Saturday, March 2, 2013

Challenges: Mission Princess

I'm developing a few new Disney Challenges for any Disney fan to try. Since I can always go to the parks and sometimes I don't have days off with friends, these challenges make the parks a little more fresh and fun for me, even when I'm by myself. Also since I'm going into Concierge, I am trying to get myself to try EVERYTHING Disney. When it comes to drinking and Duffy, that's pretty easy, but when it comes to meeting Characters, watching parades, or trying new restaurants, I need a little push.

If you need a new Disney Challenge, look no further! I have plenty of challenge ideas, which I'm going to attempt myself and publish for you to see. There will be several Drinking Challenges, Park Hopping (this IS Kingdom Hopping isn't it?), Show Challenges, maybe food, and also Character Challeges. Which brings us to today's challenge.

The Challenge: Meet all 11 Disney Princesses in One Day

You must seek out and get photo evidence of meeting Snow White, Cinderella, Aurora, Rapunzel, Ariel, Merida, Tiana, Belle, Pocahontas, Jamsine, and Mulan (I know Mulan is technically not a princess, but this is a CHALLENGE, so why not shoot for the stars?).

Difficulty: 5 Out of 5 Tiaras

This is not an easy task! It is time sensitive and involves some park hopping, but it is still so much fun to attempt.

My Results: I met 8 out of the 11 Princesses

I started bright and early at Magic Kingdom. Due to trouble with the monorail, I didn't actually get to MK until after 9, but that didn't slow me down! I had a plan in my head: get the difficult princesses out of the way first, Merida and Ariel, since they usually have very long lines. And then I would tackle the blondes, Rapunzel, Cinderella, and Aurora and then Tiana before I left for the next park.

Just as I walked in the Magic Kingdom, I saw Snow White with no line. It was fate! I had planned on saving her for last at Epcot, but why not start with the original princess?
#1.5 "Bert drew me this dress this morning"
Across the way I saw Mary Poppins. Not a princess, but I LOVE her, and never get my picture with her, so I just HAD to take advantage. Now off to Space Mountain for a quite trip to space and then Fantasyland to find some more princesses!
#3 "I hear it's easy to lose glass slippers off human feet."
Ariel was super adorable. I waited in line with a bunch of little girls and their parents. I was a little out of place, but I had a challenge to accomplish and nothing would get in my way! After Ariel I needed to find Merida ASAP before the line got any longer. It winded around pretty far, so I jumped in it right away. I had to wait almost an hour before even getting in to the area where she was. I should have grabbed a snack for the wait, but I forgot. Ooops!
#3 "Angus and I want to tackle Space Mountain next."
When I finally met her, I forgot all about the wait. She was awesome! So energetic and friendly. She made me pose just like her. I'm very happy I obliged. Now down to the bayou to find Miss Tiana.
#4 "She got a promotion, y'all!"
There wasn't a very long line waiting for Tiana, thank goodness! I loved her southern accent. She asked me what I was celebrating in the parks, so I told her I just got a promotion (for Concierge!). She got excited and yelled to the crowd and cast members "She got a promotion, y'all!" I loved it! Before heading over to find the blondes, I walked through Adventureland to see if Jasmine and Aladdin were out. There was a line waiting for them, but they must have off playing with Abu and the magic carpet for a bit. I figured I would see her later on in Epcot anyways, so I headed to the blondes.
"Minnie Mouse is always trying to get me to wear polka dots."
The wait time was 65 minutes. UGH! But I had a challenge and this would knock out 3 more princesses, so I walked in and waited in line. I STILL hadn't eaten, nor had a picked up a snack for the wait in line. HUGE MISTAKE. I was starting to get a little cranky, and I had a very obnoxious family waiting in line behind me. The dad was threatening to hit his 13-year-old son and telling him to "shut up," and they just came across as very unpleasant company to everyone else in line. This ended up being the most uncomfortable line to wait in, even more than the line for Merida. But I made it through and I am so glad I did because the blondes were waiting for me!
I had never been in the Storybook Hall to meet the princesses before (that was actually part of my motivation for this challenge-to make myself see it). It's pretty cute. The 3 princess are next to each other, so you can visit them all in a row pretty quickly. They each have a little table with a quill next to them for signing autographs, which is cute. But other than that I was a little disappointed by the backdrops. After reviewing all my princess pictures, the backdrops just did not cut it for me. They need some type of physical objects in the shot to create a little dimension. Merida, Ariel and Pocahontas just had such cool picture spots! So I think all the princesses should!
#6 "Have you seen a large white horse running around?"
Cinderella was first. Next up was Sleeping Beauty, one of my favorite princesses. She's definitely the most regal princess. You have to love that.
#7 "I don't have a lot of free time. My hair takes a lot of time to brush."
Last blonde was Rapunzel. She was so energetic! Just like the movie. And just look at ALL, THAT. HAIR. I guess she doesn't have a lot of free time, since it's always spent grooming her hair. Makes me want a hair cut.

After I found all the blonde princesses, it was time to park hop. I headed to the monorail, to a tram, to my car parked in the Heroes section. Then I drove over to Animal Kingdom to find Pocahontas, who I don't think I've ever actually SEEN in the parks. Probably because I am never in Animal Kingdom, so I had no idea where she'd be. From the map I thought she'd be in Camp Minnie Mickey, which was unfortunate. There is nothing in Camp Minnie Mickey, besides Minnie, Mickey, and the Lion King show, which I didn't want to see. So I never go there, nor do I ever want to go there.

So I went and Pocahontas was nowhere to be found. My parents called, they were in town, so I invited them to come join my quest. It took them a while to get their butts to AK, so I got a late lunch at Pizzafari. I inhaled a veggie pizza and caesar salad. I was famished. Hunting characters is exhausting. At this point in the day I knew that I wouldn't be able to finish my challenge. Belle, Mulan, and Jasmine were all waiting for me in Epcot, but they stopped making appearances at 3:30-4pm. And I would not be able to make it in time.

But I was in AK and so were my parents, so we had to do Expedition Everest! After that my parents felt invested in my quest, so they helped me figure out where Pocahontas was. Turns out she was near Africa on the opposite side of the Tree of Life. Not at all where I expected her to be. But once I found her, I realized why they put her there...
#8 "Wingapo, Pocahontas!"
 So she could take the most gorgeous pictures ever! Look how beautiful the Tree of Life looks from this side! She was not easy to find, but I am so glad I did!

Are you ready to accept this challenge?


My Advice:


I definitely think everyone should try this challenge! I NEVER do pictures with characters, but because I was doing the challenge, I HAD to and it was so much fun. And I got so many fun pictures from it. But I do want to suggest a few things:
  • Plan ahead and know where you are going. This is time sensitive! Don't waste time getting lost if you can help it.
  • Pack snacks/lunch or buy something easy to eat in line. It'll give you something to do in line and is an efficient use of your time.
  • Use photopass AND your camera every time! I did this by myself, but was still able to get Cast Members to take a picture on my camera for every princess. I also used my photopass card for everyone. My Ariel pictures did not come out at all, so I was so happy to have done photopass!
  • Bring a camera, not just the camera on your phone. It's so much easier to hand a camera than your smartphone to someone. And as a cast member, it's usually easier for us to operate a camera than your smartphone.
  • Look cute! I know it sounds totally vain, but next time I'm drawing in my eyebrows. Compared to the princesses, I have none! You're in the presence of royalty, the least you can do is look good.
  • Try to play along with their characters and don't just focus on the picture. You never know what they'll say and that's usually the best takeaway from the experience!
EDIT: 4/17/2013
I met Mulan in China about a week after I did the initial challenge.  She was precious. I was wearing cheetah print pants, so she asked me if I had just come from safari. It actually took me a minute to catch on. I felt bad for her though because it was a windy, cold day and she had to keep blowing her nose.

On the same day I actually got in line to meet Belle, but she was wearing a cape with her hood up (since it was so cold), so I didn't think the picture was worth it, so I left the line. So I still have yet to meet Belle and Jasmine in person.

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