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View Full Version : AJDerrick- Memorial Day Weekend 2010 - HoJo



AJDerrick
04-28-2010, 07:31 AM
Travel dates: May 25th through May 30th
Travel method: Flying
Resort: DL, DCA, DTD
Accommodations: Howard Johnsons (Entertainment Dates)
Ages Represented in Group: 23 and 26
Disney Resort Experience Represented in Group: I've got wayyyyy to much. DH is good, but completely turns planning over to me. :D
Comments: This is in the prep stages, but I wanted to remember what I've done so far!
Cast of characters: Me and DH--it's our first solo trip! We've always gone with friends and/or family.

4/27

Woke up today with nothing. Went to bed with HoJo's reservation on the Entertainment rate (better find that card!) and the following PS for dining:


4/26: Carnation Cafe (Lunch)
4/27: Naples (Dinner)
4/28: Carnation Cafe (last Breakfast seating)
4/29: Blue Bayou (Early Dinner, anniversary!)

I'm super excited, the adorable CM put on everything that it's our anniversary. What a good day! While we know there's the possibility of WoC crowds decending from the sky if something comes up we're hopeful that it won't be too bad on our weekdays at least. We're prepared for the weekend to be scary. Anyone want to share some Memorial Day weekend experience? I'm upgrading our GAD ticket at the gates (to a hopper, then to an AP after we get in on Saturday, which would otherwise be blocked out), is there a way to snag a Magic Morning?

4/28

Called in at the moment the lines opened for F! priority seating. Got two for the 9:00 show on 4/28. This will be great, DH was not a fan of sitting on the pavement for hours so I could have a front row seat. Now we'll just stand in line for an hour instead. :P Maybe I'll send him to get FPs for something. But at least he'll get a chair and some dessert! I haven't done PS for F! since it was still at the Gallery on the balcony (my dad used to get up at the crack of dawn to go wait in line for those tickets) so this will be a new one for us. AND we get to meet Murphy!

AJDerrick
05-19-2010, 07:05 AM
5/19

Checked the weather today, it looks perfect! Mid 70's, lows in the mid 50's. I'm getting excited, this time next week we'll be there!

One of the new things we're trying is the Magical Express to get to HoJo's. It was the same cost of a shuttle, but without bench seats. :) Anyone have any experience to share using the ME from HoJos to LAX?

SigalTchelet
05-19-2010, 09:20 AM
We are staying at HoJos on the 24th, Flying home the eve of the 25th. We may overlap by a few hours! :D

AJDerrick
06-01-2010, 07:20 AM
Ok, here we go...just as a review, it's me and the hubby (23 and 26) for our 2nd anniversary and to celebrate DH's Masters degree. Woo!

5/25 (Tuesday)

Caught our flight out of SLC to LAX. I hadn't flown into LAX in years, now I remember why. It's not nearly as nice as SNA! Our flight got in right on time, but it took them 20 minutes to get everyone's carryons up to the jetway (it was a smaller plane so we all had vallet tags). I'd never had it take so long to get a carryon back, it was nuts. Which then caused us to miss the Disneyland Express by about 3 minutes. Argh! So we hung out an hour for the next one. The driver was crazy, he kept pumping the gas so much I thought I was going to have whiplash the entire trip. But eventually he deposited us safely at HoJo's where our groceries and room were waiting. Whew! We went to Mimi's for dinner, since it was close. It was ok. DH's favorite part was their BBQ sauce. Got back to the room in time to catch come of Glee and then to bed.

5/26 (Wednesday)

First day in the park! We headed out around 8:00 am (rope drop was at 9:00) so we could use our GAD vouchers to upgrade to park hoppers. Headed for the ticket booths on the hotel side of the esplande, walked right up. To upgrade our GAD they had us use two different windows, one to get the 1 day ticket and another to upgrade (something about how their computers couldn't handle it) but we finished right about the time they started letting guests through the gate. Made it right to the front of the rope (DH loves rope drop) and waited for the happy Disney voice to tell us the park was open. From there we:

Rode Indy (got a FP for later)
Rode Matterhorn (I still think it kind of hurts!)
Rode Space (got a FP for later)
Watched Captain EO (which I vaguely remembered as a child and we both found hysterically cheesy)
Rode Buzz (got a FP for later)
Rode Star Tours
Tarzan Treehouse
Pirates
Picked up another Indy FP

Then it was lunch time. Carnation Cafe and potato soup for me! Had a great lunch, chatted with Oscar. Then it was back to work!

Mr. Lincoln and new Gallery (not as cool as the old gallery, but better than nothing)
Head to DCA
Turtle Talk (this is DH's favorite, we did it every day)
Monsters Inc.
Muppets 3D
Get Screamin' FP
Toy Story Mania (longest wait of the week, ~40 minutes...DH thought it was worth it since he won)
Screamin' (use FP)
Dinner @ Pizza Om Wow Wow (which was fine, and not busy at all)
DCA closes

Back to DL
Space is broken :(
Buzz (use FP)
Sleeping Beauty Castle
Peter Pan (~30 minutes)
Indy x2, use both FP from morning
Haunted Mansion
Space is fixed! Use FP.

This was our only nap-free day and boy were we tired. 21 rides/attractions in about 12 hours. Yikes! We had a great time, but decided that the rest of our trip would for sure include nap time. The weather was perfect and the crowds this day were very doable.

5/27 (Thursday)

After a very full day the day before we decided to rope drop @ DCA since they didn't open till 10:00. Thank heavens. Their rope drop is handy, we liked that we could FP Soarin' before heading to the rope for TSM.

Get FP for Soarin'
Rope for TSM
Walk like crazy, walk on TSM, then walk away in fear of the instantly formed 40 minute line
Screamin'
Swinging car on the Fun Wheel (my DH had never done this, his face the first time it moved was priceless)
Tower of Terror (13 minute wait despite no FP)
Turtle Talk (our daily visit)
Aladdin show (so glad it got extended!)
Soarin' using FP

Nap time! We got up in time to hit our dinner reservation at Naples for 5:00 pm. Food was good, nothing amazing though. Then we headed back to DL.

Pirates
Get FP for Big Thunder
Mark Twain (saw our first DL kitty on the mine car tunnel!)
Haunted Mansion
Big Thunder (use FP)

Between our nap and DL closing early for grad night we had a much easier day. Just 11 attractions today, but lots of fun! Still perfect weather, crowds not bad at all.

5/28 (Friday)

DL and DCA opened at the same time, so we chose rope drop @ DCA, 9:00 am.

Get FP for Soarin'
TSM x2 (managed to ride twice today, thanks to crowds being split between DCA and DL)
Turtle Talk
Soarin'

Back to DL to get FPs
Splash is broken. Was up for an hour or so before someone discovered that everyone was getting covered with sticky stuff on their backs from the seats. Yuck! CMs were guessing it was from the boats being parked outside in the sun during refurb.
Get FP for Indy
Go to pickup F! priority seating...woo!
Breakfast (very late breakfast) @ Carnation cafe. Mmm Mickey Waffle!
Jungle Cruise
Indy (use FP)
Pooh (boy is the view from the back seat bad)

Nap time. Whew!

Back to DL, Splash is clean so we grab a FP. Return time is late, probably won't happen.
Watch Billy Hill and crew from one of the boxes at the side of the stage, had a fantastic time. DH had never seen it, it was very fun.
Pirates
Time to check the line for F! seating (about 6:40 pm). Being my petite self (*cough, short!*) I wanted to make sure we were in the front row. Clearly we were going to have to wait, there were people along the rivers all day! When we found the podium the CM told us if we wanted to be first we better stick around...sure enough, we hadn't been there 5 minutes before more people started showing up. Whew! DH went to FP Indy and get a churro (yes, I told him we were getting treats with seating) while we waited. We checked in right at 8:00.
Haunted Mansion
Back to F! seats for treats and shows.
Storybook Boats

The F! seating was so wonderful! Snacks were great (key lime was my favorite) and the staff there was really good to us. Being in the center section but elevated we had a much better view of the boats, especially Peter Pan. Totally worth it! DH said the treats were just extra, he would've paid just for the chair alone! The view for fireworks wasn't bad at all, it was nice to get a refill and hang out for the fireworks rather than fighting the crowds right after F!. 12 things today counting F!.

5/29 (Saturday)

Now the crowds are here, that's for sure! Saturday was warmer too, starting to get uncomfortable. Luckily we spent the hottest part of the day napping or inside. DH had a great morning since it was a double rope drop day! Indy was down for a chunk of this morning.

Rope Drop for DL @ 8:00
DH goes to get FP for Splash (which is now functioning and sticky-free), I go to get a spot for the Lilly Belle
Meet @ Nemo Subs (I really love these!)
Get FP for Space
Upgrade our PH to our very first APs! :D
Get FP for BTMR, and ride

Rope Drop for DCA @ 10:00
Get FP for Soarin'
TSM (could they put that ride any farther away?!)

Head back to DL to do Lilly Belle @ 11:00. First time we've done this, so much fun! Just us and one other family.

Nap time...boy are we going to miss napping every day...

Get FP for Indy, who is feeling much better
Anniversary lunch @ Blue Bayou. Fantastic, as usual, and DH loved it (he'd never been). The BEST place to be on a hot day!
Pirates (in an effort to let our awesome lunch settle)
Splash (use FP)
Star Tours (probably our last almost visit to Endor since they're closing this summer, goodbye Rex!)
Innoventions (we actually had a lot of fun in here, watched ASMIO and picked out a lot of cool stuff to put in our house someday)
Space (use FP)
Buzz
Indy (use FP AND we finally got the future room for the only time this trip)
Dole Whip (yes, I consider this an attraction!)
Turtle Talk
Soarin' (used FP, but didn't need one)
Silly Symphony Swings (very fun at night!)
Screamin'

Bedtime! Next morning we caught the shuttle back to LAX (shudder) and headed home.

This was the first trip for us on our own to DL, it was so much fun. DH has decided he loves rope drop, he will always win at TSM and that Turtle Talk is pretty much the coolest invention ever. He also only wants to ride in the front on Screamin' and is convinced that priority seating for F! is totally worth it. We had a great trip and can't wait to use our AP's to go back!

nursechrissy32
06-01-2010, 07:57 AM
Thank you for sharing and congrats to your DH on his degree!

WaltDisneyFanatic
06-05-2010, 11:23 AM
Sounds like a great trip! Thanks for sharing!

TowerofTerror
06-05-2010, 06:42 PM
great report thanks for sharing