My fiance and I had Walt Disney World’s list of recommended rabbi, clergy and officiants for four months now. It sat in my inbox, and his, tagged and starred. It was clear and simple to read, there was really no … Continue reading
I’ve been engaged for over a year now and, because of booking and contract timelines, have yet to have a clue as to what we’re doing, but we’ve just started renegotiating with Walt Disney World Weddings and made some important decisions.
We chose to pass on being the first Tower of Terror Courtyard wedding. While we had our hearts set on it, the park schedule and space limitations would have stopped a few of our favorite guests from being able to make it. Instead, we’re moving one park over for an Animal Kingdom ‘Casablanca’ themed reception at Tamu Tamu Courtyard, and we’ll keep our small ceremony at Disney’s Wedding Pavilion, just outside of the Magic Kingdom.
- A few things to note about a theme park reception if you’re preparing your own Disney World wedding:
- Your venues are not solidly booked until six months before your proposed date.
- You cannot access your venue until two hours after the park has closed, making Animal Kingdom, the park that closest earliest, a clear choice winner.
- Parks may decide to add a day of ‘Extra Magic Hours’ and keep the park open for longer, on a whim. If this happens, your reception is pushed back even further.
- Should a larger gathering want to book your space (or your whole park) you can be booted out, even as close as a month ’till your date.
Not exactly ideal. But because we’re having a very small party of just close friends and family, we felt that any emergencies could be easily handled. For others, it may not be that simple. We’ve even picked a Plan B location in Hollywood Studios Park.
So, we’ve moved on from the idea of a Disney Wedding, or destination wedding in general, being the simple easy choice, but we have decided that it’s for us. Nothing is perfect, but this is the party, with its laid-back vibe and surrounded by fun, that best reflects us.
Photo by Disney Travel Babble.
As part of the team at a to-remain-nameless travel magazine I received a lot of flack for my favorite destination. It was a source of anxiety to announce, once I took my chosen vacation days, where I would be heading off to.
“Oh… You’re going to Disney World again?”
“Well… It’s an annual tradition.”
Yeah. Not exactly a homecoming. But deep in my little heart of hearts I was just so happy to be away. And once I was locked inside the Epcot park, I was even happier.
Between the somewhat realistic World Pavilions, Epcot’s answer to a trip to the major countries of the globe, kids were running back and forth with Venetian masks created from feathers and Elmer’s glue and brightly colored Japanese lollipop art, dancing in circles to a bagpipe. Not everyone is as fortunate as I am to really be in these places. Not every family can just jet off and buy a real Venetian mask. And maybe that family of four saved up for years for that weekend trip to Disney, many of them do, but what they have created is the curiosity of what lies around the globe, and the excitement of packing your bags and going. Those children covered in glitter, hands sticky from apple juice and sweaty with excitement, just got a crash course in wanderlust. They’ll take that with them and someday, they’ll board a plane.
there’s a stigma that comes along with the idea. Travel is for a certain group of people, a specific demographic. Travelers look and act a certain way. This is the trap many of us fall into when we assume the single mother maneuvering the grocery line has never left town, or the Southern gentleman with his gentle twang and love of home cooked grits has yet to taste the red meat of a whale. We stereotype the idea of this traveler: the one with dirty boots and a backpack, Swiss army knife ready to go, guidebook haphazardly tossed aside because he doesn’t need it. He could probably suck the venom out of a snake bite and wouldn’t be caught dead in a Hilton, not if his life depended on it.
In reality though, travel is open to nearly anyone. Distance need not be a factor since you can learn just as much about the world in Anapolis as Abu Dhabi. Travelers are men and women and children. They carry wheelie bags, duffel bags, no bags. They rely on smart phones, paper maps, intuition. They’re favorite meals are street carts, grocery stores, 5-star dining. They feel at home on a boat in the Caribbean, in Edinburgh or Entebbe, on the Sydney Harbour Bridge, in Disneyland.
Once, back at Epcot, I sat back on a relaxing boat ride through the Mexico Pavilion. It played Mariachi and showed scenes from Ixtapa, Cancun, Mexico City. Behind me, as with most places in the park, a child was crying.
“I want to go for real!”
“There’s no real Donald Duck there.”
“I know. I just want to go for REAL.”
“Ok! Someday! Soon!”
Between faxing flower orders, sending travel docs, and praying the rain gods to stay at bay for just a few more days longer, travel brides do not need anything else to worry about. For me, this includes shoes.
My hot, hot, burning hot, humid August Florida wedding is causing me some major havoc in clothing. Sure, everyone else can enjoy their sweet lil outfits and sit under a fan, but Travel Bride here needs to hoof it across the ceremony and reception in a sweaty beaded gown, tiptoeing in 6-inch heels. Somethings gotta give, so, I’m giving up the heels. Sorry, Jimmy Choo, no one needs you acting up in 90-degree humidity.
Below I’ve cataloged a few of my all time favorite flats. These aren’t your nieces school-day shows, but chic bridal options that will carry from quiet ceremony to funky reception- and all the way back to the honeymoon suite.