"The Last Jedi" opening weekend (Sat)

by Darth Danno
on 2018-01-24, 07:53:49

Got up somewhat early as I wanted to hit Disney's Animal Kingdom having never been there before. So I went down for breakfast, then jumped on the bus, and was off. I always wanted to ride "Expedition Everest" and today was my chance! I had the fastpass for it that morning, so I knew I wouldn't have to wait too long. And after riding it once, I knew I had to ride it again, so I got into the single rider line and rode it two more times! There were other things I wanted to ride while there, so taking a 4th spin wasn't in the cards for this visit.

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I went on the "Primeval Whirl" (which was okay for what it was, a tame roller coaster) and the "Dinosaur" ride (to me, it was like the "Jurassic Park" ride at Universal w/o the water + "The Transformers" ride without the cool factor). By then, it was close to 2:00, and I needed to hit Disney Springs. It was nice that Animal Kingdom had shuttle service to Disney Springs, what wasn't so nice was that those buses didn't start running until after 4:00. So I had to catch a bus back to my hotel, then catch another bus to Disney Springs from there.

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Upon arriving at Disney Springs, I immediately headed for the Star Wars store. After spending $400+ there, I headed out to find where "Secrets of the Empire" was so I'd know exactly where I was going on Sunday (I'll go more into detail about that in Sunday's report). Finding its location, I decided to check out a few more of the shops since I had some time. As I was perusing the Star Wars-related wares of one store, I couldn't believe my ears when I overheard a customer asking a store employee the difference between the red and blue lightsabers...and he didn't know! So I immediately stepped in and assisted her, regaling her with all the pertinent SW information I had, so she could make an informed and educated purchase. Then it was time to head out and get to Disney's Hollywood Studios. I was hoping that DS would have shuttle service going there...no such luck. So once again I had to board the bus back to my hotel, which turned out to be a good thing because it allowed me to drop off all of my purchases so I didn't have to carry them around all evening. Then I headed out to catch a bus to DHS.

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The event started about 7:00 I believe, and I arrived there @ 7:30 and decided to get into the first of the four panels they were having that evening on the upcoming "Galaxy's Edge", which started at 8:10. The panel was held at the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular stage, and Warwick Davis came out to introduce David Collins, who would be hosting the event. His guests for the evening included: Doug Chiang (VP/Creative Director at Lucasfilm), Robin Reardon (Executive Creative Producer - Walt Disney Imagineering) Chris Beatty (Executive Creative Director - Walt Disney Imagineering) and Scott Trowbridge (Portfolio Creative Executive – Walt Disney Imagineering). They showed all kinds of production artwork from Batuu, and talked about how guests will actually be able to fly the Millennium Falcon! They didn't give an exact opening date, other than 2019 which we already know, but we did get a cool poster and some exclusive trading cards for attending the event!

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The rest of the night I spent riding Star Tours (I got to go to Crait and Batuu in the same trip!) Acquired all the different stickers for my badge in the scavenger hunt, rode the Tower of Terror, met and got my picture with BB-8, bought an AT-AT popcorn bucket, perused the shops for what Star Wars-related goodies they may have, and saw the end of the night fireworks display. During the fireworks, the guy next to me dropped to one knee and proposed to his girlfriend...she said yes. Once that all ended, as it was after midnight, it was time to head out and catch the bus back to my hotel. Hard to believe that Sunday was already here and with it, my last day in Orlando!

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TO BE CONTINUED...





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