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Photo TR: A "Scare-ibbean" October with TPR '11


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October 2011 finally arrived, and it was time to take the plunge with TPR for a week of Orlando goodness, followed by another week of Western Caribbean goodness aboard the Freedom of the Seas! Although we've been to Orlando countless times and seen what feels like everything there is to see, this trip was filled with brand new experiences!

 

For starters, it was really nice to finally meet up with many of you I've only known online for the longest time. Then there were the parks. We had our first visits to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party, Discovery Cove, Halloween Horror Nights, Aquatica, and last but not least, the TPR house party.

 

In the report, it should also be noted that I decided to borrow a friend's Canon D50 for the trip. The downside of this was that I really only had several days to try and learn everything on it. From point and shoot to DSLR is like a Ford Fiesta to a Ferrari....but I'm always up for a challenge. On top of that, the other day a friend suggested I try using Gimp with some of the images. Again, uncharted waters for me, but I figured "what the hell...let's do it," so I decided to mess around a little. The results are questionable to say the least, but I did get a triple double....so all is good.

 

Anyway, let's get this party started. Up first is Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. We loved it. The Magic Kingdom, people dressed up, good friends, candy, a great parade (complete with brainwashing soundtrack), fireworks, and 5 minute lines for everything? Um, yeah...sign me up!

 

Picture pages (sorry, no Jell-O).....

 

Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party

Downtown Disney Marketplace

Disney's Coronado Springs Resort

Wilderness Lodge

Discovery Cove

Halloween Horror Nights 21 review

Aquatica

First day at sea

Labadee, Haiti

Montego Bay, Jamaica & the Margaritaville "slide of death"

Cozumel, Mayan Ruins, Margaritaville

Final Day at Sea

More Disney Goodness

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We stayed here for the week. The owner of this condo provided the worst cable package ever. I can't tell you what happened in sports from Oct. 9th through the 16th, but I'm well versed on everything that happened in Orlando's Latin community during that week. He almost died because this.

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If you know exactly where this is located, you visit WDW a lot. Not that that's a bad thing.

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"Oh, we'll park in 'Villains' if I say we park in 'Villains'.......muahahaha."

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I see you, Red.

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Fake HDR FTohwaitaminutethat'sjustawful.

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Redemption?

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Yay, we're here.

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"Velcome to my lair. Do make yourself comfortable."

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The park now offers personalized lightsaber design and construction.

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The future and stuff. Mostly stuff.

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Something about Disneyland here.

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Not only the costume look good, but it was selected for aerodynamic purposes as well.

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This is not in Tomorrowland.

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OMG, Justin Bieber.....and Divv!

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I'm sure this picture will one day hang in a museum. I've titled it, "Lou makes a $240 phone call, Ginny is shocked, and Chuck is busy thinking about a Dole Whip."

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Told ya.

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"He stole my balloons!!! Why didn't someone tell me that he had one of those...things?!?"

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Those balloons mean one thing....candy!

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Chuck and Bieber, about rock out on BTMR.

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Jack, Caribbean, sequels, lots of money, and um, stuff.

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Boo to you.

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Hi, Larry.

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Hi, Lou!

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I told you he had magical powers (or just got caught in a pleasant photographic surprise). ;)

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It's Halloween, so I suppose the Haunted Mansion makes sense, no?

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I don't mind this one following me home.

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Hanno, you win.

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Love this one.

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One last time....

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See ya real soon.....just not here much longer.

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We took a spin just so Larry could laugh at how much better Japan's is.

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Pro Tip: without a tripod and a remote shutter release, fireworks pictures suck.

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=( These had so much potential.

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Goodnight, Magic Kingdom. Up next, more random Disney goodness. Stay tuned!

Edited by BeemerBoy
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Love the shot outside the mansion. I was wondering how it turned out. It was nice to finally confirm the existence of the mythical Shannon after only being teased with pictures for years. It reminds me of the first time I saw a unicorn.

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Love the shot outside the mansion. I was wondering how it turned out. It was nice to finally confirm the existence of the mythical Shannon after only being teased with pictures for years. It reminds me of the first time I saw a unicorn.

Ha! Yeah, I was pretty surprised/proud of that shot. I fully expected an 8 second handheld exposure to not work out. I just wish the mansion could have been in focus....but I'm not greedy.

 

 

Thanks, guys! Matt, if you or anyone else is interested in the full size pic of that one, or any other, just hit me up.

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Hope you were excited to meet me & Ice Bat for all of a minute. Perhaps we'll break the five minute barrier next time!

 

And I didn't think it was possible to have a worse cable package than the one at my hotel, but you have just proved me wrong. No jury on Earth would have convicted you...

 

dt

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Jon - My time around the monorail system on this visit was far too short, thus the amount of monorail pictures suffered tremendously. In fact, Renee even made us take the ferry (GASP) back to the TTC after MNSSHP!! Okay, it may have been because they were only running the resort line sporadically, but I'm still blaming Renee. :p

 

Bob - I've spent hours conducting market research in order to learn what really sells these reports.

 

Dave - It wasn't just Ice Bat.....it was "Disco" Ice Bat, which makes me even sadder that I failed to get a picture with you guys. And wait, five minutes? I'm ambitious....so I'm shooting for at least six! =)

 

 

And now for more Disney goodness. In this installment, I present to you random shots from around the Downtown Disney Marketplace.

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While this building is obviously now occupied by AAU, it has a certain historical significance at WDW. Do you know why?

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Overheard twice while in the store: "Yes, I believe it is open now, but no, ma'am, it's actually not a Disney park."

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My little niece likes legos. And that's a boring caption. Sorry.

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It's like straight out of a sci-fi film or something.

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Close enough.

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Wait, it IS still just place two parts together and push, right?

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Oh, okay, they must've been using those computers for high tech engine calibration then.

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Why is there a one-handed pirate in sneakers walking four dogs?

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Um, your guess is as good as mine on this one.

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World of Overspending store time! Oh, and hi again, Lou.

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There's a large model of the castle in here. (insert Disneyland joke here).

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It comes complete with a "Hidden Mickey." Do you see it?

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I don't watch the show, but I think it would be awesome if a "Biggest Loser" contestant wore this once.

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"What has two thumbs, and is the focus of Disney pervs everywhere?"

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It's like a monorail.....ON A MONORAIL!!!

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"Attention all Central Florida pedos, there will be a little princess parade through the Downtown Disney plaza at 2 pm. Thank you, and have a magical day!"

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Time for my first visit to the Earl.

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And it was.......

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....HEAVENLY.

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Stupid Flanders.

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Then we got transported to Tokyo....which was alright by me.

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Hi, Elissa!

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Time to grab a treat and head out.

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Up next, some Disney resort love. Stay tuned, and as always, all comments welcomed.

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While this building is obviously now occupied by AAU, it has a certain historical significance at WDW. Do you know why?

--- Totally just a guess, but was this the WDW preview center?

 

 

Amazing photos Scott (although they could probably use a few watermarks for good measure)! It looks like you spent some time reading the owners manual before embarking on the use of that beast of a camera. I look forward to seeing where we are going to go next, but I think this also might make for a great off shoot thread. I'm sure there have been threads based on how to take a theme park photo before, but I'd love to see an amateurs guide for how you took some of these amazing photos. Great stuff.

 

 

 

Chris "life gets cool when you turn off the automatic settings" Connolly

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First off, thanks Brandy and Chris!

 

Yep, it was indeed the Preview Center, which makes it the first building opened to the public on property. It was a true crash course on the camera...I just dove right in and tried to soak up everything I could about the settings, etc. I probably ended up with more "bad" than "good" shots, but that just gives me a reason to learn about post work.

 

Chuck, I like to consider myself a sandwich enthusiast, and I can certifiably say that the Earl of Sandwich was by far the best "chain" sandwich I've ever had.

 

"life gets cool when you turn off the automatic settings"

Amen to that.

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^ Maybe that's why we had such a great time? I'm guessing we'll be up your way for a little something new next year though!

 

As for the tables, or table as it was, there's one word to describe it.....rubbish. It was video screen poker, or as I like to call it, worthless. It really confused me. I mean, they had every other table game there, and those all had real chips and real cards, so why not the poker table? Without chips and cards in hand, there's no reads to be made, thus no money either. Because of that, I didn't even bother with it. That was really one of the very few disappointments I had with the ship. Luckily there was a TON of other things to keep me occupied though.

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-Shannon's costume was awesome.

 

-Boo to You automatically loops through my head, whenever I see MNSSHP photos. So sad we had to miss it, this year.

 

-We are convinced that LEGO blocks have some sort of crack-like substance embedded in the plastic, that makes kids mental with addiction for them.

 

-The Mickey plush photo is now my desktop, just in time for Charlotte's birthday.

 

-That DD Pedo Parade creeps me out, every time we encounter it.

 

-I want an Earl of Sandwich Caprese. Right NOW.

 

-Stupid sexy Flanders.

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^ :-)

 

-The Mickey plush photo is now my desktop, just in time for Charlotte's birthday. =)

Yay! Happy Birthday to Charlotte!

 

 

Just a quick update for now. Come, won't you join me for a brief look at Coronado Springs Resort and Convention Center? This is one of Disney's "moderate priced" resorts, and for some reason (at least to me, anyway) it seems to get lost in the shuffle. I decided to take a little time, walk the grounds, and snap a few pics for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy.

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Love the look of this check-in area. I always have "Hotel California" in my head when I see this.

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It's a gift shop. The captions are pretty much writing themselves on this part of the report.

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To the left is the large food court area. To the right is a restaurant.

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A look at "Pepper Market."

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Also in the courtyard, across from Pepper Market is Rix Lounge.

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Inside the lounge.

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And another look at it.

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Now let's step outside and make our way to the pool, shall we?

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The place has a great look to it. It's very much like the Caribbean Beach Resort, but "Mexican" instead.

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There's never anything wrong with outdoor bars.

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Over at the marina, looking back at the main building.

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Bridge. Yep, I warned ya...don't hold your breath for any exciting captions.

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At the center of the resort is the main pool complex.

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And this is the cool looking centerpiece of the main pool. Sorry, not a lot of pics due to it being fairly busy with people.

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And it has a slide....although I'm not sure how thrilling, due to most of it being hidden from view.

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Again, outdoor bars are a plus.

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Kiddie area.

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Arcade.

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And it's time to head back to base.

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Up next, some random views of several "Deluxe" resorts.....which may or may not include a monorail...or two.... =)

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I've always thought the Coronado looked like a nice resort, but it never seems to have any "buzz" behind it. A friend of mine went to a conference there and thought the rooms and grounds were fine, but the food options were weak (this was about five or six years ago).

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How 'bout a quick trip to the best Disney resort without a monorail station?

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This is the area only available to the top-level guests. However, when one of those guests invites you and your camera up to shoot a few pics, you don't hesitate.

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Sorry, Bob. You're stuck with me for this part of the report.

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Hidden maple leafs (it's spelled that way for a reason, kids).

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I love these quiet sitting areas around the place.

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Sitting down there in the winter is one of the true joys of any Disney resort.

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I was running short on time and good light, so it was unfortunately time to head out.

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Goodbye, Wilderness Lodge. 'Till next time!

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Oh, hello, Mr. Gallardo.

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Sheesh, their animatronics just keep getting better each year.

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