Day 12: Celebration, Mini Golf + Touring the Resorts

The plan for Tuesday was to meet our wedding photographers at the Market Street Cafe in Celebration for brunch. Unfortunately, Jensey got really sick a few days before (and then Nathan got sick a few days later) so we couldn’t meet up. We were really bummed because we had been looking forward to actually having a conversation instead of just striking poses for them! We’d also been looking forward to exploring Celebration, which we’d never seen before, so we decided to go anyway.

Now, just to show you what dorks we are, we wore our bride and groom mouse ears off property to Celebration! We figured it was prolly the only non-Disney place in the world that we could get away with it, and we got lots of nice congratulations. Our brunch at the Market Street Cafe was really good. I think Patrick had an omelet, and I had chocolate chip pancakes and bacon. We didn’t have room, but I insisted that we split a piece of coconut cream pie for dessert (yes, we had dessert with our breakfast – it was our honeymoon!). It was A-friggin-mazing!

Sorry there are no pictures. I’m not sure why we didn’t take any (oh wait – maybe because originally we were gonna let Nathan & Jensey do all the work!). So I borrowed some from the Internets for you…

Market Street Cafe

Not actual Market Street Cafe coconut cream pie, but just as tasty-looking!


After brunch we waddled around Celebration’s lake, where we found this disturbing sign…

So… there are alligators in Celebration’s lake? Then we sneaked into the residents-only recreation center at the park (not worth the jail time, let me tell ya!) and stopped at the fountain.

We struck up a conversation with a family there, and it turned out the dad not only works at Epcot in special events, but he knows our wedding planner! AND he told us they’d just done a scuba wedding in the Living Seas tank! (And our WP thought our wedding was unusual?!) Across the street, next to the movie theater, I discovered the combo fudge/ice cream shop Kilwin’s – be still, my beating heart! Unfortunately, I was too stuffed full of pancakes, pie, etc. to partake, but I vowed to return before we left Florida. It started to rain, so we ducked into these shops…

With the rain, we were glad we’d not gone out to the parks to take pictures with the Roots (although it would have been great weather for this “trash the dress” thing all wedding photographers seem to be really into!).

Next we decided to play miniature golf at Winter Summerland. I wore my screaming yellow poncho, which amused Patrick to no end.

That yellow blob is me in my foxy poncho!


The kind gentleman working the register gave us a free round of golf for being newlyweds, so we decided to try the winter course and the summer course. The theming was great, but it seemed like a lot of the effects weren’t working on the winter side.

Not only did we get the one round free, we also got free Mickey golf balls AND I won both games – hooray! We (OK, I) decided that the loser of the first round had to buy the winner a souvenir, and the winner of the second round had to buy the loser a souvenir, so that meant we each owed each other a prize.

Next up: resort hopping! We started with Coronado Springs cuz it was closest. I was really surprised – I’d always assumed it would be my least favorite Moderate resort because I thought it would be all rocks and dirt and the occasional cactus. But the grounds were quite lush, and the common areas were a lot nicer and a lot less like Taco Bell than I’d imagined. Patrick was fascinated by the pool…

Next we hit Caribbean Beach Resort. Our aunt and uncle honeymooned in Jamaica, and after staying at CBR for our wedding, they declared it very authentic. When I started planning my first trip to WDW as an adult (eight years ago!), I thought I wanted to stay at CBR, but today, after seeing the food court, I decided another of the Moderates would be my favorite. (Every resort we went to, Patrick wanted to see the pool and I wanted to see the restaurant/food court). The pool was being rehabbed…

We’d seen Old Key West when we met my family there at Olivia’s, but we drove around the grounds a bit to get a feel for it in daylight. Then we went to Port Orleans French Quarter, the Moderate I thought would be my favorite. I was kind of surprised to find I didn’t care for the theming at all. I must’ve thought it would look more like New Orleans Square at Disneyland, but it seemed a lot less detailed and more generic… and kinda ’80s, somehow!

Now, I thought I’d heard you could get pralines at the food court at POFQ, but nobody knew what I was talking about. So we had beignets and Cheetos (I know – what was up with that? I never eat Cheetos! I think I was turning into a duck…) Talk about messy! I was covered in white powdered sugar and fluorescent orange powdered cheese!

Look who’s wearing a doofy poncho NOW!


After Patrick’s narrow escape from the jaws of an alligator, we got in the car and headed for Port Orleans Riverside. I suppose it would be a crummy place to stay if you had to walk everywhere, but we both fell in love with the theming. It seemed much more Disney than the New Orleans-esque overlay feeling of POFQ.

We went out back to the water wheel and dashed to the pool through a downpour. While Patrick explored the pool in the rain, I hung out on the porch of the pool bar, which felt even more quaint and Southern with the rain tapping on the roof. We found our prizes in the POR gift shop – a box of WDW stickers for Patrick (they were cool – like mini attraction posters and vintage characters and stuff!) and an anime version of Eeyore on a key chain for me. No pix – d’oh!

Next we tried to see Ft. Wilderness but were thwarted by the transportation system there – I hadn’t realized that they make you leave your car and take their internal bus system to get around. This made me grumpy, so we drove straight to Wilderness Lodge, where our dinner reservations were. It was a good thing, too, because it started pouring again as soon as we got inside. Our Artist Point reservation was for 8:30 pm (the only time I could get when I had to rejigger our schedule due to fireworks changes about a month before we left). But they took us at 5pm right when they opened, and we got a lovely seat by the window.

Our meal was amazing. (Sorry we don’t have pix – I think today was the day we got tired of all the picture-taking.) We split the mushroom soup and the salmon, which Patrick raved about. Afterward we got free berry cobbler for being newlyweds! Patrick got to eat it all by himself because I don’t like fruit. For my dessert I later decided to try the ginormous brownie they sell at Roaring Forks, on the recommendation of the same fellow DISer who steered us toward the France Pavilion’s chocolate mousse. It was HUGE… and hugely delicious!

After dinner we explored Wilderness Lodge. We walked around each level and read about the different rocks and fossils found in each stratum of the Grand Canyon. We “discovered” a little nook on the third or fourth floor directly over the entrance, with a fireplace, comfy chairs and a fantastic view of the lobby.

(Not actual view)


We walked down to the DVC wing to check out the Iron Spike Room (wait – I think they just renamed it something else…) and were excited to see on display the train Walt used to ride around his backyard in Holmby Hills.

I was also excited to see actual families actually sitting in there playing actual games, just like in the DVC ads! (Although the DVC rep we kept running into all over WDW may have been there manipulating this photo op from behind the scenes!). We liked the animal carvings in the beams of the elevator lobby, but there was something about the overall feel of the place that I didn’t like as much as some of the other DVC resorts we’d seen.

We headed back to the main lobby so I could eat my Gigantic Brownie (or 1/3 of it, any way) in our fave nook. We were really sleepy, so we decided to call it a night and return to our resort. But, just like in a Jerry Bruckheimer movie, that turned out to be a false ending…

As we were walking out to the parking lot, we heard the MK fireworks start and caught a few glimpses. I thought maybe we could see them better from the patio at the front of the resort above the entry, so we dashed back inside, ran up the stairs, tripped over the doorsill, and stumbled out onto the patio only to see…. nothing. So we tripped back over the doorsill (I mean really, why is that thing 3 inches high? Isn’t everything supposed to be wheelchair accessible these days?), tumbled down the stairs, and sprinted for the dock. But by the time we got down there, the fireworks were over. However, a boat had just arrived, so on a whim we took it over to the Magic Kingdom and got there 30 minutes before closing time. We went straight to Big Thunder Mountain and got to ride it twice in a row because there was hardly anyone else there!

Then it was back to the boat, back to the Lodge, back to our car, and headed for the Animal Kingdom Lodge. We were really tired. Patrick was trying to perk me up by making up some silly story about an Indian spirit of the Wilderness Lodge named “Panchuto,” but I wasn’t having it – until we got to AKV and were trudging up the stairs from the parking lot, when I tried to exclaim “Praise Panchuto – we’re home!” but couldn’t get past “Praise P–” because this seemed SOOOO funny (Ed. note: This is one of those “you had to be there” stories.) We were in hysterics, staggering past the valet stand – I’m sure we looked drunk. But if our honeymoon were a movie, this scene – heck, the whole day – would definitely be in the “having fun together” montage…

And STILL we didn’t go to sleep! Instead we sat on the deck watching the rain and got to see a group of zebras dash by…

Day 13: Epcot to MK and Back Again!

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2 Responses
  • alexa
    July 7, 2014

    Carrie, I love your blog! I randomly discovered your podcast a month ago and listened to all in the iTunes archive, then stumbled across one of your posts on the DisBoards, leading me here. I love your writing style (and your wedding photos! The one of you in sort of sepia tones with just your earrings and necklace in bright color is just stunning). I wasn’t lucky enough to have a Disney wedding, but had to comment on this post because I DID get engaged in Celebration and it was so nice to see it covered here! We just love that little town, especially the Market Street Cafe! Thanks for the happy occasion to reminisce 🙂

    • Carrie
      July 7, 2014

      Hi Alexa! Thanks so much for the kind words. I love that you got engaged in Celebration—such a fun town, and one you can always return to and reminisce!

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