Jun 05

Selfie Sticks at Amusement Parks

Good advice from Laurie on selfie sticks.  Remember to enjoy your time with your loved ones……

There is word that the selfie sticks are banned from all WDW rides and attractions. I (Laurie) did a search of the WDW site and have found no such rules listed. However, selfie sticks are covered under ride rules that are not made public. On Kali River Rapids, one is to stow ALL gear which means selfie sticks. They retrieve lots of cameras that fall overboard when guests try to take pictures even back before the selfie stick was invented. Tower of Terror requires gear to be stowed yet every night they scrape up the remains of phones and cameras.

No selfie stick was harmed.

No selfie stick was harmed.

Signs are going up that prohibit selfie sticks. Greeters are going to be trained to remind guests about selfie sticks if they see them. Greeters will not hunt for selfie sticks. Selfie sticks will be treated like cameras, canes, crutches, hats, and anything else that can and will go flying on a ride. If they say stow gear then you have to stow your selfie stick. If they tell you to hold on with both hands, then put away your selfie stick.

Selfie sticks on a ride can go flying into other guests or the ride itself. During shows, the selfie stick can hit other guests especially on simulator type theaters and they are distracting as they invade other people’s space. Would you hold a cane out in front of you?


Advice on selfie sticks

1. Do you really need that shot? Billions of images have been made over the past century of amusement parks without selfie sticks.

2. How much time is used to set up a shot? 10 selfies at 3 minutes each is 30 minutes. That is half an hour that could be spent eating or riding a ride.

3. Whose space are you entering with your selfie stick? I ducked because a selfie stick came swinging at my head. People see your body not the selfie stick!!! People will pivot as they try for the perfect, ultimate, award winning shot. As they pivot they swing that selfie stick without seeing objects, horses, and people around them.

4. ROAD HOG! I promised Tabitha to be nice, but one thing that irks me to no end, is the person who has to have that perfect shot. With or without a selfie stick they want you to stop what you are doing and not interrupt their shot. All guests must go around the photo shoot and must not enter the scene. It doesn’t matter that a kid has a dirty diaper, a person is sick, someone has a fastpass, or a cast member is trying to get to work. STOP!! Photo shoot in progress so everyone walk around or wait. Worst is when photo shoots are in narrow paths and everyone is forced to walk single file. Bridge photo shoots are the worst as they require everyone on the bridge to stop.

5. Down in front, please! For us in scooters, the kids, and many other guests, it is hard to see over your selfie stick and camera. All of my parade shots are from my chest area. I hold my camera chest high so as not to interupt everyone. My images are not perfect but they invoke memories. It is not fair for guests at a parade to suddenly get whacked by a selfie stick.

6. Failure of guests to act in a civil and fair manner will end up with rules. We have gates on rides and yellow lines because of guests jumping into ride vehicles before the current guest exit the vehicle. Because of careless parents we are now asked to put kids on the inside of the ride vehicle. People parked at resorts to avoid paying parking so now resorts are very strict on who parks at their resorts. Selfie stick users need to be careful or there could be tighter rules.

7. There are cast members and guests who will gladly take your picture. The photographers in the parks will take your picture. Have a friend stand on a bridge and wait to snap pictures of you on rides.

Try to remember that you are sharing a public area with disabled guests, short people, kids, and a wide variety of people who cannot see well. Try to remember that instead of doing selfies you can savor moments with your group. It was a fun tool until people got hurt. Look around you and see what you paid to visit. I regret that in 1998 I spent too much time on camcorder time instead of savoring the experience.


Jun 05

Great Movie Ride Changes and Rebel Hangar Review

Laurie brings us her take on the changes at The Great Movie Ride along with her review of the Rebel Hangar.

The biggest changes are the opening and closing montages. I was not able to stay long enough to see all of the opening sequence in the waiting area but you can find online, the opening montage. The closing montage was too fast for me as I prefer to savor the clips and remember those moments. GOOD MORNING VIETNAM has remained as are some of the best ones from the past. Added were Frozen, Rapunzel, Bruce and Nemo from Finding Nemo, and the Incredibles as well as modern classics like new scenes Star Wars, Pirates of the Caribbean, Guardians of the Galaxy. As before, it is fast moving, and best seen on YouTube. The montage now focuses on themes and genres, as well as, gets rid of some violent images like the chariot crash. Robert Osborne does a fine job narrating.

TCM is the new sponsor so you will find “The Great Movie Ride Presented by TCM” on posters that replaced most of the old posters such as Titanic. A new tag is “presented by TCM” that can be found at the entrance marquee, the marquee at the loading area, and on the Mary Poppins display. Some artifacts have been replaced with new artifacts. Outside is a “photo op” area that few know exists, few actually use it as a photo opportunity (photo op), and many use as a shelter in the time of storms.

WARNING: read and study BEFORE you go to the park. I told a group that the nearest food open at 9 pm might be at Sunset Boulevard. I had left the Rebel Hangar after closing into a downpour. Depending on the day you go you might find certain restaurants closing early, paths blocked because of fireworks, and rides closing before the park closes. This advice applies to all areas of WDW, Seaworld, Universal Studios, and Legoland. Always have plans in case something is missed or is closed. I met a family sitting in a photo op area and started talking with them. Finally, I told them that they might as well do Toy Story Mania and wait in a dry warm room instead of sitting out there doing nothing.


Rebel hangar9Reservations are recommended. We arrived late so were able to be seated immediately. I was not overwhelmed with the theme and decor. Maybe if I had time to walk around I might have seen something awesome. There are guests who are not dining that wander the halls looking at the decor and getting pictures with the storm troopers. Rebel hangar4The chef came out immediately and discussed my dinner while the waitress brought out the blue milk. First sip was milk, the more of a Nestles Quik type of drink, then raspberry. It was not a pleasant drink. Being soy and gluten free he offered me the salad, French fries, pork wings, sliders, and the skewers.

My friend can eat almost anything thankfully. I shared with him the Pilot’s Pommes Frites which are almost shoestring fries, minced then roasted garlic, parsley, and tiny shards of parmesan cheese. There is enough for two or three people. You can smell the garlic as you dig into the best French Fries I have had in a long time. Rebel hangar6My friend loved the Lightsaber Bites which are corn dogs that use knockwurst instead of hot dogs. I tasted the honey-mustard sauce and agreed with my friend that a corn dog needs yellow mustard or Gulden’s mustard. This came with the house made chips. I had the sliders on gluten free buns. It is called The Sith and The Jedi with “The Sith” being a delicious barbecue-braised brisket with cole slaw and “The Jedi” being barbecued pulled chicken with arugula. Mine came with house chips which we both agree are awesome and full of flavor. Rebel hangar7I was full from the fries but like a kid he gleefully dived into the Mini Darth Vader (chocolate-peanut butter), Mini Yoda (chocolate-hazelnut), and Mini Jabba the Hutt (salted caramel latte) served in a Han Solo Carbonite Souvenir Box. Overall the chefs are very good at using spices and herbs to season the chips and sliders well. Everything we tried was flavorful and I think the sliders were as good at the ones at the Brown Derby Lounge.

The only issue for me was the draft where we sat. Some guests may find the place to noisy and there are so many people going in and out that it can get on one’s nerves. Overall the seating and lighting are good and disabled guests should not have trouble getting around. Remember to use the main entrance as there are stairs in certain areas. It was well worth the experience and the prices are reasonable. $5.49 for a large order of fries that would fill me up. They offer beer, wine, specialty drinks, and the usual nonalcoholic beverages. The fries can be made vegan if they hold the cheese. The salad can be made vegan as well as one other dish. Vegetarians can find many dishes here that are vegetarian or can be altered to be vegetarian. The chef tried hard to meet my diet and seemed very knowing about the food he offered. I HAVE FRIES! If I won the lottery I would be there every night for the fries. They have family friendly dining as well as a nice place for adults to hang out with a few drinks with friends. Tonight it was 4 thumbs up!

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