Wishes And Pixie Dust

Follow the journey of a Wisconsin family of 4 who relocated to the Walt Disney World area in July 2011


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Christmas Day Services at the Contemporary Resort at Walt Disney World

The Contemporary Resort will be holding Christmas Day religious services in the Fantasia Ballroom. Catholic Mass will be held at 8:00am and 10:30am and there will be a Protestant Service at 9:15am.

Contemporary Resort parking will be restricted so if staying at a monorail resort you will want to take the monorail or use boat service. If staying at any other Disney resort, you can take transportation to the Magic Kingdom and then take the monorail, bus, boat or use the walkway to the Contemporary. Monorail and boat transportation begins at 7:00am.

Fantasia


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Walt Disney World Park Closure Guide

WDW_Closed

So, the Park Is Closing?

As many who are visiting Walt Disney World (WDW) this week and next will learn, the Disney Parks can close when busy.  Maybe you asked what all the close phases are you’ve heard about.  Here’s a little bit of help for you if you are visiting during a busy period.

The first type of closing is when any Park’s parking lots reach capacity and the lots are closed for any further parking.  In these cases Disney will direct you to alternate means of parking.  For example, this happens quite often at Hollywood Studios (DHS) during Star Wars Weekends.  For those lot closings, you’ll be directed to the Epcot parking lots where you can then board the extra buses that Disney provides to transport Guests from Epcot to DHS.

The next series of closings are the ‘mysterious’ phased closings.  Disney doesn’t publish an ‘official’ guide to what each Phase refers to, but this is a good guide based on past experiences.  One important thing to keep in mind is that these phases are flexible and can change up or down or even be cancelled altogether as a day progresses and people arrive and leave.

Phase A Closures: Guests without tickets and those with base one-day, one-park tickets as well as Cast Members are turned away at the parking lot entrance booths.  In these cases, you will need to change your plans and try a different Park for that day. Phase A allows admission for the following:

  • WDW Resort Guests (Including guests from Hotel Plaza Boulevard hotels arriving by bus, Golden Oak residents and registered Guests of Golden Oak residents)
  • WDW Premier Passport, Annual & Premium Passholders
  • Guests with Park Hopper tickets re-entering or crossing over from another WDW Theme Park
  • Guests with Memory Maker
  • Guests with dining reservations
  • Magic Kingdom Guests with reservations for Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, Harmony Barber Shop or The Pirates League (if applicable).

Phase B Closures: Guests without tickets, those with base one-day, one-park tickets and Guests with Park Hopper tickets re-entering or crossing over from another WDW Theme Park as well as Cast Members are turned away at the parking lot entrance booths.  In these cases, you will need to change your plans and try a different Park for that day. Phase B allows admission for the following:

  • WDW Resort Guests (Including guests from Hotel Plaza Boulevard hotels arriving by bus, Golden Oak residents and registered Guests of Golden Oak residents)
  • WDW Premier Passport, Annual & Premium Passholders
  • Guests with Memory Maker
  • Guests with dining reservations
  • Magic Kingdom Guests with reservations for Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, Harmony Barber Shop or The Pirates League (if applicable).

In these cases be prepared to show your resort key or annual pass or, even better, take Disney transportation from your resort.  If you have an ADR or appointment, please make sure to allow extra time to arrive for your reserved time.

Phase C Closures: Only these guests will be allowed admission: Guests staying at a Disney Resort, the Swan and Dolphin or arriving by bus from the ‘Downtown Disney Hotels’ with a valid room key, Annual Passholders and guests with ADRs or appointments (the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique or Pirates League) in the Park.  In these cases be prepared to show your resort key or annual pass or take Disney transportation from your resort.  If you have an ADR or appointment, please make sure to allow extra time to arrive for your reserved time.

Phase D Closures: No guests are allowed in and the Park is completely closed to new arrivals.  If you have an ADR or appointment and you have any warning or thought that a Phase D closing will occur you will want to get to the Park as early as possible or change your reservation if possible or you may miss by being denied admission.

Also, if you are visiting during a very busy period (such as the current Holiday weeks) and want to experience a particular event (such as New Year’s Eve fireworks for example), it is best to plan to arrive as early in the day as you can to ensure you are able to be admitted.

I hope this helps you plan your next visit during a busy period.


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Get Extra Magic in Your Photopass Shots with Magic Shots

If you’re looking to add a little fun and magic to your Disney vacation photos, be sure to take advantage of the Magic Shots that are available from Disney’s PhotoPass Photographers.  Magic Shots are photos where special effects are added after a photo has been taken.

Most shots are only available in select locations and Magic Shots require that the PhotoPass Photographer has been trained to do that particular shot.  For this reason, Magic Shots may not always be available where listed below; this depends on the photographer and even the time of day.  Also PhotoPass Photographers who use tripods typically do not do any Magic Shots.  When in doubt, just ask!

Here are the locations of many of the available Magic Shots you’ll find in the four Parks.

Family_Castle_Tink

Captain Hook
Magic Kingdom – Occasionally available outside Pirates of the Caribbean

Ghost Hearse Driver
Magic Kingdom – Haunted Mansion – primarily during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP) but may be available during the day if a PhotoPass photographer is present

Hitchhiking Ghosts
Magic Kingdom – Liberty Belle Area – primarily during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP) but may be available during the day if a PhotoPass photographer is present

Baby Simba
Animal Kingdom – Discovery Island and in Asia by the shrine with Expedition Everest in the background

Soarin’ With Mickey, Minnie and Goofy
Epcot – between the Fountain of Nations and World Showcase

Disney ‘Mickey’ Balloons
Magic Kingdom – Main Street and the entrance to Tomorrowland
Epcot – Entrance area
Animal Kingdom – Discovery Island
Hollywood Studios – On Hollywood Boulevard

Mickey Mouse
Magic Kingdom – Benches and curbs on Main Street
Hollywood Studios – Benches on Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards

Minnie Mouse
Magic Kingdom – Benches and curbs on Main Street
Hollywood Studios – Benches on Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards

Lilo
Hollywood Studios – Benches on Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards

Stitch
Hollywood Studios – Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards
Magic Kingdom – Main Street
Epcot – Entrance area

Darth Vader
Hollywood Studios – Occasionally available outside Star Tours by the Jedi Training Academy stage

Fairy Wings (on your back)
Magic Kingdom – Adventureland by Tinkerbell Meet

Chip (from Beauty and the Beast)
Hollywood Studios – Outside the ‘Beauty and the Beast’ show
Epcot – Occasionally available in France
Magic Kingdom – Outside Gaston’s Tavern

Sebastian
Magic Kingdom – Outside ‘Under the Sea with the Little Mermaid’
Hollywood Studios – Outside the ‘Voyage of the Little Mermaid’ show

Monsters University Mike Wazowski
Hollywood Studios – Outside entrance

Anna & Elsa
Hollywood Studios – Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post and Sauna

Also a new type of photo available, where the PhotoPass Photographer will take your picture holding a large frame around you.  These are available in various areas but are usually seen in the Magic Kingdom between Casey’s and the Crystal Palace with Cinderella Castle in the background, in Epcot in the main entrance area with Spaceship Earth in the background and in Animal Kingdom in Asia by the shrine with Expedition Everest in the background.  These photos are impacted by refurb work and construction barriers, so may not always be available.

I hope that you can find some great Magic Shot opportunities on your next visit.  Also, please comment below if you know of some locations that I may have missed here.  Thank you for reading this month!


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Christmas in July Giveaway!

If you follow us on Facebook, you may have noticed that we were listening to Christmas music from the Music Choice cable channel- Christmas is our favorite holiday and loved that we could listen to it during their “Christmas in July” promotion.  July 25 is the official day of “Christmas in July”, and coincidentally, it is also the first day that we arrived in Florida!  Tomorrow marks our three year anniversary, and we decided to celebrate with a giveaway!

Last year after Christmas we were gifted with two Mickey ornaments from one of our readers, and we wanted to pass them along to you:  Magician Mickey and Mickey’s Toy Machine.

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There will be two separate winners:  the giveaway will run until July 31st; winners will be announced August 1 on this blog, and the Wishes and Pixie Dust Facebook Page.   Click on and use the Rafflecopter link below to enter.

Christmas in July Giveaway