Monday, April 25, 2011

Hollywood Studios

After coming back from Epcot/Disney last night and all of us falling asleep completely exhausted, it was nice to know we didn't have to wake up so early today to head out to our 3rd theme park - Hollywood Studios. We finally got hip to the fact that we couldn't get in early (since we weren't staying on Disney property), so we took our time getting ready, having some breakfast and heading on over. We did make sure though that we were there earlier than normal park hours so we could be one of the first in those lines. We had a very important mission to get to! Besides being super excited to visit the Harry Potter ride, the kids were also very much looking forward to being able to train as a Jedi. As part of their StarWars section of the park, they also do a 'Jedi Training' for the kids. You know my boys were all over that (oh, who am I kidding? I was all over that!) and once those gates opened, it was a mad dash to get over to where we needed to sign up at. One of the reasons for the mad dash was that they only allowed a certain number of kids to participate in this. What I was unsure of at the time, was how many times a day did they do this. I had read online in various websites that said the sooner you get there the better chance your kid has to be signed up. I didn't want to take any chances. So instead of taking in the sights of first entering the park, we hauled tail to where we needed to go.  Thankfully, we were there in plenty of time and the kids were able to sign up for the 11AM training session.

Once that mission was accomplished, we had some time to spend before we needed to be back for that, so we slowly made our way back to the front of the park to see what we missed on the rush in.

The view down main street...

Here's part of the Ewok village that we needed to go through to get to the sign up...



After we signed the kids up, there was a speeder bike picture opportunity. Seeing as we're all StarWars geeks, we all hopped on for our turn to get a picture taken.






I love this AT-AT! Think housing would allow one in our back yard?

We then made our way to the other side of the park that housed the Tower of Terror and Aerosmith's Rockin' Rollercoaster.

A cool hot rod we meet along the way...

The TOWER OF TERROR!!!! Cassie and I will be riding this later...

No, the picture isn't upside down. This is the entrance to the Rock'n Roller Coaster. I should of known then that we'd be going upside down....


Inside the recording studio with Aerosmith!

Let me just start off by saying this ride was KICK ASS! Yes, I swore in my blog but I think it's appropriate since I am dealing with rock stars here. In any case, what we didn't really pick up on was the fact that this ride went upside down. Jack totally made the height requirement and when we got into the loading dock room for the ride, we noticed the roller coaster carts was actually like a long limousine.

Here's a quote about the ride from Hollywood Studios:

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith, a high-speed roller coaster for big kids, teens and adults, is amplified by the driving beat of a soundtrack recorded by the rock group Aerosmith specifically for this attraction.
With the force of a supersonic F-14, accelerate from a stand-still stop to high speeds—then swoop into 3 inversions and discover a new twist on viewing Los Angeles: upside-down!
Step into the G-Force Record studio where you see the 5 members of Aerosmith wrapping up a practice session before their big concert on the other side of town. The show starts soon, the band's late and their manager is trying to get them on the road. You're invited to come along. But how's everyone going to get to the big bash?
The solution: a super-stretch limousine that races across 3,400-feet of roller coaster tracks past Southern California landmarks and slices through the toughest of traffic on the LA freeways.
Each "car" is furnished with a 125 speaker, 24 sub-woofer, 32,000 watt, onboard audio system—built to blast. Careen through the neon-filled streets of Tinseltown, the rock 'n' roll adrenaline pumping through your veins, your body feeling the force from launch to loop at zero to 60 miles per hour in 2.8 seconds. This is one limo ride you'll always remember!

We basically got shot into the dark and with Aerosmith music blasting in our ears, raced down the tracks, in complete blackness and the only things we could see where the awesome neon road signs. But as soon as we flipped upside down the first time was when I immediately freaked out about Jack and Jason.  We had all paired up (I was riding with a stranger, who told me he'll try not to scream like a girl and I told him I'd try not to throw up on him, lol), so Jon had Jack and Cassie had Jason.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVED the ride but it was kinda hard to really enjoy it when you didn't know if one or two of your kids were balling their eyes out because they were terrified.

But to my surprise, the boys both came off that ride with big grins on their faces! In fact, they said they thought it was AWESOME! Of course later on when we asked them if they wanted to go on it again, they both cried, 'NO!" lol

Here we are in all our rock-n-roll glory after the ride.... Love the guy in the corner, lol!
Alrighty, so after this we headed back over to the Jedi Training. But I'm going to save all that for a separate blog post. THAT'S how awesome it was!


As we were making our way back through the park, the had a Disney Dance party going on with kids from the Disney Channel. It was pretty fun watching them shake their groove thing.

But then we found another chance for more group pictures...

We eventually get back to the side of the park with the Indiana Jones Stunt show and you all know how much of a fan Jack is, so we made sure to catch it.




The boys LOVED this tank!

Jon finally got hip to the fact that he really wasn't in a lot of the pictures he was taking, so set up the camera to take a couple of family pictures right outside the Indiana Jones set.





This is inside the Indiana Jones set. Made to resemble the opening scene in the first movie where he gets chased by that hugely perfect round boulder.

Before the show started, they called for volunteers to be part of the 'movie'. When they asked who'd like to be Indiana Jones love interest, I JUMPED from my seat and yelled, ' I DO!". And of course, I got chosen! Sweet!!

Here the cordinator is asking my name, where I'm from and all that...

Then it was my turn to be embarrassed....I had to do that thing where it looks like you're making out with someone by wrapping your arms behind you and running them up and down you back. It was HYSTERICAL!!!

After they got the suckers/volunteers, we all had to go get into costume and sign waivers and then the show started.


After the first scene was shot, they brought out all of us in our costumes. I'm the 5th one in from the left. All I have to say is, that costume was HOT! In every which way that means, lol!

Here we're pretending to walk across hot coals...

We finally move onto another scene...


When it got to this point in the 'movie', Jack started freaking out about that guys face getting sliced off by the propeller. He kept asking, 'Is he going to die?" Poor kid! I had to explain to him (many times) about it not being real.

After the show, everyone filed out but Jack was very interested in seeing Indy. I walked back down to the set (I am a superstar now!) and asked him if he would take a picture with his biggest fan! He was super nice and happily did so!


After our Indiana Jones adventure, we got some grub and then made our way to the Animation Area of the park.


In the Pixar section, they had this amazing Toy Story ride. Out of all the rides we rode during our entire trip, this was the one we had to wait in line for the longest. We were going to get a 'Fast Pass' but by the time we got there, they were completely gone for the day. We figured, lets just do it! I would say we only really waited for 45 mins. So it really wasn't too bad. In fact, if I had to chose, I would vote this ride as one of my absolute favorites! It was way to fun! 

Some of the pictures and things from the movie we saw while making our way through the line...


An animated Mr. Potato Head is behind me...

...and here he is! They're able to do this almost creepy thing with their eyes. I don't know how to explain it except that it's like a hologram or projection eyes. It's awesome, but like I said...almost creepy!

DEATH BY MONKEYS!


I 'borrowed' this picture from the Disney website since we were way too busy enjoying the ride to even think about taking a picture. But I wanted you to see how fun the ride was. It's kinda like an arcade type game where you shoot darts and try and get the highest score. You go through different rows of stuff to shoot. The best part, it's in 3-D! It was SO FUN!!!!

Wouldn't you know, Jon had gotten the highest score of the day so far! The highest score ever was around 400,000 or so.

The army men on the outside of the building...LOVE IT!

Here are some random shots of us throughout  Hollywood Studios...


It was finally time to have dinner and we headed to our restaurant. I had made reservations here a while back thinking it was be a fun place to have some food! The Sci-Fi Diner!

Right in front of the Diner they had a car that was a perfect picture taking opportunity!





When we were seated, we were very happy to find that we got a car of our very own to sit in!

The Diner was basically like an outdoor movie theater from the 50's. It was so fun! They had a large movie screen that showed clips from B movies and newsreels as well. The ceiling was lit up like the night sky and the entrance to the kitchen looked like the concession stand from the drive-ins.




We let the kids order whatever it is they wanted. We all got milkshakes and Jack ordered a cosmic drink with color changing ice cubes. The food was not the best, but the whole experience was worth it!

Right as you exit the Diner, is the 'American Idol Experience'. You can actually audition for the judges here and you'll get a chance to come back and sing for your chance to win. I had tried to talk Cassie into it a few times during the day but she wouldn't do it. Stinker! But we got her picture with it anyways...


By this point, we were all completely stuffed and tired. It had started to rain but it lasted maybe 20 minutes or so. Cassie was dead set on going on the Tower of Terror and I knew the boys would NEVER go on that ride. Jon had decided he'd take the kids back towards the Star Wars/ Indiana Jones area and let them pick out their souviners they've been wanting all day while I took Cass to the ToT.  We'd meet in the middle when we were done. So off we went.

I have to say, I have never screamed as much as I have then when I was on that ride. Not only did it give you the biggest freak out factor, but you're on an elevator shaft that you ride to the top and then it drops down! Both Cassie and I ended up with the feeling of wanting to toss our cookies since we still had very full bellies from dinner. But it was actually a very fun ride. Just not one I'd ever do on a full stomach again!

It was decided after we met back up that we should head back to the condo and let the kids go swimming. We left the park and made our way back, got into our swimsuits and spent the rest of the night in the pool and hot tub. We stayed out there well after dark and the kids absolutely loved it! It was the perfect way to end another fun day! Tomorrow would be our last visit to the Disney parks and we saved the best for last - Animal Kingdom!


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1 comment:

  1. You have an awesome life!! And and GREAT family!!

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