Announcement

Collapse

Reminder

It is against MiceChat's rules to promote any violations of Disney's rules. Members who choose to brag about breaking Disney's rules, or who encourage others to break Disney rules, will be immediately banned. There will be no exceptions.
See more
See less

Katherine's 10th Birthday Trip for Dapper Day and Club 33!!

Collapse

Get Away Today

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Katherine's 10th Birthday Trip for Dapper Day and Club 33!!

    So this trip finds us doing Fall Dapper Day with only ONE KID!!! Katherine had turned ten years old a few days preceding the trip, so we begged, borrowed, and stole to get my parents and Lindsey to take the two other girls for the weekend and a day on each side. Victoria was a trooper about it. Charlotte left in TEARS that morning. Oh well... she'll be ten some day and get a trip with us all by herself too. We were trying out our new-to-us vehicle. Unfortunately the Volvo XC90 V8 had some mechanical needs which I just couldn't justify addressing for a Swedish vehicle with over 100k miles. It was sold for a pittance and replaced with a few-years newer land yacht which we have affectionately named "The Axiom" of Buy n’ Large fame. We were really struggling with the Volvo for family trips and had even resorted to a roof rack to extend its practicality. Needless to say... once we gave up hope of fitting a vehicle in the garage, bigger was better (read more utility for the $), so this behemoth found its way home. As we packed our TWELVE bags/cooler into the back with the third row simply folded up, we had ample room. For future trips, we'll probably leave half the back row out, and have a spacious trip without being crammed in. Hopefully a family trip this spring will prove this out, but we still have the roof rack if needed.

    Almost ready to go...Katherine almost lost some fingers after she wrote in the morning dew on a black vehicle...



    She had the whole second row to herself which she would soon commandeer in its entirety.



    Loads of room to spare..




    And we were off at 08:43. A quick stop to fill up the battleship-sized fuel tank with some 91 octane and we let the 403 horses run and jumped on the highway at 08:50.



    I had some things to address, so I let Amy drive. It was hard not to be a backseat driver. I figured out how Katherine could watch Dark Wing Duck while we could listen to the radio/music from the phones after a quick perusal of the encyclopedia-esque owner’s manual.

    Katherine eventually stretched out and enjoyed a luxury seldom afforded by the eldest of three children... SPACE.



    Amy has never driven... she did just fine despite heckles from me to "go faster".



    This is where my story goes bad. I somehow dropped my trip journal (one from a previous trip in fact) at the FlyingJ gas station at exit one. It hasn't made its way home yet despite owner info in it with offer of reward. I do remember it took us about 10 gallons to get the 130-ish miles to the California boarder, but not the time. Oh well.. teach me to pay more attention next time.

    We made it to the Disneyland Drive turnoff from Katella a minute or two before 2PM. Not bad, but we've definitely made better time with me at the helm.



    Passing Paradise Pier. Despite the great views of DCA, I doubt we'll ever stay there. The amenities didn't seem "Disney", and the walk wasn't any fun last time we did it.



    Oh yes... Our turn!!



    A quick exchange with the guard shack attendee, a happy birthday for Katherine and a joke and we were pulling up to the inner sanctum of Disney Resorts.. We were home!!



    I must admit, I felt like a Secret Service Detail pulling up. No celebrities here, just us. Unloading went flawless, a quick exchange with both Valet and Bell Services and we were on our way..



    Our room was actually ready, so we scooted up and checked it out. We were pleasantly surprised with an upgrade to a pool-view room and ended up in 2228 for this trip, which was a view/wing we had never really been in. It was right over Pinocchio’s Workshop, and you could access it from either the elevators in the DVC wing, or from the lobby directly. I liked it all told.

    Unlike my last stay at the Grand, being in a newer section of the hotel, this room was in great shape. Nothing to complain about whatsoever.







    It’s the little touches which make the Disney hotels worth it.



    Katherine loved the balcony and view despite being a lower room.



    After bell services dropped our bags, we quickly organized and headed off towards the parks.





    Last edited by whoever; 11-15-2016, 08:44 AM.

  • KellyMcG86
    replied
    Originally posted by whoever View Post

    After Joe's TR on how awesome Halloween is this year, we are definitely going next year for Halloween... and hopefully for DD too... Going to have to save some pennies.
    Let us know if you want to coordinate dates for Halloween! I'll probably celebrate my birthday while we're there, too.

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    Originally posted by KellyMcG86 View Post

    I don't know if we'll do Dapper Day... maybe spring. We are definitely doing a Halloween party 2018 - would be happy to plan that with you guys!
    After Joe's TR on how awesome Halloween is this year, we are definitely going next year for Halloween... and hopefully for DD too... Going to have to save some pennies.

    Leave a comment:


  • KellyMcG86
    replied
    Originally posted by whoever View Post

    Kelly, you need to come again... Do we need to start planning 2018?
    I don't know if we'll do Dapper Day... maybe spring. We are definitely doing a Halloween party 2018 - would be happy to plan that with you guys!

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    Originally posted by KellyMcG86 View Post
    omg memories
    Kelly, you need to come again... Do we need to start planning 2018?

    Leave a comment:


  • KellyMcG86
    replied
    omg memories

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    Originally posted by bamato View Post
    Loved the photos from the Tiki room. Thanks for an awesome trip report!!
    Thanks for coming along. I feel like I always struggle with the shots in the Tiki room. Too much contrast with the direct lighting making it hard to shoot the dark without blowing out the light. Also running f/2.8 glass there leads to sensor noise which I abhor.. Appreciate the kind words.

    Leave a comment:


  • bamato
    replied
    Loved the photos from the Tiki room. Thanks for an awesome trip report!!

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    OK... last post of this TR... it was quite a doozie to write with the Art of the Grand tour mini-TR in the middle of it.. Been so fun reliving it...

    And some random phone pics from the trip in no particular order which were found after I put the TR largely together...

    Katherine chilling on her bed. Rare treat because we ALWAYS had bunk beds at the Grand when traveling with the kids.



    Katherine and I after we just got into the park.



    Family selfie in Pirates queue.



    Girl Power on Dumbo.



    Katherine LOVING the carpet pattern (ick)



    A few shots from 33..











    Amy trying out the holding power of the mouse she picked up at Sephora as she prepped for Dapper Day hair-do. There's just something about Amy..



    Some Dapper Day family shots at the DCA entrance from the Grand.







    Dappered up Splash..

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    With heavy heart, we left the Tiki Room at 3:15. It was time to go. We would take our time leaving the park though and getting back to the hotel to grab the bags and load up. A trip through World of Disney for those precious few last souvenirs was in order..

    This is always the saddest part of our trip. Sitting in the vehicle ready to pull out of the Grand..





    I made it linger a LITTLE while longer as I pulled over to the convention center to get the navigation sorted. Amy took the time to snap a couple pics.. wish she had dialed the exposure down a bit..







    Katherine not wanting it to be over... I felt similar.



    Man the engineering and wood work is BEAUTIFUL. I really, really, REALLY love the Grand.





    We finally pulled out of the Grand's parking lot at 4:13 and hit the road.

    Katherine had some homework to catch up on, so to it she took while she still had decent light



    Amy and Katherine took to decimating the sourdough Mickey head we had procured before leaving DCA. By 4:57, his ear and the left side of his face had been consumed.



    The Traffic was pretty bad today, especially on the 91. We made OK-ish time with me driving and pulled into the Flying J safely back in Arizona at 9:11 Arizona Time (we were now on an hour time difference with CA). It took 18 minutes to get the vehicle fueled and everybody restroom breaked and a bite to eat from the Wendy's.

    She sure can drink some fuel down.. Not bad for 425 miles I guess. The big beast got 14.75MPG in California which I guess isn't bad given the congestion which is a fair amount of CA.



    We finally rolled into the driveway at 11:24 and proceeded to unload... it's a School night after all.

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    What would be our last attraction of the trip? I wonder...

    Why it would be Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room (and Dole Whip).

    I've never noticed this guy before..



    I just LOVE the theming of the Tiki Room waiting area. So great and interactive..



    Here we have Hina Kaluua: This Hawaiian mistress of rain, from Hilo, Hawai`i, keeps it in the family – her daughter, Hina, is the mother of the trickster, Maui.





    And Pele: This Hawaiian fire goddess lives in the Kilauea volcano and likes to torment her neighbor



    Of course one can't forget Tangaroa-ru: Also known as Mapui-Kaufanga in Maori tales, she is goddess of the east winds, which bring rain.



    And of lastly for this trip at least...Tangaroa: The father of all gods and goddesses, he took the form of a tree (a tree that no one ever did see).



    Amy was enjoying her whip..



    Katherine elected for a caramel apple from one of the Main Street confectionaries.



    I need to make this sign.



    Inside the long house there many sights to behold..

    The drummer:



    The magical fountain..







    The singing flowers..



    And the magical birds..





    Katherine in all her hoodied glory..



    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    It was time for one last sled down the mighty Matterhorn.

    But what is that I see?



    Let's take a closer look...why it's Harold!!



    I love this part of the attraction. The Alphorn, the original Skyway buckets and cable, the camp cookware, lanterns, ski poles, torn open original bobsleds and homage to the Wells Expedition with the snowshoes, crate, and climbing gear. This scene inside the Matterhorn is a lasting tribute to Frank Wells, former Chief Operating Officer for the Walt Disney Company. Wells was an avid mountain climber and skier, who had climbed most of the world's tallest peaks. Tragically, Wells died in a helicopter crash while on a ski trip in Nevada. Frank G. Wells has also been honored with a Disneyland Window on Main Street. I'll have to look for that window one of these days.







    Harold looking as good as ever.





    Our icy expedition completed with a splash. We started to head towards Adventureland but were distracted at the hub. There was the Fire Engine with NOBODY on it. We decided to take a ride on the Fire Engine as it was one we've never done before. We took it down to the square and back up.



    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    Tour around the world complete at 1:38, we stopped for a few quick pics at the Christmas Treat in front of Elias & Co. before making our way to Disneyland





    A quick stop for one last pic of the castle and we headed towards the North East part of Fantasyland



    Katherine's hair is awesome here.





    I swear I've never noticed these two before.



    Katherine's FAVORITE.



    We braved the queue for Teacups



    Any did the shooting this time... its really odd.. she LITERALLY went to a 4-year Fine Art school and majored IN PHOTOGRAPHY but seldom shoots unless she's doing pictures for the Christmas cards.



    I was just focused on spinning as hard as I could..









    Katherine is obsessed with paper lanterns now..



    Love the control booth..



    Katherine REALLY loves being an only child at Disneyland..



    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    We wrapped up at Cove Bar at 12:23. Katherine wanted dessert so we meandered over to Fiddler, Fifer & Practical for a Kitchen Sink Sunday.



    Let me just say that Disney hit it OUT OF THE PARK with Buena Vista Street makeover. It is SOOO good. Even the HVAC vents are beautiful.



    And this stained glass and chandelier...



    Decorated for the holidays... so beautiful.



    Katherine was SOOOO happy to FINALLY get a Kitchen Sink.. it is her first one ever.



    Amy grabbed some spoons for us too!



    And with always, some Disney story telling accompanied us..

    This 1930s-era eatery was established by Dolly, Dottie and Ethel Bounds, known professionally as Fiddler, Fifer & Practical (aka the Silver Lake Sisters). They spent a good part of their lives performing the vaudeville circuit, entertaining the troops in World War I and becoming minor celebrities in nightclubs along the then‐emerging Sunset Strip in Hollywood.

    After 20 years of singing, dancing and playing their instruments (Dolly on violin, Dottie on flute, Ethel on piano), the sisters decided to put down roots on Buena Vista Street. The idea came from Ethel, the practical one. She had always handled the trio’s business affairs and was constantly urging her sisters to settle down and open a legitimate business. They finally agreed, joining together to open Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Café, with its name an homage to their act.

    A wall inside the restaurant features photos, posters and memorabilia from the days when Dolly, Dottie and Ethel performed as Fiddler, Fifer & Practical – the Silver Lake Sisters. You can see them in publicity shots and in photos showing them performing on stage and relaxing or prepping backstage in their dressing rooms. A map of California shows the various places they’ve performed throughout the Golden State, and above the front window, marquee letters, spell out “Silver Lake Sisters.”

    So the next time you’re getting a great deal on a square meal at Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Café, take a look around and discover the story of these talented ladies for yourself.







    Not sure what Amy was doing here... so I took a pic anyway.



    Loaded up with ice-cream, I washed out the Kitchen sink and we headed over to Soarin’ to use our fast passes. Let me say, I'm not a fan of Soarin' Over the World. BRING BACK SOARIN' OVER CALIFORNIA!!!! The CGI is completely unnecessary to good storytelling and quite frankly, the new version just doesn't have the charm, mystique, and greatness of the previous one. Two thumbs down on this one Disney... not quite as bad as GOTG, but it’s still a letdown compared to the previous iteration.

    The queue however...still awesome.





    Good ole Amelia... did you know she was a member of Plus Ultra?



    And James Doolittle. His daring raid on Japan in WWII showed the Japanese they weren't invincible and had bitten off far more than they could chew when tangling with the USofA!!!




    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied

    What could possibly be next? The FUN WHEEL OF DEATH!!!!

    We split up. Joe, K, Ian, Amy, and I went in one car, T, Alli, Soph and Kelly went in the other while Sean took Pea to grab a table at Cove bar..









    The NON-swinging car..



    We were having MORE FUN!!!





    Afterwards, we parted ways with Joe and the family so glad to have seen them again. Amy and Katherine decided to do Single Rider on Screaming while I went to meet up with Sean at Cove.





    He had scored a SWEET spot at the bay side.



    My new hat, which I wear ALL THE TIME these days. LOVE it.



    Not sure what Sean just ate, but he was enjoying it.



    Amy and my lobster Nachos..



    Sean's GREAT looking drink.. looks like the remnants of a Manhattan..


    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    And afterward... it was time for some Toy Story Midway Mania...

    Pea was obsessed with Amy's face..







    Katherine was loving it.



    Soph was making faces..





    Ian and T were one of the first to load.



    Leaving Joe, Alli, and I behind..



    It was a fun shoot.. As we made our way down the pier, I snapped a couple off the cuff pics..







    We ran into Jessie out doing pics..






    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    Originally posted by IzzyInWonderland View Post
    I am just as upset as you are about Tower of Terror. I am utterly bitter about its departure. I first rode it in Orlando and was excited when we got our very own version in CA. It quickly became my favorite ride at DCA and probably overall. I have fond late night AP memories riding it over and over in the off season with no line and never once thinking I'd have to say goodbye to this special attraction. The theming was top notch and really brought out that Art Deco design perfectly in every detail. The eerie swing music in the queue, the posters and displays even after the ride, the gift shop, it made the experience linger with you a bit longer. I think getting rid of ToT was one of the biggest mistakes they have made.
    I'm surprised that fellas picture above didn't get "lost in another dimension". Haha
    I can't echo this enough. GOTG belonged as a third-gate attraction. Quite frankly, so did Starwars. They could have been a split park where Paradise Pier is.. It would have worked superbly without ruining GREAT aspects both parks.

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    It didn't take us long to make it through and off the attraction. They had some scenes set up outside as TOT was being ruined by the GOTG overlay. We took advantage of it all and got some photo ops.



    While we were snapping pics, who showed up by Joe, Teresa, Kelly and Sean!!

    These two kids have a pre-arranged marriage ahead of them... they just don't know it yet..





    HATE seeing one of my favorite attractions die...



    Why TOT is a VASTLY superior attraction yet again... IT JUST FITS!!! It has supreme theming even outside of the attraction itself. It was PERFECTION for Hollywood Land.













    Leave a comment:


  • IzzyInWonderland
    replied
    I am just as upset as you are about Tower of Terror. I am utterly bitter about its departure. I first rode it in Orlando and was excited when we got our very own version in CA. It quickly became my favorite ride at DCA and probably overall. I have fond late night AP memories riding it over and over in the off season with no line and never once thinking I'd have to say goodbye to this special attraction. The theming was top notch and really brought out that Art Deco design perfectly in every detail. The eerie swing music in the queue, the posters and displays even after the ride, the gift shop, it made the experience linger with you a bit longer. I think getting rid of ToT was one of the biggest mistakes they have made.
    I'm surprised that fellas picture above didn't get "lost in another dimension". Haha

    Leave a comment:


  • whoever
    replied
    Five minutes after leaving Radiator Springs we were standing in the lobby of the Hollywood Tower Hotel. If you don't want to hear how TOT was VASTLY superior to GOTG stop reading now because this installment will be about how crazily AWESOMELY themed the TOT queue and gift shop were. They fit in, complimented, enhanced. I've watched numerous videos of the new GOTG queue and it is just cheap looking. It doesn't fit. It's horrible. A wart on the face of DCA and Hollywood land specifically. HATE it. Sure I'll ride the attraction, and the new Raccoon animatronic grabbing the Walkman is pretty cutting edge, but they are gimmicks to compensate for HORRIBLE theming, poorly conceived, and badly executed storyline. Bring back TOT... It makes me so angry Disney made this poor decision.

    Look at that beautiful chandelier..



    Disney could have cut this terrazzo out with a concrete saw, thrown it on the Disney store and I would have bought it in a heartbeat. It's classy, it is reminiscent of Hollywood's golden age unlike that travesty which occupies the spot today.



    Every ounce of the lobby and costumes... simply perfection.





    Wish I had got to see the Silver Lake Sisters



    The lighting...so good





    The queue so creepy and well-done.















    Even the GOTG storyline was poorly conceived. It's an attempt at tying IP to an existing attraction and a poor attempt at it. Falls flat.

    Even the after-theming... so good. I'm going to have to get a print of this made up. Long live TOT.



    Classy theming. ..even after the attraction..







    I wonder if the guy wearing my Trader Sam's tiki shirt was as upset about the looming GOTG overlay based upon his hand gesture..


    Leave a comment:

Working...
X