Underappreciated Epcot – The Seas

RM-Bruce-and-JosephToday it may be called “The Seas With Nemo and Friends”, but it’ll always be “The Living Seas” to me.  I think this attraction area has a lot to recommend it (as I mentioned in my previous attempts to raise interest here and here).  My fried Nick would call it “Edutainment” for the educational/entertainment factor The Seas offers Epcot guests, but the draw for me is in the entirety of the experience.  Calm, relaxing, fun, and yes, even with a lesson to teach here and there.RM-Epcot-Aquarium-Eel

Maybe I’m aquarium-deprived since I live in rural Louisiana and it’s a pretty long haul to Audubon’s Aquarium of the Americas in New Orleans (which is awesome, by the way), but there’s something about Epcot’s version of aquatic-animals-on-display that makes me ridiculously happy and magically transforms this little corner of the World into a must-see for me on every visit.  Seriously, don’t skip it – there are a lot of awesome things to see besides the Nemo ride (cruisin’ in Clammobiles!) and Turtle Talk.RM-Manatee  RM-Manatee-Eating-LettuceI’ve mentioned the Manatees before and how fun it is to watch them eat lettuce (no, I’m not kidding).  But wait!  There’s more!

Underappreciated Epcot – The Seas


Bob? Sheldon?






Jacques the Cleaner Shrimp

Next time you go, give it a try.  I think late morning (before maybe heading to the World Showcase for lunch) or mid-afternoon are great times to visit The Seas.  Our family likes to start in the main building to leisurely make our way to all the fish tanks and animal exhibits before we see Turtle Talk.  Then we wrap up the visit with Nemo and Friends – if we had small children, I would have them look for fish on the ride that we’d seen on display in the exhibits.

Depending on the crowd levels, The Seas could be explored in 60-90 minutes.  Short on time?  Allow 20-30 minutes to see the exhibits, then decide if you can afford to wait for the Nemo and Friends ride and/or Turtle Talk with Crush (FastPasses may be booked in advance).  Pre-school and lower grade-school-age children will appreciate those two attractions the most.RM-Epcot-Aquarium-Fish

Have you explored The Seas in Epcot?  What are your must-do attractions or exhibits?


For Love of Epcot’s Spaceship Earth

Spaceship Earth at Sunset / Epcot / Walt Disney WorldThe iconic heart of Epcot’s Future World, this much-photographed geosphere is a beloved park favorite at Walt Disney World.  Spaceship Earth is both a weenie and an attraction – and adored by legions of Disney fans around the world.  The ride inside Spaceship Earth takes us on a slow and easy journey through time for a peek at various innovations in communications technology and how those discoveries influenced human lives through the ages (and will shape our future, perhaps).

For my family, this 16 minute tour of both past and future never gets old and we’re not alone in our love for this attraction!  We’ve been known to ride Spaceship Earth many times during aRM-SSE5 single vacation – even multiple times in a single day.  Is it the animatronics?  The narration?  The smell of Rome burning?  The peek into our personalized future on Earth?  No!  I believe there’s no single moment of the experience, but the perfection in the combination of all the components, the small details and the expansive scenes.

Once again, I asked and you answered.  Twitter followers and Facebook friends were happy to respond to my request for shout-outs, in Haiku form, expressing feelings for Epcot’s icon.  I’m happy to share these gems of poetic beauty with you now…

For Love of Epcot’s Spaceship Earth

From Facebook, there were only two entries, but both were highly creative!

DSCN2870Submitted by Anastasia:

Golf ball cool and dark
Invites me to sit and rest
I can haz nap now

Gaylin posted her fondness this way:

Bright golf ball of love
Beckons all to ride away
Past to future slow.

On Twitter, the response was overwhelming! (If you’re looking for Disney friends on Twitter, you should follow all of these awesome folks!)

From @BerryMary92, a beautiful poem:RM-SSE1

One of Disney’s icons
beautiful site to behold
stands proud in Epcot

From good friend (and occasional guest writer) @AndrewCfran:

At Epcot Center
Lies a geodesic dome
Called Spaceship Earth

@bscala1986 composed this very touching entry:

Grand and miraculous.
A symbol of immortality.
Tomorrow’s child awaits.

RM-SSE4@WDWParkHopper captured Spaceship Earth’s best moments:

Thank the Phoenicians
I can smell the fire in Rome
Time to head back home

@Bekka_C writes of her own Spaceship Earth memories (Bekka – stay awake & you’ll remember it better!):

Every time I ride.
I swear it is new inside.
What a great sleep ride.

@HLebischak also captured the spirit of Spaceship Earth with:

Time traveling sphere –
in the center of EPCOT –
thank you, Phoenicians.

@scottquaile seems to feel the latest Disney technology has not been good for SSE!RM-Spaceship-Earth

My Magic Plussed
Long lines it has

@TacoMan945 submitted this beautiful piece:

Jeremy Irons
Many think you’re a golf ball
Smell in burning Rome

@GoAwayGreen played along this time with a profound piece of art!

Most fragile transport
Of the knowledge collected,
Analyzed and shared

RM-SSE7In @YoPaulieNJ’s entry, Paulie weighs in on SSE’s most recent updates:

The last ride descent
Once so very inspiring
Now a dumb cartoon

Finally, I am proud to bring you the artistic talents of @AmyBethCombs, who didn’t just compose one poem – Amy’s obvious love for SSE could not be contained in a single Haiku.  Amy is the clear winner of today’s game (Congratulations, Amy) with this Ode to Spaceship Earth composed of several entries…

Spaceship Earth is cool.
Spaceship Earth is really cool.
Wow I love Epcot.

Look at those three guys.RM-Spaceship-Earth-Early-Backup-System
That guy’s hat looks like garlic.
I love Spaceship Earth.

Hey, do you smell smoke?
Oh no! Rome is on fire!
Well, there go the books.

Thank the Phoenicians.
You know what they invented?
The alphabet, chump.

How did they do that?
The cave painting on the wall.
It moves. That is cool.

When it turns backwards
That can be kind of scary
The angle is steep.

RM-SSE6Each entry was awesome – some of their expressions of love, others for their honesty.  How do YOU feel about Spaceship Earth?  Which attraction would you like to see tributes for next?

Free Fizzy Fun – Club Cool in Epcot

Soft Drink Flavors in Epcot's Club CoolI’d heard about Epcot’s Club Cool – a LOT.  Blog posts, tweets, Face Book, YouTube – There’s quite the hubbub.  In Future World, near Innovations West, this Coca-Cola sponsored attraction offers guests the chance to sample Coke soft drink products from all over the world – free of charge.  I’d never felt the need to stop in there.  Free or not, I’m not a big soda (pop, coke, soda-pop, insert the preferred term of your choice) drinker and like to pretend I’m more of a trend setter than follower (let me have my dreams, okay?).  So – many trips to Walt Disney World were thoroughly enjoyed without making even a single visit to this unique little corner of Epcot.

Then came FastPass+  and, on our recent WDW vacation, we found were no longer running from attraction to attraction to check available FastPass return times.  We had our scheduled attraction times, the crowd levels were low, the weather was sunny and warm and we…hadSample Flavors in Club Cool extra time on our hands.  It felt foreign.  We did our usual Future World “must-do’s” and still had free time – not enough to walk all the way to World Showcase and back – but enough for some serious thumb-twiddling.  Why not make an inaugural visit to Club Cool and explore the flavors, escape the sun, and kill some time?  I was pretty sure Megan and Joseph would be caught by surprise with the exotic flavor of one of the available samples – an unusual soft drink known as Beverly.

Beverly was originally introduced in 1969 and marketed in Italy as an aperitif (a drink to be enjoyed before a meal to stimulate the appetite, usually alcoholic).  Aperitifs are typically dry in flavor, which would explain Beverly’s sour nature.  Many people find the taste surprisingly and unexpectedly bitter – therein lies the fun!  Reactions to the first taste of Beverly are really amusing to watch!  While there are many people who like Beverly, it’s certainly an unusual flavor.  Not into dry, bitter soft drinks?  Try some of the  many other flavors The Flavors in Epcot's Club Coolto choose from – most are sweet and delicious! A full list of available products is here.

Even though Beverly has been discontinued and no longer sold in Italy (due to product consolidations in 2009), you can still grab a sample in both Club Cool and at the World of Coca-Cola in Atlanta.  Want to know more?  Catch the entire story of Beverly here.

Watch Megan’s and Joseph’s reactions to their first taste of Beverly here.

It’s your turn!  Have you tried Beverly?  Are you a fan?

Voices of Liberty – Epcot’s Hidden Gem

Epcot's Voices of LibertyAdvice about Epcot.  I like to dish out advice – one of the reasons I started my own blog probably.  I’ve got opinions in abundance and, on occasion, people take my advice and it works out great for them.  Really!  So today (not so different from any other if you’ve been here before), I’m dishing up some Epcot love in the form of this message:  Go see the Voices of Liberty.

I visited Walt Disney World many times before I saw a performance by the Voices of Liberty.  I didn’t even know they existed until 2012 when I read someone’s trip report on the DISboards and they were singing (pun intended) the praises of this amazing a cappella group in Epcot’s American Adventure pavilion.  Summer is swiftly approaching and the season is accompanied by a series of holidays that bring out our patriotic love of the good old U.S. of A.  Memorial Day?  Good time to see Voices of Liberty!  Flag Day?  Independence Day?  You betcha!

Okay, back to Epcot…

The Voices of Liberty are simply amazing!  These performers demonstrate an incredible amount of pure talent.  Dressed in early American clothing (seems to be a mix of time periods), there’s no doubt they absolutely love what they do – I’m guessing they consider their set a failure if there are any dry eyes in the Voices of Liberty, Epcot's American Adventurehouse.  Seriously – if you can hear them sing The Battle Hymn of the Republic or The Star Spangled Banner and manage not to get at least a little misty, you’re made of much sterner stuff than I.

The 8-person group performs every 45 minutes throughout the afternoon (subject to change without warning), so there’s no excuse not to take an opportunity to cool off inside the rotunda of The American Adventure pavilion.  The actual show only lasts 20 minutes.  If you’re able, the singers will encourage you to sit on the floor surrounding them as they stand in the very middle of the rotunda – which maximizes the acoustics to great effect!

Check your My Disney Experience app!  Or better yet, check the Epcot times guide upon arrival (I’m sorry to say, the app is still sometimes slow and glitchy) – old, young, and everyone in between will enjoy hearing the majestic harmonies of the Voices of Liberty!

Sample them on YouTube here (they’re much better in person!).

Have you seen a performance by The Voices of Liberty?  What did you think?