(Note: the internet was difficult on the ship and time was short so I apologize for being a bit behind with the updates.)
We arrived at the port and the security was much more thorough than in the past. The bus was stopped and had to open up all compartments to check. Soon we were at the terminal. Other than small handbags, we had to check everything. We made our way in through security and then out the back of the terminal. We found a seat in the stands to wait for the Christening to begin.
Once the ceremony started it was filled with live music, dancing and characters. There was a lot of excitement. I held it together until the cast and crew of the Disney Dream were presented. It brought me to tears.
They had cameras on the ship so we could see close ups of the cast and crew. When Jennifer Hudson came out, they talked about her accomplishments and told us all how she got her start on the Disney Wonder.
As Jennifer was declaring the name of the ship, a helicopter picked up the large champagne bottle filled with “dreams”, and took it to the ship to break it against the bow. There was another bottle up on the bow hooked to a small crane that broke at the same time.
And then there were fireworks!
Our review of the Disney Dream will continue later today or tomorrow.
Dining, dancing, fireworks and more will be on the ticket for New Year’s Eve at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida. Here is a list of what is going on in and around the resort. Note that all events are subject to change without notice.
- “Move It! Shake It! Celebrate It!” Street Party at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. & 5:15 p.m.
- “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade” at 12 p.m. & 3:30 p.m.
- “Main Street Electrical Parade” at 7 p.m. & 10:30 p.m.
- “Holiday Wishes” fireworks at 8:30 p.m.
- “Fantasy in the Sky” fireworks at 11:50 p.m.
- Park Hours: 8 a.m.-2 a.m.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios:
- “Block Party Bash” parade at 3 p.m.
- “Fantasmic!” nighttime extravaganza at 6:30 p.m., 8 p.m. & 10 p.m.
- Live performances by in-park band “Mulch, Sweat and Shears” at Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Hat at 8, 9, 10 and 11 p.m.
- “Lights, Camera, Happy New Year” fireworks starring “Mulch, Sweat and Shears” at 11:55 p.m.
- Park hours: 8 a.m.-12 a.m.
- Special version of “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth” at 7:30 & 11:40 p.m.
- Park hours: 8 a.m.-1 a.m.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom:
- “Mickey’s Jingle Jungle Parade” at 3:45 p.m.
- Park Hours: 8 a.m.-8 p.m.
Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon:
- “Electrical Water Pageant” at 10:25 p.m.
Cirque du Soleil at Downtown Disney:
- 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. performances of La Nouba
- Special New Year’s Eve champagne toasts
- Guests will receive a limited-edition La Nouba pin created for the New Year’s Eve event
- More info: 407/939-7328 or cirquedusoleil.com/lanouba
DisneyQuest at Downtown Disney:
- Ring in the New Year at DisneyQuest with favorite cyber attractions and games, a DJ Dance Party with a New Year’s Eve countdown, party favors and a coupon for a personal pizza and soda at FoodQuest
- Party Hours: 8 p.m.-1 a.m.
- $39 per person, advance/$45 per person, day of
- More info: 407/934-7639 or disneyworld.com/disneyquestparty. Tickets may be purchased online or at the DisneyQuest Box Office.
Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney’s BoardWalk:
- Dance into the New Year at Atlantic Dance Hall at Disney’s BoardWalk
- Party Hours: 8 p.m.-2 a.m., ages 21+
- $35 for access to the main floor of the Dance Hall, party favors and a champagne toast at midnight
- $75 for a VIP ticket that adds a private upstairs area with seating; limited viewing for Epcot fireworks with guaranteed seating and coffee, tea or hot chocolate with dessert bar and a premium bar
- More info: 407/WDW-DINE
Special Dining Experiences…
La Hacienda de San Angel at Epcot:
- La Hacienda de San Angel is offering a special six-course prix-fixe menu and live music starting at 9 p.m.
- $199 per person, or $225 with wine and spirits (plus tax and gratuity), $49.95 ages 3 to 9
- Epcot admission required
- More info: 407/842-1107 or e-mail email@example.com
Bistro de Paris at Epcot:
- Bistro de Paris is offering a special prix-fixe New Year’s Eve menu
- $150 per person, $225 with wine pairings with each course
- Epcot admission required
California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort:
- California Grill will host a New Year’s Eve party featuring food stations, an open bar, a casino-style game room, DJ, dancing, Disney characters, live entertainment and a great viewing location for the Magic Kingdom fireworks
- $525 per person, all inclusive
- More info: 407/WDW-DINE
Each year, the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival kicks off the Holiday Season in Chicago. There are many activities with the highlight being the Mickey Mouse parade lighting over a million lights down Michigan Avenue.
We attended this celebration a few years ago and it was a lot of fun. This year events start at 11 am and continue through 7 pm. The parade is scheduled to begin at 5:30 pm.
From 11 am until 3:45 pm there will be live music at the Harris Stage in Pioneer Court. There will also be holiday booths where you can help decorate and eat an Eli’s Cheesecake, have some Lavazza Italian drinking chocolate, get your photo with Santa, build a marshmallow snowman and decorate gingerbread houses, enjoy a free Cuties Clementine. There are also events going on at the Shedd Aquarium. Phineas and Ferb will be there with Radio Disney and teach everyone the Squirrels in Your Pants dance.
This year for the first time Minnie Mouse will join Mickey in the parade. They will make their way down Michigan Avenue to the Chicago River, lighting the street with twinkling lights along the way. Following the parade, the Allstate Fireworks Spectacular will begin over the Chicago River. An absolute amazing end to the night.
Wait! That’s not the end of the night. Many of the stores on Michigan Avenue will remain open until 10 pm for your shopping pleasures!
There are also some sweepstakes and contests which will give you the chance to win stays, museum visits, American Airlines AAdvantage miles, and a shopping package!