When we left Disney back on December 10th, we had no plans to return again but we learned that Rob’s aunt & uncle, Linda and Herb, had made reservations at Fort Wilderness from January 8th and checking out on January 11th.
It didn’t take too much arm twisting to make a decision to return since we didn’t have any firm plans after our stay at Riverbend. We also knew that it had been many years since their last stay at Fort Wilderness so maybe we could help them find their way around. And even sans the theme parks its always fun at Disney so who needs an excuse to go there anyway!
Lake Louisa is only a 45 minute drive from Disney so on the morning of the 8th, we leisurely readied for our departure, figuring we didn’t need to leave until 11:30-ish. Taking SR-27 to SR-192, it was an easy drive, arriving at Disney around 12:30 pm. As usual, there were a few RV’s ahead of us waiting to check in but we made it to the head of the line in short order where we were greeted by the usual smiling cast member. Once again, we lucked out and were able to get our favorite site, #631.
Linda and Herb arrived several hours later and were given a site right near us, #628. Once they settled in, they came over and we enjoyed some munchies and adult beverages followed by a delicious soup which Linda made and a salad I made for supper. Once our tummies were filled, we walked over to the Chip and Dale sing-a-long where we enjoyed the show for a few minutes, then walked down to the marina/beach to watch the fireworks.
The next morning, Rob made bacon and eggs for everyone on our new griddle, then we headed over to Wilderness Lodge by boat. While sitting in the lobby, one of the cast members, Jeremy came over and talked with us for a bit. Being a former history teacher from Illinois, you could tell he loved all the nitty gritty facts and trivia about the Lodge and about Disney World in general and enjoyed sharing them with us.
During our conversation, he recommended several of the various tours Disney offers, including the Holiday lights tour. He also recommended the Backstage Tour, Keys to the Kingdom (which we’ve already taken twice) and the Steam Train tours. We would have liked to have taken the free 9:00 am Wilderness Lodge hotel tour again but it isn’t given on Fridays and we were leaving on Saturday. After about an hour of discussing trivia with Jeremy, we wandered around the lodge and walked down to the Wilderness Vacation Club lobby where there is a display of a few of Walt’s backyard train cars.
Unfortunately by the time we were ready to leave, it was pouring! Yuck! We stopped at the Roaring Fork restaurant for an ice cream in the hopes that the rain would stop but no such luck. We did get a little soggy walking down to the boat dock but luckily while we waited for a boat to take us back to Ft. Wilderness, we were able to stay dry under the shelter at the end of the dock. We thought we would be able to stay dry once we were on the boat but not so. Oh, well, what’s a little rain, at least it was a warm rain! It finally let up as we walked back to the 600 loop. That night we had an enjoyable dinner on board Linda and Herb’s RV.
Luckily Friday morning dawned bright and sunny. The plan of the day was to go to the entrance at Magic Kingdom by boat, do our usual resort hopping at the Grand Floridian and Polynesian and then take a ride on the monorail around Epcot. The monorail to Epcot was pretty crowded.
After that, we took the boat back to Ft. Wilderness, walked back to our RV’s for a quick break, then drove over to Port Orleans Riverside resort where we had a quick bite then took the boat to Downtown Disney where we walked around for a bit. Even though we have done all of this many times before, we still enjoyed it and had fun showing Linda and Herb our favorite things to do.
After we returned from Downtown Disney, we hopped in the van and drove over to the Boardwalk resort area. We had decided earlier that both Linda’s needed the night off from cooking so we went to the Big River Grille and Brewery for dinner. This was the place Rob and I had wanted to try the night of the boating fiasco when we went to see the Osborne light display.
We arrived early enough (5 ish) to get seated right away – normally a reservation is recommended. Earlier I had subscribed to their emails so I had received a coupon for a free appetizer. Linda and Herb bought the first round of drinks (thanks again!) while we enjoyed a totally delicious Jalapeno Spinach Cheese Dip with nacho chips.
For entrees, Linda and I both had the hazelnut crusted chicken with sun dried cherry sauce, Rob had their meat loaf which was quite different since it was primarily sausage based and Herb had steak. Everything was delicious and their prices weren’t as exorbitant as some of the other Disney restaurants. Our average entree cost was $16, that won’t buy you a hamburger at most other places around here! Highly recommended!
After dinner we took a short walk along the Boardwalk but we were all pretty tired. It was a fun but exhausting (no surprise there, it is Disney after all) day. The next morning, we said our goodbyes – Linda and Herb were leaving for the Fort Myers area and we were heading back to Lake Louisa for a few days. I’m sure that we’ll end up seeing them again at some point in time before they start heading back to RI the end of March.
Stay tuned for our next adventure!