EPCOT – Spaceship Earth

Have you ever wanted to take a ride inside a golf ball?  A giant golf ball?  This iconic object sitting at just past the entrance to EPCOT can easily be described as just that – a giant golf ball.  But it is more than just something to catch your eye or be the anchor to a theme park.

Spaceship Earth as seen from the World Showcase Lagoon.

Actually, this golf ball is called Spaceship Earth and it contains a fun, educational ride that takes you back to the dawn to man and follows him through the development of communication to today, then allows you to create your own future right on the screen of your time-travelling machine.

This complete geodesic sphere was designed with the assistance of science fiction writer Ray Bradbury.  It is 165 feet in diameter and tops out at 180 feet and took Continue Reading →

Tea – Who Knew?

One of the interesting things about the World Showcase is experiencing the different cultures in language, food, architecture and shopping found around the lagoon.  Among these is the Twinings Tea Company which has a Tea Caddy in the United Kingdom land in EPCOT, complete with a garden of tea shrubs, herbs and spices.  During the International Flower & Garden Festival,

English Tea Caddy & Tea Garden

they are hosting daily tours through their tea garden.  In this short, informative tour, guides retell the history of the Twinings Tea Company from its foundings in 1706 to present day.  Its continuous operation makes Twinings the oldest business still in operation in London and being in business over 300 years obviously makes them experts in their field.  Look closely at their packaging.  You will notice a crown – this represents the fact that they are the official tea of the English Royalty – a tribute to their expertise and longevity.

While the average consumer has their favorite tea brand and/or flavor, and even whether they prefer it hot or iced, sweet or plain, most of us know very little about this little leaf that brews the second most popular drink around the world.  Tea is Continue Reading →

EPCOT Flower & Garden 2018

Figment the Dragon

The 25th anniversary of the International Flower & Garden Festival is officially underway in EPCOT.  This 3-month long event runs February 28th to May 28th and showcases everything flora, and even combines it with Disney magic to create some very special displays.  It is not much unlike the Rose Parade in Pasadena, CA, where the floats are made entirely of organic materials; but unlike the Rose Parade, most of these displays are made from living and blooming plants, so they will stay in color all spring long.

While the topiaries are spectacular and most of them depict Disney characters, the grounds around EPCOT are planted in blooming flowers and garden displays.  Even an enclosed garden with butterflies in all stages of growth is available for Continue Reading →

EPCOT Festival of the Arts – Dave Avanzino

Disney’s EPCOT is becoming a land of festivals, and 2018 brought the second annual Festival of the Arts; and as they get more experience hosting these events, they are continually making significant improvements which enhance the guest experience.

The five-week long festival running from January 12th to February 19th, saw opportunities galore for exploring your artist within, from culinary arts to musical performances, artist lectures, hands-on learning opportunities and just chances to meet and talk with a number of Disney artists and legends.

Dave Avanzino

Many of these opportunities were presented in a class-like setting.  Most were free or had a small fee for materials.  There were a few “premium” events that ran in excess of $250.  This year, 3D artist Dave Avanzino came to EPCOT to teach his technique for creating unique works of art.  We jumped at the chance to learn from one of our favorite Disney artists (ok, who are we kidding – he IS our favorite Disney artist!)  His ability to create a work of art and make it Continue Reading →

EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival

It’s a foodie’s dream.  Or it could be a gastric nightmare!

Welcomed to the festival by Tinkerbell.

Welcomed to the festival by Tinkerbell.

Why?  Because there is so much great food and so little time (or room in the tummy) to travel this unique world experience and taste it all!  We finally took the plunge to sample Disney’s EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival during a trip to Walt Disney World in October, and it was quite a treat!

Now in its 22nd year, this annual food festival provides Disney guests with an opportunity to taste the many flavors of the countries that line the World Showcase lagoon in EPCOT.  For 2016, it runs every day from September 14th to November 14th.

Whether you crave mild or spicy, domestic or international, sweet or sour, wet or dry, hot or cold, a hungry traveler can find something to satisfy their cravings and even try something new, especially if you don’t have the means to travel abroad.  Countries from Africa to Continue Reading →

Frozen Ever After

Entrance to Frozen Ever After in the Norway Pavilion

Entrance to Frozen Ever After in the Norway Pavilion.

A new addition to EPCOT in the Norway Pavilion is “Frozen Ever After,” a boat ride through the story of the iconic movie, “Frozen.”

This new attraction has been extremely popular.  Fast passes are reserved weeks in advance and on most days, the standby waiting line is in excess of 90 minutes.  We discussed with Cast Members and the tips they gave for navigating the lines saved us from waiting too long.  They said that from about Continue Reading →

Soarin’ Around The World

We had the opportunity to ride the new “Soarin’ Around The World” at EPCOT.  The original “Soarin’ Over California” was our favorite ride and we tried to do this on every visit, even if it was the only ride for that day.

Entry to Soarin' at EPCOT

Entry to Soarin’ at EPCOT

Soarin’ Over California took you for a birds-eye-view of scenic wonders both natural and man-made, such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Monterey Bay, Borrego Springs, Palm Springs, Malibu, downtown Los Angeles and finally up Main Street in Disneyland where you landed in the middle of a fireworks show.  In the 15 years that it was operational, it was a real crowd pleaser.

For the grand opening of Shanghai Disneyland, Disney made Continue Reading →

TBT the Disney Way

BG_trib

“Stayin’ Alive Canada” performs at the American Gardens Theater in EPCOT.

What a wild way to celebrate a “Throw Back Thursday.”  We watched a Bee Gees tribute band called “Stayin’ Alive Canada,” (facebook page)   perform at EPCOT in Walt Disney World.  They performed some of the Bee Gees’ most famous songs from the Disco era, including songs from the movie “Saturday Night Fever.”  It was funny to look around and see that most of the audience were our age!

This summer, Disney is hosting various bands that are performing Continue Reading →

Run Disney – Walt Disney World Version

On Saturday, February 20, we ran our first race at Walt Disney World, the Enchanted 10K during the Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  In a previous post, we described our runs at Disneyland.  Running is running, so this will be a comparison of running at the two parks.

Entering EPCOT

Entering EPCOT

Just like the parks themselves, the location dictates the size.  The runs in Florida are nearly twice the size of the ones in California.  The simple comparisons of the first 2016 races show:

Disneyland – Star Wars 10K – 8994 finishers vs WDW Enchanted 10K – 11,341 finishers.  Disneyland Star Wars Half Marathon – 11,316 finishers vs WDW Princess Half Marathon – 20,126 finishers.

While we mentioned that Disney makes running fun, Continue Reading →

Walt Disney World 2015

Velora, Dan, Debbie & Melvin

Velora, Dan, Debbie & Melvin

In mid-November, we had the incredible opportunity to go back to Florida to spend a couple of days in Walt Disney World.  This was following Melvin’s retirement and the sale of our home in California.  What we thought was going to be a few days to get away and relax (downsizing your life takes an unexpected physical and emotional toil on a person) turned into a celebration of our next phase of life.  Long days and lots of good food with dear friends left us with little time to relax.  But it was all worth it in the end.

We met up with our friends, Dan & Velora who arranged for all of us to stay Continue Reading →