WDW Every Ride Kids Challenge Part Five
This is the fifth and final part of a series. Be sure to check out parts one, two, three, and four before reading on!
As we hooked a right past Cinderella Castle and headed towards Tomorrowland, I only had one thought in my mind, ”I hope he doesn’t fall asleep in Carousel of Progress.” My son loves this attraction and was showing no signs of slowing down, but parents, we all know that in a moments notice that can change! I got the thumbs up that he was ready to go as we sat down in the last two seats at the end of one of the last rows for ride #30 Carousel Of Progress. After 20 minutes of non-stop entertainment, we hopped right next door to ride #31 The Peoplemover.
Next, we ran up to Fantasyland to knock out ride #32 Peter Pan’s Flight (FP15) & #33 It’s A Small World. Then we grabbed a FastPass for ride #34 Haunted Mansion (FP16). While on Haunted Mansion, John said to me, “Daddy, I think we are going to do this!” I still didn’t want to jinx anything, so I just smiled and told him we had a pretty good shot. But, in reality, he was right. We had 6 rides left with 2 ½ hours until park close. As long as a ride didn’t break down or Daddy didn’t do something to sabotage our run, we had a great shot at a completion!
For the next 3 rides, we headed off to Adventureland where, in fact, Daddy did almost sabotage things! At first, everything was going according to plan as we grabbed our next FastPass and hopped on ride #35 Pirates Of The Caribbean (FP17). Then picked up a Jungle Cruise FastPass and made our way over to ride #36 Magic Carpets of Aladdin.
We headed over to the Jungle Cruise and experienced one of the best skippers/group of fellow passengers I’ve ever had! She was so animated, funny and into the role that it got everyone on the boat locked into her every move. Yes the jokes are corny (which is clearly intentional), but how they are delivered can turn a boring ride into a phenomenal one. My fellow passengers completely got the humor and it was so much fun. I really wish I remembered her name AND something else I completely forgot to do….TAKE A PHOTO ON THE RIDE!
Yep, I forgot to take the on ride photo. Which is right up on the list of mistakes you really don’t want to ever make on a run. It ranks in the top 3 of challenge no-no’s, along with forgetting where you parked the car, and a dead phone due to not having enough portable chargers. Funny thing is, I didn’t even realize it until we were up the stairs near the Tiki Room.
I turned in a panic to John that we needed to go on it again. Fortunately, standby was only 15-20 people deep so we only had to wait a short time to board, but the damage done. We sat down and I was so angry at myself. John again, always knowing the perfect thing to say, “Daddy, I’m sorry. I should’ve remembered to tell you to take the picture.” I looked at him and reassured him that he had nothing to apologize for and that Daddy had messed things up. Then I reassured him that everything was going to be alright and we still had time to get everything done.
What followed was probably the worst group of fellow passengers I’ve ever encountered on this ride. You would’ve thought the skipper (who tried her best) was speaking in another language. It felt like the ride took three times longer to get through, but we finally had our photo for ride #37 Jungle Cruise (technically FP18, but the re-ride was without one).
We finally departed from the Jungle Cruise a little after 10:30 pm and still in great shape. 3 rides left with an hour and a half until close. I grabbed us a FastPass for Winnie The Pooh and we headed to Fantasyland to close out the night. As we loaded onto Ride #38 Winnie The Pooh (FP19), John turned to me and said, “Daddy, I think we are definitely finishing this challenge!!” I looked at him and said “We are almost there, big guy!”
Next on our list, it was time to go Under the Sea! I grabbed our 20th and final FastPass of the day and as we ran around 7 Dwarfs yelling “Stay Open!” We loaded into our sea shell and sang every song on ride #39 Under the Sea - Journey of The Little Mermaid (FP20)!
AND THEN THERE WAS ONE!
When exiting Under the Sea, I looked at my phone and realized we still had an hour to go before park closing. As long as 7 Dwarfs did not break down, we had it in the bag. As we walked over to our final ride, John once again said, “Daddy, we are definitely going to finish this challenge!” The wait to get on was excruciating. We were both getting anxious and I just kept repeating for it to please stay open.
While waiting I got a message….. Marty King has donated $125 to your donation page for being the first to complete the #EveryRideKids Challenge! Now this was fantastic news BUT we hadn’t actually gotten on the ride yet. You want to remain positive when you are so close to finishing, but it’s very hard not to think of the worst thing imaginable. So to help John and I take our minds off things, we went back through our tweets and I showed him all the fun GIF’s that my fellow spreadsheet HQ buddy Korrina (@SoarinOverWDW) posted throughout the day for John. He laughed and smiled and it really helped when the little dude was starting to get really tired! When we finally got close to the Cast Member at the front of the line, I thought for a moment to ask for the front row. And then quickly slapped myself in the face and said no way. Just get us on this ride!
Well you already read how it ended, so all that’s left is one last on-ride picture…Ride #40 Seven Dwarfs Mine Train!!
On our day, we covered 17 miles over 4 parks across the Walt Disney World property. I took almost 36,000 steps so John probably took about 50,000 on his little legs. We took some pictures and videos on the way out and then celebrated by going to….McDonald’s! It was an incredible day and I was so proud of my son. A father/son moment I will never forget!
When John woke up the next morning, the first thing he asked was, “How much money did we raise?!” With a big smile, I told him over $800 and his mouth dropped open. I shared his expression and was blown away by the support and generosity we received. Thank you again to everyone!
So I thought the next few days would be a relaxing Disney vacation but John had other plans. He wanted to do another challenge on this vacation and try and get to $1,000 in donations. So after an off day, we recharged the batteries to take on……the #EveryRideToddler Challenge!