WDW: Day Four
Finally, the day had arrived for our first visit to one of the parks. We selected the Magic Kingdom as our starting point. The crowds were expected to be fierce today, so we took the "early magic hour" option and went to the park during the hour before general admission. We were able to hit all of the rides we really wanted to in the first hour: Dumbo (twice), It's a Small World (twice), and Peter Pan (thrice). I took my oldest to Haunted Mansion, which she was very excited to try. We barely made it through the front entrace when she started asking for the "chicken exit." As we walked back toward the group the lines were starting to get serious. Peter Pan had gone from five to ten minutes to at least thirty minutes. My oldest went with her grandparents to Mickey's Philharmagic while we took my youngest to Haunted Mansion. Not surprisingly, she just loved it. We swapped kids with the grandparents and then took Maeve on a second trip through Haunted Mansion, and then the Barnstormer coaster, while we took my oldest, the history buff, to the Hall of Presidents.
On the way back to Toontown to meeting the grandparents and youngest, Tandy and my oldest stopped at the Teacup Ride (ick!), where they had a great time. The girls then played for quite a while at Toontown in the play areas. My goodness it was hot! Before long it was time for lunch at my favorite in-park restaurant: Pooh's Crystal Palace. The food is very good and the characters come right to your table for pictures and autographs. We all had a great time enjoying not just the good, but also the respite from the heat and crowds.
When lunch ended, we split into two groups again with the grandparents going back to Adventureland and we made for the lodge to go swimming in the DVC pool and the larger lodge pool. While we swam Jim had his hair cut at the Magic Kingdom complete with fairy dust. After a nice cooldown, we went back to the Magic Kingdom to have dinner at Cosmic Rays. I thought was awful, but everyone else loved it. The four of us went on to the Race Track, something both girls had been begging for. It turned out to be just a bit too loud for them up close, but we had fun.
Right after leaving the race cars we made for Space Mountain. Tandy is a freak for this coaster so she was even more excited to finally be sharing the experience with the girls. I can take it or leave it, after all being thrown around in the dark is not all that great. Our youngest is in Tandy's camp and our oldest is more or less in my camp, but wants to feel brave. After a short wait in line, we boarded the "launch vehicle" and headed off into the twists and turns of the coaster. Behind me, our oldest squealed in abject horror the entire time. Well, sometimes squealing and other times just screaming. Somewhere up front Tandy and our youngest were laughing and raising their arms in the air. Even after leaving the coaster our oldest was shaken up, then suddenly she announced, "I loved it. Can we go again?" Weird...
A quick stop at the carousel for the horse fanatic and we were off to the lodge for bed time. It took only seconds to get the girls to bed and then Tandy and I sat on the balcony to watch the lighted boat parade go by...and so to bed.