I have thoroughly enjoyed reliving our time spent in the world of Disney. Today I’m going to continue on by recapping our day at Hollywood Studios. Get. Ready. For. Tons. Of. Pictures. I’ve only just now realized how many pictures we took with our iPhones and Photopass Plus at this one park. It’s a lot!! I believe that says something about how much fun we had on this day. As you’ve read previously, we were back at our condo by about 5 the night before so we were able to relax and get to bed early. Here’s what our schedule looked like for Hollywood Studios:Once again our day ended up quite differently. We did arrive early…probably about 8:15 or so. We parked on like the second row and got in line to enter the front gates. While we were waiting in line we see the REAL Duck Dynasty set up for pictures and autographs outside the gate!! The children and I run over and get in line to meet them while my husband keeps up with our stroller. As we get closer to the ducks he asks the people in line behind him to watch our things and he joins us for the pictures. I thought this was a perfect idea for Disney to do. It was great to get some pics and autographs before the park even opened and we hadn’t met these two yet and we REALLY wanted to!! Once our books are signed and our pictures taken it doesn’t take long for the gate to open. As soon as it opens there’s a MAD DASH to two locations. The cast members were literally yelling out, “No RUNNING!!”. It felt like Black Friday!! It was so fun!! Keith and the children ran and signed up for Jedi Training Academy. Your children MUST be present at sign up. The age range is 4-12. Lilly could have participated but the idea of Darth Vader prohibited her. While they were signing up to fight the Dark Side, I ran to grab fast passes for Toy Story AND Rockin’ Roller Coaster. I tried to grab them for Tower of Terror but wasn’t able to.
IF YOU DO NOT GET FPs FOR TOY STORY FIRST YOU MOST LIKELY WILL NOT GET TO DO IT! It was my first stop and the wait was already 72 minutes. Here’s what the wait looked like later in the day.The same goes for Jedi Training Academy. You’d better sign up first thing as it is first come first served. We signed up for an afternoon show so we would have the morning to do whatever.
After we were signed up and had our FPs we all rode Toy Story. It was so much fun!!!
After Toy Story the big kids rode Rockin’ Roller Coaster with Dad. I signed up for a rider switch here and let Keith ride with my ticket. They basically got off the ride and got right back on. They LOVED it! Another FastPass tip here is that there were 5 of us total in our group. Lilly (4 at the time) and I almost never rode the big stuff. But I still got 5 FastPasses every time so at least two could right twice.
While they were jamming with Aerosmith, Lilly and I snagged FPs for Tower of Terror and did one of our favorite things…..shopping. We met back up with them, gave them their FPs and did more shopping. This is where we messed up. I knew Sofia the first was due to appear at a certain time for a character greeting. Lilly and I could have stood in line and met with her while everybody else was riding. However, I knew both Rockin’ Roller Coaster and Tower of Terror had attraction rides and I didn’t want to miss out on those. We could have written down the picture numbers and gone back later with our Photopass card to collect them OR we had an extra card in our pocket that we could’ve linked with our account. I didn’t think of this until the end of the day so we wasted a bit of time here but it all worked out.
Once Tower of Terror was conquered, Lilly and I waited to meet Sofia and everyone else saved a spot in line for us to meet The Incredibles. They were first in line and Lilly and I made it to them just in the nick of time. Literally!! I think she was a little star struck. Sofia was the only character she met on her own.
After this, it was time to head over to the Dark Side. On our way to check in at Jedi Training (check in is 30 minutes before your scheduled show) Ruthie ran into some of her favorite men in T.V.
Andy Griffith. Bill Cosbyand Walt Disney himself.Here we are in line for Jedi Training once we’ve checked in and received our Padawan robes.
This was one of the biggest highlights of our entire trip. If we could have, I would have done this over and over and over. Something happened to us Sewells on Disney property!! We broke out of our everyday shells and just had the time of our lives in every moment. That’s me screaming like a mad woman cheering on my extremely shy child has he is on stage fighting a very intimidating Darth Vader! I NEVER thought he would do it but he DID and he LOVED it!! Only one child gets to use “the force” per show and we were tickled that it got to be him. Ruthie has a totally different style with her light saber. She fights more like, “I’ve got this. Darth Vader who??” This was also one of the best photopass photographers we encountered all week. It was obvious that he really enjoyed his job. He got awesome pictures of this moment that will help make the memory last forever. I love that he got both my babes in this one (unbeknownst to him).
After everyone trains and fights they receive a diploma ensuring them that they are indeed Jedi Knights. We expended a LOT of energy tackling the dark side so it was definitely time for some refreshment!! This was our last day and the ONLY day that we bought a snack inside the park (we normally just ate what we packed). 2 regular soft drinks, 1 soft drink in a souvenir cup and 3 popcorns ran us about $25. After our refreshment we went to watch the one thing that I really lobbied for and that was Beauty and the Beast. Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite Disney movies. I would’ve watched the show alone if I had to. I’d heard great things about it and it didn’t disappoint. It was truly fabulous! It was also starting to sprinkle a bit so this was the perfect time to be under a shelter. Afterwards we headed over to meet the crew from Wreck It Ralph. These two do not sign autograph books but they do give you a “trading card” that we put into our autograph books. I love this picture of Lilly. She’s so tiny compared to his gigantic hands.
We were also able to FINALLY catch the Disney Jr. show. A couple of shows in the middle of the day were cancelled and we thought we were going to miss it and we almost did! The line was so long that we didn’t think were were going to get in. This building holds more than you think!! We did have to sit in the back. This was great because we were able to stand up and see better but we missed out on some of the fun stuff falling from the sky like bubbles, snow and gold doubloons. But it was still super fun and Lilly especially enjoyed the show. AfterDisney jr. Live on stage Ruthie and I got in line for a lesson in animation. We waited for quite a while but we were able to sit down and we were one of the first ones in line.This was so fun to us. We both enjoy art and drawing and to be taught by a Disney cast member was a thrill.You don’t get to pick who you draw….that’s done for you. Also, there is no eraser on your pencil so you must draw lightly and be prepared to make mistakes. It’s a 20 minute class; if we all had erasers we’d be there all day. Here’s how mine turned out….and this one is Ruthie’s. I thought she did great. Especially to draw by following instructions and watching the instructor. Our pictures are now framed…..but they are still waiting to be hung. While we were drawing, Lilly was resting. By the time we got out of class, it was getting dark. We hung around and waited until it was time for the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights to begin.It was phenomenal!! After we were mesmerized by the lights we shopped around some more. We did take part of the free package pick up earlier in the day so we picked up more packages on the way out. And this is the last picture we took on our trip.We had a BLAST all week! We can’t WAIT until we can go back!! We were so sad to have to leave. I never imagined we’d have as much fun as we did. Hollywood Studios was a great park to finish out on. It was one of our favorite days!! And I’m so thankful the weather encouraged us to make this our last day. Had it been Animal Kingdom, I think it would’ve felt a bit anti-climactic.
I’ll most likely follow up this series with tips, crafts, and just overall thoughts of what we experienced during our 8 days.
See ya real soon!