|(My son is MUCH taller now!) If you have followed my twitter account @kennypirate or this blog for long, you know that one of my hobbies (or all-consuming passions as my wife calls it) is Ultimate Touring. Some may wonder what Ultimate Touring is. In 2003 Len Testa, the guru behind www.touringplans.com, first proposed an “Ultimate” tour of the Magic Kingdom in which a physically-fit person or team could visit every operating attraction in one operating day. The first official completed tour was by Yvette Bendeck and Edward Waller who completed 37 attractions in 11 hours. This team actually held the record 3 different times over a 4 year period. Many of the completed Ultimate tours have been accomplished by distance runners. Only just over 40 people have completed an Ultimate Magic Kingdom tour under Touringplans guidelines. (One is a family with no individual names given.) The “record” has only been held by 15 groups and has often been taken back by a previous record holder.I’ve had the joy of leading three complete Ultimate tours with my children, nephew and brother, but our first attempt was incomplete because Philharmagic was broken when we were attempting to experience it. On our previous complete tours, we’ve experienced the following: 71, 72, 75 attractions – my daughter and I actually experienced every operating ride, show, parade, fireworks and met every available character according to the guidelines. To my knowledge, we were the first group to make that claim. We averaged an attraction every 13.94 minutes on a busy June day with late extra magic hours. We did all this despite a 3 plus hour downpour that rained out the first evening parade. Later we learned later that the Kiss Goodnight wouldn’t count because the rules at the time required it to be viewed after park closing or it would have been 76 attractions. A small, but important, detail that we somehow overlooked. We’ve learned not to overlook any details! I’ve been a part of holding Ultimate Touring record with various family members since June of 2010.
All that one receives for the accomplishment is a wonderful listing in the Touringplans Ultimate Hall of Fame. It’s a prestigious club of people who have gone without eating sustainable food for 12 or more hours, carried more water on their backs than the average camel, worn blisters on their feet and inner thighs and resisted sleep in the Carousel of Progress.
So, what will I be doing on Leap Day this year? I’ll be attempting, with my son and daughter, to raise our personal best by more than 14 attractions! The schedule is favorable with every regular attraction already scheduled to operate on a Wednesday, which is rarely an extra magic hour day, and touringplans just added Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom missions to the available list. I’ll use an Android Motorola Atrix and carry two backup batteries. I’ll also bring along my two backup chargers to drop off by City Hall for additional battery power. I also use my Canon Powershot camera for low light photos and bring a backup batter for it as well.
I’ll post all my data live to twitter as I’m accomplishing each attraction using an Android app that my brother created to store the data as well as post it to twitter. You can find that free app in the Android Market listed as “DISNEY Touring.” The data required for each attraction includes: Attraction number, attraction name, current posted wait time, current Fastpass distribution time, time in queue, time on ride, time out of line and whether or not I used a Fastpass for the attraction. It looks like this: 1,Buzz Lightyear’s Spin,10,07:55 PM,19:22,19:23,19:29,FP Used. I even answer twitter questions and give shout outs when time allows, but I don’t answer email during an Ultimate Tour – only after.
How many UNIQUE attractions do you think we can do in 24 hours? Whomever guesses the nearest to our actual total without going over will win my One More Disney Day Ears that I’ll receive free as a an Annual Passholder!
I updated the schedule with information provided today: http://kennythepirate.com/magic-kingdom-leap-day-character-entertainment-schedule/
(My beautiful bride on our honeymoon in 1990 on the right. I have no idea who the little girl is that jumped into our photo!)
Characters that I think SHOULD appear at the Magic Kingdom for Leap Day. They could just delete all the regular meets and follow my plan; complete with meeting locations! (Maniacal laugh, maniacal laugh).
Oswald the Lucky Rabbit - He’s the official greeter and will stand proudly in front of the Mickey floral. While it was all started by a mouse, the mouse wouldn’t exist without this rabbit.
Bean Bunny – most people know him as the disgruntled bunny from Muppetvision 3D. Let’s put him next to Philharmagic because it’s 3D also
Brer Rabbit – we can’t purchase his movie in America, we do have his ride. How about putting him out front??? We’ll let Brer Frog meet with him too.
Captain Jumps-a-lot: He’s Minnie’s pet bunny from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. We’ll replace Mickey in Town Square Theater
Deadeye: He’s from the Rescuers and who could turn down a character voiced by Goober Pyle? Tom Sawyer Island would make a great greet location!
Fanny Cottontail - She was the love interest for Oswald. We’ll have them meet together like Mickey and Minnie would normally do.
Frog band from Meet the Robinsons – Someone needs to provide dance music on Stitch’s stage in Tomorrowland.
Hoppopotamus – she’s one tough rabbit/hippo wuzzle, so we’ll let her serve as head of security at the bag check.
Kermit – We’ll do a duo meet or rotation with Bean Bunny at Philharmagic.
Lucky Jack – we’ll locate this character from Home on the Range in Frontierland and give Donald a day to swim in the Rivers of America with Daisy.
Max Hare – this character from the Tortoise and the Hare asked if he could run an Ultimate Tour with me, but he’d slow me down too badly so I’ll dump in the Hall of Presidents for a good nap.
Mother Rabbit – she’s the kind, unselfish mother from Robin Hood whose costume resembles Fairy Godmother, so we’ll let her meet behind the Castle. Sis, Skippy and Tagalong will join off an on throughout the day.
Mr. Toad – He’ll be driving an ECV in The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh area.
Mr. Whiskers – he doesn’t have many friends and really needs a shave. The Barber Shop is a pefect fit for him.
Naveen (as a frog) – Send Tiana and human Naveen on vacation for a day and bring in the humorous frog!
Nivins McTwisp aka White Rabbit – We’ll leave him at the Mad Tea Party because he fits well there, but he has to sign his real name.
Steel Rabbit – This robotic rabbit loved the magnetic carrots invented by Dr. Bunsen Honeydew. He’ll take Stitch’s spot in front of the Carousel of Progress.
Thackery Earwicket aka March Hare – of course we’ll put him right next to White Rabbit at Mad Tea Party. Just be careful with him, he’s a bit crazy.
Yellow Rabbit – he hopped past Mr. Toad’s security and is attempting to collect carrots from the Pooh Ride queue.
Roger Rabbit - Roger will appear several times during the day with the Dapper Dans because he’s a sucker for the old “Shave and a haircut” song. I just hope he doesn’t damage too many buildings with his grand entrances.
Tigger – He’ll be fighting Mr. Toad for the prime real estate in Fantasyland.
Thumper & Miss Bunny – This married couple with four little bunnies will hop through Adventureland because nothing is a bigger adventure than raising 4 kids! They’ll need some help so Thumper’s mom Mrs. Hare will tag along.
Who would YOU invite to the One More Disney Day / Leap Day event?