Review: Disney Springs AMC Dine-in Theatre

I’ve heard about AMC Dine-in Theatres before, most particularly the one in Disney Springs.  The concept is awesome, but we have yet to give it a try.  Maybe because we go to the movies a lot at home (at our ordinary old-fashioned-type theater) or maybe because we’ve never made room on our Disney World vacation schedule to squeeze one in.  We’ve been fortunate on the last several trip to have had spectacular weather and going to the movies seems more like a great rainy day plan to me.  Luckily, Nick’s treated himself to dinner and a movie in Disney Springs and here’s what he thought…

Review: Disney Springs AMC Dine-in Theatre

By Nick

On my latest solo trip to Walt Disney World I had a few items I wanted to cross off my must do list, and to go to the AMC Fork & Screen theater in Disney Springs was one of them.

I had some preconceived reservations going in, and some of these reservations were justified.

One of these was would I really want to see a movie for the first time with servers walking around, interacting with me or other patrons, thus causing me to miss something?

So I chose a movie I had already seen, twice in fact, Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

I went on the morning after I took the Monorail Loop Lounge Tour, and was feeling none too clear headed, and it was also a rainy day, so, the perfect time to go to a movie. I was told that the AMC in Disney Springs, unlike my local theater, doesn’t have reserved seating, but that is not the case with the dine in theaters apparently, as I was indeed able to pick a seat for the 11am show.

After arriving in Disney Springs via bus a little early, I walked through the rain from the one side DS to the other, walking through shops along the way.

Once I got to the theater, I went in the wrong entrance, going in by Splitsville. This is the regular side, but since I didn’t have any clue how this sprawling theater was laid out, I asked where the Fork & Screen theaters would be found and was told the entrance to that side was by Planet Hollywood, but since I’d been through security already (yes, I had to empty my pockets and get patted down!) and it was pouring rain, I was directed through the inside of the theater to the doors to the dining side.

I was allowed into the theater about 20 minutes before the 11am showtime and was quickly greeted by a very nice server who took my order and returned a few minutes before 11 with my cheeseburger, fries, and Bacardi and Coke.

The burger and fries was pretty good and the rum and Coke was fine. I was pretty much finished by the time the movie started after what felt like 20 minutes of previews.

As for the theater, the seats recline very far back, which isn’t a problem, unless the person in front of you is sitting up eating, and their head is very much in the way, which was the case for about 15 minutes of the movie.

About halfway through the film, I realized I hadn’t seen a server at all for awhile. I decided I wanted to try one of the milkshakes I heard were so good, and maybe a small popcorn to satisfy my savory and sweet craving.
I pushed the button that I was told would bring a server quickly…and waited about 20 minutes before someone showed up.
I asked for a small popcorn, and was told they only came in large buckets (?!) so I passed and got a chocolate milkshake, which was absolutely better than I was told it would be. Very highly recommended.

The overall experience however, was mediocre at best. And it wasn’t cheap. I got the bill 10 minutes before the end of the movie, and admit I did not analyze it thoroughly, but it was $35! (That price doesn’t include the cost of the movie ticket.)

My suggestion, if you want a designated seat, this is the way to go. I noticed several people around me who did not order a thing, so can only assume they chose this theater for that reason.
Grab a meal at Splitsville next door, where the food is fantastic and reasonably priced, and save room for a milkshake at the theater.
Follow Nick, his wife Barbie, and friends on all their many Disney adventures:  Disney Musings Blog, on Twitter, on Facebook, On Instagram, On Pinterest.  You can listen to Nick, our friend Dave and me on The Disney Exchange Podcast where we talk about…well, you can probably guess.

Disney Cruise Deck

Disney Cruising – At Sea Day Tips

Before the first Disney cruise we took that had an at sea day on the itinerary, we wondered what the heck that would be like.  At SEA.  You’re stuck on a ship, floating around in the ocean with typically no land in sight.  What does one DO under such conditions?  Sleep in?  Lay by the pool?  Honestly, we are simply not the kind of family that would be excited by either one of those options!  This caused us no small measure of concern initially.  Seven Disney cruises later, we think we’ve got a pretty good handle on exactly how to make use of an at sea day to the best advantage.

Disney Cruising – At Sea Day Tips

Plan ahead – At sea days provide the perfect opportunity to splurge!  Book in advance both spa treatments and adults-only dining.  Both of these are wonderfully relaxing experiences.  We’ve enjoyed massages and both brunch and dinner this way many times.  We strongly recommend making this part of every at sea day opportunity!Disney Cruise Sunrise

Get UP!  You are on a Disney cruise – this is most definitely not the time to sleep in.  Get your patootie out of bed and embrace the day!  There is food to eat and activities to try.  Sleeping late is for wimps and ne’er do wells (I’ve always wanted to say that!) – you’ve paid good money for the amenities Disney Cruise Line offers and there’s no better opportunity to make the most of that investment like an at sea day.Disney Dream Children's Play Area

Walk around a bit, breathe in the sea air, grab some grub and make some decisions.  Your personal navigator (offered in both print and through the DCL app) will detail the day’s schedule.  Plenty of fun for all ages will be on the agenda. We find there’s usually not enough time in the day for us to do everything that appeals to us.Disney Dream Gym

Consider activity – Explore the ship, work out in the exercise room, play games like ping-pong, basketball or shuffleboard.  The astoundingly plentiful cruise food makes burning some excess calories very appealing.  We thought the Midship Detective Agency was awesome on the Disney Dream!  It was a lot like a scavenger hunt that took us all over the ship.  Word of caution – if you feel strongly about hanging out by the pool, get there early for a lounge chair!  If you want to try the AquaDuck or AquaDunk slides (depends on the ship), be prepared to wait in long queues.Disney Dream Pool

Learn something new or see a movie – Both options are available.  Attend a cooking demonstration.  Learn to draw a Disney character or create towel animals.  Mixology and other adult beverage seminars are loads of fun!  First run movies will be shown in the very comfortable and spacious on-board theater.  I haven’t even mentioned the Disney character meet-and-greets or the trivia games!  So much to do in one day!Disney-Dream-Cooking-DemoMovie-on-the-Disney-Magic

Are you a Disney Cruise fan?  What’s your favorite at sea day activity?

 

 

The Wave Soup

Disney at Home – Duplicating Recipes

The Wave EntrancePart of (I should really say much of) our Disney vacation happiness is about the food.  Favorite restaurants, favorite dishes, trying new places – oh, boy, do we love to eat at Walt Disney World!  What’s best about all this dining is when a particular dish really surprises us.

Disney at Home – Duplicating Recipes

Last December when Raymond and I were on our post-Christmas R&R, I booked dinner at The Wave (Contemporary Resort) for our last night.  I knew we’d be tired and want to be close to our room at Bay Lake Tower.  We’d never eaten in The Wave before, but had enjoyed snacks and cocktails in the lounge more than once.  We knew the food would be good and were looking forward to the relaxing atmosphere.The Wave Menu

As expected, we were exhausted, but had been having a fantastic trip.  We arrived for our last dinner practically sleeping on our feet.  If you’ve never been to The Wave before, it’s a lot like being in a cellar – no windows, cozy if a bit dark.  The service is absolutely top notch.  We ordered soup for an appetizer and, if I remember correctly, we both ordered fish for our entrees.  I’m positive we ordered a bottle of wine from the cocktail menu.The Wave Menu Cover

The soup was a most pleasant surprise and made the entire meal for us.  In fact, it was one of the most delicious soups we’d ever had.  The ultimate comfort food – creamy soup full of sausage, gnocchi, and spinach.  As we were exchanging Mmmmmm’s, I made the offhanded comment that I could probably recreate this amazing deliciousness at home.  We enjoyed the rest of our dinner, made the short walk back to Bay Lake Tower and crashed.  The next morning we headed for home.

Fast forward about at week and Raymond says, “Hey!  Weren’t you going to try to make that soup?”.  Yes!  I had planned on that and I made my grocery list right then and there.  I’ve cooked Disney dishes at home before, but always found a recipe online to use.  This time I didn’t even search for a recipe, I made it up as I went.  How hard could it be?The Wave Soup Recreation in Progress

Turns out not really hard at all.  I stared by browning spicy Italian sausage which I drained and set aside.  While the sausage was browning (I added red pepper flakes to make it spicier), I defrosted, squeezed dry, and food-processed a package of frozen spinach (the food processing part was a total waste of time).  After that I whipped up a simple roux of butter and flour.  Then I stirred in a healthy amount of both chicken broth and real live honest to goodness cream.The Wave Soup Recreation Begins

I added the spinach and sausage and one store-bought package of gnocchi to the pot and let it all cook together for about half an hour.  This gave the gnocchi time to become soft and all the flavors to blend together.  While all that was going on, I toasted up some garlic bread as an accompaniment.  The original version from The Wave had a crunchy toasted cheese topping which I’ll try to recreate in the future.The Wave Soup IngredientsThe Wave Soup Recreated

While the soups didn’t look exactly the same, the flavors were nearly identical.  I was very proud of my soup!  I will most definitely be making it again as soon as the weather starts to cool off a little in the fall.

Have you made a Disney dish at home?  What’s your favorite Disney recipe?

25th Anniversary Passport – Walt Disney World

In 1996 we were already a family of four.  Megan was five and Joseph just 13 months old when we took them to Walt Disney World for the first time that summer.  In July.  We stayed at All Star Music and had the time of our lives!  This week Disney previewed the merchandise coming out this fall to commemorate Walt Disney World’s 45th Anniversary – My, how the time has flown by!  Do you remember Disney World in 1996?  Nick’s got a wonderful souvenir from that year.  Take a look…

25th Anniversary Passport – Walt Disney World

By Nick

This passport was from Walt Disney World’s 25th Anniversary in 1996.

Remember the Magic!
This passport, like the Epcot version, measures 5 1/2 by 3 3/4 inches.

The first page tells you what the passport is all about.

“Welcome to the 25th Anniversary Celebration at the Walt Disney World Resort!
It’s a big year of celebration with festivities, parades, and special special events continuing through 1997.
While at the Magic Kingdom, guests can validate their passports at 8 key park locations (locations are identified on each of the pages).
The passport is also packed full of great Magic Kingdom trivia- see how much you know!”

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The next couple of pages tell some of the awesome events and parades you’ll experience on your 25th Anniversary visit. Remember the Castle Cake?

Then the trivia begins!
Some of the questions are hard! See how many you can answer. I’ve included the answer key at the end.

The biggest problem I had with the whole thing, and an issue they may not have foreseen, was the bleeding through of the stamps to the opposite page.

Well before the Pirates movies, this book paid homage to one of the most popular Magic Kingdom rides, the only ride to get this honor.

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How many did you get right?

For more Disney awesomeness, be sure to follow Nick, his wife Barbie, and friends:  Disney Musings Blog, on Twitter, on Facebook, On Instagram, On Pinterest.  You can listen to Nick, our friend Dave and me on The Disney Exchange Podcast where we talk about…well, you can probably guess.