December 2010, The Crystal Palace
Everyone loves a hug from Winnie the Pooh. There’s pretty much nothing better, and if you disagree then you’re barely human and I don’t know what to do for you.
But when Estelle and I decided to create this list of our favorite Disney World characters to interact with in the Parks, I wanted to challenge myself to go beyond Pooh, Piglet and Eeyore and think think think about the interactions that really stick with me.
Here are mine. In order. And you’re going to want to get all the way to number one because it is a doozy:
5. Tweedle Dumb and Tweedle Dee in the Magic Kingdom
February 2013, near the tea cups
I don’t know how often these two are actually out in the Parks, and I am too lazy to look it up, but I feel like I never see them. I see Alice and the White Rabbit all the time, but these two 70′s throw-back monsters aren’t something I regularly connect with Fantasyland. So just for their pure to-me novelty, I was psyched to meet with them. Add to that the fact that these two were SPOT ON in terms of portraying their characteristics, and I was over the moon with giggles and smiles. Super fun interaction.
4. Lotso Huggin Bear in Hollywood Studios
December 2011, The Prop Shop
I first met Lotso in 2010, where he was posing in the Magic of Disney Animation under the Sunnyside Daycare sign. I was so charmed but how soft and sweetly-scented the giant bear was. I was hooked. I met him again the following year in The Prop Shop, a private event space in DHS. And again, I found him to be so delightful. I also learned something terribly important that day: if you squeeze his tail, it squeaks!! WHAT NOW?!?! There’s not a single Disney character I’d rather spend the day cuddling with.
3. “Our” Belle in Magic Kingdom and Epcot
September 2012, Town Square Theatre
Sometimes it’s not the character itself but the person portraying the character that makes all the difference. This is one of those cases. Rob and I were … erm … enjoying a particularly hot and humid trip, and our interactions with Belle was something that made the trip totally magical despite the weather. We initially met her in the Town Square Theater. I can’t remember why, but I made Rob stand in that line. She was sweet and lovely as Belle is wont to be. And then the next day we met her again in Epcot’s France Pavilion. And when she saw us, her whole face lit up. She remembered us! And she picked up right where we’d left off the day before, teasing Rob about being a hairy beast. It was like, “no shit, really?! You remember us of all of the people you must meet in a day? Really?” But she did. And it was awesome.
2. Buzz and Woody in Hollywood Studios
December 2010, Pixar Place
I’ve already written about this once, but this interaction continues to stick in my mind as one of the absolute best Disney moments of my life. The short version: I was hot, sick, exhausted and foot sore, and I waited WAY TOO LONG to meet with these two. But as soon as they walked into the room, all of my own personal discomforts melted away, and they made me feel so, so happy. Two very enthusiastic thumbs up for these two hams.
1. Mark Diba in any Park or at any Resort
September 2012, Camp Minnie-Mickey
You guys, Estelle never said that we had to write about licensed Disney characters, and if we’re talking about characters at Disney, Mark is absolutely, 100% my favorite. In case you don’t know Mark (how sad for you), he is my official-unofficial Disney Husband as well as the insane man live tweeting horrible Disney rip-offs. (You can see What’s Up here and Kiara the Brave here.) He also sometimes blogs for the Disney Hipster Blog. Why do I love Mark? Because he is the only member of the Cult of Trolley. And he makes me stand in front of the castle with him, tormenting a poor Photopass photographer, so we can get photos like this:
Because not only does he know exactly when the fireworks are going to go off during every stage show, he also knows all the moves to Move It, Shake It and sings along with the Tiki Room in a most adorable way. He is, simply put, the best Parks companion you can have, and that’s why he gets the #1 spot on my list.
So which characters would you stand in an unreasonably long line to meet in Disney Parks? Let us know in the comments below. And don’t forget to head over to This Happy Place Blog to read Estelle’s favorites!