Obrins At WDW October 2002 

First Time List

Those of us who are fans of Walt Disney World have all heard this same question:

“Don’t you get tired of seeing the same things over and over again?  Haven’t you seen everything already?” 

To answer that question, I’ve started the habit of keeping a list each trip of things, great and small, that we have done for the first time.  So, here is the list of things that we have done for the first time ever on this trip:

1.    Swimming at the Polynesian volcano.  We actually stayed at the Polynesian right after the volcano pool was completed.  But, cool weather and a nasty infection kept us from being able to enjoy it on that trip.  But, thanks to pool hopping privileges at

DVC, we were able to make up for that on this trip.  The Poly pool is a lot of fun, with the smoking landmark, the waterfall, the slope up to the beach, and the slide.  The three of us had a great time here, and we may pool hop here again (it is convenient if you have pool hopping privileges, and are on your way to the Magic Kingdom for the evening.

2.    Swimming at the Boardwalk.  This was a kick also.  Nick enjoyed the roller coaster/clown face slide, and Debbie and I had a nice time just kind of splashing around in this pool.  The pool side refreshments were good, if a little pricey.  This was another fun and relaxing time, and we got a good look at the back of the Boardwalk Hotel.

3.    Renting a surrey bike and seeing the Boardwalk area.  Although there are surreys for rent all over the property, this was the the first time that we tried this out.  This thing was a lot of fun, not too difficult to pedal, but rather more difficult to steer.  It was a blast cruising around the Boardwalk, and getting a better look at the area than we’ve ever had before.  Both the surrey and the Boardwalk were a great first time kick.

4.    First time through the International Gateway to Epcot.  We’ve been to the Boardwalk area before, but haven’t been through to Epcot.  It’s a fun little change of pace coming and going this way.

5.      Stars and motor cars parade.  They do frequently cycle their parades, and we hadn’t seen  
this one.  It was a fun parade, good costumes, good little bit of acting, imaginative floats.

6.    Share a dream come true parade.   This was another creative parade.  The floats here were very creative and elaborate.  I got a huge kick out of the snow globe theme.  The costuming was good as well, and there were even some clever little dance segments. 

7.    Lunch at Casey’s Corner.  There are, of course, a hundred places to eat at Walt Disney World, and we enjoy trying out one that is new for us.  Casey’s is a fun little place, with the baseball and hot dogs theme.  Good old Americana at the end of Main Street.  I wouldn’t mind stopping by there again.
8.    Columbia Harbor House.  Like Casey’s, this is just a little, simple, quick spot to eat.  But, the food was tasty, and the atmosphere (the nautical colonial theme) is very enjoyable.  Somehow, I thought this was a table service restaurant.  But, this will be a fun place to stop when we need another quick bite.

9.    Garden Grill.   Easily the star of our “new places to eat” list.  We were very pleasantly surprised at the quality of food, the great characters, the theming, and everything else about this restaurant.  Characters, great food, themeing, even a “slow ride”.   The best of Disney, all rolled into one.  This is a great place, there is no doubt we’ll be back here again.

10.    Creme breulla at Kona Cafe.  We’ve eaten at the Kona before.  So, this is worth mentioning for
just a single dish?  Have you had the creme breulla here?  This stuff is amazing.  Crispy top, creamy custard, and the bananas give it an extra kick.

11.    International Food and Wine Festival.   Keeping on the subject of first time eats, this was the first time that we made it to the International Food and Wine Festival.  It was kind of interesting, but I wouldn’t plan a trip around being there for this.  On the other hand, being there in October has other advantages.

12.    MNSSHP.  This was our first time here in October, and our first time for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party.  This event, all things considered was worth the extra price, and I may

consider another October trip to catch this event again.  There were many little things that made this first time event special for us.

a)    E ticket Night.  This was our first time at an E ticket night of any type, and this is pretty cool.  It was fun being able to do rides quickly that you normally have to wait or Fast Pass for.

b)    Decorations.  The extra park decorations were cool, especially since they were put out just for this party.  A little spooky fun celebrating one of my favorite holidays.  And the extra lighting effects over at the Haunted Mansion enhanced what is always one of the best rides on property.
c)    Trick or treat.  I may have to agree with other folks who said that the trick or treat was a bit skimpy at this event.  But, it was a fun little addition to the night, and Nick was still interested in it.

d)    Golden Horseshoe.  You know, we have never been to the Golden Horseshoe at all before this.  The show here was fun, and we still have a “first time” to pick up when we stop by for their regular show.  This place was an unexpected treat.

e)    Music and tales.  The Halloween story telling over in Adventureland was kind of fun, but the Halloween DJ on the stage in Tomorrowland was very cool.
 f)    Parade.  Of all the new parades we saw this trip, this one wins hands down.  From the Headless Horseman galloping down the street to start the parade, to a float and dance number dedicated to the Haunted Mansion, to Hades and Megara dominating the street, to the barnyard finale, this parade is one great act after another.  I loved this thing.

13.    Universal Studios Islands of Adventure and Halloween Horror Nights.  This is a category in itself, isn’t it?  We had never been to Universal Studios Florida, and the IOA is very different than the movie park that we have been to in California.  Plus, we actually did the Halloween party here as well.  So, I could fill a page with stuff we had never before done at Universal.  But, here are some things that are worth mentioning.
a)    The Spiderman ride.  This ride is the one thing at Universal that is, without a doubt, on a par with the rides and attractions at Disney.  This thing is great.  The motion simulation, the 3D, the live effects, everything so well integrated and keeping with a story that was a big part in my youth.  This ride is terrific.

b)    Poseidon’s Fury.  I really liked this show.  The water curtains, the walk through of very interesting sets, the atmosphere that is kept throughout, make this a fun, practically Disney class attraction.

c)    Bill and Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure.  Here was a stage show that was so busy you couldn’t even tape it.  What a great pop cultural stew.    There were appearances by Bill and Ted,

Doctor Evil, Minnie Me, Fat Bastard Elvis, Selena (from Men In Black) Will Smith (from both MIB and Ali), Darth Vader, Martha Stewart, the Osbournes, the Scooby Doo gang, the Power Puff Girls, Austin Powers, Sexy Cleopatra, Anna Nicole, Spiderman, the Green Goblin, fireworks, dancing, and some pretty good music.   This was fun.

d)    Jurassic Park.  The ride, specifically, is really very good.   But, the dinosaurs in Epcot are still better.

e)    The foam in Toon Landing at night.  That was fun, huh?

So, there you have it.  I could go on even more about Universal and a couple of other things.    There is
always something new to do at the World, especially if you stretch it out to include the other activities available in Orlando.

What a great place, what a great time we had.  How soon before we go back?

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