10 February, 2011

Marathon Week Day 2: Hollywood Studios

Hope everyone likes pictures! :)

Friday, January 7, 2011
So after spending a small fortune at the expo and making a quick pit stop back at the room, Christina and I headed over to Hollywood Studios while Nicole met up with some of her other friends in the area.  After renewing my Tables in Wonderland card at Guest Services, we ventured into the park and started  heading towards the obvious first choice.. Toy Story!  Ran into some of the Streetmosphere Cast Members though so had to stick around to enjoy a card trick. 


Hollywood Studios

Got a few card tricks...

Still decked out for the holidays

After a few Photopass photos, we finally made our way to the Toy Story entrance.  It was 1pm and  the Fast Passes were gone for the day.  We saw it was a 60 minute wait and decided to suck it up and sit in line.  Since Christina had to shorten her trip, we knew we wouldn't be back to Hollywood Studios at all and this was one ride that we knew we couldn't miss!  We both love it!  It was actually pretty cool going through the whole queue though because I was able to see a bunch of the tiny details that we always miss while running through the Fast Pass queue. 

Toy Story

Everyone always talks about how cool Mr. Potato Head is in the queue but he doesn't do it for me.  My new favorite?  Looking at all of the tiny slides in the huge View Finder wheels!

View Finder

The queue ended up being around 45 mins, which was a bonus.  Thank you to the girls behind us though that pointed out that the Cast Member in the Fast Pass area was calling us over to spread out the line a bit.  Definitely saved us those extra 15 mins!  After we got comfy and donned our fabulous yellow 3-D glasses, the competition was ON!!  Proud to say that I came out victorious!! (Sorry Christina...I had to post the picture....)


After all that waiting in line and 3-D competition, it was time for me to get some real coffee.  If anyone here knows me, you KNOW I love my coffee. And you KNOW I HATE the gross vile Nescafe syrup crapola that Disney tries to sell off as coffee at many of their counter service locations.  Disney coffee drinkers in the know, though, know that there are a few secret hidden gems when it comes to finding real fresh brewed coffee in the World.  As far as I know, 95% of all sit down restaurants serve the real stuff so no need to worry but I usually ask to make sure.  Also, a few of the coffee shops and kiosks in the parks serve the good stuff too.  One of those places at Hollywood Studios is the Starring Rolls Cafe.

I had a slight brain fart though and went to Starring Rolls thinking that they also served the carrot cake sandwich that everyone loves.  After getting there I realized that we should have went to Writers Stop instead (they also serve real coffee I believe).  Not wanting to walk any further though, Christina and I split a HUGE rice krispie treat that was fabulous! We sat and savored our treats and then knew we had to keep on chugging along if we were going to get the big rides out of the way.

And I apologize for no pics of Starring Rolls.  Apparently my brain wasn't functioning without my coffee yet.  

Wanting to do the other two big rides in the park, we headed down Sunset Boulevard.  Grabbed Fast Passes for Tower of Terror and then jumped on the single rider line for Rock N Roller Coaster.  Got our Aerosmith fix in under 30 minutes!

Another fun 'tradition' that Christina and I have is testing out our drawing skills at the Magic of Animation.  This time we all tried drawing Flynn Rider from Tangled.  TOTALLY think that drawing 'real' people is much harder than drawing animal cartoons.  Let's just say my version of Flynn didn't look like the picture below, which is what the animator running the session drew.  If I get up the nerve, I might post my horrific version. 

Flynn drawing

Since our dinner reservation at Mama Melrose was in an hour, we started heading towards the back of the park and along the way decided to go through One Man's Dream and the Muppet Vision 3-D show. 

One of my favorites of Walt

One Man's Dream

One of the original Figments...*sigh*
Usually I take my time and walk through and take it all in but since we were a little pressed for time, I just wanted to see what changes they made since last time I went.  Some of the stuff was cool (yayyy for Figment & the Horizons dude!) but much of it was still the same from what I could tell.  We skipped the movie at the end and continued on our way. 

My new buddy

Walking through Pixar place we ran into one of the green army guys (do they have a real name?) from Toy Story.  Obviously I had to take a picture.  (And please ignore the gross hat head I have from wearing my hat and Minnie ears all morning at the expo...blah!)

When we got to MuppetVision 3-D, I told Christina about the 'key' that's hidden.  I had never found it before though so we originally walked right past it and into the main waiting room.   After back tracking a little bit, we found the security window and sure enough...found the key under the mat! 

Found the key


The Cast Member that was greeting guests started talking to us about the key and explained how they had to actually nail the key to the floor since so many people were stealing it.  Kinda took the fun away from it a little bit but still cool!  The movie was cute like always, wouldn't hurt for a tiny little upgrade though!

After we got our Muppet fix, it was time to head over to Mama Melrose for dinner!  I'm going to write a separate post for that right after this one but I will say we really enjoyed it.  I was pleasantly surprised because I really wasn't a fan the last time we came a few years ago.

Dinner has us thoroughly full and prepped for our upcoming races so we headed out with the intention of doing the Great Movie Ride, Tower of Terror, and then heading home early.  

Muppet fountain


Little did we know though that the Great Movie Ride closed down at 6pm (it was now around 6:30pm) for a private party.  Turns out it was actually a runDisney party...where was my invite people?!?! :) We also didn't realize that Hollywood Studios closed at 7 that day! So we high tailed it down to Tower of Terror and had a fabulously freaky elevator ride at the Tower Hotel.

On the way out I loved how the park looked at night so I tried to take a few pics by making a makeshift tripod out of the garbage cans (accidentally left the Gorillapod in the room).  We got stopped by a Cast Member right by the exit asking us to fill out a survey so I gladly said yes.  He brought us to a little alcove on the side of the street where a few laptops were setup.  The survey took about 10 or 15 minutes and in no time we were heading to the busses to head back to Pop for our early sleep.  Christina had a half marathon to run the next morning! :)

Looking down the blvd

Disney & Co
My favorite shot of the night


Overall a fun day in the Studios. It's never been my favorite park but there are a few things here that I love doing every trip. I ended up coming back on my last day so I'll talk about that in a later post! Next up?  Mama Melrose review!

(I'm totally impressed with myself that I've had 3 blog posts in 3 days. I'll leave out the part that I'm totally slacking on school work though.  This is just so much more entertaining for me...shhhhhh)


  1. Fun times! :) And BEAUTIFUL pictures! This makes me want to go to Disney ASAP! :) (Maybe my 21st birthday in April ;))

  2. I'm LOVING this! I'm hoping to run in a Disney half-marathon in the near future -- I've just begun my journey into running.

  3. We totally both blogged about this park at pretty much the same time! I love your pictures, they came out great!!

    Definitely happy to hear that you like Mama Melrose better than in the past. I have only been there YEARS ago, so I'm excited to give it another try. One quick question .... did you make your reservation when you got to the park, or did you do that ahead of time?

  4. Pretty! You take beautiful photographs!

  5. @Katy...thank you!! :) And I DEF recommend Disney for your 21st!! No better place to celebrate!

    @runningtowardtheprize..thanks! And congrats on your journey! Just saw your blog so I'll have to go do some catching up. :)

    @Ronda... I definitely laughed when I saw your DHS post this morning! For reservations, we made ours WAY in advance using Disney's online reservation system. I know people were getting turned away at the door asking for reservations on the day of. If you can, definitely try to make some reservations now! :) You can always cancel them later!

    @Victoria...thank you! Still a lot to learn with photography but I'm having fun trying things out!

  6. Ah good to know! I'll go online today to see if I can get in!

  7. that woody topiary is so creeeepy it has no eyes

  8. I love your photos! I've never done the drawing class at the Magic of Animation, but I've wanted to! That's cool that they did a person (instead of a character).

  9. @Ronda...saw your comment on another post that you got an ADR...yay! :)

    @Daniel... right?! I noticed the same thing! At least give him pupils!

    @Emily...thank you! Definitely do the animation class, it's a lot of fun and you can all laugh at how horrible you are. :)

  10. LOVE all of your nighttime pictures!!! They came out great...especially the one of the ears! Great job! :0) Sounds like a fun day! I totally never knew about the key! Something to see next time!! lol

  11. @karen...thanks! :) Yeah, I love finding all those little hidden gems around the parks! There's a ton more I still want to go investigate!