Day 2 – Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Day 2 – Hollywood Studios

     We are staying so long, that we don’t feel rushed in the parks, and we are taking good breaks. We were still excited to get into our first park, and do all we could do, though. We woke up early and excitedly got ready to go to Hollywood Studios. Boy, did we have a great day. Our first stop was Daniel’s request for Star Tours. There was no line, no wait so we walked right on and did the baby swap. Daniel got to ride twice.

Disney Tip: Disney will let families with young children do a “baby swap.” We all go through the line together, but when we get to the ride, Cindy and Daniel ride while I wait with Luke. Then I hand Luke to Cindy, and I get to ride with Daniel for the next show (Daniel gets to ride twice). Baby swapping is allowed on any ride that has height requirements.

After Star Tours, we happened upon a large crowd of people gathered around Mickey’s big wizard hat in the center of the park. They were gathering for the High School Musical 2 Pep Rally. For those of you that do not know, High School Musical is already a cult-classic among preteens everywhere. It’s like Saved By the Bell with singing and dancing. Well, Daniel knows the movies just about by heart, and can tell you who each character is, and for many of them, he can tell you the actor’s name. He loved the show. At one point, the ‘wildcats’ invited the kids to come dance with them, and Daniel received instructions from one of the dancers, and she walked him back when it was over. Yeah, Daniel loved it. We have pictures:

The Playhouse Disney show was a highlight of the morning. It is, by far, the happiest we have ever seen Luke. Playhouse Disney turns some of Disney’s best characters into Sesame Street type puppets, and they put on a show. Luke loved them. He oohed, ahhed, pointed, clapped, laughed, and danced. Sometimes he did all of those at once. There were lots of lights and colors, and at one point they blew thousands of bubbles into the room. Luke reacted in the way I would have reacted if they would have dropped gold from the ceiling. He was thrilled. We’ve been chasing bubbles in the backyard a lot lately. Daniel enjoyed it, too, but this was definitely Luke’s attraction.

The Muppet 3D movie was good. At first, the 3D effects weren’t working. One of the projectors must have been out. Cindy and I didn’t know that at first, and both of us kept complaining about our glasses not working. It was kind of funny to realize that everyone in the theater was having the same problem. Luke wouldn’t have known, though. He refused to wear glasses. He did laugh pretty hard when Fozzie bear squirted the audience, though.

We ate lunch and realized that Daniel was over stimulated. So, we took a break, went back to the hotel for a little nap. Great decision. We hit the park again around 3:00 and picked up where we left off. Here are pictures of Luke warming up to the hotel room, and Daniel taking a much needed break.

Daniel has been into Indiana Jones lately. This is mostly because of the marketing for the new movie. I did sit down and watch some of the Raiders of the Lost Ark the other day. I’m not sure how much he saw of it, though. He remembered the Indian Jones Stunt Spectacular from our Disney trip last year, and he really wanted to see it again. Well, this time it was a little different for him, because his dad was part of the show! At the very beginning, they ask for volunteers to be extras during the show. Back when Cindy and I were dating, I was chosen as an extra, but I thought it would score some “cool dad” points if I did it again for Daniel. So, when they asked for volunteers, I jumped up and acted like a moron, and was the first one selected (ok, no cool dad points there, but sometimes you have to spend points to make them). Pictures were hard to take during the action, but here are some pictures of me standing around.

Disney Tip: There is an art to being selected as an extra to the stunt show, or any other Disney attraction that requests volunteers. They look for someone with energy. Just raising your hand isn’t going to cut it. They look for someone with a big smile on their face. They want happy energy. Show them happy energy, and you improve your chances greatly. You have to be careful not to go over the top, though. If they think you are drunk (albeit a happy drunk) they won’t take you. Other than that, you just need a little luck.

Being an extra is a lot of fun. You get to get into costume (a sheet with Velcro and a cool turban), go down on stage, meet the cast, and really see how it’s all done. They had us pretend to shop and then root on Indiana as he fought his way through the bad guy acrobats. It put us right up there with all the action. The fire from the exploding jeep is really hot. Anyway, Daniel thought that it was really cool. It has had a slightly unintended effect, though. The scenes that I was on stage for were fist/sword fighting scenes. Daniel has decided that I’m an expert on fake fighting now, and he constantly wants to ‘play Indiana Jones.’

We finished up our day at the park with the Beauty and the Beast Show (which Luke really liked), I went on the Rockin Roller Coaster (0-60 in 2.8 seconds and corkscrews). Daniel played on the Honey I Shrunk the Kids Playground, and we went on the Great Movie Ride.

We ate a late dinner at Chef Mickey’s. Chef Mickey’s is in the Contemporary resort just outside the Magic Kingdom. The Contemporary is the hotel that has the monorail running straight through it. Luke loves monorails. Every time he sees one, he waves at it. It is very cute. Anyway, at Chef Mickey’s, we met Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto, and Goofy. Each one came by our table. Daniel really got along with the characters. Luke also loved the characters. He would ooh at them, point, and clap. That is, until they came within arm’s reach. Then his little chin would start to quiver, and boo-hoos would start. We have quite a few good Chef Mickey pictures (click here).

We had a great dinner, and made it back to the hotel by 10. Luke passed out and made no complaints about the pack-n-play. I took Daniel down to the pool for a quick dip, and then we all were soon fast asleep.

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