It’s mildly embarrassing to admit that my recent trip to Disney World was my fourth in a year (okay, 13 months). Two of those times were for work, I swear! This trip, like last year’s, was for my association’s ImpACT! Leadership program, which I’ve help develop. I find this program amazingly rewarding, between the leadership consultant we’ve hired and watching the participants connect.
This year the program was held at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. It has a “Spanish Explorer” theme, and the conference spaces had some lovely traditional textile art displayed. The resort also has a Mayan pyramid themed pool! I’m sure we could debate the legacy of the Spanish explorers in Central and South America, but let’s just leave that for someone else’s blog. I enjoyed the theme, the decor, and the gardening – plus some perfect weather the last day I was there!
We didn’t have much time in the parks, but managed to squeeze in some fun, including some of the shows. I haven’t been to the Lion King show at Animal Kingdom in a long time, and enjoyed that. We also forked out some cash and went to the Spirit of Aloha show at the Polynesian Resort. I really loved this, but I’ve always loved the styles and sounds represented in the show. The vegetarian meal option was uninspired, but the performances made up for it. I barely noticed what I ate.
I did find some delicious vegan meals, however. At the Yak & Yeti Restaurant, in Animal Kingdom, I had a spicy cauliflower meal for lunch. That same day, I had another cauliflower meal at the Coral Reef Restaurant in Epcot. I guess I’m the only one weirded out by people eating seafood as fish swim by at their elbows. Nevertheless, I highly recommend the vegetarian/vegan meals both restaurants have, and you can’t beat the ambiance.
In other food-related topics, I was excited to have the Maleficent ice cream cone at Magic Kingdom, a rum Dole Whip at Animal Kingdom, a delicious rum drink at the Spirit of Aloha show, and another rum drink at the pool bar at Coronado Springs. It was not a trip of dietary restraint! The conference catering food was excellent as well, with good vegetarian options for their buffet lunches. If conference food is a priority, have your conferences at Disney World!
One of the really fun things we planned for the participants of our ImpACT! Leadership program was a team-building scavenger hunt in Epcot. One part of the scavenger hunt was finding as many Hidden Mickeys as possible. If you didn’t know, Imagineers hide Mickeys all over the parks as they are building them. They could be anywhere and take a sharp eye to find. Ever since I learned about them, I’ve enjoyed hunting for them as well. Makes the time standing in line go by faster, too!
I guess it will be a while before I go back to Disney World. Our program will return there in 2020, so if I’m allowed to go, I *may* do some Star Wars themed sewing, because the new Galaxy’s Edge world will have opened by then, and I will need some Princess Leia/General Organa inspired outfits. Until then, I have several trip’s worth of magic and memories to keep me satisfied. Whenever things get stressful, there is no end of happy Disney things to keep me happy.