The second official trip of the Disney2013 season wrapped up yesterday and the TSC is hailing it as a wild success. The trip was attended by representatives from The TSC LIC, Astoria, Brooklyn, and Houston offices and was an opportunity for the TSC to get one last look at the first ever Epcot International Flower and Garden festival to combine Food and Wine.
Accommodations once again were at the TSC's preferred set of hotels, The Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin complex with rooms this time at the Dolphin. Naturally, the TSC was upgraded to a King Suite with adjoining room and conference table (for conducting official TSC business such as sending fake faxes and eating pizza for breakfast we forgot we had ordered).
Day 1 began with a stop at EPCOT to take advantage of a few food & wine booths as a light lunch, the obligatory stop at La Cava Del Tequila, a ride on Maelstrom (Happy Consitution Day, Norway), and a chance for funnelcakelouis to swap out her paper annual pass at the odyssey.
Next it was on to the Magic Kingdom...errr...'Ohana for Lapu Lapus, and THEN the Magic Kingdom. Crowds were light at MK (likely due to the draw of Stars Wars Weekend happening over at stanksville). Members enjoyed the new Little Mermaid attraction in Fantasyland, Philharmagic, Big Thunder (new interactive queue is great), and the Jungle Cruise before voting to get the hell out.
Day 2 was the Total EPCOT day (every trip needs one). We started by picking up some Soarin Fastpasses and then a gentle ride on Living With The Land (arguably the ride that exemplifies EPCOT's original message most). Then we skulked around some more, did a little lurking followed by some drinking and some eating.
Then we showed up to our lunch reservations at EPCOT's venerable Le Cellier Steakhouse in the Canada pavilion. The service was superb and the steak we shared was cooked perfectly. The scallop appetizer (order 2 for 4 people at least) was a big winner but the Lobster Mac & Cheese, while good, didn't live up to expectations. The meal was also accompanied by various pieces of information from the server of where the food originates and how it represents various regions of Canada - a nice touch that only EPCOT could do.
The festival was great. The lines we experienced on both of the TSC's spring trips this year were nothing compared to the waits one can encounter during the fall Food & Wine festival and both of our trips were on weekends. The TSC voted that the best bite of the festival goes to Mexico for its Tacos de Carnitas. Honorable mention goes to the Shrimp with Grits from Florida Fresh and the Asparagi con Aragosta all'Ortolana (asparagus with lobster) from Italy. It should also be mentioned that our TSC New Jersey Prez housed the Frushi in about 2 seconds flat without coming up for air last month...so ya know. Important to note, each participating member of the TSC completed his or her passport for the Food & Wine & Flower & Garden festival.
Finally our evening was capped off by what we all agreed to be the best view of IllumiNations we have ever had. We stood just to the west of Mexico in front of the bridge that takes you to the Odyssey. To be fair we held that spot down for a solid 90 minutes prior to the start of IllumiNations which was necessary as before too long we were starting to get invaders. After that it was some time in MouseGear before heading back to the Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney's Boardwalk hotel for some LI Iced teas and the Electric Slide. By 4am we were all tanked and separated and Louis was getting rides in a wheelchair from three strangers down the ramp outside of the Dolphin.
Another successful trip.
This trip marks the end of the first half of this year's Disney trips as with the onset of the summer months the TSC goes into its annual Disney summer blackout period. The next scheduled official TSC trip is to our first ever runDisneyland trip to participate in the Disneyland Half Marathon weekend events over Labor Day and marking the beginning of our fall trip schedule. There were, however, rumors that the TSC is planning an unprecented summer weekend trip called Evenings at EPCOT whereby the TSC can still visit the resort this summer but only during the cool evening hours after a day of poolside bloody marys. However, nothing has been confirmed at this time.