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How did you discover Walt Disney world?

Discussion in 'Walt Disney World' started by keith, Jan 5, 2014.

  1. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    For me, I remember the first time I saw WDW very vividly. We were on holiday in a caravan in Wales when I was young and I can remember lying on the couch, watching the tv upside down :lol: and watching the presenters on the breakfast show outside the castle with a bunch of kids. It was in the 70s so probably not long after Disneyworld opened.

    Since holidays were always wales, I didn't get there until much later. I was coming back from a disastrous business trip and had had WAY too much wine on the plane on the way back. The company, hateful though it was, arranged a car and driver at the airport to take me home and on the way home the driver, realising I was incredibly depressed and somewhat drunk, asked how things were. I explained I was in a really stressful business and had had an awful year. He went on to tell me that he'd had the same until he retired and started his executive car company but that every year he now went with his family to this wonderful place called EPCOT to relax. There was this huge lake around which everyone gathered to watch the fireworks. By the time I got home I knew I had to go and see them.

    The rest is history. My first trip to EPCOT blew my mind. I was completely wowed by the fireworks and the size of EPCOT itself! couldnt imagine how much there was to explore. Cast Members said hello and smiled every time I passed them and whilst I was waiting in queues, on more than one occasion, a CM would come over and offer me a drink!

    To me, it's EPCOT not Magic Kingdom that let's me know I'm at Disney World and although I love wishes, illuminations is the one that gets me teary.
     
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  2. Johnie
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    Johnie Budget Queen Forum Host

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    WDW and I both made our debut in October 1971 :) I can't remember a time that I didn't know about Disney or the parks. I had a WDW metal lunch box in kindergarten. We never went though. I was always told it was too expensive. I didn't go until I was 25 and took Alysia for her 5th birthday. I cried the moment I spotted the castle and knew I was home.
     
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  3. Vikki
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    Vikki Serious Forum Regular

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    I was asked once, only once, if I'd like to go to WDW as a child. It was either that or visiting my relatives in Canada. I chose Canada. Looking back I now think my parents only asked me because they thought it was the done thing to take your kids to WDW - I also now know they're not Disney fans, so it was nice of them to ask :-D
    This year we combined WDW and Canada in one trip, which was wonderful!

    Our first trip was in September 2001 (9-11 was our first ever day in MK). We went for our honeymoon and have never looked back.
     
  4. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    My first recollection is watching a television show (probably the Wonderful World of Color) that was showing how Pirates of the Caribbean had been made… I was hooked from then on. :D
     
  5. Dizneyblonde
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    Dizneyblonde Secret's Birthday Fairy!

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    Disney time on a Saturday afternoon and seeing Tink fly over the castle.
    We lived in Kent then so I was less than aged 9 and I knew then I wanted to see it for myself.
    When I met my ex he had already been in 1982 but we went for our first wedding anniversary in 1992.
    My kids have lived Disney since before they were born!
     
  6. uscwest
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    uscwest Senior Cast Member

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    Well I've know it existed since shortly after it opened. My first visit however, was not until 1987 after I came back from Germany. It was fascinating to see the castle but other than that I really don't remember a lot about that first ever trip at the age of 39.
     
  7. robertcraig
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    robertcraig Serious Forum Regular

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    My first experiance was my visit in 1981 and I have been in love with DISNEY World ever since
     
  8. Lauren Rogers
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    Lauren Rogers Imagineer

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    When I was really young, my uncle went to wdw in 1989 and bought me back a mickey mouse toy and some mickey ears and he gave me pictures of him and all the characters and from then on I just loved all things disney! Growing up we went to devon or cornwall in the uk as my parents weren't very well off and disney was just a dream destination.
    Christmas of 1999 my brother and I opened all our presents and my parents gave us each a package which was full of wdw park maps and leaflets. My initial reaction was that it was cruel of them to just give us leaflets when they know how desperate we wanted to go! And then the penny dropped...we were going to wdw. We were uncontrollable with excitement and my dad (ukwdwnut) was just as enthusiastic as us! It felt like we had won the lottery and all our dreams had come true.
    Our first trip was the millennium celebrations and my first memory from that trip was all of us standing there looking at the castle for ages. We couldnt believe we were there! We documented every memory on camera and video camera and I love watching it back.
    We have all been hooked ever since and have been every other year since.
     
  9. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    Uncle Walt told me! :D

    When he announced it on Disney's Wonderful World of Color. :happydance:

    Since I lived in Florida, I was so excited I couldn't see straight. Just didn't really understand at that time how it was all going to work or why they'd picked that location since Orlando in those days was just a wide spot in the road.

    Tom ( :macwave:... took a few years till I first visited. They had to build it first!)
     
  10. Wendy
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    Wendy A hui hou kakou makuakane Staff Member Administrator

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    Lauren, it is so good to see you :hug2: I was only thinking about you a few weeks ago, wondering how you are and how the plans are coming along xx

    Beautiful memories that last forever.
     
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  11. Lauren Rogers
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    Lauren Rogers Imagineer

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    Hi Wendy! How are you? I've been meaning to come back and say hi but always so busy! We've had to put the plans back to 2015 now for various reasons but I am currently researching prices and places that were in dads plans! My partner and I have decided to get married there too which will be amazing! I'm going to have a nose through all the wedding threads for some inspiration.

    Hope you and the family are well xxxx
     
  12. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    oh Lauren , married at Disney that would be WONDERFUL!!!!!! We got married there so feel free to ask anything :hug2:
     
  13. Lauren Rogers
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    Lauren Rogers Imagineer

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    Thanks Keith! Will take you up on that as I'm really not sure where to start! It won't be for a couple of years but once the real planning commences I will pick your brains!

    Did you get married at the beginning or end of your trip?

    I bet it was magical!
     
  14. Beccaberry
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    Beccaberry She's beccalicious! Forum Host

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    YAY! Another wedding!! :hug2:
     
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  15. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    At the very beginning! we flew out on the Thursday, got the marriage license on the Friday Morning and were married at 4pm on Saturday at the wedding pavilion.

    In the end, it was all magical and I can't think of a better location.

    I should say I spent a year "planning" it with Disney events and weddings and I can't say THAT was always free from frustration ;-) in fact I changed out the Disney wedding planner twice and wasn't really that happy with the one we ended up with! They may be better now, but back then they were very focussed on larger weddings because those were the events which really made their CV and got them promotions. So I felt like they were quite dismissive of our tiny wedding... there was a lot of "oh just tick which box for flowers, which cake, and then we'll see you on the day". It didn't help that we were doing it all from the UK.

    ...but end of the day, when you can see the Magic Kingdom castle out of the window during the ceremony and even see fireworks going off, you can't really do better :)
     
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  16. Lauren Rogers
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    Lauren Rogers Imagineer

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    I can imagine that to be very frustrating! We too only have a small party coming so I imagine it to be the same for us. As you may know, dad had his 'celebration of life' trip he wanted to do post transplant which we are still going to do and we were considering marrying then. I think it'll be too much emotionally to combine so were hoping to fulfil his dream trip next year and hopefully marry the year after so I'm thinking I may be able to plan some stuff with them whilst were out there on dads trip.
    It must be frustrating planning a wedding abroad even with a helpful wedding planner!!
    Thanks for the advice, I think it'll be nice to marry at the beginning of the trip so that you can relax and enjoy the honeymoon.
     
  17. Johnie
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    Johnie Budget Queen Forum Host

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    Congratulations Lauren!!
     
  18. Watchinherskip
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    Watchinherskip Better known as "That Guy"

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    First off, so great to hear from you Lauren. I am so glad that you will be celebrating a few big events at WDW. Just great hearing you are doing well.

    I guess I was Disney before Disney was cool (apologies to the country song). Like others, I grew up watching WD's world of color every Sunday. It was marvelous. But it didn't really kick in until going to see his designed attractions at the NY World's Fair. I was only 6 or 7 and it just blew my little mind. I think I was clinically depressed after the WF closed. I had a viewmaster viewer of the world's fair and would just look at the images over and over. My dear wife Mrs. Skip and I went for the first time in 1988 and stayed at the Disney Inn. We saved forever as we were poor teachers and didn't have a lot of money. What can I say. We went over Thanksgiving and the place magically turned from fall to Christmas/holiday decorations seemingly overnight (literally, the day we arrived, no Christmas tree in the hall or lobby, the next morning, the whole place was transformed.) We have been going back over the years, with our daughter to experience the magic that was and is Disney. Daughter went when she was 6, 10, 13, 16, and 21. Guess it is time to go again as she turns 23 this January. Maybe next year. Have just about enough Disney dollars saved for another trip and she will be graduating university this May.
     
  19. MrDanielOwens
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    MrDanielOwens Imagineer

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    I remember my grandparents having a Disney Vacation VHS when I was really young. I watched and wanted to go so bad. I always said I wanted to go ride the tea cups! I also was mesmerized by this huge white ball, and was confused to what Epcot was and how the 4 parks related. I never got to go as a child.

    In April 2012, I started dating my now fiancé. Her family has been amazing to me and welcomed me with open arms to join them in Florida for my fiancé's brother's wedding. My mother-in-law asked us if we would like Disney World tickets for part of our Christmas present. My dream had come true!

    I had originally planned to propose to future DW at Disney, but could not come up with the money for a ring in time. I still did not understand Disney World very good, as I do now thanks to this and other pages. We had planned to go to Downtown Disney the first night we were in Florida. This was another foreign concept I could not grasp or imagine the Magic of. I remember seeing R2-D2 ears on someone there and knew that had to be my first pair.

    The day we went to MK was the last full day of our trip. We woke up extra early for the 2 hour drive and arrived shortly after rope drop. The sights and sounds were amazing! Words can't describe the Magic. From the archway, to the parking lot. The Avengers Monorail. Then the real deal. Main Street USA, the CASTLE. Then there it was in all its Magic, my first Disney World ride: THE TEA CUPS!!! I was probably the most excited 21 year old to ever be on the ride. I remember walking straight through the queue for Space Mountain with no wait, learning Fast Passes, the characters, parades, Christmas time, riding the train for probably 8 or 9 loops because we almost stayed from open to close and were so tired, but did not want to leave. Another highlight was seeing First Time visitor buttons and wanting one, but being embarrassed to look for one. The last store we went had one in the display case. I asked the CM how much they were and he handed me one saying here you go. It was my first taste on Pixie Dust. My DW to be could see the twinkle in my eye. I was officially hooked. I can't wait to place my honeymoon button next to it on the board. Speaking of honeymoon, my DW to be and me (poet and didn't even know it) decided that's where we will honeymoon, there is so much more Magic for me to discover. This amazing experience helped boost my Disney obessesion.
     
  20. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    Oh yeah! :happydance: I was 14. Flushing Meadows was unbelievable! :shocked:

    The Carousel of Progress, It's a Small World, Ford's Magic Skyway, Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln. Loved, loved, loved the whole thing. BTW Dan, if you're looking for a real nostalgia trip, pick up this album from Amazon. It'll take you right back there!

    Tom ( :macwave:... There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow)
     
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