aka. Every Person Comes Out Tired
We spent a lot of time in Epcot. In fact, we probably spent
as much time here as we spent at the other three parks combined. There are
two parts to Epcot - Future World and the World Showcase. Future World is
a series of exhibits/rides that each focus on an educational aspect. The World
Showcase is a number of pavillions, each stocked with restraunts, shops, and
shows relating to that country.
Leaving a Legacy
See those large stone figures in front of the ball? That's a
new item in Epcot called "Leave
a Legacy." It was started with the 2000 celebration and still continues.
On the front of those are metal plates, inscribed with pictures of people.
Ken and I looked at those each time we came into this park. On our last day,
we decided to spend the $35.00 to leave a legacy. So, if you go there, you
can either go to West 6-H-10-8-5 and find us or search for Scott Nicholson on the system to find it.
Our Legacy at West-6-H-10-8-5
When you first enter Epcot, you are in Future World, which is like a huge
science museum. Here is what we did and our thoughts:
Spaceship Earth is the large ball, and is a fairly hokey
ride on the history of communication. It's the first thing you see in
Epcot, so many people flock to it. The ride loads just inside the door
and it's a constantly-moving ride, so if the line outside the building
doesn't curve, it's a very short wait.
- There are east and west Innoventions, each with a set of exhibits on current
and upcoming technologies. Some were not quite a surprise (this is a PlayStation
2...) and others were interesting (Xerox's digital paper, which is a rubberized
sheet of black and white balls that rotate to show what is on the page). It's
worth going in.
- Also in the Innoventions area is a large Coke-sponsored glacier. The first
part is a cheesy-but-quick walk through a frozen area, but after that is a
tasting area where you can try 8 Coke products from around the world (and
it's free!) This was quite tasty and thirst-quenching; Ken and I visited a
- The Land focuses on agriculture. There is a very interesting boat tour in
the Land which shows some of Epcot's advanced agricultural techniques. They
also offer an in-depth walking tour of this area, but our timing was never
right for it.
- The Living Seas has a number of aquarium-type exhibits. You might even see
a diving mouse! Hint: When you first enter, there is an option to skip the
opening movie. Unless you have oodles of time, it really doesn't add much
to the experience.
Imagination is home to a 3-D film featuring Eric Idle and Rick Moranis, which
is certainly worth seeing, and a ride about Imagination, which could be
skipped. The current ride no longer features Dreamfinder and Figment, which
is really a shame. However, there are a few things worth exploring in this
building. If you enjoy the music in the theme parks, you can create your
own Disney theme park CD by selecting tracks from a computer. There are
also some cute technological things to explore. In one, they take a picture
of you and then allow you to morph it into an animal. When you are done,
you can e-mail it to 3 people, so bring your e-mail address of your friends!
- Test Track is a chance to see what it is like to be in a test-dummy's seat.
It zips you around pretty quickly - you hit speeds of over 60 MPH (and it
sounds like a roller coaster). But to be honest, it feels like you're in a
convertible on the highway. As this is the only thing approaching a thrill
ride here, the lines get loooong. Use FastPass
or go to the single riders line.
- Energy gets the "Most Improved Exhibit" award. This used to be
a number of very droll films with an entertaining look at dinosaurs in the
middle. Now they have revamped it with Ellen Degeneres, Bill Nye, Alex Trebec,
and Jamie Lee Curtis, and the films are very entertaining. This one is worth
- We skipped The Human Body, as Ken can't handle the motion in Body Wars.
I was on this ride on a previous trip, and can tell you that it is a good
motion simulator - much more exciting than Star Tours in MGM.
The World Showcase
The other half of Epcot is comprised of a number of World Pavillions.
We came back to Epcot a number of times to eat at different countries, and
each time, we took in a few more pavillions. Here were some of the highlights:
- Canada has a 360-degree film showing the landscape and people of the country.
It is a very nice 18-minute film, but you have to stand for the film. Don't
visit this when your feet hurt.
- Morocco has excellent food (and belly dancers, if you're into that sort
of thing). We went for lunch and had cous-cous dishes. If you don't know,
cous-cous is small balls of a rice/pasta type food, and then they put vegetables
and/or meat on it. Very good stuff... and the mint iced tea is a nice refershment.
- France had a froofy restraunt called Chefs de France, which was created
by three of the "most renowned chefs in France" - Paul Bocuse, Gaston
Lenotre, and Roger Verge. Ken had escargot (aka snails), which he said were
quite like what he got when he was really there. I was...well.. uninspired
by them. (Of course, if there was a Chefs de America in France, the most renowned
chefs in America would be Betty Crocker, Ronald McDonald, and Boy-ar-Dee.)
There is also a 180-degree movie in France that is very beautiful. There is
a brief section in this movie about hot air ballooning. The group they show
is the Buddy Bombard Society, and that is the group Ken went ballooning with
a few years ago.
- Japan is fun for shopping. There is a Mitsukoshi department store with reasonably
priced dishes and other non-Mickey Mouse goods. It is refreshing to shop somewhere
without the Mickey logo on everything....
Italy has a nice courtyard which is a replica of St. Mark's
square. Ken would like the viewers at home to know that the Doge's palace
is really on the other side of the Campanile.
Scott resting at the base of a pillar in Italy
While we were in Italy, a Masquerade began. This was a little eerie
for me, as the people had black or white material covering all of
their skin, so the masks floated on their faces.
- In China, there is another 360-degree movie, which runs for 18-minutes.
It is beautiful, but you do have to stand for the film... While waiting for
the film to start, we were entertained by some musicians playing authentic
The kid on the right isn't too interested... but I was, since I play a similar
Norway has one of the best places to eat in all the parks,
in our opinion. It's a traditional smorgesbord with really tasty cold meats
and cheeses and hot meats and vegetables. It's reasonably priced, and is
a great place to go. The deserts there were entertaining as well.
Here we have (from left to right), a troll cookie that is painted before
eating, a chocolate mousse viking ship sailing into the ocean, and a dark
chocolate Spaceship Earth filled with a type of rice pudding.
Disney Magic at Epcot
Ken had his first encounter of Disney Magic while walking near
the Innoventions area in Epcot. At first, the sidewalk looked normal:
Then we noticed something about it...
You could even say it glowed!
Here it is at night...
Another enounter with Disney Magic came on the last day of the
trip, as we were leaving Epcot. There is a rose garden, and a group of people
gathered around a spot. We got up there and saw this...
Aww... a bunny eating a rose.
I would guess the bunny was used to people as the flash from
cameras didn't bother him.
The final bit of Disney Magic happened after the trip, once
we settled down. At the top of this page were two pictures - one taken by the
Disney staff and another taken by me later on the same day. Notice in the top
Notice something different? They were doing construction on
the ball while we were there. The Mickey, 2001, and Epcot symbol were not there
in real life.. it's Disney Magic!
Admittedly, it could be that this little Mickey appears on each
picture you buy from them. But when you scroll back up and look at the picture,
it appears that they are part of the ball.
Whew! This has been quite a trip.. but there's still more! Check
out Cirque du Soleil at Downtown Disney, or visit another