go into detail regarding what I had. On account of it’s my blog. Plus, Suzanne and Arty both got the same. SO I mean. I am covering a few bases.
Annnyways. This here is the Outer Rim (Patrón Silver Tequila, Stirrings Pomegranate Liqueur, Lime Juice, Pure Cane Sugar, with Black Salt and Exotic Fruit Purée.)
It’s insanely good. It’s the best thing on the Oga’s menu in my opinion. And my opinion is the only one that really matters.
Again, my blog.
It was a real fun time at Oga’s. Always is. We had a lot of good conversation.
Well, we had conversation. I mean, Lani and Bella were trying to claim White Chicks was a better movie than Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure AND that Kevin James is funny. So they were conversations. I can’t actually stand by the “good” part.
And I highly recommend a late reservation if you can get one. It is a really great way to end a Hollywood Studios day. And when you leave, the park kind of feels like yours.
Well, except for all the cast members ushering you out.
Plus, remember…emptyish park pics, my guy.
We made our way to the front of the park and were near the Chinese Theater by around 10:45.
And we did more old picture recreations!!
That one? Went much better. Here is the older one for comparison.
But yeah, man. Emp. Tee.
And yeah, that was Day 4 you guys. Oof, an epic one to be sure, right? I am going to try my best to get you guys another blog post a little more quickly this next time. But I mean….my best?
It isn’t the best. So like, don’t get your hopes up.
But regardless – talk to you guys on Day 5!
Last post – Day 3