The next time you are at Disney and someone sprinkles you with Pixie Dust or even just makes sure that you have a pleasant experience, be sure to thank them and to thank them with recognition at Guest Services. It can be difficult standing all day, especially in the hot sun, maybe with cranky people all around you because they think everyone else around them is getting all the luck, or maybe because they are having a hard day themselves, but those smiles, and the helpful service never stop to matter how they might feel.
While not all cast members are allowed to accept tips or small gifts, there is something else you can do for them.
It's very easy to show your gratitude, and it only takes a minute or two of your time. On our last visit, we made sure to recognize several very helpful people and were told that any reports left, go immediately onto their records. I like to think that the awesome cast member who helped us find a space for the fireworks, warning us to push closer to the line or other would step in front of us, kept the crowd moving in the walkway and got threatened several times for trying to direct pedestrians during the show knows how much we appreciated his help. So, thanks Ryan, from Lutz, Flordia. We stopped on the way out to let them know how amazing you were.
Then there was the woman at the Pop Century food court, who apologized that they didn't have milkshakes any longer. My oldest had been waiting all day for one, passing by several other yummy treats because they weren't safe for his brother, with the plan of soft serve together. Without my asking, she called around, tried to see of Art of Animation could do one, tried to find a blender and finally, even though there was a line, mixed together some ice cream and milk by hand for my son. she totally made his day, he said it was the best ever and I thank her for her sweetness. She didn't have to do that, but she did.
(We had a few other times that people were wonderful for us, once, I did forget to get the name of the person, so when we go back, if I see him again, I'll leave a compliment. )
So how do you leave a compliment? There are a few different ways. You can email guest services, you can ask at guest services for an applause-o-gram, or you can stop by and leave the name and incident. Don't remember the name? Just saying, "The woman who worked at the ice cream area at Pop with the long hair 4:55pm today" is good enough!
Have you ever thanked someone at Disney? Share your story of how awesome they were, and next time something happens to make your trip magical, be sure to share it with Guest Services too, if you didn't already!
The last time you visited the Magic Kingdom, you might have visited Ariel in her grotto, or even experienced the Under the Sea - Journey of the Little Mermaid, but did you happen to notice where those places were located? They are there, at Prince Eric's Castle. It's a beautiful castle, and this Sunday we are here to share some of our favorite pictures. Join on on a mini tour!
What do you think? There are some amazing details hidden in these pictures, and next time someone asks how we like the Disney Castle, I'm going to ask them which one they mean!
It's always fun to meet your favorite characters, and even to get an autograph, but sometimes after standing in line for so long, you get to the from and feel flustered trying to get your autograph things ready, or maybe you feel rushed, because you are the last group before Mickey "gets some cheesecake." Either way, follow these tips for a fun, and carefree experience!
1. Have your autograph stuff out and ready before it's your turn
2. Take the cap off of your Sharpie! Characters can't always remove the cap
3. Set your stuff down! Somtimes you feel so rushed, but if you can, when walking over, set your backpack down. The pictures look better, and it's easier to get a Pooh hug!
4. Play along! Sometimes Pluto wants to run around, run with him! Don't be afraid to pose how you want! Last visit an older woman, on a solo trip, posed each of the Fab 5 at Epcot's Character Spot just how she wanted them, usually in a dancing pose.
5. Pay attention! In the photo above, Smee wanted our oldest to salute in a picture and both he and I almost missed it, because we'd stumbled upon a bunch of characters in a side alley about to leave, and I was fumbling for my camera, and trying to push the youngest towards who he wanted to meet.
6. Even if you have the memory Maker, try and grab a few pictures with your own camera. While the Disney Photographers can get some memorable moments captured, they might not be capturing from the angle that you want, and they won't be capturing all of the fun details in the room you meet Sorcerer Mickey in!
7. This last time might be the most important! Enjoy being there! Sometimes we feel awkward being in a picture...and it shows. 30 years from now, you are going to think you look amazing. You aren't going to care about that spill on your kid's shirt, the frizz in your hair, how that unflattering angle make you look twenty pounds heavier, nope! You are going to remember the fun of that trip!
Any other tips to make meeting a character more fun? Who's your favorite to meet?
On our most recent trip to Disney World, we had cast members going above and beyond to make it extra special. I'll have a later post on how to make sure that they get the recognition they deserve, but today I want to tell you about these gloves.
These might be the most special gloves in the world. At Hollywood Studios, we waited to meet Indiana Jones after his show. Those of you who have been there know what it is, you can click here to see pictures of the show. If you haven't ever heard of it, they have some amazing stunt doubles act out several scenes from the Indiana Jones movie and explain a little bit about how some of the special effects are done. It's all absolutely real though, real fire real possibility of getting hurt. Just amazing to see.
Anyway it's not every time but sometimes afterwards Indiana Jones will go and meet his fans. The little one got terrified once again to meet his Idol, and hid behind dad on the very very top row of the theater. Big brother asked them for an autograph and pointed out his brother dressed as Indiana Jones and said he was too shy to come down. Indy and Marion said "No problem! We will go to him!!" And they started walking up the stairs. Little brother saw and instantly hid and started dragging Dad out. I apologized and said that he was so nervous.
Indy and Marion just smiled, and signed the white hats we were collecting autographs on for the boys, and then Indy stops, asks Little Brother's name, looks over and picks up the gloves he'd worn in the show and said "Here. Give these to your brother." Indy laughed, and apologized, saying "You might need to sanitize them, they're a little sweaty!"
Those gloves stayed on him almost non-stop the rest of the trip, and have a very special place in his Indiana Jones bag. It was such a special gift and something that we never imagined could happen.
I made sure to email Guest Services with a cast compliment, and about a week later I heard back from them. It's reasons like this that though, Disney is expensive, and they make it hard to go sometimes, we keep going back. Memories like these are priceless.
While at Disney, we lost a magic band. To be more specific, a magic band on the Magic Keeper lanyard clip, on a Thor lanyard. After tearing apart the room, thinking about where it was last at, we gave up and went to the front desk of our resort.
There we were given a new magic band, it was activated, the old one deactivated, and the slip of paper that you see above with a URL to file a claim.
On our way back to the park that day, I filled out the claim multiple times, since you need to fill it out once for each location. When we got back to Magic Kingdom, I asked the Security Guard checking our bags where something, if it were lost, might go. He pointed me me to the right direction, and we stopped by the Guest Services at Magic Kingdom after stopping by the last place our oldest had had his backpack open, a pressed penny machine at the gift shop just past security. The girl seemed to remember something being found, so we headed to Guest Services. There we were describing out lost Magic Keeper, and miraculously, it had been turned in, but also to her, the CM helping us, who had remembered the tiny little Thor hammer hanging from it.
While our stressful few hours had a happy ending, I learned a few things that might make it easier for you to find your lost item.
1. File the report ASAP, but don't wait for Disney to contact you. Keep checking with them.
2. Lost items don't instantly get transported to the central lost and found area for all of Disney. They stay, until the end of the day at the location they were lost. This really improves your chances of getting your item back if you can remember where you lost it.
3. The better you can describe something, the easier it will be for them to find your item. Lost items are kept in Ziploc's, and there could be hundreds piled together in a box or on a shelf, so saying, the blue magic band on a lanyard, is going to make the search longer, and quite possibly unsuccessful, as opposed to saying the blue magic band, on a Mickey head magic keeper, on a Thor lanyard that looks like this, (showing picture)
Disney has a pretty good return rate I was told, and while I hope you never lost anything, if you do, it will probably work out very quickly you get your item back, especially if you follow the above advice.