Flower & Garden Festival 2007
Flower & Garden Festival
Let me tell you about our fabulously fun day at the Flower & Garden Festival yesterday.
Instead of taking the usual left behind Mickey’s Toon Town, leading us past the Contemporary, we chose to turn right, curious to see where that road led. And sure enough, we found ourselves driving past the Grand Floridian – what glorious grounds – and we noticed a new place to park for when we just want to drop in on Mizner’s Lounge – our favorite lounge on-property. We were then led past the AAA Car Care Center, and the third Hess station. We stopped to fill up our tank and kept driving on the other side of the MK entrance on our way to Fantasia Gardens, where we planned to park and walk to the International Gateway to check out this year’s Flower & Garden Festival.
But when we pulled into the parking lot, a CM with a clipboard was stopping each car. When it was our turn, we told her we planned to play mini-golf. She said, “Fabulous” and told us about an event taking place at one of the pavilions. Feeling sheepish that we really hadn’t planned on playing mini-golf, we found ourselves wanting to make good on our word so we decided to play a round.
We love mini-golf and have been intending to play here for years and now we were finally motivated enough to do so. There was about a 10-minute wait to get started and we were concerned it would be a slow go, with back-ups at each hole, but once we got started, it all went rather smoothly with few back-ups. The dad in front of us with his 2 boys was great – he let the boys try their hand at it, but didn’t hold us up unnecessarily. He kept apologizing but we reassured him there was no rush – we were all out having a fun day.
BTW, we must say we love special events at Disney. When the CM said, “Fabulous,” it reminded us of our Sweet Sunday events during the Food & Wine Festival. The woman hosting those events – her name escapes me – uses the word “Fabulous” alot and she is, simply, “Fabulous.” This reminds us of the special invitation we were given to have “Tea with the Artists” during Flower & Garden at Rose & Crown, as part of the Disney Dining Card. Very tempted to do so but don’t think the schedule will work for us.
Anyway, we had a blast playing mini-golf and I even made under-par – hadn’t played since we lived in California. Hot and tired but still motivated to head over to Epcot, we grabbed a Mickey bar to cool us off on the walk past the Swan & Dolphin. Once there, we decided to jump on one of the Friendship boats. During the cooler weather and in the evenings, we have no problem walking all over this area but the temps were heading toward 90 and we decided to save some energy. Were we glad we did. After stopping at the Boardwalk, and the Yacht Club, we arrived at the International Gateway. But it was a beautiful day for boating and we enjoyed our “ride.”
We originally had made an ADR for San Angel Inn but had already decided against it when we chose to play mini-golf. We turned left, past the UK, enjoying the many Flower & Garden topiaries – like Tigger, Pooh, Piglet, and Rabbit, and headed toward Mexico to enjoy an alfresco lunch of tacos, nachos, and a margarita at the Cantina de San Angel, overlooking the lagoon. After lunch, we headed inside Mexico to ride the new Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros replacing El Rio del Tiempo. We were worried what changes might have taken place just because we’re so nostalgic about this pavilion and everything about it – San Angel was always our first meal whenever we flew in from out-of-state. It signified the, “Ah, we’re finally here” moment. Without giving anything away, we must say we enjoyed the updated ride and it was a nice change.
Then we headed over to the Festival Center taking place for the first time in the Odyssey, where the Sweet Sunday event takes place. On the way back, we stopped to take a photo of the Pirate Topiaries and noticed the soundtrack to Pirates of the Caribbean. “Yo, ho, yo, ho, a pirate’s life for me.” How cool is that – our favorite song from our favorite ride at our favorite park – Pirates of World Showcase. We took pics of all the characters dressed up as pirates – Mickey & Minnie with a cool pirate flag, Goofy, and Pluto with Donald Duck. Unfortunately, the M&M pic came out too dark, and I’m posing with the Pluto and Donald pic but I’m standing in front of Pluto and it looks like he’s licking my head. 🙂 Goofy came out the best so Goofy it is.
We didn’t see anything we had to buy this year so we headed back to the Friendship Boats to take us back to the Swolphin, on to our car, and back home. It was quite hot out and, if it keeps this up, we probably won’t want to do many more, if any, daytime events at the parks until Food & Wine in October. But last night a big storm came in and it’ll storm most of today and be cooler tomorrow. So, we’re not in the summer heat yet. But it is a warning that it’s coming.