Laurie gives us the low down on the Rock Your Disney Side. Will you be there? I may venture over there after the Star Wars event.
BE PREPARED!! Based on the Hollywood Studios villains fiasco you better be prepared for long lines, closed parking lots, long bus rides, traffic jams, detours, lack of traffic control, long lines at the gates, long ferry rides, and other difficulties. During the villains fiasco it took 2 hours to go 3 miles and I was stuck there despite repeatedly telling the driver that I needed to eat NOW. 2 hours while the guests were hungry and needing to go to the bathroom and no compensation. I was refunded by Disney for the Fantasmic event that my group was supposed to meet up with. About 20 of us missed that Fantasmic event and some did not even get into the Studios. One lady was at guest services complaining about a 5 hour trip from a Disney resort to the Studios. Be prepared for monsoons, heat, high winds, cold, and anything else that Florida can throw at you. There are few villain events, meet and greets, or parade characters in WDW or in any amusement park. People want villains and are not getting them except at Star Wars Weekends, Halloween, and a few of the weaker villains such as Lady Tremain and her daughters. The mine train ride is scheduled to open the next weekend and fastpasses were made available for the event at the Anna and Elsa meet and greet.
They will start off with a Welcome Show to open the event that will feature heroes and villains. There will be a closing special Kiss Good Night starring villains as the park closes. “Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It!” Street Party will have 3 parades that feature Disney heroes at 10 a.m. and Disney villains at 1:30 p.m. Disney will announce how to vote for who gets to be in the 5:45 p.m. parade. They also have “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade” at 12 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. and Disney’s Main Street Electrical Parade at 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. Rounding out the evening are “Wishes Nighttime Spectacular” fireworks at 9 p.m. and “Celebrate the Magic” at 8:45 p.m., 9:45 p.m., and 11:45 p.m. Those staying into the wee hours of the night can join the dance areas at Frontierland, Tomorrowland, and Cinderella’s castle. There is a pre-parade of villains before the Electric Parade.
Sleepy Hollow will offer the Poisoned Apple Waffle Sundae: waffles with stewed apple topping and whipped cream. Storybook Treats will offer the Poisoned Apple Shortcake Sundae: ice cream, yellow cake, stewed apple topping and whipped cream. Princess themed cupcakes can be found at Gaston’s Tavern while Main Street Bakery will offer Olaf, Maleficent, and Frozen themed cupcakes. Lunching Pad and Friar’s Nook will sell an Olaf souvenir cup with a special beverage. Outdoor vending carts will have pink heroes and blue villains cotton candy with a special event themed bag label. Now for the scary part, breakfast, dare I go there? Quick service restaurants will offer breakfast sandwiches, French toast sticks and bacon, breakfast flatbread, and breakfast hot dog. There will be the usual breakfast baked goods, individual boxes of cereal, yogurt, and fruit. Check the times guide for restaurant hours as finding food in the wee hours may be hard.
Characters take over the park at about 2 am including Jafar replacing Aladdin, Dr. Facilier for Tiana, and Captain Hook for Peter Pan. Anna and Elsa stay in their home at Princess Fairytale Hall while the Queens from Snow White and Sleeping Beauty take over the other half of the hall. Expect very long lines for some villains as the Hollywood Studios fiasco had 2 hour wait times to visit with one of the few character meeting areas. Keep your children and any slow moving adults in front or next to your group. The crowds can suddenly break up a group so that kids get left behind. It is very important that you take pictures of children as you leave to go to the parks just in that rare incident that you get separated. Take photos of landmarks so you will not get lost. Mark your strollers with something unique that stands out when you see a sea of strollers. Some people use online maps on their electronic devices to bookmark where they parked. The application for Legoland has a link to a map that you can bookmark your parking spot. Use paper and pencil if that is easier to right down the directions. Have a specific meeting spot not just “in front of pirates”. Disabled guests should get their DAS before the event if possible.
Guests are encouraged to wear kid friendly costumes to the event. The usual WDW rules such as visible eyes, no swords and sharp objects, no signing autographs, no implying you are the REAL Disney character, and no dragging costumes. Hours of operation for the event will take place from 6:00 AM, May 23, 2014 to 6:00 AM, May 24, 2014. Not everything will be open in the wee hours and some things will be down for refurbishment. This is not a hard ticket event so any admission will get you into this event.
REMAIN CALM! As with any holiday or packed park day you can avoid the stress and issues by having a game plan and 10 back up plans. Try to get there at 5 am. Designate one person as the schlepper who takes bags through the bag check thus freeing up everyone else to get in line. They will have guests line up at the gates and wait for admission at about 5:30 am or a few minutes after that. Watch for hidden lines and lines on the end that are shorter. Guests will plow into the front area to watch the Welcome Show or to get strollers. I doubt it but they may have the human chain again on Main Street because of Anna and Elsa. Take the train around to Frontierland or Fantasyland if it is running. The traffic will not be so bad at 5 am compared to midday as the main villain related activities will not start until after noon. Check with your resort to see what buses are running that morning. Taxis will drop you off at TTC where you take a ferry or monorail. Enter the park and stay right then head back to the light then left to the taxis and and drop off area. You can have your taxi drop you off at the Contemporary and walk to MK. The Lynx buses will not be running that early.