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Christmas at Walt Disney World

Christmas at Walt Disney World

Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Jock Lindsey's Hangar Bar At Disney Springs

NOTE:  A guest writer, the husband, wrote the majority of this post!

December 31 of 2017, the Williams Family made a historic sojourn to Jock Lindsey's HANGER bar, located at Disney Springs. For the Boy and I this has been on our Disney Bucket List place to visit. My lovely Wife with her near infinite resources made it happen. Actually we had plenty of time to use before our dinner at the Boathouse.
Excuse me, I hear a couple of readers wondering what the significance of the HANGER Bar is to the boy and I.  Jock Lindsey is the pilot who whisked Indiana Jones to safety in the beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark. One of our favorite movies. Even though Jock has less than a minute of screen time an important fact is revealed about Indy. As Jock and Indy are flying off our rough and tough archaeologist finds he is sharing his seat with Jock's pet boa constrictor Reggie. Indiana Jones hates snakes and this becomes evident in all his films.

Click here to see the 2 minute clip of the movie that includes Jock and Reggie!
The origin of the HANGER Bar comes from some Disney Imagineers. They expanded the role and history of Jock. At some point in Jock's life he quit being a pilot and converted his hanger into a bar. The walls inside adorn Jock's history and adventures. You see what Jock's life was like along with various archeological specimens brought in by you know who. Look around and you may see a certain gold idol from Peru.

A scavenged diving bell turns into a private booth for guests.

The actual bar is small but very well stocked. Plenty of tables and booths. When business booms there is an overflow area outside overlooking the water. The structure is a quaint homage to blue collar adventurers of the 30s and 40s.

The menu is designed to look like a pilot's log book with stories and pictures of Jock's adventures.  Guest can select from the appetizers and beverages--which are the only things Jock's sells.

Here's the "Cool-Headed Money"--the wife's beverage.

The boy had the "antidote" from this menu page.

Check out the propeller used as a ceiling fan.  Did you know Reggie's cage is in the rafters, too?  Only dedicated Indian Jones fans will know who Reggie is.

Cool-headed Monkey

Beverage 1

The Wife and I had some adult beverages. I had a beer and Reggie's Revenge. A liquor whiskey combo with lime juice. The Wife had a rum concoction called Chilled Monkey Brain. The Boy, a teenager, had  "the antidote"--a non-adult beverage.. Jock's has a nice selection of appetizers. I split a mountain of cheesy beef nachos with the Wife and the Boy ate some burger sliders.
The boy's sliders

Beverage 2

The boy and I made it outside to check out the deck and found a two-way radio.  He had a conversation with someone in Tibet.

Jock Lindsey's HANGER Bar may not be everyone's cup of tea but it is definitely my glass of frosty brew. The Williams Family shall return to the HANGER Bar.
I'm taking over from here . . 

The Hangar Bar does not have an age limit to be inside, at least while we were there which was late in the afternoon.  Obviously, only those of age can order/consume the adult beverages.  Anyone is welcome to order food and there were fun non-adult beverages on the menu.  Prices were a little inflated.  We paid $65 for three drinks and two appetizers and with the tip, we were closer to $80.  Compare that to a dinner at The Boathouse with three entrees and one appetizer for $100 including tip.

Hours vary.  The day we were there, it opened at 3:00 pm, but some days it opens at noon.  Check MyDisneyExperience or the Walt Disney World website to confirm the hours.

There is no live entertainment due to space.  At the same time, there's a great location just outside the Hangar Bar for live entertainment and there was a group playing the night we were there.

The Landing boat dock is right beside Jock's, too.  So if you are on the West Side or Marketplace and want to visit Jock's, taking the boat launch is an option.  After our dinner at The Boathouse, not too far from Jock's, we used the boat to get us to the West Side as the pier was right in from of LaNouba's theater location, which was our destination.

Bathrooms are located right inside Jock's, just to the right.  Be SURE to check them out as the theming is incredible!

Click here to go to the official Jock Lindsey's Hangar Bar site.

Monday, January 15, 2018

The Thinking Behind The Wardrobe Selections For Walt Disney World

Packing for a Walt Disney World vacation is no easy task.  There are books/sites with packing lists, reminders, even Disney sends emails to future guests about what to remember.

For us, I make a new packing list every time.  Writing it all down, helps me think about and picture items.  We also have some things perpetually packed, such as the park bag.  But then there are the wardrobe selections.

Let me begin with it is evident that our family tradition is to dress in matching shirts each day of our vacation.  This does make packing somewhat easier after shirts are chosen.  But how to chose which shirt sets AND what day during our vacation will we wear them?

A consideration for wardrobe selection, after weather of course, is what shirts go with certain parks.  We have worn our Zootopia shirts to Animal Kingdom before, something we also try to avoid--repeating shirts at the same park--but the them of the shirts just fits with this park.  Cast Members make many comments and we get asked where we got them.  Answer:  DisneyStore.com right when the movie came out and the shirts were a limited edition.  We haven't seen them since.  If Zooptopia characters were added to Animal Kingdom, wearing these shirts to meet them would be an added bonus!

Speaking of having wardrobe selections to match characters, we had great fun wearing our Star Wars Christmas sweaters on Christmas Day to Disney's Hollywood Studios to meet Star Wars characters.  Chewbacca wanted one in his size!

Since we would be at Walt Disney World on Christmas Eve and the day before that, we decided that some holiday shirts were needed.  Santa and Mrs. Claus got a kick out of our "I Tried" shirts.
Santa was not Grumpy but he did ask about our shirts.

Often, characters recognize our wardrobe selections and make comments--even those characters that cannot talk.  These Olaf sweaters were worn on Christmas Eve Day with our "I Tried" t-shirts underneath.  It was nice to have a warm layer during the cold morning and then be able to take off our sweaters and then put them back on in the cooler evening.  Where do the sweaters go when we aren't wearing them in the park?  In the park backpack.

Guests can find Olaf at Disney's Hollywood Studios at Character Spotlight.  Give him a warm hug--he likes those!

While Olaf is at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Anna and Elsa from FROZEN can be found in EPCOT at their Somerhaus in the Norway Pavilion in World Showcase, not far from their new ride.  Both Anna and Elsa appreciated our Olaf sweaters.

Note:  It's easy for guests to travel back and forth from Disney's Hollywood Studios and EPCOT using the boat launch from the front of Disney's Hollywood Studios and EPCOT's International Gateway.  The trip takes about 25 minutes as the launch makes three stops at resorts.  The ride is a great way to rest, re-charge, and take a break from the parks.

At EPCOT's Character Spot, we met the mouse himself, Mickey Mouse and took the pose of him from our shirts.
On another day at Disney's Hollywood Studios, we wore our Carsland shirts from Disneyland.  Reason?  I knew we would be meeting Cruz Ramirez a character from Cars 3.  As a note, other guests and Cast Members inquired about our Carsland shirts.
Since the boy's favorite character is Stitch, we have at least one set of Stitch shirts.  We wore them to meet Stitch at 'Ohana's on another trip, but this trip, we wore the shirts to Disney Springs.

While at Disney Springs, we enjoyed the Christmas Tree Trail, where each tree has a different Disney theme.  We found the Stitch tree AND a Disney Photopass Photographer who was taking photos along the trail.  Voila!  Pictures of all us in front of Stitch's tree wearing Stitch shirts.

Yes, I do have these types of experiences and photo opportunities in mind while planning and packing.  Although the Stitch tree with the Stitch shirts was a bonus!

We see various versions of our strategy while on vacation such as girls changing into Princess dresses to eat or before a character meet and greet or boys wearing Buzz and Woody attire prior to meeting the Toy Story friends.

For anyone thinking that making wardrobe selections specific to parks or characters might be uncomfortable/embarassing for adults or older children, let me ease your worry right now.  The boy continues to be excited about our family's tradition, even making wardrobe suggestions.  And, DisneyBournding, where folks wear clothing in colors or designs that are a tribute to their favorite Disney character is all a rage.  This is Disney folks.  We come to play and have fun!

I have written about this before with another post:  How Do We Decide What Matching Shirt Sets to Wear?
It's a fun post and contains photos and shirt sets from a few years ago.  My, how the boy has grown!

And, here's another post:  Do You Wear Shirts to Match the Characters You Meet?
Again, more fun pics of the boy and the family!

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Why "Double Dips" Are Our Favorites!

Disney Cruise Line offers itineraries of various lengths and sailings throughout the world--Alaska, Mediterranean, Northern Europe, Hawaii, Southern Caribbean, along with Bahamian and Caribbean stops.  Currently there are 4 ships is the Disney Cruise Line fleet.  I say currently, as at least 2 more ships are scheduled to be built and join the fleet in 2021 and 2022.  Two ships are larger--Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy while two classic ships--Disney Magic and Disney Wonder--have two decks less in height and are a bit shorter in length.

Having sailed on all four ships and itineraries on the West Coast, Caribbean, and The Bahamas, I can say that our favorite itineraries include two stops at Disney Cruise Line's private island in the The Bahamas, Castaway Cay.  Here's why:

More days in paradise!  For us, Castaway Cay is paradise!  Beautiful, pristine, tropical paradise. It is feast for the senses.  The only way to get to be on Castaway Cay is to be a guest on a Disney ship that makes a stop there--unless you are a Cast Member that works on Castaway Cay.

Castaway Cay is the best "port."  Disney Cruise Line planned for the last stop in each of its Caribbean and Bahamian itineraries to be Castaway Cay so that guests have the "quintessential" beach experience.

Are there beach experiences as possible port adventures throughout the cruise?  Yes.  And at the same time, those experiences sometimes require traveling long distances from the ship, purchasing food out of pocket, dealing with crowds and vendors, and even having a cost associated with the experience.

Castaway Cay is a part of the cruise--it's included--as is your lunch!  There can be crowds on Castaway Cay, but they are manageable and no larger than the number of people on the ship.  And, no vendors!

Click here for our top 10 reasons we love Castaway Cay!

There's plenty to do on Castaway Cay.  Want to meet Disney characters?  You can find them on the island.  Riding bicycles, snorkeling, parasailing, speed boat, and fishing.  Almost anything having to do with tropical waters can be found on the island.  You will not be bored!

Two days on Castaway Cay gives us more time to explore the island and find beaches and lookout towers.

And because there are two days on the island, it makes it easier for us to decide what we want to do.  There are so many options that choosing can be difficult.  With two days on Castaway Cay we can combine relaxation with activities.

There are also activities for kids of all ages on the island.  Having two days at Castaway Cay allows us to combine family time with time for the boy to be with his new friends and enjoy adventures just for kids his age.  There's a great "teens only" adventure that is available on the second stop at Castaway Cay.

It's hard to leave Castaway Cay.  Knowing we'll be returning makes it easier.  What's interesting is that I have had more conversations with guests about rebooking on board while at Castaway Cay.  Seems this bit of paradise gets guests thinking about how they might return!