Spending a Day or More at Walt Disney World’s Toy Story Land

Disclaimer: I was provided park passes and other incidentals for the purposes of this review. All opinions are my own.

toy story land

For the first time in forever (picture me singing in my best Anna and Elsa voices!) I spent a full day at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Then, I went back the next day for several more hours! And – I would do it again!

Let’s face it, we all know Hollywood Studios has been lacking to say the least. A half day at most was maximum for any visit. This was especially true for frequent visitors to Walt Disney World. Then at the end of June the gates opened and everyone was invited into Andy’s backyard!

Toy Story Land

I’ll admit I wasn’t prepared for how Hollywood Studio’s new Toy Story Land would get to me. The details, the colors, the music and the rides all play a huge part in taking you back to your childhood. I personally think Disney has out-done themselves this time. Before my first visit I had read all sorts of reviews of the area. Most positive with a few negative comments and observations. I very quickly realized that those few negative observations were so very wrong! I couldn’t find a negative thing to say about it. 

Woody’s Lunch Box

A new food location offering very different choices than your usual theme park food. I had the opportunity to speak to the chefs that created the menu for this new quick service spot to get some idea how they came up with the food options. Comfort food and lunch box food were their main goals.

Although not a long menu, the choices are great. Because I visited twice, I was able to sample a couple of items and everything was very good. My favorite, of course, the Lunch Box Tart (Disney’s version of a Pop Tart! $3.29). The tart comes in raspberry or chocolate hazelnut, is larger than your traditional Pop Tart and could very well be enough of a breakfast for some.

My friend enjoyed the S’more French Toast Sandwich which is made of marshmallow and chocolate ganache on grilled custard soaked Brioche and encrusted with graham cracker crumbs for $7.99. Although I didn’t try it, the aroma was very enticing and I know I’ll be giving it a try on my next visit.

Photo Credit: Post50RX.com

On my first visit I went for the Breakfast Bowl ($8.49 – A hearty portion of potato barrels smothered in smoked brisket country gravy, scrambled eggs and a sprinkling of green onions). I did ask for the country gravy to be left off and in typical Disney food fashion, they were more than happy to accommodate my request. I enjoyed this breakfast and would definitely recommend it. However, it is very large and one order is enough for two people. Unfortunately, I didn’t know that going in so wasted just about half of it.

The Smoked Turkey Breakfast Sandwich was my choice on my second visit. The sandwich is sliced smoked turkey breast, melted swiss cheese, and scrambled eggs on grilled sourdough bread for $7.99. 

The lunch and dinner menus are the same offering vegetable macaroni and cheese, potato barrels, grilled cheese, smoked turkey sandwich, BBQ Brisket sandwich and more.

The entire area is roomy, colorful and inviting. I did initially wonder if they had enough seating for standard meal times when many people choose to eat and although the area was crowded, I had no issue or trouble finding a table either day.

Slinky Dog Dash

The attraction everyone had been waiting for – and it doesn’t disappoint! The first thing I realized was that the physical length of the attraction is huge. The layout takes up lots of space. I wasn’t prepared for the size. As the ride was being promoted before opening I kept imagining it more like Goofy’s Barnstormer – I was so wrong! The time you are on the ride is much longer than the Mine Train for example. It’s really worth waiting in line for. It’s a mix of fast, slow, up, down and hairpin turns. The creativity of the Imagineers who created Slinky Dog Dash was definitely working overtime!

Andy’s blueprints for Slinky Dog Dash decorate the wall inside the queue.

Alien Swirling Saucers

Oooooh! You have been chosen! Again, my imagination of what the attraction would be was much different than what it actually is. I imagined Magic Kingdom’s Tea Cups with an alien theme. Again, I was wrong.

Like the Tea Cups, the Alien Swirling Saucers is just long enough of a ride to make stop you from getting dizzy. You can’t control your spinning so there is way for a family member to think it’s funny to make you turn green!

Toy Story Mania

Although this is a ride we have all enjoyed for a long time, the new queue makes you feel as if you are experiencing it for the very first time. Mr. Potato Head is a fun addition and there are so many new items throughout that your time in line goes by in a snap while you are looking at some of the themed walls and decorations and remembering all those items from your childhood.

Toy Story Land in General

On your first visit, you could spend hours just looking. Every little corner of the land has some sort of great little item that almost blends right in, just as if it was a toy left out in the yard!

Creativity abounds everywhere you look – like “RESTROOM” out of Scrabble Tiles – 

The Green Army Men patrol the area almost constantly either drumming their way through the crowd or playing with other toys they found around the backyard!

If Toy Story Land is any indication of the creative minds of the Imagineers working overtime – can you just imagine what Star Wars Land will be!!!!

I can’t wait to go back!




Toy Story Land is Open! Celebrate with a $250 Disney Gift Card Giveaway!

toy story land giveaway

Disney’s Hollywood Studios closed to capacity on June 30th for the opening of Toy Story Land! Hollywood Studios hasn’t seen that much traffic in a super long time. Social media was over-loaded with ride through videos and images thanks to those who braved the crowds.

At noon on opening day, there was a 3 to 4 hour line to be allowed into the Toy Story Land area. Besides that, add on a 3.5 or more hour wait to get on one of the attractions. I would say Toy Story Land opening was a success!

From a roller-coaster ride named after Slinky Dog to a food area based on a lunch box, Toy Story Land will definitely be a hit!

For many of us that haven’t gotten there yet, but are planning to get there soon, let’s have a giveaway! A little extra Disney money for your visit to Andy’s backyard. Heck, even if you’ve already been there – you can enter too! You deserve to win if you braved those crowds!

The Rules:

  • One winner will be awarded a $250 Disney Gift Card (e-gift card to be delivered via email)
  • Winner will be notified via email and have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen
  • All winning entries will be verified
  • Must be 18 years of age or older to participate
  • Open to residents of the United States and Canada
  • Giveaway starts on July 5 and ends at midnight on July 21

a Rafflecopter giveaway

An Open Suitcase teamed up with these 9 Disney loving bloggers to bring you this giveaway:

  1. Post 50 RX
  2. The Creative Stay at Home Mom
  3. Redhead Baby Mama
  4. Motherhood & Beyond
  5. Oh Sweet Disney
  6. The Farm Girl Gabs
  7. Adventures in Familyhood
  8. Over the Top Mommy
  9. A New Dawnn

Good Luck!!!




Ten New Things Coming to Walt Disney World Before 2021

Walt Disney once said “We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” It’s hard to believe that in a few short years (2021), Walt Disney World Resort will be 50 years old. I wonder if Walt could of ever imagined just how many new doors and new things were on the horizon.

ten new things wdw

I sometimes think that the motto that is followed today goes more like “If we build it, they will come!” In just under 50 years, Walt Disney World has gone from the Magic Kingdom and a couple of hotels to a massively, sometimes overwhelming, stunningly beautiful, vacation destination for millions.

As someone that has visited since it was only the Magic Kingdom and a couple of hotels, I do try to embrace the growth, the changes and all that it has become. Sometimes I welcome those changes with open arms. Sometimes I wonder if they will ever stop making the changes. Sometimes I miss attractions, shows or parades that are just a memory in a family photo album. I do always appreciate that those changes have created for me and my family a destination that we can continue to enjoy. A destination that no matter how many times we visit, still has us seeing new things.

The new Toy Story Land will be open in just a little over a month and will be the start of Disney’s Hollywood Studios moving into once again being a full day park.

Here are some of the new and exciting things that we will be seeing in the next few years:

No. 1 ~ Main Street USA Live Theater ~ Yes or No?

At the 2017 D23 Expo, an announcement was made that a new theater would be coming to Main Street, USA inside the Magic Kingdom. The theater was said to be based on the iconic Willis Wood theater in 1920s Kansas City, where Walt lived after he left Marceline. Additional details were supposed to follow, but no one heard anything further until a few months ago when a rumor began circulating that the project has been canceled. This cancellation information has not been confirmed by Disney and should be considered a rumor until it is confirmed. I have searched for cancellation confirmation and haven’t been able to locate any.

No. 2 ~ “Guardians of the Galaxy” Attractions ~ Epcot

Photo Credit: Disney Parks

The ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Attraction at Epcot will be one of world’s longest enclosed coasters when it is added to Future World in Epcot. The attraction will open in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021.

No. 3 ~ Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge ~ Hollywood Studios

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will be going into that giant spot of Disney’s Hollywood Studios that originally belonged to the Studio Backlot Tour, which was the heart and soul of the movie studio-themed park when it opened. The Star Wars themed land is set to occupy the former Streets of America section (which closed in April 2016). The leftover portion of Streets of America that Galaxy’s Edge won’t engulf has been rechristened Grand Avenue and has been made the new home of Muppet*Vision 3D. The galaxy is not really that far, far away with anticipated openings in 2019.

No. 4 ~ Space Restaurant ~ Epcot

Photo Credit: Disney Parks

This still un-named restaurant will be located in a newly created area between the Mission: SPACE and Test Track attractions. The restaurant will invite guests to travel to space for an amazing dining experience in the stars. There is still no information about what the restaurant will serve or when it will open.

No. 5 ~ Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway ~ Hollywood Studios

Photo Credit: Disney Parks

This Mickey-themed ride-through attraction will be opening in 2019. Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway will put you inside the wacky and unpredictable world of a Mickey Mouse Cartoon Short where you’re the star and anything can happen. The attraction will be located where the Great Movie Ride was.

No. 6 ~ Ratatouille Attraction ~ Epcot/France Pavilion

Estimated completion for this new attraction is said to be Spring of 2020. Very little information has surfaced, but construction is in full swing behind the France Pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase. It is assumed the attraction will be similar, if not the same, as the trackless ride Ratatouille: The Adventure at Walt Disney Studios Park at Disneyland Paris. 

No. 7 ~ Star Wars Themed Resort

Photo Credit: Disney Parks

This first-of-its-kind resort will combine luxury with complete immersion into an authentic Star Wars story. Guest’s journey through space will start when everyone departs together for a multi-day Stars Wars adventure by boarding a starship alive with characters and stories that unfold all around them during a voyage through the galaxy. At the resort, guests immediately become active citizens of the galaxy and can dress up in the proper attire. Every resort window will also have a view into space. The opportunity for immersion at this resort will also stand out among all Disney resorts around the globe, as it will be seamlessly connected to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, allowing guests a total Star Wars experience.

The hotel is expected to have 400 rooms and give guests direct access to Star Wars Land at Hollywood Studios. No planned opening date has been revealed.

No. 8 ~ Disney’s Riviera Resort

Photo Credit: Disney Parks

Using land that was acquired from the demolition of a portion of Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, this new Disney Vacation Club resort will open in the fall of 2019 and will feature approximately 300 units. The resort will feature a rooftop restaurant with views of both Epcot’s and Disney’s Hollywood Studios’ nighttime spectaculars. Disney’s Riviera Resort will have access to Walt Disney World’s upcoming Skyliner gondola transportation system, which will take guests to and from Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Walt Disney World bus transportation to all four theme parks, two water parks, and Disney Springs will be available.

No. 9 ~ Disney Skyliner Transportation System

The Disney Skyliner is a gondola lift system that will connect Disney’s Pop Century Resort, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, and the new Disney Riviera Resort to Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot. Disney Skyliner cabins will have iconic Disney characters incorporated into their exterior design to give the appearance that a Disney pal is riding along with guests, such as characters from the ‘Fab Five,’ figures from Disney attractions, fan favorites from movies, and more. The design of the Disney Skyliner station at International Gateway at Epcot will be inspired by the park’s nearby European Pavilions. Information points to completion in mid-2019, however, it’s hard to tell when visiting if the construction is far enough along. Of course, Disney is famous for it’s magic so chances are the gondolas will be up and running in no time.

No. 10 ~ Tron Roller Coaster ~ Magic Kingdom

Walt Disney World’s Tron coaster will be modeled after Tron Lightcycle Power Run at Shanghai Disneyland. The coaster-style attraction invites guests to board a train of two-wheeled Lightcycles for a ride through Tron’s high-tech universe. The Tron coaster is being built on land adjacent to Space Mountain. Information has this attraction being ready for the 50th Anniversary in 2021.

Which of these ten new things coming to Walt Disney World are you most looking forward to?




Eating in Hollywood Studios for $14.99 and Under

Moving right along into our third park – Disney’s Hollywood Studios – to continue the series of eating in the Walt Disney World parks for $14.99 and under. We started with Eating in the Magic Kingdom for $14.99 and Underand last week we were Eating in Epcot for $14.99 and Under. Contributor Julia really knows how to beat the high cost of food at WDW! Be sure to stop by next week for Eating in Animal Kingdom for $14.99 and Under.

Budget Eating Hollywood Studios

Here are some ways Julia beats the high cost of food when visiting Epcot:

I often order kid’s meals at quick service locations. They are more than enough food and much less expensive! Some of the lunch and breakfast items at Hollywood Studios are ideal for using the kid’s meal rule – they are more than enough for an adult. The portions are large and offer the meal along with a small drink and some fruit. Don’t forget – some snack or dessert items are HUGE and can be a special treat to have dessert for lunch! Live it up! You’re on vacation!

For some reason, some items cost more in one location than another and I don’t know why. If an item is on the list, it is at the cheaper location (Turkey leg in MK is currently $10.99 but in EPCOT is $11.75 and in AK it’s $14.50 w/chips! Cheese sauce is $1.00 in MK and HS but only $.75 in Epcot). This seems to be the case with some alcoholic drinks too. TIP: EPCOT is the priciest of parks when it comes to food and drinks, but also has some items/drinks you can’t find in other parks.

Information is accurate as of August 2017.

ABC Commissary

  • No Sugar Added Strawberry Parfait ($4.99)
  • (Kids’ meal) Power Pack – Dannon Danimals Yogurt, Apple Wedges, Carrot Sticks, Goldfish Crackers, Apple-Cinnamon Snack Bar and a choice of small lowfat Milk or small Dasani Water. ($5.99)
  • Chicken and Rib Combo Platter – Smoked Barbecue Spare Ribs and Roasted Chicken served with Coleslaw and French Fries ($17.99 A few dollars over the $14.99 limit but enough food for two! 

Backlot Express

  • Royal Guard Burger – 1/3 lb Angus Beef Burger, topped with Barbecued Brisket, Pepper Jack Cheese, Lettuce, Tomato and a Pickle on a Dark Bun served with Carrot Sticks or French Fries ($13.49)
  • (Kids’ meal) Grilled Vegetable Sandwich served with Applesauce, Carrot Sticks and choice of small Low-fat Milk or small Dasani Water ($5.99) 

Min and Bill Dockside Diner

  • (Kids’ meal) Pulled Pork Sandwich topped with Coleslaw and includes Carrot Sticks, Apple Slices and choice of Small Low-fat Milk or Small Dasani Water ($6.79)
  • Foot Long Hot Dog topped with pulled pork and coleslaw with chips ($11.49)
  • Chili-Cheese Foot Long Hot Dog with chips ($11.49)
  • Adult sized Barbecued Pulled Pork Sandwich topped with coleslaw with chips ($10.99)
  • Loaded Chili Cheese Nachos served with guacamole, pico de gallo and sour cream ($10.99)

Oasis Canteen

  • Barq’s Root Beer Float ($4.99) 

PizzeRizzo

  • Meatball Sub –  Hoagie Rolled stuffed with Seasoned Meatballs and Smothered in Marinara Sauce and Provolone Cheese served with Caesar Salad ($9.99)
  • Vegetable Pizza –  Pizza topped with Mushrooms, Peppers, Onions, and Tomatoes served with Caesar Salad ($10.49)
  • Regular pizza with Caesar Salad ($10.49)

Anaheim Produce

  • Assorted WHOLE Fruit ($1.99 .. cheapest I’ve found)
  • Snack bars, veggies, chips, trail mix, dried fruit, fruit cups, Churro, Pretzel with cheese sauce ($1 – $6) 

Hollywood Scoops

  • Adult Hard Root Beer Float mixed with Coney Island Hard Root Beer ($8.00) 

Rosie’s All American Cafe

  • Fried Green Tomato Sandwich – Jalapeño Ranch, Pepper Jack, and Arugula on Ciabatta Bread served with Coleslaw or French Fries ($9.99)
  • Burgers/Cheeseburgers with coleslaw or fries ($11.29)
  • 8 piece Chicken Breast Nuggets with coleslaw or fries ($10.49)

Do you have a favorite Hollywood Studios spot for saving money on food?

Up next week will be Eating in Animal Kingdom for $14.99 and Under. And don’t forget to take a look at Eating in the Magic Kingdom for $14.99 and Under and Eating in Epcot for $14.99 and Under.

Julia and her son are frequent visitors to Walt Disney World and Disney Cruise Line. She admins a great Facebook group for Disney lovers that you can find HERE

You might also find 50 Great Tips for Doing Disney on a Budget helpful for planning a trip to WDW




It’s All About the Snacks! Foodie Guide to Flurry of Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

No place does holidays like Disney does holidays – No place does parties like Disney does parties – No place does special treats like Disney does special treats! So I was not at all surprised when I saw Disney Parks Blog post about the food that will be available during Flurry of Fun at Hollywood Studios! All photos courtesy of DisneyParksBlog.com

Snacks Flurry Fun Hollywood Studios

‘Tis the season to be hungry – this holiday season brings a merry array of goodies that are sure to have you smiling from ear to ear. To help you find everything on your wish list, I’ve put together a complete foodie guide to Flurry of Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. And while Flurry of Fun officially kicks off on Nov. 9, as a special surprise, these festive sweets and treats will actually be available throughout the park for you to enjoy starting on Nov. 5!

To start off the list, we’ve got holiday cookies and gingerbread pops galore, offered at various locations throughout the park. In addition, all you jolly elves out there will be excited to learn that there’s a “Prep and Landing”-themed gingerbread cupcake dropping in at ABC CommissaryRosie’s All-American CaféCatalina Eddie’s, Sweet Spells and The Trolley Car Café.

If you’re looking for that classic cup of hot cocoa to go with those cookies, then you’re in luck! This year, guests of all ages can enjoy classic hot cocoa with marshmallows at ABC Commissary, Backlot ExpressPizzeRizzo, Rosie’s All-American Café, Catalina Eddie’s, Fairfax Fare, and Min and Bill’s Dockside Diner.

Guests over the age of 21 can warm up with a special array of hot chocolate beverages offered at Min and Bill’s Dockside Diner and Fairfax Fare, including a hot chocolate martini, Bailey’s Salted Caramel hot chocolate, black cherry bourbon hot chocolate, and a hot chocolate flight where you can sample all three. Other adult beverages available this year include a Peppermint White Russian, a Winterberry Cooler and a Let It Glow drink consisting of vodka and blue-raspberry frozen carbonated beverage with your very own glow cube at various locations around Echo Lake and Sunset Boulevard.

Next on the list is a delicious present that isn’t placed under the tree – it is the tree! These decadent red velvet whoopie pies are decorated with icing garland, ornament pearls, and holiday sprinkles. You’ll find these tree-shaped desserts at Sweet Spells and Fairfax Fare.

A perfect finish to a holiday feast, you’ll also be excited to find an apple cranberry cobbler at Hollywood Scoops and Min and Bill’s Dockside Diner; or if you’re looking for a sweet and savory snack, you can find a festive holiday popcorn mix at popcorn carts throughout the park. This popcorn comes with marshmallows, pretzels and M&M’s and is drizzled with chocolate.

These desserts are worth melting for – Olaf has come to celebrate the holidays this year and he’s brought a sleigh full of fun new treats. Find his special cupcake at ABC Commissary, Rosie’s All-American Café, Catalina Eddie’s, Fairfax Fare and Sweet Spells. You’ll also find an Olaf Pop at Gertie’s Ice Cream of Extinction, an Olaf Sundae at Hollywood Scoops, and Sugar Frosted Fruit Bites at Pretzel Palooza. But that’s not all – be on the lookout for an Olaf-themed sipper that comes filled with a fun “Frozen” beverage!

Finally, wrap up your day with a little extra merriment and melody by attending the Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM! Holiday Dessert Party. Indulge in specialty sweets and sips before you move to a special reserved viewing area to enjoy the all-new Disney Movie Magic show and Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!, a holiday spectacular hosted by the elves Wayne and Lanny from “Prep and Landing.” Among the desserts offered are candy cane brownies, holiday Mickey and Minnie sugar cookies, warm pumpkin pie spiced bread pudding, and sweet Yule Log. In addition, you’ll be given an exclusive ornament to take home with you at the end of the party! Remember, this is a premium event, so be sure to reserve your place at this yuletide celebration today, with dates available Nov 9. through Dec. 31. From Nov. 9-Dec.15, pricing is $79 for adults and $45 for children ages 3-9; and Dec. 17-31, adults are $89 and children are $49 (gratuity and tax included). Book online or call (407) WDW-DINE or (407) 939-3463.

And that’s a wrap! Be sure to check out all of these holly, jolly holiday goodies during Flurry of Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, starting November 9th.